183 Princess Crown Princess Cruise Reviews

We had been looking at a Buenos Aires to Santiago Chile cruise for about five years and decided on this cruise due to Princess' perceived reputation of being more upscale than other lines. We were disappointed at almost every turn. ... Read More
We had been looking at a Buenos Aires to Santiago Chile cruise for about five years and decided on this cruise due to Princess' perceived reputation of being more upscale than other lines. We were disappointed at almost every turn. To begin with, we embarked a day late in Buenos Aires due to the death of a passenger in route from Rio. However, when we (a party of six) arrived at the designated hour at the port, our luggage was taken, then we were bused to the Sheraton (another miserable experience) for seven hours without information, wifi, or other amenities. Eventually we were bused to a three-star hotel for the night. The following morning, we finally boarded, only to be informed the now 10-day cruise would have only three hours in Montevideo (instead of a full day) and the cruise would skip the Falkland Islands. The three hours in Montevideo were late in the day and capped with a heavy rainstorm. The two remaining ports of call were Ushuaia, Argentina and Punta Arenas, Chile. Both were fun, but not a reason to book a cruise. Disembarkation in Valparaiso, Chile was fairly routine. Princess Cruise Line attempted to make up for the deficiencies of the cruise with a compensation package. However to say that made up for the loss of time and experiences is an understatement. Issues I had with the cruise include: 1. Exceptional poor treatment of the 700 passengers boarding in Buenos Aires. There is no management excuse for keeping people uninformed and without some amenities. Emergencies at sea are understandable and manageable, but the lack of responsible Princess staff on the ground is inexcusable. 2. Severe under-staffing of the ship. There were simply not enough on board activities on cruise days. In cooler cruising regions where the outdoor public areas are not really usable, planned activities are essential. 3. Deplorable lecture/workshop offerings. Given the geology and geography of the cruise route, this offered wonderful opportunities for lectures on local geology, history and geography. Another opportunity missed. Time management lectures to a mostly retired passenger group is not good planning. 4. A large portion of the staff, with some notable exceptions, were unmotivated. 5. We have come to expect good evening entertainment on cruises. With the exception on one evening, we were profoundly disappointed. Good points of the cruise: 1. Our standard balcony cabin was nicely done and adequate. 2. The port lectures were well done and entertaining. 3. The room steward and "Anytime Dining" staff were attentive and cordial. We have cruised ten times on six different lines. We shall be returning to other options. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
As part of my wife’s and my 50th wedding anniversary celebration, we planned a “bucket list” cruise around South America. We planned and reserved the trip in September 2015, while aboard an Alaskan cruise on the Pacific Princess. We ... Read More
As part of my wife’s and my 50th wedding anniversary celebration, we planned a “bucket list” cruise around South America. We planned and reserved the trip in September 2015, while aboard an Alaskan cruise on the Pacific Princess. We sailed on a 14-day cruise on the Crown Princess leaving out of Rio de Janeiro on 04 January 2017, ending up in Valparaiso / Santiago, Chile. The first half of our cruise was like the “cruise from hell”! The second half turned out very nice. Some of the problems we encountered were particular to us, while some affected everyone on the cruise. Some were not the fault of Princess, while some I totally attribute to Princess. Some were due to weather and some due to an unexpected medical emergency. However, others were due to what I consider poor maintenance on the Crown Princess; some due to poor attitude of some, but not all of, the Princess staff; and some due to what I consider poor planning and execution by Princess Management. Problems started before we boarded the ship. The Embarkation process in Rio was a disaster. It was not a process at all, but rather total chaos! There was no organization and the subcontractor hired by Princess to manage the embarkation was untrained, unknowledgeable on what was going on or supposed to be going on, and totally rude to some passengers, notably handicapped ones. There was a very noticeable total lack of Princess staff present until very late in the boarding experience. Once a Princess staff member did come out and try to make announcements, they were audible only in about the northern 1/3 of the building. There were far too few chairs for the number of folks there (about 1/3 had to stand the entire time) and the air-conditioning was woefully inadequate. There was no water or cold drinks available except for purchase from one vendor which had a 30-minute line to check out. Priority boarding was non-existent. Platinum, Elite and Suite passengers were given “boarding numbers” just like everyone else, (seemingly at random) based upon when they arrived. Everyone should have boarded by 5 PM and sailed at 6 PM. We, along with two other couples traveling with us arrived at 1:30 PM. We finally boarded around 5:45 PM and our traveling companions did not get aboard until around 7:15 PM, and they were by no means the last to board. We sailed about 3 hours late, missing our scheduled dinner assignment and unable to see Rio de Janeiro’s harbor sights in daylight. It was the worst embarkation, by far, we have experienced in some 16 cruises in numerous North American and European ports, and with six different cruise lines. A couple next to us in the Rio embarkation warehouse said it was the worst embarkation they had experienced in 35 years of cruising! During our first day at sea, an announcement was made asking for any blood donors with AB+ or O- blood and a donor card to please report for the ship’s medical center since a passenger had a medical emergency and was in need of a transfusion. He was stabilized, but needed to be transported to a hospital onshore for further treatment. The ship diverted course and sailed back to the Brazilian mainland and the patient was transferred to a smaller vessel near shore and thence to a hospital. Unfortunately we learned the next morning he had undergone an emergency procedure there, but had not survived. This necessary diversion caused us to be another 8-10 hours late. After another day of cruising we had entered the Rio de la Plata river / estuary between Buenos Aires and Montevideo, where we dropped anchor! The Captain explained that 24-36 hours of very strong Northwest winds had caused an unusually low tide in the estuary and there was insufficient draft for us to proceed to Buenos Aires. We stayed at anchor for maybe 6-10 hours while the winds abated and the tides returned sufficient water for the required draft of the Crown Princess. The next morning we were docked at Buenos Aires, albeit a full day late. We awoke to find that out of some 8 or so planned shore excursions in Buenos Aires, the one we had signed up for was the only excursion cancelled. The reason given was equipment or technical issues. The same exact tours, but with German and Spanish speaking guides, proceeded as planned. It was too late to schedule another tour. We and one of the other couples traveling with us took a taxi into the Plaza de Mayo. From there we walked 2 blocks and took a “Hop-On-Hop-Off” bus tour of Buenos Aires. After several hours on the bus, and consulting the guide, we got off the bus and walked 3 blocks to the Recoleta Cemetery to see Evita’s grave. This had been one of the major stops on the Princess shore excursion that was cancelled. While walking the three blocks through a very nice park, we were “scammed” and I had my pocket picked and lost my new iPhone! Someone threw some foul-smelling stuff on all our backs and while we were distracted, thinking a flock of birds had pooped on us, their accomplice, seeming to help point out the stuff on our backs, picked my pocket. Apparently it is a favorite ploy of gangs in the city. The guide in Recoleta saw our soiled pants and shirts and said “Oh, you have been scammed”. He said we were not the first that day. When I reported it to two nearby policemen, they simply said that’s the way the gangs operate. Guest Services said when we reported it back aboard ship that we were not the only Crown Princess passengers to fall for the same scam that day. We told the staff member working there that future passengers should be warned about this scam. Indeed, the excursion speaker did then warn of exactly this type of scam before we arrived in Santiago. We went to our stateroom, took off our clothes, showered and left quickly for our scheduled early dinner seating. We planned to wash our soiled clothes the next morning in the self-laundry on our deck. The next morning we “learned” that because we are a day late, we had lost our docking spot in Montevideo and thus would not dock there during the day but only a short time in the evening to take on supplies and food. All shore excursions in Montevideo are thus cancelled. We are also told that we “must take on fuel” and because we have lost our docking slot in Montevideo, we again sat at anchor for 6-8 hours in the Rio de la Plata while a small tanker and pump barge tied up alongside and loaded bunker fuel. Also when we awoke that morning we found some of the carpet in our stateroom wet. We learned that the toilet in the adjacent stateroom had overflowed and somehow seeped through the bulkhead and into our stateroom. We also found that all the laundries were closed for “water rationing”? We complained to the head steward who was on the hall overseeing carpet clean-up, asking when the laundries would be open because we had the fouled clothes for our Buenos Aires scam. He offered to take our clothes and have them cleaned complementary with the crew’s laundry. We thanked him and then went to eat breakfast. We had to stay out of our cabin most of the day while the carpets were vacuumed, shampooed, and dried (or at least partially dried). We had a very noisy blower in the room for two days. It seems strange to me that a ship capable of extended cruising and making trans-Atlantic and trans-Pacific crossings of 7-10 straight days at sea should have to refuel only 4 days after leaving the beginning of the cruise in Rio de Janeiro! I am guessing that since this ship for the remainder of the season cruises alternatively between Buenos Aires and Valparaiso that they have attractive bunker fuel contracts in both areas. However, with only one stop per season in Rio, I suspect that Princess had to purchase fuel at a more expensive “spot market price”, and thus Princess management chose to sail from Rio with only partially full bunker tanks. Then after unexpected weather and unforeseen medical situations, we must sit anchored in the muddy Rio de la Plata and refuel for 6-8 hours. In retrospect I think this may also be the reason for the “water rationing” since I doubt if that the reverse osmosis water-makers could properly handle the very muddy water being taken in from the Plata while we sat at anchor. I had noticed water from our tap the night before being somewhat cloudy or brown! We finally docked at Montevideo just at dusk and passengers are allowed ashore for about 3 hours and told to “enjoy the nearby shops, bars, and restaurants” since no tours weree offered. My wife and I disembarked and got just to the end of the pier before a major thunderstorm unleashed torrential rains. We quickly re-boarded, being some of the lucky ones to get only slightly wet instead of thoroughly drenched. People who did stay ashore later complained that all the shops and many restaurants and bars were shuttered for the night (or the rain?). We just got to “set foot” in Montevideo and Uruguay, and had no excursions or tours! The next morning we were informed that we would totally bypass the Falkland Islands in order to get back on schedule for the remainder of the cruise. All shore excursions in the Falklands, including the one we had booked to go and see the penguins, were of course cancelled. Seeing the penguins had been one of the anticipated highlights of our cruise! We went to the Shore Excursion Desk to see if there were any options to change, or add, excursions in Ushuaia to see penguins there. We were told they were all already full with “very long waiting lists”! People were really getting upset by now. After waiting in line for quite a while at the Shore Excursion Desk, two men cut in from the side and went directly up to the desk. Several people behind us yelled at them to “wait their turn and get in line like everyone else!” When we then approached the staff member (we were next in line before the men attempted to cut), my wife told the staff member working there that in addition to helping with shore excursions, he should also help maintain order and ensure that folks kept in line and did not cut. He, almost indigently, told her that he had been there several days and nobody had ever cut before! He also said that we should not anticipate on getting on any excursions to see penguins as they were all much too full. As new Captain’s Circle Platinum members, my wife and I were disappointed in the lack of attention that was paid to the “claimed Platinum Benefits”. First there was absolutely no priority or preferred boarding in Rio for us as Platinum members. There was a “Happy Hour” for Platinum, Elite and Suite passengers held in the Skywalker’s Lounge every night. We received no notice of this initially. We only learned about it after 3-4 days at sea from a fellow Platinum passenger. My wife called the Guest Services desk and inquired about these functions and about an invitation. She was told we should have received an invitation in our stateroom (which we didn’t). My wife requested one and was told it would be sent to our room shortly. Late the next day after still not receiving one, I finally went to the Guest Services desk and asked for one. After a lengthy “verification” that we were indeed Platinum, I was given a copy. We did utilize the special disembarkation lounge for Platinum, Elite and Suite guests in the Explorer’s Lounge and that was nice. There were also a number of smaller instances which all pointed to the age of the Crown Princess and what I consider poor condition and maintenance. There were numerous plumbing problems. In addition to the overflowing toilet next door, our toilet overflowed once but thankfully was contained on the tile bathroom floor. Over the remainder of the cruise, we heard of several other “overflowing toilet issues”. The tub in our mini-suite was VERY slow draining for the entire voyage. Initially there was no Wi-Fi service in our stateroom. I called and complained and was told that the “router would be tweaked and it should be better”. It was never consistently available. Occasionally I could get a weak Wi-Fi signal in one or two spots in our stateroom, but if my phone or iPad shifted more than a few inches, I lost the signal. I resolved myself to going to the ship’s common areas to text, and send and receive email. One day we were both in our stateroom, my wife in the bathroom and I on the couch reading. There was a loud thump or bang. I thought my wife had fallen and she thought I had fallen. Instead a large fabric-coated wooden panel had fallen off the wall beside the bed between us and bounced over the lamp and onto the floor. It probably weighed 20 pounds. I informed our steward and it was promptly reattached. I know we experienced some rough seas both in the Atlantic as we approached Cape Horn and also in the Pacific as we came out of the Strait of Magellan and the ship rolled and pitched. However, all the attached wooden furniture (desk, cabinets, etc.,) in our stateroom (D515) creaked and popped so loudly that on several nights my wife could only get to sleep after putting in earplugs and taking some melatonin. As a football fan I was also disappointed in the choices of Princess as to how games were presented on television. We watched all the pre-game hype and interviews for the NCAA championship game on our stateroom TV. Just as the game was about to begin, however, the screen went blank and then a message was displayed that “this presentation is blacked out on this station”! The first weekend of the NFL playoffs, games were shown on the large poolside screen and on the TV’s in Gatsby’s Casino, but not in the staterooms. The next weekend of the NFL Division Playoffs the same arrangement was initially started. There was so much interest in the Dallas – Green Bay game that Gatsby’s was standing room only. The Blackjack Dealers could not even get chairs around their tables and no one came to the tables to play in spite of the dealers trying to set up. Finally the head man or Pit Boss came out and told the dealers to just give up and wait until after the game. At the end of the Dallas – Green Bay game, they made an announcement that the next game between the Steelers and the Patriots would instead be shown on the stateroom TV’s! I’m not sure of Princess’s arrangements with satellite television but when the business in the casino suffered, they certainly found a way quickly to broadcast the games in the staterooms! Why didn’t they do it earlier for the NFL and for the NCAA game? Although there was clearly a bad attitude among some of the Crown Princess staff, especially the staff manning the Shore Excursion and Guest Services desks and some of the shops, not all were of this same attitude. Our stateroom steward was very attentive and efficient and very promptly attended to every issue raised with him. The Botticelli formal dining room wait staff and the staff at Vines Wine Bar deserve special praise. They were excellent. We were also somewhat disappointed in the overall quality of the entertainment. The specialty venue musicians were all very good and the comedian in the Explorer’s Lounge was very good. The Princess Production crews (singers and dancers) were very talented, but the production shows themselves seemed “dated” and unimaginative. Nathan Foley, whom we had seen win Princess’ Entertainer of the Year on the Caribbean Princess last year, was great as usual. The audience response to all shows, however, even including Foley’s, seemed to lack the enthusiasm we have experienced on other recent cruises. The food in the main dining rooms (Botticelli and da Vinci) where we ate and the Horizon Court buffet were adequate. The food in the International Café, which we frequented for lunch, was very good. Our two meals in Crown Grill and Sabatini’s specialty restaurants were probably the best dining experiences and meals we have had on any cruise. The second half of the cruise was much better; making all ports and having no shore excursions cancelled. Cruising around Cape Horn and the glaciers around Beagle Channel and the Strait of Magellan were spectacular. Ushuaia was beautiful and fun to visit. Our Wildlife Watching excursion there was excellent. Punta Arenas was interesting also. Disembarkation went very smoothly in Valparaiso. One last personal problem did arise related to disembarkation, however. We had dutifully placed all our large bags outside our stateroom the night before so that they could be transported to a lower deck for offloading into the passenger terminal. We kept only our small carry-on bags and one set of clothes to wear ashore and on the full-day tour of Valparaiso, Vina del Mar, and a wine tasting and lunch en route to our hotel in Santiago. I had saved the hiking pants that had been taken and cleaned by the chief steward for us after they were severely soiled in our earlier scamming incident. I had checked that all of the odorous substance had come out of the trouser legs and that they had not been stained. Much to my chagrin, however, I discovered as I put on the trousers that last morning, that in the washing, drying or ironing that the entire zipper pull was missing! Luckily I had also left out a pullover golf shirt with an extra-long shirttail that I could constantly pull down to cover my open zipper! I did fill out a Damage Report at the Guest Services desk, but it was still an uncomfortable, embarrassing day until I could get to the hotel in Santiago and get another pair of pants from my suitcase! I have yet to hear from Princess or receive any reimbursement for the ruined pants. I know this was not the experience or quality cruise that I, nor other passengers, nor Princess was expecting. Obviously Princess realized this since they offered each passenger ½ of that they had paid for the cruise in a “Future Cruise Credit” and another ½ of that they had paid for the cruise as a credit in their “Onboard Spending Account”. I am grateful for that, but still do not think that this particular cruise and ship was anywhere near the quality on prior Princess cruises. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
Good itinerary. Heard good things about it. But the ship itself was not in good shape. There were big stains in the carpet. There were dents in the hallway wall. Dingy. We marked out preference for table of 8. We were put at a table by ... Read More
Good itinerary. Heard good things about it. But the ship itself was not in good shape. There were big stains in the carpet. There were dents in the hallway wall. Dingy. We marked out preference for table of 8. We were put at a table by ourself. The fix for that was poor. There was a table of 6, but 3 were a sub-group of old friends. A group of 8 would have minimized that social difficulty. The people at the table were downers. Never had that experience with Princess dining before. In one tour we were left by the tour guide (Ernesto in Lima). Luckily there were other Princess buses there, but that is not acceptable. He did not even count the people on the bus. Food was ambitious but often not well prepared. Meat usually overcooked. If we wanted medium-rare, we had to order rare. Many excursions were poor. Long drives and nothing to see. Long lines to get on the bus, long ride, and nothing to see. The description on some of them exaggerated, like a sales pitch. We could have done other with our day in port had we known. The stateroom help was excellent. Our waiter (Florenza) was excellent. Generally the personnel were friendly and helpful. Please note that the same unpleasant people at our table complained about Florenza -- unfairly and planned to give her a negative review. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
Embarked on MV Crown Princess on a 27-day cruise from Los Angeles to Montevideo, I had been driven away from poolside by the thumping music. So I found a deck chair in a quiet region, stretched out happily, and opened my book. Presently, ... Read More
Embarked on MV Crown Princess on a 27-day cruise from Los Angeles to Montevideo, I had been driven away from poolside by the thumping music. So I found a deck chair in a quiet region, stretched out happily, and opened my book. Presently, a cruise line goombah appeared and demanded $40 to use the chair for the day. “You’re kidding.” “This is a quiet area.” “I know. That’s why I sat here.” “You have to pay for quiet.” That last statement should be featured on every Princess Line brochure. This ship is a floating gouge machine. It is also a jam-packed cattle car, whose passengers are relentlessly herded and prodded into servility. I had been eager to make this voyage around Cape Horn ever since I read “Two Years Before the Mast” when a boy. As a former seagoing Naval officer and a veteran of six prior cruises on some illustrious liners, and having read every one of the 25 or so Hornblower and Aubrey and Maturin novels, I was churning with excitement. What a shattering disappointment. The debacle began with embarkation in L.A., a grueling two-hour exercise in donkey coitus that killed all festive spirit. You are interrogated, searched, photographed, and admonished as you pass through no fewer than five checkpoints. This suggests nothing else so much as the booking-in process at Terminal Island Federal Prison. You are issued an ID card linked to your personal data and photo, and told it is “required” that you carry it with you “at all times.” This suggests nothing else so much as the ID cards that German Jews were “required” to carry with them “at all times.” You are advised that your luggage is subject to search for “contraband.” Guns? Bombs? Drugs? No. Jack Daniel’s and Cotes du Rhone. The company forbids passengers to possess alcohol, even in their own cabins. This is further enforced by “alcohol checkpoints” when you embark. For our good health, right? Of course not. We understand immediately that this is to shelter the monopoly on alcohol. This is soon manifested. A (short) martini costs $10.25; a Paulaner beer, $16. A 50-minute massage is $134, including the mandatory tip. Internet access is $200 to $400, depending on which plan you choose. The service is glacial. As the ship enters the tropical ports, a steward circulates around the decks distributing half-liter bottles of water “to beat the heat ashore.” “Thanks very much.” “That will be two dollars.” The standard (i.e., “free”) restaurants offer food of quality raning from four-star to hog slop. Oddly, they serve a superb Beef Wellington but the hamburger has the flavor and consistency of week-old oatmeal. Breakfast is especially dismal: bins of tired bacon marinating in grease, eggs congealing under heat lamps, soggy pancakes, truck-stop coffee. If you don’t fancy dishwater coffee, you can get the “special” variety for $2.95 per cup. The meals are contended for in bump-and-shove buffet lines or delivered in noisy crowded restaurants by harried waiters. The service staff are willing and friendly, but are so frenzied in contending with the mass of humanity that they lack care. For example, rushing around the restaurant the waiter will pour water in your wine. Yes, this happened. He apologized and carried away the diluted wine, saying he would “bring another.” It turned out that he meant “another water,” not “another wine.” The replacement wine had to be paid for. Waiters are forbidden to dispense “free” wine. Similarly, in the rush to keep the herd moving, waiters will snatch away your half-finished plate when you get up to refill your coffee. The buffet restaurant is in such frantic chaos that it is impossible to know who “your” waiter is. So I asked the nearest one to please not take the untouched meal away while I went for iced tea. I returned after a minute and a half. Gone. At dinner one evening, I was captivated by the narrative of an 84-year-old Korean lady to my left who had lived through the Japanese occupation. A waiter positioned behind my right shoulder interposed, in the middle of her sentence, “May I take your order?” Deeming that I was not quick enough to break off this communion and turn to his business, he poked me in the shoulder repeatedly and barked “sir, sir, sir.” This particular form of rudeness is a regular thing. Not all the wait staff are so rude. A minority are more thoughtful. But this proceeds from their innate politeness rather than correct training. If you want the good food and soft ambience, you must attend one of the “specialty” restaurants at $29 extra per meal. Ka-ching once again. Be prepared for LOTS of lines, swarming and teeming, for meals, for shows, for excursions. Be also prepared for the “dash for the seat/bar stool/deck chair” competition. You will be ordered to vacate if another passenger believes he has a better claim. You could stand your ground and battle for your rights, but you didn’t buy an expensive cruise for that. So you shrug and amble off, irritated less at the other passenger than at Princess Cruises for packing you in this way. SHORE EXCURSIONS. I could write a separate essay of similar length, but will just say this: NEVER book a Princess shore excursion unless you desire further experience with mass-herded donkey coitus at exhorbitant cost. Instead, make independent arrangements in advance, more customized and at a third the price. Alternatively, it is almost always possible to make arrangements on the spot. The harm of all this is not only out-of-pocket. You might just set aside a few thousand extra, say the hell with it, and relax. But it wouldn’t work. You are repeatedly irritated as you are dinged, gouged, squeezed, and fleeced; you are endlessly on edge as you worry that you might have crossed some line or entered some space or consumed some comestible that will trigger an extra charge or a “not allowed” reproach; you are always conscious that this cruise line will exploit your captivity to the maximum. In time, I developed a grim admiration for the efficiency with which the passengers are processed. The word “processed” is carefully chosen. That’s what you will be. The Rule of Five Percent holds that every experience entails at least five percent that is fun and enriching. I made it my mission to find the five percent, and managed to do so: the sea air, the ocean vistas, the communion with other passengers, some stunning views at the bottom of the world. So I attained part of what I came for. But by the end of the cruise I was half screaming inside escape this hog-wallow vessel. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
We chose this cruise purely because of it's destinations and the fact that they had a kids club as we were travelling with our 12 year old son. Embarkation was a total nightmare - preference was given to those that are elite/gold ... Read More
We chose this cruise purely because of it's destinations and the fact that they had a kids club as we were travelling with our 12 year old son. Embarkation was a total nightmare - preference was given to those that are elite/gold status which 80% of the passengers appeared to be so the entire boarding lounge was literally long long queues. We had a Mini Suite deck 9 - room was ideal for the 3 of us and handy having the balcony. Only complaint with the room would be the fact that you have to be incredibly careful with putting only the min amount of toilet paper in the toilet or it blocks. They are very good at quickly unblocking them though and by the sounds of it it's a full time job for someone as many people we met had the same problem. We chose the "anytime" dining. We found that the food was pretty much the same regardless which restaurant you went to and the menus never changed. The food overall had little taste and was NEVER hot (warm at best). The pizza bar was literally the best place to eat (quality of pizza) so my husband and son ended up there a lot of the time. Being in a Mini suite we were able to order continental breakfast - this was great and meant we didn't have to join the queues at the buffet. Entertainment was definitely below average when you compare with other lines such as Disney. The things we did go to were generally run by the crew and rather "weak/basic". We went to a number of the information sessions on the various ports that we were about to stop at - these were interesting but aimed at adults with dry facts. The ports we visited were fascinating - needless to say, with only a day it was not long enough but good for a quick glimpse. Main complaint we had with this cruise was the continuous "on-selling" that went on and the fact they would agree to everything (say "yes") to get you across the line for whatever package you were agreeing to then they'd renege! Drove us crazy! An example of this is the fact we booked a 31 day cruise from LA to Rio - on our itinerary it clearly gives one voyage number and states 31 days. We booked it directly with Princess Cruises online so it's also on their paper-head. This same cruise was also made up of people cruising from LA - Santiago and from Santiago to Rio so essentially two smaller cruises. When ever we discussed any of the packages onboard such as at the day spa, photo shop they would advertise specials per cruise eg. $199 package for all photos taken onboard per cruise. We agreed to this and reiterated that it did mean our cruise of 31 days and the girl working there said yes. She said she'd make a note on our file that we were continuing past Santiago so there was no confusion. After we left Santiago we popped into check the photos were still put aside for us - we were then told that no, the deal was we'd have to pay $400 as on their books (the photo shop) we were now on another cruise (so $200 per cruise)!!! UGH!! We asked to speak to the manager - that took about 2 days and even then, he never actually came back to us - he just said "no". We then asked to see the Customer Services Manager which also took another two days for them to organise and only after a huge amount of push back and telling the story to numerous different staff. When I was getting really frustrated on one call and mentioned I'd give a bad comment on social media she told me that if that's what I wanted to do then to just "go head"! LOL! Our bill had various inconsistencies, thankfully they have an app that you can keep checking but you need to. We had spa treatments of around $700 added to our bill that were not ours. We had to get reception to go back through all the receipts to prove that it was not ours and we didn't sign for it - this took ages! Then it was simply oh, we'll deduct that - no apology. In a nutshell they offer "service" but if something goes wrong or there's an issue they just don't want to know about it. It was bewildering to experience such low levels of customer service - they literally have no ability or wish to work with the customer, you come up against a stone cold hard wall. For many of the various ports that we stopped at tenders were used. Waiting to get to port and back was often a nightmare as they never used enough tenders to deal with the large quantities of people. Our Captain was the most cautious man on the planet and would only allow people off when literally the water was still - we're on a cruise ship for goodness sake!! Unfortunately, because of this, we never made it round Cape Horn which was extremely disappointing as that was the main reason for taking this trip. The lovely man we had looking after our room stated that this particular Captain was extremely cautious which is fine but not to the extent of constant disappointment and stress for many of the paying passengers. With many of the delays of disembarking/embarking the duration at which we were in port was often shortened. When leaving Stanley (Falkland Islands) the queue was 2.5hrs.. long - it was freezing and many of the older people were literally shaking standing out in the open. The police turned up to close one of the roads as the queue was so long! Stanley was amazing however, and would definitely recommend a tour guide called Tim. On the whole, our son loved it. The kids club was interactive and he made some lovely friends and the staff in the kids club were exceptional. For my husband and I, we won't ever sail again on Princess. We have done a number of cruises around the world and this was our first on Princess. They constantly play the "Love Boat" series on the cabin TV's and this pretty much sums it up - basic! Not much has changed from those days except the crew (on the whole) don't care anymore. Recommendation - if you've got another option, take it! Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
It started out all wrong with a 3 hour line for checkin. No water, seating or apologies. We were 1.5 hours late in sailing. I've never been on a cruise where the luggage arrived at your cabin before you did. The dining room menus were ... Read More
It started out all wrong with a 3 hour line for checkin. No water, seating or apologies. We were 1.5 hours late in sailing. I've never been on a cruise where the luggage arrived at your cabin before you did. The dining room menus were pretty routine. Portions were small. They even counted the pats of butter. Average of 6 pieces of fruit for a starter dish of seasonal fruit. Cabin was standard Princess cabin, but showing its age, as was the entire ship. Cabin staff was good. There were signs of maintenance issues, like splattered paint all over the balcony furniture, and several nights the water and sewage systems were shut down for emergency repairs. There were also frequent sewage smells thru the ship. We thought it was going to be warmer, but many nights people watching Movies under the Stars were wrapped up in several blankets. The excursions were the best part of the trip. Nice tours in Nicaragua and Costa Rica (recommend the rainforest aerial tram and river cruise). We did Lima on our own with a private 2-day tour. All in all, the worst of our 5 Princess/Carnival cruises. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
We were in Los Angeles already and wanted to remain out west for Thanksgiving holidays. Having been on 37 cruises, though never Princess, we decided to try this short trip to Cabo. We knew it would have many children and families, and ... Read More
We were in Los Angeles already and wanted to remain out west for Thanksgiving holidays. Having been on 37 cruises, though never Princess, we decided to try this short trip to Cabo. We knew it would have many children and families, and figured we could overlook that. Embarkation was fine, and the ship seemed reasonably attractive and well appointed. Our room, a balcony cabin, had a large balcony, and was acceptable overall. No amenities provided like robe or shower cap, but, ok. The carpet was FILTHY. Stained and dirty, and appeared not to have been vacuumed. We let it go, hoping we had tracked the debris and dirt in with us. The next day, it was all still there. By the bed, under the table, under the desk etc. The steward claimed he had vacuumed the room. We both requested it be cleaned, and to his credit he did, but was not around the rest of the trip....... We checked out the Sanctuary, and it was available. Probably because it's $40 per person per day and no kids allowed! There were 700 children on board, and the ship was over capacity at 3500+ passengers. It was worth the money because we had reserved, comfortable lounges, constant service, and no one was there to bother us. Don't be fooled, however, the spa pool that is adjacent is not monitored. Supposedly only spa service guests and Sanctuary guests can use it, but that was not the case. Again, luckily, no children allowed. We decided there was no way we would be able to handle the buffets or MDR and were able to book all the nights at the specialty restaurants, no problem. Again, probably because there were so many children most people did not want to spend the extra $29 per person. They were ok, not great, but definitely better. There were, however, crying children at one point. Luckily the parents finally took them out because the staff said they were not 'entitled to tell them they were bothering the adult guests' at 9pm!! Here is the biggest and most important problem: the ship was constantly closing bathrooms because they were 'out of order', there were several with NO SOAP in the dispensers, they were dirty and had paper towels strewn on the floor, overflowing garbage, and in several instances VOMIT on the floor! There was no hand sanitizer in the casino dispensers. Deck 6, 7, and 15 and the spa bathroom were the most frequently a problem. We would then have to go to our room, and our keys demagnitized at least 5 times! Our safe had to be reset. We get the drink package. We realize the basic wines are poured. These were less than grocery store level. The 2 wines that I wanted that were better (in my opinion) were unavailable. The specialty restaurants had no better wine list as the other cruise lines do. We had them come twice to make our room cooler, and it did nothing. There is no air flow from the vents. I think they turn it off during the evening and night. We really wanted to like Princess so that it would open additional options for us. Sadly, two thumbs down! And, the staff doesn't care when you complain. They do nothing. Since there was vomit on the floor prior to sailing at the entrance to the Crown Grill restaurant and in the spa bathroom, I'm just glad we didn't get sick Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
Could not believe how bad this cruise was. First the positive: great enrichment speakers, cabin steward and waiters at 5:30 seating were very good. While the TV did not have as many stations or screen qualiy as the Royal Princess (3 ... Read More
Could not believe how bad this cruise was. First the positive: great enrichment speakers, cabin steward and waiters at 5:30 seating were very good. While the TV did not have as many stations or screen qualiy as the Royal Princess (3 cruises in the last two years), the TV had a sleep timer on it while the Royal did not (Princess customer service was not aware that their new ships do not have sleep timers on the TVs. Paid Princess to stay at Marriot LAX the night before. Parked car for 3 hours before returning it, automatic $31. charge. Meeting in lobby the next day was crowded, confused and Princess rep had bad attitude. The way some people acted, I don't blame her but...... In 2015, before world cruise we did the same with no issues. I believe this was due to the type of people that took this cruise (more on this later). Embarkation was late, even for Elite. Once on board all OK. 3rd night on way to Hawaii, did Crab Shack. Bad, Bad, Bad. I could not believe how terrible, small and overcooked the crab, corn, shrimp and potatos were cooked. Other noted was same and many stopped going. I guess part of the disappointment was that we had dinner at Captain Jacks in Sunset Beach before the cruise. There could be no comparison. We had two dinners at the Crown Grill which was worth the price. Over the past 15 years, even the regular dining room food quality has gone down. In the past if you did not like the offering for that evening, you could always chose from the left side, Medallions of Beef, now no long, just meatloaf. There were two different stations that had rude servers. Each morning at 5:30 I go to the internet cafe (much improved internet and support when help was there) to download newspapers as the TV news stations were good but limited. The guy at the coffee bar started to be refurred to as the 'coffee nazi'. While my darling had a coffee card, I just liked regular coffee while on the internet. If you weren't getting a special coffee you were treated poorly with a bad attitude. The we had the 'popcorn nazi'. The last Monday night of the cruise was cold. About 10 people were on the top deck watching the football game. At 7:15 we smelled popcorn, it was being made around the corner at the pizza/ice cream area. I went there and some poor young man was making tons of popcorn. A large bin was already full and the popper was going strong. I asked for popcorn and he told me he could not give it out until 8 PM when the movie started. After several tries (politely), the pizza guy came over to defend him as that was their orders. He offered to make me a pizza. When I asked to talk to a supervisor, the young kid went pale. I felt sorry for him. While they made the call, I went back to the game. About 15 minutes, a supervisor came bay (light blue jacket). We had a discussion and he would not budge. It was their policy not to serve until the movie as if they gave it out ahead of time, then everyone would want popcorn. I again showed him that there were no more than 10 people on the entire deck. Imagine how many more beers would have been sold if we had popcorn during the game? On the Pacific Princess, there was always popcorn in the evening, sometimes even in the theater. The next day, on formal along with the shrimp delivered to our Elite room, they delivered chocolate covered strawberries with an apology. Just what we needed, just before dinner. Excursions were well organized and guided. Our first time to French Polynesia. The bad part was that there were too many people. At the Bloody Marys' stop there were 5 buses and a long line for a drink or T shirt. Now for the people. I am and was very polite. In the past, I would take my Mother on cruises with a companion chair (she could walk but was limited) and thus have compassion for those with disabilities. Within a few days, many people were grumbling about too many 'sticks and wheels'. Not only was the ship too crowded but I estimate at least 30% had canes, wheel chairs or electric carts. One time, on our way to dinner, at midship bank of 6 elevators, we had to wait a full 3 cycles of each elevator before we got one that had room in it (most had an electric chair and 3 people). Many of these people rushed to the ship hospital to get walkers on tender days as they instited to go on the tenders (long lines and delays). Toward the end of the cruise, the geriatrics with bad attitudes or patience started argueing with each other and causing issues (seats, blocking hallways, not backing up in elevators.....). We are over 70 years old and not super fast however, we did OK. No idea how Princess could avoid this but it was bad enough that I would not take this particular cruise again. We heard that since it was round trip from LA and less than one month, that this is normal for this cruise. Embarkation was late and poorly managed at the buses. We had a 12:30 flight back to NJ. We were guided to the bus along with about 40 others. The driver was confused and did not speak English well. The Princess rep walked away and left the driver to pack the bus. All this time, about 45 minutes, he did not have the bus running so no AC. It got so hot, some of us were really feeling the heat. We were just about to get off as now were we running late. Again, no rep to see us off. The driver announced that if anyone had a flight around noon to let him know and he would go to that terminal first. I let him know when our flight was and it was at terminal 7. Everyone else had later flights. Long delay with traffic to get to the airport. To my shock, he went right to terminal 1, then 2, then 3......and so on. At each terminal he had to open the bays and take out and sort luggage, walkers and wheelchairs. Needless to say, we arrived at terminal 7 30 minutes before the flight and they would not take our luggage. Thus, we missed our flight. I am 6'5" and always pay for an emergency row so I lost my seat and the next flight, 4 hours later only had middle seats available. I was cramped the entire flight, did not get home until 1 AM and now, I may need a wheelchair. In summary, poor service, poor attention to details, poor follow up, too too crowded. Poor attitude of elderly passengers. (I live in a retirement age restricted village so I am experienced with this type of attitude). I felt sorry for the crew yet some showed their frustration and lacked understanding. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
airlines beat up my electric wheel chair. Princess wanted $20.00 per day to use one of their many many wheel chairs. I was almost trapped in my room for 28 days. Also they didn't have much to do one the days at sea. No cooking ... Read More
airlines beat up my electric wheel chair. Princess wanted $20.00 per day to use one of their many many wheel chairs. I was almost trapped in my room for 28 days. Also they didn't have much to do one the days at sea. No cooking classes, special events and such. A very stupid ceremony for crossing the equator. It was chocolate sauce, hot sauce and such poured over the people. Also the movies really weren't that good. They were old. The show from Soma was very nice, Food was average except at the 24 hour café on deck 5. when I asked for help from the front desk over my electric wheel chair they did not care. All they wanted was $20.00 per day for a loaner. It was also odd that the tenders took carts and such but would not take my chair. That meant I could not get off in many locations. I could only see Bora Bora from my cabin balcony. I hate when the staff speak in native tongue with other staff while addressing you. No excursions in some places and very little help. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
The embarkation went very well, but the disembarkation was a little a little rough around the edges. The ship was very well maintained and we had a balcony which had a lot of storage room. I would like to have a hand held shower head ... Read More
The embarkation went very well, but the disembarkation was a little a little rough around the edges. The ship was very well maintained and we had a balcony which had a lot of storage room. I would like to have a hand held shower head like other cruise lines. Dining was nothing special. If I would rate the ship by the food, I would give it a 2. Some of the meals were over cooked. Something is wrong when the best meal is a hamburger, hot dog or a pizza. The Windjammer almost had the same menu every day. We have been on Princess 5 other cruises and enjoyed them very well. This was a once in a lifetime cruise to Hawaii. We are thinking about a trip for 28 days to Tahiti, but it will not be with Princess. We enjoyed the shows every night. The service staff all over the ship was top notch. All of the ports were just great. Peal Harbor was a highlight of the cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
Was not happy with the service, charged for coffee and tea in one area of the ship and it was free in other areas. Shows were being shown at the same time. Didn't have much to do on sea days. Cruise Director was not ... Read More
Was not happy with the service, charged for coffee and tea in one area of the ship and it was free in other areas. Shows were being shown at the same time. Didn't have much to do on sea days. Cruise Director was not engaging. Cabins and Balconies to small. Didn't have excursion worked out to well, long line and wrong lines, lines not properly marked. Didn't have a beech day scheduled as excursion which I heard a lot of people complaining about. Had to go to a locals beech about 2 miles away small and dirty. Hardly any activity on the ship except drinking, swimming and dancing Closed restrounts early Closed all bars and entertainment at 11pm. Getting on the ship was great, getting of was a horror story. very very long lines. Buying anything onboard was expensive. 8x11 photo was $20 Had free elegant night dinner. If we didn't get this free, we would have had to pay a $29 dollar entrance fee and pay for the dinner too and drinks. REALLY ! The wait staff were exalent. ***** Entertainment was great every day. Was able to bring wine onboard with no problems Suites kept very clean Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
This was our first cruise, selected because we wanted to see Hawaii and Pearl Harbour. We had already been to LA and seen a bit but thought we could go to the Iowa and Queen Mary, which we did... Boarding was quite laborious and ... Read More
This was our first cruise, selected because we wanted to see Hawaii and Pearl Harbour. We had already been to LA and seen a bit but thought we could go to the Iowa and Queen Mary, which we did... Boarding was quite laborious and drawn out, but apparently the norm, and anyway I'd arranged for an expensive bottle of champagne to be delivered to our stateroom outside cabin...or so I thought? We accessed our cabin, which was nice enough and surprisingly spacious, but no sign of the champagne...and when we found the cabin steward, were advised that we should have a voucher (NO)...next visit to the main desk to be told we should have a voucher (NO)..it will be in your cabin...(NO)...after 3 days of being told this, we were informed that they had tried to deliver...Yes wrong cabin....eventually we got it, not the start we expected. The passenger list was aged, with the amount of motorised wheel chairs, buggies, and general support vehicle mind blowing, with ages of 80 upwards....the result of this was an endless stream of shufflers at almost every venue, and the inevitable queues that ensued. Except when it came to various functions on board, when the speed to be at the front of the queues was spectacular...anyway I digress...our luggage turned up long after we had set sail, after many requests, and the hanging space was fine when supplied with extra hangers.... The ship generally looked in good order, fairly clean and well appointed, but as we found out, did not have enough room in the various areas to accommodate the volume of people on board, with even the biggest area, the theatre having have two shows . This theme carried on in every area of the ship, even at the outside cinema, which insisted in showing a vast amount of Nfl American football games, fine for them but not for other passengers... We had anytime dining which worked well in the main, but we found that the dress code was not adhered too with shorts and tee shirts at the tables, even on formal nights, for which we had made an event...we got a glimpse of the captain who was mainly only available for elite passengers, the first class etc. The specialty dining, " extra cost " was generally good, apart from the Crown grill urgh...again with dress code issues, Sabatinis being the best overall. The other bugbear was the card procedures on pre paid "all inclusive ", which entailed handing over your card on every drinks request, even whilst eating a meal...the dress code here was very poor and some waiting staff as miserable as sin... The bars were hit and miss except one...Crooners...they were cheerful and prompt, keeping everyone entertained, but again not enough space, with one passenger deciding to sit in shorts and bare feet up on a chairs reading a book...quite revolting really. The food was generally good, but in the breakfast areas overcrowded with again more miserable staff with the minor exception, we were always polite but clearly not respected. Entertainment was hit and miss but too short, the manager was pleasant and whizzed around the too many small venues, we saw a couple of shows which were good but too short, and this was normal, activities are sparse.. Services are a little indifferent, with some good and others poor, with the main aspects driven by sales, sales, and more sales....no opportunity was missed in selling anything and everything to the point of annoyance. The ports and disembarking was chaotic, and manic, with one port served by lifeboats to the port, which was not pleasant, we had made external arrangements for Honolulu. The final disembarkation was the worst, and had many voices of dissent, which appeared to be normal for Princess cruises....we were happy to get back on shore, safe in the knowledge that this was our first and probably our last cruise..... Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We chose this cruise because we wanted to see Glacier Bay and hoped to spend time in Skagway. We departed Seattle on time Saturday afternoon. We arrived in Juneau per our schedule Monday morning. Weather was usual Southeast/Juneau ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to see Glacier Bay and hoped to spend time in Skagway. We departed Seattle on time Saturday afternoon. We arrived in Juneau per our schedule Monday morning. Weather was usual Southeast/Juneau rain and cloudy. Overall our day on the beach in Juneau was a good experience. We did plan to stop for King Crab at the Crab Shack, however their prices we out of this world high, so we elected to have our crab on board that evening since it was a scheduled menu item on board. King crab on board the Crown was way overdone, dry, pretty much tasteless. We asked for melted butter to dip the crab in, but the wait staff advised the company was cutting back on expenses so there was none available, however they did have a buttery mix to pour on our crab. Have you ever tried to eat king crab while it was all slimy? Not good. We departed Juneau on time that evening and were due to make our port call in Skagway the next morning. Our captain did advise us on departure the weather in Skagway was forecast to be very rainy and windy. Next morning I looked out from our balcony and observed we were making our way into Haines, not Skagway. Captain finally come over the PA system to announce we were not able to port in Skagway due to high winds preventing our the ship's ability to dock without a tug. The city of Haines was not expecting a cruise ship that day, so normal arrangements for tours etc, had not been made, making for limited opportunities for passengers wishing to go ashore. Next day we were in Glacier Bay. Again we had normal Southeast Alaska fall weather, i.e. rain/drizzle, a little sun, and fog. Overall our visit was enjoyable. Better weather would have been appreciated from the sun gods, but didn't really happen. The following morning we arrived on schedule in Ketchican. Port call was nice, weather was again drizzle and a little sun, although a very short port call considering we had been unable to get into Skagway. Passengers were to be back to the ship NLT 12:30PM. For some reason it was almost 2PM before we finally departed. That night was formal night enroute back toward Seattle. Lobster was the prime fish choice for our special dinner. Again the lobster, like the king crab, was very dry, pretty much institutional food. I really had expected much more from Princess. We had done the Panama Canal aboard the Island Princess and had a great time. The Crown just didn't show me/us much on this cruise. Just makes me wonder if I would bother with taking another of their cruises. Our next port of call is Victoria, B.C. We didn't arrive at Victoria until 7PM, and passengers were to be back to the ship by 11PM. Who wants to bother trying to see a special city like Victoria in the dark. Not this person. We arrived back at the pier in Seattle at our scheduled time the following morning. Off loading went as programmed. Very efficient. People seemed to be off in plenty of time for the ship's crew to prepare the ship for its's departure by 5PM. We chose a mini-suite for our cruise, and were very pleased with our cabin. Our room stewart, Ryan, did a great job taking care of us. We did have a special request after our stop in Juneau. We had purchased some reindeer sausage while ashore and needed to keep the meat frozen until our arrival back in Seattle. Ryan was able to have our meat stored as requested and returned it to us in time for me to pack it for our travels home. Evening entertainment was usually overly loud. I wear hearing aids, so I needed to remove the hearing aids and also had to plug my ears with my fingers due to the excessive noise. For me most of the musical presentations, including the music in the Wheelhouse Bar during Happy Hour ruined any attempt at a relaxing evening. Would I go again on an Alaskan cruise? Not on a cruise ship anyway. I would seriously consider taking a car, and doing the "Poor Man's Alaskan Cruise" on the Alaska Ferry. That might not be as plush as a cruise ship, but I could get off at my desired ports and spend as much time ashore as I chose, prior to catching the next ferry and going to another port. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We chose Princess after reading good reviews, and because they are known for their Alaska cruises. Unfortunately we won't be travelling with Princess again. We were very disappointed in the level of service. We have travelled ... Read More
We chose Princess after reading good reviews, and because they are known for their Alaska cruises. Unfortunately we won't be travelling with Princess again. We were very disappointed in the level of service. We have travelled with other cruise lines in the past, and this was by far the worst level of service we have ever received. Crew were not overly friendly, and sometimes downright rude. I can honestly say that in my past 6 cruises, I've never experienced a truly rude crew member like I did on this cruise on at least 4 occasions. I'm used to being smiled at, greeted, moved over in the hallway if possible (not cut off) and just helpful. This was not the case on the Crown Princess. Our only consistent good service was our dinner servers. They were always very friendly and attentive. Here are some of my specific complaints: Room set-up. HORRIBLE. We had a verandah room on the Caribe deck and it had 2 floor beds with 2 beds that dropped out of the ceiling. My children hit their heads HARD on these overhead beds at least 10 times. What a bad design these rooms are. You can barely get to the balcony if the beds are down and you are always at risk of hitting your head. Also, when the 4th bed is down, NO ONE in the room can watch TV. Room cleaning. Barely saw our housekeeper. Sometimes had to find him in the afternoon just to get towels, TP etc. Sit Down Dinner: Had to ask for butter every night. When we asked the server he told us he was instructed to only give butter on request...but yet there are buns on the table when you arrive to dinner?? Buffet: Logistically a really bad set up. You sometimes had to wait 20+ minutes to get into the part where you could start getting your food. On other cruises the have different sections that are open and accessible, and you don't have to wait in line. Also, not a lot of variety from day to day. Kids Program: I was told there would be plenty to do for our kids...not the case. The kids program only operates at specific times and there is no drop in. So if you kids didn't like what was going on, then they didn't go. On other cruises, my kids would practically live at the program, but they hated the Princess kids programs. It's also not available on Port days unless you want to sign them into the little kids program (my kids are tween and teen). So if you are on the ship at all during port days then the kids are bored to tears. Ship: Our ship was constantly shaking for the first few days...not rocking like with the sea, this was a fast/hard shake that rattled things in our room. I spoke to other seasoned cruisers and they were upset about it as well. First Day: We were asked a total of 10 times if we wanted to buy the drink package. Why can't they just ask you once as you enter the ship, and if you say no, then leave you alone! Other than those complaints, the ship was nice and clean and food was OK. But I won't be taking a Princess cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
I choose this particular cruise line based on reviews. My destination was to Alaska, regardless of which boat to take. However, after having sailed on Norwegian and Carnival, I opted to go with Princess based on the grander scale everyone ... Read More
I choose this particular cruise line based on reviews. My destination was to Alaska, regardless of which boat to take. However, after having sailed on Norwegian and Carnival, I opted to go with Princess based on the grander scale everyone was raving about. Unfortunately, I more than likely won't be choosing Princess again. More than once from several employees we received rude and obnoxious treatment from the staff. I gave the bartender at the International Cafe the benefit of the doubt, thinking maybe he had a bad day. When his behavior occurred on more than one occasion. That's when I decided never again, will I go on a Princess cruise. He even made a comment to another employee I guess she can't see the menu up on the wall and she needs a menu. I am 39 years old and yes I can't see very well. I asked for a menu because I literally could not see and left my glasses in the room. Plus it seemed like Princess was basically all about getting more money from you. We were scammed into purchasing these coupon books, to go on a scavenger hunt and get free so called items. We purchased three, $75.00 and one store owner had the audacity to say it was one per state room. I was like no we purchased 3 booklets. Then when we did not purchase more merchandise, we were looked at like cheap-skates. The food, was bland and not always available. Breads, and pastries were stale and old, to the point of hardened. Sorry Princess, but this is a thumbs down! Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
We took this cruise during 13th - 20th. I had my family including 2 teen boys with me. The itinerary was good. Your Room and Comfort: However the cabins smelled muggy/wet, and the bathrooms smelled like public restrooms. Beds were ... Read More
We took this cruise during 13th - 20th. I had my family including 2 teen boys with me. The itinerary was good. Your Room and Comfort: However the cabins smelled muggy/wet, and the bathrooms smelled like public restrooms. Beds were sagging and uncomfortable. Not good to get relaxing sleep. Entertainment: The company clearly focused it's energy on selling (goods on ship via their stores, or shows or auctions or drinks if you did not purchase their drink plan) but had less focus on making your stay enjoyable. Other than mostly shops, there were some entertainment like movies but it got real boring when it was whole day at sea. The temperatures get cold and rains are common in Alaska, hence you can't really enjoy Lido deck as much. I expected the ship to have lot more fun activities inside but sadly it was mostly either shopping or casino. Music been played in the areas where even coffee is not free so better shove out money if you want to listen to relaxing live piano being played. Dining Service: Staff was okay if you were to go to formal dining rooms. Casual buffet staff was plain out careless in most cases. Language barrier with staff made it even more challenging to explain what you need - ask for water and you may get coffee. The food choices where pretty much limited - pizza, burger, ice cream, casual buffet or formal dining. Fitness Centers: Fitness center was small, specially when you have 3000 guests, 10 trade mils and 5-6 machines for strength workout was way too little. Center was always packed with waiting lines, very little room to move around. I have seen twice the size on other ships. I had more expectations from Princess but sadly disappointed. The whole point seemed like "Aha, now that you are on my ship, I am going to suck and shake every penny off you!!! Where will you go even if you don't like me huh?" Overall, I would say, stay away from Princess. Only other cruise line I had sailed was Carnival and they were much better at treating you like they cared. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
The cruise ships was fine but two things let it down, poor food and pushy sales tactics. The food in the buffet restaurants looked good and had a good variety of choice but was pretty tasteless. The breakfast toast and bagels were kept ... Read More
The cruise ships was fine but two things let it down, poor food and pushy sales tactics. The food in the buffet restaurants looked good and had a good variety of choice but was pretty tasteless. The breakfast toast and bagels were kept under hot lights so that they were hard and dry by the time you got them. We were told they catered for vegans but this was not the case and we often ended up having bread and salad. There were no vegan dishes as such. It almost seemed as if the food was deliberately bland so that you would pay to go to the restaurants that required a cover change, sabatinis was a good Italian but we had to pay $29 USD per person. Every day there was a promotion by the sales manager for Jewlllery and Juneau town was just row after row of Jewlllery shops. Clearly this man was on commission as all he talked about was Jewlllery and bargains. Efforts jewellery was pushed all the time. Similarly the spa team were always offering talks on how to look more youthful I order to push spa treatments, at the end of which you got the hard wall for expensive products. One good thing about the cruise we're the naturalist speakers, and when travelling through area of interest we were provided with great wildlife talks and shouts,out when whales or Dolphins were spotted. The captain was very friendly and chatted in restaurants etc. The shore excursions were very pricey and often disappointing. We booked a whale watching and glacier tour. The whale watching was excellent. It the glacier was miles away and just a few ins to take photos. The bear sanctuary was very pricey and it turns out they only have 17 bears there! It's really small too. I did see a shop sign saying to come on in becaus they don't give kick backs to cruise companies ... I enjoyed the cruise destinations but the crew weren't overly friendly or helpful and seemed on a bit of a downer, maybe because the season was coming to a close? But it was the constant excuse to squeeze money out of you that irritated me. Constantly pushing the gastro pub food, which of course you have to pay a cover charge for. The internet was very expensive and poor, but gain they offered specials on this. The jewellery shop co tstanly had raffles or specials to entice people in. Disappointing... Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
This was our 50th anniversary cruise. We had very bad service at dinner! The assistant waiter was missing most of the time, leaving the waiter to buss tables and wait on over 16 people at two tables by himself. The breakfast and lunch ... Read More
This was our 50th anniversary cruise. We had very bad service at dinner! The assistant waiter was missing most of the time, leaving the waiter to buss tables and wait on over 16 people at two tables by himself. The breakfast and lunch buffets were mediocre at best compared to any Las Vegas buffet. The main dining room service and food was subpar compared to other cruises we have been on. The carpet in our cabin desperately needed cleaning or replacement also. The bars and shops were very good. The shore excursions were excellent. Our cabin steward was excellent and tended to our every need. As I said before, the food and main dining room service were subpar, which was one of the things we were looking forward to. Definitely took away from the total cruise experience. When we take another cruise it most definetly won't be on the Crown Princess. Very disappointed in Princess Cruises. Princess basically gave us a mediocre 50th anniversary cruise! Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
Our friends who had never cruised before selected this cruise line and ship because their bank card gave them additional shipboard credits for using. Very disappointed for my friends who had never been on one and picked out the cruise and ... Read More
Our friends who had never cruised before selected this cruise line and ship because their bank card gave them additional shipboard credits for using. Very disappointed for my friends who had never been on one and picked out the cruise and for my husband's first time to see Alaska. I had been on 3 other Alaskan cruises as well as several in the Caribbean and one to Baja. This was my least favorite of all my cruises. This was such a disappointment and money thrown away. Maybe cruises have changed recently, but this was first one we were nickel and dimed for everything including coffee. The shore excursions were overpriced compared to "doing on own" --- although sold as being less. There was a 20% automatic gratuity on everything that didn't fall under the standard tipping. I was quarantined for 24 hours after getting food poisoning on a pork roll and a hefty medical bill for "diagnosis" and medicine. I threw up two pills they gave me within minutes for several loose stools. The other prescription was for stomach cramps which stopped after taking only one, then didn't need any more since the food poisoning was then over. .They called my room several times during the quarantine to make sure I stayed in the room (Weds/Thurs) but nothing after releasing me at 1030am on Thurs. Since it had been determined that it was food poisoning from something on their menu, it would have been nice to acknowledged it or something. Maybe I just think differently in my customer service follow-up. Our disappointment was with the cruise line (dining experience, food quality and choice, cleanliness and smell, activities offered, visibility (lack of) of the captain and officers -- the only time we saw captain was Sunday. For all we knew, he got off i Juneau!!!, Formal portraits were done in funky, unnatural Olin Mills poses and too zoomed-in, salesmanship of everything -- couldn't order a glass of wine without getting hammered about the expensive wine-tasting experience and then when we said we weren't interested in the wine-tasting experience, service rest of meal tanked. The on- shore tour people were not honest about the tours. I questioned a dog sled ride included on our Skagway Yukon tour reserved since we also reserved one in Juneau. When we told the guy we wanted to cancel the Juneau one, he told us we were not on the Skagway tour with the dog sled ride and playing with the puppies. Well, it turned out we were and we had spent an additional $300 for the Juneau one which was first on the itinerary. It turned out that the Juneau musher camp experience was excellent and the one on Yukon tour lacked so I am glad we spent the extra money for a better experience. Just wish the guy had been honest about what was on our other tour!!!! Shining light:: We loved Juneau and the Red Dog Saloon experience!! (did on our own) and Jim, our bus driver for the Yukon bus/train tour and tour was five stars!!!!! Cruise Line had said we couldn't make earlier flights and we watched 3 flights non-stop to DFW with seats leave but it would have cost almost $200 to change tickets. I give Princess Cruises a D and don't recommend them. Normally I have kudos to several employees --- I did three commendations on this cruise. As for our flights, the Alaska Airlines up there was wonderful -- flight attendants visible throughout the flight. On American coming back, we got to listen to one of the flight attendants chat with employees sitting two rows up for forty minutes about flying international and San Francisco turnarounds while her two peers worked including picking up and cabin check on final. Crown Princess.... 1st and last experience. Have been on Royal Caribbean, Cunard and NCL. Always felt like we got our money's worth. Not this time .... Full fare tickets on AA coming home. Will NEVER fly them again!! Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
Just did an Alaskan cruise with Princess. The itinerary was great and Princess does pretty well entertaining during days at sea. Their technology is excellent - for example, their "Voice of the Ocean" competition featured real ... Read More
Just did an Alaskan cruise with Princess. The itinerary was great and Princess does pretty well entertaining during days at sea. Their technology is excellent - for example, their "Voice of the Ocean" competition featured real rotating chairs just like on The Voice. Also, the ship was very nice. We were on Crown Princess which apparently is due for updates. To me, it was nice the way it was. Our room side, bed, and balcony were all great. Unfortunately, Princess' service is very very poor in comparison to other lines I've been on. Where do I start? OK, let's take drink service. First of all, hardly any bars open early which basically meant I had to go to the pool deck to get a drink for the beginning part of the day. And for those who order liquor straight or on the rocks, you get an embarrassingly small amount. It looks like what's left when someone is DONE with their drink. They have nowhere near enough wait staff to meet demand either and I felt like no one was around when you needed them. Food lines and beverage lines were always overcrowded. They often could have opened both sides of the buffet but would not do so until it was a guarantee that there would be a long line on both sides. In all, I felt like I was dropped into the middle of some massive cost cutting program that Princess had unleashed. While there were some service people who were great, as a whole, the group is unfriendly and unhelpful. Regularly, staff members would cut in front of me while I was walking and, generally, I got the feeling that I was imposing on them whenever I asked for help - and I don't ask very often! I loved Alaska and love cruising but there's no way I'd book again with Princess. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
First cruise in 2009 on Grand Princess to Mediterranian "sampler", 15 days. Second, August 2015, Alaska departure from Seattle, WA (Grand Princess). Third, May 2016, departure from Vancouver, Canada (Crown Princess). After ... Read More
First cruise in 2009 on Grand Princess to Mediterranian "sampler", 15 days. Second, August 2015, Alaska departure from Seattle, WA (Grand Princess). Third, May 2016, departure from Vancouver, Canada (Crown Princess). After three cruises on Princess, all not good however, I must say, the staff has ALWAYS been AWESOME! How Princess keeps these awesome employees when in Hawaii it's so difficult to find good workers with MORE THAN minimum wage. Because we have had such AWESOME service from our housekeeping to wait help and bartenders that alone has made our cruises "special". It is NOT because of the Princess "service" (front desk, check in, off shore excursions, etc.) but the "service staff" from, bartenders, housekeeping, etc. that makes Princess what they THINK they are. I have written letters to recognize staff that has given 'EXCEPTIONAL" service, only to find out these employees DON'T receive any recognigtion what so ever. Does Princess NOT recognize employees for this? Why? I'm dumfounded as to find out WHY? Princess is NOT the only cruise line out there and this is why we will NOT cruise Princess anymore. Three strikes, you're OUT. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
Sailed on Crown Princess. The ship was okay. It has seen better days. There was rust where the metal meets the wood and in many spots. Our cabin was a mini-suite. The toilet kept braking didn't flush at least once a day had to ... Read More
Sailed on Crown Princess. The ship was okay. It has seen better days. There was rust where the metal meets the wood and in many spots. Our cabin was a mini-suite. The toilet kept braking didn't flush at least once a day had to call to get it fixed. The shower you either got burned or froze do NOT LET YOUR KIDS SHOWER make them take a bath. The Buffet, I had better food in my high school cafeteria. The sit down dinner was good. The entertainment was fantastic and so were the activities. The Services that from the stewards to dinning and photo were great. The excursions some were over rated but your in Alaska what do you want. We had 2 16 yr olds and they loved the activities for them. Remix is the way to go. We have traveled with Princess for many years and this is the first poor cruise we have taken. We spent over $10,000.00 on this trip and I am completely dissatisfied. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
> Bad choice of meals first 4-5 nights - (looks like cost savings as food quality increased drastically from that point forward. > When we pulled into BC Port the ship was late and the excursion's were coming back late with ... Read More
> Bad choice of meals first 4-5 nights - (looks like cost savings as food quality increased drastically from that point forward. > When we pulled into BC Port the ship was late and the excursion's were coming back late with folks not able to see anything in the dark. > Front desk was very short with my wife and I when we asked about our account. > Going home we paid extra to have our bags taken directly to our last stop airport, we wanted to go to bed early and had to wait for the bag tags to be brought to our room however there was a problem with that. > TV's in the room, you had to constantly press the buttons and hoped that the channels would change. > Queen bed was in bad shape as it sunk in the middle - THAT WAS NO FUN! The overall value did not seem to equal to what we had paid to see Alaska! Try another Cruse Line! Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
I have travelled on multiple cruises with several other cruise lines, but never with Princess. I had heard great things and my friend who was travelling with me had a great experience on the Coral Princess, so I was excited to experience ... Read More
I have travelled on multiple cruises with several other cruise lines, but never with Princess. I had heard great things and my friend who was travelling with me had a great experience on the Coral Princess, so I was excited to experience Princess with my first trip to Alaska. Staying in a suite, Our accommodations were very nice--just what we expected. Multiple perks to being in a suite, but any time we asked about them, there was little information ever provided--such as the added room service menu for Suite members only. While our room was freshened each day, toiletries and clean towels were consistently omitted. Upon calling the steward, our calls went unanswered, and when we asked about the phone calls never being answered, we were told we were doing something wrong with the phone. This was typical of the service provided by many of the staff. Any lack of customer service on their part was the customer's own fault. Somehow having to bathe without soap was MY FAULT. Dining experiences--food itself was subpar compared to other cruise lines. Best meal was Sabatini's breakfast which was excellent. Salty Dog's was great too. Most of the regular dining staff rushed us through ordering, were extremely condescending when we asked questions about any items on the menu, never went out of their way. They did the bare basics to get by. Some were friendly, some were downright rude and bossy. Most especially, we missed out on 2 of our 4 excursions planned. Although the other cruiseline ships that were sailing along with us throughout the week made it safely into port in Victoria, our captain was unable to dock the Crown Princess. The reason provided to us was first--that permission had not been granted from the local authorities, and then the 2nd reason--weather--specifically wind. Upon looking out the balcony and even climbing to roof top decks, the water was the calmest it had been our entire trip. No wind to speak of. Our last excursion of the trip was cancelled, and upon trying to find additional meals on the ship, none of the vendors were prepared for everyone to stay on board and didn't have enough ready or any willingness to try to meet the added demand. The issue that took the cake----the cancellation of our 2nd excursion in Skagway. We docked early morning, but our excursion was not until 1:30 so we remained on the ship until then. It wasn't until we met with our guide right at 1:30 that we were informed our Helicopter ride & Dog sledding excursion were cancelled. Weather--issues--and it was definitely smoggy. There was another group going dog sledding at the same time and since that was the main event of our excursion we asked why we couldn't be included in that group or why our entire group couldn't be bussed to the dog sledding excursion. The answer was just no. Most discouraging since these excursions were booked in December 2015 and some of those who still got to go dog sledding booked it this week from the trip. Weather can't be helped, but there was no back up plan. OUr tickets were confiscated and after talking to the shore excursion manager, she continued to explain that our refund would be applied to our account within the next couple of days. I was insistent on receiving something in writing to that affect since these were not cheap excursion tickets. We had no proof other than the word of one guide on the dock that this was cancelled and our tickets were taken. I needed a receipt that a credit was forthcoming. The manager was unwilling to provide anything further. We spoke to the passenger services manager and he provided a print out that would suffice until the credit was actually applied. We were satisfied with this. HOWEVER--the Excursion manager went OUT OF HER WAY to call our cabin and say "Did I know make myself perfectly clear that this would be handled later? I was called back from my excursion departures to handle this after I already explained it to you." There was no other purpose to her call. This was all she had to say. Calling a customer, mid-cruise, just to explain that YOU have been inconvenienced in doing your job---worst professionalism I have ever experienced in any travel arrangement. Never travelling with Princess again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
I have been on about 50-60 cruises, so I would think that I am a seasoned traveler and know what to expect for my money. To say that the cruise staff is poorly managed would be an understatement. This is a beautiful and stately ship. ... Read More
I have been on about 50-60 cruises, so I would think that I am a seasoned traveler and know what to expect for my money. To say that the cruise staff is poorly managed would be an understatement. This is a beautiful and stately ship. However, we seemed to have issues in almost every area of the ship, with the exception of the embarkation staff. They were great. The Salty Dog (Gastropub) was also wonderful. As for the rest, read on. Our party of 8 always entered the dining room promptly. However, we were always the last ones to leave. Service was painfully slow. The assistant waiter doubled as a beverage server which took him away from clearing dishes and running food from the kitchen. As if this was not bad enough, the food was horrible. One would think that salmon would be fresh on an Alaska sailing. It was dry and un-edible. I ordered it a second night and it was the same. Next, was reservations. On the second day of our cruise, I made phone reservations for Wednesday at the Salty Dog, and Thursday at the Italian restaurant. On Tuesday, I received a card confirming my reservation for that evening. The reservation was made for Thursday, not Tuesday. We went anyway. Dinner was just OK. However, the server was excellent. On Wednesday, we went to the Salty Dog at our reserved time. They could not find a reservation for us. Next, it was the Spa. I was given a spa gift certificate by my children. I made reservations for my wife and myself for spa treatments for Thursday afternoon. At breakfast, we decided that we would rather have Friday appointments. I called the spa to change the appointments and was told that Friday was all booked up. I told them that I would then need a refund of the pre-paid amount. Miraculously, they got us appointments for 1:15. As a matter of fact, my son called a little latter and got appointments for himself and finance. So much for being booked up. Next, it was the excursion desk. I had pre-reserved our tours from the Princess web site. On the first day, I had the tour tickets delivered to my cabin. I checked my shipboard account to see if everything was as pre-booked. The tickets were correct, but the amount charged was not. The tour desk agent told me that I was mistaken. I showed him the printout of the tours and the cost to be charged. It was in black and white, but he still stood on his high horse and told me that I booked them wrong. I received a call from him latter that night telling me that it was straightened out and re-billed correctly. No apology! I am not going to go into the quality of entertainment. Let's just say that it was about the worst that I have ever seen. Although the princess staff "missed the boat" on the customer service end, we still managed to have a once in a lifetime vacation. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
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 3.9
Family 4.5 3.9
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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