We're a 40 something professional couple. This was our first cruise on MSC; previously we've cruised with Carnival and Norwegian. We're easygoing, not hyper-critical, and tend to make lemonade when handed lemons. We chose this MSC cruise because we liked the itinerary and the price was very reasonable.
Precruise: We decided not to chance the winter weather in the Northeast, so we flew down the day before. We stayed at the Days Inn off I95, which has absolutely nothing to recommend it unless you like walking 3/4 mile (in a pretty scary neighborhood) to reach a Burger King. Stay somewhere else.
Embarkation: Hands down the easiest we've ever encountered. We arrived (the cruise terminal is minutes away from the airport; you do not need the cruise ship transfers as cabs are plentiful and half the price), got in the "US Citizens" line, and walked on to the ship. A staff member showed us to our cabin.