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Everything posted by milepig

  1. Whenever I explain why we cruise and why Windstar to people who start our saying "I will never set foot on a cruise ship" a major part of the answer is what's stated above. I describe it as you cruise every night when you're sleeping and wake up the next morning in another amazing port. Then you're free to do whatever you want to - for us we mostly explore the culture of each place, which quite often is by foot, finding a local place for lunch, etc. If the future for WS is just getting of the ship and being herded into a bus every day, we're done. That's not the point for us.
  2. I’ve lost count. How many is this in the past few years? I won’t miss the one who when leaving the motu BBQ in FP turned to his underling and asked “how much is this costing us?”
  3. This is our typical day in port. Im always up early. Disembark and walk a mile or two enjoying scenery, often the coast of the small town. Likely chat up a local. Back On board I have my first cup of coffee and meet Mrs Milepig for breakfast. Our local guide turns up and off we go with no more instruction than “show us what interests you”. If we spot a little church or something else that catches our attention in we go. Stop for lunch and shopping and then more touring. One day we unexpectedly ran across a falconry show. A local craft shop appeared and we bought amazing knitwear from the people who had made it. If it’s a late sail we have dinner on shore at the local place our guide recommended. Back on board for a night cap up top. That’s sailing for us and I can’t imagine it any other way.
  4. If they do this we will cancel. Period. A huge Part of the cruise is poking around the ports. Without that there little appeal. This would be like France saying you can fly to Paris as a tourist but you can’t leave the airport.
  5. I sort of think that 15% of the cost of an expensive cruise IS worth the effort!
  6. I don't know if this is offered on only select cruises, or universal. But when I fired up my record for our August 2021 Alaska cruise I saw a link to specials on the full package. I clicked though and the offer was $89 pp/d instead of the usual $129. This includes the full top-level liquor package, very decent hard stuff and decent wines that we've always found perfectly fine. Also includes the WiFi, laundry, and gratuities. I think this is a decent price.
  7. Yeah. We’re looking at Alaska, probably late summer 2021. This adds a couple layers of concern, including Canada being open. I’m just tired of waiting. We’ve lost at least 8 trips, and our vacation this summer was a week at a crappy cottage an hour drive from our house. Our current WS credit is from try three. I can wait, but we’re getting to the stage where each year sitting home is one less year to travel, and we have so many places to return to.
  8. Back in maybe June/July I got a series of mailings with special incentives for credit holders that went above their other current offers. At some point they stopped coming. Are others still getting these and/or are their any standing special offers for credit holding that I should be aware of? BTW. I was dropped off the 7x7 mailing at some point. I Just signed up again and immediately got a rather annoying response from someone at WS welcoming me to the family and they’re there to help with all my travel needs. Um. I’ve been sailing WS for at least 12 years so don’t need any “welcome” and I don’t need your help as my TA takes care of us. I just signed up for the weekly sale list, thanks. Gotta give them credit for trying, but negative points for the execution.
  9. That pic makes here look like a rust bucket! Just a bad pic, or have I missed some news about plans - is she mid-painting?
  10. We got our FCC yesterday - about a 2 month wait. This was a bit of an odd situation as it involved multiple cancellations. Cruise one (Alaska) was cleared a long time ago, and we got the expected 10% additional in our FCC Cruise two (Japan) is the FCC we'd been waiting for, the only thing we had into that was the original FCC credit and we hadn't made any other payments other than the original $100. The FCC from cruise two was the same as the original FCC from Alaska plus the $100 - no additional 10%, but I wasn't really expecting one since we had no new money into it. Does this sound right?
  11. well, yes, but not a one day cruise ship type. We’d find a local apartment for a month, shop in the shops, eat in our favorite spots away from the throngs, do a museum a day, and just soak up the beauty without being jostled right and left, and walk and walk and walk.
  12. Do the 11 day. The outer islands are wonderful and quiet.
  13. We only requested and received the FCC since were WS regular. We also didn’t have much in this cruise yet other than the deposit. We rolled that over to Japan in spring 2021 and now have that credit after that was canceled.
  14. About “Seattle”. That’s where WS is headquartered and they’ve long been known to be an operational mess. I would never book WS without a TA doing the lifting for me. But, when you’re on board it’s night and day, the crew on board can do things that Seattle said were impossible. But, on board they retain the great staff for years and when we board our first thought Is who will be on board. Then we’re greeted with hugs at reception. That’s WS, and the motor yachts are great. We were supposed to be on the “new” Breeze in Alaska in June, but THAT didn’t happen!
  15. For those who would consider Windstar but have concerns over the steps or small cabins, there is word that the Breeze will also be down there for, I think, part of 2021 and 2022. So, you can get the Tahiti experience in the just refurbished and lengthen Breeze. Smiling WS service and large cabins with verandas (if you wish) and lifts to each level.
  16. Your cabin will be ready, but it may take a little while for your bags to come. We get checked in, drop our carryons in the room and then head for lunch. Generally by the time we're done eating the bags will have arrived.
  17. Yes. We just booked Singapore to Tokyo in May 2022, taking advantage of our credit and the June promotions. I guess we’ll decide in early 2022 to bail for only $200, if things are still ugly. Everything down to that huge long air trip the way things are now gives me the Willie’s. But hopefully things will be much better 2 years from now. To the comments on Venice/Ravenna. Ravenna is too often overlooked. It’s quite amazing and still close enough to Venice for an easy trip. And, I know many disagree, but those ships disgorging thousands of passengers just don’t belong in Venice. I’d actually love to sneak in now and see Venice without the throngs of tourists.
  18. Thanks. Can I ask about the process? Did SS contact you one day out of the blue saying "these are the flights we propose"? DId they just book them? Did they offer a chance to discuss options first and then make a proposal? How far out did this all happen? If you used a TA were they involved?
  19. All good to hear. I will be prepared for when it comes time to book. The only time I’ve had economy mixed into itins I’ve book we’re indeed for short hops, usually in cases like a regional jet where there IS no business class. This may be what they’re protecting themselves for. My TA was also encouraging so I’ll just sit back for, oh about 18 months.
  20. Thanks for the detail. This cruise is a fair bit out - just under 2 years (using up a credit) so too soon to plan specifics, or book anything myself. I was aware of the inter-asia connections, so my hope is that SS would count the entire ticket, so ORD-SIN is one itin and all in Business, and not by each leg. If my TA doesn't have a firm answer I may decide to cut out the airfare and do it myself, even though the price is good. Some of those inter-asia connections can be long! I wouldn't fly UA international under any circumstances, and especially now,
  21. Thanks to both of you. A domestic leg would be managable but not international!!
  22. So sorry if this has been answered, Cruise Critic is very hard to search! For the first time ever, we're doing a booking with Business Class airfare included, since our TA explained why in this case it was a good deal. On my confirmation for the full cruise I saw this fine print: Business and Premium Economy Class air upgrades are capacity-controlled, apply to international flights and do not apply to U.S. domestic or intra-continental flights within North America, Europe, South America, Asia or Africa, in which case economy class will be substituted. The mention of “Premium economy Class” as a possibility frightens me, but I think is a generic phrase since it also mentions “upgrades” and we're actually booking Business!! Please tell me that we’ve booking actual Business Class with no possibility of getting Premium Economy instead!! That's a huge difference for Chicago to Singapore! It also sounds like a flight within the US will be economy class? I've asked my TA as well, but you folk often have the full scoop on such things.
  23. Thanks for the information and that is indeed a deal. We bought some in a market in Spain when we were on a walk about with the ship's chef, and he took us to the places he uses for such stuff.
  24. Just have to ask. Buying saffron at a knock-down price sends my scam shields up. How did you determine that is was as advertised?
  25. Without saying anything about my opinions, why are you so obsessed about a physical location. What an obsolete concept. Everything in the world is moving to virtual with no fixed address. A street address these days is meaningless.
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