An enjoyable experience once you find a way to turn off the noise
Freedom of the Seas Cruise Review to Caribbean - Eastern
Sail Date: May 29, 2016
Ship: Freedom of the Seas
Cabin Type: Inside
Cabin Number: 7311
Traveled As: Family (older children)
Reviewed: 1 year ago
The ship and amenities was a pretty complete package, with multiple choices at just about every hour. The pools are great but on sea days they are really slammed. Luckily the abundance of other activities work to put some people in other places. If you are a pool person you will be disappointed though. RCI would be well served to maybe turn down the volume on the pool deck to make it less a central theme of the ship during daytime hours.
The Solarium was a lot, lot more crowded than it it was on my previous cruise.I guess this is partly an overflow from the pool more than it is an extra number of people wanting the quiet space. Once again, don't know what RC could do about it.
I only have two real complaints. One, the constant hocking on the promenade and on the TV and announcements. Just as you find a way to turn it into background clutter RC changes tactics to put it right back in your face. Do we really need round-the-clock reminders of the "deals" being offered at the stores at the ports giving kickbacks to the cruiseline? If I see that same smiling face urging passengers to come to the front of the boat for jewelry information over and over and over and over again it will be too soon. And second, live music in the bars. Living in Nashville may have spoiled me on this. Surely there is room for a few solo artists and bar bands to move around the bars in the evening. Maybe they get in the way of the announcements about art auctions and Effy sales? There is more to life than steel drum or reggae bands by the pool.
Food and Dining
I did lunch as much as I could in the main dining room. The buffet on its best day was one step above atrocious. That was more the fault of the other guests than the food staff.
The promenade cafe had good sandwiches, but it was hard to pry them away from the throngs of other guests who needed their Starbucks for some reason. Ben & Jerry's was always worth the small fee. The pizza sucks something awful, stay away.
The Bull & Bear could be so much better, but the layout, lack of selection, and staff was all wrong. Pouring an uninspired bottle beer into a glass does not make it a draft. Society has moved past the bar with two to three taps with a fridge full of maybe a dozen or two other beers. I am okay with the dark decor, but the lack of seats, staff, and selection is hard to overcome. It looks like Carnival has figured this out from what I have read.
Service and Staff
Cabin / Stateroom
Get a stateroom in the back third of the Freedom of the Seas. a quick elevator ride put us almost in the main dining rooms, buffet, two of three specialty restaurants, the kids programs, and the sports deck.