3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We boarded the FOTS in San Juan. We have sailed on this ship twice before. So disappointed in the way that RCCL has allowed the ship to be trashed. Embarkation was kaos. Everything from the promenade staff drinking to the poor quality of ... Read More
We boarded the FOTS in San Juan. We have sailed on this ship twice before. So disappointed in the way that RCCL has allowed the ship to be trashed. Embarkation was kaos. Everything from the promenade staff drinking to the poor quality of the food. The highlights were the outstanding cabin service on deck 10 aft and the outstanding service in the main dining room. The quiet pool was far from quiet. Boom boxes were allowed as well as jumping in the pool. There was no quiet, relaxing area. We went to the dining room for breakfast as a party of 7 but were told everyone had to be present to be seated. Why was this silly rule in place, there were no rules anywhere else on the ship. Sorrentos looked like there was a food fight...food all over the floor and no one attempted to clean it up. The quality of the food in the Windjammer was poor. This area was as well, kaotic and the floors and carpets were littered. The staff looked overworked and tired in the Windjammer and just frustrated with the kaos. This is not the FOTS we knew. Sorry RCCL, you have some great staff, some not-so-great and overall, this ship has been left unsupervised and your guests are not likely to return. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We chose this boat because it offered a great itinerary (not lots of sea days and the opportunity of exploring the southern Caribbean). We like Royal Caribbean options for young families (daycare is a life saver). Let me start by saying ... Read More
We chose this boat because it offered a great itinerary (not lots of sea days and the opportunity of exploring the southern Caribbean). We like Royal Caribbean options for young families (daycare is a life saver). Let me start by saying that we like to have a good time when we travel but we are definitely not on a cruise to rage all night. If you are looking to party all night this for sure is a LOUD PARTY boat! People were extremely loud at ALL times of day and night plus we had constant banging from people jumping on the room on top of us not letting my wife and young son sleep. People skip all lines, specially the buffet (it is like they never eat!). Don’t forget your prom dress as there will be major quinceañeras throughout the boat taking portraits at all time. Finally the boat could us a major face lift. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
This was a spur of the moment decision for us and we booked this cruise at the last minute. We chose this cruise because we loved the itinerary, the ship (second time on Freedom) and the length of the cruise. We had Any Time Dining ... Read More
This was a spur of the moment decision for us and we booked this cruise at the last minute. We chose this cruise because we loved the itinerary, the ship (second time on Freedom) and the length of the cruise. We had Any Time Dining and on day one we were able to make an 8pm dinner reservation every night for the entire cruise. We usually were seated at table number 254 in Leonardo's. John was our Waiter and the Assistant Waiter was Igeede. They were both outstanding. They were very friendly, very attentive and extremely professional. They were always asking if there was anything else we would like to eat or was there anything else they could do to make our dining experience more enjoyable. Our Head Waiter was Ischem. Of all the cruises we have been on (27) Ischem was by far the friendliest and most professional Head Waiter. He was every where! Always mingling with the passengers and making sure the service and hopefully the food met their expectations. If there was an issue, he addressed it immediately. All three of the gentlemen are each such an asset to the RCCL team. Truly the Best of the Best! Regarding the food, my husband and I always found something we enjoyed. The way I look at it, there were 4400+ passengers on board. Taking that into consideration, I think they do a very good job. Yes, it may not be what you find at your very favorite restaurant at home or in one of their specialty restaurants but all things considered, it was very good. We never left hungry!! Usually I always like to book private tours when we go into a port. This time I booked two snorkel excursions thru the Ships Excursion Desk. Ingrid was behind the desk and she could not have been more helpful. I told her exactly what I wanted and she told me the two tours she recommended should not disappoint and they didn't. She was very friendly and very patient. Even though there was quite a few people in line waiting to make tour arrangements I noticed and then experienced Ingrid treated you as if you were the only person at the desk. She really was helpful. We thought the entertainment was very good. The Broadway style production, Marquee was outstanding. It was as good as any show we've seen on Broadway. The ice show was amazing. The comedian Jim David was very funny. We went to both his first show and then his Adults only show. Although the Adult Only show we were amazed at the number of people that brought their kids. It started after 11:00pm. They made repeated announcements that the show was for adults and may be inappropriate for children. Personally, I find it difficult to understand the mentality of people bringing their children to an Adult Only Show. This brings me to the final part of my review.....the Passengers. We booked this cruise because we really like RCCL, we like Freedom of the Seas and we really liked the itinerary. We have cruised out of San Juan in the past and had a great time and never experienced any issues. Sadly, this time was different. I have never sailed with such a large group of people that were so disconcerting.. They were loud, they were pushy, they were rude and had total disregard for their fellow passengers or the crew. Many were ill mannered and obviously were never taught any social skills. This is the first time I have ever experienced this on any ship. When talking to other passengers, we found that we were not the only ones who shared this same opinion. Many passengers said they loved the itinerary, the ship and the crew and would do it again in a heart beat but never would leave out of San Juan again. I know booking a cruise leaving from San Juan would not be our first choice. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
First of all, I would like to express my eternal debt of gratitude to Royal Caribbean for all the invaluable humanitarian assistance that the company, particularly the crew of the Adventure of the Seas, provided to the residents and ... Read More
First of all, I would like to express my eternal debt of gratitude to Royal Caribbean for all the invaluable humanitarian assistance that the company, particularly the crew of the Adventure of the Seas, provided to the residents and visitors to Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and St. Maarten in the immediate aftermath of the horrible hurricanes of 2017. I can't start another review of your cruise line without acknowledging that. No matter how lousy any future cruises with RCI, this great act of ultimate corporate social responsibility will forever earn you 5 stars. Now, on to the specifics of this Freedom cruise. SHIP - Even if up there in years already, the crew of the Freedom keep her in top shape. No complaints here. CABIN - We had a great cabin, number 7700. Extra large Ocean View. I believe it is larger than a JS, except that it has no balcony. It's tucked almost at the end of deck 7, port side. Would recommend for all the extra space for no extra cost if not having a balcony is not an issue. Attendant Nola was outstanding and lovely. Very busy with large family groups in her part of the kingdom, but always available and in great spirits. Our grandson loves and misses her! DINING - We did My Time Dining every night. The reservations people always managed to hold the same table for us, and were also great adapting to changes. Food was very good, our servers were great. No issues here. ENTERTAINMENT AND ACTIVITIES - We enjoyed everything, except maybe the overcrowding issues most times, especially in the Windjammer and the Solarium. I did some asking around, found no hard answers, but it seems that this sailing was sold well over 100% occupancy, with large family groups, and even multiple-large-family groups. It made for some sporadic uncomfortable moments, as for example sometimes the partying spilled over some to supposedly quiet areas like the Solarium. But all in all, there were no serious issues, passengers were well behaved (even if some things could come as a culture shock for those not used to boisterous partying), and you were always able to find a quiet place to rest if you looked, well, hard enough. Us, we skipped going ashore on some frequently visited ports to be able to enjoy a quiet ship. That was the plan all along, anyway. SERVICE - Overall, very good. Not excellent, as IMO, these mandatory gratuities and almost mandatory beverage packages breed some complacency in many of the crew. PORTS - Those we did go down to, we did on our own, as we are very familiar with these southern routes. KIDS - We traveled with our 10 year old grandson and he enjoyed it very much. He loved the Adventure Ocean and the staff there. We always felt comfortable leaving him there, and since this was his favorite activity, it worked well for everyone. He also made a lot of friends in the pool area. Didn't think there would be so many kids on board in October, but it was a real treat for him as he home schools and doesn't get to socialize with kids his age very often. All in all, a very enjoyable, if not restful, cruise. I would definitively recommend. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
We arrive in San Juan a few days before and stays at my parent's house. The day of departure arrives to the port around 12. The embarkation process was fast and super easy. In less than 20 minutes we were on board. Disembarkation was ... Read More
We arrive in San Juan a few days before and stays at my parent's house. The day of departure arrives to the port around 12. The embarkation process was fast and super easy. In less than 20 minutes we were on board. Disembarkation was as tedious as always. Especially because of the way the girl in charge of our group was talking to us. More on that later. After we got out of the ship the line to get through immigration was incredibly long. But if get one of the guys that help with baggage they take you through a shorter line. This was the Average Cruise Vacation. Wake up in the morning breakfast at Windjammer. The Windjammer was always packed. And there was always a line. But the service was great. There was a good amount of waiters, always offering coffee, juice, and water. The same thing repeats at lunch. Our cabin was very nice and comfortable. It was on deck 12. To the front of the ship. This area was remodeled and is completely different from the rest of the ship. The halls and cabins are decorated in beige, white and navy colors. We were on cabin #1858 a Spacious Panoramic Oceanview. It was an amazing Cabin, comfortable and clean. And the location was ideal. The service on the Main Dining Room was great. Our waiters were very nice. They were always on top of things. The food was good. Ok, Entertainment. I think there were trying to entertain. But they are still doing the same activities and playing the same songs from 10 the last 10 years. At the sail away party, they play La Macarena. We went to a TV Theme Trivia and all the TV shows were from the 70s. They did the 70s Disco Party and out came the guys dress as the Village People. There was this girl from the Cruise Director Crew. She was hosting a game, we were in the middle of the game. Somebody came an ask her if she knew were was someplace located. She remembered that she had to be in that same place, picked her things and left. She didn't say anything. We didn't finish the game, we didn't know who won, nothing. From there on every time we saw that she was the hostess of an activity we were left. That was the same girl in charge of our disembarkation area. And she was treating people like garbage. There were only to Highlight on Entertainment of the Week The Search for the Nations Game. They give you a paper at the beginning of the week and you spend the rest of the week looking for the signature of the different employees of the ships depending on the country they are from. My kids came in Second Place and they got a Medal and Royal Caribbean Back Pack The other one was the Spanish Music Trivia. The Guy who hosted the game was great. And we ended up partying with another couple and singing all songs in the trivia. In the end, it was a party. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
Our son gave us this cruise for our anniversary because we had never been on a cruise before. Thank you royal carribean for making our first cruise ever a wonderful experience. The food everywhere was excellent and the entertainment so ... Read More
Our son gave us this cruise for our anniversary because we had never been on a cruise before. Thank you royal carribean for making our first cruise ever a wonderful experience. The food everywhere was excellent and the entertainment so enjoyable. The ports were fantastic and the experience of leaving and returning to the ship was made easier than expected. There was not a crew member or staff that wasn’t courteous or helpful. Especially our state room attendant Roy and our dining room waiters Samphan and Placid. We made new friends everywhere and especially enjoyed our times at the pool. The only bad experience was one piece of our luggage having a broken wheel when delivered to our room on the first night. When I reported it Fabio at the guest desk went out of his way to help and two days later we had a new piece of luggage delivered to our room. Thank you Fabio and also for his guidance on beaches to see to Aruba which was a wonderful experience. Excellent crew and staff. We will be cursing again with royal carribean freedom of the seas Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
We are experienced cruisers with 20+ trips. Mostly on Royal Caribbean and Celebrity. We go to the Caribbean during the Stormy Season and usually do well getting lower prices. We planned to do the Southern Caribbean partly based on the ... Read More
We are experienced cruisers with 20+ trips. Mostly on Royal Caribbean and Celebrity. We go to the Caribbean during the Stormy Season and usually do well getting lower prices. We planned to do the Southern Caribbean partly based on the knowledge that if you go south you will often miss any Hurricanes. This time we were met with some dark skies. Light rain in Aruba and a deluge in Saint Martin. We still had a great time. The SHIP is aging but gracefully. The design is sound and still works. Our CABIN was OS 1334. We reserved a GS and got a call asking if we'd like a low cost upgrade to an OS. We took the upgrade for a few dollars more. We were located just a short walk fro the Concierge Lounge. That lounge was small so we wandered off to find the Diamond Lounge where we went most evenings to get free drinks and meet fellow cruisers. We met some very nice folks there as we have in the past. One of the perks of being in a Suite is getting the MDR menu available for delivery to the room. We did that a lot since we had a large table in our room and a large veranda with room to have dinner and enjoy the view of the Caribbean as we toasted the day's high points. The only issue we had with the room was the TV. It was a jury rig of some kind with a retro fit screen in the space. It was difficult to get it to work. We called the attendant and then the tech staff but it was not always working. They offered two devices to control the system. We mentioned the issue to our Concierge who was not surprised so it seems to be an ongoing issue. maybe we should have told her earlier. DINING: The quality of food from MDR is excellent. However, it is also not very imaginative. We suspect that the innovative dining is done in the Specialty restaurants, We got a strong sales pitch for the first three days aboard to buy the Specialty Dining. That was annoying. We went to Chops Grile for breakfast every morning. Very nice service available to Suite class. We tried the Windjammer a few times and got great food and some crowds. ENTERTAINMENT: Shows were entertaining but not as good as bigger ships. We tried Trivia at Schooner Bar and loved it. Captain's party had a classical guitarist who was delightful. SERVICE: We enjoyed the fine service throughout the cruise. EXCURSIONS: All trips were via the cruise line. St Thomas. Did an underwater bicycle and snorkel adventure. One of us loved it, the other is claustrophobic and abandoned the device quickly along with another person who felt uncomfortable. Curacao. Went on Speed Boat ride plus beach. The boat got old the snorkeling didn't happen. The beach was great. They offered us soda and chips, which was a disappointment for what we payed. Aruba. Went on a sailboat ride down the coast of Eagle Beach and stopped at a beach where we could swim. Got some rain that dampened things. But, the water was still very nice. We watched tons of seaweed get taken away to compost inland. Later that day we took a ride on a bigger boat down the same coast. Entertaining as we went down the coast with lots of drinks. They ran out of food before may of the folks got fed. Would not trust this outfit a second time. Nice boat, lousy service. Rain in Aruba is rare. St Martin. Went to the beach in the morning. Cloudy day. Beach was nice. Nice place for a swim. I love to collect the shells on the shore. Lunch was very nice. Then the skies opened and a 30 minute deluge followed. The afternoon excursion was cancelled. We headed back to the ship after a pleasant day. Summary, we had a great time. Sometimes it was because we know how to manage the system. Rookie cruisers might have had problems. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
Looked for a cruise which we could combine with a visit to San Juan and visit St Maarten as well as the southern Caribbean islands. This one fit that bill. Enjoyed our pre cruise visit to San Juan and would go back again loved the ... Read More
Looked for a cruise which we could combine with a visit to San Juan and visit St Maarten as well as the southern Caribbean islands. This one fit that bill. Enjoyed our pre cruise visit to San Juan and would go back again loved the people, beauty and energy of the city as it rebuilds. Unfortunately that was the highlight of the trip. The ship was fully occupied and included many children from the island. The children were well behaved but did not expect so many on a cruise during the regular school year. They kind of overwhelmed the staff and facilities even the adults only areas were over run. Love kids but this was a bit much. Understood later that there were special discounts afforded to families from Puerto Rico. We were in a balcony room but there were inside cabins accross from us with 4 or 6 in the room. The housekeeping staff seemed overwelmed. Our Cabin was a 9th floor balcony which was quite adequate except for our bed. I normally like a firm mattress but it was like sleeping on a concrete pad. I complained but was told that there was nothing they could do. I left the ship with a back ache which took a week to go away. We had the early seating at the main dining room and enjoyed our servers and our table mates but the food was mediocre at best. Royal Caribbean seems to be pushing people to their specialty dining rooms and adding extra cost items to the regular menu more and more. On the lobster night it was difficult to get a second serving. On the plus side we had a good dinner in Giovani's which included a fun murder mystery show. We also had a great lunch at Chops. Unfortunately Royal caribbean seems to have been taken of by the bean counters who are more concerned about the bottom line than having guests come back. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
We had a great cruise on the Freedom of the Seas sailing from San Juan on September 29. I'm currently sitting in the airport lounge writing this review so that it is all fresh in my head. My wife and I spent two days in San Juan in ... Read More
We had a great cruise on the Freedom of the Seas sailing from San Juan on September 29. I'm currently sitting in the airport lounge writing this review so that it is all fresh in my head. My wife and I spent two days in San Juan in an Airbnb prior to the cruise. When pricing the cruise, the flights were about the same from PHL to SJU as they were to MIA or FLL. That being said, it seemed like a no brainer to get a few extra "port days" and leave from PR. EMBARKATION We arrived on embarkation day via TAXI at around 1230pm. Bags went with the porter and we got in line. Check in was a breeze. We hit the Duty Free for some libations. Getting on the ship was easy. We hit the Windjammer for lunch. I will say that the upsell to specialty dining on embarkation day is a little rough. We must have been pitched 3 or 4 times during our lunch. It does seem a little insulting since we just sat down after paying several thousand dollars for a cruise and now we're being asked to pay more. Nonetheless, we had a good lunch and the rooms were ready by 1:30pm. THE ROOM We met our cabin attendant De De for balcony room 8216. EXCELLENT room, as it is the forward most balcony on the deck. There was an entire glass "wall" where the divider would be, giving us a tremendous view of the boat moving forward. Only warning about the room... the bed is HARD. Like... REAL hard. Luckily we were so tired every night and just passed out. The shower was A+... great pressure and HOT. THE FOOD Our only other cruise experience was about 5 years ago on Norwegian. Our dining room experience then was mediocre at best. We expected the same on Freedom. BOY were we wrong! We had MyTime dining and ate in the main dining room 5/7 nights (one in the buffet and the other at Chops for our anniversary). I was SUPER impressed with the food. Steaks cooked perfectly, excellent appetizers, etc. The service was phenomenal. We had Makram and Delly as our waiters, and both got to know us personally and would bring our drinks without us asking. Truly made us feel like family. The Windjammer was pretty good. Crowded. Room Service breakfast was good also. We used it 4 times, each time paying the extra $10 for a real breakfast. We ate on our balcony which was awesome. Chops was incredible. So good. THE ENTERTAINMENT We only went to three shows, two comedians and the 'Once Upon a Time' show on the last night. AWESOME. Super impressive. We're 30 going on 80 so we were in bed by 10pm every night, so unfortunately I don't have anything to add for the late night stuff. THE SHIP We loved the ship for its size and family atmosphere. She is a bit worn, though. Carpets have some wear and tear, some chipping of the paint... etc. Don't expect a brand new ship. PORTS St. Thomas was a lot of fun. We rented a scooter. DO NOT DO THIS unless you are an avoid motorcycler. Also keep in mind that the FOTS docks at a port away from the other ships. The main port town was CLOSED on the day that we went since there weren't any other ships. The highlight of this port stop was Magens bay. We try to avoid major tourist spots (lol... like I'm not a tourist), however this was the most beautiful beach. The pelicans are CRAZY... and worth the price of admission to watch them hunt. Curacao was far and away our favorite. We rented a car from ADVANCE car rental. Do it. $75 for a car, GPS and a cell phone, drop off and pick up at the MEGA PIER. We hit a few beaches, including Playa Porta Marie (WILD PIGS), Playa Grandi (swim with TURTLES!) and Playa Knip. All beautiful. We bought our own snorkel gear prior to the trip. Highly recommend as we didn't see a whole lot of rental spots. The town is full of great color. Aruba was OK. Rainy day. We rented a car at the pier and hit a few beaches. St. Martin was kind of a miss. We rented a car here as well (Coastal Car Rental... good experience). The weather was bleh and traffic was bad. My suggestion is to take the $7 water taxi to the main town of Phillipsburg and go to the Lazy Lizard. Great food. $20 for an umbrella, two chairs and 6 beers. Nik the owner is a very nice guy. DEBARKATION We did the express debarkation with self luggage. Easy. Off the ship and through customs in about 20 minutes. We took a taxi to the airport and rented a car from Enterprise for $30. We needed a place to keep our luggage and wanted to explore Old San Juan for another day. FELLOW GUESTS INCREDIBLE. I don't know why I was surprised (ignorance), but I'd estimate 60% of the passengers were Puerto Ricans. SO MUCH FUN. So many large families traveling together. So much laughter and Boricua pride. The PR children were so well behaved and polite. My wife and I mentioned on more than one occasion that we want to cruise out of San Juan more just to have some PR culture in our lives. OVERALL Great cruise. Excellent service. Phenomenal food. Would cruise the FOTS again in a heartbeat. Read Less
Freedom of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.4
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 5.0 4.2
Public Rooms 4.0 4.5
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.4
Family 5.0 4.4
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 3.0 3.9
Service 4.0 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 4.0
Rates 4.0 4.1

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