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Posts posted by MBMGWM

  1. >>>Best thing for the OP to do is call NCL and ask them.<<<


    I have a variation on the OP's original question, and may end up calling NCL as well. My wife & I will be on the Escape in January, which includes St. Thomas and Tortola stops on consecutive days. It's very easy to move between the U.S. and British Virgin Islands by ferry, so we were thinking about disembarking the Escape on St. Thomas; taking the ferry to St. John and spending the day and evening there; then ferrying over to Tortola the next day and re-joining the Escape there. I realize that we could do this on the sly by just calling the ship and telling them we were stuck somewhere and couldn't make it back to port in time on St. Thomas. That way the ship's departure from St. Thomas wouldn't be held up on our account, and we've read accounts in the past where passengers who missed the ship in one port could "catch up" by flying to the next port and rejoining the ship. I guess my thought would be, assuming the "missed the ship" excuse actually does work, wouldn't it make sense that the ship would allow a passenger to do what we plan to do voluntarily, with the ship's blessing in advance? Or do we risk being barred from re-boarding the ship in Tortola if we clue the ship in that we're planning to intentionally "miss the ship" in St. Thomas?


    Only other fly in the ointment I could foresee would be if the Escape skipped the Tortola stop completely. But that's a very low probability risk that we'd be OK taking.


    Anyone ever done something like this?

  2. I am sailing 11/22 on the Getaway in one of the large balconies on Deck 8. What exactly is the advantage to Vibe?


    I can lounge on my deck and walk just a few steps to several bars for my drinks and not have to endure the swarm of people on the pool deck.


    What is the draw of the Vibe? 2 hot tubs, loungers, rain shower and bar for $160


    I'd rather not try to convince you. That'll leave more Vibe passes available for those of us (like me) who DO like 'em! }:~)


    More seriously, Vibe passes are very limited in number, so don't grab them unless you really want them and will definitely use them. Otherwise you're just taking something away from others who do want them, and who will use them.

  3. So does this mean I can get ubp for an inside room on a 2017 cruise?????? If so, yaaaayyyyy


    Yes. My wife & I had a pre-existing inside cabin reservation for the Feb. 2017 two-week Panama Canal cruise on the Jewel. Called up NCL today to add the UBP (2 weeks of free drinks for just the gratuities cost - - yeah, I'll take that!). No problem. Also took the time to change our cabin assignment to a better room (mid-ship 9th floor instead of 4th floor at one end). Finally, we got a $50 cabin credit added on that hadn't been available at the time we originally booked. Upshot: We got a better room, with the UBP, plus a cabin credit, for a couple hundred extra bucks/pp over the 2 weeks (most of which was the UBP gratuities). No brainer.

  4. Thank you for taking the time to write this review. DH and I will be sailing on the Getaway after the holidays and I love reading anything and everything about her.


    We have already made many of our show and dinner reservations, so most of our planning is done. We're looking forward to the entertainment, so it was good seeing that you enjoyed it.

  5. Look at the size of most of the cruise Roll Calls, only a very small percent of passengers on any one ship belong to the Roll Calls. I would think that Cruise Critic members are still a minority of the total passenger count. There could also been a number off CC members that look for information about a cruise but do not choice to actively participate.

    As to Mr. Del Rio, Mr. Sheehan or Andy Stuart, few know or care.



    I agree that most cruisers don't seem to know about Cruise Critic, but I wouldn't necessarily measure CC numbers by the Roll Call numbers. Some of us aren't "joiners", but are longtime CC followers anyway. And although I've seen the names listed above now and then in posts here, I couldn't tell anyone much of anything about who they are or what they do for CC, NCL, or cruising in general. Nor do I typically know who the Captain, or Cruise Director, etc, is for most cruises my wife & I take. But I DO tend to know quite a bit about the ship we're on, and the ports we visit. And I have CC to thank for that.

  6. My wife & I will be on the Getaway in January, and as I was reserving shows/dinners today I saw this:



    Wine Lovers The Musical

    Do You Love Wine? Do You Love Comedy? Then we have the show for you! Hailed as “A great evening out” by the New York Post, Wine Lovers – the world’s first The Wine Tasting Musical – brings laughs and libation aboard Norwegian Getaway. Join us in Illusionarium for Wine Lovers, where you taste six sensational wines and enjoy a lovely lunch, all while watching a hilarious musical comedy about the joys of wine and love.



    Anyone done this? Comments/reviews? More interested in reactions to the music and the comedy, rather than the lunch or the wine tastings, but will read all comments with interest. Thanks.

  7. I'm very interested in how they'll handle the platinum dinners now that Le Bistro will be al a carte.


    I called NCL today and spoke with a rep who had just gotten off of the Getaway a few days ago about my upcoming cruise on that ship. I had a few questions, and one of them was just that - - how will the Platinum Bistro dinners be handled. I was told not to reserve anything ahead of time at the Bistro; that it's all handled onboard; and that NCL will be releasing only 25% of the tables in the Bistro to advance reservations, so that there should be plenty of tables available for Platinum folks once they get on board. She called it "the free Bistro meal" while we were discussing it, although I didn't specifically ask if any menu items might be held back from the "free" meal.

  8. Originally Posted by MBMGWM viewpost.gif

    I think the pool bar on the Escape will be on two separate decks, so that's kind of like 2 pool bars.


    Both pool bars have same name?



    There is a "Waves" pool bar on Deck 16, and it looks like there is a "Sun Deck" bar right above it on Deck 17, but both bars appear to come out of the same two-deck structure. At least, that's what the artist's rendering looks like on page 28 of the 'Escape' book from NCL. We'll know better in a few weeks when the first cruisers report back.

  9. This is what I would recommend.

    I did b2b sky, Pearl in Feb with Sky making me Platinium.

    Talked to the latitudes rep on the sky and he contacted the lat person on the Pearl to let him know.

    We got off the sky, walked to the Pearl, right next door and when we got to our room, all our perks were there. Sparkling wine, certificates for laundry, dinner etc.

    Enjoy both cruises and the Lat perks.Lois


    Sounds like good advice. We'll make sure to see the Lat rep on our first cruise (the Escape - - really looking forward to this one!) and hopefully our Getaway cruise thereafter will be platinum w/o any problems. Thanks again for all the quick & informative responses.

  10. Enjoyed your review. As someone who has sailed both Carnival and NCL, I come down on the other side. I'm curious about your age, though, because my wife & I enjoyed the Carnival cruises when we were younger (in our 30's), but definitely prefer NCL now that we're older (in our 50's). NCL's cabins are tiny (we've done interior/oceanview/balcony & aft balcony; no suites), but we tend to use them only as a place to sleep and change clothes, so it isn't a big deal for us.

  11. I would agree.


    First question; are they on the same ship?


    Second question; you state they are almost B2B. Were they one booking?


    Two different ships; same port; both booked at the same time thru a travel agent, but they are separate cruises, not connected in any way.


    Thanks for the replies so far. I'm hoping that the change will be automatic and quick so I can get in on any early Platinum entry onto the ship for that second cruise! If they don't have us as platinum at the check-in desk, I'll get it changed on board.

  12. My wife and I have had multiple sailings over the years on NCL ships. While we're generally aware of the various bronze, gold, etc levels, we haven't paid all that much attention to them in the past. We've scheduled two almost-back-to-back cruises for early 2016 (first cruise ends on a Saturday, and the second leaves the next day on Sunday). We recently noticed that we will go from "Gold" to "Platinum" after the first of those two upcoming cruises. We're wondering how fast the new points will accrue, and more specifically, will we be considered "Platinum" guests on our second cruise that starts about 24 hours after the first one ends. Thanks!

  13. Lol I know the rooms are air conditioned but we've noticed that in the last 5 years, they aren't always very cool. Carnival considers 78 cool enough and RCL wouldn't let me keep my fan several years ago, it had to stay in the "naughty" room even though our room wasn't at all cool. [emoji16] We like it really cool at night, about 70. My hubby thinks since its anew ship with new insulation etc, it will be better.



    We've never cruised on RCL, but we've brought two fans with us, and set them out openly on each side of the bed, on every cruise we've taken, and never heard so much as a peep from the cruise line/cabin steward/etc. Lines we've cruised include NCL, Carnival, Oceania, Holland, Regent & more, so it sounds like RCL is out of step.

  14. We always are back on the ship in plenty of time........except for this one time in St. Thomas. We got stuck in horrible traffic that would just not move and we were biting our nails.....


    Similar story here. We used to live on St. Thomas, so whenever we're in port there we always arrange (ahead of time) for a rental car and then spend our day visiting fave spots and old haunts. We're well aware of the traffic on St. T, so we always allow at least one hour to get to Havensight (where the NCL Epic was docked) from our usual last stop (the K Mart where we stock up on liquor). We hit the motherlode of all traffic jams and came to a complete stop, then just crawled a couple car lengths/stopped; crawled a couple car lengths/stopped; etc. When it was a half-hour to final boarding time and we were still trapped, I thought that I was going to have to sedate my wife; when it got to 15 minutes, I thought I was gonna have to shoot her! She's a worrier and this had put her right over the edge. Anyway, I called the car rental firm and arranged to just leave the car on the dock close to their office so that we could just jump and run when we got there. We got there late and hustled to the ship (with two full liquor boxes and our beachbag & knapsack flailing all about us) and made it with only 5 minutes to spare before the ship was actually scheduled to leave (that is, 25 minutes AFTER the final boarding time). Fortunately the traffic jam had made some other passengers late as well so they kept the gangplank down for the extra half-hour and we made it, huffing & puffing, up the gangway and onto the ship just in time.


    Now my wife wants to start heading back to the ship TWO hours before final boarding time. Yikes!!!

  15. Took my grandson and his parents to dinner tonight for his 20th b-day.

    Tip alone was $40.00:eek:

    When WE were his age, McDonald's hamburgs were 20 cents, fries 15 cents...

    it was all we could afford; we were hungry and happy ! :)


    Yep. I still remember my whole family (5 people) going to Mac's for a Sunday lunch and all of us combined getting fed for under $5 total. Even so, cruise ship meals have to be one of the best vacation deals going these days, whether you're on a special package of meals or not.


    Now if only those damn kids would keep off my lawn.....

  16. Thank you for starting such a wonderful, positive topic. Just reading it is giving me such a feeling of joy and anticipation for my upcoming Escape & Getaway adventure in January 2016!


    I could write so many things, but I think the thing that I love most about cruising is the absolute sense of peace and joy I feel from the moment I step onto the ship. I really can't explain it, but I love feeling it. I am such a worrier by nature, but that falls away when I"m heading up the gangway. Of course when I'm in port I do worry about getting back to the ship on time, but I won't think about that today!

  17. We enjoyed the Posh area on the Epic a year or two ago, and are thinking about trying the Vibe on Escape in 2016. If the cabana OBC is truly a general one, instead of a Vibe-specific one, we might even spring for one of those this time. One question though: Do the Vibe areas close at sunset? Some other set time? I recall being disappointed a time or two when we went up to the Posh on Epic and found it closed for the evening. Thanks.

  18. My DH and I also don't have children. We went on a Christmas/New Years cruise on another line a couple of years ago. It was really nice. As many have mentioned, there are more families, but we were surprised that we didn't see more children more often. The main times we saw them were at the special holiday events. We sat through the entire presentation of Santa giving gifts to the children - it was adorable watching them. There were also children at the tree lighting ceremony, but overall they were very well behaved.


    The ship was decorated beautifully and I would go on a Christmas cruise again. I hope you have a wonderful cruise. Having that beautiful aft balcony won't hurt one bit!

  19. There is some great advice here. One of the things I picked up a long time ago was the concept of cross-packing. Put some of each other's clothes, shoes, etc. into each suitcase. If any of your luggage is delayed, at least you will have something to wear.


    My DH is an ex offensive lineman, so he can't just walk into any store and find clothes. I also had a dear friend who was on a Med cruise in January and she could not find a swimsuit in any of the ports, so she missed out on the spa/hot tubs. The swimwear on the ship was made for slender 20-somethings!

  20. I may have missed it, but are you flying out of Philadelphia? The reason I ask is that in our office (in Virginia) we always try to avoid flying in and out of there if at all possible. It is a definite topic of conversation when someone's flight goes off without a hitch! Of the last 10 flights one of my colleagues or I have taken, there have been significant delays 7 - 8 times. We were not flying in the winter. Many of those delays were due to rain. I'm sure there are hundreds of flights that go off on time every week, but we just seem to hit the ones that don't.


    It will be helpful that you are taking the first flight of the day, so you may be fine, but I would always recommend going in the day/night before if at all possible. I know not everyone can do that, but it does give you more peace of mind. As someone mentioned earlier, it all depends upon your risk comfort level.


    I hope you enjoy your cruise on the Sky! I was on her in February and really had a wonderful time.

  21. I went on my first solo cruise this February (was able to add on to a work trip) and it was on the Sky. DH and I went on a B2B on the Epic last year, so I went from one of the biggest ships to one of the smallest. I had a wonderful time on the Sky.


    As others have mentioned, the crew was warm and friendly. I would highly recommend having your embarkation lunch in the main dining room rather than the buffet. It was such a relaxing start to the cruise. I also enjoyed breakfast in the main dining room one morning. I took all my other meals in the buffet, but I absolutely love eating outside at the Great Outdoors, so I can't really comment specifically on the Sky's specialty restaurants.


    I took one of the first tenders to GSC and had my choice of loungers. For about an hour or so, I felt like I had a private beach almost all to myself. It was wonderful! I came back to the ship for lunch, just as the island was starting to get a bit more crowded.


    I think you and your family will have a wonderful cruise on the beautiful Sky.

  22. We went on a B2B on the Epic earlier this year. On the first leg we had a balcony on deck 10 and really enjoyed it. We moved to an aft balcony on the second leg. We were able to upgrade, as the prices went down significantly on all categories as it got closer to the sailing date. We had booked over a year in advance and had selected our balcony on deck 10 specifically for it's location and angled (larger) size. When the prices started falling, we didn't really want to "upgrade" to a mini-suite, as the locations weren't as desirable to us. When we saw that several aft balconies were available on the second leg, we jumped at that, as we love aft balconies.


    I agree with sdmike that you may want to consider a lower level aft balcony if you choose that category. We were on the 11th floor corner aft (awesome size). The vibrations did not bother us very much, but one night between midnight - 1:00 AM, I was woken up by the booming base from Spice H2O.


    I know you can never tell if prices will rise or fall for a particular cruise, but we were stunned that so many balcony cabins were available (at several hundred dollars less per person than we paid) within about one month of our sail date (last week Jan./1st week of Feb.). DH says if we were booking for this coming winter, he would book an inside and take a chance on getting a balcony later. Of course, we would get an inside in a location that we could live with in case prices didn't drop.


    We were fortunate to get Posh passes on both legs of our trip. We thoroughly enjoyed the experience. To me, having them would absolutely make being in an inside cabin okay. I am not one to take too much sun, and we were always able to find a nice shady spot at Posh.


    I had wanted to sail on Epic since she launched and I loved all 15 nights on her. I wish you a wonderful cruise!

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