Royal Princess Cruise Review

We were on a 4-day repositioning cruise from Vancouver, BC to Los Angeles, CA on the Royal Princess (fun fact: it was christened by the real Princess, Kate Middleton) with Princess Cruises in September. We got a balcony room for a really good price and since we wanted to visit LA for a few days, this itinerary worked out perfectly for us. This cruise did not have any port which was common for repositioning itinerary and I believe was part of the reason why it was very affordable.

This was my second cruise (the first one was a 6-day China/Japan itinerary with Royal Carribean this summer) and Eric’s first. One of the biggest let down for me on my Royal Carribean cruise was the quality of the food so I had mentally prepared Eric for his first as we both love eating (definitely not a foodie in the fine dining sense but we just get hungry often).

Lucky for both of us, the food on the Royal Princess was much better than expected. We enjoyed the 24-hour cafe, the buffet and even though less so, not because of the food quality but rather the slow pace, the dining rooms. Entertainment-wise, we kept ourselves entertained with the impressive in-room movie selection, Movie under the Stars, the hot tub and the performance at the lounges.

Cost for the Royal Princess

I don’t normally detail cost for my travels as I think it fluctuates too much depending on the season, time and promotions but because I think the cost for cruises has many components that are not apparent to first-time cruisers, I am including it here for reference. For reference, I spent ~$1,500 CAD on my onboard account for my Royal Carribean cruise between my mom and myself which was in addition to the cruise price and taxes. The cost of a cruise vacation definitely goes beyond the cruise price.

Cost for Royal Princess

Other charges to account for (these prices are specific to this cruise but I believe they are comparable to other cruise lines)

Additional Cost for Royal Princess

Room on the Royal Princess – C304 Category BB

We took our chances and booked a guaranteed balcony room. Guaranteed rooms are often cheaper because you basically pay for the lowest category of room you will be happy with and the cruise line has the right to assign you any room in the category you paid for or in a better category anytime between your booking to before sailing. Since we booked only a week or so before sailing, we were assigned the room almost immediately after payment.

We were assigned an accessible balcony room on the Caribe Deck (level 10). This room was about double in width than a non-accessible room in this category and had a larger balcony.

C304 Royal Princess
C304 Royal Princess

We were happy with its location (only steps away from the elevators) and the size but my sleep was affected negatively by some sort of mechanical noise the entire trip. It did not impact Eric at all so if you are a heavy sleeper, you will have no trouble sleeping. There was minimal noise from upstairs and the hallway despite its proximity to the elevators.

The Caribe Deck is a guestroom deck meaning we were not on the same deck as any dining or attractions. This did not bother us however as the wait for an elevator was never long and the stairs were always an option.

Even though the decoration of the room was not our style, the Royal Princess was refurbished in Dec 2018 with new beds. The position of the TV did make it difficult to watch TV during the day with the curtains open as the glare was too bad.

I was glad we were assigned a bigger room as we saw some of the regular balcony rooms and they were petite. It might be fine for a short trip like ours but if it was a 7-day+ itinerary, I would suggest splurging on a Mini-Suite or above if you like to spend lots of time in your room like us.

We also really enjoyed the balcony and thought it was worth every penny!

C304 Royal Princess
C304 Royal Princess

Dining Options on the Royal Princess

The buffet was open from 5 AM to 11 PM during our cruise and the international cafe was open 24/7. The dining rooms were open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner and the fast food was mostly open at 11 AM.

*has charges

The Buffet – Horizon Court/Bistro

Horizon Court Buffet Royal Princess
Horizon Court Buffet Royal Princess
Horizon Court Buffet Royal Princess
Horizon Court Buffet Royal Princess
Horizon Court Buffet Royal Princess
Horizon Court Buffet Royal Princess
Horizon Court Buffet Royal Princess
Horizon Court Buffet Royal Princess
Horizon Court Buffet Royal Princess
Horizon Court Buffet Royal Princess
Horizon Court Buffet Royal Princess

The Cafe – International Cafe

International Cafe on Royal Princess
International Cafe on Royal Princess
International Cafe on Royal Princess
International Cafe on Royal Princess

The Fast Food – Pizzeria, Trident Grill, Swirls, Gelato*

Gelato on Royal Princess
Gelato on Royal Princess
Gelato on Royal Princess

The Dining Rooms – Allergro, Symphony, Concerta, Alfredo’S

Dining Room on Royal Princess
Dining Room on Royal Princess
Dining Room on Royal Princess
Dining Room on Royal Princess
Dining Room on Royal Princess
Dining Room on Royal Princess
Dining Room on Royal Princess
Dining Room on Royal Princess
Dining Room on Royal Princess
Dining Room on Royal Princess

The Lounges – Sea View Bar*, Crooners*, Wheelhouse Bar*, Vibes*

Sea View Bar on Royal Princess
Sea View Bar on Royal Princess
Crooners on Royal Princess
Crooners on Royal Princess

The Specialty Restaurants – Sabatini’s*

Entertainment Options on the Royal Princess

Movies under the Stars

Movies under the Stars on Royal Princess
Movies under the Stars on Royal Princess
Royal Princess

Princess Live!

Princess Live on Royal Princess

Princess Theatre

Princess Theatre on Royal Princess

Performers at Lounges

Wheelers Bar on Royal Princess

The Piazza

The Piazza on Royal Princess
The Piazza on Royal Princess
The Piazza on Royal Princess
The Piazza on Royal Princess

Fitness Center & Sports Court

Sports Court on Royal Princess
Sports Court on Royal Princess

Pools and Hot Tubs

The Retreat on Royal Princess
The Retreat on Royal Princess

Casino

Casino on Royal Princess

Library

Library on Royal Princess
Library on Royal Princess

In-room Movies

Conclusion

As mentioned, the quality of the food on the Royal Princess way exceeded our expectations. I was glad that the buffet opened late and that there was a 24/7 option for my caffeine needs and late-night cravings. We did not make it to any of the shows at the Princess Theatre and Princess Live this time but we were kept entertained between meals by a drink or two at the lounges, the in-room movies and Movies under the Star.

shares
%d bloggers like this: