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Which Is The Best Princess Cruise Ship For Alaska

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The Princess Cruises Fleet


Princess has downsized the size of its fleet considerably over the past year with the removal of five vessels. But its still the worlds fifth-biggest cruise line by passenger capacity, with 14 ships that together offer more than 42,000 berths.

In general, Princess operates big ships. But theyre not quite as big as the vessels operated by Royal Caribbean, Norwegian and MSC Cruises the three lines best known for giant ships. The biggest Princess vessels, the lines five Royal Class ships, measure around 145,000 tons. Thats about 35% smaller than the biggest ships operated by Royal Caribbean.

The Royal Class ships are the belles of the ball in the Princess fleet. Newer and more amenity-filled than the lines 9 other ships, they began rolling out in 2013 and carry about 3,600 passengers a piece at double occupancy. .

One more Royal Class ship Discovery Princess is on order from a shipyard in Italy for delivery in 2022.

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Still, at the core of the Princess fleet are its seven Grand Class vessels. Unveiled between 1998 and 2008, the ships are smaller than the Royal Class vessels at around 107,000 to 116,000 tons in size. This smaller size allows them to operate a wider range of itineraries than the Royal Class ships. But theyre still big enough to have a lot of onboard venues. The Grand Class ships carry between 2,600 to 3,100 passengers at double occupancy.

Related: TPG goes on board the new Sky Princess

Top 8 Best Cruise Ships Going To Alaska In 2020

Think this is the year you will take the family to the Last Frontier and go on an Alaska cruise? Sounds like a great plan, but you might be wondering which is the best ship to go on an Alaska cruise.

There are a lot of great ships that will traverse the Inside Passage from May through September, each with their own assortment of amenities, activities and fun things to do.; In fact, you will find a great range of value with options that run the gamut of ship size and offerings.;;

Here are our picks for the;best ships cruising to Alaska this summer.

The Best Alaska Itineraries

My first visit to Alaska started in Anchorage, where we took the Alaska Railroad to Whittier to board Regent Seven Seas Mariner to explore Prince William Sound, Kodiak and the remote Dutch Harbor before heading to Russias Kamchatka Peninsula and the northern islands of Japan.

What I saw in Alaska took my breath away, and weve returned several times since. While that particular cruise was aboard a pricey luxury line, there are ships in all price ranges sailing a variety of itineraries, so dont let budget stop you from visiting.

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Princess Cruises Reveals Alaska Cruises And Cruisetours For 2023

Cruise Line & Cruise ShipPrincess Cruises August 05, 2021

As the cruise industry continues to come back after a long pause due to COVID-19, excitement for future cruises continues to build. Princess Cruises, a favorite of travelers heading to Alaska, has just announced its cruises and cruisetours in the region for 2023.

Sailings for the newly announced season will go on sale August 18, 2021, and will feature six MedallionClass ships, including the cruise line’s newest ship, Discovery Princess, which will be returning to Alaska for a second season.

The 2023 season includes 145 departures, 14 unique itineraries, five glacier-viewing experiences and departures from four convenient ports.

Highlights of the season will include Voyage of the Glaciers from Vancouver, B.C. or Anchorage . Onboard the Majestic Princess, Sapphire Princess or Grand Princess, guests can set sail on the top-rated, seven-day itinerary that features two glacier-viewing experiences and Glacier Bay National Park.

Princess will also offer sailings of the Inside Passage from Seattle. Onboard Discovery Princess or Crown Princess, guests set sail roundtrip from the Emerald City on these seven-day voyages.

The Ruby Princess will sail 10-day Inside Passage cruises roundtrip from San Francisco, offering the once-in-a-lifetime experience of sailing under the iconic Golden Gate Bridge.

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Princess Cruises Announces 2023 Alaska Cruises & Cruisetours Program

World of Cruising

Six MedallionClass® Ships, Including the New Discovery Princess, Sail from Four Departure Ports to the Sought-After “Great Land”

SANTA CLARITA, Calif., Aug. 5, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — More guests choose Princess than any other cruise line to experience the incredible glaciers, wildlife, fresh seafood and the local culture of Alaska. The newly announced 2023 cruises and cruisetours program offers something for everyone to explore this destination, including the top-rated Voyage of the Glaciers itinerary, award-winning “North to Alaska” enrichment program and the ultimate experience of combining a cruise with a land tour including scenic rail travel and stays at Princess-owned wilderness lodges.

The 2023 Alaska cruises and cruisetours season, on sale Aug. 18, features six MedallionClass ships, including the cruise line’s newest Discovery Princess, returning to Alaska for a second season. With 145 departures, 14 unique itineraries, five glacier viewing experiences and departing from four convenient departure ports, cruise offerings include:

Combined with a Voyage of the Glaciers cruise, guests can experience Alaska’s top-two attractions Glacier Bay National Park and Denali National Park by choosing from 24 cruisetour itineraries, ranging from three to 10 nights on land, before or after the cruise.

Here are the top-10 reasons to see the very best of Alaska with Princess:

  • Princess is #1 in Alaska!

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    The 8 Best Alaska Cruises Of 2021

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    “Airport transfers, shore excursions, meals, wine and spirits, and park admission is bundled into the price.”

    Best for Adventure: Alaskan Dream Cruises See Rates

    “Excursions focus on local culture such as totem carvings, folk dances, and other Tlingit cultural presentations.”

    Cruise In Sophisticated Style To Exciting Destinations

    Consistently a top choice for cruisers and industry experts, Princess offers quality, contemporary cruising with a balance of tradition and innovation. Spectacular ships sail to the Caribbean, Alaska, Europe and many more of the world’s most fascinating places. Now you can do more of what you love with Princess® MedallionClass Vacations, offering a more effortless, personalized vacation than you could ever imagine. Enjoy Wi-Fi at sea, expedited boarding, drinks on demand and more on select sailings. Discover the next wave of vacation travel, exclusively on Princess. The MedallionClass experience is currently available on Caribbean Princess®, Regal Princess®, Royal Princess®, Crown Princess® and Sky Princess.

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    Other Interior Attractions And Activities

    In addition to entertainment spaces, the interiors of Princess ships are filled with other venues where passengers can kick back and let loose day and night, including a range of bars, lounges and nightspots.

    On many ships, the hub of activity is the Piazza, a sprawling, multilevel space that is designed to resemble a square in Italy. The configuration of the Piazza varies by ship, but the area typically offers several shops, a coffee bar called International Cafe, a wine bar called Vines and additional bars and eateries. The Piazza also is home to roving street performers.

    Every Princess ship also has a casino, often just off the Piazza, and spas are big on Princess ships. The Lotus Spa complexes on the lines Royal Class ships offer nearly two dozen treatment rooms, an extensive beauty salon and a thermal suite with a hydrotherapy pool, heated stone beds, Turkish-style steam bath and other steam chambers.

    The new Sky Princess is home to the first jazz club on a Princess ship and the lines first escape room. Called Phantom Bridge, the latter attraction takes place in a digitally enhanced room that can be adjusted so the experience is different every time you try it. Its designed for six players at a time, and the experience lasts 23 minutes.

    Culinary demonstrations, wine tastings and dance classes also are big on Princess ships.

    The Best Cruises In Alaska

    See the Best of Alaska on a Cruise Vacation | Princess Cruises

    Cruise lines are in the business of giving their guests a good time, so they’ve all got something going for them. Here are our picks for Alaska’s best, in a few different categories.

    • The Best Ships for Luxury: Luxury in Alaska is defined in 2012 by Regent Seven Seas and Silversea. If you want a more casual kind of luxury , the Seven Seas Navigator offers just that on an all-suite vessel with excellent cuisine. Silversea, on the other hand, represents a slick, Italian-influenced, slightly more formal luxury experience with all the perks — big suite cabins and excellent food, linens, service, and companions. Both Regent and Silversea include fine wine and booze in their cruise fares. For the ultimate Alaska experience in a small-ship setting, check out the intimate offerings of American Safari Cruises, where soft adventure comes with upscale accouterments.
    • The Best of the Mainstream Ships: Every line’s most recent ships are beautiful, but Celebrity’s Infinity is a true stunner, as is its sister ship, Millennium. These modern vessels, with their extensive art collections, cushy public rooms, and expanded spa areas, give Celebrity a formidable presence in Alaska. And the late-model Sapphire Princess and Diamond Princess have raised the art of building big ships to new heights. Both of these vessels will again be in Inside Passage service this year from Vancouver.

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    Princess Cruises Relationship With Alaska

    One of the reasons I chose Princess Cruises for an Alaska itinerary is their relationship with Alaska. For more than fifty years, Princess Cruises ships have sailed to Alaska, and now cruisers can extend their stay in one of their wilderness lodges and enjoy the impressive views of the towering Denali during the midnight sun. Their Voyage of the Glaciers cruises experience unique ports and cruise glacier-fed fjords with jaw-dropping scenery.

    While I didnt book a Princess cruise and land tour, my 14-day back-to-back Alaska itinerary had different glacier viewings each way, which made the vacation doubly magical. Also, because I live in Vancouver, Canada, sailing back was cheaper than flying. Hard to believe, right? But, if you snag an Alaskan cruise deal as I did, the 7-day Alaska return cruise was less expensive than the cost of a one-way flight. Additionally, I could extend my vacation by seven days .

    When sailing out of Vancouver, Coral Princess, Royal Princess, and Grand Princess offer 14-day or seven-day back-to-back itineraries. . When considered a 14-day or back-to-back itinerary, compare the prices of the two options. Sometimes, its cheaper to book two one-week cruises than one 14-day vacation. Especially when there are perks such s free onboard credit, youll double your credit by choosing two cruises instead of one.

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    How Much Does A Princess Cruise Cost

    Princess ships are very reasonably priced. Theyre not the least expensive vessels out there. But theyre not pricey by any means. Its possible to find Princess voyages to the Caribbean, Bahamas or Mexico starting under $100 per person, per night including all taxes and fees at least in the offseason.

    As of the date of this storys posting, for instance, seven-night sailings from Fort Lauderdale to the Eastern Caribbean in May were starting at just $571 per person, not including taxes and fees of $140. That works out to just $102 per night, per person with taxes and fees for a package that includes your lodging, transportation and meals.

    As you might expect, pricing for ships generally will be lower during offseason periods such as September, October, November and parts of December.

    The timing of when you book also can matter. Cruises book up much further in advance than airplanes or hotels, and many cruisers will tell you that the best pricing for any given sailing often is available when cruises first go on sale . Booking far in advance also will give you the best chance of getting your preferred cabin type and location on a ship.

    Once on board a Princess ship, youll pay extra for most drinks, extra-charge restaurants, spa services, shore excursions, internet service and a few other things unless youve bought a package for some of these items in advance. Most onboard activities such as theater shows are included in the fare.

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    Best Large Cruise: Royal Caribbean

    Courtesy of;;Royal Caribbean

    • Ship: Ovation of the Seas
    • Duration: 7 nights
    • Itinerary: Alaska Inside Passage, Juneau, Skagway, Victoria

    If youre looking for a cruise to Alaska with all the theme-park-like attractions, then the Ovation of the Seas will not disappoint. Built in 2016, Ovation is currently ranked as one of the 10 largest cruise ships in the world with onboard features like a skydiving simulator, a cocktail bar tended by robots, aerial performances in the theater, and the North Star, a moving observation pod with surreal views. The first two days of the voyage are spent at sea so theres plenty of time to explore the ship and try different activities. Or, dine at specialty restaurants like Chops Grille, Royal Caribbeans iconic steakhouse; Wonderland, an eclectic array of dishes, or Giovannis table, a favorite Italian restaurant.;

    Our Experiences On The First Sailing To Alaska With Princess Cruises

    Princess Cruises to cut back in Alaska

    It is true, We Are Back! Princess Cruises is delivering a memorable Alaska cruise experience. We are happy to report that cruising with Princess Cruises has not changed much since the pandemic. With a few extra health and safety protocols, that mainly go unnoticed, the cruise line is able to offer the same great cruise experience.

    While this is our first Princess Cruises sailing, we can see why the cruise line has become so popular, especially in regions like Alaska. Providing a contemporary cruise atmosphere, with plenty of enrichment and onboard fun, travelers have the flexibility to customize their voyage.

    With everyone fully vaccinated, in addition to some enhanced health and safety measures, we feel completely safe on this cruise. Like other cruise lines, all staff members are required to wear masks in all public areas. When compared to our other sailing from the U.S., we have noticed more fellow passengers also wearing masks during this trip even though they are not required.

    If you are looking to cruise to Alaska, now might be the perfect time to do so!

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    Best For Families With Younger Kids

    Carnival, Disney Cruise Line, Norwegian, Princess and Royal Caribbean all have extensive kids clubs aboard their ships. Disney kicks that up a notch with meet-and-greets with its beloved characters on board. You can hang with Dr. Seuss characters when sailing with Carnival and there are DreamWorks personas aboard Royal Caribbean ships.

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    Bhupesh Singh, 44, who was boarding the Serenade of the Seas on Monday with his wife, Hansi, and their two unvaccinated children both are under 12 said he felt comfortable with Royal Caribbeans approach, even with the extra precautions hed have to take travelling with kids. He noted that he brought his family to cruise from Seattle, where Royal Caribbean at least requires all adults to be vaccinated. In Florida, where hes from, that isnt the case.

    The reduced capacity on board the Serenade of the Seas was also encouraging for Singh. Royal Caribbean declined to say exactly how many passengers it will have on board, but said it would be much lower than full capacity, which is typically almost 2,500 people. Holland America and Princess Cruises said they will be starting their Alaskan cruises at approximately 60% capacity, moving up gradually over the course of the season.

    Some cruise lines will also be using technology to trace passengers location. Royal Caribbean will be using tracelets, or wristbands that passengers must wear in order to be tracked on board. Princess Cruises will be using medallions, portable devices used for various functions on board the ship, which will keep a log of who passengers come in contact with.

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    How To Pick The Best Alaska Cruise For You

    Youll see from our chart below that dozens of ships are sailing Alaska in 2020. And this just includes the mass-market and luxury ships. There are even more if you count all of the small ship and expedition vessels. Thats a lot of information to parse as you determine which ship is right for you, so consider a cruise line that caters to your specific needs or interests. Consult this list, and then check the chart to find a vessel that might fit your own preferences, from ships with the fewest passengers to those with the least expensive cruise fares to the ones offering exactly the itinerary you want.

    Which Ship Is Right For Your Alaska Cruise

    How To Choose An Alaska Cruise | Princess Cruises
    Update: Royal Caribbean is committed to delivering vacations that are as safe as they are memorable. We are thrilled to welcome our guests to experience the memorable vacations we are known for once again, starting summer 2021. As you plan your next trip with your loved ones, well be here with inspiration in all forms whenever you need it.

    Royal Caribbean visits top spots in Alaska each summer, including the Inside Passage, Juneau, Icy Strait Point and Skagway.

    There is a lot of ground to cover when visiting Alaska, from its vast, rugged terrain to the many animals that call it home. Planning a vacation to the 49th state may seem like a daunting task. But with two Royal Caribbean ships sailing to the Last Frontier in 2021 and departing from convenient cities in the Pacific Northwestthis must-see destination has never been more within reach. Your big decision is choosing which ship is right for you!

    Whether youre in it for the views, activities, destinations or an extended experience, every ship offers a bit of everything, but each has its perks:

    Quantum of the Seas is packed with family adventures for the young and young at heart.

    The Family Vacation Quantum of the Seas

    Explore more of the family adventures that await when you sail aboard Quantumhere. ;

    The Nonstop Views Ovation of the Seas

    Sneak a peek at the views from Ovationhere.

    When sailing on Serenade of the Seas, its as much about the destinations as it is the journey.

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