We have been on a few ships now, so have some idea about what to expect. We decided to try Princess since the dates offered worked for us.
The cruise we chose left from Seattle, the ports were Juneau, Skagway, Tracey Arm Fjord, Ketchikan, Victoria, British Columbia, then back to Seattle.
It was a mistake, the ports were great (except for Victoria, the ship was broken, so we went to the dock and looked at it, leaving the ship was not an option) but the ship itself was not good at all. The only staff member who went out of their way to be friendly was the room steward, other than that, the staff for the most part acted as if we weren't there
We avoided the main dining room, instead we opted for the buffet, the staff there were not on the ball, you needed to wait for them to put napkins, and silverware on your table.
On more than one occasion, we got our plates and sat down and had to wait for them, the food (already not very hot) getting cold.
They were in charge of getting you drinks as well, on more than one occasion, we had finished our plates before they came to take an order.
It would be one thing if they were really busy, the delays would be understandable, but they were mostly standing around talking to each other.
The buffet itself was not very good, as I had mentioned, the food was not very hot, and the selection was not great, it seemed like yesterdays food was being reused in several of the dishes, plus there seemed to be little thought in the presentation, I mean who puts Indian Korma with Mozza Ball Soup?
The whole buffet had a high school feel to it, there were frequent big lines, and the cooks acted as if nobody was there.
There were 2 restaurants outside the buffet, a pizza place (that was quite good when it was fresh out of the oven) and a place that made burgers and hot dogs (I went there once to get a hot dog, and the guy staffing it was downright surly).
Several times, people gave up on the buffet and headed here (it was that bad).
There was also a cafe located on a different deck that served sandwiches and desserts, we never tried it, so cannot comment on it.
One night we ordered room service, we had a couple of sandwiches, nothing special, but the delivery guy was nice.
Our room was nice, it was quite large, we had a balcony room at the back of the boat, the view was great, unfortunately, the balcony layout was such that we were on the highest deck, so we looked down at all of the lower balconies, I prefer a little more privacy, but that is just me.
The closet was big enough to put our suitcases in, and we had plenty of room to hang whatever we needed, the bed was nice (my girlfriend said she found it too stiff, but I thought it was alright).
The television showed a selection of movies, but some were played again as soon as they ended, but most only played 2 or 3 times a day, in order to see the movie you wanted, you needed to wait at times until 2:00 in the morning.
There were a few news and sports channels as well.
The tv cut off part of what was shown though, it was as f the screen was supposed to be bigger?
There were 2 chairs in the room, an office type chair, and a sitting chair, plus there were 2 chairs on the balcony.
The entertainment on board was lacking, with previous lines, they would bring on entertainers, but it seemed every show that Princess had featured the Princess singers.
We saw them in the atrium and didn't like them, so we avoided the shows they put on.
We did go to see a ventriloquist and a comedian, the shows put on were only 30 minutes, but were good.
There were a few shows put on while we were in port, there was a champion dog handler, and someone from the Red Onion Saloon, but like I said, both were presented while we were in port, so they were only good for those who didn't go ashore.
There were movies under the stars, presented outdoors on the Lido deck, but being that we were in Alaska, it was way too cold out to sit through a movie.
There were several performers at the several bars throughout the ship, but they were catering to an older crowd, none of the music was appealing.
I had earlier mentioned the atrium, it was way smaller than I was accustomed to, the international cafe (serving sandwiches and desert was there, so there were not many seats available if you felt like sitting there)
Other shops in the atrium were a Godiva chocolate store (always empty), some kind of wine/sushi bar, then on the second floor there was a duty free shop (nothing had prices on it, so I never bothered) and a Princess shop (in case you need a Princess shirt).
The ports in Alaska were fantastic, but we wandered the ship several times looking for the exit, on previous cruises this was very clearly communicated, on Princess, you just had to look for the disembarkation door.
We wanted to get to the ports, yet we had to wait while costumed people had people pose for pictures while in line, why this was not done off of the ship, after you had passed through security I don't know.
Also, on other cruises, they were very clear about what time you needed to be back on board, unless you had the flyer Princess made, you had no idea what time you had to be back.
As I mentioned, this was our third cruise (each time with a different cruise line) so we kind of had a set of expectations, sadly, they were not met, we are not the type of cruisers who are high maintenance, but this ship totally let us down.
We will not book with Princess again.