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Old August 25th, 2009, 01:58 PM
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Default Carnival vs Royal Caribbean

We are comparing iternaries and found the stops we like to Hawaii leaving out of VanCouver. We have only been on Celebrity and RC. RC has just about the same cruise as Carnival going out next Sept. The ports are almost identical. There is a $300 saving for inside and outside cabins on Carnival. We can get a balcony on Carnival for the price of an outside cabin on RC. Has anyone sailed on both lines. How are the services and food on Carnival in comparison with RC?

Thanks,

Know the iternary, just not which ship to take.
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Old August 25th, 2009, 02:17 PM
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I personally prefer Carnival. Their food is generally very good and the service excellent. But, there are many others who prefer Royal. Just different tastes. Carnival is definitely the most relaxed in terms of dress code. They don't even have true formal nights anymore, although many of us still do dress up.
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Old August 25th, 2009, 10:16 PM
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I've been on Celebrity and Carnival. My last 3 on Carnival was purely because the port was so close to home, 1/2 hour driving distance.

The food on Celebrity was extremely better than Carnival. But that's not to say that Carnival food is bad, it just didn't WOW us like Celebrity.

Passengers on Celebrity are also the more quite and reserved crowd as opposed to fun loving party type. You won't find "hairy chest contest" or "belly flop contest" on Celebrity while it was a normal attraction on Carnival.

It all depends on what you're after so its personal preference. Take for instance, my 72 year old mom went on Celebrity for the first time 2 years ago and she thought the crowd was too boring...go figure
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Old August 26th, 2009, 08:50 AM
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Overall, we prefer Carnival better. The only thing that RCCL wins hand down are their newer ships, but once we get past the AHHHHH factor, it's behind us.

Otherwise, everything else is either equal to or better on Carnival. Which makes the decision REAL easy when you compare prices.
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Old August 26th, 2009, 09:11 AM
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I agree that the food is better on carnival and the atmosphere a little more rowdy, in a fun way. But the ships RC offer are amazing. True about the dress code also, much more laid back on carnival. I guess it depends on what you are looking for and what things are more important in terms of a cruising experience. I don't think you will be disappointed either way. We have sailed both lines and would go back to either.
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Old August 26th, 2009, 10:29 AM
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If you are comparing service and ports of call...Carnival vs. RCCL...they're both pretty equal. RCCL's newer ships have the flowrider, ice skating rink, specialty stores and restaurants, none of which I would use. The area where there is a big difference, in my opinion, is the food quality...I found RCCL's food inedible at times, very salty, lots of sauces and goopy casseroles. When I have sailed on Royal Caribbean, I have packed lots of snacks and peanut butter and jelly.
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Old August 26th, 2009, 11:11 AM
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I think we need to compare the acutal ships for RCCL and Carnival for Vancouver to Hawaii. I can tell you for a fact there are NO Freedom class ships (RCCL) sailing to Hawaii so no flowrider. We finally just got a Voyager class ship out here and it's not doing Hawaii.

So RCCL ship would be the Rhapsody of the Seas and the Carnival ship would be the Carnival Spirit.

Rhapsody of the Seas if a Vision Class ship built in 1997, it has a rock climbing wall, but no flowrider, no ice rink, no special mall type promenade area. Passenger capacity: 2,435 and it's Length: 915'.

Carnival Spirit is a Spirit class ship built in 2001. Passenger capacity: 2,124 and it's Length: 960'. Spirit does not have a wall climbing wall.

Spirit is cheaper, newer, and a larger ship with less passengers I would book the balcony room on Spirit.

*Just a note to RCL if you send the Freedom of the seas to start running the Hawaii route I would have recommended the Freedom of the seas over the Carnival Spirit. You have the Oasis of the seas over there in Flordia, send us west coast cruisers that good ships please.
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Old August 26th, 2009, 12:03 PM
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Don't know about the RCCL ship but I have done Hawaii on the Carnival Spirit and would recommend it to anyone. I would not hesitate to do it again. They had a Hawaii Native on board as a guest speaker who gave all sorts of interesting info about the islands. This cruise is only done twice a year and is more about the Islands and less about Hairy Chest contest.
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Old August 26th, 2009, 12:31 PM
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http://www.zydecocruiser.com/Carniva...sage/page1.htm
Zydecocruiser took the Carnival Spirit to Alaska and there are some great pictures of the ship and food at the link above. It always helps me to look at pictures.
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Old August 26th, 2009, 02:18 PM
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8/26/09

I'm leaning toward Carnival after hearing from everyone, unless RC offers a ship board credit before I book. We sail in March to the Caribbean on RC. If I get up my nerve and wait till March 28th to book, I can get the $200 RC credit for the next sailing. We are cruising RC again in seven months. I'm concerned that the better cabins from interior to balacony will be taken. Have an issue with top floors or end of the ship locations. I do better with mid ship and lower deck.

Thanks everyone for your input.
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Old August 27th, 2009, 02:09 PM
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When I thought I had my mind made up to book with Carnival, I went back into their site. I wanted to check out rooms prior to calling my TA. I had originally seen that the price was for the early booking price. I thought it's great to have an early booking price. This is what I used to compared or based the cruise line prices on. I found that the early booking price is several hundred dollars less than the reg. guar. rate for carnival. I didn't realize you are locked in and the cruise is non-refundable. Has anyone experienced this or is it new? Other than a health issue, I plan on going on one of the two ships that are going to Hawaii. With all the exceptions these days, I hope insurance would cover or reimburse us in full if we can't go. If I book at the standard price where you can get your money back in full prior to the last payment, its about the same as RC. The info I got on line so far indicates that the price is guar. so you can get a lower price. I doubt there will be a lower price than the early booking price, but who knows. I saved over $900 on our RC cruise that is coming up in March when there was a price drop.

Thanks for your help,
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Old August 27th, 2009, 02:32 PM
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While it is true that deposits for cruises based on the Early Saver Fare are non-refundable they can be transfered to a different Carnival cruise for a $50pp fee so all is not lost. When/If the fare goes down you can submit an on-line form for the lower price. 8)
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Old August 27th, 2009, 07:57 PM
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That is good to know. All won't be lost if we can switch to a diff. cruise. We haven't had to change in the past 10 cruises, but you never know.

Thanks for the info.
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Old August 28th, 2009, 02:42 PM
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Wow, Zydeco, those are some of the best cruise photo's I have ever seen. Got mentally lost feeling like I was on board again....sigh.
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