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RSF Cruiser

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About RSF Cruiser

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    Cool Cruiser

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    San Diego

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  1. We loved it and for us it was well worth the extra money. I like being closer to the water - you get a different perspective of the glacier. We got as close as the coast guard recommends - half a mile. I think our ship got that close, too. We left for the face of the glacier before our ship, and then encircled Haenke Island where we saw literally thousands of small white birds on the face of the rocks, on the water, and flying in flocks. There were maps and binoculars on the boat, hot chocolate, coffee, and small snacks (not that we were hungry!). If I go back to Hubbard Glacier, I’ll do the small boat ride again. Glaciers are one of my favorite things to see.
  2. I love the aft balconies - You get a great view when leaving port and if there is something to see while cruising, you can see both sides.
  3. We always call for Lyft or Uber. They usually arrive in less than five minutes - depending on the traffic getting into the pier. We've never found any van service - SuperShuttle doesn't do shared rides to the Oakland airport, at least they didn't the last time I checked. Flying out of Oakland is so much easier than SFO!
  4. Yes. One mini bar for a bottle of wine valued on the ship's menu for about $40.
  5. Although elites get free laundry, suite passengers have "free" same day laundry. If you give the steward your laundry by 9:00 AM, you will get it back that evening. If there are lots of elites on board, the laundry can take several days to be returned.
  6. Even on ships without MedallionNet, I've been able to make wifi calls with no problems.
  7. Happy I could help! We love the aft suites, and it took us a while to figure out what deck we preferred. I actually pretty much don't like the Vista aft suite balcony on Caribe, but I'm not willing to pay the extra cost to get a Penthouse suite 😕 My husband is not willing to give up the extra desk, so I've decided the inferior balcony is not a deal breaker for me. My husband is willing to pay for the Penthouse suite so both of us are happy, but I'm not... Guess life is full of compromises!
  8. I know the original poster asked about Penthouse suites, but Vista suites have come up in the conversation, so... Vista suites on the Dolphin deck have a larger balcony with a beam that doesn't interfere with much, but slightly smaller sitting room with no desk (there is a desk in the bedroom). Vista suites on Caribe deck have a smaller balcony with a beam right in the middle, but a slightly larger sitting room with a desk. After going back and forth between these two aft suites, we've decided overall we prefer the larger room and tolerate the balcony on the Caribe deck. As many have said, it's a personal choice.
  9. We always fly in and out of Oakland - a much easier airport to navigate and fewer delayed/cancelled planes. We take Uber/Lyft and give ourselves an hour for traveling. Our flights are generally between 1:00 and 2:00, and we sometimes get there before we can even check our bags (four hours)!!! Traffic varies, but there's always a delay somewhere... Depending on our pre-cruise plans, we often take an evening flight to Oakland the night before the cruise, stay in one of the Oakland airport hotels, and then take Uber/Lyft to the port in the morning. Again, it seems to take about one hour. The biggest traffic jam the last time was waiting in line to get into the port area. We arrived around 1:00 like I guess most other people did!!!
  10. RSF Cruiser

    hubbard glacier

    I've been to many glaciers on cruises, and they all are spectacular in their own way. Look at these boards and you will see some people have strong feelings about which one is "best". Many say Glacier Bay is a must/the best. Although I love the sailing up to the Margerie Glacier in Glacier Bay, and the spires on the glacier are beautiful, other glaciers are also spectacular, but in different ways. I love the huge icebergs in Tracy Arm. College Fjord has so many glaciers to see. And Hubbard Glacier is massive! I do think if you pick a cruise for Hubbard Glacier, be sure they offer the small boat experience like the pictures above. I've done small boats to Glacier Bay, Tracy Arm, and now Hubbard Glacier, and prefer the small boat experience to the cruise ship - I like being closer to the water and looking up to the glacier. If you stay on the ship, the experience will be probably be the same no matter what cruise line you are on.
  11. RSF Cruiser

    hubbard glacier

    This is the boat we were on... yes, we got within a half mile of the glacier - this shot is from before we got on the boat.
  12. I've done the drive alone in a rental car and had no issues with the road. Using Murray's guide is wonderful and I would not hesitate doing the trip. The views are spectacular and since you are doing the driving, you can determine where you stop and for how long...
  13. I LOVED the snorkeling excursion. The wet suits they provided kept me almost too warm! There are lots of pictures online of snorkeling in Ketchikan - I thought it was fascinating and totally different from warm water ports. Lots of star fish and kelp.
  14. For the Hawaii ports get the Revealed books (Oahu Revealed, Maui Revealed etc.). Libraries generally have them, and there are many used ones available online. We go to Hawaii often, and always bring our Revealed books - lots of editorialized reviews on everything!
  15. RSF Cruiser

    hubbard glacier

    We were on the Hubbard Glacier small boat excursion a few weeks ago. We were told the Coast Guard allows boats/ships to get up to a half mile from the face of the glacier. so the small boat and ship generally get to the same distance from the glacier's face. The advantage of the small boat is you are closer to the water, so it's a different glacier view from a large ship; there are fewer people with more space for viewing/pictures; and you encircle Haenke Island where the wiwiwakes (white birds) live. We literally saw thousands of birds. Although the small boat excursion is expensive, we thought it was worth every penny. We've been to numerous calving glaciers over the years, and find the experience in a small boat superior to a ship. That said, I think it's a personal decision as to whether paying for the small boat is "worth it". The experience on a ship is different, although it is still spectacular!
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