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  1. I think that is great and the correct thing to do. We all had different TA's and none of us got the discount.
  2. One more thing you may wish to consider is the popularity and demand on one of the legs versus the other. We were on a 32 day grand voyage comprised of two 16 day cruises. The first leg was in great demand and booked out immediately. The second leg was not well received. Oceania heavily discounted the second leg right up to sailing. When we and others on the GV requested the discounted fare of the 2nd leg to be applied to our grand voyage (before final payment) Oceania said no. If we cancelled and rebooked we were told that we would lose our cabin on the first leg. Since the entire first leg was waitlisted it meant we would not cruise. You might want to consider demand on each of the legs separately and how many cruise points you will receive for the GV versus individual legs. If you are near a milestone anniversary (ie. bronze or silver level) the points will make a difference in benefits you will receive.
  3. Amalfi/Positano are tender ports. If the ship can't tender then they usually go to Sorrento and sometimes Naples. There are lots of ferries that run from Sorrento. If you are in Amalfi/Positano then there are fewer. You can always take the bus to Sorrento and ferry over to Capri from there.
  4. To clarify, I have never taken a post cruise excursion through the cruise line. However, Oceania offers several classes of hotel accommodation all in different areas of Rome. You need to disembark the ship at 8 or 9 am. Depending on how many cruisers have opted for the post excursion would impact how many buses are required and the time it takes to load them with the passengers. I am assuming that each bus will make multiple hotel stops. It take about an 1 1/2 hours from the port to downtown Rome depending on the traffic. You can't check in until 3 pm even with Oceania reservations so the luggage will need to be stored with the hotel which may take some time to get your baggage check receipt. I would check with Oceania directly and see if you can get a handle on timing so you don't miss your afternoon tour.
  5. Thank you for your review and no apologies needed for your English. Your experience with the food was exactly what we experienced both on the Sirena and the Rivieria. We started cruising annually with Oceania in 2008 and there has been a downward decline in both the quality of food and number of offerings in the last several years. I totally agree with you about the GDR remaining open for lunch. In the past the GDR was always open for lunch. On our last several cruises it was shut the majority of our days when in port and open only for sea days. We do not like buffets so it was noticeable. I would sail on Oceania again if the itinerary was good but the changes made me seek out other cruise lines where in the past I stayed with Oceania.
  6. It appears you ship is not overnighting in Barcelona. Therefore, the ship has to clear first. If you are the first off then you need to get your luggage or you can carry it off to expedite matters. You need to get a taxi. The ride to the airport is 30 minutes. The only thing in your favor is if it is a Sunday with little traffic. If the required time to be at the airport is 3 hours prior to a flight then you need to be there at 7:45 am. Your disembarkation is 8 am. Even if you ignore the 3 hour rule you are cutting it real close. If the moon and the stars align you can make it but I would not take the chance. If there is even a minor hiccup then you will have to put up with a lot angst. I totally understand the inconvenience of connections or waiting around an airport for hours. If you have the time and the funds stay in Barcelona. It is a delightful city.
  7. I have friends that went to Alaska in early September 2018 on a small excursion ship and were asked if they wanted to be woken if the lights were visible. Fortunately for them they got to see them. I also follow Icelandic blogs for an upcoming land trip and the lights were visible there in late August. You need some darkness and clear skies and there is almost 24 hours of light in June/July so it would depend when you go. Also, larger ships can't/won't shut out their light so this lends to a poorer viewing as well.
  8. I have not been on the included Viking Ocean Copenhagen by Foot excursion. However, I have been to Copenhagen by cruise ship and have taken Viking's included walking tour in other ports. I would imagine that the "demanding" rating given for the Copenhagen tour is due to the distance covered during the 2.5 hours. The ships dock at the Langelinie which is very close to the "Little Mermaid" sculpture. From the dock to Nyhavn which is the farthest the tour goes, the distance is 2.5 km so return walk would cover about 5 to 6 km. Copenhagen is flat and the walkways paved. The streets in the old section are cobblestone so could be difficult for those in wheelchairs or are mobility challenged. There isn't any hill climbing and it doesn't appear that this tour actually goes into the palaces where there would stairs to climb. A really nice way to Copenhagen at leisure is to take a canal cruise that can be picked up at Nyhaven where the tour leaves you off. Enjoy.
  9. This is true but it usually doesn't effect the quality of the foord.
  10. When traveling abroard I stay at boutique hotels or B&B's which are not part of chain hotels. Since I prefer these small hotels and forego the points associated with chains. I am also retired and no longer accrue Marriott points through my company. The only program I am now part of is IHG since I will stay at their hotels when I drive to and from Florida.
  11. I am wondering if the Chilean wine runs out quickly because it is the cheapest. I really can't discern good wines from mediocre so I order the cheapest so maybe other do so also. I also order whatever their "house" wine is of the moment and it changes all the time.
  12. And a superior price if you do not have points.
  13. Thank you for the comparison. I loved sitting on the rooftop deck looking at the view and drinking wine.
  14. The Ava looks like a great hotel and is only 3 minutes walking from the Athens Gate where we stayed which was very good location for restaurants etc. Will keep this find in mind for next time.
  15. If you don't have a lot of luggage or are traveling light than you can take the Aerobus from the Barcelona airport to the city. The bus drops you off at several locations the last which is the Placa Catalunya which is central and at the top of the Ramblas. Last year we stayed at the Hotel Acta Atrium Palace on the Gran Via and it was very nice, reasonable and central. The previous year we stay at the Hotel Jazz were many people from CC stay but for some reason the rates were rather high when I checked for last year. The previous two years we stay at a small unique boutique hotel in the Eixample neighborhood called Hotel Praktik Rambla. We liked this hotel but once again their rates almost doubled from our previous stays. We have always taken a taxi from the hotel to the port. I believe there is a shuttle bus if you are located at the bottom of the Ramblas. In Athens we stayed at the Athens Gate Hotel which was nice and reasonable. We used Athens Airport Shuttle to get from the hotel to the port were we embarked and shared the van with 2 other couples on the cruise. We took a taxi from the Athens airport to the the hotel. You can leave your luggage with the hotel to sight see but let the hotel know you will be arriving early. If they have a room ready they will check you into the room. Enjoy our trip.
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