May 2014 - Grandeur of the Seas to Caribbean - Bahamas
First cruise and overall great experience. Traveled with 13, adults and early teens. Activities were great, but we learned as we went along. The ship is overall clean and we'll organized. We never felt like we were traveling with 1,600+. We will definitely cruise again. But a few precautionary items for newbies...
- if you or someone in your party have food allergies, beware the buffets. Poor labeling and cross contamination are rampant. And staff will not help in determining what's in a dish. The dining rooms are more accommodating. I found cross contamination in items/areas I've never seen in other places and spent some time sick from foods I never expected.
- the drink packages with liquor aren't worth it unless you are a very heavy drinker. See other blogs for a detailed breakdown. There were a few light weights that were staggering, fall down drunk the entire trip trying to get their money's worth. This is not what I wanted my kids to see. But now they know that drinking isn't sexy or glamorous...
-There are way more excursions available once you are on the boat than what is offered ahead of time on the RC website. If you do Disney or Universal, the RC shuttle is worth the price.
-If you have teens, get walkie talkies with a 20mile range. The staff are not responsible for their whereabouts and they kids can go where they please. Keep your volume down so you don't alienate others, but it's a great way to keep track of autonomous teens. And keep them off the storeroom decks for their own safety and so they won't disturb others.
As I mentioned, the trip was great. We just will cruise a bit wiser next time.