I have sailed on both Celebrity and Princess numerous times and enjoy both cruise lines. No doubt Celebrity is nicer though - better food, a much higher level of service all around, nicer ships, etc. Iím not sure I would consider their cabins larger than Princess. I usually take mini-suites or suites on any ship and although Celebrity's cabins are wider Princess has longer ones. (In the end they are very similar in size.) I happen to like the layout of the mini-suites on the Grand series of Princess ships. But not more than I like the butler you get with a suite on Celebrity. You may think you won't have anything for a butler to do but once you have one you will want one for every cruise you ever take.. (I always want to bring mine home with me.)
As far as I know though if you want the dining room on Celebrity they are all assigned seatings. For me that's perfect as I like knowing when I will eat, who I will be sitting with and where my table is. I like my waiter to know that I expect certain things every night and to have those waiting for me when I arrive - and on Celebrity they will be. They do have tables for two but there's a VERY limited number of them. If you want to get one I would suggest booking as early as possible and making sure to request only a table for two. It also doesn't hurt to call them yourself about a month before sailing to confirm a table for two.
If you have any other questions regarding the two please feel free to ask. Happy Anniversary!
Yep, u shd b able 2 get table for 2...u can dine casually, usually on the ship near the pool, but inside, in casual lounge
I'm stuck on Celebrity, ev cruise has been good, pineapple btr on RCL...have done Norwegian and Carnival, but like the "tip how much u want" on RCL and Celebrity
Randy Shields (from his fiancee Cherie Wenderott)
We LOVE Mex Riviera, we book 1 yr in advance to get good savings ($1000 per person w/o air)...we love that the beach is 1/2 block from where ship docks and that u can walk around P Vuerta and rest of the ports...except we rented scooter, which we'll do again on our h-moon this year's cruise...ab. $100 for 2, for 4 hrs...to go from Zjatenajo to Xtapa...
I don't like St Thomas or Grd Cayman, unless u beach only...LOVED St Maarten...rented jeep, stopped en route to beach, right near it, at "yamayama" stands, locals selling in straw booths, like 5 booths...loved walking the beach there...loved going thru great quality shops, buying nice qual. beach towels for like $3
Really LOVED Aruba and Curacao, Curacao has old fashioned HUGE drawbridge ships go thru, and u can eat right on edge of water @ eaterie and watch the ships...
We enjoy Princess and Celebrity but for us our order of preference is Celebrity, Princess then Holland America. However having been on 15 cruises we tend to choose the ports/itinerary first these days then choose the cruise line. Celebrity has better food, better more refined service and is a quieter on board environment with lots more space, though that is talking of the Millenium and Century class ships, not Zenith which is an older less spacious ship. I have written reviews of a recent 14 night cruise on Summit and a 10 night on Sun Princess last February that are both on CruiseReviews.com so they should make interesting reading as a comparison. Celebrity is considered too formal by some, certainly more so than Princess and it doesn't have a dine anytime option, though you can make a reservation to dine casually in the Lido at night or in the speciality restaurant. It is all pluses and minuses so it comes down to what is most important for you. Neither choice should dissappoint, but I haven't found the perfect cruise line yet.
Cunard QE2 1984 & 1990
Carnival Fantasy 2001, Inspiration 2003, Glory 2005,
Celebrity Horizon 2004, Galaxy 2005, Summit 2006, HAL Zuiderdam 2004, Veendam 2005
Princess Star 2003, Sun 2004
P&O Oceana 2004
RCCL Nordic Empress 2002
Regal Empress 2002
RCCL Legend of the Seas Apr 2006
Saga Ruby June 2006
P&O Arcadia July 2006
Carnival Miracle Oct 2006
RCCL Navigator Apr 2007
P&O Aurora Sep 2007
QM2 Sep 2007
Sapphire Princess Apr 2008
Originally posted by JeffS:
Yes, I have heard that Celebrity, Princess, and Holland America are a step above Royal Carribean. How would you guys rate these cruise lines? I am curious as a couple of travel agents have recommended them. Any thoughts? Thanks!
We've sailed on most of them, and Celebrity is by far our favorite. The new Millennium class are best, but we've enjoyed Galaxy and even Zenith. Took 3 cruises on Millennium in a recent 12 month period: 12 day Med, 7 day Caribbean, and 14 day re-positioning (Ft. Lauderdale to Barcelona). Loved them all, and we've booked the British Isles/Norway cruise on Constellation this summer. The food, service and entertainment/musicians are always terrific, and the alternate dining is worth the $30/head at least once. We've tried both the standard $30 menu (buy your own wine) and the $60 tasting menu (more small courses, wine included), and recommend the former. Either way, the decor, service and anbiance are awesome. We prefer assigned seating so we can get to know our table mates and waiter. If we don't like them, we move! There are tables for two, but fewer on the newer ships.
One one recent cruise we sat with two couples who had taken well over 60 cruises each. They both agreed that Celebrity was #1, Princess #2, HAL #3.
Last month we took the HAL Maasdam from Norfolk. HAL ships are lovely inside and out, the rooms (at least on that class) bigger than most with lots of recent upgrades (beds, linen, etc). The food was almost as good as Celebrity, and service quite good too, although Indonesian waiters are never as much fun as European.
Having said all that, never again on HAL! On a couple of previous HAL cruises we were with other couples and didn't much notice the rest of the passengers. This time we were alone, and felt like we were on a floating nursing home. We're no spring chickens, but found the evenings lethally dull with Lawrence Welk music, people dozing in the night clubs, hardly anyone drinking or dancing. Surprisingly, drinks were about $1 more than on Celebrity, and they've gotten nasty about passengers bringing their own liquor aboard.
Speaking of Norfolk, their new cruise terminal is way behind schedule, and the only ship using the port is Maasdam, and that only until December. Apparently the other committed cruise lines have backed out. Another problem with Norfolk is the two days of typically unpleasant weather between there and the Bahamas/Caribbean.
Our last Princess cruise was on the Dawn Princess, but that was a few years ago. We loved the ship and the international staff, but found the food somewhat mediocre. That was our only complaing, and hopefully they've improved it? We hope to try the new Crown Princess out of San Juan next year.
I just realized that I forgot to report my opinion on Celebrity compared to Princess, now that we have returned from Celebrity Infinity.
This is just my opinion, based on a 2005 cruise on Diamond Princess and 2006 cruise on Celebrity Infinity, hardly a significant sample size. Comparing these two, I give the edge to Princess. While our cruise on Infinity was fine and we had a good time, it was simply average in many ways. There was very little that stood out, other than the SS United States Restaurant (which attracted me mainly for its historical nature than as an alternative dining venue). Service was far superior on Princess and the entertainment was much better and there was more of it. I also noticed a good deal of nickel-and-diming on Celebrity, at least more than I would have expected from a premium line. I'll elaborate in my forthcoming review, which is nearly completed.
Not that our Celebrity cruise was bad -- it was far from it. It's just that Princess had more of what we enjoyed and was more pleasurable to us. As with any product, it all comes down to personal tastes. Also keep in mind that there could be a great deal of variation from one week to the next. JMHO.
I went to Alaska 3 years ago on Celebrity and the food was wonderful. We had a cabin with a balcony and it was very nice, with a very small sitting area, sofa/chain converted into a bed. Will be going on Baltic cruise with Princess 15-May. Will let you know comparison.
Originally posted by Ian Murray:
It's our 25th wedding anniversary next year and I'm looking at cruises for November 2006 for my wife and I, both in our mid-40's. We've done only the one cruise previously with Princess (Grand Princess). We enjoyed this very much, but had a few issues - cabin was very small (and we had a "mini-suite"!)and food wasn't great. After reading various websites, Celebrity seem to be on a par if not slightly more refined than Princess, similar prices and offer apparently a better quality of food and slightly larger cabins. The only thing that perhaps puts me off them is that we enjoyed the Personal Choice dining with Princess (sit anywhere when you liked) which Celebrity does not seem to have. Is it possible to get tables for two with Celebrity dining does anyone know, and do they still have fixed dining times? Also, any general views on Celebrity v Princess as cruise lines? Which would you prefer and why? Any help would be gratefully received.
I was all hyped about the 10 day "Sun Princess" cruise to the Southern Caribbean next Jan. I may have mentioned "Mediterranean" in my "Reason For Joining". (We did that last year on HAL.) 10 days is just right, vacation wise and money wise.
I am a little unsure now that I've read some of your negative comments as we can't say enough about HAL and NCL. The staff, food, entertainment and accomodations were supurb. After perusing books with itineraries for the Caribbean, I found the above cruise to be the best value as the Radiance of the Sea was almost $700.00 more for only 8 days. I guess it's a case of "You get what you pay for".
Has anyone done price comparisons? NCL has Freestyle cruising, which we love, HAL has formal (suit and tie), informal and casual (No shorts, Jeans or tee shirts) What kind of dress code do they have on the Princess line?
Princess' dress code is similar to HAL's - in fact, my one experience with Princess (so. Carib. on Golden P.) it seemed formal night was even dressier than my one experience with HAL (Maasdam E. Carib.), which surprised me. We did enjoy the Personal Choice dining option, though; most of the time we said we would share a table and we ended up making some new friends, but at the same time it was nice to choose to eat at a table for 2 a couple nights and not feel guilty about "ditching" an assigned set of tablemates.