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Island Beachdog

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About Me

  • Location
    TN
  • Interests
    Travel
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    NCL
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    BVI

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  1. I would imagine that they have discontinued that perk as it was always listed when they offered it before.
  2. Yes, the small ones are classic cabanas. The large ones are now the Premier Cabanas.
  3. The 120/130 days out only applies to dining and entertainment reservations. You can book excursions (which includes all GSC items) as soon as they are posted for that cruise. I booked my cabana the same day I booked my cruise, which was 9 months out. All options at GSC were available to book as well. The current free at sea promotion applies to all ships. You can opt out of promotional items if you so choose at the time of your reservation. The open bar that existed for everyone on the sky was discontinued quite a long time ago.
  4. I was looking at my upcoming reservations and noticed that all 3 now say "Default Itinerary". That includes Dec. 5th Encore; June 12, 22 Joy to Bermuda: and Prima Dec 16, 2022. Hopefully, this is a glitch. 😱 Anybody else experiencing something similar? Seems odd that all of them are going to be cancelled.
  5. Are any of the specialty restaurants ever open for lunch? Seems like that would be a good idea on a sea day.
  6. At the risk of contributing to further argument, every new variant increases the risk for everyone, vaccinated or not. That is the why the experts are pushing everyone to get vaccinated. A virus that is held in check in the population is less likely to have an opportunity to mutate and create a new strain. Vaccines are developed to target specific known strains at the time. New variants create greater and greater challenges for existing vaccines. I am not an expert, but I have spent my career working in a hospital. While I don't expect to be fully protected by a vaccine, I do expect it will allow me to survive covid if I get it.
  7. Just read this on news feed. USA today said 2 on the Celebrity Millennium cruise tested positive 72 hours before scheduled to return to port as part of the end of cruise testing. Reportedly they are asymptomatic and in quarantine.
  8. I struggle with the aft vs Haven decision every time I start to make a reservation. Having experienced both on more than one occasion, I now usually make the decision based on both the ship as well as the itinerary. The next two cruises I have chosen are in aft balcony cabins. The price is much less than the Haven and I can go on two cruises for the current cost of the available Haven cabins on my second cruise. I might wind up changing that though if an aft Haven cabin opens up on my 2022 cruise. As far as the excursions, I seldom find them worth the price. The last cruise we went on, we didn't go on any. We took a shuttle into town or just walked off the ship to explore on our own. There again, it would depend on the itinerary. Probably wouldn't do that if I was going to do an Alaskan or European cruise.
  9. The 2 bedroom suite that we had on the Dawn had 1 lounge and two chairs. There would have been room to substitute a second lounger for the two chairs, however, you would have to crawl over one to get to the other. We were on the ship right before the refurbishment.
  10. We like to lounge under an umbrella and enjoy our libations. The last time we got passes, we were only able to do that one time as it was so windy they would not open the umbrellas the entire time we were moving. We did have drinks sitting at the bar a couple of times. The bartenders were great. Just not worth it for us though.
  11. If you try to book a specialty dining reservation, what date does it tell you to come back to book? You will need to "select" even though it says it is too early to book in order to get the date.
  12. Excursions are open for booking now if they are in the excursion listings. Dining and shows open 120 days out. Not all the shows can be booked online. Some, like the comedy show, have to be booked as soon as onboard. Same goes for the spa..
  13. NCL promotes the freestyle concept. It implies that you can spontaneously decide where you want to eat or what shows you want to see. That is not the case. As soon as your specialty dining and entertainment reservations open up, you need to book them! Otherwise, you can secure reservations as soon as you get on the ship. I cannot emphasize that enough. Like the previous posters, I recommend Cagney's and Le Bistro. They book up quickly. We love the Epic. The bathroom set up and the rounded walls were of no bother to us. I hope your first cruise sans kids is a great one!
  14. How does the SDP perk work with the a la carte restaurants? Thanks in advance for help.
  15. Just home from Dec. 8 cruise on Allure. While we had a nice time on the ship, I feel compelled to review my experience with the Chef's table. We receiving an invite to meet in the library on the night of our reservation. I thought was a nice touch. As it was formal night, everyone arriving was dressed for the occasion. The library, however, was open regular hours and was in fact in use at the time. We were presented with a glass of champagne, however, there were not enough chairs for everyone to sit so we stood as the sommelier talked about the champagne we were drinking. We were then escorted to the upstairs section of the lounge. As the diamond members were packed in for their evening happy hour, the noise was uncomfortably loud and continued to be so after being seated. The sommelier seemed very passionate about wine and overly enthusiastic about sharing his knowledge. He advised us this was a new team for the Chef's table. He seemed to be team leader and somewhat anxious about how things were going. In addition to the noise, it didn't help that people kept coming upstairs to be seated for drinks at the small tables around us, only to be asked to leave, as this was a private event. The meal started well enough with some excellent bread and an introduction of the first wine pairing. It went down hill after that. The kitchen seemed a little slow and with each new wine pairing, the sommelier talked more and more until it felt like we were attending a class about wine. Most of the food was on par with the occasion, however the venue was intolerable. There was little opportunity to talk with your table mates as the sommelier talked incessantly and was ever present. When you did try to talk to anyone who wasn't sitting right beside you, one had to literally yell. By the time the meal finally ended, 3 hours and 45 minutes later, we were all glad to be done. The couple who sat across from us summed it up perfectly as they were leaving "Wow, that was really bad."
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