Are the new Princess ships (Caribbean, Emerald) too crowded?
Are the new Princess ships (Caribbean, Emerald, Ruby, etc.) too crowded?
These ships have an extra deck of cabins compared to the older ships (Grand, Golden, Star, Diamond, Sapphire) and accomodate about 3100 passengers compared to about 2600-2700 passengers on the older ships.
Are the theaters, bars, public spaces, etc. too crowded? If you have sailed on both classes, please respond.
I honestly do notice a slight difference in the number of passengers, however, Princess is EXCELLENT at controlling the crowd, and having multiple things to do, so that the entire crowd isn't trying to go the same place at the same time. I sailed the Mariner of the Seas last year, and they had a real problem with crowd control. I'd sail the Princess Mega Ships again in a heartbeat, but won't sail the RCI Mega Ships again, unless it's a giveaway price.
No. I was on the Emerald in November of 07 and it was just great. Everyone was doing something different every day. I think the crew does a good job with the different types of activies on board. It is a mega ship but with a small ship flare, you will love it.
They are absolutely to crowed. I have also sailed on the large RCI ships Navigator & Liberty and all things = The new princess ships are way to crowded!! Try and get a seat in the Theater 10 Min. before a show.I have salied on CB,EB,SP & DP
Sailed on the Grand Princess last Feb. and am sailing the Caribbean Princess this Feb. So will find out the answer to your question first hand. One thing I do know is that the seating problem in the main theater is a problem on the Grand Princess also. When you have an 800 seat show room with 2 shows a night for a total of 1600 seats it doesn't much matter if the ship has 2700 or 3100 passengers. You still have to get a seat at least 1/2 hour before the show. Not a good situation. The other thing I noticed on the Grand was not enough seating in the buffet at peak breakfast and lunch times. It appears on the deck plan of the Caribbean that they have more buffet(s) seating, but understand it still isn't enough at prime times. Any first hand comments on this would be appreciated.
I found the CB crowded and it also seemed like the staff was overwelmed as far as service goes.
Added another deck without adding anything else doesnt make much sense to me.
CCL Inspiration 09
RCCL Explorer of the Seas Eastern 09
CCL Miracle Southern '08
RCCL Enchantment of the Seas Western '07
PCL Caribbean Princess Eastern '05
RCCL Explorer of the Seas Western '05
RCCL Explorer of the Seas Eastern '04
CCL Destiny Southern '01
CCL Sensation Eastern '94
CCL Ecstacy Western '92
CCL Jubilee Eastern '90
As one of the Emerald's officers told me, cruise ships are not designed by people who cruise!
The Princess Theater on Emerald is clearly smaller than it should be for the number of people on board. It only holds about 750 people with 3100 passengers on board. We decided to see entertainment in the other venues of the ship on our last cruise. The Explorer Lounge and Club Fusion have good shows that are worth seeing. On the Jan. 2008 cruise, the shows were run three times in the Princess Theater (2 at night, then one more the next afternoon) in order to get folks in.
Anytime Dining has improved, we were asked if we wanted to share a table each night in the DaVinci dining room. We had no wait time to get into the dining room any night. We went to dinner from 6:15 to 7:00PM and had no problems.
We spent 10 days on the Emerald Princess and didn't find the public areas too crowded. We went to three shows in the Princess Theater and always found seats, but, yes, you had to get there early to get a seat. Sometimes the horizon court seating was a bit crowded, but we always found a seat for the two of us when we joined a table that wasn't full or we walked through to the Caribe and sat there. Surprise! I only saw one instance where two women saved 2 seats between them, then when the show started, they got up and left. (Probably figured their DHs weren't coming.) The biggest issue was with the chair hogs around the pools...but, that doesn't happen just on the bigger ships. On the other hand, we still don't know what was the issue with our late traditional dining....many, many empty tables pretty much throughout the entire 10 days. We talked to a few people on board that were on a long wait list for late traditional dining and didn't make the cut....once they got on board, they checked about changing to traditional and were told that there was no availability at that seating--Which was contrary to what we saw each night. One couple never showed up at our table of 6.
I'll have to agree with everyone else about the shortage of seats in the show lounge. You have to get there EARLY- say 30 to 40 minutes to stake out a seat. We were also on the Grand P last month & they don't have nearly the same crowding problems. We never did have any problems in the dr's since we ate early but I would suspect if you choose to eat at 6:30 PM there would be a wait + the fact that you would not get a seat at the first show. I would still cruise the Caribbean P again but just be prepared what to expect.
We wonder when the cruise lines will get the "Broadway" concept that you don't present a show for one evening (unless of course it's an absolute flop...)
Seems to us that there should be an opportunity for everyone aboard to see a show, a really spectacular show, at least once during a trip and for which the passengers are given tickets if need be. Rather than try to present something different every evening with the resulting stampede for seating, repeat performances of fewer presentations on different evenings could be an answer. We would prefer to plan and to see one really great show during a cruise rather than ignore the theatre altogether as we now must do for the many reasons covered in these posts.