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kennystwin

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  • Content Count

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About kennystwin

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    DFW
  • Interests
    cruising!
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    HAL, RCCL
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Alaska

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  1. The Denali Park Road is within Denali National Park well north of Anchorage and is now open. The road from Anchorage to Seward is the Seward Highway which is definitely open. It provides vital access to the Kenai peninsula. Alaska remains shuttered to interstate and international travellers, but the locals are having a blast this year enjoying the state tourist free. https://www.npr.org/2020/05/15/856171287/while-the-tourists-are-away-alaskans-will-play Also, the Alaska Railroad is planning to resume some operations July 1. https://www.alaskarailroad.com/passenger-information
  2. I was supposed to be boarding the Noordam in Seward today after spending a few days enjoying Seward and the Kenai Fjords National Park. (I lived in Alaska decades ago, still miss it terribly, and go back whenever I can.) Instead, this morning I listened to Governor Dunleavy's Friday COVID press conference so I could follow what's happening in the state. They extended the mandatory quarantine orders until June, but are reevaluating it daily as they gain experience opening up other parts of the state. I'll consider a land trip once it's safe to do it. Social distancing in Alaska isn't hard to do, but the long plane rides up may be another thing. BTW - it was refreshing to see a government press conference purely focused on informing and educating the people without political overtones and a press doing the same.
  3. The land tours definitely aren't happening. The providers are dependent on seasonal workers that won't be coming for the potentially shortened and shrunk season. With all the uncertainty, there is no way anyone could even offer them contracts right now. Princess and HAL (the 2 biggest Alaska land tour providers) cancelled all their land tours first and tried to maintain limited, late season Seattle round-trip cruises before abandoning them as well.
  4. It's finally official: https://www.hollandamerica.com/en_US/news/coronavirus-travel-advisory.html - All cruises through June 30 are cancelled. - All Alaska cruises on Maasdam, Westerdam, Noordam, Oosterdam, and Volendam are cancelled (leaves Eurodam and Konigsdam after July 1). - All Land+Sea is cancelled. Now we can plan accordingly and choose our refunds (cash or FCC).
  5. Amsterdam is doing Canada/New England this summer and N. Amsterdam is in the Mediterranean.
  6. That leaves only the Eurodam and Konigsdam doing the 7 day round trips this shortened season. These are the 2 largest ships planned for Alaska this season. Seems like a maximize revenue/minimize expenses strategy. I imagine they will be trying to move cruisers from the cancelled ships to these cruises. No northbound/southbound cruises so no Land+Sea journeys. I've been expecting problems with the land portions which are heavily dependent on seasonal workers who likely won't make the shortened season. It is still wait & see for the July cruises. Canada will be open (assuming they don't extend their port closures), but the CDC 100 day closure might impact them.
  7. You can certainly book it directly, but if there are any issues, they will force you to resolve them through your TA. FlightEase wouldn't let me fly from one airport and return to another, cross town airport (Actually it let me make both reservations, but it subsequently cancelled the first - a known FlightEase issue.) They forced me to go through my TA to fix things. Not a big deal, just another hoop to jump through.
  8. I'm booked on the 17th southbound from Seward as well. There is no way this is happening. They already cancelled the northbound from Vancouver on the 10th, so how are they going to have a ship there? Do you thing they will send an empty ship to Seward to pick up the handful of people still confirmed? My flight to Anchorage was cancelled as well so that is going to add another wrinkle to those who might still want to go. To those of you with land tours, who is going to be staffing those? They are largely dependent on seasonal workers, but Alaska is currently on lockdown and arriving travellers are subject to a 14 day quarantine, so I doubt anybody is heading up there for that. This just ain't happening. I'm waiting for HAL to cancel to bet the best compensation. If they give me up to 48 hours before, I can wait. If they don't have an empty ship on its way up earlier in the week, I know it's not happening.
  9. Nothing wrong. I think everyone should be able to enjoy GB. Just more competition for limited slots.
  10. Another good resource to check out is https://www.cruisedeckplans.com/ As noted above, all the cabins you're considering are "normal" verandahs with the same overhang, plexiglass rail panels, and standard baths+shower. The deck 8 cabins are underneath the spa which shouldn't generate too much noise, but the deck 7 cabin would definitely be quieter.
  11. It's not weather. Anyone who tries to predict Alaska weather a year out is fooling themselves. I was in Glacier Bay last May and the weather was spectacular. And no, Glacier Bay won't go out of business. It is a National Park and has the responsibility to both encourage its use as well as manage and protect it. This is likely just a scheduling challenge by Carnival corporate. They have a fixed number of permits and they are allocating them across their HAL, Princess, Cunard, and Seaborn brands (thankfully, Carnival doesn't do Glacier Bay). Your Noordam cruise just happened to get the short straw. If this is a once in a lifetime cruise, I'd be changing it to make sure you get to Glacier Bay. It IS that special.
  12. I'm on the Noordam from Seward as well on May 17th, but HAL has cancelled the northbound on May 10, so surely the southbound won't happen. I'm waiting for them to cancel and free up my cash so I can make other plans.
  13. Arrgh! I was hoping they would follow RCIs lead by addressing cruises impacted by the Canadian port closures. I'm on the Noordam Alaska southbound on 5/17 which I'm sure will be cancelled since they just cancelled the 5/10 northbound. I'm just waiting for it to be official to free up some of my cash tied up in taxes, flights, etc. Guess I just need to wait a little longer.
  14. Galveston would be a great option. Besides the cruise port, there is a large University of Texas Medical School there and there is a huge medical complex in Houston 60 miles away. Local hotels could likely be used to quarantine asymptomatic passengers, and, as you mention, Lackland AFB is not far away. Plus, our Texas culture would more likely lead to a compassionate welcome than some of the "not in my back yard" attitudes we hear from Florida (and yes, I know that isn't everyone). Regardless of where these ships wind up, I'm sure HAL and the various authorities are working feverishly to put lots of resources in place to handle the arrivals. My thoughts and prayers are with the passengers and crews on these ships as well as all those preparing for their arrival. (BTW, a selfish thought: if they decide to use a Texas port, maybe HAL would show their gratitude by home porting a ship in Galveston. I'd love to be able to drive to a HAL cruise!)
  15. Another option would be to dock at Corpus Christi and bus the passengers to Lackland AFB in San Antonio. Lackland already has facilities and experience caring for the Diamond Princess passengers and the San Antonio military hospitals are likely better prepared than civilian hospital for these emergency responses. Just an idea.
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