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About jstrutton

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    Cool Cruiser

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    Myrtle Beach, SC
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    Med and Alaska

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  1. Quick review: Embarkation: Simple and on the ship very quickly. If you happen to be Black Card, you can go to the front of the line and avoid the wait. But even so, the lines move very fast for boarding Ship: The ship itself is gorgeous. The stairways are like most MSC ships with the crystal inside with makes for a great picture. For having +5000 customers on board, it never felt crowded. There is definitely a large majority of customers from European countries so expect numerous different languages being spoke. Now for the bad: the elevators as noted on several others reviews are horrible. They have three banks of elevators, one being at the very back of the ships. The other two banks are used to move +5000 passengers which isn't realistic IMO. The other issue is that if someone has a "yacht club" card, they use it and it basically bypasses all the floors to get them to deck 16 (yacht club entrance). So, you can basically take 1 or more of the elevators off the grid for the average customer since it will not stop to pick up or stop on any other floor. IMO, they should just have dedicated a set of elevators for the yacht club in the construction, but not sure if they can correct problem now. Overall, for our taste the ship was probably too big but a good experience. Liked the MSC DIvina much better but that is just our taste. Also, be careful with getting to deck 16 buffet from one side of the ship. It is blocked by the specialty restaurants and you have to go up to Deck 18 and then back to Deck 16 to get to it. You do get more exercise but at times this is an annoyance. Casino: Standard casino, had one section for smokers, but never got too bad. Buffets: Standard buffets, nothing more or less than other cruise lines. One note, the ice cream is only available on deck 16 and it isn't self-serve. Moves fast, you just have to ask the waiter for it. Main Dining: Food was really good. We can't remember having a bad dish and very timely service. The negative is that they are serving 3 dinner times, so the waiters have very little time to interact with customers. Room Steward: She was fine no issues. We stayed in cabin 14065. So, if you look this cabin up on their map, it looks different. It is off track with the rest of the inside cabins on deck 14. The good thing is that this cabin has a ton more space than the average inside cabin. Bad thing is that we were so outset that the luggage porters on the last night forget to pick up our luggage so we ended up taking our own. Shows: Very good, probably one of the best shows especially the last night. Entertainment staff: The dance instructors (Alex & Erica) were FABULOUS!! They are the best instructors and entertaining people we have seen on cruise ships. If you miss their dance sessions, you are really missing a treat. You must go; also it is a good workout so you can lose weight from eating on board. Disembarkation: Very simple and easy. Was on the street from the boat in probably less than 30 minutes. Drink packages: Didn't get one so have to feedback Zip line: Well worth the $11.00 pp for the ride. It is quick but still great fun. Bowling was $25 for 30 minutes (I think), we didn't do it, but it was a standard bowling alley and not the miniature size like on the Divina. Any questions, just let me know. I'll probably think of something else later.
  2. Can anyone verify that one of the dance instructors on the Seaside is Alex? We cruised on the Divina and he was one of them along with Erica. I recently saw a picture posted from a June Seaside that looked like him. Loved their energy and passion. Wanted to take another cruise with them. Thanks....jay
  3. Does anyone have a picture of the daily program from the Seaside? Just curious to see their activities especially on sea days. Thanks in advance Jay
  4. Any ideas? Just moving it back to the top just in case someone can help Thanks....jay
  5. If anyone is currently on the MSC Divina, can you please either get Alex/Erica contact information or ask them which ship they will be on in December. We really enjoyed their energy and dance instruction and wanted to take another cruise with them. I'm assuming they are still on the ship since we took the TA with Divina back in March. Thanks in advance for any info. Jay
  6. We just got back from TA MSC Divina and really really enjoyed the dance lessons every day from Alex and Erica. Unfortunately, I didn't get their email or schedule for upcoming ships. Does anyone know how to contact them or can someone currently on the ship ask for their upcoming schedule in December. We are considering booking the MSC Divina from Miami but would like to know if they will be on the ship as well or if they might be on the Seaside. Thanks in advance for any insight and your time Jay
  7. Was looking at our booking and noticed the following was on the excursion page. Was wondering if anyone else has something similar and does this imply that the Valencia city tour was included in our package. We booked this cruise over a year ago and can't remember this being part of the package but maybe it was. Thanks for any info Screenshot: Included Excursions ValenciaCITY TOUR Discover More Excursion Package Details
  8. I found it later, but what is the relationship between the drink package and needing to seat together for dinner. We have the fantastica package with the 12 drink coupon and not sure what if any option the other guests have. Jay
  9. I know I've seen it on their MSC website, but can't find it now. We have friends going on the same TA cruise as us and I want to link their reservations (#) with us at the dinner seating. Can anyone show or tell me where to find this on the MSC website, really don't want to call and be on the phone for an hour for something as simple as this Thanks in advance for any advice Jay
  10. I just read somewhere that the Divina does NOT have ATM machines on board? Can someone verify this is true or not. Granted everything is cashless on board, but probably will need cash for ports. If they don't, then what is the best option for getting cash without paying a fee i.e. via the casino. I would think it would be smart to have one near their casino but never know Thanks...jay
  11. We are booked on a TA cruise in March 2019 and looking at insurance options. Not sure whether I need it because of the following: 1. Paying for the entire cruise with our Costco Visa card which has some travel insurance in the event we have to cancel for illness, etc prior to cruise. 2. Once on the ship, I'll have Tricare Select (the old Standard). Granted I may have to pay upfront but can file a claim once I get back off the cruise for medical treatment on the ship if needed. 3. Also, once at our destination in Europe, then I can still use same process as #2 4. In addition, we have a Tricare supplement policy, for anything that Tricare doesn't cover i.e Tricare only covers 75% so our supplement covers the remaining 25%). Opinions? Just trying to figure out whether we actually need the additional travel insurance. Granted it isn't a huge amount, but less I pay for insurance is more for us to spend on board. Thanks in advance. Jay
  12. Does anyone know if they show night movies on the outdoor screen similar to what Carnival does on some of their ships?
  13. Thanks for the info. Under the 12 free drinks, do we still get charged the 15% service fee or that included? Also, is there a difference in the pricing if we switch over from the 12 free drinks to Drinks on us package. Just wondering if it is worth the difference to transfer over. Jay
  14. Thanks for the quick response. That is what I was thinking. But it will be interesting on the TA cruise. They leave Miami for NY, then Bermuda. So we get free "tap" water for the North American piece, but I can't imagine they would switch over to the European model (pay for water) for the remaining stops in Europe. They will really be flaky, but I've seen stranger things happen Jay
  15. Was just curious and this has probably already been answered. But we are on the TA Divina in March. At dinner, do they give us free water or do we have to pay for their water package. I seem to have read somewhere that if the cruise start in US, they give US passengers "tap" water and don't require us to pay for the bottled water at dinner. Thanks for any clarification Jay
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