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Just off the Freedom, hits & misses


YB Nrml
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We just got back yesterday from our 8 day Freedom cruise. Ports of call were Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Kitts & St. Maarten. I'm just posting a few opinions for those that are curious.

 

We've been on this class of ship before so we were aware that you have to use deck 5 to navigate the length of the ship. It can be very confusing for someone not familiar with the deck plans.

 

The ship was CLEAN, CLEAN, CLEAN! Never saw anything that needed attention in that department. All the staff we interacted with were wonderful, cheerful and helpful.

 

This was one of the smoothest cruises we've ever been on. There were times I couldn't believe we were going as fast as we were because the seas were so smooth. I know Carnival has nothing to do with this just the luck of the draw.

 

The Chocolate Extravaganza was held on the last sea day and was greatly reduced from our past experiences. They only had the very center section of the buffet set up for it along with the sweet spot right across from the buffet. In the past one entire side of the buffet has been used for this event. I still got my chocolate fix so it was all good! ;)

 

One change that was really tacky was in the dining room during dinner. I'm used to the bar servers coming around to see if you want a liquer along with a special shot glass. On this cruise however another person would come around each night during dinner trying to sell Tervis Tumblers or the disco ball, coconut cup or whatever special drink cup they were promoting that day. I felt like I was on the beach in Mazatlan trying to fend off the local vendors.

 

We did the power snorkel in Grand Turk and loved it! The guides were great with information and keeping us all together and safe.

 

In St. Kitts we took a taxi to Cockleshell beach. It was $7.00 per person each way and when we got there the chairs and umbrellas had to be rented out for $5.00 each so a total of $15.00 for two chairs and an umbrella. Your really didn't have a choice about renting them because there wasn't much beach space left to just lay down your towel. But the water was clear, the staff friendly and all in all for a total of $43.00 not a bad deal. We stayed there for three hours and had a great time. There was food and drink available, restrooms, shower and a little area where they had some orphaned monkeys in cages. We didn't buy any food here but the others we talked to all said it was very good.

 

We are smokers and had a balcony room. We knew this would be the last cruise that we would be able to smoke on our balcony. When the sun would get too hot and we were looking for other places to smoke we had our choice of the casino, Big Band dance club on deck 5, the 70's dance club where we never even saw an ashtray, deck 10 starboard (which is very windy and not ideal), or deck 3 starboard. There were a couple of days where all of these areas, except deck 10, were closed for private functions or cleaning so our only choice was to bake on our balcony or shove money into a slot machine in order to have a smoke. It was a little frustrating at times.

 

We stopped by the Taste Bar most evenings and they had a menu of what they were serving for each day. One of the days the items were from the Cucina del Capitan. I hadn't seen the restaurant and wondered where it was on the ship. (I had heard of it from other reviews I've read) The strange thing was that restaurant doesn't exist on the Freedom, they only have it on two ships in the fleet. Just thought it was strange they were offering samples of that food but the restaurant didn't exist?!? :confused:

 

I've never used the laundry rooms before but this cruise I decided to do a load. The laundry had 3 washers and 6 dryers. The washers were always in use while 2 to 4 of the dryers would be available. To me they needed to add 2 more washers and get rid of a couple of the dryers. I had to try three times before I could get a washer. In the end I just stayed there for about 20 minutes until a machine opened up.

 

We had a great time and are already looking ahead and planning to book another cruise with Carnival.

Edited by YB Nrml
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We were also on this cruise. Our 7th time on the Freedom for us. Always a great crew and officers. We were with a large group and had two private cocktail parties (at old prices) and had a terrific time. We had the late dinner seating in Posh dining room and the Maitre'd Drasko,

treated us just wonderful every night. We are off on the Breeze on Dec.6th for another cruise

and will be our 26th Carnival cruise and first time as Diamond members. Looking forward to the Breeze for sure!! :)

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One change that was really tacky was in the dining room during dinner. I'm used to the bar servers coming around to see if you want a liquer along with a special shot glass. On this cruise however another person would come around each night during dinner trying to sell Tervis Tumblers or the disco ball, coconut cup or whatever special drink cup they were promoting that day. I felt like I was on the beach in Mazatlan trying to fend off the local vendors.

 

 

This is terrible, tacky is right. Really bad idea Carnival :mad:

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We were also on this cruise. Our 7th time on the Freedom for us. Always a great crew and officers. We were with a large group and had two private cocktail parties (at old prices) and had a terrific time. We had the late dinner seating in Posh dining room and the Maitre'd Drasko,

treated us just wonderful every night. We are off on the Breeze on Dec.6th for another cruise

and will be our 26th Carnival cruise and first time as Diamond members. Looking forward to the Breeze for sure!! :)

 

Hey neighbor! Glad you enjoyed it too.

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Thanks for the recap of your Freedom trip. We sailed her in August and I agree with you about the laundry. For an 8-day especially - the 3 washers weren't enough.

 

The MDR selling cups and what not definitely did not happen on our cruise. I agree...that's a tad tacky!

 

I also don't remember the chocolate extravaganza. I don't think they had it during our sailing or DH would have been drooling waiting for it to open!

 

Glad you had a good time. So did we!

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Glad you posted, as I've been considering a "Freedom" cruise early next year. Did you attend any of the "Big Shows", or perhaps the Karaoke? If so, what were the shows, and how were they? Who was the C.D., and how was he/she? :confused:

Thanks in advance for the info, and GLAD you had a good time aboard "Freedom". :cool:

 

"SKY"

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You're really concerned about the air conditioning on your upcoming Carnival Liberty cruse, eh?

 

Yes...I am seriously uncomfortable in the heat. Hubby & I are the opposite of most coup0les with me cranking the air and him sneaking the temp up (like I won't notice...while sweat drips down!)

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We were on this sailing as well and really enjoyed it. Our biggest complaint was when we got to dinner the first night, they had us (my husband, 3 year old and I) at a table for two with my son's chair on the side. There were at least 5 tables in a row that were like this. This was our 4th cruise with our son and never had this before. This was not acceptable. There was no room on the table. Our waiters had trouble fitting three dinner plates on the table in addition to everything else.

 

We ended up talking to one of the assistant maitre'd and his first response as to why we were seated at a table for 2 was that there were no tables for 3. He then told us that the ship was full, which I knew, and that they wanted to make as many people happy as they could. They couldn't fit as many people in the MDR if they did this. I told him that I didn't book this cruise 6+ months out to be squashed at a table. He told us that we could move to the later seating, which wasn't happening with a 3 year old. He then took our request and told us to not expect it to happen.

 

We did end up getting a larger table at the early seating, but the attitude of that assistant maitre'd made me mad.

 

Other than that issue the first night, the cruise was fantastic. My 3 year old loved Camp Ocean and the staff was great. He is still talking about it.

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Could I hear more about Camp Ocean. OP did you happen to hear anything on board from other passengers that may have used it. I know that Freedom is the one out of a few that actually have Camp Ocean.

We are going to be on the Freedom January 25th, 2015. Your review has been very helpful!

 

The Canuks

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I was on this sailing too. I kinda feel left out that we only got offered a couple shot glasses after dinner and no special cups.

 

I know it wouldn't have been real convenient but the laundry on lido was almost always empty. I did some clothes there and only saw someone else in there one time.

 

Camp Ocean was awesome, my kids loved it but couldn't get my daughter to stay till the second to the last day. All of the counselors were good with the kids.

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ohhh, and the character breakfast was a lot of fun. Definitely worth $5pp. Was weird though, when we boarded the first thing I did was call to reserve a table and they said it was only 1 seating then mid week they added another and called to change our time. Didnt mind the time change since i wanted early and got early but seemed it would be easier to just do 2 seatings and be done with it.

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Hits: steakhouse, Blue Iguana tacos and burritos, omelet station, bartenders Deo and Kristina at the aft pool bar, deli, Guy's burgers, most of the staff was very pleasant. 4 awesome ports, short lines to get back on board.

 

Misses: Playlist Productions, Percy Crews in the comedy club, rude fellow passengers who thought the Dive In movies meant no one was allowed to talk or do anything else on deck. Steak in the MDR was pretty awful. Much better on Victory last yr. But the chocolate melting cake was always delicious.

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