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Everything posted by trish1c

  1. While they might not count the number of drinks you consume, if you are obviously & visibly intoxicated to the point where you are a danger to yourself & others they will cut you off. I was shocked the 1st time we got the UBP. I had to ask the bartenders to make my drinks weaker. They overpour IMO. Sometimes I'd ask for a mixed drink & a glass of the mixer on the side so I could water it down myself.
  2. We cruise in part because DH is not the sun worshipper I am. I can be on deck & he can be inside. We're not planning on doing much or spending a lot of money on the islands on our next cruise. I'd like to just go to the beaches. DH will fry in the Caribbean sun all day. At home we have this portable sun shelter for him, it's like 1/2 a tent. It folds down into it's own carrying case: It's about 3 feet long, 4 inches wide & maybe 2 inches tall, not very big. It might weigh 3-5 pounds. It's quite light. It's a parachute / vinyl material & some flexible poles like a tent that snap in place to form a dome. It looks a bit like this when it's open: https://www.walmart.com/ip/Portable-Pop-Up-Beach-Tent-Sun-Shade-UV-50-Protection-Canopy-Outdoor-Automatic-Instant-Tent-Sun-Shelters/387972703?wmlspartner=wlpa&selectedSellerId=571&adid=22222222222080207060&wmlspartner=wmtlabs&wl0=e&wl1=o&wl2=c&wl3=83700324559310&wl4=pla-4587299951035565&wl12=387972703_10000000599&wl14=dome sun shelter &veh=sem&msclkid=5f2cd24e42c01153dc348f51de12b569 It doesn't fit into a suit case. If I can mange to stuff it even diagonally into a suitcase I will do that. We are driving to the port. Do you think I'll be OK slapping a luggage tag on it & turning it over to the stevedores? I could carry it but would prefer not to.
  3. Spend a few minutes looking at the NYC skyline. It's beautiful at night. Take a PATH into NYC & wander around. Do not try to drive in. You will pay a fortune to park
  4. Ask your car service where they want you to meet them. It may be your 1st time doing this but it's not theirs.
  5. You absolutely have to read the fine print of what's covered & by whom. "full coverage" through fly by night insurance carrier may not be worth it. Just because it's from American Express Travel does not mean that large corporation is backing up the policy. If you don't understand all the terms, call your regular broker, make an Appointment & get professional information.
  6. Totally agree that EWR can be a nightmare. Being a Jersey girl I guess I'm just used to it & power through. lol OP don't risk it. Fly in a day early. Also if you are flying a discount regional airline like Frontier the risks increase in winter. Frontier had no options for me after a northeastern snow storm stranded me in Miami after a cruise a few years ago. They did refund my ticket price but I had to get myself home. Now I have a new rule: no discount airlines in winter when I have time deadlines.
  7. I enjoy a spirited political debate when I'm the mood but it's hard to find somebody to debate with. There is too much scorch the earth mean-spiritedness in politics anymore -- both in the US & with Brexit. It's not worth starting an argument. Several years ago on a cruise our CC group had dinner together. One guy & I were having a lively political debate. As we carried on debating I realized not too many others in the group were saying anything even to each other. I stopped, looked at him & said "I think we're making everybody else uncomfortable." They had never actually seen 2 people debate the issues without it becoming a blood bath. We were both just so excited to find somebody worthy of debating we forgot that there are reasons many people don't discuss these issues in public because they get too ugly. When we both assured our dining companions that we were having fun, they went back to chatting with each other & ignoring us because the subject didn't interest them.
  8. I have always found SJU to be horrible. EWR/JFK/LGA are my "home" airports. They are staffed properly most of the time. SJU was always a madhouse on cruise days. I've waited hours to clear security there, worse then the NYC APs even at the holidays, O'Hare, ATL, LAX, Heathrow & Charles DeGaulle, imo. For the OP to come through EWR with a layover here in December -- the winter holidays -- & think there is enough time to get to the port is cutting it too close. If it snows or ices & the plane can't take off, they will never get to SJU on time. The OP doesn't really have 4 hours. They only have 2 because the regs require all passengers to be on board 2 hours before sailaway. To land at SJU at 4:30 assuming nothing else was delayed to have to deplane, collect luggage, & stand in that taxi line -- which can be over an hour long -- & think that they will make a 6:30 all aboard is too risky. Even if everything went perfectly I'd have no fingernails left after that journey which would adversely color my whole trip
  9. We sailed the POA for the overview. We took a week before to explore Oahu. Unlike Caribbean cruises this isn't about the ship at all; the ship is actually underwhelming. It's transportation & food between islands. It was a good overview for us. We also hate sea days so a long voyage from the mainland would have not been a good fit for us.
  10. SJU is a congested AP. Connections through Newark at the holidays add more trouble to this plan. Don't risk it.
  11. I suppose you could try to nicely say something like, not all of us vote in the same election. I'd prefer not to talk politics. Then change the subject. When you have know it all blowhards who want to pontificate, the silent majority who want them to shut up are often grateful when someone else tries to steer the conversation back to more neutral subjects.
  12. We no longer get balcony rooms out of NYC. When sailing at high speeds they whistle & you can hear the howling wind. It just kept me up. We do splurge on a balcony when we embark from Florida or San Juan but not NYC.
  13. Yes, it's through the official national parks service www.nps.gov. The fee is about $2 for processing. It's the same thing with the Liberty Bell & other attractions in other states but it's a real convenience. Make sure you are on the dot GOV site. Everything else is commercial / for profit.
  14. Anything in the Times Square area should be fine for you to be centrally located & lots of subway access. You get good values there too in terms of hotel. One "secret", if you are going to take a taxi, walk a block to make sure you are on a street or especially an avenue that runs in the direction you want to go so you don't get charged for a ride around the block DH & I often book using the "blind" features of hotwire & only got 1 stinker of a hotel (the elevators were noisy & kept me up all night). Book 3.5 stars or better to be safe. Bear in mind many of these rooms will be smaller then your cruise ship cabin and you will still pay nasty "resort fees" up to about $40 per night.
  15. DIY is the best way to go. No overpriced tour required. To use The Bus, Hawaii's public transportation system, use the map feature on your phone & click the public transit option. Once somebody taught me that it was sooooo much easier! Do check with the national parks service because as has been posted above, the Arizona Memorial is currently closed.
  16. Passports are not good until they expire. The common carriers including airlines & cruiselines do not have to accept them if they are less than 6 months to do. It's their vessel, their rules. Bring back up ID with you (raised seal BC & a REAL ID compliant drivers' license) Better safe then sorry.
  17. People have a tendency to post when they are annoyed but not when they are happy. I have read negative reviews of cruises I was on. They make me laugh. It's a vacation. No matter what it's not that bad. We took one 7 day cruise which started with flights our TA never booked; no heat in the hotel even though it snowed in Miami (yes you read that correctly) where it rained all 7 days & the cruise high temperature was 70; mostly in the 50s. We still had a blast. Take all negative reviews with a grain of salt, preferably around the rim of a margarita glass & enjoy your time with your granddaughter.
  18. DH & I will be sailing over Christmas & New Year's. We will do presents aboard ship. I am thinking about buying him the classic men's shave but that only really works in my mind if I can get him an appointment for New Year's Eve. I've always resented the NCL stuff that you have to book in advance. It defeats the purpose of freestyle IMO because I don't want to have to remember a schedule on vacation. When does the pre-boarding booking begin again, 90 days before sail away? Can I book a salon appointment then? Otherwise I'm going to have to rush to the salon as the 1st thing when I board.
  19. It's impossible to dress for something like the Met Gala without a team of stylists. What you don't see are the people fluffing the trains etc. I do enjoy a good black tie event & love getting dressed up but that over the top stuff. . . no thanks.
  20. We're in the never say never camp. Actually Princess was not a good fit for us, & unlike many of the posters here, we like NCL. However, we will avoid her mega-ships, Breakway, Epic, Getaway etc. They are just too big for our tastes.
  21. Thanks! I saw a listing for the Cathedral on a Catholic website where I will be able to find Mass times closer to when need them. That site is great if you know what Church to look at. Now that you have given me that piece I can plan accordingly.
  22. We are scheduled to arrive at 8:00 a.m. the Sunday after Christmas. I would like to go to Mass. What is the closest Catholic church to the port? Does it have a website with Mass times posted? What is the best way to get there? Can I go by myself or would I be safer taking my husband? I'm not too keen on getting into a taxi alone. Ideally we'd like an early Mass, around 9 a.m., so we can get in some sight seeing. We're in port until 6 p.m., assume all aboard is 5. DH has never been to this island. I want him to see the botanical gardens & the Grand Pitons. Thank you in advance for your help.
  23. We're booked on a 2 week cruise over the holidays, leaving the Saturday before Christmas coming back on the Saturday after New Years. I have written to NCL guest relations & the Apostle of the Sea, a catholic organization that places priests on cruise ships at the request of the cruise line. This voyage has 3 Mass requirements. Yes I can go to Church in port on Christmas & the following Sunday but I'm at Sea on the 1st Sunday. Has anybody ever had success persuading a cruise line to place a priest on board? I know HAL always has a priest but I love this itinerary If you have issues with the Catholic Church, I'm sorry for your pain but please refrain from bashing my faith on this thread.
  24. Head to the Target (I think) at Ala Mona mall . . . I think that's the name of it & buy what you need in Hawaii. At the ABC / tourist shops things will be pricey but we got good value at K-Mart. We paid $4 per box for souvenir chocolates that were $9 in ABC & $16 in the tourist traps. The itinerary is so port intensive you won't have time to notice your hair.
  25. When DH was going to school on line we used to get a big package so he could check into the his classes & I could stay connected to my company. It is very slow but we managed. It is bare bones; surfing is not really an option because it's too slow. You pay for a log in code basically. Only one person can use that code at a time but on any device: the ship's internet café, your phone, your device in your cabin. The speed on their machines is better then on your device in the cabin.
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