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About BobbiSox

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Fernandina Beach, FL
  • Interests
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Holland America
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Greek Isles

Recent Profile Visitors

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  1. The casino offers vary, and are separate from the HAL offers. There doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to the system; they just show up occasionally (through the post office, not email). The casino offer ins NOT to be confused with the HAL PRIVATE SALE, as they are completely different offers. We have been taking advantage of the casino offers for many years, and yes, they count as 'days sailed' in the Mariner Club, regardless of what discount was used for the booking. If you play in the ship's casino, you should be getting casino offers in the post. Most of the HAL booking agents have access to the casino-cruise offers when you give them the 'code' that is somewhere on the offer, usually near the name of the addressee. If you are having a problem getting these offers, may I suggest that you contact Global Casino, which is the company that offers the discounts.
  2. My husband and I have been using these offers for many years. That's how we are able to cruise so frequently. When I first received an offer, I though it was a gimmick. It wasn't. We booked a Neptune Suite for $199.99 each. I know. It's unbelievable. Now, some years later, that suite is $1,999.00, which is still a fabulous price. We always take advantage of these offers, and we are now able to sail three or four times a year IN A SUITE, and we are now only seven days away from five-star mariner status. We enjoy playing in the casino, but it's so much sweeter when we are rewarded (win or lose) with these offers. I haven't seen an offer lately, but the inside rooms used to be no charge at all. We prefer a cabin with a balcony, and for that price, who wouldn't!
  3. I have only recently started to look at the reviews on HAL's excursion pages, having booked a cruise for 2021. I don't see that anyone has reviewed anything! That's curious. Before I buy most anything, I use reviews to help me decide if I should buy or not. Would anyone know why there are no reviews critiquing their past experiences with excursions?
  4. Somewhere on these boards, a poster reminded us that just because these ships have been sold, doesn't meant they won't be sailing. Holland America can lease them back. It's a common practice. Airlines do it also.
  5. I just found a You Tube video that will show you the balcony of Neptune Suite 10006 in the very front of the New Amsterdam, and it's the exact same tiny balcony I was talking about, with mostly the steel wall instead of the glass. The balcony is shown very clearly at the END of the video. The rest of the room may be different, but the balcony is identical. in every way. Just to You Tube and search for it.
  6. The first time I received a casino offer, I too thought it was a joke. $199.00 for a Neptune Suite. I asked the agent "Is this $199.00 per day?" She said "No. It's the price for the entire cruise", and I've been sailing in Neptune Suites every time they are offered to me, even though the price is ten times that now, they are worth it. Being treated like royalty is something I could get used to. Those that are in the very front have a very little balcony that only fits two little chairs and a tiny cocktail table, and there is no way to stretch out. They are mostly metal instead of glass, so there's really not much view unless you're standing. This is not one of those 'swing around balcony' cabins. The wind is constant while moving. You will feel every little wave, and probably you will rock and roll while at sea. If you enjoy lounging on your balcony, you may want to opt for a different cabin. Happy sailing!
  7. Having learned from twenty-plus years of cruising experience, I have figured out the best way to book a cruise is to call the cruise line directly. I have had bad luck with cruise agencies who offer 'FLASH SALES' and other gimmicks, only to sell you a crappy room that no one else would book. There are perks to booking directly. For example, if any problems should arise, customer service is most helpful to THOSE WHO HAVE BOOKED DIRECTLY, especially if the problem involves a cabin change. I have heard (with my onw ears) customer service agents on board tell cruisers they are unable to help, and that they should contact their own travel agency for assistance with a cabin change. Whether it be a three day cruise or a three week cruise, comfort is on the top of my list when choosing a cabin. Imagine spending three days in a cabin with a plumbing problem, a faulty air conditioner, or perhaps a cabin directly adjacent to laundry mat, so book with caution. Trust you own eyes by using on one of those deck plan sites (for example, cruisececkplans.com) before you book Happy sailing!
  8. I just noticed a big typo on my post. The upgrade to the Neptune Suite was ($2058.00) not exactly chicken feed. I am vision-impaired and can't always see what I have typed. I wish an upgrade was only $208.00! My credit card dispute was eventually settled, and I received a refund for the entire amount of the April 6th cancelled cruise. . My husband did NOT file a dispute, and he is still waiting for HAL to refund his money.
  9. In yesterday's mail (May 30) I received a notice from my bank that they had reversed the charge for the full amount of the cruise, temporarily, while they waited to hear from HAL. I filed the dispute back in March. I can't imagine what kind of excuse HAL would have to argue the reversal of my funds. I paid for a cruise, HAL didn't deliver, so what else is there to talk about.
  10. Ha, that's true. I can't help feeling HAL has 'borrowed' my money without my permission. Where I come from, that could be considered stealing.
  11. My European cruise was cancelled by HAL ONE DAY AFTER they accepted my payment for an upgraded cabin. THEY CALLED ME to offer the $208.00 upgrade to a Neptune Suite, and THE NEXT DAY, they cancelled the cruise. My bank was able to reverse my payment for the upgrade, and I have filed a dispute for a the remainder, but I paid so far in advance, that dispute is still in Limbo. Will HAL they pay me interest on my money that they have been holding since October 2019 and using for something else? Probably not.
  12. I've never figured out the Oprah thing. I even wrote to HAL and asked them. They mentioned a magazine, which I've never seen anywhere on board. I couldn't really get a definite answer. I still don't know what it is!
  13. Thanks. My bank settled one dispute for me; the upgrade payment was returned, but not the payment for the original cabin. Still waiting for the decision for that amount.
  14. You are right about everything. Of course we are nostalgic! The main reason I continue to travel with HAL: I am ten days shy of being bumped up to 5-star Mariner, after twenty years of sailing HAL, and I am too old to start another loyalty program on another line. I probably wouldn't live long enough to enjoy the benefits.
  15. Here's just some of the things I miss: Dinner at the Captain's table, orchids in the MDR and flowers everywhere else, a team of white-gloved waiters in the MDR, an escort to my cabin on embarkation day, pate de foie gras, live orchestra on stage, live music in MDR, DVD players with DVD menu, ballroom dancing venues, decadent treats in the Neptune Lounge (once there was lobster salad and caviar, now there is egg salad sandwiches), real FORMAL nights, real pizza in the buffet and not the tortilla pizza they have outside), fruit, vegetable, and ice sculptures in the Lido, and some 'quiet' areas with no piped in music.
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