Christmas cruise to the Caribbeans

Freedom of the Seas Cruise Review to Caribbean - Southern

Cruises: 4-6 cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 10

Overall rating:

3.6 out of 5
Verified Review
Freedom of the Seas

7 Night Southern Caribbean (San Juan Roundtrip)

Sail date: December 22, 2019

Ship: Freedom of the Seas

Cabin type: Balcony

Cabin number: 8242

Traveled as: Family (older children)

Reviewed: 3 months ago

Review summary

The cruise had the itinerary we were looking for- 5 stops and only 1 day on the sea. We spent each day on a different beach/island and literally "island hopped" Because we were off the ship every day, the shortcomings of the ship was not impactful to our vacation experience. I understand the ship will be getting an upgrade this year so some of this feedback will probably become irrelevant soon.

Embarkation

2 out of 5
This was our first time sailing out of PR- the port was chaotic and congested. The building was pretty much a rundown warehouse. There were no clear insturctions or signs to direct arriving passengers. you are to drop off your bags at one end of the terminal and then walk to the other end to enter the building to check in. The area where you "drop off" the bags are outside and has no security - We felt very uncomfortable leaving them there and held our breath until we got them in our room

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

3 out of 5

Onboard Activities

3 out of 5

Entertainment

3 out of 5
We have cruised with RCL multiple times and the shows/performers on this ship was not on par with what we have come to expect. The ice show was just ok and the standup comedy felt "flat". The lead singer on the shows however was absolutely Phenomenal - one of the best singers we have heard in a long time!! Lastly, this being a Christmas cruise, we were expecting the experience to be more of "festive" in terms of atmosphere and shows. Of course, RCL had a very difficult job to serve to a very diverse group of people and interests so they were probably trying to walk a very fine line.

Children's Programs

We were not traveling with young kids

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
Always topnotch service from the waiters and room stewards.

Ship Quality

3 out of 5
The ship is definitely showing its age. Overall, clean and well-maintained though

Cabin / Stateroom

4 out of 5
The room was larger than the previous balcony rooms we had on other ships. Once again, the décor was somewhat outdated but overall clean and well-kept

Ship tip

I would not recommend booking an inside/promenade view room- very loud at night and has no privacy

Ports of call

San Juan, Puerto Rico

4 out of 5

Philipsburg, St. Maarten

3 out of 5
Due to rioting on the French side, we stayed on the Dutch side. We took a taxi to the Mullet Bay beach and had a great time. Beach chairs and umbrellas, very reasonable food and drink prices.

Basseterre, St. Kitts

5 out of 5
Gorgeous beach and beautiful island. Watch out for the overaggressive locals as you exit the port. Spent the day at the South Friars Bay- great facilities!

St. John's, Antigua

3 out of 5
Took an excursion to see the pineapple farm, beach/lunch and historic house. since we were there on Christmas day, majority of the stops were closed. The tour was only $40/person and we did get to drive around the island and had lunch so it was an OK tour.

Castries, St. Lucia

5 out of 5
Probably one of our favorite islands. Took a catamaran excursion around the Island and to the Pitons. Saw dolphins and had 1.5hrs to swim at the beach. I would definitely recommend taking some kind of a sail/boat excursion if you are visiting.

Bridgetown, Barbados

2 out of 5
Took an excursion to snorkel with the sea turtles and shipwreck & spend the rest of the day at the Copacabana beach- While we get to see the turtles (love it!!!), it was short, rushed and very crowded. The service at the Copacabana beach was very poor and most of the tables were closed off or reserved for English travelers.

Disembarkation

2 out of 5
Just like embarkation, once you left the ship, the port was chaotic. There is no clear sign or direction as to where you need to go to get a taxi etc. Totally unorganized.
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