1. Home
  2. Cruise Reviews
  3. Ruby Princess
OVERALL This was our 4th cruise on Princess. There were hits & misses. We have also cruised on Norwegian & Royal Caribbean. HIT: Even though the ship is due for a refurbishment in dry dock fairly soon, I was pleasantly surprised by its condition. Sure, there were a few nicks in the statement (desk chair, coffee table). Public areas were very well maintained. I especially enjoyed the three level Piazza area. It’s a fun sort of “town square” for various entertainment throughout the cruise, and it is surrounded by several bars and the International Café where you can grab a beverage and enjoy the festivities. I particularly enjoyed the Mariachi band (it was a Mexican Riviera cruise, after all!) that played several times during the cruise. Really puts you in the mood to enjoy the beauty and culture of Mexico! MIXED: Most of the crew members were very professional, helpful and friendly. One notable exception: the female crew members who served as “greeters” outside the main dining rooms. They were downright mean & rude! I joke to my husband that they had been sent to “Mean Girl” training. There was a very wide age range among the passengers: from babies to senior citizens. I was surprised by how many children were on a cruise in mid-February, but it appeared that several families were taking a multi-generational cruise: grandparents, parents, children. Most children were well-behaved, and we enjoyed the entertainment that they provided. HIT: I loved that you no longer have to sign a paper slip each time you purchase a drink or other minor item. The staff just scans your cruise card. An automatic gratuity is added to your bill for alcoholic beverages. While this is just another method of the cruise line to reach into your wallet, it does remove the 15% - 20% math computation, which is kind of nice because you are on vacation and probably don’t want to do a lot of math. MISS: Speaking of reaching into your wallet, the amount of upselling on this cruise was annoying. There is always someone pushing that damn Bellini cart around – morning, day and night. The aggressive sales pitch in the spa may keep me from visiting a Princess spa again. It was that annoying. HIT: We saw dolphins & whales from our cabin’s balcony. This was really neat, and we didn’t expect this. Also, the “Pacific” Ocean definitely lived up to its name. The ride was very smooth throughout the cruise. I never felt nausea of any sort. (We were those wrist-bands, just in case.) MISS: The ship’s WiFi is SLOW and costly (if you opt to pay to access the Internet). We had to wait in line at the Internet Café in order to learn how to access the minutes we had pre-purchased on the Princess website before the cruise. We had lots of company among other passengers who had done the same thing and were equally confused. MISS: Luggage drop-off at embarkation was confusing. (On the positive side, it didn’t take long for our luggage to show up in our cabin.) The rest of the embarkation went smoothly. The disembarkation process was disorderly. It was challenging to figure out how to get a cab to LAX. DINING MISS: The Main Dining Rooms were a huge miss for us. We like Anytime Dining, and have generally found (on Princess & other cruise lines) if we show up at 7:30 pm or later, there is no wait. That was NOT the case on the Ruby. The lines for the dining rooms were excessive, so we only ate there one night during the cruise and once for breakfast. If you want to dine alone as a couple, good luck. You will be seated so close to the next table-for-two that you might as well all be seated at the same table. In general, there were just not enough available dining facilities to accommodate the number of passengers on this ship. HIT: The food at the Crown Grill & Salty Dog (both specialty restaurants requiring an additional charge) was excellent. Service was very good. MISS: Placing an order for Room Service was incredibly frustrating. The extension was generally busy. We had to call repeatedly about 5 to 10 times to get someone to answer. After the order was placed, however, service was efficient. The food was okay. Pizza was so-so (and requires an additional $3.00 charge). They claim to be the “best pizza at sea”. Must not have much competition then. MISS: The buffet was always crowded & difficult to navigate. Finding a table was challenging. Food was mediocre. Where were the peanut butter cookies that previous cruisers have raved about? HIT: I read several reviews about stinginess with butter. We did not find this to be the case. So, no butter shortage as far as we were concerned. HIT: Specialty coffee at the International Café was surprisingly good, but – again – for a fee. I didn’t try coffee in any of the other venues because past cruise ship experiences have taught me the coffee is awful. CABIN HIT: For us, the mini-suite is one of our favorite Princess features. It is the perfect size for a couple, and we love the balcony. The bed was very comfortable. The bathroom is a good size with a shower/tub combo and ample counter space. There are two decent TVs, but the selection of shows is spotty, at best. We enjoyed watching several “Love Boat” episodes, as we grew up during the 1970s. There is plenty of room for storage. Our cabin steward, Catherine, was among the best we have ever had. She efficiently refreshed our cabin when we went out for breakfast in the morning, and then again when we left for a drink in the evening. We are not particularly “needy” with requests, but for the few minor items that we did request (extra towels for the balcony chairs, extra blankets because it was rather cold for the first two days of the cruise, wine glasses, etc.), they were brought to us promptly. Only liquid shower gel is available in the bathroom. Fortunately, we had brought our own bar soap because that is what we prefer. SUMMARY I would not rule out a Princess cruise in the future, but I am inclined to return to Norwegian or Royal Caribbean, particularly due to greater variety of dining choices, plus the quality of the food. For me, the only thing Princess offers about the other cruise lines is the mini-suite option. I am also inclined to try a Celebrity or Viking Ocean Cruise.

Ruby Princess – 7-Day Mexican Riviera Itinerary – February 2018

Ruby Princess Cruise Review by SweetPea2222

2 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: February 2018
  • Destination: Mexican Riviera
  • Cabin Type: Mini-Suite with Balcony
OVERALL

This was our 4th cruise on Princess. There were hits & misses. We have also cruised on Norwegian & Royal Caribbean.

HIT: Even though the ship is due for a refurbishment in dry dock fairly soon, I was pleasantly surprised by its condition. Sure, there were a few nicks in the statement (desk chair, coffee table). Public areas were very well maintained. I especially enjoyed the three level Piazza area. It’s a fun sort of “town square” for various entertainment throughout the cruise, and it is surrounded by several bars and the International Café where you can grab a beverage and enjoy the festivities. I particularly enjoyed the Mariachi band (it was a Mexican Riviera cruise, after all!) that played several times during the cruise. Really puts you in the mood to enjoy the beauty and culture of Mexico!

MIXED: Most of the crew members were very professional, helpful and friendly. One notable exception: the female crew members who served as “greeters” outside the main dining rooms. They were downright mean & rude! I joke to my husband that they had been sent to “Mean Girl” training.

There was a very wide age range among the passengers: from babies to senior citizens. I was surprised by how many children were on a cruise in mid-February, but it appeared that several families were taking a multi-generational cruise: grandparents, parents, children. Most children were well-behaved, and we enjoyed the entertainment that they provided.

HIT: I loved that you no longer have to sign a paper slip each time you purchase a drink or other minor item. The staff just scans your cruise card. An automatic gratuity is added to your bill for alcoholic beverages. While this is just another method of the cruise line to reach into your wallet, it does remove the 15% - 20% math computation, which is kind of nice because you are on vacation and probably don’t want to do a lot of math.

MISS: Speaking of reaching into your wallet, the amount of upselling on this cruise was annoying. There is always someone pushing that damn Bellini cart around – morning, day and night. The aggressive sales pitch in the spa may keep me from visiting a Princess spa again. It was that annoying.

HIT: We saw dolphins & whales from our cabin’s balcony. This was really neat, and we didn’t expect this. Also, the “Pacific” Ocean definitely lived up to its name. The ride was very smooth throughout the cruise. I never felt nausea of any sort. (We were those wrist-bands, just in case.)

MISS: The ship’s WiFi is SLOW and costly (if you opt to pay to access the Internet). We had to wait in line at the Internet Café in order to learn how to access the minutes we had pre-purchased on the Princess website before the cruise. We had lots of company among other passengers who had done the same thing and were equally confused.

MISS: Luggage drop-off at embarkation was confusing. (On the positive side, it didn’t take long for our luggage to show up in our cabin.) The rest of the embarkation went smoothly. The disembarkation process was disorderly. It was challenging to figure out how to get a cab to LAX.

DINING

MISS: The Main Dining Rooms were a huge miss for us. We like Anytime Dining, and have generally found (on Princess & other cruise lines) if we show up at 7:30 pm or later, there is no wait. That was NOT the case on the Ruby. The lines for the dining rooms were excessive, so we only ate there one night during the cruise and once for breakfast. If you want to dine alone as a couple, good luck. You will be seated so close to the next table-for-two that you might as well all be seated at the same table. In general, there were just not enough available dining facilities to accommodate the number of passengers on this ship.

HIT: The food at the Crown Grill & Salty Dog (both specialty restaurants requiring an additional charge) was excellent. Service was very good.

MISS: Placing an order for Room Service was incredibly frustrating. The extension was generally busy. We had to call repeatedly about 5 to 10 times to get someone to answer. After the order was placed, however, service was efficient. The food was okay. Pizza was so-so (and requires an additional $3.00 charge). They claim to be the “best pizza at sea”. Must not have much competition then.

MISS: The buffet was always crowded & difficult to navigate. Finding a table was challenging. Food was mediocre. Where were the peanut butter cookies that previous cruisers have raved about?

HIT: I read several reviews about stinginess with butter. We did not find this to be the case. So, no butter shortage as far as we were concerned.

HIT: Specialty coffee at the International Café was surprisingly good, but – again – for a fee. I didn’t try coffee in any of the other venues because past cruise ship experiences have taught me the coffee is awful.

CABIN

HIT: For us, the mini-suite is one of our favorite Princess features. It is the perfect size for a couple, and we love the balcony. The bed was very comfortable. The bathroom is a good size with a shower/tub combo and ample counter space. There are two decent TVs, but the selection of shows is spotty, at best. We enjoyed watching several “Love Boat” episodes, as we grew up during the 1970s. There is plenty of room for storage. Our cabin steward, Catherine, was among the best we have ever had. She efficiently refreshed our cabin when we went out for breakfast in the morning, and then again when we left for a drink in the evening. We are not particularly “needy” with requests, but for the few minor items that we did request (extra towels for the balcony chairs, extra blankets because it was rather cold for the first two days of the cruise, wine glasses, etc.), they were brought to us promptly. Only liquid shower gel is available in the bathroom. Fortunately, we had brought our own bar soap because that is what we prefer.

SUMMARY

I would not rule out a Princess cruise in the future, but I am inclined to return to Norwegian or Royal Caribbean, particularly due to greater variety of dining choices, plus the quality of the food. For me, the only thing Princess offers about the other cruise lines is the mini-suite option. I am also inclined to try a Celebrity or Viking Ocean Cruise.
SweetPea2222’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Service
Onboard Experience
Free Price Drop Alerts
Get Ruby Princess price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email

Cabin Review

Mini-Suite with Balcony
Cabin ME D330
HIT: For us, the mini-suite is one of our favorite Princess features. It is the perfect size for a couple, and we love the balcony. The bed was very comfortable. The bathroom is a good size with a shower/tub combo and ample counter space. There are two decent TVs, but the selection of shows is spotty, at best. We enjoyed watching several “Love Boat” episodes, as we grew up during the 1970s. There is plenty of room for storage. Our cabin steward, Catherine, was among the best we have ever had. She efficiently refreshed our cabin when we went out for breakfast in the morning, and then again when we left for a drink in the evening. We are not particularly “needy” with requests, but for the few minor items that we did request (extra towels for the balcony chairs, extra blankets because it was rather cold for the first two days of the cruise, wine glasses, etc.), they were brought to us promptly. Only liquid shower gel is available in the bathroom. Fortunately, we had brought our own bar soap because that is what we prefer.
Dolphin Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews