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About tfred

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Delray Beach
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Crystal River, Celebrity, Oceania
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call

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  1. we have taken two Crystal river cruises - both seamless in experience. Tell people that not all hotels are the same - why would cruise ships be? Once you add in all the extras with other lines, Crystal is usually very close in price and worth the difference
  2. we thought the food on O was pretty good. Specialty restaurants were excellent, especially the French and Italian. That said, food on C is a big notch above. Service is better as well. Not as stiff and formal in every sense of the word
  3. I agree with your premise overall - there have been improvements historically in infection control. If you do what you should be doing (following protocol) and then just go a little better then chances of infections are lower - not eliminated. Blood borne pathogens is difficult enough for most to follow cleaning- I have been in enough hospitals and healthcare facilities professionally to know. Some of it is pretty shocking what actually goes on. Airborne pathogens are another area that most facilities just don't do a great job at as it usually relegated to "flu" season, not all year and they just aren't thinking about it Most cruise lines not on that list probably got lucky that no one with Co19 was onboard that could spread it. Rigorously followed Norovirus protocols help keep that at bay - some that spills over into CO19 for surface cleaning. These protocols have to be followed everyday or it doesn't work. Crystal seems to be pretty organized customer facing and would think that the culture of the company is just that - protocols and organization and the follow through of that. They certainly aren't infection control experts - though no hospitality business is . They do have to be aware of food safety, surface cleaning (norovirus) and now airborne issues. The last one is easier to deal with if the first two have a protocol. As an aside, many nursing home facilities don't have a functioning Infection Control Officer or an up to date infection control protocol.
  4. Infection control is not doing one thing 100^% better, it is doing 100 things 1% better.. Cumulatively, if you are doing what you are supposed to all the time, then yes, you can avoid many problems. This is how many hospitals operate. I can only comment on what I see on board as a consumer, but Crystal is very good with procedures forward facing. My guess is that they are also that good with back of the house that you can't see
  5. we have been there 3 times in November and December . It may snow, but it isn't going to be a Dr Zhivago experience on a sleigh - except at higher elevations. If it snows, it is generally dusting plus and then melts.
  6. layers of clothing that can be added or subtracted depending on temp. Waterproof walking shoes of some sort - critical. Packable rain gear. warm hat. It can be cold at night in some towns, but rarely snows.
  7. I assume that you are flying in a few days early prior to Budapest ?
  8. and both are always very crowded. at night there can be 100 people in line. Th original was not even allowing a line when we were there in November
  9. we were just talking about Oceania today since we received a few brochures yesterday with all sorts of special pricing. we liked it because of the above that I mentioned. we also liked the small port aspect as well. Port intensive cruises I think would be best. Bucket list is Baltic and I think that Oceania would be a good choice for that. For 14 day TA Oceania would not be my choice
  10. if you are still around.. we have sailed on RCCL, X and Oceania (and a few others). Oceania. Food is a giant notch above anything you ever had on RCCL brands - even the MDR. Specialty restaurants are fantastic. If you are a foodie, this is the place. Older crowd than RCCL and X. Moneyed and slightly more sedate. Entertainment is chamber music with a functional nightly show of some sorts. Plenty of room to sit by the pool, the ship never feels crowded would I cruise them again? Yes, but with a few caveats. Nothing longer than 10 days. There are on board activities (cooking classes, art class) but there just isn't enough activity throughout the day. Want to sit by the pool with great food and drinks, then you are ok. Decor is a little too glitzy for my taste, although they have done a refit so that may change the view
  11. I think that HAL has to figure out what they want to be and then how to make that profitable. It seems that it is attracting people looking for a "traditional cruise" that a "good" price. It seems that the average HAL pax is pretty happy with what is included and is miffed when HAL takes those unprofitable things way
  12. if you are ambulatory and can generally walk easily for a 2 hour tour, the river cruises are excellent choice. If you have to rest "often", you can still go but not be part of the organized tour. alternatively, some river cruises may have panoramic bus tours that would work - look at the excursion chart
  13. This is HALs time to figure out what they want to be to be profitable. Looking upthread I see scary requests that revolve around "free", "spend a lot of time in the room" and the non-profit events on board . Not going to happen and quite frankly HAL would prefer that you don't come onto the ship - they just can't tell you that out loud. airlines figured this out recently. Status doesn't come from mileage only. It comes from "fuller" priced tickets that are longer distances. Low price flights are given discounted status accrual. Travel a lot at low price?- back of the bus.
  14. this is all true. HAL was not making money with their business model. Ask most people what HAL was - it was "old" in every sense of the word. Businesses can't make money with that moniker. Just the fact that I see requests for books makes me wonder where its going to go. Analog crowd vs Digital. Many cruise lines offer computer skill classes, digital photography classes etc- not more paperbacks. Cruise lines can't make money with pax curled up with a good book in corner for the afternoon - they aren't going that way Seabourn is too far of a reach for the HAL crowd. Oceania with maybe less expensive food and less glitz
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