What do you want to know about Balmoral?

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#1
New Jersey
3,516 Posts
Joined Nov 2005
Hi, I'm setting sail March 3 - 8 for a cruise onboard Fred. Olsen's Balmoral. I'm curious: Do you have lots of questions about the ship?

We plan to feature an interactive "blog in a thread" right here in the Fred. Olsen forum -- I'll come on each day (technology permitting) during my trip to answer as many of your specific questions as possible. Please post them below, and visit often for new insights and information.




Best,

Carolyn

Editor in Chief
Cruisecritic.com and Cruisecritic.co.uk
#2
412 Posts
Joined Jun 2005
I think as much info as possible and a blog ,good idea,will they have wifi or just their normal type connection ,via their own PCs.Also photos of cabins etc. nothing yet on FO site ,is the prom deck wide enough for loungers ,whats she like in rough seas ,although hope you don,t get any.
Have a nice cruise.
#3
155 Posts
Joined Jan 2008
I'd prefer it if you were going on Black watch

But uptodate photos of cabins - especially superior outside. Price list for the beauty salon, do they do nails, massage, etc - what about quality?
#4
UK
657 Posts
Joined Oct 2007
I'm sailing on Balmoral in August so any info on her would be appreciated!

Loads of photos would be great It will be interesting to know how much of her is "new" ie furniture, carpets etc. I have a cabin in the stretched part.....are these cabins better than others?

What about the crew? Are they from other Fred. Olsen ships or are they new? Loads of questions to ask so yes an option to do that would be wonderful!

Hope you have a wonderful few days on her.....happy cruising
#5
Sydney, Australia
46 Posts
Joined Feb 2005
We are sailing on Balmoral on 1May to 22 May and would really appreciate your overall impression of the ship, crew, food, service etc., Were the shore trips well organised? We have not seen a deck plan with the new section added and is there now a self service laundry?
Hope all goes well and you are able to report that your cruise was great.
#6
poulton le fylde UK
5 Posts
Joined Nov 2007
We are a party of 4 who are on the Balmoral from 3-24th March.Do you plan to organize a Cruise Critic members meeting? We were on Azamara in November and found the meeting useful as it was attended by senior personel of the ship.
#7
NR Blackpool
324 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
We are going on Black Prince, would like to hear more about this ship, also pics. Any thing would be very helpful. This is our first cruise.
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#8
18 Posts
Joined Feb 2008
Would be interested to know which areas are smoke free and which are shared with part for smokers and part for non smokers.

Would also be interested in facilities for Tea/Coffee during the day. Is there a self service area like that on Black Watch.
#9
Gloucestershire
137 Posts
Joined Jan 2008
I am joining Balmoral on 13 March, would love to see any pictures .... just to wet my appetite even more! Salon prices and singles/solo cruisers info would also me good to know
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Cara
Find me on youtube at carah70
#10
South coast,uk
10 Posts
Joined Jan 2008
Hi Carolyn, the wife and I are on the Balmoral cruise when you are, 3rd -13th March and if you would like to meet up you can call us at cabin 4078. It is our first cruise and will be celebrating our Golden Anniversary on the 8th. It is a good idea to get as much information about cruises as possible and we wish you all the best and have a nice cruise. Roy & Doreen
#12
New Jersey
3,516 Posts
Joined Nov 2005
Great suggestion; let me check it out! Look forward to meeting you.

Best,

Carolyn


Carolyn Spencer Brown
Editor
Cruise Critic

Originally posted by tenniselbows
We are a party of 4 who are on the Balmoral from 3-24th March.Do you plan to organize a Cruise Critic members meeting? We were on Azamara in November and found the meeting useful as it was attended by senior personel of the ship.
#13
New Jersey
3,516 Posts
Joined Nov 2005
Hi, Roy, don't know my cabin yet but I know yours and so will ring you once on board. Would be great to meet you and by the way -- CONGRATULATIONS!. What a special occasion....

Re camcorder, I can ask but (and I'll admit I'm the Luddite on the Cruise Critic staff) what I know about video is if it's short and sweet you can easily upload it to You Tube and then we can download it on site. I'll ask but anyone out there who's smarter than me on this (the bar, LOL, is pretty low here) please feel free to chip in.

Best,

Carolyn

Originally posted by Chippy71
Hi Carolyn, the wife and I are on the Balmoral cruise when you are, 3rd -13th March and if you would like to meet up you can call us at cabin 4078. It is our first cruise and will be celebrating our Golden Anniversary on the 8th. It is a good idea to get as much information about cruises as possible and we wish you all the best and have a nice cruise. Roy & Doreen
#14
New Jersey
3,516 Posts
Joined Nov 2005
Thanks, all, for your posts. I'm happy to find answers to specific questions and also quite happy to take photos (with one caveat: it's really hard to get cabin shots if the cabins are occupied so can't promise specific requests there).

Let's do this: Between now and when I leave for the trip (next Saturday) please respond with very specific questions (if you haven't already). I'll print them all out and will run around during my short cruise and find out, and will post them here.

Sound do-able? We'll also be publishing a "sneak preview" review (our full review has been assigned and will launch this summer). And lots o' photos so stay tuned....

Best,

Carolyn

PS It doesn't hurt to nag me (feel free as well to email me directly at editor@cruisecritic.com) if I don't answer your question in the first few days....
#15
155 Posts
Joined Jan 2008
I posted this in another thread here but if you could answer then that would be great:


Firstly, I've been reading the other parts of this forum and mostly the views of Americans (not trying to offend anyone just pointing it out). There are various threads about tipping, auto-tipping, etc

So, what is the procedure on FO? I don't recall reading anything about auto-tipping but have taken note of the suggested amounts per person for certain crew members - what about the 'behind the scenes' crew? Are the tips collected and shared out? Or what?

Also, I've read about 'soda cards/stamps' - does FO operate this kind of thing too? - as a non-drinker I do tend to put away quite a quantity of Coke and lemonade.

Are there any rules about leaving a teenager on board ship during a port visit - there is one stop that my daughter (14) thinks she won't be interested in and would like to stay on board- I have no problem with this but wondered if FO might.

That'll do for now - I'm sure I'll think of some more



Thanks
#16
88 Posts
Joined Sep 2004
Hi Chippy71,

If there is anything else you wish to know before you go please feel free to contact me.

Regards

Chris
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#17
poulton le fylde UK
5 Posts
Joined Nov 2007
Originally posted by editor@cruisecritic
Great suggestion; let me check it out! Look forward to meeting you.

Best,

Carolyn


Carolyn Spencer Brown
Editor
Cruise Critic
Thanks for your reply. My husband and I are in cabin 5039 although we have yet to receive our tickets, and my sister and partner are in cabin 5035. See you onboard.
#18
Columbia, MD
1,163 Posts
Joined Jun 2001
Having cruised on the Royal Odyssey in 1995, I'd love to see what it looks like now. Please post lots of photos.

How do we in the U.S. see the virtual cruise if it's on the UK site? Will there be a link on the U.S. home page too?

Thanks.
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#19
Lincoln UK
18 Posts
Joined May 2007
My husband and I and another couple are due to go on the Balmoral on 13th March - woohooo! Next week!

Like everyone else we'd love to see some pictures of the interior of the Balmoral as the FO site is sadly lacking!

We're going to be in cabin 9092 on Bridge deck so we'll have a balcony. Is it standing room only on the balcony or is there room to sit (and I mean on a chair not on the floor!) ?

We're also interested to learn the cost of a few bits and pieces - namely the photographs and the drinks in the bars. I would be drinking red wine or gin and tonics, my husband is a lager man and our friend drinks pints of bitter. Is there an all inclusive drinks package available once you're onboard?

Changing local currency - will we be able to change small amounts of sterling for local currency - or will we be able to buy small amounts of local currency for each port and charge it to our room/credit card.

Are there plenty of sun loungers on the decks?
Will I be able to get a massage and if so, how much will it cost?

Anyway, my husband says that's quite enough questions for now so many thanks for any answers you get.... appart from.. what's the weather like over there at this time of year!

Netty
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#20
88 Posts
Joined Sep 2004
Carolyn,

Will be interested to hear how passengers flying in from the Uk found the immigration proceedure at Miami and how long it took to get through to the coaches. Originally the flights were going to land at Ft.lauderdale, Hollywood airport, but this appears not to be.

Looking forward to your Blog, I see Peter Knego is doing a blog as well, communications permitting.

Bon Voyage

Chris
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