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A question for X cruisers who also sail Princess


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49 minutes ago, upwarduk said:

We took a late deal in 2017 on Crown Princess, sailing to the Mediterranean. 
Pros:

1)Many more Internet minutes for Platinum (250) compared to Celebrity Elite(90).

2)Invited guest speakers. We had Harry Rednapp, which delighted my husband.

3) The Captain took a Memorial Service for the victims of the Manchester Bombings at the Ariana  Grande concert. We were given flowers to throw into the sea. As a large number of passengers were British, this was very fitting.
 

Cons:

1)One toilet seemed to be permanently blocked in the Rest room above the steps to the Sapphire dining room.

2) We were denied entry into Genoa; no reason given, but we have always been informed of the reason when sailing on Celebrity.

We had booked to go to Portofino, which entailed quite a lengthy bus trip, which obviously didn’t happen. We were tendered into Santa Margarita. I claimed for the bus trip portion which we missed. I was told ‘ well you have been tendered,’ -but so was everyone else! Eventually, after a great deal of complaining I was told that we would get 35% back to my Credit Card. This was refunded late on the final evening to our OBA, but did not reach my credit card( CelebrityCruises refunds show on C.C on the final morning). I was then told it would reach my C.C in 4-6 weeks. This did not happen, so I phoned the Southampton office. I was told that was for US passengers only, I should have to claim it as I was a UK resident. I was eventually sent a cheque 8 weeks after we disembarked.

 

3850BCCF-D586-4038-AE2A-6CADBB35BD9B.jpeg

that is why I never book excursions from the cruise line, but do them directly on the spot at every port.

At Genoa I remember there were shared taxis or minivans to take you to Portofino and back

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1 hour ago, mafig said:

.Celebrity will be our first choice, but I was looking at prices for 2022 and Celebrity seems really high (for now).

You hit the nail on the head. The key words are "for now".

just wait 45 to 60 days prior to sailing and you should get price drops.

Because they need to fill all the cabins,  which will be difficult, given the high prices.

 

I don't think they will waste any cabins or keep them empty once sailing resumes,  because by then everyone will need to be vaccinated and/ or have a negative covid test

Edited by drsel
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7 minutes ago, drsel said:

You hit the nail on the head. The key words are "for now".

just wait 45 to 60 days prior to sailing and you may get price drops, because they need to fill all the cabins,  which will be difficult given the high prices.

We've gotten a few really good last-minute (45-60 days) cruises on X right around Easter.  Even Easter week itself.  Air fare is high around that time, but since we live in Florida we take advantage of the price drops for Caribbean cruises without having to worry about transportation.  And while other lines are loaded with kids since it's a holiday and spring break cruise, Celebrity is delightfully not over-run by children.  One Easter week cruise had less than 30 kids.

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42 minutes ago, drsel said:

You hit the nail on the head. The key words are "for now".

just wait 45 to 60 days prior to sailing and you should get price drops.

Because they need to fill all the cabins,  which will be difficult, given the high prices.

 

I don't think they will waste any cabins or keep them empty once sailing resumes,  because by then everyone will need to be vaccinated and/ or have a negative covid test

No price drops in UK. 

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21 minutes ago, sandancer said:

No price drops in UK. 

You need to book with online US TAs.

 

I also use a website which lists Cruises by price per night including port fees and taxes.

you can even choose which destination/region, which cruise line, which ship, which month, etc.

 

So when there is a substantial price drop, the bargain Cruise comes right on top.

I remember booking a 9 night Celebrity Constellation Cruise for just $902 for 2 adults in an Ocean view cabin with the unlimited classic alcoholic beverage package included!

It was absolutely amazing!!

 

This website even tracks prices with a price movement graph

Edited by drsel
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You need to book with online US TAs.


Absolutely. That’s why we use an agent in the good ole sunshine state. 
 My post was more for any other UK cruisers who are unaware of the advantages of using an agent in the US. 

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We have been fortunate to have sailed multiple times on both Celebrity and Princess.  If you are a suite passenger, Princess is stepping up the service, but still not quite the level of Celebrity.  The crew on both lines have always given us great service.  What I really enjoy on Princess is the ability to rent pool side loungers at the Retreat pool and the quiet area in the Sanctuary.  The sanctuary is a great venue to enjoy viewing Glacier Bay on the Alaska sailings.

 

Looking forward to experiencing the Retreat on the Apex, it looks like a game changer!

 

Regarding some of the prior posts about dining, the "Club Service" has also improved since implemented.  We have not had any problem getting a table for 2 and the same server every night no matter when we showed up for dinner.

 

Living on the West Coast, we don't have many Celebrity warm sailing options, which is why we continue to enjoy Princess.  And, yes saving some money on Princess is a plus!

 

Cheers

🥂

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5 minutes ago, Sam.Seattle said:

We have been fortunate to have sailed multiple times on both Celebrity and Princess.  If you are a suite passenger, Princess is stepping up the service, but still not quite the level of Celebrity.  The crew on both lines have always given us great service.  What I really enjoy on Princess is the ability to rent pool side loungers at the Retreat pool and the quiet area in the Sanctuary.  The sanctuary is a great venue to enjoy viewing Glacier Bay on the Alaska sailings.

 

Looking forward to experiencing the Retreat on the Apex, it looks like a game changer!

 

Regarding some of the prior posts about dining, the "Club Service" has also improved since implemented.  We have not had any problem getting a table for 2 and the same server every night no matter when we showed up for dinner.

 

Living on the West Coast, we don't have many Celebrity warm sailing options, which is why we continue to enjoy Princess.  And, yes saving some money on Princess is a plus!

 

Cheers

🥂

When you finally make it on board APEX, you will love the retreat, loved it on EDGE and I expect will be the same on APEX.

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14 minutes ago, LGW59 said:

When you finally make it on board APEX, you will love the retreat, loved it on EDGE and I expect will be the same on APEX.

Counting the months, weeks and days!  It looks fabulous! Booked for 2-weeks April 2022.  

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36 minutes ago, Sam.Seattle said:

We have been fortunate to have sailed multiple times on both Celebrity and Princess.  If you are a suite passenger, Princess is stepping up the service, but still not quite the level of Celebrity.  The crew on both lines have always given us great service.  What I really enjoy on Princess is the ability to rent pool side loungers at the Retreat pool and the quiet area in the Sanctuary.  The sanctuary is a great venue to enjoy viewing Glacier Bay on the Alaska sailings.

 

Looking forward to experiencing the Retreat on the Apex, it looks like a game changer!

 

Regarding some of the prior posts about dining, the "Club Service" has also improved since implemented.  We have not had any problem getting a table for 2 and the same server every night no matter when we showed up for dinner.

 

Living on the West Coast, we don't have many Celebrity warm sailing options, which is why we continue to enjoy Princess.  And, yes saving some money on Princess is a plus!

 

Cheers

🥂

I am familiar with the Sanctuary for an added cost on Princess.  Please tell me more about the ability to rent pool side loungers in the Retreat pool on Princess. I was not aware of that option.  I know there is an Aft pool open to everyone on board, but I did not see any thing about reserving loungers.

 

Thanks

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16 minutes ago, jagoffee said:

I am familiar with the Sanctuary for an added cost on Princess.  Please tell me more about the ability to rent pool side loungers in the Retreat pool on Princess. I was not aware of that option.  I know there is an Aft pool open to everyone on board, but I did not see any thing about reserving loungers.

 

Thanks

The newer Royal and Regal Princess no longer have the signature aft pool the older ships had.  I miss that pool too!  The Regal does however have a smaller "Terrace" pool aft on deck 17.

 

Here is a picture of the loungers you can rent next to the Retreat Pool.  This is the pair we usually select.

 

If you are interested, I recommend one of the first things you do after boarding is to head up to the entrance of the Retreat where you can make a reservation.  Warning... the B2B cruisers get to book while on the previous sailing leaving sometimes limited choices.  You can rent the pair of covered loungers for half or whole days.  Food can also be purchased and delivered from the retreat menu.   

Royal Princess Poolside Loungers.jpg

Edited by Sam.Seattle
typo
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2 hours ago, Sam.Seattle said:

 Regarding some of the prior posts about dining, the "Club Service" has also improved since implemented.  We have not had any problem getting a table for 2 and the same server every night no matter when we showed up for dinner.

Cheers

🥂

 

We thought Club Class on our 2018 Regal trip was great.  It wasn't Luminae or even Blu but a vast improvement over Princess MTD.  However, same cruise, same ship, a year later Club Class was just the opposite.  Never had same server, food was mediocre at best.  We were very disappointed, even more so because we talked friends into the cruise who had never sailed Princess and they were not pleased.  We had an aft corner suite and they had a side suite.  The suites themselves are great, better than the CS on Celebrity but service was not at the same level.

 

Again, that's not to say we will never cruise Princess again, but it will be based on itinerary not the ship.  

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Lately I have had a preference towards Princess because of the itinerary.  I could get a 14 day cruise on Princess where X only had a 10 day.  They are similiar.  I have a preference for the smaller Princess ships. In a nutshell some things Princess does better others X does better.

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I’m a Celebrity-preferred cruiser just so you know my bias. But I also have enjoyed every cruise I’ve been on except a very short 3N Carnival with my kids who couldn’t take anything longer and it was terrible......and I knew it would be. The rest were fine to great. 

 

As to Princess, enjoyed the 3 Princess cruises, and agree there are similarities with Celebrity, but here are my ‘issues’:

 - We have to book a Princess mini-suite cabin to get a decent shower and enough room compared to a standard Celebrity balcony SR. Yes, the mini-suite has a much larger balcony than a standard X, but the SR and especially the BR/shower of the standard Princess SRs are not great. So we compare standard X SRs to Princess mini’s. 

 - All the Princess common areas were very crowded. You had to really jump on a table and stick with it. We played cards up in the buffet dining area when it wasn’t being used just to find open room.

 - The Princess theater on all 3 of the ships we sailed were smaller than X and to get decent seats just for 2 (yes, there were seating areas with blocked views even), you had to be there at least 45min prior.

  - Princess doesn’t have live bands at the theater. Excellent entertainment, but canned music with the singers and so on. I love X bands. 

 

Enough. Princess is nice. Would cruse on it for itinerary or join friends, but not my favorite. 

 

Den

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26 minutes ago, NMTraveller said:

Lately I have had a preference towards Princess because of the itinerary.  I could get a 14 day cruise on Princess where X only had a 10 day.  They are similiar.  I have a preference for the smaller Princess ships. In a nutshell some things Princess does better others X does better.

Kindly let us know what you feel Princess does better and what Celebrity does better.

Thanks

Edited by drsel
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10 minutes ago, drsel said:

Kindly let us know what you feel Princess does better and what Celebrity does better.

Thanks

They are mostly small differences.

 

X Silent Disco.

Princess Champagne Tower.

 

I sure that others can come up with more.  I have a preference for Princesses Wine package.

I found that the photographers on Princesses smaller ships would spend more time on their shots and take higher quality photos.

 

E class is at the bottom of my list of ships to sail on.

S Class is towards the top.

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2 hours ago, NMTraveller said:

E class is at the bottom of my list of ships to sail on.

S Class is towards the top.

I've only been on S class ships on Celebrity all of them except Solstice.  My Mediterranean cruise last year which was cancelled was on the brand new Apex.  Although I was looking forward to it I wasn't keen on the infinite balcony I had booked. 

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5 hours ago, drsel said:

Kindly let us know what you feel Princess does better and what Celebrity does better.

Thanks

I will say upfront that I am not a fan of Princess although we have cruised on both.

 

What we like better on Celebrity

- butlers in suites

- far superior buffet, lunch and dinner

- better retail shops on board

- Silent Disco

- complimentary, made on board, ice cream

- complimentary Bacio pastry shop

- fewer children on board

- Celebrity stage shows feature live bands, Princess has canned music with lip syncing

- different type of pax onboard

- overall, staff seemed happier

 

We enjoy both M and S class ships but for different reasons.  S class ships much newer and glitzier.  M class ships more classic and easier to get around.  We have yet to be on E class yet.  Princess generally puts their older, worn out ships on the West Coast where we cruise from.

Edited by El Crucero
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 We have cruised with Celebrity almost exclusively. We took our first cruise with Princess in 2019 to take advantage of a 14 day cruise from London going along the fjords of Norway and then to Iceland.  We found Princess much more like Celebrity than different. 

 

Embarkation was very similar and the balcony cabin also felt quite a lot like Celebrity. There was an advantage in having a huge closet on the Sapphire Princess, especially since we had cold weather and bulky clothing. Having a shower curtain instead of a glass door was a small negative though.

 

What we liked about Princess was the availablility of savory food at the International Cafe, especially to grab a breakfast sandwich to enjoy with coffee on the balcony in the morning.  Neither of us liked the buffet for breakfast, the ordering system for omelets where you have to place your order then find a waiter to bring your omelette to you and then return to buffet to get whatever else you are having was annoying at best and impossible when there were no seats to be found.  We tried eating breakfast there once and gave up.  We either relied on the International Cafe and ate on our balcony or went to the main dining room..

 

Another positive for Princess was that we really enjoyed Alfredo's Pizza for lunch. On the negative side, the food in the MDR and specialty restaurants did not seem to be as good as on Celebrity and their "every day" options on the MDR menu ran more toward hamburgers than steaks which was a disappointment when nothing on the evening's menu was appealing.  

 

For me, a huge negative for Princess is that they allow smoking in the casino. On the positive side, self-service laundry is very helpful on longer itineraries and we enjoy formal nights.

 

The differences all come down to personal preference. IMO if you like Celebrity, Princess is worth a try 

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We both love Celebrity and Princess.  Like others, we also find more things that are alike than they are different.  Staff is good on both lines-definitely no complaints.  Also feel the food is comparable on both lines.  Rooms can be a bit smaller on Princess, but it's not a deal killer.  We've also encountered a lot more of the dreaded door closing and talking in the halls at weird times on Princess.  Smoking in the casino on Princess keeps me out of there (that may be a good thing!)  I know when we went to Panama, they had one night that was no smoking....problem is, you can take the smoking out, but it still smells.  I love they have washers and dryers.  We are light packers and it's nice to be able to wash up clothing.

We do like the open feeling of Celebrity ships a little more than Princess, but again it's not enough to interfere with our experience.  I don't see us going to Europe in July on the Apex.....and I really wish they would pull the plug and just get it over with for us.  The prices are crazy on Celebrity at the moment for the cruise we have booked and when it comes to Europe, I don't see us not planning ahead for that itinerary....last minute for the Caribbean perhaps, but certainly not Europe.  We will either book Princess for it or just go on a plane and make our way to where we want to go once this is over.

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14 hours ago, El Crucero said:

What we like better on Celebrity

- butlers in suites

- far superior buffet, lunch and dinner

- better retail shops on board

- Silent Disco

- complimentary, made on board, ice cream

- complimentary Bacio pastry shop

- fewer children on board

- Celebrity stage shows feature live bands, Princess has canned music with lip syncing

- different type of pax onboard

- overall, staff seemed happier

 

 

Curious as to what a different type of pax on board means?

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20 minutes ago, Sam.Seattle said:

Curious as to what a different type of pax on board means?

 

I'm  curious about this comment also.

 

It is difficult and dangerous to generalize, but in my experience only (E+ on Celebrity, E on Princess), Princess passengers are a bit friendlier , and a bit younger.  

Not kids, mind you, but 50s, 60s as opposed to 70s and 80s. 

 

The cabins are smaller, and the buffet offerings are less inspiring on Princess.  

 

 

 

Edited by EatonDoolittle
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6 minutes ago, EatonDoolittle said:

 

I'm  curious about this comment also.

 

It is difficult and dangerous to generalize, but in my experience only (E+ on Celebrity, E on Princess), Princess passengers are a bit friendlier , and a bit younger.  

Not kids, mind you, but 50s, 60s as opposed to 70s and 80s. 

 

The cabins are smaller, and the buffet offerings are less inspiring.  

 

 

 

I'm also curious. An odd comment. I've been on many princess cruises and there are people from all walks of life, ethnicity, color, etc. Do not notice any difference from Celebrity. We usually cruise the beginning of January and see very few children mostly babies with parents as the others are in school. I love the cabins on Princess and apart from the hugs from the shower curtain they are very spacious with huge balconies.  Don't do buffets on any ships so can't comment on offerings. 

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