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What happened to the cruising experience? Our view.

What happened to the cruising experience? Our view.

Old Aug 30, 2023, 10:47 pm
  #31  
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Originally Posted by philemer
This is such an individual decision and hinges on how many drinks, of all kinds, a person consumes per day. Remember, each adult in the room must purchase the package. So for 2 this is an extra $120/day. My wife is hooked on Diet Coke (~$3 each) and an OJ for breakfast. The package would be worth it for me but not for both of us.
YMMV of course. Happy sailing.

Drinks menu: https://profcruise.com/new-princess-drink-prices-2023/
We both drink. For me, if I was paying ala carte, a beer, 2 glasses of wine with dinner and 2 manhattans after dinner along with 3 bottles of water and an americano, that’s between $50 and $60 a day. Then another $31 for gratuities and wifi. So $80-90 vs $60 for Plus. Mrs BV will have a pina colada and 3 glasses of wine, but guzzles bottled water all day long. I couldn’t justify it if we only drank 2 beers a day. I also don’t drink like this at home. That would be an early grave. I assumed everyone ran the numbers and makes the decision that makes sense for them. Although some people at or below break even just like knowing they won’t have a bill on disembarkation day. Not me. Strictly by the numbers.
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Old Aug 31, 2023, 1:50 am
  #32  
 
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Originally Posted by BamaVol
Wifi is $15. Gratuities are $16. Princess Plus is $60. That leaves $29 for drinks, including specialty coffees and bottled water. Show me where you can purchase 8 drinks for $29 on any Princess ship. Four beers, maybe.
Top status on Princess (Elite; 15+ cruises or 150+ days) gives 50% off on wifi. (We used to get some free minutes, but that got dropped a few years ago - this is a bit annoying, but the wifi is so much better now with starlink that it doesn't bother me too much.). I also will often not pay for wifi for the first two or three days of a cruise, as that helps me get into vacation mode. Elite passengers (and the level below) also were able to get $5 drink specials at the pre-dinner top-tier lounge; I don't know if this is still around.

For me, the wifi is costing me under $6/day for a 7-night cruise, approaching $7.50 as the number of cruise days increases. With $16 for gratuities, that leaves ~$36 to $38 for daily drinks to make the package worthwhile - less if you care about their other inclusions. At regular prices that's probably 3 drinks or so. This is right on the border of being worthwhile for me; I did buy Princess Plus for my 10 night April Solar Eclipse cruise, but not for my next Princess cruise after that (18 nights LA to NYC).

Now, when Princess Plus was only $40 I always bought it, even though tips were only $14 or so back then.
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Old Sep 1, 2023, 7:20 pm
  #33  
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Originally Posted by BamaVol
Princess Plus is $60.
Princess Plus is $120. I don't sail alone and you can't just pay for one person in a cabin. Not to mention you can't use OBC to pay for Plus, whereas you can use it to purchase the individual elements.
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Old Sep 1, 2023, 10:27 pm
  #34  
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Originally Posted by mahasamatman
Princess Plus is $120. I don't sail alone and you can't just pay for one person in a cabin. Not to mention you can't use OBC to pay for Plus, whereas you can use it to purchase the individual elements.
Princess Plus is $60 and Premier is $80, per person.. So $120 and $160 for two.See https://www.princess.com/cruise-deal...uise-packages/

This topic is going around in circles. Buy, or not, what makes sense to you.
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Last edited by philemer; Sep 1, 2023 at 10:32 pm
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Old Oct 19, 2023, 9:03 pm
  #35  
 
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Not that it matters to most, just finished first segment of extended cruise on Explora. For this market segment there is a huge WOW factor. Happy to respond to specific questions.
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Old Oct 20, 2023, 12:15 am
  #36  
 
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Originally Posted by hedoman
Not that it matters to most, just finished first segment of extended cruise on Explora. For this market segment there is a huge WOW factor. Happy to respond to specific questions.
This is a new one for me - how would it compare to the old Seabourn (before Princess bought it) if you know (back when there were the "triplets") Yes I'm dating myself.
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Old Oct 20, 2023, 1:06 am
  #37  
 
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I'm currently on Seabourn Odyssey, and someone happened to mention Explora to me last week. He said that Explora was wonderful and superior to Seabourn in terms of food. However, you have to adhere to what they serve. Unlike Seabourn, they are very strict and regimented and do not do customized requests or alterations. To me, that is a deal breaker, since I am vegan (vegetarian at sea, if necessary) and have sailed with Seabourn for so long and so often that I order off menu at times, and Seabourn is excellent at providing a customized experience for me and anybody else with special dietary requirements.

I am, however, quite interested to hear about your experience with and impressions of Explora. Any menus you can share?
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Old Oct 20, 2023, 5:37 am
  #38  
 
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Take a look at cruise critic for menus people have posted. The menus never change and there is no noticeable rotation of items. Too soon to tell how bothersome this might be, but tend to think not at all. Same idea with buffet. So many restaurant venues with very extensive menus. My favorite TK Grille dish, Dover Sole, pales versus the French restaurant on EJ. I like the mostly butter mashed potatoes in TK and a nearly identical item is served on Explora. Sushi has become a staple for me. Several reasons I am no fan of ordering special meals so cannot comment. They are careful of asking about special needs when ordering. I've asked for simple variations of listed vegetables and the decisions made in kitchen have been favorable. I'd say this is not the place to order a custom made Indian dinner that seems to be so popular on SS and SB.

Everything about the physical interior of ship is very different than anything previously experienced. We began sailing Seabourn after the O ships entered service. Did one cruise on the triplets. Sitting in buffet on deck 11 and looking down across the dock at Quest. Three years ago, I was very happy to be on that ship doing this itinerary. Today, I am grateful to be on this ship. It's not all roses, but it is much rosier than recent times spent with SB.
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Old Oct 20, 2023, 7:47 am
  #39  
 
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Now that Seabourn is ready to phase out TK Grille, might have to go to Explora for those items if you need them ;-)
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Old Oct 20, 2023, 2:33 pm
  #40  
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We'll be doing a 15 day cruise out of Long Beach in January. Plan is to fly to LGb and overnight at the airport Holiday Inn since it's nearby. Can anyone fill me in on transportation options from the Airport Holiday Inn to the Carnival cruise terminal in Long Beach? Looks like about 11 miles so can't walk it. That leaves shuttles, taxis, uber and such. Last time I was in Long Beach was the mid 60's so guessing things may have changed just a tad. TIA!
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Old Oct 20, 2023, 8:53 pm
  #41  
 
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Originally Posted by sfvoyage
I'm currently on Seabourn Odyssey...
Curious about how they are upkeeping the ship since it has been sold? We are booked on its final voyage as a Seabourn ship, next September SEA-TYO.

Originally Posted by Hoyaheel
Now that Seabourn is ready to phase out TK Grille, might have to go to Explora for those items if you need them ;-)
Have not heard about this. What is planned as a replacement?

Thanks!
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Old Oct 21, 2023, 1:43 am
  #42  
 
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Originally Posted by 747FC
Have not heard about this. What is planned as a replacement?
https://www.carnivalcorp.com/news-re...perience-solis
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Old Oct 21, 2023, 1:49 am
  #43  
 
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Originally Posted by 747FC
Curious about how they are upkeeping the ship since it has been sold? We are booked on its final voyage as a Seabourn ship, next September SEA-TYO.
Seabourn Odyssey is in fine shape. We're on Day 15 of a 62-day voyage, and so far service has been outstanding for the most part, and food is very good. (But then we're vegan/vegetarian and so YMMV.)

The new Japanese owner MOL has had delegates on board frequently the past few months, talking to Seabourn staff, asking questions, taking copious videos and photos and notes. I chatted with a few of them today and am looking forward to sailing on the new ship ("Mitsui Ocean Fuji") after the conversion. The ship will be bilingual, and so international guests are welcomed. My only concern though will be how well they will be able to cater to vegan/vegetarian guests. (Japanese cuisine is hardly veggie-friendly.)
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Old Oct 23, 2023, 3:20 pm
  #44  
 
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Originally Posted by Boggie Dog
We'll be doing a 15 day cruise out of Long Beach in January. Plan is to fly to LGb and overnight at the airport Holiday Inn since it's nearby. Can anyone fill me in on transportation options from the Airport Holiday Inn to the Carnival cruise terminal in Long Beach? Looks like about 11 miles so can't walk it. That leaves shuttles, taxis, uber and such. Last time I was in Long Beach was the mid 60's so guessing things may have changed just a tad. TIA!
I have taken Uber from the LGB area to the Port of LA for ~$20. Long Beach port is closer, so should be less. Also, check to see if your hotel has a good deal on transfers to the pier.
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Old Oct 23, 2023, 5:02 pm
  #45  
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Originally Posted by HPN-HRL
I have taken Uber from the LGB area to the Port of LA for ~$20. Long Beach port is closer, so should be less. Also, check to see if your hotel has a good deal on transfers to the pier.

Thanks, hotel offers nothing although did give the name of a service. They aren't cheap!
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