Sail Date: February 2018
I've seen a fair number of negative comments on Ruby Princess in CC, so was wondering what kind of experience we would have on our 7 day Mexican Riviera cruise. I'm happy to say we had a fantastic vacation and I'm a bit puzzled by some ... Read More
I've seen a fair number of negative comments on Ruby Princess in CC, so was wondering what kind of experience we would have on our 7 day Mexican Riviera cruise. I'm happy to say we had a fantastic vacation and I'm a bit puzzled by some of the negative reviews. This is now my favorite Princess ship and crew. Both were outstanding. Embarkation was a breeze. Very well organized, fast process. We've had some horrible embarkation experiences, most notably NCL, so it's nice to see it done well. The ship, while older, is well-maintained by the crew and is still in fine shape. I like this class of ship, with the full wrap-around Promenade deck, 5 pools, Skywalker's nightclub above the stern, and other nice features. I especially like the aft, adults-only pool. It seems like few passengers know about this place, as it never seems overly crowded, and sometimes has few or no people. We were in a balcony stateroom (R723 - BE). Everything worked. Gerry, our room steward, was great. I like this location because we're only steps away from the aft pool and one deck below Lido, where lots of stuff is located. Being extreme aft, we did not experience any noise from Lido deck. The crew were great. The captain made informative announcements each day at noon. The cruise director, PJ, was the best we've seen. Such a nice, energetic, funny guy. He even came to our veterans gathering and spent quite a lot of time with us, expressing genuine appreciation for our service. I don't think I had a single bad encounter with any crew members. This is unusual, as there is usually someone having a bad day or something. Everyone seemed cheerful and happy to be there, even though I know that is not always the case. Let's be real; these people sign-on for 6 months of grueling work and it's hard to always be 'up' for the passengers. Food ranged from good to outstanding. We never had a bad experience. We found the buffet to be pretty good, which isn't always the case. I had chicken cacciatore in Da Vinci DR for lunch on embarkation day and it was fantastic. I do see what some have said about the pizza served by the pool. It wasn't as good as I remember from past cruises. I wonder if Princess has changed the recipe... We had a great shore excursion at Las Caletas in Puerto Vallarta. I highly recommend this one. We paid extra to spend time with the sea lions and stingrays and it was well worth it. On the downside, we wasted our Cabo day on the Cabo San Lucas City Highlights tour. This one spends far too much time on the bus, either driving around or sitting on the side of the road while the guide talks. The glass blowing factory was what we were looking forward to, and the tour only spent 25 minutes there out of many hours. Princess advertises Cabo as 7:00 AM - 2:00 PM. However, what you don't know is that you must be in line for the tender by 1:00 PM, so it's one hour shorter on an already short port day. Cabo is the best destination of the three, so it's frustrating that the ship stays there such a short time. Lots of stuff to do on sea days. Pretty much anyone should be able to find something that appeals to their interests. We enjoyed numerous trivia games, shows and other activities. One thing I really appreciated was not having someone pushing drink packages and other packages constantly. I got asked occasionally and that was fine. I've been on a couple of other cruise lines that really push this stuff to the point of having someone asking me every 15-30 minutes and it gets old fast. Disembarkation was as easy as embarkation. Great cruise overall and I would definitely do it again, sans the Cabo bus tour. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2018
Overall the cruise was good. Shows were just O.K. The food however seemed to be a little bland and portion size seemed to be that for a 2 year old. I felt like I had to order 2 entrees to complete a meal but stuck to one. Had the sip and ... Read More
Overall the cruise was good. Shows were just O.K. The food however seemed to be a little bland and portion size seemed to be that for a 2 year old. I felt like I had to order 2 entrees to complete a meal but stuck to one. Had the sip and sail package, and when asked for a can of soda to take back to the room for later, was told only fountain sodas with sip and sail. Water was also to be part of the package but when going into port was charged for it. As for the staff they were great. Our cabin steward was quick about his business and always kept our ice bucket full as requested. Our dining room waiter and assistant waiter were always there and service with a smile. On our second formal night, the kitchen could not keep up with the orders for lobster tail and it took an hour and 45 minutes to receive our main course. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2018
I saw some bad reviews and just don't get it. We just finished 21 Princess cruises all in the VG - Excellent category. I had a conversation with another old timer on the ship and we compared notes about how great cruising is and why a ... Read More
I saw some bad reviews and just don't get it. We just finished 21 Princess cruises all in the VG - Excellent category. I had a conversation with another old timer on the ship and we compared notes about how great cruising is and why a number of cruisers never seem to enjoy themselves. Oh well... From the time we got to the ship everything went smoothly. Very few people in lines and then right on to the ship. Our room was ready so we left our carry ons and headed to the buffet. Our main dining room table was waiting for the 4 of us and the wait staff were excellent - again. There's always more to do than we have time but I especially liked the choice of movies under the stars with popcorn delivered to my chair. We talked to great people, entered many contests, won a bottle of champaign at one (gave it away to a couple near us) and did the Mexican hat dance in the Piazza. We've been to all the ports several times and always find something new to explore. The worst part of the cruise was having to get off the ship when it ended. NOW - the confusion with our Air Canada flight was another issue but we didn't let that take away from our great cruise with Princess. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
This cruise was selected as an affordable, relaxing getaway from the dreary Pacific Northwest winter weather (which actually hasn't been as bad as usual this year!) We flew to LAX the evening before, and requested a Lyft ride from our ... Read More
This cruise was selected as an affordable, relaxing getaway from the dreary Pacific Northwest winter weather (which actually hasn't been as bad as usual this year!) We flew to LAX the evening before, and requested a Lyft ride from our hotel to the port at about 10:30am, arriving at the pier at about 11:15. Check in went very quickly, but we had to wait longer than expected to board due to late return of the ship. We were in boarding group 8, and were able to drop off our carry-ons in the cabin and go to the Da Vinci dining room for a relaxing and delicious lunch. We found the ship to be clean and in generally good repair. One frustration to us, as avid outdoor walkers, was that the Promenade deck was partially blocked several different days for maintenance tasks, both in port, which I would expect, and at sea the last day (really not okay!) We were always able to find deck loungers when we wanted them, as well as quiet indoor spaces to relax during the day. The gym has a good variety of equipment, including a Bosu ball (my favorite workout activity at sea). For the most part, we found the food to be good to excellent quality for what you can reasonably expect on a ship this size and at this price. There was a great selection in the Horizon Court buffet for lunch and dinner, and the menu varied from day to day. I could not even sample everything that appealed to me. We especially loved the expansive salad bar. We had most dinners in the MDR, and I think one or two breakfasts. There were a couple of nights when ATD was very poorly managed, with people lining up to the IC for 20+ minutes rather than being checked in and given pagers. Then suddenly, they began seating all of us. Service in the MDR was extremely slow one night when we were at a table of 6, other nights it moved along at a reasonable pace. Sometimes we shared, other times we requested a 2 top. There will be a few "sour apples" wherever you go, but the majority of the crew members we interacted with were very helpful, kind, and interesting to talk with. There was a nice variety of entertainment, but times when it was difficult or impossible to find a seat. Another big glitch was the lack of communication regarding the cancellation of the second performance of "Magic To Do" (due to technical issues). It was very poorly handled, and left a very negative impression with passengers who wanted to see it and could not. We tried to get in to the first showing but it was too full. The "Colors of the World" and Folkloric shows were both enjoyable and no problem getting seats. I really wish Princess still had crew talent shows, those are my favorite. Our cabin, a Caribe deck balcony, was comfortable and we loved the extended balcony. It was on the starboard side, and we enjoyed a few sunsets with a glass of wine as we traveled south. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
Overall: Our experience was highly soured by the service issues below. Had they not happened, this would have been a mediocre cruise. Service: We had two major issues during our cruise. At our first port, we had booked an outside ... Read More
Overall: Our experience was highly soured by the service issues below. Had they not happened, this would have been a mediocre cruise. Service: We had two major issues during our cruise. At our first port, we had booked an outside excursion based on the cruise itinerary. We were warned ahead of time by the tour operator that the cruise might be on a different time zone, so I called ahead to Princess to verify the time we were planning on getting into port and was given the wrong time, making us miss our entire day's activity. We lost a deposit and a small amount of money on internet and phone charges trying to rectify it, but were given no assistance or even good-will gesture on board to make up for this error on their part and were referred to 'corporate'. It took days to reach them and they also refused to acknowledge fault or make any gesture to rectify the situation. Our second day in port we had booked an overpriced resort day pass with Princess' official excursions. We were a few minutes late to the meeting when my watch lost time overnight and were willing to pay our own way over to the resort. However, main staff had no way of contacting the excursion staff, and when we met with the excursion staff member, she would not tell us where the group went and had no way of contacting any other staff. We had to ask a random taxi driver where the cruise passengers usually go to find it, and our passes and when we finally arrived our passes were not fully honored, so we essentially paid $160 to sit on a crowded beach to be accosted every minute by schlock hustlers. We had to pay our own way back as well. We could not obtain a refund for this excursion either. The rest pales by comparison, although there were small issues with cabin service. Entertainment: Difficult to participate (i.e. Karaoke booked out before it formally began), and otherwise mediocre. Dining: Share restaurant was excellent. Main dining halls were good. Buffets were mediocre. Service in dining halls was very good, but limited during day in buffet areas. Cabin: Aging, but mostly clean. Reasonably spacious with nicely sized balcony. Ports and shore excursions: As above- otherwise issues included having very short window of time in Los Cabos, the third port and one of the locations with the most to do. Lines to get back to the cruise (tendering required) were extensive, and activity repertoire was limited by short time frame. Ship facilities: OK. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We had hoped this cruise would a be convenient escape from winter weather. Unfortunately, it was poorly managed, lacking in concerns for sanitation, fraught with hard-sales desperation and lacking in adequate accommodations for ... Read More
We had hoped this cruise would a be convenient escape from winter weather. Unfortunately, it was poorly managed, lacking in concerns for sanitation, fraught with hard-sales desperation and lacking in adequate accommodations for passengers! 3 days after departing on a 14 day cruise, I became ill with a strange virus and was denied access to medical care, but instead told to buy cough syrup! 3 days after completing the cruise I am now still recovering and receiving care from my doctor! Regarding the cruise experience; the food quality was average, service was generally disappointing, there was little oversight regarding sanitation of food preparation and service, and the management of disembarkation, transition between ships and direction to transportation was severally lacking! And forget about wifi access in your cabin, though we were told we would have this, there was essentially none. And if you have kids, don't expect in room entertaining TV for them! We did enjoy our excursion to Las Caletas, but Cabo San Lucas was rather disappointing! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We wanted to try out a new cruise line and some new ports, so we decided to take the Mexican Riviera cruise with Princess for our 15th anniversary. We were highly disappointed. I had always heard that Princess was a much nicer cruise ... Read More
We wanted to try out a new cruise line and some new ports, so we decided to take the Mexican Riviera cruise with Princess for our 15th anniversary. We were highly disappointed. I had always heard that Princess was a much nicer cruise experience but we just felt that it was way overpriced for what you got. In the past we have cruised Carnival and MSC. This was our 14th cruise. Carnival is better than Princess, in our opinion, and there is no comparison between MSC and Princess. MSC wins on everything. The food was extremely repetitive and most days for lunch ended up having a salad because it was the same food options everyday in the buffet. This was the first cruise that I ever lost weight on. The traditional dining experience wasn't any better. I am not sure who came up with the menu options for this cruise but it was awful. Entertainment was poor. The magician and the comedian were good but the magician only had a show one night. The comedian had an early and a late show one night and then another night had 1 late show. The Mexican folklore show was okay. But their other shows were extremely disappointing and we actually got up and walked out half way through the "Magic to Do" show which Princess seems to think is so great. It isn't. The hard sell on this cruise ship was the worst I have ever seen. We spent $400 for a couples massage and then my massage therapist actually got pissed off because I wouldn't buy the extremely overpriced lotion she was trying to force on me. Usually I make 3-4 visits to the spa on a cruise but after this experience I never went back. Selling on this ship is out of control. They walk around while you are eating in the buffet trying to get you to sign up for wine tastings or specialty restaurants. You couldn't walk into a store without them trying to redirect you to the overpriced Effy store. My husband forgot his cuff links. Every store told us that we had to go to the Effy store for cuff links where they were almost $200 a pair. We searched ourselves and were able to get him a pair for $10 in the store where tshirts and logo stuff was sold. Debarkation was also the most organized and stressful that we have ever seen on a ship. We were an hour late getting into port and this just seemed to throw everything off. There was very little communication about what was going on and everyone was trying to wait in the same area because no one was telling anyone what was going on or what to do. We ended up being 2 hours late getting off the ship. We even witnessed a Princess employee getting very rude with cruisers that were upset about missing their flights. There were a few things we did like. We enjoyed have a drink each evening before dinner in the Vines Wine Bar. Their waiter and bartender were very entertaining and knowledgeable about their wine offerings. Our room steward was also really good. After asking him for something once, he always made sure we had what we needed for the rest of the week. Cabo San Lucas was another highlight. It is a beautiful port. We did the whale watching tour offered by Princess and we totally enjoyed ourselves. It was a relaxing day of whale watching and saw quite a few of the whales that are in the area for the season. The only disappointment was that we left the port at 2pm and didn't really get to enjoy the port after our tour. The line was so long to get a tender back to the ship that we were afraid to do anything and risk being too late for a tender. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
my group arrived late for embarkation but the crew got us registered and on the ship pretty quickly, we had to carry our own luggage which was a bummer but it was okay especially after I heard from other cruisers that their bags came up ... Read More
my group arrived late for embarkation but the crew got us registered and on the ship pretty quickly, we had to carry our own luggage which was a bummer but it was okay especially after I heard from other cruisers that their bags came up missing, I was disappointed in my cabin , I paid for balcony stateroom and my children stayed in an inside cabin which I found to be the same exact size, only difference was I had a balcony. I have cruised many times before and always get a balcony or suite so I was extremely disappointed. the only good thing about the room was my room steward kept it nice and clean the entire time. I took this cruise for my birthday and found very little night life on this cruise, I was a little bored , it seemed like everyone slept for 2 or 3 days before I even saw movement or any entertainment. The night club didn't start playing music till 11pm and by 1:30am nobody was around. I could not even enjoy my balcony because the people next to me complained about noise the entire time , it was as if they got on board to sleep. The buffet was small and didn't have many choices but the dining room was nice, I enjoyed sitting down for a nice meal every night. The pool was nice and so were the Jacuzzi's . I had a spa treatment and ended up getting blisters on my feet and was told to see the ships doctor but of course I would have to pay out of pocket. I was not offered any compensation at all. I paid for a private balcony breakfast which I never received because room service lost my ticket, they claimed they would give it to me another day but never showed up !!! and I never received a refund which of course I asked for. the ports were beautiful !!! we took a tour of the city in Puerto Vallarta , saw the church and beautiful boardwalk, then did a tequila tasting and did a little shopping before we headed to the jungle where we zip lined, afterwards we had a great lunch of lobster and shrimp and fish which was the most delicious meal I have ever had it was very fresh !! in Mazatlan we did a city tour and saw the cathedral which was absolutely breath taking!! we got some great photos and had had lunch on the beach. In Cabo we got off the ship and took a tour on a glass bottom boat afterwards it dropped us at Medano beach where we stopped at the Office and ate and drank some more tequila. The prices were great the bottle of tequila (Don Julio) and 8 plates of food came to about $100. We spent some time on the beach and relaxed. ON the way back one of the boat operators stole from us so that left a bad taste in our mouth for that port. I go on cruises just about every year sometimes twice a year and I doubt that I will ever cruise on Princess again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We booked this cruise was for my 75th Birthday celebration. Our cabin steward, Cyrus, was excellent and kept the cabin neat and clean without being intrusive. The Botticelli dining wait staff, Richard and Edson, were excellent and service ... Read More
We booked this cruise was for my 75th Birthday celebration. Our cabin steward, Cyrus, was excellent and kept the cabin neat and clean without being intrusive. The Botticelli dining wait staff, Richard and Edson, were excellent and service was what we've come to expect from Princess. The Princess Theater singers and dancers were very enthusiastic and talented and although we've seen these production shows many times, they still are interesting and exciting to watch. The featured singer, David Austen, was one of best we heard on a cruise and we bought his CD. The comedian, Doug Funk, was a fantastic improvisationalist, and had the audience laughing from the beginning to end of his performance. He was assisted by some very bright and engaging volunteer audience participants. The assistant cruise director, a young man from Australia, was very funny and always had a smile for everyone entertaining everyone with his dialect impersonations. The Ruby, even thought it is not one of the newest Princess ships, still looked great and was well maintained. However, it is due for a refurb, especially the cabin carpets because some passengers are not careful about spills that leave minor stains that can't be removed by shampooing. We saw about a dozen whales and many, many dolphins that rollicked in the bow waves of the ship jumping and doing flips at the cheers and laughter of the passengers. In Puerto Vallarta we were in port with the Grand Princess and were berthed at pier 3 since the usual pier 1 area is under construction. We repeated the Viva Tequila excursion since we enjoyed it so much the last time we did it in March 2017. It has changed with the open air, multi-car "trolley" thru the city tour was replaced with a bus because the city decided it was too disruptive to local traffic. The Tequila Museum is a newer building converted by the Mexican Tequila producers and is in a refurbed large stage theater. We were given "unlimited" margaritas made the traditional Mexican way not the American way and they were much better. The museum staff gave a tour and presentation on the myths and origin of tequila and how it is made which was very informative. In the theater there was an enlightening discussion of how to drink and distinguish between the major varieties of tequila based on its processing and aging. We then had a sample of each of the tequila varieties, Blanca/Silver, Reposado and Anejo to taste. One of the best folkloric shows that we've ever seen was then presented. This was then followed by a short walk to the beach for a complementary lunch at the Mangos beach side restaurant. Highly recommend this excursion when in Puerto Vallarta. At Cabo we were in port with Holland America's Westerdam which left with us and we paralleled our courses all the way to LA being only a little more than mile or so apart for the last 2 days. It was neat to see their lights at night off the port side. In summary, the cruise on the Ruby was great and we truly did come back relaxed and renewed. Read Less
Ruby Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 3.9
Entertainment 4.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 3.0 4.0
Family 4.0 4.0
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.9
Enrichment 4.0 3.6
Service 4.0 4.2
Value For Money 4.0 4.0
Rates 4.0 4.2

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