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About nolatravelgirl

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    Cool Cruiser

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    wine, travel, mob movies

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  1. I am with you! There is no way I would pay Disney rates just for a floating hotel. We are doing the 7 night Disney Wonder over New Year's Eve which is astronomically expensive. I could do any other line for half the price. Heck i have paid practically the same per person per day rate for Seabourn which is an all inclusive all suite luxury line for what I am paying for this NYE cruise. 😮😮
  2. there were reports of a few folks who were on board via disboards.com so it wasn't a charter but yes some of those things were definitely staged. It was a two hour commercial so I have to believe that it was all comped by Disney. Totally out of scope of reality on several points. Booking 26 people with only a few weeks notice and Hazel "picking" it based on a photo. They were able to reserve a Castaway Cay cabana with just a few weeks notice. All the characters joining them for a group photo on the beach. I think some of it was filmed out of order. Based on reports it looks like the BBB was filmed on disembarkation day after the others departed and before new guests arrived. if you look at the order shown right after the BBB they are at dinner and none of the kids have hair and makeup done. I can't imagine they would do all of that and then just go back to the room and wash it all off.
  3. I read your review of the brewery. Did you pre-book your tour? Did they just wait till they had enough people? you took the hop on/off bus for $11. Was that per person? Was that just one way?
  4. I second this option. It is cheaper and more flexible to just take a taxi or Uber to the port. You can have them stop at a grocery or drugstore and buy wine. You also may want to pick up other sundries like sunscreen which are all reasonably priced in the US. Walgreens in Miami sells beer and wine.
  5. NCL almost always offers the beverage package as a "Free at Sea" offer so if you were planning on adding the beverage package to your booking the prices are almost identical to the other lines. While RC and Carnival offer some version of "Anytime Dining" it isn't as ubiquitous as it is on NCL. I like the flexibility.
  6. Seabourn allows you to check it as luggage. I love my Diet Dr. Pepper and was worried that it wouldn't be onboard so I made a quick stop at a Walgreens in Miami before boarding. They took it as checked luggage but the cardboard ended up busted in transit. If I were to do it again I would bring some packing tape or a small tote to put them in.
  7. You don't just have to mix with other solos. As long as you are friendly, you will find plenty of people to socialize with on your cruise. I would look for private excursions that you can join via your roll call. These are generally groups of 10 or less which makes it much more intimate and conducive to conversation. Sit at bars or in the hot tubs, be friendly and you will be making friends left and right. You can also ask to join a group of people at a trivia or game activity.
  8. If you enjoy being social you may want to look into being a "gentleman host" for the cruise lines that have them. You would need to have some good dancing skills, including all the traditional ballroom forms and be willing to dine with older female solo travelers. You travel for free but are required to be social. http://www.compassspeakers.com/gentleman_host.html
  9. We are going to do the 499 sail away rate since the open bar is still included on that sailing. The rate is still a bit high but considering it is Labor Day weekend and we were looking for something fun to do for the holiday it fit the bill. I have no expectation of high quality entertainment and such. I have done the Sky before so know what to expect on these short cruises. We will do Specialty dining each evening.
  10. I didn’t see it can you link to it? How many nights of specialty dining are included if we pick that? It still doesn’t seem like much of value.
  11. Can someone help me understand what we would get. Looking at the August 29th sailing on the Sun. The sail away rate for ocean view is 499 and the rate that includes the two perks is 679. What am I getting for 179 more dollars? It doesn’t seem to make mathematical sense.
  12. I agree that there is always something to see at any port but take the small port you mention, what would happen if one of the mega ships via tender dumped 6000 people into the small town. It wouldn't be able to handle that amount people. Folks would be on top of each other since there would be no way for them to effectively get around, nor would there be adequate restaurants, bars or sites that would be able to accommodate that many people.
  13. When you basically want to dump 6000 people out for an experience there has to be infrastructure. There aren't that many ports which can handle these floating cities so they have to build a port that can handle it. Some smaller towns like Wrangell aren't as dependent on tourist dollars to make a living where as I am sure Jamaica was given all kinds of concessions and funds to allow them to build this port. When you look at all the mega ships that sail 7 day itineraries out of Miami there are limited ports that can handle these floating cities. Trying to tender that many people would be near impossible. Those 7 day Caribbean itineraries are the bread and butter of the floating cities. It makes sense to build a place relatively close to minimize the fuel burn and having a built in port that they control just adds to the potential revenue. The passengers get to tick Jamaica off their bucket list even if they really never step foot outside of the Disney-fied port.
  14. My 40th was on a cruise and the cruise staff made a very big deal of it. Here is my room decorated by the room steward
  15. I am not disagreeing with you that there are things there but the cruise ships developed a Disney style port that is closed to the locals. There is enough at the port to encourage the patrons not to leave the little mini fortress You are clearly trying to be contrary and not looking at the fact that the cruise lines build a faux city to encourage people to get off just long enough to have a small walkabout or cruise sponsored excursion and then get back on to continue spending their money.
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