What is your favorite cruise line and why?

So far I don't have any experience with cruising other than booking a cruise. I want to know what others think before making my next booking. Which cruise lines are best for which age groups? Who has the best deals? Which cruise line has the best restaurants? Who uses the most convenient ports and has the least confusing embarkation process? Anything you can tell me about your favorite cruise line would be appreciated. Thanks!

Tags: Favorite Cruise Line

29 Answers

I've travelled on Carnival (3 times), Royal Caribbean (3 times), and Princess (Once). Royal Caribbean is my favorite. They have the most innovative ships and plenty of activities for every age group. Carnival was a great line when I first went on them in 1986. They were noticeably worse in 2000, and horrible in 2014. I've decided to never sail with them again. That said, if you are in to the spring break bar scene, then Carnival might be your best bet. Princess was very nice. Food was good. Enrichment programs were informative and fun. However, they don't really have anything for the 12-35 age group. All three are comparable in price for similar itineraries, but Carnival is a little cheaper on average.

I have been on Carnival, Princess and Celebrity.

Carnival is good for kids, young adults and fun lovers.

Princess and Celebrity are for the middle-agers and older - not quite as active as they once were.

Princess is a bit more classic with an Italian flair, while Celebrity is a bit more "modern". (like comparing classical paintings to modern art?)

Food on all three were comparable, with Carnival just a bit lower than the other two.

 

Rather than relying on our views, though, I would encourage you to try out several lines to compare in order to find your favorite. On here, you will find fans of all the major lines, possibly leaving you even more confused. On the other hand, everyone here will be happy to share their experiences.

 

Just out of curiosity, which cruise did you book?

Have sailed NCL 4 times and am booked on RCCL next so cannot offer a comparison but we like NCL for many reasons. Love the free style and atmosphere and having ships ported in NYC and Boston makes it convenient. Prices do make a difference which is why we are trying RCCL this time since NCL seems to be a bit more expensive and RCCL is offering some better deals.

As already mentioned, it depends on what you are wanting for your experience.  We have sailed Carnival and Princess.  When we started sailing it was with Carnival and while we still sail with them, they are not the quality they used to be.  We choose them for itinerary and price.    We  also get a lot of perks (that figures into the price) because of the number of times we have sailed with them. As we "mature" we find some of the silly (but fun) activities on Carnival are no longer of interest to us and Princess is more sophisticated in the activities offered.  They also have itineraries not available on Carnival.  I haven't tried others yet, but that doesn't mean I am not willing to do so.   So far neither has made me say the dreaded "never again" comment.

NCL to the Panama Canal on April 1, 2019

Its a reasonable question with no accurate answer.  Even ships within a given cruise line vary in age, quality, activities, amenities, and or course, the attitude of the crew you contact.  Surly waiters or stewards, or an unaddressed cabin problem can quickly sour you on that entire line. Yep, the dreaded phrase "never again..."..We have cruised on just about every cruise line out of the Continental US, and NCL happens to be our favorite.  Coming to that conclusion can be expensive.  I would suggest you spend ALOT of time reading online, bearing in mind that a bad experience usually leads to epic sour grapes rants.  Sometimes deserved, sometimes not. Its been my experience that, reading between the lines, people expect cruise line to "compensate" them for virtually anything they perceive as a problem.  When they don't get it, they complain online, mainly to vent.  Anecdotal evidence, therefore, is just that.  Cruising, to me gives me the biggest bang for the buck there is, which is why we do it about 3x a year.  We understand how things "ought" to be, and sometimes, like life, they just ain't.  gl2u and happy cruising!!

 

Very insightful!

I have sailed on Carnival, Royal and Celebrity. We like Carnival the best, our daughter is a crew member. So it's like cheating if we don't go on Carnival. It is for the younger set, alot of bachelor and bachelorette parties out of our home port. We will try Princess at some point.

We like Carnival just because we live near Galveston and save transportation costs to board a cruise ship.  We get "perks" for being loyal customers.  Food is great, entertainment great, we do what we want to do.  BUT if an Oasis class ship comes to Galveston, we will try it.

I have cruised on NCL, Carnival, RCI, Princess, HAL and Celebrity.   They cater to different demographics.  IMHO for adults Celebrity is the best for modern elegance with good service,  food and guest lectures,  With kids or young adults I'd go Carnival or RCI for things to keep the the active ones happy.    Hal is great for senior citizens. Princess ok for adults but I'd rather go on Celebrity.   NCL is hit and miss by ship,  food not to good in the free dining rooms.   If NCL I suggest the extra dining package as I did not like the MDR food.

 

But what I like others may not.   I have had someone that has only cruised Carnival tell me Carnival has enough elegance for her when I said I prefer Celebrity for the elegance of the ship   I have had people tell me food on NCL is good..... no accounting for taste.   The above is my opinion.

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