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cynbar

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  1. With a drinks package, you can get an included drink anywhere. The biggest advantage of Michael's Club (The Retreat on some chips) is the service. It is rarely crowded, and the bartenders and waiters will make an effort to get to know you and what you like to drink. If a certain brand os whatever is available anywhere on the ship, they will make an effort to have it availble for you. This can be a relaxing spot when the other bars are jammed such as the pre-dinner hour. Most evenings have some canapés available to go with your drinks. And there are sometimes special events, such as entertainment by one of the ship's entertainers or a chance to meet the officers. All is all, we think that Michael's Club is one of the better suite features. And, for those few suite guests who booked without a drinks package, drinks here are always free.
  2. So far, we're saving the extra money not spent on cruising. We haven't planned our next trip, want to wait and see what opens up when and how it's going. But I doubt a cruise will be on our horizon for awhile. most likely a road trip to somewhere in the USA we haven't been to. It just seems too risky to get on a ship for the foreseeable future. I would hate to be one of those passengers quarantined in my cabin on a ship with a COVID-19 outbreak! It's enough to scare me back onto land.
  3. But you have made final payment, even though it wasn't required yet.
  4. I think it's hard to tell at this point. We do see a lot of posts here from cruisers who can't wait to cruise again, but Cruise Critic members are usually devoted cruisers, so I don't think we can confirm a trend from that. How will the less addicted cruisers feel, and how many non cruisers will feel the urge to book one for the first time? The industry has certainly gotten a lot of bad publicity in recent months. I have been a faithful cruiser but would be reluctant to book one now until a vaccine arrives. We'll have to wait and see how the final numbers shake down after all these restrictions are finally lifted. Impossible to accurately predict at this point.
  5. If Princess didn't mind, they would allow you to book 2 cabins, with everyone in the right place and still getting the discount. I do think this is different than a family trip where husband and wife are each booked into a separate cabin with kids, then change around once onboard. I'm sure lots of people use this scheme, but I'm not sure this public forum is the place to get tips. Sort of like questions about if it's easy to share a beverage package........
  6. I think one of the big reasons the cruise lines are reluctant to cancel too far ahead is financial. Think of the logistical nightmare of having to refund all those payments and deposits, all at once. The cruise lines are already in some financial jeopardy, that might send them over the edge. I read an article today about NCL's struggles, and how they are really hoping that many cruisers will not demand a refund but instead accept a FCC of 125%. They are just trying to stay in business. I can't say that I blame them, but I hope they consider how difficult they are making it for their loyal customers who need to plan. For the record, I don't think there is much chance of cruising returning until spring of 2021, may be longer. I hope I'm wrong.......
  7. Every policy is different, so read closely all the details before buying. Pre-existing conditions is usually the sticking point. Most policies say that you must buy your insurance policy within a certain amount of time of your deposit on your cruise (if that is all you are insuring), or the deposit on the 1st section you purchase (if you are insuring the whole trip, cruise plus airfare plus hotel plus whatever) to get a waiver of the pre existing conditions restrictions. Some policies have a look back period, for instance no changes in a pre existing condition for 60 days before you put down a deposit. It's important to remember that if you do have a pre existing condition, many illnesses that required you to cancel could have some connection to it, giving insurance an excuse to not pay if you don't follow the guidelines. And the pre existing conditions usually also applies to anyone else who might cause you to cancel, such as a parent with a fragile medical condition. Anyway, consider your own circumstances and make sure you understand the policy. We generally book a third party company so we can choose the terms and insure our whole trip, and we are careful to study it closely.
  8. We have had a suite on Princess as well as many different suite classes on Celebrity. We enjoyed our Princess experience and would do it again, at this point it's all about itinerary for us. The suite breakfast on Princess was fantastic, fancier than you see on Celebrity with top notch food and service --- a great way to start the day. The bathroom was fantastic, akin to what you find in the fancier hotels. We enjoy Luminae but are sometimes underwhelmed by the food, thought club dining was a nice upgrade over regular Princess anytime dining (it does seem this varied by ship.) We didn't miss the butler, room service did a fine job of bringing us meals when ordered. Service was excellenteverywhere. We would definitely book another Princess suite if the price and itinerary were right.
  9. We have had many wonderful cruises on Celebrity and are loyal to the brand --- but I don't see that we have any obligation to bail them out. It is still a business arrangement. As long as they have a product we want, we will buy it when it is up and running again. They aren't family who needs and deserves our financial support. Personally, I'm waiting to see how all of this plays out before deciding where to travel next. As a poster above said, if you can happily afford to lose money (or wait for your refund), then go for it. I rather doubt that Celebrity would be too sympathetic if I were having financial issues --- I'm pretty sure they would proceed as "business as usual."
  10. Princess cruisers tend to "clean up" for the evenings. It is nowhere near as formal as it used to be, don't worry about a tux or a suit or even a blazer on formal night. Evening wear for men is usually khakis/slacks or nice jeans with a shirt, maybe a nicer shirt or formal nights. Ladies wear slacks or capris or a sundress, with a nice top and often a little sparkle for formal nights. Some people change after dinner in the MDR, but I wouldn't say that is the norm. Generally, shorts are not allowed in the evenings for dining (except the buffet) ---- some will chime in and say it has been done, but it is in the vast minority. Princess is fancier in the evenings than Carnival and NCL, but it's nothing to stress over. Wear what you would choose for a nicer restaurant in your hometown.
  11. It's so nice to see a positive, upbeat post in these uncertain times --- and one that talks about actual cruising instead of cancellations, pandemics and so on!
  12. Jat1977, your post asks for our opinions on what we would do in your situation. If it were me, I would cancel now and ensure getting 25% back. But I have to say , I don't understand why you posted looking for support of the idea that Princess should either refund your money or give you a future cruise credit for the full amount. Why would they do that, when you had a chance to purchase CFAR insurance but chose not to? The cruise you would take in the future precludes them from selling the cabin to a paying customer. Just think of the numbers involved if they let anyone cancel with a full cruise credit. This isn't meant to be snarky, it's just a fact. Anyone who books has the option to forego insurance, purchase regular travel insurance, or buy a CFAR policy. Anything less, you take your chances.
  13. If your husband isn't critically ill, I would go. A lot of money will be lost if you both cancel,, and he may well feel guilty about that. If you can make a plan for him, personally, I would head for the port, especially as you say you don't mind traveling solo.
  14. The atmosphere on Celebrity is dignified, refined, elegant. There is entertainment, but not as much as on some of the other lines. Music plays around the ship, but whether it's your personal style varies and dictates how much you enjoy it. Nothing like rock climbing or ice shows or parades is offered. There are not a lot of poolside activities. Ambiance is sort of like a country club instead of a night club. Food is very good, service is usually excellent. Age of the passengers varies from cruise to cruise, but it's generally not a senior demographic. We love Celebrity, it suits us, but we're not really looking to be entertained. It's not for everyone, however.
  15. Don't miss the International Cafe, Celebrity and NCL don't have anything like it. You'll find it on the lower floor of the atrium, and it offers an assortment of "small plates" throughout the day. No charge, with an occasional exception I think. In the morning, you'll find delicious donuts and pastries plus an egg sandwich. The rest of the day, it's small sandwiches and salads and soups plus sweets. The coffee bar is right next to it. We love grabbing a snack and just relaxing at one of the tables, watching all the people go by.
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