Ocean Princess Cruise Review by Keith Orford: First time Princess cruisers
Overall Member Rating
First time Princess cruisers
Embarkation: Hong Kong
The cruise was in fact two, back to back, Hong Kong to Shanghai (originally Osaka to Shanghai, pre earthquake) then Shanghai to Singapore.
1. Mostly excellent crew. Others have complained about the level of staff training but we found that the waiting and the cabin staff were excellent. Several went well out of their way to help.
2. The crew kept their helpfulness right up to disembarkation. Some other lines (Regent being the worst) lost interest in disembarking passengers on the last morning.
Not so good points.
1. The reception staff were not as helpful as the rest of the crew. Indeed on more than one occasion someone came from the back office and was outright rude.
2. The attitude to hygeine was strange. Other lines have hand sanitizer dispensers at the entry to every restaurant and bar. When I asked about there being only one on the whole ship (entry to buffet) I was told that there was no need, the crew had excellent More standards. What about the passengers? Anyone who, like me, watched someone come out of a toilet cubicle and walk straight out into the restaurant would not be happy to handle his menu after him!
3. Passengers doing back-to-back are not really catered for as they should. We asked about excursions for such passengers and were told that there were too few. We later found that there were about 120 rolling over between cruises. How many do they need before they cater for transit passengers?
4. The food was OK as to standard but the restaurant menu repeated after 12 days! There was only one working ice machine on the ship, in the buffet.
5. The big one was their nickel-and-diming. Other lines we have been on do not expect you to look for coins (only $1 but if you don't have the right coins it is a bother) to use the washing machines. The standard coffee was dire, made from a liquid concentrate, and in the UK they would have been prosecuted calling it 'coffee'. To get a drink that tasted of real coffee rather than ersatz cost from $2 up. They charged for small bottles of water on disembarkation for excursions just to find that the excursion companies provided complimentary larger bottles on the excursion buses! Less
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