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Everything posted by simplelife

  1. We are staying in Kingsland, Ga which is about 35 minutes form port,
  2. On our last cruise the piano bar just became another Karaoke venue (with live piano instead of tapes) with indivudual guests requesting and singing songs solo.
  3. I don't mind using the ship launderette when available. This cruise we are platinum on Carnival and I am looking forward to the free laundry bag perk.
  4. Yes to booking excursions through the ship. Usually do NOT do self assist.
  5. Out first cruise was in July 1999 on Imagination, the 5-night Ocho Rios and Grand Cayman itinerary. I believe it was the July 17 sailing. I agree with you that the Imagination did 5 day sailings then.
  6. If you book through the cruise line, you are guaranteed to get back in time or have the ship wait for you (as long as you stay with your group and don't wander off alone). The ship will not wait for late passengers otherwise.
  7. If you book your excursion through the ship, they will get you back in time or the ship will wait for you.
  8. I used to get the Bubbles package on Carnival when they had Coke products but now that they have gone with the competition, it's not worth it.
  9. We have sailed Carnival out of Manhattan to Nova Scotia and St. Johns. Beautiful itinerary and not super pricey. They only have a couple of sailings a year, but I would definitely recommend this.
  10. When it comes to packing for a cruise, I go by the adage that less is more and more is too much. I have never needed duct tape or an over the door organizer. Highlighters and sticky notes aren't needed anymore with the electronic app and the chat feature ($5 each for duration of cruise on Carnival - definitely worth it for us), things I do bring and use: a power pack for my phone and one for DH; a couple of dollar-store disposable plastic ponchos (DH teases me for always bringing them, but the few times we have needed them, he is grateful); A small yeti-style cup; Analog watch (actually I wear one every day); a simple multioutlet adapter things that don't take up much room but have many uses: a couple of quart size and gallon size ziplock bags, a fold up cloth/fiber tote. Bonine is the best motion sickness pill I have ever taken. Take it every day. Buy enough for the whole cruise. It costs 5 times as much on the ship. Highlighter to go over the daily activities. good idea to have a back up battery pack now that most ships allow use of phones for apps and on board communication. Water proof phone lanyard. Towel Clips chap stick with sun block Pocket poncho. You can find these at the dollar store. They are typically only good for one use, but they are tiny and inexpensive.
  11. DH and I turn platinum on our Elation cruise in 2 weeks. I was able to check at 16 days rather than 14, Our boarding pass says Platinum and our Boarding group is A01. 🙂
  12. You can't get much mi0re casual that what people wear to dinner on Carnival nowadays,
  13. Prepay your grats, or let them be charged to your account, The staff definitely earns them. Give extra cash to anyone who goes above and beyond. No need to go to GS at all.
  14. DH brings his own extension cord with his CPap machine. He usually just uses the ship's water,
  15. For slots. at the machines you are given the option to "transfer to player bank" from your S & S account (multiples of $10). Once you do this you can then 'transfer from player bank" to the machine in multiples of $10 up to the amount in your player bank. You can do this as many times as you wish, without charge, I do not play tables so I cannot speak to that process,
  16. I don't change these, so there's no need for lines at all. I just provide extra cash to those who have been particularly helpful.
  17. Yes, this is exactly what I do, I buy them from AARP and pay with my Carnival Mastercard to get the fun points, and buy OBC on the Carnival site and pay with the gift cards, (I pay off my carnival card in full every month, so interest does not eat up my savings).
  18. We are just off Paradise and also noticed how understaffed the bars were. I passed on specialty coffee the whole cruise because Java Blue ALWAYS had a line. It took forever to get drinks at every bar. It used to be there were so many "roving waters" on the pool deck and Serenity, and in show venues that it was almost a nuisance. This time it was rare to see one.
  19. We just came off Paradise and found embarkation and debarkation to be very smooth. The Port of Tampa is very convenient and well-planned. We parked in the parking garage across from the ship and made the short easy walk to the embarkation point, No lines for embarkation,(we did have to pause a few seconds for the drug dog - first time we have ever experienced that), plenty of check-in stations, and we only waited a few minutes in the preboard area before boarding. Debarkation was smooth as well. We selected luggage tags the day before debarkation for the time we wanted to debark. After we ate breakfast, we waited just a few minutes in one of the lounge areas until our number was called ,and we pretty much just walked off' Love this port!
  20. My understanding from reading on the website and the comments here is that you can use it at any bar during sea day brunch hours,
  21. Thanks, I thought that was the case but just wanted to confirm
  22. I will be Platinum next cruise and have a benefits question. I know there is a "Free Drink at Seaday Brunch" perk. My question is: If there is more than one Seaday Brinch, do you get a free drink each time, or is this a one-time-per-cruise benefit?
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