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293 Princess Emerald Princess Family Cruise Reviews

Chose this cruise to fulfill my Mom’s bucket list. At 90 years young we wanted to keep the trip as easy as possible. We stayed with Princess excursions because of their Best Price Guarantee! My experience has been you get what you pay ... Read More
Chose this cruise to fulfill my Mom’s bucket list. At 90 years young we wanted to keep the trip as easy as possible. We stayed with Princess excursions because of their Best Price Guarantee! My experience has been you get what you pay for and we weren’t disappointed! This was our 13th Princess cruise and 26th with 5 different lines! I would like to see some slight changes however, such as bring back a happy hour for everyone at 3pm. More seating in the Piazza. Find chairs that take up less space for the smaller Piazzas on older ships. I gave an average rating on embarkation, not because of Princess but because of how Vancouver’s port process of all cruise lines share the same long lines through customs. Otherwise I’m happy with Princess! Booked for a transatlantic 14 night return to Fort Lauderdale on the Crown Princess in November with 4 nights in Rome prior to cruising! One more cruise after that and we will be Elite members when we will enjoy free laundry service and free mini bar set up as well as onboard discounts in shops. Already enjoy free WiFi and Platinum happy hour, as well as Platinum embarkation and disembarkation. What else can I say but we love All the Love Boats! You can too! Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Sailed with a group of 16 friends which included spouses and kids. The group had fun spending time together however, the service was not acceptable. With a few exceptions, the crew was rarely engaged, inattentive, uninterested, poorly ... Read More
Sailed with a group of 16 friends which included spouses and kids. The group had fun spending time together however, the service was not acceptable. With a few exceptions, the crew was rarely engaged, inattentive, uninterested, poorly trained and just not friendly. More like mindless robots rather than highly trained friendly helpful crew. This seemed rather unusual as I've always had a great experiences on other cruises: Royal Caribbean, Holland America and Celebrity. Their crew are typically cheerful and engaged and helpful with their patrons. I found this rather surprising as it wasn't just one or two problem crew members but the majority were like that. It was the strangest experience. Food quality was fine. We usually went to the dining room or buffet. Selection at the buffet could have been better. The food quality there was solid at both places. Public washrooms were filthy. This was my first and last cruise with Princess. There are too many other options out there for me to want to give Princess another try. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
The cruise was very good, and the roundtrip LA to La Alaskan cruise was a very easy choice as no airfare for us. The visit to Glacier Bay was spectacular, and perhaps will not always be here to enjoy. The ship is very clean and ... Read More
The cruise was very good, and the roundtrip LA to La Alaskan cruise was a very easy choice as no airfare for us. The visit to Glacier Bay was spectacular, and perhaps will not always be here to enjoy. The ship is very clean and comfortable, and the staff overall are wonderful. The food choices and meals were very good in both the any time dining rooms and the buffet. The fresh fruit at the buffets all meals were absolutely delicious. The entertainment choices in the Princess theatre were all very entertaining, and the lecture series were informative and timely for the Alaskan experience. Our cabin steward was efficient and made us feel special by his friendliness. All the staff we encountered were helpful and friendly, much better service than is the norm shore side. My only issue was the $250 Art department prize that I won that was not a prize!! The $270 bid on an artwork that was part of an edition was accepted, and this was listed as a CP category which includes shipping and frame. CP was explained to me before the auction and this was partly why I bid on the item which I did like and I would have been willing to bid a bit more, so $270 seemed like a very good deal. When I went to the Art Department to pay for the balance on my bid, I was told that my prize only covered about half of the package, and they told me I was responsible to pay for the shipping and the frame. I thought A PRIZE IS A PRIZE, so why was my $250 not good for the full $250 of the certificate. This is my cautionary experience to you. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
Highly recommend this cruise. Fun ship with lots to do on sea days, amazing excursions (alpine ziplining is a MUST!), family friendly, and absolutely breathtaking views and locations. The staff was exceptionally friendly and always their ... Read More
Highly recommend this cruise. Fun ship with lots to do on sea days, amazing excursions (alpine ziplining is a MUST!), family friendly, and absolutely breathtaking views and locations. The staff was exceptionally friendly and always their when needed. They all tried to get to know our group and even remembered us and our certain food or drink requests. The scenery was so relaxing and absolutely breathtaking. Their were so many options for things to do once at port that we really felt like we got to experience each city/port and while at sea we were hardly bored as we had so many options like trivia (my favorite), movies, sports, and shows (magician, theater, and comedy) Everything went very smooth on the ship from entering to exiting and only took a about 10 minutes from walking in to on the boat and even faster getting off. They really have that down to a science! Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
cruise chosen for the ports of call. embarkation was such a disaster it is difficult to be objective regarding princess cruise line. apparently the coast guard boarded the ship prior to disembarkation, which caused a huge delay in ... Read More
cruise chosen for the ports of call. embarkation was such a disaster it is difficult to be objective regarding princess cruise line. apparently the coast guard boarded the ship prior to disembarkation, which caused a huge delay in embarkation for this cruise. unfortunately the passengers were without information, food, water and any necessary items while waiting to embark. passengers with disabilities were left to fend for themselves. the only information given during the wait was there was a delay. there was no apology or compensation for the disaster of embarkation. the theater is too small to accommodate all the passengers even in 2 seatings. the theater has 750 seats and the ship has over 3000 passengers the ports of call were great. the south pacific was as expected. hot and humid! the french polynesian countries are very expensive. the scenery is beautiful. american samoa was a pleasure. the weather was very cooperative during the cruise. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We chose this cruise because we’ve always wanted to go to the South Pacific. It did not disappoint at all. We would definitely do this cruise again. We would like to try it on another ship. The Emerald Princess was in good shape. Most of ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we’ve always wanted to go to the South Pacific. It did not disappoint at all. We would definitely do this cruise again. We would like to try it on another ship. The Emerald Princess was in good shape. Most of the crew were very friendly and helpful. The food was just average. The worst thing about this cruise was how crowded it was when trying to go to anything. They did the shows sometime three times a night and you still had to go minimum an hour early to see one and still you might not get a seat. We could not get in to a few shows at all and had to watch one standing in the hall! It was unbelievable. Same thing at the Horizon Court on port days, lines down the hall to get in. They only opened one side and it’s a small area. “Share” the restaurant was underwhelming. The food was average and way too expensive. Even with the above complaints this was s cruise worth going on. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
28 day cruise, food was good when first onboard but steatly down hill. From the buffet to main dining to Crown Grill. Most time the food was over cooked in the buffet, way too much food that was in my opinion over spiced, over ... Read More
28 day cruise, food was good when first onboard but steatly down hill. From the buffet to main dining to Crown Grill. Most time the food was over cooked in the buffet, way too much food that was in my opinion over spiced, over cooked....from way too much Curry dishes, lamb, veal, when beef served was at least two days old, beef used for beef stew was from beef ribs served the night before....desserts were either diet type or just plain terrible. I lost 6 lbs on this cruise. Way too many sea days, the last leg was over 8 days, with really no intertainment , there was a few bands but during the whole cruise there was only 4 production shows. also average age on people was approx 80....seems that allot of them should have been in nursing home, needed added attention taking way normal duties. We did have a great bartender on deck 16 and in the Cigar bar. Casino was bare most of the time too...... Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
We chose this cruise because we did not want to go around the horn but wanted to visit S. Am. We have sailed on Princess several times in the past and like to book our next cruise prior to leaving the ship. Princess always seems to have ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we did not want to go around the horn but wanted to visit S. Am. We have sailed on Princess several times in the past and like to book our next cruise prior to leaving the ship. Princess always seems to have excellent entertainment, food, and services. The one downside members of our group mentioned this trip was the lack of Happy Hour at the Wheel House. That has always been a gathering place of many in the past and we were sorry to find it was not included on this trip. Also the wine package was listed as being available prior to sailing and upon sailing they found this also was not available and many wines listed on the wine list they did not have. This did not affect myself or wife as a rule but I did hear other passengers growling about these issues. Overall this was a great cruise again this year. If you ever see Dinesh, tell him hi from the group of 8 from the area of Wyoming. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
It’s not what you want to think about. But it is really important. Our 10 year old developed acute appendicitis in Nicuragua ( of all places ) the onboard medics did an amazing job and assisted us in getting our sick child to a hospital ... Read More
It’s not what you want to think about. But it is really important. Our 10 year old developed acute appendicitis in Nicuragua ( of all places ) the onboard medics did an amazing job and assisted us in getting our sick child to a hospital where she had surgery that night Their quick thinking and ability to make decesions quickly meant our doctor was diagnosed disembarked and taken to hospital quickly. The quick response resulted in a quick recovery. Our cruise was amazing but the crews response in a crises was amazing Before that we found the ship very comfortable. There were only 13 kids onboard but our three kids were entertained at all times My only complaint ( so minor) is that 16 days without decent coffee is a long time However the rest of the food and dining options were great. We were expecting long lines but we had no problem finding tables Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Chose the cruise for its itinerary. Spent 2 days in BA prior to embarkation. Worthwhile to see BA. Embarkation process could have been smoother. Personnel lacked proficiency with the English language as well as familiarity with the ... Read More
Chose the cruise for its itinerary. Spent 2 days in BA prior to embarkation. Worthwhile to see BA. Embarkation process could have been smoother. Personnel lacked proficiency with the English language as well as familiarity with the process. Disembarkation much better in San Antonio-however the port is very industrial and there is NOTHING to see/do in this very economically depressed city. Have to rely on transportation for the 1.5 HR ride into SCL to board flight. SCL airport very disorganized, little English spoken, poor signage. Emerald dated, in dire need of upgrade in furnishing, rethinking of need for lounges and very amateurish shows. Very noticeable downgrade in quality and variety of food choices. Did not like the constant up selling of services and dining. Food was "pre-cooked" and reheated for service...cold toast, cold fries, cold bacon, lobster cold?! And mushy? Shore excursions poorly organized and lacked value for $. Crowded and limited time at sights. Would book with on shore tours, but operators lacked command of English. Better selections with Expedia shore excursions. Would travel to SA again, however NOT on Princess. Captain would not even shake hands on the welcome cocktail reception, did not feel our loyalty was valued?! One highlight was our cabin steward and dining staff, who went above and beyond to ensure a pleasant vacation despite their limitations. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
This was our 18th cruise on Princess. We had a good time, because of the staff and the ports but were disappointed in the food. The food never seems to change - and this time in the dining room, even sitting with 6 - 8 people for dinner ... Read More
This was our 18th cruise on Princess. We had a good time, because of the staff and the ports but were disappointed in the food. The food never seems to change - and this time in the dining room, even sitting with 6 - 8 people for dinner there were never more than 3 pads of butter in the dishes. We were told it was because it looked better - really? The little silver bowl looked sadly empty. You had to ask for more butter. I don't mind them saving money on the butter but at least put 1 pad of butter on the table for each person sitting at the table. Tried all the pay for restaurants and have to admit I hated Curtis Stone. I was excited to try it since he now has a vegetarian menu - Did not like the menu at all. Hubby did enjoy the lamb in the final course. Crown Grill as always is nice for my hubby, but since I am Vegetarian - there is really no special dish for me to order - they just get me a meal from the main dining room, this is really not worth $29 to me. (but I go so Hubby gets his steak). The Salty Dog which was only $12 per person was surprisingly good, actually my favorite of all the pay for restaurants. We hardly ever eat at the buffet so can't really comment on this, we did order breakfast in our cabin on the days we were off on an early excursion, which always came promptly! Kuddos to the staff! Ok, enough complains, had a nice time on this 14 day cruise and loved the itinerary. Our main goal was to sail around Cape Horn - mission accomplished - the weather was nice and there were hardly any waves. We also wanted to see the Falklands, this is a port that really is hard to get to, but we were successful and took the 7 hour Jeep tour - amazing, highly recommend!! The ship was clean and the beds were comfortable. We had Cabin D709, a mini suite, which was great - I even used the bathtub. Balcony was large enough for a little table and two chairs. It was a little to cold to sit out and read most of the days, but we enjoyed getting out and taking pictures of Amelia Glaciers. Went to several shows and found them entertaining - I usually don't even bother but we had friends traveling with us , and they enjoy going to the shows. Only went to the casino 2 times and lost $40. Big spender here!!! Enjoyed a few drinks at Crooners and watched people dance at the little dance floor in the bar. The music seems to be getting louder all the time. The one really bad experience we had was disembarkation - it was really badly planned. We had tickets to get off first thing - however the suitcases came off the ship haphazardly. People were standing around waiting for a long time - and even when the suitcases came down we were not able to take them until the dogs sniffed the luggage. Sometimes I just have to wonder how stupid people really are - packing oranges in the suitcases? Really, suitcases were being searched and it really slowed things down. At this time we have no upcoming cruises planned. We would travel with Princess again mainly because we now have elite status and the perks are great - Free laundry, free minutes for the internet just to mention a few.... Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
It seems like Princess has decided not to prioritize customer service. This trip felt more like working with an airline than a cruise line. The guest relations staff was not empowered to do anything when a problem arose. The food was ... Read More
It seems like Princess has decided not to prioritize customer service. This trip felt more like working with an airline than a cruise line. The guest relations staff was not empowered to do anything when a problem arose. The food was mediocre. The entertainment, with a few exceptions, was terrible. The director of dining was abrasive. The decor was dated. The tendering was poor. Some of the scheduled events did not occur because the cruise director staff did not show. There was virtually nothing in the way of activities for our children. (Ages teen through young adult.) It was also odd that they had a series of enrichment lectures about serial killers. Why would that be a topic at all, never mind almost every day. On top of it all, you had the usual high pressure sales tactics (spa products, health products, art). Because of the poor training and customer service, the ship was simply not designed to give even the suite passengers anything extra. We made the most of our trip mainly by creating our own fun, designing our own excursions, etc. We also found out during the trip that numerous passengers were upgraded to Platinum, which was good for them, but further diluted the benefits of being Platinum, Elite, or Suite. For example, the evening cocktail party did not offer any complimentary drinks and snacks that were no better than what could be obtained elsewhere. Even the staff who helped suite guests with disembarking was rude. Christmas/New Year's is always a little hectic, but this was unbelievable. Also note that despite the cold weather, there is NO INDOOR POOL. The outdoor areas were almost unusable for the majority of the trip. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
My wife and I joined three other couples on Emerald Princess from Southern California to the Mexican Riviera the week after US Thanksgiving in 2017. For my wife and I this was our first time sailing with Princess. I would like to share ... Read More
My wife and I joined three other couples on Emerald Princess from Southern California to the Mexican Riviera the week after US Thanksgiving in 2017. For my wife and I this was our first time sailing with Princess. I would like to share some of our thoughts. Pre Cruise We drove to LA and spent the night at the Crowne Plaza before the cruise. Hotel was lovely as the room was spacious, furniture was comfortable, staff was friendly, and we could see the port from our room. Room was priced fairly (around $230 and that included covered parking for the week in their garage as well as complimentary shuttle to and from the port) We took a very short walk to Grinders restaurant and their food was outstanding (and surprisingly low cost). Tab for the four of us was less than $50. Food was kind of “elevated” diner food (wife and I both had a Chicken, mushroom, and veg angel hair pasta dish. On embarkation day, we had a buffet breakfast at the hotel (included in our room rate). Buffet was not as good as the nicer ones in Las Vegas; but, for a hotel in LA, it was fine. While choices were limited, food was flavorful and well prepared. After breakfast it was time for the shuttle to the port. We were a little excited (you think?) and showed up a little too early Check In Process Wife and I had not been on a cruise since 2013 (doesn’t seem long but in this technological age it is a lifetime) and that was on Oasis of the Seas. Things have really changed since then and I do not know if that is industry wide (that is my instinct) or if Princess is just that different. I can say their process is very streamlined and organized. They are detail oriented down to the places where they have you sit and wait. People in the terminal were friendly and helpful. One of the things that really resonated with me, not just on check in day, but throughout the cruise, is that Princess really understands how excited people going on a cruise can be and they do not do anything to curb or limit that excitement. Overall, I was so happy with how I was treated by the various members of Princess’s staff. Embarkation & Staterooms Again, a real smooth and efficient process. We were on the ship at about 12:45 for a 4:00 PM departure. Our staterooms were ready and we immediately went to check them out and drop off our carry-on items. The Princess Mini Suite is VERY Impressive. As far as staterooms go, this is quite large. The bathroom had a tub/shower, we had a walk in closet, a queen size bed and a sitting area with a couch. The balcony was good sized as four of us could comfortably congregate on it. There were two flat screen TVs (one pointed at the sitting area and one pointed at the bed); although, honestly, we hardly ever used the TVs. Food This is an interesting discussion. We tried numerous dining venues and enjoyed most of our meals. On embarkation day, we had lunch on the buffet. This was probably the worst meal we had during the cruise. There was nothing wrong with the food, the serious lack of tables, combined with a state of “Hangryness” did not help things. We hit the buffet three times during this voyage and were pleasantly surprised each time by how good the food was. I thought it was much better than the food on buffets on both Carnival and Royal. That said, we do not usually hit the buffet too often when we cruise. We had a lot of meals in the Botticelli dining room. I think breakfast and lunches in the dining room are kind of a hidden jewel. It usually isn’t too crowded and it is nice to be served. Food in this dining room was good, well prepared and flavorful. Service was good for all of the meals with the exception of 1. Our last breakfast (and it was the only time all 8 of us had breakfast together) was kind of a cluster. Wrong items were delivered, service was very slow, etc. That said, the food was good, people were very nice, and the dining experience was fine. Speaking of hidden jewels, afternoon tea is “off the charts”. We did this three times and it was fabulous. The little sandwiches were good and oh my, how about those scones and the freshly made whipped cream. The only downside to tea is the room is a little loud; but, wife and I loved, loved, loved the experience. We really look forward to that on our next cruise. One day, Princess converted the “Wheelhouse Bar” into a British Pub for lunch. I LOVE British Pub food (on my last visit to the UK, I was there for a week, and I had Bangers and Mash every night). Food was free and beers (I had draft Newcastle) were not. This was one of my favorite dining experiences on the cruise. Bangers and Mash were authentic with the onion gravy (but, no peas) and really well spiced. It really took me back to the UK (so to speak). “Wheelhouse Bar” also hosted the “Salty Dog Gastro Pub” and all eight of us tried that one night. We divided into Boys and Girls. For the boys, surprise, surprise, we all had the burger. I didn’t like the burger as it was overcooked to my liking so it was dry and there was nothing on it to moisten it. It had a really good spice (and the flavors with the Kimchi and the Jalapeno Pepper) were nice; but, again, the burger was just too dry for my liking. My second entré was a white tomato soup with a small gruyere sandwich. Tomato soup is my favorite; however, I did not like this soup as the tomato was barely noticeable. One of my friends tried the lobster mac and it looked pretty tasty. As for the girls, they had one of everything on the menu and shared. They were having such a good time. Gastropub was reasonably priced at $12 per head. Burgers I did like were at the Trident Grill. During the week, I had at different times, Hot Dogs, Burgers, and some really good Brats. It is so easy to overcook a brat and lose the flavor; but, grill did a nice job with these and they ranked among my favorite brats of all time. Their fries were also really good. Crispy and sort of like a steak fry. I didn’t care for the Pizza as I liked the crust, but the sauce had a funny flavor to it that overwhelmed me. Wish they had more than three choices but I do understand why they need to have limitations. Never tried the ice cream as I avoid sugared desserts; although, that soft serve looked really good. “Crown Grill” was disappointing to me. Understand, that my favorite steakhouse at sea was on Liberty (Carnival) as the food was really good, generous, and felt elevated from what we got in the dining room. I compared it to one of the fancier steakhouses from land (where the steaks run about $40 per and you buy all the siders separately). At “Crown Grill”, the experience did not feel elevated and it just felt like they took dishes that used to be on the menu in the main dining room and moved them to the steakhouse. Don’t get me wrong, the food was good; but, it paled in comparison to Liberty. Originally, we had planned at least two dinners at Crown and never returned after the first one. By far the best meals (we went twice) on this cruise (and I ever had at Sea) were at “Share” by Curtis Stone. This was an actual dining experience. It was a 6 course meal, and the best way to do it is to each order something different per course and then “share”. This was fine dining as the food was not typical fare. So many things were just amazing. The Lemon Prawns, The Scallops, the Lobster over Hash, the Strip, the Pork Ravioli in Thai Sauce, and the Lamb, one of the best two lambs I have ever had. Flavors were so bold. This experience had it all, from excellent service, to flavorful and somewhat unexpected food, two a pair of customer made sugar free desserts for my wife and I. While I love Italian food and look forward to trying it on Grand Princess next year, I am saddened that I will not have the opportunity to experience “Share” on my next voyage. Excursions In Puerta Vallarta we visited Las Caletas and that is one of my favorite all around excursions. It is a pleasant boat ride Las Caletas, the food is great, and I spent a lot of time in the ocean. Had high expectations due to our last visit and was not disappointed. In Mazatlan went to a resort in the Golden Zone, Playa Mazatlan, and shopped. When we shop, my heart tells me I will be hitting these little artisan shops and will be seeing different things in each one. As soon as we start to shop, my brain quickly remembers that for the most part, these shops are all selling the same things. That said, it was a pleasant way to spend a day. Cabo is one of my favorite ports and it was the short stay this time. We did the High Sierra Zip line adventure and it was phenomenal (I zip lined upside down). I am terrified of heights but I faced my fear. The staff was outstanding and the day was both physically demanding and a lot of fun. On Board Entertainment/Activities Princess is definitely more sedate than Carnival or Royal. This is a positive thing to me as while I like to party as much as the next guy, it is nice to know there are also quiet places to go. Also, I never felt like I was being “sold” things. On both Carnival and Royal, it seemed like every time I turned around, someone was trying to sell me a drink, or anything. The approach was much more subtle on Princess. Our Cruise Director, Dave, was Hilarious. He sounded like “Mozz” from “The IT Crowd” and he had just a fantastic demeanor. We liked him a lot, and his staff was excellent as well. Wished there was a little more trivia as it seemed like there was a morning trivia and an afternoon trivia. Kaitlyn did my favorite trivias as she would inject some astronomy, comic books, and animal info into hers. We did an escape room one night and that was so much fun. We succeeded and missed the record by about 2 minutes. No spoilers ahead, but, I suggest if anyone goes on a Princess cruise and the escape room is offered, do it. Disembark Saddest day of the cruise. Again, Princess is organized and smooth. This process has not really changed much over the years; but, Princess does it very well. Lastly, here are some tips The All Inclusive Photo Package We bought this and we maximized our value. That said, Princess does not seem very knowledgeable about what you get so I thought I would make that clear to everyone. When I called and enquired, here is what I was told and then the reality. You get one print, any size, of every picture taken of you on the ship with the exception of Black and White ones. Any extra prints are $10.00 per. At end of trip you get a thumb drive with ALL the digital photos. The reality is close to that. You do not get a print of anything taken in front of a “White Screen” or any Black and White ones. Included are the embarkation photos as well as the ones taken in port when you first leave the ship. Also, you do not get “any size”. For the posed pictures, you get the 8x10. If you want a smaller size, $10.00. The Thumb drive is really cute. Looks like a ship. Extra Power in the Staterooms We had a mini suite with 2 TVs. Behind each TV was a wooden panel. Move the panel and there is an extra plug. Room Service “Pre Breakfast” Most mornings we would get up around 6:30 and have a very light breakfast delivered (usually a croissant, some fruit, and coffee/tea) and enjoy that on the balcony as the sun rose. Very nice way to start the day Princess At Sea Have to remember this is a web page not an app so your phone will not give you an indicator when things have been updated. The site has a lot of good info, including a digital copy of the patter, and allows you to calendar events, create your own, etc. Patter is uploaded nightly around midnight and it was fun to review that on our phones before sleep and kind of plan the next day. Remember to refresh the web page so you can see your messages. This is a great way to communicate when you get separated and is completely free. Leave your phone on “Airplane Mode” and log into the ship’s wifi. You DO NOT need an internet package to utilize this site. Beach Towels You can get them at any of the pool areas and can take them ashore. This was different for us as Carnival and Royal had simply left 2 in our rooms, with the caveat of if it is not in the room when you leave, you bought it. Time Change This was weird as they took an hour from us the first night, but didn’t give it back until the last night. Really thought they would give it back to us the night before our last sea day (the night we left Cabo). Not a complaint, just odd to me. Red and Blue Carpet When going to your room the first time, look at the carpet when you get in the hall. There is striping that runs the length of the hall. Red on one side and blue on the other. It is very easy to get disoriented on these ships and the carpet color helps you walk down the correct side Go to 7 You cannot walk the length of deck 6. If you want to go from one end to the other, suggest you go to 7, walk on either the inside or outside to the other end, and then go down one floor to 6. This is really handy when you want to go to Botticelli’s for tea. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
I was invited by my family to go on this cruise. They were offered a special from the station casinos here in Las Vegas, Nevada. The cruise ship was average with a strange layout. Hardly anywhere for people to smoke and the rooms we had ... Read More
I was invited by my family to go on this cruise. They were offered a special from the station casinos here in Las Vegas, Nevada. The cruise ship was average with a strange layout. Hardly anywhere for people to smoke and the rooms we had were incredibly small with horrid bathrooms. The breakfast I will say was very good, however the lunch was absolutely terrible and cheap looking. They made food that most Americans would never touch. I ordered room service most of the time because of this. However, if you're hungry, good luck! Room service usually takes around and hour to deliver. The food on deck including the pizza, hamburgers, fries and ice cream was average. The room service burgers were much better in my opinion, but as I said before, you'd be luck to get it in under an hour. As for the dining, it was up to par if the crew didn't act so uptight. Not all of them were like this however. The one's we had on the other hand were somewhat rude and sarcastic. That really didn't help when you were hungry and they smirked at you when you asked for another meal or dessert. Getting off the ship was the best part. The off-shore excursions were nice, but returning to the boat meant returning back to a small cabin with a terrible bathroom and horrible lunch that was pretty much a carbon copy every single day. Only thing that helped was our cabin steward Anthony. He was amazing, but extremely overworked. Felt so bad for him. Thank god for a ping pong table, that was the best highlight of this trip besides the other on-board boring activities. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Found the food passable but not very memorable. Although there were many choices of places to eat, I was very disappointed with the quality of food in the main dining rooms. The casual eating places were better. You will never go ... Read More
Found the food passable but not very memorable. Although there were many choices of places to eat, I was very disappointed with the quality of food in the main dining rooms. The casual eating places were better. You will never go hungry, as there is food to eat around the clock. Hamburgers and french fries on deck were probably the best of all the food choices. We had 7 people in our party, ranging from 11 months to 71 years old. There were a lot of activities to keep all of us entertained. However, there were no babysitting services for young children. This made it difficult for the parents to have any free time. If you are a smoker, there are very few places designated for this. If your room is at the rear of the ship, you have to walk a country mile to get to a smoking area. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Honestly one of the coolest experience me and my GF have had. You have to be a real stick in the mud to NOT have fun. Seriously. I saw one person complaining about rust on the side of the ship. ITS A SHIP.....ON SALTWATER LOL. Lol now ... Read More
Honestly one of the coolest experience me and my GF have had. You have to be a real stick in the mud to NOT have fun. Seriously. I saw one person complaining about rust on the side of the ship. ITS A SHIP.....ON SALTWATER LOL. Lol now that THATS out of the way let me tell you.... Ship was IMMACULATE. Super clean. Staff were very attentive, friendly, and FUN! Our room steward was super sweet and did a GREAT job! Wish i could remember her name but its been since sept 17. Food buffet was pretty good. Nothing TO fancy but tasty enough to eat lol. (If you're not a super picky eater) They did a great job keeping all age groups entertained. They showed recent movies (Guardians of the Galaxy) out on the deck WHILE they had one the "formal" nights going on. Casino was a tad bit dissapointing but still was fun (who doesn't like any form of gambling lol) Drinks were overpriced but was kind of expecting that. Getting on and off the ship was a BREEZE. Super quick and efficient. Security was also very good (for those who notice that stuff) Room was clean, and just enough space for what its meant for. Bathroom was decently sized. Tub kind of overflowed a bit but wasn't a big problem. All and all we had a great time. Remember, if you treat staff with respect and kindness, they will do the same to you. These people work almost 24/7 during their "contract." They do their best to be friendly to everyone but i can imagine it being super hard to keep calm at some people. (I've worked in the service industry long enough to know this.) Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
My brother and his family sailed to Alaska on Holland America and I wanted to go to a different cruise line so we can compare. The dates of travel makes a difference. We sailed on September 3, 2017 and kids are already in school so we ... Read More
My brother and his family sailed to Alaska on Holland America and I wanted to go to a different cruise line so we can compare. The dates of travel makes a difference. We sailed on September 3, 2017 and kids are already in school so we didn't have very many kids on board. We have sailed before so we are not new to cruising. Yet, one afternoon, just before dinner, everyone was just rolling side to side as it was very, very wavy. I didn't think I would need any motion sickness pills or patches, however, I packed both anyway. It turned out we were going to use them. My teenage daughter used the Dramamine pills for 2 days and she was fine. I used the patch. Everything was fine afterwards. I'm not a big fan of the Horizon Buffet; it's very limiting, creates long lines, long waits, not enough seating, not very much food choices. Food here is average. I love their traditional seating for meals, Boticelli, Da Vinci, Michelangelo restaurants. Food here is excellent. Don't expect a lot of shows as they have minimal. They do have the Voice of the Ocean, with the iconic chairs that turn. I love that they have an app on board which lists all the daily events, and you can message your family and friends or create a group for messaging new friends. Although it didn't match the other cruise lines we've taken in the past, the cruise was very laid-back and relaxing. Crew and staff are very nice and friendly. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
We went on this cruise to Alaska on August 20th, 2017...This was our 4th cruise, first with Princess...Overall, a very positive experience. Very organized Embarkation and Debarkation. I felt after boarding there was some confusion with ... Read More
We went on this cruise to Alaska on August 20th, 2017...This was our 4th cruise, first with Princess...Overall, a very positive experience. Very organized Embarkation and Debarkation. I felt after boarding there was some confusion with room service and the items I pre-purchased before the cruise. I also was worried about my tuxedo rental not being there when we were just about to sail away....Everything seem to come together nicely a few hours into it....All the staff seemed very personable and we enjoyed talking to them.. I felt the service at the bars/clubs could use some work as it was difficult to get a waiter. I often saw them congregated around the bar chit chatting amongst themselves..I often had to get up and go find one... The anytime dining was sort of pushed on us when we booked 5 months before the cruise as traditional (early) dining was full and late dining is not for us....Part of the overall Cruise experience for us is dining with the same people everyday, make new friends, talk about your experiences that day, shore excursions, etc. This is one piece of the cruise that we really missed. The anytime dining line to get into the Michelangelo dining room at 5:15 was like a cattle line...One day, there must of been 500 people in line....This cruise was filled to capacity and I'm attributing most of any lack of customer service to the huge crowd...Besides these couple items, not really a big deal the Cruise was an exceptional experience..... HIGHLY RECOMMEND-book your excursions months in advance, especially helicopter and seaplane ones....We happened to reserve the Helicopter ride to Mendenhall Glacier and Salmon Bake 4 months before the cruise and got it....90 days before the cruise it was sold out....You have to do this tour, it was probably one of the best experiences in my life...It was freaking unbelievable....Words or pictures cannot describe this, only your own eyes need to experience this..... Again, we thoroughly enjoyed this cruise and any criticism above is mostly attributed to a crowded ship.....We booked a future cruise while on the cruise to the Grand Mediterranean on the Crown Princess October 23, 2018.....Really looking forward to it:) Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We live in Seattle so we did not have to travel far to catch the ship,. Boarding was very smooth at first it seemed hectic with so many passengers arriving at the same time but as soon as a porter gathered all f are luggage and we preceded ... Read More
We live in Seattle so we did not have to travel far to catch the ship,. Boarding was very smooth at first it seemed hectic with so many passengers arriving at the same time but as soon as a porter gathered all f are luggage and we preceded to the entrance all went smooth and we were on the ship in less than 30 minutes of being dropped off. First off there were 47 Of us 41 family 6 friends traveling . We had a range of cabins with and without balconies. We had a balcony c410. That's is midship 10th floor next to our friends we had the open the balcony door so the balconies we open to both of our rooms. The room had a lot of room for a cruise ship. Small bathroom but it worked well. One tip bring a power strip as you have two plug ins if you do not. Since we were traveling to Alaska you need to bring more clothes then a tropical cruise. We had 4suitcases all were stored in the closet , we had a hotel sized refrigerator no freezer section. Enough drawers for all of our clothes. One suitcase I filled with bottled ice tea. That suitcase we later used to carry all of or purchased souvenirs and clothes we purchased on the cruise. Suitcaseses arrived soon after we ate lunch. Our room attendant Alan was fantastic room was cleaned two to three times a day. Ok the food part most of the food was great to excellent some not so good. We ate mostly in the Botticelli dinning room. Since we had such a huge part we had many tables all in the same area and we could move around and sit with different tables on different nights we had the early seating at 5:30 and we never were finished before 7 or 7:30 so if your in a hurry go to the buffet. I have lots of pictures of food and menus. Ok the veal scalloping was thin dry and not good.pine rib was great New York steak was good the salmon was ok the crab legs were great the lobster was great. Most of the salads very good, and you can order one or two of anything you want . Great deserts. I am diabetic and they had a sugar free desert every night, some of some very good, breakfast was good also and they had lox and bagels my breakfast of choice everyday, I purchase a coffee card for the lattes, and other coffee drinks. If you like soft boiled egged they we closer to hard than soft . We ate breakfast at the buffet when we were getting off the ship early and the food is ok they did have egg dishes made to order, large selection of foods , fruits, and would say the food was good , and a large variety, the service was good , you always had to order your pop or specialty coffees separately and sometimes took a few minutes to get them. the service in the main dining room was excellent and most of the servers were fun and after the first meals remembered your drinks you like ne they paid attention to your likes and dislikes. If you drink alcohol and pop and want specialty coffees it may be worth the all inclusive drink card about $56.00 per day, average glass wine from $7.20 to $9.50 , coffee drinks $2.25 to$2.75. I drink alcohol so not sure about hard liquor drinks . Most of the ship employees we asked questions could always help you find or give you directions. We were very lucky we had fantastic weather upper 70s every day up to the last day Saturday night in Victoria BC if started to rain. The ship was always clean. Excursions we did a van tour at Ketchikan we purchased at the dock as all tours and excursions can be purchased off ship on the dock. best part of of the tour in Ketchikan was the log carving totem tour. Then we met up with family shopped the the town and ate . We took the Tracy fjord catamaran tour , best thing we did this cruise well worth it, then the white pass train tour at Skagway, a don't miss to me. There we all types of ship activities going on most were set up to get more of your money, photos, wine tasting, art auctions, jewelry store over priced, there is no deal on a cruise ship in any shop. The shows were ok to bad they had a magic show my thoughts in that at the magic was getting the audience to fill up the theater to watch it. The disco show was much better. They also had had the voice of the ocean, this was very good mostly due to the fact two of the contestants were my nieces and one of them won the contest. , the casino is not the same as Vegas or Reno, poor odds and most people do not win . Not really my thing to do on a cruise. The pool was on mostly kids. Great pizza . Ok last day embarkation was easy very smooth except off the ship you may have to wait for your ride. This was our fourth cruise and scenery wise Alaska was the most beautiful ever. My biggest complaint is always The upswell or just constantly being asked to purchase something. I'm not a huge cruise fan but this was a family event and the ship accommodates for that. Overall the food was good service was excellent rooms were clean. And to me having a balcony is worth the money. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
My son and I needed to go and have a relaxing adventurous vacation. We both loved our time on board. What I noticed the first day was that a cruise could be as slow and relaxing or as fast paced as you wanted. So much to see outside the ... Read More
My son and I needed to go and have a relaxing adventurous vacation. We both loved our time on board. What I noticed the first day was that a cruise could be as slow and relaxing or as fast paced as you wanted. So much to see outside the boat as well as so much entertainment inside! I also loved the fact that we could not use our phones so the world pretty much stopped. My son and I had opportunities that we may never have again. So glad we went and can't wait to go again! I especially liked the morning coffee looking out at the ocean and mountains. Nothing comes close! We even saw whales, pacific sunfish and sharks from the boat. The weather was also so beautiful. Not a day of rain. The excursions were incredible; The Deadliest Catch Boat, Shoreside Salmon Fishing, and the SkagwayTrain ride. Only regret was not bringing a gopro to video the fishing trip! Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Having cruised on Holland America, Celebrity, Royal Caribbean, Regent Seven Seas, and previously on Princess, I have experiences to afford comparisons. We had a mini suite and it was adequate, anything smaller would have been pathetic. Our ... Read More
Having cruised on Holland America, Celebrity, Royal Caribbean, Regent Seven Seas, and previously on Princess, I have experiences to afford comparisons. We had a mini suite and it was adequate, anything smaller would have been pathetic. Our cabin steward was excellent. Soap in the shower was of the pump on the wall type, an example of cost containment. The basins are very small and the counter the one basin is on is very narrow. You are nickeled and dimed to death on this ship. Anything that is "free" is really hard to find. The library is about the size of my bathroom. They have an added level of service called "Cabin Class" or something that we bought. It was promoted as "you get better food." The real advantage was you didn't stand in line in the dining room. The wait staff in the Michelangelo Club Class or Cabin Class whatever dining area were excellent. The Horizon Buffet must have been designed by a 4th grader as the traffic pattern is pathetic. My suggestion is that the owners of this line should checkout other lines to see how a buffet is really done. Personally we really like the Lido Buffet type on the Holland ships. the entertainment is nothing to write home about. There was a comedian that was pretty good. This is a good ship for those that have never cruised and have no idea what makes a great cruise. Shore excursions were good, but the same ones most Alaska ships have available. Forget about any ship heading to Tracy Arm and not Glacier. That is a real bummer. Getting on and off the ship was excellent. If one has only cruised with Princess, it would be difficult to really have a standard for comparison. In my opinion, better than Carnival but below Holland, Celebrity, Regent and Royal Caribbean. The crew was excellent and I have no complaints with them. They did their job with exceptional ability. However the security people when one was entering on leaving the ship were not too hospitable. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
There were 17 of us in the group and common consensus is most staff look miserable, no hello's and no smiles. The exception is our room steward and waiter at our fix dinning. We all had high expectations on quality of service and ... Read More
There were 17 of us in the group and common consensus is most staff look miserable, no hello's and no smiles. The exception is our room steward and waiter at our fix dinning. We all had high expectations on quality of service and food and were very disappointed. Both reasons are why we decide to cruise with Princess. It seems like we were on a budget cruise about to go bankrupt. The buffet breakfast was the same everyday. The dinners were nothing to brag about. It seems the cruise was more tailored to 60+ senior with diet restrictions. Buffet selection is limited. Meatloaf and Ham are not considered crave meats at the carving table. Breakfast make to order omelet can be better. They leave the napkin and utensils on the table which is nice and servers are always around to serve your drinks. That's is when they do care and half of the time, they ignore you and just clean tables which they are efficient at. This is the first cruise show that I actually fall asleep while watching. The comedian was half descent but don't expect Broadway style shows like on other cruise lines. Even the Carnival line had more entertaining shows. There are just too many dislikes to mention so take this line at your own discretion. My final comment: If you are going to Alaska, take another line like RCL or NCL. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Arrived in Seattle the Saturday prior to cruise. Arranged for Princess Transfers from airport to the Westin - Westin to Cruise Port - Cruise Port to Airport. Upon arriving in Seattle, Princess representatives were are the luggage area to ... Read More
Arrived in Seattle the Saturday prior to cruise. Arranged for Princess Transfers from airport to the Westin - Westin to Cruise Port - Cruise Port to Airport. Upon arriving in Seattle, Princess representatives were are the luggage area to meet arriving guests. Although, it took us talking to 3 different Princess reps for them to figure out how to get us transportation to the Westin. 30 minutes later someone comes to meet us and takes us for a long trip through the airport - up escalators dragging your luggage- across to parking deck- up more escalators then back down and then finally getting to a waiting area for a shuttle to pick you up - this took an hour after we got our luggage - save yourself the hassle and get a taxi which is lined up right outside of luggage area. The Westin, which Princess had booked for us - was great - highly recommend staying there if you have an extra day. Transportation to the cruise ship was much better - Everyone met in the lobby the morning of and had a bus waiting to take us to the Pier. Check-In was quick - cabins were ready on the ship when we boarded. We were fortunate enough to stay in a suite - if you can swing that or Club Class Suites - they have a lot of perks. The best ever is the Club Class Dining - soooo wonderful - Head Waiter/Chef and wait staff are awesome. Cruise ports were fun, plan your day around what you like to do - tours are readily available or take a walk through town and catch a local restaurant. Advise you to take the boat tour that picks you up off of cruise ship and goes into Tracy Arm Fjord - our cruise ship was not able to go into area due to weather, but people who had booked that excursion were able to go into the Fjord on a smaller boat - saw lots of animals and had a fabulous time - our cruise ship just had to head on into our next port and got there earlier than planned. My best advice would be at the end of your cruise - save yourself a big head ache the last night of the cruise and do not let Princess handle getting your boarding passes and luggage tags for you from your airline. This is a service they highly promote and make it sound wonderful - was awful. Our last port was Victoria, BC - a night stop. Arrived 5:15 pm, was to be back on board by 11:30 pm. (Side note - city bus tour and High Tea excursion was boring and a complete waste of $90 person compared to excursions we did at previous ports.) My 78 year old mother and I arrived back on board by 10:00 pm....still did not have luggage tags and boarding passes even though we were told we would have them between 5 pm & 8 pm (the information for the flight was given on the first couple of days of the cruise). Went down to the customer service desk - oh my - 50 + other people waiting in line - all with problems with no boarding passes/luggage tags so none of us could put our luggage out in the hall for pickup. An hour and a half later - the front desk gave me Delta paperwork for our connecting flight in Atlanta, not our departure flight out of Seattle. Said they did not have the correct information to give me luggage tags for leaving Seattle so I would have to address it with Delta at the airport the next day - It is now midnight - I finally get a colored luggage tag for Princess just to pick up bags in the hallway to take off ship for us to pick up in luggage holding terminal. Was fine until the front desk had given 2 of us Purple 1 tags which coordinated with our flight schedule for when luggage was taken off of ship,. but they gave 2 other people on our flight traveling with us, Purple 2 Tags, therefore we had to wait in the luggage terminal for an hour for all of our group of 4 luggage to be taken off the ship at different times. Just make sure everyone traveling in your party gets the same color/numbered tag for luggage. We got a porter to help take luggage out and he took us right to the bus which would go to Delta at airport. No one ever asked us for our transfer passes for the bus which we had paid for to take us to the airport....made me wonder if we had needed to even pay extra for that. Also, taxis were readily available right outside the door after passing through customs. Other than the hassle the last night, the cruise was a wonderful time. Alaska is absolutely beautiful and a must see! Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Princess Cruises has entered the race to the bottom with so many changes, to what once was the popular "Love Boat" experience. The focus during the entire cruise was to generate onboard revenue with additional charges and ... Read More
Princess Cruises has entered the race to the bottom with so many changes, to what once was the popular "Love Boat" experience. The focus during the entire cruise was to generate onboard revenue with additional charges and fees. No longer is everyting included with the cruise. There are 4 alternate restaruants with very high additional fees charged ($29.00) per person. The food quality is inferior due to low quality provisions, inproper preparation and lack of training of kitchen staff. Princess should consider changing the name of buffet dining to Golden Corral at Sea, however Golden Corral has wider selection. Alternate dining restaurants were substandard and improper preparating of foods, all foods overcooked. The kitchen cannot make a good soup and does not know the meaning of bisque or chowder. What a truely disappointing experience with Princess. As a Platinum member with Princess, I will not sail with them again. Princess has transferred the labor costs entirely to the guest with the automatic gratuties added to every shipboard account. Staff onboard was great but they can only do with what the company provides, which is poor provisions and inferior training. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
I enjoyed this cruise - it was my first cruise ever and while I did get seasick sometimes - it wasn't terrible the entire time. The gym on the ship is large and gorgeous and I ran quite a few times while we were sailing on the ... Read More
I enjoyed this cruise - it was my first cruise ever and while I did get seasick sometimes - it wasn't terrible the entire time. The gym on the ship is large and gorgeous and I ran quite a few times while we were sailing on the treadmills and did a workout. Food was pretty good but only if you went to the more fancy dining room at your specific dinner time - otherwise the cheaper and faster food was not my favorite. We had a suite so we had the option for a private breakfast in the steakhouse which consisted of a lot of the same food but much less crowded and more quiet so that was nice. The ship itself is gigantic and it takes a full 10-15 minutes to walk from one end to the next. Elevators are REALLY slow and take forever to get to the floors because they stop on each one and pick people so your best bet is stairs if you are fit enough. Onboard entertainment was awesome - we loved Bingo and I loved Voice of the Ocean which was based on the hit TV series "The Voice" where they had folks volunteer onboard the ship to compete and had 3-4 different sessions narrowing it down to a final group and picking a final winner with judges from the crew. So much fun. The shore excursions were awesome and we did a number of things - we were busy and tired most days - but it was worth it! We road a float plane over the Misty Fjords, we rode with sled dogs, we crossed a suspension bridge over the Yukon valley, we road the White Pass Train... you name it - we tried it! Service was excellent and everything went fairly smooth. I have no complaints other than crowds and crowds and more crowds. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Emerald Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.5 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.5
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 4.0 4.2
Value For Money 4.5 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.0

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