BVE - Grand Princess 08/16/17

Back home from being on the Grand Princess for lunch.

 

Showed up at terminal about 10:30a and there is a man in front with sign that says Bon Voyage registration.  He points me to a lady who checks my pass and ID.  She points me to another lady who checks my pass and ID and directs me to go ahead up stairs.

 

There are four people on the list for today's BVE but I never saw the other three.

 

I pass through security and go into the general area where I'm told I still need to fill out the health questionnaire.  I do so a then sit by the sign that indicates BVE wait here.  I wait 1/2 hour and nothing is happening.  I ask a lady at the line and she says oh no you go here first at the counter then you wait over by the sign.

 

Hardly anyone there since it's so early so no biggee.  I get my card and papers and wait by the sign again.  I wait another twenty minutes before the guide shows up.  She leads me onboard.  She asks if I want a guided tour or go solo.  I indicate solo.  She says I can fill out a future cruise deposit sheet out if I want and after I let her know that I know where the sheets are she says she's going to look for the other three.  That's the last I saw of her.

 

I roamed the ship looking for people I recognize and asking about people from the March cruise.  Didn't see anyone from March and when I asked about three names specifically, one was on break, two weren't on the ship.  So after wandering a bit it's finally noon.  I had lunch in the Da Vinci MDR.  Food was good and I had a nice chat with two older couples, both retired elites.  One couple was doing B2B Alaska.  They were about to start the second part.  Errrrrr, I'm so envious!!!!!  

 

I left after lunch.  

 

I was told there are 50 spots available for BVE but on average 12-13 show up.  Be nice if it were organized a bit better but it's a handful of people paying 30 bucks while there's thousands of people coming and going who have paid thousands.  So having BVE as a low priority is understandable.

 

I'm glad I went.  I loved being on that ship and hope to sail again soon in her.  I realize now I had some unrealistic expectations about seeing people from the March trip.  I was expecting at least a couple and then to have a nice chat with them.  But there was no one and if there had been the chances of them remembering me would be slim.  

 

I'd like to do it in LA someday on the Ruby or Star Princess.

Tags: Princess Cruises Grand Princess Grand Princess BVE

12 Answers

Something else I noticed today at the cruise terminal.  All the female customer service agents I dealt with including the BVE guide were friendly while all the men I encountered were not nice at all.  Just an observation that stuck in my head. 

 

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The pictures include the sticker they give you, the special card made for BVE guests, and the envelope that had a paper enclosed about what to expect.  It's very informal.  The "Future Cruise Deposits" lady is the one that is in charge of it.  She can do a tour or a person can roam on their own (in the public areas of course).  For lunch you can just wander down to the MDR when you're ready.  I thought it was four hours but it's actually three.  You don't get on the ship until 11:30 and they want you off by 2:30.  I liked it and wow I felt bad when I had to leave the ship!  Sad

Thanks for the review.  I'm sure the ladies just found you attractive and were extra friendly.Wink

Thanks for the info, was not aware they did this. I'm afraid I would hide and they would have to come find me!

Thanks for telling us about it. I'd love to do an event like that someday.

That's a great review! Hoping to be able to do that one day.

How far in advance did you need to make your reservation?  We are discussing a vacation trip to San Fransisco and I think this might be a fun adventure.

7 or more days ahead. 

 

Reminders:

 

Book at 1-800-PRINCESS (1-800-774-6237)

 

The customer service agent on the phone will ask for the booking number of the guest that is sailing out.  Just say your not visiting with anyone your just wanting to tour the ship, have lunch, then will be leaving.  The customer service agent I talked to had to check but then said that was fine.  I've read other reviews over at C/C that have also said many have gone on without having a booked guest that they were spending time with.  So you should be fine. 

 

Lindsay is the lady that was in charge of BVE on the Grand.  She's the future cruise director and is very nice.  She might not get to you at 11:30am but she will get to you.  Remember to get in line first and get your card and paper.  Then afterwards go wait by the sign that says "BVE wait here".

 

Tour can be solo or guided.  If you've been on a Grand Class ship you'll be fine roaming around on your own but it's of course up to you.  You can have lunch in the Da Vinci MDR or up in the buffet. 

 

If you have your picture taken it's part of the price of admission - $39 not $30.

 

$39 can be applied to a future cruise but I just noticed that the $39 future cruise credit only lasts 3 months.  Not sure what happens after that. 

 

Lindsey the future cruise director said I needed to leave the ship by 2:30pm.  She didn't actually escort me onto the ship until almost noon.  It was a lot less than 4 hours but I'm still very glad to have done it.  Just being on a cruise ship is great for me, no matter how long it is!

 

Hope you can do it!  I enjoyed it very much.  I posted a longer reply just above this one.  Go to the front door of the terminal right away and look for the older gentleman holding the BVE sign.  That will be your starting place. 

 

Thanks!  I don't know if this will happen.  But I like adding as much fun into any trip as possible.  It also could be a great way to get a friend who thinks she would be too claustrophobic to cruise, a chance to get a real feel of a ship without having a panic attack.

Lunch in the MDR might way heavily in a positive way for her.  I usually eat in the buffet or one of the specialty restaurants but the MDR that day was very good.  

 

Of course even if you don't go, there's a lot of cool things to see in San Francisco. 

 

Always remember to take a jacket with you no matter what time of the year it is.  It's rarely warm there no matter what the temperatures are in other parts of the Bay Area. 

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