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DfDinLA

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About DfDinLA

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Los Angeles, CA
  • Interests
    travel, food, sports, movies

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  1. Go ahead and wear it. At least you won't have to worry about getting hit on by sloppy men wearing t-shirts and "nice" shorts.
  2. In response to the original poster's question, no.
  3. This board is positively docile compared to the college football board to which I subscribe. Flame retardant clothing is required to login to that board. And the most interesting thing about that board is nearly all of us attended the same university! Make a comment critical of the play calling and see what happens. If somebody doesn't agree with me about tipping on a cruise ship I just ignore it, but attack my judgement about offensive line performance and you better prepare for a fight.
  4. In addition to flying from London may I suggest buying a Eurostar ticket and catching a first class transatlantic flight from either CDG, BRU or AMS? You could save a lot. I would include Dublin but Aer Lingus only has business class service. Also, if you are flying with a group of friends consider chartering a private jet. For 10 people flying from London to New York the price per person isn't much more than a one way first class ticket on BA. Private jets charge by the hours flown, not the number of passengers on board.
  5. I do not agree with the comment about the EU. There is no such thing as an EU minimum wage. 6 of the 27 member states (Denmark, Italy, Cyprus, Austria, Finland and Sweden) do not have any minimum wage at all. The other 21 countries have individual labor regulations regarding the number of hours in the work week and minimum pay rates. Some of the EU countries (Czech Republic, Poland) do not even use the Euro. In addition, workers in EU receive statutory benefits regarding vacation pay and sick pay that effectively and significantly increase their income on an hourly basis relative to US workers. Comparing international pay rates is not a simple exercise. As they say, the devil is ion the details. In my opinion, there is a lot of misinformation on these boards on this topic.
  6. Thank you for that deep-dive from afar into my soul. Have a nice day.
  7. Tipping is such an American thing. It is not customary in many countries. I tip according to the custom of the country I'm in. When on a cruise ship I pay my cruise fare and expect Royal Caribbean to pay its employees. For the amount I am paying I expect consistently good service and if I don't receive it the ship's management shall hear from me. On my first cruise (Vision) I "went with the program" and prepaid gratuities. After that, I did it my way and did not pay any gratuities at all. I did not prepay gratuities. The first day onboard (Rhapsody and Independence) I notified Guest Services I was not going to pay gratuities at all. The desk agent asked why and I said it was not my custom. On my next to last day onboard I called to make sure I had not been charged gratuities. I experienced no change in the level of service from day one to the end of the cruise. I was polite to all employees and I received good service, no different from what I receive in the US when I tip. I'm not trying to change anyone's opinion. It is your money, spend it as you wish. Likewise, it's my money and I'll decide how and when to spend it.
  8. I agree with the sentiments of the other respondents. Cash preservation is critical for the cruise lines. Any significant expenditures are to make the ships saleable, not sailable.
  9. I love wearing my bespoke suits on the formal nights. They look great and feel great. Question for the ladies. How do you feel about leaving your fancy evening dress in the closet at home because your male companion is "on vacation" and "needs to feel comfortable?" And would you rather be dancing in your shimmery cocktail dress with a man wearing a suit or tuxedo once in awhile? I for one am happy to see my favorite lady in an evening dress as often as possible.
  10. I received an e-mail from Royal today saying my excursion to Mt Teide on Tenerife has been canceled. I'm looking into taking a private tour.
  11. As others before me have mentioned, Wells Fargo and B of A both have foreign exchange services for people who have accounts with them and the rates are very competitive. Travelex has a reputable online ordering service with good (not great) rates. They will FedEx the money to your home or business and you must be there to sign for the delivery, it will not be left on your doorstep. If you travel to Europe frequently, consider opening an account in a bank in the European Union. Once the account is open you can wire transfer money from your US bank to the foreign bank and interbank exchange rates are the best you can find. For all those who say use credit cards and ATMs and you don't need much cash, I doubt you have gambled in the casino in Monte Carlo.
  12. During a transatlantic crossing on Rhapsody I decided I wanted to host 6 guests in my suite one afternoon. I told the concierge I wanted to buy 5 bottles of champagne and a case of Evian, and I wanted the champagne delivered chilled in ice buckets with 7 champagne glasses, 7 drinking glasses and some cocktail napkins. I also ordered a tray of assorted veggies and dip, a tray of assorted cheeses and asked that it all be delivered at 1 PM the next day. At the desired time it all arrived and he stopped by to make sure everything was OK and then he told me the snacks were compliments of Royal Caribbean.. My guests and I had a very nice afternoon and afterwards I thanked the concierge for his help and the nice surprise.
  13. I did the eastbound TA on Indy last year and there were fewer than 10 teenagers onboard. There were more toddlers than teens.
  14. Miserable? I certainly have not seen that. I've seen employees who were not friendly, but that's a long way from miserable. I admit my sample size of cruises is small but I have encountered mostly friendly employees and no one anywhere near miserable.
  15. Things must have changed a lot. I was on Rhapsody 2 years ago and the ship was very clean and well-maintained. I'd sail on it again without concern.
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