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queenofcruzin 04-26-2010 07:56 AM

Although I watched with interest at the information about the Oasis was coming, coming, COMING at us, I alwasy knew that ship was not for me. After 14 cruises with Royal Caribbean, I recently took a Celebrity cruise aboard the Century. I LOVED the Century, and will definitely cruise with Celebrity again. I loved the more laid back cruising and the older ship was wonderful, a real old time crusiing feel. But as I am planning my next cruise I realize I have way less options when choosing Celebrity. I cruised solo many times in my 30's and 40's and Royal Caribbean was a really good choice for me. But I cruised once on the Adventure of the Seas, and although I had a great time, that ship was too big for me. I recently took my first Radiance class ship, and loved that. I hooked my 80+ year old Mother on cruising and 3 RC cruises later I believe that was the best choice for us. I was recently married 25 years after my divorce, and my husband had cruised a couple of times before, and we cruised Celebrity Century, that was a really good choice for us. I will still cruise with Royal Caribbean and Celebrity, depending on who I cruise with, I am less likely to be loyal to one brand now, I just don't see any significant savings. The whole priority this or that seems to be more show, and less effect. Princess will definitely get my business soon, I believe Alaska would be a great way to try the line. Anxious to hear others who have cruised and how you make your cruise decision, is the cruise line important? Is the ship your destination? Are ports your main decision?

penny3333 04-26-2010 09:09 AM

As you know, I really don't have a loyalty requirement. My first choice is itinerary or ship. Like the Solstice was for the ship. I found that Celebrity was not my cup of tea. The upcoming cruise on the Epic was for the ship. I enjoy NCL and this will be my 5th cruise with them. The cruise in a couple of weeks was for the itinerary/cost. It's on Carnival, I've had 5 previous cruises with them.

I'm really missing Princess, though, so next year I'm going to need to go on Princess or Costa. Both of which I love. Princess is my favorite though.

So to answer your question, no, loyalty is not the main consideration for me.

LHT28 04-26-2010 09:17 AM

We have done a few mass market ships but prefer ones with under 2000 PAX then we discovered Oceania with under 700 PAX.
we tried to go back to the mass market lines but now we just cruise Oceania
We do 2 cruises a year with them usually B2B I would rather sail with the smaller less formal lines that the big ships
Just our preference & not for everyone

Dave 04-26-2010 09:49 AM

Our last several cruises have been split between RCI and Carnival. I purposely did a couple of RCI cruises solely to get diamond status, although one of them was also doing the Alaska itinerary we wanted. Since this also gives us Elite membership on Celebrity, I can say that I will tend to look first at RCI and Celebrity before the other lines. Our Carnival cruises have mostly been swayed by the convenience of driving instead of flying. However Carnival has won us over as being a really good cruise line too and I am certainly willing to fly to cruise with them. But if NCL had been in Mobile I could easily tell you I had many NCL cruises instead of just two of them.

I enjoyed our Princess cruises and it has been a few years so I might look at them for next year.

To answer the question: I do have some loyalty to the Royal Caribbean brands since we like RCI and Celebrity. But it depends on the itinerary. Caribbean? I'll be on RCI or Carnival. The Caribbean itineraries don't matter that much to me. Alaska or Europe? It's all about the itinerary and the ship is just the conveyance. I'll go itinerary, then cruise line, then ship for those two places.

queenofcruzin 04-26-2010 09:52 AM

Penny, thanks for your response, what is it about Princess?

queenofcruzin 04-26-2010 09:53 AM

Lyn, I am also dying to know more Oceania, where have you sailed with Oceania, which ships and what do you like about them?

queenofcruzin 04-26-2010 10:00 AM

Dave, you said you now have Diamond status, which I also have, but besides what the cruise lines tell you what makes the difference for you?

Sonny has ?? maybe 50 with RC and I see what they do for him, but after 14 cruises, I just don't see the difference for me. Coupon booklets, nice but, priority embarkation or disembarking, haven't really seen that much of a difference especially on Royal Caribbean, I am Diamond status with a wheelchair and crushed with crowds.

queenofcruzin 04-26-2010 10:02 AM

Please don't misunderstand, I believe anyone (especially Sonny) with that many cruises with a cruise line should be treated better than someone (even the Queen) with 14 cruises.

Dave 04-26-2010 10:27 AM

I like the priority embark/debark. It has worked well for us. The coupon book doesn't matter. It was never that great and now is pretty useless. I also like the diamond lounge and the new diamond breakfast perk. Granted it was the Oasis on it's first revenue cruise, but last December we D and D+ members were showered with attention. I almost needed another carry-on bag to carry all the gifts we got. They definitely made a good impression on me.

Obviously it is better to be diamond on the Freedom and Oasis class ships. It is a diminished thing on the older ships. But don't forget the C&A perks go beyond the ship. Free air deviation if I use RCI air is a good perk, although that one starts at Platinum level.

However...since we book suites on Carnival we also get priority embark/debark even though we haven't hit the magic number 10 cruise yet.

I am quite interested in trying one of the old R ships that Princess acquired. Being small, the value of priority embarkation/debarkation and other things would tend to be less meaningful to me. After all, when you have 700 passengers to move it becomes less of a problem.

Bob1958 04-26-2010 10:28 AM

Interesting thread. We've only been on 2 cruises, both Princess and both have been more than we could have asked for. However, our next cruise will be Celebrity because they're going to the islands we want and staying longer hours than Princess does. As for the ship we're expecting mostly the same qualities, however we'll miss movies under the stars and the Sanctuary, both of which Princess has and Celebrity does not. For this cruise the destinations are carrying more weight.

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