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2 Princess Expedition Cruise Reviews

I recently sailed on the Coral Princess, out of Ft Lauderdale, through the Panama Canal, and on to Los Angeles, sail date 10-11-11. Itinerary was main reason for booking Princess, ship went into Panama, and Aruba, two destinations I had ... Read More
I recently sailed on the Coral Princess, out of Ft Lauderdale, through the Panama Canal, and on to Los Angeles, sail date 10-11-11. Itinerary was main reason for booking Princess, ship went into Panama, and Aruba, two destinations I had not experienced before. Canal was on my 'bucket list'.. That being said, I need to impress on everyone, CHOOSE YOUR TRAVEL AGENT WISELY!!!!!! I used a 'friend', who advised me, when booking, to make it a 'final' booking, in other words, if ship didn't fill as expected, and price went DOWN, WE WOULD NOT GET A FEFUND OF FARE PAID, OVER AND ABOVE NEW FARE. Well, I talked to 30-40 people, conservatively, who not only got some HUGE refunds, but got 'upgraded'... beyond any of their wildest expectations. This would not have been such an issue, but, the ship is what I would classify as a sailing 'Howard Johnsons'... dating myself, but truly the room steward, the staff in general, and some of the entertainment, were all that I can say anything positive about. The cabin, (a balcony) had a shower that 90% of the passengers would not fit into. There was no 'shower gel', 'shower cap', or 'kleenex' in the room. Steward explained, only 'mini suites', and up, get such things. I attempted to purchase some 'Spa' Gel, 'Elemis' but, lo, they were out of it!!! Bear in mind that HAL provides all you need of that high end 'gel'... to inside cabins... everyone! I usually travel alone, and have had my share of remote cabins, should I supply my own toilet paper, should I cruise Princess again, alone in an inside cabin???? The food was really not very good. I went to the Dining room only 3 times, in the 14 day cruise, because nothing looked very good. Any seafood was dry(frozen too long), and tasteless. Meat, not high quality, steak, not tasting like 'steak' waiters very attentive, and caring, but could not make food better than what kitchen prepared. No l'escargot, French onion soup, creme brulee on the 'LEFT MENU', traditionally the daily offerings. Wow, the Buffet, at least there was visual choice, the things that I actually liked, the breakfast 'rice', the grits, and pastries, (were what put the 9 lbs. on my backside.) Scrambled eggs, out of a carton, were strange, but I got used to them, the bacon was delicious!!! Real eggs were available, but long waits, (not worth it.) No smoked salmon, with onion, capers, and a real bagel, not there. Bagels were 'white bread' in a round shape. Sounds like I'm being a picky jerk, but bear in mind we paid top dollar for this trip!!! Also, there was a fee, or charge for nearly everything. I was really affronted at every turn, with 'extra' charges, for everything. My trip into the 'Old City'... in Cartegena, Columbia was easy, because, you realized these people really needed the $$$$.... Princess, not so much, I had to even 'beg' for ice, and water in my cabin, What???????? And did I mention, another first. "anytime" dining, up to a 45 minute wait, with an 'Olive Garden' style vibrator? Normally I eat a 'good' diet on-board, salmon, chicken etc., that are cooked in a moist, and tasty way, then sauced or gravied well, not so on this ship. Just saying, if the quality, means anything to you, heed my advice, and decide what is right for you!!!!! Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
We are a mother and daughter traveling together with over 10 cruises between us. Here is our impression of the cruise. We had no problem getting on the ship. It was an easy process; however, the first day on the ship we had so ... Read More
We are a mother and daughter traveling together with over 10 cruises between us. Here is our impression of the cruise. We had no problem getting on the ship. It was an easy process; however, the first day on the ship we had so many Princess employees approach us to sell products (Coffee Card, Soft Drink Card, and etc.) it was absurd and a nuisance. Our room steward was the best one that we had ever had. The rooms are standard (Balcony - Category BA) and they were fine. The food was ok. The type of food was not to our taste. I do have one complaint I had a hair in my dessert. That was pretty disgusting. We did not complain - we just left and never went back to that dining room. Ports: I hated the way they organized the tours through Princess. They would have 5 to 6 different tours meet in the Wheelhouse bar and then they would call you in to the theater and then assign you a bus. You would sit for another about 5 to 10 minutes in the theater until you were called. This created an atmosphere of a rush to be the first in the theater. It was like the day after Thanksgiving shopping every day . On the cruises that I have been on with Royal Caribbean they would have you meet in the theater and you would be assigned a bus and watch for the number to be called. No rush or being stuck in a small room with a lot of people trying to rush the door. We mainly stuck with the tours through Princess. We had the best guide in Berlin. They had to change the schedule because of a sporting event and instead of a bus tour of Berlin we did a walking tour. This allowed us to see scheduled landmarks but also we were able to see points of interest that were not scheduled. This was not the case for St. Petersburg. We pick the tour of Catherine's Place and the Peterhoff Place. The tour description said there would be time to shop at the markets at both places and this did not happen. Our tour was late leaving because a couple missed the bus and we had to wait in a parking lot so a princess representative could drive them to our bus. We advised a Princess staff member that we did not see everything as promised and she told us that she wrote the tour descriptions and that the markets were not scheduled. I advised her that it needs to be address because it was incorrect because it was listed apart of the tour. Getting off the ship was a problem for us. We had ordered a transfer from the ship to the airport. We had an 11:25 flight and they told us to meet in the Club Fusion as a platinum member. They did not take us to the airport until 9:30 and we had 50 people on the same bus and after you pick-up the luggage from the warehouse and checked it in we had no time to spare to get on the airplane. We would not recommend anybody using this service. They did not leave any room for any problems to arise. We would have been better off getting a cab. Princess reason for taking us late was because Delta did not open the desk until 8:30 and you would not want to sit in the airport. Instead we were stuck in bumper to bumper traffic with a large group of people trying to get on the plane. The plane was already boarding by the time we made to the gate. This was my second cruise with Princess. My mother just went on the Sapphire in China and loved the ship and Princess. My mother and I had agreed that we are going to stick with Royal Caribbean. We have had better overall experiences with that cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date August 2009
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