1. Home
  2. Cruise Lines
  3. Princess Cruises
  4. Caribbean Princess Review
  5. Caribbean Princess Cruise Reviews
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
I've been waiting 50 years to go on a cruise and I hate to say that I picked the wrong ship and the wrong cruise line. The size of our mini-suite was great and the beds were comfortable but the furniture was rather outdated and worn. ... Read More
I've been waiting 50 years to go on a cruise and I hate to say that I picked the wrong ship and the wrong cruise line. The size of our mini-suite was great and the beds were comfortable but the furniture was rather outdated and worn. The couch was a tired green with a few holes and the furniture on the balcony needed an upgrade. The food in the buffet was worse than Golden Corral and there was very little entertainment on the ship. The three sea days we were bored to tears and ended up watching movies in our room each night. I guess if you are 75 or older you might enjoy this cruise with nightly Bingo and knitting classes or playing cards on deck but my daughter and I were so disappointed because we had heard and seen videos from friends who have been on cruises and were told of all the deck parties and all the fun activities on the ships. We never saw any or maybe if we would have known that there was a LGBT convention we would have picked another cruise because there were tons of activities for them or if we had known that 90% of the passengers were over the age of 70, we would have picked another cruise. I wish I could say that the dining was at least good, but I can't. The table we had assigned to us for the whole cruise each night sat over one of the engines I guess, because the whole table and all of our chairs shook every night except one and that is because we were still docked in St. Thomas. There were several menu choices each night but the food was just ok. I had again heard stories about how wonderful the food is on a cruise and how you come back home with a few extra pounds and I can honestly say that I didn't. Our two wait staff that we had for the week were super nice though. I have to give them credit for that. Siti and Dadang were great. The service on deck and out by the pool area was not so great. If you wanted a drink while sun bathing you had to go and get it yourself because there was never anyone walking around asking if you wanted a drink. Also if you decided to grab a slice of pizza, which by the way was the best thing I ate all week and needless to say we ate sliced pizza every day, you could never find anyone to bring you a glass of water or iced tea. It would have been nice if they would have at least had some sort of beverage stations set up around the ship to get a drink without having to pay $10 for an alcoholic one. I believe half the trip I was dehydrated from lack of water. Oh and let me fore-warn you to NOT TAKE PART IN THE TEETH WHITENING in the LOTUS SPA. WHAT A RIP OFF. We got suckered into it because we were told upfront that the cost would be $129 each for teeth whitening that would last 2 to 3 years. Well, after the process was done, you then get told that for it to last 2 to 3 years you have to pay an additional $249. WOW. So the $129 that I just paid is only good for a few days! So I broke down and bought the additional packets that were $49 for 12 treatments, which I was told was only good for 1 week of whitening AND WHEN I GET MY CREDIT CARD PRINTOUT THE GUY TAKES IT UPON HIMSELF TO ADD A $39 TIP. WOW was all I could say. The only good part about the whole cruise was the ports we visited. That was what I was most looking forward to was seeing the beautiful blue waters and that did not disappoint. We enjoyed a nice bus tour of St. Thomas and we had a great time walking through all the shops and open markets of St. Maarten. I will say that come Saturday morning, the day we got back to Ft. Lauderdale, I was up at 5am and ready to get off the ship! At least if you carry your own luggage off, you can disembark at 7:30 instead of waiting until 8:30 or in some cases 9:30 depending on what floor you were on. If I ever decide to go on another cruise I will certainly do more homework of the ship and will probably chose Royal Caribbean for sure! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary (stops in Grand Cayman, Roatan, Belize, and Cozumel) and the fact that it was recently refurbished. It was also a great price since we booked six months prior. This cruise was during our ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary (stops in Grand Cayman, Roatan, Belize, and Cozumel) and the fact that it was recently refurbished. It was also a great price since we booked six months prior. This cruise was during our daughter's Spring Break as well as her 16th birthday. She was very excited to travel to so many Caribbean countries in one week. As for the ship itself, we took a Princess cruise to Alaska in 2013 and were very surprised to find the Caribbean Princess had the exact same layout as the one we sailed on then (don't recall the name). It made things easier to find as it was familiar to us, but it was slightly disappointing to feel like we'd been here before after so many years. We wanted an aft facing mini-suite but they were sold out even six months in advance, so we ended up midship. This was absolutely fine, but I think the aft facing provides the best views since you can see both side of the ship while in port. As for the food, the Coral and Islands dining rooms had good decor, great service, and a nice menu. We ate in the Crown dining room for our daughter's birthday and had excellent service and food (the filet Mignon was the best). Well worth the extra $29 per person. We also ate in Steamers, but weren't impressed. The menu is intentionally extremely limited (only clams or fried seafood, nothing broiled) and the placement of the restaurant is where the ship rumbles and shakes during the whole meal. Not worth the extra $12 per person, for us. The International Marketplace buffet was fresh and tasty and we didn't grow bored as the selection kept changing (veggie lasagna was the best!) Entertainment was the best by far of my five previous cruises. The dancing and singing were top notch and the Voice of the Ocean competition was well done (congrats to Hannah on her win for Abba's Dancing Queen!) Most activities were targeted for the very old (e.g. arts and crafts). Average age was 65, I’d guess. Also, each time there was something we were interested in seeing it was at 9:00 a.m. after a late night, so we didn't attend anything other than Bingo and that was as expected. Finally, I was pleasantly surprised at the Casino's selection of slots and variety of table games. I enjoyed myself at the Casino three of the nights (even though I didn't end up winning - big surprise). One downside of this itinerary on Princess is you change clocks four times. Twice one hour behind, then twice one hour ahead. Made for a wonky jet lag experience every morning. On Carnival, we stayed on ship’s time no matter the port time. All in all, it was a wonderful vacation. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Princess has been a step above Carnival, but over the last few years, the gap is shrinking. All announcements and especially the music were of such volume that it was physically demanding to tollerate. When asked to lower the volume, ... Read More
Princess has been a step above Carnival, but over the last few years, the gap is shrinking. All announcements and especially the music were of such volume that it was physically demanding to tollerate. When asked to lower the volume, ship’s staff responded that it was necessary to be loud to create a party atmosphere. Food was below par, and service was simply average. I was served Cream Bule! That had obviously been sittyng long enough for the carmelization to melt and the pudding to decompose at the bottom. Ships dancers and singers were the absolute best! Every show was like a broadway performance. Bravos to them. Ship condition was really bad. Paint peeling off the ship, hand railings varnish was crinkling. Several sharp ends exposed. Electrical closets left open in passage ways. No water to rooms between 3 and 5 pm two days due to replacing water lines. Our safehad low batteries on second day. Key pad was also malfunctioning. Replaced batteries. Next day, replaced key pad with key pad with low batteries. Had to come back a third time to change batteries in the replacement key pad. Necessitated us having to stir our valuables in a friend’s room safe for a day. The new Medallion program might be fine in the future, but because of poor training of the ship’s crew, they were learning the system as were the passengers. I spent the entire first day of the cruise trying to figure it out. I should have been given a discount for having to do the work of the crew and loosing nearly an entire day of relaxation on the cruise. Suggest avoiding the Medallion cruises untill Princess rolls it out in a more user friendly manner. The last thing was that this cruise ship appeared to be a crew training ship. Supervision of staff was slim to none. Our sendoff was cold coffee in the zHorizons on the morning of departure. We asked for hot coffee and were told by the server that the coffee machine was broken and there was no hot coffee. Appropriate ending to a very disappointing cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
I took my granddaughter and her college friend on SPRINGBREAK...EMBARRASSEnD! We found two pair of dirty underwear in our room upon arrival. Very nasty! There was a contact lens stuck to the wall of our bathroom for the entire trip. ... Read More
I took my granddaughter and her college friend on SPRINGBREAK...EMBARRASSEnD! We found two pair of dirty underwear in our room upon arrival. Very nasty! There was a contact lens stuck to the wall of our bathroom for the entire trip. Plastic and paper trash was under both beds. We were given a free meal in one of the specialty dining rooms for our room being dirty . For the first time ever in my experience this room Steward was surly. The excursions were great, the food was very good. Embarkation and disembarkation was very smooth. The staff on the ship other than the room Steward were very nice and friendly we enjoyed the excursions but will never utilize Princess Cruise Lines again. There were some pretty bad stains on the carpets in some of the public areas I think they could have been cleaned better. I don't give bad reviews very often but this is one that needed to be relayed sorry Princess Cruise Lines but this was a failure on your part. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Everything was incredible!! They make you feel like family and you never want to leave the ship! The food was world class and the service on the ship was otherworldly, the drinks on board were incredible and allowed you to venture into a ... Read More
Everything was incredible!! They make you feel like family and you never want to leave the ship! The food was world class and the service on the ship was otherworldly, the drinks on board were incredible and allowed you to venture into a whole other culture and a whole other world of excitement! It is a wonderful mix of people and every passenger on board was so fun and excited and so sweet to everyone else. The stage shows that they put on our like a broadway musical and the performers can sing with the best of them! They have a full range of things for you to do whether it’s hanging by the 5 pools and jacuzzi’s they have, learning about the many secrets of pirate treasure, world class shopping with incredible deals, or anything else you can think of, there is never ever a dull moment. Everything was so smooth especially with their new medallion you use for everything!! It is the best thing out there!! 100% recommend!!! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this 7 day cruise as it fit in with our March Break schedule. Since my husband and I both work for a school board, we wanted a quieter, more adult only cruise to relax and unwind. We love your hashtag # comebacknew as Princess ... Read More
We chose this 7 day cruise as it fit in with our March Break schedule. Since my husband and I both work for a school board, we wanted a quieter, more adult only cruise to relax and unwind. We love your hashtag # comebacknew as Princess definitely delivers. The ports of call suited our need to explore the area before returning back to the ship. Princess Cays was a perfect beach day. A beautiful little spot with a bbq lunch and bar service. We rented a clamshell for some much needed shade. The anytime dining had a great selection that accommodated our vegetarian lifestyle. Friendly wait staff and delicious food. The best creme caramel I have ever had. Sabatini’s delivered a rich and delicious multi course meal with vegetarian options as well. We truly felt spoiled. The adult only pools offered a quieter spot for us to cool off from suntanning and reading. I truly enjoyed 3 treatments at The Lotus Spa while I was aboard The Caribbean Princess. I almost fell asleep. A great way to relax and unwind. We’ve already left a deposit and are planning our next Princess Cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
they clean your room everyday, Varieties of food, Dining experience is really awesome. service is great, Ice cream bar was great, international cafe, Karaoke bar, fitness room, Art auction, love the idea of formal night and going to a fine ... Read More
they clean your room everyday, Varieties of food, Dining experience is really awesome. service is great, Ice cream bar was great, international cafe, Karaoke bar, fitness room, Art auction, love the idea of formal night and going to a fine dining after having pictures from the photographers and you will your pictures that same day...you can watch live shows everyday with their funny Cruise director & his staff, lots of entertainment and things to do, love all this fun games with the staff especially with the cruise director Matt, foods is great, enough restaurants to choose, great service, smooth sailing and they are organized, i will plan a next cruise this year again and i will convince some of my relatives and friends to join me and my wife for the next cruise before end of 2019, and hoping they will come out a promotion to back up my plan Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
Great get away from snow and winter weather. I enjoyed the lovely 80 degree weather. My husband and I took excursions at each port. It was nice to have people give us tours and take us to points of interest. On board the Caribbean ... Read More
Great get away from snow and winter weather. I enjoyed the lovely 80 degree weather. My husband and I took excursions at each port. It was nice to have people give us tours and take us to points of interest. On board the Caribbean Princess we took in the shows each night. What a wonderful job the cast put on. Each night a different type of show. Our vacation also gave us time at night to sit down in the Island Dining Room. The food was wonderful, and full of varieties. Everything from seafood to steak. My husband enjoyed the lobster and I enjoyed the New York Strip steak. And you couldn't forget the desserts. Made from scratch apple pie and baked Alaska. The service we received was awesome. From the port, to dining to our cabin. The cabin is cleaned twice per day, which is so nice. Our stateroom steward did a fabulous job. Our room was clean and spotless. We enjoyed spending our vacation on Caribbean Princess. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
The Bad : Ship shakes under sail and unbelievably worse in port, especially annoying when you are dining. Common areas good condition but we had hit and miss cabins this fall and winter, some ok and some awful condition. Ship staff said ... Read More
The Bad : Ship shakes under sail and unbelievably worse in port, especially annoying when you are dining. Common areas good condition but we had hit and miss cabins this fall and winter, some ok and some awful condition. Ship staff said they can’t update the rooms without a dry dock and the company keeps putting that off. Personally had and witnessed some negative interactions with the Guest Services Staff. As typical of the brand no built in activies for active adults and children. Just off a Christmas cruise on another ship of the brand, many families cruising and the young people were bored out of their minds. Royal Caribbean, Carnival or Norwegian would have been a better choice for a family vacation. The Good: The company has invested in Internet upgrades for this ship. Room and Dining staff generally excellent as is usual throughout the brand. Food quality and selection was on par with the brand and far superior to Royal Caribbean. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
This was my first cruise with Princess and as a result of my experience, it will definitely be my last. Prior to booking, I had this impression that Princess was an elite cruising brand. I expected more of them than I would a Carnival, ... Read More
This was my first cruise with Princess and as a result of my experience, it will definitely be my last. Prior to booking, I had this impression that Princess was an elite cruising brand. I expected more of them than I would a Carnival, Norwegian or Royal Caribbean cruise line. I could not have been more wrong. Let's start with the PROS since its a short list. PROS: Embarkation - Princess is very organized. I was on the ship in less than 20 minutes from my arrival to the pier. I have NEVER gotten on a ship that fast before. There was no haggling to buy onboard packages and no pressure to take pictures. It was the most quickest, easiest embarkation I have ever experienced. Shore Excursions - I really liked that while the Excursions desk was not always manned that they had iPads at the desk so I could book excursions during their non-operating hours. I struggled whether to add this to the CONS list really, because the Excursions desk was closed before and during our sail away period, but I do like that I had this as an option. I like to book my excursions as soon as I get on the ship. I later learned I could have booked them in my room via the TV. Entertainment - I really enjoyed some of the musical talent on this ship. I learned of some new artistic gems like George Thursting that I now follow through social media. Love them. Folks, that's where my PROS list ends. Let's dive into everything that made this cruise horrible and left me vowing to NEVER cruise with Princess again. CONS: Bed Bug (in Room B249) - I usually don't sleep much, if at all, the night before a cruise, because I am busy packing and getting my house (and life) prepared for my extensive departure, so I usually make up for that sleep the first night on the ship. This cruise was no exception. I grabbed a bite to eat and booked my excursions once I got on board and I headed straight to my room to snooze. After we set sailed, I got up to grab something out of my bag and when I returned to the bed I noticed what looked like a bed bug crawling over the duvet cover. I screamed! I ran outside where the cabin steward was. He came in looking embarrassed, but not surprised, and scooped the bug into a glass jar. I was mortified. All I could think was how grateful I was that I had not unpacked yet. I did NOT want to take any of these critters home with me. I hear bed bugs are horrible to get rid of. I went straight to the reception desk to report it. Its the first night, so there's a long line. I patiently wait. When I get to the line, the service desk rep (Ignacio and Aracelli) said there was not much they could do besides send someone to investigate and clean the room since the ship was sold out. They did not offer me some place to sit or rest at during this 2-hour investigation. They did not offer me a complimentary beverage or meal. They did not apologize for the inconvenience. They did nothing, but "investigate." I stood on the side of the reception desk for 2 hours exhausted. I finally got back in line to see if there was an update, since NO ONE spoke to me during those 2 hours and only after I got back in line did someone call to check on the "investigation" and that's when I was told they were done and they did not find anything else (meaning another bug). For all I know, the investigation could have been completed an hour earlier. I return to my room alone. Visibly shaken, they did not offer to escort me to my room to reassure me and show me their findings. No one was there when I arrived. It was hours later when the cabin steward supervisor and my cabin steward returned to tell me the supervisor found nothing. I asked if I would be able to get checked by medical - something the front desk rep said I would be able to get as a courtesy to check for bed bug bites - and the supervisor told me NO. He said the ship doctor is not like a doctor on land, they're expensive, so I would have to pay for this myself. Um... OK! I was done after this. Done. He treated me like I was an inconvenience. Very hostile. I never unpacked my bag. I kept it closed the entire cruise and I checked my room for bed bugs each and every day. I tried not to let this ruin my trip cuz then I would definitely be on the losing end. I tried to make the best of it. Ship - Its old. Real old. Very dated. There's rust, mildew and mold everywhere. While I stood in line at the guest desk, I noticed there were multiple leaks from the ceiling. Also, the layout makes no sense. They give each deck a name. For example: Deck # 11 is named Baja and Deck # 15 is named Lido. Instead of referring to the deck number, you had to learn the deck names, because that is how they were referenced. It was so cooky. Then there were only so many elevator banks. I believe there were three or four for the entire ship and one or two of those only went to a few floors. There were no machines for people to add money to their room card/key. Everything went through the very incompetent guest desk. And they had to escalate everything. No one at the desk could make a decision at their level. No one was empowered to just do common sense things for guests. While I waited for my bed bug investigation, I heard a man with Platinum Level Status get upset over his beverage package and how someone screwed it up. I stood there thinking: If this guy is a loyal Princess cruiser and they treat him like that, how should I expect them to treat me? Not good, folks. Not good. Dining - I actually like the seating in the buffet dining areas. I liked that there were pub seating that looked directly out the window, so if you're a party of one you're only taking one seat and not an entire table. That's where my likes end. The food options were very limited and buffet small. It was about one-third of the size of the buffet area on the average Norwegian ship. Horrible! I made due, but I was just shocked. In Conclusion: The pros definitely did not outweigh the cons. I cannot justify the cost of the average Princess cruise for me to try the brand again. Outside of wanting to experience the Princess brand, I really chose this sailing because it was going to the ABC islands and it was full of smart at sea days. Heed my warnings. If nothing else, stay away from this ship unless you've cruised it before and know what to expect. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We chose this particular cruise because of its itinerary, particularly the Orkneys since it is an area we would be unlikely to visit independently. It was also undertaken at the end a of 4 week trip in Spain prior to returning home to ... Read More
We chose this particular cruise because of its itinerary, particularly the Orkneys since it is an area we would be unlikely to visit independently. It was also undertaken at the end a of 4 week trip in Spain prior to returning home to Australia. We have not done many cruises and this is our first time with Princess. Embarkation was amazing. No queues, very little time waiting, and extremely friendly and helpful staff both luggage porters and counter staff. On our other cruises we have had to wait for up to two hours in a long line before we were processed setting those cruises off to a bad start. We couldn’t believe how efficient this one had been and kept praising it to whomever we met! The disembarkation was also very efficient (there was an emergency change of port) and we couldn’t fault it. We had a balcony room on Caribe deck. The room showed its age, but was really quite acceptable. It was clean, smelt fresh and had all the necessary appointments and was of a good size. There was sufficient storage space and the small desk was adequate for our needs. The towels were a bit thin and worn and there weren’t any face washers but these are minor quibbles. We had a couple of breakdowns in the room during the cruise but within less than 15mins from reporting the issue a crew member had been and fixed the trouble. Really prompt service and much appreciated. I read somewhere that the beds were new and if so they were well worth the investment. Very comfortable and sleep inducing. We easily slipped into oblivion every night. We had fixed seating and after a bit of a rocky start this was quite acceptable. While you don’t get to meet a wide range of other travellers, you do get to know you fellow diners very well. As it turned out those on our table were very interesting and we wound up getting on very well however there were only six on the table. We would probably look for a table of eight on our next trip. We tried anytime seating once (late shore excursion) and this was OK but we did hear subsequent stories of long waits (up to an hour) before diners could be seated. Overall the food in the dining room was good, but not exceptional. Choices were a little limited and were sometimes uninspired in taste and presentation. There were few meat choices and the steak was often rather tough. Obviously a cheaper cut (that had not been well trimmed) was being used. The chef also seemed to have trouble with very rare, rare, medium rare, medium etc. Often what arrived was not what was ordered, i.e. it was overdone. Seafood dishes were OK but again could be a little overcooked and with limited quantities of seafood. However, the shrimps (prawns) were excellent in every dish we tried (must be a good supplier) and worth ordering. Deserts were also good but not outstanding and again there was not the range and flair one might expect. Dining was equivalent to that in a medium priced café/restaurant. (Maybe this is the price point for this ship.) Drinks (including bottled wine) on the whole were very reasonably priced and the drinks package offered very good value (better than other ships we have been on) for those who enjoy their cocktails and coffee. We also went to the specialty restaurant Sabatini’s. We had trouble with the timing of our original booking but the staff were so helpful we were able to easily change the booking time and day. There is an extra charge for this restaurant, but it was worth it. It is Italian themed and the food and service were excellent. The entertainment was good and very varied. The Princess Singers and Dancers were outstanding. The only criticism is the shows were too short. We would have enjoyed seeing much more of them. Also, the Princess Theatre is very small for the number of passengers and for popular performers it is necessary to get to the theatre at least ¾ hour before the show starts to get any sort of decent seat. Late comers often had to stand. Of the individual performers the piano player, Paul Burton, in Crooners Lounge, stood out as being exceptional. One thing that impressed us was the overall friendliness and cheerfulness of the staff. Almost without exception we were greeted with smiles and cheerful words. The service was very good. At one stage we had a minor problem with our account. The staff member in passenger services immediately fixed the problem and adjusted our account without any hassle. So nice to be treated with respect. The waitress on our table was great, and the bartenders in the international and crooners bars outstanding. One thing that didn’t impress us was the boarding at the end of each port day. One time it took well over an hour and a half (this was a tender port) and even when the ship was docked there were often long queues, especially when tour buses returned. Princess really needs to get more gangways and X-ray machines. Would we sail with Princess again? In hindsight it was a very port intensive trip which meant we had little time (or stamina) to enjoy the full range of activities provided on board. Next trip we will try for more sea days. We also found the size of the ship a little overwhelming preferring something slightly smaller. However if the itinerary and port schedule suited then yes we probably would. We certainly have good memories of this trip. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
We have been on over 30 cruises and are Platinum on Princess In November 2016 we contacted Princess and explained that my wife had recently been diagnosed with Gluten Ataxia, (a rare form of Coeliac Disease where gluten attacks her ... Read More
We have been on over 30 cruises and are Platinum on Princess In November 2016 we contacted Princess and explained that my wife had recently been diagnosed with Gluten Ataxia, (a rare form of Coeliac Disease where gluten attacks her brain) and that I was gluten intolerant. He assured us that Princess Cruises could provide us with a variety of good quality gluten free food providing we gave them the required notice which we did. Breakfast At breakfast in the dining room we were told there was only one type of gluten free bread and cereal. The rice bread did not toast very well. The cereal was corn flakes but they were sweet and tasteless.. The gluten free muffins were hard and had a horrible taste. Incidentally we also tried the gluten free scones available at afternoon tea which were hard, dry and tasteless so between the scones, bread and muffin afternoon tea was not an option available to us either. We were very upset by the attitude of a small minority of the waiters towards us. One particular waiter offered us pastries on the first morning and pressed us when we said no thank you so we told him we were gluten free. He shouted to all the other waiters, whilst pointing at us, that we were gluten free. Obviously other passengers looked at us. Quite honestly we felt embarrassed and humiliated. The requirements of other guests such as diabetics were not shouted out and they were not pointed at. After we complained about this he still came to our table every morning and said that he did not need to offer us pastries now that he knew we were gluten free so would not disturb us. We felt this was completely unnecessary and that he was being sarcastic Buffet We were advised to avoid the buffet because of the risk of cross contamination and on two occasions I saw food containing gluten in the gluten free desert section. When the ship was in port the only food available was in the buffet. We asked various chefs/staff what food was gluten free and got mixed messages, one person saying something was OK whilst another person said it contained gluten. The only safe items were jacket potatoes, some meat on the carvery but none of the sauces. We usually had the same lunch on port days. The desert section usually only had two options jelly/tapioca or crumble. Even the sous chefs, whilst they tried to be helpful, didn’t appear to understand the risk of cross contamination by other passengers with tongs and spillages. Main Dining On day one the only gluten free food available was fish. It had been overcooked. The head waiter took our order for the next day, again main dishes were limited. We were told that we could NOT choose a desert as these were specially made each day by the chef for passengers on special diets. At dinner we were seated at a table for nine which was a tight squeeze and ordering took a long time. On the first two nights my wife ordered fish but it had been kept hot and was tasteless and nothing was said even though my wife didn’t eat much of it. We complained in writing about the food. We spoke to the Maître d’ about the lack of deserts and the waiting staff at breakfast. He said he would send out an email to the We were moved to a smaller table but problems continued as some courses arrived at different times to others on the table and some items such as gluten free crab cakes were inedible. We had to complain before we were offered a desert choice. One night my wife was served a dish containing pasta which was not gluten free. Some things did improve slightly after we moved tables as we got carrot cake for desert thanks to Roberto along with chocolates and biscuits all on the same night! STEAMERS SPECIALITY DINING - we decided to go to Steamers, after speaking to Claudio the Assistant Maître d’ who escorted us to our table. After 10 minutes the chef told us he did not think he could prepare any gluten free dishes because of the danger of cross contamination in his small galley and it was arranged we could go to Freedom Dining. Once there we waited 45 minutes for our starter but 20 minutes later we were told the rest of our special pre-order had been lost. The waiter said he did not know what to do next so we left. There was almost nothing we could have in the buffet but we tried a jacket potato and some beef both of which were unacceptable, cold potato and tough beef. As a consequence we had some snacks we had brought on board plus fruit from the buffet in our cabin. To say we were upset would be putting it mildly. Most nights we were given a jelly/tapioca type desert. The one on the last night was plain tapioca with 2 berries and a strawberry slice made into a smiley face (see attached photo) which just added insult to injury. We complained to Roberto Roberto lost his temper shouting ‘I have allergies too but I never mention them’ He also said there was nothing he could do other than relay our comments to the chef Summary We were very disappointed and upset by these events which spoiled our holiday. We paid a lot of money for it and expected to be treated the same as all the other guests which did not happen. There was a diabetic on our table at dinner and his special diet was handled sensitively and with no fuss. We felt we were seen as a nuisance and quite honestly sometimes we were just very hungry. We were totally reliant on Princess for food during our holiday as it is not easy to find gluten free food immediately on arrival in other countries. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2017
I had read that there could be problems with a ship leaving dry dock and it was true. There is no need to list everything that was wrong, but there were many things that took about five days to remedy. That being said, the prices had been ... Read More
I had read that there could be problems with a ship leaving dry dock and it was true. There is no need to list everything that was wrong, but there were many things that took about five days to remedy. That being said, the prices had been discounted drastically which did compensate for most of the problems. If this had been my first cruise on a Princess ship it would have been my last. I hope people who were on this cruise consider this when judging the line. Along with leaving dry dock, they were changing a lot of venues, menus, and how things are priced. Cruise food for the inclusive venues reflect the price of the cruise and is sort of like going to Denny's or Applebees. Many of the changes were wonderful, but when you are used to certain things being there it is an adjustment. It seems that waffles are a thing of the past along with peppermint tea being replaced by a spearmint version. I used to look forward to those items on the vacation. As Princess rolls the changes out on the rest of their older ships I hope they listen to their loyalty members regarding the changes. Many of the complaints I heard were from people who have cruised on more expensive lines and their comparisons were like comparing Morton's Steak House with Sizzler. If you want Morton's you are going to have to spend the cover and go to The Crown Grill. The staff doing the art auction we not as friendly, except the blonde, Lanna. The main auctioneer was brash. She liked to promote her non-profit in Africa, and herself. Also, other Princess ships auction staff gave free mass produced prints out for attending any events, this group didn't even give them after the last two hour auction. Many older people have problems with knees and hips and need to use an exercise bike instead of a treadmill. They only had a few bikes, they don't let the spinning bikes be used. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
arrival organisation was a nightmare after a long flight into Houston the rep was pretty useless had no idea who she was supposed to be meeting and only had 8 seater mini bus to transport people to the hotel, very poor, however getting ... Read More
arrival organisation was a nightmare after a long flight into Houston the rep was pretty useless had no idea who she was supposed to be meeting and only had 8 seater mini bus to transport people to the hotel, very poor, however getting onboard was much quicker and smoothly done. First port of call was Montego Bay - would recommend organised tour there, we loved Dunn's River falls, great fun. We had any time dining, sadly the food was not the best I have had with Princess it was very hit and miss, and we were served all three courses in about 35 minutes every night. The pool was taken over every afternoon by children, not supposed to jump in the pool but no-one especially the parents seems to enforce that therefore all the adults were sat around the edge, my fault when booking had no idea it was easter holiday's {they came earlier then expected} worse trip, Private Beach in cancun, supposed to be private but it's done like a relay but they overlap on people so when you arrive you have to hang about til the other people have gone before you can get a bed, poorly ran and very very overpriced. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
This was our sixth cruise and my parents first. We took our two children, ages 5 and 7 as well. We drove from the Dallas area and my parents drove from San Antonio. We all stayed at the Best Western Suites close to the port since ... Read More
This was our sixth cruise and my parents first. We took our two children, ages 5 and 7 as well. We drove from the Dallas area and my parents drove from San Antonio. We all stayed at the Best Western Suites close to the port since they offer free breakfast and parking. The hotel was ok, but I did see moldy spots in the bathroom, very poor construction/repair work done around the hotel that looked shabby. Beds were ok. Hotel staff were very courteous and responsive. The food was decent. They were fairly organized getting us to and from port. Overall, the hotel was fine. *********************************THE CABINS**************** We had two balcony rooms. My parent's room was on the Aloha and ours was on Baja. Their bed(s) were nicer than ours. (two twins) My husband is still recovering from back pain from the awful beds. The bed was worse than some Motel 6 beds. It was really, really worn down. We even bring a tempurpedic pad with us, that is an inch and a half thick and it still didn't help. On the third day, the nearly non-existent cabin steward brought us a egg crate pad as well. It helped some, but my husband is 6'1" and 200 pounds. A non supportive bed is really hard on him. :( The room size seemed fine for my parents, but it really became frustrating with 4 of us in this room. There was not ever enough room for us to 'unpack' fully and we never got organized enough to feel comfortable. We were always looking for stuff and having to pull out a million things to get to the items we needed. We have been on Carnival Magic, Sensation, Dream, Conquest, and Disney Magic in balcony rooms. This is the smallest room we've ever had. We barely saw our room guy but at least our bed was made when we got to the room. My parents got a wonderful steward for their room. They were raving about him. The bunkbed my daughter was in was rattling ALL night long the first two nights. So, I got so frustrated that I moved the mattress to the floor and had her sleep there. It stopped the rattling! But, now we had to step over her to get to the bathroom in the night!!! ++++++++++++++++SHIP ACTIVITIES++++++++++++++++++ ++++++++++++++++KIDS CLUB We went on a ship tour as soon as we got there and were excited to check out the kids club. I was disappointed when I saw the pathetic facilities compared to some of the other ships we have been on. However, this is one of the nice surprises. The kids LOVED being in there. They had many, many activities planned and kept the kids engaged enough that they always wanted to go back! Very good job on that, Princess! +++++++++++++++++++NIGHT LIFE+++++++++++++++ We always try to go out late once or twice on a cruise, so we decided to go out one night until midnight. We walked through all the bars first, then headed to karoake. Karoake was a blast. People were being crazy. I was a little disturbed that some parents were letting their little kids hang out in there after 10... ours were in the kids club! We decided to wander up to the 'dance club', Skywalkers, around 11:30. When we got down there, it was full of cigarette smoke and they were playing a bunch of country music. (not our preference) Ugh. The smoke was the worst. So, we headed back to karoake. They were closing it down for the night when we got there and a bunch of people were leaving disappointed. :( When we walked into the other bar areas, those were shutting down as well??? There were LOTS of people still awake and walking around. I can't believe they would miss the opportunity to sell alcohol! Especially to those of us that don't smoke and didn't want to go into Skywalkers. Needless to say, we called it a night. ++++++++++Shows++++++++++++++ there were only two production shows that I saw on our agenda. Unfortunately, we missed both. But, usually there are shows every night on other ships, so I was disappointed with that. I was hoping my parents would get a full cruise experience. We were treating them for their 50th wedding anniversary. :( DINING +++++++++ROOM SERVICE+++++++++++++++++ Breakfast delivery was timely. The coffee was good. The pastries were almost always stale. :( My kids wouldn't even eat them. The cereal selection is for older people. Absolutely no cereal choices for kids. (like fruit loops, not even cheerios!) The same thing goes at the buffet as far as cereal! No smoked salmon on room service, either. :( We ordered sandwiches by room services late at night once. I requested plain, turkey sandwiches. I said "NO MAYO, NO TOMATO, NO LETTUCE.. PLAIN" three times to a guy that barely comprehended English. Sure enough, 30-40 minutes later, I get sandwiches with different combination of toppings. I try to call back and the phone rings and rings and rings. I ended up throwing away 4 sandwiches because someone couldn't understand what I said. ++++++++++++++MAIN DINING ROOM++++++++++++++++++ Me and my husband agree that the food was not great the first three nights. Dried salmon, over-cooked meats, etc. The food just wasn't what we were used to on a cruise. But, either they got a fresh shipment or a new cook, because the food seemed a lot better on day 4 on in the MDR. The lobster and prawn on formal night was fantastic. The desserts weren't as good as Carnival, though. ++++++++++BUFFET+++++++++++++++++++ There was a lot of food on the buffet that looked good, but tasted bad. We wasted a lot. :( I was happy to see smoked salmon on the buffet at least ONE morning. AND it was fabulous. On other mornings, they had other smoked fish. I wish I had tried them now. For breakfast, there was slightly disappointing corn beef hash, fried eggs on a tray to grab, egg omelets, sauteed mushrooms, etc. , and the elderly's finest selection of cereals and yogurts. Fruit was also available. The evening buffet was better than the MDR in a lot of cases, but still many dishes that need improvement. And, not to be snobby, but the presentation just didn't seem to be what we have become accustom to. I felt like I was eating at Golden Corral sometimes. One other thing about the ship that I saw in other posts--- sewer smell. Yes, I saw the reviews before and thought someone was just over-reacting. Nope. Sewer smell, especially on certain decks, and bathrooms. There are a lot of places that stink unfortunately. It wasn't in our room or in any of the areas we were staying in, so that was nice. :) We could avoid it. SHORE EXCURSIONS Playa MIA- The food was ok. Guacomole is good. Everything else is just edible. Drinks were drinks. Had a lot of alcohol. The beach water was very dirty for Cozumel. We could barely see through it. I had a drunk person fall into my back when I was on the floating water trampoline thing. It didn't feel good. I was worried for my small children when we got out there. I got them out of there as soon as I saw how stupid some of the adults were being. It would have been fun otherwise. the waterpark was nice to play in when we were done at the beach. The kids loved it. Little French Key This was not through the cruise line, so we had to leave the cruise terminal and walk up the 'hill'. We have done this before when we went on Victor Bodden's tour. It looks safer than it used to be. There is a security guard at the top of the hill. It's hot waiting. Bring WATER! We loved our day at Little French Key!! It was so beautiful. Our favorite stop. Even the food was good! I want to go back already. Goff's Cay Beautiful, but primitive. I could see some people loving this, others hating it. I was somewhere in between. The boat ride could have been better. It was so rough. 30 minutes, too! My poor mom looked terrified. I was hoping she wouldn't have a heart attack! My dad said it hurt his back. There were only two restrooms on this island that they dump about 500 people on per day apparently. There were a lot of drunks because the alcohol is strong. Be forewarned though- the rum punch is the same color as the kids punch. Bring water for your kids! The beach is really nice for the kids- it goes forever without getting very deep. The food was ok, but the smoke from the wood! That smoke burned my eyes for two hours. It was horrible. I don't have allergies of any kind, but that just about crippled me when I walked through the path of that smoke! My mom said it bothered her too. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
We are experienced cruisers, but this is the first time we have ever cruised with Princess. 29 members of our extended family joined us over Spring Break to help celebrate our parents' 60th wedding anniversary. The staff was very ... Read More
We are experienced cruisers, but this is the first time we have ever cruised with Princess. 29 members of our extended family joined us over Spring Break to help celebrate our parents' 60th wedding anniversary. The staff was very helpful in making the celebration -- and the entire week -- special. The food in the Palms dining room was very good -- in fact, the best lobster I've ever eaten. The prime rib was a bit disappointing, but the other beef dishes were very tasty. I was not terribly impressed with the quality of the fish dishes other than the lobster, but I am very particular about my fish. My daughter-in-law, granddaughters and I are all on a gluten-free, dairy-free diet and the staff was very diligent about ensuring that we had gluten-free bread, muffins, pasta and other gluten-free choices as well as special desserts prepared without dairy or gluten. The shows in the Princess Theater was outstanding -- especially Piano Man and Bravo! We enjoyed the Voice of the Seas competition on the final night, although the way they set it up, the singer who was clearly the crowd favorite was bumped out by the three judges. There were plenty of activities to keep us busy from movies under the stars to bingo to lounging by the pool -- and the spa offered some very nice options (and great massages). Read Less
Sail Date: March 2016
This was my first cruise and my husband's first as an adult. We enjoyed it very much. It was very low stress and relaxing. We plan to do more cruising the the future. Ship: The ship was clean, well maintained, and nicely ... Read More
This was my first cruise and my husband's first as an adult. We enjoyed it very much. It was very low stress and relaxing. We plan to do more cruising the the future. Ship: The ship was clean, well maintained, and nicely appointed. While each bar had its own vibe and decor, the three dining rooms were all very much the same. Once I was in a dining room, I couldn't tell which one I was in. It would have been nice if the dining rooms had more varied decor for variety. At anytime of the day or night I could find a quiet spot to read, play board games (we brought a few with us) or watch the water. Or you can always find a lively spot if you prefer. The staff was mostly good but not exceptional. We didn't use the pools but there a lot of them. At least one was adult only with hardly anyone in it. Still the pools were a little small. I would have used one if there had been a lap pool. Dining: We had anytime dining with the unlimited soft drink package. The dining was not really "anytime" as we often waited in a long line for a table. I loved the food in the dining room but my husband did not care for it. It was too gourmet with too much sauce on everything for his tastes. He normally love Eggs Benedict but was disappointed by that dish in the dining room. I loved my dining room breakfast. The best part of smoked salmon and cream cheese on a toasted bagel. Also good granola and yogurt. At dinner, on the first night I ordered a cheese tart (which is an entree) for desert and they were confused for a second but were happy to oblige. At our last meal in the dining room, I didn't like my beef wellington and they happily replaced it with something else more to my liking. Also, the soft drinks served in the dining room were flat and they seemed mostly unwilling to fix the problem. One server, sent his assistant to a nearby bar for our soft drinks and another brought us soft drinks in a can. But others were less helpful all the manager did was blame it on the manufacturer of the drink dispenser. The buffet lacked variety. In the AM the eggs were cold and the pastries stale. We also ate one night in the Italian restaurant and once in the Steak House. The food in the Italian restaurant was okay but not really worth it. The service was mostly wonderful but ... at another table one passenger had taken off his shoes and socks and was getting a foot massage from his son. It was formal night and this seemed well outside the dress code. Even at McDonald's you have to wear shoes. I complained to the waitress but she said there was nothing she could do about it. Not very romantic. The steak house was wonderful. The service there was superb as was the food and atmosphere. We would have eaten there again but it was our last night on board the ship. Even with our soft drink package we had to show our ship ID every time we ordered a beverage. I bought a lanyard (none provided) so that I would always have it on me in easy reach. My husband kept his in his wallet and got very tired of taking it out. We would have been willing to pay more it we could have ordered drinks without the fiddlyness of showing our card every time. Next time we will skip the drinks package and stick to the included drinks of water, tea, coffee. Be warned at least one bar charges for basic coffee even though basic coffee is supposedly included in the cost of the cruise. Entertainment and Activities: I was disappointed that there weren't more scheduled activities. I like more live music and dancing. I'd also like presentations about the upcoming ports covering history, culture, geography, and economy but none were offered. We went to one show in the theater which we enjoyed but there was too much opera singing for my husband's taste. The best activity was the star gazing but it was only offered once the entire cruise. Also, they turn off deck lights on the top deck to better see the stars (good) but when the talk is over they turn the lights back on (bad) so that you have no time just to look without all the yammering. They said it was for safety but they could have given us 30 more min of supervised (for safety) but silent dark to just soak in the night sky. Also the talk was all about the mythology and nothing about astronomy. I would also have liked a talk about ship operation and navigation. Ports: The towns are very poor and ugly. There is nothing glamorous, exotic, beautiful, or quaint about them. The water was gorgeous. The weather was warm and pleasant. Shore Excursions: We booked an excursion for each port and were happy with them. When we first booked, we wanted to do the the America's Cup Race but it was wait-listed so we booked a snorkel thing instead. Luckily someone canceled and we got into the America's Cup Race and had no difficulty canceling the snorkeling but we did have to ask them to do it. It was not automatic. Then, because the water was so beautiful and we weren't doing the snorkeling, we asked to change one of our other excursions to include time at a beach where we could snorkel and we had no problems getting that taken care of either. In Cozumel we did the America's Cup 12-Metre Yacht Race. I highly recommend it. We hope to do that excursion again it was so much fun. In Roatan we did the Gumbalimba Preservation Nature Park & Scenic Drive. We added time at the beach to this one and it came with lunch. It was okay. The scenic drive wasn't very scenic and we didn't get enough time with the monkeys. The lunch was cold hamburgers and there wasn't enough food. The beach was wonderful but the snorkeling was just so so. In Belize we did the Lamanai Mayan Ruins,Mangrove River Cruise & Lunch. I'm glad I saw the ruins once but they were not very interesting compared with ruins I've seen in Europe. The river cruise was loud and windy. Don't expect to see wildlife. I think the noise of the boat scared it all away. Lunch was very good, home-cooked, and the best meal we had on the entire vacation. Embarkation/Disembarkation: The cruise leaves out of our home city. In the morning we drove to the cruise terminal. Parking was easy and check in was low stress. The waiting room could be more comfortable and better appointed but it serves its purpose. We were early and some of the first to board. We had plenty of time to get lunch on board, take a self guided tour of the ship, and unpack. Then sit on the back deck, enjoy a drink and discuss the geography of the area. Then we sailed away thru the ship channel and watched the land pass by. At the ports, getting on and off the ship was easy if a little crowded. At the end of the cruise we had a choice of walking off with our luggage or having them unload or luggage for us. With the second option you have to pick a specific time to disembark. We wanted to be flexible so we chose the first option only to find out that those folks have to get off first very early so we switched the the second option but had to give them our luggage the night before. In the end it turned out well but it could have been better explained in the first place. We were looking for a relaxing stress-reducing week and we got it. We especially liked that there was no air travel involved nor long car drives like all our previous vacations. It was also very affordable. We understand that this is that last season that they are offering the cruise out of Houston but we will take a similar cruise again in the future out of Galveston. We will do the America's Cup Race again and spend the other days snorkeling off a sail boat. We will try a different cruise line in hopes of better dining. We will get an interior cabin towards the front of the ship. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2015
I can't speak highly enough about Princess Cruises they went above and beyond and everything ran smoothly ,nothing was an issue and the staff were all polite and went out of their way ,especially room service and the seated dining in ... Read More
I can't speak highly enough about Princess Cruises they went above and beyond and everything ran smoothly ,nothing was an issue and the staff were all polite and went out of their way ,especially room service and the seated dining in the evening .Only thing i would have liked was a kettle in the room this isn't allowed for safety reasons.We had a top balcony room and it was perfectly situated,you couldnt hear anything at night when trying to sleep considering there were bars and shows going on ! The food was fantastic whether anytime dining or evening booked .5 star cuisine ! Loved the free tapas /sushi bar too. The ship itself was amazing and very relaxed no matter what part you were sitting in ,the classes were great we loved the zumba class and nutrition class.The huge screen by the pool was a bonus to watch a movie day or night .the day trips were brilliant although you have to see a lot in 6-8 hours so can be tiring for some.Transfers and day trips ran like clock work .I would highly recommend princess cruises ,I went with a friend but its a great way to reconnect with your loved ones also .lots of couples ,no stress ,a hotel floating with you to different countries amazzzzzing !!! So nice to wake up each morning in a different country and also nice to have days at sea to enjoy the spa.we had a seawed 2 hr wrap which was really nice .The interior of the ship is beautiful and there are several different bars/cafes etc ,the pools and jacuzzis were clean and not too busy either. Thank you Princess Cruises for a brilliant week :) Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2015
We booked this Spring Break cruise in celebration for our sons graduation coming up in June, and as the title says it will be one we will never forget! This was the 6th time my wife and I have cruised on a Princess ship and actually ... Read More
We booked this Spring Break cruise in celebration for our sons graduation coming up in June, and as the title says it will be one we will never forget! This was the 6th time my wife and I have cruised on a Princess ship and actually our 2nd on the Caribbean Princess. We were blessed to have sailed her for her 2nd voyage back in 2004 with our oldest daughter and her boyfriend (now DSIL) for their high school graduation present. This cruise we would be coming a board as Platinum's, so we were excited about the extra perks we were going to get! Travel to embarkation port: We drove from Virginia on Good Friday and due to the time we left plus the heavy traffic, twelve hours later we stayed at Microhotel in Brunswick, Ga. We had booked this in advance, so we were not surprised at all with the condition. I'll just say it this way, you get what you pay for! We decided to leave early (5 am) for the port just in case there was traffic along the way was bad but we were truly blessed. We used our GPS plus followed the instructions provided on the Princess website and we arrived at the gate by 12:00pm. As we approached the gate, a guard ask what pier were heading to, checked our ID's, gave a parking pass and sent us on our way. We made the first left and it took us right to the parking lot on the left. This was our first time parking at the port and we were pleasantly surprised how easy it was, we will surely do it again. It was $15.00 a day compared to the Park & Go's $12.00 a day BUT minus the shuttle ride, which we preferred not to do. Embarkation: As we excited the parking lot elevator and followed the directions, we handed off our luggage to a friendly porter and we were in line in less then a few minutes. Being use to the lines, we not bothered by the length and actually it wasn't that long. BUT while we were waiting on of the Princess reps was distributing the health explanation cards and said " does anyone have a green stripe across the top of their boarding pass?' Well ours were printed in black and white but I remembered ours were green when I printed them, and we off course said ours were. He looked and said 'Ok up the middle please.' We looked at them and how we did not notice before it said 'Preferred check-in across the top'. A Platinum perk we had forgotten! Well we moved swiftly through the line after the security check, health form check and the check-in desk and on board before we knew it! Cabin: We had originally gotten OW on Deck 8 (Ocean view obstructed), about 3 weeks prior we received an e-mail for the Up sell to either a balcony or a window suite, so we grabbed the opportunity for the window suite! We were not disappointed at all, it was like being in a hotel room! It was an amazing surprise for our son who expecting to sleep in a bunk! (See cabin review for more.) Dining: As always we found no fault with the dining facilities on board. The first night, we dined at the Crown Grill, a perk of having a suite, on behalf of Princess. We all had different variety of steaks along with lobster and it was delicious. I had made the reservation that day after we got to our cabin and they ask if we were celebrating anything and I said my sons graduation from high school. Well after he had dessert, they surprised all of us and brought him a nice size chocolate cake and sang to him! It was definitely a surprise. We also dined a Sabitini's one night, and the food was fantastic! The rest of the cruise we had Anytime dining in the Island dining room. We able to make our reservations for the same table each night and again they did night fail to surprise us with the fine quality of the food. We only visited the buffet area one time during the cruise, and it was not because of the quality of the food but because of the rudeness of the passengers. It amazes me how people will totally ignore the request of the person in charge to use the hand sanitizer before getting their food, ignore using deodorant, and act like the food is about to run out. So, we chose to go to the International Cafe on deck 5 in the Piazza. They had a variety of sandwiches. salads and desserts for lunch and in the morning: breakfast sandwiches, donuts and yogurt were available. Service: Again we found the service of the Caribbean Princess crew to be above notch from our waiter Leo and his assistant Reagan to our cabin steward Sandy, to the pursers desk reps who had to fix my wife's room card 4 times because it kept getting demagnetized, to the cruise director staff who kept us laughing! Yea we saw a few frowns on faces but most of the crew walks around with smiles and ready to serve! Activities: We loved waking up to the cruise director Paul and his deputy Corey with the Wake Up show every morning! Each morning they would give a trivia question and you had until noon to answer it on the form provided and turn it in. The next morning they would get all the correct answers and pull 3 winners. Paul like to analyze the handwriting and it would keep you laughing. We actually won 4 of the trivia questions! I thought the activities were fine, we mainly went to the different trivia's being held. Entertainment: We didn't go to any of the shows put on by the Princess dancers and singers, but we did attend the shows with the special guest: Magician Alex Ramon, the comedian Troy Thirdgill and the ventriloquist Jerry Goodspeed. They were all fantastic! Make sure you go early all 3 shows were usually packed! Port & Excursions: Grand Cayman: My son and I did the Stingray/ Turtle farm/ Hell excursion. We really enjoyed ourselves. We sent a post card home from the town of Hell. Roatan: Pay close attention to the time, Roatan time is 1 hour earlier then ship time and it can through you off when trying to get to your excursion, The time on the ticket is ship time. We all three did the Extreme Zip-lining and it was a blast. Everyone at the location was wonderful, and the guides are really helpful and full of fun! Cozumel: We went to the Tulum Mayan Ruins tour! I highly recommend it, the tour group that is in charge of it our wonderful. The ruins themselves are breath taking, do not forget your camera! Princess Cays: Love it! Disembarkation: We were suppose to disembark at 9:30am but due to customs again, we disembarked at 10:15. It went pretty smoothed, grabbed our luggage went through the customs line and on to the parking garage. We were back on the road to visit some relatives before heading home by 12:00pm. Summary: I find it very hard to really express how much we enjoyed ourselves, but I can say we definitely will cruise with Princess again and again and again in the future! Our motto is: Your cruise will be they way you want it to be. ONLY You control what happens and how you let others affect your experience! Read Less
Sail Date: April 2015
Overall impressed with princess Caribbean ship. Some areas still need refurbishing like some carpet and lounge chair cushions but maybe that is in the works. Kept very clean throughout the entire public areas! Horizon Court coffee was ... Read More
Overall impressed with princess Caribbean ship. Some areas still need refurbishing like some carpet and lounge chair cushions but maybe that is in the works. Kept very clean throughout the entire public areas! Horizon Court coffee was horrible most days tasted burnt. Go to sit down dining for breakfast for much better food and excellent table service. Tender service to islands was top notch very organized and speedy. Carnival guests were jealous because our line moved so much faster then theirs because Princess has own tenders instead of locals at Grand Cayman. Speaking of Grand Cayman, the swim with dolphins and Stingrays was awesome. Well worth it. check out booze prices on ship most match Cozumels even. Overall great trip and awesome food in Palm dining thanks to all who made it that way! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2015
Where do I even begin? To begin with the embarkation was a nightmare! I have cruised 7 times before this cruise with 3 different lines and was totally appalled at the lack of speed and service we encountered. We waited in a line over an ... Read More
Where do I even begin? To begin with the embarkation was a nightmare! I have cruised 7 times before this cruise with 3 different lines and was totally appalled at the lack of speed and service we encountered. We waited in a line over an hour and a half just to get into the building to get our small bags through security. Then we waited another 45 minutes to get our IDs checked and to get our ship cards. Then another 25 minutes to board the ship. In my opinion, this is totally unacceptable! Once on the ship, we were promised a beautiful ship of luxury......this ship certainly did not live up to this. Dust all over the hallways and rooms. Lots of wear and tear everywhere. The pool areas and entertainment locations were WAY too small to hold all the passengers which created chaos and over crowding. This cruise line typically charges more than most and I just don't see why. The "princess" cruisers were for the most part completely snobby. They swore by cruising princess only and looked down upon those who preferred other cruise lines. They also had no problem voicing that opinion. Our other major problem was with the target age group of this cruise. I understand you need to please all clientele, but if you weren't over 60 then you probably were not pleased. There was not a variety of entertainment or entertainment times. The entertainment was mildly entertaining to say the least and I have had way better experiences on other cruise lines. Not to mention the entertainment spaces were always full to capacity and during all shows people had to stand along the aisle due to lack of space. One thing I LOVE about a cruise is the food. I went on the boat hearing that the food and service was incredible.....once again I found this information to be false. The food was lack luster to say the least. Not a variety of food choices and was never the correct temperature. Once again, I felt the food was also designed to appeal to an "older" crowd, as the food was bland and flavorless on most occasions. Even on the formal night the food choices lacked pizzazz. We were also super excited to try the steak house, but no luck. They were not flexible with booking us a time and there was never an opening besides a 9PM time. We did anytime dining (which we have done many times on other lines and had been highly pleased) and wow was it a mistake! We usually eat at 5:45-6 and had never had to wait for a table with other cruise lines. Well long story short, we had to get in line at 5:15 each day just to get a table. The one night we were late due to a shore excursion, the head waiter wanted us to wait with a pager for over an hour and a half to get a table. The buffet was a joke and I found that items such as the pastries were infested with gnats. The food was over cooked and dry due to sitting for way too long. Once again the dining area was too small and you practically had to fight for a table or go eat in your room. Room service(or never show up service) was also a joke. If all you want is a hard piece of fruit and a stale pastry that doesn't show up until 3 hours after your shore excision time; then this boat will serve you well. Needless to say, the dining experience was highly disappointing. A few more issues just to be the icing on top of the cake...... Slow and over crowded bar service everywhere you went, snappy older people who were not afraid to voice their rude opinions, all deck chairs full by 8:30 AM due to lack of chairs and people saving multiple at a time, no towel animals (which is a silly thing that we love and requested but never received), slow disembarkation(took over an hour and a half and the staff sent us to the wrong room to get off the boat which prolonged our stay on the boat when we had a timeline to get home), ridiculously long photo lines, and no availability for shore excursions. So basically if you are 65+, love to play bingo, eat by 4:45, don't like going to the pool or comedy shows, love bland food, poor service, dust mites, and rude people then this is the cruise for you. If this does not fit your description; please do yourself a favor and steer clear of this boat. Save yourself from overspending on this cruise line that offers nothing but broken promises! Don't bother calling Princess to tell them your issues. The rude customer service people tell you there is no direct phone line to talk to a person about this. You may submit an email or a survey, but that will take up to 3 weeks to hear a response from. We will NEVER sail Princess again!!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2015
This cruise was top notch! I booked two inside staterooms, because the prices were so low, and my wife and I are building points towards becoming Elite members in the Captain's Circle. Sailing as a solo, you get double cruise ... Read More
This cruise was top notch! I booked two inside staterooms, because the prices were so low, and my wife and I are building points towards becoming Elite members in the Captain's Circle. Sailing as a solo, you get double cruise points. Since we live in Florida, we just drove over on the same day, so we had no hotel stay. We usually park at US1 Airport Parking or United Airport Parking, which uses the Embassy Suites on SE 17th Street parking lot. Both shuttle up to 4 people to and from the port as part of the fee, which ranges from $5-$7 per day. I've never had an issue with either service. Both are about a mile from the ships, which are usually at Cruise Terminal 2 and/or 21, depending on how many Princess ships are in the port at the same time. Two days before the cruise, I received a call from AL at Princess. He saw that my wife and I were in separate staterooms, and he asked if I would mind sleeping with my wife in the same stateroom? LOL! He said he needed some inside cabins, and he wanted to move us into a suite. It didn't have a balcony, but neither did the inside cabins. Before I said yes, he sweetened the deal with some added onboard or "move-over" credit. That was definitely more icing on the cake. Plus, we had full "suite benefits" to enjoy. You should look those up on Princess.com. I've listed most throughout this review. We've learned to pack light for these Caribbean Getaways (3-5 days), so now we just carry our own luggage onboard by ourselves. The porters will usually try to take them from/for you, but it's not required. If you do drop off your luggage, it's nice to tip a buck per bag, but tipping is not required since they are paid employees. It is simple and easy if you just have one suitcase each. You have to go through the security screening, but since we are eligible for Preferred Check-in, the lines are short and we were onboard and in the suite in just 15 minutes; that's from shuttle to suite, including the check-in, embarkation photo and walk up the ramp. We boarded on Fiesta Deck 6, the same as our suite, and we just had to cross the Piazza/Atrium and we were there. Princess has done a great job of streamlining their embarkation processes. Everyone is willing to help and get you pointed in the right direction. One issue folks experience on the CB, which we didn't have to deal with this time, is the slow elevators, and during embarkation, Princess employees commandeer half of the elevators to manually take folks to their deck/stateroom. If you dropped off your bags with the porters, they do a great job of delivering the luggage fairly quickly. The latest we've waited is 6pm. If you've never been in a suite before, you get spoiled really fast. First of all, the Window Suites are hidden behind a wood-paneled, soundproof wall, so you are separated from all the Piazza noise and traffic. We opened the suite door, and we were home in the Santa Monica Suite. The 300+ square footage (about 18'x18') is great and featured an outside wall with two large (6'x6') picture windows. There were three closets and lots of drawers, a desk and credenza and a small sitting area with a sofabed. There was a nice, fresh fruit basket waiting for us, as well as a fully stocked mini-bar. Unlike regular staterooms, in the suites the first round of items in the mini-bar is complimentary. It had 10 small bottles of liquor (2 each of 5 kinds), plus 2 beers, 2 tonics, 2 Pellegrino, 2 spring waters, 2 Cokes and 2 Sprites. You can swap out what you want with the steward on the first day to stock it to your taste. We don't know if there is a sensor or a camera, but soon after entering the suite, the steward appeared, followed shortly by room service delivering canapés. In another 30 minutes, room service stopped by with a plate of chocolate-covered strawberries. Oh yeah! Now we know why folks spend the extra $$$ for a suite. Other amenities include unlimited use of the Thermal Suite at the Lotus Spa, canapés delivered daily, corsages for dress to impress/formal nights, the cover charge waived for one dinner at a specialty restaurant, a 100+ DVD library, and Lotus Spa bathroom amenities. Our suite was an accessible suite, so the bathroom did not have a jetted tub like they have in other suites. It had a roll-in shower (5x6) with a fold-down shower seat and lots of handrails around the bathroom walls. My wife enjoyed the fancy, lighted makeup mirror, but the blow dryer was located next to the vanity/makeup mirror out beside the sitting area. The bathroom floor had long drains to capture the water, but until we learned the right spots to put the bath mat and a towel and angle the showerhead, the bathroom floor got flooded. We never saw it, but we think the steward had a squeegee or a fantastic mop, because when we left the room to eat or play, when we returned, the bathroom was clean and dry. We had our 6yo granddaughter with us. She loves the Kids Club and being a Princess Pelican. Even though Princess isn't known for their young family cruising, they do a great job of educating and entertaining the kids. We've never heard an "I'm bored" from her, just "when can I go back to the kids' club?" At sea, the program is open 9am-12pm, 1pm-5pm and 6pm-10pm for free. There's a late-night program, 10pm-1am, for a fee (usually $7-$8 per hour). For parents with younger children, they have pagers to beep you if they need you. If the pager goes off, you can call and find out what they need. Other ships have phones that operate on the ship's wireless network, which is nice. Part of the program is educational, teaching the kids about things like sea life, conservation and recycling. They colored t-shirts, made lanyards for their cruise cards, danced, played games, etc. On formal night, they had their own "kids' dinner" or the kids can eat with their parents, or both. I won't mention that after we picked her up at 10pm, she had to have a vanilla ice cream cone with chocolate and rainbow sprinkles and a cherry on top AND a slice or two of pizza. Of course, just water to drink to stay hydrated and save calories, right? And it would have been rude of us to let her eat alone. On a personal note about children, cruising with your own kids or grandkids gives you a great opportunity to find/see/catch any gaps in their etiquette and manners, and it's a great place to teach them how to eat a formal dinner. You'll get questions like "why are there so many forks and knives on the table?" Who knew there was a table knife, a butter knife, a steak knife, a fish knife...? Something new this year is Discovery at Sea. For the Caribbean cruises, the focus was on the night sky. It was very interesting to see the stars (weather was cooperative) and hear about the various things to see. They even lowered the lights on the upper deck areas for better viewing. This is definitely a plus for Princess. Now I'm curious about the Discovery at Sea programs in other locations on other ships. This was also our first time eating at one of the specialty restaurants. We've always had the "we already paid for the food" mindset, so we didn't spend extra, but this time it was free as one of our suite amenities. We enjoyed a wonderfully delicious Italian dinner at Sabatini's. I failed to mention earlier that suite guests can also eat breakfast in their own separate dining room, which is Sabatini's. The maître d and waiters/waitresses were super, a cut above the main dining room. You felt like royalty as they catered to your every need. Once you see what's on the menu, hear about the Chef's "special" creation, and taste the food, too, you know why you pay an extra cover charge. Superb! I just may pay next time. There are lots of fancy choices, including "lobster 3 ways" or lamb shank or NY Strip steak. Like the Main Dining Room, you can eat as much as you want. If you can't decide between two choices, get both. Don't know if you like something or not? Order it and try it. Escargot? You can love it or leave it. Cold soup made with meat, fruit and veggies that you've never heard of before? Go for it! It's your own fault if you leave hungry (or leave sick from overeating). I've always enjoyed the entertainment on the Princess ships; this was no exception. This cruise had a comedian, a comedic master magician (great up-close magic, too) and two wonderful Broadway-style shows featuring the Princess Singers and Dancers. There were also other entertainers and musicians at the various lounges and bars around the ship. Also, various shows/activities in the Piazza throughout the day and every evening. All did a great job. Our shore excursion (semi-submarine) was cancelled due to murky waters, so we just went ashore and enjoyed browsing in the stores and playing/lying on the beach. The weather was perfect in the mid-80s, and there wasn't a cloud in the sky. I enjoyed a shared margarita and jerk pork tacos with the family and the masses at Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville in Grand Turk. I took advantage of their guest Wi-Fi to check on the real world and send a few pictures to other family members in the chillier regions around the globe. And yes, it generated a little envy seeing the beach, clear blue/turquoise-colored waters and cloudless sky that framed the cruise ship. My brother commented that it was a long walk back to the buffet from there. LOL I was a lot closer than he was, 12 time zones away on the other side of the world. There's an interesting, free NASA display about the Mercury splashdown and astronaut retrieval on the island. It's hidden behind the shopping area, over to the right after going through the duty-free store. It's a nice photo spot, or you can play a game of chess with the 2- to 3-foot tall chess pieces. That's Check and 'mate! Back on board, Paul, the Cruise Director, announced a change in activities. Due to forecasted inclement weather, the evening's On-deck Disco Dance Party had to be cancelled. Instead, they changed it to their '50's Rock & Roll Party indoors in the Explorer's Lounge. The Captain did a fantastic job of punching through the weather, which just involved light rain. In addition to the onboard entertainment, our Sea Days were occupied with all sorts of activities on the ship. We watched others participate in silly, fun games. We watched the paper plane contest. We attended an art auction, went to a movie, made crafts, sat in on a couple of lectures, browsed through the stores onboard (they're making changes to the boutiques), participated in drawings and giveaways. Everyday, we took advantage of the Thermal Suite in the Lotus Spa. We had to spend our "you can't take it with you" onboard credit, so I indulged myself with a Royal Shave at the Lotus Spa, and I'll do it again on a future cruise. That included a double shave (one with gel and one with oil); a scalp, neck, face and arm massage; and aromatic facial. I purchased a few items and added additional tip. My wife enjoyed time at the casino and saved some $$$ with some duty-free shopping, buying items she would buy at home anyway. The cost was about 50% of the price she would pay in FL, so.... That's a perk of international travel. Disembarkation was a breeze. As a suite amenity, Princess has a special Disembarkation Lounge setup for Platinum, Elite and Suite passengers, that has coffee, tea, juices and pastries available. This one was setup in Club Fusion, Deck 7 Aft, so we didn't use it this time. Princess asks that all passengers that are disembarking vacate their staterooms by 8am. You can fill your time by attending breakfast or catching a few last-minute sunrays, or looking through the photos one last time. Some folks were taking a nap in their deck chair. We were able to disembark directly from our suite, just right across the ship, one last scan of the cruise card and down the ramp to Customs. We chose a "walk-off group" which allows us to carry off our own luggage. The "walk-off groups" are great if you want to disembark the ship early, soon after arriving back at the port once Customs is ready. We took a later group so we could sleep in an extra hour, since we were only headed home. Sometimes I have to go to work the morning we arrive, so I'm able to disembark quickly and make to work in Miami by 9am. The Customs line was fairly short (maybe 50 people), and they had 5 stations open, so it just took 15 minutes to get through the line. Back on land, Port Everglades does a pretty good job of keeping vehicles moving. Transportation is split up, with some folks going to get on buses to go to the airport, some going on local excursions before going to the airport, others that are parked in the cruise terminal parking, which is close, but costs $15 per day. Those with independent travel arrangements (taxis, hotel shuttles, private shuttles, off-site parking shuttles, limousines, personal vehicles, etc.) are shuffled down to a pickup area that is managed by local security and county sheriffs that direct traffic and keep things from backing up and creating a gridlock. Just make sure you follow the instructions given by whoever is picking you up and be watching for them. The security officers and sheriffs don't let anyone stop for very long, so shuttles will stop, load luggage, and then leave with only one person on it if that's all that is there or paying attention. Some are running scheduled loops, and others, like taxis, are summoned or "on-call" private shuttles. Anyway, we made it out and back to our waiting vehicle and safely made it back home. That same day, Monday, we received a survey via email. Throughout the cruise, you'll hear about giving everyone a 10 on their section of the survey. What are you going to give them? "10!" cheers everyone. I say, rate them fairly, and take the time to tell Princess about both the good and the bad. That's how they know where to make changes and how some employees get rewarded. In summary, I really would have to give this specific cruise a 10. I don't know if it was what I'll call the "suite-effect" or something else, but most everything exceeded our expectations. The upgrade to the suite, the added move-over credit, the suite amenities, the royal treatment by everyone who served us, the dining experience, the spa experience, the entertainment and activities: ALL contributed to a memorable, nearly perfect, cruise experience. I wish everyone could have this kind of cruise at least once in their life. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2014
Spring Break cruise to Cozumel, Roatan, and Belize. Family of 4 -- mom, dad, 6 and 1 year olds. We have been Royal Caribbean customers but chose Princess this time because the schedule worked well with Spring Break. I will include some ... Read More
Spring Break cruise to Cozumel, Roatan, and Belize. Family of 4 -- mom, dad, 6 and 1 year olds. We have been Royal Caribbean customers but chose Princess this time because the schedule worked well with Spring Break. I will include some comparisons for others that may not have tried both companies. *Port of Houston -- easy to drop luggage, park the car, and walk in. We arrived 3.5 hours prior to departure and waited about 40 minutes total from arrival to embarkation. *Stateroom -- Oceanview level 5. Open floorplan stateroom felt a lot more spacious than Royal Caribbean. On RC they try to implement separate living room and bedroom areas, but the single room on Princess worked much better for us. Shower does not have a detachable showerhead and flimsy shower curtain hardly does its job -- keep everything off the floor! Our shower had hot water only which made for interesting showers. *Stateroom service -- pleasant and efficient but not super accomodating like on previous cruises. Our requests for extra pillows, towels, and diaper disposal were not quickly serviced. *Ship layout -- very well done interior and nice variety of venus, from piano lounge to wine bar to line dancing. Outdoor areas are nice with giant movie screen at one of the pools. Few good ocean viewing spots, like up high or at the very bow or stern of the ship. I always like to stand at the very front of the ship like Kate Winslet in Titanic. *Pool area -- nice and basically what we expected. I wish cruise lines would enforce the "no reserving lounge chairs" rules. At one point I counted the number of vacant, reserved chairs was more than double the total number of people wandering around the pool area. What are people doing, reserving loungers and then going back to their rooms? Also, the clean towel bin was almost always empty. *Dining Rooms -- food definitely a cut above Royal Caribbean. Service seemed to be in a more European style, very efficient and polite but not friendly and talkative. Dining room staff does not provide entertainment like on Royal Caribbean. "Anytime Dining" gave us some flexibility with the 1 year old and let our family sit alone, which made us more comfortable when he was difficult. But it is only "Anytime" if you arrive right when it opens at 5:30. Every night when we finished dinner at 7:00 there were more than 100 people in line waiting to be seated. *Bars -- good drinks, and nice variety between the different venues. On Royal Caribbean it seems like every bar location has exactly the same offerings. Princess had a martini bar, wine bar, draft beer at the pool, etc. I liked that 15% gratuity was added automatically to drink orders because I didn't feel like I had to leave $1 or $2 regardless of whether my order was only $4. Very attentive service at all locations. *Buffet -- We had breakfast and dinner a few times. Nice variety among nights. We particularly enjoyed Bavarian night and "Crab Shack" (which costs $20 extra). As other reviewers have mentioned, yes, of course the crab has been previously frozen. But the big quantity and pretty good quality make for a good value. We usually had to wait for about 5 minutes to get into the buffet line which was never an issue on R.C. *Entertainment -- excellent first run movies, at "Movies Under the Stars" at the pool at night, at the theatre, and in the cabin. I have never watched movies on previous cruises but watched several this week. *Children's clubs -- children under 3 not accepted for children's activities or babysitting, unlike on Royal Caribbean. There were definitely a few times we lamented this. But my 6 year old absolutely loved the kids club and wanted to go back as often as we would let her. *General -- I didn't feel like Princess was constantly trying to upsell me like on Royal Caribbean. In particular, the photographers were not as ubiquitous and intrusive. We observed crew members bickering with each other on a few occasions which struck me as very unprofessional. Ports *Cozumel, Playa Mia -- online it looks like a wonderful beach park with water slides and playgrounds for children. But the sea is rough and deepens quickly. Everyone has to wear a life jacket to swim out to the water trampoline. You probably need to be at least 12 years old and a strong swimmer to enjoy the in-water amenities. Food and drink service was excellent, though the buffet was a bit "American-friendly" for my taste. Fruit, mashed potatoes, fries, etc. with just a few Mexican offerings. *Maya Key, Roatan, Honduras -- a gem. Shallow and extremely calm beach, though you arem't allowed to go out very far. Perfect for small children; we were totally comfortable letting our 6 year old go out to the water while we watched from our beach chairs. The best snorkeling from shore I have seen outside of Hawaii, and several interesting birds and big cats. *Belize City -- the only excursion available for little kids is the zoo and Howler Monkey Sanctuary. This tour involves about 3 hours on a bus but the tour guides were excellent. At the monkey sanctuary you only have about 15 minutes with the monkeys but it is amazing how close you are. The zoo is small by American standards but they have unique local specimins. Really my favorite part of this tour was driving through the "real Belize", outside of the port area. Belize does not have a welfare state, so even though it is a developing nation, small business owners and entrepeneurs are everywhere. The cashew wine sold at the monkey sanctuary is a unique local experience. Summary We slightly preferred this cruise to our previous Royal Caribbean cruises due to better food, stateroom layout, entertainment, and on-board venues. However, I believe that the fact that Princess charges all gratuities automatically to your account has decreased the motivation for individual crew members to excel at their jobs. We will definitely sail Princess again after our 1 year old is old enough to participate in the kids' activities. The ship is a bit more worn than you would expect for its age, but I probably would be too if I went to Cozumel every week. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2013
We booked this cruise about 10 days prior to sailing and chose it because of the itinerary -- we hadn't cruised to Curacao or Aruba previously. The reviews I read from the recent few months were decent, but quite a few comments about ... Read More
We booked this cruise about 10 days prior to sailing and chose it because of the itinerary -- we hadn't cruised to Curacao or Aruba previously. The reviews I read from the recent few months were decent, but quite a few comments about the condition of the ship. This was the 3rd cruise we've done on Princess, 9th cruise overall. I was pleased w/ the condition of the ship, the service and overall didn't have any issues other than trying to find the best waitstaff as soon as possible. We were fortunate to have an excellent room steward; the best one we've ever had (Alfred from the Philippines was a joy -- genuine and always smiling; did a great job & was patient in doing our room later in the morning due to the sleeping teenager). I had read that getting off the ship had been taking up to two hours, but this was the quickest we ever got off and the ship was full. We were in the group that was due to meet at 10:05am but they were ahead of schedule and it was 20 min. earlier. They made announcements so groups knew about the change. Bert Statton was a pianist/singer/entertainer and was a blast. I watched most of his set every night and both of his full shows in the lounges. He is a nut and brought humor, had the crowd participate and sing a little. From kids to seniors, it was great to see so many people having fun together. A++++ for Bert. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2013
On March 23rd, I took my mother on a cruise aboard the Caribbean Princess to celebrate her birthday. We eagerly anticipated the cruise for months prior and expected to enjoy ourselves. We have taken several cruises in the past and have ... Read More
On March 23rd, I took my mother on a cruise aboard the Caribbean Princess to celebrate her birthday. We eagerly anticipated the cruise for months prior and expected to enjoy ourselves. We have taken several cruises in the past and have heard positive feedback about Princess from other passengers. My mother has talked about wanting to go on Princess for the past few years, and I surprised her last year when I told her that I booked it for her birthday. We did not expect that the cruise, which took place March 23rd to the 30th, would have been a costly mistake demonstrated by repeated poor service every day (and several times throughout the day). The service was so poor that, at this time, I would not consider booking with Princess again. As you will come to read, you will find that the staff was extremely rude, disrespectful, and inconsiderate throughout the ship in various departments. There were problems every day---in the morning, afternoon, and evening. On day one we were treated poorly. We departed Fort Lauderdale in the afternoon and wanted the balcony door to open in our cabin, R301. We attempted to open the door, though were unsuccessful. We called the front desk staff, which sent up two people who did not know how to open the door, and by the time the door was opened, it was two hours later (at nearly midnight). Two hours to open a balcony door is unacceptable. We had to call the front desk several times and were repeatedly told "10 minutes" or "soon." Early in the cruise, we saw the GoSmile advertisement. We were interested and made a consultation. The young woman provided us with consent forms, and I go through them meticulously. I can not help that, considering I am a critical care nurse. Consent forms are given for a reason; they are given so the client knows the risks/benefits of a procedure. I noticed that there were some areas of concern for my mother (who has veneers, crowns, and a denture) and for me (asthma and a history of melanoma). We asked her questions about these, which were cautioned in the consent form. She was getting impatient with the questions and said that the forms are "old" and "you will be fine." She could not show us pictures and was upset that we would ask. I asked about the light and if it emits radiation; she responded with "of course not!" I said that I thought it would be a good idea "if we hold off." We were walking out of the room and she tore apart the papers. I could not imagine talking down to people like that prior to a procedure if they had questions. It is unethical to degrade people in such a manner, and I would (rightfully) lose my job. Each night, we went to the Princess Theater for entertainment. The wait staff would scan the room for people in the theater for whom they would offer a drink too (people they saw were formally dressed up and thus they would get a larger tip). We were never offered anything to drink; yet, they would make eye contact with us. It was as though we were treated as second-class citizens and only the people they considered "VIP" were offered any kind of drink. We were ignored. One of the evenings, I called out to one of the servers and asked for something to drink. They said that they could not get us iced tea, since they do not have that at the bar. We asked for water, and he returned 20 minutes later with water. My mother asked for two straws (one for her and for me), and he yelled at her saying, "the straws are only for the soda or drinks. If you wanted a straw, you should have asked for it with the water." Well, when we go to restaurants, the servers carry extra straws in their pocket...so, this came to us as a surprise. He came back with several straws, handed them to my mother, and we realized that on this boat we have to carry our own straws in our pockets. The following night, we asked for water but forgot the straws...we got the straws, 30 minutes later, after asking three servers. Unbelievable! So, my mother made it a priority to keep a straw in her jacket pocket while walking throughout the ship. I am shocked by this; I spent nearly $2,100 so my mother can walk around a cruise boat with poor service and a straw in her pocket? However, the lack of offering liquids went throughout the ship. On the 15th floor or in the cafes, we would ask for iced tea and the staff would say that they could not get it for us, though mostly they would not offer us anything. We asked a server (who just put iced tea on the table for four men) if we could have iced tea too, and she said that we would have to go to the dining room (this was the night of the Ultimate Deck Party, so the 26th--my mother's birthday). The staff would say that iced tea can only be given in the main dining rooms. The same story applied to lemonade or iced coffee. We have been on different cruise lines before and iced tea was available everywhere, even if you poured the iced tea from a pitcher into a glass yourself. This was an everyday problem...obtaining hydration was so difficult that we would bring the drinks back to our stateroom. When you would ask for something to drink, such as iced tea, the staff member would give you a funny look and a reason why they could not get it for you: this was everywhere. We would hang out on the 15th floor outside a lot, and the workers would offer everyone else but us something to drink. Throughout the dining areas, though especially the various buffets, the workers continued to be incredibly rude. We would be eating food (with our mouths full and food still on the plate) and the workers would just take the plate. They did not even ask if we were finished or still working on it! This was an everyday problem. I have had better dining experiences at Denny's. We would ask questions to staff workers throughout the ship, and they would talk down to you or belittle you as to how you could ask such a question. It was as if it has become so common knowledge to them that they expected the guests on-board to know where places were, if the food was included in the meal plan, and the times to get back on the boat. One of the many examples of this would be when we asked the gentleman outside the Palm Dining Room if the food was included in our package. We did not know if the food would cost extra or if it was part of the standard package. He yelled at us to "look at the menu! Look at your card! It says "anytime dining!" You need to read the menus!" Unfortunately, him yelling at us occurred on my mother's birthday. We asked him about the card as it said to present the card during dinner for a "festive treat." We did not know what that entailed (considering this was our first time on Princess) and we thought he said "steak." So, we repeated the word "steak" to him and he said, "No, I said cake! Cake, not steak!" I was flabbergasted by how rude this man was outside the dining room, especially knowing it was her birthday with the card. I wanted her to have a memorable and enjoyable birthday; this was far from what occurred. He did not apologize for his rude behavior but had an exasperated sigh. From here, we went to the Island Dining Room. We had gone to the Island Dining Room for my mother's birthday. We presented the card and happily told them it was her birthday. There was an open table for two available---no signs showing a reservation. The hostess continued to insist that we sit with others at a larger table. I asked her four times if we could sit at the table for two, considering it was a special occasion, the table was clean, and nobody was sitting there. She finally gave in, though why should I have had to ask four times? Why should I feel like I have to continue to ask people for basic service? I looked around the room to see who was sitting at the tables for two; all the people sitting at the tables for two were dressed up with wine bottles in hand. We do not drink alcohol and thus it appeared that they were trying to save the tables for those dressed up and whom they thought would be purchasing liquor. This judgmental attitude on my mother's birthday struck a huge chord with me. After dinner, I wanted to speak to a supervisor. I spoke to Sanjay at the front desk. This gentleman was a true gem. He would follow up with our complaints to management. He had Andre Markovskyy call us, which was a very poor experience. Mr. Markovskyy was rude and insisted that everyone treats everyone the same. I explained to him that he could not speak about everybody; he could only speak about himself. This made him irate, to which he said, "I'm sorry you feel that way." I could see that we were not getting anywhere in this conversation besides him becoming argumentative and I requested to speak with someone else, which is how I spoke with Leigh-Anne Davis (the customer relations manager). We spoke face-to-face with Ms. Davis, who understood that our problems were related to service and that the solutions should be simple. We only asked for simple things that were not out of the ordinary. We were asking for hydration and respect. She was very concerned, listened, and responded courteously. Ms. Davis followed up with various department managers about what we were saying. She said that if things did not get better to let her know; we called her the next day to let her know how things were going. After speaking to Ms. Davis, things seemed like they were improving a bit. We were offered water in the Princess Theater, though brought our own straws (since we have learned that they come at a premium on the ship). However, when we asked for water in the International Cafe, the waitress never came back with it; so, after 20 minutes of watching her serve others, we went on a hunt for water. We went to the 15th floor for pizza on that Friday the 29th just a few minutes before 11am. We saw that the pizza was ready and asked for a slice. Again, we did not know that they opened at 11am. Ernesto yelled at us, "11am! We open at 11am! Look at the clock!" He had an angry scowl on his face and pointed to the clock. We patiently waited as did another man who pointed out to Ernesto, "Well on my watch, it is perfectly 11:00." I would have been happy if he just said, "we are just finishing setting things up. Can you give us a few more minutes?" The attitude was so poor. We knew that we would be leaving early on Saturday morning to get to the airport. We filled out the room service card for fruit, danishes, and yogurt. We selected the time for 6:30am for everything to come. We got off the boat at 8am and the food we requested never arrived to the room. Never have we packed so soon to fly back from a vacation, and we found ourselves packing up on Friday the 29th and asking the front desk if we could "check out." We were so excited to get off the boat and go home. If I treated anyone like this at work (as a registered nurse), I would be fired. In public service, there is no room for awful attitudes, unkind tones, and poor service. Besides our experience with Ms. Davis and Sanjay, we found that workers on the ship to have an argumentative attitude and a poor attitude. Most of the workers seem burnt out from the job, not even smiling, even walking in what looked like a daze at times. I worked very hard to pay for this cruise, thinking that it would be well-worth the 12-16 hour days. The boat got us from point A to point B, similar to a taxi cab. I am requesting for a 50% refund of what I paid, considering the boat had acted as a taxi cab and got us to the places, and thus this is what I believe is fair to the cruise line and to myself. I am hoping to work this out with this Department. This trip was a huge disappointment. Furthermore, I have never paid this much for a cruise before and have had better service on other cruise lines. The saying is that you "get what you pay for." I expected that by paying more money to go on Princess that the payback would be superb service. As my mother told Ms. Davis, "I thought we would be treated like princesses." Read Less
Caribbean Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.5 4.2
Dining 4.0 3.9
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.5 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 3.5 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 3.5 3.3
Service 4.0 4.2
Value For Money 4.0 3.9
Rates 3.0 4.2

Find a Caribbean Princess Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click
Compare and book excursions for your next cruise