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About MMsteffey

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    Cool Cruiser

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    anywhere tropical

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  1. And a different perspective: I’m a certified diver. I do not go on dive trips from locations that have heavy tourist traffic (such as most Caribbean cruise ship ports). I grew tired of spending a lot of precious time and money waiting with the group, getting briefed with the group, dealing with unfamiliar gear, and ultimately having my dive cut short because someone in the group over stated their abilities and ran out of air or got cold. Snorkeling when in cruise ports is just fine. I save my time, patience, and money for dedicated dive trips.
  2. Highly recommend that you spend the day with driver Frank of Barbarossa excursions. He is one of the drivers for their Jeep tours. He was born and raised on the island, spent some time in Canada, and is mostly retired. He is delightful, very knowledgeable and proud of his home, and knows every inch of the island. He will listen to your interests and take you there. No ideas? trust him. He made our day in Gozo one of the best of our entire 12 stop cruise. Jeep tours are flat rate, we shared with another couple. http://www.barbarossa-excursions.com/
  3. Just Back from HA Veendam. HA charged $16/pp for bus from/to port. 3 ships in port, 2 mega ships plus us, took over 1 HOUR to go from port to fort - missed my independent tour but was able to make the best of it. Solid traffic through the narrow pass, people asking bus driver to let them off so they could walk. Pandemonium at the drop off /pick up point as pax from 3 different cruise lines tried to find their line for their bus, no where for the lines to go, plus people trying to find/enter/exit smaller vehicles for tours. So my advice : Check to see what else will be in port that day and plan accordingly I sure wish I had ! https://www.croatiatraveller.com/southern_dalmatia/Dubrovnik/cruise-schedule.html
  4. Cruise lines vary, our Caribbean cruise was strictly 21 in the bars and disco, enforcement by uniformed crew at all entrances. No5 allowed in, even with parents. We tried.
  5. 18-20 is a very awkward age to be cruising with family. I appreciate your idea, our experience with our kids has been that their cruise experience hinges on who they meet onboard, they finally have the freedom to roam the ship, and the last place they would go is in a staffed lounge for underage teens. An unstaffed lounge is, unfortunately, subject to vandalism. There is a wide range of maturity, mischievousness, and entertainment choices at that age, the program really cannot “run itself”. Yes, our 19 yo daughter was very frustrated that most of her new friends could hang out in the bar and dance club, and she could not, and most of the people her age were obnoxious boys who would not stop hitting on her. Very few girls 18-20 on board that week, luck of the passenger draw. Bad cruise for her, we wish we made a different vacation choice. A lounge and activities would not have made a difference. While I think it would be great if a cruise line would accommodate mature and trustworthy teens like your son on a case by case basis, a dedicated lounge and activities program is very unlikely.
  6. I have seen discussion on another travel advice site that sometimes a small amount of soot may fall on the chairs and railings. The staff is aware of this and will strive to keep the deck clean. Just look before your drape your white shirt on a chair. Have a great cruise.
  7. Believe me it’s no fun for the dealers either. This has been in effect in Vegas for several years. Stats must be showing that it is a good idea for the Casino, rather than discouraging players.
  8. While HA “ know before you cruise” states that there is a self serve laundry aboard the Veendam, I’ve read a few reviews that imply that it has been removed. Any first hand recent knowledge? Departing in 10 days. Thank you all!
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