March 10, 2007
Second time on a Princess ship, second cruise overall. Married couple, early '60s.
After researching the message boards a lot, we asked for mini-suite E728 or E 729 to get the covered larger balcony. 729, on the Starboard side (docking side) would have been more interesting but it was already taken. A mini-suite is well worth the extra price for added elbow room.
When we printed our boarding pass the day before the cruise, we found that we had been bumped out of our choice and put in cabin C749. THAT was a full suite. Very nice, and faced the rear of the ship with double the space and double the balcony. Full suites also have other added perks, such as free internet. Check the catalog for what else they give you if you are considering a full suite.
Check in was lightning fast at about 1:00 pm.
Coke card. This $30 option got me a sticker on my cruise card that allowed me fountain drinks at any bar, from any waiter, and from any table clearer in the Horizon buffet. It worked well for me and I had little trouble getting all the diet cokes I wanted. Iced tea, hot tea, water, and so-so coffee were free. Canned Cokes were not included in the deal.
We picked the early seating for dinner (4 couples at a table,) and felt a little rushed each evening.
Shore trips. We went on three, and for us, one would have been enough. It seemed like all we did was wait in lines to go ashore, get on a bus, come back, etc. We went to the Plantation and Duns River Falls in Jamaica, the Highlights tour in Grand Cayman, and the Tulum ruins in Mexico. Email me at DDavisFLA@aol.com if you have specific interests in hearing about any of these. None of these extra-cost items was essential to our good time on the cruise.
Princess Cays. We reserved a cabana and enjoyed the shade it gave us. Most chairs were in the sun. We also rented a couple of floats, but the water was cold. A few hearty souls were swimming and snorkeling, but not many.
Parking. We chose the cheaper remote parking United Airport Parking -- $54.36 for the week. The shuttle service was marginal at best, but it DID work and saved us a few bucks. I think that next time we’ll park in the cruise terminal lot, though -- less aggravation and waiting.