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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 03-14-2007, 10:00 AM
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 61
Okay, I'm hooked after only one (and they say DRUGS hook you quickly!)

So many of you have gone on so many cruises with all different lines. How do you decide?

Does sticking with Carnival give you perks beyond the extra free cocktails? Is there a lower price for booking after you've been on a few?

If you've had a good experience with one line, why would you go to another? Curiosity? Ports not visited by your original line?

Do most people go with the cruise/air package?
I'd think that if I planned to arrive in the port city the day ahead and stay a day later, that the cost for a family of four would be a little less. (This is based on belief that the airfare surcharge of $100 is per-person, not per party--not sure if that's true).

Again, you guys are great about answering my questions and not making me feel dumb--that takes some tact and talent, especially when you answer the same questions over and over. It's appreciated.

And finally (for now, anyway)
Are the higher priced Celebrity Cruises worth the extra money?
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 03-14-2007, 12:27 PM
penny3333's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Alabama
Posts: 10,602
Well, I've only be on 18 cruises and hope to announce one day that I've hit 100+. I can only give you answers from my perspective and I'm sure more will join in on theirs as well. I'm glad to hear you're hooked, cruising beats drugs any day of the week!! My hubby began cruising after we'd been married a few years, so he's only been on 8, but I'll answer for both of us. We've been on HAL, NCL, RCCL, Carnival, Costa, and Princess. I begin by book the cruise depending solely on itinerary and prices. Then I started booking for the length of the cruise (I prefer 10-14 days, longer would be fine if I could afford it.). We started cruising with Princess 5 years ago, and so far, they're my favorite line. We haven't received any discounts for being past cruisers with Princess, but do enjoy some of the perks. We became Platinum members last year. Even so, I booked the Magica with Costa last year for a Christmas cruise, because of itinerary and because of the price. It was great to experience Costa again, and the ship was magnificent. I still prefer Princess. I've booked both ways, air/cruise package and just cruise package. The reason I booked air/cruise/hotel was purely for convenience. I'll be driving as much as possible now, since the airlines are such a pain. This year's cruise is on the Emerald Princess, we've been to all the ports before, but she's a new ship and I'm sooo excited!! I try to book with Princess, but if some offer for great ports come along, I'd book it. I've not tried Celebrity because they are much more expensive, so I can't answer whether they're worth it or not. One day, I might be able to try them. It's exciting to try new lines, ports, ships. The only way, for me, is to experience then I can draw my own conclusion. I even try things not recommended by others, sometimes it works out great. Hope I helped a little. Have fun making your next cruise choice
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 03-14-2007, 05:25 PM
f-mattox's Avatar  
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Costa Mesa, California
Posts: 4,740
Hello gkyagermom;
just want to say I echo much of what penny3333 said. I think most of us stick pretty much with one line, maybe two. It's fun to try something different but usually, when you find something you really like, you stick with it. I, like penny, am sold on Princess--dosen't mean I wouldn't try another line; in fact I am this summer. But I like what I get for my money on Princess. I will take issue with one thing penny said: you do get discounts as past passengers; not as a percentage or fixed amount off a cruise fare, but as offers or sales that are not given to the general public. You will find that with all lines the perks increase as you build a relationship with them. Most of their business is from past passengers or referrals--they want you back!
I'm not sure what you mean by "airfare surcharge"; but getting to your port a day early is ALWAYS a good idea, whether you do it independently or through the cruise line.
Is Celebrety worth it? The jury is still out on that. Some here swear by it--others diss it. There are some interesting reviews in the cruise-reviews section of this site. Personally, I would rather put the money into a better Princess accomodation; I don't want to spend that kind of money on Celebrity just to see if I like it.
I hope this has given you some ideas.
Any other questions? Please ask! We love talking about it; we wouldn't do this if we didn't. We all learn too, from each other.
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 03-14-2007, 07:01 PM
gdjoslin's Avatar
Senior Member
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Near Yosemite, California
Posts: 1,937
I have only been on three cruises. Two Carnival, the Pride and the Spirit. We were on the Princess Sun, From those I prefer Carnival. It seemed like we could never find a seat on the Sun. In the main show room full, on the lido deck you had to fight for a table, lounging around the ship was hard. On the Spirit class thy had open chairs everywhere. Going to try Hal this summer to Alaska, and maybe next Oct to Hawaii.
Cruise Photos from Mexico and Alaska

  #5 (permalink)  
Old 03-14-2007, 07:34 PM
goin' cruisin''s Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Cameron Park, CA
Posts: 1,395
So far, between Carnival and RCCL, our choice would be RCCL; we've not been disappointed yet (with the exception of the dining alone incident, and even that was tolerable). While on Carnival, and perhaps due to the time of year, the majority of the passengers were out of control 20 somethings. Not that I'm dissing 20 somethings or being out of control--been there, done that. I've just had a better all around experience on RCCL. I have not tried Princess, probably because of the name; some may argue the fact, given my history with bras, handbags, and pumps, but I just don't see myself as a "Princess."

Maybe f-mattox, at some point, can convince me otherwise!
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 03-14-2007, 08:05 PM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 6,043
Celebrity is a premium cruise line. They have a refined eloquence. Just like any cruise line you can find good deals on them. I have experienced great service on Celebrity. I really like their thalossotherapy pools. One thing I really like on Celebrity is they aren't always making annoying announcements telling you that bingo will be starting in 10 minutes or the gift shop is having a special today.
You should talk with a cruise oriented Travel Agent about the difference in cruise lines. All cruise lines aren't a good fit for everyone. Each cruise line has their target market.
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 03-14-2007, 08:34 PM
f-mattox's Avatar  
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Costa Mesa, California
Posts: 4,740
Yes, goin'cruisin', "Princess" is not the image that springs to
mind for you--I think "Royal Viking" is more like it. Too bad they're not still around.
I'm not on any campaign to pry people away from the ships they love. gdjoslin prefers Carnival to Princess; and by the way gdjolin I'm aware of the problems you mention--I've seen them first hand. Show seating is the Sun Class ship's biggest problem. And I avoid the Horizon Court at peak times for the reason you mention. The main pool was usually busy but I could always find a quiet spot at the aft pool.
I guess my point is no line is perfect. The quest is to find the one that suits us best.
goin'cruisin' hasn't tried Princess because of the name.
I won't try NCL until they get rid of that ridiculous hull art.
Since I don't rock climb, ice skate, surf or box I'm probably not gonna' try RCCL anytime soon; although Sonny makes it sound darned inviting.
I will definitely try Carnival when our grandsons are ready to cruise. And I'm looking forward to trying HAL this summer. Heck, I'm approaching geezerdom--I might fit right in.

Sorry! I'm rambling tonight.
Good Night.
  #8 (permalink)  
Old 03-14-2007, 08:50 PM
goin' cruisin''s Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Cameron Park, CA
Posts: 1,395
No problem on the rambling, f-mattox. Heck, you ramble more clearly than many when they are at their most articulate!
  #9 (permalink)  
Old 03-15-2007, 01:59 AM
Junior Member
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 12
My 4th cruise is coming up in May 07. So far all have been on Carnival. I haven't really had a bad experience yet but it would be nice to try a cruise more adult oriented. My wife & I not the stuffy pomp & circumstance type by any means but now that we've raised our kids, the quiet times are desirable.

Each time I consider other lines but find it pretty hard to beat Carnival's price. Should we encounter a really bad experience I'm sure I'll try a difference line in spite of the prices.

A close friend of mine sailed Carnival a couple of times and hated it. His wife then talked him into going on a Disney cruise. He was very hesitant because of the greater number of children that you would expect to be on board. Very surprisingly, he said they enjoyed it much more than prior cruises and found everything well controlled and found more quiet & privacy than expected. Disney is now 'his' line.

Not that he nor my wife and I are anti-children, we just prefer more quiet and solitude while vacationing.
  #10 (permalink)  
Old 03-15-2007, 12:28 PM
Chef Ken's Avatar  
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Bloomington, MN
Posts: 2,259
Originally posted by goin' cruisin':
Maybe f-mattox, at some point, can convince me otherwise!
Well he worked me over pretty well without knowing it. (He and Penny are really agents of Princess you know)

One of our next cruises will be a Princess cruise. I think you could pull it off without going in drag, just do your best John Wayne impersonation with a little bow in you legs and a "Howdy pretty lady" on the tip of your tongue.

In fact we could meet up in 2008 on a Princess cruise with our lovely better halves! f-mattox could show us around his ship!
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