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Everything posted by meatloafsfan

  1. We've stayed there, it's a decent hotel. There is a restaurant in the hotel for a quick bite along with a bar (so if having a drink in the evening is your thing, it's easy). There is an IHOP not too far away for breakfast if you want something more than what's offered at the hotel restaurant (which is a bit on the expensive side with a small breakfast menu). But the hotel was clean, staff were pleasant and the hotel itself was relatively quiet (especially compared to when we stayed at the Residence Inn in the same loop).
  2. I guess my phrasing should have been: "From a consumer perspective, booking the Early Saver rate is to ensure that if Carnival drops the price after final payment - which for many years seemed to be the average time for price drops - your price can be adjusted so that you're going to be paying the same as someone who was able to take advantage of a sale within 75-90 days of sailing."
  3. Price drops before final payment usually aren't an issue with most rates (i.e. if you can cancel without penalty, then you can always adjust because you can cancel and rebook at the better rate); early saver rate is really to protect people after final payment.
  4. So book with ES and then price match to the lower rate. You never know if the price will go down further. Sometimes yes, sometimes no.
  5. Sometimes on the longer cruises (Journey cruises of 9 days or more), they vary between the brunch menu and the separate breakfast/lunch menus. On longer cruises, it pays to check out the hub app (or funtimes) to see what's up (again, doesn't apply to regular 3-4-5-7 day cruises but since yours is 10 days, it might).
  6. Yes on the Spirit Class ships [Pride, Spirit, Legend, Miracle] 4207 (fully accessible) does - 4202, 4203 and 4205 (ambulatory accessible) do not.
  7. And I think they've ended that as well. Now when I price out on Princess, it makes me select the actual category (and shows no availability when there's no cabins in that class). We really enjoyed cruising on the Caribbean Princess but there's only 1 accessible cabin for 3 on that ship (my mom is disabled and is a full time wheelchair user and my dad uses a cane so I assist my mother and do a bit for him so it's much easier to be in one cabin) and the 1 accessible cabin for 3 is a Window Suite. It no longer shows availability except in the "Mini Suite" category where now all of the Window Suite cabins show. It used to automatically upgrade us from lesser cabin categories but not any more.
  8. Why not contact the special needs department of the cruise line? Depending on the nature of the medical equipment, they may have an alternative solution (or may recommend that based on your family member's overall needs that an accessible cabin is the only way to accommodate all of their needs). They may be able to remove some less-necessary furniture from the room to make space or figure something else. Better to ask directly.
  9. No, "proper service animals" don't work 24/7. Above is a quote from a person who is assisted by a service dog - no one - not humans, not animals - works 24/7.
  10. I was on a cruise where the owner of a service animal had the dog in a cart-thing (I don't want to say carriage - it was a small 4 wheel cart with a soft plastic top). The cart had a sign on it that said "service animal". We (myself and my mother in her wheelchair) were waiting patiently for an open elevator on embarkation day when they rolled up to the elevator as well and we struck up a conversation. The service dog owner said that they use the cart on embarkation and debarkation and any really crowded place. They had issues in the past with the dog being stepped on (to the point where the dog was injured) or people trying to get between them and the dog where they couldn't actually continue to hold onto the led without injury to themselves. Now, whenever I see a dog in a carriage, I tend to think it's for the dog's protection.
  11. Yes, just the 1500 points still. What you'll notice is by the end of the cruise many, many, many people will have a DOU card hanging from their cruise card and drink service will take on a different timeframe (the drink servers are working just as hard but their trays will be full all the time). In my experience, this is where a few $1 tips throughout the cruise when you're using your DOU card really pays off. Despite having a long list of drink orders, the servers still happily got us our drinks (even when we were ordering cans of soda).
  12. As of January 2020, Carnival cruises will be switching from Coke products to Pepsi Products. If it's successful - I wonder if Carnival Corporation will make the switch throughout all of their lines.
  13. I'm happy - I prefer diet pepsi and if they add in Diet Mountain Dew and Diet Sierra Mist, so will my mother. We'll just bring on diet coke for my dad and then the whole family is covered.
  14. If you can get it for 7 - 15% for most people it would be less than if you put it on a credit card. For some, it's easier to budget this way and buying on credit is normal. I'm not going to use it; I'm not going to judge someone who does. I read something that impacted my thinking recently "You can always get more money; you can't get more time." I can see cases where the thought is "why not take this cruise on credit and pay it off over the next 11 - 24 months. Time is of the essence."
  15. Actually - the part of showing your appreciation at the end of the cruise (and not tipping when asking for a change) comes directly from Ken (the singing Maitre D on the Carnival Pride). He declined a tip when we asked to be moved to a shared table and let us know that if we felt that his service was exceptional, the end of the cruise would be the appropriate time to show our appreciation. I have no issue tipping - I just feel that it's not necessary to bribe someone to do things - it's about tipping them for their overall service at the end of the cruise.
  16. For me Lido deck food options / stations. Love the variety like Guy's burgers, Blue Iguana, Deli, Chopsticks, Pasta bar, wok, etc. The cabin set up including the super comfortable beds, bedding, desks, more than adequate closet and drawer space and the curtains the shower (I know many don't like these but I really don't want to stand in a tube like on some other cruise lines).
  17. If you don't get moved prior to the cruise, by all means see the Maitre D on the first day to make your request. You don't need to have money in hand (you don't need to bribe them). If you're happy with their service at the end of the cruise, that's the better time to show their appreciation.
  18. 1025 covered the scooter issue really well. For your son - I recommend talking to the Maitre'd on embarkation day. Explain the situation with your son, they will do what they can to make it work for you. At the same time, you can inform them of the allergy. Even with anytime dining, you can still be sat in the same section (with the same servers) each night. They may also be able to let you know what time is best for your son for when the dining room is the quietest.
  19. thank you for the heads up. I knew about the $1000 limit but not that it had to be at least 14 days in advance. I will ensure that I order mine ahead of time (yes, I'm one of those Canadians who find it easier to have my gambling money waiting for me on the ship than to bother with going to the bank here and doing the exchange or using my credit card and paying the foreign transaction fee).
  20. Unless your premier cruise includes a lot more cash/funplay, then I would say no. While premier cruises are fun (drawings, gifts to the cabin, cocktail party) it's not worth $340 to me. I would check your premier cruise offer to see if the funplay is higher than $340. If it is, then I would switch; if it's not, I would just stay with what you've booked and enjoy spending your $340 savings in the casino.
  21. From the Carnival site: If you are thinking of renting a wheelchair or scooter and haven’t done so already, we encourage you to visit www.scootaround.com, or call 1-888-441-7575. Scootaround’s team of trained professionals is able to review the different rental options available based on your accommodations and find the one that best suits your needs. As a preferred vendor, they have unique access to deliver your rented equipment on board Carnival ships in North America. They have a whole section for guests with disabilities: https://www.carnival.com/about-carnival/special-needs.aspx
  22. Absolutely. Typically 3rd and 4th passengers pay less. Sometimes though - when there are few cabins left that will sleep 3 or 4, the price for those additional passengers go up. Just like when a cruise is selling well, you see the price for 1st and 2nd passengers go up - the fewer cabins they have left, the more they charge. When I originally booked my brother's room for his family (4 people), it was cheaper to book 1 cabin. Had I waited a couple of months, it would have been less expensive to book them 2 cabins because there were so few 4 person berths left, that the 3rd and 4th rates had skyrocketed. Yet I have consistently paid less for the 3rd person on the Sunshine when I've booked my parents and I into a 3 person cabin.
  23. Many of the casino rates with the low deposits ($99) have the non-refundable deposits. In fact, if you read the offer it says something to the effect of "Secure your cruise with only a $99 non-refundable deposit" (yes, I have booked one with the hot streak offer with that clause).
  24. What ships are you looking at? Some of Carnival's Ambulatory accessible are close enough to fully accessible. I find with that cruise line it's really better to look at each cabin set up rather than just trust "It's fully accessible."
  25. Yes, it can be tough to find wheelchair accessible cabins for 3 people on many ships. I feel your frustration as someone who travels with my elderly parents (including my mother who is a full time wheelchair user due to a stroke and needs a lot of assistance). The wheelchair accessible cabin on the Caribbean Princess listed above is the only wheelchair accessible cabin for 3 on that ship (I know - I have it booked for January 2020). We also love cruising on the Carnival Pride but have to get 2 cabins on that one because the only accessible cabin for 3 is a suite. Royal Caribbean's Voyager and Freedom class have 3 interior wheelchair accessible cabins on deck 9 that are great. I'm not the biggest fan of Royal Caribbean but it's often easier to book so we cruise with them occasionally. Celebrity's M class ships have wheelchair accessible cabins for 3 in interior, oceanview and balcony. I don't recommend the S class ships for 3 as when we cruised in one the 3rd bed was a pull out chair that was no more than 10 inches off the ground (so it was like trying to sleep on a camp mattress on the cabin floor). The Carnival Dream class has a few accessible cabins for 3 - the nicest are the accessible spa oceanview (they may be listed as ambulatory accessible due to the toilet being on an angle but they have the wide doors, the roll in shower and plenty of space).
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