Caribbean Princess Cruise Review by shellyfronk: Not at all the level of Princess I was expecting
Overall Member Rating
Not at all the level of Princess I was expecting
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
3 day cruise - Memorial Day Weekend. My first 3 day cruise. I was unaware that when we booked this cruise (which we got a great deal on), it was known as a "gambler's cruise". Entertainers are a whirlwind of information.
Embarkation onto the ship - As a platinum member, this was a breeze, except that they lost my cousin's card and we needed to go to the other end of the area to take a seat and wait while they printed a new one.
Once on the ship - we dropped off our stuff and went to lunch on Lido which was pleasant. Plenty of choices and the food was good
Cabin A749 - my first interior. Only downside was the location - the very last interior room before the Aft suites and the anchor that dropped 2 days and made a crashing loud sound which woke us up.
Casino - Smokey!!!!!!! I can usually go there (and do!), but found it uncomfortably smokey. Perhaps they need a new ventilation system?
Overall, we feel they had all newbies on More staff. Service was slow, and in some cases nonexistent.
Steward - Regallio, was very pleasant when we first met him. We requested extra towels which he provided with a smile. Unfortunately, he did not provide them the next two days and when my husband went to get one off the cart, he got "yelled" at, as if he were stealing it. (Believe me, you don't want their towels!)
Bar Service - We prefer the quieter Terrace Pool area. There were zero servers around on either this deck or the lounging deck above. We had to go to the bar ourselves to get drinks (As a Carnival shareholder, this upsets me!). It took a very loooooonnnnng time to get their attention and then get your drink. Quality control is nonexistent - every drink I ordered tasted different (and yes, we ordered the same!)
Shows - don't bother. It's like they dredged the bottom of the barrel for the two comedians.
This short cruise only went to Princess Cays. Have been there many times and have no problem with this "private" port, however, on this ship it took 2 hours to disembark and 1 1/2 hours to get back on. That is unacceptable and I feel we did not get our money's worth from our cabana and aqua chair rentals. There are water sports and excursions available for extra money of course. Food is so so, hamburgers, hot dogs etc... I prefer to go back to the boat to eat.
Food and Food Service -
As far as choices, it was fine. You do not get the "top" level food as it is only a three day cruise, but it's fine. Service - our waiter, Alexander, was very nice and personable. He really tried to please. We actually tried to tip him extra on the last day, but we waited 20 minutes after eating and he never came back out! Unfortunately, I cannot say the same about our assistant waiter who we never saw until we actually asked our waiter for coffee. Moreover, we requested regular milk and were brought out cream, twice, each time ruining our cup of coffee! Also, I got sick on our last night of the cruise from something I ate at dinner. Not a good way to end the cruise :(
Disembarkation - An absolute breeze. Ate breakfast on Lido and waited to walk off with our luggage. We never even made it to the Platinum lounge.
The reason I booked this cruise was the price, plain and simple. I thought it would be a good cruise to help me get to elite status. My fault, but I should have checked airfares to Ft. Lauderdale first - it was expensive! Is this where I say, you get what you pay for? LOL
The only shame is that I brought along my cousins. I wanted them to share my Platinum Princess experience and turn them on to Princess. I am afraid they will never book one again. Less
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Cabin review: A749
We booked an interior guarantee room, and therefore were not assigned our room until a couple of days before the cruise. We hoped for an upgrade to balcony since there was only one interior room left, but alas, the upgrade fairy did not visit us. This interior is the last room before the Aft suites. The Caribbean Princess is one of the smaller ships so walking from one end to the other is no big deal. The Palm Dining room is under you, but you have to walk toward the middle to get to the stairs as the stairs at the back of the boat are emergency exit only. It was my very first interior room that I thought I would try because it was only a 3 day cruise. The only downside was that we twice heard the anchor drop and it woke us out of a sound sleep! Otherwise, it was fine. As someone used to a balcony however, I would not book an interior for a longer cruise. I was upgraded a category and therefore placed on Aloha, but it was still an interior. The room: Actually, I was pleasantly surprised that there was plenty of room for storage of clothes, drawers etc. Bathroom was the same size as well. The area that gets shortchanged in the interior is the bedroom space. Pretty much you can walk around the bed, that's it. If you really spend a lot of time outside it's fine.
Port and Shore Excursions
The port is fine. It's the disembarkation and embarkation process that's terrible. 2 hours to get off the boat and 1 1/2 to get on. I prefer the food on the ship to the food on the island. We did not have drinks this time, just spent all the time on our aqua chairs - which by the way is the best bargain there $9.00 per rental. Next time, I will not even rent a clamshell ($29). There is nothing to buy on this island...one very overpriced shop and a couple of vendors selling stuff from China. Keep your money.
As far as excursions, I did not do any. There are plenty of water sports if you are interested, all for an additional charge. Chairs really need to be replaced, the material stretched across them is pretty stretched out. I also think they should have a drop off for the towels there and bring them in themselves.
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