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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2017
We chose this cruise for the itinerary and it was on a newer larger ship. We were very fortunate with great weather at all ports and minimal rain. The ship was beautiful and well maintained and easy to maneuver floors. We found the staff ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary and it was on a newer larger ship. We were very fortunate with great weather at all ports and minimal rain. The ship was beautiful and well maintained and easy to maneuver floors. We found the staff to be very friendly with the very few in buffet who would try to run you over if in their way, but we find this on all ships in buffet. Although we had Club Class dining as a perk of our suite upgrade, we only ate in dining room once. We ate mostly in buffet as we were tired from excursions. Buffet was good food but problem is they can't keep it warm, only lukewarm. On sea days we ate at outdoor grill where burgers, hot dogs and fries were cooked to order and good. Overall food was very good and always available. We were able to use our credit card without PIN numbers in every port but in case you need cash there are ATM's on ship that will convert from US and EURO to other needed currencies. For those wondering about issues of disembarkation process for private tours in St Petersburg it worked smooth on this cruise. We had a tour booked with TJ Travel at 8 am but were worried from other reviews of time needed to get off. On this cruise Princess had private groups take numbers in separate area and let off ship concurrently with ship booked guests. We were off and through customs in 30 minutes. This was a fantastic itinerary and we highly recommend it! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2017
The Regal Princess is a beautiful ship that is well run, friendly and had the itinerary we were looking for. The service was excellent from the cabin steward, Mark, to the dining room staff of Sherwin and Rashid. The food service was ... Read More
The Regal Princess is a beautiful ship that is well run, friendly and had the itinerary we were looking for. The service was excellent from the cabin steward, Mark, to the dining room staff of Sherwin and Rashid. The food service was great, but the selection in the dining room a bit limited. The Horizon Court food was always varied and well prepared. The Bread Pudding at all times of the day was a big hit with my husband, who absolutely loved it! There were countess activities that were well received by the passengers. The tours were well organized BUT, Yellow 17 in Oslo was terrible. We started out with a Turkish guide who had lived in Oslo many years. He was difficult to understand most of the time, but that wasn't the real problem. We visited the Ski Jump first and he was unclear as to what time to be back on the bus. Some cut their visit short because of that, making sure to get back. We were 38 passengers on the bus. The next stop was the Vigland park and again no time was mentioned, so we followed him along for an hour. When he led us to the bus he counted and there were 34 on the bus. He didn't bother to look outside and told the driver to leave even though their personal items were on the bus! The last stop was the Ship Museum and we all insisted on what time to be back on the bus!! They took us to an overlook of Oslo and the bus started to move while 5 passengers were chasing the bus! I cannot believe this would happen on a Princess Tour and I hope this guide is dealt with accordingly. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
We have cruised with 7 other cruise lines in the past and love cruising. We have never taken Princess before and had read some good reviews about them. The dates of this particular cruise and the location of the Baltic states were just ... Read More
We have cruised with 7 other cruise lines in the past and love cruising. We have never taken Princess before and had read some good reviews about them. The dates of this particular cruise and the location of the Baltic states were just what we wanted. One week before departure we began receiving emails wondering if we would either move to an inside cabin OR cancel our trip and rebook at another time. I thought that was a bit odd. We kept our reservations and forged ahead. We discovered that the ship was indeed booked to full capacity. We had a balcony room on the back end of the ship which was fine. It was larger than most balcony rooms including a couch/extra bed for my sister who joined us making us a group of 3. Our cabin steward was excellent...always wanting to please. I don't usually complain...but to warn people I'll share.....My main complaint was with the food service/meals. We chose open dining and our first night in one of the dining rooms was what appeared to be confused, unprofessional wait staff and food that was 3 star. Every cruise line we've been on...Holland, Royal Caribbean, Carnival, Disney,Viking, Celebrity & Crystal....all provided excellent meals to rave about! The next night we chose another dining room and experienced fun, excellent wait staff and that night's menu was better. However....I bet we had 3 nights out of 11 that had great meals and one of those we paid extra for in a specialty restaurant! Up on deck around the pool there are 3 options for food service...pizza, hamburgers/hotdogs, and soft serve ice cream. None of these were outstanding...they definitely were using a cheaper brand of ice milk for their cones and the pizza was "ok" along with the burgers. We discovered halfway through the cruise that there seemed to be an "upper class" group of travelers that frequented the 5th floor (deck) real ice cream shop, sandwich deli/bakery & coffee shop. Of course...these things were not included but cost extra. These same people I'm sure enjoyed the specialty dining restaurants each night. We wised up and managed to get into the Italian restaurant our last night on the ship. The cafeteria area....was crazy busy/full....breakfast & lunch. So full you had to try to find a table or wait for someone to leave theirs and be quick enough to grab it! It reminded my of the high school cafeteria days only worse. We opted for breakfast in the formal dining room as often as we could. Very little was appealing at the cafeteria...Same thing most days. How does one manage to serve up soggy crackers that are individually wrapped?? They must have been extremely old! Everyday we tried to find crisp crackers to no avail! We DID love the popcorn served by the pool at night for the outdoor movies! Half filled popcorn bags so we would have to ask for two. Entertainment at night was VERY disappointing. We're used to excellent entertainment you never wanted to miss in the main theater each night...always planned our dinner time to coincide with it. First night we had a singer....ok....every night from then on we looked but nothing great...we did watch the Russian singing/dancing group which we enjoyed. The other show we watched was a juggler that kept dropping the ball and joking about it. We saw broadway type productions on other cruise lines! AND....one other thing....on most cruises...I'm an early morning person and have found a spot at the front of most ships where I can sit indoors surrounded by windows to watch the ship pull into ports etc. Not one spot on the Regal for observing "where" the ship is going! We WILL cruise again....just not with Princess. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
We chose this cruise because of the destinations and the timing. We had planned to visit St Petersburg and Germany and this cruise fit our dates and added even more great options with much less hassle. Staying on the boat and letting it do ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the destinations and the timing. We had planned to visit St Petersburg and Germany and this cruise fit our dates and added even more great options with much less hassle. Staying on the boat and letting it do the moving from country to country. We boarded in Copenhagen but didn't have time to visit the city. landed at 2pm and had to be on board by 5pm. Had lined up a Princess Transfer that went very smooth. This was the first cruise for us. The cabin was nicer and larger than we expected. We thought it would be a box. We had a balcony on the Baja level and loved having the balcony -totally worth it. Our friends had the cabin next door so our steward opened the door between the 2 balconies. I had read the balconies were small so didn't have huge expectations and we enjoyed them I had read numerous reviews about no storage in the bathroom. Ours had a corner shelving unit with 4 shelves. Lots of room for the 2 of us. Our steward, Lino, was great. Cleaned up 2 or 3 times a day. We'd pre-purchased 2 cases of water and 5 buckets of beer so we brought a soft sided cooler in case the fridge was too small. Without asking he refilled the cooler with ice every afternoon so my husband always came back to ice cold beer. I purchased the Wine card once on board and found out they will bring glasses and the bottle to your room but won't leave a corkscrew. They will open it. We bought one in Oslo. Their beer openers didn't work great either so we bought one of those too. As rookie cruisers we didn't know what to expect for the food. The buffet was ok. The mongolian barbecue was good but the already made stuff was pretty average. My husband figured out (on our last day) that the 2 sides of the buffet had different offerings at breakfast. One side had more than the other so look around. We did anytime dining and the servers were great. Always funny and personable no matter which dining room we were in or when. We tried to take advantage of Happy Hour when we could. Loved all the bar staff too. They had to open bottles of beer but not cans for those of you planning to take it back to your rooms. I had read previous reviews that said the employees weren't very friendly or enthusiastic. I saw the opposite. I'd give whoever does the hiring for this ship a huge thumbs up. Great staff. We only tried to go to one show and left pretty quickly, not our thing. We did go to trivia a few times and Noah was great. Quick witted and fun. We also went to the Match Game and it was hilarious. They picked great couples and the cruise director acting as host, along with Ramon were great. I saw the vegetable carvings after they were done and they were so cute I wish I'd gone. We skipped formal night because my husband did not want to dress up on vacation. Add us to the list of people who'd like a casual dining room that isn't the buffet. We got burgers at the Trident Grill one night and ordered Tuna Salad from room service on the other night. Oslo: We did the Princess tour to see the highlights. It was fine. For us the timing was perfect because it was over at 2:30 and we'd booked a fishing guide who picked us up at 4:30. Fishing was fabulous. One of our tour highlights. They picked us up on the dock and brought us back. So much fun Berlin: We booked the Princess non-air conditioned train to do Berlin on your own because we wanted to do a bike tour. We wanted Princess in case things ran late so we were guaranteed to get back on (we were late and they did wait). The train did not get to Berlin till about 11am and they normally put you on a bus that would've been 15 minutes from our bike tour. Oliver, from Princess, helped us contact the Fat Tire Bike Tour guys who worked with us. 9 of us wound up grabbing a cab at the train station and we were 20 minutes late for our tour. Fat Tire Bike Tour: Best way to see Berlin in this amount of time. Our guide, Antonio, was knowledgeable, passionate, very informative. Every major site that was in Rick Steve's walking tour was covered. We didn't go inside anyplace but we were fine with that. It was 80 degrees so we could cool off while biking. We went through Tiergarten and got to see lots of folks out on a Sunday afternoon. Stopped for lunch and a beer at a nice little beer garden inside and it was great. We biked 11 miles and didn't even notice. Easy pace. We made it back to the bus 45 minutes before we needed to be there so we had time for a beer in the square. Princess had to delay picking us up by train for some reason so there were 2 trains that held up the ship. Leaving Warnemunde was cool. People on shore were lighting lights, honking and waving and our balcony faced it all. It was so much fun. Talinn: We had watched "The Singing Revolution" documentary prior to sailing so did Talinn on our own. We didn't want something formal in every city. We walked around, went through the KGB museum and hung out at a restaurant we'd seen in Rick Steve's book. It was outdoors in the square so we enjoyed borscht, beer and wine and watched all the hot sweaty tourists walk by. The Estonian people have been through a lot and the town is charming but it is very touristy. The touristiness reminded us of Venice. We had met some people on a Celebrity cruise in Germany. They had done an electric bike tour in Talinn that focused on the countryside and gave them time to swim in the Baltic. They only spent about an hour in town. In hindsight, we'd have done what they did. It was still a very relaxing interesting day. And for you Harley Davidson people, the Talinn t-shirt has a gorgeous picture on the back. Saint Petersburg- We did the 2 day Deluxe Tour with SPB. I've read most of Robert Massie's novels and this was where we really wanted to go. There were 4 cruise ships in port that day so we were worried. We all got down to the Princess dining room by 6:15 as did the people doing the Princess tours. They sent us down to Immigration in groups of 50. Our group had 59-63 and when we got out to our tour van the other 6 people were already there so our guide was thrilled. We had an early start and beat a lot of crowds on day one. We also had time to go down (way down) into the subway. Catherine's Palace was more beautiful than I expected it would be. Our guide Elena, was excellent, very professional. We drove out to the Tsars Village which was mentioned a lot in Nicholas and Alexandra. It was just something to see the places I had read about and it put things into better perspective. We had signed up to "Go Out Like a Local" on night one so Elena and the group dropped the 4 of us off at a hotel restaurant where our nighttime guide would get us at 7. It was a very nice hipsterish restaurant. Our waitress didn't speak much English but she thought ordering dark Russian beer was a mistake. The table across from us ordered a houkah and they were passing it around smoking it. Our night time guide Alex came in and grabbed about 12 of us at this restaurant and we stopped for 6 more. Not everyone was from Princess. On the bus he gave us shots from 3 different types of vodka, teaching us Russian toasts. We stopped at a shopping place for about 40 minutes then walked down Nevsky Prospect, where people go to be seen. Wound up at a little complex that had a few bars and a couple of shops. We tried some apricot beer that was good and some cherry beer that wasn't. Our guide sat with us for a few minutes and we asked for his opinion about the occupation of Estonia since there are 2 sides to every story. He opened up. It was interesting Then we did a night time river cruise that was beautiful. They light up the bridges. Alex opened up more vodka on the boat and brought orange juice. It was a fun night, we got back to the ship at 11:30. Day 2 had more crowds as we went to the Hermitage. It needed to be seen and we were lucky to be there in the morning. Yusupov Palace, where Rasputin died, was surprisingly more fascinating. The way the rich lived back in the day makes it pretty clear why there was a revolution. We'd noticed that people who take this cruise have traveled a lot so our group was good about not keeping people waiting, The SPB van had free wifi which was nice for everyone to catch up on emails. Lunch was provided both days, we didn't purchase any extra drinks with lunch so didn't need any rubles. Loved being in a group of 10 with the smaller tour group but because of our late night on day 1 we were ready to be back on the ship at the end of day 2. Helsinki- We weren't in this port for long and it was raining hard in the morning so we slept a little and did the hop on hop off bus. We bought it at the port that morning. We got off at the stop by the monument that indicated a tiny cafe for coffee. We went there and the coffee and cinnamon bun were excellent. very tiny. They took credit cards. We found where the Olympics museum that is now a gym. Looked around. Ate lunch somewhere and went back to the ship. The ship docks right downtown and you see lots of local business people walking around looking sharp, I think it would have been a fun town to spend an evening in but we had to be on board by 3. Stockholm-Our group disembarked here. We docked at Nyasham and because the winds were rough we had to be tendered ashore. We had lined up a car to pick us and our luggage up at 10 so at 6 am when the place to get tender tickets opened I went in and asked the assistant cruise director how early she thought we'd need to be down. She thought half an hour would be good. It wasn't. At 9:15 we walked into pandemonium. They were telling everyone it would be at least an hour and people were everywhere giving the staff a really hard time. We made it to our car by 11:00 and had to pay an extra 55 euro. 5 more minutes and we'd have owed another 55 euro. Some people who got there before 9am did get onshore in half an hour. I can only speculate that maybe some Princess tours got to use the tenders and the rest of us got caught up in a log jam. I don't even want to think about how it was getting everyone back by 6pm. We had a nice wet day in Stockholm. Did it on our own. Stayed in the Radisson, caught the train to the airport the next morning, and came home. The Radisson was very nice but the size of the room and the setup were almost identical to our room on the ship! I made this long because I read a lot of reviews when we were planning our trip. I hope it helps someone. The one place I wish I'd had some local currency was Stockholm. We walked a lot and could have bought some water or salted licorice from some of the stands. We did use some Euro in Berlin (there is a cash machine by Checkpoint Charlie) but otherwise everyone took credit. Our goal was to see some of the history, see some of the local people who live in the area, and relax and enjoy our vacation. This cruise helped us do all of that. We had a great time and would recommend it to anyone! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
This was our 6th cruise (4th on Princess). We chose the cruise to visit a part of the world we had never seen, and because of past good experiences with Princess. Our last cruise was on Carnival and this trip confirmed that we like ... Read More
This was our 6th cruise (4th on Princess). We chose the cruise to visit a part of the world we had never seen, and because of past good experiences with Princess. Our last cruise was on Carnival and this trip confirmed that we like Princess much better than Carnival. The Carnival Cruise was like a week-long party with a hyperactive cruise director. Princess wants us to see the world, relax, and come home enriched by our new experiences. This was one of the best trips we have ever taken. The ports were interesting and the service on the ship was excellent. We explored the ports on our own, except for Berlin and St. Petersburg, where we used SPB tours. We used the Princess transfer and stayed 1 night in Copenhagen in the Scandic Copenhagen. Our plane arrived an hour early but a Princess representative met us as soon as we arrived at the baggage claim. The Princess desk at the hotel was very helpful and was open most of the day. Embarkation went very well. We used the Princess transfer from the hotel and did not have to wait in any lines. Disembarkation went right on schedule. We chose any time dining and never had to wait for a table. Food and service were good, but a little slow some nights. We also enjoyed 2 delicious dinners in Alfredo’s and found it very relaxing with excellent service. We had a free meal at Crown Grill where the steak was one of the best I’ve ever had. We enjoyed several dinners at the Horizon Court buffet. One of the biggest difference between Carnival and Princess is the quality of the food and service in the buffet. We enjoyed the beverage service and the large variety of food that changed every day. We ate breakfast and lunch a couple times in the Allegro Dining room. It was a nice relaxing alternative to the buffet. Entertainment: We booked the cruise to see the ports, so entertainment was not a priority for us. The Russian folklore show was fun, and we enjoyed the tour of the galley. We liked the in-room movies. We have enjoyed comedians on other cruises but were no comedy acts on this cruise. We played trivia few times but only won twice. There was almost no smell of tobacco smoke anywhere on the ship, even in the casino. Oslo: We bought the Oslo Pass that included admission to museums and public transit, including the ferries. We visited the ski jump in the morning, had lunch on the ship, and visited museums in the afternoon. Warnemunde: We took the SPB tour to Berlin. The bus ride was 3 hours each way. The tour was just ok. We did not go inside any of the places we visited and the guide was not very organized. Tallin: We enjoyed walking around the beautiful old town. St. Petersburg: We took the 2-day deluxe tour with SPB tours. There were 10 of us in the group, plus Elena, our guide. This was the highlight of the whole trip. Helsinki: We bought a transit pass and took the tram (a short walk from the ship) into the city. We saw the rock church and planned to take the ferry to the fortress island. It started raining very hard so we went back to the ship and did laundry. The weather cleared up in the afternoon and the sail-away past the islands was beautiful. Stockholm (Nynashamn): The weather was too rough to dock so we used tenders to get to shore. We bought tickets for the 1-hour train ride to Stockholm. We walked around the old city and took a ferry (included in the train ticket) to an island with parks and museums. Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
We chose this cruise for the great cities it visited, Copenhagen, Oslo, Berlin, Tallinn, St. Petersburg, Helsinki, and Stockholm. Although each city was a whirlwind tour, we were not disappointed in them. We booked all or our excursions ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the great cities it visited, Copenhagen, Oslo, Berlin, Tallinn, St. Petersburg, Helsinki, and Stockholm. Although each city was a whirlwind tour, we were not disappointed in them. We booked all or our excursions through SPB instead of Princess at a cost of less than half of the Princess prices. SPB runs tours in all of the Baltic countries and we read great review on cruisecritic before booking. They were prompt and delivered exactly what was advertised. This is our 5th cruise with Princess. We were satisfied that this was the cruise line for us until this cruise. We had now achieved the "coveted" platinum status. We had not cruised with Princess for three years and found that the ship, food and service was not equivalent to our previous experiences. First the towels in the stateroom were old and worn out, the type that I use to wash and dry my car with. The menu had hardly changed in the last 3 years. Although it is understandable that the standard every-night offerings on the left side of the menu were the same, many of the "nightly" specials on the right side were the same as we experienced 3 years ago. Toward the end of the cruise the entertainment was excellent and was what we expected on Princess, however the first few nights had little or no entertainment in the theater. One sea night there was none. One night we had 4 high school students from Copenhagen paying the violin and piano with no backup and no stage props. Although they were excellent, this is not what we expected for the main theater on a 3500 passenger cruise ship. Information aboard the ship was difficult to obtain, especially concerning times to disembark for shore excursions. Information was only disseminated through the daily newsletter which usually arrived after dinner for the the next day's activities. On the night before arrival in St. Petersburg, I approached the shore excursion desk where Mr. Chris Roberts, the cruise destination lecturer, was standing and ask about debarkation details. This was a special port requiring gathering in a dining room and obtaining a number to ensure an orderly departure. After quickly determining that I had not booked my excursion with Princess, he held up the newsletter and said to read it, although none of the passengers had received it yet. Not the kind of customer service I expect on my chosen cruise line. I hope this experience was ship specific and not Princess in general. But we will be searching for another cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2017
We want to have a Baltic cruise. Princess Cruise covers most of the places we want to go. Have read other good reviews prior cruise. But wish we had studied more on European history before the actual cruise as we got confused with all the ... Read More
We want to have a Baltic cruise. Princess Cruise covers most of the places we want to go. Have read other good reviews prior cruise. But wish we had studied more on European history before the actual cruise as we got confused with all the royal names. I liked the stateroom with balcony but had restricted TV viewing when the upper bunkers were lowered for the night. We did not participate much in the group activities. Found the atmosphere different from Royal Caribbean's. You need to be a frequent traveller in order not to feel lost. The food in the fine dining restaurant was nice. Very different from those offered in Asian cruises. But had a bad experience on the first day of cruise. We chose 'Anytime' dining but it was very chaotic and had to wait half an hour. Service in 'Symphony' was not very good. One waiter actually took away my plate while eating. Had to change to fixed timing at 'Allegro' and it was perfect after that. Service was superb and food was delicious but sometimes a bit salty. It was a good experience overall. Worth the money and the early planning. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
We have been wanting to do Scandinavia and Russia for a long while. Too bad it rained for most of it.The the crew was great. I had a fall on concrete in a store in Oslo and hurt myself pretty bad. the medical team was great as was our ... Read More
We have been wanting to do Scandinavia and Russia for a long while. Too bad it rained for most of it.The the crew was great. I had a fall on concrete in a store in Oslo and hurt myself pretty bad. the medical team was great as was our steward Anthony always checking on me and keeping the ice a plenty. Would love to have him on every cruise.. Lucy over at the Piazza Bar area was beyond helpful, always there for me with a great smile and a small conversation if she wasn't too busy.I I will always remember her kindness. Aside from the fall I enjoyed my cruise anyway, the entertainment was fabulous and the food, well aside for a lot of it,(we ate in the Horizon Court) many different cultures were covered which we loved. The pastry was the best and more fresh fruit daily than the grocery store. In the buffet the last night was American night with a flag that was not right. The stars are on the top left and that flag was on the top right. It was not an error by the staff. I looked at the back of it and it was made wrong. Someone really should check into it as it is offensive that who ever produced it couldn't get it right. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
The ship needs a good re-fit , dated, in my opinion not enough staff on all departments. Cabin was ok , The Horizan restaurant was never fully opened, walkways closed off leading to long walks to get food, which became bland after ... Read More
The ship needs a good re-fit , dated, in my opinion not enough staff on all departments. Cabin was ok , The Horizan restaurant was never fully opened, walkways closed off leading to long walks to get food, which became bland after having to eat there every day,seating allways seemed full and forget waiter service dinning in the 2 free restaurants unless you want to eat after 19.45 hrs . No restaurant info on tv . No soft drink stations around the ship. Movies under the stars only good if visiting a hot country, not for the Fjords. Entertainments were excellent Overall a very disappointing week on board this ship. The best place for coffee is the International Café served by Lucy , try to avoid the tea and coffee in the Horizan restaurant. The tours arranged by Princess were very expensive, my tip of travelling to the Fjords is to pre book from home. Read Less
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