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313 Princess Southampton Cruise Reviews

My husband and I wanted to go to Norway, and the price was affordable for us. The staff was very nice, and courteous. The ship was awful. If I could rate this cruise a 2 1/2, I would. We missed one port due to someone getting ill, but ... Read More
My husband and I wanted to go to Norway, and the price was affordable for us. The staff was very nice, and courteous. The ship was awful. If I could rate this cruise a 2 1/2, I would. We missed one port due to someone getting ill, but that could happen to anyone. Our carpet had stains, the toilet plugged up 3 times, the food bland...In fact the food seemed redundant. At times, the chicken was tough and dry. We may choose another cruise with Princess again in the future, however we are going to explore other options. Embarking was a breeze, disembarking was painless. The cruise was very smooth, and we were informed via Captain, as needed. One of the tender's exhaust fumes was disgusting, not sure if that is why my allergies were ignited or not. I would not go on this ship again, unless issues were addressed. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Princess had the right British Isles itinerary and that is what we went for. We had low expectations for the ship based on a previous cruise with Princess and Cruise Critic reviews, and it was about as expected. Princess would not be our ... Read More
Princess had the right British Isles itinerary and that is what we went for. We had low expectations for the ship based on a previous cruise with Princess and Cruise Critic reviews, and it was about as expected. Princess would not be our first choice for another cruise. Pros: embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly, new mattress was very comfortable, staff friendly, ports did not disappoint. The new World Market remodel did tend to reduce lines waiting at the different food stations. Cons: Food was barely adequate. Lido breakfasts were poor. A lot of canned fruit and melon. The salad bar had canned vegetables, few choices of toppings. There was a separate gluten free area if that is important to you. All food was self-serve except in one small area. Usually crowded and often had to walk around or wait for a table. Wait staff were prompt with coffee and clean up. No hand sanitizers at the entrances of the Lido, although there was a hand washing station not very many people seemed to use. Lunches were warmed over previous nights' leftovers. Much of the food was left on the warming trays too long. Dining room dinners (we had traditional early dining) were limited in choices and very mediocre. Seemed like they put all the good choices on one day. Lobster tail was served with prawns (medium sized shrimp) - both tasted the same and not very good at that. Servers poured butter over (not a separate dish on your plate). The Curtis Stone "special dishes" actually were three different dishes served repeatedly. Did not like waiters clearing off plates while others at the table were still eating, or even when you still had a forkful of food on your way to your mouth, although the waiters themselves were friendly. Shore excursions - Do your homework and book independent tours (or on your own). Princess pricing was outrageous; even comparable independent tours were much cheaper, and for a little less we had private or semi-private tours. St Peter Port: Very nice port. It is a tender port and was the worst tendering experience we have had. The wait to get on a tender in the morning was over an hour, and because the ship was to leave at 2:00 that left little time to walk around or to eat. Last tender was supposed to be at 1:30. We were there at 12:30 and there was already a line. Worse, there were no tenders going to the ship. There were at least 1000 people ultimately in line and we waited two and a half hours before tendering resumed. Apparently the swell was so bad that they could not bring them to the ship. There were two or three tenders bouncing around waiting for over an hour and a half. Most frustrating because the tenders for the other ship in port were going to and fro with no problem. The port staff said this happened frequently with Princess - first because they leave so early everyone tries to stay ashore as long as possible so they all get to the tenders at the last minute, and second because the sea conditions are often like that. The captain was, I think, at fault, because he just had to turn the ship so the tenders would land on the other side away from the swell. At least the weather was nice. Cobh/Cork: If you MUST kiss the Blarney Stone, then get there early. The line when we joined was at least one and a half hours. We skipped it and toured the beautiful grounds instead. The ship was delayed an hour because people were still stuck on the stairs to get up. Had an independent tour which was similar to the Princess tour but $100 per person cheaper. Dublin: Line to disembark stretched from mid-ship all the way forward and back on itself several times. Another hour wait. Did appreciate the free ship shuttle, but ended up not using Hop-on Hop-off as the wait at the stops was long and the buses were crowded. Walking worked fine. Student tours at Trinity College well work the price. Belfast: Used independent company with a similar itinerary to Princess at less money. Time to get out to Giant's Causeway, see the murals and Peace Wall in Belfast, and still have a couple of side trips. Interesting place. Glasgow: Again, independent company with only five of us on the tour. Went to Stirling Castle (could spend an entire day there) and up to northern end of Loch Lomond. Ate at 300 year old Drover's Inn - very nice. Stopped at several nice picture spots and the scenic town of Luss. Even saw a couple of "Outlander" tv sites. Inverness: Private tour with independent company. A little cheaper than cruise excursion but we had control over where we went and how long we stayed. Great guide. Went to some Harry Potter and Outlander sites (wasn't our focus but appreciated nevertheless). Edinburgh: Another tender port with no free shuttle. Taxi and shuttle were expensive so we took the train (at least 100 steps but also a quarter mile path). Cheapest alternative, trains run twice an hour. Ticket kiosk but you can pay on the train. Visitor information at Edinburgh station was very helpful - you could tell they answered the same questions (cheerfully) for 3000 cruise passengers! Went on our own, maybe a tour here would have been better for the short time in port. Loved the city. Le Havre: We have been to Paris several times so we chose not to endure five hours on a bus for five hours in the city. Thought we would go to Honfleur, but taxi was very expensive, no trains there. So walked around Le Havre, went to their market place. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We booked on the Caribbean Princess about a month out from our 3/30/17 sailing. The ship had recently come out of dry dock so we expected everything to be in tip top shape. Unfortunately, this was not the case. The exterior looked new and ... Read More
We booked on the Caribbean Princess about a month out from our 3/30/17 sailing. The ship had recently come out of dry dock so we expected everything to be in tip top shape. Unfortunately, this was not the case. The exterior looked new and the dining venues have been remodeled but the cabins were lacking. Mold in the restroom, very soft beds, and overall tired looking. This was my 12th cruise with Princess so I have many ships to compare it with. Also, be warned that Southhampton is a couple of hours from Heathrow. Our favorite meal was at the Crown Grill but this also adds a $29 per person charge. We have never had a bad meal at one on any of Princess' ships. Sabitinis revamped their menu and in our opinion for the better but again expect to pay an additional $25 per person. We dined at the new Planks a couple of nights and enjoyed it. Although there is a surcharge (I think $12 per person) you can go casual. The dining room was okay and the Market Place (formerly Horizon Court) was okay. My husband felt it lacked variety and sometimes the food was not warm. We typically enjoy the production shows and did so this time. There was also a comedian, piano/comedian, magician, and Voice of the Ocean we attended. Most early shows were booked and they had a live feed in the Explorers Lounge. Spent some time in the Casino if it wasn't too smokey. I usually go to the spa a couple of times per sailing but the last two times I've passed since it seemed like their prices have really gone up. I expect to pay more at sea but when it is so much that I lose any enjoyment...I just decide not to go. Overall, this is a general complaint I am having with Princess and am considering other lines. I feel like I am nickle and dimed to death (increase in specialty dining, increase in photos, increase in spa, increase in drinks). For some reason it just irritates me. Now there's the Club Class and such but of course it comes with a price. Our first stop was St. Peter's Port/Guernsey. We took a ferry to Sark. Although the history of the island is interesting there is little to do there. Our "carriage ride" consisted of a wagon pull with 12 people. This port was such a waste of time and frustration. The whole tender situation impacted our next couple of days because that's how long it took to recover (spent 40 minutes bobbing like a cork returning from Sark and then stood in tender line for close to THREE hours). We even had to cancel an excursion. We heard horror stories upon horror stories about tender issues. One of the Guernsey representatives said it's always bad but that day it was particularly bad. Not a great way to start our tour. Passengers were rightfully irate. Took an independent tour with Paddywagon in Cobn. We went to Blarney Castle and then Kinsale. Due to the extended time in St. Peter's Port, we arrived in Cobn MUCH later than scheduled. This caused us to arrive at the castle after it was already too crowded. Very frustrating! Had a nice lunch in Kinsale with another couple we met on the tour. New Mercedes coach with wifi and plug-ins to charge your phone. Our guide was great. Did an overnight in Dublin. Princess provided a shuttle service to town but it was a block long to return on the second day. Took an Uber instead. Did the hop on hop off one day and the next day went to Kilingham Gaol and Guinness Storehouse. The hop on hop off was a good overview. The second day we Ubered and walked. The gaol is interesting and the storehouse is a "self-guided" tour/tourist trap. They have a nice facility but it would have been nice to have guided tours. Hired an independent in Belfast and got a short tour of Belfast, mural history, and local landmarks. That was plenty for me. Some people went to the Giants Causeway and we heard mixed reviews. Took an independent tour with Timberbush tours in Glascow. I do not recommend this unless you want to sit on a bus all day. Has some time at Stirling Castle, drove and drove through Trossachs National Park, and visited Loch Lomond. We wish we would have just visited Stirling Castle and then explored Glascow. The scenery was pretty but after awhile it is the same old thing. There was NOTHING to see at Loch Lomond. Took a Princess tour in Invergordon to Urquhart Castle/Loch Ness. It was very crowded. This wasn't a full day but it seemed like a lot of driving. There was a local shuttle in Edinburgh which I wish I would have known ahead of time. Our Princess excursion was horrible. We could never find our guide (he needed a flag or something) and we barely got any time at Edinburgh Castle. The city is beautiful but our city drive portion was a waste of time...only ONE thing, Holyrood Palace, was worth seeing. I am still kicking myself that we didn't just abandon the tour and explore Edinburgh on our own. We would have done the castle and walked the Royal Mile and maybe lunch instead of being herded around like lost cattle. Paris was such a highlight. We took a Princess tour knowing the drive would be THREE HOURS one way. We did the Seine lunch cruise and city drive. We were pleasantly surprised by the lunch and will say that the long drive was worth it. It really was a teaser and now we hope to do Paris as a destination trip in the near future. Also, our guide Annmarie was wonderful. I have learned to really search other options for excursions. Our Paddywagon tour was less than half of the comparable Princess tour. Timberbush was also half of the Princess equivalent and both companies guaranteed you would be back to the port on time. I will say the staff on Caribbean Princess were wonderful:) I was disappointed that it took DAYS to get distilled water, which I had requested upon booking, and this is a significant health issue for me. We could not find it in ports either. Our cabin steward was so apologetic. Overall, I am thankful for the experience but will not do this itinerary again. My biggest regret was Edinburgh since I feel we really missed the boat (no pun intended) on that stop. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
I have cruised Princess two other times, a few years ago, and unfortunately have noticed a decline in the on-board atmosphere on this cruise on the Caribbean Princess. Food seemed average in the main dining room. Service seemed rushed ... Read More
I have cruised Princess two other times, a few years ago, and unfortunately have noticed a decline in the on-board atmosphere on this cruise on the Caribbean Princess. Food seemed average in the main dining room. Service seemed rushed there, as servers had too many tables to cover. The new World Marketplace Buffet was better than I expected but seemed to lack much variety. On-board entertainment relied heavily on sales pitches, especially for art auctions and Effy jewlery. While the Caribbean Princess was just refurbished, she still shows her age in many places including my stateroom of P229. Dented walls, mildew shower curtains and tiles, stained carpets and broken drawers. Tendering in St. Peter's Port was suspended due to swells and caused a line to board tenders of 2-3 hours long. While I realized it was out of Princess' control, it still was not such a great experience waiting two hours for a tender in a massive line. All the while, another ship (P&O Azura), kept their tender operations going. The sea didn't seem to be rough but I am not a mariner so that was my layman's opinion. For the positives....embarkation and disembarkation was efficient. The itinerary is the draw with many ports and a lot of excursions to partake in. We spent an overnight in Dublin which was great. Edinburgh was a highlight! The Crown Grill had good food and great service and I also enjoyed Planks (the new dining venue on-board). The food at Planks was very good and plentiful. I also enjoyed the local entertainment that came aboard. I wish they had more of that and less sales pitches. The service was very good and warm for the most part. Overall it was still a good cruise, despite the negatives.I am fortunate to be able to go on such a vacation. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
My husband and I chose this cruise because of the itinerary. This is our 7th cruise on Princess and our first time visiting British Isles. Embarkation : fast and smooth check in at Southampton cruise terminal. Ship : A bit old, wear ... Read More
My husband and I chose this cruise because of the itinerary. This is our 7th cruise on Princess and our first time visiting British Isles. Embarkation : fast and smooth check in at Southampton cruise terminal. Ship : A bit old, wear and tear is very obvious especially the cabin. Cabin : Found ceiling of our stateroom water dripping, and also the washing basin water leaking. TV blurred with snowflakes. All reported to stateroom attendant, water dripping from the ceiling was fixed on the next day while other waited until Day 8 or 9. On July 4, a note saying that NO water supply from 9am to 3pm but we found only cold water resumed but NO hot water after 3pm. After a few visits to the front desk, hot water finally resumed at 7pm. Food : We had Anytime Dining, the food and menu of Island Dining room was fine but the food at the buffet was not up to Princess standard before. Limited choice and very salty in most dishes. Entertainment and activities : Nothing spectacular Service : We were so impressed by our first Princess cruise on Golden in 2013. However we found Princess gone downhill recently. Ports : Best itinerary and we had great time on our private excursions on every single ports. On our first port, Guernsey, we were stuck on the return tender boat for more than an hour and Princess did nothing and people on our tender boat were so sick and frustrated because of the rough sea. I understand it's only because of the bad weather but Princess could do more or tender us back to St. Peter's Port so we didn't have to suffer that long on the tender boat. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Itinerary . We took granddaughters ages 16 and 17 and it seemed to be exactly what we were looking for. The itinerary was great. Food was not as good as other cruise lines we have cruised on. Service was great. We felt communication was ... Read More
Itinerary . We took granddaughters ages 16 and 17 and it seemed to be exactly what we were looking for. The itinerary was great. Food was not as good as other cruise lines we have cruised on. Service was great. We felt communication was poor compared to other cruises. If you did not take a cruise sponsored shore excursion you were treated like a second class passenger. Long slow lines. Again without good communication as to where lines started and ended. We had a bad experience with the tendering at the Guernsey Islands. I want to emphasize this was not the fault of Princess Cruise Line. The winds and waves had gotten worse and the tenders were having difficulty docking at the ship. Finally, Princess delayed all docking efforts. We were the last tender that attempted to dock at the ship. We were able to get tied up OK and one passenger actually got off the tender. Then a huge wave hit us and broke one of the ropes securing us to the docking platform. We immediately moved back out to sea. Eventually, Princess moved the docking to the other side of the ship where the ship was able to block the huge waves. Yes, people were getting sick, including my granddaughter. Yes, communication could have been better. No, Princess had no control over the wind and wave conditions. People need to understand this and decide whether they want to go into a port that is tendered. Only guarantee this won't happen is to stay on the ship. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
If this had been our first cruise with Princess it would have been our last. We chose this trip because of the itinerary which didn't disappoint, but were very disappointed with Princess. Up until now we have only sailed with ... Read More
If this had been our first cruise with Princess it would have been our last. We chose this trip because of the itinerary which didn't disappoint, but were very disappointed with Princess. Up until now we have only sailed with Princess but after this trip we will be looking at other lines. We had been on this same ship last spring and the improvements after coming out of dry dock this spring were very noticeable, but we did not like some of the changes to the buffet line and don't really understand why the mandatory hand sanitizer was replaced with an optional hand washing station (which didn't seem to be utilized too much) Before the trip I had found an excursion with another company that was less expensive than the one offered with Princess. When I filled out the form and emailed it to Princess my request was declined because the excursion I found was LONGER than that offered by Princess, meaning it was a better value. As far as I am concerned their excursion guarantee is meaningless. We booked an inside cabin for this trip because most of it was land based with little reason to pay for a balcony. I received an email before the trip letting us know that we had been given an upgrade to a better location for our inside cabin. Imagine our surprise when we walked in to find bunk beds hanging on the walls on each side of our bed, and that we were next to an elevator! We spoke to the desk about it but were told that the cruise was sold out. On one of our port days, when tenders were needed, close to 700 passengers who did not have scheduled excursions, were given preference over a group of us who did. We waited an hour and a half before we were called. When asked why we were having to wait so long we were (incorrectly) told that we should have obtained tender tickets. The following day when I went to the excursion desk to complain the employee I spoke with offered no apology and was very rude. I was offered a 25% refund (which seemed fair). The following day I spoke to two others who had been on the same excursion. They had not made it to the excursion desk, and when I told them about the refund they were upset because they felt that should have been applied automatically to everyone who had been on the excursion. I totally agree with their response. I am giving this cruise an average rating only because of the excursions. They were wonderful and definitely made the trip for us. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
I chose this cruise because it had sites I wanted to see and because my sister and her husband asked me to go with them. I was expecting a Princess cruise to be run smoothly and provide the ultimate cruising experience and this cruise ... Read More
I chose this cruise because it had sites I wanted to see and because my sister and her husband asked me to go with them. I was expecting a Princess cruise to be run smoothly and provide the ultimate cruising experience and this cruise provided neither. Boarding was very smooth; the rest of the cruise was not. This cruise had two tender ports. I was a bit apprehensive about these because my sister said unlike Carnival, Princess uses its lifeboats as tender boats. Come on Princess! Those lifeboats are small! This is a big ship and there were lots of passengers. This led to huge lines getting off of the ship even when the tenders were not in use. I would think Princess would have a more efficient plan in place. After our short stop in our first port of Guernsey, we were forced to stand in line in the hot sun on dark asphalt pavement for over an hour. Princess did not provide any shade and only brought out water (which it ran out of ) after about 30 minutes. My sister and went to the front desk to complain and were treated rudely. After we complained about the horribly inefficient way the ports at Invergordon (not a tender port) and Edinburgh (tender port) were handled, we found out the original person who handled our Guernsey complaint never bothered to record our complaint. What kind of customer service is that?!? Due to bad weather, our stop at the Orkney Islands was canceled. This caused us to stop at our next port, Invergordon a half day earlier than expected. According to the local bus drivers in Invergordon, Princess did not radio ahead and tell them we would be docking early. The local bus drivers refused to give the cruise passengers rides to Inverness on the public buses because of this. The locals needed to be assured transportation. Because of this all of the cruise passengers who went ashore (and there were many) were forced to ride a two car train into Inverness. There was not enough room on this train and the train had a very limited schedule. Was this the cruise director's first cruise? Did this person lack some critical ability to think ahead and plan for possible contingencies? I am beginning to think so because our tender port at Edinburgh was a disaster. Due to rough seas, the ship had trouble with its tender boats at Edinburgh. Maybe this was again due in part to the small size of its tender boats. We were delayed over 4 hours getting off of the boat so we lost a half day of site seeing in Edinburgh. Also we passengers were told to wait in the public areas of decks 4, 5 and 6 so we could hear our the tender numbers which we were assigned being called. Did the cruise director plan ahead and provide extra seating or extra food in the bars or bakery areas or even bother to open the restaurants on these floors - of course not!! After we got to shore, we again were told by locals in the port of South Queensferry that Princess had not bothered to tell the local shuttle operator that there would be a delay in getting passengers off of the ship. This led to a 30 minute plus wait for the local shuttle buses. Like most ports, Princess did not provide free shuttles into the destination cities. Free shuttles would have been a very nice perk! At many of the ports the lines to get off and on the ship were very long. I think this was in part because Princess did not stagger the departure and arrival of its own tours. They all seemed to be happening at the same time. Why wouldn't Princess know from previous cruises that this would be a good technique to employ to avoid long lines and crowds and,therefore, provide a more enjoyable cruise experience for all passengers. We also seemed to be late leaving every single port. I think this may have been in large part due to all of the Princess tours departing port and arriving to port at the same time. The food was for the most part very good. I enjoyed the cookies and donuts at the International Cafe. At the buffet, however, especially in the morning, the food was often cold. The butter sat in an unmelted lump on my pancakes and waffles every single time I tried them. I finally resorted to having Cheerios for breakfast. The sit down dinners in our assigned dining rooms were good but not fantastic. I would have thought the cruise would have featured more meals representing the food of the ports where we stopped. Also, all of the beef and lamb, except for the prime rib, seemed to taste the same because I think it was covered in the same wine-tasting sauce. It also would have been nice to see some plain cake type desserts on the menu. We stopped in both Scotland and Ireland and there was no lamb stew on the menu. It seemed to be very fish heavy. Our waiter service at our reserved sit down dinners was very good. They seemed to work together well and they delivered our food in a timely manner. Our cabin steward was very good. He was usually very responsive to our needs and kept our cabin clean and neat. The entertainment was just so so. I did not find the female comedian named Jo funny nor did I find the male comedian who went down into the audience funny, either. There were not many children on the cruise, so I didn't see the need for fart jokes. He was also hard for other audience members to see when he went into the audience. The singers and dancers were very good. Like other reviewers, I also think the day activities were trivia heavy. They also seemed to focus on selling us passengers stuff. Maybe this lack of variety was again due to the seemingly inexperienced cruise director of this ship. The website that Princess provided to see activities was just okay. Some nice additions would have been a weather forecast, a schedule of shows for the entire week so we could plan ahead and decide which shows to see, and a reliable messaging system. It often did not work due to some networking error. It would have also been much easier to access as an application rather than a website. I often had trouble returning to it after shore excursions and taking my phone off of the ship’s wifi. Would I go again? At the start of the cruise and after running after my husband and son on a quick trip using trains and motels in Belgium and the Netherlands, I would have answered a resounding "yes"! After the many gaffes at the ports of call and the rude behavior of the front desk, I would have to seriously think twice before booking another cruise on a Princess ship. I think I may try another cruise line next time. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
The last few cruises I have been on with Princess has been disappointing. They seem to be going downhill a little more every the time. I think I am done with them. The ships are looking a bit worn and the food in mediocre at best. The ... Read More
The last few cruises I have been on with Princess has been disappointing. They seem to be going downhill a little more every the time. I think I am done with them. The ships are looking a bit worn and the food in mediocre at best. The towel were worn and felt like sandpaper. I talked to some of the crew and they said that they are short of towels and that they have to hide them if they want to be able to have some for the cabins that they serve. The food in the dinning room is the same mediocre stuff they serve on all their ships now. In twelve days I can say I had one meal that was above average. This one is important. Bad Bad hosts for all their games. We go to all the games and the hosts were so terrible that by the end of the cruise no one was going to their games. We had Dave when we went to Hawaii last year and he was fabulous, you need to have him train your hosts. Or maybe you could clone him. If I knew he would be on a ship we would all go on that ship. The quality is almost the same as Carnival. I have cruised with Royal and Celebrity and they are so far above princess for everything. The only reason I agreed to this trip was because they were the only one going to the British Isle when we all could go. Quality control please. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Having previously cruised with NCL, Celebrity and Royal Caribbean, and as this ship is rated about a 4 star we were expecting a similar experience – but whilst I would probably use Princess again (if the price was right) this cruise did ... Read More
Having previously cruised with NCL, Celebrity and Royal Caribbean, and as this ship is rated about a 4 star we were expecting a similar experience – but whilst I would probably use Princess again (if the price was right) this cruise did not live up to my expectations. The ship has had a recent facelift in the public areas, but cabins are a little ‘tired’ – but our accessible cabin was OK with a big bathroom, perfect for my wife in her wheelchair. There were always plenty of bar staff, so getting a drink was no issue – but as on many ships the audacity of adding 15% even when you get the drink yourself from the bar is quite shocking. I was on an inclusive drinks package so this charge was already included – but at about $54/day, you need to be a serious drinker (whiskies/spirits are about $9) My wife being teetotal chose the ‘soda’ package – but this did not include water or canned drinks, only coke/lemonade from the ‘pump’ and sickly sweet alcohol free cocktails – these ‘mocktails’ normally cost about $6 – yet she had to pay for a $2 bottle of water – weird……. The arranged trips were extortionate – over £200 for a trip to Paris – which included sitting in a coach for 5 hours. There were often bus transfers at the harbour to get people into the town – but this information was intentionally not mentioned in the daily bulletins – to encourage people to spend on daily trips. In La Havre, the 4 of us used a taxi for the 5 minute trip into town for a TOTAL COST of 7.20 Euro, we walked back to the ship and I enquired at the bus waiting near the ship what the transfer cost was - $16 return EACH, on my obvious shock the driver stated it was Princess Cruises who dictated the price. The entertainment was quite acceptable and there is always something to suit everyone. The food was generally quite good and service overall was OK – but not sure about the idea of removing peoples plates whilst others are still eating - and reaching across people who are still eating to lay the next set of cutlery is hardly fine dining – luckily this was only a particular waiter and we did not sit in his area again. I had several issues with our account, the drinks I had often appeared on my wife's account, and not having a package they attempted to charge her, this must be resolved - there should be no way that anything should have appeared on her account as her 'ship card' was never given to the waiter.........I would say this is almost fraud................... In conclusion, it was OK for what I paid but below Celebrity standards. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
My oldest nephew graduated in May and his brother graduates next year. As a graduation/pre-graduation present and family vacation all wrapped into one, we wanted to visit Ireland. The thought of everyone trekking around seemed a bit ... Read More
My oldest nephew graduated in May and his brother graduates next year. As a graduation/pre-graduation present and family vacation all wrapped into one, we wanted to visit Ireland. The thought of everyone trekking around seemed a bit daunting, so we looked for cruises. My husband and I are Elite on Celebrity, but the itinerary for Caribbean Princess was much closer to what we wanted from this trip, so we narrowed it down to dates and decided on the June 18 sailing. THE GOOD Embarkation was a breeze. We arrived around 11:00 a.m., I think, and boarded around 11:30. One benefit that Princess has over Celebrity is that everyone is entitled to eat lunch in the dining room on embarkation day (rather than selected cabins only), and we availed ourselves of this offer. Lunch was very quiet, and our waiter, Jorge, was very personable and seemed excited. It was a very good start to the cruise. Carrying that theme for a bit, I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed the ability to eat breakfast and lunch in the dining room each day, as Celebrity typically does not offer dining room meals unless there is a sea day, or if arrival at the port is after the typical meal time. We much prefer eating in the dining room to the buffet, so we enjoyed that. Staff members were generally very good. There was one young lady - I cannot remember her name, but she served in Planks and was from Jamaica - who was the embodiment of what you want in a server. She was the only one who really stood out to me, but I have nothing bad to say about any of the staff I encountered. Another good thing that we did was that we used non-ship excursions, along with our own plans for a couple of the ports. If you have time to plan ahead, I highly recommend researching other companies and/or transportation logistics in the ports you are visiting. All of the tours we took were excellent, and we were able to plan our own travel in a couple of ports, with very good results. Skipping ahead, I would say that disembarkation was a breeze, too. We were assigned a 9:00 meeting time, and we waited about 10 minutes and then were called to disembark. We had tickets for a 9:45 bus back to Heathrow, and we arrived a couple of minutes before the bus did. THE NOT SO GOOD As I mentioned, we typically like going to the dining room for our meals, and enjoy dressing up for dinner. However, I found several nights challenging, as the offerings were not appetizing. The food I ate was good, it's just that the offerings were not really my preference. So we ate at the buffet several times for dinner. If you go hungry on a cruise, it's at least partly your fault - but I have to say I was disappointed in the overall menu selection. The weather in South Queensferry (Edinburgh) was very rainy, and due to conditions, the tenders were extremely delayed. I recognize that these are the kinds of things one can't always predict or prepare for, but it did throw a wrench in our time planning. Fortunately, we had simply planned to take the train into Edinburgh and enjoy the Hop On Hop Off bus. The ticket machine at the train station was out of order, so we had to go to the ticket counter once we arrived in Edinburgh to purchase tickets. The folks there were very responsive, and several staff members came out due to the size of the crowd and tried to get everyone settled quickly. So we arrived in Edinburgh soggy and much later than we had intended, so we had to be a little more aware of the time than if we'd been able to leave earlier. Also, we missed Kirkwall due to the weather. I understand the need to make potentially disappointing decisions in deference to safety, but I do wish that we'd done as we were initially informed and stayed at sea the day we were supposed to go to Kirkwall. We were later updated that we would be arriving in Invergordon at about 2:30 p.m. the day before we were scheduled to arrive, so we spent the night there, rather than at sea. (I know, personal preference - but I enjoy sea days the most, so I was excited to have an extra one, and then disappointed when I didn't really get that.) THE TERRIBLE There is really only one thing in this category, but it absolutely and completely deserves it. Our cabin - Emerald 424 was the.worst.cabin.EVER. It was an oceanview, but that is not a part of my negative experience. (We do typically cruise in a balcony stateroom, but didn't really feel like we missed anything by being in an oceanview for this trip.) First, the cabin is set up for four people - which, in this case, means there are two bunks hanging on either side of the wall. Since there were only two of us, we asked for the bed to be placed together, which meant that we had to hunch over and shuffle into and out of bed each time. In addition: The Bed. Ugh. I understand it was supposed to be the new luxury bed, but I don't know if they somehow skipped our cabin or if it was one of the first the replaced, but it was the worst bed ever. It was lumpy and too soft, and there were a couple of nights where I just could not get comfortable. I am currently suffering from a pinched nerve in my back (first time ever), and I absolutely believe that it is either because of the bed, or was exacerbated by the bed. I do hate the cloth curtain in the bathroom (I much prefer the hard door style I'm accustomed to on Celebrity), but that was not a deal-breaker. One thing that was, though, is that half of the blackout curtains are missing in this cabin. Perhaps that isn't normally that much of an issue, but when the sun sets after 10:00 p.m. and rises at or even before 5:00 a.m., that half a blackout curtain makes a difference. The steward did do a very good job keeping things tidy, but the knocks against this cabin, at least for me, makes this the worst cabin I've ever sailed in. With all of the bad, however, it was overall a good cruise, and I know those of us who went made memories that will last a lifetime. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
I'm an active, independent cruise veteran with 53 cruises over the past 42 years. I flew to London and had private limo transportation to the ship. I've toured London several times, so skipped the city this time and was ... Read More
I'm an active, independent cruise veteran with 53 cruises over the past 42 years. I flew to London and had private limo transportation to the ship. I've toured London several times, so skipped the city this time and was comfortable overnight at a favorite Hilton hotel near Heathrow Airport. A private car service took me to Southampton the following day after a good night's rest. I'm elite status with Princess, and enjoy the little extras this status level brings. I do wish, however, that Princess would give a discount to solo travelers (at any level), but at least with the elite cruisers - many other cruise lines do this for their solo travelers, but not Princess. Embarkation at Southampton's rather outdated and small terminal went very smoothly, thanks to lots of practice by the mature and polite staff on duty. From drop off to boarding the ship, it was probably 10 minutes until I was in my cabin. Luggage arrived approximately an hour later (I checked in around noon. ) I did not like the aggressive photographers who try to trap embarking passengers on the way to the ship, or the equally assertive spa ladies who are literally right at the boarding door, handing out a bunch of paper information. There was no welcome aboard greeting, just sales pitches. Ship's crew were noticeable for those needing assistance or directions, however. The noise level was very high. Forget the elevators if possible - people were mobbing them and wait times were long. Grateful I can climb the stairs with just a carry-o bag and myself. My cabin was the familiar balcony style I prefer. I had expected a lot of improvement since the ship was in dry dock just a few months ago, but all I noticed was the new bed linen and a colorful updated picture on the wall. I had heard a lot about the new beds, but when I checked it and sat down, it was far too soft. Nice new linens, however,and a thick feather duvet which turned out to be very crackly and noisy, and far too warm, even with the AC turned as cold as it would get. They need to get a thinner one for warm climate cruises and summer travel. The pillows were a mix of feather style and polyester fill style, four in all. Other than the fresh bedding, the cabin looked the same as I've seen on this ship for years. It was very dated as far as the furniture and colors. Furniture was chipped, and not too clean. Fabric chair had greasy stains on the back and arms. The carpet was very dirty. the colors were mainly a dreary mix of brown. The mini-fridge was not working, but I called and someone fixed it eventually the same day I called. There were paint chips all over the balcony flooring and furniture. Smears of old nail polish were on the desk. There were plenty of good wooden hangers in the open closet. Enough drawers and shelf space to store everything for one person, but it might be tight for two people with a lot of clothes. The blackout drapes and curtains were in good condition, but still let in light all night at the high latitudes of the trip - the drapes need to be longer and go all the way to the wall and ceiling. I use sanitizing wipes on every flat surface in my cabin when I cruise, and the wipes came up with brown and gray dirt smudges on them when I was cleaning. The bathroom looked as if nothing has really been improved at the dry dock session. Kleenex boxes have been removed from the holder beneath the sink and placed in the cabin because people are throwing the tissue into the finicky, delicate toilet systems and clogging them up. A sign was placed in the bathroom, telling guests not to throw anything but the usual human stuff and toilet tissue in the toilet to avoid plumbing failures. Shower gel and shampoo/conditioner were in two pump dispensers in the shower. The shower curtain was stained and had mold all along the bottom. Mold was visible in the soap recepticle in the shower, too. The pull-out clothesline didn't look very clean, either. The tile floor was black with dirt and mold in the grout lines, especially near the toilet and shower. The toilet brush container was rusty at the bottom. There was a large crack on the shelf beneath the bathroom sink, and it had been crudely repaired with what looked like ancient maple syrup. The towels were so threadbare, with holes and some stains, and so rough, I had to ask my steward for softer towels which actually dried something. This repeated throughout the cruise. I wouldn't wash a dirty truck with those old towels. I do like the provided body lotion Princess provides - it's very moisturizing with a lovely delicate scent. The sink appeared as clean as possible,but was very worn, and had low water pressure. My cabin steward was one of the best I've ever met, doing everything absolutely perfect the first time, supplying everything without being asked, and always cheerful and singing. He worked very hard, and was one of the few things on this cruise that I did not have to keep following up on. The mandatory safety briefing was somewhat of a joke. Despite the crew asking for people to pay attention, stay awake, and stop using their phones, nobody really paid much attention. People were talking, sleeping, and on cell phones. I guess they don't realize that their lives may depend on this vital information. The captain was delightful and chatty on the PA system, but his very thick Italian accent as sometimes hard to understand, and the bridge did not have enough volume when the captain made his daily announcements - it was very difficult if not impossible to hear his informative briefings over the loud noise levels throughout the ship. Despite requesting a solo small table due to some medical issues, I was once again assigned a huge "single old ladies table". Fortunately the maitre'd was human and approachable, and was able to provide the dining table I needed to enjoy my meal in comfort. I had two of the best waiters in the cruise line, I'm sure, with extremely fast, accurate, courteous, and superb service. The food continues to decline in quality since Carnival ruined the former very good original Princess/Sitmar line. Apparently the menus are the same world-wide. If it is embarkation day, it must be spring roll day, type of mentality as far as menu planning. Some of the food items were so bizarre that either it was a contest in the kitchen to see who could do the most creative thing with the leftovers, or somebody was just having a bad day. The fish was junk or bottom feeder quality, and inedible, except for the sole. Shellfish was good, and there was a lot of shrimp and prawns. Lobster made a few appearances, and was also good. Vegetables were barely cooked and served nearly raw. The pasta was a disgrace - the rice was served so hard and uncooked it was likely to break teeth. It was as if somebody had poured some hot water over uncooked rice, and then put it in the plate. The pasta was not "al dente", but simply hard as a rock and barely cooked and terrible. Sauces were very watery, which is criminal when it involves Italian cooking. The featured chocolate deserts were full of nuts, which made them off-limits to many guests. Menu items were really uninspired - people can get steak, hamburger, sphaghetti, meat loaf, fried chicken, baked potatoes, and other home cooking comfort food items at home. It's not what I want when I cruise and can escape "healthy" eating for a few weeks. Some of the vegetarian items sounded bad on the menu, but turned out to be delicious. I did not starve, but was very disappointed in the quality and choice of food items in the main dining room. I lost three pounds on this cruise, unintentionally, due to the food. The deserts were also very poor choices - again, I can get ice cream at home. The sugar-ffree items were slimy with gelatin and nearly tasteless. Anything cold or inedible was sent right back to the kitchen, which my waiters handled with grace - but the head waiters seemed annoyed, and surprised that I did not love their "wonderful" cuisine. Some nights on the cruise, special items were cooked at the entrance to the dining room, and the nauseating odor of hot, cooking garlic permeated the entire dining room, sucked in by the ventilation system. This always seemed to happen on the nights when we had rough sailing, I noticed. The first night's appetizer had an added ingredient - a big black hair on the plate, beneath the last bite of the appetizer I was eating. I quietly told the appropriate dining staff, and one of them just said, "well, these things happen". It took a solid week of complaints, follow-up, haggling, and frustration to get any sort of proper response from the zombie-like front desk staff. I could have stood up and screamed about a hair in my food, but to save face for my nice waiters and myself, I was quiet. This should have been worth something to the cruise staff, but apparently it's routine for them to have hairs in the food. I finally received an adequate form of compensation for this disgusting lack of hygiene, but it wasted hours of my time. I only ate at the buffet once, as I try to avoid it with all the dirty hands there. The two nice new sinks for hand washing have replaced the handy Purell dispensers at the entrances to the buffet, and nobody seemed to use the sinks. The breakfast pastries were stale and dry, even when the buffet first opened, and there were swarms of fruit flies hovering over the pastries from the second morning on. This was reported, but the problem never was resolved. Despite the fancy new name for the buffet, the same congested, disorderly mob surges through too small a space and nothing has changed. Some food with nuts was not identified as such. Other foods were mysterious enough to make me wonder what they were, but there were no signs, and when staff was asked, they couldn't speak enough English to answer. Lots of officer types circulated through the buffet area, but nobody seemed to do anything useful. I had one lunch at the buffet, and everything in the hot section was lukewarm or cold, and dry. The French toast in the morning was also cool, or cold, and dry. Some of it was labeled as plain, but had fruit and/or nuts or meat in it. Lots of confusion labeling the foods in the buffet, apparently. I took what I needed for an early breakfast back to my cabin and ate in peace and quiet. I enjoy the food at the deck 5 Atrium level's International Cafe. Some of the staff there were like robots, unfortunately, and some did not speak enough English to communicate about the food. Others were very nice. They make a very good daily quiche, but the oven kept breaking, or the quiche were not ready to be heated, even though the cafe was open and demand was high. Lots of interesting salads, and some good deserts, but very little in the chocolate family. This was usually my main source for lunch, and I also took this back to my cabin rather than try to eat in the traffic jams of people and ear-splitting noise. There were some unruly, uncontrolled, noisy kids of all ages on this ship, and their parents let them stampede up and down the corridors, quite late at night. Reporting this did nothing to stop it. There were also some young adults with their cabins near mine, and they would return roaring drunk at the small hours of the morning, banging on doors and shouting to each other, and yelling inside their cabins. This also was reported and not stopped. I wish the cruise line would post a prominent notice in each cabin about time limits for noise in the corridors and cabins, and if people insist on making noise and disturbing others, they should be fined or put off the ship. The smoking ban was also disregarded around the ship - I could smell it in the corridors, and people smoked on their balconies. I realize the crew needs to have their cleaning carts and supplies parked in the very narrow corridors, but they were there nearly all day and half the night, making it very hard to get through, and blocking access for those with wheel chairs and scooters. Carts were placed around 6 AM, or a bit later, and anybody trying to sleep through this, as well as the cheerful and loud chatter of the stewards both in the corridors and nearby pantry and storage room spaces, were sadly out of luck. I noticed a horrible odor like a dirty wet dog when I arrived on my deck upon boarding, and this odor persisted for half the cruise. Apparently there was carpet shampooing scheduled, and the wet carpet never really dried well, plus whatever the used on it was terribly nasty as far as the odor. I was asked if it was OK to shampoo my cabin carpet (why wasn't this done at dry dock or immediately when it was stained - and there were some large, disgusting stains on it), and I politely declined. I had enough problems from the prevalent stink in the rest of the ship without having it in my cabin for a two week cruise. The first night I tried the new bed in my cabin, it had a definite downhill slope towards one side, and was so soft I had a backache the entire trip. The pillows had no support, either, and made my neck ache. So much for improved new beds by some supposed sleep doctor. The beds looked great, but even the new linens had stains and holes in them, and the quality of rest was very poor. I was tuck most of the time in a deep hollow in half the bed. New dust ruffles were attached to the bed(s) in my cabin during the cruise, but they looked worse than the old ones. The ship itself is 13 years old, and very tired. It creaks and rattles, has a lot of wear and tear on everything, and is outdated in style. During some very rough weather for several days, the thuds and bangs and other loud sounds made me wonder if the ship were coming apart. The stabilizers worked as designed against the rolling, but it sounded like enormous pieces of metal grinding equally enormous pieces of metal into smaller bits, all night long, all day long, about every 10 to 15 seconds. At least the toilet, AC, and phone actually worked normally this cruise, for which I give thanks. I am extremely appreciative of having self-service washers and dryers on cruise ships, even at the exorbitant cost. However, some were always out of service, and people literally lined up at dawn to grab a machine before anybody else. Sometimes a whole family would spend the day in the laundromat room, hogging all the machines. It made doing laundry a nightmare, especially if one had clothes soiled from a fitness workout or Zumba class. I've learned to bring my own detergent and dryer sheets to save money, and also more clothes so I don't have to use the washers. Activities on the ship were a joke. If one has infomercial withdrawal away from home, this is the cruise line for you. Most of the so-called activities were seminars selling something - all that was missing was the TV pitchman seeking plastic junk for $19.99, and saying, "but wait!". Same for the ceaseless hawing of the art auctions, night and day. You can get the same prints for 10% of the cost simply by going to art.com. There is a "big name" jewelry store on the ship, and it seems that Princess is obsessed with this man and his products - it's all you see and hear as far as "enrichment" articles and sales. The actual gift shops were OK but small, crowded often, and did not have a great variety of things in them. The casino was popular with the gamblers, but reeked of stale tobacco. Most of the activities wouldn't have entertained a 10 year old at a summer camp in 1950. I did not go to the evening entertainment or shows, as it is not to my personal taste, and I've seen the production shows on other cruises. The best entertainment was the local folkloric shows in Ireland and Scotland, brought on board in the afternoon, and truly entertaining. Some of the solo acts were really bad, with poor quality instruments and off-key singers. The guest services staff could use some further education about who is paying their salaries, and how to be courteous to the guests. Some were absolutely robotic in their manner and responses, and it became obvious very quickly that complaints were not passed on or acted on beyond the first contact - I had to keep going back and repeating everything day after day, as with the case of the hair in my food. I envy the staff at the front desk as far as being multilingual, but apparently they are better at languages other than English, as there were some misunderstandings about what I was plainly and simply explaining to them. I don't know who is in charge of the sound levels in public spaces on this ship, but they must be deaf. Everything broadcast in the Piazza area in the atrium was at dangerously high decibel levels, and it made being there painful, and speech with companions impossible. Same for the guest services desk, which was right at the top of this area and blasted with noise. It is not good business to need to shout at guests, or have them shout at the staff, and some of the information was personal. I had to ask to be taken to a quieter area so I could explain what I needed, on several occasions. Everything was far too over-amplified, expect the captain's announcements. Speaking of announcements - during one of the earliest nights of the cruise, at about 11 PM, somebody on the bridge obviously pushed the wrong button. I was startled awake by an announcement about "this is the bridge", and then a welcome recording began playing before somebody realized what was happening and shut the thing off. What would most people think at that hour of the night when an announcement comes blasting into the cabin, from the bridge? Probably that there was some emergency happening. It took hours to settle down after that and go back to sleep. The fitness center had had more good equipment added, and seemed to be cleaner than I remember from past cruises on this ship. Not nearly enough space for workouts with the weights, however, and classes took up the floor space elsewhere at times for those wishing to stretch or do floor workouts independently. The spa is at the entrance to the fitness center, and there were always several crew on duty there, trying to engage the guests at the beginning of the cruise to sign up for seminars and spa services. A few of the staff were pleasant, but the rest of them seemed to have joined the zombie crew and did not smile, had no expression, and looked depressed. This ship doesen't seem to have the happiest crew members, at least from what I've observed in at least five sailings on it, and unless the itinerary is too good to pass up, I won't be choosing to sail on this ship again. Yes, I know they work very hard, but I'm on the ship to have a good time and be around pleasant people, and it didn't always happen on this cruise. With that said, the usually sour and taciturn security people seemed unusually cheerful and pleasant on this trip. A few of the cruise staff remembered me from previous trips, and they were delightful to visit with. Some of the ports I'd been to before and enjoyed seeing what I had missed the first time. The other ports were all delightful, and it was a great sampler of what Great Britain, Ireland, and Scotland have to offer visitors. Shore excursions were very popular, but I did not take any. I use Tours by Locals for private, custom-tailored tours, and 99% of the time they are far better value than what the ship offers. I get to see exactly what I'm interested in, travel in comfort, meet local people, and benefit greatly from the experience in places all over the world. I also use private transportation rather than the ship transfers and private car services for the same reasons. The passengers were from all over the world, and some were nice to interact with, and others were dealing with squabbles with family, friends, groups. It did not seem to be a cruise environment friendly to singles of any age. Most of what I saw were either couples, or tour groups, or family groups. The youngsters on the cruise seemed bored, and would hang out on the staircases and yell in the corridors, very annoying at all times, and especially a hazard when blocking the stairways. None of the public rooms seemed to have benefited from the recent dry dock overhaul, but they seemed to be in decent condition, if not a bit outdated. I did not have any photos taken, or purchase any. The photography staff delayed guests getting off the ship in almost every port, and were outfitted in tacky, stupid, costumes some of the time, and yelling like street vendors in some out of the way place on the planet to get business. The photos were also very expensive. It was annoying to be aggressively intruded upon during dinner by the photographers trying to get yet another photo or two. Some people liked this, but many did not. This was a very port-intensive itinerary, and not conducive to staying up late if one had to be up at 5 AM for breakfast and an early tour, either private or with the ship. I could hardly wait to get to bed in the evening, and definitely slept very well despite the uncomfortable bed and noisy cabin neighborhood. Sadly, one of the most anticipated ports had to be bypassed due to an awesome North Sea gale-force storm at the top of Scotland that lasted several days. At the end of the cruise, since this was the British Isles, there was a Celtic festival that was some of the most fun and best entertainment on the ship. A few of the entertainment staff provided good Irish music, some folks danced with great spirit, and those of us who love Zumba and who had learned a few Irish folk dances joined in for the grand finale. Speaking of Zuimba, this took place every sea day, and was so very popular that the small lounge area dance floor was jammed. It was great fun and exercise, just needed more room. I choose to cruise on Princess mainly for the ports and the boat ride. The newer ships, like the Royal Princess, are quite nice. The cost is also reasonable if two share a cabin, but going solo, I pay double and wish they would change this policy and give singles a break with the cost. I keep asking, but no response positively yet. While some of the crew are truly outstanding, there are others badly burned out and despondent at their jobs. Some can't communicate sufficiently in English and this causes misunderstandings and frustration on both sides. The food quality continues to decline, as do the menu offerings. Everything on the ship seems to be aimed at making money for the cruise line. It is one gigantic floating sales pitch or commercial most of the time. I go to the spa to relax and enjoy the rate luxury of having someone else do my nails, hair, or have a massage - but even then, the sales pitches continue for all sorts of products I'd not use in one hundred years. I also wonder about the quality and wisdom of offering things like Botox injections, teeth whitening, and other cosmetic medical services which should be done on land with a reputable physician you can return to easily if you have a problem with the results. Disembarkation was extremely efficient and easy if one planned carefully ahead of time. I was able to get off the ship in a matter of minutes, and found my luggage quickly as well. I had a private car back to the hotel at Heathrow, as my flight did not leave unti the next day. To avoid stress, I never take a flight anywhere the same day a cruise ship is either arriving or departing, as its movements can be extremely unpredictable. I had a mostly good time, visited wonderful ports with great private tours, enjoyed being on the ocean again, and even the two impressive storms we sailed through. If a cruiser is mainly concerned with getting to the ports by ship, and doesn't care much about the amenities on older ships with questionable crew quality, Princess delivers for a reasonable cost for double occupancy. It is just sad to see how this once very stylish and nice cruise line has deteriorated since Carnival bought it and lowered the quality so badly in almost every area. If cruisers want everything to be five star for what they paid, Crystal Cruise Line exceeds beyond expectations, and flawlessly. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Was a back-2-back cruise. Sailed the Baltic aboard "Crown Princess" immediately prior to this. Dates chosen to coincide with our 50th (Golden) wedding anniversary occurring on June 10 whilst in St. Petersburg, Russia. ... Read More
Was a back-2-back cruise. Sailed the Baltic aboard "Crown Princess" immediately prior to this. Dates chosen to coincide with our 50th (Golden) wedding anniversary occurring on June 10 whilst in St. Petersburg, Russia. Considering the distance & flying time from Australia, we decided to abut this British Isles cruise making it a worthwhile holiday. Thoroughly enjoyed the "Crown", with nil problems - or even hiccups. But different opinion with this ship, the "Caribbean Princess". STATEROOM ========== Problems with our stateroom, a Club Class Mini-suite mid-ship on Dolphin Deck, from day 1. Air conditioning hardly functioning, very hot and stuffy in room. Plus fridge not even cool. Reported both to our steward who, in turn, had to make three reports before a maintenance crew person attended. Played around with his 'hi-tech' gadget on the A/c. issue, made some adjustments. Still not functioning, so reported again, same guy attended with marginal improvement. Finally, after another report lodged, a different guy attended and whoopi - like magic, the cool air flowed strongly, problem fixed. We were highly suspicious the A/con. system had been turned low (supported by the fact he had a list of complainants from that area of the ship) perhaps to cut costs? Also, to add insult to injury, they kept blaming the 'hot day' (it was 28° C) in Southampton! So for 2 days of a 12-day cruise our comfort (plus stress levels) were compromised. Totally unacceptable for a high cost Club Class Mini-suite! Footnote: With us coming from Australia they don't know a HOT DAY! The faulty fridge issue was finally resolved with a bit of 'tinkering', with no further problems. BUFFET DINING ============ The new 'Fresh Market Place' buffet (prev. the 'Horizon Court'). New 'island station' type concept, with the different food categories allocated to their own areas. Really great, as one can easily navigate directly to the desired 'bay' (e.g Bakery, Soups, Desserts, etc) without having to queue. Greatly disconcerting was the new sanitation requirements. Previously when one entered the buffet they 'washed' their hands from the pedestal dispenser ("Purell") as a safeguard from the dreaded Norovirus. Now, these have disappeared, being replaced by washbasins & paper hand towels located each end of the room (not the actual buffet food entry point). There is no signage whatsoever directing guests to use these facilities...leaving it purely to their 'sanitation conscience' as to whether they wash. Simply put, as we observed, guests come & go to the buffet, with only a small percentage pre-washing. Our prediction: Only a matter of time before another virus outbreak! To us it appears Princess are 'trialing' many of the new features, restaurants and concepts aboard. Some of which we were not happy with, and suggest they make amendments. But then again, with so much demand for cruising today, will they even listen? Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
had family who were born in Scotland just wanted to see it . over all we enjoyed the cruise BUT as I have said for the last three cruises.....The food is going down hill....If it goes down hill any more I'm afraid we are going to ... Read More
had family who were born in Scotland just wanted to see it . over all we enjoyed the cruise BUT as I have said for the last three cruises.....The food is going down hill....If it goes down hill any more I'm afraid we are going to change to another cruise line. menus are getting smaller and smaller...if you don't like fish you really don't have much to choose from...here at home we eat out at tiye restaurants all the time love it...ordered some tiye food in the mdr it tasted like something you get in a box at costco. I'm not just ranting we had 8 people at our table...2 from Canada...two from London...two from l.a. california..and us from central california. at every meal part of the conversation was ......this is not good .....why the change. it does not cost more money to make food taste good it takes someone to put the right seasons together....... our room steward....great ........waiters great ..except for the food every thing was great. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
My wife wanted to go to the North Cape. North Cape was excellent as were Trondheim , Flaam and Skoldjen . Less impressed with Tromso (closed on Sundays it seems ) and a random island stop by tender. Bergen visit was extremely curtailed ... Read More
My wife wanted to go to the North Cape. North Cape was excellent as were Trondheim , Flaam and Skoldjen . Less impressed with Tromso (closed on Sundays it seems ) and a random island stop by tender. Bergen visit was extremely curtailed due to cautious captain and a spurious tale about just finding out about the 2017 Round the Island race so can't really comment on that one . Set off for Southampton at speed and then flat slow for a while. Liked the Crown Grill a lot : good man that Borko. Good wine selection . Dining Room was fine for breakfast and dinner . Good wine selection (dinner ). Level 15 buffet always seemed like a scrum for a place to sit . Food quality not so good and lukewarm for the most part. Everything seemed stewed and overcooked to me. Lots of recycling and reappearances . Bread pudding several times on offer and always it seemed at breakfast . Some buyer must have got a good deal on a job lot of asparagus and mushrooms along the way. Shows were mixed in quality but you had to get there 30 minutes in advance to secure a seat which didn't seem appropriate. Lift doors seemed very aggressive but perhaps I'm just slowing with age. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Had circled this cruise as a possibility when I rcvd the Princess Cruise atlas. Inquired and told all verandas were sold out and thought price was high. Then in a last minute special e-mail I get from Princess price was lowered and then 1 ... Read More
Had circled this cruise as a possibility when I rcvd the Princess Cruise atlas. Inquired and told all verandas were sold out and thought price was high. Then in a last minute special e-mail I get from Princess price was lowered and then 1 week later lowered again. Bked at a good price a partially obstructed cabin on E deck. Knew the Crown in need of work and since was round trip South Hampton would have lots of Brits on board. Out of +3,000 on board about 2,000 were Brits. Thats why I chuckle on comments about American service etc etc. All the nonproduction shows were British slanted, including both comedians(both awful) and tribute show to Robbie Wms. Cabin same size and lay out of veranda cabin without veranda - bed was not over the window as some outside cabins. Steward was good. I always tell them I want cabin serviced early, ice early evening etc. Give a small tip first day of cruise. Left a note if something was needed and he always responded. A few towels were tattered. We are Elite so bar set up was appreciated( if u do not like one of their choices ask to" trade"for your preference) Laundry ws a treat but took 3 days. Wound up washing denimsand other dark items at the $6 launderette. At one time it was free and then $2, at leastcan use cruise card and not sourge around for change. Food was good, a few were very good. We are NOT buffet persons. Ate 1 bkfst and 1 lunch in Horizon court. Both times barely acceptable. Tried pizza once - terrible!! saucetasted liked our canned tomato sauce - no spices,no garlic. It was served hot. Used roomservice for brkfts when we had early tour - chili one day for lunch - tea and cake 1 aft. Everything came as ordered, presented well and on time. We are Elite and had canapes on formal nights - same thing 3 times and nothing special. Liked Vines and International cafe. Did Tea once, nicely presented, nice variety of food. Have done anytime dining for yrs with Princess. Would go to DaVinci around 7:30 and have no wait for shared table. We ask for table for 6 - met nice passengers that way. Ate at sABATINI'S 2x and Crown Grill 1x. We celebrated husband's birthday and ouranniversary there - children sent on board credit to cover the charge. Wine is way overpriced, that's not new. We did pack 2 special bottles for our celebrations. Thought there should be more entertainment in the piazza - on Mexican cruises therewere jugglars, acrobats etc in the afternoon and evening. Such a beautiful space! Daily activities were lacking - why no destination lectureer on exploring the North Pole,or Vikings? Did not book any shore excursions with Princess - way over priced. Used NSB sight(only take PayPal for payment from USA) to book Flam RR since Flam sightwas sold out. Toured in each port independently - took private tours North Cape andSkjolden. Both ports were highlights.. Ice bar at Honning Svag was a hoot. Used Princess air for the guarantee but insisted on non stop flights I wanted not theconnections they tried to sell. Embarkation was best ever - took later time and justwalked off ship with no lining up et. book Flam RR since Flam sight was sold out. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
I chose this cruise because of the itinerary. The only good thing about the cruise. Trips off the ship were far too expensive. One trip Princess was charging 149 US Dollars and it was done locally for 52 US Dollars. A rather large profit ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the itinerary. The only good thing about the cruise. Trips off the ship were far too expensive. One trip Princess was charging 149 US Dollars and it was done locally for 52 US Dollars. A rather large profit for Princess! The times of arrival and departure in port was changed from that on itinerary so lost time in some of the ports. Food in food court on deck 16 was awful. Dining room food was ok. I was expecting better. Service in dining room was a bit haphazard. Entertainment was poor in the theatre. The 3 comedians told the same joke only slightly different which I had heard more than twenty years ago. The rest of the entertainment could have been better. I found the ship overall was a bit dated and in need of refurbishing. Some areas were rather shabby. Leather seating in nightclub very worn. Will use a different cruise line next time I want to cruise. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Our first ever cruise with Princess - unfortunately it will probably be the last as a result of our overall impression of this ship and the company. Prior to departure, rumours were circulating on social media that the Crown Princess had ... Read More
Our first ever cruise with Princess - unfortunately it will probably be the last as a result of our overall impression of this ship and the company. Prior to departure, rumours were circulating on social media that the Crown Princess had been over-booked and that some passengers were being offered financial inducements to cancel at the last minute. We were not approached by Princess (or our TA), but it was a foretaste of what was to come - a seriously over-crowded sailing on a large ship, where queues and long waits were an everyday occurrence (and irritation). In the interests of balance there were some good points worthy of note before I come on to the bad points:- GOOD POINTS:- - Comfortable cabin: a good bed, slept well with no disturbance from outside. The aircon in the cabin worked well (though we had to leave on the lowest setting to keep cool enough, as we did not have a balcony). - Cabin steward was a very nice young lady who clearly worked hard and took a close interest in making sure we had everything we needed. - The ports we visited were very good / excellent. Even the weather was reasonable considering the high northerly latitudes reached - only one truly wet day (in Tromso). - The specialty dining options we tried (Crown Grill steakhouse and Sabatini Italian) were a very high standard with delicious food and a much more up-market, relaxed atmosphere than the congested main dining rooms. Unfortunately eating here makes a serious dent in your on-board account ($29 surcharge per person per meal). - The sailing was generally smooth or with only moderate motion (though often quite a lot of vibration) and we did not encounter sea-sickness at any point. BAD POINTS:- - "Anytime Dining" arrangements / organisation very restrictive and inflexible. We pre-booked the Anytime Dining option as our personal preference is to eat on our own not with a group of strangers every night. We'd assumed this would be similar to NCL's "Freestyle Dining" concept, but the problem Princess had was operating both Anytime and Traditional Dining models in parallel - it simply doesn't work when the ship is at full occupancy. Anytime diners were treated as second class citizens and either denied access to the dining rooms at certain times, forced to wait 30-40 minutes, or obliged to share with others (as per Traditional Dining). The only ways round this were to book a table at 08:00 am sharp every morning, or pay extra to eat in one of the specialty restaurants. - Breakfast and lunch options very limited. The only table service option for breakfast or lunch was the Botticelli restaurant (which inexplicably stopped operation at 09:00 - unreasonably early for those looking to catch up on some sleep while on holiday). The other two dining rooms (Da Vinci and Michelangelo) remained closed outside of dinner operating hours. The alternative was the hopelessly overcrowded buffet set-up (Horizon Court / Cafe Caribe) which was straight out of a school / works canteen, with plastic (!) plates and glasses and cheap-looking, lukewarm food. Seating was in high demand and people were forced to share whether they wanted to or not (unless you fancied sitting outside in the cold!) Really unacceptable. - Shore excursion cancellation (Flåm). Most spaces on official shore excursions were sold out on-line months in advance including the one we'd booked on the famous Flåm railway. Luckily we thought, we had a confirmed booking for the first such tour of the day. This entailed a very early start and a considerable wait in the Explorer's lounge while we were repeatedly told to wait while the ship completed docking procedures. We were assured there was no reason to worry as "...Princess had paid for the train and it would not leave without us...". After about an hour, a terse announcement came out over the ships' PA that our excursion was CANCELLED. As all subsequent trains were either fully booked (or would not make it back to the ship in time), we were left with a day in Flåm with virtually nothing to do. The shorex staff and the people at the front desk had no idea how to deal with this and simply refused to take our complaint seriously - they could not care less that this advertised highlight of the trip had been cancelled apparently due to an unexpectedly long passage into the fjord approaching Flåm. The tour was of course refunded but Princess stubbornly refused to offer any OBC or recompense of any kind. Tells me all I need to know about their customer service ethos. - Decor and general ambience. So many of the ship's public areas are dark and frankly rather oppressive - an excess of dark wood paneling, subdued lighting and small windows with heavy curtains which limited the opportunities to see the fabulous scenery, especially at mealtimes. It all looked rather dated to our tastes. We eventually discovered that the Adagio Bar and the Skywalkers lounge up top at the back of the ship were good places to curl up with a book or watch the view, but there is no drinks / snack service here during the day. We were even turfed out of these areas on one afternoon due to someone's unannounced "private party". - Poor at-sea activities and "enrichment" options. We were shocked by how bad the entertainment and activities were during our 4 sea days. The main options were bingo / trivia competitions, and sales promotions for art and back / foot pain treatments. None of which interested us remotely. We were hoodwinked into paying $10 each for a "wine-tasting" session which consisted of six small glasses of inferior, nondescript wine (the sort you can buy at Tesco in the UK for a fiver). This was accompanied by an embarrassingly poor commentary by members of staff who clearly knew very little about these wines or wine in general apart from what was written on their script. There was only one guest speaker in two weeks of cruising - Pete Best (the "fifth Beatle", who was interesting enough), no sign at all of Peter Shilton or the Midsommer Festival mentioned in the original pre-departure blurb from Princess. - Overly "Americanised" service / atmosphere. Despite Southampton being the start and finish of the trip it felt that we were cruising out of a US port. Staff had clearly been trained up for the US market: attempts made to remove dinner plates while we were having a short break from eating ("...you still working on that?"), coffee repeatedly offered at the same time as dessert, port info sheets bearing contact details of the US embassy in Norway (but not equivalent info for UK, Australian, Japanese guests) etc etc. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We chose this cruise (actually changing from another cruise line) because it had a stop in Le Havre and the Normandy beaches. The embarkation was one of the smoothest we had - no lines to speak of and on board in approx. 30 minutes. We ... Read More
We chose this cruise (actually changing from another cruise line) because it had a stop in Le Havre and the Normandy beaches. The embarkation was one of the smoothest we had - no lines to speak of and on board in approx. 30 minutes. We went with a Guarantee cabin and that was a mistake because we end up in the very front of the ship on deck 5. The location was fine most of the time but the noise as the ship left or docked or hit stronger waves was enough to keep one awake. The room itself did not allow for space on both sides of the bed, so one person always had to crawl into bed from the foot of it - that's the first time we've ever experienced such an arrangement, and one we didn't appreciate the lack of space! The service and wait-staff were excellent! They met our every need, from cabin steward to dining staff to passenger services! On the other hand, the food was definitely not up to par. We ended up eating in the World Market buffet most evenings because the selection in the dining rooms was very limited and not to our liking. We did eat in the Pinnacle Grill one evening, and the food there was very tasty! Most activities on board during sea days did not interest us. We did attend the shore information talks with Humberto and they were good - but we've had better on Princess. We attended 2 presentations by locals, and one of the was fine, but not beyond what we already knew about the port/location. The other one read his information to us, which made us wonder why he was chosen to do it. The ship provided transportation from the ship to towns in some ports where the distance was great (Dublin) but not in others (Edinburgh). In nearly all stops, there were locals at the port with information about their city and the local attractions. The disembarkation was again very smooth - we basically didn't have to wait at all and our luggage was available by the time we arrived in the building. I do have to mention that we did not stop in Guernsey for our fist port. The captain announced after the life boat drill on embarkation day that we would not stop there due to expected wind and waves. That was truly disappointing since we had read a great deal about the island! As a result, the ship did not leave Southampton at its scheduled 5:00 pm; it left at 2:30 am. Not much you can do when you've just gotten on board and you're not leaving at a time to see things during daylight! (Also, see the noise of leaving port above!! at 2:30 am!!) Wondered why he couldn't arrive at Cobh earlier or left on time or .......? Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We have traveled with our son, his wife and 3 children on 5 cruises. We choose large ships for the activities for the teenagers and preteen. The Caribbean Princess had a marvelous itinerary of the British Isles, but the ship needs a ... Read More
We have traveled with our son, his wife and 3 children on 5 cruises. We choose large ships for the activities for the teenagers and preteen. The Caribbean Princess had a marvelous itinerary of the British Isles, but the ship needs a makeover. It was very crowded. To sell out the cruise, the cabins are cheap but you are nickeled and dined for everything else. Entertainment was excellent, but one had to get seats 30 minutes before the show. The ports were very interesting. Shore excursions aside from Belfast with jail and Titanic and Mt. St. Michael were disappointing and overpriced. I would use Viator or arrange private guide. Shops on board did not offer much but they always seem to have big sales in the public rooms. Food was mediocre and tepid in regular dining room and buffet. Club section was much better, but we ate with our family for dinners. Service was excellent. Dress code is not enforced so one sees men in undershirts on formal nights. Our mini suite was rather ordinary. The towels were what one expects at a cheap motel. Enjoyed the folk dancing programs and the port briefings. The teenagers had a wonderful time but the 11 year old wasn't thrilled by his club. I was disappointed in the ship. Princess could do better. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We chose this cruise because of the Itinerary to the Baltics and because Crown Princess was our first cruise ship just after her Launch in 2006. We sailed in Jan 2007. Sadly the Crown has slipped badly. The ship is in desperate need ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the Itinerary to the Baltics and because Crown Princess was our first cruise ship just after her Launch in 2006. We sailed in Jan 2007. Sadly the Crown has slipped badly. The ship is in desperate need of a major refit and has seemingly hardly been touched since we set sail on her, and what few things have been changed are for the worse. For example our favourite bar - The Wheelhouse Bar has been partly transformed into a so called English Gastro Pub and it is a shambles. They have effectively destroyed the Wheelhouse bar in a quest for more money. The Theatre, Explorers, Club Fusion are all desperately in need of a major makeover. We ate in Bottocelli Dining Room on Fixed dining. Here food was good and well presented, hot and tasty, although service was at times slow owing to an apparent lack of staff with different second waiters being deployed to our table on a regular basis. The Horizon Buffet is to put it mildly a shambles. Cold plastic plates often issued out and at both breakfast and lunch food was often tepid. Even on sea days some server outlets were not open putting pressure on other server points. Entertainment was distinctly average. Only one guest speaker - James Cosmo of Games of Thrones Fame, a comedian, magician, female comedienne - Joe Little who sometimes struggled to keep her audience, a Superb Freddie Mercury Tribute from Steve Larkin, a female singer - Leanne Mitchell - first winner of The Voice and the Theatre Company singers and Dancers who were very good, however remember this was dispersed over 14 days. Other than quizzes it was more or less up to passengers to entertain crew with Karaoke. Bar prices were very high and then to add insult to injury a 15% surcharge was automatically added to all bar purchases. A disgrace. We purchased 2 photographs and were astonished to be charged $50 for 2 medium sixed portraits. We only did one ship tour - 2 days in St Petersburg. The tour was excellent but heavy going with lots of Churches, Museums, Palaces visited. On more than one occasion the port adviser gave out misleading and in fact incorrect information, presumably to get more people on ships tours. This was Gdynia for Gdansk. She stated that their were few taxis, no shuttle bus and no hop on hop off bus and also intimated that Gdynia was a boring town with little to recommend, We exited the port on foot to be met by a barrage of taxi drivers, Hop on bus Ticket Sellers and a Shuttle Bus service to town. We decided to walk into town which we accomplished in 30 minutes to be met by a delightfully pretty promenade with old ship including a Navy Destroyer, Spanish Type Galleon as well as other pleasure boats, a parade of Souvenir shops, a delightful beach, Big Wheel, an Aquarium as well as bars, cafeterias, restaurants and a host of shops. To sum up - a good cruise and a good ship that needs a lot of TLC and money to bring it back to her best - seats are in many areas dirty and worn. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We chose this cruise for its itenerary, which was perfect for us. We spent three days in London before embarking at Southampton; London was wonderful, and the food was excellent wherever we went. We used Smith's for Airports to travel ... Read More
We chose this cruise for its itenerary, which was perfect for us. We spent three days in London before embarking at Southampton; London was wonderful, and the food was excellent wherever we went. We used Smith's for Airports to travel from London to Southampton, and it was the best choice we could have made. Embarkation was easy, since we were in a mini-suite. For others, the lines were very long. Our cabin was very nice; we have sailed on Princess before and knew what to expect. However, there was a gooey smudge on the inside of our sliders when we embarked; it was never cleaned during our 14-day cruise. Food: main dining room was quite good, the horizon court buffet was awful, the Crab Shack (extra) was delicious, and Sabatini's (extra) was also delicious. We never tried the steak restaurant, and it looked empty most every night. Coffee: dreadful at the buffet, good (decaf) in the main dining room. If you want good coffee, get the coffee card and buy a decent cup. Pizza was just so-so. Activities were ok; nothing special. The entertainment was good, but the theater is too small; many nights we could not even get in. We took Hop-Off, Hop-On buses whenever we could; in most cases, you could just line up outside and charge it to your cruise card. Of course, in St. Petersburg, you MUST be on a cruise excursion (or other pre-booked excursion) to get off the ship and through customs. You cannot just go ashore alone without a visa, which you must have booked separately and well in advance. One huge complaint: before going to Gdansk, Poland, at the pre-event presentation, we were told that ground transportation was NOT good. It was 2 miles to the train station, and we were led to believe we would have to walk there to get a train or cabs, as Loie (the woman speaking) said cabs were very scarce at the port. So, many of us ran to book excursions through Princess, thinking we would not be able to get to Gdansk any other way. Well, lo and behold, there was a FREE SHUTTLE from the ship to the trains. Plus, there were many cabs available. Many of us were rankled; we were sold a bill of goods so that Princess could book excursions. I have to sadly agree with many others that Princess has really lowered its standards and value. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
This is our 3rd cruise with princess and was not up to the standard we are used to, ship is very tired looking and tatty in places. Our adapted Cabin had quite a few niggles with it, patio door windows were absolutely filthy, the chest of ... Read More
This is our 3rd cruise with princess and was not up to the standard we are used to, ship is very tired looking and tatty in places. Our adapted Cabin had quite a few niggles with it, patio door windows were absolutely filthy, the chest of draws had all odd knobs as handles and some draws were almost impossible to open, the balcony was covered in paint splashes and the blue plastic floor was sticking up in places. The Staff were extremely friendly and helpfull, plenty of room to move around all areas with my electric scooter, but had to be carefull with the lift doors as they shut very quickly catching many passengers out. The Entertainment was hit and miss some very good others below average. Hozion court buffet was the biggest let down the food was not paticulaly hot and by the time you had chosen all and return to the tables is warm maybe Luke warm at best.Desserts were the same most days occasionally a fruit crumble appeared but that ran out quite quickly and was replaced by bread pudding every time. Room service was fairly good when they managed to get the order right. Ports of call were very efficient but the chose of accessible travel options offered on the advertised princess excursions were very very poor. However princess cruises managed to meet our needs with alternative vehicles . Crown princess is in need of a upgrade refit . We have booked another cruise on the Sapphire Princess as we enjoy the freedom the ships give to the disabled,fingers crossed it is in better condition. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Was in London for another event so decided to take this short cruise. Started out badly - delayed departure - 10.30 pm from Southampton. When arrived even later than promised in Zeebruge, we had to line up for 2 hours for customs & ... Read More
Was in London for another event so decided to take this short cruise. Started out badly - delayed departure - 10.30 pm from Southampton. When arrived even later than promised in Zeebruge, we had to line up for 2 hours for customs & immigration. At 3.45pm exiting now too late for Bruges. Helsingborg cancelled due to "high seas" and bad for tender. Then had to line up for one hour for Norway - in meantime Captain was waxing poetic about the great views as we sailed out of Copenhagen - which we could not enjoy since we were all lined up !! Captain was advertised as being Welsh by Princess - he likely thought he was Dylan Thomas - but to me was more like Richard Burton the morning after. A total disaster from start to finish. A long way to travel to be treated like Princess does not care. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Cruise on Crown Princess 27th May, 2017 to 3rd June, 2017 We have sailed with Princess some years ago and decided to give them another go. We arrived at Southampton terminal around 1130am and because we were Elite we were checked in ... Read More
Cruise on Crown Princess 27th May, 2017 to 3rd June, 2017 We have sailed with Princess some years ago and decided to give them another go. We arrived at Southampton terminal around 1130am and because we were Elite we were checked in straight away. We were then shown to a separate area and tea coffee and nibbles were offered. We then boarded around 12 noon and our staterooms were already, we went up to the Horizon Court for lunch and when we returned our luggage was already by our stateroom door. The itinerary was Southampton, Zeebrugge, Copenhagen, Helsingborg, Oslo, Southampton. Total distance sailed of 1815 nautical miles. We did not manage to get into Helsingborg due to very high winds. Due to IT problems we could not sail at 4pm but managed to get everything sorted by 1030pm only to sail from Southampton and then return for a medical emergency. We made it to Zeebrugge very late the following day. The good points of this cruise were the crew, they were all very professional and they could not do enough for you. Our cabin steward Klaydon was excellent and kept our cabin up to the standard we had enjoyed on other cruises. The condition of the ship, in our opinion was good, we did not see, like others have said, frayed carpets or stained chairs. There seems to be a lot of new carpets in stairwells and corridors. Our stateroom, we were told by our Seward, was due to be refurbished on the next batch, others had already been done. For a ship 11 years old we felt that it was in very good condition. The production shows we enjoyed, the only one we were disappointed in was the new show Magic To Do, which we thought went on a bit and got rather boring towards the end. Children’s facilities were very good and kept them entertained on sea days and at other times, considering there was about 600 children on board they were mostly very well behaved. Sabatini’s was excellent, food was hot, for the first time this cruise, and the wait staff were very efficient and could not do enough for you, well worth the extra 29 dollars per head. Crown Grill was a different matter, the food was good, but the waiter we had needed more training, and customer service, he managed to get our order wrong and could not even get the wine right. He took forever to serve us and in the end we left before desert as we had been in there more 2 and a half hours. My main adverse comments must be about the food, in all venues, apart from Sabatini’s. Food was never hot and served either warm or sometimes cold, even after asking for it to hot. I do realise that they have to serve a lot of people but something should be done to serve food at a correct temperature. The Horizon Buffet was very basic, and on sea days, when all passengers were on board, they only had either one side open or closed the Cafe Caribe, this meant long queues to get food and long walks to take it to your tables, something management should look at. At no point during the cruise was the dining room open for lunch, a great mistake. We felt that Princess had cut too many corners, especially the food budget, who ever thought that at the Captains Gala Dinner, that a Beef Burger would be on the menu!! Drinks were a little pricey and when you added the 15% gratuity were a lot dearer than other lines. Crooners bar was our bar of choice and the staff, Grace and Stanley, certainly know their jobs and were excellent bar staff. Overall we enjoyed the cruise, but feel that Princess need to up their game regards food and the temperature of the food. Would we sail again on Crown Princess, the answers to this is Yes we would, but would like to see standards improved somewhat. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
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