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Everything posted by teenieleek

  1. That looks like a great trip. Wish I’d been there.
  2. Thanks to both. The brochure will thump in here soon. I have the short trip to Orkney, Shetland and the Western Isles booked for this summer. I am ashamed to admit that I’ve never been to any of those except Skye. I was looking to add the trip to Warnemunde etc as a back to back but there are no balconies or suites left which was a surprise. I might ask to go on the waiting list. Last year we had three cruises including a long one from Southampton with Princess to Canada (double transatlantic). It was overcrowded with no where to sit as a foursome, the buffet was a zoo and they ran out of lots of drinks! The concierge lounge saved it from becoming a complete misery for us but you need to be in a suite to use it and even then, not all Princess ships have them. We won’t be going with them again unless the itinerary is too good to miss. By comparison, the trip to Svalbard with Fred was so relaxed and easy. However the set dining times are a pain, the Balmoral is an old ship and some of the lounges are so dull as to be a bit dispiriting. I know neither Fred. nor Princess are upmarket so accepting their limitations is necessary and choosing is always a balancing act. If I’m going south again it’ll be for something “posher”, Oceania or Cunard maybe…..or maybe just make do with a caravan on the Fife coast, as we did as children!
  3. I got the email this morning with the “new” cruises for 2025. Sadly I don’t see much that’s new to me. Anything appealing we’ve already done. Nothing from Newcastle or Liverpool either that jumps out. Could you tell me which other lines go from Leith etc please as this has passed me by. Thank you for your replies.
  4. I was on the website last night but I missed those. Must have clicked on the wrong thing. Thanks for replying. Hopefully a few more will be added.
  5. Ah, ok, thanks Tring. Certainly I’ve had lots of emails recently saying “watch this space”.
  6. P.S. I was in fact looking at one this summer and there are no balcony cabins available so the Scottish sailings are obviously popular so this would be a real loss to those of us unwilling to trek to the south.
  7. I’ve just been looking at 2025 and there are no cruises on the website that leave from Rosyth.
  8. That probably varies by departure port. The biggest log jam on Sky was 7.00 to 8.00. We went once at 6.00 (must have been hungry!) and it was quiet. It’s also probably different if lots want to go to the early theatre shows but since we had no wish to sit for an hour in there (necessary if you wanted a seat) waiting for the show to start, we never went and made dinner our entertainment instead! The ship does not have enough public space.
  9. I hope yours is better than ours was. The concierge lounge and its manager saved our trip. A place to get a decent cup of coffee, a warm welcome, tasty treats and drinks from 5.30 - 7.30. We realised after a few days that people were in there drinking for the two hours then going to dinner and having water, no package obviously. We didn’t know, had bought the Plus package which turned out to be a waste of money because the wine was undrinkable and we couldn’t get a seat in any bar to take advantage of this package. The suite “experience” was fab but I was uncomfortable with the “us and them” situation. I am happy to pay for a suite for the extra space and the reserve dining but I would like to take part in the whole ship thingie but couldn’t because of the overcrowding so increasingly we went to the concierge lounge or our cabin because we had that option…..but most didn’t and you constantly heard the complaints. People were very unhappy.
  10. I did too. The fare dropped so much we were almost prepared to lose our £1500 deposit in a fit of pique but I phoned up and they did a “move across” or something. Paid £100 fee, lost our $500 OBC but saved about £4000! This was the 24 night double TA in a penthouse suite. One of many reasons why our third Princess cruise was also our last. We could so easily have missed the price reduction.
  11. I would grab any of these reservations that appeal to you now. You don’t need to eat at exactly the same time each night but it would be better to have some sorted in advance. Good luck.
  12. It was definitely not included as a suite perk on the Sky this last month.
  13. We were just there….R614. The concierge manager called that area Beverley Hills! He and that lounge saved the cruise. (See my other posts).
  14. I’m just home from 24 nights on Sky, double TA from Southampton. There was a queue every night at the Estrella dining room. It must have been slow-moving because a row of chairs was set out for those waiting. I can’t tell how long people were waiting because we were in Reserve dining but no matter when we turned up (at various times between 6.30 to 8 pm) there was usually a queue. I know some had reservations because one woman tried to go in the Reserve side saying “I’ve reserved”. The manager said Princess should never have changed the name from club class to reserve as it caused confusion and annoyance. While at Guest services one day I heard a woman at the next assistant complaining that she could only reserve 5 pm or nearer 9 pm. My assistant told me that every day they have people with the same complaint. The ship was overcrowded, the buffet was a zoo. There was no where to sit on decks 5/6/7 during the day. People set up camp at crack of dawn with books, puzzles, cards, knitting and didn’t move. The Soleil dining room was opened as a “quiet space” aka overflow seating but who wants to sit on a dining chair to read? International café had nice food but nowhere to eat it. We managed a table for four for an after dinner drink occasionally but it had to be during the show otherwise there was no chance. We were very glad we’d paid the big bucks and could use the concierge lounge and reserve dining otherwise it would have been such a struggle each day.
  15. I saw someone with Aperol the last night so you’re probably fine. The “champagne” was Chandon sparkling wine so better than Prosecco but there was plenty of the latter. Btw, my first time in Canada and it was great. Obviously didn’t see Toronto but we did see lots of the east coast and, apart from Sydney where the rain was so heavy we could see nothing, the weather was great and much warmer than I expected. Canada 5*, Princess ?
  16. P.S. we don’t drink beer but the ship ran out of Heineken and Corona. They also ran out of Amaretto, Campari (my choices) and who knows what else. The concierge lounge ran out of champagne although to be fair by the last week we were getting fed up with it anyway 😂😂. The ship had also run out of brown bread by the end. Our waiter called the the white toast “pale brown” which made us laugh. So many first world problems….not sure how we coped.
  17. You can get scoops of vanilla and chocolate without the rubbish because they are the included flavours. If you tell the server that you are lactose intolerant you can also have the mango etc sorbets. It was his suggestion! I’m just off the Sky so speak from experience. The wine on the Plus package was dire. The white, for us, was undrinkable and the red not much better. On the Regal two years ago there was a decent selection. Now it’s a selection of four grape varieties, no named wines at all. If the intention was to push us into upgrading to Premier it failed. The sommelier in the dining room kept managing to find us ok stuff included in the package e.g. Albariño, Errazuriz, Carmenére etc but they kept running out. The bars had none of these options but it wasn’t a problem because we could never find a seat in any of them!
  18. We’re doing TA on Sky this Saturday from Southampton. First formal is Monday, i.e. second sea day.
  19. Would you really not pay extra for anything that would make your trip less hassle/more enjoyable? Increasing costs for everything is the way of the world now and kicking against the traces will change nothing except diminish by degrees your overall experience and pleasure…..unless of course the self-denial is the pleasure.
  20. Do you mean other people’s bar charges?
  21. Hmm, quite a mixed bag of reviews. Thanks everyone. We eat a lot of fish (have it delivered) and know how to cook it so will be disappointed if this restaurant is not up to par. However it’s a cruise ship so we definitely won’t go hungry over our twenty four nights!
  22. Just realised those are nighties and not even togas😂😂
  23. Yeah, there is one on our up-coming cruise. I will just pretend I never heard of it if it’s on a formal night. No toga for me thanks!
  24. I seem to be rubbish at finding what interests me on the site but yes, sounds good. This cruise is two years late (they’ve had our sizeable deposit [U.K., large un refundable one] all this while) so determined to enjoy ourselves despite them already having dropped a port and reduced the benefits.
  25. Thank you. Calamari and mussels look fab.
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