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  1. Are the only public hot tubs on the Encore located on Decks 17 & 19? I can't use the pools or hot tubs because of some recent surgery, (so the Thermal Spa and Vibe do not interest us)--but my husband might want to get into a hot tub. I couldn't tell from a deck map plan I saw online which of the hot tubs were public, which were private? THANKS!
  2. We are on the 9/25 Encore. The first message in my email this morning was from NCL Tech Support saying that there is no longer a place to register for Covid testing on their check-in site, that I should get an email from Surofins "soon", and if I don't, to contact Eurofins, NOT NCL. Not long after reading this I DID get an email from Eurofins, so we were able to register for the test. Very glad we were able to get that sorted out. Thanks to everyone who has answered questions and offered insight about the test registration process.
  3. We got our e-docs on the NCL website, 19 days prior to sail date. Again, Tech Support told me that Covid testing registration for the Sept 25 cruise would be sent via email today (Sept 7th) Still haven't gotten it (and I look in spam folder too. I guess there is nothing to do except to keep on checking, and I will call again if we haven't gotten anything in a few days.
  4. We are on the Sept 25th Encore cruise. Completed online checking, saw no place to register for Eurofins covid test. Then we got our E Docs, still nothing about registering for test there, nor did we receive any emails. The check in time I selected was 10:00-10:30, and I did not understand if we are to get the covid test IN that time frame, how to pre-register, etc.so I called NCL and spoke to an agent. When I told her we hadn't received anything about registering for the covid test she told me that "NO, you don't need to do that--just "show up with your E Docs". This did NOT seem right to me, because I have heard many mention pre-registrating for covid testing on this forum. When I tried to question the agent on this she cut me off and told me she was transferring me to NCL Technical Support. Tech Support agent told me that yes, I should get an email sometime today (Sept 7th). THEN she went on to say "this is all "new", so if something goes wrong and you don't get an email where you can pre-register for the test, then yes, we SHOULD just "show up", and there will be paperwork to fill out before entering the testing site. My questions to the forum are: Is the time we selected that is printed on our EDocs the time we should arrive at the pier, or report for the test? Also, has anyone else been told what I was told by the NCL agents? If anyone has shown up for the covid test and had to fill out some sort of paperwork first, how much time should be allowed for that? I feel nervous about "just showing up" without pre-registering for that test. Any advise would be appreciated, THANKS!
  5. If you stuff a laundry bag like that, what do the clothes look like when you get them back? Are they "stuffed" in a bag as well? A few months ago our washing machine had to be replaced and it took several weeks for it to be delivered, so I dropped our laundry off at a local laundrymat and picked it up the next day...It was great, like getting things back from the dry cleaners, everything either neatly folded or on hangers. Then the next time I did this everything came back crammed into the basket, washed and dried, but a mess--wrinkled, not even folded. I am curious to know what the your clothes look like after you get them back from the ships' laundry service. Thanks!
  6. Thanks for doing this detailed trip report. I love all your packing gear! Our cruise is Sept 25th, and afterwards we are spending a couple nights in Seattle. We are packing for cool-cold weather, so sweaters and bulky items. I don't think we could do it with carry on luggage. We don't have to pay for checked luggage on our flights so have never minded traveling with larger suitcases in the past, but as a first time cruiser I think I may be bringing way more clothing than is needed. (especially as we get one complimentary bag of laundry) How many outfits/pieces of clothing did you bring? I guess I am having a hard time with this because it is totally different than any other kind of vacation we have done before. I can tell you are very organized so would appreciate packing tips for a late September Alaska cruise.
  7. If my husband and I are sitting together in the Observation Lounge, and he gets up to use the bathroom, and someone comes over and asks if the seat he was in is taken, I thought I could say "yes, that my husband just went to the restroom and will be right back...BUT if he isn't back in ten minutes, you are welcome to have the seat." Does this seem reasonable? This will be our very first cruise, so no experience with chair hogs on a ship, but I have experienced them at hotel pools and beaches plenty of times, and do not want to be one myself.
  8. This is a great topic! I have gotten some terrific tips, especially splitting the clothes in the suitcases. I agree with those who say planning is part of the fun of a vacation. I especially enjoy planning what to wear and pack. This will be our very first cruise, as well as first time to Alaska. (Encore, Sept 25th) We live in Florida and don't have a lot of cold weather clothing , and you certainly can;t find it in stores around here this time of year. I had read that dressing in "layers" is a good idea for Alaska, and have been buying things online. I waited till everything I ordered had arrived, turned our AC down to 68, and insisted my husband try everything on while I went out grocery shopping. My husband was in a thermal undershirt, sweatshirt, and waterproof jacket when he got a frantic call on his cell phone from our neighbor who was up on his roof cleaning some gutters. The ladder had fallen so my husband ran over and put back up so the guy could climb down. He didn't think to take the jacket etc. off first, and was in such a hurry he forgot about leaving our door unlocked. So now he is locked out of the house, its about 95 degrees, and he is in winter clothes. No way to get back inside so he called me. I hurried home from the store and found my husband in our yard just wearing his underwear, and sweating to death. Hopefully this will be the only "silly" thing that happens to us before our cruise, and we can't wait!
  9. So many helpful answers, and I appreciate the imput. I now know we can enjoy excursions even in rainy weather as long as we dress properly. ( We live on the "Space Coast" of Florida and it is sweltering, so being outside in cold weather sounds wonderful right about now! ) Will be sure to pack some waterproof rain gear and dress in layers on excursion days, I was mainly concerned that bad weather might spoil the views, etc during excursions, but no one has mentioned that, so will go ahead and book an excursion or two for our late September cruise. Thanks again everyone!
  10. Before booking an excursion in Ketchikan for our late September cruise I was wondering about how those excursions are impacted by bad (rainy) weather? I know there is a very good chance it will rain and I believe most of the excursions take place regardless? We are considering either the "Totem, Bight State Park & Lumberjack Show" or "Misty Fjords & Wilderness Explorer". Of course I know both would be more pleasant on a sunny day, but if anyone has done either of these excursions when it was rainy, could you please tell me about it? Were they (or any other Ketchikan ecursions) still worth doing on a bad weather day? On our vacations is usually DOES rain more often than not, and we carry on and make the best of it, but if anyone has taken an excursion and felt that bad weather totally spoiled it, I'd like to hear their thoughts. Thanks so much!
  11. We had been planning to walk as it is not very far. Why is it not a "nice walk"? Busy traffic, or no sidewalks? I've tried looking at some maps but could not find out anything other than the distance... Thanks if you can provide more details Bird!
  12. We booked our first cruise which embarks onSept 25th. (Alaska-Encore) directly from NCL. We have a Club Balcony Suite with "larger" balcony, and I think we will be very happy with that. Being first time cruisers, we had no idea that there can be advantages to not paying in full at the time of booking, and thats what we did. (Obviously we had not "discovered" Cruisecritic and these helpful forums when we booked our cruise early last month) We don't want to cancel and start all over...But lesson learned! We are quite sure we are going to enjoy cruising so we'll know better the next time. Since booking our cruise, we've talked to several friends who are considering first time cruises, and have to told them that no matter how they book, to read these forums first!
  13. Thanks so much for posting this! We are looking forward to our very first cruise, Sept 25th, on Encore, and now we have a better idea of what we can expect as far as daily activities go.
  14. Hello, We will be taking our first cruise in late September, and the online check in form can't be completed until later. We have started to fill it out, and have been looking it over and I have a question. The form asks "Are you flying back home for your cruise vacation", and you have to check either "yes" or "no", and if the answer is "yes", fill out some flght information. After the cruise we are spending a few days in Seattle before flying home. I am assuming NCL just wants to know about passsengers who are flying on deparkation day, so we should check "no" on the form, but I just want to be sure. (sorry if this is a stupid question, but we want to be sure we fill out our check in forms correctly--THANKS!)
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