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About Djptcp

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
  • Interests
    Cruising, reading, swimming
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Carnival, Holland America
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Western Caribbean

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  1. MissG, I just saw your question regarding our casino rate. It was an email with a long list of cruises in the offer. It started with a group of free interiors with greatly reduced rates for the other cabin categories including Neptune Suites, the next group was $99 interiors, then $199 interiors, and so on. We wanted the Rotterdam in the first group because we live 45 minutes from the Port of Tampa and cruise most often from there on Carnival. However, the Neptunes were sold out so we selected the Oosterdam our of Ft. Lauderdale. All the cabin selections were guarantees and the whole cost had to be paid for when booked, no deposit with the balance due later. Haven't sailed on the Oosterdam, so looking forward to the cruise very much.
  2. Djptcp

    Port of Tampa Parking

    DH and I do valet parking at the Port of Tampa all the time and love it. While ambulatory I do have some standing issues and I do need a wheelchair at embarkation and disembarkation because of the long distance to get on board/off the ship. At disembarkation, we also get a porter to get our luggage when we get to our zone. There is a special line at immigration for porters so we never have to wait in line. My wheelchair pusher and our porter take us right out to the valet parking area where our car is brought to us. The extra costs of the valet parking and tips for the wheelchair pusher and porter are well worth it and make embarkation and disembarkation easy for me and much less stressful.
  3. Djptcp

    Upgrade on Oosterdam

    Great price - I would definitely take it.
  4. Djptcp

    Bringing alcohol on board

    It's not petty, it's Holland America's "law" and no one is above the law. We buy liquor through HAL's program and have a bottle waiting for us in our suite. We also bring one bottle of wine each. At least HAL's liquor purchases are still somewhat reasonable - we cruise Carnival much more often and stopped purchasing their liquor to have in our cabin when they jacked up their prices which are now about twice what HAL's are. We get free drinks in the Carnival casinos through our casino offers so that helps make up for not purchasing their liquor bottles beforehand.
  5. If it's the same Brenda, we have also had a very positive experience with her. Enjoy your first cruise with HAL - you will love it!
  6. Djptcp

    Casino Offers - room selection - HAL

    I gamble a lot on all of our cruises as I consider it my entertainment and I receive many casino offers, mostly from Carnival and HAL because we cruise them the most. I don't go to shows or the other venues. With people who don't gamble much also receiving the casino offers, who knows how HAL and Carnival select people to receive the offers? Doesn't matter to me as long as I keep receiving them. Carnival's are better and are usually free or $50 per person and since we live 45 minutes from the Port of Tampa we sail from there the most. We take advantage of the HAL offers only when we can get a Neptune Suite very cheaply and our last 4 HAL cruises have been these. I actually prefer sailing on HAL than Carnival, but I don't receive as many casino offers from HAL so we end up sailing on Carnival much more often.
  7. I use Google Chrome and have never had a problem finding the information. We went to Cuba last May on Carnival and printed out the affidavits and brought them with us to check in. The Visas costs $75 each and were charged to our onboard account. Do not fill them out until you are ready to get off the ship. I injured my achilles tendon a week before the cruise and even with a rollator with a seat I knew I wouldn't be able to get off the ship and get around on the uneven terrain. I hadn't completed my Visa and was able to get my $75 back at Guest Services. They don't give you a refund if you have filled it out.
  8. Djptcp

    Casino Offers - room selection - HAL

    I just realized in my previous post that I said we are on the Oosterdam in March, but it's actually in February. Everything else is correct.
  9. Djptcp

    Casino Offers - room selection - HAL

    We are also sailing on the Oosterdam in March 2019 in a deeply discounted casino rated Neptune Suite, also a guarantee. On other deeply discounted casino rated HAL cruises, we have also sailed in Neptune Suites but were able to book specific Neptune Suites not guarantees. This must be something new making them guarantees. Ours is a SC guarantee and there are only four of them on Deck 7 near the aft elevators. We normally book NS near the fwd elevators, but did the guarantee anyway as we couldn't pass up this offer. The cruise cash is substantially less than we normally receive, but what the heck, it's still a great deal.
  10. HiltonhJr, did you make a reservation with the special needs dept. for the wheelchair for embarkation and disembarkation? They will email you a form to complete and email back to them. I haven't done it previously and often had to wait for those who had made reservations, so I did it for our next HAL cruise in Feb.
  11. $10 each way since I am taken right up to our suite and at the end of the cruise right out to valet parking. Worth it.
  12. Djptcp

    How does room guarantee work?

    I received a tremendous casino offer this week and booked a Neptune Suite on the Oosterdam, but the offer was only good for guarantees. We don't like guarantees because we prefer to book a specific Neptune Suite, but couldn't pass up the offer. The rep said it was a SC category Neptune near the aft elevators. I just see four of them on Deck 7. Prefer to be near the fwd elevators because the casino is close to them and I have some walking issues. The rep sent a message to the inventory dept. requesting a Neptune near the fwd elevators so we'll see if that happens with a different Neptune category. She said we won't find out until it's within 7 days of embarkation.
  13. Djptcp

    Holland America Munster Drill

    After responding to this thread, I contacted the HAL special needs dept. by email today and mentioned that on all our HAL cruises (on a number of different HAL ships), special needs passengers were allowed to check in at the muster station and then go to a lounge area to sit that was near the muster station. There are usually 30-40 people sitting in the special needs section. I explained I have a standing issue and there is no way I can stand for muster drills. I received a response right away and said there are no special needs areas for muster drills and I have to go to the muster station. Huh? How can he explain what we have experienced on all of our other HAL cruises on various HAL ships? I haven't responded back to him yet.
  14. Djptcp

    Holland America Munster Drill

    I have standing issues and on every HAL cruise we have taken, latest was Nov. 2016, there was always a special location for special needs passengers for the muster drill where we could sit. Crew showed how to use the safety jackets, etc. and you could hear the instructions over the PA system. When we sail on the Oosterdam in Feb. I was planning on contacting our concierge in the Neptune Lounge to find out where to go. If you think the special needs locations are no longer offered, I will contact the HAL special needs dept. before we cruise to find out what to do in Feb.
  15. After a little more research, I discovered you can also get Carnival gift cards from Allstate and Verizon. Still nothing more about any for HAL.