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Carnival Conquest - Review January 2018


coldweather
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We were on the January 14 Carnival Conquest 6 day easternCaribbean that started from Fort Lauderdale and stopped at Nassau, Half MoonCay, Grand Turk and Amber Cove. It wasan awesome cruise!

 

 

We had been on Carnival for 3 cruises but the last one was1998! We moved onto other cruise linesand never returned to Carnival. We are glad we did this time.

 

 

Our first impression was the clear communications prior tothe cruise. The pre-cruise informationwas easy to complete and the printing of the cruise documents was flawless.

 

 

We arrived at Port Everglades and it took 8 minutes from thetime we arrived to drop off luggage with the porters, walk through security andboard the ship. Since we had completedall of the pre-cruise documentation including submitting a credit card, therewas no reason to stop us. Our photoswere taken when the scanned our passport as the baggage/screening. Very simple. I was super impressed withembarkation.

 

 

I loved the variety of included restaurants. In addition tothe buffet and main dining room there was Guy’s Burger Joint, fresh made-to-orderburritos and tacos, a deli for hot and cold sandwiches, Pizza and BBQ. There was enough variety of complimentaryrestaurants I never got bored.

 

 

We used Any Time Dining and mostly had dinner in the MainDining Room. It was easy to just arriveanytime we wanted and be seated.

 

 

Formal night was a mixed bag. Some folks dressed up in gowns andsuit/tie. Others wore golf shirts withkakis. Women wore dresses or slacks/top. Basically, Carnival formal night was justwear clean clothes that you would not wear to mow your lawn. Also, no hats in the dining room. I did not feel others were looking at orjudging others. Each group seemed to dotheir own thing and respect others for doing their own thing.

 

 

I LOVED the included Serenity adults only area. This is located at the bow of the ship. You must be over 21 to enter. There are lounge chairs, double hammocks andprivate pods. I was pleasantly surprisedthat each time we went to this area, we are able to find a place.

 

 

I LOVED the dedicated space for a comedy club. Most nights there were 2 comedy shows with 2different comedians. GREAT!

 

 

I LOVED the evening outdoor movies. Great to watch a movie sitting in an outsidelounge chair while sipping an adult beverage.

 

 

The crowd on the ship was mostly adults. Not a lot of kids de to school being insession. The attitude of the guests was tohave fun, fun, fun.

 

 

We did not have a drink package. We did carry on the 2 bottles of wine thatCarnival allowed. I noticed that most ofthe drinks were $9-$10 plus 18% gratuity. I thought that was high until the following week I was on RoyalCaribbean and they charged $12-$15 plus gratuity for the same drink. Over a week that difference adds up. Also the same bottle of wine on Carnival was$30 and it was $40 on Royal. So, as highas the drink prices are, it could be worse.

 

 

We will definitely look at Carnival for future sailings. I wish they had more variety in ports and went to some of the less visited Caribbean islands.

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One more thing to point out, Carnival offers a wine package where you pay for 5 bottles of wine that you can select from a list of about 20 wines. You receive a voucher that you just exchange for the wine. We didn't do this because our cruise was short and we already carried on 2 bottles. When I return to Carnival I will definitely look for this wine special.

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We will be on the Conquest in a few weeks , with the same itinerary, and we are first time Carnival cruisers. We have enjoyed other cruise lines and were nervous to go with Carnival, but have heard good things about Conquest.

It was great to read that you enjoyed your cruise and that there was a lot of dining options.

Thank you for sharing!

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You can bring 2 bottles of wine on the ship? I didn't know that. Is that per person or for the cabin? Also did you have it packed in your luggage or just carry it on?

 

You can take on one bottle per adult (up to 750ml). It must be carried on.

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wow, embarkation sounded fast! What time did you get to port?

 

Embarkation was a fast as we could walk onto the ship. I can't remember exactly what time we arrived but I think it was noon. After dropping luggage with the porter we walked to the embarkation area. They split the arriving folks into 2 lines. 1 - Those who arrived within their appointed time and 2-Those who arrived early or late for their appointed time.

 

We arrived at the last minute of our appointed time. Walked right up to the metal detectors/carry on screening. At this point they swipe your passport and copy the picture from your passport into their system. This is the photo that gets associated with your card. Since I had completed all of my pre-embarkation questions including registering a credit card, we just walked onto the ship. I am not kidding it was 8 minutes from dropping luggage to being ON the ship.

 

The other line that had the arriving early/late people did have a small line. This was the fastest embarkation possible. :-)

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Cold weather,

We are doing same itinerary with three kids in April. Wondering if you have any comments regarding the four different ports on the itinerary. Also, any suggestions with kids, age 15, 12, 10.

Thanks!

 

 

I don't have kids so can't comment on any of the programs. It was a January cruise so not many kids onboard. This was a source of material for the comedians. They would ask the parents in the audience "why aren't your kids in school." Some funny answers. All in good fun.

 

For ports, I would suggest you check out the ports of call forums. That is where I received most of my pre-cruise info.

 

But, here goes a summary:

 

Nassau - Walked to Junkanoo Beach. You can see it from the ship. It is to the right of the pier. There are some beach bars. On the walk, you will pass the straw market. Stop in. The local ladies working the stands are very nice. They have a rule that when you walk away from their stall they cannot follow you or continue trying to sell you. It is the next ladies turn.

 

Half Moon Cay - GREAT white sand beach. It is like sugar. The food buffet was nice.

 

Grand Turk - We booked a shore excursion with Shore Excursion Group.com I received a discount from my TA which is a large membership box store focused on COST. We booked the Exclusive Supreme Snorkel. It was great to snorkel to "the wall." (google it)

 

Amber Cove - We took the most AWESOME excursion with "Amber Cove Adventures" We went to Damajagua Falls for the Jump and Slide adventure. An Adventure it was! You hike uphill to the top of 12 waterfalls and then jump and slide your way down. You must be physically fit to do this. The ship excursion goes to the 7 falls mark.

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We are doing the same cruise in a few weeks. Can you tell us what nights were the formal nights? Thanks!

 

I can't remember at this point. I think there were 2 formals nights.

 

They were not very formal. There were some groups of people dressed up that were taking group/formal photos.

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Just off the Feb. 3rd, 8 night super bowl sailing. Loved the choice of food in the daytime and almost everything else about the cruise. This was a full boat and the pools were crowded on sea days.

We were in a second deck aft. cabin and felt the motion on this ship more than any other ship I have been on. If you are the least bit prone to sea sickness look into the patch or take your ginger or Dramamine before cruising and daily while on board. Even 50 plus time cruisers we were with felt the swaying.

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Thanks for this review. Getting excited as we have the same itinerary. Happy dance!! Do you remember if they had the 80's dress up night and the white night? Did you have late night dining and if so did you find that the theater was full by the time you arrived after dinner? Is there anything you wish you had brought or done to make it even more fun? Do you have a copy of the fun times for this review as I can't seem to find the one for Nassau. Cheers!!

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One more thing to point out, Carnival offers a wine package where you pay for 5 bottles of wine that you can select from a list of about 20 wines. You receive a voucher that you just exchange for the wine. We didn't do this because our cruise was short and we already carried on 2 bottles. When I return to Carnival I will definitely look for this wine special.
I love this wine package. It's perfect for my wife and I.
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