Mixed review

Island Princess Cruise Review to Alaska - Gulf of Alaska

Cruises: 2-3 cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 18

Overall rating:

3.2 out of 5
Island Princess

7 Night Voyage Of The Glaciers Northbound (Vancouver To Anchorage)

Sail date: September 05, 2018

Ship: Island Princess

Cabin type: Balcony

Cabin number: A724

Traveled as: Family (older children)

Reviewed: 3 years ago

Review summary

All in all, a good cruise, however the ports all had the same shops. several gemstone stores next to several jewelry stores and the same Alaskan clothing store. icy straight (hunnah) was probably the exception in that regard. Clearly princess cruises is catering to a demographic that goes on cruises to spend money on jewelry. Unrelated item: I felt that a fee of $40 for the picture getting on ship was ridiculous. People spend 4 and 5 figures to take a cruise and you can't give them a complementary photo that is

Embarkation

5 out of 5

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

3 out of 5
I wish there had been more variety at the buffet. Each morning had, for the most part, the same breakfast choices. The table side service (buffet and restaurants) was disappointing. It was not uncommon for us to get up and get the coffee refill on our own as no one came by frequently enough. The juice glasses, seriously? way too small. It would also have been nice to have a juice machine with more offerings than simply OJ. Bussing of the tables was a positive. Very quick and nice work, there. TECHNOLOGY: HUGE disappointment there. Provide wireless, and offer an an APP that does NOT necessitate putting my phone on airplane mode). That is out of date by today's standards. Your app made it difficult to find hours of operation and things like that. Your app's requiring that each person register to be able to message another person is also seriously antiquated. We didn't bother using it. There was no way to see if anyone else from my hometown or state is on board. (There are several apps on the market that show attendees allowing the individuals to opt out.) The video/tv quality was horrible. Your maps of where the ship is were enjoyable but shared no other information whatsoever about towns we were sailing past or any other information of interest. I would have like to learn about the surrounding area, the culture, the history. The screen resolution was terrible as it did not match the resolution of the tool you used to show you map locations. That 'morning show' was not enjoyable for us. It was too cheezy.

Onboard Activities

2 out of 5
Enjoyed the outdoor movie theater however it amazed me that the movie would continue playing when the ships announcements took place. PAUSE the movie when doing announcements! The hot tubs were not very 'hot'. One was completely off line, one had over 1/2 of its jets not working. At times (when one would expect them to be available), the pool and hot tubs were closed off w/o notice for "maintenance". It was early afternoon and we returned from our island visit and wanted to relax in the hot tub - walked all the way to our cabin, changed and got to the hot tub only to find then closing it. We complained at the cust service counter and the person there was not even aware they were closed. A person we met said his kids couldn't even swim in the pool at noon (I believe that was on monday or tuesday)? Why aren't you doing maintenance during the off hours of the morning or before breakfast time, instead? Regarding your onboard store. I was given a gift card to the spa. Wife went there and was refused because we were no longer at port. She told them she tried them earlier WHILE we were at port and the spa was closed. The person at counter said they have 'various' hours when in port. Very confusing. If the card says use while at port, why wasn't the spa open? And does it really matter if we are at port or at sea? You lost some revenue there!

Entertainment

3 out of 5
musicians and singers were very good

Service and Staff

2 out of 5
Our cabin steward was very efficient and friendly (johnathan?) the waiters were the biggest disappointment. Except for one meal where we were waiting on by a man and woman (alexander and??) they were the only ones who really made any eye contact and struck any friendly rapport with us at the table. I recall past cruise (different cruise line) where the waiter was very personable). I expected same. Most of the people who served us did not even make eye contact when reciting the specials. They would literally recite the special while looking around. Coming from a customer focused occupation I could not help but notice this. The friendliness was there, in words, but not in the face to face. As to bar service waiters. at the bar by the pool I stood there for 2 full minutes, no one else at the bar, the bartender was prepping some drinks and did not even acknowledge me. I ended up walking away. You lost some revenue there. There were also several times where we wanted a drink at a poolside table but no roaming waiter or waitress was anywhere in sight. In one card-playing session alone, (4 of us) I am convinced you missed out on a sale of two rounds of adult beverages that single time. In any hall on any floor, for the most part the cabin stewards were by far the most friendly, made eye contact, wore a smile, etc.

Ship Quality

5 out of 5
restrooms spotless. hallways: some fine, some had construction happening. overall very clean everywhere. Nice.

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
Johnathan was excellent

Ship tip

Be prepared to be bombarded with gemstone and jewelry advertisements, sales pitches etc. whether on board the ship or in ports.

Ports of call

Vancouver (Canada Place), British Columbia

3 out of 5

Icy Strait Point (Hoonah), Alaska

3 out of 5

Juneau, Alaska

3 out of 5

Skagway, Alaska

3 out of 5
The train excursion was nice, the town, for the most part was yet more gemstone and jewelry and alaska clothing store. same as other ports. I was hoping for more uniqueness.

Whittier (Anchorage), Alaska

3 out of 5
lot of confusion about our excursion. Worked out in the end, but the name of the excursion company did not match the ticket, etc. the bus driver from whittier to anchorage talked incessantly and some of his conversation topic (people getting killed here and there on the highway) was out of place for tourists, imo.

Disembarkation

3 out of 5
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