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Everything posted by Wayfairers

  1. Met many interesting people on cruises, but the most interesting was at breakfast sailing into Honolulu. My husband and I were at a table for 4. The other couple included a guy who was in the barracks sleeping when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor. His stories were incredible including when he looked out of the window and saw a Japanese plane flying by at window level. His wife was also very interesting with her perspective of being a military wife at the time with a husband based in Honolulu. Perfect timing too!
  2. I google the normal tip amounts for every port and tip accordingly. It has been easy to find a normal tipping range for tour guides (private, small group or bus tour are all usually listed), cabs, restaurants, etc for almost every port we have visited around the world (I do this for land trips too, by searching by city, or country if we aren’t in a city). I have been amazed how much it varies.
  3. Nah….just rarely cruise for 10 days or less or in the Caribbean the last few years. I prefer no dress code enforced. To me the meal experience is the same regardless of what I’m wearing. I know that doesn’t apply to everyone though.
  4. It has been a long time since we cruised with Carnival (geez…with anybody due to Covid!). But, last time we were on Carnival there was no enforced MDR dress code and I suspect it hasn’t gotten more strict since then.
  5. Thanks everyone! It sound like it really depends upon who is making the reservation whether of not the FCC is used for downpayment. I also wonder if it depends upon the total cost of the cruise you are booking. I’ll ask when I book and maybe I’ll get a yes. We also have FCD and I know that will be used first for the downpayment. I checked our accounts (I should have done that originally) and the book by date has been changed to match the sail by date of 12/31/22 without me asking so that is a nice surprise.
  6. Do you mind sharing how you got them to use your FCC as the deposit?
  7. Thanks so much for the great info on using FCC! Appreciate you taking the time to share your knowledge! I’ll call HAL about possibly extending my book by/cruise by dates. With everything currently so uncertain, I’m reluctant to go through planning another trip that could so easily get cancelled. I’m thinking of booking cruises that would be our transportation to and from Europe next year with a few months in Europe between the cruises and prefer to wait to book. I didn’t want to wait on hold just to be told that extending the dates isn’t an option.
  8. My FCC book by date expires mid September and I have to sail by the end of 2022. I’m thinking many of you have booked using FCC and I have several questions. Has anyone been able to use FCC for the downpayment? Is it possible to get an extension on the book by/use by dates? Is there a lead time on booking and applying the FCC to the booking? I won’t wait until the day it expires to book, but wondering if I need to allow a few weeks for processing. I’m guessing the FCC is applied to the cost of the cruise and when it is time for the next payment you pay the remainder. What happens if the cruise is less than the FCC you have? Is the entire 1st cruise paid for by FCC and then a 2nd (or more) cruise has to be booked to use the remainder? yeah,, I have a lot of FCC from 3 cruises that didn’t happen in 2020. What happens if that cruise is cancelled by the cruise line? Am I correct to assume that the FCC is reissued with a new book by/use by date and the new money paid is refunded?
  9. Haven’t experienced it but from what I’ve read FCC is returned as FCC and cash paid is returned as FCC unless you request a refund.
  10. Might seem like a radical idea but have you ever considered that some people may do research before making the “I have never understood” statement? I’ve done my research (person to person, online) and still don’t understand the logic of those people who don’t want vaccines.
  11. No didn’t see that program. Were they saying anything else important? I have never understood people who resist getting vaccinations. I’m sure there will people who don’t get this one, unfortunately. I’m getting one as soon as it is available to me.
  12. Oh my! That’s crazy. we are hoping to be on the 2021 Grand Africa with you. But, waiting to book because we already have $5500+ in FCC with HAL and really don’t want to let them hold more of our money until we know what is happening long term in the cruise world. Luckily they dated our FCC based on the date awarded rather than date cancelled so we’ve got a while to use it.
  13. Thanks for the info. I suspected FCC would be returned as FCC but wasn’t sure Hoping that would be a way to get our cash out of HAL.
  14. We have FCC from cancelled 2020 cruises. I know there have been several threads on FCC and forgive me if these questions have already been answered on another thread. I did a search before posting. I believe if I book a new cruise the FCC cannot be used for the downpayment....is that correct? What happens to that FCC if I book a cruise, use the FCC for the cruise payment and that cruise gets cancelled? Do I have the option to get the money as a refund at that point or does it get returned as FCC since it started as FCC?
  15. Thanks! I’ll push my TA to get approval before booking and if she says no I’ll call HAL.
  16. Thanks y’all! I have discussed this option with my travel agent and she said she would ask HAL for the variance and she believes it would be granted. But, she said I have to book the cruise before asking HAL. Is that true for those that have done this?
  17. We would like to take the Grand Africa next year (if Covid is not an issue) but need to be in Europe early October for a wedding. I am going to call HAL to see if they will let us join the cruise at the first port stop, Mediera, rather than embark in Fort Lauderdale then do the rest of the cruise returning to Fort Lauderdale. All we would miss is the transatlantic crossing. I know we wouldn’t get a discount for those missed days. I’ve done some research and it appears sometimes a request is approved and something it is rejected but I don’t know why. Has anyone made this type of request before? Did you call a specific Dept or just the normal 1-800 number?
  18. You must have very good hygiene practices or a great immune system. Congrats for never having the flu! I used to not get the flu shot because I thought I had had the flu and it wasn’t bad. In my mid 20s I actually got the flu. It was horrible and kept me in bed for a week. In just 20 minutes I went from happily skiing down a mountain to not feeling right to feeling so bad I didn’t even want to walk to the car. The past 30 years I always get the shot. I never want to feel that bad for that long again. I am looking forward to getting the Covid shot when it is available
  19. It still is listed here.....https://www.hollandamerica.com/content/dam/hal/marketing-assets/mariner-society/documents/Holland-America-cruises-Mariner-Reward-Chart.pdf
  20. What!?!? I hadn’t noticed! Wine package discounts and free laundry are the best two perks of 4 star!
  21. Well said. I don’t expect cruising to start at full capacity when a vaccine is available. I believe once a vaccine is available to the general public that there will still be outbreaks amongst those who refuse the vaccine and because of that I hope we will have to show proof of vaccination when boarding any public transportation...planes, cruise ships, ferries, trains, etc. Another thought....even with a yearly flu vaccination you can still get the flu, either because you caught a strain that wasn’t in the vaccination or you didn’t build enough antibodies, but it is almost always a lighter case than you would have had without the vaccination. No reason to believe that won’t be the case for Covid.
  22. IMO Covid will join colds, the flu and other perpetual illnesses...including those where people choose to skip the preventive vaccination then get the illness.....I think it is here to stay and we will have to get a yearly vaccine like the flu vaccine.
  23. I thought the negative test might be ok until the issues with the cruise line (cannot remember the cruise line name) that just tried to do a cruise to nowhere and a person who tested negative multiple times preboarding tested positive later on board. Another time that a pre-test didn’t work......DH ended up with a horrific infection in the mid 1980s when he was tested negative for an infection on Friday for a tonsillectomy on Monday. But, he had infected tonsils on Monday when they were removed. Over the weekend he developed an infection but it hadn’t progressed to the point of him or the doctor knowing there was a problem until it was too late. He lost an entire semester of college due to that.
  24. Good point and simple solution. People will either have a vaccine or not. If the answer is no, then no cruising.
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