Royal Princess Inside Passage Northbound
Royal Princess Cruise Review
Review summaryWe just disembarked the Royal Princess Northbound on Saturday. I wanted to share a few things that worked/didn’t work for us (sorry a little long). When we first boarded, we went straight to guest services to book the ultimate cruise ship tour and the sanctuary for Glacier Bay Day. Both are limited and sell out fast. The cruise tour is $150 pp and lasts about 3 hours. You see the bridge, backstage of the theater, the printing room, various areas in the galley, food refrigeration areas, photo room, laundry, engineer’s room, mooring area, staff areas, “I19 highway” and areas where staff rooms are, etc. You get items with this including several pics, a photo frame, personalized notepad, Princess apron and robe, champagne and bakery items. The Sanctuary was a special day/rate of $60 pp and I saw people trying to get in who were turned away. They feed you breakfast, lunch, cocktails, hot/cold drinks, afternoon tea, you receive a picture of the day and just get pampered. It was so peaceful and so worth it to relax under a blanket in a reserved lounger! We tried the buffet twice and it wasn’t for us! Extremely busy with limited to no seating and the food wasn’t great there. We decided to go elsewhere after that. Any issues we had were resolved through Guest Services and we met a nice man there who made our trip perfect (Jore). If you use a sleep machine, make sure you not only request distilled water but also an extension cord to run across your room prior to boarding. We had the water and didn’t see anywhere you could request an extension cord but were told by our steward this should be done prior and we almost didn’t get one. We went to the Crowne Grill twice and Sabatini’s once, both were good as well as the Pub Lunch and afternoon tea. We loved Mike Wilson in the theater (hilarious). As far as excursions we did the following: Ketchikan, float plane to all you can eat crab feast at George Inlet Lodge (great excursion); Juneau, Mt Roberts tram tour (nice views from the top otherwise we didn’t have time to hike, etc) and Helicopter landing on Mendenhall Glacier with dog sledding (best excursion ever); Skagway, all day train to Lake Bennet, BC (as far as the train travels) with lunch on the train, another stop in Carcross, and bus tour back to ship (nice but stops should be a little longer). We walked all towns as well in these ports. Our Ketchikan stop was a little short so that limited what we could do after returning from our float plane excursion. Glacier Bay was beautiful and clear the day we went but got cloudy and cold as soon as we left. Most of our weather was nice and a little on the warmer side until we got north of Glacier Bay. As far as things I bought and used for the cruise, best items were the over door hanger, magnets with hooks and clips (strong ones), a hanging mesh shower organizer, pop up bins from the dollar store, and laundry bags (FYI the cloth ones from the dollar store ripped right away). Also, extension cord and usb chargers (non surge of course). I saw you could not bring irons but never saw anything about travel steamers (at least on my cruise). My cabin steward also never said anything about it. I used the magnet hooks on the metal ceiling and steamed formal clothes near the balcony door. We got the photo package and brought home over 75 photos (could have been more but the picture lines get a little long at times and we would give up waiting). It would be nice if they had the process of finding your photos electronic as we don’t really know if we got all the photos. We had an incredible time on the Royal. We swore off cruising over 15 years ago and had a great time, hope to cruise again with Princess soon! Update re: Medallion. Loved it for getting on/off the ship and accessing our room. The app didn’t always work and couldn’t always find us to order drinks, etc. Also, the Patter and app didn’t always match for activities so be aware. There are also too many apps, would be better if one central app but this is new and I’m sure it will be improved. Loved the sports band accessory for the Medallion so we didn’t have to wear it around our necks. We also purchased the 4 device Medallionet (WiFi). Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t...but it was slow. Also, take LOTS of small bills for tipping off ship (transfers, excursions, etc....we kept having to break larger bills when we would get into port and some excursions have multiple drivers/transfers).
Food and Dining
Ice Cream Bar
Love this but they ran out of cones
Service and Staff
Cabin / Stateroom
Book the ultimate cruise tour and sanctuary for Glacier Bay Day right when you get on the ship!