These boards were so helpful to me before our Golden cruise that I thought I would try to give back.
My family of four (DH, 13-boy, 16-boy, myself) just returned from a great vacation on the Golden Princess Southern Caribbean route. I thought that I would tell you a little about the Princess teen program as I had a hard time finding specific information before our cruise.
The first night, there are two sign-up periods followed by a ice breakers and a movie. A parent must register their teen the first night to participate. After registration, they gave each kid a t-shirt.
The teen center consists of a big screen tv, ping pong table, a room to hang out in with games and cards, and a nintendo area shared with the younger children. There is also an unsupervised area on the highest deck with a hot tub and lounge chairs.
General Impression - I was very impressed with the teen program. Most activities did take place as scheduled even if a small number of kids showed up. An example of an activity that did not take place was the chess/checker tournament. Big crowds were present for the game show type events. There were a lot of counselors in the room so it was well supervised. By the second evening, the counselor knew who my child was by name and pretty much his likes and dislikes. When there were only few kids in the center I saw counselors playing ping pong with the teens, etc. In other words, the counselors were fairly involved in their job. One evening I was trying to locate my 13 year old to see if he wanted to go to the comedian with us. I went to the teen center, but he wasn't there. When he did show up a few minutes later, the counselor made him go back to his cabin as I requested despite his compliants. Afterwards, I realized I shouldn't have left that message, but I didn't expect the counselors to actually comply with my request. They were on top of things. Their attitude was always good with the parents.
Example activites taken from the "Rap Sheet"
Day 2 Sea - T-shirt graffiti - largely attended by the girls
Teen ship tour
Chess, checkers tournament
Egyptian rat slap
Teen group picture
Body language game
Teen pick to show lounge
Day 3 Who wants to be a millionaire
Battle of the Sexes
Ping pong tournament
Day 4 Golf putting contest
Casino night - black jack and poker
Day 5 Crafts
Island night dinner party
Day 6 Crafts
Teen disco at Skywalkers
Day 7 Teen talent show
Teen farewell party
My 13 year old had a blast. My 16 year old only attended those things that interested him the most. My 13 year old was so tired at the end of the cruise from all the activities that he absolutely crashed at the hotel in San Juan.
I was worried about underage drinking on board before the cruise but am happy to say that I did not personally witness any. I only saw one incident of "bad" teen behavior, a group of kids sitting in the middle of an elevator playing some hand slapping game. My kids commented that it looked pretty dumb for the 16 or 17 that they were.
Sorry for the length. If you have any questions. Please ask.
Thanks for all the details. We were on Caribbean Princess in April and my daughter participated in the youth program (she's 10 yo). Since there were only a few teens on our cruise, it's good for me to get the low-down on the teen program.
Luisa Frey Gaynor
Family Cruise Editor