Carnival Dream Aug 9, 2015 with Capers and FTF
Carnival Dream Cruise Review to Caribbean - Western
Sail Date: August 09, 2015
Ship: Carnival Dream
Cabin Type: Balcony
Cabin Number: 8277
Traveled As: Family (older children)
Reviewed: 2 years ago
Carnival Dream Review August 9-16, 2015 with capers and about FTF.
Just off the dream, had a blast! We were in room 8277 balcony. In our cabin was my husband, myself and our two college age kids. So 4 adult’s one room! And we had plenty of room and storage space. Everyone hung their clothes up, had a shelf and drawer. We forgot there were two drawers under the bunk bed, never used. Believe me this family doesn't pack light.
FTF, Was it worth it? My husband says, YES!!! We were on the boat slightly after 11. Our room was ready and luggage there by 12:30. Leaving the boat we carried our own luggage, which we had to be in crimson dining by 6:15 am. But had a elevator to ourselves, so no problem with luggage and off boat by 6:50. In car driving at 7:05. They unloaded diamond/platinum, then FTF self-luggage (which we were all in Crimson dining, and they were checking), then they unloaded self-assist not FTF after us (which were in another place), then by zones. Our other option was to put our luggage out and they would take it night before. Then meet at 7:45 zone 2. Which was a upgrade with FTF. Everyone else on hall had zone 35 and meet later. The BIG thing why FTF was worth it! My husband had library books to return to guest services on last sea day. We went down to guest services and no joke the regular line was over 50 people long. FTF line no one, he walked right up and was waited on. He turned to me and said that was worth the $50 bucks. We had a excursion in Belize so didn't use the FTF tendering. But they gave us all the info for it.
Parking we parked in the Fulton Garage top floor, bought online before we went. Cost was good and no issues. They took us right to the boat fast and simple. Coming off boat we hiked it the two blocks to the garage, instead of waiting on bus to fill since we were so early. Was not a bad walk, plus needed to walk off all the food.
Our cruise director was Hennie, oh my gosh! His Asst. was Mel and she was awesome also! The best cruise director ever had. Don't miss anything he does. Watch his live show each morning. Call in, I did and he delivered a ship trophy to me. Crazy guy, but made it so fun! Be sure to take a selfie with him and get a prize last sea day. You will see him everywhere and so friendly!
We had 6pm early dining in scarlet dining hall. Sat with another family of four. Dining staff was incredible. We had the head waiter which he did a magic trick every night at our table, reg waiter who was so sweet, then asst. waiter who taught my daughter and son a good amount of his language. They were really in to it. They were the most interacting wait staff we have had. Even when we saw them at breakfast or lunch, they made a point to come across and spend time with us. We learned in the Hennie ? And awesome session, that the dining staff and our steward make their money from us tipping 95% and then 5% carnival, plus room and board. They all work average of 68-72 hours a week. Contract 6-8 months on board and 2 months hone. With the normal gratuity carnival recommends we figured their making 80-100 a day, 10 hour work day. But in their country's that's good. Hennie said the staff on board the Dream consist of 12 Americans. Which one was the librarian we know she was from Houston. The others are dancers, performers. Which they make a little more. So please don't remove your tips, which Hennie says 15% do. We gave a little more. If you really get to know them, they’re just trying to provide a better life for their kids.
Back to eating. Breakfasts: do go to the main dining hall for breakfast/brunch on sea days. It’s open like 8:30-1. You will not be sorry! Excellent! My husband and son had steak eggs and salmon every morning. Oh and try the Mac and cheese for breakfast, oh my it's good! I know breakfast? It has bacon in it. You won't be sorry! My family wanted to eat here every day. But two excursion days we did buffet, which was fine and quick. Husband had omelet made in buffet, he said was good. Be sure to grab boxed cereal to take on excursions from buffet line, came in handy. Lunch: really only had real lunch first day on board. Had the Italian place upstairs, very good. Misc. times had the fries, deserts and of course pizza late night. Even though pizza line seemed long, went fast. All the lines moved quickly. Tea time: 3pm sea days. The entire family loved it. Had cucumber sandwiches, salmon thing, special deserts and of course Tea. It was fun to do one day. Room service: we ordered a lot, I have college kids. Ordered late night, they were so quick. The chocolate chip cookies were hot and melting, yummy. We kept dollars in top drawer to tip room service 2-3 each time. Late night Mexican buffet my husband went to, he said was good. Chocolate extravaganza was from 12-2:30 during day on lido deck, which were use to as a midnight buffet. It was good but not like use to be where everything was carved out of chocolate. Yep we ate a lot. Now back to cooking ourselves.
First stop was Magaoney Bay: My husband and son did the 2 tank scuba dive booked on carnival. They said that Anthony’s dive shop that carnival booked through was excellent, their equipment was all new and up to date. They had a great time. My daughter and I did the beach excursion for two, where you walk off the boat and ride the ski lift thing to the beach; we had a cabana thing over our loungers and two rafts. The water was crystal clear; even though it was crowded it was very enjoyable. Nachos on the beach were excellent. WIFI was offered once off the boat for 1 hr $5 or all day $10, it reached to the beach and worked great.
Second stop Belize: Been here before so decided to do the zip lining and cave tubing. Both were fun, we really loved the zip lining. Next time just going to do lots more zip lining. Cave tubing was fun, but once do it don’t think need to do again.
Third stop Cozumel: usually we do Chaukanaub Beach, this time we did excursion Cave snorkeling and Snorkeling with turtles. We really liked this excursion, especially the Cave Snorkeling the water was so crystal clear and the caves incredible. Do this excursion if you can.
Sea Days: We lounged on the boat, never had a problem finding chairs on deck to sunbathe and watched all the fun stuff on deck, we played family trivia a lot in Ocean Plaza which was fun, played putt putt twice and went to the shows. As far as shows, the Fun force dancers were awesome and the comedy shows were really good (late night ones). We all decided that each of us could spend $10 a day in casino. My daughter took her $10 to $850 in the casino on slot machine (yes! She cashed out and brought $850 home), the fun interactive ones that had bonus things. It was a lot of fun. The darn cash cube was fun to watch also, my son kept trying it but no luck (it’s like a claw thing that grabs money, kind of like the arcade machines where you grab stuffed animals).
Overall we had a great time, ship was beautiful and we never felt crowded.