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Old November 25th, 2006, 07:02 AM
richsea richsea is offline
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Default Princess vs. Celebrity - My View

We just returned from a 7 day cruise aboard Crown Princess, our first Princess cruise after 13 cruises on Celebrity. I thought that I would try to give some comparisons or differences between the 2 lines. I realize that it is a little unfair to compare the two after only one cruise on Princess but I will try to be objective as I can. Please remember that these are only MY views & others may disagree.

First a little background about us. We are 62 & 63 years old & try to cruise twice per year. Things we look for on a cruise are good service, good food, clean ships & enjoyable entertainment. While we haven’t tried RCI & Carnival, I don’t perceive them as being what we look for in a cruise.
We enjoy dancing & our port days are usually spent at the beach. We rarely take ship excursions & don’t have to be “on the go? 24/7.

We took this cruise with our 8 year old grandson, so there were many ship’s facilities that we did not make use of because we chose to spend most our time with him.

Here are some of our observations:

Service: Overall, I would say that the service is comparable. We found cabin service & room service the same on Princess as we have come to expect from Celebrity.
We did personal choice dining in the Da Vinci Restaurant because we felt it would be better suited for us with our grandson. We did not try the specialty restaurants. I liked being able to dine when we were ready, but also enjoy having the same waiter & dining companions. Most of our waiters on the Crown were efficient & friendly. I think I prefer traditional dining, so maybe next time.

Entertainment: IMO, Princess clearly wins over Celebrity. There is much more going on in the evening than on X. There was a lot of entertainment that we would have liked to seen, but weren’t able to because of our grandson. What we did see; the comedians, a ventriloquist, a magician, & 2 “body balancers? who did things that defy gravity, were very good. There were always a number of venues available every night. Movies Under The Stars (MUTS): We enjoyed it, but it was a little loud & the accoustics make it hard to understand sometimes. If you don’t like it, there are alternative pools to use. Our grandson loved it.
We also felt that the hot tubs on Celebrity were more powerful than on the Crown.

Food: Celebrity wins here for us, even though we think that X’s food is slipping somewhat. What is with the “small plate? “large plate? on Princess? It seems that all the soups, appetizer, & salads are just bunched together on the menu. Soups were limited, & the ones we had we found so so.
We found the entrees good, but did not find one that jumped out for us. We also thought that the desserts were nothing special, just OK. X has better bread sticks, but Princess has far better rolls.
The buffets were comparable, with the standard choices, although I’ve never seen meat loaf, macaroni salad, or tuna salad served on X. I’ve seen complaints about the layout on Horizon Court, but I think that the way Princess has it laid out makes for a better flow than on Celebrity as you are able to skip what you don’t want & not file along. We enjoyed the pizza on both lines; X has crispier crust; Princess thinner crust & cheesier. Pizza is very subjective.

Cabins: We had a balcony stateroom on Baja Deck. The size was similar to most of the rooms we’ve had on X, but really not efficiently laid out. My wife said that they needed a woman to design them. The shower is the smallest since our Meridian cruise, definitely not for sharing a shower! There is kind of a walk-in closet with some shelves that also house the safe. There were many more hangars than the three of us could use, but not nearly not enough drawers for storage The room had a refrigerator (not stocked) which housed the ice bucket, but the frige is enclosed in a cabinet that has a chair in front of it. In order to get in the frige, you must move the chair, open the cabinet, & open the frige. Very clumsy.

Embarkation: Similar between the two lines. We arrived at just before noon & were in our stateroom by 12:30. Disembarkation was not as smooth. We waited in the theater from 8;30 & gor off the ship at 12:30! They started disembarking at 8:15 & there was about an hour around 9AM that no one was called. I don’t think this was the fault of Princess, but customs; however, it would have been nice to be told something.

Other Observations: I think X does some little things that Princess doesn’t; like the welcome champagne, I know it’s cheap, but a nice touch.
Escorts passengers to rooms.
Supplies trays in buffet & sometimes offers to carry them to your table.
Supplies towels by the pool - you don’t have to bring them from your room.
Amenities in bathroom; Q-tips, shower caps, beach bag in room.
Cold towels when returning to ship.
Free sorbet by the pool.
X has interactive TV where you can check your $ charges to date at any time.
Fewer announcements on X. Two or three days we were awoken to announcements at 7:10 AM
Free ice cream - not so on Princess

Princess plus’s: While no interactive TV, there are more channel choices with better selections.
Chair hogs; never had a problem getting a chair by the pool.
Much more lenient with soda card. My wife A grandson ordered soda from the same card with no questions asked.
Future cruise program; booking onboard. For $200 down you can prebooke with cabin credit, depending on length, & have 4 yrs’ to decide on a cruise. Can also invite others who get tha same perk.
The future cruise area is stocked with tons of brochures. On X it seems that they are rationed, like they really don’t want you to take one.
Better hair dryers, just ask my wife.


Bottom line, & I apologize if I went on too long, I would (& did) book again with Princess, but I think that Celebrity remains our line of choice. They just seem to be making it harder to stay with because of some of their policies and the fact that there are less & less opportunities to cruise X to the Caribbean, plus they seem to have priced us out of the Bermuda market with their outrageous rates to Bermuda on Journey.
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Old November 25th, 2006, 01:10 PM
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I have to give you a +1 for a truly balanced critque. No bashing one or the other; just the facts.

Thanks.

BTW, we get the welcome champagne in our cabin. I don't know if this is due to the number of cruises or the cabin category.
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Old November 26th, 2006, 02:46 PM
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Never been on X but have never had anyone say anything really bad about them. On our last cruise we tried open dinning, the first night I liked the table we were at so I asked the head waiter for the same table for the following night ( We got it for the rest of the cruise) but it was for the same time each night. We have notice a big change in the food after the Carnival take over, and the taste changed with each ship but so does the people who prepair it! We leave for our 10 priness cruise in January but I keep telling the wife we need to try another line someday. Your information was of great intrest to me. Thank You for the input
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Old November 26th, 2006, 03:45 PM
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On our last cruise, we got the same table every night. But it was for anythime we showed up. They just did not seat anyone at that table until we ate.
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Old December 10th, 2006, 09:56 PM
will7260 will7260 is offline
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Default Thanks for comparison

Thanks so much! We have cruised on Celebrity three times and Royal Caribbean four times (since 2000). Was glad to hear comments from someone objective, as we have been a little apprehensive to try any of the other lines.
Celebrity is our favorite, and also love Royal C. - no problems with either. I love Celebrity's sorbet!!!! We are in our early 50's and live in Kentucky. Maybe we'll give Princess a try when they have a good deal!
Thanks Again!
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Old December 25th, 2006, 02:01 PM
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Thanks for the great comparison! I enjoy reading constructive comments well put! I know I enjoyed the constant ice and pitcher of water of my Celebrity cruise.

Princess is my line of choice, seems to fit me better and just a matter of my personal feeling about it. I have the most cruises with them and sailing by myself, I feel comfortable with Princess. I'm 59 by the way.

I'm sailing on Celebrity soon and have before but for me right now Princess has the itienraries that I want.

I sail with RCI, too and pretty much choose Princess or RCI. I have 24 days (B2B) booked on Princess for 2007 and a 28 day cruise on RCI for 2008, again a B2B.
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Old January 17th, 2007, 01:41 AM
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Hi Richsea, we disembarked the Crown Princess on November 25th in San Juan. This was also our first Princess cruise, but we've never cruised with Celebrity, just two prior Carnival cruises. Your details of the Crown are right on. We had a Mini-Suite, and on Princess, it's only when you book a Mini-Suite or a Full Suite, do you get the two glasses of Champagne. We got ours. We were escorted to our cabin on embarkation. I'm surprised you were not.
On Carnival Ice Cream, Hot Chocolate, orange juice, fruit punch, apple juice on the Lido deck were included in your cruise fare. You have to pay extra for these on Princess.
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Old January 25th, 2007, 01:36 AM
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WE just got home from 10 day Southern on Sun Princess. Twelve year old ship that is in great shape and clean. Lots of sanitizing stations. We have sailed twice Holland Am and twice Carnival. I think both Carnival and Holland America have better food in the dining room and on the buffet. The cabins were bigger on both lines than Princess and the cabin stewarts were more attentive than on Princess. We did however enjoy the cruise and the port excursions. I think we will go back to Carnival until we have completed our points bookings on Carnival Vacation Club. We were to get the privledges of the vaction club on other lines but Carnival forgot to tell them that. Embarkation in Ft Lauderdale and disembarking were the best on this Princess cruise that we have ever had. Only one faster was VIP disembarkation in San Deigo last year through Vacation Club.
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Old January 29th, 2007, 10:37 AM
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Nice review, richsea !
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Old February 1st, 2007, 03:21 AM
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Thanks so much for all of the info on the Crown Princess. We just booked a cruise for November. Your comments were very helpful. We've sailed on Celebrity once, and twice on Royal Caribbean. We preferred the itinerary on Princess this time around, and we're looking forward to the new experience.
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Old February 3rd, 2007, 05:10 PM
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I like to try all the cruise lines and have just returned from my first Princess cruise on the Caribbean Princess. We have been on HAL, Carnival and Celebrity. Based on this one cruise, Princess compares favorably with the other cruiselines. I liked the food and the service was excellent. We happened to get a good price on a balcony cabing, so no complaints here! While there was nothing exceptional about the cruise, I would sail again on Princess without hesitation. One of the biggest pluses about Princess - our quickest embarkation out of 7 cruises! The food was very good. We liked the MUTS and the resistance pool. Only negatives: the shower was much too small, and we missed access to various beverages in the lido area. I also was sorry that we couldn't order a hot breakfast from room service - this is a treat that we loved on HAL and Celebrity. Also missed easy access to Carnivals soft serve icecream. Princess was the only cruise were I didn't care for the ship's water - we felt foreced to buy the bottled water.
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Old February 24th, 2007, 04:56 PM
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That was a very fair objective review of the two lines. Thanks for your input.

If I may correct one tiny inaccuracy. Princess does have free ice cream each day, but it is limited. Go to the Horizon buffett area at "tea time" between 3:00 and 4:00. They usually only have two flavors but there is a wide variety of toppings to make your favorite sundae. Grab a banana from the buffet and you can even make your own banana split. Also it is "real" hand dipped ice cream, not the ice milk or soft serve some lines have.
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Old February 24th, 2007, 07:00 PM
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The only two lines I want to use are Princess and Celebrity. I like them both, but I only have experience with Princess.
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Old February 26th, 2007, 07:30 PM
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Default princess vs celebrity

celebrity seemed to have much fewer family or interactive group activities than princess. celebrity has much more high-end gourmet dining, but not much to do on the boat compared to princess. celebrity felt much more stuffy and boring to me (age 50)
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Old February 26th, 2007, 10:38 PM
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Quote:
On Carnival Ice Cream, Hot Chocolate, orange juice, fruit punch, apple juice on the Lido deck were included in your cruise fare. You have to pay extra for these on Princess.
are ANY beverages other than tap water included on princess? the only thing i'd feel sad about is not having a glass of orange juice with breakfast... but my boyfriend has a pretty bad caffeine addiction... doesn't want a soda card but was hoping that there would always be complimentary coffee and tea available.
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Old February 27th, 2007, 12:49 AM
Tom8595 Tom8595 is offline
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You cand have juices, tea (hot or iced), coffee, milk, lemonade on Princess. The soda card is offered on most ships. This is good if you drink alot of sodas. I have sailed on X. My preference is Holland and Princess. I will be sailing on the Crown B2B in 47 days. Happy sailing!
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Old March 8th, 2007, 02:59 PM
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Default Princess vs. Celebrity

Hi, everyone! I love both these lines, and have had three cruises on each so far. My next Princess cruise is May27th, Hawaii to Vancouver on the Pacific Princess. My next Celebrity is 12-03-07 from Barcelona to Miami. I've had good food, service on both, however, I have had huge waits getting on and off Princess. I have decided to try Oceania and this month (3/23), I'll be sailing on the Regatta (684 passengers) from Miami to Provence. Other cruises planned are on HAL, Seabourn and if I can get it, Regents Seven Seas. Loving socializing over cocktails, I am now leaning toward the all-inclusive lines. My bar bill and wine on Both Princess and Celebrity were enormous(!) Keep cruising! Jini.
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Old March 11th, 2007, 10:59 PM
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Well, have done 43 Princess cruises and 9 Celebrity (48 years old). I prefer Princess. Find Celebrity to ber snooty and aloof and much more expensive overall.
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