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I've previous been on the Carnival Triumph (same route: Cozumel->Caymans->Jamaica) in 2012 and this was pretty much the same experience. The shows, the public rooms, shops/deals are all pretty much identical, so if you've on the Triumph (or any of the Carnival Destiny or Conquest classes) then you've already been on this cruise. I'll just write my highlights: -The dining staff was great - friendly, funny, approachable, always smiling. Put up with our requests for multiple entrees etc. with no problem. -The guys who took care of our stateroom - very good. Also funny, and no complaints with how they made our rooms (+ towel animals) every night. HOWEVER: -The medical staff was very brusque and rude. We had a friend faint during one of the shows, and the first question they asked her was if she'd been drinking. She had - but she had drank a couple drinks 4-5 hours prior, and had completely sobered up by then. The medical staff acted like this was the big thing though, and disregarded any further concerns - pretty much writing us off as another case of youngsters drinking too much. As soon as the doctor heard we were drinking, she acted like we didn't need any more help. This experience alone kind of questions if I want to go on another Carnival cruise, since their bedside manner was so terrible. The cruise director, Jace, is memorable, funny, and a great personality. You can tell he really likes his job, and he really livens up the otherwise kind-of-samey production shows. The food is alright. It ranges from damn good (about 2-3 of the entrees we've tried over the week) to decent (the majority). My issue was that if you're the type to stay up late and party/drink, and then eat after, you're kind of out of luck. The only thing open 24/7 is pizza. Or alternatively, if you're hungry at 5Pm, I hope you like hamburgers, since that's all you got. Also, meat tended to be overcooked a step; medium rare was always medium, etc. Gets kind of dry. The entertainment ranges from very samey/seen-it-before-if-you've-ever-taken-a-cruise, to awesome. The last day, there's this talent show where cruisers can show off their skills. Obviously this is a very your-mileage-may-vary, but our cruise was blessed with extremely talented singers, and when these guys perform, Carnival sets them up with a lights show, backing band, snow falling from the top. It's a really nice touch. Bottom line: Great budget cruise/value for your money. I wasn't expecting much for the ~$550 I paid, and this met all my expectations + then some. What I would like in future cruises: -More flexible dining times -Interesting shows. Think I'll end up skipping em on the next cruise. Stuff Royal Caribbean does better: -More stuff to do (Liberty of the Seas has a freaking ice rink. Plus some talented ice-rink acrobatic performers, coupled with really high production value.) -Bigger/more open communal areas (top deck had this great area for parties) -Food quality Stuff Carnival does better: -Price -Mobile app (Royal Caribbean may have this now, but it really is awesome being able to have a digital map/schedule with you at all times) -Less old people (shows are geared more for young families; the clubs aren't having 50s/60s/70s nights) -Cruise director

Got exactly what I expected; enjoyable, but wasn't breaking ground.

Carnival Freedom Cruise Review by anguyen128

1 person found this helpful
Trip Details
I've previous been on the Carnival Triumph (same route: Cozumel->Caymans->Jamaica) in 2012 and this was pretty much the same experience. The shows, the public rooms, shops/deals are all pretty much identical, so if you've on the Triumph (or any of the Carnival Destiny or Conquest classes) then you've already been on this cruise.

I'll just write my highlights:

-The dining staff was great - friendly, funny, approachable, always smiling. Put up with our requests for multiple entrees etc. with no problem.

-The guys who took care of our stateroom - very good. Also funny, and no complaints with how they made our rooms (+ towel animals) every night.

HOWEVER:

-The medical staff was very brusque and rude. We had a friend faint during one of the shows, and the first question they asked her was if she'd been drinking. She had - but she had drank a couple drinks 4-5 hours prior, and had completely sobered up by then. The medical staff acted like this was the big thing though, and disregarded any further concerns - pretty much writing us off as another case of youngsters drinking too much. As soon as the doctor heard we were drinking, she acted like we didn't need any more help. This experience alone kind of questions if I want to go on another Carnival cruise, since their bedside manner was so terrible.

The cruise director, Jace, is memorable, funny, and a great personality. You can tell he really likes his job, and he really livens up the otherwise kind-of-samey production shows.

The food is alright. It ranges from damn good (about 2-3 of the entrees we've tried over the week) to decent (the majority). My issue was that if you're the type to stay up late and party/drink, and then eat after, you're kind of out of luck. The only thing open 24/7 is pizza. Or alternatively, if you're hungry at 5Pm, I hope you like hamburgers, since that's all you got. Also, meat tended to be overcooked a step; medium rare was always medium, etc. Gets kind of dry.

The entertainment ranges from very samey/seen-it-before-if-you've-ever-taken-a-cruise, to awesome. The last day, there's this talent show where cruisers can show off their skills. Obviously this is a very your-mileage-may-vary, but our cruise was blessed with extremely talented singers, and when these guys perform, Carnival sets them up with a lights show, backing band, snow falling from the top. It's a really nice touch.

Bottom line: Great budget cruise/value for your money. I wasn't expecting much for the ~$550 I paid, and this met all my expectations + then some.

What I would like in future cruises:

-More flexible dining times

-Interesting shows. Think I'll end up skipping em on the next cruise.

Stuff Royal Caribbean does better:

-More stuff to do (Liberty of the Seas has a freaking ice rink. Plus some talented ice-rink acrobatic performers, coupled with really high production value.)

-Bigger/more open communal areas (top deck had this great area for parties)

-Food quality

Stuff Carnival does better:

-Price

-Mobile app (Royal Caribbean may have this now, but it really is awesome being able to have a digital map/schedule with you at all times)

-Less old people (shows are geared more for young families; the clubs aren't having 50s/60s/70s nights)

-Cruise director
anguyen128’s Full Rating Summary
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