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About ronpat

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Mathis, Texas
  • Interests
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Royal Caribbean, Celebrity & Carnival
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
  1. ronpat

    MSC Opera Baltic May 13, 2011. Anyone going?

    [quote name='scubacruiserx2']Sorry. May 13, 2012.[/quote] We have friends going on MSC Opera, but she said it was May 14, 2012??? Is this the only post??? thanks ronpat:)
  2. ronpat

    CAS Changes

    [quote name='wg6530']Please tell me you are just joking. that idea would take a lounge away for the diamonds, again. Granted, the diamond lounge is only present on newer ships but D could select those ships if a lounge is important. D's are a larger group than D+ and many D are still smarting from the loss of CL. And the Diamond lounge is actually named for the Diamonds. If you are serious, your suggestion would create many hard feelings and would, therefore, undermine the concept of a loyalty program. If your suggestion was tongue in cheek, it is kinda funny. Some sailings have relatively few D or D+ cruisers (like my two recent Splendour of the Seas cruises), so it doesn't much matter where they put people. some sailings will have a large number of D and D+ cruisers. It seems to me Royal should try to make these cruises special. Instead of an "overflow" room that sounds second class, they should have a wonderful competing nightly event many people would want to attend whether D or D+. Maybe theme nights in a nice lounge ( I am not as creative as RCI event planners, but something like Sangria and tapas, margaritas and Mexican snacks, nicer beers with tailgate fare, sparkling wines with terrific entertainment). whatever goes over well without too much labor.[/quote] [COLOR=red]RCCL used to hold the CL/D & D+ in Cleopatra's Needle on the Voyager class ships. It held everyone and was really a nice, comfortable place to sit, visit and dance (yep, they even had a little band playing). The bar was great, but of course, that was before they cut it back to only free Champagne and wine. Pat (ronpat)[/COLOR]
  3. ronpat

    CAS Changes

    [quote name='Host Kewlguy'] [COLOR=black]The Diamond Lounges may be more attractive than the majority of the Concierge Lounges but at least in the Concierge Lounge I'm assured of finding a place to sit. This is usually not the case in the overcrowded Diamond Lounge.[/COLOR][/quote] [COLOR=red]We were on the Voyager 12/12/10 and the first nite it was so crowded in the CL. There were D & D+ folks and suite folks. Not a place to sit. The second nite they moved the Diamond folks to the Vault. And some of the D+ members went there also. They came back to the CL complaining that the music was too loud, etc. Anyway, it all calmed down after the 2nd nite. According to some of the folks we saw later on told us that they turned the music down and the a/c up (too cold). I wouldn't "bash" Diamond members, we all were there once. Pat (ronpat) [/COLOR]
  4. ronpat

    CAS Changes

    [quote name='pscruzinboyz']Karen, I am surprised you and Pete are home....glad to see your post so Bill and I can wish you a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Bill and I had a blast with you 2 and Linda and Dennis on the Oasis and dinner was the best in the Solarium Bistro.....Have fun on the 9th and Congrats for hitting # 200. We are slumming it in Jan. on the Carnival Paridise....3 day weekend....but it is an Anaheim Angel fan Cruise so should be fun. I think we are doing the Repo Radiance in May so maybe we will see you on that. Tell Linda ( Nancy ) and Dennis that we said hi. Thanks again for all of the fun and Wine and Champange.....that just made the Oasis that much more SPECIAL! Mike and Bill[/quote] [COLOR=red]It took us from 9/1/2002 to 9/11/2009 to become D+. Unfortunately, most of them were inside cabins and seven day cruises. We worked really hard to attain the D+ level. We are now at 31 cruise credits with RCCL. Under the new system that will equate to approximately 185-190 days. I was shocked when RCCL changed the rules to receive the coveted "crystal block" at 20 cruise credits. Didn't seem fair to me that we had to wait until we hit 30 to get the block, but that's the way the cookie crumbles. Guess RCCL was trying to get more "loyals" thereby giving them an extra incentive. We are "Elite" on Celebrity by having 12 cruise credits with them. I wouldn't mind having RCCL & Celebrity combining credits, however. Pat (ronpat) [/COLOR]
  5. ronpat

    CAS Changes

    [quote name='Bruin Steve']My personal math...or why I've decided not to care Okay, after reading this whole thread, I decided to log on to RCCL and try to figure out where I stand... First know that I am Diamond under the current system and RCCL shows me with 13 credits...I have one more cruise on January 2, so that one will fall in under the old system, not that it matters...but, call it 14 current credits... As a side here, I am Elite on Celebrity...they show me with 16 credits... Here's where it gets to be fun...Royal Caribbean's accounting for this has never been very good... When I go to my cruise history on RCCL, it's wrong...it's always been wrong...They have cruises credited to me that I am sure I never took...and they are missing cruises that I definitely took...most of these are many years ago in both cases...I don't know anyone could really reconstruct it... I assume RCCL will just do all this by computer using whatever they have in their system...too many C & A members to go through them all individually... So, looking at my history, for eight of those credited cruises, they have full descrptions, including number of nights--those total 46 nights...add the upcoming cruise and they have accounted for 53 certain nights... However, the remaining three credited cruises, two of which date back to the 70s, DON'T show the number of nights...and these three cruises account for FIVE of my current credits (one credit each for the 70s cruise, the 3 credit cruise was in 2005)...So, how will they account for those? Will they give me ZERO credit? Or can they make the assumption that they were 7 nights per credit? Or will I have to now prove what cruise I was on so many years ago? Let's say they somehow just assume 7 nights per "unknown credit"...That would put me at 88 credits...It won't be accurate, but does it matter? What it will do is to leave me even farther from "Diamond Plus" than I already am (under the current system, I likely would have achieved that in my next 11 cruises or sooner--figuring 11 seven night cruises, I would have hit D+ in another 77 cruise nights (or less by throwing in a couple of 12 night Europe cruises...but, figure around 165 total nights or less...Unless RCCL reinstituted the 3 and 4 night routes out of LA they once did, in which case, I'd get there a lot sooner...Now, I'd need another 87 nights--or 13 more 7-nighters... Now, over on my Celebrity Captains Club ledger--just in case they decide to do any "combining"--which I hope they do--I have 16 current cruise credits...Of course, over there, their accounting is slightly messed up as well...They've double-credited me for one cruise...and their accounting for my Alaska cruise tour brings up a question: It says 7-night cruise but I have THREE credits...I am assuming it is because we did it in a Suite and it was actually a 13-night "Cruisetour"...So, my assumption, therefore, is that they credit a "cruisetour" by the total number of nights, not just the cruise portion... So, let's assume that cruisetour land days ARE credited... Based on the new RCCL system and the Celebrity website accounting, my total nights on Celebrity, including double points for cruises in Suites, would be 115 nights... So, if Celebrity went to a similar system and added new tiers, we would at least be closer with them... Of course, should they decide to somehow COMBINE points from the two lines, we would currently be at 203 total nights...and, therefore beyond the initial threshold for Diamond Plus... Now, we all know that Royal Caribbean and Celebrity is the same ownership...and my cruising on and loyalty to BOTH lines has put lots of money into the same pocket... So, if they REALLY wanted to be fair, they would take my 203 total nights and jump me directly into Diamond Plus...Even combining the old system first, my current total combined 30 old credits would put me into Diamond Plus... However, I don't count on it... I assume that when they are done converting over, I will remain Diamond and Elite and nowhere near any higher level... And that's just the way it is... Of course, I don't cruise for the loyalty club amenities...I cruise for the cruise itself... Sure, I enjoy some of the amenities--particularly the free drinks in the Diamond and Elite Lounges--Of course, when we first made Diamond, we had no such lounge...Then we got that lounge experience on the Liberty of the Seas...then our next couple of cruises were on ships where they didn't have it...That's when you realize that the C&A levels don't matter...they can give and they can take away... The whole program is at their discretion...You really haven't "earned" anything... So, there's no reason to stress out over any of this...As long as they take nothing from you in terms of level ...Of course, they can still take amenities away from those levels... So, does it matter?[/quote] [COLOR=red]The only comment I have is that whatever level you are the highest with, i.e. RCCL or Celebrity, then you are supposed to be the same status on both. The only difference is that with Celebrity, you are Elite (highest) even if you are D or D+ w/RCCL. Celebrity only has three levels: "Classic, Select & Elite. Wonder if they will change the way their system levels are or if they will add levels to equate to RCCL's? Guess we will find out soon enough. Pat (ronpat) [/COLOR]
  6. ronpat

    New charges from rccl

    [quote name='Lynnees']The charge is $25 per person and yes, it's set to happen. They are already charging the $25 per person on Azamara. This will stop those who book 4 or 5 cruises until they make up their mind about the cruise the actually want. There are a lot that do that. As for the new rules, more and more people are booking closer in anyway. Now the diehards will also do that. It will be harder on groups mind you, as groups are normally done much farther out. You have to be happy with the price you pay or don't book. CCL has now stopped discounting so for those who think they can stop these things from changing, not going to happen.............book closer in................for those that have to fly (such as we do, there are other tricks to be used to be able to book closer in. I am far from a loyal royal. I believe in getting the best bang for my buck but at the same time I don't feel they "owe" me anything once I've booked. I find it amusing that others do.[/quote] Something else everyone could do is just book a future open-end cruise while on a cruise. That way, you don't have to book an actual cruise and I believe you have a couple of years to decide which one you want to go on. Wait a couple of months before the cruise you decide you want, then book it and get your onboard credit, etc. ronpat[IMG]http://boards.cruisecritic.com/images/icons/icon12.gif[/IMG]
  7. ronpat

    New charges from rccl

    [quote name='Ocean Boy']They held the room for you and they also held, and collected interest, on your deposit money. Even if you cancel on the final payment day they still have 70 days to resell the room before the cruise sails. And if the cruise is selling well they will most likely resell that cabin for even more money than they were going to get from the original booking.[/quote] AMEN! ronpat
  8. ronpat

    New charges from rccl

    [quote name='cruie4ever']Liz If Royal Cribbean Corp started those policies in the US& Canada they would loose a great deal of business & imo not fill their ships . When you look at the population of the US vs other countries ,the wealth & that the ships & corporate headquarters are US based ,it could place them in jeopardy as they don't build those shipsc on a cash & carry basis . There is a lot of debt they carry on their books . In essence & I said it in another post ,those UK & others who pay high cancellation fee are totally unfair imo . We here in the USA would not sit still for those .It took a while for the banks to rein in their credit card high charges & the Fed gov't did it . These boards can be used to get the cruise lines to listen up if there are enough people dissenting . Take the diamond perks fiasco .There were thousdands of posts that if Royal Caribbean changed those perks so much people would go to toher cruise lines .Just think of how many millions of dollars the Diamond & diamond plus levels contributr to the sales & profits of royal Caribbean .Soon after the many posts the top management came back with a different plan . Thus ,what I am saying is the power of the people in this case can change things instead of agreeing with every charge that they can dream up to take more from our pocket books ,lol[/quote] The thing that really gripes me is the Stock credit. Basically, you lose if you use. Can't combine it with anything. We spent $$$ to buy stock and now it's useless. Considering selling if it ever comes back up. Diamond+ member, but we can't always afford a balcony. ronpat:(
  9. [quote name='emmy']I had never heard that the cruise has to be paid in full before you can book your shows and specialty restaurants. I am waiting for my Oasis bookings to open up and final payment is not until end of July... can anyone else confirm this about booking the shows. Great review.. we also have a deck 10 aft Boardwalk balcony:)[/quote] Hey Emmy, what are you doing over here. Ha. I saw a review and now I am here as well. Anyway, don't know about having to pay balance before you can book. But the timing schedule for booking is about two months, so your balance would be paid by the time you could book the reservations. I went on RCCL last nite and did a live chat. The reservations are accepted now up through Aug 28 sailing. So am assuming we will be allowed to book in about 6 weeks. ronpat:cool:
  10. [quote name='funat55']I really enjoyed your review. Just goes to show that you don't have to be a kid or generation X individual to go on this ship and have a good time. (I'm still having fun well over 55) You sound like fun folks. You are so right about how some people get their panties in a wad over the tiniest things. I travel a lot with my sister and we always "go with the flow". I am the organizer in the family so you can bet that I will be going over the schedules and making our reservations as early as possible. How soon ahead of time did you get a schedule of the shows?[/quote] Saw your post and thought I would share - did a live chat w/RCCL last night. We are going on the Oasis Oct 9 and right now they are taking reservations thru Aug 28. Just go on RCCL, click "Before You Board", click on the Pre-Cruise drop done menu, then, I believe there is a title called Entertainment reservations. Somewhere along the way you will need to put in your booking number. Hope this helps. ronpat:confused:
  11. [quote name='denamo'][FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=red][B]Travelers:[/B] My husband and myself (mid 50's - early 60's)- As others have previously said, check-in is extremely efficient. Getting there early is best. Early= 10:45 A.M. to 11:00 A.M.[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=darkred][SIZE=3][B]Cabin:[/B] Deck 10 Boardwalk Balcony - Our cabin was fine for the two of us. Jesus was our cabin steward and did an awesome job. We spent some time in our cabin, but not much. Of course, the bathroom is small. We thought the storage worked well. There was plenty of room for all of our belongings. Don't overstuff the drawers. At the lower bottom of the desk cabinette there was a mesh covering and we could see where someone lost a scarf that went behind the drawer. About noise - We were 8 cabins in from the aft (back) of the ship. If you are noise-phobic, a Boardwalk Balcony may not be to your liking. There will be times of great activity going on which you can hear. We absolutely loved it. We had a great seat for any show happening in the Aqua Theater! [/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=green][SIZE=3][B]Shows:[/B]We booked everything online prior to going. All of our reservations were ready for us upon arrival at every show. While we heard complaints on ship concerning having to make reservations for each show, it is a very equitable way of handling being able to see the shows. You can get in 10 minutes prior by taking seats of those who are "no shows". [/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=green][B]Aqua Show - [/B]Do NOT miss. We saw Oasis of Dreams. They are working on another one called Splish Splash. There are a variely of shows taking place in the Aqua Theater. We loved the "dancing waters" shows they would do with music in the Aqua Theater. The big screen there is phenomenal! [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=green][B]Come Fly with Me[/B] was spectacular as well. The choreography and acrobatic stunts coupled with great props, especially the taxi and airplane, kept you in awe.[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=green][B]Hairspray[/B] was well done and the cast is unbelievably talented. [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=green][B]Headliner Show[/B] in the Opal Theater changes weekly. Earl Turner was beyond high energy! [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=green][B]The Ice Show[/B] features tales of Hans Christian Andersen. The skater portraying the king in the Emperor's New Clothes is a wonderful entertainer and skater! All of them did a great job, and I cannot fathom having to skate on such a small area and on a moving ship! A break in the middle features a sand artist. I had not seen anyone do this before. It was amazing.[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=green][B]Summer Evening[/B] was a show the Royal Caribbean Dancers and Singers did one eveing in the Aqua Theater. It was fun realizing how different some of them looked from the character they portrayed in Hairspray. Great talent![/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=blue][SIZE=3][B]Excursions:[/B] [/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=blue][B]Dragon's Flightline at Labadee, Haiti[/B]. I can hardly express in words how magnificent this is!! The trial run they have you do was more nerve racking than the actual line. LOVED IT! We did the 7:30 A.M. one and it was great. Plenty of sun, but not too hot yet. We recommend it. They had ship's photographers taking pictures as we got to the bottom and these were the only photos we bought! :) [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=blue][B]Walking[/B] [B]Art Tour - [/B]This is held at sea days by the Art Shop staff. Met at the Champagne Bar and walked down the Promenade. The sculptures in plain sight down the Promenade are so interesting. Around the ship are located telecopes which contain 3D pictures and binoculars that contain photos as well. These are done by two artists using photography and are quite interesting. We went down to deck four and worked our way up to the Art Shop on Deck 8 Central Park. Learned wonderful facts about the ship and it's art work and the choice of artists to display their work.[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=purple][SIZE=3][B]Eating Venues: [/B]Everywhere we ate, we thought the food was flavorful. We ate at a variety of places for meals to just give things a try. [/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=purple][SIZE=3][B]Giovianni's Table[/B] $ We ate at one day for lunch and very much enjoyed it. I would have ordered differently seeing others meals around. I had the antipasta and baked shrimp. Nothing really that I would super rave about. Just for me, I think I should have been less adventurous and stuck to the Italian dishes I was more familiar with.[/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=purple][SIZE=3][B]Park Cafe[/B] is wonderful and easy for a quick lunch. We tried to avoid the usual lunch hour due to the small space and limited seating. Everything from soup to salad to sandwiches. Great desserts as well. [/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=purple][SIZE=3][B]Main Dining Room[/B] for breakfast using the a la carte area was tasty and hot. The service we received each evening from our waitstaff Pei, Ben, and head waiter Giorgi could not have been better! [/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=purple][SIZE=3][B]Windjammer [/B]- Busy and bustling as usual. We found the food to be very good. What a variety! Ate there one evening for dinner as well. [/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=purple][B]Johnny Rocket's [/B]for breakfast is a good alternative. We had omelets and the raved about potates, which were good, but not over the top. [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=purple][B]Solarium Bistro[/B] - A healthier style of eating is featured here. We ate here for lunch a couple of times and enjoyed it. It was very quiet the days we ate lunch there which seemed kind of weird, since all of the other places are so active during the service hours. It was a nice change of pace.[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=purple][B]Rising Tide Bar[/B] was fun and novel to ride. Just had to do this once while enjoying an adult beverage![/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [COLOR=purple][SIZE=3][FONT=Comic Sans MS]Hmm...I thought we did other things on this cruise besides eat! Doesn't look like it from our list of eateries! [/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=#4169e1][SIZE=3][B]Pools: [/B]Since we were not traveling with young children, our pool place was the Solarium. If you are in the pool you are fine, otherwise, it was pretty warm in that area. You have to wear flipflops or water shoes of some kind to get from your beach chair to the pools because the surface was so hot it would burn your feet. I do not remember this being the case in any of the fleets other Solarium areas's we've been in. I think because of the number of hot tubs in that area, there is a lot of humidity that is trapped by the glass. Maybe ceiling fans or even surface fans to circulate air in that area would be helpful. [/SIZE][/COLOR][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=darkorchid][B]General Thoughts: [/B][/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=darkorchid][B]* [/B]We really enjoyed the touch screens around the ship. If you wanted to know a menu of a restaurant or what time an event is happening, no problem. So convenient! [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=darkorchid][B]* [/B]We really appreciated having the Diamond Club available to us. This was our first opportunity to use one on a ship since RCCL changed the qualifications. Great perk that we truly appreciate.[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=darkorchid][B]*[/B] The ship did not seem any more crowded than ships smaller in size. If a show or event was completed, then the usual crowd that any event brings was noticeable. We never felt as though we were waiting an unusually long time for anything.[/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [FONT=Comic Sans MS][SIZE=3][COLOR=darkorchid][B]*[/B] It was interesting to hear people's perceptions of this large vessel. Some loved it and only now want to do Oasis class; others mentioned they are going back to the smaller class ship. The one disctinction the Oasis has is that you somewhat need to plan. If you don't have your heart set on seeing a show and are willing to take a chance that 10 minutes prior you can get in, then the Oasis is not so different from other ships. Where we noticed there seemed to be the most unhappiness was those traveling in large groups - maybe 6 - 8+. Large groups are more challenging whether on land or sea. But my, can people get their dandruff up in a hurry! ;) [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT] [SIZE=4][FONT=Comic Sans MS][COLOR=#4169e1]Would we cruise the Oasis of the Seas again? Absolutely! This was a phenomenal cruise, and we loved sailing on her. [/COLOR][/FONT][/SIZE][/quote] Thank you for your excellent review. Several of us are going on the Oasis Oct 9 & excited about seeing her. My hubby & I are also going on the Allure Dec 12. Can't wait!! ronpat:D
  12. ronpat

    Retirement Home on a Cruise Ship?

    Do you have any idea what it costs her and is it on a monthly rate? Thanks for sharing. ronpat:o
  13. Was going to my cruise messages when I happened to see your question. We are diamond (18). I think you might get several responses to your question, but I have found that if you call the Crown & Anchor Desk at RCCL, they are usually the ones that can set you straight-- however, the discount is based on the # of nites, ie. 3-5 nites - $100; 6-9 nites -$200 and 10+ - $300. The question is whether or not you would be eligible since you booked the cruise while you were still Platinum. To be safe just call C & A @ 800-526-9723 for help. If you are really upset about something that your ta did, I would also let RCCL know this. ronpat:o
  14. ronpat

    Live From Grandeur

    Any goodies we should know about before we board? We will be sailing on 4/12-19 Tampa to San Juan. Then off her and going on Serenade 4/19-5/3 to San Francisco via Panama Canal. We haven't been on either of these two ships, but have sailed same class on others. ronpat;)
  15. ronpat

    Live From Grandeur

    There must be something wrong with me. I liked Progresso - or maybe it was just the shopping and cheap beer. We shop inside the pink compound, but DH found the beer across the street. ha :o ronpat