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sue2020

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  1. They also added the following clarification - should anyone be interested: "We have extensive checks for our member reviews. We also process member reviews with real people that have years of experience and knowledge about most of the ships that are sailing. I’m not able to discuss our processes with you but you can fell secure that member cruise reviews on Cruise Critic are from actual cruisers. If you ever see a review that you question the validity of, you can write to us and we can look at it closer. Having said that, we don’t offer an authenticity guarantee on our member reviews. I don’t think any review site can guarantee that. I’ve been manually processing member reviews for 13 years. I know what I’m looking for and I can spot fakes and trends pretty easily. You have very little to worry about with fakes on Cruise Critic."
  2. Cruisecritic's staff answered my question about reviews and reviewers. Anyone who signs up for membership can write a review about any cruise.
  3. I would have to go back to square 1 to see which cruise lines go from Vancouver, have great stops with interesting off shore excursions, good activity choices for kids, an indoor pool and great reviews - if there is such a cruise....... Regardless, thanks to each of you who answered my questions (and maybe helped me save $8,500 for a few different vacations with our grandson). Now at least I know a lot more about cruises than before. They might be great for some, not appropriate for others, depending on one's interests, age, etc.
  4. Thanks mapleleaves. The more I read, the less excited I am about this specific cruise. We would see little of Alaska, nothing of Victoria (which I would not might enjoying for a day); we don't really drink, would not care for night life, would care maybe for 1 show (if could get in). The on board fun for our grandson would be expensive, limited and weather and maintenance dependent. While the ship is new and cabins are supposedly small but well designed, the cruise (for us) is not about staying in the cabin. The other reason I appreciated the newness is the modern stabilizing system. Both my grandson and I are prone to motion sickness. Everything else seems to have issues: the food, finding a place to sit down, customer service, etc. I really tried to talk myself into it but based on all the info it doesn't seem that this cruise is for us. For me vacation is relaxing, finding peace and quiet and no stress. This cruise seems to be everything else but this. If I jumped at the wrong conclusion and you think otherwise, please let me know.
  5. BirdTravels, I want to thank you one more time for the link to your review and pictures. The copy of info distributed after one gets on board, the schedules and copies of other materials have been extremely helpful for me. Also I will ask a lot less questions that would require time for the kind forum members to answer. I am now doing a "sanity check" to determine if this cruise (which will cost at least $8,500 for 1 week for the 3 of us by the time I factor in all service charges, the attractions on the ship, one off-shore excursion in 2 ports, etc.) will deliver enough "value' for us. I am using all the answers to-date, the reviews on this website, at Tripadvisor, etc. vs. my expectations and what I know that would be of interest to each of us. It will be a tough decision, based on what I see. For $8,500 one can buy a lot of vacation on land, so I have high expectations. I am wondering if this "overcrowded" feeling mentioned even by those who provided high ratings, the lines for almost everything (including for the 2 elevators), the need to race to reserve most attractions, shows, restaurants is specific to Bliss or if this is the way things work on all cruise lines, all cruises. Not having been on any, I have no idea, but it really turns me off. If you have been on other cruises and can compare, I'd appreciate an answer.
  6. Does anyone know if the reviews posted on this website are only from those who were actually on the cruise? Thanks
  7. The above helpful info is much appreciated. I will look into the suggested offshore activities.
  8. WOW! BirdTravels, thanks so much. I would have never found this link, which is the most useful reading I have done until now. It gives a great insight to what to expect in terms of information, how things work on board, etc. Reading it end-to-end will turn me into an educated cruise prospect. Thanks for doing all this legwork and sharing. I just wish it would as "empty" as in some of the pictures.
  9. Thanks. Yes, great suggestion. I reserved a hotel in Seattle for 3 nights before the departure. I am reading reviews to spend time there. There are lots of things our grandson would be interested in. I know he would love the Go-carts too and on the ship, but (even if one can get a reservation), he cannot have too many rides as the price just went up to $15/ride. I am not sure what they do at the Kids' Club, so I am not sure if he would like it. I am reading the reviews and can see that so much depends on luck. On some of these cruises to Alaska on the Bliss, some or most of the attractions just didn't work for the duration of the cruise, the water slide was out of order and due to bad wether, some ships skipped the glacier. In Victoria we would not go anywhere because unfortunately the arrival is scheduled when it will be dark... So Victoria would not mean anything for us. Still learning and researching. Your answers and comments are much appreciated.
  10. There is so much to learn about a cruise. Thanks for having the patience and making the time to address my naive questions. As I am getting familiar with this website, I can see that there are reviews for each cruise ship. I will be reading them, with the understanding that past experience, expectations that can be different, luck with the weather, etc. can "color" the review and the perspective of the reviewer. But I have learned that when many people are mentioning the same (good or bad) it makes sense to listen. I want to make sure that if I spend the money (a lot of it) I get the value that I am assuming for it. Thanks again.
  11. Thanks. Based on what you mentioned, it seems that there are separate lines for shows, dinner and attractions, which might make sense, unless one needs reservations for all. If easy to use and one can get into the cabin after on board, maybe using the TV is a better option (???) - if it works at that time and is reliable. Does one have to go through many "steps" when boarding and after boarding before getting to the cabin? If one boards between 11:30 and 12, at what time can one go to the cabin? Are all lunch locations open at that time? Is food served during the day all day long or they have windows for (and gaps in between) breakfast, lunch and dinner?
  12. Thanks for your helpful answer and suggestions. I would love to read your review but (excuse my ignorance) I could not figure out how to get to it......
  13. Thanks! This is so helpful, particularly for someone like me who has never been on a cruise before. So if all 4,000 passengers boarding can make reservations only after boarding for the race track, laser tag, restaurants, etc. , how does that happen? Any advice to avoid staying in line the whole day to make reservations or missing the chance to enjoy (for a lot of money) these attractions? Does one get details about the type of food, sample menu before making restaurant reservations? I assume one has to have a clear plan for any off-shore time and try to make reservations around them or stay on board when others are away. It sounds a little bit crazy, high pressure and stressful for a time when one is supposed to be on a relaxed vacation.... Is everything on this cruise a race for a chair, a seat, a spot, etc.? Hopefully no stampede 😧.
  14. I would have not known about special power of attorney, etc. documents that might be required. Thanks again!!!
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