My wife and I, along with another couple, are trying to decide on whether we should go on the Caribbean Princess or the Carnival Paradise. We have actually been on the Carnival Triumph twice and had a great time on both occasions. Could someone who has been on both a Carnival ship and a Princess ship please compare the two cruise lines?
Some questions we have are....
Is the Princess crowd a much older crowd than the Carnival crowd? We are in our late 20's and would hope to meet some couples that were around on our age to hang out with....
Do the Princess boats have a Captain's Cocktail Party like the Carnival lines do?
Are the alcoholic drinks more or less expensive on the Princess boats than on Carnival?
How does the food compare? Do the Princess ships really not offer free ice cream??
Thank you so much for your feedback!!! It is greatly appreciated!!
speaking from my own personal experience trying to compare Carnival to Princess is like comparing apples to oranges. Carnival is a good basic cruise line. Princess takes it up a notch or two. Princess ships have more of a floating resort hotel atsmosphere. I describe Princess as casual-elegant. Not snooty or uppity just really nice. The service on Princess is top-notch. The food is great, the shows are really good. There are nice little bars to pop into for a quiet drink , there are hopping discos, and large bars with great bands. The whole age thing about Princess is a total myth. You will find folks of all ages.The longer cruises (10+ days) are the ones that will attract an older crowd. The large Grand Class ships will attract the younger crowds, just marrieds and familes with kids. A big plus is that the pools are fresh water not saltwater they are open 24hrs as are the hot tubs. Lots of fun stuff and activites around the pools. Neptunes Reef pool has a retractable dome that can be closed if the weather isn't the best. The newer Grand Class ships are now offering "Movies under the Stars" which i think is neat, its like going to the drive-in.
The prices for drinks are comparable to what you would pay for a drink at home at a nice restaurant.
You can get ice cream at Horizons Court buffet at no charge. There is a Hagen-Daz ice cream parlor on board that is the ice cream you pay for.
Since you have already sailed on Carnival, why not try something different and give the Caribbean Princess a try.
I've cruised both Carnival and Princess and enjoyed them both very much. It's very difficult to compare cruise lines because each sailing can be so different. IMO the time of year you cruise has quite a bit to do with the average age of the passengers, and the "pulse" of that particular cruise. That said, I would not hesitate to sail Princess or Carnival, or any other cruise line for that matter. But I do enjoy variety and seeing new things, so I would go for a different ship, whatever line you choose!
These are great questions (and answers). I too, have sailed on Carnival and I have booked a cruise on Princess this year. Thanks for the info on the pools. I have never really enjoyed the salt water pools and knowing we can use the hot tubs late at night is great too. I can't wait to go!
Grand Princess 112704
Princess skews older...40's and fifties...but I am 41 and enjoy myself immensely
Princess has a number of cocktail parties, and renewal of marriage vows, more romantic than Carnival's offerings.
Prices for booze are about the same...FInd a bartender who doesn't measure and you'll be happy!
Princess food is much better than Carnival's, and ont he Grand Class, there is much more variety, including AWESOME Strak house and Italian eight course. THERE IS FREE ICE CREAM at 3-5 on the Princess Grand Class at the Horizon Court. They don't advertise it, so I just did! Pluse you can get ice cream with room service (for some a unique experience awaits!)
Princess is definetly much better, Much higher level of service and much more intimate and quiet settings to be had. Personally I thought the party scene on Carnival was horrible and it was much bette on Princess. The ships are also better maintained than Carnivals. Anyway thats my 2 cents
I must have been on the wrong Carnival boat. We went on the Fantasy to Nassau. I have heard all of these stories about how it is a party ship, but I was BORED! I am in my early 30's and went with my cousin of same age to have fun and we had to literally search it out. The wait staff and our steward were great but ask anyone else a question on the ship and good luck finding an answer. There was a mixed age group, we went at the end of April and there were HS kids and people from their 30's on up. We wanted to goto the clubs to at least dance but nothing started happening on there until the last night of the 3 day cruise. The casino was busy. Food was good. I was reluctant to even go on another cruise, but my soon to be husband is letting me do the wedding I want so I am letting him pick the honeymoon he wants. Hopefully Princess will be better than Carnival.
I agree with you. I'm in my 50's and sailed on the Ecstacy a few years ago and was really disappointed with the night life. It was better on the Celebrity Century. On the Century they had something going on up on deck every night. I'd take any other cruise line before I'd take Carnival!!!