Hi All,
Planning to cruise the Western Caribbean in late Aug. or early Sept. Cruised Mexico Riviera last October on Star Princess. Loved the ship; great entertainment, great facilities, great service, great cabin, but MEDIOCRE FOOD! (no flavor whatsoever).

Would like to experience another Line for the Caribbean.
We (married, early 40's) cruise to:
- relax (no time schedule or deadlines)
- in a nice pleasant environment (ship & ocean)
- be entertained from morning to night (good shows, nice theaters, variety)
- and eat really good food (included in our cruise price) - Quality > Quantity

So far we've only had GREAT! food (every night) on this small cruise line (Dolphin) over 14 years ago. Not sure if they're around anymore. It was for a 4 day cruise to the Bahamas. Has time changed the quality of food this much? That was a much smaller ship (1200 max) whereas Princess had close to 3000. Could that be the reason? Any cruisers on smaller cruise lines out there?

Or does the food change depending on destination? Are there better cooks cruising the East coast vs. the West? Don't get us wrong, we're not gluttons, we would like some flavor to the pretty food that's placed in a pretty order on our plate each night. Maybe a night or two of bluh is understandable but every night is disappointing. We finally gave up and paid for a good tasting meal at one of the non-inclusive restaurants on board.

Appreciate any suggestions on a cruise line for the Caribbean.

Post Edited (03-31-04 18:37)


I think of dining on a cruise ship like going to a wedding or some other big, massive event. You just aren't going to get amazing food on a mainstream cruise b/c it has to be serve en masse. The food on our RCL cruise was decent. The food on our NCL cruise had the potential to be better but IMO it sat under warming lamps too long & was mediocre when it got to the table.


We just got back from the Carnival Conquest and the food was also Mediocre at best. We had a great trip but the food definately NOT the highlight of our trip.


I thought the food on the Carnival Sensation out of Tampa was great in the dinning room. And good on the lido deck. Pizza and icecream also great.

Ready to Cruise

I have to agree that the food on our last Princess cruise wasn't what it used to be. Hope it is better on our cruise in June. However, we were very pleased (and surprised) with the food on Carnival's Spirit last month. Every meal was great with lots of flavor. We were even surprised with the deli, buffet, etc. In fact, we just flat liked everything about that ship. We did the Exotic Western cruise and we are thinking of booking our first back-to-back cruise on the Spirit.


Just what kind of food are all you guys looking for when you pay only $80 to $150 per day for a cruise? I keep hearing that the food wasn't great but I also know what some of you pay for your cruise and I sure wouldn't expect super fantastic meals for the price you're paying! I sailed on the Conquest in August, had a beautiful balcony room, room service, entertainment, music, great pictures, 3 great ports of call and decent (not outstanding) food. (I did eat 5 lobster tails). I paid about $1200 including tips. I think it was a fantastic bargain. If I want a five star meal at a nice restaurant, I can expect to pay $75 to $125 per person. I sure don't expect that kind of meal on a cruise where I'm paying $150 per day. Where are you guys coming from?


I don't think you will be disappointed with Celebrity. We have been on the Century and the Mercury and it was really great! I have a friend that is going on the Summit in a few days. I will let you know what she thinks about it when she gets back.


Dolphin cruise line is no longer, sorry. I would say you would really enjoy Celebrity, for the food and service, and there is plenty to do as well.Celebrity food is very good and if you don't like their food I would say you might have to go to something like Crystal cruises which is far more expensive.


The luxury cruise lines (Crystal, Seabourn, Radisson) and Windstar are supposed to have good food, but you pay considerably more and from what I understand, the average age is a bit higher if that matters to you. I understand there is also a big difference in entertainment (no Vegas-style shows) and organized activities.I think there is some form of live music on most of these ships for listening and dancing, but not sure about the nature and extent. Personally, I would love to try any of these based on what I have heard about them. Great itineraries, smaller ships, great service, great food. We are also in our 40s, and do not care about the age of other passengers. We have been thinking about Windstar to the Caribbean for some time now, but hubby likes a balcony and the best I think they have are porthole windows.

I would be interested to hear comments from those who have sailed on these smaller luxury ships, for when I hit the lottery!


Just like beauty is said to be in the eye of the beholder, this food issue is a matter of the taster. Just because i may not like certain foods prepared certain ways does not necessarily mean that the food will be bad to everyone else. I've had no problem enjoying Princess Cruise Line's food. Just my =twocents


Funny thing is when we cruised on Carnival Holiday in 2002 late seating the food sucked! When we cruised again on this same ship in 2003 we chose the late seating and the food was great! Go figure, anyway we will be on the Conquest next May and hope it will be good.


Cruising is a bargain.
Don't know if things have change but years ago they serviced good tasting meals. Cruising 10 yrs ago was all about relaxing and eating good food.
Mediocre food is a major change in cruising.


I have been wined and dined in some pretty fancy and expensive restaurants. I don't think the Conquest was that bad compared to them. For instance, I am traveling to South Africa next month and will be staying at the Palace of the Lost City Hotel which is 5 star all the way. I will compare that to my food on the Carnival Glory in August.

Even though I've eaten in some great places, I don't feel like I'm a demanding patron. My daughter is in Hospitality and Tourism so maybe I sympathize too easily by always thinking the waiter or whatever could be my daughter. I don't know.