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We chose Princess because we had always heard that Princess really dominates in Alaska. We could not tell that, especially since our Princess ship was usually docked the farthest from the main downtown areas of each port. And there were certainly other ships that joined us on the same route into Glacier Bay. We enjoyed our Princess excursions but would have appreciated knowing before hand that the only probability of seeing whales in late July was in Juneau. We booked helicopter to glacier and dog sledding and loved it, but never saw a whale at all on our cruise. We did our water excursion down in Ketchikan and were told that we should have booked water excursion in Juneau if we wanted to see whales this time of year. Our very first cruise 13 years ago was on Princess and we still remember how wonderful the food was. This time, not at all. Very limited menus and dishes were odd and not well prepared. Hamburgers were average and my son did not like the pizza. Steakhouse and Share were good but not fabulous. Bartenders really had better things to do rather than acknowledge our presence or ask what we would like. Main dining staff were excellent and our cabin steward was wonderful. Comedian was not great and my son did not enjoy the teen area very much. He mostly watched movies in the room and ordered room service and they could not even get a kid's cheese quesadilla or grilled cheese sandwich correct. The quesadilla (kids) came with tons of onions and spices. The grilled cheese was two pieces of toast with un-melted cheese in the middle. He was very bored on Ruby Princess and staff even agreed that at 15, they could totally understand that. Most music was for an older generation and we are in our 50s so we did not enjoy that either. Movies Under the Stars were all things we've seen a million times or did not even recognize. On the plus side, the bed was so comfortable I got the best sleep of my life onboard.

Food & entertainment has gone way downhill on Princess

Ruby Princess Cruise Review by KBates1030

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: July 2019
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: Vista Suite with Balcony
We chose Princess because we had always heard that Princess really dominates in Alaska. We could not tell that, especially since our Princess ship was usually docked the farthest from the main downtown areas of each port. And there were certainly other ships that joined us on the same route into Glacier Bay. We enjoyed our Princess excursions but would have appreciated knowing before hand that the only probability of seeing whales in late July was in Juneau. We booked helicopter to glacier and dog sledding and loved it, but never saw a whale at all on our cruise. We did our water excursion down in Ketchikan and were told that we should have booked water excursion in Juneau if we wanted to see whales this time of year.

Our very first cruise 13 years ago was on Princess and we still remember how wonderful the food was. This time, not at all. Very limited menus and dishes were odd and not well prepared. Hamburgers were average and my son did not like the pizza. Steakhouse and Share were good but not fabulous. Bartenders really had better things to do rather than acknowledge our presence or ask what we would like. Main dining staff were excellent and our cabin steward was wonderful. Comedian was not great and my son did not enjoy the teen area very much. He mostly watched movies in the room and ordered room service and they could not even get a kid's cheese quesadilla or grilled cheese sandwich correct. The quesadilla (kids) came with tons of onions and spices. The grilled cheese was two pieces of toast with un-melted cheese in the middle. He was very bored on Ruby Princess and staff even agreed that at 15, they could totally understand that. Most music was for an older generation and we are in our 50s so we did not enjoy that either. Movies Under the Stars were all things we've seen a million times or did not even recognize.

On the plus side, the bed was so comfortable I got the best sleep of my life onboard.
KBates1030’s Full Rating Summary
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Ages 13 to 15
Service
Onboard Experience
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Cabin Review

Vista Suite with Balcony
Cabin S6 D736
The cabin was great, although the sitting area looks wider in the pictures. Shower was very small and leaked constantly so used a lot of towels. Huge Jacuzzi tub that we never used. Would have preferred a larger shower instead. Bunk that pulled down from the ceiling over sofa was perfect for our 15 yr old son. Plenty of storage and liked that shower, toilet and sink were all separate areas. Balcony was huge and wonderful!
Caribe Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Glacier Bay
    Hardly any snow due to the warm summer they are having. Kept saying, "There is usually snow on the tops of those mountains over there." Glaciers seemed very small and not what we have heard about at all. Calving (the little we saw and heard) was impressive because of the sound.
    View All 748 Glacier Bay Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Glacier Bay Cruise Port Review
  • Dog Sledding
    You don't really go very far and basically just do a circle very near the dog camp. Could only interact with dogs from your sled and only 1 puppy onsite. People were great and the dogs were so much fun.
    View All 147 Dog Sledding Reviews
  • Helicopter Tour
    Helicopter tour to Mendenhall Glacier was fabulous! Did not even get air sick which was a surprise for me. The views were incredible!
    View All 125 Helicopter Tour Reviews
  • Mendenhall Glacier
    Incredible to be on top of a glacier! Views were magnificent.
    View All 889 Mendenhall Glacier Reviews
  • Mount Roberts Tramway
    Mount Roberts Tramway was not that great and the restaurant at the top was awful. Out of everything we tried to order, took forever just to get drinks, overpriced. Tram was so crowded that it was not enjoyable. No AC on tram either and it was hot!
    View All 235 Mount Roberts Tramway Reviews
  • Zodiac Boat
    Very rainy and rough seas. Only wildlife we saw were eagle and one or two seals at a distance. Could only see their heads anyway.
    View All 32 Zodiac Boat Reviews
  • City Tour
    Was disappointed because tour guide said we could not get to Ballard Locks because of construction. Took us to Fisherman's Wharf instead which was boring and empty. The rest was good though.
    View All 50 City Tour Reviews
  • Pike Place Market
    Very crowded but worth seeing and eating at. Pike Place Chowder was excellent and worth the wait in line.
    View All 57 Pike Place Market Reviews
  • Space Needle
    Interesting and worth doing. Restaurant is gone so many more people up there at the same time. Have to wait a bit to get back down.
    View All 46 Space Needle Reviews
  • Underground Tour
    Very good tour guide and very interesting how they created the city and finally pushed back the ocean and built over original city to create sewer system.
    View All 19 Underground Tour Reviews
  • Horse-Drawn Carriage Tour
    Was not a carriage at all but a large trolley with bench seats. Not what we were expecting. Mostly went around the neighborhoods with the exception of going around the capital building. Did not go downtown at all and can't get off once on.
    View All 31 Horse-Drawn Carriage Tour Reviews

One thing I wish I had known before scheduling the tours was that by late July, all the whales have migrated up to Juneau. In Juneau, we did a helicopter ride to the top of the glacier with dog sledding, which was awesome, except that I never saw even 1 whale on my 7 day cruise. We did our boat tour in Ketchikan and saw nothing but a couple of eagles that she threw fish out to make them come down near us. She said we should have done a whale tour in Juneau at this time. We did not even see any in Glacier Bay! Our neighbor cabin went fishing in Juneau and had a humpback swim under their boat and surface practically next to them.