Carnival Australia vs Princess Cruises

What are the differences between Carnival and Princess cruise lines in Australia?

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A cruise is a big-ticket item. So you want to make sure you travel with the cruise line that’s best for you.

We have put Carnival and Princess under the microscope to see how they compare on everything from the provision of formal nights to the cost of laundry facilities.

Discover the results here:

Carnival Australia vs Princess Cruises

FeatureCarnival AustraliaPrincess CruisesVerdict
Where does it sail to?
  • Asia
  • Australia
  • New Zealand
  • Pacific Islands
  • Honolulu
  • Asia
  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Caribbean
  • Central America
  • Europe
  • South America
  • New Zealand
Princess covers more destinations.
Does it have Wi-Fi?Yes, for a fee.Yes, for a fee.Both offer Wi-Fi at a cost.
Does it provide towels?Yes.Yes.Both provide towels.
Contact options
  • Email
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Phone
Contact options are the same.
Is it all-inclusive?No.No.Neither is all-inclusive.
How much is the deposit?Deposits vary by cruise duration and deal, but the following generally applies:
  • $150: 1- to 6-day cruises
  • $250: 7- to 16-day cruises
  • $400: 17-day cruises or longer
Deposits start at 5% of the cruise cost.Carnival’s deposits are set amounts.
Does it have a gym?Yes.Yes.Both have gyms.
Does it have hairdryers, laundry and irons?Yes. Laundry and irons are available for a fee.Yes. Charges apply for self-service laundry.Both charge for laundry services.
Does it include food?Yes.Yes.Both include food.
Does it have casinos?Yes.Yes.Both have casinos.
Does it have an ATM?Yes.Yes.Both offer ATMs.
Does it have formal nights?Yes.Yes.Both hold formal nights.
How much are drinks?$5-$8 for a beer and $6-$12 for wine.US$5-6 for a beer and US$7-$11 for wine.Drink prices are similar.
Is it good for families?Yes.Yes.Both are family-friendly.
Does it have child care?Carnival’s kids’ clubs are not day care. Evening babysitting is available for children 6 months to 11 years.Yes, group babysitting.Both offer forms of childcare.
Does it have virtual balconies?No.No.Neither offers virtual balconies.
Does it have a waterslide?Yes.No.Princess does not offer waterslides.
Does it have a promenade?Yes.Yes.Both have promenades.
Does it have free room service?24-hour room service is charged.Yes.Princess offers free room service.
What are my payment options?
  • American Express
  • Carnival EasyPay
  • Carnival Gift Card
  • Cashier’s cheque
  • Discover Card
  • Diners Club
  • MasterCard
  • PayPal
  • Visa
  • Visa Debit
  • Western Union Quick Collect
  • American Express
  • Carte Blanche
  • Diners Club
  • Discover
  • JCB
  • Mastercard
  • Visa
Carnival has more ways to pay.
Can I price match?No.No.Neither price match.
Does it allow for cancellations/changes?Some fares come with cancellation penalties.All fares come with cancellation penalties, from the loss of deposit to loss of the full cost of the cruise.Both have cancellation penalties.
How much are airport transfers to the departure port?Prices vary. A 30km journey costs approx. $40.Prices vary. Most transfers cost around $18 per 15km.Transfer costs are comparable.
How much are gratuities?Tipping is not required.A discretionary gratuity of between $13.50 and $15.50 is added to all on-board accounts every day.Princess’s tipping policy is a bit more formal.
Has a ship ever sunk?No.No.A ship has never sunk with either.

Is this cruise line good?

On Cruise Critic, Carnival’s ships are rated as either 4 or 4.5/5 and reviewers praise the service and staff friendliness.

Princess is rated overall as 3.5/5 on Cruise Critic. The ships that operate around Australia rank from 3/5 to 4/5. Reviews talk about food being good and entertainment being varied.

Who offers the best price?

Prices for a four-night, round-trip cruise from Sydney to Moreton Island start at $649 with Carnival in January 2019.

In a similar vein, prices for a four-night, round-trip cruise from Sydney to Moreton island in January 2019 starts at $679 with Princess.

The verdict?

Carnival comes out slightly cheaper than Princess, but the difference isn’t earth-shattering making them quite competitive with each other.

What are the deals like?

Carnival Australia runs discounts on last-minute cruises and deals on specific itineraries that change every week.

Princess Cruises runs deals like low 5% deposits and limited period on-board spend deals.

The verdict?

Carnival’s deals go further in offering money off.

Latest Carnival Australia and Princess Cruises deals


From $247: Australia cruises in 2022-2023

Expires 31 Dec 2021
Available on cruises in 2022–2023. Destinations include Brisbane, Adelaide and more. Sample fare is for a 2-day cruise from Sydney–Melbourne.

Up to $1,000 OBC on worldwide cruises

Verified Yesterday Expires 29 Nov 2021
Available on cruises departing from 31 December 2022 onwards with Carnival Cruises, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian Cruise Line, Celebrity Cruises and more.

Up to 50% off deposits + up to $200 onboard credit on cruises

Expires 30 Nov 2021
Plus get up to $200 OBCs on cruises departing from March 2022 onwards. Destinations include Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii, Canada, Alaska and more. T&Cs apply.

Free drinks and perks with Princess Cruises

Expires 30 Nov 2021
Available on select voyages in 2022. Destinations include Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart, Auckland, Fiji and more.

Cruises from Sydney from $247

Expires 30 Nov 2021
Available on select travel dates in 2022–2023. Destinations include Hobart, Cairns, Wellington, Auckland and more. Sample rate is for a 2-day cruise to Melbourne.

Brisbane cruises from $249

Expires 30 Nov 2021
Available for travel from 2022–2023. Destinations include Cairns, Port Douglas, Hobart, Melbourne, Wellington, Tauranga and more. Sample rate is for a 2-day cruise to Sydney.

Up to 71% off holiday cruises

Expires 30 Nov 2021
Available on select cruises in 2021 and 2022 with Royal Caribbean, Carnival Cruises, MSC cruises and more. Destinations include Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii, Singapore, Caribbean, Bahamas and more. T&Cs apply.

Melbourne cruises from $348

Expires 30 Nov 2021
Available on select cruises in 2022-2023 to destinations including Eden, Adelaide, Kangaroo Island, Phillip Island and more. Sample rate is for a 2-day cruise to Sydney.

Up to $500 OBCs on worldwide cruises

Expires 16 Dec 2021
Plus receive $30 OceanFront credit on 5+ night cruises until 2022. Destinations include Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and more. T&Cs apply.

3+ nights last-minute cruises from USD$180

Available on select travel dates with Royal Caribbean, Carnival Cruises, Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises and more. Sample rate is for a 3-night Caribbean cruise with MSC. Destinations include Australia, Japan, Vietnam, Italy, Alaska and more. T&Cs apply.

Australia and New Zealand cruises from USD$228

Available on select dates in 2021-2022 with Royal Caribbean, Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, Holland America Line and more. Sample rate is for a 3-night cruise with Carnival Cruises.

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