11 Southampton to Europe - All Princess Crown Princess Cruise Reviews

Having sailed with princess on five previous cruises, there was no contest as to which cruise line we would choose again! We sailed from Southampton to the Western Med and thoroughly enjoyed the cruise. Result? We're booked again ... Read More
Having sailed with princess on five previous cruises, there was no contest as to which cruise line we would choose again! We sailed from Southampton to the Western Med and thoroughly enjoyed the cruise. Result? We're booked again on the Crown Princess out of Rome/Civitaveccia (?) late July 2018 sailing in the Southern Med. Looking forward to seeing the 'upgrades' to the Crown! As far as the food was concerned, we generally enjoyed all but the 'Salty Dog.' But then again we aren't 'drinkers,' so maybe our experience of the 'Salty Dog' was biased. The entertainment in the Princess Theater was up to the standard we had come to expect. The only "bad" experience we had was a trip we had booked by train to Rome, and the tour operator 'botched' the whole thing, which resulted in us not actually going in to Rome. But Princess was very generous in reimbursing us for the full price of the excursion PLUS an additional amount for onboard credit. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Where do I start? The cabin safe didn't work on arrival so we had to carry passports etc around with us. Cabin Lights kept flashing on and off like a disco , not fixed until the next day. Air con poor. Reported all these ... Read More
Where do I start? The cabin safe didn't work on arrival so we had to carry passports etc around with us. Cabin Lights kept flashing on and off like a disco , not fixed until the next day. Air con poor. Reported all these faults and they were and repaired eventually. Then the ship was very late leaving Southampton due to " passenger accountability " IT issues, this was not explained and most people thought that the ship had a cyber attack on it and the atmosphere among the passengers was of high anxiety due to problems in London and Manchester attacks. A very Late arrival 2pm to Belgium but no able to get off until nearly 4pm so only had 2 hours there not nearly enough time to go any where. Two days spent in Copenhagen due to bad weather and the next port was completely missed out. The Captain kept giving out incorrect or misleading information and customer services didn't follow up any complaints. The ship then Left Oslo really early at 3pm so not much time there either. The Food was in the self service area was average and not always very hot with huge ques due to only one part open and the staff just didn't seem happy or helpful. This review sounds just like a grumpy person having a pop at everything, but we have cruised 17 times before and never had these sort of issues, when you pay over a grand for a cruise you do expect better than this. A paltry on board spend was given but this in no way was anything like enough to compensate a ruined cruise. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Yes, there are parts of this cruise and this ship which weren't perhaps as good as other Princess cruises we had been on, but I have to disagree with some of the petty complaints that some of the other cruisers have put in the past ... Read More
Yes, there are parts of this cruise and this ship which weren't perhaps as good as other Princess cruises we had been on, but I have to disagree with some of the petty complaints that some of the other cruisers have put in the past (and are likely to post about this cruise in particular!) Southampton/Embarkation This was by far the fastest embarkation I have ever experienced in my years of cruising. We had priority boarding via our Platinum Captain's Circle status, but even the queue for regular check in was far shorter than normal despite us arriving at peak time (around midday). I got onboard the ship and my scanning card wouldn't work. The security at the front desk were very patient, swiftly got me a new card within 5 minutes, apologized and it was sorted. Then the problems started... We were due to set off for Zeebrugge at 5.30pm but as the standard muster station drill time approached an announcement (the first of many) went to every area in the ship. There was a problem with a piece of the ship's hardware that meant that the passenger accountability system wasn't working and we couldn't safely leave port - delaying our arrival to Zeebrugge. Particularly given the horrendous incident local to ourselves in Manchester the previous week, we could completely understand why this was the case however even more so than ever, but there were a great deal of less than happy passengers aboard because of this delay and the fact some had already had system issues with British Airways at Heathrow the same day. The captain was very apologetic though, and because it was technically the cruise line's fault, every passenger onboard was credited $100 which more than paid for our gratuities and part of our drinks package. We eventually left at about 10.30pm, but not before having the return back to port again due to a crew medical emergency which delayed us even further. The captain then predicted our arrival at Zeebrugge to be at about 2.00pm, limiting our time there to just four hours which - on a Sunday - was unlikely to get us to Brugge at all. Zeebrugge After finally getting underway, just a couple of hours before we were due to get off at Zeebrugge another announcement - all non-EU passengers must go through immigration. This led to lines of over 2.5 hours for some passengers, with people stretching the length of the forward stairway from Deck 6, up to Deck 11. In the end, very few of these people managed to get off at all. This process also delayed the rest of the passengers getting off the boat, and it was past 3.00pm before we did. Very disappointing, but not Princess' fault as they were only made aware that immigration for non-EU people was required on the morning of arrival - doesn't help the poor people who waited in line all day though! We went to a small town by the beach via shuttle bus, 10 euros each return and it was pleasant enough. There happened to be a nice parade that day which certainly lifted the mood. At Sea We took the opportunity of the sea day to relax and get properly settled, not too much in the way of activities compared to other cruises we've taken but by no means the worse. However, this day also gave us our first taste of some of the questionable features of the ship itself. As has been mentioned in previous reviews, the buffet areas are definitely too small for the amount of people onboard, and the seldom had both sides open even on the sea day. The line to get your food sometimes stretched outdoors - something we have never seen before but when you got there it was just standard cruise ship fayre imo, nothing better nothing worse. The queue for the Ice Cream Bar was never below 5 or 6 people and service was slow due to milkshakes and gelato also being served there, we ended up only having the patience to line up twice in the whole week. The weather wasn't fantastic and I can only imagine how busy these areas would have been had it been in the Med or the Caribbean. Copenhagen Copenhagen was nice but don't be fooled by fellow passengers misinforming you about distance! You NEED to get a bus or taxi for this port to get anywhere, as it is one hell of a walk into the town centre. We foolishly tried it and ended up walking over 10 miles in one day. There is a red 'Hop-On, Hop-Off' bus that stops directly outside the ship and you can even pay on your cruise card - this is an absolute must despite the cost. We were due to stay there overnight and leave in the early hours, but due to bad weather at our next step, Helsingborg, we were unfortunately forced to abandon that port of call. Sensibly, instead of travelling there just to sit in the bay unable to tender, the captain kept us in Copenhagen for an additional day. Again, a shame and a lot of disgruntled passengers, but not Princess' fault once again. We were also refunded $25 per stateroom in the missed port taxes for Helsingborg - enough for a nice trip to the onboard boutique shops when we eventually left port despite some quite rough seas in the evening. Oslo We weren't willing to make the same mistake as at Copenhagen and went straight for the 'Hop On, Hop Off' bus option. The buses ran regularly and were efficient if you did choose to get off, however when it came to initially leaving the port a full busload of people were stood there next to an empty bus for over 30 minutes for no good reason - annoying. Would certainly want to go back to Oslo, and arguably would have preferred to have been there an extra day rather than Copenhagen as there is far more to do. Sea Day Our final sea day was a chance to relax and pack before we went home, one slight disappointment was the fact the Movies Under The Stars that we had been going to showed the same film as it did at Oslo. Unfortunately, everything had been getting a bit 'samey' food-wise ever since the second day in Copenhagen, presumably because of the immense amount of extra time people spent onboard during the week long cruise. It was the third day in a row that fried fish and chips in some incarnation was the main meal at the buffet.The desserts too in the main restaurant, despite them being some of the worst choice of any cruise I've been on (THREE types of ice cream dish on one menu one night) were getting very dull by this time. Southamption/Disembarkation Just as had been the case at the start of the cruise, disembarkation was a breeze but the poor captain had one last headache - we couldn't dock at our originally allocated berth so were located across the port ruining a lot of peoples onward plans if arranged privately (again, angry people, you get the picture). Luckily we booked car parking at the port with CPS, who very helpfully move EVERY car over to the correct berth prior to our arrival - very very good feature and saved us a lot of a hassle and a long walk. Conclusion All in all, this cruise was a nice little break. Our overall experience would have been better had it not been for the issues with Bruges and Helsingborg, but Princess by no means disgraced themselves in trying their best to resolve it and keep people happy. We aren't big spenders onboard, and after our $50 onboard credit, $100 disruption compensation, and $25 port tax reimbursement came in - our entire onboard spend including gratuities cost us just $10 between the two of us! The ship in general is looking a little bit tired, and doesn't appear to have coped well with the expansion despite this being a few years ago now. A renovation is needed but it isn't as desperate as some other reviews suggest. It does a job. It is a nice place to be for a week or two, particularly for the price we paid. It isn't below the Princess standard as you can tell the crew are doing their absolute best with the ship they have, however it wouldn't kill them to dry dock it for a few weeks and spruce it up a bit. Overall a very enjoyable experience, would recommend. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Cabin ok disabled cabin was supposed to be a upgrade but ended up with no bath but very large room. Cabin service steward great, Ship ok but not as modern as royal princess. Food ok some good nights and some average food was often cold. ... Read More
Cabin ok disabled cabin was supposed to be a upgrade but ended up with no bath but very large room. Cabin service steward great, Ship ok but not as modern as royal princess. Food ok some good nights and some average food was often cold. But I seemed to have chosen a good choice and enjoyed my meals on the whole. The food in the horizon café was hot and a good choice but didn't like the melamine plates etc and was a bit chaotic, the Botecceli resteraunt was better especially the afternoon tea. Generally enjoyed the cruise, staff were helpful shows were ok but the Robbie Williams tribute was very good. Would we cruise again with Princess yes defo but would go on the newer ships. The Royal princess had better TVs for viewing films you could start the film whenever, and not being over interested in the shows or gambling this was a brill thing. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
This was our first experience of Princess cruise ships and therefore the comments should be viewed in conjunction with those more familiar with the line. Boarding was ok but could have been handled a bit better. The staff in the terminal ... Read More
This was our first experience of Princess cruise ships and therefore the comments should be viewed in conjunction with those more familiar with the line. Boarding was ok but could have been handled a bit better. The staff in the terminal were friendly but seemed a little unsure when it came to dealing with Southampton boarding specifics and loading took longer than we were used to. There was little help from staff as we entered the ship as to where we should go to find our cabin but they seemed friendly enough. Once we located our cabin our cases had already arrived – even if they had been left in a way that completely blocked entry to the cabin. The cabin itself was adequate if a little smaller than we had been used to on Cunard ships. Again the bathroom was functional but the decoration and facilities tired. Our first stop was Guernsey. This stop required passengers being tendered to the Island. The process took hours and certainly was a distraction to the day. In fairness there were a lot of passengers to get onto the small lifeboats being used by the ship. We were lucky and only had to wait for about an hour and a half but those sitting next to us who had tickets with numbers over 500 above our number must have wondered if they were going to get off the ship before nightfall. Returning to the ship was slightly better as we seem to have used some larger ferries based on the island. Dinner on our first night was ok but certainly not up to the standard we come to expect on Cunard ships. On the second evening we asked for a table for 2. Non were available in our dining room and we were then taken to another dining room where we we had a table for 2. I was extremely surprised that at the end of our meal having asked for an espresso coffee this was an extra charge. At the beginning of the cruise we had opted for free dining but unfortunately we never managed to get a table for two which we preferred as I have very poor hearing. The options were either to share, which we did on occasions, or move to the fixed table dining room which was ok except it required quite a complex walk and also the staff managed to lose our bottle of wine twice. In fairness they did provide complementary glasses but nevertheless the organisation seemed very poor. Unlike our last, and previous, cruises with Cunard, just about everything not directly associated with food in the dining rooms was an extra charge. I have already mentioned the espresso at dinner but also ice creams were extra as was the use of the laundry or service to rooms. On one occasion I managed to get a bed on what was called the sanctuary only to find that I was going to be charged $20 for the privilege. Having spoken with a number of passengers who have travelled with Princess boats in the past the general consensus of opinion seemed to be that Crown Princess fell well short of expectations for most. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
The good---dining room food, the pastry chef( superb---best of any of our 30 plus cruises), the excursions and reception. The bad---the ship needs to be refurbished and won't be until April 2018. Lots of empty wasted space outside ... Read More
The good---dining room food, the pastry chef( superb---best of any of our 30 plus cruises), the excursions and reception. The bad---the ship needs to be refurbished and won't be until April 2018. Lots of empty wasted space outside and inside with no chairs, etc. .The "tennis court is a too small sport court that doubles as the only basketball court or whatever. The few kids on the ship thought it was theirs and tried to continually get on it while we were trying to play pickle ball. There is only a small putting green no mini golf. The 2 larger pools were taken over by the kids and us lap swimmers were splashed endlessly. There are not enough outdoor activities for a ship that size! Celebrity and RC and NCL and even Holland America is better. There were no enrichment activities. And the entertainment was the worse we have ever had on any ocean ship. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
For the price Princess charged for this cruise, we found it to be value for money, so if your cutting prices, something has to give! No the food isnt perfect all the time, but you can always ask for somthing else, lets face it no one ... Read More
For the price Princess charged for this cruise, we found it to be value for money, so if your cutting prices, something has to give! No the food isnt perfect all the time, but you can always ask for somthing else, lets face it no one starves on board! Paid $29 each to eat in the grill - great meal, well worth the extra. Shows were good most nights, loved the casino! Shops are the normal mix, there was the usual art auctions and jewellery pushes! But the staff make them entertaining! Service was normally good, occassional slip ups, MDR breakfast slow serving. Ports of call were new to us, one of the reasons we picked this cruise. They were interesting, a good mix of big and small places. Free shuttles at two stops, other two not needed. Stops Bordeaux (best of) expensive tour as we saw vineyards and city, included lunch however did not appreciate the cockaroach running around the bread basket at the chosen restaurant stop! Shuttle bus into Bilbao,, great city. Huge queue for bus back so we got a taxi, asked did anyone wanted to share our taxi, no takers, it was only €22 for us 2 and we got back quickly and were sunbathing on deck while they were all still queuing no doubt,! La Coruna small place but stops right in the centre! Enjoyed it Gurnsey stop on a Sunday so it was quiet and most shops closed. Bottom line would we go with Princess again? YES Our only gripe was not really with Princess but Southampton Port Authority and CPS parking, ship was late gettin in due to bad weather, so it turned into a reall fiasco trying to board, neither of them coped well with the situation so lead to a lot of annoyed people! It was chaos, not a great start to your hols! Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Delayed at Southamton although not princess's fault ship was late getting into Southamton due to weather in the bay of Biscay which can be very fickle. We checked in and we're informed that as ship was late getting in boarding ... Read More
Delayed at Southamton although not princess's fault ship was late getting into Southamton due to weather in the bay of Biscay which can be very fickle. We checked in and we're informed that as ship was late getting in boarding would be delayed and if you wanted princess were organising free shuttle busses into Southamton to kill time. However we decided to stay put which was just as well as we boarded within half an hour of checking in all credit to princess and check in staff. We have cruised with P&O and Cunard and princess our are favourite so far, I can't aggre with previous reviews that the ship needs a re fit as I found no evidence of tatty carpets etc. We had a mini suite on dolphin deck which was great as you get a bath as well as shower, however if there is more than two people in the cabin there is no curtain to separate the main cabin from the bed sette (as on P&O Brittania) We had fixed dineing but the couple on the table opposite us were constantly moaning about the service and were rude and belligerent to the waiters so as a result we only dined in Botticell's three times, we also ate in the sterling stakehouse and sabitinis which were both excellent. Will more than likely book princess again Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Our fourth time on the Crown,this time we did the 7 day cruise to La Coruna. It lived up to our expectactions.We had the opposite experience to the 1 star transatlantic review. We found the ship to be very clean, no bad smells and ... Read More
Our fourth time on the Crown,this time we did the 7 day cruise to La Coruna. It lived up to our expectactions.We had the opposite experience to the 1 star transatlantic review. We found the ship to be very clean, no bad smells and all staff without exception were extremely friendly,polite and accomodating. We had freedom to dine and only had to wait for 5 minutes for a table for two,went straight in on the other nights.Whatever table we went on the waiters were very friendly and accomodating.On a few ocassions we asked for a combination of a starter and main course eg. I had a caesar salad with grilled salmon as a starter,my wife is not a lover of veg but likes french fries and the waitewrs were very helpful. We had breakfast delivered to our cabin every day,the young steward was very friendly and helpful and most mornings we had a chat. We had lunch in the Bottecelli had again the experince and food was exceptionally good. We had a balcony cabin A314 and found it more than adequate for our needs and very comfortable. our cabin steward Joseph was first class and again ver y helpful. We did not book any tours as we have done them in the past but opted for the shuttle buses and we heard some passengers had to wait quite a while for a shuttle but we had no problem because we went down about 9 oclock and more or less straight on. Both embarkation and disembarkation went very smooth, in fact on the way to Southampton I had a text to say there was a delay due to the Crown getting in late due to adverse weather conditions and boarding would not start until 2 oclock.we arrived at 1.30 and were on board by 2.15pm. Must also mention Eaveswaycoaches they give a 5 star service we have used them before and will in the future. Overall we had a great cruise,excellent value for money and cannot wait for the next cruise, on the Crown going to Norway for two weeks in August this year. If it is as good as this one we wil be very pleased. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Had heard good reviews about princess cruises. We were booked on Club Class with everything that came with it, which I might add we did not receive, starting at the terminal at Southampton. Priority embarkation - we were one of that last ... Read More
Had heard good reviews about princess cruises. We were booked on Club Class with everything that came with it, which I might add we did not receive, starting at the terminal at Southampton. Priority embarkation - we were one of that last groups to embark. Priority disembarkation - We left the ship two hours after we docked. Club Class dinning - we were told we had to have breakfast and lunch in the Horizon buffet and evening meal in Botticelli when infact Club Class had their own dinning room for all three meals whilst at sea. With lunch in Horizon only on port days. The staff in the Club Class dinning room we eventually got into after 3 days and complaining at Passenger services counter, who were most unhelpful and in some cases down right rude, were wonderful. They were friendly, helpful and in my case being gluten intolerant bent over backwards to ensure I had a varied variety of gluten free meals - nothing was too much trouble. Definitely the best place on ship. I would also say the guys in Crooners bar were also the same, helpful, friendly and funny. Our stateroom - D423 - was dirty, dried soap scum on shelves and a dirty bath, toenails on the carpet from previous passengers, which stayed there for the duration of our cruise, though I must admit the bathroom was finally satisfactorily cleaned. Yes we had the 1/2 bottles of wine left but no robes and when they did eventually appear, only one - I suppose we were meant to share !!!. Most of the ladies toilets on ship that you went into smelt of sewerage with a lot of the lids hanging on by one attachment. Our balcony was very rusty and once out on the balcony the sewerage smell seemed to be stronger. The theatre we could never get a seat in as most people couldn't unless we missed evening meals to guarantee a seat. Most of the other entertainment was directed at the American market and whilst I appreciate the fact that this was an American ship, there were many other nationalities on board. Unfortunately we are back on the 27th May with a recently bereaved friend as we would not be travelling with Princess again and have actually cancelled a cruise on the Sapphire as a result of our experience. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
My husband had some medical treatment so thought it would be good for him to recouperate so booked on Black Friday. Unfortunately on11 April he had another operation and although able to travel was not well enough to get off the ship. ... Read More
My husband had some medical treatment so thought it would be good for him to recouperate so booked on Black Friday. Unfortunately on11 April he had another operation and although able to travel was not well enough to get off the ship. Room excellent (same as Azura). Cabin Steward good except for one mistake. Food good for us although some people did not agree. Found it better than P & O. Had not been on Princess line for some time. Entertainment generally good although too many tribute artists who were not that good. Some acts excellent. Do not like the Outdoor film area particularly April/May from UK to Med. Weather inappropriate although some people were in the rain and with rugs around them. Crazy. Not comfortable seating areas around pool all jammed together with the usual early morning pegs and towels and bags but no passengers. Staff did not stick to the notice that after a certain period of time if no passenger items would be removed to give people a chance to sit out. Atrium entertainment extremely noisy around a lot of the floors of the ship and could not hear the reception area people because of the noise. Reception Staff. Some not helpful with a slight attitude problem others excellent. More training needed. If they did not know an answer they should say they do not know but will find out and leave a message on the room phone. First morning for breakfast in restaurant there was chaos with staff who may have just got on the ship. Took about 1.5 hours to get served and then it was incorrect. Maitre D' called too room numbers but nothing actually done. They must have thought it would keep us quiet. Restaurant service sometimes very slow so missed show. Shuttle Bus services: not as good as other shipping lines when docked in port areas where passengers not allowed to walk to gate. Usually provided by dock authorities but at Marseilles Princess own but charge $14 return to old port which was excessive for a relatively short ride. Many people very angry that they did not tell passengers of free port shuttle a few hundred yards from the ship. This did not go in as far as Princess one but options should have been given. Had some difficulty with some services and became irate so saw a "sensible" receptionist who said we could reduce the gratuities which we did. Generally found ship a bit too large for our preference. Disembarkation: 1.5 hrs late because of delay due to bad weather but went fairly well. Would probably try another cruise now that we know how they operate and learned a lot from passengers waiting to leave the ship a bit late but knowledge for later. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Crown Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.5 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.8
Family 4.5 3.8
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 4.5 4.2
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.1

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