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About shellindc

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  1. Me, female: one pair Adidas sneakers (plane, walking on tours/deck/at the gym), one pair flip flops for the pool, one pair low heel for gala nights. H, make: one pair dress shoes, one pair sneakers, 2 pairs flip flops. kid, male: one pair sneakers, one pair crocs/flip flops.
  2. Just got back from Zaandam today; my kiddo is 8, spent every evening, and part of our 1 sea day, @ Club HAL. He LOVED it. Sched is 9-11:30a, 1-4p (during the day on sea days) and 7-10 every night. Each session had planned activities--organized games, movie night, going to a show, arts/crafts, drawing, plus there were video games, board games, building toys, etc. One day they made figurines out of some kind of material--I heard that from a brother/sister pair that my son was hanging out with. I also liked that it wasn't ALL day--kids still had meals w/ their families, and you could pop the kids in and out for whatever reason. Kids could stay in Club HAL on port days, but they must be pre-registered--go the night before to sign them up if you're doing an excursion that isn't kid-friendly. I don't know what the schedule is on port days. They don't take kids under 3. Staff could not have been nicer and I was confident and comfortable knowing he was safe and engaged with other kids on the cruise. The only other experience I have w/ a kids club is on Carnival and my son was not a fan. I'm not exactly sure why, except that on Carnival they made him wear a nametag and he hates that (he's weird). I also think it was just really crowded--lots and lots of kids on Carnival cruises. No nametags this time around, I guess maybe because there were less kids (we asked; they said that on average there were about 18 or so kids at any given session). There were 160 kids on board (of 1400 passengers), and I imagine that the #s allow for more individualized attention. Also on Carnival, from what I remember, kids could be in there all day--including meals--and that made me sad. I saw the same kids every night having meals w/ the kids club staff, and I just wondered where their families were. I bring my son on these trips to spend time with him. Maybe it's judgy of me, but I love having meals together as a family on vacations like these--that's the time that we can have dessert first, or try new foods together, or just recap the days events over a plate of pasta or the fish of the day. Sure, if I wanted one night to have date-night with my H, or if I was with a big group of people and we wanted to have an adult dinner, great, no problem, but every night w/o your kiddo(s)? That's not for me. I read before I went that Holland America tends to trend a bit older than say Carnival (avg passenger age), and I do see truth in that, but there were plenty of kids for my son to meet, hang out with, etc. at the pool, in the library/game room/Club HAL. I LOVED the Zaandam (1400 passenger load seems to be a sweet spot for me--the bigger ships just have so.many.people) and will easily and readily sail again.
  3. Panda, did you do any excursions other than your train trip? We just booked this ship for next summer and the excursion choices are proving to be the most difficult for us to figure out/research/book. TIA!
  4. I booked last night on Royal Princess (Alaska) for June 2020 and got it. I was floored--didn't know it was an option. Is it really as good of a deal as it seems to be?
  5. I just looked up a one-way flight from Anchorage to Washington DC in May 2020 (it was the latest Travelocity would let me go), and with one stop (Chicago), it was under $300/pp. The most common advice I'm seeing for the best Alaska cruise is a one-way, and I think we'd prefer a northbound from Vancouver, which is why I searched this particular route.
  6. That was my cruise. I am so happy that we will be getting a full refund. I miiiiiiight have considered keeping the booking, if they hadn't ALSO changed the Grand Cayman port (I wanted to swim with sea turtles!). Now we will bank this money for our cruise to Alaska next summer. I called today around lunchtime to see if they had any information re: what would happen with bookings, and I made sure to tell the agent that I understood that it was not RCIs fault, it wasn't her fault, it wasn't her supervisors fault, and I apologized to her if anyone *yelled* at her today. She said she was uplifted by my comments--I just feel bad for these guys that are fielding all this crap, due to the shenanigans of our govt.
  7. So I just checked my account too, and 2/3 of our cruise on 8/4 has changed. We were sailing Empress to Key West, Grand Cayman, and Havana. Now it's KW, Cozumel and Costa Maya. I would have MAYBE considered CM...but to tank Grand Cayman too? Now I'm pissed.
  8. Source? We just booked a sailing for Aug 4 and we're freaking out. We can get 75% of our payment back today if we cancel, but today's the last day.
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