This was my third cruise with Princess. The first two were on the Sapphire Princess Ship and both times it was a great experience. I wish I could say the same thing for the Caribbean Princess.
This was a Thanksgiving cruise leaving out of the Houston Port. I have been told that Princess only started leaving out of Houston port earlier the same month (November). Embarkation seemed chaotic. Our family had a mini suite, and previous times leaving port we were able to get in a line for suite holders. This time, we were told that we would have to get in the long line because we did not have a "full suite." It was cold and windy, and we had to wait in the elements for over an hour.
Once on the ship, the captain got on the loud speaker stating we would be delayed a couple of hours leaving the port due to the weather. A couple of hours later we were told that they would still not be able to leave the Houston port due to the weather and that they would try again at 10:00 PM. No word after 10:00 PM and we went to bed on the ship. When we woke up the next morning, we looked outside our balcony and saw that the ship was still parked next to the Houston Port. The captain later got on the loud speaker and stated that they would try to leave around 10:00 AM and explained that the itinerary for the cruise would need to be changed due to the delay.
The ship left around 10:30 AM Sunday morning. The captain later came on the loud speaker and stated that we were not going to be able to go to Honduras due to the delay. Also, instead of going to Cozumel the first day as planned, we would be going to Cozumel on Thanksgiving Day (Thursday). This day was planned to be a day at sea. We would now be going to Costa Maya Mexico on Tuesday (not on the initial itinerary), and would be going to Belize on Wednesday as planned.
We had no idea what was in Costa Maya. The cruise ship was able to plan activities and we did arrange an excursion to see Mayan ruins. After Costa Maya, we set course for Belize. Wednesday morning, the captain got on the loud speaker and told us that due to strong winds, we would not be able to go into port in Belize and instead would be staying out in sea for the day. This was frustrating. Instead of a Caribbean cruise visiting exotic destinations, it turned into a Mexican cruise visiting only two ports.
On Thursday, we arrived in Cozumel. I believe most if not all of the water excursions such as snorkeling and scuba diving were cancelled due to the weather. We were able to visit X-Caret and enjoyed our excursion. The excursion returned us to the ship at around 5:00 PM. We got on the ship at 5:15 PM. Thanksgiving Dinner was at 5:30 PM and we had to put on our formal attire before going in the dining room. The Thanksgiving Dinner was very disappointing, as we had what appeared to be processed Turkey, with no mash potatoes. I saw other people had stuffing, but for some reason, there was no stuffing on my plate. I was able to request mash potatoes which was then delivered to my table. Although I enjoyed most of the Dinners on Princess during the trip, the Thanksgiving meal was the most disappointing meal I have ever experienced on a cruise ship.
We left Cozumel and arrived at Houston Port on Saturday morning by 7:00 AM.
First, let me say that I believe Princess needs to reconsider their decision to move from the Galveston to the Houston Port. From what I read on another review, the same ship was delayed going into Houston Port due to fog which likely caused many passengers to miss their flights. I believe this was the fourth cruise out of Houston, so having problems with the port on two out of four cruises is not a good statistic to have. On the way home at the Houston Airport, I spoke to a couple that left on the Disney Ship out of the Galveston Port the Saturday we were supposed to leave. The couple told me that they left the Galveston Port with no problem. If Princess is going to have cruises not being able to leave Houston Port due to weather, then people need to reconsider whether they want to go on a cruise out of Houston. The second thing I want to say is that Princess did not provide any reimbursement for not going to two of the three ports advertised (money off a future cruise would have been nice).