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About caviargal

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    10,000+ Club

About Me

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  • Interests
    Travel, Fitness
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    AMA, Uniworld, Oceania
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call

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  1. It was not for "any reason". It was emergency surgery. A covered reason.
  2. It absolutely did. I never leave home without travel insurance.
  3. The visa is obtained through Viking and included in the fare. Due to a family crisis, we did not take the cruise and cancelled the day prior.
  4. While they may say they "guarantee" one excursion in each port, that is very misleading based on our experience. We were not able to book any, as all were SOLD OUT within 24 hours of when we were able to make our request, with the exception of one walking tour in one port of the two we are stopping in. I emailed and called and was told to check back daily (not happening) or wait til we got on the ship to see if something opened up. There was only one we were interested in, as I am aware that Viking provides the most basic tours possible, and not what I consider to be an excursion. Their
  5. Tauck was actually our 6th cruise for the Christmas markets (we have done 19 river cruises total) and the absolute worst for both excursions and entertainment. We were bored to tears and learned quickly not to rely on Tauck for any local experiences. They had 3 "cruise managers" on board, all from the US, and these three lead all of the tours, day after day. We gave up after 2 and found our own adventures. I was also shocked when they turned the lights on and off in the dining room, asking guests to leave. This happened twice and was the tackiest thing ever. I went to the dining room man
  6. That is my understanding as well and we are not expecting a luxury cruise from VO, but hopefully it will be on par overall with a premium experience. We are fans of Oceania, especially the quality of their dining. La Reserve, their Wine Spectator experience, was exceptional! It will be interesting to see how food and service compare on VO. We have our first Crystal cruise coming up soon and are very much looking forward to that experience. Our last ocean cruise was on Ponant and while ship was very nice, non French passengers definitely were treated as second class citizens
  7. Our Viking cruise, not factoring in air, was 40% less than our Crystal cruise. I am not thrilled with our stateroom on Crystal but there was basically one left that was not a suite, and we grabbed it. VO's beverage package is cheap by any standards, but then I have read and expect that the wines and liquor brands we will be getting are nothing to get excited about; they are just better than the low end wines they "include" at lunch and dinner. We are bringing a few magnums of our favorites to enjoy with dinner. VO "includes" excursions but those were all fully booked within hours of b
  8. One of the reviews was totally ridiculous and I dismissed it immediately. And I do take them all with a grain of salt. We don't generally ocean longer cruise than 7 nights. We are not retired and also are not big ocean cruise fans. If we can get away for a longer period, we will chose a land trip first and foremost, as that is our preference. To see the Greek Islands via a cruise (it will be my husband's first time seeing the islands and I have not been since my Regent cruise in 1994 or so, when they were Radisson) just made more sense than hopping around by ferry.
  9. We are going on our first Crystal cruise in April. It has been months since I have looked at reviews and I am now wishing I had not done so this morning. There are far more negative than positive recent reviews and quite a few of those have the same complaints. The one truly scathing review was so poorly written and sarcastic as to have no credibility IMO, but some of the others are well thought out and carefully written. We were originally booked on Scenic Eclipse to Spain and Portugal and that cruise (and dozens of others) were cancelled due to multiple construction
  10. Michelle is fabulous! We've been up with her twice and you will have a great experience.
  11. A little noro goes a long way but it appears that it is currently under control. It was enough to close gym, hot tubs, common spa areas and quarantine some passengers, as well as control service in whatever the buffet restaurant is called. From live reports now, normalcy has been restored.
  12. I hope everything is open and back to normal Bon Voyage!
  13. I did not mean to come across as snarky - not my intention at all. I just wanted to point out that a perfect score for cleanliness does no guarantee no noro. It is people who ultimately spread it. One would hope that grown ups would take the time to wash their hands well, especially in these situations.
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