We flew into London Gatwick 2 days early, just in case the volcano in Iceland decided to act up. We stayed at the Holiday Inn in Crawley which was not too far from the airport. I paid $89CDN per night and it included a hot breakfast. We simply returned to the airport on the day of the cruise and took the (pre-booked) Princess transportation to the pier. It took about 1.5 hours to get to the pier.
We booked this cruise very late and there was nothing left except an inside cabin but this was fine with us as we had 10 ports in 12 days so we were not in the cabin much. The room was very spacious as far as inside cabins go. We had plenty of drawer and closet space. This ship was the first (out of 23 cruises) that had 24 hangers, usually I end up double hanging clothes but this time I was able to hang the t-shirts!
We did not attend many of the shows on the ship so really can't tell you how they were. We did attend a juggler one evening (so-so) and a comic on another night.