Not what we paid for.

Caribbean Princess Cruise Review to Caribbean - Southern

Cruises: 7+ cruises
Reviews: 2
Helpful Votes: 46

Overall rating:

3.2 out of 5
Verified Review
Caribbean Princess

10 Night Southern Caribbean Medley (Ft. Lauderdale Roundtrip)

Sail date: September 08, 2018

Ship: Caribbean Princess

Cabin type: Suite

Cabin number: D729

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 3 years ago

Review summary

As you can see, I wasn't able to rate most of the planned stops. Our itinerary was changed due to the Hurricane. While this was no doubt unavoidable, we would never have booked this cruise for the stops we did make. Princess should have offered significant refunds for this. Instead, all they offered was a measly 20% of whatever cruise fare you paid as a discount off of a future cruise booked on Princess by Dec. of 2019. This is unacceptable. Given the mediocre food served in the main dining rooms, and otherwise 'same ol' same ol'" we are unlikely to rebook with Princess at all. This was our 19th cruise (3rd with Princess) and it seems evident that the cruise line owners are paring down in many areas to keep their profits high. This is easily seen in everything from poor quality drinks-margaritas made from pre-mixes sold in cartons like milk containers and served in cheap/small plastic cups (for $10!) to the standard wines that are at least double land prices BEFORE they tack on an additional 15% bar tip! Princess is rolling out their "medallion class" service. This is just an RFID token that you wear along with your ship card (transitioning) While this may end up being great idea sometime, it doubled all security scans while embarking/disembarking the ship. All drinks still needed the regular ship card for purchase. About the only feature these offered was that they would usually sense your presence as you approached your cabin door and unlock it for you. This was a nice feature as it required less fumbling at the door, but since it activated from at least 10' away, I could see this as a potential security concern as someone else nearby might have access to your cabin. Definitely try the Crown grill. This type of food and service is probably what used to be the norm for main dining rooms prior to 'up-charging'. Princess and others have substituted quantity for quality these days. People should come home raving about the great cruise foods. While many probably still do, they're probably referring to specialty restaurants. You'll find that most dining room options are little more than what your mother would probably make (if she's a decent cook) when you go home for a visit. Offerings typically have a 'comfort food' ambience and are probably not what you would order when going out to eat (various beef cuts, potatoes/gravy/vegetables-unremarkable salads and appetizers etc.) No matter the fancy descriptions, it's all what you would find at a 50's diner for about $10-12 bucks. Decent, homey, filling, but pretty boring. For all of the touting of 'Master Chefs' etc. I have no idea where this talent might be exhibited-perhaps at 'Captain's Table' offerings? (along with ultra high up-charges) Without exception, all bread EVERYWHERE was exceptionally dry and could not be consumed w/o a lot of beverage. I have no idea how they can accomplish this as it is relatively easy to make fresh moister bread. ALL of Princess' bread seemed days old-always. You choices were limited to plain buns, plain buns with crumbs sprinkled on top, and plain buns with two variants of seeds on top. There were the same offerings occasionally in darker wheat buns. Don't bite into any of these without watching your clothes for the cascading crumbs falling off of these and onto your clothes and table. This should be evidenced by the waiters need to scrape the crumbs off the tables in between dishes. In the buffet, you can load up your plates (again quantity-not quality) with deserts that look tasty, but almost always were a let down. Sandwich offerings were a thing of awe! Imagine you being tantalized by 'red pepper and broccoli' on a bun! Picture nearly meatless sandwiches buried in soggy vegetables! Picture yourself having fun as you wonder 'what the he!!' is that on that bread!?!? Yeech! Of course, incorrectly labeled sandwiches adds to the adventure here! When hotdogs of questionable meat sources appear to be the most appetizing offerings on many days, this should signal someone that these areas are truly in distress. Soups were clearly left overs from the main dining rooms whether unaltered from the night before (and now overcooked) of just made from left overs, weren't necessarily bad (hard to wreck most soups) but they were pretty obviously 'seconds'. "International" offering were both ugly and low end. These must be an insult to those serving them if they are of the featured nationality. I'm no food snob by any means, but when anyone would willing choose McDonald's/Taco John's/Arby's etc. offerings over ANYTHING on the buffet someone should take notice! (Actually, 'branded' foods might be an idea cruise lines should look into-I'd bet guests would overwhelmingly choose these over what they offer.) The results of choices like that would probably shock the ship's 'chefs'. For entertainment the new show "Fantasy Voyage" (or something like that), is not to be missed. Kudos to everyone involved with this production! In all Princess can and should be doing much better. While we will probably give them another chance in the future, I hold low expectations.


5 out of 5

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

2 out of 5

Onboard Activities

2 out of 5


5 out of 5

Children's Programs

Service and Staff

3 out of 5

Ship Quality

3 out of 5

Cabin / Stateroom

3 out of 5

Ship tip

You won't make the early shows if you have the early assigned seating in the restaurants. Service. while otherwise good, is far to slow. This appears to be a problem with either the rate at which food comes up from the kitchen, or waiters simply stretched to thin-as they appeared to be working very hard to serve all of their assigned tables.

Ports of call

Ft. Lauderdale (Port Everglades), Florida Did not visit port

Princess Cays (Cruise Line Private Island)

4 out of 5

Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas

3 out of 5

Basseterre, St. Kitts Did not visit port

Castries, St. Lucia Did not visit port

St. John's, Antigua Did not visit port

Philipsburg, St. Maarten Did not visit port


5 out of 5
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