3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
Excellent Service, Very Clean Ship, wonderful pool & kids splash area. Our 7 & 9 year olds had a blast! Smooth & fairly quick embarkation from Galveston. We were lucky to have 2 adjoining rooms & really appreciated ... Read More
Excellent Service, Very Clean Ship, wonderful pool & kids splash area. Our 7 & 9 year olds had a blast! Smooth & fairly quick embarkation from Galveston. We were lucky to have 2 adjoining rooms & really appreciated the extra space. We stayed on deck three and had a great experience. We never felt the ship moving—very smooth sailing. The shows were great! We went to see Saturday Night Fever, the ice show & the Air show as a family and all enjoyed them. My husband and I saw a comedy show one night while the kids were in the kids club—it was so much fun. Grand Cayman & Cozumel were awesome! Our kids went to the kids club a few nights but honestly they didn’t love it. They were happy to be able to stay together though, since they were supposed to be in different groups due to their ages (7 & 9) but they let my older daughter move down. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We loved our cruise on Liberty of the Seas . Prior to the cruise the website was easy to navigate and make plans. We used a travel agency. But I made excursion and dinning choices online. Our room had a balcony. I enjoyed many ... Read More
We loved our cruise on Liberty of the Seas . Prior to the cruise the website was easy to navigate and make plans. We used a travel agency. But I made excursion and dinning choices online. Our room had a balcony. I enjoyed many hours on it. The staff were beyond gracious! If everyone treated each other like Liberty of the Seas staff treat people the world would be a better place. Windjammer food was fresh and displayed well. Delicious! The coconut cookies are addictive. Staff were eager to assist. These people work long hours and not 1 time in a week did I even see an attitude or hear a complaint from them. The main dining room was like formal dining every meal. The special treatment was fun. The food was beyond delicious ! Our waiters were so excellent ! Caribbean night was a treat with a dance from the staff dressed in Caribbean shirts. Formal night was very enjoyable ! Food was just amazing every meal! We stopped in Cozumel , Grand Cayman and Jamaica. We booked excursions in Grand Cayman and Jamaica. We didn’t enjoy shopping in Cozumel due to the shop keepers were too pushy. After buying a few items we cut shopping short and enjoyed the benefits of a half empty ship. In Grand Cayman we did a beach excursion at Calico Jacks. It did not include lunch and in my opinion was more of a bar party atmosphere . Food was pricy and took a long time. I wouldn’t bring a child to Calico Jacks. We had another beach excursion in Jamaica. Blue Waters beach excursion with jerk chicken and pasta. This was a great experience . There was a bar for drinks but not the main hub. Staff was great as well as the food. We got back in time to allow us some shopping time. Jamaica had great shopping variety. Some shops accept credit/ debit cards but bring cash for those hand carved items from the locals. I loved the cupcake decorating class with Chef Marcos. Overall , Liberty of the Seas has a system to get a lot of people fed and entertained with having this gracious attitude that makes you feel special. My only bad moment was when the cruise was over Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Getting there: Flew in to IAH, rented a car, drove to Galveston the night before the cruise. Had the car to sight see on the way, Stayed at the Inn at the Waterpark overnight, Next day parked at EZ Cruise Parking, took their shuttle to the ... Read More
Getting there: Flew in to IAH, rented a car, drove to Galveston the night before the cruise. Had the car to sight see on the way, Stayed at the Inn at the Waterpark overnight, Next day parked at EZ Cruise Parking, took their shuttle to the pier. Hotel is a little run down. Parking was good experience. Porter took the suitcases right from the parking shuttle. Embarcation: long lines but moved fairly quickly. I think it took about 45 minutes to make it through security and to the desk to pick up our sail cards and get our photo taken. Then it was right on to the ship. Rooms were ready by 1:30. Food: Food on this cruise was above average and the dining room staff was the best. They cleared tables quickly and refilled drinks. Everyone had a smile. We ate a lot in the buffet for the variety and the quantity. MDR was elegant but seemed a little slow. Don’t go there for a quick meal. We had anytime dining so we didn’t get to know a particular wait staff. Pizza was popular, as was coffee drinks at the promenade café. Johnny Rockets seems very out of the way. I had the soda package which came with a refillable cup (that was supposed to be in my stateroom before sailing but wasn’t, and I had to beg a bartender to give me one). My daughter did get sick one night from what we think was bad shellfish in MDR. Entertainment: Catch “In the Air” the first day or two. It doesn’t repeat (which it should). The Ice Skating Show was great. Saturday Night Fever was good but not fabulous. Comedians were good. Other shows/activities were ok. There is music all over the ship. Would have liked more dance lessons (both quantity and variety) and they should be followed by a band playing some of the music you just learned to dance to so you could practice. Activities: Liberty is a great ship for water lovers: pools, hot tubs, water slides, two person tube slide, and a surfing simulator. Some reviews found that deck loungers were hard to find but this was not our experience most of the time (maybe a little on the last two sea days, when the pool areas were very crowded). Would have preferred much more variety in the outdoor movie selection, with a children’s movie early and a more mature movie late. My teenage daughter really enjoyed the sports deck. Remember you need socks for rock climbing and ice skating. The teen program really needs work. There wasn’t an adequate ice breaker / get to know you activity the first day, and the teen staff didn’t seem to like working with the teens. Also the rules were overly restrictive and sexist comments were made about the girls. After that, the teens largely organized themselves and spent their time together at the teen only times at the other activity centers rather than the teen room. Cabin: We stayed in room 2552, an 1N ocean view with two beds and two Pullmans. The space is better with the twin beds separated. It feels cramped with the beds together. Cabin is a little longer than some other ships I’ve been on, but no wider. The shower is really small. Not suitable for a large person. The bathroom was never properly cleaned. There was mold in the toilet (same in another room in our group). Our daughter threw up one night and it took a while to get someone from housekeeping to come change the bed linins. Rooms low down and towards the middle are less affected by ship movement and this sailing was as mild as they come. You can’t go from one end of the ship to the other on Decks 2 or 3 because Studio B (also the ice skating rink) is in the way. This is really inconvenient for getting to the other set of elevators. Excursions: Cozumel: We did the tour of the Mayan ruins at Chitzen Itza. To get there you take a 45 minute ferry back to the mainland (Playa Del Carmen) and then a bit of a walk to the depot, and then a bus a little over two hours to get to the ruins, where you spend about an hour. We had a great guide (Hector, the son of Hector – also a tour guide) who gave a lecture with slides (on a tablet) on the drive out, which was both informative and a good use of the time. The lunch provided was a cheap ham and cheese sandwich, chips, a small apple, and a juice box. Disappointing but necessary given the length of the excursion. There is a general store at the bus depot with cold drinks, snacks, and other items for sale. There is some shade at the ruins, but sun screen is a must. It seems a lot of transit time for a short time on site, but the ruins are really worth seeing with a good guide. Can’t say I saw any of Cozumel, as we had to get right back on the ship when we got back. Grand Cayman: We did the Turtle farm, Rum Cake factory, Hell, and Stingray City swim. Bring snacks, this one is a lot in the time allotted, and all are a drive around the island, which is good with a good guide calling out the sights. No other food was provided. We enjoyed all of it, but the swim with the stingrays was the highlight of the trip for us. Photos by the tour operator were better than the ones we tried to take. We would have liked to stay on Grand Cayman a little longer. Falmouth, Jamaica: Went on the CHUKKA Ziplining, River Tubing, and Adventure Falls with lunch. Had a great time in spite of the 1-hour torrential rainstorm. Great guides. Always felt safe and the staff were all about having fun. Lunch was traditional Jamaican fare. Had time for shopping in port before the bus left, but none on the way back (when we really wanted it). We barely made it back in time to get on the ship. Disembarcation was easy, but be sure to send in the form with your selection of how you are getting your luggage off to get the earliest time slot. Your room steward leaves it in your room. A bit of a line to get through customs, but it moved quickly. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We chose to go on the Royal Caribbean Liberty of the Seas 5/19/19 sailing because it was a great deal and we were making up for a really bad cruise experience we had in November (more on that in a second). I'm a teacher and it was ... Read More
We chose to go on the Royal Caribbean Liberty of the Seas 5/19/19 sailing because it was a great deal and we were making up for a really bad cruise experience we had in November (more on that in a second). I'm a teacher and it was difficult to be gone the last week of the school year, but the cruise was worth it! We went on RC's Brilliance of the Seas 5-night cruise in November 2018 but one of my sons came down with a virus on day 2 (he'd picked it up from one of his students BEFORE we got onboard). We self-quarantined him to his cabin. By day 3 he was so sick that my husband or I stayed with him at all times. The medical office was only open a couple of hours early (like 7 - 9 a.m.) each morning and my son was asleep so we didn't see a doctor. He missed all of his excursions. So....his college graduation trip wasn't really a vacation for any of us and we wanted to celebrate and have fun with him; thus, the Liberty 7-night Western Caribbean cruise. Embarkation was easy. Our rooms weren't ready yet so we went to Windjammer to eat. Staff did a good job of cleaning tables and the manager made the announcement for you to move on if you were finished so others could have a table. Our cabin, 7248, and our sons' cabin 7253 were clean and ready at 1 p.m. as promised. Luggage was late arriving so we had to go to dinner in very casual attire. One of our favorite things about RC is that their ships are so easy to navigate. There is a direct path down the center of the ship from forward to aft (as long as you remember to go to that deck). They have great signage and interactive wall maps that help too. The ship was beautiful and well-maintained. The freedom class-size ships are perfect. Just big enough to have extra amenities but not too many people. The cabins could use a little update but you're not there much so that's okay. We got the oversized balcony cabin and agree that it was totally worth the price. Our sons had a promenade-view stateroom and it was nice but small. The window seat helps! The food was usually excellent but sometimes just OK. Our dinner at Chops was amazing. In the main dining room, we felt that some nights it was hard to choose because everything sounded good. On other nights, we were wishing we had gone somewhere else because nothing sounded good. Also, there were some VERY strange combinations: chicken cordon bleu with FRENCH FRIES? chicken parm (that was really rubbery) with MASHED POTATOES? Lunch in the main dining room was good but again...sometimes we wanted every dish and others we had trouble choosing because nothing sounded good. We loved the Tutti salad bar in the main dining room at lunch (wish that was an option at dinner too). The Windjammer food was consistently good but the hot food bars are laid out so everyone just keeps running into each other. It's not fun to eat there and the only reason we did was because it was convenient and quick. Our sons LOVED the pizza at Sorrento's and apparently everyone else did too because there was always a line waiting for a slice. The Cupcake Cupboard was just okay and Ben & Jerry's needed more flavor choices (I think they had 8-10). For entertainment, we wished they had more movie choices and more movie showings (especially on sea days). The band "The Long Run" was not good but the ice skating show was amazing. The ship's musicians were great. We felt like some of the game "callers" (entertainment staff) didn't know the rules of the game they were running OR they didn't know how to have fun with the people playing the games. And the BINGO guy (1st sea day) made waaaay too many jokes about sex. The NEXT Cruise staff made me NOT want to go on an Alaskan cruise-tour after attending her Alaska cruise-tour session.... We all agreed that the Fun Fair on the Promenade on sea day 3 was a super idea and very well executed. It was awesome to see some of the officers interacting with guests. The games were cute and creative. Cruise Director Brian was just okay otherwise but on this event he knocked it out of the park. We had 2 main "issues": having to get tickets for the tenders at Grand Cayman because we were on another companies' excursion; RC-booked excursion guests were first off the ship. Then the ticketed guests (booked on other companies' excursions) were running late so people NOT on RC excursions were missing their excursions because the tenders were so far behind. Finally, they re-positioned the ship so they could run more tenders. Our group of about 50 people was led around the ship (literally, we made a complete circle around deck 3, even going through the ice rink and through all the cabin hallways) because guests trying to get on tenders were so backed up. By the time our group got back to the gangway the next 2 groups had been called so those people boarded a tender before us. Very frustrating. Issue #2: need for more staff training. We're gold members so there are a few perks that we wanted to use but several workers didn't know how to give us the discount/perk. Photo staff was impatient---The new photo kiosks are great in theory but who wants to stand and go through thousands of photos when the computer can't pull up your photos? Two photo staff members were so disrespectful/condescending when we asked for help that we logged out and left. (Also, the cigarette smoke from the casino was very overwhelming when we were going through the photo ordeal. YUCKY!) Several times we asked questions of retail staff and they couldn't help us. The NEXTCruise staff member was out of breath, rushing around to get her presentation ready and then she really didn't tell us anything special about RC's Alaska cruises (as I said before, it made us NOT want to go on an RC Alaska trip). Ports/shore excursions: we do not like Cozumel---it's too touristy, dirty, and very hard to find your way through the maze of shops at the pier. Somebody needs to find a new port to visit so Cozumel can re-think, clean up and make themselves a little less "touristy". We LOVED the stop at Falmouth - the courtyard/square area is so quaint and 1,000 times better than Cozumel's port area. Very well organized and super easy to get to the excursion stations, super clean, and while there were vendors trying to sell things, they weren't yelling out at you and practically salivating when you walked in their store (like the people in Cozumel). Grand Cayman is also quaint and beautiful. Wish there were more excursions there. We are already trying to decide on our next cruise. We've been to all parts of the Caribbean so it may be time to branch out. Our family continues to be impressed and pleased with Royal Caribbean so I'm hoping we can find an RC itinerary and ship that works for our schedule and budget. I am convinced that cruising is THE best way to travel and this vacation didn't disappoint! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
Left from Galveston. Very very fast embarkation. Very very fast debarkation. The ship was beautiful and clean. Our Jr Suite room was large and super nice. Loved the beautiful walk in closet and bathroom. The balcony was large and ... Read More
Left from Galveston. Very very fast embarkation. Very very fast debarkation. The ship was beautiful and clean. Our Jr Suite room was large and super nice. Loved the beautiful walk in closet and bathroom. The balcony was large and comfortable. The service was efficient and everyone smiled! The staff was so nice and courteous! The food was literally the best that we have ever experienced. We have been on 25 cruises, and this cruise was the best service and food EVER! Windjammer food was also excellent. We can't say enough good things! There was only 2 things that bothered us on this cruise. First, everything was so clean except the pool area. There wasn't enough pool staff to clean up the dirty dishes dishes left around pool area by irresponsible cruisers!! It made you not want to swim because of all the dirty glasses and plates. Second, since we are Diamond plus members, we get different free items throughout the week. At 9:00 pm the night before the cruise ended, we were delivered, chocolate strawberries, iced cupcakes, cookies, birthday cake!!!!!! How did they actually think we were going to eat this one hour before bedtime and debarkation!!! Why wasn't this delivered the week of cruise??? Other than these two things, the cruise was great! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We did not choose this vacation, but accepted an invitation from my son and his family; they were the ones who chose the ship, itinerary and departure port. We did not know what to expect, but it turned out to be a perfect choice. ... Read More
We did not choose this vacation, but accepted an invitation from my son and his family; they were the ones who chose the ship, itinerary and departure port. We did not know what to expect, but it turned out to be a perfect choice. Galveston is a great spot to spend a few days, parking was easy to find and the port was great with very easy embarkation and disembarkation. The ship was smaller than our last cruise, but I found it easier to get around and find things. The cabin was very nice, spacious ocean view. We noticed more rocking than usual but I am not sure if it's because we were at the back of the ship, or if it was due to weather. We were able to enjoy almost all of the shows and the staff was wonderful. The MDR was very good and our waiters were exceptional. I did find the menus a little repetitive as far as the regular meals go, and there was not as much of a variety as I would have liked but the food was very good. The WIndjammer was also great, although one day the food signs had been taken down a little too early and we did not know what was being served. Actually, I feel that there should be more sineage on the food stations so that we know what is being served before waiting in line for 10 minutes. Another example of this is the JADE/WINDJAMMER are together, as one restaurant, however they are listed as 2 restaurants, yet I am still unsure what the difference is in them. The pools were amazing - hot tubs HOT and pools comfortable. The usualy complaint here is that there are never enough pool chairs. Families put towels on them to 'save' them and they are saved and empty all day. The evening entertainment was very enjoyable and there was so much to do! A great variety of evening activities, with one of our favourites being the piano bar, even though we don't drink. Phil Anderson was an awesome entertainer. We were very happy with our itinerary choice. In Cozumel we went to Mr Sanchos and except for the rainy weather, we couldn't 'ask for a better all inclusive resort experience. Grand Cayman was also a beautiful island and Captain Marvin offered several different excursions. We chose the 2 stop and it was amazing. Jamaica however was a poor experience. We did not have plans for Jamaica so we took the cruise directors advice and took a drive with a local man, Le Roy, who did have a card to prove that he was legit. He explained that he was cheaper than the ship and he would charge $50 for both of us, and that we would see everything that the ship tours offer, for much cheaper. He did show us some nice views, but when we stopped at a fruit stand, it cost us $20 to taste coconut water and a banana. Then he brought us to the 'CHEAPEST souvenir shop on the island' which we found our later was the most expensive place to shop - all of their souvenir prices were 75% more than the local market. While we shopped, LeRoy left us at the store to pick up other clients and we had to wait over 30 minutes for him to come back. When he returned, LeRoy asked us to pay for his services at this very same souvenir shop and he charged us for 3 hours, $150 because he said we were with him 3 hours. We were with him 140 minutes (less than 2.5 hours) and 30 minutes of that was waiting for him to come back. When we reached the port we found much, much cheaper and nicer souvenirs, so we bought a few more things just to support the locals. We were very discouraged. It is VERY important that the Cruise Staff warn people about this kind of behaviour. We were trying to do the right thing by supporting the locals... and he was a fraud! All in all our vacation was awesome and we would do it again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
We really enjoyed our cruise. If it hadn't been for the rain, it would have been amazing. The food was fantastic and served promptly. The servers (ours at least) were fun and friendly. Russtinov and Idewa. Our room steward was ... Read More
We really enjoyed our cruise. If it hadn't been for the rain, it would have been amazing. The food was fantastic and served promptly. The servers (ours at least) were fun and friendly. Russtinov and Idewa. Our room steward was friendly and attentive and did an amazing job for us. Valent was his name. The waitress in Sabor was amazing. Hunilyn, I think was her name. As far as the excursions, we over did it just a little but they were awesome. Even the walking in the rain to the bus was a neat adventure. The shows on board were very good and fun. Not sold on the hypnosis, but it was a fun show. Met some new friends and hopefully can stay in touch with them. Planning on another cruise sometime in the near future. Hopefully with some of our friends or family going with us. Enjoyed it throughly. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We are a married couple in our 50's who sailed on Liberty of the Seas April 7, 2019. This is our 4th cruise out of Galveston. Embarkation: Embarkation was a breeze. We arrived at the cruise terminal at 10:30 A.M., handed our ... Read More
We are a married couple in our 50's who sailed on Liberty of the Seas April 7, 2019. This is our 4th cruise out of Galveston. Embarkation: Embarkation was a breeze. We arrived at the cruise terminal at 10:30 A.M., handed our bags to a porter, and found no line at security or the Platinum check-in line. We sat in the waiting area for approximately 15 minutes, and were on-board at the Hoof & Claw Pub by 11:00 A.M. having a pint. Unfortunately some heavy storms came through later in the day causing the captain to suspend the boarding process for a period of time. Our luggage was waiting in the hallway when we went to the room at 1:00 PM. Royal Caribbean seems to have really streamlined the luggage delivery process on our last two cruises. I don't know how they do it, but we were very pleased and impressed. Stateroom Attendant: Our stateroom attendant "Gevin" was one of the best we have ever experienced on Royal Caribbean. Anytime, and I mean anytime we left our cabin, he would go in and freshen it up. I'm not sure we had a piece of trash in our trash cans for more than a few minutes at any time during the cruise. It was wonderful taking an afternoon nap, stepping out for a few minutes, and returning to a remade bed. We called him the "Stateroom Ninja", because he was quiet, always in there without us seeing him, had the place looking clean and immaculate, and always had the ice bucket loaded with fresh ice. Dining: We ate every night at the 8:00 P.M. late seating in the Main Dining Room. I know food reviews are subjective, but we agreed the food on Liberty of the Seas was a substantial step down from the food we had in the Main Dining Room on Adventure of the Seas last April out of San Juan. While we enjoyed most of the items we had, several pieces of meat were very small and overcooked compared to our previous cruise. My lobster on formal night was so small, several of us took photos of it. It looked like a crawfish. It was no big deal and was actually pretty funny, but our waiter appeared horrified by how small it was and compensated by bringing several more lobsters. Like I said, we enjoyed most things we tried, but noticed a big difference between the food on Liberty and Adventure. Drink service in the Main Dining Room was excellent. We enjoyed Sorrento's Pizza and the offerings at the Promenade Cafe as well. We typically avoid the Windjammer like the plague, but did enjoy the one lunch we had there. As usual though, we had a difficult time finding any seating. Shows: My wife was thrilled to see there was a Lionel Richie tribute show. I had to admit it was pretty darn good with a very talented entertainer. The "In the Air" show was impressive. I would make an effort to see that one. We didn't see any other shows. Cruise Director: Jeffrey was a highlight on the cruise. I think he mentioned that he has been working for Royal Caribbean since 1989, and we found him very funny, informative, and entertaining. We found ourselves glued to the cabin TV every morning to watch his "Morning Rant" program. I loved all that he did for veterans on the cruise. He was a straight shooter who gave a lot of non-revenue generating advice which was much appreciated by this cruiser. Pools: Chair hogs were out in force on sea days. I'm not sure what Royal Caribbean can really do to fix this. Too many people for too few seats. We were unable to find chairs on any sea day at 10:30 AM in either the main pool or the Solarium. Honestly though, we don't care. I don't want to get up at 7:00 AM and stress about claiming territory on the pool deck. We don't like to sit out there all day. We store our belongings in a corner, climb in the Solarium pool with some cocktails, meet other cruisers and people watch. After noon on a sea day at the main pool area is like Thunderdome. We walk through the area every now and then just to see how many people can fit on a pool deck or cram into a hot tub, It has become part of our visual entertainment on a cruise. Cozumel: We hired a driver named Leonardo ("Leo") through Tours Plaza and did some bar hopping along the east side of the island. It was a beautiful trip with a lot of pretty scenery, big waves and fun bars. We hit Mezcalitos, Senor Iguanas, Coconuts, and Rasta Bar. I'd have to say Senor Iguanas was our favorite. It has good food, cheap beer, a beautiful view, and is run by two brothers who we enjoyed meeting. Leo our driver was fun to hang out with, plays on a local baseball team, and was clearly very excited to show off his island. Be aware that you need cash at the bars on the east side as there is no electricity and none of the bars accept credit cards. Grand Cayman: We took a mile and a half walk from the cruise pier to My Bar at Sunset House. It is a beautiful bar/restaurant that is built on the edge of the water. Reasonable beer prices, and very good Indian food. The walk was a little trickier than expected as there were portions of the road that had no sidewalks. We needed the exercise, but most would probably want to take a short cab ride there instead of walking.. Jamaica: We booked "A Place in the Sun" through Royal Caribbean. I usually don't book through the cruise line due to previous poor experiences, but I thought I would give them another chance. Unfortunately I couldn't find an online review of this excursion before taking it. Just for fun, here is the Royal Caribbean description of this excursion: "Depart the cruise ship pier in Falmouth in your air-conditioned coach and enjoy the scenic drive to Montego Bay, passing Great Houses, hotels and golf courses. Upon arrival at the famous Hip Strip in Montego Bay, browse along the row of shops; shopping for souvenir items. Stop in at Margaritaville to enjoy one of their notable concoctions on your own. Next, visit Doctor’s Cave Bathing Beach and stroll the world`s most famous white sand beach; the warm Caribbean waters beckons for a relaxing 3 hours. Let the sand trickle through your toes at the water`s edge, relax, take a swim or have an optional lunch at one of the 3 restaurants located on the beach." We were able to find the loading zone for the bus without any major problems. Just follow the signs in the cruise village. It was a long walk to the excursion area, and a bit of a mad house once we arrived to the departure area, but nothing we couldn't handle. The bus left on schedule at 8:35 A.M., but had the strong smell of cigarette smoke throughout it. After an unremarkable drive of about 35 minutes we were dropped at an awful strip center for a "shopping opportunity". We stepped over trash exiting the bus, and were directed through a dirty parking lot to a strip mall containing some sort of tourist shop located between a grocery store and an off track/sports betting parlor. This was not near the Hip Strip or Doctor's Cave Beach as advertised by Royal Caribbean. The local police car with emergency lights on that pulled into the parking lot while we there was a nice touch that kind of completed the whole crime scene feel of the location. I don't know what caused the police to come, and I really didn't want to know. It was a TERRIBLE stop. Why on earth they would make us burn 45 minutes of valuable beach time on this hell hole of a place is beyond me. I'm assuming the tour operator gets paid by the store owner to stop there, but it is just an educated guess. After the 45 minute strip mall from hell stop it was another 10 minutes or so to the drop off point at Doctor's Cave. We arrived a little after 10:00 A.Mm to the beach club. The $6 per person admission fee was covered. It costs $6 per chair and $6 for an umbrella. The beach club was very clean and pretty. Chairs and umbrellas were in very good condition. Food and beverage service wasn't too outrageous. ($5 Red Stripe, $2 bottled water, mixed drinks $7-$9). The only negative to be aware of is that when arriving with a large group on a bus, there will be a long line waiting to rent umbrellas and chairs. We were fortunate to helped quickly, but many others waited in a fairly slow moving and lengthy line. The bus loads up outside the beach club entrance at 1:00 PM sharp for the return trip. We'd have been much better arranging our own transportation to Doctor's Cave. Had I known about the shopping stop far from the Hip Strip and Doctor's Cave I'd have never done this excursion. We had been led to believe any shopping stop would be within walking distance of the beach club so we could skip it. This was an absolute waste of time. We would definitely do Doctor's Cave Beach again, but I would caution to check out the number of ships on the island before committing. The beach is much smaller than I expected. On Thursday, April 11, 2019 there was only one cruise ship on the entire island of Jamaica. I'm not sure this would be a good spot if several ships were around. Disembarkation: We were expecting the worse, and were pleasantly surprised by how easy this was. We've had some rough experiences getting off ships in Galveston over the years, but this one was wonderful. They were an hour ahead of schedule. We had a nice breakfast in the Main Dining Room, cleared out of our cabin at 9:00 am, sat in the Bolero Bar area for about 15-20 minutes, then made our way out the sliding glass door on Deck 4. It was about as quickly as we could walk to the luggage area. Our bags were there, and we waited behind one other couple in the customs/immigration line. The easiest experience we have ever had in Galveston. Overall, we really enjoyed this cruise. We found the Liberty of the Seas to be a well-maintained and luxurious ship. The crew did a great job keeping the public areas clean and tidy, and we appreciated the emphasis on providing hand sanitizer everywhere. Royal Caribbean seems to take the risk of norovirus very seriously. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
The ship was wonderful and easy to navigate. The ship was beautiful and clean and the staff was super. There are a few recommendations that I would give. 1st buy the KEY card, this gives you priority everything and a free meal. Buy the ... Read More
The ship was wonderful and easy to navigate. The ship was beautiful and clean and the staff was super. There are a few recommendations that I would give. 1st buy the KEY card, this gives you priority everything and a free meal. Buy the drink package and then find Roberta. She is the female version of Tom Cruise from the movie "Cocktails". She is so much fun and everything you want when you belly up to a bar. And buy the dinner package and experience everything. And when you get to dine at Giovanni's, which is the best restaurant on the ship, ask for Vitalii. My husband and I went to all of the restaurant's on the ship and he was the absolute best. I promise you that you need to ask for Vitalii for the absolute best service possible. The outdoor activities were so much fun. They had bands at the pool with fun contests. The water slides were so much FUN! I can just go on and on, but it would be best for you to just book it and see for yourself. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We shopped for a cruise we could take our youngest granddaughter out of Miami since we were ending up there after a Panama Canal cruise. Instead of Miami, we ended up at Galveston, permitting her to fly direct to TX as an unaccompanied ... Read More
We shopped for a cruise we could take our youngest granddaughter out of Miami since we were ending up there after a Panama Canal cruise. Instead of Miami, we ended up at Galveston, permitting her to fly direct to TX as an unaccompanied minor from California. We had cruised on the Liberty in last September and knew the ship was tailor-made for kids. This ship class and the Western Caribbean itineraries are perfect for families. Although it was spring break, the ship was overrun with kids. It ended up the perfect cruise. Enough other kids to have her make friends, but no so many that we felt on a Disney cruise. We booked the junior suite which worked well with only the three of us. The ports were family friendly. We packed in a dolphin excursion, a zoo & waterpark, and a submarine ride to the reef. The ship was a good size, small enough to let a 10-year-old have some freedom. Not so huge to worry about her getting lost. We had taken our oldest grandson on the Mariner at age 10, so we were pretty confident, that his little sister would have a great time on this ship. We were right. Can highly recommend this ship and this itinerary, even if you're traveling without kids. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
This was our 4th time on Liberty of the Seas out of Galveston. We chose this cruise again because it's close to home and we wanted a spring getaway. We love Liberty! She's a beautiful ship, the staff are always so nice and they ... Read More
This was our 4th time on Liberty of the Seas out of Galveston. We chose this cruise again because it's close to home and we wanted a spring getaway. We love Liberty! She's a beautiful ship, the staff are always so nice and they keep it very nice and clean. Someone from the staff is always picking up, wiping down or sweeping. We stayed in an Oceanview Balcony cabin on the 7th floor mid-ship. It was great because being right in the middle you are close to either side of the ship. We ate in the Main Dining Room all nights except one. We ate one night in the specialty restaurant, Giovanni's and it was delicious and the service was excellent! We highly recommend it, the Filet in Giovanni's is the best on the ship anywhere. Our service in the MDR was excellent, the guys we had were so friendly and knew our likes by the second night. We loved them. I'm a little bummed they took away one of my favorite appetizers - the Banana Rum Soup, but all the food was great. We ate in the Windjammer a couple times for breakfast and lunch and also breakfast in the MDR. All of it is good and I always come back for my favorites everyday. I also enjoy the lattes in the Cafe Promenade, they make them very well. Pools were great as always, activities and entertainment was fun. The ice skating show always amazes me, especially skating while sailing on the ocean. They have some great talent! The Saturday Night Fever is one my favs too! We always enjoy Royal and will continue sailing with them as we have nothing but good things to say about them and their ships! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We are a family of 5 (me, my wife, 2 sons (9,6) and daughter (3). We have been on multiple cruises to include Disney, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian and Carnival at different points in our life. For our makeup as we are now this was an ... Read More
We are a family of 5 (me, my wife, 2 sons (9,6) and daughter (3). We have been on multiple cruises to include Disney, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian and Carnival at different points in our life. For our makeup as we are now this was an amazing cruise. While the food and decor was not quite up to the Disney standard (it was not far off, and definitely much more return on investment for the price). Embarkation: We arrived the night before and stayed near Houston Hobby airport at the Springhill Suites (we had Marriott points so it was free). The hotel itself was fine, but the area around left to be desired. Our flight home the following week was late at night so we rented a car for the week so that we would be able to explore after debarkation. We drove to Galveston (approximately 45 minutes). This is where I made a mistake: I decided to try to drop the rest of my family off and the baggage then park the car. The line to drive up took a long time with the kiddos being able to see the ship. In hindsight I would have parked and walked with them because we parked at Galveston Park and Cruise which was directly across the street from the terminal (closer to the Carnival ship, but still very close). This would have saved me a lot of "are we there yets". We had prebooked parking and it was extremely easy. We stayed in a Grand Suite so we had expedited boarding and check-in. This was a nice feature. We checked in and punched holes in our Gold Cards (different color due to being in a suite) and attached them to our lanyards that we brought from home. Lanyards were key for our family and we liked that we brought different ones for each of us, but don't fret if you don't bring them they are for sale in the terminal and on the ship. I would recommend them and punching a whole in it to attach it. Note: There was a cold front when we were in Galveston so there was light rain and a high of 59, so we did not do outdoor activities on the first day. I imagine this would have been a good plan as discussed in many other reviews, but not an option for us. Once on we explored the ship a little, and then went with the rest of the masses to the Windjammer Buffet. The food here was definitely tasty. I have read lots of complaints about bland food, but we did not find this to be the case at all. We thoroughly enjoyed the food here and ate multiple lunches, most breakfasts (got room service on two days we had excursions, but more on that later) and one dinner (they had sushi that night). Finding tables in Windjammer especially on the first day was difficult. Luckily since we had our Gold Cards we could eat in either Giovanni's or Chops (depended on the meal and the day) with our plates from the buffet or order of a menu. This was a great and underrated perk of being in a suite. We could always find a table that was quieter, but still enjoy the choices from the buffet. Next we went to sign the kids up at Adventure Ocean (kids club). There are three different levels: Aquanauts (3-5), Explorers (6-8) and Voyagers (9-11). Due to age ranges all my kids were in different groups. This was not an issue for our kids, and they each made friends that they would chat with and hang out in the pool or outside of the kids club as well. **HINT: There were two different areas to check in (Aquanaut and Explorer Rooms). The Explorer room had a ridiculously long line, but the Aquanaut room had no line. There is no real introduction or anything at either room just a form that must be filled out. For Voyagers you can sign for them to sign themselves in and out. We told my oldest that he could not sign himself out, but we signed that authorization so that he could sign himself in. This was a time saver and a few times the other kids didn't want to go to the kids club and he did so he could go by himself to sign himself in. After that we explored the Royal Promenade and made our way to our room. The room was great for us. The balcony had two lounge chairs with a little table, and then two chairs and a large patio table where we ate a few times and enjoyed coffee daily before the kids woke up. Inside the room was a pullout couch where the boys slept and our room steward (Edwin) brought in a rollaway bed that we put beside it for our daughter. Then we had a bed to ourselves on the other side of the room that could be separated by a curtain. We had LOTS of drawers (so many we even had empty drawers even with 5 of us)! We had two sinks in the bathroom and a bathtub which was great for the little ones. We changed for dinner. I put on jeans (like every night except formal night) because it said no short pants and I am a rule follower, but as stated in other reviews outfits ran the gambit and anything goes. We went to our table which was by the window as I had requested and met our waiter Michael and his assistant waiter Joenel. They were both awesome! Great service. Joenel had our drinks waiting for us the next night so we could have our martinis while we read the menu. The food at the dining room was good. Was it the most highend dinner...no, but it was good and if you take into account the number of people that are being cooked for during each sitting it was pretty darn good. Some of the presentation left some to be desired (shrimp cocktail is a bed of lettuce with 3 shrimp laid on it), but the flavors were good. We enjoyed all the meals we had there. My Family Time Dining: We selected the 5:30 seating so that we could utilize the My Family Time dining. I have not seen a good description of this in any of the other reviews so I wanted to explain this process. Starting the second night, you could tell your waiter that your kids were going to the kids club and they would ensure that they got their entire meal including dessert before they had to leave. Pickup was at 6:40 on the 4th deck (middle deck of the 3 levels of the dining room) outside the dining room. At 6:40 you take your kid(s) down to the counselor that was there and they check you in using a tablet then the parent can go back to their meal. We figured out that if we got to dinner around 5:40 this was about the perfect timing to ensure they got all their food, but not too much downtime after their meal before pickup. We also asked Michael to wait on our (DW and my) entrees until we dropped the kids off. This worked really well for us and gave us time to actually enjoy our meal too. If you don't use this pickup option, Adventure opens at 7PM. Adventure Ocean: All three of our kids loved their different areas. For the oldest group they seemed to play a lot of Gaga Ball (dodgeball, but you hit the ball instead of throwing it) and some other games. They were some more structured activities as well including facepainting and other activities. Having all kids enjoy themselves was a key part of us enjoying our vacation as parents. The boys did not enjoy their time at Disney in the kids club as much as they did here. Truth in advertising they were younger, but they all loved this so that is good enough for me. Pools: The pools were well maintained. My kids loved Splashaway Bay the best. It is a jungle gym with lots of spray and buckets and slides. This is right near the ice cream machine as well (my kids frequented this machine A LOT). There was a kid pool that was 2 feet deep, and it was great for my daughter to splash around and play in without a lifevest. There was a bar by all the pools so we frequented the Squeeze (the bar by Splashaway Bay) a lot. We had the drink package and for us we found it extremely beneficial. We definitely got our money worth. The two pools in the main pool area were too deep for my kids to touch, but we had them wear lifejackets that were readily available from Royal Caribbean by the towel stand. The screen here played the Final Four and a few movies, but most of the time it has videos from Chive TV (like youtube). The adult only area was good with two jacuzzis and a pool. This was a little crowded, but it was good overall. As previously stated by people: There is no food available on the pool deck besides ice cream so this was annoying, but not a major issue for us as we understood this limitation. Royal Promenade: There were lots of food choices at the Promenade Cafe (sandwiches, salads and baked goods) and Sorrentos (pizza, antipasto, desserts). The lines were long at Sorrentos, but they went much faster than they looked. There were different drinks at the different bars on the Royal Promenade. Note: Vintages has little to no choices that are covered by the drink package [you only have to pay the difference, but there are lots of other choices elsewhere that are covered]. My wife's favorite drink was at the Hoof and Claw Pub which was a mixed drink including strawberry, liquor and beer. It sounds odd, but it was delicious. Entertainment: We went to In the Air and it was amazing. It was really well done and had you on the edge of your seat at points. This was family friendly and my kids loved it as well. We also went to Encore (the ice show). It was also very good. It was fun and enjoyable and the kids also liked it. We chose to skip Saturday Night Fever as it is not for our kids and there were other activities we wanted to do. Other Activities: We did sports trivia at the Schooner Bar (where I got a great old fashioned and a brandy alexander), and Family Karaoke at On Air bar [where we had amazing service from Roger]. Roger always found us seats and ensured that my daughter had a martini glass full of maraschino cherries. We played mini-golf one day and it was fun. Cupcake Decorating Class: My wife and daughter did this class on one of the sea days. It was $30 per person, but since my wife was helping my daughter and not participating alone they only charge for one person. They had over an hour with the head pastry chef on how to decorate cupcakes and they made 6 cupcakes and were given two extras of different animals and colors. This was "the best $30 we have spent in a long time" according to my wife. Suite Lounge: This was a nice area to get away from the loud crowds. We went in there a few times during the day to play board games and relax with the view. Nightly there was a cocktail period with appetizers from 4:30-8. This was a great nightly routine to go get a drink and snacks (my kids loved the samosas so much they barely ate dinner on of the nights) and shirley temples for the kids. Excursions: We did excursions at Roatan and Cozumel. We chose to stay on the boat in Belize. We wanted to spend on day on the boat when it was in port to enjoy an empty boat. It was great. My kids were able to ride the slides continuously for roughly an hour without any lines. Roatan: We did Big French Key. This was a good excursion. It is a 20 minute bus ride to the boat that takes you to the island. Our tour guide was very knowledgable and we learned a lot about Roatan during the ride. Then it was a 4 minute ride out to the island. there are two different excursions out this way. Big French Key and Little French Key. Big French Key had signifcantly less activities than Little French Key, but seemed more mellow. They share a lagoon so you see the other group. I would recommend water shoes as there were a lot of rocks. Not required because we did not have them, but it would have been nice. The food was included, but drinks were extra. We wanted a relaxing beach day for the kids, and that is what we got with Big French Key but if you want more action Little French Key looked like a better option. Our kids just wanted to chase fish and ride the little zipline so this was great for our family. Cozumel: We went to Nachi Cocom. I had read all the reviews about how great this place was, but it seemed like it was too good to be true. I was wrong. It lived up to all the hype and then some. We got a taxi ($23 each way since we had 5 people) and it took about 15 minutes to get to Nachi Cocom. Upon arrival we had our picture taken, checked in and then were escorted to our Palapa (palm tree that grows big enough to be like an umbrella) and our 3 beach chairs and met our waiter Carlos. We rented a float that could hold all 3 kids for $20. Then we started playing in the ocean. Then the kids wanted to shift to the pool which was fine with us as there was a swim up bar with all drinks included so the kids got to have virgin Pina Coladas and Daiquiris, and we had margaritas. Around 1030 the kitchen opens and you can order off the menu. The food was very tasty and delivered to us at the table we found at the pool by Carlos. It was great. Perfect and relaxing day. They only let in 130 people a day so it is a big spread out area and it felt like even less people than advertised because of this. We paid about $130 for all 5 of us since our daughter was free. This was extremely well worth it, and we will book there again on our next cruise. In conclusion: This was an amazing cruise for us. Where we are in life we could not have asked for a better time or ship. It was large, but small enough to navigate with many options of activities and our room was great for when we wanted to come and relax. We are looking at booking this again for next spring break. I cannot recommend this highly enough. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
The food and service were incredible. The ship is showing signs of age and will be refurbished soon. Entertainment and activities were on par with other ships. But there sin't seem to be as much live music on this cruise. One of ... Read More
The food and service were incredible. The ship is showing signs of age and will be refurbished soon. Entertainment and activities were on par with other ships. But there sin't seem to be as much live music on this cruise. One of the bands was really good but other that a DJ, not a lot of other good live alternatives. Some lines at bars at peak times, number of bartenders were good but some of the bar areas were small so not enough room for them to work efficiently. We did Chops the first night and it was probably one of the best fillets I have ever eaten. but then every meal in the MDR was exceptional. The Windjammer had a good variety every day with many new items at each meal. We have been on cruises where it was the same dishes every day and that gets old very quickly. Our Jr Suite was spacious and always clean (thanks Julian). It was close but not too close to the elevator. Noise was never a problem. Loved having a larger balcony and larger shower. The Casino was very smoky at times. People were wearing masks and covering their mouth and nose with napkins. A better air filtration system is needed or better yet make it non-smoking. the non-smoking section was a joke as the smell was just as bad there. Maybe even a non-smoking cruise!!! I am a former smoker but at times it really was a bit much. We did a private tour on Roatan through Victor Bodden Tours and it was great. At Belize we did the Lamanai Ruins. It was a great experience, but we tendered in just in time to run to the other end of the pier and arrived back with 10 minute to get onboard. So it being a 6+ hour excursion, we had no time to shop at that port. At Cozamel we simply shopped at the pier. Good variety of merchandise, but many of the shop owners/employees are, lets say aggressive in their sales techniques. We were on the ship before 1100 on embarkation day and chose to self checkout and were of the ship before 9 am on the day which was great as we has a long drive home. We parked at Park N Cruise right across the street, less than 5 minute walk from the ship. Good value and the car was indoors. All in all, was it the cruise ever, probably not. Would I do it again? I can be at the port again next Sunday!!!! Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
This was my second time on Liberty of the Seas out of Galveston during Spring Break with this same itinerary. We obviously enjoyed it two years ago to do it again, and I would say this time was even better. We had a group of 9 people in 5 ... Read More
This was my second time on Liberty of the Seas out of Galveston during Spring Break with this same itinerary. We obviously enjoyed it two years ago to do it again, and I would say this time was even better. We had a group of 9 people in 5 cabins this time. We drove to Galveston from the Dallas/Fort Worth area the morning of our cruise, so we did not have time in our departure city prior to the cruise. We parked at Lighthouse Cruise Parking, and their service and location was perfect. They had a shuttle waiting for us and our luggage and took us straight to the port. Embarkation was much smoother this time that last. For a full ship at spring break, they got us through security and on to the ship in very little time. It was well organized and they had many people eager to help. We walked onto the ship at 1:00pm and headed up to deck 8 to see if our room was ready. We met our cabin attendant, Liliana, who was working hard and did have our room ready. She told us they were a little behind schedule because they had replaced all the mattresses on deck 8 (new bed for us!). It was also topped with a very nice mattress pad which made for a great sleep. We put away our carry on and headed to Sorrento's for some pizza. It was much less crowded than the Windjammer buffet and had great pizza, olives, and salads. We struck up a conversation with a crew member and he asked about our dinner plans. We had booked the BOGO offer where you dine in specialty restaurants nights one and two, but we had not received notification of which we were eating in that night. I let him know our preference and what time we wanted to eat and he made a call to make sure it was exactly as we wanted. When I returned to my cabin, I had a call waiting for me confirming those reservations he made. It was an unexpected level of service that started us off great. Our cabin was a balcony on deck 8. It was my first time in a balcony. Our room had an adjoining door to my parents room next door, so we had a chair in place of a couch, which gave us a little extra room. We also had our attendant open the divider for our balcony so we had a larger shared balcony. The bathroom was typical of cruise ships, small but efficient. Our bed slept great. There were lots of hidden cabinets and places for our things. Overall, the room was well appointed, efficient, and well maintained. We had many good meals on the ship during the week. Most mornings, we had the continental (free) room service delivered to our room. It was nice to sit on the balcony with a pot of coffee and some pastries to start the day. On port days, we would go have breakfast in the Main Dining Room. We found out that many people didn't know this was an option every morning. It was not ever very busy and we enjoyed the hot breakfast and great service. We also would have lunch in the MDR port days. Some others in our party would go to the Windjammer buffet and they said the food was very good. With the ship so full, it felt pretty crowded in Windjammer, so I opted for other dining locations. My son would get milkshakes daily from the Ben and Jerry's. They were an additional fee, but totally worth it. We also grabbed sandwiches and snack from Cafe Promenade, and the food was good. On night 1, we ate dinner in Chops steakhouse. The service and food were great. I had the filet, which was cooked perfectly and tender. My father had the ribeye and said it was delicious. The appetizers, salads, sides, and desserts were also wonderful. We left feeling very full and satisfied. Night 2 we ate at Giovanni's Italian. It was our favorite meal of the trip. The manager welcomed us and told us we were family and he intended to make us feel that way. Our waiter was incredible. They wanted us to try ALL the food, so they brought us all of the appetizer and pastas they offered. We only had to choose our entrees. I had the filet again that evening and it was even better than Chops. My son had the Eggplant Parm and he devoured it. My surprise was how much I enjoyed the octopus appetizer. I had never tried it before and would not have if they hadn't brought us everything. Any item that we loved and ate all of, they would bring more. It was a warm and fun dining experience. I can't recommend them more highly. All other dinners were in the main dining room. We had My Time Dining and I made reservations for all nights at 7pm for the 9 of us. Our servers were Ana and Paula and they took great care of us. My son started loving curry when we traveled on Brilliance of the Seas and was disappointed to not see it on the Liberty menu. Ana found this out and let him know they made curry each night for the crew and he could have some (which he did). If you are a curry fan, be sure to ask for it. They made wonderful curry. Everything we ordered was very good. On formal night, I had prime rib with a side of lobster and they offered to keep bringing more lobsters. I appreciate the variety of foods from traditional to more exotic. The best appetizer I had was the burrata, which was as good as any I had in Italy. I found all food on the ship to be very good. We went to a few shows, but not all. Production value was very good. We liked the ice show a lot. Be sure to come early for a seat. It is a smaller venue and it fills up. The comedian was very funny. My aunt loved Saturday Night Fever and In The Air. My son loved getting to ice skate on the ship. He is a hockey player and brought his own skates. They have teen skating on night 2 and the open skating later in the week. This also fills up, so line up early. The climbing wall was fun and they have speed climbing competitions. Pools were full this week but many in our group still enjoyed them. This ship had many activities available like bingo, trivia, surf simulator, water slides, contests, and so on. There is truly something for everyone. On the last sea day, we did the Bottomless Galley Brunch. It gave us a galley tour, bottomless mimosas, and brunch. I had taken a galley tour on Brilliance that was very extensive, so I was surprised at how brief this one was. Still, it was enjoyable and the food was good. For our ports, we did Cozumel and Grand Cayman on our own and an excursion through Royal Caribbean for Jamaica. In Cozumel, we took a taxi to Nachi Cocom. Taxis are regulated and prices posted. It was a short ride to Nachi. We booked this several months in advance, which was a good thing because they were booked up. They only allow 130 people per day to visit. We had a beautiful spot on the beach with loungers, an umbrella, unlimited drinks, and lunch. They also had a big pool and hot tub with a swim up bar. For an additional fee you could snorkel, have a massage, or go parasailing. My son and uncle parasailed and loved it. The drinks were appropriately strong and very good. It was a calm and relaxing atmosphere. If you want loud music and a DJ, you should probably find another place. However if you want a day in paradise, visit Nachi. We enjoyed the meal in the restaurant. They also offered to bring us our food and let us eat at our spot on the beach. When we were ready to return to the ship, they got a taxi for us. I highly recommend this resort and I will return. In Grand Cayman, we booked the Rays, Reef, and Rum Point excursion with NativeWay Watersports. When we got off the ship, we found the white tent with independent excursions under it. Native Way did not have a sign, but after asking around we found them. Sharon welcomed us and got us connected with our driver. We were taken to the marina and boarded our boat for the day. We had a total of 25 people on our boat, which was far less than the ones with RC excursions. We started at Stingray City and had a great time. The crew was very informative and made sure we had safe and memorable interactions with the rays. They also took photos for us.The water was crystal clear and we had a beautiful day. After about an hour we went to a snorkel site. We were provided with snorkels, masks, flippers, and life jackets if we needed them. The fish were beautiful and the snorkeling was easy. We were the only family on the boat that had Rum Point and the others had Starfish Point, so we got to visit Starfish point as well. It was about a 20 minute stop and we did see starfish. The crew made sure that we knew how to handle the starfish in order to not endanger them. The crew seemed very concerned about making sure all the sea-life we encountered was handled in a respectful manner that did not harm them. We then went to Rum Point to be dropped off for lunch and the boat took the rest of the people back to the ship. Our meal was very good. I had jerk chicken which was better than what I had later in Jamaica. We also purchased mudslides, which were said to have been invented in the bar at Rum Point. At the designated time, Sharon picked us up and drove us back to the port with tales of the island. We had a memorable and fun day in Grand Cayman. In Jamaica, we went with the Royal Caribbean excursion called Blue Waters Beach Escape. It was an all inclusive excursion that included transportation, entry to the beach, lounge chairs, all we could drink, and lunch.There was not much shade on the beach and they rented out umbrellas or cabanas for additional fees. We found one of the few trees and set up under it. The beach was beautiful, but they were clearly packing as many people into the beach as possible. After we had our spot, they moved more chairs in front of us and set up umbrellas they had rented which blocked our view of the water. That was disappointing. We had a server that brought us drinks, but they were very small and not very good. We ended up getting a bucket of Red Stripe beer instead of mixed drinks after tasting them. We did get in the water some, but it was VERY grassy on the floor with lots of seaweed. We gave up on the water after about 15 minutes of trying to find a spot without vegetation. It was a windy day which made the water quite cloudy. At 11am, they told us to go eat. The food was weird. They had jerk chicken and curry chicken, but it was more bones than meat. They also had fettuccini noodles with hotdogs (odd) and a huge amount of bland beans and rice. We tried the food, but didn't eat much of it. We ended up getting an early shuttle back to the boat. Probably if our first two port excursions hadn't been so amazing, it wouldn't have been such a contrast. Still I found I much prefer independent excursions to ship excursions. My son (14 years old) traveled with me. He really enjoyed the ship. He does not like youth programs on ships, so he didn't participate in the teen program. He did do the teen night for skating and the teen rock climbing competition. The staff made him feel like a king. Anything he wanted, they made happen. It was hard to leave the ship the last morning because it felt like we were leaving family. Disembarkation was very easy. We did the self carry option off the ship. We all went down for breakfast in the main dining room at 7am and it wasn't crowded at all. We had a very nice final meal on the ship. About 7:45am we went to our cabins, got our bags, and walked off the ship. We were through customs and picked up by Lighthouse Parking by 8:15 and on the road at 8:30. Very smooth and easy. I look forward to having another great Royal Caribbean experience in the future. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Quick overview: My DH and I are 53 and 48. This is our 9th cruise, 5th Royal, and second on Liberty. We had the drink package as we don't like worrying about a bill at the end. We had a wonderful time. It was Spring Break in Texas, ... Read More
Quick overview: My DH and I are 53 and 48. This is our 9th cruise, 5th Royal, and second on Liberty. We had the drink package as we don't like worrying about a bill at the end. We had a wonderful time. It was Spring Break in Texas, which is why we could go as I am a teacher. Lots of kids but most were well behaved. There are always rude people who try to get on the elevator before you get off so the kids weren't to blame. Galveston embarkation was a piece of cake. Arrived in Galveston at 10:00. Parked at Lighthouse parking. Shuttled to the ship, through security and waiting by 10:25. As Platinum members, we were in Windjammer having lunch and a cocktail by 11:10.Our cabin was a port side hump balcony. One of our favorites. Close to the aft elevators and very convenient to all venues. Liberty is in great shape for her age. Were there some worn spots? Yes. Enough to ruin things? No. We had the three night dining package and ate at Chops all three. Food was great all three times. Service was ok the first two nights but our last night it was wonderful. Ishyta (Ishy) was wonderful! We will look for her on our next Liberty cruise. The MDR food was also excellent. Huge variety? No but that's what the Windjammer is for. We ate breakfast at Windjammer most morning and a couple of lunches. Good food and we did not think it was tasteless. Ate lunch in the MDR twice. Love lunch there! Food was excellent and service was excellent. We saw both comedians and Saturday Night Fever. All three were great. The Quest was a bit tame but still quite a lot of fun. Jeffery is the CD and we love him. His morning rant is fun even for experienced cruisers. I know some do not like him, but we find him to be a very nice person. My husband is a Navy veteran so we attended both get togethers. If you are a veteran, you must go. Royal has refreshments and Jeffrey attended both times. We spent a lot of time at Hoof and Claw. Great pub! Danis and Yati were awesome. They made the best cocktails on the ship. We challenged them to make dirty martinis and they were both spectacular! Casino was a bit smoky but we still enjoyed it. Our ports were Cozumel, Grand Cayman, and Falmouth. "Traditional" itinerary but we had fun. We rarely book excursions through Royal. We ventured around Cozumel and had excellent guacamole and a couple of beers at Ernesto's about a two block walk from the pier. In grand Cayman, we went to Paradise where hubby could snorkel and I could a beverage or two. Husband said the snorkeling was great and we were close to the tenders. We also went to Churchill's our favorite Caribbean cigar shop. In Falmouth, we went to the Royalton resort. It was nice. Food and drink were plentiful but lots of kids in adult only areas. Not sure if we'd go there again. Overall, we had a fabulous cruise. We booked our next one for December 2020. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We were trying to find a Family cruise, that was easy to get to, the month and the price.We wanted something for our grand children 7,6,5,3 and our older kids..We looked for months..We decided on Royal Caribbean Liberty of the Sea..Could ... Read More
We were trying to find a Family cruise, that was easy to get to, the month and the price.We wanted something for our grand children 7,6,5,3 and our older kids..We looked for months..We decided on Royal Caribbean Liberty of the Sea..Could not have been a better choice..My wife and I have been on lots of cruises and this one turned out perfect..The ship had so much to do..It had a great play area for the little kids and better area for there parents..In the kids area they had small slides and different swallow pools for small kids..and a hot tub they could go in..In the back of the ship it was great for older kids and adults..It had 2 tall water slides, a flow rider, part of the time you could knee board and different times they had surfing. Also the tidal wave..A 2 man raft the went , almost straight down at one point and back up.almost strait up at one point...I"m 65 and did it all..It was SO MUCH FUN.. Also the ship had a rock climbing wall and an ice skating rink..We didn"t eat at the specialty restaurants,but everywhere else..The food was great in the main dinning room,and remember on lobster night you can have more then one.The buffets were good lots of variety..The ship was so awesome..The staff was all great and very nice..The only negative was .The cruise ended... Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
I chose this cruise because of the destinations, we have never been to Belize or Roatan. I was nervous because I heard the cruise was sold out and all I kept thinking was 4000 people on the boat was going to be chaotic. Fortunately I was ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the destinations, we have never been to Belize or Roatan. I was nervous because I heard the cruise was sold out and all I kept thinking was 4000 people on the boat was going to be chaotic. Fortunately I was wrong, it never felt overcrowded and we enjoyed a whole week on this ship. We had my time dining and the first two nights we went at 5:45 and our server was OK, then we switched to a later time which was better for us and our new server was fabulous! Our dining experience was amazing. He made the best recommendations he went above and beyond to make sure our dining experience was fabulous and it was. We watched InTheAir performance, it is a great show do not miss it! We enjoyed the comedy shows. We did not make it to Saturday night fever so I have no opinion on that. My son loved the Flo Rider, he said the slides were too slow but we had something to do everyday. It was a great week! Glad we went on LOS Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We have cruised Liberty of the Seas 2 years ago for our 27th anniversary and had such a wonderful time we thought to go again. In fact we are booked again in 2020. We thought the entertainment would be different and for the most part it ... Read More
We have cruised Liberty of the Seas 2 years ago for our 27th anniversary and had such a wonderful time we thought to go again. In fact we are booked again in 2020. We thought the entertainment would be different and for the most part it was the same. They repeated the ice skating show, the brothers comedy show, Saturday Night Fever(which did not happen due to injury) and the village people/70's dance in the promenade. I felt like the entertainment staff wasn't as talented as 2 years ago. But I am comparing it to another trip that was AWESOME. Jeffery the director was still just as amazing as the last time. We could cruise with him all the time! He's funny and so friendly. This time he was under the weather and he still managed to entertain us. Dining was good and the waiters were so friendly and professional. I asked about them making special cuisine from India and they brought it to me every night along side the normal menu. I loved it. I discovered this during a cruise that had a large population of guests from India. I asked and they delivered. We decided to try the Windjammer for dinner one night and it was really good with a plentiful selection. We had breakfast in the Windjammer most mornings as well as in the main dining room one night. We were not disappointed with the food at all. I am partial to eating different types of food. I especially loved that they had rice consume on the buffet. Be sure to visit the Hoof and Claw bar and look for Danis the bartender. He is amazing at making up fun drinks for you to try. Customer service was great all the way around. I have no complaints about the workers on the ship. They aim to please. My husband had surgery on his knee and needed ice in the room all the time. Bernard was very helpful in making sure our ice bag was always full. Our room was very clean all the time. The only complaint was the room location and that is my own fault for picking it. So this review is mainly to inform others about this room 1840 on the 12th Deck. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
We chose this cruise because we love to go the Caribbean this time of year and enjoy the Royal Caribbean ships. We have been on other cruise lines but like Royal the best. This time we enjoyed the owners suite which comes with some extra ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we love to go the Caribbean this time of year and enjoy the Royal Caribbean ships. We have been on other cruise lines but like Royal the best. This time we enjoyed the owners suite which comes with some extra perks. They offer a variety of activities and entertainment throughout the cruise. Some of my favorite are the cupcake decoration classes and the Trivia challenges where you tend to make new friends. I like being in the middle of the ship and prefer the higher floors. We enjoy sitting on the balcony drinking coffee and eating breakfast on cruise day mornings. Strolling down the prominade shopping and people watching and maybe a stop in the ice cream parlor. Cozumel is one of my favorite ports because there is so much to do and the water is such a beautiful color of blue. We enjoy the cruise life. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
To start: The embarkation and debarkation has greatly improved since three years ago. Especially the debarkation. It was 2.5 hours before and 45 minutes now. Great way to end the cruise experience. We went to the pay extra restaurants ... Read More
To start: The embarkation and debarkation has greatly improved since three years ago. Especially the debarkation. It was 2.5 hours before and 45 minutes now. Great way to end the cruise experience. We went to the pay extra restaurants named Chops and Sabor. Both had excellent service and food. Johnny Rockets was also very good. The main dinning room had outstanding service and the food was quite good. Did you know that in the main dining room you can double order something if you want? The Windjammer buffet surprised us at the selection and quality with the waiter staff always ready to help deliver omelettes, drinks, etc. It could be called the People's dining room in the evenings. The more regular folks went there and enjoyed good food and as much as they wanted. (We went there twice for dinner, twice for lunch and five times for breakfast. All good.) The Sorrento pizza joint was very popular and had more than just pizza! Five out of five for variety and quality of food and service. All four of us were very satisfied. There were some places we did not try. We ran out of time and hunger! Cabin 8398 - balcony- was nicely furnished, spacious enough and clean. No complaints. The steward was seen by us twice. Since all was good, no complaints to give only compliments for a job well done. The ship is built to entertain in so many ways. The shows were good to great. The music on board was outstanding. I thought the casino was up to date and in great shape. The pools, rock climbing walls, basketball court, miniature golf and rides were all in good condition and had happy folks using them. The decks were neat as a pin. The bars seemed to be fun and nice Sorry, I am not a bar guy so I have little to say on the matter, but when passing I saw people taking dance lessons and enjoying each others' company. We enjoyed a movie under the stars. The ice rink was popular and the show excellent. The drink packages sold were not a temptation because in order to make it worthwhile I would have to drink like a fish. These areas of business didn't bother us. We did not need alcohol to have a good time, nor gambling, shopping, buying art,drinking soda, playing video games or buying contrived photos. But they were there for those in need! never saw or heard a complaint about them. The decor of the ship was tasteful. The construction was well done - in form and function from the Promenade to the elevators, to the spa and gym to the many public rooms. We never had a problem with any of the crew. They were upbeat, courteous and informed. Now for the rest: The flag of Texas.....Well, that was awesome! The dining staff singing the Eyes of Texas are Upon You and America the Beautiful was outstanding. The huge cake at the Windjammer with the Texan and American flags was more than a nice touch. The passengers came from all over to be on the cruise. Many were Asian, Hispanic and African American as well as eastern European. The passengers:There were LGBTs, kids, elderly, singles and marrieds. But most of all there were the Texans, who know how to make the most of a moment and are open hearted. Many :"Thanks you's, your welcomes, pleases, excuse me's, hello's, witticisms and Y'all's", from not just us Texans." A happy and friendly group of passengers makes it just that much more enjoyable for all. The days were sunny and warm. The showers in Cozumel refreshing and added to the adventure. We had smooth seas every day and nice port visits in Grand Cayman, Cozumel and Goalmouth, Jamaica. Our excursions were memorable and fun. So what's to complain about? I have been on seven cruises over thirty years. This was the best ship and tied for the best cruise. Only complaint about this cruise: It ended!!! I recommend this ship and the Cris and Martha at CruiseOne who booked the trip. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
Choose to give the Liberty a try and sail out of Galveston for our first time. Ship was as expected from RCCL....our steward was spot on and never a thing out of place, our dining room attendants were impeccable in all of their services ... Read More
Choose to give the Liberty a try and sail out of Galveston for our first time. Ship was as expected from RCCL....our steward was spot on and never a thing out of place, our dining room attendants were impeccable in all of their services and all of the rest of the staff was extraordinary with attentiveness and service. All ready have our next cruise set on her again and can't wait! Shore excursion booked through the ship gave us no time at all at port and was a bit more hectic than the other excursions that I booked myself. Having only 3 ports of call was the BEST...gave us way more time to enjoy the ship and all of the amenities that were offered. Did main dining every night and really enjoyed 5 star 3 course meals....felt very elegant every time. Buffet was awesome too for breakfast and lunch and always a great variety of items. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
I chose this cruise because I don't have to fly and can use that money to upgrade the room. The cabin 1804 had the best view I've ever had on a ship. Look at the bridge cam and that's the view this room has! We-both in our ... Read More
I chose this cruise because I don't have to fly and can use that money to upgrade the room. The cabin 1804 had the best view I've ever had on a ship. Look at the bridge cam and that's the view this room has! We-both in our 60's have been on 20+ cruises with various lines so we either go for the ports or the ship. We've been on Liberty before and done all the ports our of Galveston so we go to have an enjoyable week of warm sunny weather and good food. This trip gave us both. The ship is 12 years old, but still looks good and has a smaller feel than the larger ships, but you'll still wait for an elevator. Our cabin was booked as an ocean view panoramic view suite which was later reclassified as a full suite so we were happy to get a gold card and all the suite perks. I had looked at pictures of the room on line to see how big it was and if the view was really worth the money. I was not disappointed in the view, the size of the room or all the closet space-more than we needed. The only disadvantages were it didn't have a tub, instead it had a full bathroom with a shower and a small 1/2 bath; when the ship was moving fast the bed vibrated and the rotating TV box rattled. We put a washcloth between the top axle ceiling mount and the TV box mount to quiet it and it was not close to anything so we walked a lot to get to meals, shows, bars etc. We loved going to the suite lounge- Anis is great and always had useful information. We'd go there after breakfast for better coffee and later after dinner for a drink.Happy hour was 4:30-8 pm, but it never seemed crowded. We went to the suite/pinnacle reception and the top tier reception -all enjoyable. We ate breakfast in the dining room because the Windjammer was too crowded. We ate lunch there also unless it wasn't open on port days. Dinner was in the Rembrandt DR on deck 3 where the food was good, sometimes great. We could always find something on the menu we liked. The first night DH thought he saw some onion rings, but they were calamari. The waiter said we could order onion rings with 24 hours notice so the next night and every night thereafter we had onion rings from Johnny Rockets. The service was always great. We liked the guitar player Manoelito. Since we had been to Roatan, Belize and Cozumel before we didn't do any shore excursions, but shopped instead. We also didn't site see in Galveston, but did drive in the day before and stayed at the Hilton NASA Clearlake which we have stayed at before. Embarkation was smooth. We had parked our car at a nearby parking garage and taken their shuttle to the pier. It took less than 20 minutes to drop off our bags and check in before going aboard. Disembarkation was even quicker since we did self-carry and were suite passengers. We had a great time. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
This was my family's first time with RCI so we went in with a very open mind. Embarkation could not have been easier. Hubby dropped me and our 16 yr. old daughter off with luggage and went to park the truck at Light House parking. ... Read More
This was my family's first time with RCI so we went in with a very open mind. Embarkation could not have been easier. Hubby dropped me and our 16 yr. old daughter off with luggage and went to park the truck at Light House parking. We were in a suite, so there were no lines for us, we did arrive at port around 10:30 am. There was a delay to board that day due to the previous cruise having a problem locating a couple of people to have a zero count. After that was resolved, we were on board shortly after 12:00. Headed to The Wind Jammer and got a bite to eat. Cabins were delayed until approx. 1:30. No biggie. To my surprise though, our luggage did not arrive until after dinner. Our dinner was at 5:30, and we were dressed properly, it was just annoying having to unpack so late. Our room steward: Darius was fantastic, kept ice in my ice bucket and was always gracious. The suite lounge: was fun, the 2 servers were always in a good mood and Anis the concierge was always on hand to answer questions etc. Now the Chardonnay in the lounge is AWFUL!! Yuck! So if you like Chardonnay, you may look into ordering something else. We met some amazing Pinnacle members who were so friendly, and other Pinnacles' who were not so friendly. Just don't understand THAT mentality. From reading many boards on CC I've heard of this behavior but was truly stunned by it. The ship: in general was in good shape, you could see wear on carpets and upholstery on chairs, but it was always very clean. Dining: We chose to eat in the main dining room and did not do specialty dining. The food was hit or miss. Tuna was awful! Short ribs were amazing. Same thing with desserts. There is always the buffet or pizza if you get hungry later. We did order room service a few times, and found the food to be great. Entertainment: We enjoyed the shows very much. There was a comedian, an a cappella group that were very good. The ice show was good, the in the air show we thought was amazing! Saturday Night Fever was also very good. We also LOVED watching movies at night on deck. Tip: ask your room steward for an extra blanket, and use it to bundle up in while watching movies on deck. Ports: Cozumel: We booked Nachi Cocum. It was ok, I truly expected more. Their beach could use raking, there were sharp twigs and things that made it hard to walk barefoot. The bathrooms NEEDED to be kept up with all day and were not! The lady's got pretty gross and we were only there for roughly 3 hours. The food was good. The drinks were weak, but I wasn't looking to get drunk, it's just my observation. The push to buy extra activities got annoying. If we were back in Cozumel, I'd chose another place. The port is a maze of shops to wind through to finally find your way back to the ship. Did not appreciate how aggressive the men in the jewelry shops were. I enjoy shopping, but didn't appreciate being forced to walk through shops to get back on board. Grand Cayman: FAVORITE! beautiful, breath taking, no pushy sales people. My family stayed a week here before and absolutely love it. We booked the catamaran snorkel and cruise through RCI and LOVED IT. Luckily it was with Red Sail who we had used when we stayed on the island. They are the best! I highly recommend this excursion. Some people complain about having to tender, but for us, it was absolutely no problem. Jamaica: We only shopped inside the fenced in port area. We found the people to be very friendly and not pushy at all. The store to avoid is this big t shirt shop, I wish I could remember the name, the owner is not Jamaican and is very rude!! I hate that we bought a shirt there, but it was the only one my husband liked, so ... Misc: My family did a black and white portrait sitting and absolutely loved the pictures! The photographer did an amazing job, but....they are not cheap! so be forewarned. My husband chose to purchase 3 pictures to my surprise, but if you had paid for a sitting back in the states you'd probably pay the same. Also we were not really fond of any of the pictures the ship photographers had taken, so. Johnny Rockets: In my opinion is not worth the up charge. Service was painfully slow, and the food was ok. There were only 6 other people when my daughter and I went in and it took an hour to get our burgers. Mini Golf: It's cute, go play Slides: Hubby and daughter liked them very much, arch your back to go fast on the racing slides. Fitness Center: I paid for yoga, big mistake, the guy teaching seemed to be making it up as he went, so I can't recommend. They do offer a free abs class, do it! If you work out on a pretty steady bases, this will still kick your butt. The machines were, ok. Some very old and should be replaced. My big disappointment was the lack of water! First ship ever that didn't offer water. I have to say we thoroughly enjoyed the perks that came along with staying in a suite. We found it not necessary to purchase the beverage package because of the daily happy hour, we loved the reserved seating for shows, and at the pool. The private lunches and also the reception we had in the suite where we were treated to hors d' oeuvers and had the opportunity to meet the Captain and officers. Disembarking: Was a breeze. We did self assist and with being in a suite we were the first group off the ship. We breezed through customs, and on out to the waiting Light House vans. BUT! It was POURING rain! So keep this in mind. The vans do not drive up to pick you up, you walk to them. So needless to say we were soaked by the time we got to them. Not their fault, it's just how it is. Overall we enjoyed RCI. The having to check out towels was an annoyance, but won't stop us from cruising with them again. The service was wonderful, always friendly smiling faces, we enjoyed ourselves immensely. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
Get-a-way winter cruise with similar generation guest onboard. Room service was excellent, room was clean and adequate square footage. Both dining room and Windjammer offered variety of tasty food....real orange juice would taste better ... Read More
Get-a-way winter cruise with similar generation guest onboard. Room service was excellent, room was clean and adequate square footage. Both dining room and Windjammer offered variety of tasty food....real orange juice would taste better than the watered down "frozen", service in dining room was slow (need more help), but very cordial and willing to serve your needs. Evening Entertainment was very good, would prefer more "clean" comedians onboard ship rather than filthy mouth comedians. Grand Cayman Disembarking by tender without onshore ship excursion booking was a two hour wait...not happy with rules for offloading...I paid same price for sailing to Grand Cayman and do not expect to be treated second rate just because I did not book an excursion. Biggest complaint is high price of drinks with added gratuity and high room service gratuity. For seven day cruise, room service gratuity for two is @$200 on top of basic cruise price...not very welcome or value added. All in All, the cruise was very enjoyable. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
Background DH (51) and I (52) are from Pennsylvania, and we booked this cruise in November of 2017 while we were on a transatlantic on Freedom of the Seas. We are both diamond. This is our second cruise on Liberty (the previous being ... Read More
Background DH (51) and I (52) are from Pennsylvania, and we booked this cruise in November of 2017 while we were on a transatlantic on Freedom of the Seas. We are both diamond. This is our second cruise on Liberty (the previous being in June of 2015) and our third on Freedom class. We were in Cabin 1289, a grand suite, our first suite (and our first gold cards)! Until now, the largest cabin we had stayed in was a junior suite. I must agree that what they say on these boards is true – once you go suite, you’ll never go back! We seriously can’t envision cruising any other way. We received $400 OBC for booking while onboard the Freedom. We each applied a $100 cruise discount earned from slot play on the Freedom. We applied RCCL Visa points for a $650 cruise discount and for $200 OBC. We had prebooked one deluxe beverage package with Voom, one deluxe beverage package, one dinner in Chops, and three RCCL excursions. Roatan was a new port for both of us. Belize was a new port for DH. We had both been to Cozumel on previous occasions. The captain was Anders Ingebrigtsen (“Captain Anders”), and this was his first week serving as captain of the Liberty. The cruise director was Enzo Matijaca. 1-3-19 We drove to Pittsburgh and stayed at the Pittsburgh Airport Marriott and took advantage of their park and fly program, and we had dinner at the hotel. 1-4-19 We took the 9:00 a.m. free hotel shuttle to the airport, used Southwest curbside check-in (we had free roundtrip flights with Southwest Rapid Rewards points), had breakfast at the airport, and flew nonstop to Houston Hobby on an 11:20 a.m. flight. Shortly after landing on time at Hobby, I received a call from Emmanuel, who owns VIP Express. We had prebooked with Emmanuel, and he had called 48 hours pre-flight to confirm our travel plans and for permission to charge our credit card. The agreed-to rate was $120 for round-trip transportation from Hobby to our hotel in Galveston and then from the Galveston port back to Hobby. Emmanuel picked us up at 2:15 p.m. as prearranged and loaded our luggage into the back. The shuttle was very nice and clean and comfortable, and he gave each of us a bottle of water as we boarded. We were the only passengers for this transport, so we had lots of time to chat with him. He also asked us if we wanted to stop at Buc-Ee’s (a convenience store that sells everything you can imagine) to pick up snacks, beer, wine, and we said yes. Emmanuel was very polite, professional and informative, and he even went out of the way to drive us past the seawall and gave us restaurant suggestions. It’s a 45-minute drive from Hobby to our hotel, which was the Harbor House. We had prebooked two nights at the Harbor House at a rate of $269/night plus taxes. We were given room 311, a spacious king, and it was a very big room. Although our room did not face the part of the pier where the ships dock, we did have a water view. We ate dinner at Willie G’s (right beside the hotel) in their bar section. They have Monday through Friday happy hour with drink and food specials (small plates). The prices and the food were great! We then walked around the strand, and it was quite chilly after the sun went down. We walked to Frankie’s to pick up some wine and liquor. We bought yummy (alcoholic) slushies at a place right before we got to Frankie’s. 1-5-19 We awoke way too early. The shade on the hotel window was too narrow and let in a lot of sun. This was very disappointing as we were tired from traveling and had intended to sleep in. The hotel offers a complimentary breakfast from 7:00 to 10:00 a.m. DH walked up at 9:45 a.m. and grabbed a couple pastries. That was all they had left, but that was all we wanted. Carnival Freedom was in port, so we snapped a couple pictures. We took an Uber ($11) to Jimmy’s on the Pier, which is at the seawall. As the name states, this restaurant is right on the water above the pier and has indoor and outdoor dining. We watched dolphins swimming while we ate our tasty lunch. I had shrimp tacos, and DH had a fried seafood platter. The crawfish queso was delicious! It was a breezy sunny day (64 degrees), and we spent the afternoon fishing on the pier. Well, DH fished while I hung out watching everybody. There is a shop at the pier that sells souvenirs, snacks, beer, ice cream (though the ice cream bins were empty, I’m thinking because tourist season was over), and there are nice restrooms as you walk out onto the pier. DH rented a fishing pole for $10, bought bait, and purchased a one-day fishing license online (which I think was $16 plus a $5 fee). We each paid a $12 pier fee. It’s a huge pier. We had a nice, relaxing afternoon. DH didn’t catch any fish. Neither did most of the people fishing, but we did see someone catch a shark and someone catch a big redfish. We took an Uber ($11) back to Harbor House. The friendly Uber driver offered to stop for us to get snacks or alcohol or anything else we wanted to pick up on our way back to the hotel. Our room was made up, and our used towels had been removed by the housekeeping staff, but the towels and washcloths were not replaced and neither were the toiletries, so I took a quick walk down to the front desk and the friendly clerk gave me everything we needed. We walked to Teresa’s Flying Pizza for dinner. It was very crowded, but we were lucky to be seated immediately. We were seated at a very big round table. They told us that, if another small party came in, they would seat them with us, which is what happened. They seated a couple across from us. The table was so big that we didn’t mind. We couldn’t even hear any of their conversation. The service was very good and very fast. The pizza was delicious, and it was fun to watch the pizza guys tossing the dough sky high. We visited the slushy lady again on our way back to the hotel. Emmanuel from VIP called tonight to confirm our Sunday pickup time. 1-6-19 (Day 1) Sail-away day. We packed up and put our cruise tags on our luggage. There were two ships in port this morning, Carnival Magic (which we would see at our ports all week) and Royal’s Liberty of the Seas. Though the cruise port is walkable, the Carnival pier is much closer to the Harbor House than the Royal Caribbean pier. We had four pieces of luggage, so we decided to take the free hotel shuttle, which we had signed up for when we checked in on Friday. The hotel shuttle runs between the Harbor House, the Hotel Galvez, and the port (though not necessarily in that order). We left our luggage at the front desk and walked over to the Starbucks (very crowded with cruise passengers coming and going) and then back to the hotel to catch the shuttle. We had reserved the 9:30 a.m. shuttle, but it was full when it got to us, so we had to wait for the 10:00 a.m. shuttle. The shuttle stopped at Carnival first and then at Royal. We arrived at the Royal pier at 10:15 a.m. There were virtually no lines at security and there was no one in front of us at all at the priority check-in. We were in the priority waiting area (suites and pinnacles) at 10:25 a.m., and we were called to board at 10:30 a.m. We immediately walked onto the ship with no delay and within a couple of minutes had drinks in our hands from the Hoof and Claw pub and were exploring the beautiful ship. Due to Texas law, there is a limited drink menu until Liberty gets 12 nautical miles out to sea. If anyone is interested, I think I have a picture of the limited drink menu. With drinks in hand, we checked out our MDR table location. As requested, we had early dining (5:30 p.m.), and we were assigned to the Botticelli dining room (deck 5) at table 534, a table for two (as had been requested and confirmed via email) which happened to be a private corner window table, a fabulous location! I will note that for at least half of the cruise, this turned out to be a very warm location (sometimes too warm) as the sun had been beating through the windows all day when we would arrive for dinner. As the sun went down though, it became more comfortable. We went to the Windjammer at 11:15 a.m. for lunch. We checked out both the suite lounge and the diamond lounge. Cabins were ready at 1:00 p.m. We entered 1289, which was a grand suite, a beautiful cabin with a huge balcony. There was a binder containing several documents including a letter from Anis (the suite concierge) outlining our suite amenities. The binder also contained MDR breakfast and lunch menus, and also each day we received the MDR dinner menu. On our vanity was a letter from Mangesh (the diamond concierge) outlining our diamond amenities, an envelope containing our excursion tickets, and a letter from Tiela (the loyalty ambassador) outlining our diamond onboard offers that were loaded onto our seapass cards. There was also an invitation to the Cruise Critic meet and mingle which was scheduled for day two at 10:00 a.m. in Olive or Twist and an invitation to the suite/pinnacle reception which was scheduled for day two at 11:30 a.m. in Olive or Twist. We lounged around until the 3:30 p.m. muster. Our luggage was delivered during muster. As permitted, we had taken on two bottles of wine. I had put them in our checked luggage, as I didn’t feel like lugging them around until our room was ready. Everything was delivered – no naughty room this time for us. We unpacked and met Cyril, who turned out to be a fabulous stateroom attendant. We asked him to bring an ice bucket, and he filled that and our regular ice bucket twice daily. He also made us three towel animals throughout the week. Before dinner, we set clothes out on our bed to be pressed for tomorrow’s formal night. We went to dinner and met our waiter, Robin from the Philippines, and our assistant waiter, Alex from India. All week we had great service from them. Each night (except the night we went to Chops), we watched the sun set from our dining room table. Each night there was a basket of various breads on each table, as opposed to the assistant waiters bringing around the larger baskets of bread and repeatedly serving it. Also, we had no problems getting drinks in the dining room. But for this cruise and our Anthem cruise last year, over the past several years we always had issues getting drinks (and refills) in the MDR. We were happy to see the improvement. We went to the welcome aboard show, which featured a few snippets of the entertainment that we would be seeing throughout the week. We played 9:00 p.m. music trivia (classic rock tunes) in the Schooner Bar. We walked around the promenade and the pool deck and popped in and out of the casino. Tonight we received our first nightly voicemail from Anis in which he would outline highlights of the upcoming day and our dining options for each day as suite guests. 1-7-19 (Day 2) A sea day. We slept in, so we did not attend the 10:30 a.m. Cruise Critic meet and mingle. We did attend the 11:30 a.m. suite/pinnacle reception at Olive or Twist. We met Anis, the suite concierge, and Captain Anders and all of the top officers. We were served wonderful appetizers (not the typical appetizers served at the top-tier events or in the diamond lounge) and a nice selection of alcoholic drinks, to include bloody Mary. We went to the free suite lunch in Giovanni’s Table. I had fabulous fettuccini carbonara. A fruit and cheese platter had been delivered to our cabin while we were at lunch. Cy had delivered our pressed formalwear and hung it in our closet. We visited the casino and then enjoyed the world’s sexiest man competition from the reserved suite pool deck area. At 2:30 p.m. we went to the ice show and sat in the suite seating. I always love the ice shows! Tonight was the first formal night. We had some photos taken before having dinner in the MDR. We got a table outside of the pub to watch the captain’s welcome aboard ceremony. We relaxed in the solarium hot tub. DH ordered the room service wings (no charge for suite guests). We did not attend tonight’s show, which was a juggler. Today we used our first free 24-hour internet period. 1-8-19 (Day 3) A sea day. We slept in. We grabbed coffee at the Promenade Café and then had lunch in the MDR. We did the water slides (Cyclone and Typhoon) and the Tidal Wave. The Tidal Wave was so much fun. I was sure we were going to fly over the top and land out on the ocean! The water slides have been added to Liberty since we were on her in 2015. We watched the belly flop contest from the reserved area of the pool deck. The belly flop contests are always great fun, and this one didn’t disappoint. A 380-pound guy was the winner! DH played in the blackjack tournament. A plate of chocolates and other sweets was delivered to our cabin this afternoon. Before dinner, we went to the suite lounge for a few appetizers and drinks. We then briefly popped into the diamond lounge to compare. The appetizers were the same. Neither lounge was crowded. The suite lounge has great outdoor shaded overflow. Tonight we had a 6:00 p.m. dinner reservation at Chops, and our dinner was very good. We saw Saturday Night Fever and then the late-night comedian, Phil Paulisoul, who was hilarious. He was on stage the first night during the welcome aboard show, and we knew we wanted to see him again. For the Saturday Night Fever show, we sat in the reserved suite area, which started in the second row of the balcony. The first row was reserved for guests who paid for the Key program. No one sat in that row, so we moved up when the show started. 1-9-19 (Day 4) Roatan. We had breakfast in the Windjammer and then walked around the very small port area. We each had a drink at a little outdoor bar and then walked to our designated excursion meeting area. We had prebooked the Sol Y Mar adults only beach day with a meeting time of 10:45 a.m., which was the latest time of the three choices we were given when we booked. At 11:00 a.m. we set off on about a 10-to-15-minute ride in an air conditioned bus to Sol Y Mar. Though a short ride, we were taken through very dirty, unappealing areas of the island. There were junked cars everywhere. Our guide was Nicole, and she was very friendly and informative and ended up being a babysitter to some. All in a day’s work, I suppose. I have mixed reviews about this place. When we arrived, Nicole walked us to a section of the beach which was very crowded. There were probably more chairs than loungers on this beach, which I thought was odd, but we found two empty loungers and moved them in such a way that one was under a tree and one was partially in the sun. It was cloudy when we arrived but soon became very sunny… and we got the sunburns to prove it! Our excursion included unlimited drinks and “snacks.” The only snack was nachos, though they ran out of cheese. There was chicken and/or something else set out there as well, but our package didn’t include those food trays (as evidenced by the color of our bracelet), which was fine with us as we purposely had eaten a big breakfast. There were flies all over the food areas and trash areas. The workers kept the food covered until they were serving it. When the woman wasn’t serving food, she was swinging a towel to chase the flies away. The bar was separate from the food area but still very close to our beach area, and the drinks were good and strong (and there were no flies). Bar service was very good. This is a very rocky/shelly beach. I wished I had worn my water shoes (which I had packed for cave tubing in Belize) because it was extremely uncomfortable to walk in bare feet on the sand and in the ocean. On this particular day, the water never was deeper than three feet, no matter how far out you went, and there were no waves whatsoever. In addition to the rocks and shells, there was a lot of nasty seaweed. There were some bar waiters coming around to the loungers, and there were natives just over the dividing line of the beach that were selling bracelets and cutting open coconuts and selling them. There was a guy walking around with a big sloth that you could get pictures with (for a tip) and a guy with a small monkey named Kojak who would sit on people’s heads for pictures (also for a tip). We got a few pictures with the monkey. At first I was very disappointed in this place overall. Then we got in the water to cool off, and I realized the abundance of beautiful shells. We even found a huge, beautiful conch shell. Once I just sat on the ocean floor in a non-seaweedy spot, I found myself really enjoying digging for shells. In fact, I spent too much time, did not reapply sunscreen, and really paid for it the rest of the week. However, I started to have a better opinion of the place. While this section of the beach was supposed to be adults only, there were a few little kids on the beach and in the water, but they were no bother at all. Non-motorized activities were included, but we didn’t use any. Also, probably after we were there an hour, the place really cleared out. At 3:00 p.m. we stumbled back (some more than others) to where the bus had dropped us off. We had to wait a few minutes for some stragglers, and then we were taken back to the pier. Nicole told us that she receives no salary and works for tips only. Thankfully, it seemed that everyone was tipping her as they exited the bus. We went back to our cabin and showered, rested up a little, went to dinner in the MDR, played ‘80s trivia at 7:15 p.m. in the Schooner Bar, hit the casino for a little while, and then went to bed early. No show for us tonight. 1-10-19 (Day 5) Belize City. There were two Carnival ships here today as well. We had room service breakfast (does anybody eat those grilled tomatoes?) and then headed to the Platinum Theatre at our 8:15 a.m. meet time as we had booked the Jaguar Paw Jungle Trek and Cave Tubing. Belize City is a tender port. It was a windy morning, so the water was very choppy, and for that reason the tendering process was delayed. When our group was called to disembark, we were halted in the crowded stairways for quite a while as there were still tendering issues. We finally boarded a very rocking, swaying tender at 9:30 a.m. and arrived at the pier at 10:00 a.m. after a choppy ride. We met our tour group, boarded an air-conditioned school bus at 10:10 a.m., and arrived at Jaguar Paw at 11:35 a.m. We had to exit the school bus and board a shorter school bus for the one-minute ride up the muddy mountain to the main Chukka Jaguar Paw area, which is where lunch is served, where lockers are located (locker prices are $8 for small, $9 for medium, $10 for large), and where you meet for your excursion, whether it’s for ziplining, cave tubing, ATV riding, et cetera. Willie was our Chukka representative, and he was with us from the time we set foot on the bus at the pier until we returned back to the pier. Willie is a bright, energetic, fun guide who provided a lot of history and information on the approximately one-hour bus ride to Jaguar Paw, and he was one of our two cave guides as well. Jaguar Paw was very, very crowded, and we arrived later than planned because of the tendering issues, so Willie told us we would eat first and then go cave tubing. I had been here in 2008 (ziplining and cave tubing), and the lunch is exactly the same as it was then, which is rice, beans, coleslaw, chicken, and fruit punch. You go through a line and are served your food, and then there are many covered picnic tables at which to sit while eating. This was an unappealing meal to me, but DH enjoyed it. They also sold other food (mainly tacos) and had a bar which was rather expensive for the size of the drinks. There is a gift shop as well, two different restroom areas, and changing rooms. After lunch, we were supplied with our life vests, lighted helmets, and innertubes. Water shoes or rubber sandals are a must for this excursion. We walked for a half an hour carrying our tubes on uneven, sometimes muddy, terrain through the jungle, with the guides stopping occasionally to point out various plants, trees, and even termites which they nibbled on. We crossed the river (very cold, rocky and slippery), walked some more, and finally arrived at the put-in spot. There were 16 of us (basically a double group). All of our tubes were tethered together (except the guides floated solo), and we floated through the cave for about 45 minutes while being given some history and while the guides did their best to steer us to interesting spots and to make sure we all got wet under some small waterfalls. It was very relaxing and enjoyable. When we were at the river crossing, there was a Chukka photographer taking photographs. We didn’t take our phones with us because of the risk of getting them wet (although they sell waterproof covers for cell phones at the meeting point). On the ride back to the pier, Willie provided us with the Chukka website where we could view and purchase our photos. The photos stay on the website for 90 days. All aboard was supposed to be at 4:30 p.m. We arrived back at the pier at 4:25 p.m., so there was no time to walk around the pier shops. We immediately got in the tender line, boarded the next to last tender at 4:50 p.m., and arrived back on the ship at 5:20 p.m. Our tender pulled up to a tender that was tied to the ship, so we had to exit our tender, walk through another tender, and then board the ship. I have tendered at other ports, and this is the first time where I had ever experienced the tender boat crew asking for tips, and this happened on the tender over and on the tender back (two different tenders, two different crews). We each took a quick shower and didn’t get to the MDR until nearly 6:30 p.m., so we weren’t sure whether they could accommodate us. We told Robin and Alex that we would be happy to eat at a different venue if we were throwing off their schedule and thus affecting the late dinner seating. They insisted that we stay. We ordered quickly and were served quickly. We set up our second (and last) free 24-hour internet period. We visited the casino. Tonight we attended the Up in the Air show, which was wonderful. We went to bed early. 1-11-19 (Day 6) Cozumel. We enjoyed the complimentary suite breakfast in Giovanni’s Table, along with a couple mimosas. We had prebooked the Mexican Cooking, Tasting & Beach Break at Playa Mia. The tickets that were in our stateroom on setsail day listed the meeting time at the pier as 7:15 a.m. On Wednesday, we received a call from the excursions desk advising that our meeting time was changed to 9:45 a.m., and tickets with that new time were delivered to our stateroom Thursday night. We were grateful to not be meeting at 7:15 a.m. This was the only port where port time was different from ship time, as port time was an hour earlier than ship time. Today’s Compass states, “Cozumel is one hour ahead of ship’s time. Arrival and departure times, as well as Royal Caribbean shore excursion times, are advertised on ship’s time during your cruise vacation.” We attempted to walk off the ship at 9:30 a.m. ship time. However, an MSC ship was docking next to us, and no one was permitted to exit our ship until the MSC ship was properly docked, so we had to wait at least ten minutes. Once off the ship, we found our meeting point (indicated by a sign with the name and tour number of our excursion). It was now exactly 9:45 a.m., but no one was there. Slightly panicked, I went to another representative at a different excursion sign, and the rep told us that the time on the tickets is island time and, therefore, to return in an hour, which would be 10:45 a.m. ship time. We were a little leery, as this information was completely opposite from the Compass information, but we walked around the pier area for about 45 minutes. This was my fourth time to Cozumel, DH’s second time, and this was the most aggressive that we’ve seen the salespeople in the shops. They seemed desperate for sales and didn’t want to take no for an answer, which is not a comfortable shopping atmosphere for us. It was a very hot, sunny day, and we would have stayed on the ship for another hour if we had known of the meeting time mix-up. We returned to our meeting point at about 10:30 a.m. and were happy to see other people waiting there this time. Our rep escorted us to a big covered pavilion (there are several numbered pavilions which are waiting points for various excursions, and each has several benches and free wifi). We then were escorted to an air-conditioned taxi van and had a 15-minute ride to Playa Mia. This was my third trip to Playa Mia, and today was a very crowded day. We were given about 20 minutes of free time to wander around, get drinks (open bar), use the restrooms, check out the beach, et cetera, and were instructed to then meet back at the buffet area. There’s a beautiful family area (with a big pool and slides and waterpark-type play things) that was built since the last time I was here. There were other new buildings as well. Though I had never done the cooking class, in the past I had seen that it was located in a roped-off area under the huge covered area where the buffet is located. The cooking class now takes place in an air-conditioned building and has a large number of cooking stations, though only about half of them were used due to the size of our class. I had read many good reviews about this class, and I was excited to try it, and it did not disappoint! We had a wonderful time with Chef Moises, and his assistant, who were very entertaining. Every guest is provided an apron and a chef hat to wear, and we made caramelized plantains, shrimp sopa, and fish with vegetables. Drinks were flowing the entire time (margaritas, Mexican beer and other choices). They put four people at each cooking station, and we were lucky to have a lovely couple sharing our station. There was a photographer taking lots of photos which we could review and order after we ate. After we were finished cooking, we went to a large dining room upstairs where our food was served to us. (Don’t worry. You get the food that you made, as you write your name on each dish). This excursion was a highlight of our trip, and we highly recommend it! After our meal, we had about 30 minutes on our own, and we each got a drink and spent the time walking the beach which has the softest, most beautiful sand! There is no comparison between this beach and the beach we visited in Roatan. We then boarded our taxi van and were back at the pier at 3:30 p.m. ship time. We returned to a plate of chocolate and other sweets in our stateroom, and we did some relaxing/napping to recover from our drink-filled, food-filled afternoon, fun-filled afternoon. Tonight was a formal night, and lobster was on the menu. This was not the typical fisherman’s platter. These were four-or-five-ounce lobster tails as the main course and were quite tasty, and Alex was delivering extra lobster tails to his various tables. We attended the top-tier event at 7:15 p.m. in the Star Lounge. We then hit the casino and returned to our cabin to find a hanging monkey towel animal. We were too tired to attend the headliner show tonight, which was Finis Henderson, “the ultimate entertainer.” 1-12-19 (Day 7) D.H. grabbed us Danish and coffee in the Promenade Café. We realized our cell phones were still on Cozumel time versus ship time, so we were up early enough to attend a behind-the-scenes tour of the Platinum Theatre at 9:30 a.m. The invitation had been dropped off yesterday in our stateroom. Two female performers from Saturday Night Fever conducted the very informational tour. They took us onstage and behind stage where we were able to see many of the costumes and props. These ladies were really friendly and interesting, and they ended with a fun question-and-answer session which covered many topics. We ordered our two free 8x10 photos this morning, and then we picked them up before dinner. The Liberty now has computers in the Focus Photo Gallery like the Anthem has, and it’s so much easier and less time consuming to have your week’s worth of photos accessible all in one spot on the computer versus wandering around trying to find all of your random photos. We had the suite lunch in Giovanni’s Table (same menu as the previous suite lunch we had had there). We did some exploring around the ship and snapped some photos from the helipad. We visited the casino, and DH played in the blackjack tournament. I had a piece of pizza at Sorrento’s, which I have to do once per cruise! We caught part of the Dreamworks parade on the Promenade. We got to see Shrek riding in the elevator to arrive at the parade. That was a sight! We had our final dinner in the MDR and said our goodbyes to Robin and Alex, and then we went back to the cabin to pack. We did not put our luggage outside of our cabin, as we were (for the first and probably the last time) using self-debarkation since Emmanuel wanted us off of the ship tomorrow by 9:15 a.m. There had been a note in our cabin either last night or this morning reminding us that all pool towels had to be turned in by 9:00 p.m. at the pool deck. At 8:45 p.m. we walked up to return our four towels at the pool deck. The towel attendants told us we had to return the towels to guest services, despite the fact that they had a towel bin there with dirty towels and a towel bin with clean towels, just like they had all week. We dreaded waiting in line at guest services on the last night of the cruise (when everybody else is always in line making last-minute adjustments to seapass accounts and whatever else people are always in line for on the last night). So we waited in line at guest services and finally were helped by an attendant who was behind the excursions desk. There was a big towel bin in front of the excursions desk, and she told us to just toss our towels in there. I handed her my seapass card to scan, and she said that wasn’t necessary. I alluded to the notice left in our cabin that stated we would be charged $25 per towel if we didn’t return them by 9:00 p.m. and told her I would be more comfortable if she scanned my card to reflect that we returned four towels. To appease me, she wrote down my folio number and the number four and told me she would enter it later, as she didn’t have a scanner with her, and told me not to worry. We went to the casino and played slots while waiting for the ticket drawing. I had won a ticket with one of my free spin-to-win spins, and there were other ways to accumulate tickets throughout the week as well. I didn’t win, but they pulled a lot of tickets and gave away several small prizes. You have to be present to win or else they draw another ticket. We did not attend the farewell show. We went to bed a little early, as our cruise was coming to an end and we had to be up bright and early to be in the Platinum Lounge between 8:00 a.m. and 8:20 a.m. for self-assist departure, as we were assigned Group A departure as per the note in our stateroom. In hindsight, as I will explain in tomorrow’s segment, we should have followed Anis’s suite departure information and met in the Schooner Bar at 7:15 a.m., but the departure schedule (and our Group A notice) showed self assist as departing from the Platinum Theatre from 8:00 a.m. to 8:50 a.m. and showed suite/pinnacle (red luggage tags) departing from the Schooner Bar at 8:40 a.m. We had not received luggage tags, as we had filled out a form stating that we planned to do self assist. January 13 (Day 8, Departure Day) We woke up to find our seapass statement under our door. There was no towel charge, and I was relieved that we were fine in that regard. Little did I know… Anyway, I called Emmanuel and told him that we were docked and that we were scheduled to disembark at 8:00 a.m. to 8:20 a.m. At 7:00 a.m. we went to breakfast in the MDR. As we were finishing breakfast, I received an email or a text from Bank of America Visa that a charge was made to my account. This was no big deal, as this was the credit card I had used for our seapass account. Then I looked at the amount, and guess what? It was exactly $100 more than what was reflected on the seapass statement that had been delivered to our stateroom overnight. $25 x 4 towels = $100; right? Ugh! So…we were off to guest services AGAIN, the location everyone wants to avoid on both the last night and the last morning, but yet we found ourselves there. Thankfully the long line moved quickly, and, after more explanation than she probably wanted to hear, Thaires, a senior guest services officer, happily credited the $100 towel charge. We then headed back up to our cabin to retrieve our luggage, which consisted of four suitcases and two carry-ons. The elevators and hallways were horrible. Only one elevator near our cabin seemed to be working, as the others were all shown as being stuck on the first or second floor. I swear that 95 percent of guests (and I’m not trying to exaggerate) were using self assist. And many had way too much luggage to maneuver for self assist, to include us. Even when the elevator finally stopped at deck four, everyone was stuck for a while trying to get off because there was nowhere to go as there were people absolutely everywhere. At 8:00 a.m. as we slowly (and not so surely) were trying to make our way to the Platinum Theatre to meet for Group A departure, Group A was called. We just stayed in the “line” (if you want to call it that, but it was more like a huge herd of cattle that wasn’t even moving) and waited to disembark. The line meandered beside the Schooner Bar (where, in hindsight, we should have gone instead of continuing in the herd), back behind the elevators from where we had just exited, through the back of the Platinum Theatre, and then the line finally came to a standstill while, as we came to realize, the suite people waiting in the Schooner Bar were exiting before us. They were the 7:15 a.m. self-assist suite guests, not the 8:40 a.m. red luggage tag suite guests. When we finally exited the ship and walked into the terminal, we found ourselves schlepping our luggage through winding lines that would make Disney World’s lines look short. It took forever to get through those lines, only to find that the passengers were then divided into like ten more lines to go through customs/immigration. By now, Emmanuel had called us approximately three times wanting to know if we were off the ship yet. Finally, at 9:30 a.m., he called and told us he would have to take his group of people to the airport and would send another car for us. At 9:50 a.m., we stepped outside to cool (48 degrees) and sunny Galveston. Emmanuel picked us up, along with a group of passengers from Carnival, at 10:30 a.m. (which is, ironically, the pickup time that I had originally requested from him when we booked with him way back when, although he said he couldn’t accommodate that time). He offered everybody a bottle of water and was very pleasant on the ride to the airport. I received RCCL’s survey via email shortly after we boarded the VIP shuttle. I completed it a few days after getting home, and I made sure to comment on the pool towel fiasco and how avoidable things occurring at the end of a cruise tend to overshadow an otherwise wonderful trip. We arrived at Hobby at 11:15 a.m., and he unloaded everyone’s luggage. We apologized for our delay at the terminal, and he was very cordial. We used Southwest curbside check-in and were happy to see that there was no line at security. We found our gate, ate some lunch, and had an uneventful 2:35 p.m. flight to Pittsburgh, where we landed around 6:00 p.m. to very cold, snowy weather. After we claimed our luggage, we called for the Marriott shuttle, which arrived about 25 minutes later. The shuttle driver drove us right to our truck in the parking lot, only to find that our truck battery was dead. So much for uneventful. Thankfully we had winter coats in the back seat of the truck. We called for roadside assistance through our auto insurance and were told it would be close to an hour before they got there to jump our battery, so we went into the hotel and ordered some food at the bar while we waited. The truck started up immediately with the jump, and we had no issues during the two-hour drive home. We got home around 10:30 p.m., and I was happy that I had taken off work the next day! Summary We had a wonderful trip, and January is always such a great time to escape our western Pennsylvania wintry weather. We had sunny weather our entire trip! It was chilly in Galveston but hot in the Caribbean. All of the crew went out of their way to make our cruise enjoyable and memorable. Since we both had drink packages, the diamond lounge was not the draw to us that it had been in the past, and the same with the suite lounge. We had drinks one evening in the suite lounge and had no drinks in the diamond lounge. The appetizers don’t appeal to us much either, as we always have the early dinner seating. Also, as there are no freestyle soda machines on Liberty, I never even opened my soda cup. DH used his cup a few times, and we left them in the cabin at the end of the cruise since we already have a kitchen shelf back home full of RCCL cups that we never use. We had downloaded the Royal Caribbean app on our phones about a week before the cruise, and we enjoyed the ability to check out events going on around the ship without having to carry around a Compass. It also was nice to see our excursions and dinner reservations in our planner, but we were surprised that we couldn’t add things to our planner. If, for example, there was a way to add 5:00 p.m. trivia to our planner on a specific day, we couldn’t figure out how to do that. It would have been nice to have that option. I feel like I remember having that option on the Royal IQ app on the Anthem last year (2017) over Christmas. When I checked about ten days after the cruise, our Crown and Anchor points had been credited. We are 23 points away from Diamond Plus. It sounds like a two-week transatlantic in a suite will get us there! Hmm...why didn't we stop at Next Cruise and book it while we were on Liberty? Oh, that's right, because our daughter is getting married this year! Still, now that we're back, I hate not having a cruise booked, and I might go shopping on RCCL.com to see if I can find something. I apologize for the length of this review and also for the fact that it took me nearly a month to finish writing it! If you have any questions, ask away. I have all of the Compasses and possibly some of the menus. Read Less
Liberty of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.4
Dining 3.5 4.0
Entertainment 3.5 4.1
Public Rooms 4.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 4.5 4.3
Family 4.5 4.3
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 3.5 3.7
Service 3.5 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.1

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