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I think this is my first review of a cruise on this forum. I have cruised 3 times previously, and this cruise was the 2nd group cruise we took. We book through an agent as we can keep the booking open longer than Carnival allows, and had 46 people in our group. First of all, I posted a question about separate lines in Galveston, because I have a passport but my sister and her kids did not. Last year there was a passport line and a birth certificate line. This year there was only one line, and it didn't seem long at all from the back of the line to boarding the ship. The sun we ordered with our cruise was missing, but thankfully it caught up with us later. We won't be cruising in January from Galveston anymore. Texas weather is too unreliable. The first thing we did on the ship was grabbed a bite to eat on the Lido deck and looked around because my sister and kids have never cruised before. At 3 p.m. we headed to the Red Frog inside for a meet and greet for our group. At 3:15 I asked for a ball for the foosball table. The person behind the counter very loudly and rudely told me "we are closed." Um, looking around with people everywhere, they clearly were not closed, and he even sat down a bowl of banana chip things right after he told me that. I can only assume he was getting ready to close for the 4pm (45 min later) muster drill?? That instantly put me off. We went to our room, and it was fine. We had an inside cabin mid-ship. Unfortunately I booked late and did a guarantee and my sister was at the very back of the ship. Bad call as my niece didn't take well to that much movement. On all previous cruises at some point while getting settled our cabin steward has stopped by to meet us and introduce himself, not so much on this cruise. I think it was the next day before I finally saw our steward, and he never learned our names the whole cruise. This is something that has always made me smile on previous cruises. We did all of our dinners in the dining room. I think it's been said before, but could someone please tell Carnival the American Table menu is horrible? The night we left they had jalapeno poppers to represent the Galveston port. Essentially a cheddar-ish cheese stick with a few bits of pepper fried. Not at all good, and had a weird texture. For dinner the entrees were something I could get at any restaurant in Dallas. I like to try new things on cruises, or things I wouldn't otherwise try. I found the menu to be boring and many nights had chicken or pork chop. I had the flat iron steak the first night but it simply did not taste good. Lobster is no longer an option unless you pay a $20 upcharge. Desserts were probably the most disappointing of all. Seriously Carnival, who goes on a cruise to have a piece of Apple Pie? No more Baked Alaska, no Cherries Jubilee. The couple times we got the melting cake it was WAY undercooked, and yes, I get that it is supposed to be somewhat undercooked, but not like this. Dessert options were so horrible that we resorted to ordering banana splits off the kids menu one evening. Sea Day brunch was yummy, Guy's Burgers always a hit, and Fish and Chips was actually really good. Their conglomeration of calamari, onion, and zucchini was tasty. There were numerous times on meals where someone would ask for coffee or in one case lemonade, and nobody every brought it. Once there was even a reminder yet the coffee never came. I drank lemonade and each time my glass was subsequently filled with water. The 80's show was great, but seemed to end suddenly. The beach show wasn't too great. I think previous posters mentioned that there seem to be very few activities on port evenings, and that was true. There was very little appealing. We did go to the Hasbro show and one of our people got on stage. The Love and Marriage show, as always, was great. In Progreso we went to Dzibilchaltun. I have been there before and knew the kids would love it. The fish nibble on your feet if you don't want to get all the way in the cenote. It's very relaxing. It's only about 30 minutes outside of Progreso. I booked my own excursions. In Cozumel we swam with dolphins. We were conned into the pictures and got home and only have about 180 of the 212 pictures we should have gotten for the huge price ($180). We went to Channtanaab, again I booked this myself. The dolphins were great but I really struggle with the fact we were riding on them and holding their fins, etc. I feel really bad for them, they are kept in small little pens. I don't think I could do this again. Malcom, the activities director was energetic and fun. He made you want to dance. The kids programs were wonderful, and kept our little folks busy. Because my niece was sick we missed most of the Seuss activities. We had a happy hour that was an hour long provided by our travel agent. Unbeknownst to us, it was a shared happy hour. The drinks were typically sweet and sour colored mix with a splash of alcohol. I could do without that next time even though I think we already have it booked. Disembarkation - we left the ship around 9:20 and were headed home in the car at 10:00. Amazing process! I will say that in the past I have always booked parking online through a company across the street. Never again. I paid $50 to park in the Carnival lots and got a ride to and from the terminal and it was QUICK! I will book online through Carnival from now on. All in all, we had a wonderful time. We weren't at work we were cruising, the weather was mostly good. There was just something about the service on the ship that wasn't quite up to par. I found myself wondering if it was a training ship or something. So unimpressed I am changing our 2017 cruise that I already planned to another ship.

Not overly impressed, but it beat sitting at work!

Carnival Freedom Cruise Review by txhawk36

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
I think this is my first review of a cruise on this forum. I have cruised 3 times previously, and this cruise was the 2nd group cruise we took. We book through an agent as we can keep the booking open longer than Carnival allows, and had 46 people in our group.

First of all, I posted a question about separate lines in Galveston, because I have a passport but my sister and her kids did not. Last year there was a passport line and a birth certificate line. This year there was only one line, and it didn't seem long at all from the back of the line to boarding the ship. The sun we ordered with our cruise was missing, but thankfully it caught up with us later. We won't be cruising in January from Galveston anymore. Texas weather is too unreliable.

The first thing we did on the ship was grabbed a bite to eat on the Lido deck and looked around because my sister and kids have never cruised before. At 3 p.m. we headed to the Red Frog inside for a meet and greet for our group. At 3:15 I asked for a ball for the foosball table. The person behind the counter very loudly and rudely told me "we are closed." Um, looking around with people everywhere, they clearly were not closed, and he even sat down a bowl of banana chip things right after he told me that. I can only assume he was getting ready to close for the 4pm (45 min later) muster drill?? That instantly put me off.

We went to our room, and it was fine. We had an inside cabin mid-ship. Unfortunately I booked late and did a guarantee and my sister was at the very back of the ship. Bad call as my niece didn't take well to that much movement. On all previous cruises at some point while getting settled our cabin steward has stopped by to meet us and introduce himself, not so much on this cruise. I think it was the next day before I finally saw our steward, and he never learned our names the whole cruise. This is something that has always made me smile on previous cruises.

We did all of our dinners in the dining room. I think it's been said before, but could someone please tell Carnival the American Table menu is horrible? The night we left they had jalapeno poppers to represent the Galveston port. Essentially a cheddar-ish cheese stick with a few bits of pepper fried. Not at all good, and had a weird texture. For dinner the entrees were something I could get at any restaurant in Dallas. I like to try new things on cruises, or things I wouldn't otherwise try. I found the menu to be boring and many nights had chicken or pork chop. I had the flat iron steak the first night but it simply did not taste good. Lobster is no longer an option unless you pay a $20 upcharge. Desserts were probably the most disappointing of all. Seriously Carnival, who goes on a cruise to have a piece of Apple Pie? No more Baked Alaska, no Cherries Jubilee. The couple times we got the melting cake it was WAY undercooked, and yes, I get that it is supposed to be somewhat undercooked, but not like this. Dessert options were so horrible that we resorted to ordering banana splits off the kids menu one evening.

Sea Day brunch was yummy, Guy's Burgers always a hit, and Fish and Chips was actually really good. Their conglomeration of calamari, onion, and zucchini was tasty. There were numerous times on meals where someone would ask for coffee or in one case lemonade, and nobody every brought it. Once there was even a reminder yet the coffee never came. I drank lemonade and each time my glass was subsequently filled with water.

The 80's show was great, but seemed to end suddenly. The beach show wasn't too great.

I think previous posters mentioned that there seem to be very few activities on port evenings, and that was true. There was very little appealing. We did go to the Hasbro show and one of our people got on stage. The Love and Marriage show, as always, was great.

In Progreso we went to Dzibilchaltun. I have been there before and knew the kids would love it. The fish nibble on your feet if you don't want to get all the way in the cenote. It's very relaxing. It's only about 30 minutes outside of Progreso. I booked my own excursions.

In Cozumel we swam with dolphins. We were conned into the pictures and got home and only have about 180 of the 212 pictures we should have gotten for the huge price ($180). We went to Channtanaab, again I booked this myself. The dolphins were great but I really struggle with the fact we were riding on them and holding their fins, etc. I feel really bad for them, they are kept in small little pens. I don't think I could do this again.

Malcom, the activities director was energetic and fun. He made you want to dance. The kids programs were wonderful, and kept our little folks busy. Because my niece was sick we missed most of the Seuss activities.

We had a happy hour that was an hour long provided by our travel agent. Unbeknownst to us, it was a shared happy hour. The drinks were typically sweet and sour colored mix with a splash of alcohol. I could do without that next time even though I think we already have it booked.

Disembarkation - we left the ship around 9:20 and were headed home in the car at 10:00. Amazing process! I will say that in the past I have always booked parking online through a company across the street. Never again. I paid $50 to park in the Carnival lots and got a ride to and from the terminal and it was QUICK! I will book online through Carnival from now on.

All in all, we had a wonderful time. We weren't at work we were cruising, the weather was mostly good. There was just something about the service on the ship that wasn't quite up to par. I found myself wondering if it was a training ship or something. So unimpressed I am changing our 2017 cruise that I already planned to another ship.
txhawk36’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Ages 7 to 9
Ages 10 to 12
Ages 13 to 15
Service
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Cabin Review

Interior
Cabin 4E 6306
Not bad for an interior cabin, close to mid-ship so movement was minimal.
Empress Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews