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  1. Use an ATM at a bank in Venice, not just any ATM such as at a convenience store. They usually have a better exchange rate and lower fees.
  2. Crete we were only in port from 7 to noon. They had shuttle buses from the port to the center of town. I think it was 2 euro each way. We did a little shopping had some Greek yogurt and headed back to the ship. Malta The sail into Malta is very beautiful. Definitely be on deck for that. Again we hired a tour guide, this time thru Malta private guide. Very knowledgeable guide who loved her island very much. Malta is very beautiful and I am glad we toured the island and didn’t just stay in the city of Valletta. There were many festivals going on and ma
  3. Athens We did a half day tour with H P tours. The van they had was very spacious and comfortable. Half of our group went to the acropolis and museums and the other half went shopping. The guide was very accommodating and made sure we all got back together at the end to get back to the ship. Athens was not very crowded because of a holiday in Greece. I found I enjoyed Athens much more than I thought I would. Mykonos We booked a resort for the day pass at Saint John hotel. This included breakfast and lunch. We did this because of the holiday in Greec
  4. Thank you everyone for your replies regarding the butler and concierge. After having it consume my time for the first three days I just gave up trying to fix it and enjoyed the cruise. I debated even discussing it but many times people ask what to expect of a butler and concierge and hopefully someone finds this helpful. For me I would not book another garden villa because of this. If I had wanted to spend the first few days of my vacation in line at guest services, in line a restaurant reservations, at the internet desk, I would have just booked a balcony. One last thing abo
  5. We also had some meals in the villa. My mother wanted all meals in the villa. We would have to call everyday and ask for the mdr menu. Again a butler should anticipate this need and just provide after a day or two. 11 nights and every day had to ask for the menu.
  6. Our experience was not even remotely close. The concierge came to our room once only because I asked for him, and he seemed like it was not the norm for him to come to a room/villa. That is why I compared it to MSC. We were in a regular balcony in the yacht club on MSc and had that kind of service. If we ever asked how to be escorted off the ship we where basically told we needed to hunt them down when it was convenient for them. I believe this is partially due to the fact the jade is not that big of a ship and priority embarkation and disembarkation, as well as port is not always necessa
  7. Trip report We were a group of 8. Myself 47, husband 48, mother 73, mother in law 77, sister 48, my children 15, 17, 20. I planned this vacation for over a year. We are from the Boston area and have been on a few European cruises. I hope to touch on a few topics I have seen numberous question about. We were on an 11 night Italy Greece cruise which began in civitavecchia. We arrived on Thursday for an embarkation on Sunday. We spent 3 nights at hotel Santa Maria which was located in the trastevere area of Rome. I love Rome and find it to be a very walkable city if
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