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About cwsdks48

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    Cool Cruiser

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    Florence, South Carolina

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  1. We book shore excursions online when they open up, receive the $50 credit after we return from our excursion. We then use the credit to treat ourselves to wine at dinner and a drink later in one of the Lounges. Works out perfectly. Usually we also pay for laundry and a couple of bottles of wine to keep in our room. At the end of each of our cruises we still had a credit left, which NCL refunded per paper check about 3 weeks after we returned from our cruise.
  2. We were in a mini suite on the Jade. Everything was fine with the location (we chose our cabin). Drawbacks were the closet was hard to reach and open next to the bed, and the bathroom had a bathtub/shower combination. We prefer a shower only, therefore stayed in a balcony cabin on our next cruise.
  3. We sailed on the Spirit last January and liked how they organized shore excursion groups. Each excursion had a specific meeting time in the theater. There were never more than 2 or 3 groups in the theater at the same time. There was still some ‘jockeying’ for position, but not as bad as having the entire theater filled when we sailed on the Jade the summer before. It may also help to find the best two crew members who are adept at crowd control to organize everything in the theater. Preferably someone with a good sense of humor and a loud voice if there is no microphone. It can be done pleasantly and efficiently. Looking forward to our next Jade cruise and hoping shore excursion mayhem is a thing of the past!
  4. Had that happen on our last trip to Toronto. Was trying to pay for lunch with a Canadian $20 that I had saved from a trip to Montreal in the '90's. Restaurant suggested I go to the bank and exchange for 'new' bank notes. Bank was happy to oblige.
  5. We usually end up with some foreign currency, but only buy about $50 of each., then treat ourselves to a local lunch before heading back to the ship, give some as tips on board. Those ships sail the same itinerary back to back, so crew has some spending money next time in port.Enjoy your trip! We ended up in Iceland two years in a row. The first an Icelandair stopover on the way to Hamburg, the second a cruise out of Hamburg. Should have saved the Icelandic Krona from the first trip, if we had known.
  6. If you bank with Bank of America, you can order foreign currency online through their App. There is a link to order foreign currency in the help section I believe. You input the countries and amount of currency for each. The amounts are taken out of your account and a few days later the currencies arrive in the mail at your home. We've done this twice now and it saved having to find an ATM, which we used to do, and enjoy our shore excursions.
  7. We also received the email. Thrilled about Oslo. Please keep everyone posted on updates.
  8. We always take local currency for smaller purchases, such as food, souvenirs, transportation. BofA has a link where you can order foreign currency online. Select the different currencies you need, three or four days later the currencies arrive in a FedEx envelope, complete with a spreadsheet detailing your purchase. Used this service for two European cruises last year. This also eliminated the need to use an ATM. We have an account at another bank for smaller transactions, and use that debit card if needed.
  9. We generally take the ship’s tours and have enjoyed them for the most part. But we also take the $50 Shore excursion credit (Norwegian). Usually the credit appears as soon as we return from our tour. That is our evening drink money. Just enough for us. We have been to Iceland twice, once on an Iceland air stopover (2 nights each), and last year on a cruise. We rented a car during the first stopover (did take the wind/ash insurance). Iceland is easy to navigate, it does get windy, so hold on to your car doors when getting in and out.
  10. For iPhone and unlimited data plan, we just turned on airplane mode, turned cellular data off and WiFi on. We only used phone in port when we had WiFi. Would go to an eatery and asked if they had WiFi. That and the 250 minutes from NCL perk worked for us without spending a dime. Hubby was able to post lots of his pics on fb and I checked e-mail while enjoying local food. We even talked to family in Europe and US via WhatsApp. (Only use with WiFi). Happy travels!
  11. Scottie99, we were on the Spirit returning on Jan 24, supposedly the day you left. And although we would attribute cleaning to the rough seas on Jan 22-23 and the accompanying seasickness (we did not see anyone get sick), nobody would doubt your perception, confirmation of noro and subsequent lack of enjoyment of the cruise. However, calling something 'massive' in the title of the thread has such a negative connotation, especially since NCL is taking great pains to contain the situation, that I am sad to have the Spirit and our cruise (including 'washy, washy) portrayed in that light.
  12. Before our Jan 13 Spirit Canary Islands cruise we bought a disembarkation shore ex to Montserrat from Barcelona. I had the printout of the confirmation e-mail, so all was well. We had to go to the shore ex desk on board and indicate whether we wanted airport, NCL hotel or Catalanya square drop off. Then the associate printed the (yellow) tour tickets. Later I went back to the desk because the tour did not appear on the NCL app, but was assured that all was in order and the app sometimes does not show everything. One of our perks was the $50 shore excursion credit and I didn't know whether it would be given at the end of the cruise, but it showed the night before disembarkation, probably because all accounts were settled. We were very pleased with the promptness and accuracy in handling of the onboard account. Even received a refund check in the mail yesterday. We had a wonderful tour of Montserrat Monastery and were dropped off at the airport around 2pm and from there caught the free hotel shuttle to our hotel (TRYP Aeropuerto Barcelona, a Melia group hotel). Next morning the shuttle drove us back to the airport for our nonstop flight to Miami. Here a concern concerning flights. We have flown to Europe regularly for over 40 years and have some idea of cost. So when we found a nonstop American Airlines Miami-Barcelona flight for around 600-700, we jumped on it and upgraded to Premium Economy (roomy seats + other perks) still for around 800/pp, couldn't believe that there were so many empty seats. I do our own planning, so no agent giving me 'a good deal', maybe more folks would spend an extra 100 or so, if it meant not having to fly all over the US before even getting across the pond. There were 2000 people on our cruise alone. That flight should have been fully booked. Just saying, so they continue that route, which was nice in January, making for better flying conditions.
  13. Used WhatsApp on the Spirit last month. Had the 250 minute internet perk. We were able to use WhatsApp any time we found WiFi in a port as well. If you have an iPhone, in settings set phone to airplane mode. Turn off cellular data, turn on Wifi. When using internet minutes on board, remember to type logout.com into the line you normally type url addresses (www). Otherwise your minutes run out.
  14. We just got off the Spirit. No problems as far as we could tell. Rough seas the last couple of days with Alicante stop being cancelled. Puke bags in the stair wells. Sea sickness would be a likely cause for extensive cleanup as well.
  15. Check on evacuation routes when heading to South Carolina. There could be lane reversals.
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