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About jimdee3636

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Tucson, AZ
  • Interests
    Good food and wine, interesting conversations, gym workouts, exploring places on foot.
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    HAL, Silversea, Oceania, Princess

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  1. jimdee3636

    Queen Mary 2 video tour

    Nice job! My wife and I will be taking our first Cunard cruise this summer (21 day New York-Southampton-Liverpool-Reykjavik-Atlantic Canada-New York), and your video has whetted our appetites immensely! Thanks for sharing this with us.
  2. jimdee3636

    Vancouver airport departure

    Martincath: I hope you're right. I'll be on the Bliss cruise that disembarks in Vancouver on Saturday, May 4, and I have a flight from YVR to SFO at 11:45AM. However, I'll be self-disembarking with no luggage to pick up, AND the ship arrives in Vancouver the previous day, presumably clearing customs at that time, and remains there overnight. My hope is that I can get off the ship really early and get to the airport in time. If I'm wrong in any of my assumptions please let me know. Thanks. Jim
  3. jimdee3636

    Extra tips for room stewards etc.

    I can't speak specifically for Norwegian's policies because I've only taken one NCL cruise many years ago. But I've done about twenty cruises on other lines, and I've always given cash tips to the room attendants (even on lines like Seabourn and Silversea that say "no tipping expected"). In my opinion, these people have the toughest, least-glamorous jobs on the ship. My understanding is that tipping a particular crew member by credit card isn't allowed on most cruise lines. A couple of lines have something called a Crew Welfare Fund (or something like that) that you can donate to by credit card, but all funds collected would be divided equally by the entire crew.
  4. jimdee3636

    Princess Cruise "Secrets" 2019

    If your budget permits, spring for the specialty restaurants at dinner. I've only been on four-night California Coastal cruises with Princess (on three different ships---the Ruby, the Emerald, and the Crown), and I learned on the first cruise that the specialty restaurants were head-and-shoulders above the MDRs in ambiance, service, and food quality---well worth the $29 charge. On my second and third cruises I ate every night in a specialty restaurant. I'd do it again if I sail with Princess again.
  5. jimdee3636

    Demographics of "Studio Cabin" Guests?

    Kathy: Your initial review may have inadvertently misled me, but I appreciate your clarification. In fact, because I felt the need to pose my question I've learned a lot about these cabins---more than I would have otherwise. So, thanks! Jim
  6. jimdee3636

    Demographics of "Studio Cabin" Guests?

    I'm so glad I asked this question. The information you've all provided has made me a lot more comfortable with the idea of a studio cabin. In fact, it's whetted my appetite to experience it. Thanks again.
  7. jimdee3636

    Demographics of "Studio Cabin" Guests?

    Thanks for the information. As I said, I'm going anyway, but it's nice to know I probably won't be forty or fifty years older than everyone else!
  8. I'm booked in a studio cabin on the Bliss for a 6-night L.A.-to-Vancouver cruise in late April. I've read a review here that described the studio lounge as having the atmosphere of an "upscale youth hostel." For me, the "upscale" part is fine, the "youth hostel" is not (I'm 71). Is it really true that only twenty-somethings stay in the studio cabins and use the studio lounge? I'm going regardless, but I'd like to know what to expect. Thanks.
  9. jimdee3636

    HAL Beverage Packages

    That's a great idea for the right person! it wouldn't work for my wife and me because we like a wider variety of spirits and also wine and beer. But it certainly saved you a lot of money compared with the beverage package.
  10. jimdee3636

    Wine List covered under UBP?

    I'll be on the Bliss for a six-night cruise in late April, and will have the unlimited beverage package. I'm fortunate in that I like hard-liquor drinks (gin martinis and bourbon-on-the-rocks, mainly) as well as wine, because if I only drank wine the under $15 choices are pretty limited. But for six nights I'm sure I'll get by with the $10.95 Tempranillo if I want a red, and either the Albarino or one of the Sauvignon Blancs if I want a white. I just hope they don't run out; the rest of the under-$15.00 selections aren't too inspiring.
  11. Thanks, Rhiannon35. I wasn't aware there was the band in any of the MDR's. That might be a reason to try the Manhattan Room.
  12. I apologize if this has been asked already, but I couldn't find it discussed anywhere. Aside from decor, are there any significant differences in menu choices or level of service in the three main dining rooms on the "Bliss" (Savor, Taste, and the Manhattan Room), or any other reason(s) to choose one over another? Thanks.
  13. jimdee3636

    Studio Lounge on "Bliss": Open 24 Hours?

    FLAHAM: I guess I lucked out. My studio (with the all-you-can-drink package included, but not including port charges and taxes) is priced at $749 for the six-night cruise. The lowest "regular" inside would have been $898 for one-person occupancy, with the same drink package---a $149 difference, or roughly $25 a day. But you're right: the studios on all of the subsequent Alaska cruises on the Bliss next summer are more expensive than a single-occupancy inside would be. I'm not sure of the pricing logic, but I'm glad I got what I did.
  14. jimdee3636

    Studio Lounge on "Bliss": Open 24 Hours?

    Thanks for the info. When you look closely at the space difference between a studio (99 sq.ft.) and a basic inside cabin (135 sq.ft.), the extra 36 sq. ft. doesn't (to me) seem worth paying the 100% single supplement rate for the basic inside, especially when you factor in the studio lounge amenities.
  15. I just booked one of those one-person-only 99 sq.ft. studio cabins on the Bliss for a 6-night Pacific Coastal in late April (L.A. to Vancouver). I know that there's a lounge for the exclusive use of studio cabin guests, but I can't figure out if it's open 24 hours a day. I'm an early riser, even on vacation, and I'm wondering if I can go down to the lounge at, say, 5:45AM for juice, espresso, and maybe a bite to eat. Thanks, and Merry Christmas!