Is the Princess fleet getting a little...dated?

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772 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
Originally posted by nukesubsailor
The Royal Princess entered the fleet in 2013. The Regal Princess entered the fleet in 2014. The Majestic Princess entered the fleet in 2017. The Sky Princess will enter the fleet in 2019.
We have sailed the Royal Class ships regularly and are looking forward to the new Sky Princess. We do find the older Princess ships dated, looking tired and staid.....
Sydney, Australia
8,655 Posts
Joined Jan 2014
It's not just the shower curtain, it's the tiny shower cubicle, and the annoying shelving where small items can easily fall off. Celebrity has a narrow cupboard with shelves, plus some drawers. Everything is at hand but much more secure if the ship is rolling a bit.

I'm not fussed about having a sofa but the chair in the Princess cabin always gets in the way.
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sw, Fl - Fort Myers Area
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Originally posted by PrincessLuver
We have sailed the Royal Class ships regularly and are looking forward to the new Sky Princess. We do find the older Princess ships dated, looking tired and staid.....
I'm with you on those older ships.
They all have to many problems with AC & food prep that they just can't seem to correct.
This has been going on for years now.

Bring on the new ones a quickly as possible.
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S 645/72/826/90
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Joined Aug 2005
We will do Princess next BECAUSE it is different than the other mass market lines. Dining rooms are one story and more intimate. Love the multiple fresh water pools on the "older" ships. More areas that resemble traditional cruising vs. a resort or amusement park. Lots of areas to avoid children and noisy activities - yet Princess provides the MUTS and childrens club so multigenerational cruising can please families.

Also Princess often has better itineraries. But we do enjoy each line and set our expectations accordingly.
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Trans Crown P, Sep 2019, Med Odyssey, Oct 2018; Norway Eclipse, Aug 2015; W. Cari. Emerald Princess, Apr 2015; Pac Coastal Celebrity Century, May 2014. Western Carib Crown Princess, Mar 2013; Mediterranean, Celebrity Solstice, May 2012; W. Caribbean, Carnival Conquest, Sep 2011; Transatlantic Regatta Oceania, Nov 2010; 7N E. Car., Carnival Fantasy, May 2010; W. Caribbean, Carnival Conquest, Feb 2010; Gulf of Mexico, Carnival Ecstasy, Dec 2008; Transatlantic Regatta Oceania, Mar 2008; Canada/New England Crown Princess, Sep 2007; Midway/Hawaii Regal Princess, May 2007: W. Caribbean, Grand Princess, Feb, 2007 ;So. Car.,Volendam HAL, Nov, 2006; Caribbean,Zuiderdam, HAL, 2005; W Caribbean Galaxy, CCL, 2005;Transatlantic Jewel RCI,2004; W Caribbean Sovereign RCI, 2003; Hawaii Infinity, CCL, 2002; Transatlantic Rotterdam, HAL, 2000; Caribbean Galaxy CCL, 2000; Mexico Harmony, Crystal, 1999; Caribbean Zenith, CCL, 1999; South America Royal, Princess, 1998/9; W Caribbean Noordam, HAL,199?; Caribbean Horizon, CCL, 199?; Caribbean Enchanted Seas, Commodore, 198?; Alaska Regal, Princess, 198?.
sw, Fl - Fort Myers Area
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Originally posted by happy cruzer
We will do Princess next BECAUSE it is different than the other mass market lines. Dining rooms are one story and more intimate. Love the multiple fresh water pools on the "older" ships. More areas that resemble traditional cruising vs. a resort or amusement park. Lots of areas to avoid children and noisy activities - yet Princess provides the MUTS and childrens club so multigenerational cruising can please families.

Also Princess often has better itineraries. But we do enjoy each line and set our expectations accordingly.
Sort of like eating dinner in my grandmothers basement when I was a kid.
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S 645/72/826/90
2 Posts
Joined Jun 2018
I too feel the ships are getting a little dated. I appreciate the traditional cruise experience vs the amusement park, but feel the condition of the ships are deteriorating. We sailed Ruby in 2009 shortly after it was launched. The experience was magical. We just sailed Ruby to Alaska and have to say that the ship is tired. The staterooms were dirty, carpet was worn, and they smelled of mildew. Other parts of the ship had a constant septic system odor. Dining room offerings were excellent but the buffets were lackluster. Only half the hot tubs were open at any one time. Overall decor of the ship has changed little since our first sailing. My mother remarked about the overuse of browns and beiges. Finally the activities onboard lacked creativity. Too much trivia. Simplistic contents like a ring toss toss were the best that the activities team could come up with. The Captain's Circle cocktail party offered free drinks but the alcohol was poured sparingly. The advertised orchestra was made up of 4 musicians and an iPad. There were no wind players. That's a combo not a big band. Again very disappointing. Production shows were awkward and appeared to performers were lip syncing. Our expectations were not met on this cruise, but fortunately the landscapes of Alaska made up for the declining service and quality of cruise experience. We considered booking another cruise onboard but opted to forgo and explore a different cruise line. We have been loyal customers up to this point.
637 Posts
Joined Aug 2017
Originally posted by moki'smommy
We were on the Caribbean Princess in was the best cruise we've had in years from the standpoint of service and food quality. Those things don't really depend on age of the ship.
Back in 2016 we were disappointed with CB, because it was definitely showing its age, was a lot dingier and had lots of spots (literally) all over the place. The food at the buffet was nowhere near Regal/Royal Princess level. There was no free on demand movies and cartoons which are a must for our 7 yo.
The only saving grace was the ABC island itinerary.
Regal and Royal Princess is a lot better.
But our next cruise is going to be on the Allure, BECAUSE there is nothing to do on a Princess ship with a kiddo, if your kid doesn't go to kid's club. Nothing.
You get great food and free on demand movies on Regal/Royal princess, but the trade off is boredom. We aren't yet in the elderly demographic and want to do some activities such as a water park, ice skating, zip lining and rock climbing with the kid while we still can physically. Our friends who are our age with the kids slightly older than ours absolutely love Princess (but only Regal and Royal) and will never sail another line again (so they said), but even they agreed that RCCL offers better entertainment and activities for families with kids or younger active people.
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274 Posts
Joined Nov 2010
There's nothing wrong with "amusement park" ships, IMO...but they are not for me. I am glad they exist, so that other cruise lines can focus on a different type of customer, which would be me.

Sadly, although we are "this close" to being Elite status on Princess, I think we're done. So many of the above posts mirror my opinion. How long can the beige and pink decor be considered tasteful and current? But of course, that is not my major complaint.

I absolutely despise the "Piazza Concept." In their new ships, they took away cabin space (but not cabins) to make room for this disaster. Sounds good on paper, but doesn't work in real life. Too much noise and cacophony bleeding over from one deck to the next. And though I have not experienced the Regal or Royal's "disco in the piazza," I can only imagine how much I would hate it.

On our recent cruise to Norway, we had iffy weather on our sea days. Okay...rainy weather. You couldn't go outside. We could find NO quiet public areas anywhere. Every single lounge had trivia, bingo, dance lessons, etcetera. It is too much. And though I appreciate their attempt to make the sea days exciting, everyone needs a break once in awhile. We could not find a place outside of our cabin that wasn't overtaken with noise.

Celebrity does a much better job at providing a calming cruise experience. They have lounges where you can have a conversation, over a drink or a coffee.

In short, I feel like Princess is grabbing at straws and making compromises on progress in order to keep their clientele. It IS possible to be more current AND keep their customer base happy. They are just not good at it.
Two Rivers, Wisc.
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Joined Aug 2000
Different things for every cruiser, I love the piazza area on Princess ships. Sure they use it for some things but it isn't 24/7 and on my 30 day Emerald cruise, many times it was quiet. When it wasn't, I could always find an area that wasn't in use. I've never found it difficult to find a quiet spot on any of my cruises.
Las Vegas
11,878 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Originally posted by caribill
I do not mind being on a ship with 3560 passengers.

What I mind is the limited number of ports that can handle that size ship.

What I also mind is the overcrowded ports that not only have my Princess ship that day, but up to 12 other ships, most of which also have a high number of passengers.

I miss the great Princess itineraries of the past that could go to such ports as Manaus or spend 10 days just within French Polynesia islands.
There are lots of ships out there that do the smaller ports that are not accessible to the mega ship monstrosities. They just cost a lot more. I guess that I will have to start spending more money on cruises or go back to land trips. Option 2 sounds like a better idea to me anyway. On our recent Princess cruise, I went through the 2018 -2019 cruise brochures and could not find any cruise that looked even remotely interesting. Just the same few cruises repeated over and over again.

I will add that the OP says that they have been totally loyal to Princess until their last cruise. Why would anyone be loyal to any cruise line. They do not care at all about you.

13,600 Posts
Joined Apr 2013
As above, we are each different. The piazza area is one of my favorite parts of Princess least those that we've been on. I do wish that it had more seating, preferably away from the "stage" area. Yes, there are times that I don't like what is happening there or find it too I go elsewhere.
South Florida & Shenandoah Valley, VA
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Joined Jan 2008
Originally posted by Gmucha
I The advertised orchestra was made up of 4 musicians and an iPad. There were no wind players. That's a combo not a big band.
We just got off the Ruby Princess. The Princess 'orchestra'/band had 7 or 8 members.
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Joined Jul 2002
I’ve been a Princess cruiser for decades. I loved Princess. It was my favorite. In the last couple years I realized it was getting old. I was starting to think cruising wasn’t for me anymore. I’ve been on several other cruise lines and always came back to Princess. Last year I caved in and went on an NCL cruise with friends. BTW, my friends are all people who used to be Princess cruisers who I met on different cruises over the years. Now, they love NCL. I went with an open mind, but didn’t expect much. I loved it. I am looking forward to cruising again. I have 3 future cruises booked: two on NCL and 1 on Princess. I have to say I loved my NCL cruise in spite of the theme park attractions. I didn’t even notice them. The shows were great. I saw Rock of Ages and it was great. I never even waste my time on Princess shows. The food options were really fun. I loved the specialty choices and you get them with your amenities package. To the OP point. My next three cruises are on new ships. The Regal with Princess. I don’t love mega ships, but the older ships on Princess do need attention. I will never sail on the Grand again. I had a mini and the furniture had stained and ripped upholstery. The door handle to the balcony was broken. The cabinet door to the fridge was hanging by one hinge. Bathroom floor tiles were loose and stuck to the bottom of my feet. I could go on about dripping water and moldy smell. I will stick with newer ships from now on with Princess. They really do need to work on upkeep. To be fair, I haven’t been on an older NCL ship, so I can’t make comparisons. I do think Princess could perk things up a bit. I think Princess has become more like HAL now that there under the same umbrella. It doesn’t have the freshness it once had. There’s nothing wrong with HAL. I’ve enjoyed my cruises with them. I just liked Princess better. Princess doesn’t stand out anymore. I will still cruise with them, but it won’t always be my first choice.

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Everyone who agreed that some ships need a facelift, do you ever submit the post-cruise feedback? I make sure to (I hate to be the nagging cruiser) but I feel like since Princess still sells out sailings they might not feel the urgency to address these concerns so long as their bookings aren't affected. I wish the cruise industry executives were more involved in social media. Not quite sure if the post-cruise surveys sit right next to the trash bin
909 Posts
Joined Mar 2003
Being Elite on Princess means I have been on them a few more times than other lines but beside the last 2 ships (Royal and Regal) all the rest of the ships do need some TLC and a more modern look like Celebrity have been doing to its fleet.
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We haven’t sailed on Princess for several years. We just finished paying for a September cruise on the Grand out of SFO. We have never sailed from home so we thought heading north into Canada would be a lovely, easy, much needed Fall get away before a big trip later this year.

We don’t like larger ships. We just don’t. Been there, done that, never again. 2,600 pax is actually pushing past where we like to be, but previous experiences with Princess were just fine, actually good. So now I am worried after reading through this thread. These comments sure make the Grand and other ships sound like worn out dirty ships that will leave a really bad taste.
I guess we will find out if this will turn into a ‘one and done’, but I sincerely hope not.
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San Mateo, California
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We are elite on Princess and Celebrity, 3 star on HAl, have cruised Cunard recently and NCL...In terms of new ships, we have cruised on 4 of the new Celebrity ships and the new Royal Princess... while new and glitz looking, I felt some was missing from these ships... my favorite ships on Princess recently was the Ruby of the newer ones... and I keep going back to Grand... something very comfortable about that ship... even thought it only goes out of San Francisco... have done about 6 cruises in past 10 years on it... booked for 2 more in 2019 and 2020. San Francisco is my home port, so make it easy. But we did a TA on the Royal form Barcelona a year ago, it was okay... still prefer the Ruby... did a TA on it when it was new. Service on the Grand is very good. Sp I am very satisfied with Princess and the older ships.
SF Bay Area
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Originally posted by Colo Cruiser
I agree starting with the Grand. (1998)!!

I am not for the Carnival atmosphere either. Don't need all the rides etc.
However newer ships are a must. Tired of plumbing and HVAC issues.
Agreed!!! You would think with LA having the supply they have, and getting the Royal, they would send one to SF.
We're on the Emerald in should be a nice change

***Love the crew on the Grand*** Just give them a newer ship***
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I think Princess is fine but I hope their new ships have some color to them. The older ones are sure beige

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Long Island, New York
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Joined Mar 2003
I'd like to call Princess "traditional" rather than "dated". I like a ship to feel like a ship...not a mall or amusement park. If Princess stayed basically the same, I'd be happy. Updating the stateroom colors as well as more tech friendly (charging stations) would be nice. Adding healthy options at the buffet and dining room is also good. The new World Fresh Marketplace is awful and needs to have a second look.