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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2019
We have been on about 15 cruises, last one 15 years ago. We have been all over the Caribbean, Mexican Rivera a number of times. Been through the Panama Canal, New Zealand and Australia. First cruise I have been on were I was charged ... Read More
We have been on about 15 cruises, last one 15 years ago. We have been all over the Caribbean, Mexican Rivera a number of times. Been through the Panama Canal, New Zealand and Australia. First cruise I have been on were I was charged for a soda. First cruise I have been on were they wanted to charge me $40 per person per day to look off the stern of the ship. Charged $29 per day service charge for my stateroom and 18% for every drink or soda I ordered. And that was after I paid $4,000 for the cruise. This will be the last Princess Cruise for me. The stateroom was nice, the service was great and the entertainment was good. That embarkation and debarkation was handled great. They did a great job handling luggage on and off the ship. Picked it up at the airport, next time we saw it was in our stateroom. Getting off, put our luggage outside our stateroom and didn’t see it again until we were at the airport. I have to give them a excellent grade on that. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2019
We are elite with princess and last cruised on Princess Grand 3-2019 for the Mexico Rivera cruise. This trip was Alaska, 10 days round trip from San Francisco. Its my opinion that service on Princess Grand has improved. Staff constantly ... Read More
We are elite with princess and last cruised on Princess Grand 3-2019 for the Mexico Rivera cruise. This trip was Alaska, 10 days round trip from San Francisco. Its my opinion that service on Princess Grand has improved. Staff constantly ask if everything is ok. horizon court seems to have improved. We are a fan of the club class dinning option and each meal we get an additional item not on the regular menu. Wait staff in club class dining is excellent. Our head waiter was Giovanni and he always fixed an extra dish, usually a delicious pasta. All our excursions were excellent, timely etc. I think this is here Princess excels. What we are not a fan of is the constant promotion of sales and the unnecessary sales flyers that clutter the Princess patter news letter left in our state room. It is an unnecessary waste of paper and printer ink. Passengers should be allowed to opt out of sales promotions and save the environment. The piazza on decks 6 & 7 reminds me of a garage sale with all the tables of sales items. I think & have suggested that the sales items be moved to improve the ambiance of the piazza area. Internet speed has improved since Grand has been wired for medallion, although not on it yet. Entertainment, Grand is still offering the British Invasion and Motor City which we have seen several times over the years. I must say the British Invasion this cruise was the best performed of any of this musical. The Hungarian strings and Piano in the Piazza was superb. This is another area that we like the performances in the Piazza. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2019
7 days to Alaska. We were supposed to go to Sawyer glacier but the capt. decided the weather was too bad to go. That was to be the highlight of the cruise. The star is an older ship but still looks good for the most part. Be very careful ... Read More
7 days to Alaska. We were supposed to go to Sawyer glacier but the capt. decided the weather was too bad to go. That was to be the highlight of the cruise. The star is an older ship but still looks good for the most part. Be very careful on the Lido deck when it has water on it. My wife slipped twice and the second time banged her knee pretty good. The deck is very slippery. We had a table for 2 confirmed for early seating only to find out it got changed to a table of 8. We were told they couldn't change it so we went to anytime seating and got a table for 2. The menu in the dinning room had 3 very good nights and 4 that were just so so. We ended up with salmon that is on the everyday side of the menu. The Buffet on lido deck wasn't very good for the most part. Pizza was just sauce and cheese on cardboard. Hamburgers were the best part of that deck. They have soft serve ice cream all day. The shows were good for the most part.. The magician was good, the so called comedian just wanted to swear which isn't funny but a big turn off. It was too bad he was on twice. The internet was very slow., other ships have much faster internet. The windows in the public areas were dirty and some you could hardly look through. Being elite status, if you are a drinker you get free mini bar, all the drinks you want at the captains party and free wine tasting. If you don't drink you get nothing-just a bottle of water. they discriminate against nondrinkers. Ports of call were Skayway, Ketchikan, Judeau, and Victoria (from 7pm to 11 pm) so you are there at night. Being in Alaska is always nice and pretty. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
I had not sailed on Princess before and not sure I will again. I suggest before selecting a cruise, check the age of the ship and when it was last updated. The Golden Princes was in need of updating and repair. It was older and seemed very ... Read More
I had not sailed on Princess before and not sure I will again. I suggest before selecting a cruise, check the age of the ship and when it was last updated. The Golden Princes was in need of updating and repair. It was older and seemed very sad and dingy, the carpet needed to be replaced through out the ship. In addition, the staff was not very friendly and they charged for everything...even bottled water. I would rather they just bump up the price a few dollars to cover for bottled water and don’t charge. On board the ship the food was not all that good and lacked variety. It felt as though the the crew was tired since this was one of the last cruises this season. Although we only participated in one onboard activity (Bingo), I can't speak to the entertainment on board. The one Bingo session seemed lack luster and tired. The was a large amount of excursions to choose from and we were pleased with the ones we selected. Prior to the cruise, we took the escorted land tour and it was excellent! First class service and the food & tours were really good. Most meals were included as we were given vouchers for the restaurants on site at the lodges. The lodges were not updated as much as I thought they should be but overall there wasn't a problem with the accommodations. Our tour guide went above and beyond to accommodate the variety of people in the tour with diatery needs and/or special requests for accommodations I suggest, to do your homework before spending as much money as I did. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
My friends and I were looking for a Mediterranean cruise but late to book so many were already sold out. I thought Princess was rated similar to RCCL and Celebrity ...oops, I was so wrong. If the was one Improvement I'd. ... Read More
My friends and I were looking for a Mediterranean cruise but late to book so many were already sold out. I thought Princess was rated similar to RCCL and Celebrity ...oops, I was so wrong. If the was one Improvement I'd. Suggest, it would be to stop nickel and diming people with stupid drink packages!!! How ridiculous to offer a water and coke package which only serviced INSIDE or Outside your cabins. It was, like much of the programs...petty. nightly entertainment limited to early only crowds. After 9pm, there's few options. The best experience was in the spa where I got 2 treatments that were e excellent. I did pass on the $60.00 manicure tho. Placing an automatic 15% gratuity was insulting. Lastly, as most cruises, the food is bountiful however what's the purpose of having different dining rooms if you're serving the same menu in each? Where was the variety? Even the 2 additional restaurants you had to pay additional for had pretty much the same menu as the others. Simply unimaginative and a basic 3 1/2 star cruise line. A touch above costa and same as NCL. And don't waste 2 days at sea just to get cheap fuel in Gilbralter ! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
I had Balcony Cabin (BB). One of the smallest cabin in the cruise line industry. The bathroom need complete make over and small. They brag about their new mattress. When they where new they where good but now my mattress was lumpy and had ... Read More
I had Balcony Cabin (BB). One of the smallest cabin in the cruise line industry. The bathroom need complete make over and small. They brag about their new mattress. When they where new they where good but now my mattress was lumpy and had valleys. Dinning where to begin. Dinner menu has another menu insert with added charges for food. The food was 2nd grade quality. Prime Rib was shredded compact meat. Shrimp Cocktail had 5 shrimp about 2 inches long. I thought this was a joke. The wine glasses are the smallest in the industry. Along with barely half pour at $10 plus 18% . The bottle of wine they use is about $8 in a wine store. My partner purchased a bottle for dinner to be saved for the next day only to have the waiter constantly pouring more wine. They want you to order another bottle quickly. I purchased a bottle of Evian water and rarely the waiter refilled my glass. The ships public rooms where well appointed except the main show room seating was horrible by today standards. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
We where traveling with 3 other couples and had never been to Scotland or Ireland so this cruise made sense. Nice area to visit and to get out of the heat of southern FL. The highlights include, easy boarding and departing, staff being ... Read More
We where traveling with 3 other couples and had never been to Scotland or Ireland so this cruise made sense. Nice area to visit and to get out of the heat of southern FL. The highlights include, easy boarding and departing, staff being helpful most of the time. Clean room and a decent itinerary. Our Travel Agent went the extra mile in making our arrangements and helping with problems some of which we created. Island of Guernsey was a nice stop with great weather. Dublin was also great as was Scotland. If your into Scotch a must stop is the Scotch Malt Whisky Society where we tasted and learned about the “water of life” along with learning to play the bagpipes, great fun. We use a lot of Viator Tours and saved considerable money as compared to booking with the cruise line.. The Guinness Storehouse was packed with people but we all like a pint or two, while the Jameson Distillery tour was a great educational tour. Food on the cruise was marginally ok. In the main dining rooms most food was over cooked and dry and not seasoned. The buffet was not much better but the soup was good. On the other hand the Grillroom food was excellent but for a 29.00 up charge it should be Most if not all of the entertainment on board would have not made it through the 1st round of America's Got Talent they would have been XXXX out. Princess likes to nickel and dime you to death for everything. They got so cheap as not put our lemonade or Ice Tea at the beverage station. They use a paperless system which creates a cash less system on the ship, but makes it hard to check you bill at the end of cruise. We have done a fair amount of cruising and would choose anther cruise line for our next cruise this coming March Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
I had higher expectations because Princess high end reputation. I booked because itinerary and destination ports. I have 10+ cruise experience with Carnival and Norwegian. This is my First time with Princess and I’m very disappointed. ... Read More
I had higher expectations because Princess high end reputation. I booked because itinerary and destination ports. I have 10+ cruise experience with Carnival and Norwegian. This is my First time with Princess and I’m very disappointed. Very pour entertainment performance quality, small food portions, lack of variety or options at Lido food court and restaurant dinners, ship outdated revamp need, bad coffee including the bistro, no blankets to see the outside movies, very old towels at pools and room, rest of the staff looks very exhausted because it was almost the end of the season, no engaged, excellent room cleaning, specialty restaurant (Baju) was good and learnt experience, excursion by Princess are ok but seems pricey, this is cater for senior citizens, gambler or sinkers, not to much entertainment during the day or night, not good value for what I paid. Not planning to book Princess Cruises because this experience. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
Without the outstanding service of the Bar, Michelangelo wait staff and room service I would have rated this cruise as poor. I never saw the captain walking around the ship. Most officers never said a word. One of the chef's in the ... Read More
Without the outstanding service of the Bar, Michelangelo wait staff and room service I would have rated this cruise as poor. I never saw the captain walking around the ship. Most officers never said a word. One of the chef's in the 15th floor buffet was rude and harse on one occasion. My wife and I came of the ship because people with the flu were not restricted to their state rooms. Many of people on board walked off with the flu. I'm not sure why Princess stayed in Dublin for two days knowing all too well that stores only open between 11am and noon. We had it be bck onboard for 3pm. A waste of a day. I'm really not sure why other than legally we stopped at all in Lahavre because ALL the stores are closed on Monday's !!!!!!! A real of time and money. People taking the excurion to Paris did not stop at the Louvre. The bus ride was 3hrs each way. This was $ 276 CDN. Comments provided by friends we met on the cruise. ANY excursion Princess provided was offered by other tour operators for at least half the cost as Princess. Excursion prices are rediculously high. My recommendation is to do your home work. Also, go to the front desk and have your gratuities removed from your bill and provide the staff that were outstanding. Many staff members deserved a dollar from the overall pot. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
I had taken a Baltic Sea cruise with Princess last year and loved it so Princess seemed like a natural choice for Alaska this year. Big mistake. The ship, The Star Princess is older but this should not be an excuse to have filthy carpet ... Read More
I had taken a Baltic Sea cruise with Princess last year and loved it so Princess seemed like a natural choice for Alaska this year. Big mistake. The ship, The Star Princess is older but this should not be an excuse to have filthy carpet in a cabin or light switches falling off the wall. They offered to clean or change carpet during our cruise, both of which we declined because of the fumes associated with both choices. Throughout the cruise there were noisy children playing on the balcony next door very early in the morning (before 7 AM). I called Guest Services and was told they would send someone. I don't know if anyone spoke to this family but someone came to my cabin to let me know that situation would be handled. The kids were not controlled by their parents throughout the cruise and it was very unpleasant for us. The food was mediocre, although the meal in the Crown Grill Specialty restaurant was very good. One day during Anytime Dining I bit into a roll not realizing it was most probably a day old because it was hard and a piece of tooth (molar) broke off! The entertainment was good and we enjoyed the Cruise Director who did keep us laughing. Never got to go on the excursion to Tracy Arm. One of the excursion boats broke down so not everyone could go. The excursion team decided to choose passengers to go based on the date that they reserved the excursion. Supposedly those who booked first got to go. We booked the excursion in February 2019. When we realized folks who booked as late as August were going on the excursion we were irate. We were very upset. Excursion staff became very annoyed with us and described the situation as a "minor inconvenience". Everywhere you looked someone was trying to sell you something. Not giving cabin lowest score because the bed was very comfortable.Disembarkation was smooth. Guest Services staff helpful and knowledgeable. Will try another line next time. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
Overall a good cruise but lacking in a few areas. Had great weather and smooth seas. We found most of the staff very friendly but the food grill folks weren’t as helpful. When asked to toast a bun they wouldn’t do it for a passenger. ... Read More
Overall a good cruise but lacking in a few areas. Had great weather and smooth seas. We found most of the staff very friendly but the food grill folks weren’t as helpful. When asked to toast a bun they wouldn’t do it for a passenger. Also the coffee bar staff struggled to smile and wouldn’t even give a black cup of coffee without charging someone. We had excursions planned and those were good. One problem with the Tracy Arm excursion (one of the boats broke) and half the guests couldn’t go. While disappointing the cruise line did refund the excursion and covered our other excursion in Juneau. The speciality restaurants (Sabatinos and Crown Grill) were great! Excellent food and staff. The regular dining was just ok and the buffet had much to be desired. As a first time cruisers we were not disappointed nor were we blown away or impressed. We heard from other passengers that other ships in Princess are better and that other lines are also better so we will give it another try. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
We chose this cruise because of the rates, itinerary and because it left from and returned to Seattle. I was told by friends that the food was mediocre so we were prepared. We weren’t surprised, the food was mediocre. However, the crew ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the rates, itinerary and because it left from and returned to Seattle. I was told by friends that the food was mediocre so we were prepared. We weren’t surprised, the food was mediocre. However, the crew was very friendly and accommodating. The ship was clean and inviting. The best parts were the ports, Ketchikan, Tracy Arm Fjord, Juneau, Skagway and Victoria. We saw salmon jumping and seals eating them in Ketchikan. We also ate at Alaska Fish House, very good! In Juneau we ate King Crab at Tracy’s King Crab Shack and used Alaska Tales for seeing Mendenhall Glacier and whale watching...highly recommend! In Skagway we ate at Skagway Brewery and had a Princess excursion to see White Pass Summit and it was breathtaking. We didn’t see much of Victoria because dock time was between 7pm and midnight. Tracy Arm Fjord was amazing! The ship turned 360 for a while so everyone could see all of the gorgeous scenery. It was a highlight of the cruise. Overall, we had a fabulous time. Prior to the cruise start we stayed at Silver Cloud Inn on Lake Union in Seattle. A great location with free shuttle service to Pike Place Market. We took a walk around part of the lake to look at the iconic Seattle houseboats before embarking. I highly recommend it! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
We have always gone Cruising to warm water but so many people said how great the Alaska Cruise is. Why? We couldn't walk the deck while out to sea or use the balcony. It's too cold. They didn't serve any local ... Read More
We have always gone Cruising to warm water but so many people said how great the Alaska Cruise is. Why? We couldn't walk the deck while out to sea or use the balcony. It's too cold. They didn't serve any local Alaskan dishes onboard. Only Alaskan inspired European dishes that were more European than Alaskan. (even the baked Alaska) We couldn't afford the excursions that cost $$$$ hundreds of dollars more per person than on warm water destinations. There are only two kinds of shops in the towns, jewelry shops and souvenir shops with the same stuff. Didn't get to see any glaciers or wildlife other than salmon in the river at Ketchican. It just was not a value to me. I would rather sit on a warm beach and snorkel in warm water for the money. The only highlight was some of the entertainment. See you on the warm beaches from now on, I learned my lesson. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
We have been on 7 cruises, the last 4 have been Princess Cruises, this was #5. We loved Alaska, it was beautiful, that is all I can say good about this cruise on the Star Princess. We paid for an upgraded balcony cabin, when we got ... Read More
We have been on 7 cruises, the last 4 have been Princess Cruises, this was #5. We loved Alaska, it was beautiful, that is all I can say good about this cruise on the Star Princess. We paid for an upgraded balcony cabin, when we got to our cabin it was so small that it only had the one chair in it, the desk chair. The room steward told us the room was so small they had to take the club chair out of the room. So that left either my husband or I always sitting on the bed or on the balcony. The room smelled like waste the whole time from the bathroom. The first evening when we left the cabin to go to dinner the balcony sliding glass door would not lock. We had to track down someone to fix it. Then we get to the dining, when our travel agent made the reservations, she said table for 6 on traditional dining. I changed it to table for two in January when I first had to contact Princess, I had to contact them many more times and always asked if we had a table for 2 and was assured we did. But when we got to the dining room we were told there was no tables for 2 open and had to go to The Capri Dining room and maybe they had a table for us or the buffet. Luckily the boss found us a table for 2, but we had no permanent table the whole trip, every night it was a maybe we will maybe we wont. And we noticed the food was really not up to the standards of other cruise we took with Princess The ship was showing her age and by far was the worst we had been on in the Princess fleet. Not sure if we will sail with Princess again. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
The cabin had a filthy stained rug and film over the mirrors. All the electrical outlets did not work. The urine smell coming from toilet was strong. They offered to replace the carpet but would have to move all our belongings. They ... Read More
The cabin had a filthy stained rug and film over the mirrors. All the electrical outlets did not work. The urine smell coming from toilet was strong. They offered to replace the carpet but would have to move all our belongings. They offered to shampoo carpet but the smell from the chemical may cause allergic reaction so we said no. The casino floor staff was hard to find and during smoking hours they did not put out ashtrays until asked. The food was just okay unlike my last trip. We had to revert to anytime dining to get good food. The desserts were bland but the cookies were great. The wait staff was usually there to take drink orders. The cruise director and other crew members were fantastic. There was a problem with our excursion and the person in charge had a printout and chose who would go based on when they booked the excursion. The order was all wrong so people who just booked the excursion went while those that booked 6 months prior did not go. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
A cruise to Alaska was my dream trip! Even though the cruise ship was not over the top and you can tell it has some wear and tear, the destination was SPECTACULAR! DINING -- Roger Mora in anytime dining is the BEST waiter ever! You ... Read More
A cruise to Alaska was my dream trip! Even though the cruise ship was not over the top and you can tell it has some wear and tear, the destination was SPECTACULAR! DINING -- Roger Mora in anytime dining is the BEST waiter ever! You can take 2 bottles of wine per person and some water on board -- do it! It will save you lots of $$$$! Just uncork the wine before you go to dinner and you won't have to pay the corkage fee. :) The martini bar staff are hysterical! SHOPPING -- Don't get roped into the jewelry sales, these "used care salesman" are too much! Save your money! Make sure you load the app right away. There are specials that you can use the first day that no one tells you about, but they are on the app. Go to the shopping meeting in the theater to get special coupons and city maps. Don't forget to take your coupons with you to town! ONBOARD APP/INTERNET -- You can also use it to text each other on the ship for free. This was very helpful in keeping track of our group. The internet package is expensive and not really worth it. Unless you are a social media hound, don't bother paying the extra. I was so buy having fun, I didn't really use it. Plus, you can only use it on the ship. When you are in town, it doesn't work. I could have bought a roaming plan from AT&T for $80 less. ENTERTAINMENT -- Make sure you go see the comedians and shows, we were not disappointed! a nice surprise was the Escape Room -- it was a lot of fun -- even solving it with strangers! Be sure to watch the Wake Show - it has important info! PICTURES -- The easy disembark ramp usually has the picture opportunity, go early for the formal night (the photographers take breaks right at the busy time), do lots of poses and have fun! We took stick on mustaches for our formal night and that was the best one of them all! Beware of the picture package prices -- they are EXPENSIVE! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
The Grand , not so grand and it shows. Appalled by maintenance crews entering our cabin even against our explicit direction not to; both when no one was there and when only minors where in the room ( old enough to watch a movie while we ... Read More
The Grand , not so grand and it shows. Appalled by maintenance crews entering our cabin even against our explicit direction not to; both when no one was there and when only minors where in the room ( old enough to watch a movie while we dined). Princess felt it appropriate to use our time paid for in the cabin to replace tile/closet doors etc. Rooms are very dated and wear worn. Smoking directly below us ( Emerald 722). We were eventually moved and updated to E732 but then that sprung a serious leak. Wetting our clothes , rugs, etc. The staff is wonderful. Friendly, helpful, gracious. The food is a C+, but I am from SF so standards pretty high. The average age of the cruise was 75+ so it was hard for the kids and sometimes us to blend in. Day time activities sorely lacking mostly geared to loosen your wallet. Major shows very good. Alaska is wonderful. BOOK WHEN OFF THE SHIP FOR EXCURSIONS. I wish i knew that you can save money and get a better idea what you are going to do. All in all I give this cruise a sold C. I would never however sail the Grand Princess again. Did I mention the permeating smell of smoke throught the ship? The casino reeks which is located adjacent to the main theater. I would say if you get a really good deal to go with the knowledge that some areas are lacking. But , if like us you are paying the full amount I would find a better ship. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
They sail to great places in Alaska. Beautiful scenery. Can’t fault that. There is no coffee/tea making facilities in the room like, for example, P&O Cruise. Large gym with many treadmills. Charge for using launderette. I ... Read More
They sail to great places in Alaska. Beautiful scenery. Can’t fault that. There is no coffee/tea making facilities in the room like, for example, P&O Cruise. Large gym with many treadmills. Charge for using launderette. I remember there are cruise lines that don’t charge for this. Unsatisfying vegetarian options although they tried to make something on the spot if there is no vegetarian options on the menu. Seems a bit amateur with vegetarian food. Waiters, waitresses, room stewards and other general staff are friendly and helpful. Reception staff less so. I wasn’t impressed (well, impressed in some way...) when I tried to check the random holds Princess placed on my credit card because there were some fraudulent transactions on my credit card bill, a reception staff said “Oh is this the first time you’re on a cruise? This is just how it works.”. I’ve experienced more polished tone than this from other cruise lines. Overall it’s a great way to see Alaska. Onboard experience can benefit from refinement. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Advice from my travel agent. Way to many musicals, the buffets were not very good, same things every day, go into a speciality restaurant, and they charged an extra 29 dollars to get basically something that you could get for less money at ... Read More
Advice from my travel agent. Way to many musicals, the buffets were not very good, same things every day, go into a speciality restaurant, and they charged an extra 29 dollars to get basically something that you could get for less money at a steak house. Next night go into a regular restaurant and they had almost the same things on the menu that you paid an extra few of twenty nine dollars for. Needed more time in Could not do any of the longer excursions that we wanted to do, because of the time limit that were there. The room attendant we had was very good along with the wait staff in the restaurants and bars. The drinks were very expensive, if you ordered a drink with 2 different alcohols in and they charged me double the price on top of an expensive drink already. The casino was nice with a good variety of slot machines and gaming tables. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
I chose this cruise for the British Isles itineraries- we started in Dublin and the cruise line arranged a hotel room - WE WERE CHARGED DOUBLE FOR THE ROOM AND THEY WOULD NOT CORRECT THE ERROR - do not have them book a room. We were NOT ... Read More
I chose this cruise for the British Isles itineraries- we started in Dublin and the cruise line arranged a hotel room - WE WERE CHARGED DOUBLE FOR THE ROOM AND THEY WOULD NOT CORRECT THE ERROR - do not have them book a room. We were NOT picked up at the airport, altho pre- arranged. All tours are expensive ( this is not new) however all shuttles and transfer services were EXTRA ! Unless you opt out the daily TIP charge is $15 PER PERSON and up, depending on your room. WILL NOT BE USING THIS CRUISELINE AGAIN. The cabin is average ( had an inside room, midship) - steward service excellent - will be tipping them ! Wine tasting was excellent - $25 was reasonable and well done. Most of the entertainment was v good - a couple of the Lounge groups were mediocre. Bathrooms in the hallways are few and far between - use your suite amap The general staff were 50/50 helpful and friendly OR disinterested. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
I wanted to visit Greenland and since the ship was going right out of NYC near where I live, I thought it was an easy choice. I'd gotten an upgrade from obstructed to unobstructed view but they'd forgotten to mention that it ... Read More
I wanted to visit Greenland and since the ship was going right out of NYC near where I live, I thought it was an easy choice. I'd gotten an upgrade from obstructed to unobstructed view but they'd forgotten to mention that it was right above the forward gangplank so whenever we got to a port, we were woken very early. :( The ship was well maintained and comfortable. However, I have a number of complaints. 1) The food was only okay (even the specialty restaurant we tried was okay) and I think Princess needs to work on making the food more flavorful and their steaks less tough. 2) The entertainment was good (the last show was excellent) but we had to get to the theater an HOUR plus before the show just to get any seats. It was standing room only for the productions shows and we didn't even see one because of the crowding. They really need to have other things going on during the shows so that more people would have something else to do. 3) The tender situation in Greenland was awful. The two GL ports with tenders had hours long lines to get in and out. We waited 2 hours to get off the ship and about an hour to get back on in one port. The other GL port, Nanortilik, was worse. If you go, get off as soon as the ship docks early in the morning. That being said, Greenland did not disappoint. I was sooooo glad I went. It was gorgeous and the people friendly. 4) Back to the ship. There were NO port talks at all so except for the printout for each port, there was no way to get information as to what to do there. This was completely unacceptable especially since GL had very little info online anyway. 5) And don't even get me started on the excursions. I waited for months for the GL excursions to come up so I could book them but much as I checked, they never appeared on the Princess website. So by the time I got to the ship, everything was booked and there were waiting lists. Since I'd gotten frustrated 5-6 months before the cruise, I did book a trip with Viator in Nuuk on my own and I'm very glad I did because I'd have been very frustrated otherwise. 6) They are starting a new thing with medallions. I really didn't like them and found them creepy (your face came up on the room screen before you got into the room and other places, too - the privacy issues were a problem for me). Also they didn't work if you were ordering drinks since the bar staff had to take down your name and room number anyway. The not complaints The embarkation and disembarkation were very easy. The ship was lovely. The ports were great. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
Greenland has always been on my bucket list and when Princess announced they were doing a round-trip from New York with three port stops in Greenland, the price was a little high but I signed up immediately. We did get a substantial price ... Read More
Greenland has always been on my bucket list and when Princess announced they were doing a round-trip from New York with three port stops in Greenland, the price was a little high but I signed up immediately. We did get a substantial price drop, at the expense of my husbands AIB package. We have sailed the Caribbean Princess several times, she is and older ship and she tends to show her age, but Princess is attempting to update he with the implementation of Medallion class in May this year. We utilized Princess EZ-Air from FLL to LGA, never again! LGA is under major construction and our Princess Transfer from the airport to the port took close to 3 hours, one hour to get out of the airport alone. Once at the port Medallion made check in a breeze. We visited Halifax and Sidney before heading to Greenland to visit Nuuk, Qaqortog and Nanortalik, with a stop in St. Johns NF on the way back. Princess offered limited excursions for all the Greenland stops and we were very disappointed that there were no enrichment lectures in regards to the ports. There was one lecturer on board who talked about Hollywood, Disney and film. The demographics of this cruise were mostly seniors who are elite Princess cruisers who are very demanding (as said by several crew members), we are also elite members but much younger then the average on this ship. While we heard that the production shows were excellent, we did not see them as they began to line up 1 1/2 hours before each show and the theater was always full when we arrived at the 1 hour mark, we refuse to go any earlier as we find it absurd to go any earlier. We were able to catch the simulcast of guest entertainers in the lounge and did enjoy most of these shows. There was a lack of evening entertainment, no deck party, no theme parties, guess they figured that most guests were in bed after the show. Ports: Halifax - We did a private excursion "Halifax Titanic Historical Tours with Paul McNeil". We found this small group excursion through our CC roll call. Paul was so knowledgeable of the history of Halifax and proud of his city and this showed through his narration through the whole tour, he also had photo's and videos that were shown on a large display in the front of the van. We were able to hit all the highlights of the city well before all the tour buses returned from Peggy's Cove. We visited two of the Titanic cemeteries with a drive by the third which no longer allows visitors, Paul was very respectful while viewing the sites, insisting we not walk on the graves. We also visited the Memorial to the Halifax Explosion, where he explained several hidden facts throughout. We finished off the tour with a stop for a fabulous lunch in a small uncrowded fishing village which served the best fish & chips we have every had. Would definitely recommend this tour to anyone looking to get away from the crowds and tour buses. Sidney - we did a ship tour to the old Gaelic Village which we found very interesting. This is an interpretive village with several "players" who were in character for their era in time. We found it quite interesting the changes they went through over the years. After the tour returned we walked through town and enjoyed a local brew and some lobster poutine at a local pub. Greenland - Our ship stopped at three ports in Greenland, Nuuk, Qaqortog and Nanortalik all three were scheduled as tender ports, however at the last minute we were able to dock in Nuuk. Princess offered limited tours in all three ports and most were quite expensive for what they offered so we opted to walk all but Nanortalik on our own. My research showed that they all offered museums, churches and were quite walk-able on your own. In Nuuk we were off the ship early and able to get to the church, memorial and museum well before the tour buses from the ship dropped off. We enjoyed the beautiful city with it's quaint colorful houses. We walked the waterfront and climbed what appeared to be newly build stairs up the bluff. After we found a local brewery and enjoyed a local brew. Qaqortog was a tender port and did not offer much more than Nuuk, we visited the Museum which was much smaller than the one in Nuuk. Again we walked the town, enjoying the stone art carvings that were displayed throughout town, we visited the fish market and church before we went off the main road and found a path to the top of lookout that provided a great view of the ship in the bay, the town and a nearby lake. Our last stop was Nanortalik, this was also a tender port. We had an excursion so we were one of the first off, but we heard later that some without tours waited for almost 4 hours to tender off the ship. We booked our excursion through the ship as I could not find any private excursions, I felt the price was very over inflated when I booked it and still fell the same. We took a small boat (six people) to the glacier where we were able to walk on the rocks and had a shot of scotch over glacier ice. Our tour guide and boat driver were locals and provided us with a wealth of information about their small town of less than 1000 people. After our tour we walked through the small town and visited the museum before getting in line for the 2 1/2 hr wait to tender back to the ship. We felt that this small town was not prepared for the 3000+ people from our ship, although we were happy to donate to the church and school which seemed in need. St Johns, NF - Our last port, we booked a 2 hr harbor cruise with Iceberg Quest, while we did not see any icebergs or whales, we did see the lighthouses, caves and I spotted a puffin. We then leisurely walked through town, we stopped by St. John the Baptist Church, but it was Sunday and they were having services. We stopped by the YellowBelly Brewery and enjoyed a local brew before heading back to the ship. Upon our return to New York disembarkation was a breeze. We can now cross Greenland off our bucket list, but we consider it a one and done, we won't go back there is not much to see and do, excursions were few and over priced. We will however visit Halifax, Sidney and St. Johns as there is so much we did not get to see. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
Princess Cruises is an American company and so I blame myself in part for not spotting the warning signs, even though I have visited the USA many times. Unlike the UK, where the price you see is the price you pay, every purchase made in ... Read More
Princess Cruises is an American company and so I blame myself in part for not spotting the warning signs, even though I have visited the USA many times. Unlike the UK, where the price you see is the price you pay, every purchase made in the USA will cost far more than its advertised price with all kinds of extras added - most significantly, tips. Which is why my extras bill following my 14-night cruise was approaching $2000, of which a significant proportion was "gratuities" On board the Sapphire Princess there are many examples of US influence, of which more later - but the first clue was when, as we stepped off the gangplank and entered the ship, we were approached by smiling Princess staff (as happens of other ships, of course) by the difference was that these staff were not there to guide us to our stateroom or even to point out the location of the lifts - that we had to sort out for ourselves. No, these staff were there to sell us extras - in this case drinks packages. By purchasing such a package we would be able to reduce the price of a bottle of wine to as "little" as $31 a bottle. And this selling of overpriced extras continued throughout the cruise. Of course, one can refuse them and that was the option I normally took. My partner also elected not to take any of the personal care extras such as the spa which, she assured me, was about three times UK prices (and doubtless would have required the payment of a gratuity). I have become used to the fact that drinks on ships are not cheap these days (when I started cruising they were UK prices or less) but the drinks prices on Princess were obscene. The glass of wine that would have cost Princess less than a dollar at wholesale duty-free prices was on offer to customers for $10 or more. And that's not all - every drink served attracted a non-optional "gratuity" of $14.50. So the bottle of beer that would have cost no more than $4 in a UK pub cost over $21 - of which probably $20 was clear profit to Princess. This rampant profiteering was actually counter-productive since those at my dinner table (and the other tables I could see) simply refrained from buying drinks and drank the free water supplied. Normally I would have at least one drink with dinner, as would have my companion. Had the drinks been half the price and the gratuity absent, Princess would still have made plenty of money on our dinner drinks; as it is they made next to nothing. The gratuity scam continued to the end of the voyage when a gratuity payment of $14.50 per person, per day, was added to my stateroom account. So that's over $400 just for tips - even though tips had already been added to many of the services. So I was paying tips on tips! So how was the cruise otherwise? Well, not bad - as it should have been for the money. My stateroom, with its balcony, was comfortable enough, although once again there were some issues related to the American ownership. I have never been on a cruise where the staterooms have sufficient electrical socket outlets and on a modern ship there is no reason why they should be supplied. After all, travellers will have such things as mobile 'phones, laptops, camcorders, curlers, hair-dryers and other things that need power. The Sapphire Princess provided 4 outlets and these were of US specifications, which had more disadvantages than that of simply being of the niggardly US voltage of 110V. US sockets are much smaller than UK sockets and thus, when an adaptor is used to convert the US outlet to the UK plug type, there is room for only one plug in each double US socket. So only two sockets can be used at any time. Of course, the obligatory bottle of mineral water was supplied at a high price ($2.36) should one not want to drink the warm tap-water. The on-board entertainment was good enough, although I have been on cruises where there is a greater variety. My major criticism of the entertainment was its timing. Passengers who had booked the second sitting for dinner, as had I, we simply unable to take advantage of many of the events as they started too early - 2030 or 2100 - when dinner rarely finished prior to 2200. I have never had this problem on other lines. But those intending to book with Princess would be well-advised to book an early dinner sitting. Of course, it would have been possible for us to have gone to the self-service restaurant - but when one has established a good relationship with one's fellow diners one wishes to maintain it. Overall the facilities were good and there were generally enough of them for all, although lounger-space around the pools was in short supply and some guests had taken to "reserving" a lounger with personal items - although this was supposedly forbidden. The "Movie under the stars" facility was impressive with its huge screen although it was a shame that nothing but the titles and ratings of the movies was given in the "Princess Patter" information sheets. So what is one to make of a movie entitled "Bohemian Rhapsody" if one has never seen its details anywhere. There was an in-cabin TV which gave some details of what was going on - but details of the movies were absent, although there was ample space to have shown such details in "Princess Patter" or on the TV. So would I cruise with Princess again? In a word, no, unless they do something about their prices. I can afford to pay them but I resent being ripped off - and, frankly, this is what Princess are doing. In conversation with our fellow travellers we found several who had been on multiple Princess cruises and were intending to pay a deposit for another one (on yes - the continuous on-board selling included forward bookings) but for me once was enough. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
We chose the 12-Night British Isles cruise for the itinerary. The itinerary was FANTASTIC. The ship and dining services - not so much. Can be an excellent cruise if your ship expectations aren't too high. We found the only way to ... Read More
We chose the 12-Night British Isles cruise for the itinerary. The itinerary was FANTASTIC. The ship and dining services - not so much. Can be an excellent cruise if your ship expectations aren't too high. We found the only way to get good dining was to visit the Specialty Dining Rooms, the International Cafe, the Salty Dog on the Pool deck or the Pizza service - and those were better than expected. The selections and quality of selections in the main dining rooms and Horizons Buffet were way below our our previous cruising experiences across any line. We read in advance that the ship was refurbished in April of 2018 - a year and a half ago. We thought the ship looked dated, the stateroom furniture worn and in need of replacement and in general the hallway walls, trim and carpet were tired-looking. Tendering for over 3,000 passengers in popular ports creates long waiting lines (over an hour each time), and when you add the time to tender you to and from shore, you've lost just about three hours of your in-port time. We see a definite decrease in value and general "cruise experience" of a Princess Cruise from our previous cruises with Princess and especially compared to comparable cruise lines in this price/star-rating range. In closing, the new Medallion-Class ships offer faster-than-expected Medallion-Net (on-board and internet networking services) and an electronic "Medallion" instead of a "key-Card." The Medallion experience in general and related apps can enhance a cruise experience for tech-savvy and even non-tech savvy guest by making crew recognition, stateroom access and room charging processes faster and easier than it ever was with cards. The two Princess excursions we took to the Royal Tattoo in Edinburgh Castle in Scotland and the Normandy Excursion in France (to Omaha and Gold beaches and the US cemetery) were very organized, informative and we thought well-worth the cost. We would definately do these again with Princess. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
We traveled on the Crown Princess British Aisles Cruise mainly due to it's itinerary. It was our introduction to the British Aisles and my wife and I traveled with our next door neighbors. Let me preface this review in stating that we ... Read More
We traveled on the Crown Princess British Aisles Cruise mainly due to it's itinerary. It was our introduction to the British Aisles and my wife and I traveled with our next door neighbors. Let me preface this review in stating that we are Royal Caribbean regulars and are making most of our comparisons based on that. We arrived two days earlier at Heathrow and our United flight arrived 1/2 hour early around 9 pm, I was worried that our 'Shared Arrival Transfer London Airport to Hotel' booked via Trip-Advisor wouldn't be there but he was (they keep on-top of arrival info, so make sure your Flight info is updated before you fly). Even though it was a shared transport we were his only fare arriving at 9:30 pm and with little traffic at that time we checked in to the Park Plaza Victoria (which is a great hotel near Buckingham Palace) by 10:30pm. We planned to try to cram in as many highlights of London in one day as we could but realistically settled on doing the Tower of London at 9 am (it took 2-hours minimum), Westminster Abbey at noon and The Staterooms at Buckingham Palace. We purchased a Oyster card for Tube travel and began at 9 am opening at the Tower (by the time we were leaving lines to see the crown Jewels were over a hour wait so make a bee-line there first) make sure you purchase your tickets from: https://www.hrp.org.uk/tower-of-london/#gs.zywwgy before you arrive otherwise the lines for tickets will take some time. Of the three we thought the Abbey was the highlight. We pre-purchased reserved seats (reserved for an extra 3-pounds each) for 10 am on National Express bus from Victoria Coach station (.6 minute walk from the Park Plaza Victoria) to Southampton Coach Station for $13.50 each one way. Note that as we were getting on our bus the Princess Bus Transportation was loading right next to us. When we arrived in Southampton at noon we immediately got a taxi to the cruise ship for 8 pounds. Embarkation using the Medallions was quick and we were on board by 1:30pm. This is a port intensive cruise with only two at sea days so we chose anytime dining because of the late sale-away times. We didn't want to be tied to a set dinner time. With the ship off a refresh dry dock in 2018 I was surprised by the state of disrepair we noticed around the ship. Vinyl applique sheets peeling off elevator surfaces, numerous dents on hallway walls, Tile baseboards held in place by caulk in numerous public bathrooms, two drawer fronts came off when opening in our stateroom. All small items but they all add up to create a sense that quality workmanship & maintenance are not a high priority Didn’t think much of the common areas in the ship, it had a closed in small feel with very few views of the ocean. The main Piazza area was only three stories high and had very little room to watch entertainment. Typical shops jewelry, watches, overpriced souvenirs, lacking any sundries shopping that you might have forgotten to pack. Photo services lacked any creativity, probably due to lack of any open spaces to take them. Entertainment was hit or miss, enjoyed the comedians, magician (card tricks), band that played every night, Thought the stage shows were lacking, they don’t come close to the quality found on Royal Caribbean ships, we watched for the first 10-15 minutes and gave up. Food in the main dining room was good nothing outstanding. Many of the meals were very small portioned, my cocoa pork loin while probably the best tasting dish on the cruise was five bite sized pieces. Shrimp cocktail has the smallest shrimp I’ve ever seen, formal night lobster tails were small and dry. Every night we’d get recommendations of 1-2 dishes to avoid from wait staff , that’s never happened before (clue get rid of dishes that don’t work). Wait staff for the most part were amazing in all venues. The Horizon Court buffet was also good, nothing outstanding, hard to find seats during breakfast especially on sea days. Over easy eggs on the egg station were either over hard or often cold, scrambled eggs had an odd taste leaving the only way to get a good egg dish was thru the omelet station. Free coffee only available in dining rooms were brewed weak. No free coffee or tea at the International Café (free coffee and always available on Royal Caribbean ships similar venues). International café had a great selection of salads snacks, pressed sandwiches, breakfast sandwiches, pastries, cookies, deserts and a Gelato station charging 3-scoops for $3.50. Best Pizza I’ve had on a cruise, Salta Dog Grille, on Lido Deck poolside, burgers and dogs were good, offered signature Ernesto Burger for $5 or the Ernesto w/Beer for $8 (no brainer since a bottle of beer was $6.75). We booked the Princess transfer to Heathrow which was the lest expensive and most worry free way of departing. We disembarked at 9:15 am buss departed the port at 10:15 and arrived at Heathrow at 11:30am for a 3:30pm flight. Our travel companions had a 1:30pm flight and disembarked the ship at 6:15am. Overall my main reason for booking this cruise was for the ports. While I was hoping for more (we all do), what I received was a decent cruise on a aging ship. Princess needs to pull a page from Royal Caribbean’s playbook and treat every ship like it’s our best ship, staying on top of maintenance, providing the best in entertainment, amaze us with great food venues. If Royal had offered the same itinerary, I would have cruise with them hands down. Again I was hoping for more, I wanted to be wowed, I could have been a convert to Princess. Maybe all princess ships aren’t the same but I don’t want to waste another vacation hoping for more. Read Less
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