Sail Date: March 2019
This was a family cruise that we now take once a year. I took my daughter with me this year.We stayed the night in Galveston before our cruise.This was my first time on the Freedom.The entertainment and activities were very good. ... Read More
This was a family cruise that we now take once a year. I took my daughter with me this year.We stayed the night in Galveston before our cruise.This was my first time on the Freedom.The entertainment and activities were very good. Didn't care for some of the buffet food this year.But over all it was very good.All the service people was great, And very helpful..The ports and excursions I loved. Stingray Island I loved. We will be going again next year!!!! We had shirts made the same for our cruise with our names on them. Jayson was our cabin steward and he kept our room very clean. I left him with a tip of a 10 dollar bill ring and a bag of candy. Loved the ocean in Jamaica even though it was hard for me to get out of it.It had a high sandy beach. Water was awesome and so clear. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this cruise as if fit perfectly into the time frame we both could get for our vacation. We had never cruised before and decided on this one as we had always wanted to go on one and we thought it would be a fun way to celebrate our ... Read More
We chose this cruise as if fit perfectly into the time frame we both could get for our vacation. We had never cruised before and decided on this one as we had always wanted to go on one and we thought it would be a fun way to celebrate our 20th anniversary. We flew into Houston on Southwest a day early. We used and recommend Galveston Limo service for transfers from the airport as they were fairly priced, friendly and can offer some great tips. We got a room in Galveston through Southwest and just relaxed. Embarkation/Disembarkation: Both of these went fairly quickly. The ship: well even after the recent drydock it is showing its age, The public areas overall look acceptable but around the edges where the masses don't congregate wear is taking its toll. In the steam room the glass facing out had a big crack in it. My wife and I noticed many areas along the outside walls where it was dusty, scuffed, dented, broken or just needed repainted. The Cabin: We had an 8C balcony #7365. This falls in line with more of the same we saw all over the ship. It was ok but again it is showing its age. Little things stood out ( burned out light bulb in the room, small dim tv, chips in the woodwork, lampshade fell apart if bumped and the glass on the balcony needed proper cleaning ). The Dining : this is a mixed bag! Some venues really stood out. The Sun King steakhouse was by far the best meal we had on the ship, It was tasty and well prepared and served professionally! The Chic MDR: reminded us of chain restaurant fare. The breakfasts here we had arrived cold. Guy's Burgers: Yum! Blue iguana cantina: Yummy breakfast burritos! The deli: ok ( seriously though using the bitter part of the lettuce on a sandwich? ) The Old Fashioned bbq; Sorry but if it is not smoked its not bbq. The Buffet: bland, tasteless food for the most part and the desserts lacked flavor as well, A few items were good but very few. The Coffee was horrid and the juices ( juice cocktails to be exact ). were sickeningly sweet! We did find a hidden gem in the coffee shop the desserts there were tasty but once again an extra charge ( a couple dollars ). The model Carnival has here seems to be " yeah we will give you something, but if you want something really good you will pay extra! " Entertainment and Activities: The shows in the Victoriana Theatre were ok. The comedy club was overpacked and since they do not clear the theatre between shows its nearly impossible to get a seat! The Dive in Movies: This is a neat concept. We decided on two movies and on both of them the screen went blank and the movie started over, One was at the 3/4 mark and the other was at the 10 minute mark and again at very close at the end of the movie where it never did finish. A waste of our vacation time. At bingo the screen projections were very choppy. Carnival doesn't have a good A/V tech on the ship? The Trivia parties in the Atrium area were quite entertaining. The "fun squad" and cruise director did a great job there. Pool areas were crowded and deck chairs hard to get. The water slides however were fast and fun! Service: Our room stewards on deck 7 did a great job they were efficient and friendly. The bar staff was another mixed bag. The bars in busy areas were understaffed and seemed to give priority to those who were buying beer and mixed drinks. Not all of us drink alcohol. Too many times we just felt ignored. The Fun shop staff were friendly and helpful. Ports and excursions: Cozumel, we did the shopping and beach break tour. Olivia, our guide did a great job and took us to shopping areas downtown that had better prices than the port shops. The beach club was ok with mediocre overpriced food options. Grand Cayman: its a tender port and that went amazingly smoothly. We did the land and sea tour. First stop was a semi submersible ship where we got to see some shipwrecks and many fish. Second stop was at a shop that sold rum cakes etc. Third stop was at a rock formation called "Hell". Strange looking formations with a gift shop that sold funny T-shirts Forth stop was at the Cayman turtle center where we got to see many adult sea turtles and hold a baby turtle. All in all a fun tour. Ocho Rios: got off the ship, shopped a little and then right back on and enjoyed all the amenities that were too crowded on sea days. Summary: For our first cruise it was ok as it gave us an idea what cruising might be like. If you just want to get away its fine but do not expect a 1st class experience with this ship without paying extra and that is what bothered us. Good tasty food should be the norm and not the exception. Too much nickel and diming on what is already a pricey vacation. . Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
We picked this cruise for spring break and we picked this ship based on ports, dates, reviews, etc. There were six of us total, two families. We had a great time. Our rooms were nice and clean and our room steward (Ferry) was awesome! If ... Read More
We picked this cruise for spring break and we picked this ship based on ports, dates, reviews, etc. There were six of us total, two families. We had a great time. Our rooms were nice and clean and our room steward (Ferry) was awesome! If we needed something, he got it, he respected our privacy if needed and he was very friendly...he knew our names right away! The food was very good and our waiters were amazing - Imade, John and Iwayan. I would want to sit in their section if they were on our next cruise. The variety of foods was great and I enjoyed trying different things. The gym was nice and had a great variety of equipment - my only complaint there is that I wish there were more free class options. Not a big deal though. The spa area was very nice and the employees were polite, friendly and knowledgeable. There were many things to do on the ship - shows, games, etc. The cruise director, Simon London, did a great job and was very energetic. The excursions were a lot of fun and my favorite was the Snorkel and Starfish Island Getaway. The guides were fabulous! The snorkeling was a lot of fun and the guides were very helpful and monitored everyone very well. The island was so lovely and I would have loved to spend more time doing all of it. The trip was a great experience for all of us! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Jeez... I’m not even sure where to start. Perhaps I should start from the beginning... we arrived in Galveston. Embarking was as painful as could be. The luggage handoff was confusing, the baggage handlers rude, and the process took ... Read More
Jeez... I’m not even sure where to start. Perhaps I should start from the beginning... we arrived in Galveston. Embarking was as painful as could be. The luggage handoff was confusing, the baggage handlers rude, and the process took too long... The cabins were ok. We had 2 of them. My wife and I was in a nice cabin with a balcony. No issues there. Next, we experienced the “all included except...” treatment. I was told that this was because of local vs. international rules, but it just felt silly. Our “all inclusive” drinks did not work until second day of the cruise, internet did not work until day 2, my all inclusive dinner did not include whatever I ordered for dinner, etc. Although some of these problems disappeared as we got far enough away from Galveston, the whole nickel & dime continued throughout the cruise. There are more exceptions to what’s included than what is included. The food was ok, but far from exceptional. The buffet food was horrible but the food in the posh restaurant was better than average. The service in the bars... jeez, I saw faster service while visiting Russia during the Cold War. I timed it. From getting to the bar, until I had a drink in my hand, averaged 15 min. The places were understaffed and the process unbelievably inefficient. Now for the excursions... to say they were underwhelming would be too positive. Most of the time, you’ll be standing in line. The food/drinks served, terrible. Just appalling compared to the price paid. The entertainment was for the most part good, but the daytime spectacle around the pools, just obnoxious. Speaking of pool, the pools are so small they remind me more of bath tubs. Also, good luck finding a deck chair. I talked to a few “veteran cruisers”, and they say Carnival used to be better... this is not an excuse for me... if this is a cruise line in a downward spiral, I’d hate to be among the ones coming after us... Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
My family and I went on a carnival cruise. (freedom) We didn't like the high pressure sales, the fact that how whenever you would buy a drink the tip would already be added on (I noticed on the 3rd day of the cruise), we had tons of ... Read More
My family and I went on a carnival cruise. (freedom) We didn't like the high pressure sales, the fact that how whenever you would buy a drink the tip would already be added on (I noticed on the 3rd day of the cruise), we had tons of money charged to my moms credit card. There was already a tip of 70 plus dollars for our "team" on the cruise. There was ONE person who made my experience on the Carnival Freedom amazing. She is a playlist performer on the carnival freedom and other carnival ships. Her name is Victoria and she always said "hey" and would wave at me whenever she would see me. If you go on the Carnival Freedom be aware it is a party ship. Not made for older couples or family with newborns. If you go on a cruise from Galveston be prepared for long waits and being split up from your family. My aunt is disabled and they split us up when getting on the ship. On the way back we made sure we didn't get split up. The only reason we didn't get split up on the way back was because my mom made sure they knew we would not be split up. We told the lady we would not have it any other way. They also had LGBTQ mixers almost every night along with singles mixers. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
I have been on two carnival cruises in past eight months/spent around 15k on tickets and onboard services. The service and organization on cruise to Alaska in August outweighed high pressure sales at spa/jewelry store/art gallery. The ... Read More
I have been on two carnival cruises in past eight months/spent around 15k on tickets and onboard services. The service and organization on cruise to Alaska in August outweighed high pressure sales at spa/jewelry store/art gallery. The mediocre service/lack of organization on cruise out of Galveston over spring break, 2019, along with the high pressure sales that bordered on deceptive trade practices make it highly unlikely I’ll cruise with Carnival again. At an appointment at spa for massage I inquired about a facial. They reported an opening at 8:00 a.m. the following day. I said I’d think about it and let them know, and the girl said “We’ll keep it open for you!” When I called later that day to let them know I did not want the facial because my young daughter was seriously sea sick and throwing up, they reported that they would still charge my credit card due to failure to cancel (I never “booked”) w/i 24 hrs. At the art gallery I expressed interest in a piece. They were very insistent that I purchase right then and there. I left saying I’d think about. I got a call two days later asking about the art I “purchased.” When I said I never purchased, they preceded to tell me I had “reserved” the piece and was obligated to buy. Only when I asked them to show me what I had signed indicating I was reserving or buying, did they relent. Also, they were very unaccomofating fir my 80 yr old family member I had with me. They refused to allow me to take the elevator with her when boarding, and it took me an hour to find her after. Upon disembarking, they said she had to wait in the same line with everyone else, which took 45 minutes (she can barely stand with a walker. Carnival, I’m very disappointed and encourage all reading to reconsider cruising with them! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We chose this cruise because we were celebrating my birthday on the first day of the cruise and it had an itinerary we were interested in. It so happened to be on the Freedom. The layout was the same as our last ship, the Valor, so it ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we were celebrating my birthday on the first day of the cruise and it had an itinerary we were interested in. It so happened to be on the Freedom. The layout was the same as our last ship, the Valor, so it wasn't confusing for us but I could see how it would be for others. The layout is confusing on some decks, as you are unable to walk the length of the ship on certain decks. Overall the ship was fine. Definitely had some wear and tear but going into dry dock should improve that. Great restaurants, shows, and activities. The cruise director, Simon London, was wonderful. There were plenty of activities to keep us busy even with the 3 hour delay due to fog during embarkation. The crew was very informative and helpful during the delay. Sea days were great and weren't dull unless you let it be. The Sun King Steakhouse was absolutely amazing. Worth the $38 pp. The Chic dining room's staff was also attentive each night we dined there. We did run into two issues while aboard but both were handled promptly. Given the opportunity to sail the Freedom again in the future, I would do it in an heartbeat. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We have cruised 8 times previously and on multiple lines including past Carnival, Princess, NCL, and Celebrity cruises. This is close to the bottom of all the cruises I have taken. However, let me through out a few compliments: 1. ... Read More
We have cruised 8 times previously and on multiple lines including past Carnival, Princess, NCL, and Celebrity cruises. This is close to the bottom of all the cruises I have taken. However, let me through out a few compliments: 1. Lucky, our cabin steward was exceptional. Even more impressive is her recall of mine and my spouses name by face the second day of our cruise. 2. Simon the cruise director of the Carnival Freedom who self effacive comedy kept things light on the cruise. Now onto the bad: 1. We had cabin 1026 on the 10th floor. The cabin is dated and worn. The sofa is a combination of faded and frayed leather seat and cloth pillows. There was also a constant sewer smell from the airline quality toilets. 2. The food was an atrocious mix of gelatinous chocolate mousse, hard as a brick cakes, dried out pasta dished, and burned apple pie in the Chic Dining room. 3. Tired and worn infrastructure including deep paint chipping on the "whale tail" exhaust and a rusting track for what I assume was a once functioning roof over the adult swimming area in the aft section of the ship. 4. We ran late departing Galveston but no effort was really made to make up the time. Some Cozumel excursions were canceled and refunded but no attempt made to help us reschedule a new excursion at the last minute. 5. The ship continued on a delayed schedule up and through Ochos Rios, Jamaica. Checking in to the tubing excursion some before us were told there were two boarding times and to come buck at 11:00am. As our group moved forward for our 10:00a.m. booking we were told ours was the only group going. Those who were told to come back at 11:00 probably had a rude awakening. 6. As with most cruise ships internet service remains an expensive joke. Having chose the most expensive package I got very slow service. The idea of the HUB app is not well executed. I was never able to connect or find other parties in my group in the texting portion. Then some text messages to people I was connected with were never received after being sent by me. Cruise Critic!! You professional review is a woeful representation of the realities of this ship. Time to send your professional critic back for a reassessment. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
My hubs and I typically cruise with RCI but, because we have exhausted all of the Royal Caribbean itineraries out of Galveston, we chose this cruise to the Bahamas on Carnival. We had only cruised with Carnival once before on a quick ... Read More
My hubs and I typically cruise with RCI but, because we have exhausted all of the Royal Caribbean itineraries out of Galveston, we chose this cruise to the Bahamas on Carnival. We had only cruised with Carnival once before on a quick 4-night trip so we did not know exactly what to expect. We had heard that the Freedom was scheduled for dry dock shortly after our return so we expected a ship that was a bit outdated and worse for the wear -- not so at all! We really enjoyed our Ocean Suite and will probably never go back to a regular balcony room. The extra space, storage room including a second closet, and tub/shower combo are well worth the extra money. The food was fantastic, although at times the buffet can be unbearably crowded, and our cruise director, Emma, is amazing. However, all of the shows in the theater are of the sing-along type -- good dancing and singing but no storyline. Also, disembarkation was a hot mess from beginning to end. Security at the port were horrible -- angry, screaming at passengers including my 70-year-old parents. I realize the port staff are not Carnival employees but it is worth mentioning because they are atrocious. Overall, a fantastic cruise. More affordable than Royal Caribbean with incredibly friendly staff and great excursions. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We took this cruise as part of a specialty group, which had to get permission for onboard activities, thus we were limited to this particular itinerary. Both my partner and I have traveled on Carnival for some time... I turned Gold on ... Read More
We took this cruise as part of a specialty group, which had to get permission for onboard activities, thus we were limited to this particular itinerary. Both my partner and I have traveled on Carnival for some time... I turned Gold on this trip, and she turned Platinum. We had a balcony room on the 8th deck, and it was certainly a nice room, with a great view. The ship is still in great shape, and was very enjoyable, however there were a few things that I didn't like. First... the NFL football playoffs were not available unless you went to the casino, or to the sports bar. The casino was filled with cigarette smoke, and the sports bar was just filled beyond capacity. Because Dallas was playing in the Saturday night game, there was a LOT of interest in the game. Carnival no longer has local channels on their shipboard TV (speaking of which.. the choices for in-room entertainment are very slim). Unfortunately, in todays world, its almost impossible to get totally out of touch, therefore internet is a necessity, not a luxury. However, the shipboard internet is woefully lacking. Download speeds were as bad as a 1200 baud modem at times, and never got any better than decent dialup (for those old enough to remember that). This was a nice itinerary, although The Bahamas was not as much fun as it could have been, due to cruising in winter. Although the outside temperature was nice (70s), the chill on board ship was not fun. And water activities were uncomfortable at best. I would not consider cruising in winter again, unless it were a special activity. Read Less
Carnival Freedom Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 3.0 0.0
Family 5.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 2.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 5.0 0.0
Rates 5.0 0.0

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