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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
The cruise to NZ was the main reason for this holiday. The Golden Princess is a beautiful and well maintained ship. Service in all areas was second to none. All staff members were friendly, helpful and happy. Cabin was spacious and clean. ... Read More
The cruise to NZ was the main reason for this holiday. The Golden Princess is a beautiful and well maintained ship. Service in all areas was second to none. All staff members were friendly, helpful and happy. Cabin was spacious and clean. We had a cabin with a balcony. The cabin steward was very attentive and looked after us very well. The bed was the most comfortable I have ever slept in. Dining was a great experience the staff were friendly and attentive. The food was excellent, the menu changed daily . With many dishes to choose from. Entertainment was great so much to offer every night and day. Port and shore excursions were great and reasonably priced. Shopping was also very good. We purchased some jewellery and clothing as well as some spirits a great prices. I would surely cruise with princess again. As a matter of fact I will be cruising with princess in 2020! Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
Thoroughly enjoyed the cruise, very happy with service was difficult to choose which staff to rate highest we met so many good staff over the cruise. Very happy with food plenty of variety of healthy and naughty food in the food court ... Read More
Thoroughly enjoyed the cruise, very happy with service was difficult to choose which staff to rate highest we met so many good staff over the cruise. Very happy with food plenty of variety of healthy and naughty food in the food court and restaurants. Some of the meals in the Donatell restaurant were as good as we have ever had and we looked forward to our meal each night with plenty of variety We did not do any tours but still found plenty to do and enjoyed the Ports we stopped over at. With a of research there is plenty to see and do for little to no cost for those on a budget. A couple of minor problems were fixed by staff and they followed up to check we were happy and everything was ok. Would happily recommend and travel again with Princess Cruises, and are looking forward to cruising again. Read Less
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Sail Date: February 2019
My husband and I enjoyed this cruise very much. Food and service was very good. The ship is pretty large (about 2,600 passengers I think on our cruise) so getting off at ports, especially where there is a tender, takes a while. Also ... Read More
My husband and I enjoyed this cruise very much. Food and service was very good. The ship is pretty large (about 2,600 passengers I think on our cruise) so getting off at ports, especially where there is a tender, takes a while. Also often had to hunt for a seat at the Horizon Court Buffet but the formal dining rooms are a good alternative. The ship is fairly old and will probably be in need of a refit before too long but is in acceptable condition at the moment. Our biggest disappointment was not being able to cruise in Fiordland as the weather forecast wasn't very good in spite of being fine in Dunedin when the announcement was made the day before. Instead we headed back to Melbourne at a slower speed to arrive at the scheduled time. Apparently this cancellation is not unusual. We did get a refund of $25 each for "port tax". Our stop at Gisborne was also cancelled as it was a bit rough for the tenders - $10 port tax refund each. The other disappointment was the price of drinks which we thought were exorbitant at $15 glass for the only Shiraz available (about $55 a bottle I think) and $12 glass for a Sav Blanc. Because of this we purchased wine ashore (never had any comments when our hand baggage was x-rayed on returning to the ship) and paid $15 corkage in the dining room or drank it in the cabin. I suspect they may have increased the price of drinks dramatically when they cut out the gratuities on Australian/NZ cruises. We were 3 days short of qualifying for Platinum status at the start of the cruise so were very pleasantly surprised to be upgraded to Platinum on embarkation. It was great having 250 minutes each of free internet (the only real benefit to us of having Platinum status). The cruise was pretty much as we expected and was excellent value as it included our air fares from Perth to Melbourne and return. I would recommend this cruise if you want a quick taste of New Zealand and enjoy the shipboard experience. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
We wanted to see New Zealand in comfort. Unfortunately we saw little. Weather conditions prevented us from entering Gisborne and fjord land. We upgraded to the Genoa suite. The suite was so noisy we had disrupted sleep for 13 nights. The ... Read More
We wanted to see New Zealand in comfort. Unfortunately we saw little. Weather conditions prevented us from entering Gisborne and fjord land. We upgraded to the Genoa suite. The suite was so noisy we had disrupted sleep for 13 nights. The suite appears to be next door to an air conditioning unit. The noise from the unit vibrates into the room, particularly the bed , as it is placed up against the wall of the unit. The balcony is unusable. The noise from the ships wake and the air conditioning unit makes for an uncomfortable experience. After 3 days of suffering the noise we decided to complain. We were told that there were no spaces available and that when we were in port the noise would stop. This response implied that we had to sleep whilst in port. When we complained we got the impression that it was not the first time the noise had been reported. We paid extra money for a very poor suite. We ate in the club class dining room. The meals were good and beautifully presented. The waiting staff were wonderful. Of an evening we sat and listened to both the piano man and Laura Callaghan. Both were great entertainment. They got the guests singing along and dancing. The bar staff on this level were also great. The furniture around the ship is very old and uncomfortable. Also there were not enough chairs on the piazza level. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
This was our 3rd NZ cruise with Princess. Previously on the Dawn Princess. We had a mini suite on this cruise after experiencing one on Pacific Jewel. We were terribly disappointed when we entered our mini suite on Golden. It was so ... Read More
This was our 3rd NZ cruise with Princess. Previously on the Dawn Princess. We had a mini suite on this cruise after experiencing one on Pacific Jewel. We were terribly disappointed when we entered our mini suite on Golden. It was so small. We were also not real happy with the floor plan of the whole ship. I have been on more than a dozen cruises and really found the Golden Princess difficult to get to all areas of the ship. However, once over the shortfalls, we did enjoy our trip. Smokers beware, the smoking area is also very small and limited on this ship. Don't take cigs with you as they are cheap over the bar. BUT the food was excellent in all eating areas. Princess is my preferred cruiseline, but I wouldn't go on Golden Princess again. Fortunately it is going to P&O end march. Pull your socks up Princess. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
We chose NZ for our first cruise because we wanted to see more of the South Island. The round trip from Melbourne worked out well with same day flights from and back to Perth. Golden Princess is an older ship but very clean and well ... Read More
We chose NZ for our first cruise because we wanted to see more of the South Island. The round trip from Melbourne worked out well with same day flights from and back to Perth. Golden Princess is an older ship but very clean and well maintained with lots of character. The drop-off process for taxis and Uber was quite slow at the Port, we were glad we didn't have a meter running. Embarkation was good and we could go straight to our cabin. The bags were delivered a short time later so all very easy. We had a balcony cabin mid-ships on Aloha deck and it was excellent. I've read previous reviews about it being noisy near the lifts but the sound-proofing must have been very good because we couldn't hear a thing except if we were on the balcony. Our cabin steward Raquel was amazing and always around if we needed anything. She would clean and make the bed each morning and then freshen it up again later in the day, leaving ice in the fridge and chocolates on the pillow. The shower was very small but everything worked well. Power points are US with 2 flat pins so Australians need an adapter. If you're bringing appliances like a hair dryer or straightener they need to work on 110 volts. There are a few bars and drinks are not cheap, around $11-$14 for a glass of wine. You can bring one bottle per person on board for no charge to be consumed in your stateroom, and more but subject to a $15 corkage charge per bottle. A bottle of wine at the bar or dining rooms started at around $41. The drinks package is a ridiculous price at $89 per person! We had (paid) Wifi in our cabin which was convenient but it was so slow that it was almost unusable. So anything more than checking the occasional email is best done when on shore. The Horizon Court buffet was pretty good. We had a couple of delicious curries and often came for dessert or cheese and crackers if we'd eaten at the dining room. The menus at the dining rooms were good but we found the food a little bland, maybe catering to the large number of older people on the cruise (many in their 70s and 80s). Service was very good and we had Any Time Dining and never had to wait for a table. Sometime we shared a larger table and sometimes we chose a table for 2. We did eat at both specialty restaurants, The Crown Grill (steak house) and Sabatini's Italian. Again the service was very good but the food wasn't all that special. We are coffee lovers so gave the free (syrup) coffee at the buffet a miss. A coffee card costs $36 for 15 specialty coffees so that was good value. This can be used at the International Cafe or at the bar near the Horizon Court buffet. Our sea days were nice and relaxing and mostly the weather was kind. On the way back to Melbourne we dodged the tail of a cyclone and another system coming up from the south of NZ so there was a bit more movement for one day and one night. They drained the swimming pools which had been making great waves in the swell. We didn't find it too rough but a few people were feeling a bit unwell. The ports we stopped at in NZ were all great. Dunedin and Tauranga were the stand-outs but we did interesting things at all our stops. The tender service for Akaroa and Gisborne worked well and we never really had to wait long to get off or back on the ship. Entertainment on the ship was a good mix but we didn't make it to any of the shows. The one we thought we'd go to was already full about 20 minutes before the start time! We liked the Wheelhouse bar and there was often a good guitarist playing. Every morning and afternoon there is a 20 question trivia session which was fun if we were on board. Our only gripe was having to dodge the photographers everywhere, they need to accept that some people don't want their photo taken every 5 minutes and don't intend to buy them. They were a bit pushy at times. The Princess Patter (schedule and info for the next day) was delivered to the slot outside our cabin (or sometimes inside if Raquel had been) every evening, usually while we were at dinner. They also have a Princess wifi (this one is free) for information which includes the schedule as well. Overall we found the Golden Princess to be very well run with excellent crew and good facilities. We loved the ship and our first cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
We wanted to continue to add to our cruise days with Princess to improve our level status. We had 3 wonderful servers at our dining table for 2. Diana, Joel and Plamen made our experience most enjoyable. The destinations on this cruise ... Read More
We wanted to continue to add to our cruise days with Princess to improve our level status. We had 3 wonderful servers at our dining table for 2. Diana, Joel and Plamen made our experience most enjoyable. The destinations on this cruise were wonderful. 1. Although Princess offers dining tables for 2-8, it always requires a meeting with the Maitre'D on the day of embarkation to confirm one. When having that meeting, the MD always makes you feel that the request is an imposition and if they had their way they would stick to larger tables because it is easier for them. We have had bad experiences with the larger tables due to language issues with sharing a table so prefer a table for 2. If you are going to offer a table 2 then support it and don't require people to beg for it. 2. Although we were promised in a phone call prior to sailing that both non-alcoholic beer and wine would be available on board. My wife is a recovering alcoholic and I can't drink alcohol due to a medication I take and it is important to both of us to have both beverages available. That proved not to be the case. There was no NA wine on the ship. There was an extremely limited number of bottles of NA beer and they were scattered all over the ship. We were actually told to go and find which bars had any. No one that we spoke to including Hospitality knew where any bottles were actually stored. Obviously these beverages either are not in enough of a demand or are not a big enough money maker. 3. The room gratuity is stated in all the literature and and on line to be $13.50 US per person per room for a balcony. This cruise was based on Australian dollars. However, Princess, without letting anyone know as far as I am aware, pro rated the gratuity cost to US dollars and in fact were charging $18.77 in Australian dollars instead of $13.50. I believe the costs of drinks were also increased on this cruise to be of equal value to those charged on other ships in US dollars. We made sure that we reduced the rate of gratuity charged to our room and made sure that we tipped the people that served us well were individually tipped as appropriate. Most cruisers are unaware of the fact that they can have the automatic room gratuity reduced or eliminated merely by visiting the on board main desk. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
Primary complaint was the quality and menu of main course items in Horizons Buffet. Many Mexican and Indian style dishes that were not appealing to the eye or palet. Also, most hot dishes were only warm - not good enough. Only has ... Read More
Primary complaint was the quality and menu of main course items in Horizons Buffet. Many Mexican and Indian style dishes that were not appealing to the eye or palet. Also, most hot dishes were only warm - not good enough. Only has Horizon to dine at for lunch when in port as no dining room lunches available. Dining room menus good. Only issue is the evening Princess Favourites where previously there was always a steak option - No longer available. Seems that Princess is cutting back on offerings. Crown Grill and Sabatinis very good but query if justifies all of the additional charge. Drinks are expensive compared with on shore restaurant prices for beers and wines. Spirits pricing reasonable. Tried to buy a bucket of beer but no buckets. This happened more than once and to other passengers as well. Itinerary good but not enough time in Auckland - only 0800 to 1500. Embarkation and disembarkation excellent with short delays only each time. Internet expensive given the speed as you pay for minutes used not usage. Some of the public area seating very tired as is some of the public area decoration. Overall a good cruise but the above issues did take the gloss off the trip. As this is the only Princess ship operating out of Melbourne there are no options to travel on another Princess ship. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
This departed from my home town and went over the Australia Day long weekend. We took my parents and it was a lovely opportunity to have some relaxed, quality time with them without the worry of hotels etc. We enjoyed each port and the ... Read More
This departed from my home town and went over the Australia Day long weekend. We took my parents and it was a lovely opportunity to have some relaxed, quality time with them without the worry of hotels etc. We enjoyed each port and the activities on the ship, including the shows. The dining room service was terrific and the choice at the Buffett for breakfast and lunch was good. This is an older, smaller princess ship but in good repair. The gym is amazing! We didn’t do any of the organised tours, just walked around the local area, Kangaroo Island had a small market for Australia Day and Pt Lincoln was hosting the annual Tunarama so there was plenty of entertainment. We took the horse and buggy ride around the Main Street and people watched! There was the opportunity to take a 5 minute helicopter ride for $40 pp from the beach. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this cruise based on several friends were also attending. I get severe sea sickness and always avoided cruises. When we arrived at the port, I was overcome with the size of the ship, and how I would be with another 3000 people. ... Read More
We chose this cruise based on several friends were also attending. I get severe sea sickness and always avoided cruises. When we arrived at the port, I was overcome with the size of the ship, and how I would be with another 3000 people. The staff assisting us at embarkation were friendly, knowledgeable and made us feel welcome. The ship was impressive, so many different areas to meet friends or take some time to yourself. I never felt there were too many people, the ship has an amazing capacity to allow one to find their space to do what ever suits their mood. I met new friends, ate good food, was pampered in the Lotus spa, danced the night away in several bars and had a smile form day 1. Needless to say I wasn't sick. This ship had a little rough weather and I was fine. I'm looking forward our next cruise. Read Less
Golden Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 3.0 0.0
Family 4.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 4.0 0.0
Service 5.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 3.0 0.0

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