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Neuhoftraveler

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  1. Re insurance for medical expenses during a trip: Many in the US obtain special "travel insurance" on a trip-by-trip basis that includes not only coverage for trip costs in the event of interruption or cancellation (including for medical reasons which can include pre-existing conditions), but also foreign medical expenses and also medical evacuation back to the US. There are several on-line brokers who offer a variety of competing policies, so you can pick the features that are most important to you. I've not compared the cost or coverage of such policies to "Cunard Care."
  2. Can Bigmike or anyone else tell me whether the luggage storage space is still skimpy in a QV Q4 on Deck 7?
  3. A little route map in the latest Cunard mailing we've received clearly shows that voyage going up to Anchorage itself, and also to Kodiak.
  4. A third alternative is to book early, and then periodically monitor your voyage on the Cunard website for price reductions in your desired category. As long as your deposit is refundable, you can re-book anytime the fare goes down (anytime up to final payment, of course). Of course, you may lose perks like OBC that were included in your original booking. But the price reduction may substantially exceed the value of the perks, so you come out ahead by re-booking. In fact, even if you had a small non-refundable deposit, you might come out ahead by forfeiting it in order to get the reduced fare. And as to OBC specifically, you might deem even a "wash" transaction advantageous, if you think you might not use up the entire OBC amount on things you actually want (as opposed to shop purchases made solely to exhaust unused OBC).
  5. Bluemarble, once again you have come through with the authoritative answer. Thank you. My wife, a native Cedarrapidian, would say it's only to be expected from any Iowan.
  6. Bigmike -- Thanks for the link, it works fine for QM2, but substituting QV (in both places) only brings up the dreaded Error 404. If you can bring it up, I'd appreciate a link.
  7. @Windsurfboy: Would you mind elaborating on why you prefer the Q5's? We are currently considering a change from a category guarantee Q6 to a specific Q4 on QV. Our only experience with any of this is a Q5 on QM2 last year.
  8. The main Cunard (US) website includes detailed color-coded deck plans. But I cannot find a legend explaining what cabin category each color represents. What am I missing?
  9. Another top-class tour operator is Alla Tours. They created a two-day custom tour for the two of us (including two Hermitage visits) at a very reasonable price. There are several others that also get lots of favorable reviews. This can include an evening opera or ballet, for which you can even buy your admission tickets online in advance, at a great saving as well as being able to choose your own seats. (Do not be fooled by anyone who tells you that you need a visa to go ashore unless you take the hugely overpriced ship's excursions. I don't know whether Cunard engages in this form of sleazy deception, but plenty of other cruise lines do, even the "luxury" ones.)
  10. As I wrote in a prior post, be sure you''re getting in a metered yellow (or green) actual taxi, not one of the "car services" that will be hustling for your business as you emerge from the terminal. The actual fare will vary depending on time of day and day of the week (much lighter traffic on weekends, especially Sundays).
  11. Having only one TA under my belt (in Q5), but planning for more, I'm impelled to ask, what is to be dreaded about Q3? (Comments invited from anyone, especially as Bigmike is already at sea.)
  12. Just to clarify, on a point collateral to the OP's specific question but potentially important to some: Contrary to apparently fairly widespread belief, marijuana is not "actually legal" in any US port (or inland location, either). Some States have enacted legislation purporting to authorize marijuana possession, use, or dealing in specified circumstances (medical and/or recreational), within that State as a matter of State law. But all possession, use, and dealing in marijuana, for any purpose, anywhere in the United States, is still illegal as a matter of Federal law. For a few years prior to 2016, Federal enforcement policy was to refrain from prosecuting conduct authorized by State marijuana laws. That enforcement policy was officially, and with great fanfare, rescinded by the current Administration (although there does not appear to have been any significant wave of enforcement action against State-authorized conduct)..
  13. Just to clarify, the green "boro" or "outer boro" taxis are licensed to pick up only in those areas (e.g., Brooklyn), although they can take you anywhere you want. But the traditional yellow taxis still can pick up anywhere in NYC, including Brooklyn. So don't panic if there's a yellow taxi waiting for you at the head of the queue. (The green taxis were created because the traditional yellow taxis preferred to cruise mid-town and lower Manhattan, leaving the outer boros without much taxi service.) In fact, you might not see too many green taxis in the line, and if one is the next up when you get to the head of the line, the driver might ask you to take one behind him, because they know they can't pick up a fare in Manhattan for the return trip. This would be illegal, of course, but sometimes illegal things happen. Even in NYC.
  14. Last December, our taxi from the QM2 pier in Brooklyn to Penn Station in Manhattan was $38.30, including the customary NYC 15% tip. When you come out of the cruise terminal, you will be harangued by swarms of "car service" operators to get into one of their high-priced cars. Ignore them. Look to your right, and you will see a taxi line of yellow NYC-licensed ("medallion") metered cabs. That's all you need, unless perhaps you have an unusual amount of baggage. Tell the taxi (or other) driver to take you to the Penn Station entrance on the corner of 8th Avenue and 31st St., not to dump you at the so-called front entrance on 7th Avenue , which is a long slog through dismal underground shopping corridors before you get to the actual station (or even near the so-called taxi entrance half-way between 7th and 8th, which is now closed to taxis anyway). Go into the station via that corner entrance, take the escalator down, and there you are in the main hall, such as it is. The Amtrak lounge for Acela and business-class (and sleeping-car) passengers is to the immediate left of the escalators, and the seating area for everyone else is just across the main hall. Bon journee.
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