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mcrcruiser

Ruby or Royal Princess to Alaska

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We have been to Alaska 5 times in the past .

 

April 2019 Ruby Princess departs San Pedro (LA) on 12 night R/T Alaska

 

Sept 2019 Royal Princess departs San Pedro on the same 12 night Alaska cruise (northern lights this time of year ):D

 

From those who have sailed both ships ;which one do you fell is the better ship to cruise & why ?.

 

These are all deep sea ports ,so there are no tender problems with crowds :D

 

TIA

Edited by mcrcruiser

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I have been on both ships in the Caribbean. Now this may be proven wrong as Royal has yet to make her first sailing in Alaska but I can't see any way there will be enough space on deck for Glacier viewing days. No promenade to speak of, no decent views from the forward portions of Deck 16 or 17 (Retreat pool area) and no Skywalker's, only minimal deck space with aft views as well. If you don't have a balcony, or want wider views than what your 30 sq ft patch provides, you could be in for quite a scrum outside.

 

I would pick the beginning of the season over the end in any case: longer days, possibly less rain though temps will be brisk. Ruby over Royal would clinch that decision.

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I have been on both ships in the Caribbean. Now this may be proven wrong as Royal has yet to make her first sailing in Alaska but I can't see any way there will be enough space on deck for Glacier viewing days. No promenade to speak of, no decent views from the forward portions of Deck 16 or 17 (Retreat pool area) and no Skywalker's, only minimal deck space with aft views as well. If you don't have a balcony, or want wider views than what your 30 sq ft patch provides, you could be in for quite a scrum outside.

 

I would pick the beginning of the season over the end in any case: longer days, possibly less rain though temps will be brisk. Ruby over Royal would clinch that decision.

 

Thanks . Viewing is critical in Alaska & I take many distance photos with telescoping lenses . We have seen glacier bay & all these ports many times over . It is the spectacular scenery of Alaska that is awesome :p

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I don't think you will have a poor experience on either ship, and feel you should select the sailing that best meets your schedule.

Each ship has it's own benefits. We do prefer the Super Grand Class design over the Royal Class. The Super Grand Class, Ruby, has 500 less passengers, more lounges, including Explorer's, Wheelhouse, Crooner's, Skywalker's, Club Fusion, Adagio. Most balconies on the Ruby are larger than the tight ones on the Royal. The Ruby also has a 360 degree promenade for great viewing as well as lots of upper deck(s) viewing areas. There are also nice lounge and dance floors on the Ruby.

 

The Royal has one of the best and extensive buffets at sea. It also has Alfredo's (free) a great place for lunch, dinner or anytime. It has a large Piazza area where most of the activities and dancing is held. It also has a second show lounge, Vista Lounge. Princess Live is not impressive, and the Wheelhouse Bar is not really a dance location. Crooner's is located 2 decks above the Piazza just like it is on the Ruby, but since so many activities take place in the Piazza, Crooner's entertainment times are limited. There is no real promenade on the Royal and upper deck viewing locations are limited. There is a nice Horizon Terrace outdoor lounge area. Free coffee on the Royal is prepared from grounds and taste better than that prepared from a liquid concentrate on the Ruby. The Royal also has free hot chocolate machines. If you are lucky enough to get Matt O'Brian as a CD you are in for a treat. He is very good.

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I would have to say that as much as I appreciate some of the positive features of the Royal class, in Alaska I’d go with the Ruby for all of the reasons other posters listed.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

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I have been on both ships in the Caribbean. Now this may be proven wrong as Royal has yet to make her first sailing in Alaska but I can't see any way there will be enough space on deck for Glacier viewing days. No promenade to speak of, no decent views from the forward portions of Deck 16 or 17 (Retreat pool area) and no Skywalker's, only minimal deck space with aft views as well. If you don't have a balcony, or want wider views than what your 30 sq ft patch provides, you could be in for quite a scrum outside.

 

I would pick the beginning of the season over the end in any case: longer days, possibly less rain though temps will be brisk. Ruby over Royal would clinch that decision.

 

I would have to say that as much as I appreciate some of the positive features of the Royal class, in Alaska I’d go with the Ruby for all of the reasons other posters listed.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

I think these two posts pretty much wrap it up from my perspective. Normally for a 12 day cruise I would definitely opt for the Royal. However, for Alaska it's all about the viewing options and Ruby Princess has some great features.

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My suggestion would be the Ruby. Alaska is all about the scenery and wildlife. Its important to be able to roam the open decks.

 

I would suggest a smaller ship.

 

The Royal class ships do not have a promenade deck, which means more people will be forced to go up to the upper decks. I don't think the views are as good way up high and I think its nice to have a choice between high and low. Even with a balcony, it is better to have a choice to be in an area where you can get more expansive views.

 

I also think wildlife viewing is better closer to the water rather than on the high decks.

 

I found the Royal great for the Caribbean, but would choose a different class of ship for Alaska. My vote if for the Ruby.

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We appreciate all your replies :p.

 

The vote leans toward ruby Princess & that is the ship we will book :p

 

Thanks again folks :p

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We have cruised to AK almost as much as you have, mcrcruiser--four times and three of them have been on Princess. The worst AK cruise we ever had was wonderful. The least significant aspect of our four cruises was the ship we were on.

 

We have sailed on the Ruby Princess--multiple times, but never to AK. We have never sailed on the Royal Princess.

 

We have experienced early season cruises to Alaska--this past April on the Emerald Princess (sister ship of the Ruby Princess) out of Los Angeles--and we have experienced late season cruises to Alaska--last September on the Grand Princess out of San Francisco.

 

Our experience was that the early season cruise was just a tad chillier. Some on that cruise felt it was cold, but, give me a break--it's Alaska and it's only a month into spring. We hit some fog on both cruises and a little rain on both cruises. However, we did not really hit any major storms on either cruise.

 

That being said, I agree that my data sample is fairly small. I have no idea what the weather will be like next April or next September.

 

Going late in the season, most of the stores in the ports are trying to eliminate inventory. So, a lot of the souvenir types of merchandise are on sale. Early in the season, the locals are quite excited about the arrival of the cruise ships. In Skagway we noticed that a couple businesses had not opened, yet, for the season, but it was apparent that they planned to be open within a few days.

 

We were the only ship in port in the spring. So, the ports were less busy. In September, there were multiple ships in every port. In fact, in Juneau the Grand Princess had to tender.

 

If you are interested in seeing whales, the April cruise will be a tad early. Most of them are still migrating. We did see a few whales from the ship last spring. We saw quite a few more whales in September.

 

We just love cruising to Alaska. In fact the two cruises that you are considering for 2019, we are booked on both of them. So, once you make your decision, go on over the the Cruise Critic Roll Call, and you will see me there.

 

;p

 

 

Edit a few minutes later: I see you posted a decision while I was composing my essay. Great. See you there.

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