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Ferndale Girl

Celebrity versus Princess

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I just saw a Celebrity cruise advertised that Princess doesn't offer.  Iceland and Greenland back to back from New Jersey - no flying involved.  We've taken many Princess cruises but never one with Celebrity.  I think I read somewhere that Celebrity isn't as good.  Has anybody that has been on Celebrity have anything good to say about it?  Any comments would be appreciated.

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I have been on the Celebrity Solstice, as well as Princess' Royal and Emerald.

Celebrity was very similar to Princess in most things, but, to me, is like comparing modern art to classical art.

The crew on both are magnificent, the food is excellent, the facilities are kept clean.

Celebrity has larger rooms, but no walk-in closet.

 

Although I would sail Celebrity again in a heartbeat, I prefer Princess.

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Do they serve escargot, rack of lamb, chair in the cabin to sit in and change your bed sheets every day?

Edited by c-boy

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We started our cruising on Celebrity (X) in 1996 and continued thru 2008; we returned in 2014 (Eclipse) and 2015 (Summit for Can-NE itin).  We started with Princess in 2000 and last was in 2017 (we haven't been able to cruise since due to health issues).  So we have done 11 cruises (96 days) on X, 31 cruises (347 days) on Princess.  Also have done 8 cruises (71 days) on HAL with last in 2017.  Obviously, Princess became our line of choice where we've been Elite for some time.  That Celebrity itinerary to Iceland and Greenland sounds good.  We've been to both multiple times, but always at the end of a TA, so now being able to go there from NJ sounds like a good idea!

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The one time we sailed Celebrity Infinity in 2017 we paid for "aqua class" so we enjoyed meals in Blu and few other perks so we can't comment on the MDR experience.  Our experience in Blu was extrodenary in every level and the line is refined as we like.  I wish Princess would get the equipment for the "silent party" that we did on Celebrity and I hear RCI is doing it as well.....it was a hoot.  We paid more for the aqua class experience but agree Celebrity has a good product and would try it again.

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I believe you would find more similarities than differences. We have sailed both lines a few times in the past couple of years. Like the bigger balcony cabin size on Celebrity with a love seat. Think storage organization is better on Princess. Celebrity still offers some of the nicer dinner items, at least they did last March. If you are Elite on Princess you might miss some of the perks such as the minibar and laundry. If you drink wine, Celebrity’s price per pour can be pretty ridiculous. Not sure about how often they change the sheets, but I only change mine at home once a week. I’d rather live with that and see a cruise line spend the money on other things. 

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If Celebrity offered an itinerary that I wanted, and it was not available on Princess, I would sail with Celebrity. We did on Celebrity cruise and it was just fine. We have not sailed again because....1. Their pizza does not even deserve to be called pizza, and I must have my pizza and 2. They do not have passenger laundry facilities.  When cruising more than 7 day, laundry is important to me, and although Princess will do mine for free, there are some things I just want to do myself. 

We though the main dining room food was very good, as was the service. We liked the doorbells on the suites. We liked having a butler who brought us cappuccino every morning at 7, along with warm croissants. We requested the cappuccino, he added the croissant. 

We did not like the elevators, as they were all mid-ship, none were forward or aft, so our aft suite was not a really convenient location. But there were lots of elevators.

I am sure if you are cruising for the ports you will enjoy the cruise. We were cruising with a group of friends. 

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While we prefer Princess, we still always enjoy of Celebrity cruises.  :classic_biggrin: 

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Thank you to all.  We are elite on Princess and really like the free laundry.  I wouldn't mind doing my own but I see that they don't offer a self-service laundromat and on a 28 day cruise it would get quite expensive.  We actually are booked on a Princess cruise round trip from Brisbane and going to New Zealand.  We are just dreading the long flights so that is why we were thinking of changing to this one.  I think we're going to pass on it though. 

 

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3 hours ago, Ferndale Girl said:

I just saw a Celebrity cruise advertised that Princess doesn't offer.  Iceland and Greenland back to back from New Jersey - no flying involved.  We've taken many Princess cruises but never one with Celebrity.  I think I read somewhere that Celebrity isn't as good.  Has anybody that has been on Celebrity have anything good to say about it?  Any comments would be appreciated.

 

Not sure where you "read" that...BUT...IMHO, Celebrity is BETTER than Princess...Of course, everyone is entitled to their own opinion...We all have different standards, different criteria, different expectations...Many things (food and entertainment, for example) can be largely subjective...

 

OTOH, here is why I prefer Celebrity (And I've done a lot of cruising on BOTH lines):

 

Space per passenger and crew per passenger ratios--much better on Celebrity...More space per person, less crowded venues, better overall service.

One place it manifests itself is in the show rooms...Princess ships have fewer seats in the showroom than Celebrity ships--even though the Princess ships carry more passengers.  You often need to get to the show VERY early, just to find a seat.  On Celebrity, you can usually show up at curtain time and find god seats--even front center...

 

Cabins.  The typical Princess cabin--at any category below mini-suite--has only a chair.  Celebrity cabins, even insides and OVs have a sitting area...with a sofa or love seat and a coffee table.  To get the same sort of space on Princess, you need to book a mini-suite.  Also, Princess' lowest priced OV cabins have an "obstructed view"--which often means the side of a lifeboat completely or almost completely blocking your window.  On Celebrity, the only cabins they even call "obstructed view" wouldn't even get that designation on Princess...It means that there is a lifeboat BELOW your balcony--so the only obstruction is when looking down.  All of the views straight out are completely clear.

 

As to the frequent customer programs, there are similarities:  Free laundry, free internet...But the Celebrity program goes much farther--including free pre-dinner drinks at their "Elite" level and above...But, in addition to that, getting to "Elite" is MUCH easier on Celebrity (I made it to Elite in four cruises!).  I'm doing my 8th cruise on Princess in April and I'm not even close to Elite...

 

Aside from those major differences, what I can tell you is that you would likely have an excellent cruise on Celebrity and should not hesitate to book it at all...especially if they have the itinerary you want...Have fun...

 

Let me also add that eighteen years ago, when I booked my first Princess cruise (10 night Baltic) and had not yet cruised on Celebrity, my travel agent at the time really tried hard to get me to book with Celebrity instead.  ""Why?" I asked.  Her response:  "Because they are so much better."  We heard her, but went ahead with the Princess cruise anyway.  Two years later, we took our first Celebrity cruise (a 12 night Mediterranean).  We decided right then and there that we should have listened to her...

Edited by Bruin Steve

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I think that they are more alike than different, right itinerary I’d sail Celebrity again in a heartbeat.

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2 hours ago, Ferndale Girl said:

Thank you to all.  We are elite on Princess and really like the free laundry.  I wouldn't mind doing my own but I see that they don't offer a self-service laundromat and on a 28 day cruise it would get quite expensive.  We actually are booked on a Princess cruise round trip from Brisbane and going to New Zealand.  We are just dreading the long flights so that is why we were thinking of changing to this one.  I think we're going to pass on it though. 

 

That’s one Celebrity weakness for longer trips, no selve serve laundry.

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16 minutes ago, GUT2407 said:

That’s one Celebrity weakness for longer trips, no selve serve laundry.

 

If that's the one weakness... :classic_biggrin:

 

Well...In June/July, when we're on our back-to-back Celebrity Reflection cruises (24 nights), due to our Captains Club status, we'll get 8 free loads of laundry...and, again, we didn't need to cruise near as much as we would have on Princess to earn that...so, no worries...

 

But, as to the "no self-service laundromat", let me put it this way:    I go on cruises to be served and enjoy...not to spend my time doing laundry.  Yes, laundry rates can be high (though Celebrity does run frequent specials on discounted laundry during each cruise).  But, even at full price, I figure that I am spending thousands on the cruise itself...a few extra dollars on some laundry charges isn't going to get me bent out of shape.

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I don't think you'll be disappointed with Celebrity.  We have 11 on Princess and about 4 or 5 on Celebrity.  Celebrity now would also be  my first choice.  It is a little harder giving up your perks but if it's the right itinerary, jump on it.

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We have sailed both a lot. We're Elite Plus on Celebrity and getting close to Elite on Princess. While I like the self serve laundry, I'm looking forward to sending the sturdier stuff out sometime soon. I love using the free laundry perk on Celebrity. We like to sail Aqua Class on Celebrity and love using Blu for breakfast and dinner. And, as someone mentioned, the theatre access on Celebrity is much better. I really don't understand the comment about elevators. The S-Class ships have forward and mid-ship elevators and the M-Class has forward, mid-ship and aft elevators.

 

Having said all of that, Princess comes in a close second and sometimes has much better itinerary options. You really can't go wrong with either line.

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5 hours ago, Ferndale Girl said:

I just saw a Celebrity cruise advertised that Princess doesn't offer.  Iceland and Greenland back to back from New Jersey - no flying involved.  We've taken many Princess cruises but never one with Celebrity.  I think I read somewhere that Celebrity isn't as good.  Has anybody that has been on Celebrity have anything good to say about it?  Any comments would be appreciated.

Where did you see that cruise? I just looked at the Celebrity site, maybe I missed it?

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Our last Celebrity cruise was disappointing but I chalk it up to being just a 5-night one. Our longer ones were all excellent. If it weren't for the better fares and generous past-passenger perks and shareholder credit, I'd probably book us on more Celebrity cruises. Whenever I look, though, they seem to be more expensive to start with, not even considering the things we'd be giving up. At least when we stray over to HAL, I get my shareholder credit.

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4 hours ago, daydreamer16 said:

Where did you see that cruise? I just looked at the Celebrity site, maybe I missed it?

It’s on Summit. NJ to Dublin and then Dublin to Boston. 

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I think she is mis-reading the 'map.  In August 2020 Summit is going NYC to Dublin, with calls in Iceland and Greenland.  But the return is Dublin to Boston,  EM

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Comparing these two lines is tough and perhaps one should be looking at a ship by ship comparison.  We are Elite Plus with Celebrity (over 200 days) and Elite with Princess (over 200 days).  Both lines are constantly making changes so our pendulum swings back and forth.  At the moment we favor Princess but that could change tomorrow.   Each line has their pros and cons.  For example, there is nothing on Celebrity to compare to the International Café on most Princess vessels.  But there are no alternative restaurants on Princess that even come close to Murano on some Celebrity ships.

 

Our issue with Celebrity is their current CEO seems to believe in lots of cut-backs (large and small) coupled with price increases (sometimes large price increases).  We think the overall quality of Celebrity has been going through a 5 year decline...and is driven us to book other lines with Celebrity falling far down our list of favorites.  Meanwhile, Princess who had fallen out of our favored list for many reasons has worked its way back to one of the top mass market lines on our personal list.  In the past two years we have passed over our routine Celebrity bookings in favor of MSC (Yacht Club), Princess and HAL.  When we saw the pricing on the new Celebrity Edge, both DW and I had a good laugh and a similar reaction which is that there is no way that Celebrity is worth those prices...or anything close to those prices.  That quickly drove us to book a Seabourn cruise (actually less money then most Edge categories)!   After all, you can put lipstick on a pig...but you still have a pig.  In the case of Celebrity you can launch an interesting new vessel, but food, service and entertainment are still typical Celebrity.  

 

Hank

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9 hours ago, Cruise Junky said:

It’s on Summit. NJ to Dublin and then Dublin to Boston. 

 

9 hours ago, Essiesmom said:

I think she is mis-reading the 'map.  In August 2020 Summit is going NYC to Dublin, with calls in Iceland and Greenland.  But the return is Dublin to Boston,  EM

Ok I wasn't looking at  European cruises, duh! Thanks!

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The two lines seem fairly similar to me.  The main difference that I noticed is that there is not as much to do on Celebrity.  There isn't much live music, piano bars, etc. in the evening.  The shows/entertainment are not as good on Celebrity.  There is less trivia, less dancing, not much going on late after the second show on Celebrity.  It's not hard to get a seat in the theater for the shows because they aren't as good as Princess.  The food, pools, service, etc. are otherwise pretty much the same.

That being said, if Celebrity had a more interesting itinerary, I would consider it.  I would simply plan on a cruise with less ship activities than Princess.

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15 hours ago, daydreamer16 said:

Where did you see that cruise? I just looked at the Celebrity site, maybe I missed it?

It is two separate cruises on Summit.  August 2nd and August 16th, 2020.   My mistake...leaves from New Jersey but returns to Boston.

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1 hour ago, mosenga said:

 It's not hard to get a seat in the theater for the shows because they aren't as good as Princess. 

 

The rest (re: entertainment) is arguable...but this one is simply not true.  The reason it's harder to get a seat in the showroom on Princess is VERY simple:  The typical Princess ship carries just over 3,000 passengers but has a theater that seats 900...The Celebrity M-class, for example, carries around 2,000 and has an 1100 seat theater.  It's simple mathematics...

 

What princess usually does to try to compensate is to schedule other events opposite the main show to try to siphon off some of the crowd...like putting a magician into Explorer's Lounge at a time when one would have to make a choice between the two--because the lounge is so small (capacity around 300) that no one attending the main show would be able to get to the magic act in time to even get standing room...Still, between those two shows, they can't accommodate half the passengers...

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