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About mrmoviezombie

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    Cool Cruiser

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    Santa Cruz Mountains
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  1. Vanguard index funds for the win. It's a mug's game picking stocks. Why Index Funds Are The Best
  2. That is not true, cruising is much cheaper than it used to be. It's never been cheaper to fly, What Flights Used to Cost in the 'Golden Age' of Air Travel | Travel + Leisure (travelandleisure.com) Anything based on electronics/computers is orders of magnitude cheaper. Want to guess what 55in TV in the 1990s would have cost you?
  3. We have found this depends a lot on the ship. On some ships it's hard to avoid walking thru the Casino and the smoke can be very noticeable and annoying, other ships you bypass the casino and/or you don't notice the smoke. And yes, I agree with others, the only other place you get smoke is up on one side of the aft pool deck, which is easy to avoid. Never smelt smoke anywhere else on a HAL ship. I have read rumors on CC about avoiding the cabins directly under the aft pool deck because sometimes the smoke gets sucked down to the balconies, but I would avoid those from t
  4. It actually doesn't matter what HAL officialdom says. Are you in a situation where you suddenly might find your self in a foreign country wanting to fly back ===> You need a Passport. It's as simple as that. Any number of things might happen and you are off the ship in Mexico. Either a personal health issue, or other issue back at home that needs immediate return, some failure on the ship that kicks everyone off the ship. Now what do you do? Sure there are processes to handle people without passports in those situations, but it's complicated and much slow
  5. Been kicking myself since ever since we found out about the rental car trick on CC a few years ago. Same thing, so wish I had thought of it long ago. So much time and money wasted researching the best pricing on shuttles or long term parking. It is so much better that we used it for just about all our (pre 2020 of course) trips. For us there is a closer Avis rental place that doesn't charge an extra one-way fee to the airport.
  6. There are reviews of the Dec 2019/Jan 2020 Antarctica cruises. https://www.cruisecritic.com/memberreviews/getreviews.cfm?action=ship&ShipID=1265 Doesn't matter what they do, overcrowding will not be a problem of at least a year or two. We are booked on the Nome->Halifax northwest passage next year.
  7. Yes, but it's sold as an inside but it has a window to let in natural light and while the layout is a little odd, there is quite a lot of open space which is nice. We liked it. It was really nice to be able to step outside in a moment or straight to the crows nest, and don't forget the explorer café is right there as well.
  8. My reading of them was they were all problems with the initial northern sailings. If you look at the next Antarctic season reviews, there are people that are happy with the ship
  9. Actually I imagine that without needed to look good for passengers, that a lot of the normal cleaning/painting has been suspended. The reduced crew probably doesn't help either. And being sold already, maintenance is probably just the statutory minimums.
  10. It's "placeholder" because the marketing department didn't send over the final approved text for that slot before it went live. Or more likely someone forgot they were suppose to wait for it before releasing to production.
  11. Saw this on another board https://www.kayak.com/travel-restrictions
  12. Most likely it's because they have no motivation to send out the money quickly. However, refunds like this are likely the sort of thing that require a manual review and signoff for each transaction. Usually by a limited number of people with the right financial authority. Outbound payments like this are a huge source of fraud in corporations. At any large corp there is always some employee trying to game the system with fake invoices/refunds/payments. Ballpark numbers 3 months of cruises to cancel, average 7 day cruises, 15 ships, 1000 cabins 12*15*1000=1
  13. I suspect they running the survey right now is just to get a base line. They might run it continuously, or again in a few months. So they can see at what point the public sentiment changes back to a likelihood of wanting to cruising. And thus indicate when (and maybe where) they should open up cruising again.
  14. For this reason, we decided to layer on AirMed https://airmed.com/ with an annual premium. It's probably mostly redundant with my main employer insurance (they would likely make the call repatriate home on their dime anyway), but the cost was worth the piece of mind. It's effectively only hospital to hospital transport, meaning you have to be admitted to a hospital before it can be triggered, but then you call them. And then assuming the medical teams and hospitals all agree it's safe, off you go, worldwide.
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