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Everything posted by OBX-Cruisers

  1. CDC and FDA know what is going on BTW. People are still getting sick and dying and some people fully vaccinated seem to still be susceptible to some of the Covid "variant" strains. I would bet you would be one of the first whiners when YOUR cruise had to return to port when a Covid case was confirmed on YOUR cruise. YOU wourl blame the CDC again I would also bet on.
  2. We sail both also and agree that your summary is very accurate. However, looking at a recent comparison of PRICES on HAL and X, we find a significant difference with X approaching the ridiculous when calculated per night for two persons.
  3. Totally agree about "stingy" perks on HAL compared to both RCL and X from our experiences on all 3 lines. HAL still honors "stockholder" onboard credit if you own at least 100 shares of Carnival stock while RCL and X get around this by giving a $25 cabin OBC that eliminates eligibility for the stockholder credit for owning RCI stock
  4. Sorry but if this is implemented like on HAL where they have been doing service by the staff for years, YOU won't be "grabbing" ANY plates, they will provide them from behind the glass; but THREE would be accomodated if that is what you want I would imagine
  5. Holland America has been doing this for YEARS already. Even the desserts that are "self serve" are plated in single portions and you take the cup/plate or whatever it is on. The "bacon hounds" griped endlessly about this but eventually most passengers came to accept the changes on HAL as improvements to the "persons of entitlement" who casually tossed the tongs or serving spoon into the middle of the lettuce, lasagna or whatever.
  6. We love both Celebrity and Royal but found that the Diamond perks we get on Royal are all that we need and that makes the cruise price very, very reasonable. The problem I foresee on Celebrity with All inclusive perks for everyone is that the crew will be so overworked tht the lines at the venues will be onerous and service will plummet from its current state of elegance to become substandard. Will have to wait to see if they can overcome the new challenges resulting from their perk policies.
  7. After many cruises I too always referred to the need for ships to stop at a foreign port as the Jones Act. In fact this is not correct from my reading today. The Jones Act dealt with goods transported from port to port but in fact the REAL culprit that affects cruise ships is the PVSA, the Passenger Vessel Services Act. If you google the last terms you will find that it is a doozy in that you just can't stop at ANY port it often has to be a "distant" port if your cruise started in one US city but disembarked in a different city. On the other hand, If you start in Seattle and
  8. Don't be too sure that the "vaccine" will mean the end of Covid now that the "mutants" or variants in the virus are starting to kill people internationally and look to be more easily transmitted from person to person. Passengers will have to be repeatedly tested to rule out the "symtomless" carriers. Sounds dire to me for the cruise industry with the higher prices/per passenger/day I am seeing. Land trips will be our choice for quite a while.
  9. The problem I see with the All Included pricing is that unless they increase STAFFING at the bars and at Cafe el Bacchio, there will be horrendous service waits. Internet could bog down also during the middle parts of sea days. It will be VERY interesting to see how this new strategy works out. We love Celebrity and have cruised often on various ships but the infinite verandahs and smaller walking deck on the Edge class are just not appealing.
  10. Fascinating on how the stock market buyers are inflating cruise stocks for companies that have no income and only growing expenses. Even when cruises start, the profits will take a huge hit since the ships will not be full and it won't be long until some ship has a major outbreak. Even the precautions in the White House weren't enough if people don't take it deadly seriously.......................and on cruise ships MANY people are too inconvenienced with rules from our past many experiences from hand washing to use of sanitizer...........toooooo inconvenient for many on "VACATION"
  11. We were on the Zaandam several years ago and had a similar reaction to the organ. The those who liked it.......fine............but we thought it was the cheapest looking atrium decoration of any other ship we had been on up to that time.........maybe because on our cruise the organ NEVER really did anything
  12. It's official. SOLD and you cannot book ANY cruises on either ship if you try today
  13. One year our cruise down the West Coast from Vancouver was cancelled when the ship lost an Azipod. We still had plane tickets so flew anyway, rented a car and did a 1,500 mile loop from Vancouver to Banff with multiple stops along the way including Jasper, Kamloops, Whistler and a final night at the newer Chinese sector of Vancouver near the airport. We drove leisurely, saw incredible sights in Banff and north up the Icefields Pkwy and met many interesting people. THAT was a landtour we will never forget.
  14. Must not be many contributors who also sail on Holland America. THEY have modified their buffets over 2 years ago and most of the food in the buffet is dished and handed to you on plates from a server. Many items are all served plated e.g., desserts, salads, sides etc so NO utensils used by multiple people needed
  15. YOU are very naive. If you would like to see it, I will post the study showing the increase in bacterial load during an evening in a bar where there is a common source of snacks such as peanuts or cracker mix. WHERE do you think those bacteria (inc. E. coli) came from??
  16. First, there will not be a buffet as it existed in the past according to Mr. Bayley the CEO........this may be temporary for months to years but will likely depend on the course of CV-19 that is unpredictable now. Second, the "shows" will likely be significantly modified as well when you are stretching cost over fewer paying passengers. Definitely smaller crew for fewer passengers. Things will likely be VERY different to make up for all that space you will be gaining
  17. I was also fascinated to see Icy Strait since it is featured in Michener's book "Alaska". Main feaure is a restored fish cannery that now sells tourist stuff and a few food stands that ran out of food quickly . We went to "town" on the shuttle bus. Don't blink.
  18. Your last sentence sums up why many, many people will probably never cruise again.
  19. You DID ask the question "What keeps you coming back"..........If the answer is nothing then that is a reply to the question asked when the reply is not a gripe just a simple and plain fact: Costs have gotten too high for the product received vs. other choices..............that you apparently don't want to consider since you are apparently already living in FL, a good choice for an alternative to cruising for all us other Northerners.
  20. In our case we are NOT coming back to Celebrity because of the hefty PPPD increase in cruise prices and the additional daily charge pp. This year we did a land vacation to Venice, FL and rented a 1800 sq. ft. house with 3 BR and pool for a daily pp cost of $87;50 with cleaning/taxes/fees all included. We ate great meals at the highest rated restaurants in Venice/Punta Gorda/Sarasota for a heck of a lot less than the difference in a modest $175-$200 pppd cost of a cruise on Celebrity would have been even without including specialty restaurant add ons that we usually did in the past. Cont
  21. "Fantastic value"............instead of a cruise this December we did a land trip. We rented a 3 BR, 1800 sq. ft. house on the West coast of FL within 5 min. drive to a great beach. The house had a pond, a private heated pool and all conceivable kitchen amenities to prepare meals inside and outside the house. We dined out often at the best restaurants in the area and visited local museums and art stores instead of listening to ear splitting "entertainment" in a crowded theater. Unlimited internet use was included along with over 150 Comcast TV channels and movies. The cost was about 4
  22. 3* Mariners are given almost NOTHING compared to similar status earned for the same number of cruises on Celebrity or Royal Caribbean. We will likely be on our last HAL cruise starting in a week from Quebec City. The only reason I chose HAL over RCL from the same port and itinerary was the schedule for departure allowing us to visit Canadian friends.............SAD how the amenities on HAL have been diluted and loyalty rewards diminished.
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