Originally Posted by mittshel
Want to cruise Alaska and would appreciate your knowledgeable help.
1. Which is the best cruise line for Alaska?
2. Is there one that is informal?
3. Best dates
4. What is a good 7-day price?
Appreciate all replies.
The "best" is a hard thing to answer. Holland America and Princess provide the "best" cruise/tour options. They have a well developed system of tours and hotels for pre or post cruise tours.
They also provide onboard naturalists and lecturers. Other cruise lines also provide these.
You should also consider if you want a round trip or one way cruise. Many "Inside Passage" cruises are round trip from Vancouver or Seattle. These are good cruises and do not have the open jaw airfare associated with them. One way cruises go out of Vancouver and end up in Seward or Whittier, Alaska. These towns are about an hour from Anchorage. A one way gives you a great opportunity for a cruise/tour or doing sightseeing on your own.
NCL is informal and their Freestyle concept is one of my favorite forms of cruising.
For the best dates, it depends on what you are looking for. For price, May, late August and September have the best prices. June has the overall best weather. July and August have more calving on the glaciers.
Having said that, you still can have great weather in May or September. I have cruised during both of these times and had fantastic weather.
I have seen calving in September but never in May. The lack of calving can also be attributed to "timing". An hour earlier or later it may have been different.
Prices can vary but I usually think that if you can do a balcony for $150/$200 per day it's a pretty good deal. An inside should be around $125 per day. Prices in May and September may be less than this. Right now you can obtain last minute cruises, for May, in a balcony for around $125/day.
I hope this information helps.