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John Reid

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Everything posted by John Reid

  1. I can't speak to your experience, but in 25 cruises (most on RCCL) they have always announced it with any disembarking instructions. Additionally, it has always been printed in the Cruise Compass in the blurb about the next day's port. Can it be overlooked by new cruisers? Absolutely. Is it overlooked by the cruise lines? Never in my experience.
  2. November 1 at Port of Baltimore. D+ still had priority security check (front of a separate line) and priority check-in. I will report again after boarding December 1.
  3. The ironically funny thing is that they were experiencing all the same problems accessing the choices I made. It took so long that they had to send a printout of the results to my cabin. No relief on that front.
  4. I boarded Grandeur on November 1 and made a Next Cruise appointment for the next morning. I was going to book Anthem for the fall and one Grandeur for next year. The OBC promotion at the time available to everyone (online) included $100 for balcony bookings. What I encountered: No bonus for booking more than six months out. No OBC beyond what everyone could get online. $100 per person deposits. This is my favorite - The $100 could be taken as OBC or a $100 reduction in cruise price (lowering the odds of ever getting a price drop). I found the process and printed promotional material very deceptive. At a Next Cruise seminar held in the Centrum on a sea day, someone asked "So what is the advantage of booking onboard?" The primary part of the answer was that you could make your choices in a more relaxed atmosphere." The other part of the answer was "Our agents have been on many of these ships and can give you insider information about what they are like." I gagged. More fallout from a stockholder driven economy versus a consumer driven economy.
  5. The Ubered folks did just fine. Pickup was smooth for them; Uber phoned when they were close and pulled up just past the cab line. I believe we were at dock F; it's a fairly long walk through the terminal to get to the exit. My wife was less than adventurous this cruise; no beach in Port Canaveral. I head south in Antigua to Darkwood Beach. It is a bit rustic but has a grill and bar. I guess it's the bathrooms that are somewhat rustic. Beautiful beach. Most of the people on the public transportation system I use get off at Jolly Beach. It is closer to the ship and seems to be popular. I'll be there December 6. Two Darkwood shots.
  6. Not sure what your thoughts have to do with RCCL pretending it is going to be ready by May.
  7. Kids, Is there a way to use the D+ reduction of Internet price when booking in advance through Cruise Planner? Thanks in advance.
  8. The actual Diamond Lounge is very small for this size ship. The overflow into the Music Hall accommodates many more, but it is not a given and is not the Diamond Lounge. It can be eliminated as overflow at any time.
  9. Back from the not-so high seas. Charleston was not a stop. I wandered alone down to the transportation area at the Miami port. I'd say 75% of the passengers heading to South Beach or Bayside were taking Uber or Lyft. There is a cab line. Three people sharing would make it reasonable to South Beach - $22 to $25 one way. Being solo, I approached someone with a sign for a shuttle to SB for $10.00. That seemed reasonable. I asked when it would leave. She called out to a rep down a bit further to see if he was going there. He tries to sell me a trip to Bayside, the touristy area at the end of the bridge. I was now starting to feel like I was at the cab stand in St. Lucia. I go back to the woman and say it is customary to actually have a van going to the location they are selling. They took care of it immediately; they stopped holding the signs. Something shady was going on with some hustler assembling rides using cabs, vans, rickshaws - anything that moved. He set up four to SB in a yellow cab for $7.00 per person. They would have done a bit better at the cab stand. Then he set up a group that needed to bring a mobility scooter. Looked like about five people together. He tells them he can arrange it and gets on his phone. A van with a luggage trailer pulls up (like the hotel shuttles) and they pick up the scooter and put it in the luggage trailer. God knows how they were going to get back. I saw a couple ask some sort of attendant in the area about walking over the bridge to Bayside. From where I had been standing, I could see people walking across the bridge! I decided that watching all this was entertainment enough; I went back to the ship. I'll watch an old episode of Miami Vice to see South Beach. You'll have my beach report for the 12-day around December 14. Have a good sail.
  10. I was at Coco Cay Wednesday, 11/7. Lots of signs touting the "Perfect Day" coming May 2019. I don't see that pier being ready January or February or March or ???. While taking the tender, we counted five workers on the pier and barges. And two were just staring at the horizon. I don't see how the new attractions on the island have any chance of being ready by May, either. They are selling people an expected experience that I feel won't exist by the advertised time.
  11. Well, my friend, we meet again. I came to the Florida board to find the best way to South Beach from the port, also. We will be there Sunday. Crazy prices; it's less than six miles. When will you be there?
  12. Even certified service dogs are not allowed in chairs or in laps. On a leash on the floor or carried while walking. I made a suggestion once before and got negative feedback. I'll make it again. The ONLY way to stop this entitled charade is to make the reaction to it more of a problem than declining passage to an owner. Stand up in dining and LOUDLY protest. Refuse to be seated anywhere within eyesight of a pet. Get others and flood customer service with the same com[plaint. Schedule an appointment with the hotel director and write down the response for future reference. Remember, the ship may not be able to ask for certification, but passengers can. And there are those, and rightfully so, who feel it would embarrassing to an an actual service dog owner. Don't worry, they are easy to recognize. Not in strollers, not dressed up, not defecating in public places, not barking, not seen alone with different adults, and not being available to be pet. Protest. Be more of a pain to RCCI than they are.
  13. I like Paul's laid-back style. I miss him on Grandeur.
  14. Snacks on a Plane??? Wasn't that a Samuel L. Jackson movie?
  15. On a Canada/NE cruise on Grandeur less than two years ago, when we arrived in Boston (our first stop) we found out about a death in my wife's family in the Albany area. We spoke to guest services and they approved her departure in Boston so she could drive to Albany. They charged the $300 fine and explained it was a government fee, not theirs. But there was absolutely no problem about leaving the cruise early, otherwise. We contacted RCCL customer relations10 days later to check to see if there were waivers for emergencies. They explained that a waiver is given when a ship is diverted by weather or mechanical problems but not for individuals. I thanked them, and we later received a $300 OBC for our next cruise - unsolicited. I thought that was above and beyond.
  16. And I've been hanging a giant watermelon magnet. No wonder it has been so quiet.
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