Alaska was beautiful and we can’t wait to go back and see more. It was a lot larger than we imagined and there’s so much to do. We were very unimpressed with our cruise line, Princess. The service was not good and the food was just okay. We prepaid for gratuity before we cruised through our travel agent as an offer the cruise line had and we decided that may be why the service was so lacking. Usually on cruises our room stewards and dining room staff were extremely friendly and this just seemed like we were bothering them. We felt like the staff was probably overworked, underpaid and a little bitter. We will not sail on Princess again. We also talked with a long time princess cruiser and she said how downhill the cruise line had gone and that she would be removing her membership and joining holland America cruise line. Again, Alaska was beautiful but the cruise line was a disappointment.
4 out of 5
We had priority boarding with one of our rooms and they allowed our party of 7 to board priority. It went fairly smoothly and quickly and the staff working with us was very nice.
Food and Dining
2 out of 5
We only ate in the main dining room 2 times because the first experience was so poor. The menu was lacking quality meals and to have any type of steak you needed to pay extra... The wait staff and servers in the main dining room seemed understaffed and couldn’t care less. It was an overall poor experience in what should have been the best meals on the ship. The buffet at horizons was always packed with extremely limited (if any) seating. The quality of the food there was okay. We ended up eating pizza and hamburgers and hot dogs a lot due to the crowds and poor service. The alcoholic drinks were good and they had a wide variety of choices, however getting a server to come to your table was rare. You had to find an open bar to get cokes or alcohol drinks. There were servers around but again they seemed very understaffed and somewhat bothered that you needed a drink with your meal.
3 out of 5
4 out of 5
We only saw 2 shows but both were very good. The ventriloquist singer was amazing.
3 out of 5
We utilized the kids club for our 5 and 7 year old. They seemed to really enjoy it and came back with at least 1 craft they made each time, one was even a t shirt they colored. The biggest complaint was the hours of the club. It is only open for 3 hours at a time. From 9-11:50, 2-4:50 and 7-10:50. It was hard to schedule your day around the only times they were open. We have cruises on Disney before and it was much better all around. By the time you dropped the kids off you maybe had time for a movie or nap and then rush back to get them. It could have been better, schedule wise.
Service and Staff
1 out of 5
Highly disappointed in all areas. We payed for the Guadeloupe suite, and were unimpressed with the room steward. He was very nice but anything we asked for or had a question about he directed us to room service or guest services. Felt like with the suite it would have been like concierge ( on Disney cruise line) It was not... the waiters were very disappointing as well. The service was terrible and they seemed annoyed and understaffed.
3 out of 5
The ship was clean and well maintained
Cabin / Stateroom
2 out of 5
The cabin itself was very nice and large enough for our family. We had a living area and a bedroom area with a bathroom and tub. However the main reason we picked this room was for the large balcony with views of Alaska... we were extremely disappointed with the balcony not having glass to see our the lower half while sitting (as pictured on the website) and the wind was so bad that you couldn’t use the balcony most of the time. All of our chairs and cushions were tied down for 90% of the cruise making our balcony useless.
Juneau was very nice and we did a whale watch excursion and wildlife quest. We did not see much wildlife (bears, moose...) but we did see humpback and killer whales which was our goal! The staff on the whale watch was extremely kind and the bus to get there picked us right up at the dock. It was a well ran excursion.
This was our favorite port with our favorite excursion. We did the Alaska 360 Iditarod dog camp, gold panning and white pass Yukon train ride. It was absolutely perfect and the highlight of our trip. The staff was extremely kind and excited to have us. The bus was nice to get us there and the tour guide stayed with us at all 3 stops providing lots of commentary. He was excellent. The dogs were amazing and we got to hold 18 day old puppies. The train ride was amazing as well and our tour guide gave lots of information on the train and provided us with a great snack of cheese crackers and cookies and sparkling grape juice toast at the summit. This tour was about 6 hours but it was a wonderful tour! I would suggest getting off the boat early and exploring the town of Skagway, then heading back for your tour (ours started at 11:30) so when we got back off the train we ran into town for a drink then rushed back to the boat. Could have stayed in Skagway a lot longer, it was a cute town!
Larger than we thought with lots of shopping. We did the lumberjack show excursion and it was cute, lasted about an hour and everyone enjoyed it. We walked to creek street which was pretty crowded and saw Salmon swimming. Then we ate at Annabelle’s on the way back to the ship. Great fish and chips!
3 out of 5
It’s never fun but it seemed well ran and we were lucky enough to get a bellhop that had us skip the line and get in front at customs. The customs agent was also very nice.
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