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Regular NCL Cruiser Considering Princess


JamieLogical
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41 minutes ago, XBGuy said:

 

One thing I will add, and this might stir up posters who disagree, is that the Emerald Princess and the Ruby Princess are two of the three Princess ships that have a specialty restaurant called SHARE.  If dining is a consideration to you, SHARE is a much superior venue than the Princess dining rooms or any of the other specialty restaurants.  You can find sample menus at the Princess web site.

 

SHARE is definitely something we've already discussed trying, as I am a fan of Curtis Stone. We looked at pricing and were surprised at how reasonable it is. So I think there is a HIGH likelihood we will be dining there if we sail on either ship.

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1 hour ago, knbcruisers said:

 Also the Alaska board will have very good info on all the ports and the specific differences. Alaska for many people is a once in a lifetime trip so pick the itinerary that will make you happy.  

 

Thanks for the tip! I posted over there to get more details on the differences in the two itineraries, as it really isn't relevant to this thread. Hopefully this won't be our only Alaska sailing! We hope to cruise 2-3 times a year until we are no longer physically able to do so, which hopefully will be a good 30+ years from now at least!

 

Thanks to everyone on here who has posted info on the Princess experience and the ships. I feel much better equipped to make a good decision now!

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1 hour ago, CruisingIsBest said:

Emerald has also not yet been upgraded to the Medallion Class improvements either... due to be done in August, 2020 so if you are cruising before then, you won't have that...  https://www.princess.com/ships-and-experience/ocean-medallion/ which also incluides that faster internet I mentioned... but again, as you said, that won't matter to you.

 

 

I had no idea what this was, so thank you for the link! It looks like both the Emerald and the Ruby will be upgraded by the time we'd be sailing in late August, so I am happy to have a better understanding of what this actually does. Seems like an upgraded, higher tech version of the standard keycard. Looks pretty cool!

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It won't show up in the Alaskan cruises, but we are doing a 17 day Transpacific on the Sun Princess from Tokyo to Vancouver that includes much of the Alaskan itinerary in May 2021. Actually seems a bit cheaper than the standard Alaskan cruises.

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"We do not have kids and the likelihood of fewer kids on Princess is very appealing to us. We are not big fans of kids"

 

For Alaska, I would try to book for May or September to avoid when the little ones are

out of school. We have cruised Alaska 4 times, all on Princess, and twice was September.

You will get all types of weather regardless which month you go.

 

We have seen Hubbard Glacier and Glacier Bay. We also had a VERY wonderful captain who

took us down the Tracy Arm and all the way to the end to see the Sawyer Glacier. All were wonderful,

but we have fond memories of Hubbard Glacier because it was sunny, clear, and we witnessed tons

of calving!

 

We love Princess, and no, it is not perfect but after experiencing HAL (we thought of that ship as 

a Bucket of Bolts!) and two Celebrity ships- we really appreciate Princess!

 

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42 minutes ago, nini said:

"We do not have kids and the likelihood of fewer kids on Princess is very appealing to us. We are not big fans of kids"

 

For Alaska, I would try to book for May or September to avoid when the little ones are

out of school. We have cruised Alaska 4 times, all on Princess, and twice was September.

You will get all types of weather regardless which month you go.

 

We are looking at an August 29th sailing now if we do the Ruby instead of the Emerald (that would have been August 22nd). I would think most schools' summer breaks would be over by then or maybe that following week, so not many people taking vacations with kids that close to the start of school.

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Just wanted to update all of you who helped me out. Yesterday we booked an aft balcony on the August 29 sailing of the Ruby Princess and put down our deposit. The itinerary is round-trip inside passage out of Seattle and includes Glacier Bay. The Ruby is being upgraded to MedallionClass in January. I like the concept of the Medallion and the supporting apps. Hope it actually works well!

 

Thank you again for all of the great info and advice!

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On 12/15/2019 at 4:43 PM, JamieLogical said:

To clear up a few things that might help people provide better insight and advice:

 

  • . . . . . . 
  • We do really really love live music. Are there a lot of lounge-type acts on Princess? We prefer live music in intimate venues to big productions in the theater.  Princess will IMHO satisfy you on this point, we too prefer live music in smaller venues.  Since Princess uses are large variety of musicians you never really know what you'll get, still we nearly always find a favorite on each sailing and follow him / her / them venue to venue.
  • Our planned sailing includes the Premium Beverage Package, I believe that includes specialty coffee on Princess? So does that mean we don't need to get that card some people were talking about?  Correct.  Brewed coffee and special coffee beverages will be included in your package.  Do realize International Cafe will be the best choice for decent coffee on Emerald.
  • Someone mentioned that the Emerald is an "old" ship, but it was just refurbished in April. Would you still recommend a newer ship? The reason we are looking at the Emerald is because the specific sailing we are looking at is actually really competitively priced.  I really like Emerald and her sister Ruby.  Yes, they are not the newest ships in the fleet and there are a few negatives but as you're focused on the itinerary and sights, she is a fine choice.  

 

Personally, I wouldn't even consider NCL for Alaska, Princess just does such a great job.  I've enjoyed NCL in the past and will undoubtedly do so in the future but considering your description of desires and expectations it seems clear Princess would be a sound choice for this voyage.

 

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3 hours ago, JamieLogical said:

Just wanted to update all of you who helped me out. Yesterday we booked an aft balcony on the August 29 sailing of the Ruby Princess and put down our deposit. The itinerary is round-trip inside passage out of Seattle and includes Glacier Bay. The Ruby is being upgraded to MedallionClass in January. I like the concept of the Medallion and the supporting apps. Hope it actually works well!

 

Thank you again for all of the great info and advice!

 

You're going to have a great cruise, Jamie.  I have enjoyed multiple cruises on the Ruby Princess and feel it is a fine ship.  Give some thought to the Ultimate Balcony Dinner on your aft balcony,  We feel so pampered having two waiters dedicated to just us.  If it is too cold on the balcony, just do it in your cabin.  We've done that for three of the four UBDs we've had.  Also, if you have the time, Seattle is a terrific town to spend a few days.

 

Bon Voyage.

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26 minutes ago, nini said:

A good point! You would probably really enjoy running around Seattle

for a few days- Enjoy and let us know how you like Princess an the Ruby!

 

This is a Saturday to Saturday itinerary. The current plan is to fly in the Friday before, but we probably won't get to do/see much in Seattle that night, because even though it will be "early" with the time difference, we will probably be tired and jet-lagged. However, the Monday after our sailing is Labor Day, so we both have the day off, which means we can safely stay Saturday in Seattle and fly home on Sunday and still have a day to do laundry, run errands, and try to adjust to the time change. So the current plan is to make a day/evening of it in Seattle before heading home.

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On 12/20/2019 at 2:57 PM, JamieLogical said:

Just wanted to update all of you who helped me out. Yesterday we booked an aft balcony on the August 29 sailing of the Ruby Princess and put down our deposit. The itinerary is round-trip inside passage out of Seattle and includes Glacier Bay. The Ruby is being upgraded to MedallionClass in January. I like the concept of the Medallion and the supporting apps. Hope it actually works well!

 

Thank you again for all of the great info and advice!

Hey Jamie, 

Just wanted to say I see a lot of your posts on the NCL page as that is my SO and I's favorite line.  Ironically, like you, we just put down a deposit for a Princess cruise in April because we couldn't find any good deals with NCL.  It's our first time on Princess so it should be a fun experience for us both trying something new! 

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1 hour ago, danak13 said:

Hey Jamie, 

Just wanted to say I see a lot of your posts on the NCL page as that is my SO and I's favorite line.  Ironically, like you, we just put down a deposit for a Princess cruise in April because we couldn't find any good deals with NCL.  It's our first time on Princess so it should be a fun experience for us both trying something new! 

 

Be sure to come back and tell me how your April sailing goes! I would love to hear how you like it compared to NCL.

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