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Everything posted by SFCAcruiser

  1. That is quite the upgrade 😎 The aft-facing cabins, such as yours, have extra large balconies, as noted by RichYak. The balcony may actually provide more room than you need, but for the price you paid for the upgrade, why not? i enjoy the nicer bathrobes. But in general, Concierge cabins do not provide much extra these days.
  2. Do not be surprised or alarmed if the water and electrical extension cord (if needed) are not in your cabin when you embark. I always pre-arrange these things and only once were they waiting for me in my cabin. A reminder to the room attendant may be necessary.
  3. Notification seems to be hit or miss, even if we book directly with the airlines. Like previous posters, I check the airline sites periodically to monitor the schedule. If you have had a “drastic” change, it might be a good idea to look for desirable flights yourself and not simply take whatever the airline or Celebrity Air offers you. Often when drastic changes occur, airlines can be very flexible in reaccommodating affected passengers. Good luck
  4. My opinion is that you will most likely have no problems arriving on the same day as departure. The comments you have seen mentioned here are to increase your awareness of potential problems and downsides were you to have some significant flight problems. Let me add another potential problem - PVSA. Next year, if you miss embarkation in Vancouver, it may not be possible to fly to Ketchikan and board there. Celebrity Air will be helpless to salvage your cruise, unless the US federal administration decides next year to suspend the PVSA requirements. I would not count on that.
  5. As far as I can tell, this new policy is only for the short cruises to nowhere from Singapore. The OP left out this useful piece of information as well as the current expiration date for this policy. The policy is not fleetwide and exists in response to a local Singapore regulation. The industry newsletter that discusses this is Here.
  6. I had the same thought but was not able to find any written policy, and wondered if my memory was fading. As far as I recall, this policy of pre-paying the service charge (= "gratuities") for anytime dining was eliminated a few years ago. We always select anytime dining but we always voluntarily prepay the "gratuities" so my own experience is not helpful here. I look forward to reading posts from others who have relevant experiences.
  7. If your trip was on Constellation September 2012, we were on the same cruise for the same reason as you. Very pleasant way to move up to Elite to prepare for a longer Transatlantic cruise a couple of months later. Now using Power Up challenges to help (a little) toward Elite Plus.
  8. To avoid confusing the original poster, I will clarify that United has Premium Plus on some flights, and Economy Plus which is equivalent to AA’s Main Cabin Extra.
  9. I've done this trip in both directions. It is "amazing" as long as you like the sea days and are not planning to lie around the pool basking in the sun. You should look into this itinerary for next April.
  10. I agree with all 6 of your points. I was surprised how much your points resonated with me. As for #4, I would add that on cruises I generally do not awaken early enough to get to the MDR for breakfast. MDR closes at 9:00 as I recall, maybe 9:30 on some cruises; much too early for my cruise routine.
  11. For opera enthusiasts and those of us with just a passing interest - a clever video about the virus, sung to the melody of Nessun Dorma. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VQ-2N4W4Ldk
  12. I immediately identified with your experience. We are fellow San Franciscans and took the Grand in Feb. 2019 for the same reasons you did - proximity of port. We literally walked (little over a mile) to the port just so we could say we did it. Ours was a 10-day cruise and we had the same impression you did - staff and food was good, the layout of the ship was awful, and we will not be repeating a cruise on the same class of Princess ship. Particularly disliked the small buffet and the grossly undersized theatre. Happy cruising.
  13. Story appears to be in. the public domain now, via MSN https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/companies/cruise-ships-set-sail-knowing-the-deadly-risk-to-passengers-and-crew/ar-BB13tPcs
  14. The two of us always book Select dining, and we never make a reservation. We show up when we want; making a reservation would negate the main benefit of Select dining for us. But we all have our own preferences, so you can chose whichever option works for you. Since we prefer to dine late (around 8:15 or later) we almost never encounter any wait. I have read on these boards, that arriving during the busy times of approx. 6:30 - 8:00 may increase your chances of having to wait for a table.
  15. This can be a source of confusion on roll calls for cruises that stop in Petropavlovsk. The visa situation is NOT the same as in St. Petersburg. No visa needed in Petropavlovsk, whether the passenger takes a tour or travels independently. Russia applies different requirements for St. P. and Petropavlosk, perhaps due to the latter's isolation.
  16. Perhaps you missed post #12 above re: taking drinks into the MDR.
  17. I am assuming your most recent visit was prior to May 2019. Things have changed for US citizens, among others,
  18. I had one on Millennium a few years ago and did not use it much. The itinerary was in cold weather, so the balcony held little attraction. For a warm weather cruise, I would consider a sweet sixteen balcony again. Did you ever try a sweet sixteen after your similar post four years ago?
  19. "Newark Liberty International" is the name of the airport, although most people simply refer to it as "Newark airport". Slidergirl provided good information in response to your question.
  20. The earlier poster is incorrect. Status is equal; points are individually earned.
  21. I agree with Micheleata"s response - the "all you can eat" offer is generally not publicized but is more of a discreet private arrangement. They will sometimes also offer a 30% discount as an alternative to the AYCE deal and we found this to be more economical for us. Even though we love sushi and the other menu items, we do not spend $60 for the two of us with the 30% discount. See which deal works best for you.
  22. On a different itinerary, I experienced Celebrity's poor performance regarding visa requirements; for example, they stated a visa requirement for Egypt when that country was not on our itinerary, other than we passed through the Suez Canal. So, dealing with Celebrity and required visas is frustrating. What have members of your roll call been reporting?
  23. This is a topic that comes up every so often and it results in divided responses (like most other topics on Cruise Critic). We tried it once on a 14-day cruise on Equinox and did not like it for a variety of reasons. On our cruise, the long walk became annoying during the second week when we had to return to the cabin because we forgot something. We did have a soot problem - could not lean on the railing or sit on the chairs without first wiping them down. The deck was not covered and we prefer to sit in the shade rather than the direct sun. Finally, on our deck 6 cabin, we were awoken every morning by the noise and vibration caused by the azipod (propellors) as the ship maneuvered into a port. Other posters will refute all of my objections and enthusiastically recommend a SV. So, as Fouremco mentioned, the OP should try it for him/herself.
  24. Have you done any online research on Airfare.com? It might be worth your time. I did a quick search and found this site, about which I know nothing, but here it is. I imagine there are other review sites out there.
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