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stevenr597

Celebrity compared to Oceania: Which is the Better Deal

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My wife and I usually cruise on either Celebrity or Princess.  With Celebrity we usually book Aqua Class, and on Princess we book a Mini-Suite, preferably CC or Club Class.  When one adds up the numerous extras including the costs of land tours it it safe to say that the cruise can be quite expensive.  My question would it make more sense to book on one of the so-called Luxury Lines such as Oceania or Azamara in which in many cases extras such as land tours are included.  Which in reality is the better deal.

I have also asked the same question on the Princess Boards.

But we would like to get some other opinions.  To stay on Celebrity, or to move upwards on a line such as Oceania. 

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It’s hard to answer without prices. We generally go AQ with Celebrity, and we consider $500 per day (for 2 people, with a beverage package) to be a decent price for Aqua on European cruises (although we’ve gotten much lower prices than this). We cruised Azamara in a Club Continent Suite at around $750 a day (again, for 2 people; which was a great price). We loved Azamara. This did not include any excursions or OBC, but AZ includes drinks. We booked an A2 Concierge Stateroom on a Med cruise on Oceania at about $800 per day (for two people). This included 4 OLife excursions and an Internet package. We ended up going AQ on a similar itinerary with Celebrity at $500 per day (for 2 people, including a beverage package).  We are Elite Plus and get useful perks (internet and laundry, etc), so the Celebrity Cruise was preferable to us. But,we certainly would consider Oceania at a more competitive price.

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1 hour ago, stevenr597 said:

My wife and I usually cruise on either Celebrity or Princess.  With Celebrity we usually book Aqua Class, and on Princess we book a Mini-Suite, preferably CC or Club Class.  When one adds up the numerous extras including the costs of land tours it it safe to say that the cruise can be quite expensive.  My question would it make more sense to book on one of the so-called Luxury Lines such as Oceania or Azamara in which in many cases extras such as land tours are included.  Which in reality is the better deal.

I have also asked the same question on the Princess Boards.

But we would like to get some other opinions.  To stay on Celebrity, or to move upwards on a line such as Oceania. 

We have not sailed on Azamara or Oceania, but I was recently thinking about the possibility and started researching their offerings. My first determination was that I would not like the smaller cabins and bathroom/showers on the R-class ships of Azamara and the 4 R-class ships out of the 6 Oceania ships - at $400 pp per day I would expect to have at least as nice a balcony cabin as I could get on Celebrity's S-class ships for $200 pp per day. I realize that this is a personal choice, but I would only consider Oceania's O-class ships with balcony cabins a little larger than Celebrity's S-class.

 

The typical $200 pp per day balcony cabin price difference between Oceania and Celebrity cannot be justified by merely looking at the costs of included perks when you consider that you can upgrade from Celebrity's usual 1-perk to 4-perks for $45 pp per day (with a much better beverage package than the basic one included on Oceania) and get a Celebrity specialty restaurant package for less than $35 pp per day. The real question is whether or not the overall experience and service level justifies the price difference. I can hope that this is the case, but I will only really know if and when I decide to take a cruise on Oceania.

 

Best of luck in your decision making.

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They’re completely different products, price aside. Oceania is much much quieter in the evening, older age group.  Not much nightlife or shows. It going to completely depend on your preference of vibe never mind price range. 

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We have booked our first Azamara cruise and leave in about 2 weeks.  We snagged a decent price for AZ @ $600+ for 2 in a veranda.  More than we pay for AQ and about what we have paid for our last few Suites but hoping the  reviews of food and service  make up  for the  smaller cabin & bath. 

 

The included beverages don’t impress us but we will give it a try for a few days but expect we will pay to upgrade to get beverages that are somewhere between the Classic &  Premium Packages on X. 

 

Looking forward to a new experience and will report back.

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55 minutes ago, jelayne said:

We have booked our first Azamara cruise and leave in about 2 weeks.  We snagged a decent price for AZ @ $600+ for 2 in a veranda.  More than we pay for AQ and about what we have paid for our last few Suites but hoping the  reviews of food and service  make up  for the  smaller cabin & bath. 

 

The included beverages don’t impress us but we will give it a try for a few days but expect we will pay to upgrade to get beverages that are somewhere between the Classic &  Premium Packages on X. 

 

Looking forward to a new experience and will report back.

I hope you will really enjoy AZ!  We didn’t upgrade to the premium package, and there were some wines we didn’t enjoy, but there was always another choice. The level of service is amazing. I am a big fan, but we avoided the small Stateroom and dreaded shower curtain in the the tiny bathroom by booking the Club Continent Suite (really a mini Suite). However, AZ loyalists insist that they they are fine for n the regular cabins.  Our passenger profile was predominantly British and Australian. Really enjoyed meeting others who were friendly, well traveled, and mostly very considerate of others. 

Edited by CYNSport

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Elite -plus so we’ve done some Celebrity Cruises.

 

We just completed our first Oceania Cruise on the Riviera - 26 days at about $575 for two people per day in the next to bottom of the line verandah (but it had an amazing double-sized balcony.) it was a b2b - a Med cruise and a transatlantic. We booked a future cruise. 

 

Passengers seemed to be about the same age as Celebrity. However, there were far fewer walkers and scooters. Almost everyone was active.

 

Quieter, no bang-bang music, didn’t go to shows, and it had a casino but didn’t seem to have much activity. Food overall was better, all non-alcoholic beverages were included, specialties were free, and we had the upgraded beverage package. I don’t think the beverage package was a particularly good value because so much was already included. The ship didn’t feel crowded except in Martinis during happy hour. Service was good (but not better than Celebrity.) Liked that all buffet food was served so the masses were not touching serving utencils. Loved the self-laundry option.

 

We had chair hogs but there were plenty of chairs. There were too many announcements compared to Celebrity’s once a day.

 

We met several Celebrity cruisers who were looking for a new home. All of us had booked another Oceania cruise while onboard.

 

Edited by cruzzzinma

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3 hours ago, CYNSport said:

It’s hard to answer without prices. We generally go AQ with Celebrity, and we consider $500 per day (for 2 people, with a beverage package) to be a decent price for Aqua on European cruises (although we’ve gotten much lower prices than this). We cruised Azamara in a Club Continent Suite at around $750 a day (again, for 2 people; which was a great price). We loved Azamara. This did not include any excursions or OBC, but AZ includes drinks. We booked an A2 Concierge Stateroom on a Med cruise on Oceania at about $800 per day (for two people). This included 4 OLife excursions and an Internet package. We ended up going AQ on a similar itinerary with Celebrity at $500 per day (for 2 people, including a beverage package).  We are Elite Plus and get useful perks (internet and laundry, etc), so the Celebrity Cruise was preferable to us. But,we certainly would consider Oceania at a more competitive price.

 

If I was paying some of those prices, I would be absolutely loaded the entire cruise to try to get my money's worth!

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As a retired person, living on cruise ships 8 to 12 weeks a year, and spending time on my own boat... 

 

My guess try both.

 

You'll live and NEVER be cheap to your wife. (she can kill you in your sleep) :classic_ninja:

 

 

 

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Edited by A Sixth?

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I tried Oceania when they first entered the market and their pricing was more reasonable.  It was a great experience.

based on the above comments a balcony cabin is about the same price as I pay for a SS1 on Celebrity with the Best bundle.  I keep checking and comparing for something more reasonable.  

 

OP, if you can find an equivalent Oceania cabin for close to the same price, it would be worth trying it, IMO.  You need to compare prices with the equivalent extras.

Edited by jagoffee

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I have occasionally priced Azmara and Oceana, but was seriously put off by the fares.  Yes, they are more inclusive, but why pay double the price or more when we are happy with Celebrity.

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13 hours ago, lais said:

Never had buyers remorse on an Oceania cruise.  

 

I know exactly what you mean!  Neither have my sister or me.  So far we've done eight cruises on Oceania and loved each more than the previous.  Celebrity is my second choice - one Oceania and one Celebrity per year.

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13 hours ago, cruzzzinma said:

Elite -plus so we’ve done some Celebrity Cruises.

 

We just completed our first Oceania Cruise on the Riviera - 26 days at about $575 for two people per day in the next to bottom of the line verandah (but it had an amazing double-sized balcony.) it was a b2b - a Med cruise and a transatlantic. We booked a future cruise. 

 

Passengers seemed to be about the same age as Celebrity. However, there were far fewer walkers and scooters. Almost everyone was active.

 

Quieter, no bang-bang music, didn’t go to shows, and it had a casino but didn’t seem to have much activity. Food overall was better, all non-alcoholic beverages were included, specialties were free, and we had the upgraded beverage package. I don’t think the beverage package was a particularly good value because so much was already included. The ship didn’t feel crowded except in Martinis during happy hour. Service was good (but not better than Celebrity.) Liked that all buffet food was served so the masses were not touching serving utencils. Loved the self-laundry option.

 

We had chair hogs but there were plenty of chairs. There were too many announcements compared to Celebrity’s once a day.

 

We met several Celebrity cruisers who were looking for a new home. All of us had booked another Oceania cruise while onboard.

 

 

This is a very good summary. Having taken over 20 Oceania cruises and 15 or so Celebrity cruises I have a pretty good idea what they both offer. You have to decide what’s important to you. Do you like shows? Do you like an active nightlife? Do you like an active casino? If these are important to you then you won’t like Oceania.

 

I like them both, but for different reasons. In short Oceania excels at food, that’s their big claim. They also have extremely comfortable beds. Their newer ships have very nice rooms. It’s much less crowded, more sedate atmosphere, very few if any kids.  The casino tables close from 5 to 8 pm each day. I don’t know what genius came up with that idea. 

 

You probably already know what Celebrity offers. I find the people the most unhappy with Oceania are the ones that usually book a suite on mass market lines and think for the same money they can go on a luxury line but in a balcony or ocean view. Imagine their horror when they find out no room below Concierge gets a hot breakfast from room service on Oceania. 

 

Couple more thoughts, some of those price per day quoted seem a bit high. 

 

Also Oceania And Azamara are not really luxury lines. They’re premium lines. If you want true luxury and getting glad handled then you need to look at Regent, Silversea, Seabourne and Crystal. 

 

If you book an R ship make sure you know what you are getting. Most Celebrity cruisers looking to switch seem most unhappy with them, unless they’ve been on Azamara. 

 

Good luck. 

 

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17 hours ago, lais said:

Never had buyers remorse on an Oceania cruise.  

I second that.   We have had some pretty spectacular experiences on Oceania.   Plus I love the R-Class ships!

 

Joe

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Having cruised on all of the lines, except Crystal - Celebrity, Oceania, Regent, and Seabourn I can honestly say that Oceania is still my overall favorite. Have never done the small Oceania ships, only Marina and Riviera. The 0 life package is highly affordable and they give credit for not taking their air. You can get the beverage package (which is only wine and beer during dinner or lunch) and convert it to a premium package once on board for a small difference in price - well worth it. 

If you book Penthouse level which we always do you have access to the Concierge lounge which is very convenient and has a large tv.  Our most recent two cruises were on Seabourn - which we love for the food and service and all inclusive perks. We like them for the fact that they literally will give you anything you ask for. However as others noted there  is a different vibe. They do have a dance lounge that is open until 1 a.m. with live music but even though I am not young, I like more modern club type music but you cannot find it there!  I did get them to play Katy Perry Fireworks but we were the only ones on the dance floor (   However, I booked Celebrity just because of the Edge and wanted to take my son on a cruise and knew he would not be happy on Seabourn or Oceania thinking that Celebrity would be more lively but now find that the new Edge is not that way at all it seems.  I had no idea that Celebrity was so tier oriented with amenities. On Oceania or Seabourn or Regent guests no matter what their status have access to EVERY venue on the ship  - and now we find on Celebrity if you do not book at suite you are pretty much considered lower class. I do not like that at all!  Also by the time we pay for this small cabin (sunset Veranda), add the best package, we are paying more for a 7 day Caribbean cruise than we did on Oceania back in February for a 10 day in a penthouse suite!    Just be sure you book through an agent.  The service that is similar to Cruise Critic lets you put in what cruise you want and you get offers. The only way to go.

Edited by kkmiausa

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We are in our mid 60s and have cruised on Oceania, Celebrity and Princess as well as HAL. We like all of them for different reasons and book according to the itinerary that best compliments each. As far as pricing goes, depending on the sailing, we can usually get a Celebrity sky suite or a Princess vista suite if we book early for about the same price as an Oceania concierge A cabin.

 

We like Celebrity when we want to do a B2B which includes a transoceanic leg as we have a lot of fun on their TA/TP cruises and the evening shows definitely have that wow factor we just don't see on the other lines. We also enjoy their interactive game shows and multiple lectures on sea days. We also like eating in the Luminae and having Michael's to escape to.

 

We like Oceania because of their longer itineraries to more out of the way ports and their GREAT food in their GDR, free specialty restaurants and buffet, which has an outdoor terrace to dine at.

 

We like Princess, although a little less than Celebrity, when we can get a good vista suite price on an extended itinerary or when they have the best itinerary when compared with similar X and O itineraries to exotic locations. We also like their shows and variety of things to do on sea days.

 

We like what HAL is doing with the Maasdam and their in-depth exploration-like itineraries. However, HAL's ship life on the rest of their fleet has gotten a little too boring for us over the past few years and we probably won't be cruising with them other than on some of the more exotic Maasdam itineraries.

 

Now mind you we like cruises between 20-40 days rather than 7-10 days. But the best recommendation I can give you is to book an O cruise and see for yourself.

Edited by Ken the cruiser

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On 11/30/2018 at 7:04 PM, kkmiausa said:

Having cruised on all of the lines, except Crystal - Celebrity, Oceania, Regent, and Seabourn I can honestly say that Oceania is still my overall favorite. Have never done the small Oceania ships, only Marina and Riviera. The 0 life package is highly affordable and they give credit for not taking their air. You can get the beverage package (which is only wine and beer during dinner or lunch) and convert it to a premium package once on board for a small difference in price - well worth it. 

 

Upgrade is $20 pp per day

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On 11/30/2018 at 7:04 PM, kkmiausa said:

I had no idea that Celebrity was so tier oriented with amenities. On Oceania or Seabourn or Regent guests no matter what their status have access to EVERY venue on the ship 

 

Except for the Concierge lounge on Oceania which is not open to everyone.

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6 hours ago, Nachosdelux said:

 

Except for the Concierge lounge on Oceania which is not open to everyone.

 

Also the Executive Lounge & the Spa Terrace. But having been in all of them I don't miss them when I don't have access to them. I just got off an Oceania cruise where I access to the Spa Terrace and used it once on a 16 day cruise. 

 

Pretty much anything in the Executive or Concierge lounges can be found elsewhere on the ship, just sometimes not as convenient. 

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Yes they are not "retreat areas and private dining venues" just a little areas where you can read newspapers, grab a coffee or soft drink and a cookie or two:)

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