We sailed to Alaska on the Golden Princess with my husband's family for his dad's 80th birthday. There are a few things Princess did right - embarkation and disembarkation were easy and very well organized. Transfers to the excursions were excellent as well. All were on time and very professional. We were in a mini-suite with balcony. It was somewhat dated but fine. The beds were super comfortable. Melvin, our cabin steward, was friendly and kept our cabin fresh and clean. There were enough issues on the ship, however, that would keep me from sailing again on Princess. I agree with other reviews that parts of the ship had a strong sewer like smell. I felt fortunate that it was not near our cabin and we avoided the areas that smelled as best as we could. They obviously know about this problem but seem to have no solution for it. I also thought the food in the main dining rooms was mediocre at best. Service was slow and I got very tired of sitting at dinner for over 2 hours. Food was better in the specialty restaurants. Many of the machines in the work out room did not work and there were no personnel in there to fix them or indicate that they were not working. The only water available in the work out room was from a drinking fountain that did not work. This is ridiculous. Could they not spring for a cooler and paper cups to keep people hydrated while working out? They also said that bottled water would be available to purchase prior to leaving on excursions. We only saw this on the first day. This all was very frustrating as water from the tap tasted terrible.
My biggest complaint and what would keep me from every sailing Princess again was the price of internet. My daughter was enrolled in 2 college online courses while on the cruise so we had no choice but to keep her connected and purchase internet access. Princess charges by the minute and it is very expensive and the connection slow which ate up the minutes quickly. We spend over $500 in internet charges. This is contrary to Norwegian and Royal Caribbean which charge $25 and $15 respectively per day for unlimited internet. Our circumstance for needing internet daily may have been unusual but compared to other cruise lines, it felt wrong to pay that much. Alaska was beautiful and the issues did not ruin the trip but I would not choose to travel this way again.
The mini-suite was spacious enough for 2 people. The furnishings were dated but fine. The bathroom small - 2 people could not be in there at the same time. The water pressure in the shower was great but the shower tile looked grimy. The bed was super comfortable.