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Sail Date: October 2010
I just joined the Cruise Critic today and was surprised at many of the comments made about the "Dream" and some of the ports. My husband and I have both cruised 20 times, 18 of them on Carnival. We took our first trip on the ... Read More
I just joined the Cruise Critic today and was surprised at many of the comments made about the "Dream" and some of the ports. My husband and I have both cruised 20 times, 18 of them on Carnival. We took our first trip on the "Dream" earlier this month. It was one of the most relaxing cruises we have been on. We found the staff friendly both in the dining room and casino. (Though we lost most of the time) Our room steward was really terrific. His name was Jbjoey. Should you ever have the opportunity to have him as yours, expect the best because he delivers. Having been on so many cruises we know what to expect in most of the ports and which excursions we like or when we prefer to venture out on our own. My suggestion on the "Dream" would be to book early though because we wanted to purchase a clam shell or cabana on the beach in Mahogany Bay and both were sold out the day before. No worries though, there was plenty of shade trees in the general lounge areas on the beach. The food on the same beach left a little to be desired. I ordered a chicken fajita wrap which was served cold. I sent it back for fear of salmonella poisoning explaining to them that chicken should be heated to a minimum of 160 degrees before serving to prevent foodborne illness at which I got a blank stare. They were happy to replace it with a hot meal but avoided our table from then on. The lido buffet was more crowded than most ships and the omelet bar did not provide the sides along the buffet I like with my eggs over easy, (bacon and hash browns) and of course if I waited in another line my eggs would be cold. Honestly, I really didn't need the fried eggs so it was a blessing it wasn't convenient. Getting on and off the ship was a breeze. I couldn't believe how quickly we were all off. We booked a later flight thinking it might be an issue but we were actually at the Orlando airport by 8:30 am. By the way, for you cigar smokers out there, disposable lighters are allowed in your carry on but cigar lighters are not. Leave those in your checked luggage. I thought my husband knew better. If they confiscate it you will not get it back. Our trip was wonderful and that is saying something because when your cruise a lot, it can tend to be monotonous if you don't have outstanding service and food to enjoy. That is why we keep going. We love to be worry free and pampered for a week. That is exact;y what we got. For the naysayers I have read about today, no cruise is 100% perfect and there will be an occasional disappointment, but if you let the little things consume you, you might as well be back at work where you get paid to react that way. Cruising is about going with the flow and taking it easy while everyone else scuttles about to make you comfortable. The staff works really hard and I am sure they occasionally have a bad day. If you engage them in conversation and find something good to say about them it will brighten their day and thus that of your fellow cruisers. If I was dreaming about what a great time I had, I'll gladly continue to dream. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2010
I just got back from my cruise 10-30-2010 on the CARNIVAL DREAM to the Eastern Caribbean. Nassau, St Thomas, St . Maarten. It was great.I want to try and give as much informative information as I can since I found this board to be really ... Read More
I just got back from my cruise 10-30-2010 on the CARNIVAL DREAM to the Eastern Caribbean. Nassau, St Thomas, St . Maarten. It was great.I want to try and give as much informative information as I can since I found this board to be really helpful. We left from New York and flew to Orlando. We arranged for transportation through Carnival to take us to the ship. This was definitely a good idea. There are people all around to point you in the right direction. We waited at least a half hour before the bus finally left. The trip from the Airport to the Ship is @ 45 minutes. Then you get on a long line and go through security and then another long line where they give you your ship sail and fun card. OUR CABIN: We were on the 9th level at the front of the ship with a balcony. If you can afford it get a balcony. It was nice to have plus you get to see the people on the other ships and wave etc. It's also nice to just sit out there. The person that helped us book it on EXPEDIA.com was right on point. We didn't hear any noise from people partying or any ship noise except a few. The room was a king size bed which I think was 2 beds put together because I could feel the seam. Very comfortable. TIP: There are only 2 outlets in the room. Something I recently started doing when going to hotels is I bring a small 6 outlet surge protector. Best thing I ever did. Automatically gives you 6 outlets. You can get cell phone service on the islands but you will be charged international rates which is $2.49 a minute if you have verizon wireless. There are a couple of pools on the ship I didn't get in any of them.. I did get in the whirlpool which was nice but it wasn't very hot. Size: the ship is Huge and there is a lot of walking. I was surprised to see so many people in wheelchairs and the ship was very accessible for them. WAVES: We had one night of rough water that was from Nassau to St Thomas. A few people got seasick. I didn't but I was a bit scared. I started to get my life jacket and put it by the bed. The ship was rocking and the waves were loud. It was bad just the one night. FOOD: The food on the ship was very good no complaints. If you can afford it go to the Steakhouse. Its $30 per person and worth every dime. The food was excellent the service superb and the cheesecake was so big we had to take it back to the room. There is a hidden restaurant on the ship called the pasta bar. I didn't find out about it until the 5th day. Someone told me about it. It's on the 11th floor. But you can't find the entrance on the 11th floor because it's not signed. I saw it because someone came out the side door. You can enter in on the 10th floor lido deck where the burrito bar is.then walk upstairs. You get a menu and pick out your pasta, sauce, and ingredients you would like. You then take it to the bar and a waiter brings you back the food. They really should tell you how this works because I had to watch people to figure it out. EXCELLENT Food. ENTERTAINMENT: Lots of entertainment. Comedy shows R and PG rated. The R rated ones were hilarious. You need to get there at least ½ hour before show time as it fills up quickly and then there is standing room only. They have Karaoke a few times during the week. Club Caliente is there dance club very nicely done and everyone had lots of fun partying . Smoking: There is one piano bar where you can smoke onboard. There is also only one place you can smoke outside. I don't smoke but my husband smokes cigars so he had to find the place. The also have musical shows, magicians, Bingo,hypnotist plenty of things to do at all times. TIP: They take a lot of pictures of you on the ship. We didn't take that many but the trick is to take as many as you want and pick out the one you like best and buy it. @ $20.00 Buy some Downy wrinkle release. You spray it on your clothes and it takes the wrinkles out so you don't have to iron. Works very well heard about it on the other boards. SHOPPING: If you don't book an excursion you will just end up shopping . Nassau I had been there before so we didn't take a excursion. We just walked a few blocks and did some shopping. St Thomas. We booked a shopping /beach excursion. $35 each. Hmmm not to great. Just be aware that the ship pushes the store DIAMONDS INTERNATIONAL a lot.! That's all you hear. Once you get there you see there are at least 3 or 4 diamonds international stores. They are always packed with people. NOW THE IMPORTANT PART. The excursion goes like this. 2 hours shopping, then back to boat for half hour then back on bus and it takes you to Meghan's Bay for 2 hours. WE WERE THERE IN THE MONTH OF OCTOBER SO KEEP THIS IN MIND. The sun started setting about 5:30 you see it just drop behind this mountain and then it gets cold. We had to get out of the water and we waited another 40 minutes for our bus to pick us up. It was actually dark by the time we got back. So we didn't get that much swim time. It's better to go yourself by cab and get there early. In the summer months you'll have more sunlight. By the way they said Meghan's Bay was supposed to be one of the 10 best beaches in the world. we didn't like it at all. Would not recommend it to anyone and don't plan on going back. Everyone I talked to on the ship had the same feelings. It's a beach with a little bit of sand and lots of TREES ! I don't want trees at the beach! The bushwacker drink that we had at the beach was terrible. I didn't taste alcohol at all just cinnamon. St Marteen: we didn't book and excursion so we took a water taxi to town where they had a beautiful beach. Much nicer then St Thomas. I didn't get in the water but it was beautiful. The shopping area was like St Thomas but it wasn't as congested because they didn't have cars going in the streets of the shopping area. There was a Halloween costume party that a lot of people knew about before they got on the ship because they had costumes. They found out about it online before they sailed. The cruise director Josh was very enthusiastic. He is one person that I can say really loves his job. Departing the ship the last day. We had an early flight so we didn't put our baggage out the night before. The next morning you take your baggage down yourself they call you by floor. P.S. when reading reviews I think it's important to know the age and such. We are in our late 50's and were not traveling with children. Recap. Loved the trip would do it again. But we needed to do more on the islands then just window shop. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2010
Just Returned From our Eastern Caribbean 7 night Vacation on the New Carnival Dream. We are a family of 4 with 2 boys 8 and 12. We've cruised 7 times b4 and twice with carnival in the late 90's. We decided to give carnival ... Read More
Just Returned From our Eastern Caribbean 7 night Vacation on the New Carnival Dream. We are a family of 4 with 2 boys 8 and 12. We've cruised 7 times b4 and twice with carnival in the late 90's. We decided to give carnival another look since this was their newest star on the high seas. First impressions of the ship weren't anything special. It is a nice ship with very pretty decor and lots of Red and Burgundy everywhere. If you've cruised b4 the ports of call were pretty much the same only a lot busier since each stop had 4 or 5 other ships at port. St. Thomas/Megans bay and St Marten/Le Gallion/Friars Bay both Beautiful stops for us. As for the Ship Carnival has started the Auto tips which we weren't aware of when we booked but no big deal since they will remove it if your not satisfied wich is pretty nice. We've been used to the envelopes at the end which holds value and keeps staff hustling in our opinion. It's $10 per day per person which equaled 280 for a family of 4 which was ok for us. I would say the service was good but not great. If your gonna include my tip or Auto tip then I should'nt have to ask for things it should be offered or just done. And I must say if we asked for something for the most part people/staff did accomadate so we were happy with that. We Realize that we can be the fussy type being from NY restaurant service is usually Great or out of business in a week. I do realize its a Big Ship so thats how it goes. Our cabin steward and waiter were Very Good and would of been the Only people we tipped on this cruise since they seemed to go above and beyond without having to ask which is the criteria for which i look to tip. Here's the thing Folks since we left the auto tip on our Bill feeling yes it was easier that way we regretted it the last night since I felt that our waiter and cabin steward were kinda of expecting a little More and did notice others at dinner giving cash to their waiter- so we left feeling kinda cheap which is the thing I now don't like about this Auto Tip Stuff. If we do it again I will take the Tip off Our Bill and Give it All to those who deserve it. Oh and by the way Carnival if your listening please Get more staff that can Speak English I mean really, my waiters helper spoke very, very little english i mean this is dinner how many different ways can u explain ketchup, and he wasnt friendly at all. We had an interesting experience on the 6th day at sea which speaks of how poorly prepared and trained staff can be. My son cut his hand in the pool on piece a piece of glass or sharp plastic, when we informed one of the staff and Security they both looked at us with crossed eyes and no response we had to basically spell it out for them, and getting a bandaid was another adventure, they didn't even think to ask? needless to say the Main pool was closed All day at sea, pool contests cancelled with no back-up plan and they got this huge TV screen that Offers no ship happenibgs info or ship activites or information which would be helpful, Slides closed? no reason? no update on screen when they open? we get the constant weather udates of foreign cities and world news updates, real exciting. Miniture Golf kinda small and you had to go three levels down and walk 100 yards to main pool to get Clubs? Really? Let me not go off here and just say that while we love to cruise, Carnival has to do a better job in our opinion in these major categories: Staff - English Pls? Restrooms - Very Hard to find and under stalled throughout ship. Kids Club staff- Friendly but not inviting to kids, not the only parents who noticed. Food-very Good- but Room temp at times. Sewage smell in the Rear of ship and at times in our hallway 7th Empress betw 7300 and 7400 odd side we noticed the sewage Smell their Every Day. Buffet LINES extending into Lobby of Elevator? cmon carnival. Gym and Theater WAY TO Small for this many passengers and Pillars in the middle of theater main Level? Really? 2010 Ship? Shows ok since we've seen this act b4 from John Cruise Dir. Totally Scripted and Obvious. We will probably not cruise carnival again until there is some improvements. And by the way no one from Carnival followed up with My family regarding my son who cut his hand pretty Good which led them to shutting down their Main Pool for A Day At Sea on thurs 2/18. Big Ship/Small Ship Theirs No excuse for that! Bad Job Carnival. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2010
We have used this site numerous times when choosing a cruise. We usually narrow the choices, then check out the ship reviews. We have cruised more than a dozen times but this is the first review of a ship I have ever felt I just HAD to ... Read More
We have used this site numerous times when choosing a cruise. We usually narrow the choices, then check out the ship reviews. We have cruised more than a dozen times but this is the first review of a ship I have ever felt I just HAD to write. We just returned from a week on the CARNIVAL DREAM. The embarkation process was great! We rented a car one-way from the airport...worked well. There are many Positive Things I can say about the Dream.....but I will list those AFTER I list the PROBLEMS they have with this ship. Here we go... -They have WAY TOO MANY people on this ship! Obviously it is all about money. They have MORE passengers than standing space in the public areas. Don't even think about going into the buffet...people are falling over each other. There is a TERRIBLE (and when I say TERRIBLE...I mean TERRIBLE ) traffic flow problem in the buffet. Trays falling, as passengers try to get through to even find a table. They are so close to each other-UGH! Don't try walking through the pool area during the day. If someone doesn't fall into you, you will topple over trying to get into one of the pool chairs that are pushed together. You literally have to crawl into them from the end, then shimmy your way to the end of the lounge chair to get out (IF you can find one to begin with) Also, make sure you are in TOP physical condition so you can travel up and down several flights of stairs each day because you will be lucky if you ever see the inside of an elevator. A few times we actually rode the elevator down several floors, just so we could eventually go up. ....the design of the ship OBVIOUSLY has problems...and YES THERE IS A SEWER GAS SMELL! The ship seems to be haunted with it. One of our rooms was on Deck 11, and I couldn't stand the smell. It would go away for several hours, then come back. I couldn't figure out where it was coming from because out of the blue you might smell it on deck 12, then the dining room....the pool area...etc. Carnival........PLEASE FIX this problem by increasing the size of your public areas, or take out some of the cabins and add more room. Everyone expects the rooms to be small, but the public areas? The service was horrible! ...ESPECIALLY in the dining room. THOSE POOR WAITORS! They did all they could do running back and forth, back and forth...I blame Carnival for this because they simply need more staff in there. Dinner took two hours-OMG you have NO idea! Now the good stuff- The food quality was great. The staff really tried to please. The ports were great (my beef is about the ship) AND the ENTERTAINMENT was the BEST I have ever seen on a ship! The production shows and the Comedy Club was OVER THE TOP -WONDERFUL! Hats off to the production staff and choreographers! Simply WONDERFUL! The dancers had the best technique than I have seen on any cruise! ONE thing Carnival did right on this ship was the addition of the HIP HOP group. These guys are AMAZING! We would like to see this type of group added to other ships, because we definately won't be cruising on the DREAM again. The food quality and entertainment was worth the price of the cruise IF....you can handle the other nightmares. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2010
I had read numerous reviews before booking this Cruise, and was actually a little hesitant being that I was going with my entire family. Some Carnival reviews were great and others were awful, how was I to know unless we tried? I had ... Read More
I had read numerous reviews before booking this Cruise, and was actually a little hesitant being that I was going with my entire family. Some Carnival reviews were great and others were awful, how was I to know unless we tried? I had pretty much decided that we wanted to go on an Eastern Caribbean trip during my daughters college vacation. My AAA agent suggested going on the Dream as it would be a Brand New Ship. I head read reviews from other travelers that did the same ports on other Carnival Cruises so had good idea's what to do, and what not to do. One thing I really learned from another critic about reviews, is "take what you need and leave the rest" I had gotten so discouraged after reading a couple "Bad" reviews, and then the next lady had a excellent review from the same Cruise and said "Some people when given lemons, make lemonade" and that's the type of family we are, so we took the plunge and have "0" regrets! Ok, here's the review! The Ship, The Service & The Food were fantastic! It exceeded all expectations we had. Ship was easy to navigate after a day or so. Shows were the BEST, especially the Comedy Club & Dance Routines. When they did shows/entertainment in the Lobby, people were always riding up and down the glass elevators watching the show, in was fun just to watch them. I did think that there could have been a little more to do on Sea Days, but there was enough. My only complaint was about the Texas Hold-em, and it is a minor one, but allot of people had it as well. There is only one electronic Texas Hold-em table. I have played these tables before in Vegas, and like them very much, but they need more then one. There was always people waiting around to play. They have enough room to ad 1-2 more, there would be no lines, and you could do small tournaments. I did right this suggestion on my comment card. Pink-Floyd/Rush Laser show wasn't very impressive either and needs to be revamped. Embarkation & Disembarkation went great! Crimson dining was the Best, made us feel like royalty. Order as many appetizers and entries as you like. I tipped our waiters Jawa & Earl each night. Every night, we were brought extra Appetizers and Entries, without asking...lol. Augustina was our room steward and did a great job, he new us by name almost immediately. Bring Hot/Cold cups with lids and get free lemonade/tea/water/hot tea/coffee etc all week instead of buying sodas. We forgot cups and bought them on ship for $10. Read Less
Carnival Dream Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.5 4.3
Dining 4.5 3.9
Entertainment 3.5 3.9
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 3.5 3.6
Service 5.0 4.2
Value For Money 5.0 4.0
Rates 3.0 4.1

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