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Everything posted by KmomChicago

  1. Thank you Ray. Enjoy your cruise and look forward to your review when you sail. 🙂
  2. Please do update us on the details. . . whether here or on your own post for your own review of your own cruise. It's been a lot of fun to watch more reviews come in on Mardi Gras covering more questions and answers, as well as tweaks that are being made on the fly.
  3. Sure, go ahead and add a little creative license to one of my favorite classic band's breakout hit.
  4. The fact is, the cruise lines are not yet making money and what’s happening now isn’t sustainable. My cruise is being discounted further so they can get enough people onboard to actually continue sailing. So asking for more and more discounts feels like sucking more blood from the turnip. I am conflicted.
  5. That kind of news often leaves everyone involved speechless except for the occasional dumb question, "how could this have happened?" That time of year we are prepared for weather to be an issue, as it was for us on Carnival Sensation in January 2018, and for the drive on both ends as well. Already have calculated our earliest and latest possible departures from home to get either ahead of, or behind, a storm, as the case may be. Obviously a 3-day nonstop blizzard will kill us but we'd be in good company as such an event might delay all the passengers and lead to cancellation of the cruise. On the back end we can stay in Baltimore a few days if conditions are bad for driving home. We'll park in the garage at port rather than messing around with shuttles offsite which hopefully will keep us from having to dig out of a week's worth of white stuff. As Princess Cays was cancelled on our 2018 cruise, I suppose we'd better be prepared to lose Half Moon Cay if conditions don't allow us to tender. Thanks for the notice, will keep all this in mind. You enjoy your cruise as well.
  6. Knocking me out is one of the few ways to shut me up.
  7. Sorry, no offense intended. I was just looking at your signature deets and thought I saw more RCI plus your mention of being done with Carnival after your upcoming trip. My apologies for misunderstanding. I’m annoyed seeing all these very low fares that I’m not getting as well, plus our Christmas cruise keeps dropping but we are now past final payment. I did get one drop of about 10% already but feel like a chump watching them drop further. I sat on hold a long time today to ask if they’ll consider moving some of the new difference to OBC before giving up. Usually I’m a great bargain hunter so this is all frustrating but in the end I need to not let it ruin a cruise that I willingly signed up for at the original price, rather than letting myself feel ripped off. Struggling with that. Plus I disturbed a nest of ground bees today while mowing and got two stings, one on each foot, just to vex me further as I stew, not that it should affect my cruise judgments or comments. 🐝
  8. Thanks Mondello. We will bring the Bonine for this one just in case.
  9. Seems RCI is more your preference, which we understand. We like things about both. I don't think we've had enough fun with the slots on either to play much - when we tried on Sensation we drained fast so we didn't play very long. Same on RCI - I just don't play enough for comps apparently. There are so many things we enjoy more on the ship. Heck there are so many things I enjoy more in Las Vegas.
  10. I called finally and they were not able to help. The person I spoke to said all they could see was whether we had any casino offers, which we don't. She said there are no separate players club accounts, it's just your VIFP number and they can't see any history, we'd have to contact the ocean club to see about that. Either we didn't play enough (likely - we didn't play a lot, and only did so on our short Sensation cruise), or we did something wrong. Perhaps on the Legend I will play a bit and ask the casino hosts more about all this.
  11. FWIW, I don't remember seeing anything like this on the Mardi Gras sailing, though the steakhouse is adjacent to Alchemy there as well and a secret room configuration seems feasible. I will ask DH if he noticed. We try not to drink a ton but do occasionally and that would be fun on a sea day with another sea day to recover before debark.
  12. Exactly what kind of "friends" are you "picking up" I mean "meeting" on these ships?
  13. My favorite Carnival ship is, yes, the new Mardi Gras even with a few features that I don't love such as the size of the standard staterooms. Efficient but about 20-40 SF smaller than I would really like. My favorite Carnival stateroom was on Triumph now Sunrise, an outside on Deck 2 at 220 SF! Small compared to a landside hotel, but spacious at sea and for us, prefer more room inside than a balcony - but I know this is an unusual preference. TLDR (really, seriously too long, be warned) : I am old and thus I come to these boards from the ancient days of cruising. My mom cruised from NYC on Queen of Bermuda before I was born in the early 1960's and then she took me on my first 2 cruises, both on Premier, aka Big Red Boat. This was all budget level stuff on ships that modern cruisers would find horrifying. I clearly remember being in port in Nassau and looking over at a shiny new, bright white, Carnival ship. A boisterous, musical, sailaway party was going on and I could hear the laughter. FOMO late 1980's style. It must have been Holiday class, just based on dates. Jubilee seems to come to mind but this might just be because I love that word. This class, soon to be followed by RCI Sovereign Class and then Fantasy class, was revolutionizing the cruise industry right before my eyes. And so yes, sailing the now oldest ships gives me a glimpse into a past I didn't get to try at the time, before it is gone forever, which will be soon. DH and I certainly like the bigger newer ships better, so we have had detailed conversations post Oasis - our favorite ship and a class we'd like to sail again - even after Mardi Gras. If all the stars align and we find ourselves close to a port for other reasons, in a situation to allow us to hop on a smallish rust bucket for 3 nights for cheap, do we still want to do that? The answer is a yes. If DH said NO, then we wouldn't do it for the reasons SNJ says. If the math doesn't work for you and you won't enjoy it, then it's not a good value for you. Not a good vacation, not an experience worth your investment. I wouldn't travel on a mediocre ship with someone who wants something different than that. As another poster mentioned, some people like camping and hotels. Some don't. You don't send someone off in a tent after they tell you they will not be happy in a tent! You also don't put someone in a Motel 6 next to the interstate when they just told you they want a Hilton on the ocean. For us, as we are getting older, the convenience of cruises, any cruise, getting on the ship just once, unpacking once, staying in the same room for several days without having to relocate, having ports laid in front of you and trivia and evening entertainment and a buncha free food, it's just worth it. So far, the "worst" ship available is still good enough for us. I want to see the California Sequoias or coastal redwoods before they all burn down, and so now we are considering a trip next summer to visit the trees and then do a shorty out of Long Beach on Radiance. Which I know is an older ship but recently remade into its new identity. But it would have been good enough if it was still the old Victory. And having sailed Triumph it would be fun to compare the before and after of Destiny/Sunshine class. Getting the chance to do all this is a lot more fun, for us, than NOT doing all this. That's it. Our only Fantasy class ship was just 4 nights, and that was long enough to experience everything onboard, especially since rough seas cancelled our port day at Princess Cays. And it was fine. It was tacky and old and my dad and stepmom's first ever cruise, and had everything we needed and wanted, and a wonderful end to a long road trip before the drive back up here to the frozen gloom of an Illinois winter. Having sailed Mardi Gras a mere two months ago I am interested to see whether we are happy with less than half the size, wacky Farcus decor, Carnival Legend this Christmas or if it will be "just okay." During the darkest days of December, I do know that getting out of here en route to points south (including Half Moon Cay where we have a cabana reserved), and manufacturing enough Vitamin D over a week's time to get my old 55 year old bones through until spring, is a whole lot better than NOT getting out of here. I don't want to fly during the holiday weeks and Baltimore is the closest drive port, and I am staying in a Grand Suite onboard which should be pretty, well, sweet. A cruise is better than no cruise. And if we find Spirit class and the drive to and from Baltimore not a great fit or value, we won't do it again. We have to try to know if the math works. What a difficult experiment. I hope you all feel very sorry for us as we put ourselves out there to test this hypothesis.
  14. They’ll be back. Just will take longer. Spirit class is only a bit bigger and should be around a long time.
  15. I sailed on Disney Magic twice and Celebrity Millennium, and then many years later, Carnival Triumph, before a Fantasy class ship, and while I am neither blind nor stupid, I did enjoy the Fantasy class ship (it was Carnival Sensation, it was an absolute steal due to a weird winter break schedule that got us on for 4 days right after New Year's, a little bonus we were able to tuck in to a road trip we were already taking for 2.5 weeks to Florida over the holidays). I enjoy every vacation I have ever taken. How? I don't know how I enjoy it. I just do. That's all there is to it. I enjoy it because I enjoy it, I guess. Not saying anyone else has to enjoy what I enjoy. I enjoy crappy community theatre in my hometown even though I have see Broadway. I just do. I've flown first class, I've stayed in five star hotels, I've eaten gourmet cuisine. I've enjoyed much of the finest the world has to offer, and I still like just regular mediocre too. Again, I don't know "how" I enjoy it all. I just do. No, all other factors being equal, Fantasy class is not my favorite as per the point of the OP's question, but I do like the Farcas tacky just for the pure novelty. Again, I just do. My favorite ship ever is Oasis of the Seas, but again, I like them all.
  16. Why would Legend be the Ugliest of the 3 spirit class ships? Is it the wacky Merlin type theme? We just stayed at Excalibur this past June in Las Vegas and like whimsy. We also sailed Mardi Gras in August and of course it was beautifully and tastefully appointed, but tacky is good too.
  17. Better to make up a good story than be honest and say sorry, we really don't know yet. ????? It's all based on supply and demand. Your oldest smallest ships are placed in certain ports based on passenger interest in cruising from that port (and bridges that limit what can sail there) and since there is less demand for them due to both ship appeal and port appeal, you just don't have the business to fill them yet. Why not just tell us that? Not hard to figure out the obvious.
  18. Looks like a great cruise on a fabulous new ship! ❤️❤️❤️🛳🛳🛳🛳⚓️⚓️⚓️⚓️⚓️🏴‍☠️🏴‍☠️🏴‍☠️
  19. In a martini making class on (of course) a cruise ship, DH and I were taught never to shake a martini or listen to silly 007 and his silly preferences. Apparently a good gin is gently carrying around its juniper flavors in little molecules that are destroyed by all that turbulence, and thus stirring gently (I think he said exactly 27 stirs) is the way to to. Thank you @Terab85 for bringing us with you. I love the light tower thingy with its changing scenes. Also, a general question for OP and others who have visited any or all of the ABC's. Why are these apparently well known to be much better than the rest of the Caribbean, the Bahamas, and the Mexican ports? Why would it be worth it to get a Southern itinerary, which neither Carnival or RCI run a whole lot of (plus usually out of Miami which is inconvenient or San Juan which is moreso)? It all just looks like more of the same to me: warm sunny beaches, restaurants and bars, and shopping, maybe a fort or three.
  20. It was very hot in Costa Maya but we went onshore to visit a couple souvenir shops. While there, kiddo spotted the overhead paths of Aviarius, a little bird sanctuary. So we did it. The cost was around $12 pp.
  21. I did a morning walk about through the Havana Bar. Pretty space.
  22. Picture of Grand Central during the day with the view open. This is docked at Costa Maya.
  23. We watched one of the Family Feud matches and found it very fun and funny. We intended to watch more but too much to do on Mardi Gras. Chris was a great host. IMG_8394.MOV
  24. Monday we were in Cozumel but only got off the ship briefly and then had first dinner at Bonsai Sushi for the kiddo. Later DH and I had second dinner at the Smokehouse. Sushi was good but we didn’t find it a great value or much food for the $$ with so many other options available. We got Bento Box and Boat for 2. Custard for dessert was very good.
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