Princess Complaint - PRINCESS CRUISES - SAPPHIRE PRINCESS - NO THANKS
I recently did a cruise with Princess for 7 seven days to Mexico. Of course the Mexico part of the cruise was canceled due to the swine flu. Chaos and mass dissatisfaction ensued.300 people left the ship.
Overall a pleasant cruise, but there are major deficiencies in the way Princess carries out business and the actual cruise environment. The service by the largely Phillipino crew was
excellent. The entertainment was excellent.
1) The ship has almost nowhere for non-smokers to sit. All over the boat, the waft of foul cigarette smoke is on the air. For this reason alone, I will not cruise with them again.
2) The food, although fair, has gone down in quality since I last sailed, especially the breakfasts and the dessert menus. The desserts are bland and uninteresting, smacking of
mass-production. The coffee is horrible and cheap, especially in the Horizon.
3) The Horizon 24 hour restaurant is chaotic: it is much too small & crowded, with few sea view seats, and long lines. A definite negative.
4) There were drunks and loud people all over the place. Princess should limit the amount of drinks served per person per day. Yells and foul language was heard all over the ship.
5) The cabins are thin-walled, and you can hear your neighbor clearly. I was woken up repeatedly by noisy neighbors. The passengers across the hall from me were continually drunk, yelling & calling 911.
6) The cabins are OK, but stained carpets and duvets were seen.
I also don't like the idea of the duvet (one sheet per week - yuck!). Also two comfy chairs would be nice. The beds were uncomfortable, as were the pillows.
7) One of the worst aspects on the voyage was the constant selling of stuff by princess: art, photographs, coffee, Visa credit cards, special deals; you name it. This was most irritating.
8) I hate the new deal of charging a 15% daily service fee. I prefer to tip my stewards personally. That way I am sure they they get what they deserve. This is simply Princess's way of
increasing their profits, and their over-worked staff get nothing.
9) There was no menu change between restaurants, except Sabatinis, and you could not get in here, unless you booked the first day on board.
10) The Purser's desk was poorly run, with always a long line. Several issues came up, and I did not have the time to stay in line for half an hour. They claimed to be short-staffed. I have still not received my credit for canceled shore excursions.
11) One last thing: the excursions are too expensive. Buy them ashore, and you can pay 20% less. These excursions are never fully detailed anywhere, and taking one is a shot in the dark.
12) The luggage is handled extremely roughly. My new suitcase received substantial damage during embarkation. Insurance Claim pending.
I think I will stick to Celebrity & Crystal in future, despite the cost.
Pluses are: a very new clean ship, nice crew, reasonable prices in the bar, and the good entertainment. With some tweaking,
Princess could be king again.
Try another Cruise Line (but not Cunard or Carnival or NCL)