We'll be on Grand Princess in a little more than two weeks, also Western Caribbean. I would suggest reading as many cruise bulletin boards and cruise reviews as possible. You can learn so much, it's amazing. Then if you have specific questions, post them here or maybe on a couple of boards.
Besides this fine website, check out cruiseopinion.com for reviews. cruise-addicts.com and cruisecritic.com for bulletin boards and passenger reviews.
The best advice I can give is do some research and just pick out a couple things you really want to do the most and enjoy that. If you try to do everything that looks good you are going to wear yourself out and not give yourself enough time to really enjoy the things that really interest you.
The biggest piece of advice I would give you is......relax and enjoy. I find it to be very helpful if I am flexible and go with the flow. Also try to go without any preconceived notions. Be open to everything. You are about to have a brand new and different experience and I'll bet you become addicted just like the rest of us. We would love it if you would join us in the chatroom weeknights beginning at 9 p.m. Eastern Time. We would be happy to give you tons and tons of suggestions! Happy sailing.
Thursday Chat Host
Just remember to take anything said on these boards with a grain of salt. Some suggestions are very helpful, some are not. I managed to go on ten cruises without even knowing these boards existed! Just go with the flow, relax and enjoy!!
The only thing that I can add is to be sure to book your travel so you arrive at the ship in plenty of time and, if you decide to go ashore on your own, be sure to allow plenty of time to return to the ship before the scheduled sailing time (as a general rule, the further away from the ship you are going, the more cushion you should allow).
If you and your wife enjoy wines, don't miss the wine tasting (usually held on the afternoon of the first day at sea). There's a charge of $5.00 per person for the wine tasting (and you have to register in advance that morning), but you'll receive a credit of $5.00 toward the purchase of a bottle of any wine from the ship's cellars that you order at the wine tasting (to be served at dinner on the night of your choice). Princess offers an outstanding variety of wines at reasonably competitive prices, so wine affectionados won't lose. At the tasting, they usually sample five wines -- two white wines, two red wines, and a sparkling wine -- on a rotating basis. The head waiters additionally explain the background, etc., of each of the sampled wines during the tasting.
Once you get to the ship, just relax and let the ship's staff take care of everything!