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WisRiver

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About WisRiver

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Summer/Minnesota Winter/Yucatan
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    HAL
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Transatlantic

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  1. I am posting this article on the River Cruise Board since we had booked a Nile River Cruise with OAT. We had booked a Nile River Cruise with OAT in March, 2020. OAT cancelled the cruise and initially promised a full cash refund. OAT reneged on the cash offer, and we accepted an offer for a cruise in November, 2021. Sounds like some people were able to get their money back. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/25/travel/coronavirus-refunds-overseas-adventure-travel.html
  2. I cannot remember at which pier we docked in FLL. There appeared to be no set schedule. We just followed the crew. The van filled up, we left, and that was it. Same way for the return from the shopping center. We just verified that the pickup for the return was the same place as where we were dropped. Things may change over time. I would ask crew when you get to FLL.
  3. As we were leaving the ship, we saw crew members in street clothes. We asked them where the crew shuttle stopped. They said "follow us". Since you cannot predict where the ship will dock, the crew members will know. There is a number of shops that serve the cruise ship crews where the shuttle stops.
  4. We did a B2B in Fort Lauderdale. Another guest told us about the crew shuttle. It takes you from the ship to a shopping center on 17th Street. The cost was a couple of dollars. We walked down 17th Street and caught the Water Taxi. We rode the Water Taxi to one of the ocean front stops and ate lunch on the beach. We did some shopping on the 17th Street shops, caught the crew shuttle and were back on board by 3 PM.
  5. Not only is this a 3 year old thread, but things have changed. We were on the K-Dam in 2017 for a trans atlantic crossing. There were mah jongg sets on board. Since 2017 we have been on Zuiderdam and Eurodam. Each ship had mah jongg sets available.
  6. Typically HAL ships have sushi on the Lido buffet at lunch. Not the best, but not the worst I have ever eaten. Since we seldom dine in the Lido in the evening, I cannot speak to the question of sushi on the dinner buffet. If you are on a ship with a Tamarind Restaurant, they offer sushi off a menu at dinner.
  7. You could probably take your laundry off ship, find a laundry service or spend time in a self service laundry. I do not think it would be worth the time time and trouble The Viking Ships have an on board laundry service. We did a 21 day Bucharest to Amsterdam Viking River Cruise. We hand laundered a few things (shirts and unmentionables), but sent out a couple of bags (pants, mens underwear, tee shirts, etc). I would rather spend our days touring rather than looking for laundry services. While pricey, we did not find the ship board laundry cost to be outrageous.
  8. As you go through the locks, if you have a balcony with sliding glass doors, you can get a fishy, old water smell. We learned to close the balcony doors, unless we wanted to reach out a touch the lock walls. In a 21 day river cruise from Bucharest to Amsterdam, the locks were the only place I remember unpleasant smells.
  9. We will be arriving at Christmas Island in Kiribati on November 1, 2020 on the HAL Maasdam. It appears that the will be 4 cruise ship calls at Christmas Island in 2020. In reviewing the HAL website, HAL offers no excursions. Any ideas or suggestions for things to do? I find it interesting that the currency used in Kiribati is the Australian Dollar.
  10. We took our sons, their spouses and grands on an Alaska Cruise in 2019. We said they had to "dress up" for the first gala night. The boys (sons and grandson) showed up in coats and ties and the wives and granddaughters had sparkly dresses. You could tell it was a special evening. They were on best behavior (no bickering among the youngsters). It was a fun evening.
  11. The quality of the internet will depend in part on the location of the ship and the time of day. We were on the Zuiderdam on the Voyage of the Vikings. At times we were in the northern latitudes which can degrade satellite reception. Some times we were in fjords which blocked line of sight to the satellite. Finally, the heaviest use was during the day. I had to upload some documents. I would wait until late at night, after midnight, and we were in open ocean to get the best internet. If you are in southern latitudes without mountains, then your only issue will be with other users.
  12. We like the free hors d'oeuvres delivered to your rooms. We would ask the concierge to have the snacks delivered to our room at 5 PM for cocktail hour. Since we had late dinner, this would give us several hours for socializing. We have ordered hors d'oeuvres for as many as eight persons in our aft Neptune Suite.
  13. Last year we stayed at the Homewood Suites near the Seattle Center before starting our HAL Alaska Cruise. We had a family group and the facility had two bedroom units with a sofa bed in the living room. It was about a 20 minute walk to Pike Place Market and 15 minutes (uphill) to the Seattle Center. We did not have great views, but rooms meet our needs. We used Lyft for transport from the airport and to the cruise port.
  14. We did a drive by in the Veendam several years ago. It was nice, but only whetted our appetite for actual landings. In 2017 we did a Hurtigruten cruise on the Fram. We went from Ushuiha, across the Drake Passage, five days in Antarctica with six landings, on to the South Georgia Islands, Falklands for four days and back to Buenos Aires. The Fram excursion was extraordinary. The captain had a choice of landing areas, so it you were unable to land in one place you could go on to another. There was no problem with the landings from the small boats. The Fram was pricey, but the stops in the South Georgia Islands and Falklands made a great trip even better. If you can afford the extra cost, take an expedition cruise. The Hurtigruten Line is putting more ships in Antarctica. They seem to be at a price point between the smaller ships and the upscale companies like Seaborne and Ponant.
  15. We have had aft corner Neptune Suites on the Zuiderdam and Eurodam. We like the wrap around balcony. They are a long way from the Neptune Lounge and the cabins are a bit smaller. However, the great balcony makes up for location and cabin size. Also it is easy to get to the MDR and Lido.
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