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The Trip: Now that our kids are grown, my wife and I prefer cruising in late August/early September for several reasons - not the least of which is to take advantage of back-to-school while its still warm enough to swim and enjoy the sun. This year was no different, and we knew the risk of booking during hurricane season - despite the fact that we'd been lucky over the previous 4 cruises and knew the odds were starting stack up against us. Previously we've had minor inconveniences, but nothing major. Well, we finally had a cruise that had to be redirected due to a hurricane, and it really wasn't that bad of an experience. We had a couple of days of rough weather (5-10 foot swells), but we wore the seasick patch and fared pretty well. Other people who had nothing or waited too late to take Dramamine didn't fare as well for 2 of the days, but I have to thank Carnival for redirecting south along the far edge of the storm to Grand Turk and Amber Cove rather than going north to New England or Canada - we were able to enjoy the warm weather and swim/sunbathe all 7 days. The Ship: The pride is an older ship, but in general Carnival's refreshes have improved her and she has held up fairly well. Some complain about the decor (I frankly don't care), and others complain that the ship is old. However, my wife and I prefer the smaller feel of the older design - the newer ships (in particular the megaships) are just too crowded for my taste. We did a Royal Caribbean cruise on a larger ship (3500-4000 passengers), and were turned off by the way they managed the larger crowds. The downside to the smaller design is that there really isn't a lot to do all day during bad/cold weather; the bigger ships have enclosed pools or other activities beyond the bars and casino. A definite upside is that the passenger to crew ratio is better, and the ship is easy to navigate. The Food: The best "free" food is definitely in the dining room at dinner, and the whole experience is a positive. The food was generally very good, although a few items were average (appetizer/dessert). My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed the singing and dancing of the waiters - it is a nice touch I hope they keep. For lunch Guy's was great, and rivaled any chain such (Five Guys or Smashburger). The Lido buffet is passable, but it is average at best even for a buffet. At breakfast the dining room was good, but the room service egg sandwiches were not. We did pay for David's steakhouse one night for dinner, and it was excellent. Entertainment: One of the reasons my Wife and I prefer Carnival over other lines is the nightly comedy club. Over a 7 day cruise there are 2 pairs of comedians who do 3 different sets apiece so the comedy is fresh each night. The comedy shows are thus much better than the song and dance production in the main theater. On good weather days there is plenty to do up on deck, and at night there are plenty of choices of live music along with the typical clubs and bars. Service: For the most part service was pretty good, and in particular our steward and Dinner staff were very good. They did seem to be rushed at times, but were always pleasant. Walking the ship, most of the crew would greet you with a smile and a hello. The steward did offer a choice of morning or evening which offends some, but honestly I didn't feel the need for anything more than once. Embarkation: We live in southern New Jersey, and have sailed out of New Jersey, New York, and Baltimore. By far the easiest port to get into an out of is Baltimore. The new scheme of your sail-and-sign card being on your door is absolutely fantastic - there was virtually no line at security and once we were through we just walked onto the ship. We typically do the "faster-to-the-fun", but for embarkation you really don't need it now. Grand Turk: This was our first time to Grand Turk, and since we were redirected there after we sailed we couldn't do any prior homework. We picked an excursion for an all inclusive trip to a beach, and would not do it again. The food was pretty bad, and the drinks were basically rum punch or soda. It was a 10-15 minute ride, and it would have been much easier and cheaper simply to go to one of the beaches right at the port terminal. The beach had lots of rocks, and without water shoes my wife couldn't even go in deeper than her knees. Amber Cove: First time here as well, and we ended up booking a trip to "Ocean World" to swim with the dolphins and it was great. It is basically a smaller version of discovery cove plus seaworld, without the rides. Despite the reputation of the Dominican Republic, there was plenty of security at Amber Cove and Ocean World. Conclusion: We've already booked next year's cruise on the Pride, so yes I am happy with the experience. After cruising on Disney, Carnival, Royal Caribbean, and Celebrity my wife and I are convinced that Carnival offers not only the best value but has the best options for us.

Great time despite hurricane Humberto

Carnival Pride Cruise Review by timbop

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: September 2019
  • Destination: Bermuda
  • Cabin Type: Extended Balcony
The Trip:

Now that our kids are grown, my wife and I prefer cruising in late August/early September for several reasons - not the least of which is to take advantage of back-to-school while its still warm enough to swim and enjoy the sun. This year was no different, and we knew the risk of booking during hurricane season - despite the fact that we'd been lucky over the previous 4 cruises and knew the odds were starting stack up against us. Previously we've had minor inconveniences, but nothing major. Well, we finally had a cruise that had to be redirected due to a hurricane, and it really wasn't that bad of an experience. We had a couple of days of rough weather (5-10 foot swells), but we wore the seasick patch and fared pretty well. Other people who had nothing or waited too late to take Dramamine didn't fare as well for 2 of the days, but I have to thank Carnival for redirecting south along the far edge of the storm to Grand Turk and Amber Cove rather than going north to New England or Canada - we were able to enjoy the warm weather and swim/sunbathe all 7 days.

The Ship:

The pride is an older ship, but in general Carnival's refreshes have improved her and she has held up fairly well. Some complain about the decor (I frankly don't care), and others complain that the ship is old. However, my wife and I prefer the smaller feel of the older design - the newer ships (in particular the megaships) are just too crowded for my taste. We did a Royal Caribbean cruise on a larger ship (3500-4000 passengers), and were turned off by the way they managed the larger crowds. The downside to the smaller design is that there really isn't a lot to do all day during bad/cold weather; the bigger ships have enclosed pools or other activities beyond the bars and casino. A definite upside is that the passenger to crew ratio is better, and the ship is easy to navigate.

The Food:

The best "free" food is definitely in the dining room at dinner, and the whole experience is a positive. The food was generally very good, although a few items were average (appetizer/dessert). My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed the singing and dancing of the waiters - it is a nice touch I hope they keep. For lunch Guy's was great, and rivaled any chain such (Five Guys or Smashburger). The Lido buffet is passable, but it is average at best even for a buffet. At breakfast the dining room was good, but the room service egg sandwiches were not. We did pay for David's steakhouse one night for dinner, and it was excellent.

Entertainment:

One of the reasons my Wife and I prefer Carnival over other lines is the nightly comedy club. Over a 7 day cruise there are 2 pairs of comedians who do 3 different sets apiece so the comedy is fresh each night. The comedy shows are thus much better than the song and dance production in the main theater. On good weather days there is plenty to do up on deck, and at night there are plenty of choices of live music along with the typical clubs and bars.

Service:

For the most part service was pretty good, and in particular our steward and Dinner staff were very good. They did seem to be rushed at times, but were always pleasant. Walking the ship, most of the crew would greet you with a smile and a hello. The steward did offer a choice of morning or evening which offends some, but honestly I didn't feel the need for anything more than once.

Embarkation:

We live in southern New Jersey, and have sailed out of New Jersey, New York, and Baltimore. By far the easiest port to get into an out of is Baltimore. The new scheme of your sail-and-sign card being on your door is absolutely fantastic - there was virtually no line at security and once we were through we just walked onto the ship. We typically do the "faster-to-the-fun", but for embarkation you really don't need it now.

Grand Turk:

This was our first time to Grand Turk, and since we were redirected there after we sailed we couldn't do any prior homework. We picked an excursion for an all inclusive trip to a beach, and would not do it again. The food was pretty bad, and the drinks were basically rum punch or soda. It was a 10-15 minute ride, and it would have been much easier and cheaper simply to go to one of the beaches right at the port terminal. The beach had lots of rocks, and without water shoes my wife couldn't even go in deeper than her knees.

Amber Cove:

First time here as well, and we ended up booking a trip to "Ocean World" to swim with the dolphins and it was great. It is basically a smaller version of discovery cove plus seaworld, without the rides. Despite the reputation of the Dominican Republic, there was plenty of security at Amber Cove and Ocean World.

Conclusion:

We've already booked next year's cruise on the Pride, so yes I am happy with the experience. After cruising on Disney, Carnival, Royal Caribbean, and Celebrity my wife and I are convinced that Carnival offers not only the best value but has the best options for us.
timbop’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Extended Balcony
Cabin 8K 7192
My wife and I prefer to be amidships in case of rough weather, and deck 7 gets us close to the Lido deck without concern for noise that some mention on deck 8. Cabin 7192 fit the bill, with the added benefit of being near the amidships stairs/elevators without being too close to be noisy. The room itself is not overly large, but comfortable. The first day or 2 we did have an odd chemical scent in the bathroom, but it seemed to dissipate over the trip. The balcony is a good size, and the fact that the room is recessed a little bit from the line of the ship meant that the lido deck made for a nice little overhang. My wife and I sat out one night and watched an amazing lightning storm on the balcony and were covered from the rain; it also provided a nice shade during the day.
Panorama Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins