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157 Princess Emerald Princess Cruise Reviews

South America was one of the last places on our to-cruise list. Was a mini-disaster. The ship was packed with rude people. Lines everywhere for everything. Loud people. Line jumpers. Angry, politically intense people with ... Read More
South America was one of the last places on our to-cruise list. Was a mini-disaster. The ship was packed with rude people. Lines everywhere for everything. Loud people. Line jumpers. Angry, politically intense people with election-night hangovers ready for a fight. Hall running kids. Hallway blockers slowly and aimlessly walking, weaving back and forth, arm-in-arm down hallways. A zillion scooters driven by food-crazed grossly overweight people going back and forth to the buffet. The weather was cloudy, chilly, and rainy forcing people inside where they clogged up every hallway. Excursions were way over-priced. Typically $150-$250 for drive-a-rounds hitting a few tourist traps. Food was bad. Breakfast was terrible. Dried out cold scrambled eggs. Two day old tough pancakes. Tasteless oatmeal. Good fruit selection. Pastries same everyday. Gave up on it 2 days into the cruise and ate cold cereal with banana. Pizza was really bad. Burgers, hot dogs, etc. were good. On the plus side. Best service by dining room and room steward staff ever. Decent ice cream. Officers were semi-rude. One wildlife announcement the entire cruise. The bridge evidently didn't see that large pod of whales we went by at one point. Entertainment was mediocre. Daily activities were jammed packed with ship's money making efforts. Hallways were semi-blocked daily with tables loaded with jewelry, clothing, cameras, etc. for sale. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
We wanted to go to Machu Pichuu, and the the tour company who handled this 72 hour excursion was wonderful--pricey but worth it. I wish I could say that about the rest of the cruise. My husband and I have been on 60+ cruises between ... Read More
We wanted to go to Machu Pichuu, and the the tour company who handled this 72 hour excursion was wonderful--pricey but worth it. I wish I could say that about the rest of the cruise. My husband and I have been on 60+ cruises between us, from the high end (Regent, Oceana, Asimar) to the low end (Carnival). This was our first (and last) Princess cruise. Some of the reasons include: mediocre food (my generous description, my husband called it terrible. Cheap, tough with grissle cuts of meat, dinners and soup served cold (had to be sent back 3-4 times).Soups were mostly broth with barely visible pieces of vegetables. (Once they had wonton soup and all four of us at the table had zero wontons in our bowl of soup. Don't know if they were never there or others fished out all the wontons. Once I told the server the olive oil bottle was empty. He just removed it without replacing it with a full one. When the nut bowls at breakfast were emptied, they were not replaced. We got mixed messages from staff at the service desk, and once they said they would get back to us and never did. At one point, they couldn't find our passports. I joined a book club and about 30 of us were given the same book to read, but there was no follow up meeting scheduled for us to discuss it! We ended up leaving out books on a table in the library as there was never anyone there to check books in or out or get information from. Erroneous information was published in the daily newsletter. Formal night was a joke. My husband in his tux and I in my evening gown sat next to people in the dining room dressed in jeans and tennis shoes (even on Christmas and New Years Eve!) We were encouraged to sit for black and white photos for a studio photographer and told the cost was $150. When we went to look at the pics, several minutes into the "presentation set to music" we learned that the three pictures we were interested in would cost us $1200! The "professional" photographer was using photoshop to edit them, the same software we use at home. My husband was upset we were charged for hot chocolate (which is free even on Carnival) when we were sailing through glaciers! The buffet layout In Horizon is arranged in such a way that people are going in various directions--it's a mess. On the second leg, the entertainment was mostly repeats, and since the theater could not accomodate the over 3000 passengers in the two shows offered, if you didn't get there 30+ minutes ahead of the show to get a seat, you were out of luck. Oh, and some of the bathrooms--in fairness, those near the pool area which might not be used that often--were less than clean. I'm talking black rings in the commode at the water line. Very disappointed. Princess Cruise failed to deliver. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
This is our third and last cruise on Princess. It was suppose to be a relaxing getaway cruise from November 26th to December 3rd on the Mexican Rivera. Anytime dining is an oxymoron on Princess.. On this ship anytime dining requires you ... Read More
This is our third and last cruise on Princess. It was suppose to be a relaxing getaway cruise from November 26th to December 3rd on the Mexican Rivera. Anytime dining is an oxymoron on Princess.. On this ship anytime dining requires you either stand in long lines or require you to make reservations at 5:15 in one Dining Room or 7:30 in another. Wanted to switch to traditional but told they were full so I visited those traditional DR's only to find numerous empty seats. Very poor selections on menu and some food not cooked well or overdone. Special dining (Share and Crown) both way over rated. Cabin steward knows he is getting a piece of the tipping so doesn't provide same service when passengers tip directly. In the future I'll go back to tipping directly Disembarkation was a nightmare. 6 hours in Cabo stinks. Watered down - over priced martini's - you can hardly taste the gin. Back to Holland America or Royal Caribbean. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
We choice this cruise to celebrate our 33 wedding anniversary. We went with our son et his wife. The ship did not have a slide , my son was a little bit disappointed but we enjoyed the jacuzzi on the deck 15 with a panoramic view. ... Read More
We choice this cruise to celebrate our 33 wedding anniversary. We went with our son et his wife. The ship did not have a slide , my son was a little bit disappointed but we enjoyed the jacuzzi on the deck 15 with a panoramic view. The food was average at the buffet, bad coffee but the dining at Botticello was very good. We had a beverage package so we went at the International coffee for good coffee. and our servers Emilio and Romina were plaisants and funny.(table 28) The service was very good. We were disappointed with the AC of the cabin (A 306) We called several times , they came but did not fix it. It was hot at night with 4 people in the room. An accident spoiled my trip . The first night the door slammed at my finger. I had to go to the sick bay the next day because it was close . The Dr. did 7 sutures on my finger. I could not go snorkling or swimming the rest of my trip. I filed an accident report and had witnesses. The next day they fix the door (loosen) I had to pay the medical fees they told me to do complaint after the cruise.(which I did and wait for a reimbursement) The 2 nice things about this cruise was a tea time at the Botticelli in the afternoon and also a good tango quintet every day. I rated this trip poor because the accident and the AC in the room Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
I was invited by my family to go on this cruise. They were offered a special from the station casinos here in Las Vegas, Nevada. The cruise ship was average with a strange layout. Hardly anywhere for people to smoke and the rooms we had ... Read More
I was invited by my family to go on this cruise. They were offered a special from the station casinos here in Las Vegas, Nevada. The cruise ship was average with a strange layout. Hardly anywhere for people to smoke and the rooms we had were incredibly small with horrid bathrooms. The breakfast I will say was very good, however the lunch was absolutely terrible and cheap looking. They made food that most Americans would never touch. I ordered room service most of the time because of this. However, if you're hungry, good luck! Room service usually takes around and hour to deliver. The food on deck including the pizza, hamburgers, fries and ice cream was average. The room service burgers were much better in my opinion, but as I said before, you'd be luck to get it in under an hour. As for the dining, it was up to par if the crew didn't act so uptight. Not all of them were like this however. The one's we had on the other hand were somewhat rude and sarcastic. That really didn't help when you were hungry and they smirked at you when you asked for another meal or dessert. Getting off the ship was the best part. The off-shore excursions were nice, but returning to the boat meant returning back to a small cabin with a terrible bathroom and horrible lunch that was pretty much a carbon copy every single day. Only thing that helped was our cabin steward Anthony. He was amazing, but extremely overworked. Felt so bad for him. Thank god for a ping pong table, that was the best highlight of this trip besides the other on-board boring activities. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
It's nice being able to jump on the ship in Los Angeles for a short 7 day cruise we're only 18 minutes away. But that was the good part. We've done this cruise fifteen times and I'm not sure what went wrong or if ... Read More
It's nice being able to jump on the ship in Los Angeles for a short 7 day cruise we're only 18 minutes away. But that was the good part. We've done this cruise fifteen times and I'm not sure what went wrong or if it's just the Captain on the Emerald. It felt like we were on a training voyage. The crew was lost and confused and could never answer a question or help you. We were traveling with ten other family members that weren't in a suite so we sat in Main Dining most of the time. Had a set table but continually had the wrong meals served and it would take fifteen to twenty minutes for everyone to be served. I know, we shouldn't complain about eating, but that's part of our job on a cruise!! Club Class dining was amazing, still the same menu but the waitstaff knew their jobs. Breakfast in the Crown Grill should never be missed, was worth the cost of a Suite! Kind of tell you how they feel about folks that book an inside room! Then there's always Horizon Court on the Lido Deck. I'm not packing a suit for a seven day cruise so up we go. Not much to say about the food there, salad bar consisted of some shredded lettuce and cherry tomatoes, that's it. Wasn't much of an entree either but there was a large mixture of warm things to choose from and the best bet for dessert was a cookie. Everything else was gluten or sugar free . . . hey! I'm on a cruise! Getting off the Ship! Whew, platinum member in a full suite! We get our own private disembarkation lounge. We travel light and only in our 60's so we can still move a little and choose self embarkation. Asked for Group 1, ended up in Group 4 and our lounge was on Deck 5. Had to go up two floors to get off and couldn't get a free elevator. Most of the ship had disembarked by the time we got off. Would I go back! The way I feel now, nope, there's a lot of other choices out there. I'll probably end up on a Princess Cruise sometime or another but I'm steering clear of the Emerald, it was just that bad! Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
This was the worst service we had ever experienced on a cruise. One the first night we had booked in the Chris Stone restaurant. We ordered a bottle of wine from the wine list they did not have it. This happened four more times on the ... Read More
This was the worst service we had ever experienced on a cruise. One the first night we had booked in the Chris Stone restaurant. We ordered a bottle of wine from the wine list they did not have it. This happened four more times on the wine order and they did not have any of them. On the fifth try, they asked us to choose a wine from the main dining room list. It took 45 minutes to ever obtain a bottle of wine. There was no accommodation made for this, we just repeatedly were told that they had just gotten in from a 28 day cruise and had not restocked the wine. Why did you open the restaurant that evening then? We were paying for the cruise we were on. We did not want to hear about the previous one.We complained to the cruise desk and never heard from anyone. The service in the main dining room was slow and not uncommon to wait 20 minutes to get a glass refilled after requesting. We got off the ship on the third day at Puerto Vallarta. When asked how to disembark early no one inquired as to why. We did not experience "happy" employees on this cruise with the exception of 2 employees. We wonder how the employees are treated because they surely did not seem happy. the employees in the steak specialty restaurant were excellent. Overall a very bad experience, poor service and poor customer relations. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
There were 17 of us in the group and common consensus is most staff look miserable, no hello's and no smiles. The exception is our room steward and waiter at our fix dinning. We all had high expectations on quality of service and ... Read More
There were 17 of us in the group and common consensus is most staff look miserable, no hello's and no smiles. The exception is our room steward and waiter at our fix dinning. We all had high expectations on quality of service and food and were very disappointed. Both reasons are why we decide to cruise with Princess. It seems like we were on a budget cruise about to go bankrupt. The buffet breakfast was the same everyday. The dinners were nothing to brag about. It seems the cruise was more tailored to 60+ senior with diet restrictions. Buffet selection is limited. Meatloaf and Ham are not considered crave meats at the carving table. Breakfast make to order omelet can be better. They leave the napkin and utensils on the table which is nice and servers are always around to serve your drinks. That's is when they do care and half of the time, they ignore you and just clean tables which they are efficient at. This is the first cruise show that I actually fall asleep while watching. The comedian was half descent but don't expect Broadway style shows like on other cruise lines. Even the Carnival line had more entertaining shows. There are just too many dislikes to mention so take this line at your own discretion. My final comment: If you are going to Alaska, take another line like RCL or NCL. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Just wanted a nice weekend getaway. Arrived at time and place indicated on boarding paperwork. Extremely long walk to first boarding area to get a number to be called to the check in area which was in another part of the convention ... Read More
Just wanted a nice weekend getaway. Arrived at time and place indicated on boarding paperwork. Extremely long walk to first boarding area to get a number to be called to the check in area which was in another part of the convention center. It was again another long walk. Once receiving your room key was directed out side and back towards the first room then down stair to a larger room. No signage to where to go. ( three different ships in port and three lines ) After finding proper line had to stand in line for about 20 minutes to clear security check point. After check point stood line 15 minutes to clear US Customs ( in Canada ) Total time to check in 75 minutes. Total steps according to fit-bit 5,200. If your in shape not a problem. There was no where for the older people we saw with mobility problems to sit. Had purchased transfers from ship to airport. Did not receive them as normally done. Went to tour desk who issues them and was told they did not offer transfers on this trip and that we should go to customer service at front desk for refund. Contacted front desk and was told that we should have already gotten or transfers from our room attendant. Was told they where to busy to assist us and to come back after 8pm. Went back and stood in line for approximately 30 minutes. Staff didn't understand what we needed after another 10 minutes they went in the back for about 10 minutes and returned with our transfers. ( missed out on several activities ) Ship was schedules to leave port at 5pm. Was informed at 5 pm they were not leaving until after 8pm because they were conducting routine maintinace. Left at about 8:15 pm pm. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
I chose Princess on other people's recommendation, but I was not impressed and don't plan to use Princess again. I had been on two other cruises on Carnival and found them much more fun, well-planned, and friendly. First of ... Read More
I chose Princess on other people's recommendation, but I was not impressed and don't plan to use Princess again. I had been on two other cruises on Carnival and found them much more fun, well-planned, and friendly. First of all, our room was too hot and we had no way to control that. Then we asked a women at guest services about our excursion for the next day. She gave us completely erroneous information and we almost missed our excursion. The excursions were great but finding where to meet them was a real guessing game every day and no one onboard the ship seemed to know where to go for them either as we were constantly given wrong information. Also, the staff sometimes seemed to resent our questions. They didn't like to be bothered. We had no tv guide in our room. We wanted to be able to see the ship announcements but never did find them. Also the menu button didn't work on the T and the weather button didn't work on our phone. We couldn't hear the announcements in our room. Some other guests (several) said there was a switch we had to throw but we scoured our room for that switch and never found one. What entertainment there was was good, but it wasn't organized well by time. Many of the activities were focused on older people--knitting, bingo, etc. On the Carnival cruises, those were offered but there were also plenty of other activities for those who wanted something more appealing to a younger crowd. We wanted to see some of the movies they were showing but they were always outside at 10-11 at night at we were in Alaska! The disembarkation process was total chaos. No one knew where to go and again, when we asked questions at customer service, we felt like gnats being shooed away. Utter confusion about the luggage tags. The food was excellent no matter where we ate, but when we went through the breakfast buffet, no drinks were available. We had to wait for a waiter to see that we had just gone through the buffet, come to our table to take our drink order, and then they would return with the tiniest glasses of orange juice I had ever seen....and God forbid we ask for orange juice and water! We often got our juice after we were done eating. The quality of the photos taken were much inferior to the ones I had seen before on Carnival and the prices were extremely inflated. When they came around at dinner to take pictures, they would only take individual pictures. Couples were asked the photographers to take pictures of both of them together and they said they weren't allowed to. They could only take individual pictures. I guess another way to get your money because you would have to buy two pictures instead of one. We didn't have enough plug ins in our room and there were only two of us. We didn't receive the Canadian customs forms and so had trouble getting those filled out to stop in Victoria. It was utter chaos getting off there also. My main complaint was that there was too much selling. As we would walk around the ship, we were constantly bombarded with staff wanting to sell us stuff--face lotion, massages, alcohol cards--the list was never-ending. I won't be going on a Princess cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We have traveled on both the Allure and Oasis of the Seas with RCI and Solstice and Millennium with Celebrity. Compared to them Princess is unfortunately a way way distant last. First and foremost the quality of the cooking in the main ... Read More
We have traveled on both the Allure and Oasis of the Seas with RCI and Solstice and Millennium with Celebrity. Compared to them Princess is unfortunately a way way distant last. First and foremost the quality of the cooking in the main dining room and even the Crown Grill is poor at best and downright disappointing. They had excellent produce in the freshest seafood and quality meats and sadly in the hands of a rank amateur cook - totally wasted. Everything was way way overcooked and dry. As I mentioned we even tried the Crown Grill one night to get away from the Main Dining room but that didn't really fair much better - what a sorry waste of $29 per head. We always chose Anytime Dining so we could sit by ourselves and not have to share. With Princess Anytime dining simply means you don't have to arrive at the designated times of 530 and 745pm. They don't really allow you to book - so you turn up when you want and get treated like a second class citizen when you politely (and this was every single sitting for dinner and several lunches and even afternoon tea) decline to share - which is the first question that gets asked. Best of all every time we were eventually allowed to enter the dining room, half the place was empty and I could always see a whole row of empty two person tables so I'm not sure what the fuss was all about. We also specifically chose Princess even though we have never sailed with them based on the information provided regarding their expert talks and knowledge about Alaska otherwise we were going to try Holland America. Sadly this really didn't eventuate either. On the second day after leaving Vancouver at the crack of 9am they had an expert Alaskan lecture followed by how to raise a family in Alaska around noon which I wasn't particularly interested in. They had the much advertised Iditarod champion on one of the port days at 3pm which we missed as we didn't make it back from the shore excursion in time. Lastly they was a total distinct lack of activities (or poor timing during the afternoons) when nothing was really on offer other than the obligatory art auctions or shopping promotions. Compared to RCI and X they had much better timed activities during the dull afternoon periods whereas Princess piles on the interesting stuff during the night so you cant get to them or they overlap one another during the peak times. Why couldn't they simply move some of them to the afternoon? So in summary this will be our first and only Princess cruise and back to RCI or X for us. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We wanted to see Sitka, and it was wonderful. However, the excursion we were on couldn't go to one place that was advertised, because it is always closed on Mondays. We asked for, and received a partial refund. The telephone ... Read More
We wanted to see Sitka, and it was wonderful. However, the excursion we were on couldn't go to one place that was advertised, because it is always closed on Mondays. We asked for, and received a partial refund. The telephone receptionist at the Lotus Spa was inept. The manicure was mediocre. She spent more time trying to sell me face cream than she did on the manicure. We went to dinner one evening, and the waiter served everyone else. I could see my plate sitting in the serving area. The waiter gave everyone their pepper, took a walk, and finally served me. I complained after the meal. Princess gave us a bottle of sparkling wine, which my husband described as the worst he ever tasted. They also gave us chocolate covered strawberries, which were great. There was no beverage service in the Horizon Court - it was serve your own water. As usual, the vegetarian options are limited. They even put steak in the potato salad! Two of our excursions were cancelled, one of which we had to tender to shore to discover was cancelled. The supervisor at the excursion desk was extremely rude when we tried to rebook. I got sick one day, and went to the medical center. After that our cabin steward left wet towels on the floor. For the rest of the cruise he closed the curtains and turned the tv on. The laundry rooms ran out of tokens towards, and you had to stand in line at Passenger Services to get them. Passenger services gave out wrong information. We paid extra for a larger cabin, but got the same size as on our previous cruises. When we got home we both had colds, which from the timing, we believe we caught in Medical Services. This was our third cruise with Princess, and our only bad experience. I would never cruise on the Emerald Princess again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We picked this cruise because it was short and we wanted to visit Vancouver. Plus we were anxious to cruise with Princess for the first time. Probably will never cruise with them again. The food in the main dining rooms was truly awful. ... Read More
We picked this cruise because it was short and we wanted to visit Vancouver. Plus we were anxious to cruise with Princess for the first time. Probably will never cruise with them again. The food in the main dining rooms was truly awful. Either no taste or way too much seasoning. We found the food in the buffet to be much better which is kinda odd since it comes from the same kitchen. However the design and flow of the buffet is a disaster. And was always a challenge to find a table. The extra fee restaurant " Share" was a welcome change. The $40 charge a person was well worth it especially after dining in the main rooms. The ambience, staff and food at Share were simply amazing. For vegetarians there are ample options in the buffet, main dining and Share. Our mini suite cabin felt cramped with a poor layout. Our steward was ok but he was never around so hard to comment on him. Our biggest disappointment was the crew in general. It seemed like they all wanted to be somewhere else. No smiles. No eye contact. Just a few were cheerful and helpful but the general feeling was sour. The ship claims to have been renovated. We strongly disagree. The furniture in the buffet is very beat up. Including the furniture in our cabin. The mattress and linens however were very comfortable. The best part of our 3 day cruise was on Saturday when we cruised into Vancouver in the morning got off and spent a wonderful day and night exploring beautiful Vancouver. What a wonderful city! Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
My family has been using Princess over two decades and have seen the quality go up and down..... and now it is definitely on the way down again. Let me explain: We, In the last year, took two Emerald Princess voyages (1) Southampton to ... Read More
My family has been using Princess over two decades and have seen the quality go up and down..... and now it is definitely on the way down again. Let me explain: We, In the last year, took two Emerald Princess voyages (1) Southampton to Sydney and (2) Sydney to Los Angeles; we experienced sarcasm from the Passenger Service Manager, non responsive reply from other officers about issues during the cruise, and continual push backs on the ability to get our voice heard. The reception desk make it difficult to get any correspondence to the officers, and the officers are NOT available to the passengers. Many issues went unresolved due to non replies. The other issue(s) is the reception desk doesn't speak good English, and is hard to understand, and you have to explain it several times in order to get your ideas across. The dining room food is second class. Food is served cold, portions are reduced, and the menu selection has shrunken. No longer does the "Always Available" selection include steak, hamburger has been the substituted. The Chicken is butterflied, but my credit card is thicker, and the plastic has more taste. The only crab served is at the Crab Shack, and the price has gone from $20 to $30 per person.... and the crab is soft and chewy. I complained, as I had to open the legs(shells) with a scissors, - they would not crack ! I I called on the Manager, but he did nothing. Not even a refund. The Horizon Buffet is a shadow of it former self; there are less items from which to choose, and more salad selections. Another cheaper approach to cruising. The wait staff or clean up committee is slow on the take. The tables seem to stay dirty longer, and you have to do your own clean up, or if you want a beverage, you are better served to get it yourself, as it takes too long, and sometimes you are half way through with the meal before it arrives; worse yet, on some occasions, it never shows up at all. As to entertainment: The days of the Bridge Instructors, Dance Hosts, or craft instructors, have been replaced by the Crew Staff, and the Singers and Dancers. They are the substitute for many afternoon and evening events, like lectures and lounge shows,. Good quality entertainers are now hard to find. Movies, movies, movies, repeat, repeat, and repeat again. It would be nice to change the format, and have something newer than the 1980's stuff. The videos ( on TV) in cabins are repeated over and over again. They must buy a "package" and show them fleet wide. The shows and movies are the same from last year. Elite has no longer the cache that it was marketed to have. Now that the larger ships have 900 to 1100 Elite passengers per voyage, the ship management doesn't have the ability to give "special handling" of this group as promised. No special lounges for tender service - you must get in line with everybody else to get a ticket to disembark. - at 6 AM if you want to get off by 11 AM. No Elite line at reception. And the big deal is that laundry can take up to five days -- but if you pay for it, you can have it in two days; What a disservice to loyal membership !!! The system for the loyal Elite member is BROKEN. My family will take our wallets and vote for another cruise company ( other than Carnival) on our next voyage. Princess has turned the corner, and is only $$ oriented; not as interested in "Service" as before, but it is now a PRODUCT, not an experience. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Worst cruise I have ever been on..!! Seriously could not wait to get off ship! Rude workers, rolling eyes at people and talking ..not doing their job. Will not cruise Princess again! The way I see this it comes from the top! Clean up the ... Read More
Worst cruise I have ever been on..!! Seriously could not wait to get off ship! Rude workers, rolling eyes at people and talking ..not doing their job. Will not cruise Princess again! The way I see this it comes from the top! Clean up the workers attitude Please! Food was horrible, unless you wanted to pay more for dinning. Entertainment was almost none. Unless you want to do trivia 3 times a day. The Princess Theater had maybe 4 or 5 shows that were worth watching. (and that is in a 32 day cruise) So much lack of communication with both embarkation and disembarkation. It seemed confusing with which line to get in etc. and no one to ask.. We happen to love cruising, we have given Princess 4 to 5 chances. Enough! The line just doesn't add up other cruise lines that are out there! (that we have cruised with!) Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
My wife and I boarded the ship in Sydney on 12 April 2017 and stayed on board for 39 nights doing a back to back to back and disembarking in Vancouver, BC after doing the Alaskan inside passage. Where to start the cabin was good we had ... Read More
My wife and I boarded the ship in Sydney on 12 April 2017 and stayed on board for 39 nights doing a back to back to back and disembarking in Vancouver, BC after doing the Alaskan inside passage. Where to start the cabin was good we had a premium balcony for the first 32 days then moved to a Mini Suite for the last 7 days. Comparing a Balcony to Premium Balcony to Mini Suite the best compromise for cost and space is a Premium Balcony. The Mini Suite was great but does come at a higher cost. My thoughts here is that a slightly bigger shower would really be a better compromise by the cruise lines in allocating space within a cabin. Back to the cruise our first impressions the Stewards were tired and it showed in their zero to limited initiative, we found this pretty bad. We had anytime dining which was ok, However we found the buffet better and the Crown Grill awesome. We did two visits to Share which was great and several to Crown. The first 15 days were good getting to Hawaii, and Tahiti is always a fun place, the cruise to Vancouver via Los Angeles was terrible, a time limited stop in LA was the worst for us as it was our first visit there and one of the ports we were looking forward to. Next the Casino, when we sail we love heading to the Casino and playing the Slots and table games, well I can tell you these slots would float if they were thrown overboard, tight does not even start. At any rate after we piled heaps of money into the Casino after which we had to ask for free drinks to put this it into perspective my wife had over 24,000 points, with myself getting to over 7500 points. On other princess cruises this equaled a free drinks package but not here we got a dinner then had to say thanks to the host for the bone thrown! When we left no letter for gaming credits for the next cruise just a website that's it ZERO. The Alaskan cruise was good and the weather perfect, however where there's a will there's Princess to screw something up sure as eggs they did. At Ketchitan Princess decided that one of the largest cruise ship's there should tender while smaller ones docked. There were 5 ships in harbor 3 Princess and 2 Holland America. This meant not getting off the ship until 2pm and missing a much looked forward to ship excursion. To put this into perspective all the ships docked were owned by Carnival so this is pretty poor planning. Exiting and re-entering the ship at Vancouver was a 2 hour wait for pre-boarded guests, un-boarded guests had to wait over 4 hours. Cheap bastards, the coffee cups at the international cafe were changed out so only one small size was available yet you were still charged the as for the larger cups that disappeared. Meaning you were ripped off on the pre-purchased coffee cards. Finally when I had enough of all this crap I called Princess and asked to be put through to a Manager and was refused by the initial person that answered the phone, talk about poor customer service. All I can say is if you want to take a Princess Cruise be warned this ship sucked, and yes I have cruised with them before, being Platinum Cruiser. We have only experienced 1 worse cruise than this on the Carnival Spirit. We have also sailed RCA and NCL. This review is a warts and all account I trust you read it as an honest appraisal. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
As always we enjoy planning for our holidays on board Princess Cruises. We've been cruising for around 20 years. This year we decided to do back to back cruises from Sydney. Staff, food and entertainment were fine. First cruise ... Read More
As always we enjoy planning for our holidays on board Princess Cruises. We've been cruising for around 20 years. This year we decided to do back to back cruises from Sydney. Staff, food and entertainment were fine. First cruise was excellent up to Noumea, Vanuatu etc. Great entertainment from a ventriloquist and Steve Larkins doing Freddie Mercury. Next was our New Zealand cruise. We always do quite a bit of research about ships, destinations etc. We usually choose deck 5 based on the location and stability. On our return to Sydney prior to departure for the New Zealand sector we knew we would be relocated to a stateroom 6 doors further down the starboard side. We had booked at different times and were unable to get the same stateroom for the entire journey. Unfortunately, even though the diagram, sales information and promotional guide for the stateroom was exactly the same as P309, P325 was in fact smaller and did not accommodate a full queen bed without moving furniture etc. Thus we could hardly see TV, use the fridge or bedside cupboard. We complained but were told it was a full ship. We could do nothing else but grin and get on with it. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
This was our first cruise and we were surprised at the number of extremely elderly people on board who were are danger to themselves and other people. Many walkers, wheelchairs and motorised wheelchairs. One elderly women drove madly ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we were surprised at the number of extremely elderly people on board who were are danger to themselves and other people. Many walkers, wheelchairs and motorised wheelchairs. One elderly women drove madly through people. The Emerald princess does need some refurbish on the balconys. We ate at the Botticelli restaurant for breakfast and dinner except when we went to Share and the Crown Grill. We ate at those restaurants 2 times each. Very good food but the watering staff need more training. Overall the crew were very good as they work very hard. The european crew were rude to the staff at times. The shore excursions were overpriced and we booked one excursion via the internet at half the price. We did enjoy most of the cruise as we met a British couple who we were great fun to be with. We would not go on a cruise from Australia again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
This was our 1st cruise as elite members , we were looking to be fed ,watered and entertained as well as our last 14 cruises, with just maybe a little more service or recognition .we are average working class people who enjoy cruising for ... Read More
This was our 1st cruise as elite members , we were looking to be fed ,watered and entertained as well as our last 14 cruises, with just maybe a little more service or recognition .we are average working class people who enjoy cruising for our hard earned money. We highly disappointed with the emerald princess We live in new zealand , chose this cruise to see the fiords and visit hobart . Not disappointed with aspects of this part of the cruise , but as to the ship itself ,not happy at all . The vibration thru some parts of the ship are very questionable & daunting . The elite status gave us a 1 time mini bar which we were informed pre - cruise we could change for 2 coffee cards . when tried to do on board , they told us could not be done , they have never heard of such nonsense. We did not use any other elite entitlements after that, due to any more disapointments. This is probably our last cruise with princess, have really enjoyed the last 15 years with them, but sadly it has ended in a negative. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We chose this cruise for the opportunity to see NZ and Australia. We did not think that that the ports of call were at all interesting. Fjordland National Park cruising was disappointing (after having seen fjords of Norway especially) ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the opportunity to see NZ and Australia. We did not think that that the ports of call were at all interesting. Fjordland National Park cruising was disappointing (after having seen fjords of Norway especially) I expected to see more beautiful countryside in New Zealand, but found that it was very bland. I guess that a person should tour through interior of NZ in order to experience the cultural side and the beauty. We will not travel back there to do so however. Ships excursions were costly and not as good as other places we have cruised to. We did think that The Emerald Staff did a good job in organizing the disembarking and re entry to ship from tours though. We ate in The Crown Grill once ...vegetables were not tasty, potatoe was dry, steak was decent, but not above average. The overall food temperature was "warmish" The service was a little slow. The experience at Crown Grill did not encourage us to try other specialty restaurants. We found that the food was much more tasty at The Buffet, even though it was crowded most times. We found that the local people of NZ and AUS were some of the most friendly arouind the world. But cruising NZ does not give a person a good view of the country. Our overall experience of this trip was below average. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We were very disappointed by this cruise and will probably be taking our business elsewhere from now on. We had numerous complaints, which has never happened before. From missing 2 ports, our bathroom smelling like a urinal, 2 ports being ... Read More
We were very disappointed by this cruise and will probably be taking our business elsewhere from now on. We had numerous complaints, which has never happened before. From missing 2 ports, our bathroom smelling like a urinal, 2 ports being shuttled from the docks (after waiting over 1 hour at each port to get off the boat, which was a horrible system), shortened time at 1 port, horrible sewer smells in part of the boat, to overcrowded dining (there were NEVER any tables in the breakfast buffet available) this trip was just plain bad. And to top it off, we paid extra for our room for its location, only to find out our room was ACROSS THE HALL FROM THE 24 HOUR KITCHEN!! It was room B616. The clattering of pots, pans, and dishes woke us up at 12-3 a.m. constantly!! It was RIDICULOUS!! And we also learned from a fellow passenger that this was her 11th cruise to this area, but it was the 1st time she actually got to see the Fjordlands, due to weather preventing her previous cruises being able to go into the area. So, I would definitely fly and rent a car the next time. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We chose this cruise because Princess offered a land tour of Australia in combination with the sea portion of Australia and New Zealand. As a platinum member of Princess's inner circle, I expected much more than we received. The ... Read More
We chose this cruise because Princess offered a land tour of Australia in combination with the sea portion of Australia and New Zealand. As a platinum member of Princess's inner circle, I expected much more than we received. The food was mediocre to poor in all locations except the specialty dining options. In the diningroom, the waiter would serve you a plate and warn you that it was very hot. Unfortunately, the food was always tepid.this happened on many occasions so it wasn't a fluke. The service in the diningroom was poor. Rarely did anyone refill your water or ask if your dinner was okay. The maitre'd never appeared during 11 days. If you were willing to pay extra, then you got what in the past was included. The "good" coffee was served in the coffee bar for an extra charge. The ice cream up by the pool was like frozen skim milk, not worth eating. Gelato was served in the coffee bar for an extra charge. We ate at specialty restaurants most evenings and the food was tasty, not fabulous but enjoyable. The buffet was awful, just like my college dorm cafeteria. All this for $7200 per person. Our cabin was fine, comfortable and clean. Our room steward was fabulous. He was friendly, hard working and so very pleasant. Unfortunately, 2 of our ports in New Zealand were cancelled due to fog, not Princess's fault. I have been on 30+ cruises. Sorry to say, this wil be my last Princess cruise as I was just plain disappointed in many aspects of this cruise. I felt as if we were nickeled and dimed to death. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We wanted to try a princess to compare to our other cruises. I did love the Movies under the stars and the nice selection of wines and whiskeys. They have 3 specialty restaurants 2 of which were quite wonderful. However as a whole, what ... Read More
We wanted to try a princess to compare to our other cruises. I did love the Movies under the stars and the nice selection of wines and whiskeys. They have 3 specialty restaurants 2 of which were quite wonderful. However as a whole, what a disappointment. Ho hum food in the dining and buffet, bad service (tips are included in cruise and it shows) missed two ports, (Yes we actually skipped two of them due to fog) and were refunded a whole $69 per person. We were stuck on the ship because of it for five days and princess would not even fill both pools for us. They decided to paint one and not open it for 10 of the 11 days. The one they did open was kept at a balmy 54 deg. Couldn't even put my feet in. I never even knew my room stewards name, because he did not need to be friendly as he already had his tip. Just a bummer. I am 42 so that could have been most of it. The cruise was absolutely catered to the over 70 crowd. Bland food and entertainment as the example. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We first cruised the Emerald in 2008 and found it to be a lovely ship. We have since sailed with Princess many times and have logged over 100 days at sea. We weren't after waterslides and dodgems, just a lovely seat by a quiet ... Read More
We first cruised the Emerald in 2008 and found it to be a lovely ship. We have since sailed with Princess many times and have logged over 100 days at sea. We weren't after waterslides and dodgems, just a lovely seat by a quiet pool, a comfortable balcony room, and some great destinations. It was still NSW school holidays (just), and rather than limit children to one of the four pools they were everywhere and six children virtually incapacitated a pool for adults as you would get jumped on and screamed at. One of the pools was closed most of the time, as it tends to flood the spa (what a shame...) Bar service at the pool was almost non existant - if you have a soda card they dont want to know you. Deck chairs were at a premium - it was virtually impossible to find one in the shade on days that were incredibly hot. They were also at a premium at night - not once did I get to see a movie on deck as all seats were taken. Our room was similarly disappointing - same furnishings at in 2008 (carpet and all) and it smelled of urine. No matter how many times the steward cleaned the bathroom it was the same. We had the manager of housekeeping come to visit and she agreed it was not up to scratch and this was not what we had paid for. After some carpet shampooing and rigorous cleaning it was marginally better, but not good enough. The beds are new as are the pillows - we even requested new pillows as they were smelly. I assume they may have a wool filling that made them offensive smelling because the new ones smelled the same - just giving them the benefit of the doubt. The food was okay and the only real thumbs up I could give it was for the International Cafe with fabulous pastries and good coffee. Their Captains Circle cocktail party is a joke - the worst beer and vinegar-like sparkling wine and nothing interesting happening. Also, make sure your insurance covers missed ports. Princess reimbursed us $4 for missing Mystery Island due to strong winds. One out of 5 ports lost. And their prices have gone up while everyone else's has gone down. My advice - don't bother with Princess - they have definitely lost their sparkle and would have to try much harder for my dollar in future. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
I have 30+ years of cruising history with various cruise lines and ships of all sizes of which Princess Cruises has always been a favourite. This last cruise on the Emerald was a display of where a once great cruise line can come from and ... Read More
I have 30+ years of cruising history with various cruise lines and ships of all sizes of which Princess Cruises has always been a favourite. This last cruise on the Emerald was a display of where a once great cruise line can come from and then end up. Since the take over by Carnival PTY approx. 15 years ago, Princess Cruises has now sunk to the lowest levels. The company now must have the following motto - "Build them a pretty ship and they will come, given them the most watered down service, catering levels and over the top saturation marketing possible and hope they may come back." The Princess cruises I remember is gone and this new cruising experience has taken its place. Some examples: Once on board, find your own way to the cabin. The cabin, average, nothing spectacular, but functional - we travelled in a standard veranda cabin. Cabin steward, did well, English language was a struggle, but at least he tried. The ship in general, for 10 years old, is showing her age. The Emeralds general appearance has a feeling of tiredness with signs of rust, wall and floor marks and wear and tear not attended to. Have seen older ship in both Princess and other lines in better condition. She is designed to enhance marketing, with little clear deck space for guest to find and enjoy that special place and relax. Yes she is designed for mass cruising, families and children to enjoy, but limited space for those wishing for a quieter experience. The restaurants: very average, especially the main dining room. Gone is the traditional Italian, French and International nights, replaced with 3 star mass catering in a rushed, noisy environment under the guise of cruising cuisine. Very cheap and nasty, The buffet, don't even go there - complete chaos with substandard food and service - mass catering at its worst - resembling and army canteen in war time. Where did the relaxed, personal service go, why does the catering need to be of the lowest food quality possible dressed up with sauces - obviously to hide the truth below. One bright light was the Crown Grill, yes a $29 cover charge per person, given you have already paid for dinner in the main dining room and god for bid the buffet, so in fact not really that cheap a night out, but at least you could eat a decent meal in a relaxed, attractive environment. Did not try the Share restaurant - $39 per person.. The bars: drinks heavily over priced, bar staff numbers reduced and shared between venues to cut staffing costs. Some lectures and events only had 1 waiter to serve, with many patrons requiring to leave their seat and stand in line at the bar to place their order while the lecture continued. Where have the staffing levels gone. Yes, we all know staff cost, but the cruise lines don't exactly pay top dollar to their front line staff either, so why the number cut backs - profits of course.. Will leave the enrichment and entertainment part of the cruise alone as this varies each cruise and is not a constant, but the items I will provide comment on are constants and experienced every cruise. General feedback; yes we all know cruising is cheaper now than it ever has been and those who have cruised with the major lines in the 70's and 80's will vouch for this, but in return the Carnivalisation of Princess and other brands under their umbrella has gone too far where now the only cruise experience the guests seem to have is that they are on a ship at sea with a cruise card to empty their wallets - no longer a 4 or 5 start cruising holiday experience of past with duty free or discounted bar charges or upscale catering which many of the brands were proud of - Princess Cruises being one of them. The answer, simply chose your cruise line well. for service levels look at smaller ships, for families and amusement parks at sea and associated crowds look at the larger ships. When it comes to value for money, this is the home work I will leave you with. Each persons requirements are different. All I am asking for is for Princess to bring back what went well for them in the past, and that was service levels, attention to detail, quality catering and the feeling of being on a ship providing you will a quality cruising holiday or escape, and not the watered down example being sold today. Princess Cruises may be the Love Boat, but they are definitely not the cruise line on which their reputation was forged. Conclusion: We will now be looking at alternatives in the future and Princess has lost another of its past passengers, which I believe they really don't care about as they are now here for the fast buck and that is what they will get and at the price of other fellow passengers who are also looking at alternatives. Good luck with the brand in 10 years time Princess. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
Emerald Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.5 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.5
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 4.0 4.2
Value For Money 4.5 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.0

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