I had decided to take my 6-yr old granddaughter on this 5-nt cruise with one overnight in Cabo. My 85 yr old mom also came along. My mom and I have both been on many cruises but never had the opportunity of using the kids program. I did the online registration. So once onboard, we attended the open house and then handed my granddaughter over to the safe hands of the Princess Pelicans staff. And they did not disappoint. Just be sure to read and follow their special kids program rules very carefully. I got lectured twice; once for not responding fast enough to their page, and the other because I forgot to sign up for port day in advance. Overall, it was well worth it. Aside from that, embarkation went well. My mom was wheeled all the way to our balcony cabin, which then her and I rested while my granddaughter took a tour of the cabin and balcony. We had traditional early dining in the Da Vinci dining room and felt well taken care of. The food was good on most nights, but there were some minor glitches. One of them was the very hard bread. It felt like they used the bread from the previous cruise. I'm not one to look for perfection either. So these could've been major to some passengers. I took into consideration that the ship had been at its max capacity and this staff was forever hustling. Same with the room service. I look forward to having my coffee first thing every morning, but they forgot it once and brought the rest of my breakfast. On another day, they forgot the croissants. But I would just smile and say thank you still as I handed them a tip. The food at the buffet was so-so. Except for the yummy desserts! Definitely my downfall on this cruise. And this staff in the seating area were on their game. As soon as you sat down, there was someone at your table to take your drink order. And as soon as you were through, there was someone there to clean-up.They even found my pager for the kids program when I lost it one night! One thing that didn't make sense was how they ask you to use the hand sanitizer upon entering the buffet area, then immediately try and hand you a plate.
The shows were all entertaining. The comedian had me cracking up! We tried to see him again later in the week, but he had moved to a lounge and there wasn't even a place to stand. This was a terrible set-up by Princess because the area outside the lounge was cram packed, and people who just wanted to walk by we're stuck. You couldn't go around either because there was no other side, except outside. The mariachis performed throughout the cruise in the atrium. Also, very entertaining!
Our room stewart was wonderful during our cruise, but we hardly ever saw him. Which was fine with us because no matter when we left and returned, our beds were always made up and bathroom towels always restocked. One thing he could've done better was a thorough cleaning from the prior passengers. I found a used ear plug in one of the drawers, small hairs around the cabin, and spots from something spilled on a nightstand and chair. Next time I'll bring my Clorox wipes and playtex gloves.
The debarkation should've been easy off, but this is where this cruiseline took a huge dive in organization. My mom's platinum status put us in a nice lounge that was very easy to get to from our cabin. However, since she needed a wheelchair we were asked to move to another lounge much further away. We again struggled to get through walkways cluttered with passengers, and their oversized bags. Once at the proper lounge we were told our assigned color and number would get us off the ship by 8:50 a.m. Great, since our plane departs at 12:05 from LAX. But 9am came around, and no call. Then 10am, and at this time I let someone know that we have a 12:05 plane to catch at LAX, but they saw no problem with this. Once our color and number was finally called about 6 people got up that needed wheelchairs. Of course, once it came around to us, there was no more available. So we had to wait for one to return. It's about 10:30 now and I'm letting everyone know from this point on that we have a 12:05 flight to catch at LAX. The wheelchair went flying as did the baggage handler and taxi driver! All were tipped very well. Once at LAX, what could've gone wrong, did go wrong. Needless to say, we arrived at our terminal right at 12:05 and could hear our names being called by the airlines employee. That's when she grabbed the wheelchair from me and ran us down the walkway to the plane! Phew! Once onboard, we were greeted with kind smiling faces all the way to our destination. This helped our stressed out selves alot! Thanks Southwest! As for cruising again, it won't be with Princess. And we may stay away from the larger ships from now on. I've always had real good experiences with Carnival, and am already planning my next cruise with them for this Summer.