My husband, sister, brother in law and myself booked our first ever cruise on The Sun Princess to New Zealand in November 2013. Never having sailed before we had no way of comparing the cruise, staff, meals, on board entertainment with other ships - that being said we were all totally satisfied with our entire experience. White Bay departure terminal was a bit of an eye opener, but that is not the faults of the cruise line and we just took the whole day in our stride. Once on board we could not fault the efficiency of the crew at any time throughout the whole cruise. We think the staff do an excellent job of looking after their passengers - the food in the dining room was excellent and although at times the self-serve restaurant was crowded - if one is prepared to share with other passengers at the tables there is not a problem. As we are early risers, the breakfast sitting was never crowded, although other meal times can be a bit of a problem. That being said there is always the fine dining where we had our tables reserved for evening meals - we found the meals in the dining room were of more than adequate proportions and at the buffet we could eat as much as wanted - and there was always something different on offer.
The shore excursions were well organised and made our touring of New Zealand a pleasure and getting on and off the ship at each destination was well handled by the crew.
There are more than enough activities on board the ship to keep everyone entertained - we absolutely loved being able to go to the theatre each night and the entertainers were of very high quality.
We had a balcony stateroom and were very pleased with the size and appointments - the only thing we were not comfortable with - there was no top sheet on the bed - only a comforter - that was soon changed to cater for our needs so we were very happy passengers
Disembarkation at Sydney was well handled and we were off the ship in plenty of time to catch our train to Canberra - passengers are given plenty of information as to the disembarkation procedure and it is certainly easier to disembark the ship than dealing with luggage collection at an airport.
All in all we would thoroughly recommend cruising with Princess and were so delighted with our experience that we are cruising again in February 2014.