Sail Date: February 2019
I went with a 50+ singles travel group for safety in numbers. Ana was my cabin steward, and she was wonderful. The studio cabin was clean, the bed was comfortable and good for my back, and I loved the towel animals Ana made. I'm ... Read More
I went with a 50+ singles travel group for safety in numbers. Ana was my cabin steward, and she was wonderful. The studio cabin was clean, the bed was comfortable and good for my back, and I loved the towel animals Ana made. I'm with others on here in that the room could be equipped with drawers and a refrigerator. It was really nice to be able to shove my empty luggage under the bed, too; plenty of room there. The reason I'm writing this review is because, before I went on the cruise (Western Caribbean), I had read numerous reviews on Cruise Critic. One in particular makes me laugh now. The reviewer had complained about someone in the next room snoring loudly all day and all night every day of his or her cruise. I'm profoundly hard of hearing and wear a hearing aid, and they had set up my cabin with a deaf alarm that went off for every little noise, even people walking by, or me opening the door or the bathroom door or the closets. It was a constant, LOUD, irritating WAH WAH WAH WAH noise. It took me a day to figure out how to shut off everything but the alarm clock part (which I had to reset every night because all electric shuts off when you pull out the key card and leave your cabin)... and I realized that the reviewer must have had a deaf person in the room next door who couldn't hear the constant alarm at all. The ship was supposed to provide me with a device that alerted me to all announcements (sort of like a TTY), but they didn't. Fortunately, I had 4000+ people I could ask about what was going on. Other people LOVED the cruise, so I suspect much of my dissatisfaction had to do with being unable to hear. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
This was my first cruise and my first trip out of the US. I was in a Studio Cabin and did not realize until day 4 that they had events/shows just for the single cruisers! No worries though, there was so much going on both with ... Read More
This was my first cruise and my first trip out of the US. I was in a Studio Cabin and did not realize until day 4 that they had events/shows just for the single cruisers! No worries though, there was so much going on both with activities onboard like art auctions, casino, shows (Howl at the Moon, Rock of Ages & Burn the Floor), trivia contests, arcade, bingo, Deal or No Deal games, pools, tours and seminars and awesome onshore excursions I was slam worn out everyday~ So much to do and so little time! Loved Armon (spelling?) the host for all the "gameshows", HILARIOUS! The staff were AMAZING! Ana, my steward, was awesome. Left me a note the last night I was on the ship telling me how much she enjoyed talking with me. Milos with excursions gave me some great tips for first time cruisers and onshore excursions. He is the one who suggested the "Behind the Scenes Tour" of the ship and then he was the guide. That was very informative, interesting and cool (meat freezer was -10 degrees F!) Let's not forget the food! Cagney's was by far my favorite place to eat. Every thing they brought out was beautiful (WOW!) and tasted even better. Moderno's & O'Sheenan's were pretty amazing too. However the place I ate the most was the Garden Cafe...huge variety of choices at every meal. Jose was the Tour Guide for the Mayan Chocolate Excursion and Tequila Tasting in Cozumel. Nice guy, knowledgeable about his tour. In Belize City, Tara with the Bacab Jungle Horseback ride (Bacab Eco Park) knew her stuff too but the Park left something to be desired. The "self guided medicinal plant walk" only had 2 of the 30 or so "plants" marked with signs/descriptions. One of the two plants was almost dead (ginger). The horse that I rode was intent on getting me off the saddle by rubbing me off with jungle trees. It was an adventure! The Harvest Caye Mayan Medicine Excursion was cancelled by the tour company "due to lack of participation", that sucked. The final port in Costa Maya was the Chacchoben Ruins...Latecia, our guide, was amazing. Lots of trivia and details about the culture and the ruins. Once in a lifetime adventure. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
My complaints are so minor they slip my memory. DO keep in mind I was a solo traveler (female mid-50s) and in arguably the best cabin onboard for me (16704). Embarkation was a complete cluster. Think NYC traffic, bozos everywhere and a ... Read More
My complaints are so minor they slip my memory. DO keep in mind I was a solo traveler (female mid-50s) and in arguably the best cabin onboard for me (16704). Embarkation was a complete cluster. Think NYC traffic, bozos everywhere and a completely disorganized plan. For those of us that paid the large premium for Haven it was a dismal start. There was no marked line. I had the choice of being extremely rude trying to be separated from the masses or (eventually) making the General Public feel lousy compared to my care. For me the the whole point of Haven status was the ability to disappear from public view. Instead I was on full display. Not a good start. But that was just a flash in the rearview mirror. Once someone figured out who I was I was led to a sad little room that looked like a jail visitation area. But there were yummy little bites and infused water and it was quiet. In just a few minutes we (total of 3 Haveners), were escorted to the ship and directly to our Concierge Bowen. He gave us a very rote intro to the areas, then we were directed to our suites (in mine by 12:30). Before I headed off I met my new bestie, Anita, the helm of the best-run bar ever. Even if you just drink coffee and juices, Anita ( Ineedadrink :)) is pretty much the Lady of the Haven on Breakaway IMO. The bar is open 7am-close. There are fun little bar games around 9 for those having a nightcap. I can't say enough about how well the bar service worked. Gotcha though - drink service is sporadic on the sundeck (17). The bar needs another body on sea days. Concierge - Mine was Bowen. I must say, several of us Haveners were cautious about him the first couple of days. He just seemed very stiff on a ship filled with the opposite. But by Day 3 we all loved him and on Day 10 he was a rock star. I didn't have much scheduled and probably way under-utilized his knowledge. Next time I will rely on my Concierge more. I sure hope it is Bowen. He never once led me astray. He was the one to recommend being the last off the boat. It saved me a ton of time. I also liked that I saw him all over the ship and not just with "us". He definitely had relationships with people throughout the ship, just as an excellent Concierge should. Room - 16704 I was a solo and of average size with a side of clumsiness. My suite was awesome,. The bed is king and comfy. The balcony is one of the most private on the ship. Forward is the glassed-in bath of the DOS; aft is the shower of a 2BS. Above is the sundeck. Below is the spa. My room was not ever well-cleaned. I had to request new sheets Day 7. The TV remote sucks, but they all do and there is nothing to watch. Bvlgari bath products are low quality. Remember the bath water is extremely hard so pack your own bath products, especially lotion. Storage is mind-boggling. There is an abundance of hangers (20++). Lighting is also very good so bypass packing a nightlight. I always travel with an extension plug but could have survived in this room without it. Butler!!!! I had Louis and he changed my life. I will never forget him and I still think of little trays of treats and smile remembering him. Think of Bowen, but all to yourself (or so it seems). I really tried to be a good guest, but am sure I was not. Poor Louis was lugging my empty plates, wine glasses and coffee dregs off all of the time., He started bringing me my afternoon treats as catered to my diet as possible. FYI I am a fairly obedient T1 Diabetic but did not want the line to limit my cheat options. Louis was very attuned to my food cravings. One night I was a tad ill and a sugar crash. Louis brought me orange juice and gorgeous grilled shrimp on skewers in minutes. I also saw him buzzing about in the GP a time or two. It was a great sign that "our" staff have relationships throughout the ship. Dining in the Haven was Heaven. The menu does not change but it is divine. If you do one thing, please have a taste of the chilled soup d'jour. It was not until Day 5ish that the kitchen and I came to terms. After that it was nirvana. My issue? Sizes for 3 people! It was all fantastic, but the better the food the less I eat. Good food just makes me filled and happy and it doesn't require crazy portions. So once I figured out that I could order 1 egg, 2 lamb chops, no starches, a few more beans... it was excellent. The female Maitre´d is lovely. I ate at a few of the specialty restaurants but quickly learned Haven dining was what I enjoyed. And do not forget your butler can get you anything your heart desires. Pool/Courtyard. The word is that they will open the glass cover at Port on request. I can tell you it was never opened on my 11 day trip. Our weather was almost perfect and I never felt having the top closed was a bad thing. Except for a handful of kids the area was quiet and a nice retreat to read or meditate. Meals were also served there and coffee/tea/water/snacks were available 7am-10pm. The hot tubs were just warm and sloshed into the hallway on 16 on sea days - mildew was the norm for that area. The sauna was great and never used that I saw. Back to Concierge - the area could use another body, especially at peak times. Forget the fancy robes, 24-hour butler, room service and private deck. Your Concierge is the BMOC on the ship. When you are whisked off to an event with the GP expect an escort that will lead you to the best seats for everything. The freedom of skipping massive lines easily pays for the treat of Haven. Seriously, just keep saving a little linger and then do it right. Disembark - - - per my Concierge I was the last to leave. From the lounge to starting my car was 19 minutes (6 block walk). Bowen is there to make us feel special. He was excellent. Someone needs to get me normal again! Service everywhere was top-notch (save my room steward). Not only will I remember all of the people on the ship that work so hard to make me happy, I will also remember my fellow travelers. My years are long in adventures and my favorite memories are the people I meet along the way. Everywhere on the ship there were pleasant people, but I felt a connection with my Haven Homies. We would trade ship stories and snippets of our real lives. I met plumbers, managers, artists, doctors, attorneys, longshoremen and pilots. I conversed with people of all ages and from many places. Do it again? Heck yeah and in a heartbeat. I will stick to the big ships because I am a Haven addict now and need the restaurant/bar. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
Me and my wife took the cruise for our honeymoon and first vacation ever to ourselfs. I was surprised at the selections of food they had on the cruise. Me and my wife definately did not go hungry, if anything we gained a few pounds while ... Read More
Me and my wife took the cruise for our honeymoon and first vacation ever to ourselfs. I was surprised at the selections of food they had on the cruise. Me and my wife definately did not go hungry, if anything we gained a few pounds while on our cruise. The sun decks were perfect for many people to enjoy the sun as well as other company. I enjoyed trying my hand at many games in the casino, even thou I didn't win anything. My wife enjoyed a couple of the games in the video arcade, at least the easy ones. The pool side movies were a nice touch, even thou I only got to watch one of the many they showed. The cabin was spacious for two people to share, might've been crowed if more than two had the same room. The steward we had, Junaedi, was very nice and helpful with any request. We thoroughly enjoyed our excursion we decided at the last minute to go snorkeling and eat a Mexican lunch with tequila tastings with Claudia. I would highly recommend taking the cruise with the triumph going to Cozumel, Mexico. Just make sure to bring plenty of spending cash. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
there was a credit of $800.00 from a previous sailing with the American Queen Steamboat company. We wanted to try the American Queen - the biggest of the 3 ships in the American Steamboat co. We were waiting for the last minute deal ... Read More
there was a credit of $800.00 from a previous sailing with the American Queen Steamboat company. We wanted to try the American Queen - the biggest of the 3 ships in the American Steamboat co. We were waiting for the last minute deal , we found this cruise in a very short notice of departure. the ship was built in 1995 - a paddle wheeler, the steamboat built back to the Victorian history of the 1900 -including the furniture in the cabin, the theatre, dining room, lounges. entertainment -done by the ship's own members -dancers & singers, world-class musicians - organized by the Steamboat Syncopators -playing trumpet ,bass, drums ,.piano,saxophone,clarinet , flute & trombone. and also outside guests performance - Dante Vaudeville -magic show,Lainie Gulliksen -Siren Songs celebrating the Sirens of Broadway,Pop, & Opera , also the ship's own musician entertainers During the day there were River Chat ,Movie Matinee ,Bingo dinner - on the J.M. White Dining Room -we were on the 5.15pm early seating food was good service were great there was a land tour -on the ship's Hop on Hop Off busesto visit many Plantation , resorts ,museum churches. there was hardly any children Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
The crew was great and Very HELPFUL!!!! Simon was a GREAT Cruise Director and helpful... DJ Saxy was smashing the tunes and knew how to mix the songs and not just play just another song. Jay Jay our Stateroom Steward was amazing and made ... Read More
The crew was great and Very HELPFUL!!!! Simon was a GREAT Cruise Director and helpful... DJ Saxy was smashing the tunes and knew how to mix the songs and not just play just another song. Jay Jay our Stateroom Steward was amazing and made sure we were taken care of in 1055. The band Nola and the Po’Boys were blazing and big shout out to I think his name was Rico(the bass player) we had great musician talk and I waiter for table 326 at the late dining was very good and remembered our names and drinks .. The Asian band was also very funky... Now would I go back??? YEP!!!! The burgers and fries was BLAZING!! Every crew memeber I seen working worked with a smile and a willing heart. The only thing I didn’t like was that I couldn’t find anything I didn’t like(Lol) but seriously, I give my hat,boots,fried chicken off to you guys.... 1 Luv!!! MB stateroom (1055) Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
I just got back a few days ago from a cruise on the America. I was on the four night Highlights of the Mississippi, which is a round trip out of New Orleans to Baton Rouge. I will do this in sections: I’m a solo traveler, not a ... Read More
I just got back a few days ago from a cruise on the America. I was on the four night Highlights of the Mississippi, which is a round trip out of New Orleans to Baton Rouge. I will do this in sections: I’m a solo traveler, not a foodie, who was looking to this trip to simply relax. Not really into excursions and certainly not a foodie. I have the taste buds of 12 year old. The room: I had a single balcony. Compared to rooms on standard cruises, it was a palace. It was larger than a standard stateroom. For those who share my coffee addiction, the room had a Keurig to make your own coffee in. The walls are thin though, so if you are the “early to bed” type, bring some decent ear plugs. For those of you used to regular cruises, the bathroom will be a pleasant surprise. It was a decent sized and had a real shower with a glass door. I had read how unreliable the wi-fi was, but had good luck with it except for one morning. The boat: It was nice, and plenty of comfortable places to relax. With only around 180 people on the boat, no place was ever crowded and if you wanted solitude you could find it. There were 2 lounges which the staff did an excellent job of keeping stocked. Coffee, soda, juices and snacks (Sun Chips, peanut butter crackers, breakfast bars, that type of thing), and an ice machine. The ship had laundry facilities – 2 washers, 2 dryers, Tide pods and dryer sheets. Exercise room. 2 bikes and 2 elliptical machines, plus 2 other machines for weight training. The food: This was the only negative for me, and there isn’t much to do about it. There is only one choice on the ship, and that is to eat in the dining room. I did miss being able to choose just having a quick lunch at the buffet or the deli on a regular cruise. When you eat on the boat, you are making a commitment to typically 60-90 minutes as you have an appetizer, entrée and dessert to get through. Each evening dinner was at 6:30 p.m. and at 5:30 you could get drinks and snacks in one of the lounges. At dinner, there was a bottle of white wine and a bottle of red wine on the table. You can bring whatever alcohol you like on board. They don’t have any place to purchase drinks. The food itself was OK (I’m not a foodie). You typically had 2 choices for the appetizer, 4 for the entrée (one being Vegan), and 2 choices for dessert. The wait staff worked hard. You could get room service breakfast, and I never did that so can’t speak to it. Usually an hour before breakfast in the dining room, they put out muffins and juice in the lounges, so that ‘s what I ate. I only did breakfast in the dining room once. I was very concerned about the dress code, and some people did dress up for dinner in the dining room, but not everyone. Where what makes you happy. The hotel before the cruise: I stayed at the Intercontinental in New Orleans. Very nice hotel and a great experience. When I checked in I was given a packet with my cruise information. I could get into my room right away, and there was even a fruit plate, a bottle of water and a piece of chocolate waiting for me. Not sure why as no one else seemed to get this (maybe left from the previous guest Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
Being my first cruise - I learned as the journey continued. Note: My United seat was too small and chairs too close to my knees for me to get out. I would have enjoyed my cruise more if I had "thought" about there being a ... Read More
Being my first cruise - I learned as the journey continued. Note: My United seat was too small and chairs too close to my knees for me to get out. I would have enjoyed my cruise more if I had "thought" about there being a doctor on the cruise. Because of the hurt sacrum and arthritis, I needed to stop more often. Therefore, I would have LOVED having somewhere to sit on each floor. Even if it was near the elevator. There were very, very few places to sit along the passageways. This would be helpful especially to us older or partially handicapped people. Some people just "loved" the cruise director. Since this was my first cruise, I did not have a previous director to compare him to. As for me, I found his English accent very annoying to my ears and you heard it all over the ship - everywhere all the time. Some people loved him. So I am sure he was very good. Even if you are not ready for a wheelchair (like me) you might consider getting a partially handicapped room if you stumble over things or trip a lot. The reason I say that is the first cabin I was in (like 1202) the restroom floor was raised up about six inches. I had to put the lime green cups in the doorway so I would remember to step up the extra height each time I went into the restroom of my cabin. I went to play bingo - one time. It was very expensive. Also - if you were not the only person who won that game, you had to split the pot with whoever won also. I SURE WISH I HAD BEEN TOLD there was a free shuttle that would take me from the ship into Nassau. It was not a really long trip but it was stifling hot. Also, once you entered into the building to get to town, you could not turn back. You had to go through the building and enter the other side and stand in line to wait for the shuttle back to ship or I guess to walk out and walk back to ship. Not sure how I should have handled having my baggage taken to the bus I was to get on to go from pier to airport --- but I am sure going to find out on my next cruise in December 2018. I went down early and took them myself. Little knowing I would have to stop and start and stop and start for a very, very long ways from ship back and forth through corridors to get to the bus for airport. Surely I could have paid to have my bags put on the bus and me just walk it. I will figure this out at beginning of my next cruise. I was on this first cruise by myself. I am very friendly and so were others but I made sure that I have someone with me for my next cruise and it seemed too long by being alone. I began in cabin 11202 but woke up in wee hours with rocking of ship. Went to guest services and they graciously moved me to another room the next morning. Mucho better. Thank you. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
my sister-in-law choose this cruise for us it was her 13th cruise and my first. she advised me of all the activities on the ship and the different islands we would be going to and she thought this would be the best first time cruise ... Read More
my sister-in-law choose this cruise for us it was her 13th cruise and my first. she advised me of all the activities on the ship and the different islands we would be going to and she thought this would be the best first time cruise experience for me. I agree it was a fantastic experience. and plan to do again. on the ship i really enjoy all the shows in the encore room. i love the fantastic food on board. i even enjoyed the casino at times and the off ship excursions to the beach was really great i got to meet a different culture of people i had never met before and shop for things i have never seen before and really got some great bargains. in Honduras we enjoyed a beautiful pool by the beach and really great food and some island music that i really liked . I enjoyed the whole experience of the cruise from boarding the ship till the day we left the ship It was a fantastic experience Read Less
Sail Date: March 2018
A friend has sailed with Norweigan before and highly recommended it. I have to say the service was 5 Star and what impressed me the most was how clean the ship is. Our cabin was always made, we did not wait on anything (food, drinks, ... Read More
A friend has sailed with Norweigan before and highly recommended it. I have to say the service was 5 Star and what impressed me the most was how clean the ship is. Our cabin was always made, we did not wait on anything (food, drinks, clean cabin) and there were always activities each day. This was my first cruise and return to sea after serving in the Navy 20 years ago. Everyone on the Pearl was very friendly and happy to be there which set the mood with me. I was always greeted by staff as I walked the decks which I enjoy and is rare these days. I am already looking to book my next cruise as the value and amenities you receive can not be found in other vacations. I would highly recommend Norweigan to anyone that is looking for a first time experience as this will set the bar. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
1) because my brother and his wife have never cruised before. 2) the price 3) where it was going. 4) because my brother and his wife still like to party. Carnival seems more like a party type atmosphere. The staff was wonderful from our ... Read More
1) because my brother and his wife have never cruised before. 2) the price 3) where it was going. 4) because my brother and his wife still like to party. Carnival seems more like a party type atmosphere. The staff was wonderful from our room steward Wayan to our dinner stall Dede, Ignatius, and Polett. to the staff in cloud-9. spent the day in New Orleans before embarkation. Embarkation went very smoothly ( great job) our cabin 7203 is classified interior, but has a window. It is interior with a picture(walkway view).It was our highest level yet. and a good choice. they do sell out fast. we enjoyed most of our dinning I was disappointed in the main buffet, but like the other 3 buffet or was it 4? guy burgers was very good, the pasta bella was not a buffet, but a sit down where you place an order and drop it off at the head of serving line and then go sit down and they deliver it piping hot as you ordered. a don't miss if you travel on the Dream. Main dinning room was very good. the chef's table was an outstanding experience. It di cost extra, but we thought it well worth it. the shows in the encore lounge were to mush like Vegas style and loud. we like more Broadway style performances. disembarkation went very smooth also. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
Okay so this was my very first cruise and I'm here to leave an honest review of it. I'm going to give a brief review of every aspect of this fun vacation! Carnival Dream Ship Okay so the ship was huge. I know I don't ... Read More
Okay so this was my very first cruise and I'm here to leave an honest review of it. I'm going to give a brief review of every aspect of this fun vacation! Carnival Dream Ship Okay so the ship was huge. I know I don't have any to compare it to but my friend I travelled with had been on two Royal Carribean cruises and said this ship was much much bigger. There was a nice running track viewing the ocean, a basketball court, clubs, casino, mini golf, and nice slides for the kids. The casino was always full but always had slots available. The clubs were never full and looked boring. I think there were only two small pools and I never even got the chance to dip in them because it was always too crowded. However, I didn't make much of an effort to get in the pool either. The hot tubs were always full so I never made it in any of them either and there quite a few of them so it was disappointing I never made it in. The ship was always kept clean and there was rarely a dull moment. Cabin We were on the very bottom floor with one of the cheapest rooms so our cabin was very small and we could feel the boat rocking a lot. Our beds were not super comfortable. The bathroom was not very nice at all as it looked a little outdated and very small. No complaints though because that's what we paid for. For two college girls on a budget, it was perfect. Dining The food was not spectacular. The buffets served mostly the same things everyday and there were not many options. The 24 hr ice cream was great! The pizza line was pretty good. Guy's Burger joint was very good. The dining at dinner was pretty good but the serving sizes are small and there are not many options to choose from. Service BEST service. I missed my massage by an hour and they still worked me in. The dinner dining staff knew us by name and even remembered our drink orders each night. Guest service was so polite and helped us figure out a wifi problem we had. The service in general was awesome. Nothing but good things to say about these wonderful people. Ports and Shore Excursions We had great experiences with all of our excursions. We had to take two tender boats in Cozumel and Belize. This was an easy transition from land to shore. I did not travel with any children but the kids on the boat looked like they were having a blast. Mat the cruise director had constant fun and games for everybody. I would definitely go again. SO thankful for this ship and this wonderful vacation! Read Less
Sail Date: April 2017
Was invited by friends, the boat was very nice service was very good dinning was good,We were disturbed about some of the guest on board,very bad language whilst trying to sleep sceaming loud late at nightand really bad odors on some decks ... Read More
Was invited by friends, the boat was very nice service was very good dinning was good,We were disturbed about some of the guest on board,very bad language whilst trying to sleep sceaming loud late at nightand really bad odors on some decks like a sewage smell very,very disgusting!!,on one ocassion my wife and i smelled cigar smoke it was not a very good cruise we expected better conditions!!! wet floors in restaraunt areas some were slippery.teenagers shouting profanities,being bullies,towards other children,being around that kinf of language and being bullied is not the idea vacation my wife and i want to be around .I'M just glad that i wasn't any of my children getting treated like that i wouldn't put up with that.My friends noticed it a few times when thet were on cruises With Carnival,but like i wtyped your ship is up to top standards very nice,crew was excellent good work Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2017
The day before the tour was St. Patrick's day. I toured new Orleans of foot, went to Café Du Monde for French donuts and coffee. There was even a parade with traditional beads. The evening before the cruise was relaxing in the ... Read More
The day before the tour was St. Patrick's day. I toured new Orleans of foot, went to Café Du Monde for French donuts and coffee. There was even a parade with traditional beads. The evening before the cruise was relaxing in the hotel. The tours during the cruise were well arranged, guides excellent, and the Historian had talks the day before the tour to put us in the atmosphere. The food was excellent - southern/creole with alternate entrees and salads. Our server handled special needs very well. The entertainment, histories of life in the various communities, civil war along the river and music were all outstanding. Even the weather was perfect. As a handicapped senior, the personnel catered to my needs. I highly recommend this trip for friendliness of crew and personnel, and even for helping me with boarding pass for my return trip home. Also, a bus tour was added of New Orleans for those who had long waits at the airport for departure flight. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
Cruise review & journal Norwegian Dawn, March 5-12, 2017 Western Caribbean itinerary sailing from port of New Orleans by CruiseCritic member RocketSci73, from Huntsville, AL solo cruiser, male age 43, 10 prior cruises, ... Read More
Cruise review & journal Norwegian Dawn, March 5-12, 2017 Western Caribbean itinerary sailing from port of New Orleans by CruiseCritic member RocketSci73, from Huntsville, AL solo cruiser, male age 43, 10 prior cruises, 8 with Norwegian Summary: Pros: - New Orleans is a great cruise port, convenient to a shopping mall and several good food vendors. The city itself is a good destination of its own, with hotels and attractions within walking distance of the cruise port. - The New Orleans airport shuttle service is a good bargain. - Boarding & check in for the cruise went smoother than expected. - NCL has excellent food and restaurants! Their onboard entertainers are also very good too, such as comedy performers, magicians, and acrobats. - NCL has great service! They know how to be formal, but also know how to have fun, and party very well too. - NCL has pretty good organized activities for solo travellers. For example, they will let you share a table with others in the main dining rooms. - The NCL Dawn has great gym facilities, but hot & stuffy. Every NCL ship so far I have seen has had a great gym. - Cozumel is always a fun spot to visit, something for everyone, and plenty of good shopping! - The Mayan ruins of Nim Li Punit and Spice Farm in Belize is a great excursion, very informative and well paced. - All those annoying promotional loudspeaker cruise announcements on the ship have been reduced, compared with previous cruises. - I did not notice any screaming kids while on the cruise, and there was a mixture of all types of passengers. This means parents on NCL are responsible, and so is the NCL daycare. Kudos. - Interactive in-room TVs on the ship are very useful, a great innovation. - NCL has improved the photo process, making it more personal and less of a hassle than before. Cons: - Bad ship layout, hard to get around, the NCL Dawn needs more direction signs - Karaoke is offered limited hours and not enough time for everyone to sing. - Background music throughout the ship was often too loud. It's been great on previous NCL cruises. - Only one ship can dock in Roatan, and others must use tender vessels to carry passengers to the port. The tendering process could have been better organized, and I have seen NCL handle this better in the past. - Roatan is still getting their act together as a cruise port. For example, the port area has several snack stands, but needs a good sit-down restaurant, especially with many cruise customers unable to simply walk aboard their ship, due to limited dock space & tendering. Local folks everywhere were asking for cash, and tip jars were everywhere. - Costa Maya needs a better variety of souvenir vendors. Tips: - Before boarding, be sure to research shore excursions, shopping, activities and prices, if you can. It's all online, and can even build to the excitement of your vacation. - Be sure to meet with other travellers and share experiences whenever you can while on vacation, such as at dinner or while on excursions. You will learn a lot, and make some great friends. Excursions are often mixed between different ships and cruise lines, which helps even more. - In Belize, everyone is a native speaker of English, and 1 US dollar is always worth 2 Belize dollars. - You can avoid seeing daily gratuity charges appear on your bill if you pre-pay your gratuities via the NCL website. It's not as expensive as you may think. - You can also reserve shore excursions, meal plans, and most other onboard purchases at the NCL website before your cruise. - The shops recommended by the cruise line are a tad more pricey than others, but have a lot better service to deal with. - Midway through the cruise you should receive an offer to wash & fold all the laundry you can fit in one large bag, for a good price, around $20-25. Use it! I like not having such chores to do when I get back home. - The CruiseNext deposit option is a good deal, even though over-promoted. While on board, you can put down deposits on a future cruises, and get half your money back immediately toward your current cruise. You do not have to pick out a future sailing, just put down a deposit which can be used on any future NCL cruise within 4 years. Day 00/ Mar04 - Arrival in New Orleans My flight to New Orleans went well, as usual. Flights were rather empty this Saturday, so I got surprise upgraded to first class. This was my first time flying Delta first class, and discovered their first class is nice but rather overrated. I found the New Orleans airport shuttle van service to be a good bargain, $24 per person, available in the baggage claim area of the airport. A taxi would be $36 per person. Our shuttle driver was nice and helpful and pointed out landmarks along the way, as he dropped customers off at their various hotels. There is another service company available that can pick up your luggage bags at the airport, store them under secure watch, and transfer them to the ship for your cruise, all for a reasonable cost, or transport them vice versa from the cruise to the airport. I did not use that this time, but it seems like a good idea. The Hilton near the cruise port was a convenient bargain for this visit. The cruise port and Hilton are joined into the Riverwalk Mall, which is quite convenient, downtown right on the scenic riverside. One can walk freely from the Hilton, through the mall, to the port, and all in air conditioned comfort. I saw several other cruise passengers with luggage going through the mall, to drop their luggage off at the cruise port. The mall also gives you something to do & eat, instead of waiting in long lines to board the ship. I have not seen that at other ports. It looks like the Hilton has been expanded several times, so is a bit disorganized. Most features at the hotel (food, gym, internet) are extra charge. I explored the area around the cruise port in New Orleans on foot, and did some shopping for loved ones. The food in New Orleans is always good. Day 01/ Mar 05 - Boarding the ship I checked out of the Hilton, and dropped my baggage off at the nearby cruise port, leaving me free to shop and explore on my own a bit. A New Orleans city transit pass is a good buy at only $3 per day, and includes the scenic cable cars, all city public busses, and even a new airport shuttle, dubbed route 202. I had some beignet donuts and milk at the Riverwalk's Cafe du Monde, then headed to the port to board the ship. The line to board the ship was long, but moved rather quickly through security screening, check in, photos & promos, and boarding. I boarded in time to get lunch in the main dining room, called the Venetian restaurant, which was very nice. This was the first time I recalled boarding in time to get lunch on the ship. I unpacked in my cabin, and then came the usual mandatory lifeboat drill. We had to find our emergency muster station, watch how to put on a life vest, and listen to a safety briefing from the cruise director. I did not even notice the ship was moving after the lifeboat drill, until I looked out of a window. After, I took an organized tour of the ship, which was not very helpful. It showed the feature areas of the ship, but not very well how to get around. The layout of this ship is very disorganized. I like previous NCL ships much better. I joined the solo travellers meet up in one of the public bars, and we went to dinner together in the Aqua restaurant, which has a nice atmosphere, though hard to get to. I am glad NCL has an organized meetup for solo travellers, and seems to be one of the few cruise lines that cater to them. After, we spent a couple hours at karaoke, and called it a night. The singer list at karaoke was too long, and I did not get to sing. Accoustics in the disco bar were also poor for karaoke. I did not attempt karaoke the rest of the cruise. Back in my cabin, the rocking of the ship put me sound asleep, as we left the Mississippi River headed for the Gulf of Mexico. Day 02/ Mar 06 - Day at sea I woke well rested around dawn, and had oatmeal for breakfast at the 24 hour atrium restaurant "O'Sheehan's Irish pub." Service, music, and food have always been good at NCL. I tried to play ping pong this morning, but it was too windy on the decks, due to a nearby storm that just hit New Orleans and the Gulf of Mexico. We had 13 foot waves and 63 mile an hour breezes, and about one third of passengers were seriously sea sick today. I wish better direction and deck layout signs were posted throughout the ship. Instead of ping pong, I spent an hour in the gym, which was very nice, with free weights, treadmills, rowing machines, and such, with some good sea views. It could use better ventilation, as it was hot and stuffy, and several others complained about this too. I then found it ironic that the buffet is right next to the fitness center, and I had a good meal, watching the waves. I changed clothes, then attended the presentation on shore excursions and shopping in the main theater. It was a waste of time, as I had done a lot of research before the cruise, but the shopping deals & coupons handed out were useful. I then attended the Latitudes party, for prior NCL guests, and learned how the benefits are changing slightly, but are still good. I also met with fellow experienced cruisers, always informative and pleasurable. I then had lunch in the main dining room, and found the soup spoons were too large to fit in my mouth. My waiter remembered this on several future occassions, and it became sort of a running joke. I have always been pleased with NCL service, all over the ship. Musical performances all over the ship were also very good, but often too loud when used as background music. The live newlywed game was fun, as usual. I found the in-room TVs have lots of interactive features. You can check your room bill account, order shore excursions, schedule a dining reservation, check weather and navigation information, see a schedule of onboard activities, and more. Day 03/Mar 07 - Cozumel, Island Highlights & Shopping My tour of Cozumel was moved 3 hours earlier, with no explanation given. So I went to bed early, could not sleep well, but was awakened to wonderful refreshing tropical air and breezes. I took the island highlights and shopping tour. It was a great tour, one of the best I have ever taken. It is a great overview of the whole island, and nicely paced. We got to see a museum of Mexican artwork and culture called "Discover Mexico," see Mayan temples and villages to a scale of about 4 feeet high, see a modern Mayan handicraft village with some minor Mayan ruins (El Cedral), visit a chocolate factory with lessons on how chocolate was discoved and made, visit a tequila store with lessons and samples, and see great views of the island tropical jungles and coasts, including the El Mirador rocky coastal point. The tour dropped us off at Pancho's Backyard, a wonderful lunch restaurant, also recommended by the cruise line. Good food, good service, reasonable prices, cool shade in a Mexican hacienda, and a live marimba band. Pancho's is about 8 blocks from the cruise port, a nice walk, and gives opportunity to pass by lots of great shops on the way back to the ship. I of course spent too much money shopping along the way, but it was worth it. The shops recommended by the cruise line were very respectful and professional, but the local shops were very pushy, almost desperate for a sale! They love to haggle; it's the Mexican way. I found this all true in Costa Maya as well. Back on the ship, I had a late buffet lunch, as we sailed away from Cozumel. I wish fresh drinking water were more commonly available on NCL ships, to prevent dehydration. At some cruise docks, NCL had set up a relaxation welcome tent before entering the ship, with small cups available of lightly flavored water and some cooling fans. This helped some. The evening magician show was pretty good, but looked staged, as it was always in sync with certain sound effects. He seemed rather unprofessional at times, often demanding more applause from the audience. One problem with the theater was that spotlights would occassionally circle over the audience, blinding passengers at random. For supper, I tried Le Bistro, the onboard French cuisine restaurant. It was very good, with rich flavors. I could not finish the whole meal. After, I felt drowsy from a full day and full stomach, and went to bed. I woke in the middle of the night, alert and ready for more action, but hungry again. So I went to the 24-hour O'Sheehan's Irish pub, met some fellow travellers there, then went to the gym to wear myself out, and took a nap. In a couple hours I woke up. Day 04/ Mar 08 - Roatan, Gumbalimba Nature Park What a mess! The ship could not dock at the pier in Roatan, and none of the crew seemed to be prepared for this. Tender vessels had to be used to get on and off the ship, and only one tender was loading or unloading at a time. Thus, everyone wanting to get off the ship had to wait in one long line. NCL claimed they were giving priority to those with shore excursion tickets, but I saw no such system in place. I had to wait in line standing for 2 hours, and nearly missed my shore excursion meeting time. Many people did miss theirs, especially the early ones. The line for getting on the tenders was so long, spilling through the main staircase, and Aqua main restaurant, and other public areas of the ship. Once ashore, we were loaded onto busses, and conveyed to our destination Gumbalimba Park. The nature park was very crowded, as there were at least 4 ships in port, and the park was not prepared for this. Our guided tour of the park had to stop at each attraction, while each previous tour group went through. I was told from the park's website that a self guided tour of the park was an option, but it was not. The park did not have maps or signs ready, a shame. I would have been lost in the jungle without our tour guide! We did get to see a good variety of local flora and fauna, and cross a river on a fun swing bridge. I got my picture taken with tropical birds and monkeys. Our tour guides were very good at taking pictures for everyone, though it slowed things down. The weather was hot, but the park is mostly shaded. The gift shop had a good variety and reasonable prices, but the snack stand was way overpriced. Rental lockers ($3/day) are purchased in the gift shop, but actually located on the other side of the park, which caused some confusion. There is also a beach and pool area, and ziplines available for a modest extra fee, which many seemed to enjoy. In summary, this was not the tranquil retreat that I had expected. Busses cycled through the entrance area to the park about every 20-30 minutes, to shuttle visitors back to the cruise port, and this was handled well. The Roatan cruise port has lots of good shopping, and several snack stands, but needs a good sit-down restaurant, especially for those passengers that tender to their ships. One crew member told me that NCL and RCCL alternate weeks as to who docks at the Roatan port. This was not our lucky week. On a later day, during the Senior Officers Q&A, the Captain confirmed this problem. Back on the ship, I dined at the upscale Italian restaurant La Cucina, which had very good food and service. I have been pleased with getting the NCL restaurant dining package on this cruise, and can recommend it to others, but have also been plenty pleased with the food choices included complimentary onboard. The food quality, flavor, service, decoration, and atmosphere have all fulfilled my desires, no matter which dining venue I am in. After a great meal, I hit the hot tub to relax away the evening, with Bob Marley songs performed by the reggae band on deck, under the stars. Very nice, just what I needed after such a long rough day. Day 05/ Mar 09 - Belize, Mayan Ruins & Spice Farm I woke up a little sore from yesterday's exercise, but looking forward to this day. Our ship docked at the newly opened cutom-built tourist island of Harvest Caye, but my excursion was going to the mainland Mayan ruins of Nim Li Punit and a nearby spice farm. This was one of the best tours I have taken! It was educational, shaded, and well paced. There were plenty of rest stops included, for restrooms and shopping and such, and even an opportunity for a quick lunch. From the ship, we boarded a ferry then bus, and were at the Mayan ruin site within the hour. Our tour guides were very professional, entertaining, and informative. The bus was also quite comfortable, even though some access roads were rocky along the way. The ruins were not that large or grand (as I expected), but still authentic and very satisfying, even though I have been to many other Mayan ruin sites before. At this site, trails of leaf cutter ants were marching everywhere, carrying sections of leaf back to their nest, very fascinating to watch. A couple folks needed insect repellent, mainly those who stepped in the pathways of the ants, but I did not, and most others did not. There were not many flying bugs here, and it was well shaded, which was nice. Our bus next took us to a nearby spice farm, where we had opportunity for some lunch and souvenir shopping first. A limited a-la-cart buffet was offered there, with some pretty good local choices. We then toured the spice farm on tractor-pulled, covered wagons, and our guide pointed out all the plants and their properties: allspice, nutmeg, cocoa, pepper, vanilla beans, and more! We got to learn, smell, and taste most of them. In the farm, we got to open and taste a ripe cocoa pod. I expected the gum surrounding the seeds to be nasty, but it was actually rather nice, a lot like orange pulp, both in flavor and texture. After, there was about 20 minutes to shop for spices and souvenirs at the spice farm, before the bus and ferry took us back to Harvest Caye. We had about an hour of relaxation and shopping remaining at Harvest Caye, before our ship sailed. I found a nice variety of shops, and helpful folks at them. There is a Del Sol shop here, which sells those famous color changing items. Onboard, I dined in the Venetian main dining room and shared experiences with fellow travellers at my table. The food and service were great as usual. After, I watched the Second City comedy group perform in the main theater. They were hilarious, very entertaining, very skilled at acting. They improvised skits based on audience suggestions, life's quirks aborad a cruise ship, and the awkwardness of a first date of a couple selected from the audience. Day 06/ Mar10 - Costa Maya, Mayan Reality Tour Today I took the "Mayan Reality Tour," which is a look at how Mayan people live in modern Mexico. It was rather boring, especially since our tour guide spoke very broken English. There was a lot of standing around and listening to our tour guide. He kept asking the guests questions, to continually stir up conversation and speculation as to how the Mayans really live, but I found this lecture habit very annoying. We were taken by bus (about 45 minutes) to a modern Mayan village, I believe called Limones. It looked like any other small run down Mexican town: cinder block stucco buildings and dust, graffiti, and poverty everywhere. According to our tour guide, most of the town is government subsidized and non-productive, as these people chose to stay put and not seek out employment opportunities elsewhere. We made a stop at a large thatched hut in the middle of the village called the City Center, where half a dozen local women all sold the same souvenirs on small tables. Next to the center, was a small Mayan pyramid temple. Part of the temple had been repaired in the last few decades, as it was a slightly different color, and had no moss growing. This shows that they care for their religion and community, a positive sign. Our tour guide also attempted to explain the Mayan calendar system. We were next taken by bus to a nearby Mayan household. Each room was a separate thatched hut, with some modern conveniences present, such as limited electrical wiring, but no running water that I could tell. The kitchen had a refridgerator and a coal stove/oven. The man and woman of the household served us a small meal of spiced chicken baked in a iron pot in a pit in the earth. This was served as taquitos, small tacos with a variety of seasoning sauces. They were actually really good. We were also served water, cola, and beer. This was served in a large outdoor dining ring, with stumps for seats. They also showed how rope, cloth, and tequila are made from agave palnt fibers, using wooden tools. With 45 minutes left back at Costa Maya, I did some shopping. There must have been at least 15 vendors all selling the same souvenirs (and yelling loudly at the tourists), but only 1 liquor store, and all priced higher than Cozumel. Costa Maya is the Caribbean's first custom built port for cruise ships, meaning it's an overpriced artificial tourist trap. Harvest Caye is another, specific to NCL. Back on the ship, I raided the buffet, then took a country line dance class offered. Having an international cruise crew is interesting, as we were learning Nashville dances from an Italian man yelling "Yeehaw!" Day 07/Mar 11 - Day at Sea I cannot believe it is here, the last full day of our cruise. I started with another great meal in the main dining room, then attended a presentation in the disco on all the work that goes on behind the scenes to make a cruise: the bridge, laundry, kitchens, engine room, etc. This was followed by a half hour Q&A with the senior officers of the ship: the Captain, Chief Engineer, and Hotel Director. The audience had some very good questions, and the officers had some very enlightening answers. Next I reviewed and purchased my prefered photos in the photo gallery. I am impressed how NCL has improved the photo process on this ship, with touchscreen review, sorting & marking your favorite photos, and electronic ordering. It is a lot more personal and less of a hassle than before, as you see only the photos for your stateroom, and don't have to wade through all the others. For an extra $20, you can have all photos you purchase put on a USB memory stick. You can do this all at once, or have later photo purchases added to the same memory stick as the cruise goes by. Next I attended a program on future NCL cruises (boring), began packing up my bags, tallying my souvenirs to fill in the customs form, and ate lunch. I cannot believe I spent $197 in souvenirs, but it's worth it. (I had budgeted about double that, just in case, so was actually pleased.) After lunch, I watched the onboard magician perform and even teach a few tricks, followed by an enlightening Q&A session with him. I finished packing my bags, then competed in a trivia contest of identifying beautiful global natural landmarks. Our team won first place, getting the most right. It was great fun for everyone, even though there were no prizes. For supper, the tepanyaki room was booked up, so I went to Le Bistro again, and had another wonderful meal. After, I watched the acrobatics show in the main theater, quite amazing as always. On this day, I noticed that we had gotten no rain during this whole cruise, though we got 13 foot high seas and 63 mile an hour winds on our first sea day. The Caribbean is known for great weather year-round, but in the course of a winter week one can expect a serious storm or two, no matter where you are, even on a cruise. I have seen worse, though this was new to many first time cruisers. Day 08/Mar12 - End of cruise and journey home I woke up an hour early, as did a lot of other guests, as this was the day we changed to daylight savings time, but most of the ship's clocks had not been properly set yet. This caused mass confusion, with everyone asking everyone else what the time was, and folks wondering when they could or could not eat, as well as wondering when they had to get off the ship. We arrived and docked in New Orleans to a gloomy, cold, windy, rainy storm of a morning. Winter is still present in March in America. Getting off the ship and transferred to the airport for the flight home was rather straight-forward, as I had purchased an airport transfer through the cruise line. At the airport, I discovered GLO Airlines does not allow luggage check in until 2 hours before flight, which was an inconvenience, and different from most airlines. This meant for about an hour, I had to lug my bags through the airport. The flight home was great. Everyone working for GLO seemed happy and professional. The airplane was small, noisy, and shaky, but overall better than I had expected. There was plenty of room, comparable with other airlines, and the snack / beverage service was better than most coach flights. I made it home in plenty of time, and arrived home to a clear, bright, sunny day. (Edit: GLO airlines has since gone out of business later in 2017.) Overall, the vacation was great, and I am looking forward to my next with Norwegian Cruise Line! (Edit: My current plan is Norwegian Getaway on 04Mar2018.) Let me know if you would like to know more, or have any questions. I love talking about my vacations, and dreaming about them too! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2017
This cruise is convenient for me because the Port of New Orleans is only a few hours from my home. The Dream was fun last year, but this year it was a totally different experience because of our cruise director, Chris, the Flying Scotsman, ... Read More
This cruise is convenient for me because the Port of New Orleans is only a few hours from my home. The Dream was fun last year, but this year it was a totally different experience because of our cruise director, Chris, the Flying Scotsman, DJ Verso, and the Fun Team. They were so much fun and constantly had crazy, fun activities going on. My friends and I went to a nice, sophisticated cooking demonstration one minute, and the next minute we were running around the ship on a scavenger hunt. I think this year I enjoyed the ship more than the ports. We did, however, enjoy the ports. We went to Little French Key in Roatan. It was beautiful, and very easy to get to by bus, and we got to see and experience a little of the city by venturing out. Mahogany Bay is lovely as well, and is only a walk away from the port. In Belize, we went snorkeling with rays and nurse sharks. It was a wonderful excursion and well worth the money. In Cozumel, we shopped and ate. It was fun, but I will probably do some type of excursion if I go there again. My disappointment in this cruise was our cabin steward. We NEVER laid eyes on him. Last year, our steward was so attentive, we saw him several times a day. I had even brought a gift this time for our steward. Never saw him. Our room was cleaned daily, and we had turn down service all but one night. But we never met him, and that was very disappointing. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
This was my 10th cruise, and my first going solo. I chose this port and date as it coincided with my office closing for the holidays. I have cruised on Princess, Norwegian, Royal Caribbean and Carnival, and have had a great time on them ... Read More
This was my 10th cruise, and my first going solo. I chose this port and date as it coincided with my office closing for the holidays. I have cruised on Princess, Norwegian, Royal Caribbean and Carnival, and have had a great time on them all. My previous cruises were out of either Miami, Puerto Rico or Galveston. Embarking from New Orleans made for quite a difference in the type of passengers on this cruise - almost everyone I met were locals who had driven to the port. Football was on TV's in the bars everyday, with lots of enthusiastic and vocal viewers who also brought their "go" cups advertising their home teams. Embarkation took only 55 minutes from when I arrived at port from the Carnival airport transfer. Long lines but they moved quickly. My first stop was the Dream Lobby Bar, conveniently located on the same level you board the ship - Chocolatini! The Dream is easy to navigate, and had a similar layout to the Glory which I was on last year for this same itinerary (but out of Miami). I had set dining in the Scarlett dining room at 6:00 p.m. Most nights they let us in by 5:50, which was a good way to avoid the crowds. Service was VERY slow, every night our table of 10 was the last or second to last to leave, always around 8:00 p.m. Food quality varied, sometimes cooked to order correctly (I like my meat cooked Medium), but most often overdone and always arrived lukewarm, not hot. Desserts were always good - I had the fruit plate and sugar-free offering each night. Entertainment: The comedians were all very good, both at the PG rated shows and the R18+ shows. There were 4 different comedians on this ship, so try to catch them all if you can. The "variety" type shows with singers and dancers in the Encore theatre were not good - I walked out of two of them and went back to my favourite place - the Piano Bar, where you sing along to the songs you request and drink drink drink! Cabin - For the first time, I had an interior stateroom, and it was perfect for a solo cruiser. Lots of storage space - a cupboard for hanging clothes, a cupboard with shelves, a desk and stool with hairdryer, a mini fridge and safe, decent sized shower and sink area, with lots of shelves in bathroom over sink. Best part of having an interior cabin - it's always dark, so no being woke up by that pesky sunrise! My cabin on the 9th deck mid-ship was ideal, just walk up one flight of stairs to the Lido deck where the buffet and pools are - very convenient. The first day my cabin steward offered me a "menu" for me to sign off on which time I wanted my cabin serviced - morning, evening or both. I chose evening, but after two days changed it to "both" which was not a problem. Having been on this itinerary several times before, I did not do any excursions. I disembarked at Costa Maya to walk around the shop areas, and did the same in Cozumel. I did not get off the ship in Belize, as I did not want to waste an hour to take a tender to shore to walk around some more shops, and enjoyed being on the ship when it was so empty and I could finally get in the pools. At Mahogany Bay, I walked down to the beach and sat in the lounger reading for a couple of hours, but it was overcast and I returned to the ship for lunch and again to enjoy the lack of passengers for awhile. Hint: on sea days, everyone stakes out a lounge chair at 7:00 a.m. - so be warned, if you don't do so you'll be walking the whole ship in the afternoon looking for somewhere to enjoy the sun. Overall, I quite enjoyed my cruise on the Dream, and especially the friendly southern charm of the local passengers, and would certainly go again. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
The Forward balcony cabin on 10 10018, was away from ALL traffic and far enough away from elevators so no DING. It was close to the elevators, Convient to pool, and casino. And away from all noise in halls and partying. Also great for ... Read More
The Forward balcony cabin on 10 10018, was away from ALL traffic and far enough away from elevators so no DING. It was close to the elevators, Convient to pool, and casino. And away from all noise in halls and partying. Also great for coming into port, and getting to the top Forward in about a minute for pictures and sunrises **** joined the solo sailors every night at 6, we found new friensds to gamble dine, go to the pool, or just talk. ages were 23-90. We did dinner for 16 in aqua one night. We shared bottles of wine from individuals that received due to Platinum status. The new retaurant, Los Lobos was great. It was sunny in every port. Loved all the specialty dining. Bliss lounge had so many different mini events, game shows, cocktail parties, music. The solo group was great. Harvest Caye was a safe amazing relaxing beach and pool day! Loved Tabyana excursion in Honduras, Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
I had the pleasure of going with some friends on a 5 day cruise to Cozumel and Progresso from November 26th-December 1st, 2016. Overall we had a great time. If I had to cruise again, I would like to try another cruise line for the ... Read More
I had the pleasure of going with some friends on a 5 day cruise to Cozumel and Progresso from November 26th-December 1st, 2016. Overall we had a great time. If I had to cruise again, I would like to try another cruise line for the following reasons: 1. Hidden Costs: a. We received a great rate for the cruise, but Carnival definitely knows how to make up for the price difference. I called Carnival and spoke to the reps in the Fun Shops about 5 times to ask what we could bring on the boat, how much drinks cost, rules/regulations, etc. Not once did they divulge canned soft drinks were allowed to be carried onboard. When we arrived we saw a bunch of people carrying their own canned soft drinks and felt cheated that the information was not given when asked. I was only told each person could bring a 750ml bottle of wine. Also, when I called and spoke to representatives they made it seem like the only drink options available were the two drink cards which needed to be purchased. After pressing further, I was told coffee, water, orange juice, lemonade, and a juice cocktail mix were included in the price. There was no need to buy the $6/day beverage package, since you could bring your own canned drinks on board!! The other drink package was $49.99 plus tax and it included all beverages and 15 alcoholic drinks in a 24 hour period. This package is not worth it unless you plan on drinking 5 drinks or more a day. The drinks ARE NOT STRONG, so you would have to drink 15 drinks in order to feel a buzz anyways. Also, if one person in your room wants a drink package then EVERYONE has to buy the same drink package. Don’t bother buying the Carnival cups at the bar thinking you are getting a deal either. You’re not. It doesn’t matter about the size of the cup because the same amount of alcohol is being used for the drink. It’s just a way for them to get more money of out you. b. There were little plates posted around the ship advertising “free” Wi-Fi. When I connected to the Carnival Triumph WIFI I was surprised to learn their definition of free. The use of the WIFI was free if you were only surfing on Carnival.com. If you wanted to check email or Facebook to communicate with family/friends there was a $5/day charge. Not free and very misleading. c. Since I was told I could bring a bottle of wine I thought it would be great to have a glass over dinner. My friends and I brought a bottle of red wine to dinner one night and I proceeded to open it with my own wine opener. I was immediately stopped by our wonderful server, Conrad, who explained there was an uncorking fee…even if I uncorked the wine myself. Shocked by this information, as it was never mentioned by the representative beforehand, I asked how much the fee was. My friends and I were informed it would cost $15….yes $15, to drink the wine during dinner. The fee cost more than the bottle of wine! So essentially, Carnival is charging you $15 to drink YOUR OWN WINE!!!! In order to not be charged the uncorking fee, you have to walk in with your glass already poured (using your provided wine glass in your stateroom), meaning you’re limited to one glass of wine if everyone in your room will use their glass. This left a very bad taste in my mouth. I felt the fee was very petty and asinine. Why tell people they can bring their own wine if they can’t actually enjoy it during dinner without being charged some absurd fee? Ridiculous. Oh, and there’s this lovely gentleman named Dan that comes around for dinner offering shots. He says you can buy one and get one free, but when you check your statement it shows you’ve been overcharged. Don’t get the shots; not worth the $8 or headache of trying to get the incorrect charges removed. d. Steak- So, my friend was really looking forward to having steak for dinner. This was her first cruise and she was very excited to experience the “all inclusive” cuisine. Unfortunately, a good cut of steak was not included on the menu. The prime rib steak was included, but the other cuts were a $20 surcharge. Her prime rib was ok, and came with some off brand steak sauce and a baked potato. The steak sauce had a weird consistency and tasted watered down. She had to ask for A1 sauce, when it really should have been offered in the first place. The baked potato was just that. The potato was not cut or dressed. It was merely a baked potato that rolled to and fro on her plate. A server came around with toppings, but no wants cold cheese or toppings on their potato. It seemed lazy on their part to not at least cut the potato open and make it look appetizing. 2. Stateroom Service: a. I booked the cruise with 3 passengers total in the room. When we arrived in our room we were greeted by our custodian. He was confused why there were three people in the room, because the room is normally for two people. There were two twin beds, and a sofa that was capable of folding out into a bed. There was also a pull down bunk bed available. After explaining there would be three of us in the room he made the sofa bed for the third person. When we returned to the room we found two bottles of complimentary water for my friend and I. The third person in our party did not receive a water. She asked for a water, but never received one. Also, the sheets were not changed daily after room service. My friend had a lipstick stain on her pillow, and the next night discovered it still remained on the pillow which was flipped over to hide it. I also witnessed someone put all of their sheets and comforter outside their door, I’m sure in an effort to get clean linens. 3. Pictures: a. The pictures on board were ridiculously expensive. The pictures, ranging from size, cost anywhere between 13.99-21.99 a picture. It’s crazy. And don’t expect to get any kind of deal from Blaise or Geral if you buy more pictures. Their idea of a deal is to give you a discounted USB drive, a discounted canvas portrait, or a discounted CD, instead of giving you an actual discount on your pictures. Their “deal” always requires you to spend more money in order to obtain the pictures. Very annoying. I understand it’s about business, but come on Carnival. Expect to spend anywhere from $200-300 or more if you want memories with family and friends. Blaise and Geral were very nice though, and we enjoyed many laughs with them while negotiating. I know they were just doing their job. 4. Entertainment: a. The entertainment on the cruise was pretty solid. Jess from the U.S. and Bingo Becca were my favorites. They really kept things moving and enjoyable. After our third night of Bingo we came to the conclusion that it was probably rigged. I recommend getting the cheapest package available since no one ever wins the grand prize anyways. 5. Food: a. The taco stand was pretty good, convenient, and fresh ingredients were always available. The Burger Joint was also very good and had many toppings available. There was always soft serve ice cream or frozen yogurt available. b. The lines to the buffet on Lido Deck 9 were ALWAYS long no matter what dining time. If you don’t want to wait I suggest you make it there before they open and stand in line. For breakfast there is the buffet, but also there is a continental breakfast stand adjacent to the buffet that has grits, scrambled eggs, bacon, hash browns, sausage, but most importantly a short line or no line at all. I did not like the scrambled eggs, so instead I opted to go to the taco stand to get the Huevos Rancheros which consists of over easy eggs. There was never a line and I could get regular eggs instead of the scrambled mess. Also, there is seating available upstairs where the buffet is located. We didn’t notice this until the very last day. It’s a very nice ocean view, air conditioned, and you have access to the outside area of the boat where there are lounge chairs. c. The food for dinner was nothing spectacular. The salmon lacked seasoning. The shrimp creole jambalaya was pretty good. The white chocolate vanilla bread putting was also pretty good. The steak was just ok. Overall, the food was good. Iced water was always available at the dinner table; however, lemonade was never offered. We always had to ask for something other than water. We had good servers who always seemed to be in good spirits. Conrad was great and danced his way into our hearts. d. There is a pizza joint all the way to the back of the boat that is just ok also. If you want a snack before dinner you can definitely get a couple of slices to hold you over. I did not find the staff there to be particularly friendly though. e. There is an Asian wok available inside on Lido Deck 9. Lines are generally very long, but the food is very good. f. Chips and Dip- This cruise could really benefit from some chips, dip, pico, guacamole, etc. There were so many times where we just wanted a snack or something to munch on, and not a big meal. Chips are so inexpensive, yet they were not made available until the very last night of sailing. I was pretty disappointed by the lack of snacks on this cruise. I know it’s not that big of a deal, but it’s the small things that make a trip. Something as simple as chips and pico really could have went a long way. 6. Spa: a. I did sign up for a spa treatment after attending the Ladies Pamper Party. At this party you are given a “deal” on spa treatments totaling $99. You can pick from three 20 minutes areas to massage. After you get the massage, an effort is made to sell you a bath soaking treatment called Elemis. I received the massage and bought Elemis to bring home. My honest opinion is to skip the massage and buy Elemis muscle soaking treatment!! I love it! 7. Excursions: a. So we went to Cozumel and Progresso. We decided to do an excursion in Cozumel, so the only feedback I have is for that excursion. We went on the boat excursion that did twists in the water before taking you to a private island. We had a blast. If you do this excursion just know you will get wet during the boat ride. The island was very nice, but bring your bug spray! You may not feel it at first, but you will get bit. The food supplied was also very good. The drinks were weak. Aida was our welcoming person, and she was very pleasant. b. Progresso kind of sucked. The country is very poor and it’s clear the cruise ships are navigated there to help generate money from tourists. We didn’t do an excursion at this location, so maybe this is the place to do one in order to see the area. When we got off the boat there were shops set up for you to buy souvenirs. If you want to buy souvenirs, then this is the place. The prices are always extremely high, before negotiation. They like to say $55 first, but magically will come down to $20-25. It really just depends on how much you’re willing to spend for something you really like. I think this port should be re-evaluated. I would rather have cut that day completely or went someplace else. Read Less
18 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
The Dream is a large ship and very much understaffed. From the check in process, to the room steward, the dining room staff, bar staff, it was about the worst service I have ever received on a cruise ship. Carnival now asks that you ... Read More
The Dream is a large ship and very much understaffed. From the check in process, to the room steward, the dining room staff, bar staff, it was about the worst service I have ever received on a cruise ship. Carnival now asks that you chose when you would like your cabin serviced, evening or morning. My steward did not even show up the first night on the ship. Always a shortage of towels. Like to pick up the dirty towels and not replace them. Went 5 days with no pool towels. In the dining room, the waiters continually overlooked our table. I had to find the water pitcher and bread baskets/butter several times. Diner arrived cool several times. Had to track down the cocktail waiter many times when he should have know that we were a table of drinkers after the first night. Buffet was full of dirty tables most of the time. They now charge $20 for some items on the regular dining room menu such as a NY steak. We had an opportunity to dine in the pay restaurant. The food was quite good, however the service was also severely lacking and heaven forbid you ask for something out of the norm. There was no deviation from the printed menu selections. Bar staff and many of the staff in general were not the typical happy engaged employees we once saw on most cruise lines. The Serenity spa is a $139 fee for the week. The gal at the coffee bar would not take the time to make a drink when she prematurely cleaned up the bar 20 minutes early. She simply stated all I have available is... Entertainment seems to be primarily made up of ship staff more than than the usual performers that had been brought onboard. Be careful with your purchases in the gift shop. I purchased an Invicta 18165 watch marked at $795 at a discounted guaranteed lowest price of $149.. When I arrived home I see the watch can be purchased almost anywhere for $89 including Walmart. Having cruised many times, I do have Platinum status. Debarkation took longer than ever. Even with Platinum status it was after 9:30 before I could get off the ship. One good thing, we did luck out with the weather. All in all, try another cruiseline. Carnival has cut far too many corners. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2016
The Dream is a great ship compared to my last cruise on the Fasanation. The staff as always were fantastic. I'm amazed out how hard they work and they should be tipped well for all that they do each and everyday! No real complaints ... Read More
The Dream is a great ship compared to my last cruise on the Fasanation. The staff as always were fantastic. I'm amazed out how hard they work and they should be tipped well for all that they do each and everyday! No real complaints other than I wish Carnival was like Princss and offered surf and turf at dinner without the additional cost. I think we pay enough for the cruise to have steak and lobster anytime we want at dinner. I booked all of my excursions on my own. I booked three excursions at three different ports for the price of one on Carnival. Just make sure you read their reviews and make sure they have good ones and a guarantee to get you back to port! Th ship offers plenty of entertainment for all ages. If you ever stop in Belize make sure you check out Butts Up Cave Tubing and book with them. They are top notch and have your tubes waiting on you ready at the tubing site. All the other companies that I saw made the people carry their own tubes. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2016
This was a group cruise. The embarkation port (New Orleans) is not equipped to accommodate cruise ships in excess of 2,000 passengers. There are no separate or expedited check-in for Platinum or diamond guests in New Orleans. The trip down ... Read More
This was a group cruise. The embarkation port (New Orleans) is not equipped to accommodate cruise ships in excess of 2,000 passengers. There are no separate or expedited check-in for Platinum or diamond guests in New Orleans. The trip down the Mississippi River was VERY interesting! Have been on the Breeze (Sister ship), I had high hopes for the Carnival Dream. I was very disappointed! The Breeze was a far cry from my experience on the Breeze. The Dream was very poorly laid out. The casino is on the main deck (which ended up being a huge issue for those of us who are nonsmokers). I found that; because of the casino being on deck 5, I was unable to access deck five from about midship forward. Ventilation on the deck 5 is VERY POOR! Also...what's with the Hot Tubs on deck 5???? (people felt very uncomfortable using those hot tube because of the high traffic on deck 5). Also, hardly any specialty restaurants on the Dream (except the Steakhouse). Steakhouse was never busy (but could never seem to accommodate us in advance). No sports bar!! (this is a huge issue for those wanting to watch the World Series or football on Saturday/Sunday). Food was about on par from what I experienced on other Carnival ships (which is below what I would rate other cruise lines on). Carnival has also cut corners on the formal nights (No complimentary drinks and lack of enthusiasm from the crew). Second formal night was barely recognizable as one. Also....no dining room etiquette. On Several nights (not just embarkation night), passengers were in their shorts, sandals, ect and the dining room staff never seemed to care (why have rules and standards in you are not going to enforce them?). Although the ship is only 8yrs old, it seemed like it was 20+. Seemed very old and in dire need of an update. Also...many aspects of the ship are in disrepair (ie: much of the equipment in the gym was broken). Passengers seemed to be able to smoke where ever they pleased (again...lack on management onboard the ship). Positives: My cabin Stewart was excellent! very attentive and accommodated all my requests. The ship was very clean (except for the smoking areas on deck 5). The staff did a good job keeping things clean! The journey down the Mississippi river was very interesting!!! Read Less
36 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
First Off, I want to say I've went and read some reviews about the same cruise I sailed on, and I absolutely hate that my fellow cruisers did not seem to have the same experience that I did. I travel a good bit, so here is something ... Read More
First Off, I want to say I've went and read some reviews about the same cruise I sailed on, and I absolutely hate that my fellow cruisers did not seem to have the same experience that I did. I travel a good bit, so here is something to keep in mind, not everything is going to go perfect, you are on vacation, just go with the flow. My second advice to someone reading this is, most people who take the time to make reviews, its usually because of a bad experience. So on the opposite end of the spectrum, I'm leaving an amazing review, because I just got back from a trip of a lifetime! I'm a 21 Year old female, and disabled, and traveled with two other girls my age. We were coming for my best friends 23rd birthday, and I know it's not a birthday she will ever forget. We drove from South Carolina to New Orleans, we stopped 3 times for about 30 minutes each time and in total the drive was about 13 hours long. It wasn't a bad drive though, we enjoy road trips! And the fall colors on the leaves were gorgeous. We had made plans to visit Bourbon Street, but upon arriving, since it was only us ladies we decided against it, just being cautious. However, we did do some shopping the night before we boarded at the French Quarter Market Place. I got a couple of gorgeous bags that I am so in love with. We stayed at the Knights Inn, which wasn't much, but it was cheap, and I didn't feel my safety was in jeopardy at any point which was the main thing for us. We took an Uber to the Market place because we planned on drinking. And drinking I did, i highly recommend the Voo-Doo Juice! Careful it sneaks up on you. Enjoy! I had previously sailed on the Carnival Victory in February, I found New Orleans Port Of Call Much easier as far as departure. We had our car unloaded, my wheelchair unpacked and set up, made it through customs, in less than a hour and we had NOT purchased the faster to the fun package. We were one of the first ones on the ship, and our room was ready within a hour. Please keep in mind when you are sailing to read your full cruise documents. I'm a planner. You can take one 12 pack of soda on board per guest. you can also bring one bottle of wine on board per guest. Take advantage of this! Now I have two complaints about this cruise. None ruined my vacation, dont go on a vacation with a mind set to let it be ruined. on my previous cruise our cabin had a pull down bed like the top of a bunk bed. this time our cabin (a balcony 1006) had a trundle bed. which in my opinion is a cot. It's not something you will find me sleeping on. We took our issue to guest services and sadly they weren't able to move us. So we shoved the twin beds together and made a queen, we all shared it with plenty of room. Was it ideal? no. But we were on vacation, we weren't going to let something as petty as this 'ruin' a cruise. Besides, I didn't sleep much anyway. As an apology from Carnival, they sent us chocolate covered strawberries later in the week along with a very tasty bottle of wine that we all enjoyed immensely. Was it needed to make up for our slight inconvenience? Not really. But it was nice knowing Carnival cared. With that being said, that was the only complaint about our room. i love deck 10 because of how easy it is for me to get to the smoking area! our stateroom was immaculately cleaned in my opinion. Ofcourse, I'm not a very picky person. Something I love about Carnival? Their specialty drinks! I had been dreaming about the Strawberry Daiquiris from our last ship (when I turned 21) since the day I disembarked my last cruise. I know restaurants by how good their daiquiris are, and for some reason, no one can hit it on the head like carnival! One of the first things i got on the ship was one of those amazing drinks. i had actually worried that i had built them up so much in my mind that i would find myself disappointed. that was not the case, just as amazing as I remember. That night we celebrated my best friends birthday in the main dining room (on our last cruise we did anytime dining, and i will never do that again. i absolutely loved dinner every night.) they sang to her and brought her a special birthday treat, that i was actually impressed with. Considering I'm a baker with a specialty in elaborate cake decorating, thats saying something. Also our amazing steward, wrote a special birthday note to my best friend on the mirror in our stateroom, which just like everything he did was amazing! His name was John, easily remembered since it was my baby nephews name, and he was awesome at everything. if i could request him again, I would! I have nothing but good things to say about the dining room. I had steak, ribs, pork chop, grilled chicken, and steak again. Everything was amazing, I miss the food soo much! Our servers were awesome, they let me bring sodas from my room. They even learned to just bring me a cup of ice. They knew us by name. And we had two shows on our 5 night cruise that always made my night. My second complaint, I did not enjoy the comedians routine. On our last cruise, the comedian had us practically crying we were laughing so hard. This guy.. he wasn't the worst I've ever seen, but he was far from the best. He ripped into the crowd more than anything, as if he didn't have material prepared. And when he would find a funny joke the crowd responded to he would keep repeating it over and over until it wasn't funny anymore.. But it wasn't a big deal, we got up, and made a graceful exit. No big deal. I did notice alot of my fellow cruisers doing the same. We didn't return. That night we really enjoyed sailing down the Mississippi. It was a different experience, and I treasure those. It's the little things in life. As usual on our cruises, I'm the first one up and out of the cabin in the mornings and the last one in at nighttime. I'm a night person. So the next morning I got up, got dressed and went out for breakfast. Which was spectacular as I remembered. Sometimes the lines are a little lengthy, but they pass quickly. Now someone who is disabled like myself may appreciate the knowledge of how helpful carnival is when it comes to that. Going into my first cruise i had no clue what to expect. When i stand in line, when i make it up to the actual plates a crew member is right there waiting to see if i need any assistance. Sometimes i take them up on the offer immediately. When I politely decline (when I'm feeling rather independent) , it's not 2 minutes later when another crew member is coming up and offering to help as well. They are so sweet. One morning, within a 5 minute span i had 4 different crew members offer their assistance, I kept declining because I had a friend with me, and then a manager walked up and took my plate and fixed anything I wanted. It's very appreciated. After breakfast I headed to the seminar about excursions available (we had one booked for Cozumel Mexico, but not for Yucatan (Progreso). When you went in, you put your name in a raffle, you have to be present to win. And I won an excursion! Thanks Carnival! Ill get back to that. Now two weeks prior to my cruise, i had surgery on my right wrist. the day before heading to New Orleans i was removed from my cast and put in a brace to continue healing. My first full day on the cruise, which was a full day at sea i could finally wash it! So naturally I was out of the brace when I was taking a shower. Well our ship was very rocky, it was not Carnivals fault. We were traveling during hurricane season, we knew there was a good chance of us having to travel around storms, and we did. Well, the ship rocked, and i fell. i caught myself, on my bad wrist. By time my roomies got to me, i was begging them to chop my arm off. I winded up in the infirmary, and they put me in a cast. Something i had not realized that medical is extra priced, and they dont accept insurances. Because my injury was boat related they, my service was free of charge, which i wept tears of joy about. I do realize they were covering themselves from a lawsuit. I wouldn't have sued, it wasn't their fault I had recently had surgery. But not having that charge was a big deal to me and I was very appreciative. The doctors and nurses were amazing, and fixed me right up. Thankfully when i got home, i found out it wasn't broken. just a traumatic, very painful sprain due to the recent surgery. The cast they put me in greatly reduced the pain and then I went on to get ready for Formal night. (the next day i got a letter from guest services, apologizing for my injury and letting me know if i needed anything all i had to do was call.. then the day after that guest services called and checked up on me and repeated the same. They didn't have to do that, but i really felt like carnival cared.) As far as sea sickness goes, look into pressure point wrist bands, highly recommended! you can get them for a dollar on eBay or amazon! i used that and took Dramamine as a preventative and had no issues. Sadly I met a friend on the boat who really struggled with this, and green apples really seemed to help him. Formal night is so much fun to me, I really felt like a princess. Coming from a small town we dont get the opportunity to dress up like that often. Thanks for another great experience. Another tip I would like to extend, make friends on your cruise. there are tons of people on board, You've got to like somebody.. I'm a people person anyway so this has never really been an issue with me. But we made amazing cruise friends that night, and we were with them for the remainder of the cruise. They made our cruise! And we are still in contact and have made what I think is very valuable friendships at this point. There Was a guy we called Jesus, who was amazing at Karaoke! He also turned out to be my first mate on Halloween but I will get back to that! Our first excursion was Isla Passion By Twister In Cozumel. Our New Friends- The New & Improved Johnny Bravo & Curly Top Were On It. We took a jet boat over to the private isla passion beach (our friends took a catamaran if a slower boat is more your pace). Everything was amazing. The food, open bar, the boat ride. They told us the water wasn't as clear as normal because of the storms that had recently hit, but that wasn't a big deal. We were able to leave our belongings in our chair while we swam without a worry. We had so much fun. We had surprised the birthday girl with this, and she loved it. When we got back, we did a little shopping and then headed back to our ship. I love Halloween! It's my second favorite holiday! And when your sailing in the Caribbean on Halloween, people you have to be a pirate. Our new friend Jesus agreed and actually let me do a pirate makeup on him that night. We winded up making rounds on the boat asking other pirates to join our crew, all they had to do was take a picture. I got an amazing Polaroid collection that night! (Please keep in mind the Polaroid camera is mine and not a service of Carnival!) The Halloween decorations were on point, and not to scary for the little ones. I'm not a mother and I didn't have children traveling with me, but I am an Aunt So I did notice that factor. Our Halloween desserts at dinner were spooktacular! The next morning was the Excursion in Yucatan Progreso, Mexico that I won! It Was A VIP Beach Resort Getaway, And had an open bar! Our friends Johnny and Curly happened to be on it as well! The bar was awesome, decent strawberry daiquiris! They had amazing barbecue chicken wings. We played with a coconut in the ocean as a football. we laid in hammocks and enjoyed just how beautiful it was. we played chicken in the pool. And had an amazing time! A+'s all the way around! Thanks Again Carnival. So something I really enjoyed was having another full day at sea before we were stateside again. We had one more party night and weren't quite as exhausted on the drive home. We had a toga party! Why? because you only live once! My favorite part of the night was finding an area near the front of the ship that I didn't realize was open to passengers. We laid out on that deck at 2 am just stargazing. It was beyond beautiful. There wasn't as many lights and it was breath takings. We saw the rhinestone belt and even a shooting star. It's a perfect memory. I'm already looking into my next cruise! Thank you to the people who took the time to finish reading all of this. With all the negative reviews I just had to share what an amazing time I had. I wish you the same amount of joy this cruise brought me, on all of your adventures. Safe Travels Friends. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
Embarking: Once in the building during the appropriate time slot it went fast. If you get to New Orleans port too early, you are stuck standing in the garage outside!! Ship: Pros: Food was excellent as always Pool are ... Read More
Embarking: Once in the building during the appropriate time slot it went fast. If you get to New Orleans port too early, you are stuck standing in the garage outside!! Ship: Pros: Food was excellent as always Pool are very nice with lots chairs and room. Entertainment in show room very good. Comedians, First two excellent, second two not as good. Service on entire ship was very good, including dining room. Nice gym on ship Cons: First day of cruise my cabin boy said they will only clean room once a day and what do I want day or night? I found that very strange, first in all my cruises. Although, some others passengers had their room cleaned twice daily. I like my ice bucket filled for the evening, I told the cabin boy to do this, but on 3 nights all I had was icy water by 7pm. Im not fussy, but cabin service should been a bit better. They keep raising gratuities and decreasing service in this area. Conclusion: Very nice ship and very fun time, especially out of New Orleans, this was my first cruise out there, Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
Let me start off by telling you, I have been on over 20 cruises and this was by far the most fun I've had on a ship. With that said, Carnival really needs to step it up. We were on the ship within 45 minutes of arriving at the ... Read More
Let me start off by telling you, I have been on over 20 cruises and this was by far the most fun I've had on a ship. With that said, Carnival really needs to step it up. We were on the ship within 45 minutes of arriving at the terminal but it was VERY unorganized. No one knows where to go, there were not enough porters, lack of signage, etc. I haven't booked an interior room in probably 10 years but that was the only option remaining at the time of our booking. Our room was probably the worst part of the trip. Holes in the wall, broken glass in the mirror, a razor was left behind, lotion on the walls in the bathroom, bed was broken and that is just to name a few. We immediately called guest services about 3 times and they did not have another room to move us to. The housekeeping manager came in and did a deep cleaning and had someone repair the holes in the wall. While that was nice of them, do this on your own time not our vacation time! Now for the food complaints....no lobster on elegant night? Eliminate elegant night if you aren't going to serve lobster and filet. Isn't that what everyone is most excited for? SUCH BULL!!! This is the first cruise I've been on with terrible food in the MDR. Yikes! So bland, so cold, so gross. Guys Burgers and Red Frog is the only reason we didn't starve. I think we went there every single day. There were quite a bit of activities on the ship, no way you are going to be bored. The casino was probably one of my favorite parts. We made friends with all of the dealers and although we didn't have great luck, we had a blast. TRIUMPH DID NOT HAVE QUEST :( I booked this on a casino offer 2 months before the cruise and paid under $90/day. Would I do this ship again? No, but it was worth the price we paid. My advice is to suck it up and pay more for a balcony. Read Less

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