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978 Princess Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades) Cruise Reviews

We have been on close to 30 cruises, most on Princess. I was so excited about this cruise; I chose it for the ship, not the itinerary. It was so underwhelming and many shared our feelings. It's similar to the Regal & Royal but ... Read More
We have been on close to 30 cruises, most on Princess. I was so excited about this cruise; I chose it for the ship, not the itinerary. It was so underwhelming and many shared our feelings. It's similar to the Regal & Royal but they are better. I must say Captain Tuvo was among the best. He was always being seen and had a great sense of humor. Our cruise director was also alot of fun as was the comedian. We had one production show and it was excellent but it seems we were cheated on the entertainment. The thing that totally amazed most people was no library. if you want a book, you go to guest services and get to pick from books left by passengers. The claim is people steal the books and Princess decided enough, I guess. As for dining, we have always had traditional seating but got stuck with my time dining. I'm not a fan because sitting with the same people and having the same waiters makes for a pleasant dining experience. Unlike Royal Carribbean, you cannot book the same table and time for every nite. You have to reserve each day and that means waiting on the phone and speaking to someone with poor english or arriving at 5:00. As for the food, the beef was excellent and the rest a matter of taste. Let me say the elevators are the worse! they will pass your floor several times, once when we were in it. And if that isn't annoying enough, when one finally stops, the rude people inside make no effort to make room; in fact, more than once I saw someone push the button to close the doors. Trust me, I can see when there is room. My husband and I both used a cane noone cared. I think with so many elevators, Princess should dedicate one to wheelchairs and walkers. I can't imagine how long they waited to get on. That brings me to, anyone who is familiar with Princess knows they mostly have an older crowd. I'd guess 60 - 80 years average. Children are rare. Princess could do more to accommodate the handicapped. For example, You won't find anything on their website telling you how to reserve a wheelchair for embarkation. I waited 45 min on the phone to reserve 2 chairs and the girl gave me the wrong info. Finally, our cabin. It looks exactly like the pictures. we had an obstructed balcony which wasn't all that obstructed. I love the closets on Princess as they are open and large. Plenty of room for clothes and luggage. The shower was larger than most with a ledge! The tv is on the wall and large. We had a phenomenal steward in Santhosh. First thing I always request is removal of the duvet and a blanket and sheet instead. And ice. He was most pleasant in accommodating any requests. One thing most people noticed was this ship is a bit noisy as in squeaks, etc. I should add, everyone working this ship is friendly and always smiling. Overall, this cruise wasn't cheap and if I had to recommend it, I'd say take the Royal or Regal instead. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
This ship is over “hyped”. Overcrowded. Long waits for elevators. Forget trying to get anytime dining-it’s a joke. They don’t tell you all threes dining room are traditional “assigned “ so none open to anytime dining until ... Read More
This ship is over “hyped”. Overcrowded. Long waits for elevators. Forget trying to get anytime dining-it’s a joke. They don’t tell you all threes dining room are traditional “assigned “ so none open to anytime dining until after 7:30 at least. Half the fresh market buffet is already closed by then and what was still out was barely warm. So not impressed at all with this ship. Can’t wait until we have to fight for lounge chairs near the pools and seats at the theater. They close venues such as the vista lounge to accommodate large private parties forcing everyone else to find somewhere else to hang out. It’s not right. Many items were not brought to the cabins until late such as minibar setups, soda packages, robes. They are probably short staffed such as only one guy working in the Internet cafe all day. My cabin steward has 19 cabins to take care of. The same personnel were at passenger services all day. I think this is way below princess standards and this is only day one for me. Its embarrassing as I invited 4 other people on this cruise Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
We loved this itinerary and we were excited to sail on Princess because it has a nice reputation. We loved the Medallion class and the technology and convenience that the ocean medallion offers passengers. The idea is that it will ... Read More
We loved this itinerary and we were excited to sail on Princess because it has a nice reputation. We loved the Medallion class and the technology and convenience that the ocean medallion offers passengers. The idea is that it will personalize the service for passengers in the future. However, I think that Princess still has a very long ways to go before they do that. In fact, I feel that the personalization of the service has diminished since we last sailed on Princess 10 years ago. We liked the excursions offered by Princess and we loved how streamlined the excursions were with the cruise. The biggest disappointment for me was the food - as well as the state of the staterooms (old carpet, old furnishings). The food in the main dining room was very poor. The grill and pizza was even worse, with non-fresh vegetables, non fresh bread, etc. One night, I orderdered the featured mussels with toast. The mussels tasted very fish, the broth had hardly any flavor, and the toast was literally amazingly stale. Like it had to have been just out for days. I liked the food better on NCL and Carnival - and that's disappointing considering the premium price. I was also not impressed with the entertainment. It's hard to get great entertainment each night on a 10-day cruise - I get it. But the 'singer comedy act' that they had was just so amateur. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
We have done several Caribbean cruises but had never visited the Panama Canal or Costa Rica. Princess is supposed to be a premium brand of Carnival but we were disappointed with the level of service in the dining rooms and the quality of ... Read More
We have done several Caribbean cruises but had never visited the Panama Canal or Costa Rica. Princess is supposed to be a premium brand of Carnival but we were disappointed with the level of service in the dining rooms and the quality of food overall. Wait staff were not fluent in English and we had difficulty conversing with them. The ship was built in 2004 and it looked tired, even though it had recently been refreshed. We prevously cruised on Celebrity Summit and Infinity which are comparable in age and we found them to be much better overall. We had difficulty conversing with staff in the restaurants because their English was very poor. We expected Princess to be on a par with Celebrity but this was not the case. The dining staff on Celebrity were easier to understand and there were 3 people assigned to each table while there were 2 on Princess. Each Celebrity table had a wine sommalier to help with wine selection. They poured drinks at the table from a bottle shortly after you arrived while Princess staff (not sommalier) had to get each drink from the back, increasing wait times considerably. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
I’ve enjoyed cruising on Crown Princess before but this trip was not up to par. One of the generators was out and we skipped the stop at Princess Cay because the ship couldn’t run fast enough to make the next port. After St Thomas the ... Read More
I’ve enjoyed cruising on Crown Princess before but this trip was not up to par. One of the generators was out and we skipped the stop at Princess Cay because the ship couldn’t run fast enough to make the next port. After St Thomas the wind picked up and due to high seas we skipped Antigua. Understandable. We made next two ports and then skipped St. Kitts supposedly because of the weather. However, two other ships were able to dock. I think they couldn’t get back to Ft Lauderdale in two days under reduced power. This was a big disappointment. The company gave us 35% credit of the cost of this cruise toward another one plus $75 for missing Princess Cay. I felt we should have had at least 50%. The ship is showing wear and tear and now mechanical failure. I recommend sailing with Princess but would wait on the Crown Princess until dry dock repairs in November. In reading other reviews, the generator has been out since at least November. I enjoyed the food and had excellent service from our wait staff. We ate in Sabitini's (not a fan of the menu) and Crown Grill--love it. They have a pop up Crab Shack that we eat at every cruise--it's a delicious menu. Entertainment included a first class comedian and a fabulous pianist. We listened to his workshop presentations on the tv. There were several big production numbers. The cruise director did a lot of scrambling to fill the 3 unexpected sea days. Speaking of TV, the service went out several times including in the middle of the championship football game. Heard this problem from several other cruisers. The medallion service was a nice addition. we could keep up with our fellow travelers easily. It didn't work properly all the time. The ship is looking tired with stains and scrapes. One of the elevators was out of service the entire cruise. I love the Boss Underwater Scooter in St. Thomas. It's pricey but so much fun! It's the only excursion we did this time as the other ports were cancelled. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Cruising with my friends, all 65+ I wanted a warm Caribbean destination to escape winter. Due to weather and an engine problem that was known before sailing, we skipped 3 islands out of 5. Princess was nice and gave us credit for future ... Read More
Cruising with my friends, all 65+ I wanted a warm Caribbean destination to escape winter. Due to weather and an engine problem that was known before sailing, we skipped 3 islands out of 5. Princess was nice and gave us credit for future sailings. No complaints there. The food was mostly good to very good. Desserts were disappointing in the buffet. At dinner, they were a little better. The soft serve ice cream, always available on the pool deck is your best bet. And lets talk about the Horizon buffet. Food was varied and tasty (except desserts) but it wins the award for poorest design. As an early riser I have been in there when there are only 6 guests and we were still bumping into each other. Never had that much of a problem on other ships. Just a poor layout. Exercise room has everything you need. The big complaint was it does not open until 7 AM. Also they only have a limited number of exercise bikes which the older Princess crowd needs. They spent a lot of money on spin bikes which are only used once a day for a class while we had to stand in line to get on a conventional exercise bike. Staff was excellent and friendly. Entertainment was just ok. Comedians were good. For a ship built in 2006, I would have expected a smarter design. Big issue was on some stairs/elevators, you can't get to all the lower decks from deck 6 and higher. Even after 10 days, we still sometimes were making the mistake of getting on the wrong stairs. This ship has been converted to one of their Medallion Class vessels. Loved it. Getting on and off ship is a breeze. Had a little bit of trouble setting up but there were plenty of staff to help. No more key card to get in and out of cabin. Also, you can order food and beverage to be delivered to you. The Medallion knows your exact location. You can also find your friends on the ship and an easy to follow map to get you to their location. There is a feature that allows you to "chat" with friends on board. Only complaint is that you have to have the app open and looking at it to see messages from ship board friends. No other notice that someone has sent you a message. You can also see your ship account. When you order your Medallion, which is water proof, a free lanyard to hang around your neck comes with it. Try it, maybe you won't mind it. We did not like it, it was too long and got in the way. We bought the wrist bands on board the ship. Worth the $12 each. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Went to Rose Bowl Parade and then cruised the Mexican Riviera as add on.. The cruise was enjoyable and the Medallion ships are amazing in terms of convenience. Once you become familiar with the system , it offers instant access to ... Read More
Went to Rose Bowl Parade and then cruised the Mexican Riviera as add on.. The cruise was enjoyable and the Medallion ships are amazing in terms of convenience. Once you become familiar with the system , it offers instant access to everything the ship has to offer--- but it does take some patience . We were most annoyed with the lack of hand washing as guests entered the restaurants--- and the lack of concern expressed by Princess. We were told that the ships policy was to have staff require hand washing for the first two(2) days of a cruise and then to leave it up to the guests. This policy is ludicrous. After the first two days, a great percentage of guests did not wash their hands--- even after exiting the washroom and entering the restaurant!! Perhaps guests need to contact Princess and demand a higher standard of hygiene on all the cruise lines --- viruses do not take vacations! There certainly was an adequate selection of food choices and what we selected was prepared well. Sure did see a lot of food wasted by passengers who overloaded their plates and then didn't eat it all. Those staffing the dining areas were quick to offer beverages and cleaning up of dirty plates. Since we self-serve ourselves in the buffet it really is important that guests clean their hands so as not to spread germs. It is so easy to pick up an illness off the ship and have it spread like wildfire among the staff and guests. We ate at both the Crown and Sabatini's specialty restaurants and very happy with the service and the food preparation was excellent. These restaurants are certainly worth the service charge. The entertainment had a good variety and we enjoyed it all for the most part. Our favorite was the Voice of the Ocean and congratulate all those contestants who entertained us with their song selection. What an array of talent! The shore excursions offered were of no interest to us. We find the prices are climbing and in some instances the value for the cost is not there. We explored the local areas on our own. We found the staff to be very pleasant and happy to assist if possible. They work tirelessly at their jobs and always with a smile on their faces. We certainly appreciate all they do for each and every guest. The fitness area had plenty of machines and in good working order. The hours were great. Enjoyed the outdoor walking track as well. It would have been nice if water was available while walking the track especially during the hotter parts of the day. We would recommend Princess Cruises but not this particular itinerary. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
We like to take a cruise right after New Years. The fares are excellent and there are some nice perks added, especially with the Medallion program. We are Platinum members having sailed Princess 7 times now. Embarkation was super fast. We ... Read More
We like to take a cruise right after New Years. The fares are excellent and there are some nice perks added, especially with the Medallion program. We are Platinum members having sailed Princess 7 times now. Embarkation was super fast. We were onboard by 11am. This is nice as you really do get an extra day onboard. Like most Princess ships this boat has the same restaurants, bar areas, entertainment and usual shops. We got to our room immediately and even though Edward wasn't quite finished he told us to put our carry on bags in and to go check the ship out. First stop the buffet for lunch. I always do the carving station and it never disappoints. We bought a coffee card prior boarding and that lasted all week. No extra charge for lg or sm coffee drinks or specialty drinks. There is no punch card, you just swipe your medallion. By the way, I recommend getting a sports band when the shop opens, it not as intrusive as the lanyard neckband for Medallion. Never quite got the hang of WIFI using it as you must carry your cell phone everywhere. That's unnecessary and annoying. We had a balcony room all the way forward and it was rocky indeed the first few nights heading to Princess Cay. I like being forward on all cruises but never felt the bumping as hard as on this ship. After St. Martin it seemed much smoother all the way home. We had selected late dining as Princess site listed it as 7:15. Onboard it was 7:45. Much too late, so we met with the Maitre de at 1pm and he changed us from the Concerto DR to Allegro. Lots of empty table as this is also the Anytime DR. Our waiter left such a negative impression on me I never learned his name. He never explained the menu or made recommendations . We easily were in and out within an hour. Including dessert. Service felt rushed and impersonal. I met with the DR supervisor and made him aware, but the waiter never improved his service but the supervisor was all over us. Got annoying after a few nights. Food got a C. The beef Wellington was the best Ive had on a cruise ship but other entrees didn't fare as well. There were two formal nights and of course, the shorts people show up. Rules aren't enforced, but come on, put pants on. Spent nights near the pool as there was a full moon and people watched. Movies shown were Ad Astra , Downtown Abbey, Judy, etc... Didn't do any shows but there was usually great music in the Atrium area. Crooners was always packed and the Bellini bar was nice. we did an excursion thru Princess to St Johns. Ferry to the island then a open bus tour of the island. This guy got no tip from me as the tour was all about him. He went on and on about the Numi Diet or drink that is supposedly a miracle cure. The tree is native to the island and this guy had a pharmaceutical grudge , ranting about the wonders the leaves did for his broken collar bone. He made his point, but left us 20 minutes to sit on the road as he spoke about it. The ride took us past Trunk Beach which looked beautiful and then the ride back to port was so horrifyingly bumpy we all thought we'd need a chiropractor . He left us no time to shop in St. John so I was very disappointed. I can't recommend it. The rest of the cruise was fine, 3 sea days are awesome, met very nice people and then --SURPRISE-- Regal was going into wet dock when we got back to Ft L. Disembarkation was super fast. All in all good. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Have taken multiple cruises on Princess and over 20 cruises total. The Sky Princess has all the benefits you would expect from a new ship. Its clean and fresh. The technology is excellent including the Medallion program and wifi. Make ... Read More
Have taken multiple cruises on Princess and over 20 cruises total. The Sky Princess has all the benefits you would expect from a new ship. Its clean and fresh. The technology is excellent including the Medallion program and wifi. Make sure you download the app and pre-register as it makes everything go smoother. There was plenty of deck space, the fitness center is very well equipped, typical cruise ship casino, and our mini-suite was serviced well by the room steward. Now for the not so good. Assuming the Cruise Director oversees entertainment, you would think Princess would put one of their better Directors on their newest and largest ship but that was not the case. Entertainment for the week was subpar and I don't think the staff made much of any type of effort. They really did not make the sale away any type of event. There were no deck parties at night. Other than the one production show Rock Opera and a singer who performed Broadway songs, the main showroom entertainment was well below par. They had the same comedian on 2 separate nights and two performers (one played guitar the other violin) who were more of a lounge act. They did a muppet show in one of the larger clubs and it was very much out of place. Everyone left rolling their eyes and wondering how this got booked. Princess should be embarrassed. I'm not speaking from what I personally like (one person may like a comedian and another may not) but I'm speaking as to what is adequate showroom entertainment. The cruise staff made no effort. They ran some concerts on the big screen by the pool but they even halfway did that. I like Sheryl Crow but why show a concert that was 15 years old. They ran a 10 year old Crowded House concert. Again, different taste for different people but would it have taken that much effort to play something of a more recent decade. The only entertainment bright spot was the house band Static who played mostly in the evening. Princess should re-evaluate the process and the personnel overseeing entertainment because they are greatly missing the mark on the Sky Princess. The overall service, especially in the dining room was very poor. Did Anytime Dining and never really had a wait to be seated. The real wait came after being seated and it took literally hours to finish dinner. I realize the point of a cruise is to relax and not rush but that is no excuse for the poor service. Menus were not varied and unimaginative. My wife can't eat cheese and tried to get the chicken parm without and could not be accommodated. Similarly, the service around the bars was poor. If you wanted a drink then you need to go to the bar yourself and not wait for a server to come around. The overall impression is that Princess is cutting back, including personnel and the service is being effected. Crazy enough, but our best experiences were at the buffet which had a varied selection and the staff kept the table well bussed to there was never a problem finding a table. Overall, the quality of the food and the attention to service was poor. In short, new ship was nice, entertainment poor, food mediocre, and service very spotty. Find another ship or even cruise line. Celebrity experiences have been far better. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
It's been 20+ years since I last stepped foot on a cruise ship, but this trip seemed to be something that my entire family was going to enjoy, so we booked it relatively last-minute. Loved being out on the water, beautiful views, ... Read More
It's been 20+ years since I last stepped foot on a cruise ship, but this trip seemed to be something that my entire family was going to enjoy, so we booked it relatively last-minute. Loved being out on the water, beautiful views, stunning sunrises and sunsets, gentle rocking of the ship led to blissful sleep each night. Quiet rooms, comfy beds, very relaxed atmosphere, and we got to experience a variety of ports in a short period. The medallion experience was mixed. Great concept - kind of a pain to fill out ahead of time, but worth it for ease of boarding and disembarkation. Got all the materials shipped to home, so we had them prior to arrival.Very annoying that they force a grouping by stateroom , though. My kids are teenagers, so were in a separate room, which made the apps a pain to use, and billing disjointed. Many locations on the ship tried to use the medallion, had it fail, and resorted to manual entry or paper tickets. Transfers from and to the airport were well organized and efficient. The ship overall was great - nice staterooms, well-appointed (if somewhat over the top) decor, roomy staterooms, everything was clean, comfy beds. Staff - a very mixed bag - most crew were friendly, helpful, seemingly eager to provide a great experience. A handful - particularly in the dining rooms, were surly, rude, and clearly just wanted you out of their area as quickly as possible. About half of the casino dealers were devoid of any personality at all. We booked shore excursions at each stop, which I would never do again. They are all run by third parties, and are basically nets to trap tourists into situations where they can be bled dry. Cheaper and more fun to just go it alone, and explore the ports with your group. Lesson learned. Speaking of being bled dry - the nickel and dime charges on this trip may make it another 20 years before i cruise again. $16 a day for lousy internet, $60 a day for soft drinks, another $100 a day for adult beverages, $60 a day for mandatory gratuities, plus 18% on any add-ons. Pay an extra $30-50 per person, per meal if you want to eat at one of the "quality" restaurants. When we booked this trip, it looked like a deal compared to all-inclusive resorts, but the total bill came out to almost double what our initial booking cost. Why not just include everything and let people see what the vacation really costs? Just annoying. Next year, Sandals or iberostar for sure! Overall, a great trip, but not a great value - if budget is a concern, I'd stay away from Princess. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Family and Friends have bragged about Princess Cruise Lines for years. We received an offer via email that was too big to pass up. My husband and I booked a New Year's Cruise. I am the sole care-giver for an aging parent and the ... Read More
Family and Friends have bragged about Princess Cruise Lines for years. We received an offer via email that was too big to pass up. My husband and I booked a New Year's Cruise. I am the sole care-giver for an aging parent and the timing on this offer was exactly what I needed. We make the reservations, arrange for care for my Mom and off we went!!! I almost wished we had not spent the money. Princess Cruise really needs to spend some extra funds on the maintenance of the ships in their fleet. We had so many plumbing issues in our cabin, I was never able to take a comfortable shower and/or shave my legs the entire week. Most days my husband had to stay with me so he could operate the nozzle for me. We made the steward aware of the issue, he attempted to fix this himself instead??? Trust me when I tell you, he had other issues to address himself. Our cabin did not appear to have been vacummed. We even purposely left a candy paper on the floor to test this theory. I finally picked it up days later. We had rings left from glasses on the furniture until again, I finally wiped them up. The glasses in the bathroom were never refreshed, or cleaned. The salt spray was never wiped clean so we could enjoy the balcony view, etc etc. Our robes were not delivered to room until Tuesday evening, and that was only after leaving messages at the front desk and with the steward twice. On day 4 we made the front desk aware of the plumbing issue. They did send someone to look at it, but it never repaired the issue. Once the water did start to operate correctly, the drain was so backed up, you were standing in like 2 inches of your own filth at the bottom of the shower stall. It was quite disgusting. It was a full week before I was able to bathe without assistance, shave my legs and feel CLEAN again, unfortunatley that was on shore. There were several other small issues, which would only be a training issue I believe. I asked one of the deck crew for a cup of ice (we had our cups from the Drink Package we purchased), he gave me directions to the nearest pub for me to get the ice myself???? We waited over an hour and a half for a table for table for dinner. We stood for 10 minutes at an outside bar, only to be told by the bartender we had to move around to the other side of the bar (more convenient for him) and then had to wait in THAT line for our turn again....just rude things like this throughout the entire week. We booked one excursion in Jamaica for a horse ride along the beaches where Treasure Island and Papillon were filmed. Then a nature walk through old plantations etc. This "ride" consisted of a tiny circle made by the horses in chest hight water saturated with horse poo and a 10 minute ride around the parking lot...literally. Princess did offer a full refund for this disaster. We were very grateful Although there were MANY negatives, we did find a few bright spots during our week. After the third night with a "shot in the dark" about dinner, we stumbled onto a wonderful team in the Concerto Dining room. Archie and Vermillo were definelty a saving factor for us. There was also a PHENOMINAL employee in the photography Department. Angelica was just what her name implied...Angel! She was able to capture our memories on film and was so very instrumental in assisting us to find our pictures, and arrange a great package to purchase. She was so easy to pose for her, we actually looked for her each evening. I must note that Princess did offer a $100 credit for our issues. But, we spent over $3,000 and several arrangements were made to make this happen for us. Again, we did have a great time...was just disappointed in the concessions we were forced to make to enjoy it. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Great trip! This was a 7 day cruise to Princess Cays (amazing!!), Grand Cayman, Falmouth (worst excursion ever, Chukka Horseback) and Cozumel (reef restoration excursion was unbelievable). This was our second time in 6 months to be on this ... Read More
Great trip! This was a 7 day cruise to Princess Cays (amazing!!), Grand Cayman, Falmouth (worst excursion ever, Chukka Horseback) and Cozumel (reef restoration excursion was unbelievable). This was our second time in 6 months to be on this ship. Plenty of servers and roaming bar staff. Some new activities from just six months ago. Sold out ship but never seemed crowded. Everything looked clean and cared for. Easy to embark and debark. Relaxed feel, extremely nice shipmates and staff. Cooking demo is always funny, go for the laughs even if you can't cook. Also always love the question and answer with cruise director event. Was weird that Bingo wins didn't increase with more players though. Surprisingly, we had bad experiences with our unidentified steward (correct, he never introduced himself so I don't know his name), and though I nipped it in the bud the first full day by reporting him, there was a later experience and I will be contacting Princess tomorrow about it. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We have done many cruises with multiple cruise lines. The new Princess shop inspired us to try Princess again after not cruising with them for over ten years. However this cruise will be our last Princess cruise. First impression ... Read More
We have done many cruises with multiple cruise lines. The new Princess shop inspired us to try Princess again after not cruising with them for over ten years. However this cruise will be our last Princess cruise. First impression was positive- embarkation was very quick and easy and we immediately got into our cabin with our bags arriving fairly quickly after we arrived. We toured the ship quickly (you will need a map since the layout of this ship is very confusing). Our first surprise was when we visited the sanctuary to book loungers for this adults only area. We arrived immediately after boarding - not only were they sold out for the entire cruise, but they had a full page waiting list!! By 1:00 pm . This was our first red flag. Dinner our first evening in the main dining room was over three hours. (And most evenings was this long). We had two dietary restrictions and yet the maître d’ never stopped by. The servers were amazing ...but they were literally running because they were so overworked. We noticed a huge difference in staff levels on this cruise - like they are upsizing the number of passengers but downsizing the number of staff. Our servers in the specialty restaurant apologized over and over because they were handling so many tables that service was unbelievably slow. Our last night was at the crown grill - it took over an hour just to get drinks. We don’t blame the waiters because they were working so hard - but Princess is clearly prioritizing profits over customer service. The sanctuary, escape room, specialty restaurants were all sold out. There weren’t many activities during the day - we found on-board entertainment to be severely lacking. Our teenage daughter tried to go to the teen club - but there was never anything going on ( in fact it was closed more than it was open). The food was decent- but the buffet had the same food every day, so if you cruise for more than 7 days you will get quite tired of the choices! Unfortunately we did have concerns about their handling of food allergies- we had to ask servers to double check items since we were told “we think it’s nut free” - sorry Princess that’s not good enough when dealing with a nut allergy. I have s gluten allergy and was able to get gluten free bread, waffles, muffins and pizza. Still no gf buns for hamburgers, no cookies or other sweets. There was usually one gluten free dessert in the buffet, and chefs choice for dessert at dinner. I can honestly say that after cruising for ten years as a celiac, there has been very little improvement in gluten free offerings. Our last day was the final straw - by 6:30 in the Morning there were absolutely no chairs around the pool area. By 7:00 there was no chairs around the upper decks. There were some deck attendants that would remove towels from unused chairs, but something clearly needs to be done about this problem. The only positives I have to say about the cruise was that the embarkation and disembarkation was extremely well done. The beds were also amazing, as was our room steward (one of the best we’ve ever had), but those aren’t enough to compensate for the overall poor experience on board so we will be trying another cruise line for our next vacation. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Well, this was only our second cruise with Princess, but it will be our last. We had two further bookings in 2021 with negligible deposits and are cancelling both of them. Our booking package included a hotel the night prior with ... Read More
Well, this was only our second cruise with Princess, but it will be our last. We had two further bookings in 2021 with negligible deposits and are cancelling both of them. Our booking package included a hotel the night prior with transfers from the airport to the hotel, and of course to the ship. We arrived at Miami airport at 11am, searched eagerly for the Princess rep in the arrivals area, as instructed on our booking form, but none was to be found. We walked up and down each arrivals concourse repeatedly and were still searching at 3pm, so much so that even one of the a cleaners came up to ask who it was we were looking for. At 3:30pm I called Princess on an 1-800 number from a payphone, spoke to an agent who then placed me on hold for exactly 20 minutes, probably hoping I would hang up, but I didn’t, so eventually she returned to advise me that all the reps had left for the day and we would have to take a cab and pay for it ourselves. The hotel they booked was half way between Miami and Fort Lauderdale, so at least a 20 minute ride away. I asked if Princess would refund the cost and she advised me they would not, but I could try to talk to someone on board. So we paid $52 and eventually arrived at our hotel, the Shula’s Golf Resort, where we finally met someone from Princess, but who could also not confirm a refund. The good news is that this amount was eventually refunded after speaking with the Front Desk on board. The hotel was actually very nice, located at Miami Lakes, a nice area with restaurants and up-market shops right outside. The room was contemporary with a smart clean bathroom and, had we arrived earlier, we could have certainly used the lovely pool outside while the sun shone. Next day we transferred to the ship, a very crowded and chaotic experience at check-in, but eventually we boarded and found our stateroom, B757 looking out over the stern of the ship. The large balcony was nice, the room average, but there was a distinct smell of cooking, (quite often fish) most of the time when on the balcony, which was due to the large extractor fan that was right next door - to the right as you stood on the balcony. There was noise from this, but it did not bother us during the voyage as the way more attractive noise of the ship’s wake overcame it really. We then attended the safety briefing at which point the Captain advised that, due to the failure of one generator during the previous cruise which had yet to be fixed, there was a need to cut out one port on the itinerary which was to be Grenada. A huge sigh of disappointment emitted around the room, but we were also advised that by way of compensation each guest would receive $100 refundable credit on their account. This was an OK gesture and pacified most people, however, our last trip with Princess also announced a port cut out, again after we checked-in, so I am wondering just how common this may be with them. The ship appears to be the same build as the P&O Ventura ,on which we sailed earlier in the year and was fabulous, however the Crown Princess looks tired even though it was apparently refurbished a year or so ago. The carpet in the Horizon Court appears faded as if almost threadbare, and the gold paint is literally peeling off inside the elevators and looks extremely shabby. The cabin was OK but there was some serious vibration most of the time during the night and the rocking motion was very noticeable. We have had cabins at the rear before and whilst sometimes there is more movement, it has never been this bad. Fortunately neither of us suffers with any motion sickness, but if you did it would have been an issue. I had a soda package, but we paid by the glass for my husband’s wine. In the Explorer’s lounge the only Merlot on their menu was priced at $11, to which an 18% service charge is then added which should make the total charge $12.98. However, when we eventually checked our account, we noted that each charge had been posted as $14.16. Believing we may have the service charge incorrect, I checked with the Front Desk what the percentage was and it was confirmed as being 18%. So we queried the charges applied and she returned with the till receipts and said the wine was $12. So my husband produced a photo of the menu taken on his mobile and showed her the only Merlot on the menu as listed as $11. She seemed totally unconcerned that an additional $1 was being applied to every drink and simply offered to remove one of the charges altogether, which we accepted. However, I would advise everyone purchasing individual drinks to note the exact charge applied to your account. Due to the “Medallion” system, you do not automatically get the receipt when you order items, so beware. If they add an extra $1 to every drink purchased on board, what a bonus for Princess that racket is. We chose not to eat in the MDR after seeing the location of our table in a very dark and dingy end of the room and so ate in the Horizon Court. The food was just OK, some very strange combinations at times, but at least the salads were fresh and crisp and a fairly good range of desert choices. We took excursions at each port, most were OK, except the trolley tour in Curacao, it was nothing more than a ride through deserted shabby back streets with a stop to photograph the “Weeding Cake” house and a quick visit inside a Church. At a cost of $40 each this was a total waste of money, especially as we all had the joy of queuing for over an hour on the dockside in the baking heat before eventually being loaded into a taxi to get us to the town centre, which we could have walked to in about 15 minutes, as we did on the return. Based on that experience, we cancelled the similar trip we had booked for Dominica. At this port we arrived, not at the main town port, but a container port at least 2 miles from town. A few market stalls set up and so we spent only about 1 hour off the ship here. No other ships in port, so why Princess could not dock at the usual main port is a mystery. And the final stop of Grand Turk was utter chaos. Due to arrive at 1pm, we had a tour booked for 1:30pm. The ship arrived late at 1:45pm, and so the queue to disembark was absolutely horrendous with no organisation from Princess staff whatsoever, so people were descending in elevators and pushing in, and we stood in line for over an hour in the non-air conditioned art gallery so it was extremely hot and the line did not move at all. Other cruise lines handle this much better with a numbered system ensuring that those on tours disembark in different stages as a group. The queue still did not move, so by this time we both had had enough and so spoke to the front desk to request a refund of our tickets, but we had to visit the tour desk at 5pm for that, which we did and, in they were indeed duly refunded. I will say that this was an area in which Princess excelled over several other cruise lines we have been on, their front desk staff were actually empowered to make decisions and issue refunds and did not have to advise people they would “have to contact Head Office” for such purpose. We had both had high hopes of this trip, a second for us on Princess, but yet again they failed to deliver. The entertainment was dire, the sales pitches continuous from daily Bingo tickets, Spa sessions, Photographs and “medallion “accessories (to accommodate the magnetic disk used in place of the usual cruise-card), some of which are very expensive indeed. You name it they wanted your money for it. So no, sadly we will not be returning. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We chose this cruise because the ship was new and we never cruised on Princess. Here are the pros and cons. Balcony BC Cabin was new and very nice but did not have a sitting area and the shower was extremely small with curtain. The TV ... Read More
We chose this cruise because the ship was new and we never cruised on Princess. Here are the pros and cons. Balcony BC Cabin was new and very nice but did not have a sitting area and the shower was extremely small with curtain. The TV was not interactive ( I explain this somewhere in the review). Ships decoration was surprisingly designed the old style with lots of corners cut at the pool area and above areas to save money. Theatre shows were good. Comedian was funny. The magic comedy show was boring, I don't like to hurt anyones feelings but the truth. The music in the public areas like the Piazza was 1940-1960, before I was born. This cruise is for senior citizens, not younger people 60 and younger. The casino was half the size of most cruise ships and people were crammed in there tightly. The food, yikes, the buffet was good, no complaints. The main dining room food was terrible, like cafeteria or hospital food, very disappointed, we left twice and went to the buffet. Sabitinis their heavily promoted specialty Italian restaurant was terrible, again hospital food at best. The steak restaurant was good, no complaints. The public bathroom areas were not spacious and not well attended or clean (this was mentioned in other reviews and we confirm). This disco was not well lighted up and the DJ played terrible music. It did not attract for long the younger people on this Christmas cruise. Internet worked excellent, was superior to all my experiences on any other cruise line ship. The medallion application was excellent. The only thing I did not like about the high tech application is they place your name on the door. I like my privacy. The elevators were a challenge, I had to run many times to catch one. Overall, this cruise is for seniors. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Boarding This was the fastest and smoothest we have ever boarded a ship. From exiting the cab to entering our room took about 30 minute’s total. It was flawless as was disembarkment. Bars/Entertainment We spent most of our time ... Read More
Boarding This was the fastest and smoothest we have ever boarded a ship. From exiting the cab to entering our room took about 30 minute’s total. It was flawless as was disembarkment. Bars/Entertainment We spent most of our time at the Explorers Lounge and had a great time with the bar staff. We also went to the Wheelhouse for trivia and a tribute to Billie Holiday which was fun. The Casino bar was friendly and down to business as they are way too busy to socialize. Overall the bar and wait staff was the best I’ve seen on 5 Princess cruises; they were more entertaining than the entertainment. As for the entertainment, each individual act/show/game was good or OK but the sequencing was terrible. Karaoke followed by DJ plays your favorite dance music draws a different crowd so everyone just left the bar after Karaoke. It was like scheduling Bingo after a Karaoke show, they didn’t but you get my point. Princess also needs to post large signs at the venue entrance for UNHOSTED Singles & Solo’s Get-Together or LGBTQ+ Get-Togethers events. These unhosted events were in the large Wheelhouse bar and other passengers coming in had no idea it was gay or singles night. The entertainment was nice but we had to jump from venue to venue to stay within a single type of entertainment. Casino I’ve never had so much fun losing money. The Dealers and Pit Bosses were great but the passengers on this cruise were there to have fun and we did. The passengers in the casino did not have that hard core Vegas style attitude towards gambling. The Dealers joked and laughed right along with us; it was great. Smoking Areas The Island Princess only has 3 smoking areas, an outside uncovered space on deck 15, Churchill’s lounge and a small section of the casino. Because of the limited areas on every cruise ship smokers get to know each other very well and form strong bonds/groups. With only 3 smoking areas this cruise was the best as around 10 of us became great friends. I logged my first formal complaint with Princess due to their complete and total lack of understanding smokers. On the formal night it was raining so the outside uncovered smoking area was unusable. They also closed the Casino to smoking that night leaving the small Churchill’s lounge as the only smoking area for the entire ship. The Captain or Casino Manager should be able to override the “rigid schedule” and make ad-hoc changes. If it’s raining don’t close the Casino smoking area; reschedule that for another night – make a managerial decision. The non-smokers just outside Churchill’s Lounge in Crooners were as upset as the smokers. Dining We had the privilege and pleasure to dine in the Sabatini's, Bayou Café, Bordeaux Dining Room, Ultimate Balcony Dining, Horizon Court, Slice Pizzeria and a lot of late night Room Service. The food was delicious everywhere. This was our 3rd time doing the $100 Ultimate Balcony Dining for 2 ($50 each) and it was phenomenal again. A five course meal with Champaign served on your private balcony makes for a beautiful and romantic night. The wait staff is superb and patiently waits in the hallway between courses. If you’re in love, this is the way to create a special moment; photography is included. Princess Theater We did not attend a single show in the theater and there is a good reason for that. We have no idea what each show is from the Patter. We looked in a couple of times and there was a guy talking and another time some people singing. I’m looking for the Broadway style production shows which I heard was on this voyage. Princess knows well in advance what show is being performed in the theater and should do a special Patter insert on the first day with show details and pictures. Ports/Excursions We took this cruise for the Panama Canal and it did not disappoint. Having a wraparound Starboard/Aft balcony (C731) only enhanced the experience. The canal is truly an engineering marvel and should be on everyone’s bucket list. We took various excursions at every port and they all met or exceeded expectations except for one. DO NOT TAKE the Limon, Costa Rica - Limon Waterfront & Backstreet Canals excursion. It was drizzling so they skipped circling an Island where Christopher Columbus anchored his ships in 1502 (big deal) and when straight for the canal. The boat idled for about a half mile down a canal lined with trash and slums, literally. We spent 2 ½ hours looking in the trees for birds, three-toed sloths and monkeys. We saw 1 of each and to kill time they turned the boat around so the people on the other side could see. I was ready to jump out and swim back to the ship. Going to a free public zoo at home would have been better. Princess e-mails out surveys that allow you to rate your excursions. Our ratings now show up when reviewing excursions. Ease take the surveys and rate your excursions – you could be saving someone a horrible experience like the Limon Waterfront & Backstreet Canals excursion. Overall While the entertainment could have been sequenced better, it was still good. A rainy formal night with only one small inside smoking area was terrible, it was only one night. One excursion of 5 was disgusting and the canal was beyond amazing. All of the negatives account for less than 1% of an awesome 10 day cruise. My husband and I cherish the positive and we don’t dwell on the negatives. We had a great stateroom & balcony, delicious food and a lot of fun especially in the Casino. But what made this particular cruise a perfect 10 for us was the Princess staff and our fellow shipmates we bonded with – thank you all. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
This was a good cruise with some not so good mixed in. Basically the cruise was fine in the sense you're on a floating hotel visiting all these beautiful places for two weeks over Christmas and New Year without any stress or worries. ... Read More
This was a good cruise with some not so good mixed in. Basically the cruise was fine in the sense you're on a floating hotel visiting all these beautiful places for two weeks over Christmas and New Year without any stress or worries. A few items to note, the wait lines/times for dinner are just silly and UNACCEPTABLE. On average we waited 30 minutes each night with 4 dinners being over an hour and one night we waited over an hour and a half. How do you not have wait times figured out at this point on a 16 year old ship is beyond me? As you can imagine it was enough to make the overall cruise less pleasurable. The theatre got crowded really fast so if you weren't there at least 15 minutes prior to the show you weren't getting a seat. As you can imagine, if you're waiting in line to eat for 30-45 minutes nearly every night and then waiting a little longer to get food, the chances of you missing many of the shows is great which was the case with us. Service was very good most of the time with some inconsistencies. Things like wrong orders, not having wines (even though it was listed on the menu) and waiting too long for food to come (after already waiting too long in line just to get food). The piazza was always packed so trying to get a drink could be complicated at times. Overall the positives outweighed the negatives but if you're the kind of person/people that HATE waiting in line for dinner when you're on vacation, then I would encourage you to look elsewhere when choosing a cruise as it does get quite old every night. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We enjoy Princess Cruises, but this one was not the best. While the islands were nice, the weather good, and overall service adequate, there were some things that were disappointing. !) Food selection was a challenge since the menu did not ... Read More
We enjoy Princess Cruises, but this one was not the best. While the islands were nice, the weather good, and overall service adequate, there were some things that were disappointing. !) Food selection was a challenge since the menu did not describe what ingredients were associated with the culinary terms that, apparently, the ship's chef liked to use. So, every dinner required explanations from the wait staff. 2) There was a serious lack of communication and information regarding accessibility for mobility impaired passengers. We were NINE days into the cruise before information was published regarding accessibility to the ship's theater. It wasn't until the last port of call that information was broadly distributed regarding which location for disembarkation were accessible. And, the Excursion staff said there was no Handicap accommodation om Excursion transport at the various ports.We did have a great stateroom attendant and some folks at Guest Services were outstanding. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
This was our first cruise and our honeymoon at that. I’ll start with the positives because it wasn’t a terrible experience: - food was always good: we did the buffet every night except for the last. We didn’t know you could make ... Read More
This was our first cruise and our honeymoon at that. I’ll start with the positives because it wasn’t a terrible experience: - food was always good: we did the buffet every night except for the last. We didn’t know you could make reservations for the traditional dining restaurants. Wish we would have known sooner because the waitstaff and food were magnificent there. -our room steward was amazing. The room was always impeccable and he even folded the clothes we had on the floor. He was too good to us -loved the hot tubs, wish they had more -liked the medallion app for finding my husband when he wandered off to explore (lol!) and for ordering drinks at my chair on the sun deck -the movie under the stars was cool, but the speakers were crackly or muffled for Ad Astra which was disappointing -one excursion was absolutely amazing, being the five star sail and turtle encounter in Barbados. The beach was lovely, we saw so many turtles, and even got to see a shipwreck. So very cool. The beach break in Antigua was nice, nothing overly notable beyond the beach being pretty. The bad: -all our other excursions were either cancelled or severely lacking. It was considered too wavy to do any paddle boarding at princess cays. I probably will never get off on this island again because it’s honestly just boring. The excursion staff booked us on the wrong tour for St. Kitts and Nevis and we were so disappointed once we realized no catamaran was coming for us and we were going on a Nevis tour instead. Pinneys beach looks like a Canadian East Coast beach so not worth spending the extra money to go to Nevis. Our tour guide was also insane. He couldn’t talk and drive at the same time so he would park himself in the middle of roundabouts to talk or perform original songs he wrote. Not only is this mildly annoying because I’m not a music producer looking to discover a tour guide, it’s dangerous because he’s causing traffic jams for no reason, and some cars would get sick of it and try squeezing past. He also tried convincing us to buy his Nevis TShirts so his “girlfriend” or whatever will go on a date with him if he sells so many. It was such a cringe experience let alone being on the wrong tour. -the most disappointing experience was Coral World at the USVI. The description that Princess has mentions nothing more than seeing coral, fish, etc. When we were taken to a dolphin and then sea lion show I was so incredibly angry. I don’t support dolphins or mammals in captivity for entertainment purposes. Under no circumstances are handstands an “enriching” or “mentally stimulating” exercise. Their excuses for what they were doing was flawed. Canada banned having dolphins in captivity for entertainment purposes and I’m sure there are similar laws in Europe. Princess should ideally get it together and stop supporting such harmful excursions, but at the very least be transparent about what their excursions include. Even the controversial parts. When I brought this up with the excursion staff they didn’t care in the least. So I didn’t bother going to complain to excursion staff again about them booking me on the wrong tour in Nevis. -the ship was obviously dated and only had 2 outlets in the whole room. It made it difficult to charge electronics or do my hair at the same time -activities for 25-35 year olds mostly lacking. While we met some really nice people who were 80+, it would have been nice to have opportunities to meet people our age -when ordering room service on the medallion app, the staff would mark it delivered and not show up EVERY TIME. And I ordered 5+ times to see if it was a one off. I had to call to ask them to deliver my order. But was always sensible enough to wait 20+ minutes after the delivered time stamp to make sure I wasn’t unreasonable. It was beyond annoying. We’ll probably ask for a refund for our future cruise deposit. The experience wasn’t remarkable enough to try again. I suggest offering a military / veteran discount instead of onboard credit. The form of ID requested from Canadian military is strange. I suggest looking into real ID requests because CFOne is a program anyone who works at National Defence can sign up for (even civilians) and its not policed in the sense that when they quit or move on they give their cards up. Canadian military do get military ID too ;) Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We chose this cruise to celebrate our anniversary. We've had good experiences with Princess in the past, and we liked the itinerary for this cruise. This was our second Christmas cruise, the other one being a couple of years ago ... Read More
We chose this cruise to celebrate our anniversary. We've had good experiences with Princess in the past, and we liked the itinerary for this cruise. This was our second Christmas cruise, the other one being a couple of years ago on Celebrity Silhouette. Overall, we enjoyed this cruise (we always do), and I will try to give a brief rundown of what we found to be the pros and cons of this particular cruise. Pros: Although the Crown is showing her age, it was still quite well maintained. We had a mini-suite on the Dolphin deck (9), which was quite spacious, and the extended balcony provided space for foot rests. Also had a 3-cushion sofa, as opposed to the old love seats. The cabin steward was great, and the rest of the staff was extremely friendly and eager to please. We had a favorite bartender (William) on our Royal TransAtlantic 2017 cruise, and he was on this cruise as well. Great to catch up with him. The fridge was ice cold, compared to those on previous cruises (all the lines we have been on, including Princess). The Medallion worked great for us. Embarkation seemed well organized, and we boarded in a fairly short time. A HUGE highlight of our cruise was the Chef's Table. It was SPECTACULAR, and well worth the $190/couple uncharge. Now for the cons: My mattress was severely broken down, and I slept not a wink the first night. On the second day, they stuck a piece of plywood under it, but that didn't improve it much. They finally replaced it on the 3rd day. The TV in the sit-in area (where we preferred to watch it) worked sporadically. Our cabin steward rebooted it several times, but it still wasn't right by the end of the cruise. We had a free perk of a Balcony Champagne Breakfast, which looked lovely and plentiful, but was not hot and not especially good. We were grateful for it, but we wouldn't have paid the $45 uncharge had it not been a free perk. We were disappointed that there was no religious service (ANY Christian denomination would have been OK for us). We were told that the Cruise Director was doing something, or we could watch the Pope on TV at 1:00 PM. Maybe I'm being too picky, but we found the Christmas decorations lacking; probably because we were expecting something similar to what we had on the Celebrity Silhouette Xmas cruise (They did it up to the NINES). Disembarkation was a nightmare, because people opted to do as they pleased instead of proceeding as they had been assigned. Since we live near the port, and had left our car in Park 'n Go, we were stupid not to just wait until everyone was off and then just make our way off leisurely and drive home. We signed up for two Princess tours. The one to the Mount Gay Rum plantation, Signal Hill and the orchid garden was very enjoyable. The other one was St. John on Your Own", and it was basically a ferry from the ship over to St. John and back. The bad part was that we were lined up next to the ship in the hot sun for 1/2 hour, and then marched a long distance to an old tub of a boat (the name on the stern was half worn off, and it looked like a death trap to me). They were packing this mob into it. By then, we were the last ones in line (we are 74 & 78 years old), except for two elderly ladies behind us. We opted to drop out, rather than spend 45 minutes each way, packed into that enclosed boat. In fairness to Princess, they did refund our money, assuring me the "Nobody died today" (LOL). By far the biggest gripe we had about this cruise was the decline in the quality of the food since we started cruising with Princess in 2012. As I said earlier, the Chef's Table was magnificent. We also ate twice in the Crown Grill. The first time, my husband found his fillet (ordered medium) to quite dry, while my lobster tail was very good. The second time, his steak was good, but I was unable to cut up my bone-in sirloin. The big strong Maitre's saw my predicament, and cut up my meat for me, for which I was happy to tip him. Must say it was very tasty. However, my point is that we found the quality of the food has declined across the board. The MDR was the worst. The first night, the prime rib was very good, but one night I ordered a Cornish Hen that was not even browned, and was completely inedible. The turkey on Christmas Day was dry and tough. The pizza by the pool was still good, but the outside grill is nowhere near what it used to be. This overall opinion was shared by many passengers we spoke with. I will be the first to admit that I am a food snob. We like to cook, and it doesn't always have to be high-end, but we would rather stay home than eat sub-par food. We now have 47 days on Princess, and have pretty much decided not to progress to Platinum. We're booked on a Celebrity cruise in March, so we'll see how that works out. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
My husband and I tried Princess for the very first time for this unusual 4-night cruise. We did it because we’re considering it for the Panama Canal. So this was a test. Princess had one chance to impress us and, well . . . for us, their ... Read More
My husband and I tried Princess for the very first time for this unusual 4-night cruise. We did it because we’re considering it for the Panama Canal. So this was a test. Princess had one chance to impress us and, well . . . for us, their customer service did not wow. We have been Royal Caribbean and Carnival people for 15 cruises over the past decade (mostly Royal). We also took one Disney cruise. We boarded the ship, excited and open-minded. First, the positives: The Island Princess is lovely with its abundant rich wood trim, reminiscent of Disney ships. Also abundant is comfortable seating in the library and lounges, atrium and even walkways – more than we’ve ever seen on any ship. Great to sit and chat with friends or to read quietly – kudos. We also found the ship much quieter than our past experiences. Hurrah for keeping the buffet open for so many hours (almost nonstop). While none of us need to eat 24 hours a day, this avoids the clock-watching and discovering “Oh nuts, the buffet closed for lunch ten minutes ago.” Convenient! Also hurrah for simply making pool towels available to anyone all the time, eliminating the checking in and out of towels on our other cruises. So much nicer! The library is the best we’ve seen – for a cruise ship, well-stocked and fairly generous seating plus tables to play board games or cards. While they’re at a premium, the overstuffed chairs in here with footstools are to die for – with a view out the window to boot! The pools were acceptable but the hot tubs we found were very small, handling only five people comfortably. Food – ever-popular subject when it comes to cruising, isn’t it? We’d have to say it was comparable to Royal and Carnival in the main dining room. The buffet was less enticing. We found it difficult to find anything we liked at noon, and on the days we went, no meat was being carved. Lobster was never offered in the evening. My husband paid for the filet mignon one evening and found it less than stellar, not the melt-in-your-mouth tenderness he had hoped for. On a side note, when I saw the word Patisserie I fully expected bakery and/or desserts and free coffee and hot tea. Instead it was really just another bar emphasizing alcohol with no sweet treats. The only coffee available there was “specialty” and came with a price tag. Just a disappointment, compared with the Café Promenade which is almost always open on Royal’s ships. Also disappointing was the quality of ice cream at Swirls: what we were given was grainy and the chocolate was bitter. Pizza was ordinary and Italian sausage was not a choice. But service is where Princess really fell down. For us, attentiveness needed improving in the main dining room for traditional dining, especially beverage service. Our orders are generally quite simple: iced tea or water with lemon. We had a dickens of a time getting refills on either. My husband was brought one tiny glass of iced tea (mostly ice) and had to keep reminding the waiter that he needed more tea. “Yes sir, it’s on its way,” and then nothing. I couldn’t get simple replenishing of my ice water either without reminding them. Then we ordered coffee with our dessert. Everyone at our table had finished eating our desserts before they ever began bringing coffee. Naturally, we had wanted coffee and dessert TOGETHER. Just frustrating. Finally, on our last morning in the main dining room we ordered hot breakfasts and waited and waited and waited. The maître de happened by and asked if everything was okay. We said “Well, yes, but we still don’t have our breakfasts.” He ran over to the waiters who frantically looked through their cart, finding our breakfasts under layers of about six meals under those plastic covers. We’re not sure we ever would have received them without the maître de’s intervention. Naturally the food was cold by then, but we ate it because we needed to get going. The following is one of those experiences you probably won’t have so skip it if you want. But I think it does speak to overall “customer service”: We noticed the first night that our cabin was unusually cold, and adjusting the thermostat did nothing to warm it up, so we reported it the next morning. My husband had caught a cold and was wanting to sleep that day so he would feel better by the next day for our one port, Amber Cove. A maintenance person came and said he needed parts and would return in the afternoon. He never did, so I visited Passenger Services. As the gentleman looked at his computer, he let it slip that “this has been reported before”, meaning a guest on a previous cruise had apparently reported it (so Princess knew of the problem before giving us that room?) He sounded very pessimistic that it would be fixed by the end of the day so around 5:30 he offered a different cabin. He said someone would come to our cabin and then show me the new room, for my approval. That “someone” eventually arrived, but it took a long time. All in all, it was more than a three-hour process to deal with Passenger Services and get us moved. They helped with our hanging clothes and luggage but it was very annoying to have to pull everything out of drawers and cubby holes, repack and then unpack again – just for a four-night cruise! The timing was such that I barely had time to change for dinner and of course my husband did not get the rest he had hoped for that day! I did hear an apology, but I fully expected some type of gift delivered to us the next day. Nothing. So did they resolve the problem? Yes, but it seemed like a problem that they were aware of before putting us in that room, which is unacceptable. And then the resolution process was too slow and convoluted. I kept getting calls “Did this person come to your door yet?” No. Repeat. Repeat. I know that a bad cabin or inattentive waiter can just be the luck of the draw, but people do judge on their own experiences. So we are thinking through and debating whether we should choose Princess for our ten-night Panama Canal cruise or not. Entertainment was only so-so compared to what we experience on Royal with its Broadway musicals, aqua/dive shows and ice skating shows. Silk had talented people but the story was not easy to follow. The comedian was only okay. The male singer was the most enjoyable. We skipped the final production because the write-up said it included voodoo, something we are not comfortable with as a known evil. While the ship was decorated for Christmas, we had hoped for a bit more Christmas music by performers since we were sailing so close to Christmas itself. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We chose this cruise at the last minute due to the very low price. Apparently this cruise was a 'late add' to the 2019 sailing schedule when the Island Princess did not go in for it's scheduled maintenance. There were ... Read More
We chose this cruise at the last minute due to the very low price. Apparently this cruise was a 'late add' to the 2019 sailing schedule when the Island Princess did not go in for it's scheduled maintenance. There were 1,963 passengers, less then the full ship capacity of 2,100 guests. So there must have been several dozen empty cabins. We were not offered an upgrade. The Island Princess is one of our LEAST favorite ships. We would not want to be on this boat for any longer than four days. Two reasons: The fitness center is way down on a lower deck in the stern of the ship right over the engine room. It is dark and dreary and suffers from vibrations and motions of the ship's movements. You can actually become sea-sick as you try to work out. Not a pleasant experience. Also: The Island Princess has no "International Cafe" in the main plaza! What? No International Cafe? It is unfortunate that this enjoyable public lounge -- found on every other Princess ship -- was somehow removed from the Island Princess. Sad! Other things to pick at: The promised birthday balloons and birthday card on our cabin door never materialized. We were eligible for a free internet package, but Princess did not tell us this until the last day of the cruise. So all those free internet minutes were wasted. I asked at the Customer Service desk if they could make any sort of adjustment and was politely told in a very nice way to go pound sand. There was no listing of the popular 'champagne pouring' event in the Princess Patter ship's paper. Apparently many people didn't know it was happening. Thus this special event was poorly attended. Hopefully cruise host Benny Yau will do a better job next time! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Ship is beautiful. Still had that "new car" smell. Beautifully decorated for Christmas. The cabin was clean. Love the new colors and the new curtains to the balcony. FOOD - they need to have more Vegetarian / Vegan ... Read More
Ship is beautiful. Still had that "new car" smell. Beautifully decorated for Christmas. The cabin was clean. Love the new colors and the new curtains to the balcony. FOOD - they need to have more Vegetarian / Vegan options. When I did place a special order (before breakfast for dinner - in the dining room - Anytime dining) - when I went to diner, they did not have a record of my order. The head waiter (Andrea) was very helpful and worked with the chefs to make my meal. The food in the buffet was always cold. It is open like on the Regal & Royal, so it's not as chaotic. However, even though there are 2 sides to the buffet, they don't always have the same food on each side. So you either miss out on some things, or your food gets even colder walking around to see everything. Sugar is now in dispensers (regular & raw). Splenda, Sweet & Low, and Equal are still in the little packets. Straws are a hot commodity. You are no longer given one with your drinks. You have to ask for them. So, if you like using a straw, ask for it when you order your drink. If you forget, then the waiter has to go back to the bar and get one for you. They are also not happy about that either. On the SKY, the bar at the International Cafe has been replaced with Belinis. They still HAVE the coffee "bar", but the bar in the lounge area has changed. If you would like to order a juice from the bar in the International Cafe, you have to ask a wait staff person and they will have to make it for you. ENTERTAINMENT: Saw Five Skies show. It was AMAZING!! Loved it! We missed the Rock Opera. I did not know that the production shows were only performed 1 day (2 showings). So, if you missed it, you are out of luck. HINT: Get to the theatre a MINIMUM of 1 hour before the show to get a good seat. The seats in the theatre no longer have the side table that comes out of the arm of the chair. So, if you have a drink, you will have to hold it. PRINCESS CAYS - it's different. Rearranged a lot of things. No longer have local vendors. Only ones selling Princess stuff at prices you would see on the ship. A baseball cap with Princess on it (on Princess Cays) was over $30. There is now a LONG que line area in order to get back on the tenders. It also has water misters to cool you off. HINT: the tenders leave every 15 minutes regardless of how many people are on it when it has to leave. If there are only 2 people on it, they leave. ST THOMAS - we took a taxi into town. I wanted to buy some jewelry. The sales people were WAY BEYOND pushy. I gave up on the jewelry. Did go to E's Garden Tea house. Great hidden gem. If you like tea (hot or cold) you will love this place. We spent over an hour there. Bought 3 different kinds of loose leaf tea. I did do some shopping in Havensight after. The ship was in port until 10pm, so we went to the ship for a late lunch, then back out when it was darker to see the Christmas lights. The sales people in Havensight are not as pushy. I did find a ring. The sales people were not pushy and I was able to browse peacefully. ST MAARTEN - there was a protest on the French side, so all excursions were cancelled on that side. There were also 5 ships in port. One of them was Harmony of the Seas (over 6,000 passengers). MSC, which I heard holds around 5,000 passengers was also there. It was quite crowded on the Dutch side. Again the sales people are pushy! I did manage to find a woman selling hand made jewelry at great prices! She was very nice. It was out of the way of all the pushy stores. Very calm and quiet. OVERALL: The ship is beautiful. The beds are VERY comfortable. Food needs work. Even the quality of the food has gone down hill. The crew is overworked. They have fewer crew members, so each member has twice as much work to do. Service is not what it used to be. Cabin stewards used to have 10 cabins to clean. They each now 18 cabins. There are only 2 waitstaff per table in the dining rooms and they have 5+ tables to handle. If each table has 8 people, that's 40+ people that they have to take care of. 1 person does the drinks & change of plates & silverware. The other takes the orders and delivers the food. This was our 12th Princess cruise. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
One of the newest ship from Princess cruise. Little disappointment about the food. There're great food for almost every ship of princess, but this one is really bad. Ship are new, beds are very comfortable . Room is small for 3 ... Read More
One of the newest ship from Princess cruise. Little disappointment about the food. There're great food for almost every ship of princess, but this one is really bad. Ship are new, beds are very comfortable . Room is small for 3 people. Our waiter from dining room is good, most of the food are cold, really bad compare to other Princess Cruise. Buffet breakfast harsh brown use to be one of my favorite, this ship make very very bad harsh brown, I have never eat a chewy harsh brown. Also, the scramble egg has very strange textures, like eating flour more than egg taste. Coffee machine broke down most of the days. They use a electric pot to heat up some coffee but it's always empty. Ask the manager what happened and he asked me back if I know how much it cost to fix the machine and he's asking someone to do it! Should I know how much it cost them? I guess not. Also, they start cheap to their casino customers, you have to ask for a manager approval to get a drink everytime. I sail at Royal Caribbean, they just put a sticker on my card & I could get drink whenever I want. At princess casino, I just need a bottle of water still need to approve by manager. This is the first time I sail back to back. Let see if the second week gets better! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
The service in the dining room was excellent with good menu choices. Try the Curtis Stone pork belly, it’s wonderful! The food and service in the buffet were very sub par. The food was not up tp Princess’s usual standards and the ... Read More
The service in the dining room was excellent with good menu choices. Try the Curtis Stone pork belly, it’s wonderful! The food and service in the buffet were very sub par. The food was not up tp Princess’s usual standards and the service was extremely lacking. Most meals we had to get our own beverages. Very disappointing. The entertainment was very good. There were two dance bands, a Latin based band BA Quartet and a Jamaican band Project 5. Both were very talented but Project 5 tended to talk way too much especially with black patrons. It really just used up time others could have been dancing. The guest Entertainers were very good, especially comedian Bengt Washburn and singer Claude-Eric. This was our second time on the Caribbean Princess and will probably not cruise on it again. We prefer the Regal Princess but will try the Royal, Sky, or Majestic. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
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