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About mdsgu

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Baton Rouge
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    RCI, NCL, Carnival

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  1. mdsgu

    Use your Amex Platinum

    Or just book through AmEx Platinum Travel. They do a very nice job, and they throw in the LeBistro dinner automatically!
  2. The AT&T package is good, but it only works IN PORT. It does NOT cover calls made or received when you are at sea. You have to keep that in mind.
  3. mdsgu

    UBP - taxes while in port

    Just about all US ports charge some kind of tax, but it usually just pennies, and it is only until you leave their territorial waters. The one that gets you more than others is New Orleans. You'll get charged Louisiana taxes from the time you board until about midnight when you actually get to the Gulf of Mexico.
  4. mdsgu


    Not sure how "weird" it is, but, after visiting so many islands, I absolutely love sea days. There's nothing I have to do and I have all day to do it. Mix in the drink package, and it's just about perfect.
  5. Our experience has always been a different MDR menu each night, but the lunch and breakfast menus do not change.
  6. mdsgu

    specialty dinning package

    Our upcoming Thanksgiving cruise will be our second NCL cruise with the specialty dining package. Last summer, on the Escape, we really enjoyed Cagney's, Le Bistro, and Moderno. I would recommend skipping lunch before going to Moderno! Le Bistro is perfect for a quiet, relaxed dinner -- don't rush it. Cagney's is, of course, excellent. We've never tried the teppanyaki place (not our thing) or the Italian restaurant. When is your cruise? Booking usually opens up 120 days prior to departure.
  7. mdsgu

    On Board Account

    If you don't cash out the last night, they will send you a check for the overage. After sailing the Escape last year, I had about $100 left in my account. I received a check from NCL about a week later.
  8. mdsgu

    Swimming with Dolphins....Caribbean Ports

    We did it in Nassau. It was fun, but quite expensive, and the photos you just have to buy almost double the price.
  9. Yes, in the US, if the meal is "free" or "comped" for some reason, it is still customary to tip on the cost of the meal.
  10. mdsgu

    Unlimited Arcade

    It was all done over the phone with a live operator. But my CC was charged $112 ($56 x2). I requested an amenity statement from NCL (through my TA), and it shows just the children with the package.
  11. mdsgu

    Unlimited Arcade

    I read somewhere about this unlimited arcade package. If you attempt to purchase it online, the NCL site forces you to buy it for all passengers in a cabin. However, some have had luck with calling NCL and being able to purchase it just for some of the passengers in a cabin. I went the second route and bought it on the phone for my kids -- my wife and I could really care less about playing arcade games. Now, my TA tells me that my wife and I will most likely get charged for the arcade package once we are onboard. Has anyone bought the arcade package? For just some of the people in your cabin? Were you then charged onboard for the others? Trying to decide whether to keep it or not. $112 for the 2 kids is ok, but I'm not spending $224 for all 4 of us. There's no way my kids will spend that much in the arcade! They are 9 and 8, and they only get to go to the arcade when we take them.
  12. Cut the spa -- there is entirely too much to do on the Dream; you won't be bored. Would also cut the bottles of wine, because the wine at Chef's Table is usually pretty good. If you can get an early check-in time, cut the FTTF. While it is faster, it's not $90 faster. Cut the jazz dinner cruise -- the food isn't good and you can sail up and down a little stretch of the river on the Steamboat Natchez for less. Or you can cruise from the Crescent City Connection to the mouth of the river and back again as part of your Dream cruise! From Lido deck, the views are actually better aboard the cruise ship. Doing all that would save you $997.95. BTW, I've sailed on the Dream several times -- fantastic ship. The steakhouse is very very good, and the Cheers package (provided you like to imbibe) is a great value.
  13. mdsgu

    Early Saver Strategies

    I don't think name changes are allowed with ES, so you would forfeit the deposit on the GF if she is no longer the GF. The biggest problem would be if the current GF is, in 2020, the ex and there is a new GF in the picture!
  14. We generally tip $1 extra per drink, even with Cheers. That, and chatting a little with the bartenders, usually gets us recognized more quickly. Works especially well at Alchemy and on the pool deck.
  15. mdsgu

    Norwegian Breakaway or NCL cruises Question

    For the drinks, you'll get the alcoholic package and she'll get the soda package; the same will happen for your husband and the prospective son-in-law. You can get new keys at Guest Services; they won't care who's in what room -- we've done that before.