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About ricka47

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Amelia Island, Florida
  • Interests
    Ham Radio, Drums, Bass, Flight Simulation
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    RCI, X, DCL

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  1. We just received a note that they are reverting back to the original times on our upcoming cruise: We would like to advise you of a further revision to your upcoming cruise itinerary on October 12, 2019 aboard Insignia. Oceania Cruises is pleased to advise that after additional review we are reverting to the original arrival and departure times as noted below: DATE DAY PORT ARRIVAL DEPARTURE 15-Oct-19 TUE PHILIPSBURG, ST. MAARTEN 10:00 PM 6:00 PM 17-Oct-19 THU CASTRIES, ST. LUCIA 8:00 AM 6:00 PM We look forward to providing you with a memorable cruise experience.
  2. That's why we're planning to sail more on HAL than X now although we're Elite on X and will just gain only our second star on HAL in November. X has really raised their prices beyond what I think is appropriate for the product that they offer. In fact, HAL may find themselves positioned well to gain some business at the expense of X simply due to the price to value ratio that currently exists.
  3. We're Diamond on RCI and took our first HAL cruise in 14 years last November (Nieuw Amsterdam) and will repeat that cruise this year. I can't agree with the posts that say the food is much better on HAL. The food in the buffet and the MDR is about the same as it is on RCI which, in general, is just OK these days. The service is the same on both lines. The newer RCI ships are engineering marvels and more "glitzy" than HAL but not glaringly so as you might find on Carnival. There certainly are more things to do on the larger RCI ships. We're in our late 60's and have enjoyed the zip line, ice skating, and other features of the Oasis class ships. The entertainment is different. We actually liked the entertainment in Lincoln Center and BB Kings very much and didn't miss the Royal Caribbean Singers and Dancers in the production shows. Now, the shows on the Oasis class ships are a different story and nothing on HAL matches that. But, what we liked most about HAL is that good deals are often available. The price for our Thanksgiving cruise on the Nieuw Amsterdam was (and is again this year) significantly less than what we could get on RCI. We're at a point now where we have no loyalty to any line and will go with the itinerary that we like and the price that we like as all of the mainstream lines (HAL, X, RCI, Princess) are pretty much the same.
  4. We just made our reservation online for this November.
  5. That's funny! My tux has not been on a cruise for about five years and I cannot see it being put in a suitcase and on me anytime soon.
  6. No. A really good CD can add to a cruise experience. But, I've never had one that lessens the experience.
  7. That is a good point. Losing something in exchange for getting something does soften the loss. The diving shows, the production shows, and the engineering marvel that the Oasis class ships are may make up for the lower quality in the MDR and other cutbacks.
  8. Thanks! On the sample menu, it states, " Rudi's Sel de Mer's menu items are priced a la carte." That doesn't sound correct on top of the $49 per person charge?
  9. I understand that this is a "pop up" experience. But, where does it pop up? For those who have done this (and I know this is very subjective), is it work the $49 charge?
  10. It is the same on all lines. But, it appears that the lamenting about the changes is more pronounced on the HAL board than it is on the others. Is it because HAL has fallen faster or further than the others? Or, is it because the formerly loyal base is just more vocal about their disappointment? Our first cruise on HAL was in 2004 and it was not memorable enough to go back until 14 years later. We booked the Nieuw Amsterdam for Thanksgiving last year mostly because of the pricing and did it this year for the same reason. The experience on HAL is pretty much the same as on all the mainstream lines which all have mediocre food in the MDR these days. The entertainment on HAL is not as good in some areas but, for us, better in others. We enjoyed BB Kings and Lincoln Center Stage very much. So, for us, it comes down getting the most bang for the buck. While we are Diamond on RCI and Elite on X; we're not loyal to any line at this point. Give us a good value for what we're paying and we'll go on your ship realizing that it's not 1990 (or earlier) any longer.
  11. Good point about Aqua Class on X; Blu is 95% of the reason for booking it.
  12. Based upon my experience of 28 years ago, I don't like the overall direction of any of the mainstream lines. But, I have to believe that, if the quality that we had 30 years ago was still with us today, many of us could not afford to cruise as often as we do,
  13. All cruise lines have overall become worse over time - it's a fact of life. Some things, however are actually better such as having more balconies on ships, online check in, and larger cabins. Plus, there is a much wider range of lines and the ships within those lines than ever before. I guess we have to ask ourselves, how much more are we willing to pay to come close to the standards that we perceive we enjoyed at a certain point in the past.
  14. Indeed, that was somewhat bittersweet but a nice touch. However, I used to notice that many people went to the buffet that last night and perhaps that is one reason why the prepaid/automatic gratuities were added.
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