May 2014 - Golden Princess to Alaska - Inside Passage
Overeall, we had a wonderful time, but there is always room for improvement.
I spent more time waiting in line on this trip than on previous cruises. They didn't open enough food lines promptly so lines got long. Sometimes they didn't have the excursions desk open so people couldn't fix their problems with excursions and had to go to the general desk. That meant double the number of people waiting for service from the general desk. Lines were generally long waiting for elevators as well. People in line with me who had been on previous Princess cruises said the lines were unexpectedly long compared to their previous cruises.
The buffet lines had hand sanitizers at each entrance but our main dinner dining room did not. We usually used the stairs to get to our dining center and I would have liked to use the dispenser before eating. Other cruises I have been on pushed the sanitizing dispensers heavily, so I was surprised. Three of my party contracted respiratory infections after the cruise, but I can't definitively say we became ill from cruise germs. Service in the buffet line areas was poor regarding beverage service and silverware. We usually had to flag staff down to get beverages and clean sliverware if people had recently used the table.
This was the first cruise I have been on where the ship was late docking. In Victoria, many people missed their excursions because we docked more than an hour late and it was a short shore time anyway.
We loved Michael, the guest speaker who shared his experiences living in Alaska, and didn't miss any of his talks. It was great having the park ranger staff on board to explain things and point out sights we might be missing. Our wait staff members in the main dining center were wonderful and the food was terrific. Our staterooms were more spacious than other cruises I have been on and always clean and fresh. Even though I lost a few bucks, the casino was a nice size. The smoke was hard to take since it drifted into the non-smoking side and we often walked through the smoky side of the casino on our way to other destinations. We enjoyed the stage entertainment but I was surprised that there wasn't at least one "famous" performer. On previous cruises, we had at least one pretty famous comedian or musical group and the entertainers were more mid-level this trip. In summary, we had a great time and the ship experience was good.