I know this is the old debate and maybe almost a rivalry--so far I've only cruised RCCL and Celebrity but Carnival is definitely cheaper so I'm thinking...Also the Destiny has a great itinerary I might want to try, including Aruba and Dominica. It's just me and my husband, both around 40--we never do any of the evening entertainment because we're too pooped from running around the islands and usually go to bed by 10. The entertainment is therefore the least important part for us. We like good food, even gourmet, but we only found something close to that on Celebrity and Celebrity was really too restrained for us. We basically like a family atmosphere and don't mind a lively atmosphere. However, does Carnvial blast the loudspeaker all the time? including in your rooms? How does the food compare to RCCL? I know the Destiny has 24-hour pizza, which my husband will love (he's not too gourmet for pizza, that's for sure!). What really are the drawbacks to Carnival that everyone seems to have at least talked about in the past? They do seem to be showing a more family image at least in their advertising. What's the truth to this?
I have sailed Carnival 5 times. Destiny twice. The 24 hour pizza was very good. You should try and see at least 1 of the main shows. I think Carnival is tops in entertainment. The food is actually quite good in the dining room. They do make announcements, but they do not disturb me while in my room. I actually have to run over to the door and stick my head out into the hall to hear what they are actually saying.
I have heard passengers have had plumbing problems on this ship, but we never have had that problem.
Have a wonderful cruise
We did the Adv. of the Seas last June. I never seen a more beautiful ship. It was never croweded eventhough there was almost 5,000 on ship or so I was told by the Purser. The food was excellent. The Maitre d heard my teenager son say how much he liked the tomato soup, he had the chef prepare him some for the next night. Our rooms were kept immaculate. Even my daughter and her two friends room was always clean. I would suggest a balcony on this cruise. We enjoyed sitting outside each morning and having breakfast looking out onto the island. I don't know what ship you are looking at for RCCL but the Adv. is definitly worth the money. There is so much to do on the ship if you choose to, I am like you after a day of excursions it is all I can do just to get to dinner. The ice skating show on the Adv. if amazing. Portofino's is a resturant I do believe charges 20.00 extra to eat at but worthe every penny. Takes about 2 hours to eat all the courses. IF you have any other questions please email me. I know sometime the price of a cruise is really enticing but I have found sometimes it is worth the extra money for another ship. I know the two times I cruised Carnival I kept hearing in the hallways drunk teenagers all night long. 2nd cruise it was my friends 17 year old son that was drunk in the hallways. That is one reason we will not cruise Carnival again anytime soon, I have 2 teenagers and I just don't want to have to fight the temptation of the them trying a drink at their age.
Having cruised RCI 6 times and Carnival 2 times I much prefer RCI. I think they provide a better product. I like the cruise staff and excursions better on RCI. Carnival seemed to me to stress party time in the lounges and not an overall good time.
Guess that's why I am leaving on Sunday on Radiance of the Seas.
Both lines are good IMHO, I think the food on Carnival has improved through the years and is comparable to any other line. I agree that Celebrity is not as familiy friendly as RCI or Carnival. Try a Carnival cruise, and since you find them less expensive, maybe a balcony would be in line. They are always nice to have.
Good luck, and I am sure, as long as it is a cruise, you can't go wrong.
Monarch of the Seas
http://www.cruisemates.com/countdown.php?month=04&year=2009&day=26&hour=16:00[/img] Carnival Splendor
I have never been on either (we're sailing on the EOS in May!)...however, we looked at the Southern Carb. itinerary, RCCL Adventure of Seas has a similiar one to that of the Destiny. When we were pricing, back in November, RCCL was actually cheaper than Carnival for a balcony room. Maybe their prices came down? We chose RCCL because we too were a little learly about Carnival's party reputation (and we are in our late twenties, not that we don't like to have a good time, but we really wanted something more restful???)