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niceguyneastbay

Celbrity vs HAL

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I am thinking of trying Celebrity next year after years of being with HAL.  I am trying to understand the difference in pricing between the two cruise lines and having difficulty trying to figure out why there is a wide gap in pricing.  ie Celebrity $1179 Ocean view  vs HAL $720  or  Celebrity $1499 Veranda vs HAL $792

 

Looking at  Edge March 22 vs. Nieuw Statendam March 23    Eastern Carib March

 

What is it that really makes Celebrity stand out besides a bit younger crowd?  What am I not seeing? Any tips and advice you can give me would be appreciated.  

 

Tim

 

 

 

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Why is it you want to try Celebrity, is there a disappointment or do you just need to shake things up a bit? It's been a long time since I sailed HAL, but I have been tempted with their new music venues and stricter smoking policy.

 

Are there perks in your Celebrity quote? Those are often in this far out and would offer a value.

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11 minutes ago, niceguyneastbay said:

I am thinking of trying Celebrity next year after years of being with HAL.  I am trying to understand the difference in pricing between the two cruise lines and having difficulty trying to figure out why there is a wide gap in pricing.  ie Celebrity $1179 Ocean view  vs HAL $720  or  Celebrity $1499 Veranda vs HAL $792

 

Looking at  Edge March 22 vs. Nieuw Statendam March 23    Eastern Carib March

 

What is it that really makes Celebrity stand out besides a bit younger crowd?  What am I not seeing? Any tips and advice you can give me would be appreciated.  

 

Tim

 

 

 

I think the Edge is still running higher prices due to it being brand new.  If you look at the S or M class cruises, you will find plenty of Veranda fares running around $800pp.  We especially like X's "perk" fares where you get a drink package and OBC.

 

In our opinion, food was consistently better on X...specialty, MDR, room service, and buffet.  Crowds were similar, generally 50+, although if you are cruising during a Spring Break week those laws of averages will go out the window.

 

The onboard experience on both lines was very similar...lots of quiet, generally reserved and well-behaved guests, polite and professional crew, and not much excitement past midnight.

 

IMHO, if you enjoy HAL, you will enjoy X just as much.

Edited by sound_guy0918

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I recently made 4 * with HAL. Thinking I should venture out and try something new.  I think HAL sailing to the Caribbean is stagnant with the same ports I would like to change it up.  I am hoping for better entertainment. It looks like Celebrity has more stuff to do on board.

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You can cruise with HAL a lot cheaper than with Celebrity. Here are some other differences, HAL entertainment has gone downhill. MDR's are about equal but X is better in the buffet because of the many choices. Service is excellent on both lines. Older crowd on HAL but going on 74 I'm no spring chicken. Specialty restaurants on HAL are less costly. Both lines have beautiful ships and are well maintained. 

 

 

Edited by MISTER 67

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Even if HAL entertainment has gone downhill, it still is most likely better than celebrity. But Edge is brand new ship that hopefully has better entertainment than the other celebrity ships . 

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We have found that the itinerary drives our choices.  We do like the buffet arrangement on Celebrity better.  Entertainment seems better as well. True HAL prices are less for beverages, and specialty dinners. Edge is more costly due to its unique design and innovations. On other cruiseships they are similar. 

IMO, no difference in TransAtlantic cruises.  We will choose HAL for their more exotic itineraries ex.  Springtime has a San Diego RT to French Polynesia,  Nada RT on Celebrity.  Being 6'6" Intl. Business class is to costly but FC domestically is OK. Basically We have enjoyed both and never had a bad cruise.  Elite Plus on Celebrity and 3 * on HAL,  4 * by December. Celebrity has better perks as well for its repeat passengers. Important note HAL still allows smoking in some casinos.  K for one.

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Agree nonsmoking in casino and almost all indoor area plus great buffet are two of celebrity strong points.

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We're in our mid 60s and love to have fun and laugh on sea days. We have found we have the most fun on Princess cruises with events run by their 6 assistant CDs, then Celebrity with the events run by their 3-4 assistant CDs. HAL has just gotten to boring for us on sea days over the past 3 years and we have pretty much ruled them out except for an In-depth EXC cruise coming up on the Maasdam. 

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Our last two cruise were on HAL, our next two are on Celebrity. We've been going back and forth between the two since we started cruising, and we'd be hard pressed to say which line we prefer. If you choose an S-class, you should be able to find a comparably price cruise. Give it a try and see how you like it, but I suspect that you will feel quite at home. There are differences, but many more similarities.

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3 hours ago, George C said:

Even if HAL entertainment has gone downhill, it still is most likely better than celebrity. But Edge is brand new ship that hopefully has better entertainment than the other celebrity ships . 

EDGE has a state of the art theater..very hi tech and some much better shows than standard X shows.  Good groups and variety of live music in diff areas. EDEN area is unique  .Excellent dining options!

Edited by hcat

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We love Celebrity.  We still cruise HAL as well.  Celebrity food is the best.  HAL entertainment has gone downhill, Celebrity's is still great.  I also love their ships.  I have not tried Edge yet as the price is too high for us right now.

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3 hours ago, George C said:

Agree nonsmoking in casino and almost all indoor area plus great buffet are two of celebrity strong points.

On HAL you can vape or use e-cigarettes in your cabin. We book sky suites on Celebrity. Our last cruise on HAL we had very nice cabin with double sinks, nice large cabin and balcony. In my eyes Celebrity is miles a head of Celebrity. I did not like the Edge. We dont plan on cruising on the Edge class ships.

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8 minutes ago, bigbenboys said:

In my eyes Celebrity is miles a head of Celebrity.

Ah, that clarifies things. :classic_biggrin:

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1 minute ago, Fouremco said:

Ah, that clarifies things. :classic_biggrin:

In my eyes Celebrity is miles a head of Celebrity. What I meant was Celebrity is miles a head of HAL.

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We like both HAL and X and will choose based on itinerary. 

 

On the plus side for X: (in my opinion), friendliness and visibility of captains and senior staff. Fewer announcements. Less agressive art auction staff. We also love Cafe al Bacio and the Martini Bar. We prefer sea days on X, versus HAL. 

 

On HAL, especially the Rotterdam, the wood work and decors (numerous and impressive museums style pieces) gave us a sense of more traditional cruising, which we enjoyed. The Maasdam was a bit less impressive. Food is good to excellent on both lines, and as mentioned, cheaper specialty restaurants on HAL.

 

 

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We cruised with HAL in Japan this year. It was our first cruise with HAL and we were satisfied. Service was just as good and the things we like better on Celebrity, like ship design and open space, didn´t really matter on the cruise because the destination was the focus. Entertainment isn´t a factor for us. Bottom line: we still prefer Celebrity but HAL will remain to be an alternative.

The reasons why we cruised with HAL instead of our usual Celebrity were two:

- the itinerary was much better on HAL (we had done the Celebrity itinerary before)

- HAL was half the price! 2,300 vs 4,800 pp

I keep comparing the cruises we are interested in (not Caribbean) and HAL frequently offer a way better price.
So I am not surprised about the OP´s statement.

Another thing to keep in mind is that drink prices on HAL are lower and a beverage package is definitely not required for regular consumption.  

Edited by Miaminice

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14 hours ago, George C said:

Agree nonsmoking in casino and almost all indoor area plus great buffet are two of celebrity strong points.

We always avoided HAL because of their terrible smoking policies.   I know that a couple of years ago, that policy did change with no smoking on balconies.

However, we were in Denali, Alaska and our bus stopped to pick up about 35 HAL passengers at a hotel for the Denali shuttle day trip.   You could smell the cigarette smoke on the people's clothes.  We couldn't keep the windows open, so we just had to endure it.

Is HAL still attracting lots of smokers?

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This was a very helpful thread.

Vaping and e cigs in cabins would keep us away.  Despite the cutbacks

( latest is that no in room movies a will be "free"), we will stick with X for awhile longer..  

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We tried HA and went on the Eurodam in January as it sailed out of San Diego when we were planning to stay for a week in addition.  Celebrity did not offer cruise then.  This was our first experience with HA and we found the following, if any of these are considerations for you:  

 

Food -We found MDR food options and quality, other than formal nights, were very average.  As a result we ate at specialty restaurants for 4 nights of our 10 night cruise.   What we loved about the buffet was their strict public health standards where servers had to provide food which was beyond glass.  What we hated about the buffet was there were no build your own sandwiches (sandwiches were prepackaged) and food options were not as varied and creative as Celebrity.  It could just be on the Eurodam but we there was no central coffee areas for an afternoon latte and treat (was out of the way on the top deck for those who found it) -  we missed Café Bacio our fave on Celebrity.   

Service   While service was friendly, most times it seemed that staff never went that extra mile which I always find on Celebrity.  We were on the Reflection in June/July and the service was outstanding everywhere.  

Entertainment - Actually we were blown away by the choice of entertainment on HA which outshines Celebrity.   There was a dedicated blues lounge with outstanding music, another area where two pianists/singers entertained and at times people sand along, a Lincoln Centre venue for classical music.   Never a dull evening.   Celebrity needs to mix it up more.  Mind you on a recent Baltic cruise on the Celebrity Reflection, we had a lot of fun as the central foyer area for silent discos and a sing along Abba (night we were in Stockholm) was the most fun we ever had on a ship.   

Local Themes:  We were on the Mexican Riviera cruise with Eurodam and did really enjoy that there was a Mexican theme for activities, Mariachi twice at the pool and a few other local cultural events.  This is an area where Celebrity can improve.   I remember years ago being in New Zealand was they served Colorado lamb for dinner.   

 

While we would consider HA again if they offered an itinerary that Celebrity didn't.  But not  Eurodam,  as we found the layout of the ship disjointed, tight and awkward.    

 

BTW we are very sensitive to smoke and found no issues at all 

Edited by Mimiya11

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@niceguyneastbay

Having sailed on both the EDGE and the new Nieuw Statendam (our 1st HAL cruise), my caveat for a long-time HAL cruiser is that you will be leaving staid and traditional for modern and unique which may not be to your liking. I felt like I was returning to another era when I boarded the N.S. as the decor was very dark on the entertainment decks and the Lido cafe had a 50s diner vibe thanks to the lime green & yellow vinyl seating.  Loved the muted neutral tones on the EDGE and the interior and exterior airiness whereas the N.S. felt very closed to me.

 

The music row on HAL was a definite + vs. entertainment venues on the EDGE, but theatre shows were better on Celebrity I thought. 

 

We sailed the EDGE 12/16 and pricing for our Infinite veranda was double that of our GTY veranda on the N.S. departing 12/23- we ended up on Deck 4 #4009 which had a huge veranda with footstools, so aside from the mish-mash decor in that cabin, I'd give the edge to the N.S. for cabin.

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Interesting post by the OP :).  We cruise both lines (5 Star Mariners with HAL and Elite Plus with Celebrity) and have often noticed the price differences.  At one time we thought that X was worth extra money when we wanted to take a Caribbean cruise.  As much as we enjoy HAL it is a line we prefer for the longer exotic itineraries and prefer to avoid for shorter Caribbean cruises.   I do not think that the HAL product is very competitive in the Caribbean and they are forced to market relatively low prices to fill their ships.  That being said, when looking at Celebrity we immediately ignore the Edge because the pricing on that ship is simply ridiculous.  In the Caribbean we want a balcony (not a silly large window that opens).  We recently cruised on Seabourn (an all-inclusive luxury line with all suites) for less money then a small suite (or even some balcony cabins) on the Edge.  

 

But lets be honest, the cruise industry is a big business and the name of the game (for the cruise lines) is to find the highest price point that will still fill their cabins.  If X fans are willing to pay silly prices for the Edge then the cruise line will continue to charge those prices.  If demand falls, then the prices will fall.   But what is frustrating about Celebrity is that since LLP took over command, the prices have increased (in a big way) and the overall quality has been steadily declining.   I have called it the "death by a thousand cut-backs."  LLP has yet to meet a cut-back she does not like.  

 

Since we have not liked HAL in the Caribbean and X has caused us to question the overall value of cruising the line, we found ourselves looking for an alternative for our annual Caribbean voyage.  We cruise all over the world, but once a year we do enjoy going back to the Caribbean for a few weeks.  So now, we have discovered MSC's Yacht Club which, at least for now, is our go-to line in the Caribbean.  For about $300 per passenger day we get an all-inclusive experience in a small suite (more like a deluxe cabin) with the kind of service folks on HAL and X can only dream about!   We could cruise on X for less money (in a lesser cabin) but the overall service quality on X would not even come close to what we get in the Yacht Club (private sun deck, private lounge, private section of the ship, dedicated restaurant, dedicated pool-side buffet, butler, and more.

 

Hank

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