6 Free Dining Venues on Carnival

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Every time I sail on a Carnival ship I get excited. Why? Because not only am I on a cruise ship, but also experiencing a ton of awesome food.

Across different cruise line brands you’ll find a variety of restaurant surcharges ranging from $5 to $50, depending on what you’re hungry for. Steak, Italian, Asian – it all depends on your mood. But if you’re going for budget friendly (free), Carnival offers a lot those dining options too.

I found these six fabulous free eats onboard:

*Note: not every Carnival ship has these venues. I was on Carnival Liberty.

1. Guy’s Burger Joint

Straight Up burger at Guy's Burger Joint.
Straight Up burger at Guy’s Burger Joint.

I love Guy’s Burger Joint. When Carnival first announced the partnership with Guy Fieri, I was doing backflips because that means I could get a Guy burger without spending $18.50 in his Time Square restaurant. The venue is typically open til about 6p and has signature burgers like: Plane Jane, Straight Up, The Ringer, Chilius Maximus, and the Pig Patty. You can see the menu here.

2. Blue Iguana Cantina

Burrito from Blue Iguana Cantina.
Burrito from Blue Iguana Cantina.

This lido deck southwestern joint offers tacos/burritos and is open into the late afternoon. In four easy steps you can have the burrito or taco of your choice:

  • Choose your tortilla
  • Select your meat
  • Add your stuffing
  • Pick your toppings

Oh, and they have an awesome toppings bar.


3. Fish and Chips

FIsh and Chips with Tuna Watermelon.
FIsh and Chips with Tuna Watermelon.

This is a secret that not a lot of people know (until now). There’s a fish and chips bar on deck 10, one deck above the lido deck marketplace. You can also get watermelon tuna and a couple other seafood delights in this area. The hours are typically the same as the lido deck marketplace. Also, there is plenty of seating on deck 10 which makes it a great place to retreat during crowded dining times. I like to camp out in the booth by the drink machine.

4. Pizza

Cheese pizza from Pizza Pirate.
Cheese pizza from Pizza Pirate.

One thing I love about a cruise is that the pizza joint is normally open 24/7. Making it a great place to soak up the alcohol before calling it a night. At Carnival’s Pizza Pirate you’ll find margherita pizza, funghi pizza, pepperoni, roasted garlic, prosciutto and caesar salad there.

5. Mongolian Wok

Mongolian wok aboard Carnival Liberty.
Mongolian wok aboard Carnival Liberty.

First, select your noodles and veggies. Then tell the chef which sauce and meat you want in the wok.

Beef and Thai barbecue? Chicken and black bean?

This is located in the lido deck dining room on most ships and usually has a substantial line – but well worth the wait! Get there early.

6. Sea Day Brunch

Grilled pork chops served up at sea day brunch. photo: flickr creative
Grilled pork chops served up at sea day brunch. (photo: flickr)

On the ships I’ve been on, the sea day brunch has been offered between 10a and 1p in one of the Main Dining Rooms. My favorite entree is the flame roasted, double cut thick pork chop, topped with caramelized onion, gorgonzola cream, side of fries and blistered beans in bbq sauce. I get it every time!

You can get breakfast and lunch, or both, and no reservations are required. Oh, and the Bloody Mary bar is also amazing!

Bonus Ice Cream

Strawberry ice cream on lido deck.
Strawberry ice cream on lido deck.

Frozen yogurt or ice cream on lido deck. Enough said.

Final thoughts

If you want to check out more about Carnival Liberty, check out CruiseFever’s Carnival Liberty Cruise Ship Review and Tips here.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention other free dining options like the lido deck buffet, the deli, the Tasting Bar in the evenings and outdoor burger area on the ship. But the above six topped my list!

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