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Everything posted by shecritic

  1. Don't blame you for being apprehensive about such a long flight in economy! Premium economy is definitely the way to go if you can swing it, those extra few inches of legroom make a big difference. And I agree with the others - try flying one of the Asian airlines like EVA, Singapore, or ANA since they'll treat you better in any class. Don't forget your neck pillow, noise canceling headphones, and comfy clothes too. Just try to relax and get as much rest as possible. The destination will be worth it, I'm sure!
  2. Yeah, I remember enjoying a banana split as a kid too! They don't seem to make appearances on cruise ship menus anymore though. @CGTNORMANDIE is right, all the toppings and assembly would make it tough to offer as a regular item. But @BruceMuzz has the right idea - you could definitely ask if they could make you one as a special order. Being on an upscale line, I'm sure they'd be happy to whip one up for you. Might be a fun treat to share with your family or friends onboard.
  3. Thanks a lot for this detailed info. It is surely beneficial information.
  4. shecritic

    Hong Kong DIY

    A couple spots I'd recommend checking out that are walkable or easy to get to - definitely take the Star Ferry over to Central like others said. Also check out Avenue of Stars along the water, maybe grab dinner in Tsim Sha Tsui after at the Temple Street Night Market. It's a really fun atmosphere.
  5. shecritic


    Thanks for the correction on Kagoshima - good to know you can't walk into town from the port. Really appreciate you taking the time to clarify and provide more details on the shuttle. πŸ™‚
  6. shecritic


    Miaminice provided some great resources about Kagoshima. Based on their reports, it sounds like the port is walkable into town. There might be some shuttle options from the cruise lines too.
  7. I'd say if taking a domestic flight out of DPS the same day, try to book one in the afternoon at the earliest to give yourself plenty of time, just in case of delays leaving the port terminal or traffic to the airport. Earlier flights also run the risk of missing the flight if immigration/customs take a while. Afternoon flights at 2pm or later would be a safer bet.
  8. Thanks for sharing the details on the cost and your experience with the rickshaw ride in Penang. It looks like a really fun local way to see more of the city. The personalized tour with photos adds to the memories of the visit.
  9. If I remember correctly from past cruises, there are usually two show times in the evening - one earlier and one later. They coordinate with the two dinner seatings. I'd aim for the later dinner seating if you want the option to see both shows. You should get information on your booking with exact show/dining times.
  10. That's great to hear you don't need a visa - one less thing to worry about! Bali is such a beautiful island, I'm sure you'll love exploring there even if just for a day. Hope the weather cooperates and you get to enjoy some of the amazing beaches. Safe travels! πŸ˜€βœˆοΈπŸ–οΈ
  11. It's always nice when the crew can accommodate special requests. I've had success asking for things off-menu before too. It never hurts to politely inquire - the worst they can say is no! Your waiter hooking you up with adobo sounds awesome. Filipino food is the best. Hope you find some Indian options on your next cruise. The group talking about their experiences is making me hungry! πŸ˜‹
  12. I agree spam works well in kimchi fried rice! For me, kimchi was something I couldn't get past the smell of originally. But after getting into Kdramas I was more willing to give it another try. Now I really love the flavors. Seeing it featured so prominently in shows made me more curious. Looking at how much kimchi Korea eats annually as per, https://gowithguide.com/blog/south-korea-tourism-statistics-2023-all-you-need-to-know-5254 it's no surprise it's become their national food. The cultural exposure from dramas definitely opened my eyes to appreciate it more. Funny how our tastes can change over time like that.
  13. I don't have personal experience with wheelchair accessibility in those specific ports, but a few things that may help - definitely contact the cruise line well in advance and ask very specific questions about excursion options. Some ideas - see if pre-booking a wheelchair-accessible shuttle or private car/driver is possible rather than relying on public transport. You could also look into excursions that are more walkable areas or attractions rather than sites requiring lots of stairs. Lastly, calling attractions directly may yield better accessibility details than tour operator info. Good luck planning - I hope you're able to find some great accessible options to enjoy your time in port.
  14. From the recommendations here it seems Xuan offers a variety of excellent tours all around Vietnam. Terry and Mike mentioned having a great full day city tour of Saigon with him as well as a day in Hoi An exploring the old town, beaches and countryside. He also helped plan their multi-day sailing trip in Halong Bay. Clapool also really enjoyed the full day HCMC tour. Sounds like you can't go wrong with any of his itineraries - he really knows how to showcase the best of each destination. Safe travels!
  15. Sorry to hear the tailoring scene in HK isn't what it used to be. A couple other options to consider though - have you checked out Ap Liu Street Walk? It's about a 15 minute walk from the cruise terminal and usually has some tailor shops that might work for a couple shirts. Also maybe ask your cruise line concierge for recommendations - sometimes they have contacts for tailors used to working with passengers' timelines. Hope you're able to find something that works with your short time in port!
  16. shecritic

    Bali beach

    It sounds like Nusa Dua beach could be a good option since it's close to where you'll be tendering. Have you asked your driver for some recommendations as well? They'll know the local beaches best. Sanur also sounds nice and relaxed if you want something a bit quieter. Definitely seems like location will depend on whether you want a resort area or not too. Hope you enjoy your first visit to Bali!
  17. Thanks for sharing the snorkeling tips for Puka Beach. That sunken pipeline sounds like a cool spot to check out! A couple questions - did you rent your gear on Boracay or bring it with you? And any suggestions for the best place/price to rent if needed? Always good to have a backup plan just in case. Also, any other Boracay activities you'd recommend besides the beach and snorkeling? Looks like a fun place to spend a day.
  18. shecritic

    Bali Visa

    "A visa is required for all transit passengers continuing to a third country with a transit time of more than 8 hours. The visa must be issued prior to arrival if the passenger is not eligible for a visa-free stay or Visa on Arrival." - More about this here https://www.balitours.com.au/store/pages.asp?pageid=7#
  19. I agree. Here's the website https://www.tabifolk.com/groups/japan/
  20. Australian passport holders are eligible for visa-free entry into Indonesia for tourism purposes for up to 30 days. This is often sufficient for cruise passengers making a short stop in Bali or Jakarta as part of their cruise itinerary. Australian passport holders must get a visa through the embassy to stay in Indonesia for more than 30 days or for reasons not permitted by the e-VOA. Check this for more information https://www.indonesiavisaonline.com/visa-requirements/australian-citizens
  21. Thank you for the detailed clarification. I appreciate your expertise on this matter, and I apologize for any inaccuracies in my previous responses. It's evident that the customs and immigration procedures for cruise ships in Japan can indeed be quite complex and can vary significantly from port to port.
  22. For cruises that start and end in Japan, the customs and immigration procedures are usually completed before passengers board the ship. This means that once you're on the ship, you won't typically encounter customs checks at each Japanese port. This is similar to how embarkation and disembarkation work for flights, where you clear customs and immigration at the airport before departing.
  23. It's easy and convenient. The Singapore Cruise Centre is a major cruise terminal located at HarbourFront, and the Marina Bay Cruise Centre is another terminal option.
  24. The fact that they have 24-hour reception indicates that they are likely equipped to accommodate late-night arrivals. Anyway, I understand you want to confirm this. How about you call the hotel directly? Do they have a number provided on their website?
  25. Notifying your bank about your travel plans helps them monitor your account for any suspicious activity and ensures that your card isn't flagged for potential fraud when used in a foreign country.
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