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Sail Date: August 2019
I chose the cruise for the Panama Canal Crossing and Costa Rica destination. The cruise was good and service was excellent. However there was false advertising: 1) The ad says India food available. When we boarded we were told that ... Read More
I chose the cruise for the Panama Canal Crossing and Costa Rica destination. The cruise was good and service was excellent. However there was false advertising: 1) The ad says India food available. When we boarded we were told that India food is available only for dinner and not for breakfast and lunch. In the dinners also India food was missing for 3 out of 9 dinners. We were to request repeatedly to get Indian food. The picture attached shows a full platter of Indian food, while in reality there was only one curry and rice. The Indian food tasted like out of can. Greatly disappointed. 2) The ad says Rocky and Rollers Band (refer to the picture attached). The band was changed to some other cheaper band and saxophone and no communication. This was clear false advertising and disappointing. 3) The deck 9 & 10 were leaking water. The ship needs a make over. 4) For the Grand Cayman 7 mile beach excursion, no snorkels were provided and we were to rent the equipment on the beach. 50% of the excursion fees was refunded after several complaints. 5) Cabin needs makeover. Refer to Cabin review. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We have taken 21 cruises in the past 6 years. This was our first and probably our last on Carnival. First I will discuss the positive features of our cruise. We were on the 14 day cruise out of NY going to the Panama Canal. The food was ... Read More
We have taken 21 cruises in the past 6 years. This was our first and probably our last on Carnival. First I will discuss the positive features of our cruise. We were on the 14 day cruise out of NY going to the Panama Canal. The food was excellent. We had lobster tails 2 nights and filet mignon on 1 night. The dinner choices were excellent! The had a brunch several mornings where Filet Mignon was also offered! The buffet had many choices. Good burgers, Tacos, Burittos and Pizza and Delli sandwiches. Pizza was offered 24 hours a day which was a plus. As far as entertainment goes the shows were good. We also saw a couple comedy shows which were average. The plus on this cruise were the DJ Xtreme and The Flying Scotsman the cruise director. They were amazing! They were by far the best DJ and the best cruise director we ever experienced on a cruise! As far as the cabin goes we were in 7335 an inside cabin. It was spacious for an inside cabin. Plenty of closet and storage space! Great lighting. Those are our positives regarding the cruise. Now for the negatives. The room was warm. We like to always cool down the room as soon as we arrive. After a day we knew that would not be possible. The thermostat was on the coldest setting yet it was warm and stuffy. We called customer service many times. By the way most times they do not answer their phones and you need to go to from desk. They checked the room and left us a note that the temperature was in the normal range set by Carnival. (74 is normal). To us its warm! Other cruises we can get it down to 68-70. about 5 days into the cruise we complained again about the heat to a night person at the desk. She said she will send someone. Miraculously they did an adjustment and we were happy for several day as the temperature was a constant 68.2! That didnt last for too many days! The temperature rose again to 74 and of course we complained and Carnival said its normal! We then gave up. The temperature around the ship is very uneven. For example, the dining room was cool yet the comedy club would be stifling hot. Even the comedian made a joke about the heat! Obviously the ship has not corrected their air conditioning problem! . The next issue was the plumbing. Its still in bad shape. Our toilet would make loud gurgling sounds at any time of the day for no apparent reason! Once it sounded like it was going to explode! We taped the noise on our phone and showed it to customer service and they just shrugged. A few times the toilet did not flush at all for an hour or 2 nd they start working again. We heard an entire line of toilets were not working for a good part of the day one day. As for the public bathrooms, they were dirty. Carnival cut corners not cleaning bathrooms as often as needed. Locks on bathroom stalls were broken. toilets didnt flush, many times paper towels was missing to hold the door open when leaving. I wish i had a list of all the times there was no soap in the soap dispenser in the mens room! The next problem was the condtion of the ship. Its obvious they fixed the atrium and updated many areas of the ship. But many areas were left in poor condition. There was rust in many areas of the ship. On deck 9 near the pool the floor was all rusted out, there were plastic buckets collecting the water dripping from deck 10 and the grating near the bathrooms was loose and people were constantly tripping on it! On deck 11 we sat by the pool and after a rain the water was running down the rusted stairway in buckets. On deck 9 the metal moulding was being held together with masking tape! Service in the dining room was bad. We had a "senior waiter" for most of the cruise for dinner. He would forget a dish here and there til we finally gave up asking... butter was not given even though we requested it twice. I asked for a club soda with desert every night. I received it maybe 5 out of 14 nights! Courses would be served fairly fast until dessert,.Then came the lull... we would wait maybe 30 minutes for dessert. Teaspoons were not to be had. They were not in our place setting and we had to ask every night. No one ever came to clean up the crumbs on our table after the main course. We would just do it ourselves. Breakfast service was no better. you had to ask many times to receive the items ordered. The condition of the ship as bad as previously described. The entrance to the limelight club had this red carpet that curled. Trip hazard but no one cared! There were broken ice machines in the buffet, electronic door out of order to name a few other problems. Guest services was clueless. For the most part they all were pleasant and courteous. But they did NOT answer phones when you called from the room! we asked them several questions at the front desk and they rarely had the answers. Obviously they were poorly trained about the ship features and events. Norovirus. This ship is an accident waiting to happen. There is a severe lack of hand sanitizers. Soap dispensers in the bathrooms are empty many times. Lack of paper towels to open bathroom doors. The crew is NOT proactive to prevent norovirus. Also the choice of tv stations was bad. We did not have CNBC or Bloomberg. We did not have CNN or any equivalent news station. The tv did not function properly. One station you could barely hear and another station would be blasting! To sum up, the food and dj and cruise director were great. The ship was in bad shape and crew was not properly trained. The ship probably need another week or two in drydock and was taken out too soon for the sake of profits. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We got disable-room , hard to get ,we like 14 days cruise. And was done over. Our balcony was not for wheelchair or scooters ,very narrow ,and doors were old ,we also got locked out .The room was very nice ,clean,great handicap-room . ... Read More
We got disable-room , hard to get ,we like 14 days cruise. And was done over. Our balcony was not for wheelchair or scooters ,very narrow ,and doors were old ,we also got locked out .The room was very nice ,clean,great handicap-room . Spa was disappointing ,thermal loungers were in a small room ,only 6 ,no other chairs. Would not give us a refund ,waste of our money. The Flying scotsman was the Best ,the shows were great ,food was good. Room service was good. Embarking was confusing ,the staff did not know how to help. We went to the Musterstaion and were told it was on 3 deck ,not there ,hard to get back on the elevators ,when we got there ,it was over. They were bringing luggage to the rooms ,so most of the elevators were closed. Disembarking was a nightmare , we waiting over 3 hours before we got somebody to take us out with the wheelchair. Was so disorganized ,they did not have the staff to help the handicap . Everybody was so upset. SO the cruise was disappointing ,because the staff was not trained to do their job. Not going back on the Carnival . Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
As you will read from many other reviewers; this was "the worse" Princess cruise I have been on -- and I have been on many, many Princess cruises. Something was terribly wrong with 50% of the interactions on this cruise. To ... Read More
As you will read from many other reviewers; this was "the worse" Princess cruise I have been on -- and I have been on many, many Princess cruises. Something was terribly wrong with 50% of the interactions on this cruise. To be fair, I would like to give you a balanced overview. THE GOOD: Our room steward "Randy" was THE BEST we have ever had. He should be training for Princess on how to take care of Guests. The International Cafe people were very friendly and helpful - but they need more staff for the service - everyone goes there. Two casino people really stood out (Hans and Mario) - they were very professional and helpful to guests (more on the casino later) I liked the new market place for eating and for the layout, colors and seating - the food -- that will be later too. The Crown Grill - excellent Chilean Sea Bass and steak for others. Best food and service. The fitness center - the dry dock brought mostly new equipment. I'm always at the gym on shore and the cruises - they did an excellent job here. And, there were 45+ people in the gym at all time -- just goes to show - if you build it, they will come ;) Traditional dining - good fish, nice salmon, excellent asparagus. THE BAD Customer service desk - clueless people, no help or service. It seemed that half the crew must have been new to the cruise industry and all the guest were the guinea pigs. And they were just plain rude at times. You would be talking with them about a problem - the phone would ring and they would cut you off and spend 5-10 minutes on the phone before coming back to you. Casino manager ( I won't mention names - I do have them, but it's not worth mentioning) shut the casino craps table down around 11 or `11:30 and forced everyone to leave - over and over - who does that? (more on the craps table under horrible) Drinks - every night the same thing at the craps table - hour to an hour and a half before they would come to ask if you wanted a drink. If you wanted one before that, you had to stop gambling and go to the bar to buy one. Why would they do that? The food in the new market place - average - and that is being generous. I did like their sandwiches for lunch. Food over all here was far below what you would normally expect from Princess Cruises. I will say their salads were fresh ! Traditional dining - this is the sad part - 50% of the time the meal was good, the other 50% of the time - I couldn't eat the food. The beef stroganoff - couldn't cut the meat with a steak knife - much less chew it. Braised beef - let's just call it braised fat. Their steaks - I wanted medium rare - it took them four times - each one was rarer than the previous one. People at my table were "mooing" because it was such a joke. The 4th steak was perfect. Their lamb - one bite was all I could do - so bad. The excursion for snorkeling at our 2nd port was nice - but the boat was way too small for the number of people who went on the excursion. THE HORRIBLE: Two main things stand out that really ruined this cruise. As others have said, the excursions were ruined for people and Costa Rica was the worse. Hundreds of people missed their buses because Princess wouldn't let you off the ship - seriously - they kept people in the Princess Theatre with no stickers or organization - when they finally let people out - row by row, dozens of buses had already left. So yes, hundreds of people missed their excursions in Costa Rica !! They reimbursed everyone - but it was the one big excursion I wanted to go on. People were standing in the heat of the day on the dock while they waited. Most excursions were cut in half for their time. Someone mentioned that this happened near the beginning of the cruise and people talked about it for the next week and a half - that is an understatement - people were furious - including me. I will give credit to Gary McNeil - he owned up immediately for all the problems and took full responsibility. Princess should be happy to have people like him. Craps table in the casino - okey, something is up with this and Princess needs to look into the issue. The table was "re-done" in the dry dock and new dice were added. 14 days of playing and every player lost every night. The dice would land and bounce at 90 degree angles. The dice would stop rolling and then "suddenly" flip over one more time. Many players there were commenting on what was up with the dice and table. We've played craps for years in Vegas and on cruise ships. NEVER have I seen the dice act so weird AND have 100% of the people loose at the table for 14 days straight. I'm not accusing them of anything - BUT - they need to look into this. We will not be playing craps on our next cruise with Princess. This is serious folks. FINAL WRAP UP: We did not come back "RENEWED" you will find from other reviewers, this cruise really hurt Princess's reputation in so many ways. Which is sad for me, I really liked them a lot until this cruise :( Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
First of all, the employees were awesome and the onboard entertainment was very good; otherwise, we were very disappointed. Our room was an inside room on the 10th floor. There were loud noises from the ship all night long. We never got ... Read More
First of all, the employees were awesome and the onboard entertainment was very good; otherwise, we were very disappointed. Our room was an inside room on the 10th floor. There were loud noises from the ship all night long. We never got a good nights sleep. The noises were NOT from other rooms, it was definitely from the ship. The food was also disappointing. We had 1 evening it was okay. Getting off the ship for excursions was a nightmare as they stopped running the elevators during that time. People were backed up for floors trying to get off. Getting back on was fine. They changed the time on one of our excursions without letting us know and would not work with us to be sure we were able to make it. We didn't and lost our money for it. Overall, we were very disappointed... I would not suggest this cruise!! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
We picked this cruise because it traversed the Panama canal and had ports of call we had not been to. We were very disappointed in NCL. The crew ranged from outright hostility to complete indifference. The menu was not varied enough for ... Read More
We picked this cruise because it traversed the Panama canal and had ports of call we had not been to. We were very disappointed in NCL. The crew ranged from outright hostility to complete indifference. The menu was not varied enough for such a lengthy cruise, and the food only mediocre at best. And they up charge for everything. This has not been my experience in other lines (Royal Caribbean, Holland America). The day before the cruise ended we didn't even get any disembarkation information or luggage tags. I had to go back up to the service desk and even then was only directed to a table with a few colored tags and no information. Ports of call: I really liked Cartagena Columbia and Costa Rica. Guatemala - the closest area of interest is 90 minutes one way from the cruise dock. Further, it was Passion day, so none of the tours were going into the city proper, they would drop you off outside the city. NCL not only didn't cancel the tours, but they didn't reduce the price on them either. Needless to say, we explored the market at the dock and got back on the ship. The entertainment on the ship was a mixed bag. Jersey Boys was great, as was the Beatles tribute band. Havana was ok, but not great. Aside from the shows, a lot of the "entertainment" listed in the freestyle daily were events trying to sell you something, limited to certain guests, or outright cost money. It just seemed like the planning and running of the daily ship events was so poor. This isn't their first rodeo, I expected better. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
Chose this for an extended family cruise (3 suites) for our 50th anniversary. Panama Canal on our bucket list. The cabin was nice, cabin steward attentive, and the restaurants were OK but not something to write home about. Entertainment ... Read More
Chose this for an extended family cruise (3 suites) for our 50th anniversary. Panama Canal on our bucket list. The cabin was nice, cabin steward attentive, and the restaurants were OK but not something to write home about. Entertainment meh. We did enjoy the talks about the Canal. Customer service desk personnel were unacceptable and mostly just angered us by blaming ship problems on us (it was somehow our fault that the batteries in the cabin door locks failed twice). The Bistro restaurant was our first choice (we did 4 extra-cost dining experiences). The main dining rooms (Versailles and Aqua were OK, but the food was only OK. Strangely, the onion soup at the Bistro was excellent but really poor at both Versailles and Aqua). Tepanyaki restaurant gave a very good show; food was like Benihana. There's a big current focus on using hand sanitizers--understandable given norovirus outbreaks. There was one "washy washy" girl (as they called themselves) in the Garden Cafe who made the most of this--super friendly and entertaining. Kudos to Hannah. Promises that we would somehow be compensated for 2 days without toilets, 1 day without water, and having to lock our door fail twice proved to be empty promises, However, I did have a long talk with the head of hotel operations, and he seemed genuinely concerned about our experiences. By the way, it wasn't just our room that had major plumbing problems. The 12th deck bathroom immediately above our room overflowed into the hallway and many other cabins suffered without toilets for some days (including one of our daughters' cabins). The internet only worked sporadically and was basically down for most of 2 days in a row. The average age of passengers was noticeably older than previous cruises we've been on. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Entertainment was terrible. Movies were for teenagers. Activities were for 3 year olds. Cabins are clean. Couldn’t get off in Nicaragua because of wind. Smoking area on 15 is uncovered, and I got hit 3 times with chairs sliding in the ... Read More
Entertainment was terrible. Movies were for teenagers. Activities were for 3 year olds. Cabins are clean. Couldn’t get off in Nicaragua because of wind. Smoking area on 15 is uncovered, and I got hit 3 times with chairs sliding in the wind..and it’s also a walking deck. People were complaining we were smoking up there. The indoor lounge was packed with smokers, and the ventilation was poor. No sports bar. You had to be in your room to watch sports on T.V. Food was good in the buffet and had great staff. Anytime dinning you were given a beeper to be called when a table was ready. It took about an hour, so we ended up eating in the buffet everyday. The Coral Princess is one of the Princess fleet that I will never go on again. Felt like I was steerage. Bought cigarettes on ship 3times and each time, they were a different price. Check your receipts Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
This was one of the worst Princess cruises I have ever been on. The music in the lounges was old and tired and lacked any type of variety, the onboard activities were sad, to say the least. Princess really needs to get past the love boat ... Read More
This was one of the worst Princess cruises I have ever been on. The music in the lounges was old and tired and lacked any type of variety, the onboard activities were sad, to say the least. Princess really needs to get past the love boat theme, there is a reason that show is no longer on the air. The cabin was as expected. The production shows and comedians were good. I would like to see princess do what Carvinal has adopted with their comedians and have an early G-rated show and then a show later that is more R-rated. No sports type bar on this ship and no attempt to cover the NCAA championships anywhere other than on TV in the cabins. As far as service goes, it was up to par, but the waits of up to 60 min to get seated using anytime dining was anything but acceptable. Best food on the ship, in my opinion, was at the Grill. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
After working on the Celebrity Zenith 2004-2005, possibly I'm being too critical? This was my first cruise as a passenger and 2005 was a long time ago, but I wouldn't think that service would be so bad on this cruise. It seemed ... Read More
After working on the Celebrity Zenith 2004-2005, possibly I'm being too critical? This was my first cruise as a passenger and 2005 was a long time ago, but I wouldn't think that service would be so bad on this cruise. It seemed like many of the crew were crabby all the time if not downright rude. I prepaid my gratuity and the only person who deserved it was my room steward plus, we gave him an extra $100. I didn't understand that I could get some of that money refunded by going to Guest Services. Also, I don't drink much and didn't get any drink or dinner packages and didn't understand that I could book a room that had some of these perks. I also didn't know that every single time you ordered a drink, a coffee, anything there was a 20% gratuity automatically added to the price. Big shock. Also, who knew how dumb I could be booking my first cruise by myself through the agent, but I didn't ask enough questions. The food was good. I paid to go to Cagney's and the food was excellent. The food in the buffet got real old after a while. It seemed that every restaurant or bar we went to we were ignored and sat for a long time before someone came to the table even when it wasn't busy. The balcony stateroom was very nice. We went to one show and it was fun. The worst part of the cruise were the ports. I know cruise line has their own private Caye, but I didn't know that Costa Maya was owned by several cruise lines and it was packed. I almost started having panic attacks because people vendors were on us like crazy, We had something to eat which was supposed to be Mexican food, because we were in Mexico and it was some crappy American/Mexican. The bill was $70. for 2 meals and 2 drinks. The food was cold and horrible and I didn't have any qualms telling them about it. We did make it to the beach in Mahahual which was nice. I was extremely disappointed in most of the ports, Limon was filthy and I don't remember being in that port before when I worked on the ship or maybe we never got off there because of that. Roatan was beautiful, but we accidentally got in a tour cab and we wanted to go to the Grand Roatan Hotel West Bay Beach to get away from the crowds, but it didn't work that way. We still found a nice part of the beach that was semi-quiet and didn't have to pay for a chair and drinks were reasonably priced. The Panama Canal was nice. We did a zip line somewhere, but I have a short memory and don't remember where it was at. The worst thing about the trip is that I went with an old friend who I hadn't seen for a long time. She's a vegetarian, complained a lot, she got sick. So because I was so unfulfilled by the cruise, I just booked another one to Bermuda for May 19th on the Norwegian Escape ALL BY MYSELF! I cruised back and forth between New York and Bermuda every week for almost my whole 8 month contract so I pretty much know where things are. It will be the first time docking at the Dockyard since we docked in Hamilton. I can't wait! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this cruise to see the Panama Canal, which was the highlight and a great experience, for the family. Boat seemed aged, every thing costs an arm and a leg, and bathrooms are very small. This was a family cruise with kids, but ... Read More
We chose this cruise to see the Panama Canal, which was the highlight and a great experience, for the family. Boat seemed aged, every thing costs an arm and a leg, and bathrooms are very small. This was a family cruise with kids, but there were very few kids on the ship. The demographic is very old, so lines are slow and the entertainment is suited for that generation. Disappointed with Princess, will not take a cruise with them again. Some of the staff were a rude on disembarkation day. Food was okay, but got a little tiring after awhile. I do want to not that generally the staff was pleasant and amenable. The ports of call were just okay. Jamaica was probably our least favorite would avoid it. Our favorite being Grand Cayman with very little hassle and great port experience. Would suggest that if you plan on taking this cruise expect not to be overwhelmed, but under whelmed. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
In 2015, Princess refit this boat and added space for about 300 more people by shrinking the cabins. Staff was leaned. Restaurants were not expanded. Cabins were shrunk. The results we experienced were as follows: - Poor food ... Read More
In 2015, Princess refit this boat and added space for about 300 more people by shrinking the cabins. Staff was leaned. Restaurants were not expanded. Cabins were shrunk. The results we experienced were as follows: - Poor food service in all venues. ( Time of service, Replenishment, Quality, Ambiance,Noise). One waiter and an assistant handled 22 people in our area. We missed shows due to long wait times as a table close to us gorged on 4 lobster tails each at one dinner and staff was run crazy trying to keep up as our table waited to get served at all. - Meat came out overcooked. I sent my lamb back 3 times until the Head Waiter intervened and brought me a properly cooked piece. - The buffet restaurant became a better option than fine dining. Food was properly cooked with ample seasoning. However, it was crowded and loud. - 2 couples in our group tried the Crab Pot. It was waterlogged and inedible. Fortunately they were given their money back. - Anytime dining resulted in us almost sitting on top of other couples with no option for privacy. I have eaten in MacDonald's with more space between tables. - No cabin seating other than the bed. Our room did not match the picture online. Carpet and furniture were worn and resembled a 2 star interstate hotel. - Slow inconsistent room cleaning due to 1 room attendant handling 17 rooms. Do not expect a towel animal on this cruise. You are lucky to get a towel. - Staff unable or unwilling to resolve issues. Need to find a Senior Officer in order to get any resolution. Promised refunds then are never processed. They will say anything to avoid actually dealing with the issue. They would not allow me to escalate my issues. I had to find out who was in charge of an area and track them down myself. Seemed as if staff was either untrained or burned out. - No answer on room service and dining reservation lines. Waited over 15 minutes in one case and gave up. - Internet is time based and a ripoff. Of 300 purchased minutes, was only able to actually use 100. Do not buy this option unless you constantly want to be scolded by the Internet Manager for not logging off. Found out later that even if you log out, the slow service will keep you logged in wasting your time. I was promised a refund after submitting a complaint. it never appeared on my final bill. - Ports are on the yet undeveloped sides of islands. Tours then take 65% of the allotted time for travel leaving little time to enjoy sites. Colon is a slum. Falmouth has no amenities. Porto Limon has about 8 streets and is mostly undeveloped as of yet. Used to be a Banana Port. Only options for the independent traveler if you do not book a tour are the fake tourist shops in the port buildings. Only Cartagena and Georgetown presented opportunities other than tours for exploring the island. -Ship itself is in need of another update (Carpets worn, Furniture worn, Elevators break frequently.) - Fitness area is cramped with no windows. - The My Princess app is not aligned with the paper Princess Patter. It is not user friendly. - Announcements cannot be heard in the rooms. You have to open the doors to hear and often cannot hear most of the content. This is a safety issue. Only positives we hit on the cruise were the service staff themselves. Most of the Waiters, Bartenders, and Room Stewards were warm and friendly often more helpful than management. We are young active Seniors. Ship activities seemed to be focused on an older , less mobile demographic. Napkin Folding was not high on our agenda. The Cruise Director while flamboyant was not a good fit. It did not seem that this ship was designed for those with mobility issues. Long elevator waits, crowded elevators, and malfunctioning elevators forced those with mobility issues to use steps. We have cruised throughout the world on three other lines. This was by far the worst cruise we have ever taken. We left more stressed than we arrived. We will never cruise Princess again! It seemed to us that Princess was stuck in the past and no longer innovative. Ship and systems were designed to put profit over quality. Our gift for being a past customer was an invitation only presentation on new cruises. On other ships we would have had a Captain's reception not a sales speech. Read Less
28 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Two years ago, my wife and I with three other couples enjoyed a GREAT cruise on this ship. Accordingly, another couple and ourselves chose to repeat our positive previous experience with this 16 day cruise. Spoiler Alert- Big big ... Read More
Two years ago, my wife and I with three other couples enjoyed a GREAT cruise on this ship. Accordingly, another couple and ourselves chose to repeat our positive previous experience with this 16 day cruise. Spoiler Alert- Big big MISTAKE! Very little worked on this so called "Luxury Experience" . It is quite obvious that the "bean counters" at Regent have decided to squeeze every single dollar out of every single cruise and then let the customer "suffer" their decisions. The problems began with the so called "Free" Airfare. This is nothing more then a marketing ploy as the cruise fare is increased by $ 300 per couple if you decide to take their "Free" airfare. Regent's response, when questioned, it that if you do not take the "Free" Airfare they will credit $ 150 pp. So much for the "Free" Airfare!. We decided to upgrade our flight to LAX via First Class @ an upcharge of $ 699 pp. When we finally received our flight information we found that Regent had booked 4 Senior Citizens to fly out of Miami on a 6:30AM flight to Chicago! Yes... fly to Chicago in mid-winter! We would have to get up at 3 AM in the morning to try and catch that flight. Really! When we objected, our travel agent finally had Regent offer us a 9:30 flight from Miami to Orlando and then to LAX. Somewhat better but that "new" flight was @ a $350 per couple upcharge! We declined and made our own First Class flight to LAX. Regent included a one night stay at the" Beverly Wilshire" Hotel which was fine. After checking in we were told that Regent had a "Hospitality Suite" available for all information about the next days travel to the ship. The so called "Hospitality Suite" offered NOTHING in the way of either Food or drink! Not even a bottle of water! The Regent "representative" could answer none of our questions except to say that our luggage should be ready to be picked up at 7:30 AM and we should meet in a Hotel Ballroom @ 11:15 AM. The "free" included breakfast was not offered in the Hotel's restaurant but instead was a buffet-style "Holiday-Inn Express" type of breakfast. Shame on "Regent" for that! The buses to the ship did not even arrive until 1:30 in the afternoon! Regent"representative offered little information except to wait. Arriving at the pier involved another l o n g wait. Once on the ship we again had to wait even though our quarters were supposed to be ready at 1:30 PM. No apologies were offered for the delay! We heard through the grapevine that the ship was inspected by the Coast Guard that day and experienced some "difficulties". In addition, many of the crew's contracts had expired and they were leaving and a new crew had come onboard. Many of the "new" crew were in-experienced and it showed. They just did not know what to do. Breakfast in "Compass Rose" took close to a hour and 45 minutes. Two years ago at breakfast, you were immediately served juice and coffee/tea and a server came right offer and offered Muffins/Pastries. Now, we waited and waited and waited. Finally, we were served Coffee/Tea and then waited some more to juice. The server offering pastries/muffins made only a single pass at the table and did not return. Each morning we had to ask our server what the Breakfast "special" was. They either did not know or were instructed not to offer that information. Orders are transcribed via Tablets and mistakes (missing orders) were common. Coffee refills had to be requested. An order of Smoked Salmon and a Bagel resulted in being presented with a single small scoop of cream cheese. You had to request more cream cheese or ask for a triple serving of it when ordering. Head Waiters tried very very hard but were totally overcome3 by problems/issues with the kitchen and the inexperienced staff! Breakfast service at "Compass Rose" was overall a failure! Our quarters were excellent as was our Butler and Steward! Kudo's to them! Dinner at "Compass Rose" matched that of Breakfast except the food quality overall was fair at best. We dined 5 nights at the "Pacific Rim" Restaurant and overall both the food and service was excellent. The steakhouse. "Prime" featured quality food and excellent service also. As to the French "Chartruese"... forgetabout it! Poor food and even worse execution. Service was even worse as demonstrated by our request for Onion Soup. Both "Chartruese" and "Prime" share a kitchen with two separate lines working. Onion Soup is offered at "Prime". Two of use requested Onion soup at "Chartruese" and were told NO!!!. No exceptions..!! Way to go Regent! We never went back to "Chartruese" with their poor food. As to the cutbacks- portion sizes have been cut back... obvious to us was the fact that previously when ice cream was ordered as a desert, you received 3 scoops plus a cigar shaped cookie (a "Pirouette"". Now, only 2 scoops and no cookie! Cost savings are now the norm and not the exception as to both the quality and quantity of the food. An example of the cost cutting is the fact that on one night dinner was ONLY served on the pool deck as a buffet. ALL other Restaurants were closed so either eat at the buffet or order room service. There is little question that this "move" by Regent saves them money overall. At dinner, I like to be served and help myself to a buffet. Overall, the crew is very very nice and helpful. However, here again, Regent drops the ball. One night a notice was placed on our bed that "Painting and Varnishing" of our deck were take place the next day. We returned to our room and noted one crewman was entering our cabin with a paint bucket/varnish materials. We followed him in and noted another crewman working on our deck and they finished shortly afterwards. However, they had left the doors leading to the deck open, so our quarters were both hot and humid as well as smelling from the paint/varnish. I called to complain and was told it would not happen again. Two days later, in the late afternoon, my wife was napping, and I was shaving. Our curtains were open and I then noted a crewman on our deck, varnishing. I chased him away and again complained that our privacy had been compromised. I received an apology again but clearly this is no way to treat a passenger. I do not expect perfection in an imperfect world. However, if I am paying top dollar for a cruise experience, ( over $ 30,000 in this case) , I do expect more then we received from "Regent" on this cruise. In speaking to other repeat "Regent" passengers on this cruise, I found my experiences not to be that unusual. The conclusion reached appeared to that "Regent" has changed... sadly, not for the better... Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
As frequent travellers, we are used to backpacking, expeditions, and vacations in 1 to 5 stars resorts, all inclusive or not, on all continents, but we never travelled with a large cruises ship. Yes, we had preconceptions about ... Read More
As frequent travellers, we are used to backpacking, expeditions, and vacations in 1 to 5 stars resorts, all inclusive or not, on all continents, but we never travelled with a large cruises ship. Yes, we had preconceptions about cruises, on their misuse of obsolete maritime transport laws to create tax free tourist resorts. Or their bypass of immigration laws and hiring cheap labour from around the world. However, listening to enthusiastic cruise adepts, we expected that this trip will made us change our minds. On the positive side, we found the international staff very kind and helpful. But we did not meet many Spanish speaking staff. This HAL cruise surprised us by the very similar customers aboard: mostly white couples in their seventies. As cosmopolites, somewhat younger, we enjoy more age and racial diversity, and it was strange to be in such finely targeted crowd. There was a double talk when it comes to environmental creeds, which are emphasized by HAL especially when it comes to save money for the operation, like to remind you avoid changing your towels frequently. The plastic water bottles sold in your cabin are from Europe. Fortunately, there is little plastics items used for the food service. Food is not supplied locally, everything came from US, for the whole cruise. Quite some paper spoiled with the leaflets advertising for the shops aboard. To be serious about environmental virtues, we should bear in mind that this form of sea transport use four time more fuel per passenger than a modern airplane. The 750 litres of fuel used by passenger for this 2 week cruise correspond to what I use a year with a car. And worse, after the booking, I had the feeling to be framed in a well rehearsed marketing process, with an objective to make me spend a maximum as I spend time with this company. A lot of staff and accessible surfaces on the ship are meant to bring additional income. I would have preferred a better service. The number of additional charges, and the high price of them perfectly reflects this financial objective. The time to spend on shore is very limited and the excursions highly priced. Come on, why charge $120 pp for a short visit to San Diego zoo? Before the cruise The call centre did not properly answer our questions before booking, as we noticed later. The booking process is cumbersome, with too many computer glitches encountered with browsers (I tried Microsoft explorer, Edge and Android). Some beta testing by HAL would be beneficial. Even we booked long in advance, HAL’s website, contrary to claims, did not allow us to book an hotel in FLL. The only choice offered was at $12000 per night. We booked elsewhere at a reasonable cost. Due to a light handicap, HAL requested additional documents for the cruise, and the details about these documents was not provided by HAL. We had to consult elsewhere. Due to the same condition, we booked our flights directly, and had also to organize our own transfers. The web checking process difficult, again with too many issues with browser. And finally, the departure flight information was requested again by HAL on the ship. I had also to sign an abusive long contract, which I should better have read before booking. In a summary, it reads ‘HAL is not responsible’. Eg the amount covered for lost luggage are ridiculous low. Embarking Very noisy hall at FLL terminal, it was hard to sustain a conversation in it. Luggage handling was OK, but with some delay. At the counter, it took long because person there did not know how to handle our special documents. Finally, we were asked to go to customer desk to have copies of our extra paperwork (even they had to be emailed to HAL before the cruise) For doing so there was a long waiting line at the customer desk. The customer desk clerk made copies of these documents, but forgot to return one original. Glad we checked, so we could get it back. The dinner time requested at booking was changed by HAL to less favourable to us, without explanation or excuses. It was difficult to have it changed afterwards. Even so, we were surprised by the absence of hosting from staff, in the sense of grouping people by affinities or languages. The second day of the cruise the customer desk requested again these documents. We had to elevate the tone and threaten to file a complain about harassment before we suddenly got to talk to somebody reasonable. In conclusion, the customer desk staff is not competent for anything but routine. The coordination between headquarters and the ship seems poor. Too long waiting time to access the customer service desk. Ship More than 2000 passengers. A dining hall and a self-service restaurant (plus 3 speciality restaurants, accessible at an additional high charge). Large surfaces devoted to shops, casino, photography, spa, wine cellar and other income generating activities. Not much space left for sports. Outdated decoration, interior brass and gold plated, in fifty shades of beige. Display of art not curated. More than 800 employed on the ship. Seems quite a high figure, but a share of staff is in income making activities at casino, spa, jewellery shops, excursions. And there is also the sailing, navigation crew, and the maintenance crew counted in it, so we understand that the customer service crew or hotel staff was overwhelmed. As welcome drink, we observed the desk selling beers, bottled water and soft drink cans. One day as we returned to the ship we were offered a glass of water and a refreshing towels. The other days nobody was around. The number of elevators is insufficient with such high proportion of customers with mobility issues. Expect to wait. The best spots for seating outside on the deck are covered with a tent and named ‘cabanas’ and accessible only at an additional fee, and left empty most of the time. The Neuw Amsterdam is not so new anymore, and the maintenance was done during the cruise. Unfortunately, we were nauseated by the smell as the whole hull was getting a new coat in Puerto Vallarta, or as the handrails were varnished, or at sea when the upper part of the ship was repainted. More precautions should have been taken to avoid unhealthy solvent be pumped in the air-conditioning system. We had to vacate our cabin. And so, HAL saves on ship yard. Last day ‘at sea' we refused to leave the stateroom to allow for more scheduled maintenance, in that case, a wet carpet cleaning. On the day of arrival, we could not access the patio again, as the outside of ship was undergoing more M&R. Cabin (called stateroom) Small. Balcony (pompously named verandah) allows for two chairs. The safe was not ok, as its battery was low. We had to wait quite long in the room to have it fixed. Clean, except stained sofa, walls and bed cover. On windy days, to avoid draft and strong whistling, we patched the patio door joints with duck tape. Fridge hardly cold. TV entertainment not as good as on an airline. Sink with cracks. Cabin due for an update. As the weather got colder at the end of the cruise, we were surprised that the air-conditioning could not to be disconnected, even temperature went too low. With a non-responsive customer desk, it took 10 hours to be fixed. Food & beverages Generally speaking noisy restaurants. Room service at no additional charge for a limited selection of dishes or drinks, or with an additional charge for others. Breakfast was delivered half an hour before requested time, with the explanation ‘It is a busy day’. Slow on some other days. Breakfast time at restaurants should have been adjusted for early arrival at port of call. Dining hall The dishes served did frequently not correspond to the pretentiously redacted menu, with ingredients listed missing or substituted. Obviously, the cooks did not read the menu, or tried to do savings on ingredients. Eg Grand Marnier, truffles, half avocado, maple syrup. Meal after meal, the comparison of the dishes with the ‘fancy’ menu became a subject of laughter. We had fun with the leftover potato soup was renamed Sunchoke Soup on Gala Night. Generally speaking rather poorly presented dishes with bland taste. Service was kind, but staff overwhelmed. Not trained to handle dishes, bottle and glasses quietly. It generally took 1 ½ hour for a seated dinner. Nice white tablecloth and tableware, and even a flower. Too many breaded dishes like scallops, sweetbread, sole, chicken ‘pillard’. Large parking area for scooters. Self service restaurant Lido No available tables as many tables for 4 are taken by couples or singles, even for filling the daily (free) crossword. To choose your table, arrive early! Chairs adapted for high BMI. Large choice of food, put on a plate by the staff at the stations where you line up. Due to communication issues, we frequently got too large servings. By the end of the cruise we got the impression that some buffet dishes were left exposed too long, like dried out mexican rice or sour smelling beans. Exaggerated additional charge for speciality restaurants. The ginger lobster served at the ‘fusion’ Tamarind was excessively salted. We did not visit the two other ones, as we got the same feeling of pretence from their fancy menus (Escargots? canned or frozen?). Not much spices used and the bland food served is compatible with dentures, except short ribs or striploin. Selection of sugar free dishes. We did not have the impression that many clients had digestive troubles, but be prudent about complaining about it at the medical facility, as you may get quarantined. In short, pretentious menus and mediocre food. Drinks Drinks are highly priced and another service charge added on each bill, on top of the daily $15 pp obligatory service charge. Wine or beer billed at 5 to 6 times the market price. Water, tea or filter coffee are complimentary. Unlimited fountain drinks for $8 per day. Other daily passes for unlimited alcoholic beverages. Unfair and peculiar rules about these passes, as they have to be bought for the whole cruise, or that everybody in the cabin has to buy the same pass. ‘Enrichment’ activities onboard Quite a high proportion of activities with additional charges, e.g. Half an hour meditation for $12. Many activities are meant to showcase the shops, casino, bars or spa. Bingo cards at $5. The cycles at the fitness are only meant for cycling classes at 12$. No fitness instructors besides classes. Very slow internet access at an excessive price. At the arrival, on a day of disrupted air travel, it would have been kind to make the wifi free for everyone. The mainstage had some pleasant shows, by professionals, but they lacked spontaneity. As we travelled during Carnival week, we vainly expected some reference to it. The sound on the BBKing club and the mainstage is set so loud that if you do not wear hearing aids, you will soon need some. Better use protective ear plugs. Small shows with local dancers on the rear deck. We liked the dancing classes. Excursions Long waiting before departure. The EXC staff selling them seemed overwhelmed, and there was a long waiting line. Anyway, they could not provide us the practical information about where was the supermarket we needed or where to get a fast web access. We had an enquiry about an excursion, and were told that we will get the answer later… we did not get it. Generally speaking the excursions are highly priced. E.g. in Huatulco, a snorkelling tour was offered for $80 pp. We took a taxi to this same beach and rented the equipment for a total of 300 pesos for two. Unfortunately, in three ports of call the ship was moored along a similar sized cruise ship, the Coral Princess. This was not a smart, as it brought quite a crowd getting ashore. A port of call, Puerto Quetzal in Guatemala was very unpleasant, as the ship moored in a polluted coal harbour. Taxis were not allowed to access to the ship there and we had to walk a mile way from the entrance of the port to the ship. The time allowed ashore was short, and we made the best of it with a local taxi or just by walking. So, we had the chance to practise some Spanish, and we could adapt to the weather and our envy. And got also quite some authentic memories or photos. Disembarking The announcement on the PA were not very audible, as the are mixed with music and static on TV. It was delayed, and service staff impatient to get to cabin. The questionnaire we received by email after the cruise did not cover all the sides of HAL’s services. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
We chose this cruise because it was going through the Panama Canal. But as you very well know, it sailed right after an abbreviated cruise because of a infecting virus. And yes 3 days into the cruise, my wife got sick. Something she rarely ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was going through the Panama Canal. But as you very well know, it sailed right after an abbreviated cruise because of a infecting virus. And yes 3 days into the cruise, my wife got sick. Something she rarely does. She was seen by the medical staff and was told she only had the Flu, yet was quarantined for 24 hours, forcing us to miss our excursion in Cartajena; the one she wanted to do most! (WE were refunded). Then after the 24 our period, a medical person came to check my wife's temperature and vitals. His batteries in his thermometer were bad and the unit wouldn't work. Because my wife is a Medical assistant, she had two thermometers with her. She checked herself with both and had readings of 97.7 and 97.2. The Medic said that wasn't acceptable because they were not calibrated to their scale. He said he was going for batteries but never returned. After 2 hours I went to the medical office to find him, only to learn that the staff had just gone on an additional 4 hour break. My wife was stuck in the cabin 7 hours in addition the original 24. And of course we ate room service with additional gratuities. I prepaid for the passenger protection plan but was billed when we checked out at the end out our cruise. I was told that was procedure and that I needed to file wit the AON insurance group. Redundant procedure for sure. Then when reviewing the medical findings it was stated Neg type A and B flu. Positive for a gastrol intestinal Virus. Well I guess that's why a cleaning crew came to our room at all hours, 6 times to disinfect. The food was OK at best. But we didn't know that we needed to bring formal attire for the "Good Stuff" However we often had room service because we acclimated to that while my wife was confined. The service then was always very good. We did not get involved with the fitness and recreation, nor did we use any public rooms. Our excursions were more oriented to the vendors than the culture. We have filed our insurance claim with AON. But feel we are entitled to some form of compensation for our medical issues (it was the Virus) and our missed excursion. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
Our cruise on the Island Princess should have been terrific. After all, we were visiting some interesting Caribbean and Central American ports, and going into the Panama Canal (a bucket list trip). But the cruise was a disappointment for ... Read More
Our cruise on the Island Princess should have been terrific. After all, we were visiting some interesting Caribbean and Central American ports, and going into the Panama Canal (a bucket list trip). But the cruise was a disappointment for many reasons. First, we were advised that there had been an outbreak of norovirus on the cruise that just ended, causing widespread diarrhea and vomiting. They advised us that they were doing an extra thorough disinfection, which we found reassuring. But when we got on board, they had done more than just disinfect. They removed all the interior shelves from the stateroom refrigerators, along with the metal racks in the fridge doors that hold drinks. They never explained this, and never returned the shelves and racks, which made the small fridges even less useful. Also in the interest of hygiene, passengers were not allowed to serve themselves at the buffet. Anything you wanted – from an orange to a dinner roll to a spoonful of scrambled eggs or a pastry – had to be pointed out to one of the crew, who would put it on your plate. This extended to salt and pepper packets, ketchup, tabasco sauce and other condiments. You couldn’t touch anything. You had to stand in line to have a crew member pull a glass of water or iced tea. You had to have them pull your cup of coffee and guess at how much cream to put in. It made the process slow, irritating and chaotic. At the pool grill, you couldn’t put ketchup on your own burger or fries. You had to wait for someone to put pepper flakes or oregano on your pizza slice. Then there were the dining rooms. The ship was recently (2017) refitted with additional staterooms, adding up to 300 guests (was the resultant overcrowding one reason for the norovirus outbreak?). But they didn’t add any dining rooms to handle the extra guests, so there was a 45 minute wait for a table every night at the ONE restaurant with ‘anytime’ seating. That jamming in of additional passengers speaks to another annoyance. They have found a way to squeeze extra money out of every single aspect of your cruise. The waiters constantly push you to buy more drinks. The photographers are constantly snapping photos and videos to sell you. The dining room menus have inserts trying to get you to ‘upgrade’ to steaks at additional cost. The chef and maître‘d put on a cooking demo and then try to sell you a cookbook. Bottles of water to take on your shore excursions are $2 each. Of course, soda pop and alcoholic drinks cost extra, and the first few days crew work hard to sell you a cruise-long ‘beverage package’ which comes out to about $689 per person including 15% bar gratuity, which means you’ll drink 6 alcoholic beverages a day to break even. On the bright side, drink anything over 6 and you’ll come out ahead (although your liver may not). In short, every day and every meal or activity seemed to bring one more little annoyance. After a while, they just started to add up and suck some of the joy out of what should have been a lovely vacation. The ports we visited were great; but unlike the old slogan, ‘getting there’ was NOT half the fun. Our last two cruises were with Regent, which cost more initially (it's all-inclusive and a bit more luxe), but which always delivered excellent service that seemed to anticipate our needs, instead of looking for ways to capitalize on them. We tried Princess to save some money. In the end, the savings simply were not worth the aggravation. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
2/15/19 - 3/1/19 NCL Star Panama Canal Voyage Top screw ups 1. Free internet, ha ha, ha, 250 minute perk what doesn’t work properly or frequently; isn’t free or useful. Waits at Internet cafe could be as much as 60 minutes. ... Read More
2/15/19 - 3/1/19 NCL Star Panama Canal Voyage Top screw ups 1. Free internet, ha ha, ha, 250 minute perk what doesn’t work properly or frequently; isn’t free or useful. Waits at Internet cafe could be as much as 60 minutes. 2. Cable/internet stations FOX, MSNBC, BBC, were very frequently not available as is the case right now as I write this, Thursday, 2/28/19 beginning at 6:40 AM and continuing unabated at present. The Sunday, 2/24/19 Oscars was not shown. 3. You will pay $4.64 for a glass of soda if you do not elect a plan. However most of time Diet Sierra Mist was poured by can to glass not by fountain spray but only 50% of time would server give you the balance of the can; note: only Pepsi products are available but Pepsi No Sugar was not. 4. Watch out for catamaran whale watch from Cabo it’s run by children who seem more interested in loud music and serving you prodigious quantities of alcohol; but to be fair soft drinks and water are available and you paid for it all inside the ticket fee. Like a party boat for mid lifers. They considered a whale sighting to be a spout or the whale’s tail as they dive. Never closer than a 1000 meters. One of the kids is the Cetaecian expert he plays loud whale sounds and provides much inaccurate information about humpback whales. 5. Avoid the Garden Cafe at almost all costs; except for periods of time when large numbers of eaters are gone. All enjoyed slopping at the Garden Cafe trough. Soft pretzel nirvana! 6. Avoid all specialty dining except for steak at Cagneys. If steak is your thing; there’s plenty of burned meat odor and taste there for you! 7. Be aware of cultural anomalies among some of your fellow passengers; like their general aversion to order, inability to patiently wait in line for their turn and the need for necessary occasional silence when and where it’s called as a need!!!!! 8. When you arrive at NCL TERMINAL at the Miami cruise port carefully assess what the greeters for NCL are telling you to do as it may be sufficiently botched or confused that you won’t know what you heard. This was something I thought NCL had down but not on 2/15/19 9. NCL will send you color coded luggage tags for embark; but you HAVE TO ASK FOR THEM. Otherwise you’ll need 8 ft of tape and print out cutouts online and then attach them yourself. 10. All Ports of Call are at best marginal and depressed. Let’s face it if they were all St Barth’s it would be a lot more expensive and after all you get to see how the Canal works. 11. Disembarking on 3/1/19 was an exercise in futility; for 3 and 1/2 hours we waited 3 hours of it in line to get out of NCL terminal. No announcements of any kind were ever made and no explanation was ever made to explain the delay; no bathroom facilities were identified; there were a number of fatigued or ill older people who should have been treated better; best bet appeared to be to claim wheelchair access need with the requirement for NCL staff to push the chair; which allowed for express debarkation of the person in the chair and their entourage, which was often as many as 3 additional people blithely passing those waiting for hours in line. - [x] People with apparent disability, which I defined as being in a wheelchair or similar conveyance, were present on the ship in what appeared to be anecdotally but positively high numbers to their and NCL’s credit! What was not clear were the express rides which all wheelchairs seemed to get as described above. It was simply unfair as NCL had asked passengers, able bodied and otherwise, to declare their need for early debarkation to get to airports for early flights. These express rides were much later in the debarkation process. NCL needs to mend fences with CPB In Miami FL to get a better working relationship with them rather than the blame put on CPB for the line and delay by at least one NCL agent. CPB needs to be open to such negotiations and to work equally hard to reach agreement and reduce their mutual disagreement which VICTIMIZED ALL DEBARKING PASSENGERS and nobody else. I’m confident that all NCL and CPB staff were paid for their work. Right now I can’t see myself returning to NCL to cruise again. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
Only ship doing full Panama Canal transit at time of the booking. May be the first person to loose weight on a cruise ship Ship just came out of dry dock. Suppose to be in Ft Lauderdale night before cruise but didn't arrive ... Read More
Only ship doing full Panama Canal transit at time of the booking. May be the first person to loose weight on a cruise ship Ship just came out of dry dock. Suppose to be in Ft Lauderdale night before cruise but didn't arrive until 10 am cruise day prior to cruise. Long wait in terminal. Ship was dirty. Mud / salt on cabin balcony walls & floor. Finally used pool towels to clean area and furniture ourselves. Most exterior public areas filthy. Deck furniture filthy. Cabin bathroom. First 4 days sink drain plugged. Had to dip dirty water from sink with glass to use sink. For 5 days toilet valve was stuck causing toilet to overflow on floor. Every morning bathroom floor was flooded and carpet outside bathroom was wet. Cabin Stewart said maintenance didn't have any repair parts to fix toilet valve. Next 3 days toilet didn't leak but didn't have any water to flush toilet. Had to get water from the shower to flush toilet. Drink service in public areas was terrible. some times 15-20 minute wait for drinks. Most of the time went to bar, tired of waiting on servers. First 2 days of cruise not allowed on upper & sport decks. Crews were still working on ship from dry dock. Sport deck equipment poor. Shuffle Board some equipment missing, deck so rough the pucks wouldn't slide. Court netting loose / torn at several areas. Prominade deck at one end cluttered with shipping crates and rolls of carpeting. Barley room to walk through. Daytime entertainment almost didn't exist. Almost no entertainment on exterior deck. If you did play Trivia or Rip-Off Bingo there wasn't much of anything else to do. Movies under the stars was highly promoted but out of service most on the cruise. Night theater entertainment was excellent. Theater was over crowded and difficult to get seating if not there 45 minutes early. Don't expect drink service, only 2 waiters for the whole theater. Show time scheduled later so both early & late dinners could attend the show at same time causing over crowding of the theatre Getting cocktails in the casino was impossible. One time I seen a waiter walk through but never stopped. Had to go to another bar and get drinks yourself. Food quality was poor. Buffet special was only 1-2 pans. Rest was repeat every day. Food at bottom of pans stuck from being warmed over. Main dining room menu almost the same everyday, usually only had 1-2 changes. Rest was same items every day. Dinner rolls at all dining areas were hard and dried out. Couldn't cut through crust with dinner knife. Dissert was good Probable never again travel with Princess Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
This was our first time cruising with Princess and we were disappointed. The food quality was poor, the on board activities limited, we had to skip a port due to high winds and then parts of the ship were closed due to an excessive ... Read More
This was our first time cruising with Princess and we were disappointed. The food quality was poor, the on board activities limited, we had to skip a port due to high winds and then parts of the ship were closed due to an excessive outbreak of norovirus. We knew the ship was small and older but the on board activities were dull and tacky. The quality and variety of food at the MDR, the Horizons Buffet and both specialty restaurants were the poorest of all 4 cruiselines we have sailed. The tiny fitness center is in the windowless bowels of the ship and dark and depressing. And while we understood that this itinerary attracted an older crowd, we were surprised to be one of the youngest couples on board (we are 55 and 59). Few of the onboard activiites were designed for an older demographic so the evening events were empty and boring. The biggest thing to do on board was afternoon trivia. Due to the norovirus outbreak the library and parts of the casino were closed. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this cruise because we had heard great things about the Princess Cruise Line and Princess' Panama Canal Cruise. This was our first time on Princess Cruise Line and we were shocked and dismayed at the Coral Princess’ ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had heard great things about the Princess Cruise Line and Princess' Panama Canal Cruise. This was our first time on Princess Cruise Line and we were shocked and dismayed at the Coral Princess’ condition when we embarked at Ft. Lauderdale. Our stateroom had dirty windows leading to the balcony. The balcony had paint on the floor and chairs along with debris on the balcony floor. There was a drill bit under the vanity (this was dangerous with bare feet) and construction trash in one corner. The biggest problem was a half inch of water on the bathroom floor. We spoke to our Room Steward about the water and he immediately cleaned the water using towels and called technical services. About a half hour later, he told us the problem was fixed. We thanked him and considered the matter closed. We went to dinner and the show and returned to the stateroom around 10:00PM and found there was not only water in the bath, but that it had now spread to the carpet and was heading for our unpacked luggage. We moved the luggage and contacted Customer Relations, which took a while since they were very busy. The Night Customer Relations Manager came to the room, had someone come to vacuum the water and arranged for a plumber to repair the toilet. After the plumber visited (now about 1:00AM) the Night Customer Relations Manager said a valve was broken and there were no replacement parts on board the ship. We were stunned at this news since there were over 1000 of these toilets on the ship and no replacement parts. I asked about another cabin and he said there were no cabins available. He explained we could dry flush the toilet or use one of the public toilets on this ship and left. We were appalled at this response since we never had an experience like this on any of our previous cruises on other lines. We decided during the night to disembark at Cartagena and head back home. In the morning, we went to Customer Relations to see if they could help us arrange travel back home. This is when we met the daytime Customer Relations Manager. He asked why we wanted to leave the ship, we explained our situation, and his response was genuine surprise and he explained that what we had was not a “Princess Experience”. He asked if he could have a day to resolve our problem, this was fair and we agreed. His calm professionalism was evident during the day; he provided regular updates, provided us with a key to an empty stateroom in our area where we could use the toilet, and found another potential stateroom for us to use. By 5:00PM that evening Technical Services scavenged parts from an unused stateroom to use to fix our toilet. He also provided compensation for our inconvenience and dinner at one of the restaurants. He not only saved our cruise, he saved the relationship with Princess Cruises. Was there a bright spot on this cruise? Absolutely, the Crew was phenomenal. Despite dealing with a ship with many problems (we were not alone), we found the Captain and Crew terrific even though many of them were exhausted from dealing with a poorly serviced ship. Our Room Steward, Dinner Waiter, the Cruise Director and staff, and the Buffet staff were wonderful. We know we were not the only people with problems on this cruise from talking with other passengers. There were electrical problems throughout the ship, such as the movie under the stars screen not working until the last day at sea. When something did not work properly, it was described as being “dry docked”. We feel that Princess management should be ashamed of themselves for sending out a ship that was clearly not ready for passengers. The excursions were excellent. Princess did a good job of vetting their tour operators. The destination expert did a great job of discussing each port's history and highlights. The dinning experience was above average due to our Wait Staff. The entertainment was mostly individual entertainers backed by the ship's band. We were surprised that there were only two (2) real shows on a 15 day cruise. We had experienced a much higher percentage on other cruise lines. We found ourselves spending a lot of our evenings in the lounges due to the good entertainment there and the Cruise Director's and Staff's trivia shows. We had breakfast on our balcony one day and really enjoyed that. The window to the balcony was not cleaned until day 12 of the cruise and the balcony was never cleaned; however, once we could flush we had a great time on the remainder of the cruise. Because of the Captain and Crew we will give Princess Cruise Lines another try, but certainly not on a ship heading out of dry dock. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
This was our 8th Princess cruise and it will be our last. The ship was not ready for passengers. The pool was closed the first 2 days while it was being painted. Many public bathrooms were closed the first few days while they were being ... Read More
This was our 8th Princess cruise and it will be our last. The ship was not ready for passengers. The pool was closed the first 2 days while it was being painted. Many public bathrooms were closed the first few days while they were being repaired. The Movies Under The Stars worked the first couple of days, then never worked again. The overall feel of the ship was unlike any other cruise that we have been on. The service was poor. The food was poor the first week. It improved the second week. Lunch in the dining room took at least an hour and a half. If one person asked to have their water glass refilled, the rest of the table was ignored. I gave up getting a Diet Coke for dinner in the dining room. It would take 15 -30 minutes to arrive. Several times we tried to buy a bottle of wine from the wine list to find out they were not available. Our room was not clean. There was food under the desk when we arrived. It was there when we left 15 days later. The towels were old and stained. The balcony was never cleaned. I never saw anyone cleaning railings or other public areas. The pool towels were thin and stained. The entertainment was average at best. The singers and dancers were good but we didn't see them until day 10. There were very few activities during the day. Most of them were sales pitches for the spa or jewelry shops. We felt like there was a charge for everything. I bought the soft drink package and was not able to use it the first day. I asked about it at the desk and was told I could start using it the second day. I could list many other issues but this gives a good idea of the problems on board. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
The service was poor, the meals were nothing to write home about, but our cabin and the ports were great. Also great was Doug Funk, one of the entertainers. He’s so funny. We’ve seen him on other Princess Cruises,so we were happy to ... Read More
The service was poor, the meals were nothing to write home about, but our cabin and the ports were great. Also great was Doug Funk, one of the entertainers. He’s so funny. We’ve seen him on other Princess Cruises,so we were happy to see him on this one. The entertainment is usually campy on Princess. Their broadway shows are laughable. But on this cruise we had a magician, a guitarist, a pianist, Doug funk, who were all great. The problem is that the Princess band must play with the entertainers and although they are good, they are too loud and tend to drown out the main act, especially the horns and drums. What a headache. The ports were all good,as were most of the shore excursions. I mentioned the food and service. We’re Elite on Princess and have noticed a rapid decline in service and all around quality since Carnival took over. They cut corners everywhere and made us feel we were on a substandard cruise line. I’ve never seen so much recycled food. Some items had been converted to other dishes at least 3 times. The hot doges were pretty Good, the burgers were half the size of the bun. We had a serious delay in our departure due to this old boat coming out of dry dock. But they didn’t waste any time getting us off at the end. We have to reconsider our booked cruise to New Zealand on Princess. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
I spent nearly $3000 on a cruise for 2 and my cabin was on the lowest floor in the back of the boat above the engine. The Vibration from the engine at times was unbearable, as was the noise. We were offered ear plugs to block out the noise ... Read More
I spent nearly $3000 on a cruise for 2 and my cabin was on the lowest floor in the back of the boat above the engine. The Vibration from the engine at times was unbearable, as was the noise. We were offered ear plugs to block out the noise which I felt was an insult. Make sure you are on one of the upper decks!!!! Numerous times throughout the cruise there was a significant stench, similar to that of a sewer. Fellow passengers also reported this foul smell to guest services. My partner and I felt the stench was so palatable that it may contain toxic fumes that were harmful to our health. I asked on three separate occasions to contact us for a face to face visit through guest services, we were not contacted. The excursions were so so and one of our excursions was canceled due to a broken down boat (very upsetting). The term ANYTIME DINING should be abolished, throughout our cruise, we were unable to dine ANYTIME and were forced to dine in the Horizon Court. A few different times we were unable to be seated at the Princess theater even though we were 30 minutes early, unacceptable. The entertainment was wonderful, most of the staff as well, excluding the front desk. I highly recommend they get at least one English speaking person at the front desk. Excursions were overhyped and I found you could actually buy them significantly cheaper once you hit you got off the boat. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
My husband and I chose Princess because they had come so highly rated. In the past, we had cruised using other cruise lines and had wonderful experiences. We were really excited about going on a Princess ship through the Panama Canal. ... Read More
My husband and I chose Princess because they had come so highly rated. In the past, we had cruised using other cruise lines and had wonderful experiences. We were really excited about going on a Princess ship through the Panama Canal. The ship itself is outdated. Windows were not cleaned regularly if all on board. The dining rooms and buffet had a 60's decor. We especially found our room (a balcony plus) to be lacking. The bathroom was TINY and the shower even TINIER! We are both average size people and could hardly fit in. I can't even imagine how heavier people manage. The shower did not slide down so being small, I just got bombarded with spray whether I wanted to wash my hair or not. The balcony in our room needed painting in spots as rust was showing through. It also had big globs of paint splattered on the tile. I had requested a queen and we had 2 twins when we arrived, so I had to call and had them remake the bed when we arrived. The steward was pleasant enough, but did not impress us with his friendliness or service. Then, there were the terrible meals. We originally started in the regular dining room, but after tasting the dried up red snapper and overdone steak we ended up in the buffet every night. The quality was somewhat better, but not top quality. When they included a carved meat, the chef would prepare the gravy in same manner with the same beef broth and whatever. Desserts were simply not good except for the occasional cookie. We did not attend any entertainment, so I cannot comment on that. The shore excursions were good, but we did not like some of the ports we went to. Limon and Colon were terrible. Hope they change those destinations in the future. Grand Cayman Island was so crowded, that port could be eliminated. And when we boarded , they had changed our port in Jamaica to Falmouth instead of Ocho Rios due to crowding. Falmouth was okay. This trip had been on our bucket list, so we were happy to see the Panama Canal, but honestly, I wish we had gone on another cruise line. Very disappointed. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
My friend and I chose this cruise for a winter getaway to some new places and to revisit others. We both speak Spanish and are comfortable on our own in Spanish-speaking countries. Embarkation was organized out of LA; no major hiccups; ... Read More
My friend and I chose this cruise for a winter getaway to some new places and to revisit others. We both speak Spanish and are comfortable on our own in Spanish-speaking countries. Embarkation was organized out of LA; no major hiccups; the typical long lines. Our luggage made its way to our cabin in a reasonable amount of time. We boarded and ate lunch in the main cafeteria shortly afterwards. While there was someone at the entryways with a bottle of hand sanitizer, plus dispensers at each entry, I was surprised that guests were allowed to serve themselves even on the first day. I haven't cruised in a few years - maybe things have changed. I'm more familiar with being served the first few days in an attempt to cut down on germs. We had an inside cabin - and a WONDERFUL steward. Biency is very friendly, immediately learned our names, and was quick to provide whatever he needed. His daily towel animals are treasures. I had the joy of sleeping next the bunk for the third person - had to be careful not to hit my head on the vertical mattress. Since one spends little time in the stateroom, I imagine a family of three could do fine in the cabin. Toiletries and linens were maintained quite well. The shower had a clothesline; I brought plastic hangers and some clothes pins for our 'shower/sink laundry'. Note that Norwegian ships lack public laundries; guests may have their laundry done for $20 per bag. We preferred to do our own. The acoustics in most public areas of the ship are horrendous. Dining was a noisy, and often slow, affair. The seating in the cafeteria was poor and made for a lot of unutilized space. Tables for four with a bench and two chairs usually had two people on the chairs; the benches were low even for tall guests. Circular booths were hard to use; guests used chairs around the exterior and did not use the booths themselves. More so than on any other cruise I have experienced, I found we had to search for too long to find an empty table or else sit in the uncomfortable part of a table with other guests. Food in the cafeteria was basically reminiscent of leftovers. Meat too well cooked; eggs benedict pre-prepared and thus not fresh. They did offer omelets and fried eggs to suit every morning. Plenty of melon, bread, cereal and some yogurt. Bananas and oranges became rather scarce as the days went by. Desserts were not tempting - I did enjoy ice cream on several occasions. Dining rooms were fair, at best. Same problem with acoustics and a few times we were served the wrong food - and after waiting a LONG time. The steaks were unremarkable - seemed cheap and tough. The Orchid Garden is nice; shrimp were overcooked, though. Their menu does not change. Best meals were a couple of outside grilled lunches we had on the last few days of the cruise. Freshly grilled chicken and seafood. The ship has few nooks and crannies - just a few lounges with loud music - and poor singers. Only a few shops - I'm not a shopper; my friend was disappointed. There were only one or two days of shopping on the pool deck; if you bought trinkets in volume you got a reasonably good deal. The ship does have a nice little library - watch the hours as one can only borrow a book at very limited times during the day. The library was always open - a nice quiet respite with a good outside view. The library also has an exchange - so you can give them the book you read on the plane in exchange for one another guest left. Nightly entertainment at 7pm and 9pm - a mix of some good musicians with some not so good juggling and such. Still, an enjoyable experience. During the Panama Canal transit, they opened the bow area for better viewing - as long as you had a front row position - or are tall. They put up a canopy to allow people a chance to get in the shade and kept a flow of food and beverages going throughout the transit. While going through the canal is interesting, I'd personally recommend a land visit to the Miraflores and Gatun locks/visitor centers for a better overall view and understanding. The Miraflores visitor center is a wonderful museum - worthy of a day's adventure. The ship does not stop in Panama; there are no Panama shore excursions. Not a problem for me; some people noted a desire to stop in Panama. I thought the itinerary was clear - pick another cruise if you want a Panamanian stop. Or better, spend a week there. It's marvelous. Pay attention to the shore excursion reviews; too many of them are more about shopping than seeing the sights. The "Discover Puerto Vallarta" tour turned into a shopping tour. We learned nothing about Puerto Vallarta, the economy, etc. Guide left a good half dozen people at one store. When I couldn't find my friend in our group, three blocks later, I told her we had left her at the last shop. Turns out several people did not see her wave her bandanna to let us know we were departing. As with most ship tours, there are stops at stores where the guide presumably gets a cut. It would be way better to have a half hour of free time in a shopping area than 5 or ten minutes in a store. (Or, how about no shopping??? Free time at the end with a later bus pick up for those who want to shop. I personally seek out grocery stores and markets where the locals shop. Not tourist traps.) The online shore excursions for Antigua were not available - due to a timing glitch in the system, I was told, weeks before we cruised. They never fixed it so we could see what the ship offered, so we had to wait until the cruise started. I visited Santa Marta on my own; great experience at the Gold Museum. Free, clean, not crowded, descriptions in English and Spanish. What a marvelous collection of history and artifacts! Lovely old cathedral - and a real grocery store. Good coffee at 1/4 the price of the tourist shops. I had an nice time on this cruise - best parts were Santa Marta on my own and cruising into New York harbor. Americans were by far NOT the only ones waiting to see the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty. Impressive skyline. As on most ships, a great escape is a deck chair on the promenade. Only problem was the smoking areas on both the port and starboard sides. It would be great to limit smoking to only one side - if at all. I also smelled smoke at times inside. It permeates; hard to escape. I wouldn't jump to cruise on this ship, or even NCL, again. If the itinerary were perfect, I'd go. But I'd say that Princess and Holland America both offer better overall experiences. Read Less

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