The Invisible Woman on a Princess Cruise
by Catherine Z. - Posted Mon April 13, 2009 @ 12:00 PM
To whom it may concern,
I have recently returned from a ten day cruise through Princess Cruises. Although I am a frequent cruiser, this trip was my first through Princess. I purchased the cruise as a Christmas present for my mother and myself and was overall disappointed.
While my age should not matter as a customer, I found it to be curiously related to my negative experiences on board. I am twenty-six years old and as a general observation, quite a bit younger than the majority of your passengers. When booking a cruise through your company, I never felt this would be a potential problem. It was only when on board that I found I was very often treated like a child rather than a valued customer by your staff.
To begin with, when accompanied by my mother, which was often, I was almost never spoken to personally by your staff. If there was a question or greeting it was always towards my mother, with myself standing by her side as if invisible. This behavior was repeated by our room steward, waiters, pool staff and more. When approached by servers near the pool, I found I was often skipped over when drink orders were being taken. Although I am old consume to consume alcohol, even if I had not been, I should not have been ignored. This policy continued into dining services, when I was asked only one out of nine nights if I'd care for a glass of wine. I began to observe and noticed that this did not happen to any of the obviously older passengers on board.
Although subtle, ten days of becoming 'invisible' on such a trip definitely gave me a very negative image of Princess customer service. While no staff member was purposely "rude" to me, no customer should be treated as if they do not matter. By the end of the trip, my mother and various dining companions had noticed and commented on this matter. Towards the last sailing days, the situation was not only uncomfortable but somewhat embarrassing.
From start to finish, I made all travel plans and decisions for this trip. Your records will show it was I, and not my mother who paid for the trip in its entirety. Although I liked other features of Princess Cruises better than other companies I have sailed with, I can honestly say this has been my worst cruise experience. Customer service is a huge part of the cruise experience and at this point I would be very hesitant to sail with Princess again. My booking number for your reference is: XK3C6R
I would like Princess Cruises to remember that every customer is important to there business- not just those falling within their target age market.