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About twangster

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    3,000+ Club

About Me

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    I have hobbies
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Royal Caribbean
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    San Juan

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  1. Be leary of "significant" OBC. Note the keywords "up to" $300 in OBC. Call in for a mock booking of an existing booked cruise. Unless you are booked in an expensive suite I wouldn't expect $300 in OBC. While you have them on the phone ask about transfers. Transferring a direct booking to an airline branded agency has resulted in gaining perks specific to them but it really varies on the fare booked. Cheap cruises don't fare well, more expensive cruises do better. You won't know until you call.
  2. One thing is for sure, any changes to the inaugural date means more refunds and cancellations to process. Some delay is inevitable but once announced they've got more money to give back so I suspect they won't be in a hurry to announce a revised date.
  3. I hope they are able to offer a revised timeline soon. I'd also like to see booking protection for the revised inaugural sailing assuming it will remain to sail from Port Everglades. If it's delayed long enough they may just keep her in Europe and use the existing Rome based bookings to become the inaugural. At some point it's not going to be worth bringing her across empty only to sail back a short time later for her summer in Italy. That's assuming Italy is allowing cruises 11 months from now. Interesting times. Only time will tell.
  4. If you are looking at Quantum class from Seattle then like Oasis class there are some benefits of the Royal Suite Class. When sailing on Ovation to Alaska I frequently visited the Suite Sun Deck which was often not very busy and offers a great way to move quickly from starboard to port and back again. Hundreds of my pictures and videos were taken from the Suite Sun Deck. Coastal Kitchen is also a significant benefit on Quantum class and so is the Concierge Lounge on this class of ship due to the aft views and floor to ceiling glass windows. Even if the nightly happy hour doesn't have direct appeal, the views all day long make the CL very appealing. It is however a long walk back to the CL so if you have mobility issues keep that in mind. Personally I don't mind the walk. While Voom will always be slower in Alaska compared to the Caribbean at least it's included in Sky Class on Quantum class. On Royal's other Alaska based ships, Radiance and Serenade, the benefits of GS or above don't do very much for me regardless the region they sail. Oasis and Quantum class have Royal Suite Class so the benefits for GS and above do stand out and have some merit.
  5. No Sabor on NV anymore. Lost in the amplification, now it's a Seafood venue called Hooked.
  6. Sounds like a prison. Your lodging, food and drinks are covered. You might not like any of what's served, but it's provided to you for free.
  7. Not all bars have the ingredients but the Schooner Bar has been pretty consistent. A Schooner bartenders gave me this recipe: 2 oz rum 1/4 shot lavender syrup Sprinkle of lavender flakes
  8. With ships out of position I am wondering if they will invest the money and time to get them to Alaska IF they can salvage part of the 2020 Alaska cruise season assuming Canada does open its ports. It's been offered that ships can break even below 50% capacity but that didn't assume a massive fuel bill to get the ship into position. There is additional risk that a new spike in cases could cause Canada to close it ports again. That would be a worst case scenario. Spend a fortune to move a ship across the Pacific only to see cruises halt and then be faced with the cost of moving the ship back across the Pacific empty. At some point even if Canada does open its ports it won't make sense to attempt a partial 2020 Alaska cruise season. Only Royal knows where that point is or if we've already past it. I'm also curious to know if the federal government would be open to waiving the PVSA for 2020 so that cruise ships could bypass Canada. That's assuming Seattle reopens the port.
  9. My first visit to Nassau on a cruise ship was over 20 years ago. I recall being absolutely hounded by street vendors before the current port setup was created. That experience left a bad taste in my mouth for Nassau so I avoided cruises there for years and when I did find a stop in Nassau on my itinerary I stayed on the ship. Over the past couple of years I wondered off and found it wasn't as bad as the 90's although I was careful to choose my time off ship carefully. However now that Nassau has lost a lot of tourism revenue I fear it will return to the days when it was borderline harassment just trying to walk to or from the ship.
  10. An update to the report. It seems there was no decision made by the state of Hawaii to block cruise ships as this may have been interpreted, rather this was an economic forecast intended to warn the state that there won't be significant cruise visitors coming so they can plan accordingly for a loss of revenue from cruise ship visitors. Regarding the cruise visitors to Hawaii, that is a pure assumption by a group of economists within the Hawaii State Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism, the assumption is NOT a decision of government officials. Our assumption is on the conservative side, the purpose is to provide the economic impact of a conservative scenario. The assumption is based on two factors: (1) the projected COVID-19 pandemic will finish by the end of 2020 worldwide; (2) people are reluctant to travel via cruise for a few month after the ending of the pandemic.
  11. Amazing they have such clarity over the next 16 months. On the other hand Hawaii was devastated by the introduction of disease by early explorers/conquerors hundreds of years ago so I guess I can understand their approach to such a contagious virus.
  12. Airbnb refunded 0% for me when the travel ban to Europe was announced and I couldn't use my booking in Spain. If your son had to book a new trip to get a refund that doesn't sound like a refund. I sincerely hope your son does better than me based on my experience.
  13. No common Alaska cruise port is in the Arctic. The governor just announced Alaska will be 100% open on Friday. “It’s time to get Alaska back on its feet. It will all be open just like it was prior to the virus,” says Gov. Mike Dunleavy The problem isn't Alaskan ports so much as Canadian ports required to keep the vast majority of Alaskan cruises legal.
  14. My April cruise was direct, my 2021 cruise cancelled in May through a TA. I think the early refund/cancel process was messed up. The process was streamlined so new cancellations are working out better. The early ones that are messed up need a lot of labor to manually go through on a booking by booking basis so those are taking very long times to get sorted out. Just a hunch, no inside knowledge or proof.
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