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Old 09-14-2012, 04:30 PM   #1
Luv2Diz
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Loved our Disney cruise! Are we crazy to consider Princess?

We got back a couple of weeks ago from our first ever cruise....an amazing Disney cruise to Alaska! It truly was a perfect cruise. Beautiful ship which was always spotless, great castmembers, wonderful servers and cabin host. We enjoyed the food, rotational dining, our tablemates and the entertainment.

We want to go back to Alaska next year! I did book a future cruise onboard, however......... We can get a balcony cabin on Princess for nearly $600 cheaper than an OV cabin on DCL. We can also leave out of Seattle (driving distance for us) rather than Vancouver.

We are adults, so the kids club isn't a factor.

Has anyone done both DCL and Princess cruises recently? How much did you miss that "Disney magic" on Princess? How does the dining and entertainment compare?

Thanks for helping me make the decision.
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Old 09-14-2012, 04:35 PM   #2
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We recently did Celebrity to Alaska for essentially the same reason--it was a hair over 1/2 the cost of DCL after we added in the soda card!

Honestly, the food was better on Celebrity. Alaska was totally amazing. DD (adult) didn't care for the entertainment in the main theater on Celebrity--I agree, the talent level certainly wasn't DCL. We did enjoy the "around the ship" entertainment- a male quartet, a guitarist, a string quartet, a pianist, etc. But the "Stars of the Infinity" um......really high school quality.

The age group was significantly older than a typical DCL cruise, but there were kids on board and kid programming. They also had a "20something" group that met each night in a lounge.

That doesn't help you with Princess, but does give a view from a non-DCL line.
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Old 09-14-2012, 04:37 PM   #3
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Someone wrote on here recently that the Princess cruises to Alaska were unofficial "retirement cruises" not sure if that's true or not or if that bothers you. I know when we were in port with the Princess ship on our DCL Alaska cruise that everyone from the Princess ship did fit into an older age bracket.
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Old 09-14-2012, 05:11 PM   #4
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OK, we are retirement age & we love Princess as well as DCL. We prefer Princess' anytime dining. If we want we can dine alone or with another couple. Our last Princess cruise was to the Baltics & it was excellent.
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Old 09-14-2012, 05:13 PM   #5
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I was 26 when I went on my Princess cruise to Alaska and loved it! I think Princess is top notch. I did the week land tour first and then the cruise. I loved the Princess lodges and their train cars. I met a nice group of people on the land tour that I then spent time with on the cruise ship. I am not somebody who cares about the age group of others, and I found nice companions of all different ages, both older and younger. I loved Princess so much, I have proceeded to sail with them in Europe for their Baltic, British Isles and Mediterranean cruises.
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Old 09-14-2012, 05:39 PM   #6
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We have been on 5 Princess cruises and are about to go on our sixth. One of those was Alaska out of Seattle and I consider it one of our best trips. We saw whales right near the ship on our first day, salmon were running all over the place and I got a beautiful shot of an American Bald Eagle landing in its nest. The day we sailed up Endicott Arm fjord(Tracy Arm was closed off) we got within 1 mile of the glacial wall and you never saw such vivid blue in the ice.
The ships are usually a good mix of ages, so I never consider it a "retirement" trip. There is plenty to do including lectures from an on-board naturalist which I found fascinating. Go, and have a great time.
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Old 09-14-2012, 05:49 PM   #7
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We took Holland America (same company as Princess) to Alaska. We took the train down to Anchorage through Denali and boarded the ship in Seward and then cruised down to Vancouver. We are adults with grown children. VERY happy with the cruise. Their itineraries are better. The service, the same. Stateroom a tad smaller but didn't affect us. We were there to see Alaska. Not to sit in the stateroom. Can't address food since we aren't foodies and food is so subjective anyway. We were told we wouldn't like it because Holland America was for people with canes and wheelchairs. We did see some but they never held us back or affected us whatsoever. Mighty close minded if you ask me if that would affect anyone. IF you decide to cruise Princess, do yourself a favor and consider a land tour on top of the cruise. Best decision ever for us!
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Old 09-15-2012, 06:58 AM   #8
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We took Holland America (same company as Princess) to Alaska.
Just to clarify, HAL and Princess are NOT the same company. They are separate cruiselines under the Carnival Corporation umbrella.

Having sailed both, I like both, but each has its pros and cons, and each offers different ships (obviously) with different amenities, menus, policies, and programming.
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Cruises Taken:
HAL Zuiderdam 08/05 Western Caribbean, HAL Westerdam 12/05 Eastern Caribbean, HAL Westerdam 12/06 Western Caribbean, Princess Dawn 05/07 Alaska, HAL Westerdam 12/07 Eastern Caribbean, Princess Island 12/08 Panama Canal, HAL Ryndam 11/09 Western Caribbean, HAL Westerdam 01/10 Southern Caribbean, HAL Westerdam 12/10 Southern Caribbean, Disney Magic 05/11 Transatlantic, Princess Emerald 12/11 Southern Caribbean, Azamara Quest 10/12 Sicily / Malta, Princess Emerald 11/12 Eastern Caribbean, HAL Eurodam 03/13 Eastern Caribbean, Azamara Quest 08/13 Northern Europe, HAL Eurodam 11/13 Western Caribbean
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Old 09-15-2012, 07:37 AM   #9
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I don't think Alaska cruises are more port-intensive than others, with visits usually to 3 ports and a glacier. If you sail from Seattle and go to Victoria, that's almost always in the evening. The scenery on sea days is definitely more beautiful on Alaska cruises than on most others.

Choose the itinerary first, rather than cruise line or ship. The ports don't differ that much, with most going to Ketchikan, Juneau, and Skagway. HAL tends to go to Sitka rather than Skagway on many of theirs, and they substitute Haines for Skagway on their one-way southbound cruises. The biggest itinerary difference is the glaciers visited. Many go to Tracy Arm Fjord. Fewer go to Hubbard Glacier or Glacier Bay. DCL has been very good about allowing time to get to the glaciers at the end of Tracy Arm Fjord, but other cruise lines often miss it because there's a lot of ice and they run out of time. My personal opinion of the best itinerary is Princess's southbound cruises from Whittier to Vancouver that go to both Hubbard Glacier and Glacier Bay: http://www.princess.com/find/cruiseD...lterBy=&order=

I have been on 2 roundtrip cruises from Seattle and 2 one-way northbound cruises followed by independent land trips. If HAL Amsterdam were still doing their 14-night roundtrip from Seattle, that would be my choice for a roundtrip cruise. If you choose a one-way, spend time in Alaska before or after the cruise.
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Old 09-15-2012, 05:45 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hrhdhd View Post
Just to clarify, HAL and Princess are NOT the same company. They are separate cruiselines under the Carnival Corporation umbrella.

Having sailed both, I like both, but each has its pros and cons, and each offers different ships (obviously) with different amenities, menus, policies, and programming.
My point was that they are all under the same corporation that being the Carnival Corporation which also includes Carnival Cruise Line. I guess I should have worded it different but the jest was still there. I found it funny that Princess picked us up at the Fairbanks Airport and we used their bus again for an excursion. The people on the bus were cruising both Princess and HAL.
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Old 04-08-2013, 04:47 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hrhdhd View Post
Just to clarify, HAL and Princess are NOT the same company. They are separate cruiselines under the Carnival Corporation umbrella.

Having sailed both, I like both, but each has its pros and cons, and each offers different ships (obviously) with different amenities, menus, policies, and programming.
I believ Princess is under the Celebrity Corporation, not Carnival. To the OP, DS is an entertainer for Princess and I think he's going to be assigned to the Caribbean Princess in the Fall. Right now he's on the Golden. Having spent 2 summers on Alaskan Cruises, he'd strongly recommend Glaciar Bay. As he told me, "It's like being in the middle of a postcard."
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Old 09-14-2012, 05:07 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Luv2Diz View Post
We got back a couple of weeks ago from our first ever cruise....an amazing Disney cruise to Alaska! It truly was a perfect cruise. Beautiful ship which was always spotless, great castmembers, wonderful servers and cabin host. We enjoyed the food, rotational dining, our tablemates and the entertainment.

We want to go back to Alaska next year! I did book a future cruise onboard, however......... We can get a balcony cabin on Princess for nearly $600 cheaper than an OV cabin on DCL. We can also leave out of Seattle (driving distance for us) rather than Vancouver.

We are adults, so the kids club isn't a factor.

Has anyone done both DCL and Princess cruises recently? How much did you miss that "Disney magic" on Princess? How does the dining and entertainment compare?

Thanks for helping me make the decision.

We just got off the Fantasy (western carribean) and we booked Alaska for 2013. This was our first cruise with the kids we loved it. I have been told once you do Disney it is hard to go to another cruise line....
We did RCI and there was no comparison. Disney was much better, at least for us.
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Old 09-14-2012, 05:51 PM   #13
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I have never sailed Princess, so I can't comment to that, but I can give insight about sailing with an older crowd. We did a NCL Canadian cruise and the guests were all so much older. I hate to say it, but uncomfortably older and we were terribly bored. Now we wouldn't be so bored now, but we're in our early 40s now. We were 30 and under for that particular cruise. We said we would always try to sail with our own age group (mostly). Take it into consideration if need be.

No, I don't hate old people. Please don't hate on me . Oh and not closed minded either. We were young and wanted to find others with similar interests for the days we were on ship.
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Old 09-14-2012, 05:56 PM   #14
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No, I don't hate old people. Please don't hate on me
No, we don't hate you. People think I'm anti-kid; not so. I just don't want them in adult only spaces.

You are correct that the age of the majority of guests does affect the character of the cruise. However, most of the ships are big enough for guest to find their "crowd" if they make an effort. If a guest is 25 and never goes to the "20 something" get together, they sort of lose the right to gripe about no young people. If I hang out in "family" areas, I have no right to say anything about the presence or absence of kids.

While most of the people on our Celebrity cruise were older, we met some lovely family groups of parents with young adult kids.
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Old 09-14-2012, 06:47 PM   #15
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No, we don't hate you. People think I'm anti-kid; not so. I just don't want them in adult only spaces.

You are correct that the age of the majority of guests does affect the character of the cruise. However, most of the ships are big enough for guest to find their "crowd" if they make an effort. If a guest is 25 and never goes to the "20 something" get together, they sort of lose the right to gripe about no young people. If I hang out in "family" areas, I have no right to say anything about the presence or absence of kids.

While most of the people on our Celebrity cruise were older, we met some lovely family groups of parents with young adult kids.
Very very true. Of course you may not be able to find out in advance the age group, but I'd certainly do research. There wasn't a young couple on our cruise. In fact, our parents went with us and they were young compared to the other guests! . we had our 6 year old with us and he was the only child so they didn't even bother to open kid activities for him. They opened the play area for us to play with him. The ports were awesome and we've always wanted to sail them again.

We try to sail on lines that seem to have our same general interests now. Just something to think about. Ps, I don't want kids in adult only spaces either. I agree and I have 2 of my own.
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