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Parapara

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Posts posted by Parapara

  1. We received our deposit back yesterday via our T/A for a cruise cancelled on 20 March. We were told at the time Oceania would be keeping NZ $800 as a credit for a future cruise which we were not particularly happy about but had to accept. I asked our T/A for a confirmation re this money as nothing on our acct. with Oceania. We received this yesterday too. Very draconian conditions, in my view, with the worst being that the credit cannot be used as a deposit. There is no future cruise the same as the one we had to cancel. The closest is shorter, $2000 pp dearer for same category and only the choice of one add on versus the three we had included for our August cruise. I know times are tough but this is not making me feel like booking a cruise with Oceania in the future. 

  2. We are in complete lockdown in New Zealand. It started midnight on Wednesday 25th and will last four weeks. We have to stay in our ‘ bubble’ of household members only.Only essential services open. People have to work from home. Schools closed. We should have stopped overseas visitors coming in a couple of weeks sooner, but other than that the Govt. has done well.

  3. I guess it makes some sense for two reasons. Half the world, which you and I live in, doesn’t have half the world’s population and secondly most cases are in the Northern Hemisphere to date. So, IF, it can be contained and cases drop in the Northern Hemisphere with the onset of warmer weather, it has to be good news.

  4. Thanks for all the  feed back on shore excursions.  It seems we have a different package from most called O life ultimate which includes- for the two of us-  8 free excursions,a drink package, US$800 credit plus internet and included gratuities. So we will be booking at least 4  shore excursions each.  As to how many extra we would have to book to get 25% off I am not sure but think it might be another  4 each before the discount applies. The excursions seem to be extremely expensive ( especially in NZ $) so may be looking to do our own sight seeing in some places. I understand Oceania offers free shuttles in a lot of ports. Is this correct? If so does anyone know which places we are visiting they apply.

    Thanks!

  5. I have been following this thread from its inception as we have had cruises on both ships. The two cruises on Minerva were fantastic. Amazing itineraries and wonderful shore excursions included. The two cruises on the old Discovery were also good but the last one was just before she was sold and she really was past her use by date. It is sad to think that these two shipping lines might be no more. They offered something that is missing from the big ships and their more bland itineraries. I hope Minerva ( seeing she was being leased) may be able to continue in a similar way to what she has been.

  6. I feel this thread has got off topic. I keep reading it to see if the original question is being answered. We have travelled on Minerva twice,

    ( Coincidently about the same time as Comcox) and loved it. The second time there were problems with noise at the rear of ship, but otherwise no change and excellent. Fantastic itineraries and well organized, excellent, shore excursions with choices of tours.

  7. I will write a review when I get time but can say the water was not discoloured this time- one positive! If you read recent reviews you will see we had a fire on board in the engine room about two hours from sailing! This changed the first leg of the cruise totally. As regards laundry- yes it is supposed to be one bag per cruise for Odyssey members. Obviously recently changed and they hadn't updated their website. I had printed this and took it with me and when I showed them it there was free laundry the rest of the way. A lot of Australians on board complained too because the advertising in Australia said there would be free laundry which the ship wasn't aware of.

    As I write the ship is being chartered by Turks for a month. Then the ship returns to schedule until end of November ( I think) and then goes in to dry dock for 6 months. I hope they sort their problems. The concept is good but they haven't delivered both times we have been aboard. A shame.

  8. We were on her about three years ago. It depends on the restaurant. The veranda restaurant is quite casual ( but not shorts). Still the same service for dinner i.e. waiters not self service. The main dining room just skirt and dressier tops or long pants. The only times you get more formally dressed is for Captain's cocktail parties.

  9. I was dismayed to read the latest review with pictures of the water. This was exactly what it was like when we were on her 18 months ago. We were told (what seems to be the 'story" given to enquiring passengers) that it was the water taken on in Zanzibar and it would be changed at the next port. Who are they trying to kid! The water was particularly bad for the first 10 days of our cruise ( long after the "next port") and I think this was because the ship had been in dry dock for a month before we boarded in Zanzibar. Nothing to do with the water taken on board but everything to do with the holding tanks and pipes I would guess. We were hesitant about booking again, with the water being one of our concerns, but newer reviews seemed to suggest the water was better. Oh well, too late, we have booked and leave in about 5 weeks. Will report our findings!

    Jean

  10. Thank you Robocat for your reply. It is reassuring that you found your second cruise better and that you would book again. Suddenly realized yesterday ( May1) that we leave next month. It was so long ago we booked you always think it is ages away. About 7 weeks before we leave- arrive in London on 23rd June.

    We did a cruise with Swan Hellenic that covered places you went to and it was marvelous. We started in Aqaba in Jordon. Shore excursions are included with them too and they couldn't have been better.

    Thanks again,

    Jean

  11. Hi Daz,

    I wrote a review after our last cruise. if you read that it gives the picture. There have been some more positive reviews lately so as I said we have our fingers crossed. We like small, destination type ships too and have travelled on Minerva twice and loved both cruises. We have been twice on Discovery and the first cruise was good the second the opposite. ( It was shortly after that Discovery was no longer part of the Voyages to Discovery fleet and the ship was very run down when we sailed on her from Sydney to India).

    Jean

  12. Thanks for the replies. I guess we will just have to see how much laundry we get free when on board. We are doing two cruises back to back so should at least get two bags.

    The cruise we were on before was the December 2104/January 2015 from Kenya to Singapore. We didn't think we would ever sail on Aegean Odyssey again but the itinerary appealed very much and so we are giving her another chance.

    Jean

  13. I know this is totally off the topic you two are talking about but we are doing a second cruise in June with this line and it seems you are both repeat passengers. Can you clarify whether one bag of laundry is free or all laundry for the cruise are free? One place says "free laundry" and another one bag. We normally take a clothes rack and a line with us but don't know whether to this time or not.

    Our other cruise with VTA was to different destinations, for them, and would have been great if better organized. They seemed to be out of their depth. It was a great itinerary but they didn't deliver what was promised. This is why we are going on one, with a very interesting itinerary again, but in the areas they do most. So we have our fingers crossed!

  14. Thank you Keystone Traveller for your reply. Not what I was hoping to hear. When we sailed on her she had been in dry dock for a month and whatever the problem is ( and it seems to be a major, long term one) must have been exacerbated with little water being used during that time. The hotel manager said it was the water they took on board in Zanzibar and would be flushed out and refilled at next port. If it was, there was no improvement and that was when we suspected we were not being told the truth. Early on it didn't matter whether it was hot or cold water they were both not good ( the hot was terrible) but over time ( we were on board for 5 weeks) it was mainly the hot. I suspected we were not being told the truth but was hoping we were, as we have been thinking of taking another cruise with her because of the very interesting itinerary in an area they often cruise ( and therefore not so many hiccoughs with the shore excursions, hopefully). We were sort of tempted, now we will have to think harder.

  15. Thanks very much for the information, Librarian. Not that I usually watch a lot of TV, but quite good to be able to in comfort The layout in a similar sized ship, Minerva, is excellent for a small cabin- more than enough drawer space, bedside lights on own bedside cabinets, a desk with shelves beside and a drawer. The chest of drawers is in a corner with TV on top. Plus there is a little two seater settee and plenty of wardrobe space. Aegean Odyssey must be more like the layout in Discovery. However, the cabin isn't the reason we are travelling!

    Many thanks, once again,

    Jean

  16. Thanks, Librarian. Sorry I didn't define "ordinary" better! I meant anything other than the suites and balcony cabins and other larger ones. Your cabin sounds like the one we are getting. Can you tell me about the bed lights and where the TV is? One ship we were on - Discovery- had very inadequate bed lights at top of bed and the pillows covered it. Also the TV was nearly ceiling height and horrible to watch at that level.

    Thanks again,

    Jean

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