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Everything posted by PMGS247

  1. Wow 2 years since this original conversation...and apparently a 10 month delay on the original Nov 2020 dry dock schedule. I wonder what's on the to-do list. I would think updating to accommodate medallion would have to be #1 on the list with new protocols. The island was my last cruise. Didn't know it at the time but man am I glad we decided to jump on that little 4-day getaway back in December of 2019! Didn't think a ton of it at the time but we had no idea what was about to happen.
  2. Fair enough. I wasn’t addressing your post, just speaking in more generality for times when PLUS isn’t an available package. With plus in the picture, absolutely, it’s a no brainer.
  3. This. It's kind of a math problem in terms of how many drinks you need to break even. In a package it's less, purchased separately it's more. Even purchased separately it may be worth it. You just have to bounce it against how much you intend to use it...math-wise it's like 6-8 drinks depending on the price of your go-to drinks. I always recommend it to anyone who thinks they'll even get close to the breakeven. There's value in the mindset change from worrying about your final bill to making sure you get the most out of your package. I find the latter a lot more enjoyable. 15 drink limit...I've hit it twice over I guess 18 cruising days now where I've had an active drink package. 15 is plenty by any measure, but on a lazy sea day starting at lunchtime and continuing into a late night comedy show it's barely more than a drink an hour, so it's definitely doable.
  4. I've called on board outbreaks as concern because it would be annoying but I do agree it's very unlikely. Still, more than any real concern over an outbreak situation, ultimately my desire to cruise with vaccinated passengers is to avoid masks, tests, any other annoying protocols. I get the need for them and I agree the protocols are exactly what makes the outbreaks highly unlikely...but if the protocols are lessened by only allowing vaccinated passengers then I'm all for it. If I don't have to wear a mask or be tested every time I turn around and they're still confident that protocols can avoid repeats of past disembarkation challenges then I'm good with whomever they want to let on the cruise. In order for this to be a reality though, and not put everyone through the protocols, they have to distinguish vaxxed vs unvaxxed at some point. Just seems less complicated to do it before getting on board than somehow labeling people on board. Maybe we can get away with no masks AND no vaccine requirement without having any idea who's vaxxed and who's not....I just doubt it and don't see them trying it any time in the near future.
  5. Generally I agree but I know my major concern from a cruising perspective is the prospect of a significant outbreak on board. While the CDC might be pushed out from dictating cruising protocols, they will still have the jurisdiction to disallow a ship to disembark if there is a significant outbreak on board. It'll be on the cruises to manage this and make sure they avoid it, but the more unvaccinated on board, the more masks are needed, and the greater the risk for outbreaks. Even as someone vaccinated, I don't like either of those things. The more vaccinated on board, the better. It's not just about personal safety.
  6. Scrapping all plans for a passport from a government perspective does not preclude businesses from requiring vaccines/proof of vaccination, even if there isn't an official government issued "passport". Hope you're right about covid burning itself out. I think between vaccines and improved treatments covid can be reduced to the same threat level even if it's a while before its legit gone. Still a ways to go on that but the current path is good. As for the original topic I don't think enough people will have the stones to show up to check in for a cruise and hand over a fake a vaccine card. More than zero, but not enough to throw off the 95% threshold.
  7. This is the primary takeaway. Personally I'd opt for the Sky but only because I want to add some variety. I've been on the Caribbean Princess back to back in my last two 7-day cruises, and the last 2 cruises before that on sister ships Crown & Emerald. I need to expand my horizons on ship class, but that shouldn't be read as anything other than a massive endorsement of the Caribbean princess and the grand class ships in general. Love 'em!
  8. I think that'll happen too, but I think you'll see cruise lines operate in two different capacities - fully vaccinated cruises and non-fully vaccinated cruises. The non-fully vaccinated cruises will operate under significantly more restrictive rules and procedures in terms of tests, masks, etc. Other states will allow this distinction and I believe that's where most of the cruise business will go if FL doesn't allow it. I'm not saying zero cruises will go out of FL. Non-vaccinated cruises will represent some portion, but I think the vaccinated / less restrictive cruises will be way more popular, and as a result if FL chooses not to allow it they will be giving up a significant portion of the cruising market share and take a big hit economically.
  9. I think the cruise industry will find a way around the FL executive orders and I think the Gov of Florida will be quietly happy when they do. He will publicly oppose it for political purposes but behind closed doors be happy to be overruled and get back all the jobs and revenue from cruising. When push comes to shove the almighty dollar will win out, and holding cruise lines to the current executive orders vs allowing vaccine validation will result in a fraction of cruises operating, if at all. This is too costly to too many people...I think something will give.
  10. 100% Doesn't have to be the only cause to be the difference between life and death. As for the overall question I think it's a foregone conclusion that Vaccines will be required and that makes sense. I think it's the path to cruising sooner. We could wait longer until we're at the point where it's not necessary but that would.....well....take longer. Sooner is better. Also, it might be a trade for no masks / less masks, which is very attractive to this cruiser. While I fully support mask policies in public spaces everywhere it's definitely quite unattractive in the context of paying for a cruise when I can find alternate vacations where I can safely and easily avoid having the mask be an overbearing element. Not necessarily a deal breaker depending on the extent of the rules but I'm definitely hoping that's a benefit of vaccine requirements, which in theory would put you beyond a vaccine wall where masks become mostly redundant (acknowledging marginal vaccine ineffectiveness) once you've boarded. I feel like there's going to be a small portion of the population that is unable to get a vaccine for one valid reason or another and they are going to be unfairly excluded. It's unfortunate but it's just more COVID reality in a lesser of two evils situation. Lots of that going around the past 12 months. Eventually we'll fully pull out of this but there's just inevitable stepping stones with natural pro's and con's if we want to get things rolling sooner.
  11. 2 takeaways from this: 8X% is not sufficient mask compliance People don't listen when you tell them not to travel and gather for the holidays
  12. The CDC has indeed called out the benefits of goggles/face shields. This is not new. No one has been covering up this information. Guidelines have focused more on encouraging frequent hand washing and avoiding touching one's face to address transmission through eye membranes rather than via pushing goggles/glasses, but this info has been readily available in the public domain. In reality, masks, goggles, glasses, handwashing/sanitizing....all help...the more the merrier. Having said that, the heavy hitters for controlling the spread are distancing, masks, handwashing....so that's where most of the widespread messaging is focused.
  13. I only took a 4 day cruise on the Island and it's the first time on anything other than the Grand class. While I came away from it still preferring the grand, I had no major complaints. A good time was had by all. The number of available covered balcony mini-suites was a nice change from the grand. If I have to nitpick - a couple awkward features..most notably the lack of IC and the other thing that stood out to me is going across the Lido deck to get from the front elevator banks to the pool area and the rest of the lido amenities having to either cut through the spa or go outside around it. Once I was used to it it was no big deal but it did stand out in my memory banks.
  14. Back around 2008 my then roommate and I purchased a gaming console. Just as we had just gotten home and taken it out of the box, hooked it up to the TV, we were rushing to get it set up and itching to start playing games on it we were faced with a screen forcing us to create a login name / set up an account. ::sigh:: We couldn't use either of our own usual login names since it was going to be shared. We thought maybe we'll create separate accounts later but that's complicated - we need to start playing games right now so let's just go with anything. Pretty much exactly at that moment, the cat started meowing from across the room. The cat was OBSESSED with his favorite toy and would very often sit by it and meow and meow and meow at all hours of the day for someone to come play with him. His toy was a Purple Mouse attached to a Green Stick by a string, thus PMGS, and of course just as obsessed as he was, it was 24 hrs a day / 7 week = PMGS247. We came up with that name in a fast scramble looking for anything, not really a ton of thought and the cat just happened to meow at just the right moment. Now here I am 12 years later and it's one of my go-to's. I guess I kept it since when I moved out of that house, I took the gaming console and thus the login. At a certain point it would have been more trouble to go back to something else so it is what it is. It's literally un-guessable if someone hasn't been told. People have tried though, it is amusing.
  15. Always a fun topic. I hit the limit once. I've been very close a number of other times I'm sure...they're called sea days. I drink vodka-tonics and the pre-defined pour amounts make for a pretty weak drink. Don't get me wrong, it's plenty of alcohol, but starting around lunchtime and covering a 12 hour period noon to midnight, it's barely more than 1 weak drink per hour to get there....it does add up, but it's not that difficult to hit on a lazy sea day.
  16. There's an observation deck on 2 decks forward. I want to say in addition to Caribe you can also go out to a similar observation deck on Baja? It's either the deck above or below. Sailed on island back in December and based on intel from cruise cruitic I think I went out onto the Caribe one for sail-away from Ft Lauderdale and was surprised to see people immediately below me on an identical observation deck one deck down. On our sailing neither observation deck was very well known...my wife and I were the only ones out there and on the deck below us another couple had that one to themselves. Word will probably spread a little more with Northern Lights involved though LOL
  17. My original math where I feared a threat to March cruises had assumed the inaugural sailing WAS the November cruise. I had mixed it up with the Sky's launch timeframe in Q4 of last year, not realizing Enchanted was actually originally slated for June of this year. So the reality of June delayed to November actually does land grenade-close to the 6 months that popped into my head, so I guess I've got that going for me. Hope all goes well and November kicks it off for Enchanted.
  18. Much appreciated the responses, as well as the pictures!
  19. I'm slated to go on March 27th sailing out of FLL. Just today read the article confirming that the Enchanted was delayed. Can't say I'm shocked given the situation but I hadn't come across anything confirming it until today....perhaps subconsciously on purpose. My first thought was I can't imagine it's less than a 6 month delay, which would eat up the March bookings. Admittedly, the 6 months without any substantiated logic or calculations....it just felt like a reasonable time-frame for a delay given the situation. Realizing I'm pulling that 6-months number entirely out of my "hat", I searched the boards to learn more and this thread gives me some hope, although I am still considering making an additional backup booking for March on the CB with intentions of watching the situation and cancelling as necessary. We're pretty locked into the March & FLL combination and would rather be on a repeat cruise than nothing at all. Thoughts? Any updates since this thread was last touched?
  20. Same. Just a quick bonus getaway from the cold thanks to a great deal. In the grand scheme of cruises it was a perfectly nice few days but not much from it was likely to make anyone's lifelong cruising highlight reel.....seems much more significant in hindsight now!
  21. I don't see any other messages of yours that provide any of these details so if I've just missed them then ignore this, but I'm pretty sure that would depend on when you cancel. They allow cancellation up to 48 hours prior to sailing but if you wait that long it will be 100% FCC. I think anything under 30 days would be 100% FCC. Prior to that I gather it will be a mix of refund/FCC based on the standard cancellation policy...the difference from normal being that the cancellation "penalty" becomes FCC rather than an outright loss for you. For example if you're 65 days out there's usually a 50% cancellation penalty at that point.....now you'd you'd get 50% refund and 50% FCC. Also the other thing someone pointed out was anything purchased through cruise planner...excursions, on board packages, etc. would be a straight refund regardless of timing.
  22. Fair enough. Concept is the same though. I don't want my money regardless of how I get it - I will never be able to get those prices again. First world problem...there are greater tragedies in the world for sure, but if I can keep them I will try!
  23. Sailing May 17....like most, the biggest fear is not illness but quarantine. I am assuming in the next 2 months this will either blow over or blow up. Either way the decision will become clearer as we get closer. If I had a sailing 48 hours from now I would not be cancelling, but I don’t love the current trajectory. Not panicking but watching. In reality if they’re sailing I’m probably going along. I’m too stubborn with the $18 drink package and $50 coco cay beach club to get those back in FCC and have to rebook at current rates lol
  24. I feel like it's not impossible to get an adjustment/OBC after final payment - I've done it before (although it wasn't nearly as easy as it is before final payment) but there's definitely a point where you've entered last minute pricing territory where you just have to tip your cap to anyone who was willing to wait it out that long to book the cruise. One thing I was able to do with last minute pricing with ease was to upgrade my room. I hit a point with my last cruise where they wouldn't refund my $100 difference to the currently offered last minute pricing but they did allow me to pay the $10 difference to upgrade from a balcony to a mini suite. Likely not applicable in many situations but just throwing it out there.
  25. 100% enforced. Sorry to say your sampling approach will not work on a very large scale on Princess at this point. To be fair unlike other cruise lines that do offer unlimited, princess does not require all adults in a room to purchase the package. While it was technically a better deal before they implemented the limit, it still seems fair in the current market. I'm slightly biased because the fact that I can buy it for myself but not my wife is a huge win for me. It takes hundreds of dollars off the top of a princess cruise compared to another cruise line where we'd both be forced to purchase it. So, if they need to limit their exposure to the risk of people sharing the package to avoid gone down the "all adults in the cabin" policy adopted by so many other lines, that's fine by me. I only hit the limit once on a sea day where I started early. They also make really weak drinks if mixed drinks are your thing. I would never share.
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