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About ldlewis45

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    Cool Cruiser
  1. My parents and I will be flying back to our respective cities from FLL after 4 pm the day our Seaside cruise ends. Are there any Miami/Everglades tour excursions that are available to purchase through MSC that end at FLL?
  2. Sitka also has some great art shops/galleries, if you want to pick up some hand-made souvenirs, whether it's jewelry or pieces of art. There were some gorgeous paintings there when we were there in 2017, and it was the one time I've ever been truly tempted to pay for an original painting. They've also got some great local sea salt that you can buy, and it's really worth the price.
  3. Probably, unless there are delays for some reason. And that has happened in the past, so there's no guarantee.
  4. I just got off the Seaside, as well, and I agree with the majority of your review! I was very satisfied with my cruise, as a whole. I will say that I didn't notice the smoking issue as much, and I'm generally very sensitive to smoke. I actually thought the smoke drift from the casino was far less than I was expecting, as most of the larger ships I've sailed have been much worse (NCL Breakaway being the absolute worst, in terms of drifting casino smoke, as I could smell it halfway down the ship on different levels). The only place I noticed more than a slight odor of smoke for an extensive period of time was in the billiard room/library and the bars just down from it, as they're just inside from the smoking area at the Miami Beach pool. The difference in elevator etiquette among the various passengers was noticeable. On several occasions, I had to almost demand to be let off on my level, as no one wanted to move to let me out. Many tended to try to pack the elevators, too. I walked away from several over-full elevators, but some of my fellow passengers thought nothing of trying to fit in like a can of sardines, even when it was obvious that it was already very tight quarters.
  5. I tried to use them several times on Seaside and never got any service! I always had to get up and go to the bar myself, so eventually I always just stopped there before I found a seat.
  6. I wish they'd make "anytime dining" available to everyone, as the early dining is too early and the late dining is too late! I also wish they'd get rid of those stupid call buttons for the buffet area on the Seaside. Most of the time they don't even work and you have to go to the bar yourself anyway. And they need to improve upon their drink ordering system. The program they use on the tablet is apparently not user friendly and takes forever to just order a simple drink. I hope they never change the pizza! It rivals Carnival's 2.0 pizza, and you don't have to wait for it!
  7. Have you ever eaten in the buffet on a Carnival ship? I was super impressed by the Seaside's buffet in comparison!
  8. I completely agree that service quality is subjective. On the cruise from which I just disembarked, within half an hour of boarding, I observed one passenger screaming and cursing at a bartender. I'm sure that he would absolutely say that the service he received was subpar, whereas those of us who were observing the whole scene knew that he'd just failed to educate himself about the "drinks on us" package and thought he should be receiving a benefit that he wasn't entitled to receive and was taking it out on the poor barstaff. Yes, sometimes there are true failures from service providers, but in a lot of cases, people just don't like being told "no." That same bartender at which that passenger was screaming went on to serve me and the other passengers around us, and provided us excellent service.
  9. I just got off the Seaside yesterday. I can honestly say that I had excellent service all around the ship, with everyone I came in contact with.
  10. That, I'm not sure of. I'm not a huge room-service person, so I didn't take advantage of it. I just know that the deluxe package included quite a few more drinks than the classic package, and way more than "drinks on us" included. The Blueberry Lavender Sparkler (the version made by Oxana) and the Amaro Amare at the Champagne Bar and the Chocolate Martini at Venchi were some really awesome drinks, and I don't believe they were included in the lower packages. (The Chocolate Martini is probably the best chocolate martini I've EVER had.)
  11. I just got off the Seaside yesterday and was very pleasantly surprised. I really like the ship and would definitely sail on her again. I was Bella experience, with a balcony on deck 10 and drinks on us. I did upgrade to Deluxe drink package, though, as it was only $180 to do so, and included so much more. And even with that, I was still paying what I would have paid for an inside room on most Carnival cruises!
  12. ldlewis45


    I just got off the Seaside yesterday. I was very impressed with it, especially being a Carnival cruiser (and NCL and Holland America). I thought the buffet far outshone Carnival's, but then again, I've never been impressed by Carnival's buffet. I think it's very poorly done, and tends to err on the side of casseroles and the Mongolian Wok stuff (which I think is on the level of school-cafeteria "Asian" food). If anything, MSC's buffet foods tend to be on the under-salted side, but that's easily fixed, as there are salt shakers on every table. The MSC pizza is generally as good as Carnival's newer pizza, plus you don't have to wait for it. The made-to-order omelettes in the buffet were very good, and so were the desserts and breads, especially the focaccia. I can't vouch for the dining room food, as we didn't dine there (my company on the cruise didn't like having to dress for dinner, so we generally did meals in the buffet). The steakhouse on MSC was good, but not as good as Carnival's. The Teppanyaki was excellent, though. I enjoyed the live music on the Seaside. There was one guy that could play guitar very well. His singing was generally decent to good, but we had fun making fun of some of the songs he chose. We didn't do the big shows, but everything we caught bits of on board was enjoyable. For me, MSC was a no-brainer. A nicer and newer ship than most Carnival ships, a balcony for the price of an inside room on Carnival, and drink package included. Now, I did go ahead and upgrade to the deluxe drink package, but that only cost me $180 for the entire cruise, and I think it was well worth it, as it included a wider variety of cocktails, including the best chocolate martinis I have EVER had in my life, plus all the fancy coffee, gelato, and wet bar items I could ever want.
  13. I'm debating buying one of the internet packages. Is there any benefit to buying it before boarding, or are the internet packages the same price if I wait to purchase until I board?
  14. Nevermind, lol, I found the answer! Now to decide whether to upgrade to the deluxe package or not!
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