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Everything posted by Pearl64

  1. We will need to get from San Pedro port to LAX(probably Delta) on Dec. 14 to catch our noonish flight. Should we rely on either of these ride services or use Super Shuttle or taxi? We will have one medium size bag each(there will be 2 of us). Which is most reliable and reasonable? Bruin Steve, I read you did this recently but you did not have a flight to catch. We do have a TSA and Global Entry which is not at the port. Interested in the cost. thank you.
  2. Thanks to all who responded. I finally got a paper map from AAA to see all the recommended places and routes. I did make reservations at the Hilton Garden in Calabasas and the à Résidence Inn in Yorba Linda. Bruin Steve, your suggestions several years ago were spot on. My husband loved the Luxe hotel near UCLA. You have raised an interesting dilemma: the Getty Villa which we have not been to or the other Getty which we have been to! I can always change these reservations but at least we have them. Thanks for the rental car information. Monterey worked out. Returning the car to San Pedro did work but the agency closes at 1 pm so here’s hoping we can get there from Yorba Linda in 3-4 hours. We didn’t want to leave that early but we will do it to save getting to the port from LAX. two other pieces to complete: flights which are through the roof price wise and figuring how to get to LAX from San Pedro on disembarkation day. Thanks again. We are excited to see Southern California.
  3. We understand that there will be major traffic but it is on my husband’s bucket list. That is why we are doing them on separate days and the library is the only thing we are doing on those days. So any help with car rental questions? Thank you.
  4. We are taking a short Oceania Cruise Dec.7 which leaves out of San Pedro. We want to come in several days early to see the Reagan and Nixon libraries. Here is my tentative plan. Fly in on Tuesday and spend two nights at a hotel close to Reagan and the Getty. See Reagan Library on Wednesday and the Getty on Thursday. Sometime in the afternoon head towards the Nixon library possibly near Corona so we could visit with family. Spend two nights hotel there. Saturday am return rental car and somehow get to the ship which has a 9 pm departure. Is this doable? My questions are where to stay and where to return the car rental. Are there drop offs near the port or at least closer than driving back to LAX? We have a port stop in Monterey. Are there close to the port car rental agencies? We want to do the 17 mile drive. This is a tender port so I am wondering if this is doable. How long does it take to tenders dhow long to drive the ocean route? Thank you in advance for suggestions.
  5. We stayed at a Best Western that was recommended by Rick Steves. We took the train in from the airport. We walked most places except Vinland Park and to see the Fram. Breakfast was included and you were encouraged to make sandwiches for lunch. They even provided the waxed paper. Prices will be high in Norway for food and hotels.
  6. My question has to do with not being familiar with both Air Canada and YYZ. I am used to Delta where I can track my bags. I thank you, Flyer Talker, for answering my question.
  7. We are flying Air Canada tomorrow CLT-Toronto-Dubai. We have 9 hours between flights in Toronto. I am fearful that during that time our bags may get “lost”. AC said our bags would be checked through to Dubai. I believe our flight is the only direct flight to Dubai. So, should we be worried? To protect ourselves a little we are taking a carryon with a couple of days’ worth of clothing. We are flying in three days before our cruise. This isn’t an overnight but the timing is similar. And, we know not to pack in checked bags medicine and electronics. Thanks.
  8. We are flying Air Canada tomorrow CLT-Toronto-Dubai. We have 9 hours between flights in Toronto. I am fearful that during that time our bags may get “lost”. AC said our bags would be checked through to Dubai. I believe our flight is the only direct flight to Dubai. So, should we be worried? To protect ourselves a little we are taking a carryon with a couple of days’ worth of clothing. We are flying in three days before our cruise. This isn’t an overnight but the timing is similar. And, we know not to pack in checked bags medicine and electronics. Thanks.
  9. Thank you so much, Simon. Your information has been very helpful. We will be in Dubai next week so fingers crossed. I realize the flowers may be past prime. We have one full day and two half days before our ship sails. I read your previous posts about transportation. We will see how we cope with the heat. Patty
  10. Does anyone know if the Miracle Gardens are still open? I tried to find out from their website but no luck. I am interested in knowing about the last week in April this year. Also, is this worthwhile? Thanks.
  11. Thank you for verifying. We will make certain our wine is purchased before we hit Italian waters. This additional tax will come as a big surprise to many on our cruise. Is it just good and alcohol? Does it apply to services like the spa?
  12. Our cruise Dubai to Barcelona on the Nautica will have stops in Italy (Trapani) and end in Barcelona. As I recall on past cruises we had additional tax while we were in Spanish and Italian waters. Does anyone know if this is still true, the extra percentage, and if it includes anything besides alcohol? Thank you. Several of us on our roll call would like this information. I did try the search function but since the overhaul of this site, I have not figured everything out yet.
  13. Thank you, Simon. The reason I asked if there was a stop near the port we could walk to is this. We have an overnight in Dubai so we are thinking of dropping off our luggage, checking in, and then going back out to explore. The next day we have the morning until about 1 pm to explore. If we need to get a taxi to get to the Bigbus, we might as well not do the BigBus and just use taxis. I am trying to make the most of our time and money. I hope this sheds some light to your question. Patty
  14. I am trying to finalize our time in Dubai. Is there a BigBus stop close to the port and can one walk there? Do the tickets start when you first use them and the time on them moves forward from that time? Concerning the Night Tour, it is included in the 48 hour pass, correct? Does one need to line up way ahead of time as I read there are only a certain number of spots are available. I’ve been told there is a 20 AED surcharge on taxi pickup at the port. Does this also apply going to the port? What would the approximate taxi fare from Dubai International airport to 4 points on Sheik Zayed Road? From hotel to the port? What is the tipping policy in Dubai? Thank you so much as you have been extremely helpful. Patty
  15. Thank you, Anne. You have been most helpful. Patty
  16. Hi Anne, I have read a lot of your advice but I need some help in deciding what to do in Dubai prior to our cruise. We are staying at the Four Points Sheraton on Sheikh Zayed Road. We arrive on the evening of April 24. We have a tour to Abu Dabi on the 25th. We have Friday to explore as well as some time the next day Saturday before we board the ship. We overnight in Dubai and depart at 3 pm April 28 a Sunday. I think Ramadan will be going on at this time so that may impact what we are able to do. We want to see the Dubai Mall(I hope this is the right one) and the souqs especially the gold and the textile ones. We thought we could see the souqs and Deira on Friday but did not know how the Muslim Holy Day would affect this. The Dubai Museum is open later on a Friday. Is this worth while to see? I also saw a Sheikh Mohamed Centre for Cultural Understanding. I need to see when this is open. I understand they have 90 minute tours. If you had to choose between the Dubai Museum and the Cultural Centre, which one would be better for understanding Dubai? We will be seeing the mosque in Abu Dabi so is it essential to try to see the Jumeirah Mosque? If I understand correctly we could only see this from 10 to 11:15 am on Saturday. Lastly, when is best for seeing the Mall? Would two hours be enough time the day the ship departs? Or should we try later on Friday? Seeing the Burj Khalifa can be done anytime from the outside. Going inside is quite pricey--not sure if that is worth it. I apologize for the lengthy post but I cannot figure out logistics of getting to these places. I know time of day, traffic, all enters into the plan. Is the best way taxi to get around? I don't want to miss getting back to the ship. We are so looking forward to seeing Dubai. Thank you for any insight you have in our plans. Patty
  17. We were on the Marina TA Miami to Lisbon in 2017. Leslie Jon was also the CD. There was an Anglican priest onboard who helped Leslie with the service. We had the string quartet perform appropriate music. This was a full service with communion for those who wished. There was also a Good Friday service as well. For the Jewish passengers there was a Seder dinner. I was impressed that Oceania responded as they did. As far as the food goes I have little recollection of that. For me the services were more important to me.
  18. Disembarkation was easy easy. We were among the first group to disembark the Sirena around 8:15. Going through customs was very quick. There were cabs ready but we called Lyft which was very efficient. Security at MIA was reasonably quick since we had TSA preapproval. We were at our gate by 9:15. There were five other ships disembarking as well. Even with reports of blue flu, we had no issues. Just wanted to report our experience.
  19. I have been reading this thread with great interest. We will be disembarking the Sirena on the 13th. Our flight is a little before 2 pm. I thought that was a safe time until I read this thread. I checked the port schedule and there are 6 ships that day. I just roughly added up the passengers and got between 19,000 and 20,000! Granted some will have driven, some will be staying in Florida a few extra days, but not that many. We do have Global Entry with TSA. Will that help? I know Miami can be a zoo. I am trying to decide whether we should get off super early after the ship is cleared or wait a little. Also is Uber or Lyft the way to go to the airport? I tried my car service I used before but they do not go to MIA. We are flying Delta if that makes a difference. Will we be okay? Any special tactics to do? Thanks.
  20. We had an instance of flying from GSP to Newark and we were four hours late leaving. It was in a small United plane. Newark was giving priority to the bigger planes. The crew at GSP says it happens all the time. I was trying to avoid missing our connection. And, it made no difference whether we took the earlier flight or the later one, the same equipment is used. I don’t much care for this plane either but we really had no choice unless we used a different airline. Thanks.
  21. Thank you for all the responses. Unfortunately we are flying using miles so no access to the top lounge. Trucker Dave, we changed to the earlier flight for a number of reasons: never flown out of CLT or Toronto, flying in a CRJ200–small plane which may not get clearance to either take off or land, unfamiliar with the layout of Pearson, plus we are in our 70s. The earlier flight reduces a lot of stress. We don’t fly all that often so do not have the experience of others. I will look into a day room at the Sheraton and may consider going into the city dependent on what luggage we may have with us. I also appreciate the good comments on the long flight. Thank you all again.
  22. We are flying next April from CLT to Dubai on Air Canada. Originally we had almost three hours between flights but flight changes have whittled that down to two hours. We were afraid of that scenario as that was the shortest time allowed by the airline. One never knows if flights will be delayed and we would need some sort of passport check as well. The only other flight that would work leaves much earlier. I am not looking at going into Toronto. Are there any close hotels where we could get a day room? I know that would mean clearing security again. Anything of interest at the airport? We are flying business so am not sure if we would have access to the AC lounge. I also don’t know what that is like. We would like to have a nice leisurely dinner before we board at 10: 30 pm. That’s way too late for us to have dinner. Suggestions for places to eat at the airport? We have never flown through Toronto so are open to suggestions from those who have experience. Another question: do we need to have anything else besides our passports to fly from the US to Canada? We have done land many times but never by air. Thank you.
  23. How do you propose getting to the ship? Many cruises embark or disembark from Dubai. I would think one would need to go through customs at some point. I have asked for clarification from my TA. We still have time before our April cruise but we do need to get our ducks in a row!
  24. We had a stop in Dakar on our transatlantic last year. Quite interesting. We did a Tours by Locals tour but I did not organize it. Goree Island is not to be missed. It was the last place the Africans saw before coming to America as slaves. The boat taking us there was packed with tourists as well as locals who sell their wares on the island. We also saw two monuments commemorating their freedom. There were many markets which appeared to be similar. I would have liked to have gotten out of the city but we did not do that. It was a Sunday so many places were closed so we just saw buildings from the outside. We were glad we experienced Dakar.
  25. We are coming in early before our Crystal cruise in August. We are staying at the Columbus Motor Inn. I managed to get noon tickets to Alcatraz. My question is this. We want to see the Giants play against Pittsburgh later the same day. The game is at 7:15. Can we do this? Any place close by the pier to grab something to eat? I guess we could wait until we get to the ball park if necessary. How do we go from the pier for Alcatraz to the ball park? Public transportation or Uber or taxi? Then how do we get back to our hotel? Also, when I looked on the Giant website for tickets, I noticed a box for a coupon. Where might one find these? Thank you locals for any advice. We are excited to see your city.
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