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Lori Griswold

Age: 45

Occupation:USPS

Number of Cruises: 5

Cruise Line: Carnival

Ship: Carnival Pride

Sailing Date: 2010-06-27

Itinerary: bahamas

Overall, it was a good trip. We have cruised on Royal Caribbean 3 times past, and Carnival once before. I would say it was a solid "B" in comparison. The staff works very hard to keep everyone fed and the rooms clean. We were a little mystified that some of the hospitality/entertainment staff (like those leading trivia and deck games) did not seem very enthusiastic~ almost an undercurrent of some other issues going on with personnel. We were also a little disappointed at the amount of dirty dishes and trays left in common areas and hallways (moreso in the evening). It just seemed like someone could pick them up before the next morning! The best surprise was our fellow cruisers~ a great group, many residents of Baltimore. We also were surprised that of 2600 guests onboard, 800 were kids! This was surprising because they did not seem to be a disruptive presence at any time, and you could always escape to the adult pool on deck 9. I might sail Carnival again, but will try another line first to see if all have been affected by the economy?

The food was plentiful, but of buffet quality. I had not been on Carnival for nine years, and felt the overall selection of food in the dining room, as well as the quality had gone down. We requested at booking to have the early dinner seating, but were given late seating, and wait-listed. On the second night, we were changed to "your time" seating, which allowed us to go to dinner at a time we determined each night. While this was convenient, I was disappointed that we had different waitstaff each evening. In the past, getting to know the waiters was a central part of the experience. Additionally, I felt the dinner "shows", performed by the staff were not as involved and inclusive due to the diners all being at various stages of their dinners.

Our stateroom was wonderful. We had a balcony room on deck 7, with our 3 boys in the adjoining cabin. Although the comedians on board joked at the small size of the shower, it was just fine for us. (Okay, we are both small people, but our 3 kids are growing teenagers and seemed to do alright as well). Our room steward, Elwin, was such an amazing guy, who really looked after us. Always had ice ready, made great towel animals, and never seemed to mind helping us locate our boys~ they were frequently trying to ditch us! Coffee on the balcony in the morning was perfect!

We really enjoyed the comedy shows in the evening, especially Karl Strong! Hilarious, with enough new material to keep us going back 3 times to see him. We also had fun with trivia, loved the scavenger hunt, pool games,deck party and everyones favorite newlywed game. The evening shows were good if you like vegas style dancing and singing. The finale show pulled onboard cruisers to represent the Legends of music. That was cool ~ especially since we had spent some time at Karaoke and got to know them there. An "absolutely brilliant " job was done by Jay in karaoke. I don't always love watching it, but he made everyone feel like family and kept us laughing. It would have been nice to have activities in the in-between time after dinner if you didn't love the production shows. We wandered into karaoke, checked out the piano bar (almost always empty), or the casino. But mostly just waited for comedy shows.

We heard the Atlantis excursion was great, but it had been sold out by the time of sailing. Went to Cocoa beach in Canaveral for the cost of a cab, and had an awesome day in the sun and waves. In Nassau, since our choice excursion was not available, we talked to Terrence at the welcome center, and he hooked us up with a private boat for snorkling and sightseeing with Roger Cox. There were 5 of us, and the cost was $40 pp. Had a great adventure on the water, sodas included for the kids and a bottle of rum to mix it with for us. VEry fun. In Freeport , we took a cab to the beach and hung out in the water again. Fun.

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