1. Home
  2. Cruise Reviews
  3. Caribbean Princess
We chose this particular cruise because of its itinerary, particularly the Orkneys since it is an area we would be unlikely to visit independently. It was also undertaken at the end a of 4 week trip in Spain prior to returning home to Australia. We have not done many cruises and this is our first time with Princess. Embarkation was amazing. No queues, very little time waiting, and extremely friendly and helpful staff both luggage porters and counter staff. On our other cruises we have had to wait for up to two hours in a long line before we were processed setting those cruises off to a bad start. We couldn’t believe how efficient this one had been and kept praising it to whomever we met! The disembarkation was also very efficient (there was an emergency change of port) and we couldn’t fault it. We had a balcony room on Caribe deck. The room showed its age, but was really quite acceptable. It was clean, smelt fresh and had all the necessary appointments and was of a good size. There was sufficient storage space and the small desk was adequate for our needs. The towels were a bit thin and worn and there weren’t any face washers but these are minor quibbles. We had a couple of breakdowns in the room during the cruise but within less than 15mins from reporting the issue a crew member had been and fixed the trouble. Really prompt service and much appreciated. I read somewhere that the beds were new and if so they were well worth the investment. Very comfortable and sleep inducing. We easily slipped into oblivion every night. We had fixed seating and after a bit of a rocky start this was quite acceptable. While you don’t get to meet a wide range of other travellers, you do get to know you fellow diners very well. As it turned out those on our table were very interesting and we wound up getting on very well however there were only six on the table. We would probably look for a table of eight on our next trip. We tried anytime seating once (late shore excursion) and this was OK but we did hear subsequent stories of long waits (up to an hour) before diners could be seated. Overall the food in the dining room was good, but not exceptional. Choices were a little limited and were sometimes uninspired in taste and presentation. There were few meat choices and the steak was often rather tough. Obviously a cheaper cut (that had not been well trimmed) was being used. The chef also seemed to have trouble with very rare, rare, medium rare, medium etc. Often what arrived was not what was ordered, i.e. it was overdone. Seafood dishes were OK but again could be a little overcooked and with limited quantities of seafood. However, the shrimps (prawns) were excellent in every dish we tried (must be a good supplier) and worth ordering. Deserts were also good but not outstanding and again there was not the range and flair one might expect. Dining was equivalent to that in a medium priced café/restaurant. (Maybe this is the price point for this ship.) Drinks (including bottled wine) on the whole were very reasonably priced and the drinks package offered very good value (better than other ships we have been on) for those who enjoy their cocktails and coffee. We also went to the specialty restaurant Sabatini’s. We had trouble with the timing of our original booking but the staff were so helpful we were able to easily change the booking time and day. There is an extra charge for this restaurant, but it was worth it. It is Italian themed and the food and service were excellent. The entertainment was good and very varied. The Princess Singers and Dancers were outstanding. The only criticism is the shows were too short. We would have enjoyed seeing much more of them. Also, the Princess Theatre is very small for the number of passengers and for popular performers it is necessary to get to the theatre at least ¾ hour before the show starts to get any sort of decent seat. Late comers often had to stand. Of the individual performers the piano player, Paul Burton, in Crooners Lounge, stood out as being exceptional. One thing that impressed us was the overall friendliness and cheerfulness of the staff. Almost without exception we were greeted with smiles and cheerful words. The service was very good. At one stage we had a minor problem with our account. The staff member in passenger services immediately fixed the problem and adjusted our account without any hassle. So nice to be treated with respect. The waitress on our table was great, and the bartenders in the international and crooners bars outstanding. One thing that didn’t impress us was the boarding at the end of each port day. One time it took well over an hour and a half (this was a tender port) and even when the ship was docked there were often long queues, especially when tour buses returned. Princess really needs to get more gangways and X-ray machines. Would we sail with Princess again? In hindsight it was a very port intensive trip which meant we had little time (or stamina) to enjoy the full range of activities provided on board. Next trip we will try for more sea days. We also found the size of the ship a little overwhelming preferring something slightly smaller. However if the itinerary and port schedule suited then yes we probably would. We certainly have good memories of this trip.

A memorable cruise

Caribbean Princess Cruise Review by Frenan

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
We chose this particular cruise because of its itinerary, particularly the Orkneys since it is an area we would be unlikely to visit independently. It was also undertaken at the end a of 4 week trip in Spain prior to returning home to Australia. We have not done many cruises and this is our first time with Princess.

Embarkation was amazing. No queues, very little time waiting, and extremely friendly and helpful staff both luggage porters and counter staff. On our other cruises we have had to wait for up to two hours in a long line before we were processed setting those cruises off to a bad start. We couldn’t believe how efficient this one had been and kept praising it to whomever we met! The disembarkation was also very efficient (there was an emergency change of port) and we couldn’t fault it.

We had a balcony room on Caribe deck. The room showed its age, but was really quite acceptable. It was clean, smelt fresh and had all the necessary appointments and was of a good size. There was sufficient storage space and the small desk was adequate for our needs. The towels were a bit thin and worn and there weren’t any face washers but these are minor quibbles. We had a couple of breakdowns in the room during the cruise but within less than 15mins from reporting the issue a crew member had been and fixed the trouble. Really prompt service and much appreciated. I read somewhere that the beds were new and if so they were well worth the investment. Very comfortable and sleep inducing. We easily slipped into oblivion every night.

We had fixed seating and after a bit of a rocky start this was quite acceptable. While you don’t get to meet a wide range of other travellers, you do get to know you fellow diners very well. As it turned out those on our table were very interesting and we wound up getting on very well however there were only six on the table. We would probably look for a table of eight on our next trip. We tried anytime seating once (late shore excursion) and this was OK but we did hear subsequent stories of long waits (up to an hour) before diners could be seated. Overall the food in the dining room was good, but not exceptional. Choices were a little limited and were sometimes uninspired in taste and presentation. There were few meat choices and the steak was often rather tough. Obviously a cheaper cut (that had not been well trimmed) was being used. The chef also seemed to have trouble with very rare, rare, medium rare, medium etc. Often what arrived was not what was ordered, i.e. it was overdone. Seafood dishes were OK but again could be a little overcooked and with limited quantities of seafood. However, the shrimps (prawns) were excellent in every dish we tried (must be a good supplier) and worth ordering. Deserts were also good but not outstanding and again there was not the range and flair one might expect. Dining was equivalent to that in a medium priced café/restaurant. (Maybe this is the price point for this ship.)

Drinks (including bottled wine) on the whole were very reasonably priced and the drinks package offered very good value (better than other ships we have been on) for those who enjoy their cocktails and coffee.

We also went to the specialty restaurant Sabatini’s. We had trouble with the timing of our original booking but the staff were so helpful we were able to easily change the booking time and day. There is an extra charge for this restaurant, but it was worth it. It is Italian themed and the food and service were excellent.

The entertainment was good and very varied. The Princess Singers and Dancers were outstanding. The only criticism is the shows were too short. We would have enjoyed seeing much more of them. Also, the Princess Theatre is very small for the number of passengers and for popular performers it is necessary to get to the theatre at least ¾ hour before the show starts to get any sort of decent seat. Late comers often had to stand. Of the individual performers the piano player, Paul Burton, in Crooners Lounge, stood out as being exceptional.

One thing that impressed us was the overall friendliness and cheerfulness of the staff. Almost without exception we were greeted with smiles and cheerful words. The service was very good. At one stage we had a minor problem with our account. The staff member in passenger services immediately fixed the problem and adjusted our account without any hassle. So nice to be treated with respect. The waitress on our table was great, and the bartenders in the international and crooners bars outstanding.

One thing that didn’t impress us was the boarding at the end of each port day. One time it took well over an hour and a half (this was a tender port) and even when the ship was docked there were often long queues, especially when tour buses returned. Princess really needs to get more gangways and X-ray machines.

Would we sail with Princess again? In hindsight it was a very port intensive trip which meant we had little time (or stamina) to enjoy the full range of activities provided on board. Next trip we will try for more sea days. We also found the size of the ship a little overwhelming preferring something slightly smaller. However if the itinerary and port schedule suited then yes we probably would. We certainly have good memories of this trip.
Frenan’s Full Rating Summary
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Service
Onboard Experience
Free Price Drop Alerts
Get Caribbean Princess price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Honfleur
    Lovely, but very touristy, fishing port. Guide was excellent, very knowledgeable and accommodating. Good tour of the port with enough free time for souvenir shopping or having lunch.
    View All 43 Honfleur Reviews