We embarked via New Orleans on Carnival Dream on 12-6-15. We went to Roatan, Belize & Cozumel. First of all- the process to get into the port via Security check points is long, tedious and you are standing with your carry on bags forever. Waiting to be processed from one checkpoint to the next- so prepare to stand & wait.
Next we got on the boat into our room- which was ok. I would say the accommodations stating room for 4 is not adequate. Very little space to put luggage or storage. Room was not luxurious like you would think. We did have a balcony and it was ok. This boat is so full of people 3600. If you do not like crowds- do not go on a large boat. The people are mostly big, heavy people that are rude, stand in the hallways will not move out of the way and just take their time as if they are the only ones there. The food in the Lido deck was ok- nothing special. The food in the dining rooms was great but served as "gourmet" sizes- meaning very small. 2 bites for an appetizer- 2 oz steaks, very small portions. If you want more- order 2 or 3 appetizers. Breakfast was great, but again, very small portions. Drinks are outrageously priced. We did not get the drink coupons, as we did not think we would drink that much, so we paid as we went. You do have to buy the drink coupons for every day of the cruise and for everyone in the cabin. We knew we would not drink $1400.00 worth of alcohol that week, we did end up spending about $800.00 though. The excursions are made that you have to buy an excursion if you want to be one of the first off the boat. Otherwise, you are waiting for several hours to ride the tinder. The ports are all owned by Carnival and it is a farce. They make it where you can only buy an excursion if you want to sightsee or go to the beaches. Although it is for safety -it would be nice to port near a beach that you could walk to. The excursions are all rather pricey. In Roatan & Cozumel you can walk off the boat without paying for an excursion- but you do have to pay to get around. In Belize we did not purchase an excursion- you can take the tinder to the island which is about a 20 minute ride. BUT- we had to wait in the bar to get a number to be called to get on the boat-after the paid excursions left first. This was such an ordeal- at first it was orderly, we had our number to get off # 56. They called out numbers to board, then 53, 54 55. So we thought we would be next. NO- what they did was say "OK, everyone to the 0 deck to load. This created such a fiasco as people just coming in to load all ran ahead of us -they had no number to board- we were on the 3rd floor had to go to 0 floor - so everyone -about 600 people were walking down the stairs( you cannot get an elevator) and standing on the stairs waiting to go down- these rude people were pushing, shoving and breaking in line- as there was no order now- we were pushed aside by some very rude black women- I said you want to break that bad- go ahead. So we ended up standing in the stairways for 2 hours waiting to get to 0 to the tinder. This was such a fire hazard, and none of the workers even seemed to care or be mindful of the situation. The workers were stressed and not even friendly. You can tell these people do not like their job. The large amount of heavy & rude people take its toll on the workers I am sure. Our cabin Steward was friendly & helpful though. The cruisers load their plates to the extreme, are messy, loud, obnoxious. It is no wonder the US is disliked by other countries. I would say that Carnival cruise is the Wal-Mart of cruises. Will never go on another Carnival cruise. Not worth the money. Roatan was beautiful and the islanders friendly, Cozumel was nice, great bargains but Belize is very unsafe- the port is old, the people there are not friendly, seemed very racist to us. Could not get waited on in the restaurants- took 2 hours to get a menu- then the waitress would not bring our check. This took us 3 hours to eat- they were not crowded - waited on others before us. We did not tip. The shop keepers were rude- seemed as if the crowds were not welcome. Save your money for Cozumel & Roatan. Had we known what an ordeal to load on the tinder and the unfriendliness of the islanders- we would have stayed on the boat in Belize. Not worth the money or time. Everything on the boat is pricey- the spa, the bars, any extra- be prepared to spend & spend. You should also be aware that the port fees & tax are added separately -after you book- also parking in NO was $126.00 for the week. Also a gratuity is added per person, per day. So you are going to spend an additional $400.00 PP so remember to include that in the cost of the cruise. The Comedy clubs and any of the nightlife bars or entertain fill up quickly, you must stand in line at least an hour before hand to get in. They are not worth the wait. DO NOT BUY the coupon booklet from the lady doing the sales presentation for the ports- the items you get free are cheap and ugly. Not worth the $25.00 fee for the booklet. She works for Carnival- a sales ploy. Save your money and go on a smaller cruise line- the rooms are nicer, the workers friendlier, food is a lot better and you can go to better ports. Carnival is a scam.
The cabin was like a small older hotel room. 2 twin beds, a sleeper sofa and a pull out bed. Not enough room for 4 people unless 2 are small children. Not enough storage space, only one outlet for your electronics. Bring a multi outlet so you can charge your devices several at a time. DO NOT Bring large luggage- you will regret having to step over them all week. Pack light. The room was fairly clean, the beds made daily and a little towel animal every night. They do not change the sheets every day. Our steward was extremely nice & friendly, but looked over worked.
You can walk off the boat to the port. Good shopping, rent a cab to go to the ruins , the beach or sigh seeing. Cozumel is pretty, friendly & clean. If you go outside of the port be prepared to be bombarded by hawkers selling their items. If you get a cab to share with others it is pretty safe.
The port in Belize is old & dirty. People are NOT friendly. If you do not buy an excursion, prepare to wait HOURS standing in line waiting to get on the tinder. You will only have 3-4 hours to shop, etc. NOT worth the time. Instead fly to a privet resort. Be prepared to be bombarded by women that want to braid your hair every step you take.
You can walk off the boat to the beach area. It is small, the water was cloudy from all of the people, we rented the Clam shell chairs, the Ski Lift to the beach and floats all for $80.00 for 4 people. BUT, you do not have to. You can walk the short distance to the beach, sit on the beach and just rent a float. The small island was pretty, coconut trees, nice areas, clean & safe. Get a fresh cold coconut to drink. One is enough for 2 people, cost is $5.00. Shopping is nice also.View All 460 Beach Reviews
Be prepared to wait & stand in line for hours upon arrival & debarking.