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-   -   Who do you think is better, CARNIVAL, ROYAL CARIBBEAN OR NCL (http://www.cruisemates.com/forum/carnival-cruise-lines/357182-who-do-you-think-better-carnival-royal-caribbean-ncl.html)

peninsularoad October 10th, 2008 06:02 PM

Who do you think is better, CARNIVAL, ROYAL CARIBBEAN OR NCL
 
Who do you think is best, Carnival, NCL or Royal Caribbean?

I know it depends on the ship, but what I have found is that basically all the ships are pretty nice and pretty equal.

I have found that Carnival offers the most entertainment all around the ship as far as different lounge singers and different variety of singing.

I think Carnival offers a better selection at their buffets with the different stations and outside the pool but that Royal Caribbean is a touch better in their dining room and NCL is definately dead last in the dining area and buffet.

As far as entertainment in the main room, I thought both NCL and Royal Caribbean were about equal and Carnival just one notch below.

Overall, I like Carnival the best, then Royal Caribbean and NCL last.

Like I said, I know it a lot depends on the ship you take. I've been on the Spirit and Pride on Carnival, the NCL Star and for Royal caribbean, it's been their older ships, the Monarch and Vision of the Seas.

Therefore, I have not been on any of the newer Royal Caribbean ships, otherwise, I might have to say Carnival and Royal Caribbean would probably be equal.

Your opionon

spencercoop October 10th, 2008 06:08 PM

I prefer Carnival over any other cruise line.

Dutchman October 10th, 2008 06:08 PM

Im order::: Carnival , Royal Caribbean , NCL .. Just like Carnival over the rest, RC was ok and NCL just not our type. Now its CArnival only.
I will say RCI was about $800 more then Carnival for the same rooom to see a Ice Show.

peninsularoad October 10th, 2008 06:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dutchman
Im order::: Carnival , Royal Caribbean , NCL .. Just like Carnival over the rest, RC was ok and NCL just not our type. Now its CArnival only.
I will say RCI was about $800 more then Carnival for the same rooom to see a Ice Show.

I agree about NCL. I hated the free style dining, you don't get to know your same waiter, the waiters since they don't serve you over and over are less personable, the food was bland and no singing or dancing waiters during dinner plus you don't get to know your dining mates since they are always different.

suseg October 10th, 2008 07:11 PM


In the same order for me as well, Carnival, RCI and finally NCL (which I'll never do again). We're pretty loyal to Carnival due to their military discounts, which cannot be matched by any other cruise line.

Kuki October 10th, 2008 11:42 PM

My own personal order would be NCL, Carnival, Princess, RCI

Up until a couple of years ago I wouldn't do an NCL ship. Not until they started building ships specifically designed for Freestyle. I have to say I really like the options of 10 different restaurants onboard, and eating when I want to.

I'm a big fan of the Carnival experience.

The thing I really like about Princess is the 24 hr Horizon Court on Lido Deck.


I used to be a bigger fan of RCI, but the last several years I think their food has slipped, and their new ships, though beautiful are getting just too big and mall like for me.

Mike M October 11th, 2008 01:28 AM

Of your three options, my choices would be.

NCL
Carnival
Royal Caribbean

My own choices would be:

NCL
Azamara
Celebrity
Carnival
Princess
Holland America
Royal Caribbean

NCL and Azamara are up there for overall food quality, open seating, multiple dining venues and Azamara's small ship experience. NCL's food is better in their alternative restaurants and their buffet is lacking but it still wins because of the different dining venues and food quality in the alternative restaurants.

Celebrity for their overall decor, food, cabin amenities and service.

Carnival is VERY close but goes below Celebrity because of the decor and the "singing waiters" at dinner. Their food quality and variety is up there with Celebrity.

Holland America and Princess are basically a tie but Princess is higher because of a more active cruise environment and the "variety" of food.

Royal Caribbean is last but their Radiance class of ships are the most beautiful at sea. I am not a fan of the Royal Caribbean mega-ships.

Even with this ranking I would not hesitate to sail on any of these lines.

Take care,
Mike

susierphillips October 11th, 2008 10:04 AM

This is a hard questions since I like all three. I love Royal Caribbean's older ships and they have the buffet area down right. Plus, no smoking in cabins is a big plus. Carnival is reasonably priced and the food has beenusually very good. NCL staff is tremendous, what can I say? It's all good.

cutiecat October 11th, 2008 02:17 PM

i absolutely prefer Carnival as a whole. their food is fabulous, the entertainment is great, and the service is beyond exceptional. i have had so much fun and made so many memories on board that i just keep going back for more!

i've only done one Royal and it was a very intense, busy cruise so i think my bias may be unfair. Royal does a better buffet setup, seem over all more upper class, and the ship (Brillaince of the Seas) was absolutely beautiful and luxurious. LOVED the adult's only Solarium. i will definitely sail Royal again.

hombre October 12th, 2008 04:17 PM

did any notice? the op asked a question, then answered it. if she or he is so certain, why was the question raised in the first place? i have never sailed on carnival, 'the floating mcdonald's theme park,' but i have sailed on ncl and found its service to be mediocre and its staff rude, and i have done rcci and found it crowded and just plain average. i always sail on HAL.

briguy October 12th, 2008 05:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hombre
did any notice? the op asked a question, then answered it. if she or he is so certain, why was the question raised in the first place? i have never sailed on carnival, 'the floating mcdonald's theme park,' but i have sailed on ncl and found its service to be mediocre and its staff rude, and i have done rcci and found it crowded and just plain average. i always sail on HAL.

Probably good we wont see you on Carnival. I like postitive people who wont judge something before they even try it...

wipala October 12th, 2008 07:17 PM

Having just gotten off the Carnival Valor we have sailed on all three.
Our first pick is RCL second Carnival and third NCL. I would have picked Carnival first however, all the smoke in the lounges is just too much. Carnival has the best food of the three IMO, RCL had the best layout. The entertainment is really great on all three lines. The smoke keeps Carnival second
Wipala Walt :D

peninsularoad October 12th, 2008 08:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hombre
did any notice? the op asked a question, then answered it. if she or he is so certain, why was the question raised in the first place? i have never sailed on carnival, 'the floating mcdonald's theme park,' but i have sailed on ncl and found its service to be mediocre and its staff rude, and i have done rcci and found it crowded and just plain average. i always sail on HAL.

How can you judge Carnival if you never sailed on it? By the way, the reason I asked, is because I have sailed all 3 and I was curious of everyone elses opionon compared to mine.

By the way, I am 51 and I have found Carnival to be very good. I found it to be no difference than Royal Caribbean as far as wildness, food and entertainment.

I did not like NCl, it just was OK, bet nothing special and I thought the food was very bland.

From what I've been told, HAL is more for an older, more mellow crowd, which is fine, but I prefer to act younger than my age on these cruises!

MrPete October 13th, 2008 05:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hombre
did any notice? the op asked a question, then answered it. if she or he is so certain, why was the question raised in the first place? i have never sailed on carnival, 'the floating mcdonald's theme park,' but i have sailed on ncl and found its service to be mediocre and its staff rude, and i have done rcci and found it crowded and just plain average. i always sail on HAL.

Curious what you would call someone calling HAL "the floating McDonalds theme park" who had never set foot on HAL.

So what's your BIG MAC with Carnival?

thecruisequeen October 13th, 2008 07:16 AM

Royal 1st :D :wink: 8)
Carnival 2nd :)
NCL never tried and have no desire to either. :-?

Dave the Wave October 13th, 2008 07:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by thecruisequeen
Royal 1st :D :wink: 8)
Carnival 2nd :)
NCL never tried and have no desire to either. :-?

I am with the Cruise Queen on this one. . 8)

Jeff of Torrance October 13th, 2008 01:35 PM

We are from the Los Angeles area, Palos Verdes peninsula; so we have mostly cruised on ships that visit San Pedro. We've been on RCI, NCL, Celebrity, and Princess; but not yet Carnival. Of the three lines that you mentioned, we agree totally that RCI is heads above the Norwegian Star. Maybe other NCL ships are alot better than the Star, which we rate at the bottom of our cruising experiences, mostly because of pretty mediocre food. otherwise, we've had very good food on Monarch, Vision, Golden Princes, and certainly on Celebrity's Summit and Mercury.

peninsularoad October 13th, 2008 04:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jeff of Torrance
We are from the Los Angeles area, Palos Verdes peninsula; so we have mostly cruised on ships that visit San Pedro. We've been on RCI, NCL, Celebrity, and Princess; but not yet Carnival. Of the three lines that you mentioned, we agree totally that RCI is heads above the Norwegian Star. Maybe other NCL ships are alot better than the Star, which we rate at the bottom of our cruising experiences, mostly because of pretty mediocre food. otherwise, we've had very good food on Monarch, Vision, Golden Princes, and certainly on Celebrity's Summit and Mercury.

Jeff,

I too am from L.A and what you said about the STAR (NCL) is dead on accurate! The reason i like Carnival a touch better than RCI is that the ships of Carnival are newer than the Monarch or Vision, not that there is anything wrong with the Monarch or Vision, just the Pride oofers more since they are newer.

As the food, I feel RCI is a touch above carnival in the main dining rooms but the buffet and snack places are a bit better since they offer many more stations of food and at night from 5-7 on Carnival, for free, they serve Sushi made to order for snacks which is really nice to get and bring back to the room and have it on your balcony while drinking wine and watching the sun set!

taylorkia October 13th, 2008 04:45 PM

carnival,best value for the buck.

ragtiki2005 October 14th, 2008 12:04 AM

NCL Hawaii cruises are at the bottom of my list. All American staff with high turnover, low employee morale and just very difficult to deal with. Bob

skymaster October 14th, 2008 08:41 AM

Yep, Carnival, most value for the money (especially if you qualify for the military rate)
RCI second, but only the smaller ships. (You can keep the Freedom class and larger ships)
NCL third, (used to be my absolute favorite, but I don't care for the anytime dining(

I absolutely LOVE Princess, and Celebrity, but once again, for the money Carnival beats them both. HAL is just over the top as far as laid back goes. I like the linen towels in the rest rooms, and the service, but come on,,,,closing the ship down at 11 P.M. just doesn't get-r-done.

Ken
"SKY"

Manuel October 14th, 2008 11:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by thecruisequeen
Royal 1st :D :wink: 8)
Carnival 2nd :)
NCL never tried and have no desire to either. :-?

I am in complete agreement with above statement.

TM

erikhag October 15th, 2008 08:33 AM

As an NCL-fan I really can´t see how Freestyle Dining can be something bad. How can it be bad that you have the choice to eat when you want? Some people mention lines and waiting times to get a table but that must be a minor problem. On our 11-night cruise in September we had to wait for a table once and that was for about 5 minutes, that´s not a problem for me!

As for meeting new people, maybe a shared table can be good but you have that choice on NCL too. Just ask to share a table and if you like those you share with, you can decide to eat together again, if you don´t like them, you don´t have to eat with them again!

When you have your table and share it with other people, how do you do if you meet other people on board and prefer to eat with them? I guess that the main dining room isn´t an option then.

Some people cruise to get new friends but I guess that most people cruise with their family or friends or as a couple and the need to meet new people is then very little. I defenitely prefer to choose who I shall eat dinner with and if I also can choose when that´s even better!

It´s good that people are different and it´s good that there is a cruise line for all kind of people so noone has to be angry at me for posting my opinion!

I wish everyone a happy cruiseexperience on Carnival, RCI, NCL or whatever you prefer!

SeaCruise1 October 18th, 2008 02:43 PM

I like sailing on any ship but it really depends upon your personality and activity level. If I'm sailing with my young granddaughters I like Carnival, with my older son's and their families I like Royal Caribbean and just me and my wife, Holland America. We tailor our ship to our vacation. Never been on a bad cruise....just different!

flowers October 18th, 2008 03:23 PM

Royal Caribbean has the best past cruiser perks, hands down. Give me hard cold discounts over perks like free laundry, no brainer in this area, RCL wins.

RCL also wins for service and for having the most beautiful ships. (true Carnival wins for other areas).

I guess it depends on your definition of "best".

akacake October 21st, 2008 01:25 AM

all of them
 
A day cruising on ANY ship is better than being at work!

I liked NCL ( Star and Sun). Freestyle was just fine, gave us lots of options.
I liked RCCL ( Vision).
I like Princess ( Golden and Coral)
I like Costa ( Fortuna)

and I am looking forward to trying Carnival this Christmas!

Beats cooking for myself and my family, cleaning for myself, going to work etc etc.
As long as I see palm trees somewhere I am one happy camper!

Libragirl October 25th, 2008 12:47 PM

I've never cruised on NCL, although I would like to someday. I have cruised on Carnival, Royal Caribbean, and Princess. I had a great time on all of these lines. There are many more similarities than differences. All had great food and great service. :D

colorcrazie October 25th, 2008 01:16 PM

I think that NCL entertainment beats them all hands down. But, I'm still a Carnival gal. HAL is good, too. Had a horrid experience on Princess and while I know it was probably a one time thing, not going to risk my vacation budget finding out. Have gotten disillusioned with Royal over the last few years.
Marty

lhp October 29th, 2008 12:16 PM

I hate to be nitpicky here...but personally I don't like the word "better".

Each cruise line has a unique product to offer.

And while Carnival, RCCL and NCL would probably be considered a similar product (I am going on other people's opinions since I have never sailed anything but Carnival) ..... each cruise lines has their pros and cons.

In today's travel world...you literally need to not only match a cruise line to an individual's taste ... but the ship itself.

For example, while giving a similar cruise....the Carnival Holiday will give a different experience than the Carnival Splendor.

Some folks LOVE the smaller ship experience...and some won't sail on anything that isn't brand new.

So it all depends on the individual, I think.

The best cruise line is the one that matches someone's personal needs the best.

nlb1050 October 29th, 2008 01:08 PM

We have done one cruise on each Carnival, RCL and NCL.
We will cruise Carnival again, maybe RCL and never NCL.

We love anytime dining on Princess and found freestyle to be completely lacking. Each night that we went to a main dining room we were asked if we wanted to eat with others and never once did. As for getting a reservation at any of the other dining venues it was almost impossible and we were seeing that the dining rooms were basicly empty. WE even went so far one time to call the pursers desk and complain that whne we tried to call the number to make reservations (during the time you were to do it) no one would answer no matter how long we let the phone ring. And this was on the Pearl built for freestyle.

WE found the food was much better on Carnival than either RCL or NCL.


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