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    Holland America
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  1. We had the internet package o the Royal (medallion class) and I used Facetime to talk to family with iphones and hangouts to talk to family with Android. It was usually fine, but occasionally had some lag or freezing issues. We did not have cellular at sea. It was a Mexico itinerary and my phone plan (also ATT) has roam North America, so I had full usage when in port.
  2. Jerri (the one In the hospital in Fukushima) is also taking things very well. She just tested positive again so she tests again in 2 days. She needs 2 negatives in a row before they will release her. There is a charter flight out March 4 so they (Princess’ liaison)say that is the soonest she will leave Japan. She is hoping that will happen. She doesn’t seem to have any symptoms. Her husband is waiting for his most recent test result, thought it would come today but it didn’t.
  3. I am open to the possibility that we are talking about different people, or that I am behind the times, but if we are talking about the same group of 4, Carl said on his last blog post that his wife is still testing negative, and Mark is at Travis AFB and I have been keeping up with his and his wife Jerri's FB posts. I think the group is still at 2 pos 2 neg. Jeri, Carl's wife, (wives are Jeri and Jerri) quit posting because she feels people misunderstood what she said and every time she tries to explain she is just making it worse.
  4. Pub lunch was still in the Crown Grill in January, quite a line to get in. Fish n chips cold and a little soggy by the time we were served (which wasn’t quick) My DIL ordered a Guinness before we ordered our food and we were half finished with the meal before it arrived. I think the buffet style may have been much more to our liking.
  5. How close do you have to be to the port? How picky are you? I found a lot of possibilities less than $200 on 4/26 on one of the main online hotel booking sites with 8+ out of 10 guest rating. (Courtyard, Sheraton, Comfort Inn, Best Western) With in a few miles of the airport, a little further out adds more, I have no Idea why the downtown and hotels near the port are so ridiculously expensive.
  6. We did last cruise a few years ago. (Either started or ended Sept 23, I don’t recall which) The weather was cold and rainy, seas were quite rough, the ranger could not disembark on glacier day ( I don’t remember which glacier) and had to travel with us back to Seattle. We were unable to go to Ketchikan. Merchandise selection was a little low but deeply discounted. We didn’t let the weather slow us down a bit, in fact made it feel really Alaska like. We were supposed to be in Victoria around 7pm-midnight, instead due to missing Ketchikan we arrived at noon, it was the a beautiful sunny day, perfect temperature had a fabulous time there. The only decent weather the entire week. We went the first of September 2018 and had fabulous weather in fact the crew kept talking about how the weather had been pretty poor most of the season and our weather was forecast to be bad but we just kept missing bad weather by a day one way or the other. I guess my point is Alaska weather is unpredictable. One of the biggest differences we notice is that it gets dark earlier, we were in Juneau quite late (like 10 pm) in mid July that is when the sun sets, in the end of September sunset is around 7 pm.
  7. I’m in the “fear the hysteria more than the disease“ camp. I don’t want to have a hot flash that elevates my forehead temperature and be denied boarding and whisked off to quarantine.
  8. This was on the cruise planner before our cruise started. But disappeared and never (AFAIK) took place. I was disappointed, as I was looking forward to it.
  9. I think I understand the rationale behind the staggered boarding times. However, it fails to account for other factors. Flight arrival times vary, hotel/Airbnb check out times vary, dining room lunch time ends early, later assigned times may not leave time for a leisurely lunch in the lido, and I am sure there are other things I am not thinking of. Disney Cruise lines allows some flexibility by allowing the guest to select the desired boarding time based on FCFS basis. I believe they were 1/2 hour increments I don’t know if that would/does create more compliance. I know we arrived about 15 minutes prior to our scheduled time and were allowed to proceed, although by the time we actually got to the counter we were within our time. Seriously, what should someone who arrives FLL at say 9:30 AM do, sit around the airport for 3 or 4 hours because their scheduled check in is 1:00 PM or worse 2:30. i get that using the deck designation would allow prioritizing which decks get turned faster helps HAL, but it is does not consider the mentioned variables of the guest realities.
  10. I had this same issue with a recent Princess cruise. My cruise was 1/11-18 and my passport expired 7/10. Booked last minute and worried there would not be time to renew. Luckily I was able to use DL and BC. After returning I renewed by mail paying for expedited service, and expedited mail fee, I mailed the renewal packet 1/22 and received my new passport 2/2. That timing would have been sufficient to have renewed before the cruise but That would have caused me great anxiety. I would like to also note that while some foreign countries require 6 month validity, my cruise was to Mexico and both Mexico an USA are valid upon entry countries. Princess (and other cruise and air lines) policy however is 6 month validity. I think it is stupid that a valid non-expired passport is not valid, but I don’t get to make the rules. I think this is what causes a lot of issues, people think their passport is valid because it has not expired. I don’t think that is unreasonable thinking at all.
  11. I worry about the hot flash thing and I am not sure there is no rise in body temp. The back of my neck is very hot to the touch when I am having hot flashes and my DH has commented about how hot my skin feels. If they are using external forehead monitors will those indicate a fever even if my internal body temp is actually not elevated.? Update according to John Hopkins website hopkinsmedicine.org hot flashes can raise body temperature
  12. My experience has been that I have to ask/tell them to apply FCC.
  13. Can’t answer for Embassy Suites,. But We had trouble with LYFT connections when we were in Fort Laudedale. The app said finding drivers and just spun until it timed out. Both from the airport and from the ship. Others around us were having similar problems. When we finally connected, The driver from the airport that LYFT found was 11 min away and never moved from their spot, after 15 min we cancelled the request and ordered another, waited 9 min. From the port we finally got connected to a ride waited several minutes then watched as he passed the entry to the pickup area, then through no action on our part we were notified a new ride was coming, new driver had no,idea what happened and said the app led him right to us, luckily we were not in a hurry either time, it was quite frustrating. A couple of positives, we were expecting to have to fight a cancellation charge for the ride we cancelled, but we did not ever get one, I assume either they could see we cancelled after quoted pick up time or that the driver never moved and we have used LYFT in many other locations nationwide and never experienced anything similar. Just a heads up.
  14. I only have 5 Princess cruises, 2 Alaska on Golden, Panama Canal on Coral, 4 night Repositioning on Star, and most recently (Jan11-18 202) Mexico on Royal. I am with the Coral crowd. It by far has been my favorite ship to date, and I think would be an excellent choice for Alaska. (least favorite would be Star). That said, to me they all have plenty of pros and I would sail any of them again.
  15. OP what cabin class are you sailing? I too am interested in information regarding regular (non-YC) guests experiences. NCL haven and MSC YC are a relatively small subset of the offering on their respective cruises and generally far exceed my limited budget. Without fail someone will post a subpar experience on one of those lines and someone from haven or YC will counter and go on and on about how it was a fabulous cruise.
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