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Everything posted by loriva

  1. On our Viking Homelands itinerary, there was a professor from the UK who did a series of lectures about the architecture in the cities on the itinerary. They were well attended. But it was all about the historical architecture--Gothic, Baroque, architectural styles in the Hanseatic League cites, etc.. Personally, I would love seeing takes on the more-modern styles from Bauhaus to Brutalism to MCM to contemporary, etc. All of the cities on the Viking Homelands itinerary or on your recent itinerary have stories to tell on these styles. I also agree about finding a personal angle to each lecture. Some tie to each style discussed or to the architects who created those styles. Maybe Frank Lloyd Wright is your uncle, maybe your family left Germany with the exile of the Bauhaus creators, etc. I know these are just thinking out loud, but there is definitely a reason you chose to be an architect and who inspired you. IMHO, I think people would be interested in hearing those stories to bring the styles and creators alive.
  2. That's what I thought as well. But we found repeats of the wine pairings with different menus--both the included and the premium. As @Peregrina651said, this may reflect differences in staffing on the various ships,
  3. This was the one area where we felt VO dropped the ball on our first cruise with them on Jupiter in May. We had two members of our traveling party who were vegetarians--noted on their MVJ prior to cruise. It was obvious this was in the records as the staff in the restaurants would ask about our vegetarians when we sat down. Instead, the staff would bring in something already prepared from Manfredi's. Sometimes pretty disappointing--a plain salad instead of the interesting appetizer the rest of us enjoyed. After this happened to us a couple of times in the CT, we spoke with the restaurant manager. The chef came out and offered to make something special for the vegetarians--it would only take an additional 45 minutes to prepare. Our dining companions declined and were brought a plain salad from Manfredi's instead. We were left wondering why if the chef COULD make a vegetarian alternative why this wasn't done in advance. It seemed like it would have been easy to count up the number of vegetarians dining that evening and make alternative dishes for them--even just separating out a portion of the dish before adding meat. Or tossing in some tofu instead. We also found we needed to be careful at the buffet. Dishes that sounded like they were vegetarian--a lentil salad, for example--turned out to have meat in them. Viking is, however, on the ball here and has a little card by dishes that lists ingredients. You just have to be diligent in reading them.
  4. Well, I got three out of four correct when I started this thread! Missed "Duets" and some of the names. (In my defense, I was trying to figure out how to get a bean bag into a cornhole target from the stairway in the Atrium as I was listening to the information from the entertainment staff on the new shows... I know, excuses, excuses!)
  5. This has been my experience as well--with both Hilton and other hotels and with Regent and other cruise lines. Hotels cannot link my loyalty account to group reservations or even find the latter. What has worked for us is what others have said. We make an independent reservation with the cruise line's hotel for the day (or days) before the included night. I note in my reservation that we'll also be staying another night/s under the cruise line reservation. About a month out, I send an email to the hotel notifying them again of the double stay and asking them to link the reservation. They usually reply in the same way as the clerk at the Hilton Anchorage did--that they cannot find a group or individual reservation for the subsequent stay. BUT they also usually say they have made a note in the reservation I have booked independently (and for which I have a confirmation code) about the extra time at the hotel. And, of course, when we check in, I remind them again of the double stay. I've had luck with this strategy at Hilton (where I'm a Diamond member) and other hotels. I try to book the same (standard) category as the cruise line or just one additional category higher and we have been able to stay in the same room for the duration of both our individually booked and group reservation. (I'm not sure if it would work if my independent reservation was for a suite or other significantly higher category than the cruise lines book.) Of course, as always, past performance does not guarantee future results and YMMV.
  6. Our flight to Sydney booked with Regent Air changed itinerary--a direct flight going to SFO via EWR is now going via IAD and will have a departure time 40 minutes earlier. (Airlines usually only consider any change over two hours as "significant," triggering a free change or refund.) I discovered the change in my account on the Regent website, on the air schedule under Custom Air. Neither Regent nor my TA (big box) had notified me of the change. The airline might have notified me of the change, but I had not yet input my passenger record number and linked the reservation to my frequent flyer account to trigger that. So, in my case, there was no notification by Regent of the change. As others have said, I would not expect them to notify us of any changes in equipment or seat assignments. And, echo others in recommending checking constantly with the airline's website on your flights. I do this monthly initially, then change to weekly when closer to the flight, and then daily the final week. (Which is probably overkill, but I have the time to do it and it doesn't hurt me or anyone else.) I'd also recommend checking historical records for your flights in FlightAware to determine the timeliness of flights and setting flight alerts. I do the former for the itineraries I'm considering to determine if connection times are adequate.
  7. Thanks for this information and link. There appears to be one error about the VoA you can obtain via the Indonesian Government website: https://molina.imigrasi.go.id/. The Bali Holiday Secrets website author says application for the visa starts at 14 days prior to arrival. The government website, however, says it is good for 90 days after entry. (And now enough off topic on Regent flights!)
  8. I had to look it up: Fyrstekake (or Norwegian Prince's cake) is more of a tart with a delicious soft filling of ground almonds (and rum!) that makes you want a second (or even third) slice. On my list to try when we do this itinerary in two years. (Tried the Success cake and waffle on our first VO cruise in May.) I think the crab cake is new since our sailing (or I just missed it).
  9. Regent does have a contract with Turkish Airlines. At least I was offered their flights when trying to determine an itinerary for a cruise next year. Regent may not have seats on all flights, however, or the airline may have sold all the seats in the restricted class for the contract. When we lost our flight due to a hurricane last year, we had to wait three days until there were flights with the correct fare category for rebooking by Regent.
  10. When you open your Booked Cruises, open the one of interest with "Manage Cruise." Scroll down and you should see a bunch of items under "Customize my Cruise." Under "Roundtrip Airfare," you should have a line "Review Air Schedule" in blue. Open that link and your booked flights will appear.
  11. As others have said, you will not be able to manage your flights on the airline's website until Regent has ticketed them. This is around 60 days prior to embarkation rather than as soon as you make final payment, per Regent's Air Department. We made our final payment for our upcoming cruise over a month ago, but they are still showing on the Lufthansa website as not ticketed. Our 60-day mark will be in another three weeks. Regent's Air Department also told me they do make seat reservations when they initially book your flights. For me at least, the seats do not appear on my Air Schedule in my account on Regent's website nor were they on the itinerary sent to me for review and approval. I was able to obtain the seat assignments by calling Regent--and it did not trigger the $75 fee. This MAY not apply to all airlines. We had air from Regent to LHR on British Air and return on Virgin Atlantic last year and I was able to manage my reservations on their websites as soon as the flight was booked, long before it was ticketed. I've only booked air through Regent twice, so not sure if this was just an anomaly or if different airlines have different policies on how bookings made by third parties can be managed.
  12. We have a roll call going. Not very active but come on over and say hi if you wish. Busy trying to plan. It will be only the second time for DH in Venice and Athens, so trying to come up with ways to maximize our time there (which includes just wandering aimlessly in Venice!) All the other ports except Kusadasi will be new to us.
  13. Which sailing are you on? We're on the one departing Venice on 20 October. Hoping for some nice weather and smooth sailing on what looks to be an interesting itinerary!
  14. I thought the drinking water on the ships came from a desalinization process? And then the Vero water is supposed to be filtered after that? So, the water should not have any of the heavy metals, chlorine, or fluoride the alkaline filters are meant to remove to begin with.
  15. Late to the party, but we booked this itinerary for August 2025 while aboard our first VO cruise in May. Thank you so much for the informative, detailed, and lively commentary on your cruise. Will have to give those lamb chops for breakfast a try in a couple of years!
  16. Slightly off topic, but what are the days and hours when the Viking Air Plus department is open? I can find their phone number (1-877-523-0580) on the Viking website, but nothing on when they are open. Our date to book air is this Saturday (310 days before we embark). Is the department open that day or do I need to wait until Monday to call?
  17. Thanks, @SempreMare, for pointing out @Azulann's wonderful live report. Brings back memories. Also, sadness that we missed Gdansk--same shorex booked. We had the same experience with our CC.com M&G--no response to my email--but never had any contact with the GM. Loved Assistant CD Francesca--great voice. We did not have Aarhus on our cruise itinerary, but my sister and I visited it on our Danish Heritage tour after the cruise (after we sent the husbands home). Driving around Denmark visiting areas where our family lived with the genealogist/guide was a magical experience. Har det godt for the rest of your travels, @Azulann!
  18. Thanks for the summary of the new procedure. That was not my question, however. On these boards, people have suggested calling Regent a week or so in advance of the 210-day mark to get the names of the carriers with whom Regent has contracts for a particular route. Then with that information in hand you can prepare itineraries you find acceptable for the call at the 210-day mark. It was that first call--not actual booking--on which I had the question of the $75 charge. I've also asked the question on the flight deviation thread, perhaps a more-appropriate place for the query.
  19. Should have thought to ask this question when I called about seat reservations, but I did not. Does anyone know if you can still call the Regent Air Concierge to obtain the carriers with whom Regent has contract rates for a particular route or routes? Or does the $75/pp charge apply even to that? Will give it a try next week and report back my experience.
  20. Does anyone know if you can still call the Regent Air Concierge to obtain the carriers with whom Regent has contract rates for a particular route or routes? Or does the $75/pp charge apply even to that?
  21. The Regent Air Concierge also told me yesterday that they make seat reservations when they book your flight. Mine did not show up on the itinerary they sent me (or my TA) so I had to call to get them. They do not ticket the flight until 60 days out, however, so you might not be able to access your reservation to change seats, etc. until after that date. This does seem to vary, however. I was able to access our reservation on British Airways for a flight last September but cannot access the current reservation on Lufthansa--it pops up a message that "this reservation requires payment." So, you might want to have the seats you desire in hand on your preferred flight options when you (or your TA) call/s the Air Concierge at the 210-day mark.
  22. Interesting! The OP specifically mentioned booking shorex for a cruise in June 2024 that includes Dublin/Dun Laoghaire. But the Regent website does not list Dublin (nor any port in Ireland) as among its destinations. But there is it on 16 June 2024 in the Splendor cruise itinerary! Weird.
  23. Had not heard Regent dropped Dublin. The OP mentions stopping in Dun Laoghaire, which is where we anchored and tendered in for Dublin. DL is a suburb of Dublin. I remember reading that cruise ships used to be allowed to go down the Liffey River and dock right in Dublin. That may be what you are thinking.
  24. Hey Karen, Our itinerary was called "Breathtaking Irish Landscapes" (love the creativity of Regent's marketing department in coming up with names for all its sailing). Here was our itinerary: Date Port of Call Arrival Departure 09/17/2022 Southampton – 06:00 PM 09/18/2022 Cruising 09/19/2022 Edinburgh/Newhaven – tender – 08:00 AM 06:00 PM 09/20/2022 Invergordon 09:00 AM 07:00 PM 09/21/2022 Kirkwall – 07:00 AM 05:00 PM 09/22/2022 Ullapool – tender – 07:00 AM 04:00 PM 09/23/2022 Killybegs – 10:00 AM 08:00 PM 09/24/2022 Belfast 10:00 AM 10:00 PM 09/25/2022 Dublin/ Dún Loaghaire – tender -- 07:00 AM 10:00 PM 09/26/2022 Holyhead 08:00 AM 06:00 PM 09/27/2022 Waterford/Ireland -- tender 07:00 AM 05:00 PM 09/28/2022 Portland/Weymouth 12:00 PM 10:00 PM 09/29/2022 Southampton 07:00 AM -- We missed Edinburgh as the port was closed for the Queen's funeral. Instead, the Splendor sailed across the English Channel to La Havre for the day--not ideal as it was a Sunday and most things were closed. Then we had a sea day as we sailed to Invergordon.
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