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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. .

Carnival Freedom, Eh? ok

Carnival Freedom Cruise Review by FlatlandDave

1 person found this helpful
Trip Details
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. .
FlatlandDave’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
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Embarkation
Dining
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Cabin Review

Balcony
Cabin 8C 7365
The cabin was ok. The cabin as with the rest of the ship looks ok, at first glance. On closer inspection minor details stood out ( burned out light bulb , lampshade fell apart if bumped, and a few scuffs on the woodwork). TV small and sort of dim. Overall an ok room with a good view.
Verandah Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews