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ohioNCLcruiser

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About ohioNCLcruiser

  • Rank
    Blue Ribbon Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Chicago
  • Interests
    airplanes and ships
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    NCL
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Hawaii
  1. ohioNCLcruiser

    Everything... Norwegian ENCORE! Launch Nov 2019

    I like the hull art a lot better than the Bliss and Escape! I'm tired of the scenes with whales jumping, dolphins swimming etc. Nice colors and a bit more towards the older traditional NCL hull arts.
  2. ohioNCLcruiser

    Visa to visit Shanghai

    Our April cruise from Tokyo to Shanghai resulted in about 200 people having to get off in Hong Kong and miss the rest of the cruise because they did not have a Chinese visa. The visa waiver did not apply to those coming from cruise ship on this itin. I highly recommend getting the multiple entry 10 year Chinese visa.
  3. Thanks for the feedback! We booked direct with HAL so not sure if the person who took my booking is the one who will keep an eye out. Our sailing isnt until March 2019 so plenty of time.
  4. Hey Everyone, I've only cruised with HAL once so not very familiar with how they handle this so I figure I'd ask the experts! My friend and I are doing a 14 day cruise out of Shanghai on the Westerdam and were assigned SY 8068 which is a full wheelchair signature superior veranda cabin. My friend and I do not need this but its the only cabin left in that category. We called HAL and let them know we don't need it and would like something else. My worry is that for selfish reasons another cabin won't open up and we won't get the tub, double sinks etc that the regular cabin has. My non selfish reasons is I worry that someone might actually need this cabin. We answered yes to the generic booking question of, "Would you like a free upgrade if available" but anything else we would do besides calling every so often? I assume if someone calls them and tries to book a wheelchair cabin they will see if we will take a different category cabin? Anyone with any insight would be greatly appreciated. Thanks! James
  5. ohioNCLcruiser

    Fans of MSC..please brag and tell me how it compares to

    First of all I would relax. I clearly hit a nerve. If you go through my posting history you will see it has almost come to a stand still as we tend to use FB groups now. I can't direct message someone a photo but if you want to provide an e-mail I'll send you a photo of my cabin key and wrist band today but I expect an apology afterwards for jumping to the fake "haven" pusher comment.
  6. ohioNCLcruiser

    Fans of MSC..please brag and tell me how it compares to

    Recently did a seven day. I should add I thought the main show room entertainment was great.
  7. ohioNCLcruiser

    Fans of MSC..please brag and tell me how it compares to

    Recently went on the Seaside in the YC and my "pros" will be a little different than what has been mentioned already. The Yacht Club cabins are wonderful. They are not the biggest standard penthouse size cabin but they have more than enough storage, big balconies and overall great decor. The bathrooms are also very spacious. The YC lounge was relaxing and enjoyed the snacks throughout the day. My pros end there. The YC restaurant service was quite lacking in my experience. They were friendly, just appeared to be very disorganized at times. Drinks would often come after appetizers arrived and sometimes almost a 20 minute wait. The food quality was beyond disappointing and I think you will be in for quite a surprise if you're used to X quality in this area. My group stopped going to the restaurant after a few days which on other lines, like the Haven at NCL, we would be looking forward to our next meal while eating the current one. So the YC = nice observation lounge, great cabins, free drinks around the ship but the rest was a big let down. The MSC is a beautiful ship though!
  8. ohioNCLcruiser

    Question about Eurodam April 2018 Drydock

    Just got off the Eurodam and they have already stopped using the Atrium bar. I asked one of the bar tenders and he said it has been almost six months since it was used last.
  9. ohioNCLcruiser

    Liberty fails health inspection.

    Edit: mods please delete
  10. This this this! Agree with 100% of what you said. MSC sure has some absolutely stunning ships.
  11. Hey everyone, I just booked my first suite on a cruise and I'm very excited. It's going to be a big change from the crew cabin I've been using the past few years! My question is about the alcohol that comes with the room. Its a Owners Suite on the Dawn so I believe it still comes with three bottles that we can choose from, a bottle of sparking wine on embarkation and since I have platinum status I will get a bottle of wine with dinner in the Bistro. Am I correct with this or has it since changed? Booking dance! Thanks for your answers in advance. James
  12. Hey everyone, I booked a cruise on the Norwegian Gem on Oct 16th to Bermuda. Does anyone know the best side of the ship to have a cabin on with a balcony? What provides more entertainment to watch, port side or water side? Thanks! James
  13. ohioNCLcruiser

    Ship postcards

    Hey everyone, I was wondering if Royal has postcards of the ship onboard? If so does anyone have an extra one they wouldn't mind parting ways with? I'm looking for either Oasis class or Freedom class but anyone is better then nothing! I would be more then happy to pay the postage costs. Thanks! James http://twitter.com/#!/cruiseshipcrew
  14. Sorry if this has been talked about before but im having a hard time searching from my phone. The sun docks at 5am, has anyone had any trouble making a 9am flight?
  15. Hey everyone, I did this last time I finished a contract onboard so I figured I will do it again! During my contract I run into many different situations from passengers that make me think of ways certain things can be improved on our end but also on the passengers end. I have taken notes on a few things that I would like to highlight to help you plan or organize more for your cruise vacation. These general tips can be applied to other forms of vacation as well. Hope these help! Cruise Tickets: Whenever someone books something like a cruise, airline tickets, hotel stays etc it’s important to read the documentation that comes with them. If I spent thousands of dollars on a trip I would want to know the details! NCL sends you the blue “Welcome aboard” booklet that has your luggage tags and important information. These outline some general information like what the Service Charges are, Alcohol rules etc. Every Saturday I would organize the secondary screening room that has the bags with items not allowed onboard. With alcohol for example this is explained in the book. Failing to read it means your bag will be flagged and sent to secondary screening where you will then have to take time out of your vacation to get it. While the process is easy, it’s still a waste of your vacation time! The same goes for Irons etc. These books also give you information about the ports of call, embarkation etc. Good information to read! Arriving on the pier and checking in: To speed this process up I recommend always going to NCL.com and filling out your advance registration. This saves time on the pier and will make your check in take less then 90 seconds. Also when checking your bags in with the porter always remember to keep important items on you like medications. Yes the bags are going a short distance but when 8,000 bags are being loaded on and delivered it could take several hours to arrive. If you have life dependant medication I would always keep them on you! Also don’t panic if you have 3 bags but only one showed up right away. Sometimes the bags get mixed up and separate from each other. Another tip is to make sure your cabin number on the luggage tags is still your correct cabin number. Sometimes with upgrades or changes people forget to change them and their bags will be delivered to their old cabin! CPAP machines: Almost all cruise ships are built in foreign countries so they are limited with their North American outlets. If you depend on using a cpap machine when you sleep at night I would suggest always bringing an extension cord. Also if you’re from another country always bring a power adapter. I have a universal one that works great and I bring it whenever I go overseas. If you forget the Guest Service Desk might have one you can borrow but we don’t keep hundreds of them for everyone. GTY cabins: GTY are guaranteed cabins. These are cabins that are not assigned at check in. Some people like them because sometimes they are given free upgrades, but like any gamble they have a few minor risks also. If you’re a family traveling with three cabins and book them as GTY then there is no guarantee the rooms will be right next to each other. A surprise I hear sometimes from guests is they book a GTY ocean view cabin and sometimes they get assigned a obstructed view cabin and are shocked because they didn’t think they booked that. I sometimes book these but I understand what they are exactly. Next time you’re thinking of booking one just look at a few locations of the cabins so you have an idea of what you could be assigned. After that its just keeping your fingers crossed for a few category upgrade! Rocking noise: Sometimes I get calls from guests saying they are angry because there is a slight rocking or creaking noise in their cabin. Remember you’re on a sideways building made out of metal floating over waves. Their will be some creaking noises. This is good though; it means the ship can take the sea without snapping or cracking! I actually enjoy it, I like to be reminded I’m on a ship from time to time! Another thing I do every embarkation day is help with airline delayed bags. These are bags that never made it to the airport and you had to go onto the cruise without them. For starters for the ship to track it you must file a report with the airline at the airport before coming to the ship. Once you arrive onboard let the Guest Service Desk know and all we need is a few details and a tracking number then we take it from there. You don’t need to worry about calling airlines anymore. As soon as we get updates we will leave you a voicemail. What makes it hard sometimes is when the passenger is also contacting the airline and making different arrangements and not filling us on it. I’ve spent hours on the phone trying to locate a passengers bag then it turns out the airline gave it to the passenger that morning but the passenger didn’t bother telling us they received it! This is also why I recommend putting some of your clothes in different bags and not just one. This also reminds me about the quality of luggage. From time to time a bag will get damaged and it needs to be repaired or replaced. If you purchased a five-piece luggage set at Wal-Mart for $49.99 don’t be surprised when it falls apart right away. If a nice Samsonite bag costs $200 dollars but never breaks and has a lifetime warranty it might be worth purchasing that then $50 dollar pieces of luggage that you need to replace every other trip. Nothing makes traveling easier then having a great sturdy dependable bag. Also as you know we offer free irons and iron boards to use for a few hours at a time. They are limited in number so if you have dinner reservations at 6pm don’t call housekeeping at 5:30pm to request one. Always play it safe and offer plenty of time! And finally remember that everyone onboard are people, from the passenger taking a nap near the pool to the person working in the laundry room. Treat everyone the way you would want to be treated. Nobody wants to go out of his or her way to someone who is being abusive. If you are nice and friendly, I know I will go even more out of my way to make things right plus something extra to help you. I’m sure if anyone of you spent five minutes watching a receptionist desk on any cruise ship you would know what I mean! Nope these very quick tips helped some people plan their cruise. I go back to work next week and will be re-launching my website [URL="http://www.shipblogger.com/"]www.shipblogger.com[/URL]. Feel free to ask any questions here! James
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