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sparks1093

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About sparks1093

  • Rank
    20,000+ Club

About Me

  • Location
    Enosburg Falls, VT
  • Interests
    Cruising
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    CCL, NCL
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Aruba

Recent Profile Visitors

395 profile views
  1. sparks1093

    cheers and cruise cash bar

    That's a good question, I know it can be purchased with the Sail and Sign card (which cruise cash bar would be linked to) but I'm not sure at all about using Cheers.
  2. sparks1093

    cheers and cruise cash bar

    As I understand it if you buy drinks before the 15 limit is reached you can pay for them but if you wait until it's reached you can't. You could use cruise cash bar or just have them charged to your account. I presume you are sailing on Carnival, of course.
  3. sparks1093

    Almond Milk

    I've looked for it and haven't found it. I never thought to ask anyone though so it might be something they have in the back.
  4. sparks1093

    Passport Confusion

    You said you were trying to understand why someone would leave the country without a passport and I tried to explain it, I guess it was a rhetorical statement. I take recommendations for what they are and I do what works best for me.
  5. sparks1093

    Cruiseing with a Toddler with autism

    We cruised with our middle son who has Asperger's when he was a teen and we made sure to avoid his triggers as much as possible. He had a great time. For your son avoiding loud noises is of course key (and I'm not sure how loud it needs to be but maybe he can tolerate the noise around the pool but the ship's whistle would be too much). If he has a comfort item that helps you would of course want to make sure it's available. Finally he may or may not want to participate in the kid's club, which is something our son had no interest in. Hope you all have a blast!
  6. sparks1093

    Passport question

    Maybe you do but everything I've read indicates that the expiration date of your new passport is ten (or five) years from the date it's issued. I'll have to wait until 2025 to find out (and maybe by then they will change it, who knows).
  7. sparks1093

    Tips for Travel To/From the Port

    I presume your last line was supposed to be a refundable $3000 fare and of course the answer is obvious. SRF's post was driven by the number of posts lately, by first time cruisers, who were upset that the cruise line had done something (charter, itinerary change) that left them holding the bag on non-refundable airfare, etc. I think most first timers don't realize exactly how much can be changed by the cruise line within the terms of the contract. There are many things that need to be considered when traveling and the more information that is available the more informed people can be (if, of course, they are doing their due diligence in the first place, which I suspect many don't do). I agree with the last line of your last post wholeheartedly- there is no "one sized fits all" solution.
  8. sparks1093

    Passport question

    In some countries this is so, but not the US. Your new passport expires 10 years after it's issued.
  9. sparks1093

    Passport Confusion

    I don't see it that way. REAL ID has two main goals (as I understand it but I haven't done extensive reading on the topic)- 1) to increase the security of documents issued by the states regarding identity and 2) to ensure those who are being issued IDs have the legal right to be here. And not having a REAL ID compliant ID only means that you need another form of acceptable ID in order to enter property under Federal jurisdiction, such as a Federal building or an airport. It's not just about domestic flights although that is the piece that would affect most US citizens. The WHTI regulations addressed the security concerns presented by travelers coming from outside the country, REAL ID addresses those inside the country. So WHTI was actually the first step.
  10. sparks1093

    Passport Confusion

    None of this changes DHS's assessment of the national security risk posed by a US citizen on a closed loop cruise and that assessment would need to change before any changes would be made to the regulations. Requiring someone to have a passport wouldn't prevent them from doing something illegal.
  11. sparks1093

    Passport Confusion

    LOL. When someone asks if they can travel without a passport I tell them what the rules are and let them make up their own mind. Then there are all kinds of little side-bar conversations that come up within the thread and I respond to those as I see fit. In our present side-bar I have explained what I would do and why I would do it regarding passport renewal. People can take that for whatever they want to and however they want to. If my way happens to work for them then great, if not well, that's great too. As I have said numerous times travel documentation isn't a one sized fits all proposition.
  12. sparks1093

    Passport Confusion

    A lot depends on their personal situation. I can leave the country as easily as taking a left hand turn out of my driveway and then the first left and driving 8 miles. If that is the only way that I'll ever leave the country why would I spend the money on a passport if a less expensive alternative is available? I know many people in my community that are in that very position and they all opt for the less expensive alternative. If a family is only going to travel on closed loop cruises once a year or every other year and it's the only type of travel they can do the same thing applies. Yes, there is a small risk if something happens but the only risk is delay in getting home and as long as they are comfortable with that premise then it's a legitimate choice for them to make.
  13. sparks1093

    Passport Confusion

    Alas, even now that we are empty nesters spontaneous travel is not in our cards (other than maybe a quick overnight trip to a nearby city for a date night) so not having a passport isn't a concern. I also have a passport issuing agency 18 miles from my house, so if necessary could have a passport very quickly if I actually needed it. Just like anything else regarding this issue everyone has to make the decision that works best for themselves and not worry about what other people do.
  14. sparks1093

    Tips for Travel To/From the Port

    And how much of what you say (which is certainly wise and based on a lot of experience) actually pertains to the typical first time cruiser (which is who SRF's post was directed to)? Yes, there is a lot to be weighed regarding options etc. but the main thing to keep in mind is that nothing about a cruise is guaranteed.
  15. sparks1093

    Passport Confusion

    Could be, but I'm still convinced that had DHS made a different determination regarding the national security risk posed by US citizens on a closed loop cruise that the exception wouldn't exist.
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