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7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We have been on about a dozen cruises, yet this was our first with Princess. The cruise began well enough. We embarked in Dublin and were literally in our cabin five minutes after arriving at the port. Unfortunately, it was all downhill ... Read More
We have been on about a dozen cruises, yet this was our first with Princess. The cruise began well enough. We embarked in Dublin and were literally in our cabin five minutes after arriving at the port. Unfortunately, it was all downhill from there. The room was an unobstructed Oceanview in a quiet area of the ship. The shower consistently flooded, the faucet water rarely produced anything but piping hot water, and exhaust while in port was potent throughout most cabins. The food in the main dining room was really mediocre when compared with every cruise line we've taken, and our waiter was...also for the first time...less than friendly. We ate at the buffet a few times...the food was kept lukewarm, they were always out of several dishes, and the spread is so small we couldn't believe it. Pizza also wasn't anywhere near as good as its been on any other cruise line. I had a milkshake at the ice cream vendor...it was so bad...depressing. The ports were the highlight of the cruise. There are many...only a few sea days on this cruise. Unfortunately, the ship remains in port very late, which means the shops and casino are closed often. In addition, there aren't many activities going on except on sea days. The result was more time spent without entertainment in the evenings or those days we didn't go ashore. I know this sounds bad, and I've read and dismissed my share of these...please heed my advice and book a different cruise. We ended up changing our flight and disembarking a few days early because we had such a poor time. I am writing this as we sit...and have been sitting...onboard waiting to disembark. We've sat here for over an hour already with our disembarkation group. This will be our last Princess cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
Because we wanted to see Alaska and it was our first cruise and it was our 40th anniversary and we wanted to go on a cruise. The food was excellent and the waiters was really nice. Everything on the Ruby Princess was great, you had, movie ... Read More
Because we wanted to see Alaska and it was our first cruise and it was our 40th anniversary and we wanted to go on a cruise. The food was excellent and the waiters was really nice. Everything on the Ruby Princess was great, you had, movie nights and theater and dances. You 4 different swimmingft pools and hot tubs and you had great coffee. We thought Alaska cruise would be fun because, everyone says it is a really great cruise to go on and you had a lot to do at each port. We couldn't fit everything in 1 cruise, so we plan on making 3 to 4 more cruises and maybe we will see everything that we wanted to see. If you have never been on a cruise, I suggest the Alaska cruise because it is so beautiful up there and the wife love it. Thank you for everything that the Ruby Princess did for us and the crew members took great care of us. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
This cruise was definitely a step up...in food, in service, and in our destinations. We LOVED going to Hubbard Glacier AND Glacier Bay. We were thrilled as we saw whales galore on our Whale Watching tour, and we loved the train at Skagway. ... Read More
This cruise was definitely a step up...in food, in service, and in our destinations. We LOVED going to Hubbard Glacier AND Glacier Bay. We were thrilled as we saw whales galore on our Whale Watching tour, and we loved the train at Skagway. Our outside cabin was arranged differently, and better we felt, than any other cabin we have been in. This is our 4th cruise, and we definitely felt more pampered on this cruise, and that the staff was super happy to be doing their jobs. Ok, specifically, the food now, and the service that went with it. So our first experience eating was at the buffet, and it was wonderful because everyone needed to wash their hands before going to the buffet...great move! Then the waiter's even took our drink orders and put our napkins on our laps if you wanted them to, at the buffet! So you can imagine how awesome the dinners were...the service was 1st rate. And the food was seriously as good as it possibly could get! Great variety each night, and the way the food was presented, and tasted, we could have been at any of the best restaurants in the world. Loved, loved, loved this cruise! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
This was an adult only trip with me and my boyfriend We’ve always traveled on mega ships with kids and we wanted to try this ship out but knew that this was not something for the kids as they’re used to mega RCCL ships with lost of ... Read More
This was an adult only trip with me and my boyfriend We’ve always traveled on mega ships with kids and we wanted to try this ship out but knew that this was not something for the kids as they’re used to mega RCCL ships with lost of entertainment. The embarkation was super fast and smooth, our room was even ready when coming onboard! (That’s a nice surprise becaus RCCL makes you wait for the room for hours!) The ship has been refurbished and it’s shows in several places, but a lot of the lounges and walkways were dated. We had a balcony room. The rooms are nice but also a little dated. Mattresses/ pillows/comforters are super comfy, we slept like babies all week! The medallion makes it easy to enter rooms and worked great for us using it at bars where their tablets sensed us approaching and our names and pictures would pop up in their screen without us even having to scan the medallion for payment. Buffet was a disappointment. It looked like a good size buffet but there were not many choices, mostly side dishes and items for salads. Desserts were also disappointing. I have to say that RCCL truly our does it self in this department comparing to other cruise lines. I was hoping for some different, ethnic foods to try at the buffet but there was nothing. One night Indian style okra was served with rice, it’s was ok. The next day the left overs were served again. There was just nothing good at any day that we went. The good part is the way they run the buffet, there’s always one side open and you can walk in for water, tea and food if you’re hungry. There’s never a down time when the buffet is closed due to turnover from i.e. lunch to dinner, as we’ve experienced on other cruises. There are also many different options, Steamers had free lunch which alternates Raman noodle bar and Mongolian buffet (stir fry). There also a pizza place on deck 15 and Salty Dog where they serve burgers and hot dogs. The traditional dining was just OK. The wait staff is friendly and nice, but again, nothing as professional and efficient as other cruise lines. Waiters were not very personable and we never even knew their names. Entertainment on the ship was ok. I wish that there were more adult comedy shows as the cruise caters more to adults. We stopped at Grand Cayman where we did a stingray excursion that we booked with a third party because the cruise excursion was sold out and we were put on a wait list. I actually liked the third party one better because it was early in the morning before all the crowds arrive at the stingray spot and we also only made one more stop to snorkel, so we were done early. We ate at a local restaurant and went Bach to the ship. Next was Roatan where we rented a car and drove to west bay beach. Well, what a horrible experience that was. The beach was overfilled with tourist from ships and those staying at the resorts. People were literally rubbing shoulders in the water and the ocean was all murky from the sunscreen. Vendors harassing everywhere, if not to buy something then for a massage. We paid $20/pp to get into Paradise Beach resort and we’re told the price included a beach chair and umbrella. When we walked out on the beach, there were no chair or umbrellas available. The attendant offered to bring out two chairs and squeeze them in between the already packed tiny square of beach that belonged to the resort but said that they didn’t have the “free” umbrellas and we’d have to pay for one. So we already had spent $40 and now they wanted more. After saying there for 20 minutes, looking for a spot and arguing about the umbrella, we decided to just leave. We went back to the gate where we were charged the entrance fee and asked if they’d give us our money back since they didn’t have beach chairs or umbrellas. Nope. They refused. Didn’t even want to look at us. We got in our rental and drive off to find a free, remote beach where there aren’t 1000’s of people and we found just that! The locals weren’t cooperating in giving us directions to a less busy beach, they all get a kick back for the people they bring to the busy resorts, so we looked it up on the map and drive off and buy was it worth it. The west bay beach was truly horrific. Beautiful place but so over crowded. Next port was Belize, we didn’t do any excursions but wanted to walk around and take a picture at the Belize sign. Well, we could barely make it out of the port. The vendors formed a wall that we had to walk through, asking us to buy, take an excursion, braid our hair etc. small kids were also asking for $5. It was horrible. We ran over to the sign where we were asked for money and then ran right back to the port where they could get in. Next was Cozumel. We had planned on renting a car like we always do when we’re there but after getting really sick from the Mongolian buffet at the ship, we had no energy so we walked around the port, stopped at Fat Tuesday and went back to ship. Back to Fort Lauderdale next morning with a easy stress free disembarkation unlike other ships. Those are the worst days because I always feel like everyone’s rushing, they want you out of the room etc. We didn’t feel like that at all - and somehow they still manage to have rooms ready for people embarking way before other cruise lines do. Rooms have to be vacated by 8.30. Other things; the ship shakes and vibrates a lot! When sitting at the buffet, our glasses litter lot were sliding on the table from the vibration and it was maki g me sick to my stomach and hard to eat. The waitress told us that it’s something on that particular side of the boat, that it shakes so much. This ship is comparable with RCCL Enchantment of the Seas; it’s not that big, doesn’t have that many shops and the “happening place” is the piazza. Coffee on the ship is undrinkable. I don’t have coffee for almost a week. We bought coffee by the ice cream bar and it was a little better than the buffet. They do have good movies On Demand that you can watch in your cabin for free. Would I bring my kids on this ship? No. There’s not much to do, no zip lines, no flo riders, they wouldn’t like the buffet, not many pools like they’re used to, movie theater or ice skating, but that’s only because they’ve seen the best and we’ve been on more family friendly cruises. This definitely caters to an older clientele. The ship has lots of lounges and bars, I think 11 of them! People sit and play cards, games etc. Would I go again? Maybe another adult cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
I am looking forward to cruising with Princess again in the future. As first time cruisers, my husband and I were simply amazed at the wonderful experince we had on Princess. We were really impressed about the type of people in the ... Read More
I am looking forward to cruising with Princess again in the future. As first time cruisers, my husband and I were simply amazed at the wonderful experince we had on Princess. We were really impressed about the type of people in the ship. It was a crowd filled with older people and responsible young adults with children. We felt completely safe in the boat. There were no drunk people misbehaving in the boat. Safety was a big concern to us and our agent recommended Princess Ruby for that reason and we were not disappointed. The disembarkation procedure was perfectly carried out. Everyone selected a desired time to disembark from a given choice. The process was very orderly and extremely safe. The Ports and Shore excursions disembarkation procedure were orderly organized. The ship and cabin were extremely clean and the cleaning crew were constantly at work everywhere. Saving the best for last, the dinning experience was beyond amazing! There was so much variety. The food was excellent and so was the dinning crew. They served great food and waited on you as royalty. The specialty dinning available in the ship lived up to the reputation of being special. The food and service were also great. Next, time, I plan to skip the specialty dinning because the food Ruby Princess serves in the dinning room is equally great1 They served lobster tail and crab legs in the regular dinning rooms. I cannot say enough good things about the ship and crew.The ship entertainment could be better though. They need more variety and a better representation of different races. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this cruise line because it touted it's high tech Medallion and Medallion related apps (downloaded) from home, all of which malfunctioned. Ocean Compass and Ocean Now required us to sign in repetitively, and frequently told ... Read More
We chose this cruise line because it touted it's high tech Medallion and Medallion related apps (downloaded) from home, all of which malfunctioned. Ocean Compass and Ocean Now required us to sign in repetitively, and frequently told us we had disembarked, were not onboard... we were seated by the main pool on Deck 15. IT staff onboard could not resolve the issue..we were finally told it was the make of our phone....and that upper management knew. They knew and did not inform passengers pre-cruise. Very poor. Entertainment mediocre at best. Food fair unless you wanted to go to non-fare included restaraunts. Anytime dining means 7:30-9:30 PM . Oppressive smell of sewage emanating from the Spa on Deck 16. Do not recommend snorkeling excursion at St. John's...passengers poorly monitored for safety. We have been on several cruise lines, including Disney. This was the worse cruise we have ever taken. Never again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
This was the first Princess cruise we'd sailed that offered the new Medallion class experience; had seen on other reviews that people loved it so were looking forward to it. Essentially, the medallion is a version of the Disney ... Read More
This was the first Princess cruise we'd sailed that offered the new Medallion class experience; had seen on other reviews that people loved it so were looking forward to it. Essentially, the medallion is a version of the Disney MagicBand and has all of the same functions like opening your cabin door, registering your entrances/exits from the ship, charging expenses, etc.; it also includes operations like being able to order drinks and have them delivered to wherever you are onboard ship, tracking other people in your party onboard ship, playing various games, etc. We were told that eventually it will replace all paper on the ship including the daily Princess Patter newsletter, which lists all shipboard activities. All this sound may sound nice enough, but what we also discovered is that some of the personal information encoded into the medallion doesn't really stay personal; in fact, every waiter and even entertainer with whom we interacted had ready access to our names, cabin numbers, and even birth dates (which, incidentally, is all that's required to access your Medallion Internet account). What a surprise it was to have ship staff we did not even know call us by our names and then show us how our photos and other personal info showed up on their devices when we were within a certain distance of them. Don't know exactly how much information they have access to, but as one waiter put it, "We know everything about you!" Other than this issue of personal data exposure, the cruise went well although the food offerings and quality seemed to have diminished in quality—it wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t up to what we had come to expect from prior Princess cruises. We were disappointed especially in the food court as it was so tiny for such a large ship! And on some mornings, it was so very crowded that getting to food was difficult and time-consuming---it really needs to be larger. Dinner offerings in the main restaurants were usually okay, though I can't say any were fantastic (though I did love that chocolate ice cream!); on the other hand, all the wait staff were always very competent, efficient, professional, and friendly and the kitchen really does take food allergies seriously: Thanks to all the wonderful kitchen and waitstaff! Entertainment was so-so: the duo in the Wheelhouse Bar (Jezzebel) were quite good though I'd suggest that broadening their dance music to include a few traditional types of ballroom dance might be beneficial to their audiences; e.g., a typical old-time waltz, a foxtrot or two, a rumba, cha cha, etc. The party band (The Drop), however... music was actually fine but their volume was painful, and we could never remain in their venues without ear pain so never did get to dance to them. As far as itinerary, there are quite a few ports included (and we could have used more at-sea days to relax!), but each port was of value. We tend to like to visit cities using the "on your own" option and we did this in Cork (Blarney), Dublin, Glasgow, Paris, and also London, sometimes using the cities' hop-on, hop-off bus system to visit museums and other sights. And in each city, I'd recommend the "Big Bus" hop-on, hop-off system over the other companies as Big Bus always seemed to have the most buses and the best schedules; routes were pretty much equivalent.. Prior to the cruise, we arrived in England a day early and stayed at the Heathrow Renaissance Hotel; after the cruise we remained in London another few days and stayed at The Windermere Hotel, near Victoria Station and not far from Buckingham Palace. Both of those places are highly recommended, although they are quite different in that the Renaissance is a huge chain hotel and the Windermere is very small boutique hotel, but both provided excellent service, very friendly and helpful staff, clean rooms, a safe environment, and good food. The Windermere's Pimlico Brasserie was excellent: the chef is a master at cooking dishes to perfection and then serving them in very attractive ways---he's as good at food presentation as preparation. Both were wonderful places to stay. Overall, the cruise was enjoyable and I would recommend it for its diversity of ports and what they all have to offer; I just have great reservations about how our personal information is being used. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
It was a good trip as we got to see parts of Norway landscape and mountains as the ship travel thru the fjords. We visited a few of small villages where we took excursions that gave us some wonderful views of the valley. The only issue ... Read More
It was a good trip as we got to see parts of Norway landscape and mountains as the ship travel thru the fjords. We visited a few of small villages where we took excursions that gave us some wonderful views of the valley. The only issue a I had was the length of stay in Bergen as it was really not enough time to see the city as there were many things to look and see in this wonderful city. The cruise itself was average as the boat did sort of showed it aged but Princess did a good job of renovating it. Dining was fine as the menu selection was close to the local food. The sea was not too rough as most of the time it was smooth sailing. The entertainment was fine but was not too exciting as I would have expected. The comedian Juggler I think was the best of all of the shows. We liked the music playing in the piazza as we sat with out latte and relax. The movies under the stars was good - except it was kindof chilly which is expected. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
This was our fourth cruise on princess 2nd time on the Emerald. Th is was a 14 day cruise. Starting in Rome. 10 ports ending in Barcelona. I recommend this cruise or any cruise going to th is region of the world, we previously did a family ... Read More
This was our fourth cruise on princess 2nd time on the Emerald. Th is was a 14 day cruise. Starting in Rome. 10 ports ending in Barcelona. I recommend this cruise or any cruise going to th is region of the world, we previously did a family land tour of northern Italy so this would be all new territory. We were picked up at our hotel in the Spanish steps area to the Ship. I think it was about Two hours. This trip was my wife and I first time cruising just the two of us. Getting on the ship was very organized and quick dropped off our bags waited about 2 minutes to get to the check in desk received our cards and off to the ship. We had a balcony 14 deck near the front of the ship, same type size room we had when we did Alaskan cruise Two years earlier. Plenty of room for two and our four bags . One thing to know if you never cruised before we bring a heavy 6 foot extension cord with multiple plug ins. The bed was great room clean and our room Stewart was very good always seemed to know when we would leave room always kept clean . There are two dining rooms we ate Da Vinci, and Michelangelo. We ate breakfast almost every day at Da Vinci. . And Dinner at Michelangelo had the best Materdi Carlos the magnificent And our lovely waiter Franco from Mexico. We had anytime dinning but our table was always saved for us we started with just my wife and I and as we made friends we had a table for 6.the food was good some excellent some ok mostly very very good. Franco always new what we’re drinking and never waited long to receive them. I would not recommend the buffet much. We ate there two times . Excursion We did two from the ship. We did Pompeii from Salerno all I can say was the tour guide from the princess ship was horrible he made up stuff and not one time did he take us to a shady area when it was near 100 degrees. My suggestion make all your excursions before you leave home online with reputable companies. We did a excursion in Kotor Montenegro was booked before we left home. We did this from a group of 6 Aussies we met from roll call. We did a speedboat. Blue cave , submarine caves tour with swimming at the blue caves,a very fun 3 hour tour, we then did The Godfather tour booked from princess , this was a very fun day. Great tour guide if your a fan of The Godfather movies you will enjoy this. Our next paid excursion was also not from princess with family we met from roll call. We did Pompeii again from Naples. This was a fantastic tour our guide his name was Sasha was so knowledgeable his father was also a tour guide I told him what the tour guide from the princess ship told us and he said what load of garbage i showed him the pictures I took from the first tour and what the guide told us about that. He was blown away with the crap the first guide told us. Every time there was shade he took us to the shady spots and explained what was the real history, all ”other ports we did either the hop on bus or just walked the towns. We had some of the best food on land ever.seafood was more then fantastic. One thing if your going to book your excursion from princess do it before you get on the ship most of the good excursions sold out very fast. I do recommend using non princess excursion. We made a lot of new friends in this ship. After dinner we would go to crooners bar see the piano player. We did trivia one night. And we watched a few movies on the deck with greasy popcorn. If you drink much including alcohol coffee and water get the drink package we got ours free with our balcony booking so it was worth it. Drinks are not cheap if you buy your own . Bottle water $2.50. Latte $2.50 each . We had a later time to get off the ship in Barcelona our transportation was supposed to pick us up at 10 but after 3 phone calls they finally got there by11.00 there is no place to sit and almost no shade at the Barcelona terminal. Then they took us to the wrong hotel , this was not booked through princess . One thing I would recommend transfers book from princess. If you smoke they have a cigar smoke room or you can smoke on the 16 th deck ... Feel free to ask my anything you would like to know. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
We wanted to see the beauty of Alaska on a quiet princess ship like always. No longer. Over 4000 people now on these big ships but the same amount of pool and deck space. Couldn't see the glacier or fjord with all the people. No ... Read More
We wanted to see the beauty of Alaska on a quiet princess ship like always. No longer. Over 4000 people now on these big ships but the same amount of pool and deck space. Couldn't see the glacier or fjord with all the people. No space at the rail.. Dining? Also down hill. Specialty dining room terrible for the price (steak House). The Italian was better. Not a single quiet area in the ship. Every area playing music. Couldn't read a book anywhere. Was told almost 800 children when they used to limit. We have cruised dozens of times on princess and carnival and I can say the lines between the two used to be significant. Now they are both almost the same. I think we need to try celebrity or Holland now... One more thing. Every contest or event they held in the atrium. Used to be quiet music or quartet.. Now it's games and yelling and boom boom boom music. I'm sad to see this in princess... Maybe their smaller ships still Cater to the quieter crowd but they lost their direction on this. And by the way we were on the twin of this ship the majestic in March for two weeks and same thoughts. Bigger is NOT better for anyone but princess and their bottom line. They can make a ton more on the bigger ships. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
It has been a dream to visit Alaska, Princess made it possible. Not only was the Cruise fantastic and more, it was a learning experience using Princess. The land and Sea package is superb. Tour guides are everywhere with Princess. Bus ... Read More
It has been a dream to visit Alaska, Princess made it possible. Not only was the Cruise fantastic and more, it was a learning experience using Princess. The land and Sea package is superb. Tour guides are everywhere with Princess. Bus Drivers . Hotel Staff, including Housekeeping; food service staff, conductor all are in step with Tourism and Princess Process. It took only a short time to realize that Princess Cruise is more than the ship. The Ship is a big part, so are the hotels, buses, tour guides, bag security at hotels and airport are all part time f a great Vruise experience. We learned Princess Cruise system involve the entire package from the start with an agent to returning to the home airport. This was a trip that filled the dream and exceeded xpectations. Excursions brought the Culture of Alaska to life. Tour drivers were safety specialist and tourism partners, we were treated like family. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
First time on Princess. It was ok but less than we expected. They do an ok job and the food was almost ok. Not sure if this was unique to our cruise or if this is the norm for Princess. Service however, was excellent and made the ... Read More
First time on Princess. It was ok but less than we expected. They do an ok job and the food was almost ok. Not sure if this was unique to our cruise or if this is the norm for Princess. Service however, was excellent and made the trip nice. Our main dinning wait staff was the best we have every had. Gee and King should be commended. Made it to the Sawyer glacier in Tracy Fjord. That was the highlight of the trip for sure. We are told getting that far is rare. What a beautiful sight it was. Purchasing ship photos was like shopping in a store run by teenagers waiting to get off work. They were lost and over their heads trying to answers questions they clearly hadn’t expected. We think that Princess was testing a new procedure. . . It didn’t work. We will return to Holland Amercia for our next cruise. I guess there is a cruise line for everyone and this one wasn’t our favorite. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We have never planned a vacation a year out. This one was special and we looked forward to celebrating our 15th Anniversary. I chose a mini-suite and two months prior to the cruise was offered the opportunity to upgrade to a suite. And ... Read More
We have never planned a vacation a year out. This one was special and we looked forward to celebrating our 15th Anniversary. I chose a mini-suite and two months prior to the cruise was offered the opportunity to upgrade to a suite. And I'm so glad we got the suite. A suite offers A LOT more space and some VIP perks including Club Class dining and access to a special lounge (the One-5). We slept with the sliding doors (two of them) open and listened to the wake being churned behind the ship. We awakened to the light of the day. It was awesome. Pretty much everything was GREAT about this experience. We needed this 10-day time to disconnect. We didn't use internet (and the crew joked about the expense of it, so why bother anyway). The two bad experiences - 1) There was a problem with the plumbing and a few times we found "sludge" that had backed up into our toilet. Yep, it was a little gross, but it nothing overflowed and everything was easily flushed. 2) The relaxing massage at the Lotus Spa was completely undone by them when they sat us in hard metal chairs and gave us a hard sell on products and services. This broke our trust as we felt robbed of the experience of relaxation and we didn't schedule with them again. The good experiences: The Suite was awesome and worth the price of the upgrade. It was wonderful and made us feel special being recognized by the second day of dining. Their ability to remember food and beverage preferences is uncanny. The bed is really, really comfortable. The food is tasty (it's not always warm and any style potato needs more salt, but it's otherwise tasty!) The entertainment was fun - there's enough variety that there's something for everyone. Allow yourself to enjoy cheesy fun and you'll have more fun. Ketchikan was a disappointment. It's just a tourist-trap of a cluster of shops. Get out beyond that and it's nicer. Our seaplane excursion was cancelled due to weather. We had a GREAT crab-feed, though. And as a not-quite-as-good substitute, we saw the lumberjack show - that was cheesy fun. Haines was beautiful and quiet. Juneau was interesting - we did the cultural center excursion and learned a lot. There isn't much to see, but what you do see is fantastic. Walk up from the main street of shops and you'll enjoy a little different culture than the tourist "stuff" you can get anywhere. Victoria was a short stop, too short. But Butchart Gardens was beautiful (and will be for months to come). We enjoyed this so much, we booked our next one. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this cruise for our 20th wedding anniversary. The ship was a little difficult to navigate but only took a day or two to figure it out. We booked our cruise through a private agency and chose it primarily on the embarkation port ... Read More
We chose this cruise for our 20th wedding anniversary. The ship was a little difficult to navigate but only took a day or two to figure it out. We booked our cruise through a private agency and chose it primarily on the embarkation port as we did not want to fly. On our cruise we enjoyed the nightly shows, not great but entertaining, and spent time in the Crooners Bar. Ecko is funny and amazing, remembering our names and super friendly. We encountered a slight problem with the laundry facilities but the staff quickly fixed the problem and we were compensated appropriately. Our stateroom was neat and clean and the service was great! By far the highlight of the trip was Sharon and Nilo in the Botticelli Dining. I can’t say enough about them individually and together! The personal touch, the care when I got sea sick and the overall friendliness was way above our expectations! Please tell them we said hello! A few tidbits...the international coffee house is not the best for custom drinks but their pastries are fabulous. Don’t waste your time on the shipboard pizza...go to Anthony’s Pizza onboard, have a seat and enjoy a little piece of Italy! The steakhouse exceeded our expectations as well. The jewelry store onboard is a joke, unless you have $35,000 to spare on a ring. Lastly, take your uggs, you will live in them....amazing anniversary trip! Thanks Princess!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
We had never been to Alaska and heard many wonderful things about Alaska. It all was true. Absolutely beautiful! We did not do an excursion in San Francisco since we had been there on a previous cruise. We arrived at the cruise dock ... Read More
We had never been to Alaska and heard many wonderful things about Alaska. It all was true. Absolutely beautiful! We did not do an excursion in San Francisco since we had been there on a previous cruise. We arrived at the cruise dock via Princess Shuttle service, all went well, Princess representatives met us at the Airport and provided luggage Smart Carts. Embarkation was efficient and timely. The ships new carpeting looks very nice . We did the opportunity to upgrade to a Club Class Mini Suite, which included Club Class Dining. It was delicious. The head waiter made omelettes every morning for breakfast. At lunch and dinner he made a different pasta dish. On some evenings there was a extra dinner made (we had lobster thermidor). He also made cherries jubilee and bananas foster. You could at any time order from the menu. Service was immediate and excellent. We attended a few shows. The comedian guitarist was enjoyable. We have seen a lot of the production shows, so did not attend many of them. Ports and Excursions Ketchikan - We were in port from 8am till 5pm. Nice clean port. we did the Duck Tour and the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show. The Duck Tour was the better of the two. Had lunch and plenty of time to walk about town. Haines - We were in port from 1pm till 10pm. This is far to much time to be a port that does not have much to do. There is complimentary shuttle service that dropped us off at the Raptor Center, but did not return to pick us up. We asked the driver back at port why he did not stop to get us, he indicated there were too many passengers at the port and he could only go from the port to the visitor center and did not have time to make the other 4-5 stops. The Grand was the only ship docked in Haines that day. From the port we walked to a very nice distillery that served drinks in a very casual deck setting. That was the highlight of Haines. Juneau - We were in port from 8:30am till 10pm. We did whale watching (saw about 8 whales) in the morning and the helicopter glacier walk about in the afternoon. The glacier experience is an amazing experience. Definitely worth the money. Victoria, BC - We were in port from 7am till 2pm. In Victoria we prearranged a pick up with Victoria Pedicabs. We were picked up a the cruise port and could be dropped off in town if you wanted to. Alan was a fabulous guide he was very knowledgeable about his town. Would highly recommend Alan with Victoria Pedicabs. Disembarkment was very easy and did not take much time at all. We went through Customs quickly. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
The service, the cleanliness, the delicious food, the kindness of crew, the beauty of the ship , everything was so, so pleasant and satisfactory. We choose this cruise because we wanted to see the Hubbard Glacier and took the excursion ... Read More
The service, the cleanliness, the delicious food, the kindness of crew, the beauty of the ship , everything was so, so pleasant and satisfactory. We choose this cruise because we wanted to see the Hubbard Glacier and took the excursion which was wonderful. We had the opportunity to interact with other guests when eating at the Bordeaux restaurant that is very elegant. All the meals there were fabulous and the service pronto and great! The buffet restaurant was very clean and then food was very good with a great service. The amenities offered were numerous and the shows offer at the theater were spectacular, first clase, the actors were passionate and felt deeply what they were doing. There was a soprano with an incredible voice! Coral Princess and it’s crew deserve 5 Stars! We can really recommend this cruise to Alaska that is so beautiful. We really thank the crew that took care of us! Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We are elite cruisers with Princess (have sailed on many ships) and booked two 7 day Alaska cruises from July 3 - July 17, 2019 on the Island Princess. This ship is sadly lacking in public amenities and the cabin was so small you ... Read More
We are elite cruisers with Princess (have sailed on many ships) and booked two 7 day Alaska cruises from July 3 - July 17, 2019 on the Island Princess. This ship is sadly lacking in public amenities and the cabin was so small you couldn't escape to it either. There is no International Cafe, which on other Princess ships serves a menu of very fresh food for 24 hours a day. After 11 pm the only snack available is from Room Service with a limited menu of food which you have to eat in bed as the stateroom has no chairs to relax in. There is no Skywalkers Lounge for a panoramic view of the scenery. There is no Vista Lounge as Princess took lovely lounge space and converted it to revenue producing cabins. There is no Adagio Lounge for relaxing. All that is left is the Wheelhouse and Explorers which are just bars meant to sell liquor and are not convivial day venues. The atrium has no appeal since it is constantly noisy with martini shaking and various music programs and no International Cafe to give you a nice cup of tea and a sandwich. The fitness room and gym are stuck inside with no windows to enjoy the view. The fitness room is so small you cannot stretch because of the number of people on the floor. Stretch classes have been cut from 30 minutes to 20 minutes and 10 minutes of that is taking foot impressions to sell orthotics. You cannot walk all the way around the Promenade Deck as it is always blocked off. There is no jogging track. There is extremely limited deck space since the Horizon Court is at the bow of the ship and most ships have it aft with nice outside tables to enjoy the view out the rear of the ship. There is no aft pool which also affords a view on most ships. The Sanctuary is aft instead of amidship which cuts off the last opportunity to access the rear of the ship. We felt like prisoners on this ship, Stuck in limited public lounges with the Alaskan views only slightly visible through exceedingly dirty windows in the Horizon Court, the dining rooms and whatever few public areas remain. A fleet wide Princess problem is the lack of fresh food on their ships. Frozen fish is unacceptable on an expensive holiday with easy access to port reprovisioning. The only saving graces on this cruise were the entertainment and the staff. The entertainers were very good and on the second cruise we had 3 excellent production shows. The staff (other than Customer Service) were excellent. They are the biggest strength of Princess. Although we often cruise 2 or 3 times a year we are not in a hurry to book another cruise with Princess and will probably give Celebrity or RCCL another try. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We had cruised with Princess before and enjoyed our previous cruises very much. Both cruises were on newer ships within the last two years. This was our 25th cruise so we are not new to cruising. We booked this cruise primarily for ... Read More
We had cruised with Princess before and enjoyed our previous cruises very much. Both cruises were on newer ships within the last two years. This was our 25th cruise so we are not new to cruising. We booked this cruise primarily for the interesting itinerary. Upon reviewing the ship before booking we observed it to be an older ship. We then researched to see when it was last refurbished. It had been refurbished within the year. Upon embarking ship we could see it was showing its age. It looked to be an older ship in need of being fully refurbished. Our cabin's carpet was dirty and looked shabby. The cabin very much showed its age. The food was average but did not compare to the food on the Royal and Regal Princess. The service was good with the exception of the Shore Excursion Desk. Some of the Excursions were way overpriced. ie: The Edinburgh on Your Own - charged $69.95 per person for a short ride to the center of Edinburgh. The South Queensferry Bus Service to Edinburgh on the other hand only charged 9 Pounds Roundtrip per person for the exact same service. What we paid for was not an excursion but a Shuttle bus ride to Edinburgh. This was published in the Princess Patter the night before - too late to cancel as Princess has a 48-hour cancellation policy. When this was brought to the attention of the Shore Excursion Desk they dismissed it that a lecture also gave the same information. Poor customer service. We will book future cruises on Princess but only on newer ships as the experience on older ships is less than desirable. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise as we had wanted to see Alaska for quite sometime and finally had the opportunity to take the trip. On boarding was fine. Of boarding for excursions was slow and getting off on the last day was also slow. Our ... Read More
We chose this cruise as we had wanted to see Alaska for quite sometime and finally had the opportunity to take the trip. On boarding was fine. Of boarding for excursions was slow and getting off on the last day was also slow. Our excursions were fun. We did the hike and float in Skagway and the self guided jeep tour in Juneau. The ship was old and dated but clean. The vegetarian options were lacking. I lived off side dishes for lunch and dinner for all 7 days. The cruise director Gary was amazing, he was one of the highlights for sure. SherAnn in the dining areas was simply fantastic, a true spirit to serve associate. The quality of the dancers and singers was not great in a few of the shows. The piano bar singer played all the songs in the spirit of a barber shop quartet but was missing the quartet. The female singers in the UK show had some annoying vocal habits. We tried to avoid any further shows staring them~ We went to one karaoke night and it was super fun, the place was packed so it must be popular but they only did this twice and both times the show was so short only a few people could sing. Why not do them for a longer period of time due to popularity?? Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
The itinerary is great and one would think that it would be perfect. THINK AGAIN. First, this is the first time I have ever had my passport confiscated on arrival. I have cruised all over the world and this has never happened. IF this is ... Read More
The itinerary is great and one would think that it would be perfect. THINK AGAIN. First, this is the first time I have ever had my passport confiscated on arrival. I have cruised all over the world and this has never happened. IF this is necessary, tell people before they board the ship because when you get of the ship at a port WHAT ARE YOU SUPPOSED TO USE AS IDENTIFICATION???? Second: the food is poor. Simply put tasteless and odorless. It is a telling indication when the MAIN DINING room menu has "upgrades" on it. In other words, you want good food pay extra. We did have dinner in Sabatini's which was NOT bad, but not great either. Second; who is the captain of the ship?? GILLIGAN and the Skipper. We disembarked from two ports late allegedly for low tide issues. Last time I checked, Tide tables are well know to ships masters. Schedule accordingly. And of course getting to the Orkney Island on a Sunday when HALF OF THE ISLAND is closed must make a lot of sense to the Princess People. But the ultimate indignity was the last stop in LeHavre. We book a Normany tour four months ago with PRINCESS only to find out three days INTO THE CRUISE that they were cancelling it on us because we were disembarking in LeHavre. THEY DID NOT KNOW THIS before I boarded the ship???? [Purportedly the reason is that we could not get off the boat in time to make the tour, I guess making sure that we COULD would have been too tough????] It caused hotel/train expenses for us in the hundreds. But truthfully I was glad to get off of this boat. I have cruised Royal Carib, Norweigian, Carnival, and Holland, and WILL NEVER set foot on a princess boat again. In FAIRNESS: Cabin was clean and the staff in the dining room was nice . And on the ten days, three days on entertainment were professional. The rest of it was like a HS talent show. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
Tracking passengers with a medallion, not cool at all. You have to have this device on you to get in your room, and do anything else on the ship. Including getting on and off in ports. I work for a company that makes these devices for ... Read More
Tracking passengers with a medallion, not cool at all. You have to have this device on you to get in your room, and do anything else on the ship. Including getting on and off in ports. I work for a company that makes these devices for Amazon I know exactly what they are for. The buffet lines were awkward. The cruise wasn't bad,we have been on many. There were just more things I didn't like than I liked with Princess. The crusie director was almost invisible. Other cruise lines we have been on, they (cruise directors) have been much more involved with guests. Food was good, and they had lots of vegan options for those who eat that way. Entertainment was so so, again we have seen better much on other lines. We met a lot of very nice people on the ship. Almost always fun to talk with and learn from their point of view. Itinerary was very good, It would be a great trip for anyone. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Not to bore my fellow cruisers , imagine : plastic cups , plates and glasses , a daily programme of bingo, quizzes and kids programmes , food you would normally never want to pay good money for and environment where most of the ... Read More
Not to bore my fellow cruisers , imagine : plastic cups , plates and glasses , a daily programme of bingo, quizzes and kids programmes , food you would normally never want to pay good money for and environment where most of the passengers are crowded into a central area to watch their so called" best " entertainment! "Saphire Princess" is your kind of ship . We hoped for refinement , culture and excellence.. what we got was far far from what we hoped.. such a waste of money . Lack of Security presence in public areas was alarming , there was definitely some under age drinking going on and young children seemed to be everywhere on the ship!! Most ships have family zones but parents were doing as they please . We were late arriving at ports , so little time on shore , one port was missed altogether and Princess CHARGE FOR SHUTTLE SERVICE .. Never been charged with any other company.!! Appalling !! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
This was our first cruise and we picked both Princess and this particular itinerary having talked to friends who had years of cruising experience and also wanted to see places we had not been to before. We were keen to find a ship which ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we picked both Princess and this particular itinerary having talked to friends who had years of cruising experience and also wanted to see places we had not been to before. We were keen to find a ship which was neither full of kids or senior citizens and were not disappointed as there was a good spread of ages amongst the passengers. Although there were embarkation problems in Southampton which were not the fault of Princess Cruises (mainly severe road works on the route to the docks and a fire alarm going off in the terminal we were lucky to be one of the first to check in and found things well organised as it only took 15 minutes from parking the car to being in our cabin. We had booked a mini suite and were not disappointed. The cabin was extremely spacious with lots of storage and would suggest that four adults would be able to occupy the cabin without feeling too claustrophobic. The cabin was immaculately clean and we felt that all the fittings were more than acceptable. We note that some people have stated on here that the bathrooms are either poor or "tired" but we would say that whilst looking a bit dated the bathroom was certainly acceptable and again lots of well thought out storage. As for food whilst Horizon Court buffet shows less quality than a high star hotel in Europe there was plenty of choice both at breakfast and lunchtime. We had booked anytime dining and had no difficulty in getting a table for dinner in the three restaurants available to us. The food was generally well cooked and service was good rather than exceptional in the restaurants. The main gripe we had with the menus were that for us they seemed too geared to an American pallet and my wife especially struggled at times to find dishes she liked which limited her choice. With credit the Head Waiter on the first night arranged for smoked salmon to be available for her every evening if wanted. We did one night eat at Sabbatinis and whilst the food was excellent the service was very lacking as the waiters seemed keener to set tables than serve us! The entertainment in the evening was mixed. Some of it was less quality than we assumed it would be however we did enjoy various entertainment most evenings and the Entertainment Director was excellent. As for port visits we did our own thing which we are used to from having travelled round Europe many times. This tended to give us more time at the attractions we wanted to see than the organised tours and at a fraction of the price as the ship's tours were very expensive. To sum up the pros were both the cleanliness of the ship and general standard of service especially our cabin steward for whom nothing was too much trouble and always with a smile. Also considering the number of people on board generally the ship did not feel crowded and usually we found places to sit in the various lounges. The cons were the fact that there is a very heavy selling by Princess at every opportunity and you have to watch out your cruise account as gratuities are added to all drinks. Also we were surprised and felt it was poor of Princess to charge for shuttle buses from port to town when we heard from people that other cruise lines don't. Also to charge for a cocktail on sailway from southampton surprised us. To sum up if you haven't cruised before I would ignore the bad reviews on here but be aware that Princess whilst relaxing does have some warts that come with the fun. Also we have already booked our next Princess cruise but will be older and wiser when we go. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
Got a good deal on Black Friday for this 7-day trip to Scandinavia and it didn't disappoint in terms of value. What did disappoint is that the main motorway into Southampton was shut on a weekend when 5 ships were departing. Given the ... Read More
Got a good deal on Black Friday for this 7-day trip to Scandinavia and it didn't disappoint in terms of value. What did disappoint is that the main motorway into Southampton was shut on a weekend when 5 ships were departing. Given the importance of the port to the city, this should be coordinated better, but is probably down to the government-run Highways Authority rather than anyone in the city itself. It took us 4 hrs to travel the 90 miles from Warwick to the terminal, when it should have taken 2 and the ship left 1.5 hrs late. At least lots of others were in the same situation. Having honeymooned on Sapphire 5 years ago we worried it might not be the same this time, but if anything the state of the ship was better - the refurb has been done subtly and cleverly, keeping this ship competitive despite its age. New carpets on corridors, flat screens and excellent on-demand TV made the cabins great but the pool area seemed to have been recently re-tiled too, and all the public areas seemed in tip-top condition. One thing they could change is to switch to digital photo galleries rather than sticking with the old print displays. One of the things we like most about Sapphire is the four (anytime) dining rooms with different themes - they just make it seem like you're in a different restaurant each night even though the menu is the same in all of them. Food was of a good standard, particularly the basket of bread that Princess gives you to start with. Service was OK if a little rushed. We feel that our preference for anytime dining leads to rushing waiters, rather than the attentive ones you get when you do fixed dining who know they are likely to get a tip at the end of the cruise (not just on Princess). That's just a choice I suppose. Service elsewhere was as good as I'd expect from Princess. Ports were good, but disappointed to miss Skagen because of the weather, having had to make 2 attempts to dock in Copenhagen the day before. Safety first I guess, and our insurance will compensate us a little for that. I feel for the traders in the town who will miss a lot of income that day. The only negative on the cruise really was the ridiculous number of announcements, each of which was repeated. Why do cruise lines have to wake you up with an announcement at 7am when the ship docks? If you've booked an excursion you will have set your alarm to get up in time. If you want a lie-in, tough luck. On the day the ship missed Skagen, we were due to dock at 10 am, but when the decision was taken to miss it, an announcement was made at 7am, waking us all up when we weren't even expecting to arrive for another 3 hours - stupid. How would knowing about it 3 hours beforehand have improved our day? Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
There were many things we valued. 1) I was incredibly ill one evening and into the next morning. Patricia in the Medical Centre not only got me on my feet, but I was able to go on the shore excursion that we had been looking forward ... Read More
There were many things we valued. 1) I was incredibly ill one evening and into the next morning. Patricia in the Medical Centre not only got me on my feet, but I was able to go on the shore excursion that we had been looking forward to for months. 2) Ivan - Food and Beverage Supervisor in Planks was remarkable. We even celebrated our 16th anniversary there. He was thoughtful, attentive and funny. 3) When we discovered a false charge on our account, they investigated it and credited it within 24hrs. 4) We didn’t use the internet with the Medallion program. It could be as integrated or as minimally used. It’s up to you. 5) We totally enjoyed Movies Under The Stars. It was so relaxing. 6) The food was incredible both in the included restaurants and ones you paid for. We enjoyed both. We highly recommend Planks and Crown Grill. Both were superb. 7) We sat out on the balcony every night and just admired the stars. It was better than Yoga!! 8) EVERYONE MUST GO TO CORAL WORLD in St. Thomas. The staff and activities are incredible!! The staff is thoughtful, knowledgeable and sincere. Get a kiss from Rosy the sea lion. Be in awe of Fred. Go do Snuba. We can’t wait to go back. Read Less
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