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About ddled

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    south texas
  • Interests
    cruising,wine tasting,beaches,golf,fishing
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Royal and Celebrity and Princess
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    anywhere-best cruise was voyager ta or med

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  1. In deep south Texas- Cameron county we are in deep lockdown and they mean it. No more than 2 to a car or you get a ticket. Checkpoints. Roving patrols. Tickets to golf course managers of 500.00. Nothing open except a few small restaurants with take out and grocery-pharmacy. Liquor stores are essential and are open! I cannot go fishing by myself even. Local judge(think county commissioner) scared to death and who can blame him. Testing is a joke-turned down twice as many as they gave tests to, and half the tests are bad. No end in sight.
  2. have Crown booked in April 2021 and am keeping it. Did cancel Star July 2 of this year-too uncertain with Canada closing until the day before
  3. we were just on Carnival Vista Feb 1 Lots of sick people onboard. In our party 9/12 got sick-mostly flu like upper respiratory stuff. One of ours had to be hospitilized for dehydration-but she has several underlying conditions. Not a word from the company.
  4. We are long time -26 cruises mostly on Royal, Celebrity and Princess. Tried Vista out of Galveston last week and all in all it was a great cruise on an interesting ship. Never thought I would sail Carnival, but here goes. Embarkation/Debarkation.. Embarkation went great. Parked at Discount Cruise Parking and it was fast and efficient. Getting off was slower. Carnival said we would leave at 10;30 and it was on that time. Lots of big lines in terminal building-think customs was in some mood or other. Getting a porter was the answer. Sick Ship? this is a tough one. We were a party of retireds-12 in all and 7 were sick during the cruise. All influenza/upper respiratory stuff. Everyone we talked to had the same percentage in their groups. Was a rumor that deck 9 had quarantined cabins and several ambulances 12-met the ship at Galveston. I just know we had people in our group not get out of the cabin for days. Cabin-very nice-deck 6 port side was quiet and well placed. Not as much storage as Royal, but only a 7 day cruise too. Bigger shower which was nice Entertainment-this is where Carnival beats the others hands down. 4-6 music venues each night playing everything. Each cruise has a country duo and 2country4Nashville was great. One night they played for 5 hours no breaks and the music was fantastic. They are on until April.. The comedy club was a real hoot. Get there at least 20 minutes early to get a seat, 2 comedians per night and they change in the middle of the cruise. Beats anything else. Other music was very good-a brass duo, and 5 piece band, violins, guitar player, piano.Carnival had the best entertainment we have seen. Liquid Lounge is much smaller than the ones on other lines-they had 3 stage shows that we missed because there were so many other things to do. Was a great place to see the Chiefs win the Super Bowl!!!! Waiters sang and danced each night in main dining room-was cute. The SkyRider is not to be missed-if you are under 250 lbs and they weigh you-it is fun. I am 68 and did it 3 times. Lots of things to do on deck.Truly a Fun Ship Food-here is the big one. I am like Mikey-will eat anything. My wife is a little pickier, she thought the food was not as good as Royal. We ate in MDR, Farenheit 555, buffet,and best of all they open the specialty restaurants except for the steakhouse for lunch free. The Italian restaurant was fantastic and everyone had that idea. I did not go hungry, but the buffet had fewer items for breakfast. Bananas were gold-they were put out eventually, but the servers were very good about getting them for you. MIsc. Service was very good-our room steward was tremendous Palguna was our room steward-excellent. Waiters and all ship members were very good-no complaints. Dress code was pretty casual. That has been discussed here and is a fact that pretty much anything goes. In MDR there were lots of shorts, tank tops, t shirts and dirty ball caps. As long as those that want to dress up can I guess it to each his own. There was security all over the place-no disturbances that we saw, and no drunks wandering around. We do not gamble, casino was smoky to walk through. There were I would guess 400 or so kids on board. We are retired teachers and asked several if they had a school break. They all said that they were on vacation. I guess it has been a whole month since Christmas? Kids were pretty well behaved and Carnival is built for families so other than filling up the pools and hot tubs they were on their own. Some running around and playing on the elevators. The flow in the Vista is choppy. Only a couple of decks go all the way through, and I think it is because there are so many entertainment venues. You get used to it, and it is ok after a while. I would sure have the entertainment. The ship was a lot plainer and more drab than most. The decorating was a little subdued, to our taste. We went on 2 shore excursions-Tabasco Cooking in Cozumel and Airboat/Zoo in Belize.Both were well run and fun. Did nothing in Roatan, the beach is close if you want to do that. Download for 5 dollars the Hub App. Was very convient and worked most of the time. Sometimes had to reboot. Some had wifi and it seemed to work ok. All in all it was a very good time. If food is your first thing to do-stick to the sprecialty restaurants. If you want to be entertained this is good value. It has been a long time since I got off a ship without trying everything, but I could not get everything done on Vista. Ship was clean,lots of ongoing attention, but some of the handwashing stations were dry and there were fewer of them. Captain did not make any announcments or do a QandA with the passengers. Saw him once in the hall. No mention of sickness on ship but it was there. Cruise director was Schwarz and very good-funny. High energy. Marriage game was the same type of questions, but the contestants were less inhibited especially in the kissing audition. Fun to watch. Pool chairs on sea days typically taken, but always somewhere you could use. Serenity for adults was really nice-free and available but very popular in good weather-kids no problem there. Did not get to gym-walking on deck is always nice in good weather. Sailing out of Galveston the winter weather is chilly first and last days-in the 60s. Otherwise typical Carribbean weather. No high waves. Would I go on Vista again? Yes. The price was good-cheaper than Royal Liberty. The entertainment was what balanced it out. If you are looking for a good time this is a great ship. Texans are fun to sail with and that was nice. For what they do Carnival gets a thumbs up.
  5. Pretty sure it was Liberty-big white thing? Seems to be where the parking shuttle took uslol. It was really fast-last few times we used Galveston it has improved. Spent 4 hours in the terminal building once off Voyager-had to get better.That is when we learned why you get porters-faster by far!
  6. Sailed Liberty for the 4th time. Had a balcony on deck 12 forward. Very nice cabin, balcony a little small, but excellent nonetheless. Following are a few ideas in the form of a review. We are a retired couple,late 60s, sailed Royal ships for 20 years, about 23 times. Diamond level Embarkation, Disembarkation-as smooth as we have ever seen. Hardly stopped or waited in line in either. Food- We ate in Chops twice and loved it. Giovannis once and it was just ok. The MDR was excellent, and the Windjammer for breakfast was very good. Gained the normal pounds, so I guess it was ok. They had a sale on the first day that gave 15% off the 3 day package for Chops-Giovanni. Made it a no brainer as one day is almost that much. Did not try Sabor-we live in south Texas and have excellent Mexican here. Pizza at Sorrentos was good-all the food is holding its taste and presentation. Stuff that has disappeared-Diamond perks are the same-3 drinks or mostly unlimited in the lounge. Lounge was full each day, at 5:30 much of it emptied out. Went to send a postcard to my 96 year old mother. They do not sell postage or send postcards like they used to! REALLY? No mints on the pillow of course, did get some towel animals. The perks on the Crown and Anchor list is shorter than it was 10 months ago. No stationary or robes in the rooms-I suppose you can get them if you ask, but I feel sorry for the steward with as many rooms as they have now. He did get us extra towels(which are one step above Motel 6) and wine glasses. There were no biographies of any of the officers put out-used to be in the compass. Too many diamond sales in there I guess. The captain-James-was around a lot. From Tampa and very personable. They do not wrap the silverware in the Windjammer with the napkins anymore. I really think they are running out of things to cut out- I really expect some day to be given a paddle upon check in and a time to paddle! Music- for the first time on LIberty there was no country band! I mean-it is sailing from Texas. The band was good, not country, mostly slow rock and pop. If you remember Bubba Feathers or his successors this was a shock. They were good, just not Texas. I know-other people cruise this too, but a little country would not have sunk the ship. The different thing about this cruise was the presence of 800 members of the Texas Country Music Association. They had concerts each day mostly in Studio B or On Air and were kind enough to have one on the pool deck. Turns out if you call Royal 2 months in advance of your cruise, find out there is a big group on that you do not want to sail with, they will reschedule your cruise. At least that was the talk on ship. This group was fine people and no problem at all. Misc,- The cruise director-Jeffrey-was great. Funny, informative,out in public a lot, and experienced enough to have lots of tips. I recommend his Rant on the tv each morning-it will save you some problems for sure. The ship is is in good shape-due for a dry dock in a year or so. Seems to vibrate more than it used to. They had one engine down for maintainance, maybe that was it. Really vibrated in stern half. Service was as good as always-maybe better. Only went in gym once-bigger than I remembered, and very usable. Solarium was great, pools were well used but plenty of space. Keeping in mind it is a business the attempts to sell you something was not bad. Everything was clean and on time. This ship is our favorite in the fleet., Captain James said that there will be an Oasis class(not 5-it is going to China) during 2021. New pier is not started, so we will see. That ship will sell out for years in Texas. Hate to lose Liberty though. Parking was about 50 for the week, with shuttle. Discount Cruise Parking. Check to be sure that your parking place did not flood during Harvey-some did. Never know what will come up behind you. Ports-Cozumel had 5 ships in-one was Symphony. Costa Maya-did the salsa trip-great. Taste tested Tequila for 45 minutes-no one went to the beach after! Roatan-did underwater glass bottom boat. Almost like snorkeling and stayed dry. Fun. NCL is building a pier right next to Royal, more shops coming. Not the prettiest port in the Caribbean for sure, but works. All in all it was an excellent cruise. Weather was flawless-almost no rain or waves. I would go again, the cruise is a good break. Since we drive in, I cannot comment on airports but if you can choose Hobby. Go a day early-lots to do in Galveston or Houston.
  7. Celebrity used to be our favorite. Now everything is for suite passengers. Fine if you have one, and so be it. For us we prefer Princess but they had a go at Texas and left. An Oasis makes most sense.
  8. I really liked your review. I am a veteran Royal cruiser booked on my first Carnival in Feb so I liked the comparisons. Woudn't it be nice if we could take the things we like from each line and combine them into one! I really liked that you took time to dress up nice for dinner-great lesson for your son. Thanks
  9. 7:30 I believe we eat first and it was 5
  10. We just did Emerald from LA to Hawaii. Overall it was a very good cruise-well worth the time. Here are a few thoughts as a review: Embarkation was as smooth as possible-walked right on. Stayed the night before at Vagabond Inn in San Pedro-very good service, and easy to use. Ports- In Hilo we rented a car and went to Volcano Winery-if you like wineries this was a nice place-good wines and charming location. Something different to do and a short hour or so drive. Town of Volcano has several places to poke around in too. Honolulu-rented a car and drove North Shore. great scenery, breathtaking views-shrimp trucks are fun places to stop for lunch. Kuawai we did a hop on bus you can get from the pier-not through the ship, but it is fun. Went to several places including a great plantation stop that could have been all day. In afternoon we went on fern grotto tour-great scenery, fun to see all the movie locations. Maui-we went whale watching-did excursion from ship. Saw lots of them and close. Even better would have been to go on a zodiac-faster and they get closer. Ensenada-get off here and do something-no problems. We did a ship excursion to LaCetta winery-well worth the trip-great time and no fears. Entertainment on ship-excellent-in particular the dance music. They had a duo from Mexico-the Rumba Duo that was very danceable and the show band was very good too-Atomic. Theater acts were very good-did think the dancers were just average except the Magic show which was really unique. Dance floors were bigger than most ships and were used. The nightclub floor however was an exception-glass with edges that stick up. Food-much has been said about this but we found it to be very good. Ate in MDR all nights except 2 in Crown Grill which was fantastic. Had room service for lunch, buffet for breakfast. In all places choices were numerous and well presented. We had no real complaints. Misc-several things that we thought- chairs in Explorers were worn out and needed replaced. Our bed was lumpy and sagged in the middle-if this is the new bed they are in trouble-our great room steward had to put a board under the mattess! Wine policy seems to be that you can bring on wine at any port-Over 1 per person you pay a corkage fee of 15 if you want to take it to dinner. I got several versions of this, but I did bring wine on in Hilo. Final thoughts- I would not be afraid to sail Emerald anywhere. Service was excellent, food very good with lots of choices, entertainment was great. She needs a little tlc in the upcoming dry dock, and that will help, but all in all it was a great cruise. Not part of the cruise but if I had to do it again I would fly into any other airport than lax! The place is dump and that is a nice comment. Princess continues to put on a fine cruise for us and we look forward to out next one.
  11. just back. Did 2 excursions-Green Grotto from ship was a neat cave tour-lots of history and the only warm dry cave I have ever seen. Just inside the port wall is the trolley tour. 25 not hooked up with ship but a very interesting 1 hour tour of Falmouth-churches, beaches, local color etc. Did both in a day with no problems
  12. I posted a review of Liberty in the review section if interested. Liberty does a fine job on most counts. Had very few criticisms. Lots of kids on board over Thanksgiving, but most were well behaved and busy enjoying the ship. It is a big ship, but they do a pretty good job of handling all the people. Have sailed her before and can see no downturn in the product. Speculation continues that Oasis class is coming to Galveston by 2020. Rest of review in review section.
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