March 2016 - Carnival Glory to Caribbean - Western
We chose this vessel for two reasons primarily, the itinerary and the reasonable cost for a 7 day cruise.
The cruise departed from Miami, and then visited Cozumel, Belize, Roatan and Grand Caymans. All of these stops were great. We did not book expensive excursions from the ship but instead got off early each morning and found local companies that did tours, etc. It's about half the cost but you need to get there early to ensure that you're not late for departure. We saw a few groups that were really cutting it close, so if that's not for you then stick with the vessel's tours.
As to the cruise itself, I supposed when we go for a budget cruise we should have certain expectations in terms of the ship and our fellow passengers. The ship is dated but not terrible. The food was disappointing, with very little variety or choice, with the exception of the steakhouse - which was very good food. The normal evening dinners were disappointing, and we ended up feeling that the Indian vegetarian was best virtually every night. In the end, we were sort of expecting this, so no big deal.
The unexpected high point of the cruise was the very creative drinks at the Alchemy Bar. Miro and his team made probably the best and most creative cocktails we've had. Top marks for them. Awesome guys, awesome drinks.
On other hand, the low point was the other passengers, many of which were rude and obnoxious. At the end we the the self-debark, where you take your own bags and get off the ship first. The whole process took no more that 45 minutes, which included about 30 minutes of waiting in a lounge for the ship to clear customs. I figure we saw nearly 3 or 4 fights break out over nothing, outright rudeness to the crew who had nothing to do with it, and swearing at each other loudly in front of their kids.
Bottom line: The passengers were the main problem. If you're shopping for cruises now, our advise is to spend a little extra and book onto Royal Caribbean or Norwegian. For the few hundred bucks, it's far more enjoyable to deal with a nicer and more polite fellow passengers.