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About Shel71

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    Cool Cruiser

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  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Alaska (Sitka is my favorite there)

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  1. Last year I booked my cruise through Costco and got the link to the shore excursions options and booked one and it went well. This year I booked directly through HAL because I had a Bingo win to cash in. I went back to my old email from Costco and clicked to see if I could buy an excursion for this cruise and was able to. I used the same code as last year (COSTSHRX) and put in my Costco member number and the confirmation # from HAL for that part. Had no problem booking. It was canceled due to rain (it was last Friday in Ketchikan). I received an email this morning saying my refund was being processed before I even had a chance to contact them (per their directions). So I am pleased with the service! ETA: Both times (Juneau and Ketchikan) the meeting spot was right at the dock after getting off the ship so it wasn't an issue having to get anywhere.
  2. I've booked through the cruise, privately, and through the Costco excursions. Had no problems with the Costco one at all. Last year in Juneau I did the helicopter dog sled through Costco and it was fantastic. I had a floatplane/bear viewing scheduled yesterday in Ketchikan and it was canceled due to weather. Communication was good. I do have to put in for a refund now but I am not expecting a problem.
  3. We had anytime dining on our HAL cruise last year. I had the wine package and my open bottle was held for me as you describe. I was also able to access it the night we ate in Pinnacle Grill. I am not sure about being able to get it in the bars or clubs though as I never tried that.
  4. Shel71

    Deadliest Catch Tour

    My family (kids are teens) did it in 2014 and we all loved it. I bought the excursion for my parents (in their 60's) as a Xmas gift for their Alaskan cruise in 2016 and they also loved it. I really think it well enjoyed by people of all ages.
  5. Just to put another spin on this, the rule for the water bottles is only for bottles that have a spout that you put to your mouth, it's not for filling bottles that have a lid that can be removed. I drink a lot of water so I brought my large cup along with me that has a lid and a straw (see photo) on my HAL cruise last summer. The lid comes off so it is just a regular (larger cup). The first day I was standing at the water dispenser and using their cup to fill and dump into my cup, a worker stopped me and told me I did not need to do that because my cup/bottle was not the type that is covered under their rule. The rule is only for plastic bottles where a person's lips touch it and then would touch the dispenser, which mine didn't do at all. The worker told me to stop wasting time filling and dumping and just fill my cup directly. I thanked them and continued to do that throughout my cruise per their direction. One day a fellow passenger started to yell at me and I tried to politely explain what the worker had told me. She refused to listen and kept yelling. I just walked away at that point. Point of all of this is before you make assumptions about the wrongness of others make sure you fully understand the rules, to begin with.
  6. I had a window room on deck 2. The only outlet in the entire cabin was a single one on the desk. I would really have appreciated one near the bed so I could charge my phone and also use it for a clock/alarm! It did not appear to me that this room/deck had received any of the updates that higher rooms received. My parents were in a verandah on deck 6 and they had updated carpet, furnishings, and bathrooms (outlet in bathroom and desk). Mine room was very, very dated!
  7. We disembarked from the Zaandam yesterday and used Port Valet with no issue. I flew Southwest and my parents flew United (different destinations). We filled out the paperwork for it with the usual disembarkment paperwork and turned it on by the date on the form. Are you sure the "system down" wasn't on Alaskan Airlines end? I have to say it was a great service. So nice to not have to deal with luggage at disembarkment and at the airport!
  8. I mentioned the intermittent flushing. It has been happening in my room 2704, for several days (since Homer) and also in my parents' cabin 6224, but less often. Flushed nothing other than the TP I swear! ;) Even though it is a bit annoying, it's not a deal breaker by any means. Has created more jokes than anything. Even if I had a health issue I wouldn't cancel over that or the norovirus, etc. You can catch that at your local Walmart or any other public place, for crying out loud. Just follow good hygiene practices and you will have an awesome cruise!
  9. We've moved out of the area now headed back to Seattle, but I think after the attempt at 1 there was no plan to try again. The captain said on the message after the attempt that they almost grounded the ship at the dock. We were on the verandah watching from the port side and the mud that was spitting up from the ship as it attempted to dock was pretty interesting! Sad to miss a stop in Canada, but we'd only planned to walk around a bit so no tours missed. Did get nearly $24 refunded to my shipboard account for the saved port fee! Bought a coupld drinks during happy hour and looked at the city from the Crow's Nest! ;)
  10. That is crazy talk! I am here now and all the procedures are back to normal. I really do think the virus has passed. Just be vigilant about washing your hands and refrain from touching too much stuff. I was able to get through this entire cruise even with the outbreak with not so much as a sniffle (and my mom who's traveling in another cabin had a cold and I was with her the whole time). I used the hand sanitizer, I washed my hands, and I touched things like the elevator buttons with the back of my knuckle, Used my forearm on the railings, etc. Canceling a cruise that is over 2 weeks away would be insanity IMO even if there still were signs of sickness on board, which there are not! I have been more annoyed by the maintenance issues with the ice/water machines, toilet not flushing or only flushing intermittently, lack of hot water in the shower at 8 AM, etc. The ship needs to be worked on to get up to the expected standards IMO. The norovirus was the least of my complaints and I have had a fantastic cruise.
  11. The overnight water outage was described as "routine maintenance". I think it was just really poor timing with the onset of the virus outbreak. Being able to flush is kind of a needed thing when you have a diarrhea and/or vomiting illness KWIM? I have had issues with my toilet not flushing off and on since yesterday. All times we were in port so I am not sure if it was just turned off? Had water in the sink though? The water/ice machines have been out of order on both sides of the Lido off and on throughout the cruise. One side was out all day today and still out when I filled up my water before coming to bed tonight. No work seems to be happening on it though. It is getting very annoying, to be honest!
  12. I was never sick (knock on wood) so it didn't really impact my cruise. In the dinign room tonight the bread basket, creamer and sugar packets were placed on the table instead of being handed to us as they have since about Day 3 so I think they feel they've got it under control. My mom (I'm traveling with my parents in a different stateroom) did come down with a bad cold today. She relies on holding the railings and such when using the stairs and she had another "kind" passenger sneeze heavily on her without covering her mouth while standing in the Bingo line a few days ago!:rolleyes: :rolleyes:I'm really working hard not to catch it from her now! I do notice with the older demographic on the ship that fewer people cough/sneeze into their elbows as they should and instead into their hands which of course spreads far more germs when they go and use the railings and everything. In some ways, I think I'd feel safer with a boatload of elementary school kids who all know to cough into their elbow! ;) ETA: ice and water machines have been out of commission off and on all during the cruise they were out again all day today on one side. Very annoying!
  13. The update letter in our stateroom this evening said the virus is similar to the norovirus but doesn't confirm it outright. Numbers of infected are down to one crewmember and 3 passengers and they feel their procedures are working to eradicate it.
  14. I'm here now. The announcement today was that they feel their procedures are working and that the virus is winding down. One crew member and 3 passengers currently in quarantine which is down from previous numbers. I am not seeing as many crew members in the halls with face masks on so I do think it is better. Just be vigilant about your hand washing and try to avoid touching the railings and your face.
  15. The only change after the outbreak was they moved the hand sanitizer out from the side of the entrance of restaurants to the center and there is a crewmember standing there directing you to use it. In the main dining room, there is no longer a bread basket on the table and no sugar packets for coffee. They have to hand it to you. You can grab all you want in the Lido though so that makes no sense! Other than that they have not changed anything. I politely notified the guest services this morning before breakfast that I did not have any lifejackets in my cabin. Here it is midnight and my room has been serviced twice, still no life jackets! That is just not acceptable IMO!
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