The staff aboard the Freedom were extremely friendly. That said, we found the room stewards could be a little inflexible at times. They require your room service to be left outside the room for pickup, and they needed repeated encouragement to remove the towel animals they left in the room.
The service in the main dining room left us wanting more. There were two sets of silverware, but when we ordered two appetizers no replacement was offered for the third course. When we changed our minds about a dish because it was just not to our liking, the staff did not appreciate the confusion. If you order an appetizer, you might see it with the rest of the entrees.
Carnival automatically adds a gratuity to your bill at the end of the trip, and at the time we traveled the fee was $10 per person per day. Any drink you order also has an additional 15% gratuity added to the base charge.
When visiting the main dining room and the ship’s interior bars, Carnival asks that you observe a “smart casual” dress code — i.e. no bathing suits or flip flops. The Sun King Steakhouse is a more formal affair, with men asked to wear jackets to dinner. The buffet, by contrast, is very casual; you can slip in and out of there with whatever you threw on to go to the pool. There is one Captain’s Night where formal attire is recommended for dinner.
After your first Carnival cruise, you are added to the loyalty program. After 10 cruises with Carnival, you become a Silver Member with some decent rewards and priority boarding.
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