Carnival Freedom Review

4.5 / 5.0
1,369 reviews

Great Cruise! Do NOT believe previous reviews!

Review for the Eastern Caribbean Cruise on Carnival Freedom
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Jeffs1gal
6-10 Cruises • Age 50s

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Sail Date: Apr 2023

I have to start off by saying that a few weeks before our cruise I was ready to cancel the whole trip based solely off reviews I'd read on Tripadvisor and Cruise Critic. The Freedom holds over 3,000 people, it leaves on 4 and 5 day cruises every week. Keeping that in mind you can only find a handful of reviews regarding the Freedom and most are negative. While you are always going to have a handful of complainers clearly the vast majority of the people who went on Freedom enjoyed it but sadly chose not to take the time to write a review.

Is the Freedom an older ship? Yes. Is it a smaller ship (comparatively) yes. However, it was clean! The staff was AMAZING! Food was fantastic! We had a wrap around balcony room at the back, room 74**. Our room steward was Wayan. The room was so nice, so clean and Wayan was so attentive to our needs.

Here are the things I take issue with, with previous reviews. "Lines for food are too long". Again, there are over 3,000 people on this ship. Guess what, there are going to be occasional lines. Be smart about when you eat especially at the buffet. They are the busiest between 8:00 and 9:00. We chose to eat before the rush around 7:45 but even the one morning we ate after 8:00 and there was a line, it moved pretty quick. There are 2 buffets. There is the one at the very back of the ship but if you walk forward there is another buffet line. They all have the same food. One thing I noticed is not ALL the lines were long. In fact one time there was a VERY long buffet line on one side but I walked around to the other buffet line and I was able to walk right up and grab a plate! Shop around and find a short line. The line for Guy's burgers, yes it was long, but I stood in line for only 10 minutes, the line moved fast and there was plenty of people watching to do while you waited. Don't forget the BBQ place upstairs in the lido buffet. There was rarely a line for BBQ and there are PLENTY of tables up there no one really uses. We did the "Your Time" dining all 5 nights. You check in on the app and we never had to wait more than 15 minutes before we were seated at a table. And you can wait for your table wherever you want. They hold your table for 10 minutes. 3 nights we were sat with other couples and 2 nights we sat by ourselves. My tip is if you want to sit by yourself eat later in the evening, after 7:30. However, having said that, we had a very enjoyable time talking with other cruisers at dinner. And, guess what, they all went on and on about what a great time they were having and they all had zero complaints about their cruise experience. The other thing that worried me was I read reviews about "fights" happening all over the cruise ship". We saw zero fights, in fact I was struck by how friendly and talkative everyone was. And there were security officers on board that made themselves seen so I felt very safe as well. As far a bars go, we liked the one at the back of the ship by the pool, it was never very busy. A lot of people on previous reviews complained about how long the lines to the bars were, we often walked right up and were able to get service at most bars and I think the longest we ever waited for bar service was again about 10 minutes. And the last thing that worried me was debarkation. We have been on previous cruises and have always loved how organized Carnival is when it comes to debarkation especially compared to other cruise lines. I think if you follow directions you will have ZERO problems. We waited until our "zone" was called and pretty much walked right off the ship. Were we in a line? Yes, but that line never stopped moving and I looked at my watch and from the time we got to the lobby deck of the ship, to the time we had our bags and were walking out to meet our transportation bus was less than 15 minutes.

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