I don't like the accusations that we are moderating the content of this thread. We have no affiliation with any cruise line. We just see this type of post often. Someone gets sick on a cruise ship and demands a class action lawsuit because it must be the cruise lines fault. This is just not true. So we as moderators are trying to counter some of the exaggerations in the thread.
Its a cruise ship. The norovirus didn't just manifest itself out of thin air. SOMEONE came on board with it. This happens in hotels and restaurants all over the country yet no one calls for a class action lawsuit. But because its a cruise ship where the media likes to point out everytime an outbreak occurs, it somehow becomes a rallying cry for anyone who catches it while on board.
Everyone who sails should practice common sense and personal hygiene. Wash your hands before going to the buffet and every time you use the washroom.
================================================== ========== Carnival Cruise Lines:
Fantasy 90, Celebration 95, Victory 05, Conquest 05, Spirit 6/06, Freedom 6/08, Holiday 7/08, Victory 6/09, Valor 9/09, Dream 6/10, Splendor 8/10,Conquest 8/11,Magic 11/11,Triumph 4/12,Spirit 7/12,Freedom 11/12, Triumph 2/13 - The fire cruise
NCL Dream October 2006, RCCL Mariner OTS June 2007
One tip that I read somewhere: use the sanitizer BEFORE going through the buffet, and also AFTER getting your food and touching the serving utensils. If we go back for more food we use the sanitizer again, which I always carry in my purse because I am a germaphobe, too.
When we eat in the dining room, we use the sanitizer after handling the menu. It may sound paranoid, but we follow this practice when eating at any restaurant. An ounce of prevention........
I'm sitting here at my iMac and on the left side I have a bottle of germ-X. Why? Because I use it at home too, such as after handling the mail. The letter carrier touches hundreds of mailboxes and probably thousands of pieces of mail each day. Who put mail in their box after pushing the garbage cans to the curb, and here comes the mail person? Just the thought of that made me reach for the sanitizer!
I really do not like eating anything from a self-serve buffet that is finger food, and if I see someone reach into the rolls and breads with their grubby hands instead of using the tongs it drives me nuts.
It appears the attempts at eliminating the illness issues aboard Sea Princess have had to be escalated. Princess Statement
Before anyone says 'well, they should have done that in the first place', just realize that for every sick person who thinks that would be the correct approach there would be ten-fold passengers complaining about it. The cruise line is in a no-win position and they have followed CDC recommendations all along, as noted by the physician's letter in the link.
I carry a black cruise card when I'm on a Princess cruise.
The problems from the cruise listed here occurred on the one before and the one after too.
Also, the food is HORRIBLE!. If you plan on cruising on this ship, make sure you pack some food in your luggage.
Not only is the food "recycled" from day to day--with dried out crusty food, but in the main dining room it is: 1) too salty, 2) too fatty, 3) tasteless. and to get a cup of coffee you need to act like a jerk or to get it yourself.
The quality of Princess sure isn't what it used to be.
...like I said, I carry an "elite" (black) cruise card. and this is just my opinion.
It sounds like maybe it's time to turn in your Black card and move up to a Luxury or Deluxe cruise line if you're that unhappy. It doesn't matter if your card is Blue, Gold, or Black; if the food isn't to someone's liking then it's not to your liking. Of course, whether food is good or bad is very subjective to everyone's taste. There are thousands that sail weekly on Princess that enjoy the food. You might want to try Silversea, Crystal, Regent, or Seaborn and see if that suits your taste better.
LIKESTRAVEL2BOOT - We sailed on the May 30 cruise outbound to Alaska right after your fun frolic event! Looks like some folks here might be taking exception to your report or even argumentative. Interesting since none of them were on board! I'm here to assure the readers that your discription of your cruise echos the experience we had on the very next cruise aboard Sea Princess on May 30th. Though we had performed much research when booking the cruise last summer, we hadn't stumbled on the issue of flagrant & repetitive norovirus on this ship. After your sailing, they apprently stepped up the remediation effort since housekeeping hit teams in their hazmat outfits complete with masks, gloves, gowns & red bags marked hazmat were all up & down our corridor on Baja deck. Needless to say it's more than a bit discerning when you see these four person teams with their officer team leaders working next door to your cabin! I can assure you people in our area were ballistic! Now it's clear that the embarkation of passengers on the cruise after ours on June 9th was delayed, and had the itinerary changed for more disinfecting etc! On the May 30 cruise we were on, it was only after well underway was there any hint of norovirus by the Captain over the PA. A little research indicates this ship went through a complete disinfecting in 2006for the same virus while in dry dock! I'm fully aware that norovirus is brought aboard by infected passengers etc. but I think it might be time they take this issue a little more serious and better disinfect this ship.....preferrably in dry dock and without passngers & crew aboard! It's alos interesting to note that passengers on that '06 cruise got a 30% refund on their cruise cost plus......I hope something similar is coming to us give our experiences! We agree completey by the way with the food situation in the buffet. Completely ridiculous! You can say, 'oh gee, they had a bad day', or 'the sea was rough' or whatever excuse a moderator here might want to insert, but the fact remains the buffet food on this ship, on this cruise (and apparently yours) just sucked! No other way to call it! We try to eat in the buffet for every meal, on this cruise it was impossible! Only thing worth a darn was the pastry & bread! Excellent by the way! Personally, we feel the ships company was overwhelmed by the norovirus thing. It's all anyone and everyone was talking about. People were sick throughout the ship and confined to their cabins for 3 days minimum! Hazmat teams were active all over the ship....everyone saw it! Crew members were trying to do their best, but it was clear the usual routine was cast aside! I think new septic procedures in the galleys and certainly on the serving lines etc. grossly effected the service personnel, the quality of food, etc. As you accurately stated, the meat was always overcooked & tasteless, the gravies bland & again tasteless, and everything seemed to favor curry for whatever reason, even what little shrimp they served. The menu was just weird! I know it's tough to cook for 2000 + diverse people from all over the world, but this stuff was nuts! We ate with a variety of strangers during all our meals and every single person we ate with had the same complaints. German night was a bust according to our Geramn table mates, Chinese night was gross! 2/3/ the passengers were Chinese or Phillipino on this tri and I can assure you that everyone we dined with was more than a little ****ed! So I don't think it was our finicky tastes at fault! We finally eloped to the Sterling Steak House and are glad we did! Finally.....an excellent meal! Best steak I've ever eaten bar none! They added Lobster, mashed potatoe, and a wonderful clam chowder! The classic Princess service........we were finally in cruise ship paradise! Best thing on the boat! Well worth the $40.00 extra for the two of us! We also ate in the Dining Room twice and though certainly better than the buffet......not much! Same thing.....over cooked & bland! We've cruised Princess, Celebrity, and so on before and on this trip you could tell the crew was just not dialed in to having a good time. There was the odd bartender with the jovial attitude, the guys in the hot dog/hamburger bar on deck 14 seemed their usual jovial selves, but by and large the crew looked tired, beaten down, frowning and everybody had the novovirus thing on their minds in one way or another! The fact that this cruise went to Alaska, Glacier Bay, Yukon Territory (for us on the train), and so on......it was still magnifcent in spite of the ships company. Rest assured though, like you, we agree the food, much of the service, disembarkation at the ports, embarkation after the tours etc. were all adversely effected by this darn virus period! It's to bad Princess made the decision to continue cruising this ship with the disease so widely spread. IMHO it should be dry docked again and diseninfected once and for all! Would I cruise again on Sea Princess......probably not! Princess yes......Coral class or better, but I think this ship is in need of some serious overhaul and cleaning! That's my 2 cents!
Actually at least one person who disagrees with your assessment was aboard. I am confident there are others but they haven't posted to this forum.
Because a ship had to be decontaminated in 2006 has absolutely zero meaning or link to a viral event happening in 2011. The virus didn't lurk aboard the ship for 5 years. Insinuating the Sea Princess is a floating petrie dish is not reasonable. It just happens. A ship with a record of consistently high CDC scores can have a norovirus outbreak. It isn't 'if' but 'when' it will happen.
By the way, the Sea Princess was refurbished less than two years ago.
I do agree that Princess should have been more forthcoming about the illness on the previous cruises.