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LSauls7537

Victory Review 10-25, good, bad and ugly

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This was our 29th cruise, our 7th on Carnival. We left Ft.Laud at 8 AM on the 25, 3 hours before the airport was closed to our friend Jeanne. The flight was full as passengers had been roused from their beach hotels at 5 AM and were told they must evacuate in 15 minutes. There were no inland hotels, so most headed to the airport.It was very somber at the airport and you could feel the tension.

 

We arrived in Newark on time and were met by my cousins who took us around New York for the day. Our first trip to NY, it had the feel of Las Vegas with people everywhere downtown on a Sat. Boarding the ship at 3:30 was a total of zero wait time, and we were on board in minutes. We had paid for an 8 A guarantee balcony, so did not know until we were at the pier where we would be. Our cabin turned out to be 7231 and we walked in and quickly walked out feeling we must be in the wrong cabin, THIS cabin was NOT an 8 A cabin! We looked again at our docs and cabin key and it was correct,...we were in a SUITE. Marble flooring, jacuzzi in the bathroom, double wide balcony. It was great.

 

We did none of the tours from the ship. In Boston we took the trolley to town and walked thru the city taking in the sites, then to a small pub for a lobster dinner, more sightseeing, then back to the ship.Basically the same thing in Portland, very nice area and lots to see. Tues was day at sea, plenty for all to do to keep busy. Too cold for the pools, many sat outside with their jackets on . Tues night "it" hit the fan, rain, high winds from our friend Jeanne again. Captin decided to divert the ship to Saint John and not Sydney, so we were in safe harbor until early Wed morning, then we had gale force winds and 25 ft high seas. The waves were slashing on our deck, and we were Empress Deck...7. I see we weren't the only ship having problems this past week from reading about the Rotterdam and Silver Seas.

 

Cabs in NS were reasonable, $30-$35 per hour and we were free to see what we wanted and stay as long as we wanted as well.

 

CD is Dana Hodson and you can't miss him, he's a young version of Jerry Lewis, even has his manerisms and I love how he gets his point across to the passengers, he cracked us up. "Folks, we had a passenger come back to the ship and ask for his money back because his 12 year old was with him and he booked a pub crawl". Get serious folks! "Another said he didn't realize he'd need to peddle his own bike on a biking hike". He is tops in his job.

 

Of the 3300 passengers, 3100 were over 50. Saw 3 teens and 4 younger ones. The hotest place on the ship if you like to drink, have fun and sing along is the Irish Bar, the entertainer Kevin is fantastic.

 

Best secret? Go all the way forward on deck 7, then turn right and go out the exit door, you'll be all the way up front on the ship...NEVER crowded.

 

Carnival continues to improve....first ever cruise we were able to have room service on day of debarkation. Food, although this is so personal to each one, I would rate very good. I like that the portions were small, you didn't feel like a stuffed pig when you left the table, you could order more if you wanted to. Breakfast is breakfast...lunch you had chinese, or the deli, try the pastrami, excellent. They also had rubens, turkey, and don't remember the rest. Also each day on deck was a "Taste of the Nation", French one day, Mexican, American. Plus you had the dining room or the Mediterranean restaurant buffet and of course 24 hour pizza that everyone commented it wa excellent

 

Crew is more friendly, open and does a much better job of remember passenger names, what they drink, sharing their lives and their countries and families. Much more of a family feel to this group of crew.

 

There is also a new "personal assist" feature for debarkation. Keep ALL of your bags in your cabin and you take them off the ship the next morning. First off the ship.Debarkation we expected to be a nightmare from what I read on cruise critic. There is no ship organized tours, nor is their bus service/transportation back to the airport. We expected a long wait, but it didn't happen. Walked outside, got a taxi ticket from the taxi dispatcher and walked up to an empty cab, gave them the ticket and we were on our way. From the port to Newark was $70 including far, plus $15 out of area fee and toll fees and tip.

 

Many spa services were on sale during the cruise and some are good bargains. We picked up a bottle of vodka on Thursday afternoon and were able to take it to our cabins.

 

I know there have been comments about the Victory looking a little ragged, but we saw very little rust and each time in port they were painting her. At the end of the month she will go to Freeport for 2 weeks of dry dock. We found the ship immaculate.

 

This was an excellent cruise with only our Alaska cruise beating this one.

 

Linda

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I didn't see much "ugly" in your review (except maybe the high seas), so I guess you had a great cruise. ;) I'm sure the suite was a nice surprise and a wonderful way to start your cruise!

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Hi we were on the same cruise and it was fabulous. The only ugly thing that happened to us was during the midnight comedy show some off duty crew sitting behind us were making racist remarks along with the comedian. Kind of ruined the whole show for us and if not for our dinner mates perhaps the entire cruise.

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It is never comfortable being in that position.

 

As Americans we still have a long way to go with stereotyping and discrimination...

 

Note that you did 2 Can/NE cruises in the same month, how do you compare the difference in the 2 cruise lines?

 

Linda

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Magicat - Hi Halton Hills, Mount Hope here.

 

LSauls7537 - We were on the 09/11 Canada/NE and quite enjoyed the ship, service and food. We were truly expecting this to be a big step down from our other cruises and were expecting to not be impressed. We were pleasantly surprised. As you mentioned, the crowd on our sailing was also older, which for us was good, because we are not into the drunken booze cruise scene. The downside was that we love to dance and the disco had no energy. Actually, most nights we were the disco.

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LSauls7537- Yes we did do back to back cruises...same cruise, different cruise lines. We thought we could do a pretty good comparison of them. They both were great! jturner901 is correct in saying that the crowd on both ships were older...not a lot of kids and not ship filled with rowdy drunks. We were very impressed with Carnival as we had only sailed with RCI. The only down side of Carnival, in our opinion, would be the amount of activities offered. There were some and they were great but it seemed that RCI offered more of a variety. There were times on RCI were we couldn't decide which one to go to while on Carnival we were sometimes stuck with nothing to do.

 

The food on both ships were on par with each other. Although the variety on Voyager was a little better. Our best meal in the buffet was on Victory when on the taste of nations they had indian food. Carnival has East Indian cooks so the food tasted wonderful and authentic as we eat this type of food while at home as well. We did not eat in the dinning room on Voyager as we wanted to eat at Portofino's and in the ports so we can't compare the service. There is no alternative dinning venues on Carnival however the Maitre'd in the dinning room was the most entertaining Maitre'd we have ever had. He made you want to go to dinner.

 

To sum up our experiences...We liked them both....and depending upon the itnerary, price and time of year we would certainly sail on Carnival again!

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LSauls, we were on the cruise the week before you-18-25 Sep. Other than for the bad weather and high seas on the 18th and 19th we also had a fantastic time. I agree with you on the average age of fellow passengers. Carnival may need to institute a fast and slow lane along the Promenade Deck when they do this itinerary. Sometimes hard to get anywhere :-). Were you a little disapointed that the trees in Canada had not changed color much yet? Our weather in Sydney and Halifax was perfect blue skys and Fall temperatures but all the trees were still green.

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Yes, did not see much in the way of leaf change even though we toured inland as much as we could. I was looking forward to that as we're in south florida and rarely see changes. It's OK, Mother Nature has her own time table and it wasn't with us this year.

 

So nice to hear from someone who went back to back cruises on 2 different lines. I like RCL as well and agree with the poster.

 

Linda Sauls

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