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About zymurgy1999

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  1. We were on last week in the Haven. Food Republic was 50% off for Haven guests on the first night for dinner. American Diner was free for lunch on embarkation day as well, only for Haven Guests. Haven restaurant is an excellent place to have meals to get away from the crowds. Though the menu does not change there is plenty there to try so that you are not eating the same thing every day for every meal.
  2. I thought that I had posted previously that I was booked in one room with my 14 year old and my wife was booked in another room with our other two children, so I was able to upgrade just the one pacakge.
  3. We had not traveled on this class of ship yet, so a lot of it was new to us. My kids did the VR. I bought an hour pass for them and after 30 minutes they were bored. It was never busy and half of the games were not working when we were there. I cannot see that section succeeding in the long run. We did not do the laser tag and cannot speak to whether or not it was busy or not. I did hear that the race track was very busy. You had to make a reservation. They would tell you to show up 30 minutes before your time and it was still an hour plus wait after you showed up. We did not do the race track. By the time we decided we wanted to give it a shot we were told that it was sold out.
  4. Just got back. I always try and give back as I do use a lot of the information that others post on these message boards. If you have any questions please let me know.
  5. We were in the Haven on the Encore last week. We were also in the Haven on the Getaway in June. I did not see any significant difference between the two.
  6. That is a good point, but because we are a family of 5 we book ourselves in two rooms, three in one and two in the other, then we move our two teenage boys into one and our 9 year old daughter into ours. My wife does not get the package and it is certainly not our intention of skirting the rules on board. They may have assumed and we would have been more than happy to pay for the drink if they asked. They just never did and we never thought twice about it, however, you do bring up a good point that we had not though of.
  7. That is the point. While many see this differently, we enjoy the cruise vacation as a family as it allows us to pick and choose what we spend our money on while we are on board. We have had trips where we spent nothing above the cruise far (other than tips) and we have been on trips where we spent much, much more than that. While we do our research before we get on board so that we know what our options will be, until we get on board we don't know what we will end up spending our money on, which is why I don't understand the criticism of the company for offering this as an add-on. It is a strictly personal choice and that is the beauty of a cruise vacation, especially for families (we have three kids of varying ages). For me the package is worth it, even if I get off after a week, do the math, and realize that I would have been better off going alacarte. Doesn't matter to me, the experience of not having to worry about it is enough for me.
  8. I had this package when we were in the Baltic in June. I am leaving on the Encore on Sunday and I purchased it. You can get two drinks each time you go to the bar (or Starbucks). I know sharing is not allowed, but on the Getaway this summer I sat at the bar with my wife and ordered the premium beverages and the bartender had no issue sliding one to me and one to my wife. When we sat at dinner with another couple, our friends, we ordered bottles of the premium wines and champagnes the waiters brought 4 glasses to the table without asking the others for their cards. When I went to Starbucks and ordered two coffees and went to wait as they prepared them they slid one to me and one to my wife. I don't know if this is protocol for the ship. I certainly was not trying to take advantage or "share" an un-paid for package. I am a bourbon drinker and they have Whistle Pig rye on board. The bourbon on the regular package is not what I enjoy drinking. Additionally, I enjoyed trying many of the premium liquors, things that I would never pay for shore-side, like Patron Anejo, Macallan Quest, Johnny Walker Platinum, Armagnac VSPO. I would not have had that opportunity without the package. Each day we had about 4-5 coffees at Starbucks (sometimes with 3-4 shots of espresso to liven the drink up), 3-4 of the "premium" liquors and a bottle or two of the premium wine/champagne at dinner. We actually drank LESS, but had more high quality drinks. Whether the math worked or not I cannot tell you, but what I can tell you that the overall experience was worth the upsell. This is a personal experience and is different for everyone. Looking forward to the different experience this time on the Caribbean where the trip is more of the ship experience over the port experience.
  9. I thought that I read it somewhere here. Also, I did not see it listed on the NCL site as included so assumed. I guess we will board on Sunday and ask. The issue now is that I am reading conflicting things from people on what is and isn't included, i.e., upcharges at certain restaurants just to sit down, upcharges on certain apps/sides/mains and limits on numbers of apps/sides/desserts that you can order at certain restaurants. I am thoroughly confused now as people are being told one thing by the staff but others are actually having different experiences while on the ships.
  10. I am going on the Encore on Sunday. I was told that Onda was not included in the specialty dining plan, but if it is what are the menu limitations? Is it the same as the other restaurants, unlimited apps and desserts and choice of one entree?
  11. I had the dining package for the first time on the Getaway this summer. We at at Cagney's, Teppanyaki and used the third day for the sushi bar. We did not know that when using it at the sushi bar it was all you can eat. Were told by the concierge. We will be on the Encore in a few weeks and wanted to know if someone could let us know what we are permitted to order at each of the restaurants, i.e., is it one app, one main and one dessert, or ayce if we eat using the dining package? Asking about: Ocean Blue Onda Food Republic Los Lobos American Diner Thanks in advance.
  12. I was on the Getaway in the Baltic this summer. For me it was 100% worth it. I was able to get two of the largest size Starbucks coffee each morning, one for me and one for my wife (she was booked in a separate room since we are a family of 5) and another two in the afternoon or evening. I am a bourbon drinker and I enjoyed drinking the top shelf bourbon and whiskey every day, maybe one or two per day. At dinner we ordered one, or sometimes two, bottles of wine. I would then enjoy a VSOP or two after dinner. We also had bottles of sparkling water for dinner every night and had unlimited bottled water, that we took off of the ship at every port. I must have been one of the only ones to have the package and/or one of the first that they have seen since they frequently had to verify that almost anything that they served on the ship in liquid form was included. The bartenders got to know me and would just pour me drinks that I had not requested, thinking that I may like it. I did not find myself trying to drink more to keep up with the package. It had the opposite effect. I felt as though I could have fewer high quality drinks per day, and get my daily Starbucks, instead of more low quality drinks to try and hit the daily amount that you need to hit to break even. I enjoyed not having to look at the price on the menu to see if something that I really wanted to try was covered by my package. I will be sailing on the Encore on the 24th and will definitely be upgrading.
  13. Thank you. We have just been on the Getaway (twice), so we are unfamiliar with this class of ship. Looks like a very cool space. Does it get busy and are kids allowed in there, meaning is it an adult only space (we have three kids by the way, so not asking as an anti-kid cruiser)?
  14. For me personally, the space that looks the most attractive is the Observation Lounge. Looks like a very cool place to hang out and be away from the masses. Can anyone confirm whether this will be open to the whole ship or if it will be restricted to guests in certain room categories (i.e., haven and suites).
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