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Everything posted by cachouonacruise

  1. Hi LGW59, Just following up with you on Celebrity shore excursions for your May 2022 cruise. Are they available now? ( Nothing yet for our Silhouette cruise on June 2022, slightly less than 8 months from sailing date)
  2. Our cruise is scheduled for June 2022. When the one year mark approached from the departure date of the cruise, I eagerly looked to see what Celebrity shore excursions were available. I found none. I phoned Celebrity a couple of times and was informed that shore excursions would show up between 9 and 12 months from the cruise departure date. This week-end, we reached the 9 months mark, and I was a bit disappointed and a bit concerned not to find any excursions. Today, 271 days from cruising rime, still nothing. My concern is that the absence of shore excursions could be symptomatic of another cruise cancellation. This said, we have received personal Health at sea email regarding this cruise, so there may be hope still... I will keep checking on a daily basis this week, and if nothing appears, I will ring Celebrity once more.
  3. This interesting to see the different provincial approaches to this issue. Just to confirm, we did not stuck in to get our third dose. The third dose process for travelling purposes was approved province wide in Quebec. It was announced in the media, but only available in walk-in clinics. When we went, there was nobody in the clinic. Nurses were chatting waiting for patients to arrive. In Quebec 75% of the population has received two doses, and 85% one dose. Both my daughter and I have received revised QR codes ( Official documentation) showing our three doses. Interesting also to note that in the news, in Ontario, health professionals were concerned about having thousands of doses about to expire, yet, the province refuses to give them to Ontario traveller that could be interested. Of note also, because of the Delta variant, the U.S, is planning to begin a program in September, consisting in giving a third dose to people as it is done in France and Israel and recommended by Pfizer and Moderna. When politics mixes with money and health, interesting situations can develop. Sadly.
  4. Hi Myrkymirk, Just in case this information can help you. I am a fellow Canadian, from the province of Quebec. Exactly like you, I received Astra-Zeneca as a first dose and Moderna as a second while my wife received two doses of Moderna. My daughter received a first dose of Covishield (Astra-Zeneca) and a second dose of Pfizer. My wife and I are booked on two upcoming cruises: X and NCL, while my daughter is booked on a different NCL cruise. Of note, the vaccine requirements varied for X in Europe versus NCL in Europe, and NCL in USA. In addition, requirements may vary from country to country, rendering a trip with stops in multiple countries quite complex. Taking this in consideration, and also, taking in consideration the Delta variant impact resulting in countries such as France and Israel opting to provide an additional booster shot to specific population groups and also,: for Moderna and Pfizer to recommend a third dose, I decided to inquire if I should and could get another dose of Moderna. To my surprise and relief, in Quebec, our health authority authorizes people initially vaccinated with Astra-Zeneca for the first dose, to receive an additional dose for travelling purposes. So both my daughter and me were able to go to a local walk-in clinic. I have received another shot of the Moderna, while my daughter has received another shot of Pfizer. So we both meet fully vaccinated criteria for cruise lines and most countries. If this worked in Quebec..... there is no reason it should not work in BC. ( Of note, my daughter, by phone, was also initially refused access to a third dose. Our only option was via a walk-in clinic). Hoping this can help you too! Good luck!
  5. When things go well, then it’s only a matter of comparing fares, and payment dates. Relatively easy. When things don’t go so well, like for our Asian cruise in March 2020, which was first, rerouted after final payment changing our ports of departure and final destination, and then subsequently cancelled two or three weeks later, I really appreciated having booked our flights via Flights by Celebrity. Our flights were initially changed to reflect our new itinerary and tickets re-issued (no additional costs and no hassle); and then cancelled and promptly fully refunded. In my opinion, in every choice we make when travelling, there are risks involved. Then it’s up to each traveller to choose which risk is more appealing to them. Unfortunately, as I have read on these boards, sometimes people choose a risk for whichever reason, and then, when things go awry on them, they look for someone to blame like an airline, a TA or a cruise line instead of doing a bit of introspection.... But, I guess, it’s part of our human nature.
  6. Thank you OP, for providing the reason for the price change. (Value of CDN dollar) I noticed earlier this week, that the price for our August 2022 Baltic cruise on Getaway had gone down significantly. So I called my TA. The process require to cancel and rebook, thus risking losing the cabin, and, cancelling and rebook two shore excursions as well. Our outcome was: same cabin, about $500 CDN cheaper, same perks, same shore excursions ( about $60 CDN cheaper).
  7. Thank-you very much for your reply which is very instructive. I really appreciate it since I am in that situation. So if the requirement is the same prior to final payment on our next cruise, I would definitely want to make sure I would not be facing any unpleasant surprises during the cruise. How would you suggest to proceed to contact Celebrity’s Medical Department?
  8. Thank-you very much for your response and suggestion regarding visited countries, Very interesting info. Cheers!
  9. Is it known what according Celebrity’s policy is considered a vaccinated passenger? I know that the U.S recognizes only Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson&Johnson vaccines. So, I have no doubt that a person who has received either the single dose Johnson & Johnson or the double dose of Pfizer or Moderna vaccines will be considered fully vaccinated. What I am wondering is: Are you considered a vaccinated passenger by Celebrity if: 1. You have received two doses of Astra-Zeneca vaccine ( which is approved in Canada)? 2. You have received one dose of Astra-Zeneca and one dose of either Pfizer or Moderna? ( the use of this mix is also approved in Canada) 3. You have received one dose of either approved vaccine and also had Covid! ( Public health in our province, consider these people fully immunized) 4. You have received only one dose of either Pfizer, Moderna or Astra-Zeneca vaccine? I find this issue complex and I am wondering if it had been discussed before. Thank-you in advance for your feedback!
  10. Thank-you very much Seany527 for the detailed information you provided us. I found very interesting to see that despite the pandemic, it was possible for. group of people to travel, to explore and for the most part, to enjoy their cruise. Ideally, I’m sure, you would all have preferred to experience the cruise without any positive results. I found very interesting, the list of measures taken by Celebrity to ensure that positive tests results would not translate in a situation similar to what was experienced on the Diamond Princess at the beginning of the pandemic, and to minimize to all possible extents, the negative impacts on passengers and crew. From what I have read, measures were taken to ensure the safety, health and safe return home of the two involved passengers. I am glad to see that Celebrity contact tracing has worked. That precautions were taken to promptly test and provide results to « persons in contact » while treating them as nicely as possible to minimize their inconvenience. In short, the positive element resulting from the unfortunate test results on your cruise, seems to demonstrate that the Celebrity Covid Contingency Plan worked as designed and was successful in avoiding a serious outbreak on the ship. I know, some members were questioning the reasoning behind the crew requirement to wear masks. I believe this experience is the answer. The crew was not infected and remains ready to welcome a new group of passengers. ( Of note, my wife works in a daycare where Covid outbreaks occurred. The staff, however, thanks to wearing masks and frequent hand washing was not affected). In conclusion, the information you provided us Seany527 was really helpful to keep my hopes and interest up to enjoy our planned cruise in 2022.
  11. I join my voice to all the members who have thanked you Seany527. Your review of this first cruise, is factual, filled with pictures and uplifting, even when describing a below par experience at Tuscan Grill. It really helped me imagine better what was described in writing regarding Celebrity protocols and what our next cruise could be. Enjoy the end of your cruise and once more, thank-you so much!
  12. It is so exciting to see an actual return to cruising after such a long hiatus! To the lucky one on this cruise, enjoy it to the max and post reviews! I look forward to read more about your trip!
  13. Thanks Bruin Steve, now I understand better. Prices seems to have increased a bit, since my quote of $60 per person for two legs was in Canadian dollars while yours is in US currency. This said, when reading your post, I realize that I misunderstood it. I thought that the seat assignment cost quoted was $124 US per person, while I understand now that the cost was for two people. This makes more sense in relation to what we paid. I hope you will enjoy your cruise and your flights.
  14. I am definitely not an expert (only three cruises with Celebrity). This said, if I were in the OPs position, I would ensure that all the reservations for the group of 24 are linked together. (The TA or the X rep if booked directly, can do that). I would also include in the reservations, a request for people in the group to be seated in the same section/nearby tables. Then once on board, one of the very first things I would do on embarkation day, would be to go see the Maitre D, to discuss the group’s seating arrangements. This process would not guarantee anything, but I believe would optimize the possibility for an acceptable seating arrangement in the dining room for the group of 24. For your consideration.
  15. At the beginning of this pandemic in March 2020, we had a booked Asian cruise on the Millenium and thank God, I had opted to book the airfare via Celebrity. The first impact of the pandemic consisted in changing our port of departure and our port of arrival. We normally book the second level of economy fare, the resulting change to the airfare was done smoothly via Celebrity. No cost to us. Had I booked directly with the airline (Air Canada) I would have had to pay a change fee. Then our cruise was cancelled after final payment. Our airfare was promptly refunded by Celebrity..... I would likely still be waiting for an Air Canada refund. Regarding seat assignment, we had replaced our Asian cruise with an Hawaiian cruise, thinking Hawaï would be safe. Our flights were booked via a travel agency with United Airlines and included a first and last leg on Air Canada. Because we were a group of four, I had prepaid for our seat selection directly via Air Canada for the two legs involved. ( seat assignment on United was done at no additional coast. To my memory, the cost for each of us was $60 per person. ($30 dollars each way). So, I am surprised with the OP’s quote of a cost of $124 for seat assignments. I am left wondering if the OP had initially booked the cheapeast economy instead of the second level, or if this is a secondary impact of the pandemic?
  16. In May 2019, we had a fabulous cruise on Constellation, Venice to Venice including stops in Greece and Croatia. Did not notice any significant wear and tear issues with the ship! Would be more than happy to sail on her again. We were booked on Millenium shortly after her refurbishment, but Covid .... happened. So the ship remains on our to do list. This said, we also enjoyed a beautiful Alaskan cruise on Infinity and again, we really had no issues with the age of the ship. On the M Class ship, I really love the location of the main Dining Room with its two stories high window overlooking the wake of the ship and the glass elevators with ocean view.
  17. I agree with Fouremco’s comments on all the ports. Regarding the nuance between Saguenay and Havre St-Pierre, I would like to add a few details: Havre St-Pierre is a smaller town than Saguenay, and it’s located on the edge of the Gulf of St-Lawrence, where the Gulf is wide enough to look like an ocean. If I’not mistaken. Havre St-Pierre will offer beaches (very cold water 4C year long. The St-Lawrence is quite deep in that area, which makes it interesting for whales and other mammals. Saguenay is in the heart of French Quebec. It’s a mid size town. To navigate on the Saguenay river between the St-Lawrence to the town of Saguenay, will give you almost a small taste of Norway due to the Saguenay Fjord. Furthermore, once in Saguenay, you’re really close to Lac St-Jean. (about 75 km) which is a huge circular lake, in the shape of a crater. There you will be at the heart of a small pocket of French Canadian Culture referred to as Les Bleuets). [Blueberries). The nickname comes from the delicious wild blueberries available in the area. The spoke French of the population will differ from the French used in Quebec and Montreal. You can see in that area a ghost village called Val Jalbert and if things have not changed too too much, the town of Dolbeau used to be famous for a western fetival. In conclusion, Havre St-Pierre is a small town on the edge of the ocean, while Saguenay thanks to its fjord, will give you the impression to be in land. Good luck in choosing your cruise and enjoy!
  18. Living in the greater Montreal area, I was looking for a cruise living from home. Although many cruise lines offer interesting itineraries in the fall because of the foliage, I knew that the fall on the St-Lawrence could be quite cold, which did not quite meet our needs. Besides, pandemic set aside, cities like Montreal, Quebec and in the maritimes are more vibrant in the summer because of all the festivals. So we chose the only line then offering a summer cruise out of Montreal: HAL. Our itinerary, Montreal, Quebec, Charlottetown, Sydney, Halifax, Bar Harbor and Boston. In Quebec, the ship docked in the old port. So, within walking distance were all the boutiques, restaurants, Château Frontenac, Assemblée Nationale, Musée de la civilisation etc. So we did not use any excursions and really enjoyed our visit. Québec city is one of my favorite cities in Canada. In Charlottetown, we did something similar. We walked to a fairly large shopping center, then enjoyed a leisurely lobster sandwich lunch, at a restaurant with tables on the wharf. In Sydney, on July 1, some of the shops in town were closed. So we went on a sailing excursion on the Bras d’Or Lake. Really enjoyed it as well as the little town where the Sailing yacht was moored. In Halifax, we did the Peggy’s Cove excursion. Our guide was phenomenal and really made our day. She even showed us how to distinguish a female from a male lobster. In Bar Harbour, unfortunately the excursion to the National Park was full, so we just walked in town, boutiques, stores and even discovered a fabulous olive oil store. We ate lunch in town and made it a day, and a nice day it was. Arriving in Boston on July 4th was also an interesting experience. However, we only did a bus tour of the city prior to fly home. For us, this cruise was really calm and relaxing, because we knew quite a few of the areas and did not feel stressed or compelled to take any excursions. We met really nice people in every port! Of note, the St-Lawrence River, Gulf and Estuary, can be cold and windy in early spring and fall, which may impact the size of the waves at sea. For your consideration.
  19. Thank you for sharing this information Josie 201. It’s really nice to see more concrete positive news about a return to cruising.
  20. We also tip a bit extra to our MDR servers. Even in Blue, when we did not always have the same staff every night ( From memory, there was a process where you could leave the extra tip to the relatively small staff team. My question concern MDR select dining. How do people handle the extra tipping in Select Dining, if the staff serving them is different every night?
  21. It really depends on your your interests: If it’s history and architecture, food and wineries : we had a very lovely trip in May 2019, which included pre-cruise stops, in Rome, the beautiful Amalfi Coast followed by a 10 nights cruise on the Constellation from Venice, to Venice, via Croatia and Greece. We really had a good time. If you’re just looking for a more quiet type of cruise, with beautiful sceneries, nice shopping areas, nice people, nice restaurants; a Canada, New-England cruise could interest you. Typically, most cruise lines offer these cruises in the fall for the leaves colors. Personnally, I know that cities like Montreal, Quebec, Charlottetown, Sydney are much more lively in the summer and it’s warmer. So, we did this cruise in the summer and really had a good time too. (I am a Greater Montreal Area resident, so, I may be a bit biased.) If quiet sceneries like montains, fjords, Unesco protected sites with a different perspective, a cruise in the Norway Fjords could be nice as well. We were impressed to discover near Flam, the tiny village of Undredal where we were able to taste locally made delicious brown goat cheese. The boat tour to Undredal on the fjords and the return through the tunnels in the mountains were impressive. We also enjoyed the art and history in Oslo including the Thor Heyerdahl Museum. Pulpit Rock near Stavanger (we only observed it from the water), but it is a unique rock formation. Of note, having done Alaska and Norway cruises, they have similarities but also significant differences: We saw much more species of fauna in Alaska ranging from bears, whales, eagles etc in Alaska and exposure to First Nations culture. Norway, offers clean cities, cultural gardens, Unesco protected sites, lower mountains, but beautiful fjords, as well as a unique history and folklore. In any event, you have already received a lot of wonderful suggestions from fellow members. Thank you for asking the question, I really enjoyed reading the suggestions that you received, since we’re also trying to discover a new world at every cruise. Keeping my fingers crossed for 2022!
  22. Going on deck, breathing the salty air, watching the ocean’s ondulations, smiling from ear to ear, and keeping an eye out to assess if someone will still have the heart to complain about the small stuff! If I hear such a thing after this pandemic, I may have a hard time not to laugh out loud!
  23. Hi OP, Members have already replied nicely and accurately regarding the difference between AQ and CC cabins. I really don’t have anything to add on these cabins. But, if your main interest is a larger balcony. A Sunset Veranda (SV) cabin could be interesting for you. It’s normally priced somewhere between a regular veranda cabin and a CC cabin. SV cabins are located completely at the back of the ship, and available on a number of decks. They offer a splendid view on the ship’s wake, however, they are distant from stairways and elevators, as well, of course, of any venues located at the front of the ship. So, quite a bit a walking to be expected. This said, they offer the largest type of balconies attributed to a non-suite cabin. An interesting alternative option.
  24. Hi everyone, Just to follow up on my initial post. Everything is back to normal today. I am just left feeling like the website caught a 24 hours flu yesterday! Thank you for your feedback!
  25. Thank-you very much sdnich and garyl62, for your comments. I had issues with the website yesterday....and possibly also with my eye sight... Following your posts, I rechecked again on my cruise, and the price for the Chef’s table is now shown as $175.14 CDN. (Which seems to better match with your prices) and I also read the detailed information more carefully: the « Wine Pairing available for purchase on board ». So I now have all the answers to my questions. Thank-you to all!
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