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Everything posted by gardenbunny

  1. I will definitely be cruising vicariously with you. So excited to have a great read for the next 16 days!! I have my countdown going for Enchanted on Dec 30 - 76 days! And already planning scenarios of when to leave, get tested etc. A hassle but will be so worth it. 721 days since we we disembarked Feb 7, 2020 on Coral Princess in Santiago Chile after one of our most memorable cruises in So America and Antarctica. Hoping our cruises in Feb, May and September will see somewhat relaxed protocols. So many countries have now decided that zero Covid is not attainable and we will all have to learn to live with it like the seasonal flu season - vaccines to prevent serious illness, testing, therapeutic drugs, and common sense to keep ourselves healthy and safe.
  2. I second every single comment that has been made!!! I have said many of them myself. Started reading the announcement, saw what he was in charge of and first comment - you’ve got to be kidding!! Then read all the comments and laughed and loved and agreed with every single on. I was never a fan of Medallion - the roll out was humiliatingly pushed back time and time again - never make a big announcement you can’t deliever on. Then have to offer lame excuses for the reason. Even after it was finally started on a very few ships, it was still a nightmare. I think I was on 2 cruises that had it. And from the pages and pages of comments on a single topic devoted to the Medallion on CC, it definitely has not improved. All they did during the Covid pause was add the nightmare to ALL the ships! I have only used it to 1. Open my cabin. 2. Read the daily events. The ONLY thing I ever wanted it to do was give a sound alert when you got a message from someone in your party. What good does finding a dot on the ship where someone is that you are looking for - so you send them a message - but they don’t know because there is no sound to hear it and aren’t looking at their phone???? In todays world every message, email, notification alert, phone call, alarms we receive has a sound - and you can even customize that sound!!!! But not Medallion. IMO this Medallion thing as been EPIC fail.
  3. Thank you for the insight. Just in my observation I hear a lot lately about smaller boutique hotels and the like. Thus I think Azamara has the opportunity to “rebrand” itself as a smaller boutique cruise line vs the step child of the big sister RCCL. In many instances smaller can be better. After taking a couple land trips in USA destinations this year, I am so ready to be back at sea. So much nicer than planes and trains
  4. When I saw that my beloved Pacific Princess was sold to Azamara, loving the small ship experience (2 World Cruises on her) I decided to look at Azamara for 2 cruises I was interested in taking in 2023. Still doing USA trips in 2021/2022 to continue to let the virus and cruise industry get back to some form of normalcy before Covid. Never been on the website but was impressed and found exactly the itinerary I wanted for those 2. Ships are beautiful and I definitely recognize the deck plans. So I am booked for April 3 -18 on Quest for 15 nt Japan Intensive voyage. And October 23-Nov 7 on Pursuit for 15 nt Ancient Civilizations. I have been reading on message boards from those who have written reports on some of the first cruises. They all seem to be going well. Would be interested in anyone’s opinions of former owners to the new. Really looking forward to 2023! Thanks
  5. I am so excited for you and that cabin sounds amazing! Do you know where I might find pictures of these cabins and how would I search for them, what cabin category are these? How do you compare these to an actual balcony, particularly an aft balcony? Do you prefer these and why? I am very intrigued! Just returned from a trip to a dude ranch in Grand Tetons - beautiful scenery. We typically choose an inside room or ocean view depending on itinerary - inside for the Caribbean, OV for our two World Cruises. We find we just didn’t use balcony since we are always out on decks. But this new category intrigued me - and especially since it offers a front of the ship view! There are very few of them so I am sure they will sell out quickly if I want to book one again on another cruise.
  6. I have been waiting to sail on this ship since it was to debut June 2020! Booked and rebooked. Have one of the new floor to ceiling OV cabins for New Years Eve cruise. I have not seen any recent info on her position, looked at bridge cam couple weeks ago and it is blank….just curious. It will be my first cruise since getting off the Coral in Santiago Feb 6 2020after a spectacular cruise in So America and Antartica. So ready to be back!!!! Thanks
  7. Thanks for posting. I saved this for my Enchanted cruise for New Years Eve. I hate having to jump through all the hoops (did that for my month long trip in Maui in February) but it is worth it!
  8. I had no idea that cruise lines do charters. Perhaps in pre-Covid times those dates were just listed as sold out and so you moved on to another. But I agree that the timing is unfortunate as cruise lines are just starting back - disappointing passengers was one thing when it was because of Covid. But for the obvious reason of $$$ (which they do need) isn’t exactly a good look. I gave up in February continually rebooking my cancelled overseas cruises so I have moved everything to 2023 to give all this chaos time to hopefully settle down. And also decided to try some new cruise lines I have wanted to try.
  9. Beautiful pictures - especially the eagle 😁 Great to read a detailed report - being Princess elite I felt like I was on board with you!! Surely miss cruising - we hopefully will be boarding in FLL on the new Enchanted Dec 30 for NYE southern caribbean with Barbados. Appreciate those of you who have been the “pioneers” of takng these first cruises in 18 months and dealing with the good and not so good of start up bumps and hiccups - covid testing and protocols - Medallion App frustrations - 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻
  10. Found your comment interesting based on your statement regarding Kaiser. I too am a Kaiser member - Senior Advantage plan. The only test I have had was early February for our trip to Hawaii. I contacted Kaiser and they would do my test but due to all the tests being done at that time due to all the cases, they could not guarantee getting mine in time. I used a lab approved by Hawaii and it cost $150 for results in 15 minutes. I never submitted for reimbursement as I felt it would not be paid since it was for travel, and out of network. And my Hawaii trip had been rescheduled 3 times. I would have paid any reasonable amount to go - for the cost of the trip for a month in Maui, what was another $150 😁 Do you think with all the travel options demanding testing it can be reimbursed now?
  11. Bummer…we leave on the Dec 30 NYE cruise on Enchanted - I was hoping the virus spread would be slowed down by end of Decemeber and not having to hassle with the testing. Keeping fingers crossed it could change…again…seems like it does every day!!
  12. My guess she will be ramping up to go into service. she has had limited crew during lay up so lots to get done before passengers can be welcomed on board. But great to have her finally at a US port.
  13. I have been on 10 of the Princess ships - many multiple times and the Regal twice. I have enjoyed them all. I wanted the first Enchanted to Med to try that new OV cabin! So disappointed when it got canceled. So jumped on the chance to get that cabin for Caribbean and NYE (another canceled cruise in 2020). So since I do not plan international ports until 2023, I was pleased to see that, for now, Enchanted will be in Med!
  14. I made a decision in early February to cancel everything I had for 2022. I had a feeling things would still not be back to normal in international cities I wanted to visit. Decided to wait for 2023. Just booked today with Azamara for Japan (April) and Israel (October) And Princess for 21 day Med RT Barcelona (May). Hoping that Covid will be under control and the world will be safe. Been doing my USA bucket list in the meantime 😊
  15. FWII, I just read on Cruise Critic news today that Holland, Princess and Seabourn have canceled the 2022 World Cruises…..Due to the start up of bringing ships back into service, etc etc
  16. Thanks for posting! So excited to be on board the new ship. I had been cancelled from the Med cruise in 2021 and did not want the transfer to 2022 because the Regal was doing the Med! Gave up - got an email about Enchanted in Caribbean for 2021-2022 season! Rebooked for the 12/30 NYE cruise to Southern Caribbean and was so lucky to get my original cabin - one of the new Deluxe Ocean View with floor to ceiling glass on the very front of the ship - same view as the bridge! Cannot wait!!!! Hope I like the ship - booked her for the 21 day Barcelona RT Med May 2023…
  17. Thanks for answering my questions. Appreciate the input.
  18. I have a booking on new Enchanted 12/30/21 with one of the new floor to ceiling Ocean View which are across the front of the ship on deck 17 - Sun. It is classed as Deluxe Oceanview - what a view!! Cannot wait. There are only 6 across front with each corner having a Window Suite.
  19. Someone just sent me a video of a lady being escorted off a Royal Caribbean in the Bahamas and she was having a serious meltdown! Posed an interesting situation about people who have had Covid, had antibody test and have high count vs low, because not vaccinated (doesn’t CDC say you don’t need vaccine??) She had to have a pre cruise test which she did and passed. Boarding they gave her a purple wrist band for non vaccinated - next day they gave her a test - according to her they told her it was positive - quarantined her to her room overnite and removed her from ship next day. She asked for another test but they would not test her again. So what about people in that category?? What group do you belong to?? So complicated.
  20. We had read on an earlier review from May to book that one due to popularity. Got documents yesterday - impressive package - We also have the 5:30 dinner - so a good breakfast and a snack in the port cities will suffice! I did some research on line of all the stops - probably take advantage of the HOHO, ride the loop, and then pick 1 or 2 sites to visit. Can you tell me about the Terrine Landing?? Not much time there. Did you do the HOHO in Baton Rouge? The riverfront seemed nice - and the Capital bldg but any type of tourist shops nearby to browse? Thanks
  21. Thanks for such good info. This will be our first time on this type of cruise. We leave 8/1 to 8/8 Memphis to NOLA. I like your comments on the casual relaxed atmosphere on board. Our pre hotel is the Graceland Guesthouse. We arrive a day early and bought tickets for a tour. We only bought 1 ship excursion for Vicksburg Battlefield. My husband enjoys history. Entertainment and food sounds nice. Thanks for clarity on the HOHO and dress on board for dinner. Nice casual seems good to make packing easy. Having done 2 World Cruises in past 4 years and abrupt halt in 2020, very excited to be getting back on board any ship. 😁
  22. I have not seen anything. Although I thought I read the CLIA was having formal talks with FL to try to negotiate a fair resolution. I thought CDC gave cruise ships 2 options to do either test cruises or have at least 95% vaccinated. But I like the way they try to get around it by asking passengers to “volunteer” to show your card! I have no problem with that. I did all the requirements to spend a month in Hawaii in February - so whatever it takes, within reason, I’ll do it.
  23. And did you see the list of things unvaccinated passengers could NOT do!?! Crazy. And it appeared they were not made aware of the actual limitations u til they got on board. They were told prior to the actual sailing date there would be restrictions, but I bet some were not expecting that much. I personally don’t think that was fair if RCI did not disclose the restrictions in full prior to final payment.
  24. A judge that uses common sense!! “The CSO was absolutley unwarranted, unprecendented and (IMO Massively) injurious exercise of government power…” I could not have said it better myself!! To single out one industry because of what happened at the very beginning of COVID, when no one knew what to do, and by quarantining everyone on board only made it worse, cruise lines were singled out as a death trap if you were to get on board! Several cruise lines overseas have been doing cruises to nowhere for quite some time. I think if there have been massive outbreaks it would be a lead headline breaking news story for the media.
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