Bon Voyage Experience

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#1
Phoenix
466 Posts
Joined Jun 2009
What are the thoughts those who have done this? Any details as far as cost,and how long are they on board?

Our friends will be in San Francisco the same time we are leaving and had interest- also a 10 year old son can 3 people attend? I tried the website and did not see what I was looking for.
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#2
COLORADO
59,527 Posts
Joined Jan 2004
Originally posted by Arizona-Cruising
What are the thoughts those who have done this? Any details as far as cost,and how long are they on board?

Our friends will be in San Francisco the same time we are leaving and had interest- also a 10 year old son can 3 people attend? I tried the website and did not see what I was looking for.

$39pp. Time approx 11:00pm-3:00pm.
Sometimes embarkation is delayed and you won't board until Noon or so. No way to tell.
Have to call Princess to see if it's offered for your cruise and to book.

Here are some threads on the BVE.......

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showt...age+experience

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showt...age+experience

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showt...age+experience
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Keith
Princess Elite Member
57 Princess Cruises



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#4
Lihue HI & Calimesa CA
5,075 Posts
Joined May 2013
Yes, 3 can do a BVE. There's really no limit, except that the max participants per BVE is 50.
They can fill up, so call Princess ASAP to schedule (no info on their website, it's a closely held secret for some reason).
You or your friends can call. All will need the same basic info that everyone needs to book a cruise...name, DOB, etc.
They must complete a Personalizer just like everyone else.
Make sure that you're linked, so you can all board together.
#6
Atlanta
841 Posts
Joined Jan 2012
We brought two friends on board the Coral for the BVE last December and they loved it.
They opted not to take the guided tour, but to hang out with us.
A nice perk is, you and your guests are among the first to board.
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#7
California
2,034 Posts
Joined Nov 2005
Originally posted by Arizona-Cruising
What are the thoughts those who have done this? Any details as far as cost,and how long are they on board?

Our friends will be in San Francisco the same time we are leaving and had interest- also a 10 year old son can 3 people attend? I tried the website and did not see what I was looking for.
I've done this a few times, including times when friends were boarding to actually take the cruise. It is well worthwhile in my opinion. You do have to call Princess to see if they are offering the experience for the particular sailing you are interested in.

TIP.... Ask to speak with someone in the Bon Voyage department. I have had the experience of speaking with a front line call taker who said the experience was not being offered for a particular sailing, when I knew it was. I pushed a bit and insisted on speaking with someone in the Bon Voyage department and was able to get the reservation made.

As others have mentioned, you sign up for the Bon Voyage experience just as if you were signing up to go on a cruise (i.e. you are assigned a Captain's Circle number, register your passport or other documentation, etc.). If a participant in the Bon Voyage does not have a passport, then there are ways to work around that. Speak to Princess about those options.

An advantage to having friends do the Bon Voyage is that they will often get to go on early, and if your reservation is linked to their's then you get to go on early with them.

Finally, have your friends bring a bottle of wine. Each passenger is allowed to bring one bottle on board, and they count as passengers for this purpose.
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#8
Chico, California
9,479 Posts
Joined Sep 2012
Originally posted by Smokeyham
I've done this a few times, including times when friends were boarding to actually take the cruise. It is well worthwhile in my opinion. You do have to call Princess to see if they are offering the experience for the particular sailing you are interested in.

TIP.... Ask to speak with someone in the Bon Voyage department. I have had the experience of speaking with a front line call taker who said the experience was not being offered for a particular sailing, when I knew it was. I pushed a bit and insisted on speaking with someone in the Bon Voyage department and was able to get the reservation made.

As others have mentioned, you sign up for the Bon Voyage experience just as if you were signing up to go on a cruise (i.e. you are assigned a Captain's Circle number, register your passport or other documentation, etc.). If a participant in the Bon Voyage does not have a passport, then there are ways to work around that. Speak to Princess about those options.

An advantage to having friends do the Bon Voyage is that they will often get to go on early, and if your reservation is linked to their's then you get to go on early with them.

Finally, have your friends bring a bottle of wine. Each passenger is allowed to bring one bottle on board, and they count as passengers for this purpose.
We found there was no way to finish the booking info online when we took my son on a BVE as he had no passport. I simply called Princess and gave them the info from his driver's license and it was good to go.

Linking reservations is really important. Don't forget.

Having your BVE guests bring wine onboard is brilliant. It will get you more wine to drink onboard in your cabin without having to pay $15 per bottle corkage. If you are a wine drinker you should definitely do this.
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#9
The Berkshires Of MA
11,619 Posts
Joined Feb 2006
Yes, they are treated just as boarding guest and are allowed on bottle of wine each
Leaving it with you, of course

When our daughter did the BVE she left the ship around 3:15

Right before muster at 4:15 they were asking all the BVE folks to disembark. So you can squeeze out a little more time.
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#10
Atlanta
841 Posts
Joined Jan 2012
Our friends in Florida loved it when we treated them to a BVE on the Coral last December. They were looking forward to joining us again this year, but had to cancel due to an out of state family reunion.


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#11
East Meadow, NY
1,000 Posts
Joined Feb 2009
Another great thing is your friend may drive you to the ship!!!

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#12
San Francisco
3,744 Posts
Joined Jan 2008
Originally posted by janetz
Yes, they are treated just as boarding guest and are allowed on bottle of wine each
Leaving it with you, of course

When our daughter did the BVE she left the ship around 3:15

Right before muster at 4:15 they were asking all the BVE folks to disembark. So you can squeeze out a little more time.
I did a BVE last month on the Grand in San Francisco & when we disembarked around 3:00 pm the FCC was in the terminal and mentioned that if people didn’t leave at the requested time, we were supposed to leave at 2:30 pm, that Princess may stop doing the BVE. Before we had to leave at 3 o’clock so I assumed there would not be a problem. I was surprised to hear this.

Tom😎
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#13
COLORADO
59,527 Posts
Joined Jan 2004
Originally posted by trbarton
I did a BVE last month on the Grand in San Francisco & when we disembarked around 3:00 pm the FCC was in the terminal and mentioned that if people didn’t leave at the requested time, we were supposed to leave at 2:30 pm, that Princess may stop doing the BVE. Before we had to leave at 3 o’clock so I assumed there would not be a problem. I was surprised to hear this.

Tom😎

I always get a bad vibe anyway from those future cruise consultants.
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Keith
Princess Elite Member
57 Princess Cruises



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#14
2,331 Posts
Joined Nov 2001
We did a BVE here on the east coast last year, and here is my post about it. Unfortunately with the changes at Photobucket the pictures can no longer be seen:

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showt...2415854&page=2

We did end up booking a cruise for this year, and the cost of the BVE was applied to our current fare.

You do need to provide the same documentation as you would if you were actually cruising and leaving the country on the ship.

It would definitely be a better experience in nicer weather than we had, so you could use the pools etc. and be outdoors. By the time we left at 3pm, the ship was full and EVERYONE was inside, making it very crowded in the Piazza and the Horizon Court. That would be my only "negative" comment about the day, but really it's more just an observation than a complaint.
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#16
California
2,034 Posts
Joined Nov 2005
Originally posted by Wishing on a star
Just out of curiosity.
About the early boading... Does anyone know if this usually the case?
And, how much earlier?
(we are Platinum)
Yes..... I have done a couple of BVEs in San Francisco and we have been able to get on around 10:30 or 11:00. Definitely ahead of regular passengers, but I am not sure if we were ahead of suite passengers. My friends who were travelling on the cruise appreciated that.

Something which we do is to go right to the accommodations decks so that friends who have not been on Princess before can have a quick look at the different types of cabins. Views of the cabins are not generally included in the tours given by Princess staff.

Staff have been very nice about allowing us to have a quick look as they are preparing the cabins for the next guests. Not the most glamorous views since the sheets are off the beds, etc. but it does give people an idea of what the cabins look like. Of course, we are in and out quickly to minimize disruption of the staff's work. You need to do this first thing, because the cabins re closed up once the clean up work is done.
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#18
Oakville, ON
1,980 Posts
Joined Aug 2009
Originally posted by Wishing on a star
Thanks!
Hhhhmmm?????
I am thinking about First-Come-First-Served things like the Sanctuary.
BVE's and Weddings first. (I have also observed what is obviously family of crew members).
Then Suites & Elites. (In Port Everglades this has appeared to me to be a group glom and not a specific order, but not sure as they pile out of a small room).
Then Platinum in order of arrival/check-in. (I have seen where Platinum seating upstairs is full and then I am not sure what happens because I am up there 99% and have only arrived late once and it seemed confusing where to be for priority boarding when upstairs was full.)
Then the rest of the crowd generally in order of arrival/check-in.

I have been successful with Sanctuary bookings in the past if I am one of the first Platinum's on board. IDK whether this is still the case and I would say demand depends on area the cruise covers, weather/time of year, number of port days. Not to mention number of Elites on a trip who have same plans as you.

I will reveal that one particular cruise I made it to the Sanctuary at the same time as the first party of Elites arrived, so I was next in line after them.
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#19
California
2,034 Posts
Joined Nov 2005
Originally posted by Wishing on a star
Thanks!
Hhhhmmm?????
I am thinking about First-Come-First-Served things like the Sanctuary.
The Ultimate Ship's Tour is another thing that you may need to sign up for early for in order to get a place.
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NCL, Norwegian Sun, April, 2009 (Repo LA to Vancouver)
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NCL, Norwegian Star, May, 2007 (Repo LA to Vancouver)
Carnival Paradise, Nov. 2005 (LA to Ensenada)
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HAL Rotterdam, July 1993 (Alaska)