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Ka Honu

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About Ka Honu

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Kailua, Hawaii
  • Interests
    Living in Hawaii (What else do you need?)

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  1. It may not have been Seabourn policy but it was NOT a mistake since you made your choice based on your personal value system and desires. The "mistake" comes in when someone makes choices (or attempts to influence others') choices based on gossip and peer pressure - neither of which should be part of any decision (except maybe the decision to find new people to gossip with). I may or may not agree with your decision but it's not my business (or anyone else's) how someone chooses to reward what they consider service provided well past the "above and beyond" standard we rightfully expect on Seabourn.
  2. Why does what someone chooses to do and broadcast, especially when in violation of line policy, affect someone else's behavior? If they can afford "luxury" cruises, you'd think they'd be adult enough to make such decisions based on their own standards without relying on peer pressure to make such decisions and would understand that it's a personal preference and should remain a PRIVATE decision. My anecdotal observation seems to indicate that the guests who have the closest relationships with the crew (as individuals and as a whole) observe the policy, might contribute to the Crew Fund, and occasionally give usually small, non-cash gifts to favored employees and their families. Sounds reasonable to me but that's just my opinion (and doesn't necessarily mean that it is or isn't my personal choice). Jus' sayin'...
  3. When you book back-to-back they will try to keep you in the same cabin for both segments but there has to be one that meets your guarantee class and is available for both legs - not usually a problem but not guaranteed. Normally, changeover day is a "normal" port call for "through passengers." They may or may not have a shuttle available (as they do for most port calls where the town is not adjacent to the port) but you should have regular access to shore and back aboard. In general, you are no longer required to attend a second safety drill if you are within 30 days of the last one.
  4. ... and, not to pirate the thread, if you're ever in New Orleans, definitely go to the WWII museum. It's AMAZING!
  5. It took us 5 minutes to wheel our luggage from the train station to the ship. Incredibly easy. All righty then - thanks for the info. You Aussies are so hardy. Looking forward to the train ride and am sure we'll be able to deal with whatever happens to the luggage.
  6. We're taking the Alaska RR from Anchorage to Seward to board Sojourn in late August. We know it's only half a mile from Seward train station to the cruise port and that the city runs a free shuttle service every half hour or so. Just wondered if Seabourn also runs their own shuttle from the train station to the ship. Thanks.
  7. I'm with wripro and Hoyaheel on this one. Either find an experienced, trustworthy TA who specializes in the line(s) you're booking and let them handle it start to finish or do it yourself the whole way. As Abe Lincoln purportedly said, "It is not best to swap horses while crossing the river." Jus' sayin'...
  8. My wife and two friends took a 3-day, 2-night Abercrombie and Kent tour of Sim Reap/Angkor Wat in February 2019 - left the ship in Sihanoukville and reboarded in Saigon. They loved it and it came in at about US$1,000 per person less than the Seabourn version. Transportation, lodging, private guides, most meals - all at least as good as or better than the ship's tour (which was a group of 50 or 60 as I recall). You might have to handle your own visas and will need a letter from Seabourn allowing you to disembark/reembark (all easily done). In general, if the infrastructure is present, private tours are almost always better than those sourced through a cruise line. They're usually much less expensive and you have the luxury of not traveling in groups of 30-60. I don't have any specific recommendations for Vietnam and India but will say that toursbylocals.com have always done well by us.
  9. Our stewardess had no problem supplying Laphroaig in our cabin on Ovation in February.
  10. As I understand it, whoever makes the booking with Seabourn makes the choice on accepting upgrades. If you haven't ever seen the option, your TA probably has. We did a little research in February when friends of ours got a "surprise" upgrade from a verandah to a penthouse on boarding Ovation. Apparently the actual upgrades come out of Seattle based on some combination of your stated preferences and some mysterious secret corporate criteria (possibly randomly generated by computer - no one's talking). Shipboard personnel claim to have nothing to do with the process and are often as surprised as the passengers when the upgrade appears on embarkation day. That's all I know.
  11. If you booked the cabin you want and declined upgrades, then you'll get what you paid for. In other words, if you're happy with your original selection, your work is done (unless Seabourn offers you an upsell or cabin change - which you can accept or decline). On the other hand, if your booking shows you willing to accept an upgrade, your fate is out of your hands. You can't refuse it (unless the circumstances are extraordinary) and may not even know about it until you board. Like booking a "Guarantee/OB" suite, it's a chance you take to get a shot at a higher category cabin without paying the differential (even if the location and/or configuration may not seem better to you).
  12. Isklaar - Apparently your experience varied significantly from ours. We were on Ovation for 28 days in February-March and found the hostesses in TK Grill to be very gracious and helpful. Some evenings there was nothing they could do (and apologized) but on a couple of occasions they found a way to accommodate us. Our best recommendation is to go early, tell them you'll be in the bar having a drink, and ask them to let you know if they can fit you in. That seemed to work about half the time. YMMV.
  13. We're looking at early March - sometime between the 2nd and 4th.
  14. We have an extra day in Hong Kong (Tsim Sha Tsui) in addition to our already scheduled sightseeing, shopping, etc., and are thinking about taking the new bridge-tunnel to Macau and the high-speed ferry back. I didn't lose anything in Macau so don't really need to spend time in the city but would like to see the new bridge-tunnel and take the boat ride. Any hints on making the trip simple? Thanks.
  15. The main difference in the tours is apparently shopping time which, on Komodo, isn't a big deal (a few tables of souvenirs mostly made in other places). IMO, you go to to see the dragons and (unless things have changed drastically in the last 2 years), other than the critters themselves, there isn't much "there" there.
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