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Everything posted by cruisingguy007

  1. It's all about the math, many times, even paying extra for the aforementioned items you listed, it's still cheaper to roll with Carnival than other lines that may include them. For us, it's usually cheaper to pay for the al-la-carte items we want than booking a line that includes everything. There are often hidden fees with these deals, increased cruise fares or higher up-charges and less included overall vs Carnival. Total cost should win out in the end. Carnival includes a nice selection of food options that others do not and has a higher energy level on the ships that creates a more favorable atmosphere value for some that has tangible value, especially those traveling as a family vs only couples/singles. There are many dynamics that go into the value-for-dollar ratio that many overlook.
  2. Mass market is the only level for me lol. I would not pay anywhere near what some folks pay to cruise on so called luxury lines, I'd much rather take a land vacation than spend beaucoup bucks on a cramped cabin, tiny pools and limited ship activities. I only cruise for the value proposition and because it's fun for the whole family (everyone enjoys themselves, including the kids, and gets to vacay their way). I priced out my next cruise on Disney vs Carnival and Disney wants 15K vs 4.5K on Carnival (same type of cabin and Carnival's cabin is actually a better layout). I'd never pay 3 times (or more in many cases) to cruise or even contemplate spending 15K+ on a cruise of any kind (maybe a world type cruise but that's about it). To me that's absurd and it's not even about the money, it's the principle and return on enjoyment value for the spend. I would never reach a equitable value proposition level no matter how nice the cabin or service as the price/value axis has limits for me and other options start looking much better. Fancy blankets, food, robes and butlers are not enough to overcome the limitations of cruising. The things I love about cruising won't really change with luxury prices and the things I dislike will still be there on the luxury lines so why pay more?
  3. Interesting, I was on right after you got off and it was still roped off, crew only and a smoking section.
  4. OP is correct, crew has an area on 5 forward on the port side for smoking also. Passengers have 5 forward starboard. It used to be open all the way around but 5 forward port side has been roped off for crew only to have some more outdoor space and smoking is permitted there.
  5. That is cutting it very close, it may be four hours with no traffic to Vegas but on a Saturday morning it will surely have traffic from all the SoCal folks heading over to Vegas. It'll probably be more like 5.5-6 hours (maybe more) on a Saturday.
  6. I don't live too far from you (around 45 min or so) and it took us 5 hours each way but I push it and keep it moving 😁. You should be able to get off by 9:30 doing self debark and figure 5.5-6 hours to get home (to be safe). One issue is that the schedule has changed with Cabo being last, this removes the extra sea day from the Cabo first schedule and the leisurely cruise back to LBC. The new schedule (Cabo last) kinda forces the ship to hightail it back so it may not get back as early as the Cabo first schedule. It's possible that you may not even start debarking until 9-9:30 (even later if there is some issue) and that would push back the time to actually walk off the ship (without priority debark). You may want to look into FTTF or have a back up plan just in case. If she works the evening then it's doable but I'd say 6PM ETA @ home worse case scenario and 3:30 ETA @ home a best case scenario.
  7. Yeah, that cruise was on the back end of the crazy storm we had out west. We lucked out and it ended the Thursday night before the 21st so we had sunshine and better weather but it was still pretty chilly some nights to be sure. Always smart to bring a sweatshirt and a jacket during the colder times just in case the evening gets nippy.
  8. He was fine, I don't really do many of the CD hosted events but I did watch a sing off type deal that was pretty funny and the Mrs. watched one of the shows one morning on the cabin TV (like a hurry up and answer type deal) and I watched a bit as a result and he was entertaining/funny. CD's don't really play a big roll for me but he seemed personable and out and about.
  9. Yeah, I tried a few times and just gave up, too much of a hassle.
  10. Marty Andrew is the CD right now (until 5/27/2023), then Chris Williams after that.
  11. It's because of the website design, they want you to remove all ad blockers and disable security features to be able to leave a review. I tried several times and it simply won't let you, I'm not sure what they were thinking but that's the way it's set up. It's quite strange indeed. They also don't ask you to review excursions as part of the post cruise survey, which would be an easy way to exclude folks who didn't take excursions from leaving reviews and thus, the need for disabling security features that they have in place. Every time I try I get this: Please disable any ad blockers, which can prevent successful review submission.
  12. Weather is great year round in the Mex Riv, well, except summer IMO. Some like the high heat and high humidity but I don't like humidity so it's not for me but the weather itself is great year round. January is a great time for a Mex Riv cruise. It can get a little chilly at night but the days are very nice.
  13. Love the guy in the hat, it looks like he's wondering "where the heck is everyone?" in that series of shots lol.
  14. We have La Paz over thanksgiving and that will be a new one for us. I hope the excursions improve, the options are pretty dismal. I'd like a trip to Badlandra or Playa El Tecolote, heck, even just some way to get there and back reliably and not an excursion per sey. I've heard they have busses now to ferry folks into town and back but I'm not sure on the limitations. FYI, you can swim with whale sharks in La Paz!
  15. Great review! I had a bunch of drinks from many of the same bartenders, we must have passed each other at some point because it seems we had to be in the same place, at the same, at some point lol. We had a bunch of espressotini's too! Thanks for sharing!
  16. Yes, checked it out one night and it was jumping! Drinks are weak in there though so you may want to hit the casino, catch a server, order a drink and tip them out and return to the nightclub. They have this rinky-dink cart they push out and the selection is limited and pours are super weak. I got a fella a drink for his birthday and it was almost embarrassing with the drizzle pour lol. I handed it off, wished him a happy birthday and promptly headed out to find a proper drink. 😆
  17. That is in summer when you have issues, if you go during the cooler months it's not as big of a problem. We had no issues with bugs as it was cooler and shaded when we arrived to the dock. Have a great trip!
  18. Wow! Sounds like it will be great! A NYE cruise is high on the list for the Mrs. and I and we want to do one badly but missing Christmas with the extended fam would be tough. We actually missed our first one this year do to covid (dressed up as Santa for a school event and got a surprise present from someone or some family during photos) and it was tough but we are aiming to get one in, in the next few years. I'm really hoping to convince the extended fam to come along but it may be a tough sell. We are doing a Thanksgiving cruise this year though, a first for us and we are super excited about it. The kids really do have a great time at the kids club and they get a real vacation too. It's nice to see them so happy and yet so sad when the magic is over. Agree with Pig and Anchor and Alchemy, those old fashion variants are great! The espressotini's over at Plaza bar are pretty solid also! Also agree with Rhythms of the Nights, especially for novice cruisers or those who have never done it on a land based Puerto/Nuevo Vallarta trip. Probably the most bang for the buck excursion as you get a sunset cruise, beach front dinner on the shore, a show and a combo nighttime starlight and lit up skyline view on the way back. Maybe even a whale bonus! It's like multiple excursions in one package. Hope you have a wonderful NYE trip! It sounds fantastic!
  19. Read some more of the comments and it seems like Carnival needs to do a reunion sweetheart cruise for those who met onboard! Who knew there were so many?! 😆 https://www.tiktok.com/@darylanndenner/video/7194245188297018667?_r=1&_t=8ZY3xprLDIM
  20. Yup, same response I got. They said since it was an exclusive ship excursion and the departure times and arrival back to ship times were different it was a no-go.
  21. I agree, it was over 1K for me since we had a larger party and I tried to get a price match (to $111) for the regular show that day but it got denied, it would have helped but I'm glad we did it since the older kids are old enough to appreciate it and will probably remember it forever and we had some new cruisers who were elated with it overall. It was worth the money in the end though stung the wallet a bit. 😃
  22. Forgot to add, before anyone asks, no covid from any in our party once we got home. I keep seeing these doom/gloom posts warning about covid but we didn't get it on this cruise or the two previous cruises from last year. Wash your hands frequently and use common sense.
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