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About emmtee

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Phoenix, AZ
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Baltic Capitals
  1. emmtee

    Laundry on Hurtigruten

    I understand they have laundry facilities on Hurtigruten ships and that you just need to buy a token and are supplied with laundry soap. Does anyone know the charge for the laundry tokens? I'm making my packing list - leaving in just over a week, so I'm trying to figure how much I need to bring and how much laundry will cost. We're doing the round trip, as well as a few days in St. Petersburg afterward, so we'll be gone for 19 days total. I'll definitely need to do laundry at least once.
  2. Thanks for your replies. I'm pretty sure at this point that I don't need a "converter" - just an "adapter" because my only large wattage appliance (hairdryer) has dual voltage, and the adapters all say they work for cameras, phones, tablets, etc. Fortunately, a hairdryer is all I need for my hair since I got it cut - no curling tools required - only a round brush. :-) The hotels where we'll be staying in Bergen and St. Petersburg are 4-5 star, and the descriptions on the tour company website say they both have hairdryers, so I'm covered there. Still, you never know what kind of dryer the hotel will have. Even good hotels can have tired, crappy hairdryers. So many adapters explicitly say that they shouldn't be used for hairdryers that I think I'll play it safe and just choose one of the few that specifies that it can handle them. (Many adapters don't say either way). There's one on Amazon that I'm watching right now - goes on sale in an hour or so. It's both an adapter and converter and can handle up to 2000 watts. I don't see how I could go wrong with that one. It's a bit pricey, but we'll see how much they discount it for Amazon Prime Day. :-) If that doesn't work out, I found a few reasonably priced adapters that will handle 2000 watts. Thanks again for your replies. I feel a lot better now.
  3. Okay, I'll look for that. What about the hairdryer? Can I get by with using an adapter since it has dual voltage, and if so, do I need to consider the wattage of my hairdryer when I buy my adapter?
  4. I know that Hurtigruten is different than the cruises I've been on in the past and I don't expect it to have U.S. electrical plugs. I asked a tour coordinator if I'd need a voltage converter, and she said Yes. (Note: Our trip also includes an extension in St. Petersburg after our round-trip cruise). My problem is that I'm not sure if I need a converter or just an adapter. My hairdryer (1875 Watts) has dual voltage. We'll also have a few cameras with batteries to recharge, a tablet, a phone, and a fitbit. I think that's all. I've read that electronics like this are designed to be used in other countries and only need an adapter, but I'd feel a lot more confident if I got confirmation from people here who really know. :)
  5. emmtee

    Need a good meeting place in Venice

    Thanks! I copied down your responses and am forwarding them to my nephew.
  6. I just learned that my nephew (who is stationed at Aviano AFB in Italy) will be able to meet up with us in Venice. He and his family will be arriving by train. I'd planned on taking the people mover, and I understand that it will take us from the cruise port to Piazzale Roma. Is there a good place to meet that is convenient to both the train and the people mover? Also, since we don't dock until noon and they're taking a morning train, they may need a comfortable place to sit and wait for us. Note - they have a 2-yr-old and new baby that we're very excited to meet. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
  7. I just checked our flights and discovered that our first leg, which had been listed as "Swiss Int'l Airlines" is now a United flight at the same time, but with a different number. I was able to make seat selections, but at this late date, there weren't very many seats to choose from and we're stuck on the last row of the plane. :( At least this flight is only 3 1/2 hours. Who knows where we'll be assigned on the 8 1/2 hour transatlantic flight? It could be very uncomfortable.
  8. emmtee

    Room change when onboard

    I'll be on deck 4 on the Zuiderdam in 9 days. What cabin were you in that had plumbing problems?
  9. Good question. I hadn't even thought about checking in, and that it might be different. This is our first time booking flights through the cruise line as well. We have three legs each way, and we only have seat assignments for the very last leg - 4 hours out of 28 total flying hours. That leg is a United flight. Our outbound flights are Swiss Int'l and our other return flights are "United, operated by Brussels Air." I looked into getting assigned seats for the other legs, but the option wasn't available through Brussels Air, and Swiss Int'l charges about $30 to select a seat for intercontinental flights.
  10. Glad to hear that the ship is in good shape. We'll be sailing on the Zuiderdam in 10 days. (Rome to Venice) :D Yikes! So much to do before we leave! :eek:
  11. emmtee


    I'll be in Argostoli and Corfu a few weeks ahead of you, and I'm not really worried. I keep reading that we should bring plenty of euro in case ATMs run out of cash, and really, who wants to waste time waiting in line anyway? I've also heard that credit cards may not be readily accepted, so bring all the cash you'll need and carry it in a pouch or money belt. If you're still worried, you might want to choose a HAL tour. Then you can pay for your tour with a credit card and would only need euro for a few incidentals.
  12. emmtee

    First Time - questions abound :)

    As others have mentioned, you really should fly to the port city a day ahead of your cruise. You will see that advice repeated a lot when you read the boards here. A lot can go wrong, so it's good to budget that extra day before the cruise in case flights are delayed or luggage is lost. If you are also able to spend an extra day at the end of the cruise in the port city, you won't have to fight to hurry off the ship with all the other passengers. (They will still want you off fairly early, though, so they can prepare the ship for the next cruise). Even a 7 day cruise flies by before you know it. When you budget for your cruise, be sure to include the following: Port Fees and taxes Tips/Gratuities/"Hotel Service Charge" Beverages or Drink Packages Excursions Cruise lines charge a premium for their excursions, so you can save a lot of money by booking your own. Read through the Ports of Call boards and you will find lots of good recommendations. In some ports you can actually walk or just take a short taxi ride to the beach. Of course, no one forces you to leave the ship, but why not since you're there? We usually choose a couple of ports that we're most interested in and book a highly recommended tour there. Other ports, we just play it by ear. If you don't mind getting cozy, I wouldn't hesitate to share a cabin with the kids - especially for your first cruise. There is so much to do on a cruise ship that my family mostly uses our cabins for sleeping. I've been on two big family cruises in which I've shared a cabin with three nieces, and we had a great time. It was like a slumber party every night. We even squeezed a younger 4th niece in there one night because she was feeling left out. If you go with a quad cabin, the configuration of the beds is something to consider when you choose your cruise. Often, the 3rd and 4th beds are berths that pull down from the ceiling. Sometimes cabins will have a berth and a sofa bed. My first cruise was in a quad with one berth and another bed that pulled out from underneath one of the regular beds. This is the configuration you don't want. The family member sleeping on the floor can get stepped on. :eek:
  13. emmtee

    Printing onboard

    If you only need a few sheets of A4 paper, you can go to the printing counter at Office Max or Staples and ask if they have any there. They can sell you the paper even when they aren't printing anything for you. I think most printers should be able to handle A4 paper. You just need to let the printer know what kind of paper you're using when you print the document. A while back, I printed some DVD case labels, and the label paper was a different size than usual (A4, I think) because 8.5 x 11 isn't long enough to wrap around the case. My printer handled it with no problem, and it's a fairly old printer - maybe 8-10 years.
  14. emmtee

    Can I have blood tests on Prinsendam?

    When I broke my ankle in Estonia and had to have surgery there, I felt that I got good care. The hospital was very clean and all the staff seemed to know what they were doing. My surgeon was actually Russian. The main difference between hospitals in the US and the hospital I was in there was that they didn't have all the "extras" that don't really have anything to do with healthcare and are more about comfort. I had the impression that a lot of extras are generally provided by the patients' families. When I got home and saw an orthopedic surgeon for follow up care, I asked him if they would have treated my injury the same way back home. He said that the only thing they would have done differently would have been to use a longer screw to tie the tibia and fibula together. (This screw is temporary and used to allow the ligaments to heal. The concern is that it can break if too much weight is put on it. Apparently, in the US they use a screw that goes all the way through both bones, so if it breaks, they can remove the broken piece from the other side.) I'm glad that, if I had to have an injury, it happened in Europe. I've been on tours in the Caribbean where they've mentioned that some islands don't have any more that Urgent Care. Residents have to go to another island to find an actual hospital.
  15. emmtee

    If you only had two hours in Rome...

    I really appreciate all the suggestions, and I'll look into the other tour companies. I found "Rome-Airport.net" based on a comment I read somewhere on CC, but according to my notes, the website that was actually mentioned was travelonline.org, and when I found that website, I clicked on something and "Rome-Airport.net" came up. Apparently, the two sites are affiliated, and the Rome-Airport site has a few certificates of excellence from TripAdvisor. I had checked with Rome Cabs and they said that we would need to arrive by 7:00 AM to have time for their tour. HAL has a transfer tour, but we don't arrive early enough to take it - the description says people taking the tour need to arrive at the airport and have collected their bags by 9:00 AM. I'll definitely take the suggestion of keeping track of the travel times on Google Maps. I'll even do it for several weeks so I have more data to go by. I keep late hours, so it's not a problem to stay up. (I'm typing this at 4:30 AM). :o