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    Traveling, Cooking
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Paul Gauguin, Regent
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    South Pacific

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  1. Newcruzer said that their cruise starts in Istanbul, and are wondering what would happen if they start elsewhere. That's different than Regent changing ports along the way. If you book your own airfare, pre and/or post hotels, and/or excursions, you'll have to change those as well, and chances are there will be a penalty, especially on the airfare. It will definitely be more work. Our second cruise on Regent was changed entirely, and we were not happy with the entirely new itinerary which we didn't like. We cancelled and rebooked since we were (not very long) before the penalty period, and we try not to book anything outside of the cruise line we're traveling on. We have an upcoming Regent cruise on Voyager, and the ship is scheduled to stop in Dubai before it heads to Singapore where we board. We also fly through Dubai on a flight that Regent selected for us. We have no reservations that were not made through Regent. If they cancelled our cruise and let us rebook, that would be OK. But, if Regent changed the entire itinerary of our cruise, and we ended up with a Med cruise in winter for the price we paid for our cruise because of problems in the middle east, we would definitely expect to be able to cancel that cruise and change to another cruise in the future without a penalty.
  2. We haven't had any luck with choosing flights that Regent is willing to book for us. They have so far always come back saying there are no options from RSW, and have offered us FLL or MIA. Do you have any hints on how you choose RSW flights that Regent can work with? Do you often end up with an additional flight to use RSW?
  3. Maybe I should have said that Regent doesn't give us any flight options from RSW. On our Alaska cruise, we asked Regent for a flight for RSW to Vancouver. They offered us a flight from FLL to ATL to Vancouver on Delta. The FLL flight left exetremely early, so we paid for a hotel overnight hotel before the flight. It had a connection time of an hour in ATL, which I would never had scheduled myself. I would rather have flown to ATL from RSW the day before, and would have paid for my hotel there, but that wasn't an option allowed by Regent. I spent a lot of time worrying about the 1 hour to connect in ATL until we boarded the plane in FLL. The flight attendant told me that the crew would also be connecting to the Vancouver flight in ATL and they wouldn't be leaving without us.
  4. For our Regent cruises, the pre and post hotels are always said to be a "named hotel" used in the past, or an equivalent. It's only when we received our final cruise package that we have know for sure which hotel we'll be staying at. On our July Med cruise, the "named hotel" at the time we booked was the Fairmont. We had a concierge amenity cabin, which gave us one night pre stay and transportation to the hotel, and then to the ship the next day. We arrived at 9:30 AM in Barcelona. We were given transportation in a Mercedes sedan to the Fairmont. Our included room was available for check in when we arrived around 11:30, but so was a room with a view on the 10th floor for a slight upcharge. We took it. Free bus transportation was available to and from the Barcelona city center the rest of the day, and we took advantage of that. Breakfast buffet was included the next morning, and we could choose between a transfer to the port late in the morning, or a 3 hour bus tour of Barcelona with several stops and a drop-off at the port for an additional charge (around 70 dollars each if I remember correctly). We walked directly onto the ship from the bus tour. We've always preferred what the cruise line provides rather than booking it ourselves. There are certainly ways you can save money by doing it yourself, but saving a little bit of money by finding your own cheaper transportation, hotel room, tours and breakfast seems like too much work when the savings is insignificant compared to the total cruise cost.
  5. We live quite close to Ft Myers airport. We never use it for any cruises since it never connects well to any other flights. While it has plenty of flights to Atlanta, they never seem to connect to flights to the West Coast, or to International flights. We always drive to FLL or MIA, and ask for flights from their on our cruises. We prefer to have Regent book us all the way through from either of those airports, and pay the deviation to book early and we often add a few extra days on one end or the other so we would need to pay for the deviation for that. I think our deviation charge is normally 250 dollars.
  6. A dark jacket and tie look pretty close to a dark suit when you're sitting at a table in the restaurant. Just don't wear jeans or shorts on the way to the table and you should be fine. We've been Florida residents for over 7 years now, and agree on there being no use for a suit, and rarely for a jacket and tie. Even long pants are rarely needed in South Florida most of the year. Dresses were no longer found in my closet until we started taking cruises a few years ago, but now I often wear one for dining out locally. And we have plenty of options to bring along for our cruises. What we bring in our limited luggage space depends on which cruise line we're on, where we're going, and what we're doing pre or post cruise.
  7. The cruise before ours was a typical Society Islands cruise, and that's the one that had rain the entire time. We heard this from several high level crew members that we spoke with. It was also mentioned on a loudspeaker announcement that gave the forecast for the day, early in our cruise, which pointed out how lucky we were to have a sunny day. We had 3 days in the Society Islands, at Moorea, TaHa'a, and Bora Bora, and all were sunny, but also windy and cool. If we didn't want to snorkel, it would have been perfect weather while in the Society Islands.
  8. How late in the morning do you need it to be quiet? We are always up by 6:30, and ready for breakfast at 7:00. We have always stayed on deck 8, once in 818 and the last 2 times in 808, and have another cruise scheduled in 818 next year. The sun deck above deck 8 is rarely used in the morning. Passengers are not allowed to go up there before 8:30. I agree with TBK that the unmarked space on deck 7 forward is an officer cabin. I would expect it to be the Captain's cabin since it's behind the Captain's reception lounge. The Captain and a number of other officers normally have a table reserved for them outside at La Veranda for breakfast. They normally start showing up when the restaurant opens at 7, so they would be moving about the officer's cabin area and bridge just before 7. I wouldn't expect to hear them since I haven't noticed the sound of doors opening and closing on deck 8, and I wouldn't expect the bridge crew to be loud talkers. The ship often drops anchor before 7, and it anchors almost all mornings. We don't hear it on deck 8, but someplace lower, toward the front of the ship, is going to hear it. I don't know if that will be on deck 7 or lower than that. Maybe someone else on the board has experience with that.
  9. That was not our experience on Silver Whisper on a 2 week cruise to the Amazon from Barbados last year. On formal nights, the minimum of a dark suit with a tie and a cocktail dress were expected. Many people dressed to impress. A tuxedo and gown are never in our luggage when we travel (we never have room for it), so we were dressed to the minimum, and didn't feel out of place. Our Alaska and Med cruises were on Regent, which has a more casual dress code, and tuxedos are less common. Unfortunately, sneakers, ball caps, jeans, t-shirts and sweatshirts are tolerated every night in the dining rooms on Regent Alaska cruises, which is more casual than I like. I suspect quite a few people came back from excursions, went to the bar for cocktails, and then went to the dining room without changing. Those on the Med cruise were better dressed at dinner than on the Alaska cruise.
  10. I wouldn't mind having a nice water bottle, with a Regent logo, provided for each guest. It needs to be unbreakable, and light in weight, so it can be refilled from the glass bottle and taken on excursions. It also needs to fit into the fridge without having to remove everything else since that's not true of the glass bottle (at least on Voyager it wasn't). I would be willing to forego an additional tote bag in exchange for refillable excursion water bottles. Unfortunately, I never have trouble spending my OBC's.
  11. Yes, RO water should not have anything left in it, but it's going into the same water tanks that they fill with water from giant hoses at the dock in places where I would be reluctant to drink the water local town/city water. They would need to treat the tank with chlorine to eliminate the local water contaminants from the tank. The Vero water system treats the drinking water after it comes out of the ship's water tanks, and before it goes into the glass bottles. I don't know what it does, but we saw the water filling portion of it in the galley tour that we took in July. That looked only like a filler, and not like a filter, but there may be something else hidden below deck.
  12. We stayed 2 nights at the IC Papeete and their internet was pretty good so we used that. Renting the router at PPT would not have worked for us on the cruise we just finished since we flew back to LAX from Fiji. We only spent the first 3 days of the cruise in FP, then headed West. We bought the unlimited plan on board (which gives you only 1 device at a time), and at some times of the day it works pretty well, and at others it doesn't, depending on how many others are using it. When everyone is out for the day on excursions, it works very well, which it the same timeframe that Tahiti WiFi would work.
  13. After our Med cruise in July, with the way too large glass Vero water bottle, we will now be bringing a small plastic funnel as part of our cruise essentials. We had saved 2 small plastic water bottles from our pre-cruise hotel to refill, but it wasn't easy to do. We had brought our newly purchased flat bag water bottles (based on CC suggestions), and they were impossible to fill from the large glass Vero bottles without spilling most of the Vero water into the sink. We had to buy bottled water on many of our excursions since no bottles were offerd onboard our ground transportation. After accumulating 6 small water bottles to keep filled in our frig so we had cold water to drink during the night, and to bring on our subsequent excursions, we made sure that we disposed of any additional water bottles purchased on excursions (and at 90 degrees most days there were many) were deposited on shore before returning to the ship. If the places we visit onshore don't restrict plastic water bottles, then I'm not sure why we are obsessed with it? I am not adverse to drinking RO water, but when I see the ship refilling with water at the dock, and sometimes see or smell bad water from the tap, I'm reluctant to drink the tap water onboard.
  14. Since your cruise is coming up pretty fast, I would expect you will soon receive you cruise package. It should clarify what you need to wear. Unless you want to be restricted in where you want to eat and/or drink during the evening, I would suggest men should bring a jacket. Informal on Silversea is a jacket, collared shirt, and long pants for men, with tie optional.
  15. There's also the WiFi charge if you need to stay in touch while cruising. If you want access anywhere on the ship for 1 device without counting your minutes, it can easily be 2 or 3 hundred dollars . The OBC can be used for that as well.
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