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We chose this cruise to see this part of the world and we prefer the Princess line. The countries were beautiful. We booked excursions through Princess because we had not visited this part of the world and had no point of reference to see it on our own in such a restricted amount of time. The excursions gave us a good flavor of the area and, for the most part, the guides were good. Understanding that the cost of everything has gone up through the years, I realize the cruise lines have made necessary cutbacks; however, some of these cutbacks are simply cheap. For instance, it would be reasonable on a day long excursion (which is quite expensive) that the excursion provide bottled water and soda. You could certainly buy a 25 cent bottle of water on the ship for over $2. That is just cheap on the part of Princess. Four of the excursions we chose included lunch. The food was good, but the menu was prearranged and we were served chicken at every lunch. The lunch venues seemed somewhat unprepared for the volume of guests and the service was sketchy. Our last stop while seeing the Normandy area was by far the worst lunch venue. We were crammed into a very small space in the back of the restaurant and the service was terrible. We offered nothing to drink other than the water and wine on the table. Our water bottle was never refilled and our group did not drink alcohol. The food was good. The atmosphere was a zero. The ship itself was very well maintained. Our weather was not conducive for outside hot tub or swimming pool. The fitness room had excellent equipment, but did not provide a water cooler. There was a small drinking fountain and a drink vending machine. Another example of the cruise line being cheap. If the aerobic room was being used for classes, there was no place to stretch. There were only two benches for working with free weights. All that being said, I was thankful for a place to workout. I did pay to use the Lotus Spa. The Enclave was well maintained. Unlimited use of this coed spa was $15 0 for the duration of the cruise. It was relaxing and not crowded. It did take some planning to find the time to use it and make the monetary investment worthwhile. We had one unplanned day at sea due to a severe storm that denied our port stop. I did buy a 75 minute head to toe massage/facial package for $139.00 plus an automatic 15 percent tip. It was,wonderful and the masseuse was great. My disappointment in the spa included some of the rude front desk people, the relentless product sale pitches and the deceiving way they attempted to charge for services you thought were covered in one price. As to the food....there was a daily buffet on the 16th deck. All three meals were offered everyday. The food for each meal was always the same and fairly mediocre. They served the worst scrambled eggs I have ever tried to eat. There was one actual restaurant serving breakfast from a menu, but it was not workable for those with morning excursions. Our group of six opted for anytime seating in a dining room for dinner. We were able to sit within the same seating area each night, which allowed us the same wait staff. They were excellent and always made each dinner a fun experience. Some dinner food was wonderful, some just okay. We had an upgraded cruise package which gave us a little larger cabin with a balcony. It was a good deal and I highly recommend the balcony. Having your own space to enjoy the view and access to the fresh ocean air is very worth the money. Our cabin was kept up very well. The shipboard entertainment was a very mixed bag. The ship's performance group had good and bad nights. They had some fabulous vocalists which were showcased very well one night. The other three nights were not so great. Two of those nights were shows that just did not appeal to me or many of the other passengers I spoke with. The entertainers that were brought onto the ship included a ventriloquist, a comedian, a male quartet, a Celtic group, and a solo male vocalist. They were all excellent. The male group and solo male were exceptional. We also enjoyed the interactive game shows provided by the cruise director staff. We have sailed with many other cruise lines and prefer Princess. I appreciate they do not hound their passengers to death to buy beverages packages or raffle tickets as other lines do. After having cruised many times through the years, I am disappointed in the way things have changed. The big displays of fabulously chocolate buffets and ice sculptures do not occur now. The "all inclusive" sodas and other drinks are gone. The late night amazing food buffets are no longer offered and many of the "specialty" cafes now charge for their goodies. So, yes things have changed, but cruising is still a great way to see the world.

British Isles

Royal Princess Cruise Review by Muktuk13

2 people found this helpful
Trip Details
We chose this cruise to see this part of the world and we prefer the Princess line. The countries were beautiful. We booked excursions through Princess because we had not visited this part of the world and had no point of reference to see it on our own in such a restricted amount of time. The excursions gave us a good flavor of the area and, for the most part, the guides were good. Understanding that the cost of everything has gone up through the years, I realize the cruise lines have made necessary cutbacks; however, some of these cutbacks are simply cheap. For instance, it would be reasonable on a day long excursion (which is quite expensive) that the excursion provide bottled water and soda. You could certainly buy a 25 cent bottle of water on the ship for over $2. That is just cheap on the part of Princess. Four of the excursions we chose included lunch. The food was good, but the menu was prearranged and we were served chicken at every lunch. The lunch venues seemed somewhat unprepared for the volume of guests and the service was sketchy. Our last stop while seeing the Normandy area was by far the worst lunch venue. We were crammed into a very small space in the back of the restaurant and the service was terrible. We offered nothing to drink other than the water and wine on the table. Our water bottle was never refilled and our group did not drink alcohol. The food was good. The atmosphere was a zero.

The ship itself was very well maintained. Our weather was not conducive for outside hot tub or swimming pool. The fitness room had excellent equipment, but did not provide a water cooler. There was a small drinking fountain and a drink vending machine. Another example of the cruise line being cheap. If the aerobic room was being used for classes, there was no place to stretch. There were only two benches for working with free weights. All that being said, I was thankful for a place to workout.

I did pay to use the Lotus Spa. The Enclave was well maintained. Unlimited use of this coed spa was $15 0 for the duration of the cruise. It was relaxing and not crowded. It did take some planning to find the time to use it and make the monetary investment worthwhile. We had one unplanned day at sea due to a severe storm that denied our port stop. I did buy a 75 minute head to toe massage/facial package for $139.00 plus an automatic 15 percent tip. It was,wonderful and the masseuse was great. My disappointment in the spa included some of the rude front desk people, the relentless product sale pitches and the deceiving way they attempted to charge for services you thought were covered in one price.

As to the food....there was a daily buffet on the 16th deck. All three meals were offered everyday. The food for each meal was always the same and fairly mediocre. They served the worst scrambled eggs I have ever tried to eat. There was one actual restaurant serving breakfast from a menu, but it was not workable for those with morning excursions. Our group of six opted for anytime seating in a dining room for dinner. We were able to sit within the same seating area each night, which allowed us the same wait staff. They were excellent and always made each dinner a fun experience. Some dinner food was wonderful, some just okay.

We had an upgraded cruise package which gave us a little larger cabin with a balcony. It was a good deal and I highly recommend the balcony. Having your own space to enjoy the view and access to the fresh ocean air is very worth the money. Our cabin was kept up very well.

The shipboard entertainment was a very mixed bag. The ship's performance group had good and bad nights. They had some fabulous vocalists which were showcased very well one night. The other three nights were not so great. Two of those nights were shows that just did not appeal to me or many of the other passengers I spoke with. The entertainers that were brought onto the ship included a ventriloquist, a comedian, a male quartet, a Celtic group, and a solo male vocalist. They were all excellent. The male group and solo male were exceptional. We also enjoyed the interactive game shows provided by the cruise director staff.

We have sailed with many other cruise lines and prefer Princess. I appreciate they do not hound their passengers to death to buy beverages packages or raffle tickets as other lines do.

After having cruised many times through the years, I am disappointed in the way things have changed. The big displays of fabulously chocolate buffets and ice sculptures do not occur now. The "all inclusive" sodas and other drinks are gone. The late night amazing food buffets are no longer offered and many of the "specialty" cafes now charge for their goodies. So, yes things have changed, but cruising is still a great way to see the world.
Muktuk13’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Balcony
Cabin BB D501
Upgraded to balcony on 9th deck midship right by the elevators and stairs. Good amount of living and storage space. Very much enjoyed the balcony and location. It was well kept.
Marina Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews