Once again there were problems with a Princess cruise. Since cruising with another Princess cruise ship in June, I must report that I will not be cruising with this cruise line again. Their ships are very well-kept and clean, and the crew very good, but these problems persist (on this re-positioning cruise):
All this I believe is due to cost cutting. The only result is that I will choose another cruise line next time.
LA, CALIFORNIA -- 5 days before my cruise was to leave Los Angeles to the Mexican Riviera, Princess Cruise Lines decided to change the ports to the coast of CA. Instead of changing the date of my cruise or offering a full refund and cancelling the departure. I lived in CA for years and have no desire to go to CA ports. I've contacted Princess numerous times to be hung up on and treated very poorly. I've contacted the CEO and his time frame to respond is 2-4 weeks AFTER my cruise departs. How convenient!!! PLEASE TELL EVERYONE NOT TO USE PRINCESS CRUISES!
PORT EVERGLADES, FLORIDA -- It took three weeks for a call from customer relations. I asked and did not receive a refund. If they are not held monetarily responsible what incentive do they have to disinfect their ships?
SANTA CLARITA, CALIFORNIA -- It was recently revealed that certain products advertising themselves as "100% juice" were in fact only watered down versions containing 10 to 35% juice. Princess cruise lines seems to have done them one step better (or worse) by serving "lemonade" which contains ZERO percent juice! Shouldn't unsuspecting passengers be notified that what they have been told is lemonade is really some sort of possibly unhealthy lemonoid chemical cocktail?
I've always resisted the idea of a cruise for vacation. But this year we went. The cruise was wonderful. Dinners were first class, and the buffet available 24/7. The staff gave excellent service overall. Many side trips (not free) activities and entertainment that were free. Our 13-year old had a great time with the teen club, in fact we had to put limits on it so we could spend some time with her. The cost wasn't really any more than a nice hotel would have cost. Excellent value, in my opinion.
NEW JERSEY -- We booked a cruise with Princess lines on the Caribbean Princess based on its ports of call. Well three days before departure we received an email stating "due to operational reasons" we would have changes to our trip. Cancelled one of the better islands St. Maarten for Tortola. Shortened the length on the other islands, and extended to an unreasonable length, 15 hours, on St. Thomas! They will do nothing about it either!!! Be careful with these shady characters!! Unfortunately work vacations were already scheduled for the family so off we go tomorrow.
KETCHICAN, ALASKA -- When checking out, I tried to settle my account with the credit card I had given them when I checked in. It was declined. Apparently, the cruise ship had put over $1000 charges through to my credit card company without my knowledge on the second day of the cruise. The credit card company authorized the charge. The cruise ship said it was declined. After an hour of confusion, the cruise ship came up with the authorization number and didn't continue insisting I pay twice. Hmmmmmm...wonder where that authorization number appeared from? Fortunately the credit card company stuck with the fact that they did not decline those charges.
Other than that bit of grief, the Alaskan Cruise is great. The buffet is better than the dining room food "en masse" (in my opinion). The rooms were clean except for the left-behind pair of men's socks found under the bed of B514 -- if those are yours, we found them! The one-size-fits-all bathrobes is an untruth -- of course!
The entertainment was great, and the dance instructor and activities coordinators were outstanding, except for the Scrabble Tournament which turned out to be a get-together of disappointed players who were expecting the host Ryan to appear. But he didn't, and the players were moved from the theater to someplace else so they would not disturb those watching the movie. Isn't Scrabble a rather quiet game???
The tours were great, and if you book the early (6:30 am) Bear Watch, your chances of seeing a bear (one) is better. It is expensive, but watching that bear catch a salmon is fascinating! And the float plane is an enjoyable flight into Neets Bay near Ketchican. The people on board were the best part -- young and old -- they were all delightful! I didn't hear anyone grumbling, and it was a good cruise overall. Just watch your credit card bill when it comes to be sure you weren't charged twice. I keep a low limit on purpose!
SANTA CLARITA, CALIFORNIA -- On a January Dawn Princess cruise I was quarantined to my stateroom with gastroenteritis by the ship's medical officer from Tuesday pm to Sunday's disembarkation. I was not refunded or vouchered for my compliance with the ship officer in any way. My son-in-law received a refund for the five days I was quarantined but he did not pay for the cruise. He used a voucher furnished to him when we paid for a cruise he had to cancel the previous year. Thus, my compliance was worth nothing to Princess.
My advice to others would be: 1) do not pay to take others on cruises 2) if you pay and they cancel, they will receive the refund or voucher, not you 3) do not report a brief bout of intestinal complaint because you will be confined for the duration of the cruise and receive nothing in return. We are finished with Princess!