3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
As always, this Princess cruise was chock full of the senior set, which is fine - we're just coasting into qualifying for AARP ourselves, so it's not a problem - we're not party animals by any stretch. The good: The Coral Princess is ... Read More
As always, this Princess cruise was chock full of the senior set, which is fine - we're just coasting into qualifying for AARP ourselves, so it's not a problem - we're not party animals by any stretch. The good: The Coral Princess is one of their smaller ships, which meant we developed more friendships with people than on larger ships, which was nice. Likewise, we got to know more of the staff members on a more personal basis. The ship is able to go through the Panama Canal (only just, it squeeked through) and it's amazing to watch. The activity tours we went on were amazing (ziplining in Costa Rica, swimming with stingrays in Grand Cayman) but the walking tours (Gautamala, Cartagena) were really bad (how much will you buy, rich American tourist? Oh, yeah, there's a bit of history here, but let me show you where to spend your dollars...) My advice: do the activities. Serious fun. You do NOT need to be in fabulous shape to do them. It's okay to be chubby and wheeze a bit. You do need to be willing to laugh and feel a bit ridiculous. You will make the BEST memories if you do. We stayed at the Ft. Lauderdale Renaissance Cruise Ship Terminal, and it's literally right next door to the terminal. This does NOT mean you can stay there then walk to your ship, but it does mean it's an easy Uber/taxi ride. I would not walk it - it must have been a good 2 miles considering we had to drive all the way around the port to get to the ship. It's a decent hotel and we were able to Uber from the airport to the hotel, then walk over and get dinner from Chipotle next door. It made getting on the ship the next morning stress free. We're a lesbian couple celebrating 25 years together and despite this being an overwhelmingly straight, elderly demographic, we felt nothing but welcomed and accepted, which was the best thing ever. The bad: "Anytime Dining" on the Coral Princess apparently means line up at 4:45 or you won't eat until 7:00pm - and those old folks are SERIOUS about getting din-dins on time. Don't be messing with their meals. It's worse than third grade recess with line-cutting. One person will stand in the line and 42 people will walk up and join them before the doors open. The Universe Lounge has movies and production numbers, but the balcony level is awful to be watching anything - there's multiple safety bars. No idea why they don't put in plexiglass instead so people can actually SEE what's going on. There's less food selection in the Horizon Court than the larger Princess ships - a LOT less. I found that really disappointing. Same ol', same ol' every morning for breakfast. The ugly: Sales, sales, sales. I imagine it's the same on all cruise ships - we haven't been for a couple of years, and wow, it seems like they're selling at every turn. Most conversations seemed to start with "You want to buy..." Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We always wanted to go through the Panama Canal, and loved most of the cruise and experience. The ship itself is old and falling apart. There were areas that had a moldy odor. There were areas where the air conditioning wasn't working. ... Read More
We always wanted to go through the Panama Canal, and loved most of the cruise and experience. The ship itself is old and falling apart. There were areas that had a moldy odor. There were areas where the air conditioning wasn't working. In our stateroom the thermostat didn't work, the remote for the TV didn't work, the shelf in the bathroom was broken and the carpet was dirty and worn. As in all other Princess cruises we have been on, the staff was wonderful and the food was terrific. The demographics on our particular cruise really leaned hard to the over 75 years old crowd with lots of walkers and canes. That may have influenced the entertainment, which filled up immediately after dinner. But after 8 PM the ship seemed deserted. We would have preferred more active activities too. We did 3 Princess excursions. The first was billed inaccurately as a scenic cruise and snorkeling of a reef and shipwreck. It was none of those things. We went in a boat right off the shore close to our ship to snorkel. There was no reef and no shipwreck and no scenic cruise. The second was a scenic drive, raft trip and lunch at a restaurant and it was fabulous. Our guide spoke the entire way there and back. The raft trip had another guide who was very knowledgeable. We saw crocodiles, iguanas, monkeys, etc. on the raft trip. The lunch was at a local restaurant and was very scenic. Our third excursion was a hike up a volcano. This was a little more iffy. We were not warned that it would be freezing on the trail (50's) when we had been experiencing high 90's. There were very high winds. The trail was covered with older, but recent volcanic ash that got into everything. We were not able to look right into the volcano like I have done on other similar hikes. The path down was very, very difficult. Several people fell. People who were athletic and in good shape injured themselves. I am not sure I would recommend this. I enjoyed the Cayman Islands, Cartagena, Panama City and Costa Rica ports. The Guatemala port was just another glimpse of a very poor country. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
Straight forward embarkation after over night stay in hotel organised by Princess. Good cruise with excellent staff, good food and good choice of activities. Cabin was clean but showing some signs of wear and tear - upholstery on sofa ... Read More
Straight forward embarkation after over night stay in hotel organised by Princess. Good cruise with excellent staff, good food and good choice of activities. Cabin was clean but showing some signs of wear and tear - upholstery on sofa threadbare in places and buttons on remote control for TV not working. We were on traditional dining for evening meal and were really happy with choice and quality of food. My wife has an allergy that the staff were made aware of and they were really good at making sure that the meals would not effect her and offering a choice of alternatives if there were problems with the choices on the menu. This service and consideration was excellent and very much appreciated. There was a good choice of entertainment and activities. Not all to our taste, as is to be expected, but we were not short of things to do! We used ships tours in Costa Rica and Guatemala, both of which provided excellent guides and good transport. We used local services at other ports: "Dora the Explorer" in Cartagena who was excellent and I highly recommend and, likewise, Clemente through "Tours by Locals" in Panama City. The only issue we has was with disembarkation when we had booked a stopover, again with Princess. They tried to leave us to the last group to disembark, even though they were aware that we wanted to be off early to be able to see LA. This meant that we would not arrive at our hotel until the afternoon severely cutting down the time we had to explore and going against the whole idea of booking a stopover. Despite my protestations no alternative disembarkation was offered until I demanded to see the manager and suggested the provision of a taxi would be simple enough to sort out. Not the best end to the holiday but it was sorted out for us eventually. All in all a very good trip with the "blip" at the end that could have easily been avoided. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We have sailed at least ten times on Celebrity and decided to try Princess as the dates and the price lined up nicely. To begin, it is an older ship but kept in excellent condition, however, certain structural problems could not be updated ... Read More
We have sailed at least ten times on Celebrity and decided to try Princess as the dates and the price lined up nicely. To begin, it is an older ship but kept in excellent condition, however, certain structural problems could not be updated due to age. The shower is tiny tiny, and I doubt if anyone weighing over 200 pounds could even fit. They have no chest of drawers for clothing but shelves in the closet area. However, the beds and pillows are fantastic. Crew as a whole are friendly and the three foot rule of speaking to you makes you feel wanted and appreciated. Food is good, but not in my opinion as good as Celebrity, the always menu in the main dining room contains not steaks but burgers and bad pasta. Horizon buffet is constantly changing meals that are quite good, however, again due the age of the ship the food is not really hot but warm. Maitre d explained only heat lamps are used not latest technology. Sabitni\s was excellent and on sea days pizza served custom made at lunch. Entertainment production shows were excellent however, the individual acts ranged from a great comic to a ventriloquist and trumpet player (heard better in high school bands). Magician fantastic. Cruise director was shrill and shouted at audience at shows, and I found her really annoying. Question? Why is no music played on ship by live bands that was written in past 40 years? Embarcation and departures well handled and easy.. Appreciated that late dining has been moved to 7:30 but early dining at 5:30 on shore excursion days is tough to understand. All in all we prefer Celebrity for travel and will probably only return to Princess if price and itinerary cannot be found on Celebrity. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
Chose this cruise because we wanted to do a full Panama Canal transit, and chose Coral rather than Island Princess because it had had a more recent refit.However, the ship is still tired looking. The furniture in the cabins is shabby, the ... Read More
Chose this cruise because we wanted to do a full Panama Canal transit, and chose Coral rather than Island Princess because it had had a more recent refit.However, the ship is still tired looking. The furniture in the cabins is shabby, the hairdryers are from the dark ages, the showers are the smallest I’ve ever encountered. However we still had a great time. Most of the staff are great, yes you get a hard sell if you have a spa treatment, but on the whole the staff try really hard. The food was mixed, the buffet was sometimes great, other times really odd combinations of food. Did anytime dining and most days I rang early to reserve a table, without a reservation we found we had to wait, maybe up to half an hour. Met some lovely people, enjoyed the ports, especially Huatulco. The expert who talked us through the transit was extremely knowledgeable and my husband found the whole transit fascinating- be warned, you have to be out on deck by 6am! Drinks fairly priced. We did the ultimate balcony dinner which was fantastic for £80 extra, had 2 dedicated waiters, cocktails, canapé, champagne plus 4 course dinner and then birthday cake for my husband, all whilst evening in port in Aruba. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
We had taken a Princess cruise 18 years before that started in Florida, went through the canal to the lake and back to Florida again. This time we wanted to do a full transit and take our son and daughter-in-law along, ending up in LA ... Read More
We had taken a Princess cruise 18 years before that started in Florida, went through the canal to the lake and back to Florida again. This time we wanted to do a full transit and take our son and daughter-in-law along, ending up in LA where a car ride would bring us home. The embarkation at Port Everglades could not have been smoother as was the disembarkation, examples of how organized the whole trip was. This is an older ship and not as ritzy as some we have been on, but it was clean and attractive. We had a balcony cabin which was ideal for the transit. The room was efficient, but not lavish, with a large closet and nice flat screen TV. The bathroom was very small, as was the shower, but serviceable. We chose early seating in the MDR for 4, as we are early eaters and found it most convenient for the shows. The service at our table was excellent, and we like having the same staff throughout the trip. We don't like having to make daily reservations for Anytime Dining or the "job interviews" every night with new table mates, but it's probably fine for extroverts. The food was very good with much variety although not as outstanding as some ships. We went to the buffet at the Horizon Court for breakfast and lunch. There the food was fine but finding a table at busy times was a bit challenging. The population on this cruise skewed much younger than usual, with many families that included children and adolescents but we did not notice a problem. We went to most of the shows and enjoyed them all. Be sure to get there 15 to 20 minutes early. The internet was very frustrating and fortunately we got 250 minutes free but it took up lots of minutes waiting for downloads. We bought a data plan from Verizon before the trip, and I found that most useful at all the ports to get my emails. Except for Aruba, we took the Princess excursions at the other ports and thought they were all worthwhile. The activities on sea days were not really my cup of tea (silly games, bingo, art sales) and thought there could have been more interesting presentations about the area. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
We like cruising, and save for it for quite a while, so we kind of build up this perfect/pampered dream cruise in our mind before hand. This cruise was not perfect, but it sure beats the best day at work.. Without exception the ... Read More
We like cruising, and save for it for quite a while, so we kind of build up this perfect/pampered dream cruise in our mind before hand. This cruise was not perfect, but it sure beats the best day at work.. Without exception the staff was amazing, attentive, helpful, friendly, and really hard working. Highest marks to the staff. The entertainment was also very good, but the shows were only about 40 minute long. The one area that I was VERY disappointed was the food. to call the food Crap would be an insult to crap. Overcooked, poorly cooked, improperly seasoned...the food was not good. One of the greatest joys I have on a cruise is seafood. Since my wife does not like seafood, I only get it when we go out or on a cruise. Past cruises I had a different Seafood every night, not so on the cruise. They served the same fish entre three times, it was bad the first time uneatable the second, untried the third. overall I was very disappointed in the food. the one shining spot was the hamburger grill on Deck 15, the burgers were always good, but I wanted more than good burgers. The shore excursions were okay. We were in Aruba way to short to do anything fun so we just walk around town for an hour and went back to the ship. We did not get of in Columbia, or Niagara. had a great tour in Costa Rica. This cruise had way more kids than most of the longer cruise, so we thought there would be an adults only pool -- there was not. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
We chose the Coral Princess because the itinerary had a nice division of Port and sea days and it worked well for our Holiday schedules. Boarded without issue in Fort Lauderdale. The ship overall I think was well maintained. Unless you ... Read More
We chose the Coral Princess because the itinerary had a nice division of Port and sea days and it worked well for our Holiday schedules. Boarded without issue in Fort Lauderdale. The ship overall I think was well maintained. Unless you have only been on brand new ships I think some normal wear is expected. Always saw workers painting, varnishing, etc. We did anytime dining and it was pretty good! I have been on many cruise lines and overall food quality is not what it was back in the day, but everything was tasty and we certainly never went hungry. I was interested that some preferred the buffet. Although there was nothing wrong with the buffer food, I got easily bored with the offerings at breakfast and lunch after about 7 days... We did try all the specialty dining options. Sabbatini's recently changed their menu and for our tastes, we heavily preferred the old menu. This one was just meh... Service was lovely though. Had a couple of fabulous dinners at the Bayou steakhouse. If you like New Orleans style food, they did a good job. Steak was super tasty! We also did the ultimate balcony dining for the first time and it was SPECTACULAR. What a production and awesome food! Worth every penny of the $100 upcharge. As has been our view on all 12 of our Princess cruises, the entertainment was - Entertaining. Food and entertainment are very subjective, but we are in our early 50s and I think they provided a fair variety of entertainers. I never feel like Princess has enough stuff to do on sea days, but this itinerary allowed a good mix of downtime between ports so I can't say I was ever bored. Service was top notch 99% of the time. The only exceptions would be the future cruise lady was SUPER crabby, the Spa manager was kind of a jerk, and the shopping lady was a bit annoying. ( the rest of the staff was FABULOUS that we dealt with). small potatoes in a sea of lovely people. I do have to say on All cruises lately and this was no exception, rude people and those that see a ship as an opportunity to allow their children to run rampant is not cool. I find it is a privilege to travel and the hard working people on the ship should not have to deal with such nonsense. Again.. overall this was a fantastic journey where you could watch history come to life ( HIghly recommend the book "The Path Between 2 Seas"... very long but adds great meaning to the crossing!). I mention the small things to reign in expectations, but really a fine time was had by my husband and me. As far as ports: we booked all independently from ship. .I do wish we had known in advance that the ports in San Juan Del Sur and Huatulco mainly required cash unless it was a big retail store. San Juan del Sur Nicaragua had many really nice and unique items for sale including woodcrafts but we do not like to carry a bunch of cash with us so we were unable to purchase items. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
It was a great cruise. You have to take the good with the bad and not nit pick like so many do. The weather was fantastic, the ports were great. The ship overall was in good shape for her age but needed some touch up. The food was ... Read More
It was a great cruise. You have to take the good with the bad and not nit pick like so many do. The weather was fantastic, the ports were great. The ship overall was in good shape for her age but needed some touch up. The food was average in the MDR and I am not a foodie. The cruise directors staff was a bit young. There were 10% more then capacity and you never felt like there was a crowd. Always a lounger and never a wait. The ship was the perfect size for me and easy to get around. The entertainment was good and bad, but that is subjective. The 1 thing I loved was that there was so much more then just the production shows. Maybe this was because it was 15 days and they had time but it was nice that there was other offerings. I have read some are complaining about the pizza but thought it was the usual Princes pie. Embarkation and disembarkation was fast and easy. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2017
We chose this cruise because experiencing the Panama Canal was high on our list of travel, the timing was right with the winter break and we like Princess. There is a big difference between a full passage from Pacific to Atlantic or visa ... Read More
We chose this cruise because experiencing the Panama Canal was high on our list of travel, the timing was right with the winter break and we like Princess. There is a big difference between a full passage from Pacific to Atlantic or visa versa, with the interest in mind. Not only did we go through the locks, but we had narration almost the entire time. The old locks are amazing. Princess got a reduced price for passage and paid more to be the first ship to transit for the day and refunded everyone $67 each because of the savings. Ship was in decent shape. Food was good. Entertainment was good. The production were good and 3 of the 5 main entertainers were excellent. The lecturers were outstanding as well. Best part was that we met really nice people by participating in assigned dining and also used roll call to join groups that were planning non Princess shore excursions. The two things that kept me from giving an excellent rating on the cruise was sink water that did not get very warm (shower did) and my wife had a shoreline excursion that was not as advertised. The other excursion that we did together in Cartegena was great. Best of all, we dodged the December freezes. Read Less
Coral Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.4
Dining 4.0 4.1
Entertainment 4.0 3.9
Public Rooms 4.0 4.5
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.1
Family 5.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 3.0 4.0
Enrichment 4.0 3.9
Service 4.0 4.5
Value For Money 4.0 4.1
Rates 4.0 4.2

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