Royal Princess Cruise Review by rizzik01
- Sail Date: July 2019
- Destination: Alaska
- Cabin Type: Balcony
We booked an excursion in every port we stopped in. The train, suspension bridge and garden lunch in Skagway was a delight. In Juneau, we were sadly disappointed to find that most morning plane or helicopter rides are cancelled due to low cloud coverage. We had booked a helicopter ride to Mendehall Glacier followed by a salmon bake. Since my husband and I had to "split" our preferences for this excursion, my husband (and actually me too!!) were disappointed that our tour was cancelled in the morning because of cloud coverage - so we were rescheduled for the afternoon which meant we had to give up the salmon bake. We were refunded $60 - which irritated me a bit - as the salmon bake itself is $60 a piece. So......for Juneau........book any "flight" tours after 12pm! In Ketchikan, we chose the backwater tour - a wonderful tour that took us in a little rubber boat (w/motor) through some inlets to check out seals, eagles. Never saw a bear or moose. The boats accommodate 3 people comfortably. However, they book the rafts to accommodate 4 people. My husband was lucky enough to get perched on the side of the boat - hanging on and riding backwards. The water was rough - and he spent the majority of his boat ride getting beat up by the pounding of the boat - and unable to anticipate the waves - as he was riding backwards. If you book this cruise, demand no more that 3 people be in your boat.
The ship was wonderful - the comedians were off the charts!.. Service was excellent everywhere. The staff is well trained and very professional. I was disappointed in our dining service - disappointed with Princess cruises - not our staff. There should be more servers working the evening dining room. You'll see staff tripping over themselves in the buffet dining room - not so in the main dining room. We dined as a group of 16 - in Concerto - my time dining. Drink service was very slow. I don't believe it is a reflection on the staff - just that staff has been given more tables to serve than they can adequately serve - and perhaps the bar is too far away? If you didn't order 2 drinks at the same time - and preferred a glass of wine for dinner let's say - you needed to order it when you ordered your pre-dinner cocktail - or that "dinner" cocktail would be served AFTER you were done with dinner. Somehow Princess needs to work the kinks out with that.
The medallion fobs were great for getting in your room. NO fishing for a key to get in. However, using that fob in other areas of the ship - not so smooth. In the casino - very frustrating - with a huge learning curve - that will cost you $$ if you're not careful. ALWAYS sign into your machine first - or your $$ goes to the person's account who played before you. I guess they assume no one travels with cash. Or that no one likes to play machines "anonymously" without having an account that the casino can track. So - not five stars because of level of dining service, too many people on boat excursion and casino usage of medallion.
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To see glaciers calving, seals perched on an icebergs - was off the charts! Our room was always tidy - and I kid you not - we never saw our room steward - he was stealth like!! We had a balcony cabin. We have traveled other cruise lines in a jr suite - so was surprised at how tight our accommodations were. Would definitely travel in a suite next cruise with Princess!
Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
Glacier BayThe Glaciers WERE off the charts. We viewed from our balcony - Bring binocuarsView All 722 Glacier Bay Cruise Port Reviews
View Cruise Critic's Glacier Bay Cruise Port Review
Helicopter TourThe staff was very knowledgeable. The copter ride was smooth and -- the view? WOWView All 121 Helicopter Tour Reviews
Zodiac BoatI was pleasantly surprised we were supplied with gear to keep us nice and warm. Dress in layers though. I had a headband and gloves. The boats were the disappointment. The seat 3 people comfortable. It was my husband and I - we were paired with another couple. My husband got to enjoy the tour riding backwards on the hull of the boat - hanging on for dear life - as we bopped along the VERY choppy water. Unless you have 3 in your party - I'd try to finagle a way to get a boat to your self. The ride would be smoother - and more enjoyable. We did get to see seals and eagles. Our guy threw out some fish so we got great video of an eagle swooping down to grasp it. NO BEARS will be seen on this tour - NO MOOSE will be seen on this tour.View All 32 Zodiac Boat Reviews
Jewell Gardens LunchAwesome lunch - beautiful gardensView All 10 Jewell Gardens Lunch Reviews
White Pass Scenic RailwayThe guides on the train ride were very knowledgeable. The scenery was beautiful.View All 1,085 White Pass Scenic Railway Reviews
Yukon Suspension BridgeThe suspension bridge was cool - very stable - nothing scary here. There is not much to do - but great picture opportunities.View All 59 Yukon Suspension Bridge Reviews