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hoopslover

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About hoopslover

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    Cool Cruiser

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    California Beach Town
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Italy

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  1. We were a group of 7 and 4 of us were platinum. We ate at Cagneys on the Spirit in June. The 3 that weren't platinum paid for their meals. One had the filet and with an appetizer and dessert her bill was $65. The other couple had surf and turf and their bill for 2 was $180. All of us had the drink package so no alcohol was charged. I had the crab cake appetizer, the filet and something for dessert. The food was great, but knowing that our friends paid that much just to join us for dinner was upsetting. Way too expensive for what you get.
  2. Saw this thread last night, went to NCL to check if our Jewel August 2020 b2b was listed. It was and I did a mock booking and it saved almost $500 on the first week. I emailed my TA and she got back to me this pm and had received lower prices on both weeks. Saved $466 for the first week and $830 for the 2nd week. The staterooms are the same, the perks are the same. We did have to add the specialty dining (which we originally turned down) so we had to pay the gratuities on that. Still we saved $1296! Awesome
  3. We were on Princess in NZ/Aus last fall and had OBC from our TA. I was concerned about the exchange rate after reading posts here on CC. Ours was converted to Aus dollars correctly and when we had not spent it all it was converted back to US $ and we received a check within a few weeks.
  4. I tried to order soup to go at O Sheehans and they said no. No take outs. I think we were on the Jade or Dawn.
  5. The original intent was just to use the Westin parking, but our flight got changed to early morning and we had to spend the night. We have used 405 airport parking several times also. It is on La Cienega just north of Century Blvd. I would choose the least expensive daily rate and go with them. If you have any questions feel free to ask me. We have probably used 20 parking venues as LAX is our nearest airport. Hope this helps.
  6. We use cheapairportparking.com for LAX parking. Last trip we parked at the Westin on Century Blvd. for 25 days for $7.95 a day. Great shuttle to airport. We have also used 405 parking lot near Century. Not as many shuttles but good covered parking.
  7. Australian funds. We had OBC and the cashier had up pick a pin # to use with our stateroom card. Whatever we won was transferred to our casino acct. The next to the last day I cashed out in the casino as I needed cash for our land portion of our trip.
  8. We were on the Majestic in October and I was concerned about how they would handle the US OBC. It was from our travel agent. Princess converted it to AUS funds and I used some for purchases is the gift shop and got cash in the casino. At the end of the cruise there was money remaining. Princess sent me a check in US funds after converting it from AUS and we received it in 5 weeks.
  9. We were on Majestic in NZ/Aus and our excess OBC was mailed to us about 4 weeks after we disembarked on Nov. 5.
  10. Since this was our first Princess cruise, we looked at the Patter for directions on what to do. There was fixed dining at the Alegro all night. In the Concerto there was first seating in there followed by ATD after 7:30. The Symphony was ATD from 5:30-9:30. The patter said you could show up or call or make reservations or speak to the maitreD. The first night we just showed up. There was only one person in line ahead of us. The maitre D seated us and came by later to ask about our dinner. At that time we asked if we could be assigned to our wonderful waiters for the remainder of the cruise. He said yes. Two nights the guests did not vacate and the maitreD put us at a nearby table. Absolutely no problem for us. There was only a line one night (the second formal night). It had 4 people in it. Most nights the dining room was only about half full. What mistake did we make? We followed the instructions in the Patter and the MaitreD Sebastian came by every night to make sure we were having a good time. I hope I didn't spoil your cruise. If you want to report us go ahead.
  11. We liked both the Outback and Cairns. We only had 1 day in Sydney because the flight didn't get in until 8:30 p.m. Embarkation was group 1 at 6:15 a.m. Too early as our flight was at 10:30 and we couldn't check in til 8:30. Had to stand at the airport for an hour before the ticket counter opened. After landing we went to the hotel and left for the sunset at Uluru. The first morning in the Outback the bus left at 5 a.m. for the sunrise at Uluru. No coffee anywhere. We got breakfast when we returned about 7. We went back out to the cultural center for a aboriginal campfire. That was great . We then walked to the base of the rock. Flies were horrible. Get a net on Amazon. Well worth it. The food in the outback was limited. Everything is owned by the tribe. Breakfast buffet was good. The next day we were to fly to Cairns.Flight was supposed to be at 9 a.m. There was a problem with how the 2 groups were split up for the number of airline seats. 10 of us were switched to group 2 for one day to get to Cairns. The computers at the airport were down. We had our boarding passes but they had to handwrite the other information. We waited for 2 hours in the terminal. We then had a 1 hour flight to Alice Springs. Switched planes for the flight to Cairns. Got to the hotel about 5ish. Our original group had a direct flight but didn't get to the hotel until 7. Long day of airports and flights. Next morning we left at 9 for the Great Barrier Reef. It was awesome. Since we hadn't had time the arrival day in Cairns because of the late flight we went to Kuranda and the skyrail. That was fun! Our flight back to Sydney left at 4:30 and arrived at 8:30. Got to the hotel at 9:30. Way too late to do anything and nothing was open for dinner. Our half day tour of Sydney was OK. By then we were tired. Opera House was having something special so we couldn't even get close for pictures. She found another view spot on our way back to the hotel. Loved Bondi Beach. Wish we had time to go back there. We were only in Sydney 1 day after late arrival. Princess messed up and told us that our transfer from the hotel to the airport were not included. They told us we could purchase them for $30 per person. They were not listed on the itinerary. Since there were 6 of us it would have been $180, So we booked private transfers and then the day before our tour leader told us they were included. I had asked every day for 5 days and she said she would check on it. Never did until the day before. I cancelled but might not get a refund. Take plenty of water to the outback. It was 90 with lots of flies. In Cairns it was in the 80s and gorgeous. The rainforest at Kuranda was very hot and humid but no mosquitos. Nice weather the one day in Sydney. NZ was chilly so there wasn't any pool time. Let me know if I can answer more questions. It was definitely tiring. If the dates would have corresponded to the dates we could travel we might have preferred to do the land tour first. Very tired after those 6 days followed by a 14 hour flight. Good to be home.
  12. Just returned from the Majestic Princess cruisetour from Auckland to Sydney followed by a tour through Princess to the Outback and Great Barrier Reef and Sydney. If any of you have any questions I will try to answer them. This was our 12th cruise, first on Princess. We were traveling with 2 other couples and had stateroom B502 midship balcony. The room was great with a large closet and shower. It had plenty of storage and the TV on demand movies were great. Embarkation and Debarkation were the fastest and most organized of any we had been on. The luggage was delivered to our stateroom and put inside unlike many other cruiselines that leave the luggage outside your door. We had anytime dining and the first night we talked to the MaitreD about a table for 6 at 7 p.m. every night and he had the same table with the same wonderful waiters each night. We ate one night at the Crown Grill (I will address the reason a little later). The food was OK, some better than others. Not as many choices as we had been used to. We always found something good to eat. The service was wonderful. The ship is beautiful but we really didn't like the layout of the ship. The atrium was 3 stories high and when we were on decks 6 or 7 you couldn't visit because the activities or music on deck 5 was overwhelming. With a sold out cruise it never seemed too crowded. Entertainment was only OK. There were 4 production shows out of the 13 nights. Not too impressive. We had 3 other singers which were OK and a fiddler. The Australian Beetles were great. No comedian or juggler or entertainer like that. There was a comedian in the Vista Gaming Lounge but there were never any seats. The seats in the theater were nice and as long as you were there 30 minutes early it was easy to get a seat. Buffet food was OK. Not very many salad choices for lunch except green salads. Very repetitive choices for breakfast and lunch. Good service with lots of workers serving coffee and cleaning the tables. No half and half for coffee, only regular or skim milk. Casino was the smallest of any ship we had been on. Most of the slot machines were exactly the same. No variety. Laundry was convenient but the coin machines never worked. Always had to call the service # to get help. Now for the BAD. The bartenders were way below par. We had the sip n sail, but our friends paid $1000 AUS for their drink package. It was great to get water bottles and specialty coffee as part of the beverage package. That is where the good ended. They ran out of wine on day 3. Out of white zinfandel (I know it isn't really wine, lol) chardonnay and pinot grigio by day 4. Our head waiter searched the ship for more white zinfandel and found 2 bottles that he saved for us. The last week we had no wine at dinner. They did not stock the ship properly. If it is on the wine menu they should have it in stock on day 4. On Halloween they had a special "spooktacular" bar menu posted at each bar. How fun, right? We each ordered a different drink from the 10 on the menu and they either didn't know how to make them or they didn't have the ingredients. We tried 5 bars and the answer was the same at each bar. Huge disappointment. I ordered a lava flow and got a mudslide. The next day I ordered a lava flow and asked the server if he knew what was in it. He did but he brought 2. I asked him why and he said that the bartender couldn't figure out how to make 1/2 serving of pina colada and 1/2 serving of strawberry daiquiri . So he made full drinks and split them into 2. Also got charged on 2 separate days for drinks even though we had the drink package. That meant standing in line twice to get the charges removed. Crown Grill We ate there on night 4 for our friend's birthday. Food and service were good but again no wine for 3 of us. We had a voucher for 6 because Princess messed up our cruisetour 2 weeks before we left home. Even though our reservations were linked they moved our friends to a different land tour going in the reverse direction of our land tour. They wouldn't put them back so we were forced to change itineraries even though I had booked 16 months out. We got the vouchers as an apology. We took private tours in NZ and Tasmania. I will be glad to share what we did and talk about the tour part of our trip if any of you have questions or comments. Donna
  13. OP here. Update on our problem. Princess told our TA that 2 of the 3 reservations were the last 2 cruisetours booked. If there wasn't any room left on the 1F tour we booked why were they allowed to book it? That is why they were moved and we had to move if we wanted to be with them. We sent emails to customer service about the way it was handled. No notification to our TA and none to us. Just changed it in our personalizer. The day after the email a very nice customer service representative called us. She apologized for the problem and gave each couple a complementary dinner at the Crown Grill. I asked her for a letter stating that we would all be with the same tour guide for our land trip. Instead of that she left a voicemail for my TA which will serve as proof. I downloaded it to my cell so I will have it with me. Flight to Auckland on Friday. I will post review of our cruisetour on the Majestic Princess when we return. Cheers
  14. I am the OP and wanted to let you know the outcome. Princess tried to blame one of the 3 linked reservations for making a change 2 weeks before sailing. None of us did. Then they said it was at random. Again not true. My TA finally went up the supervisor line and found the truth according to Princess. My 2 friends were the last 2 who booked the cruisetour. I guess we will have to go with that. They wouldn't change them back to my tour so I had to move to theirs to be together. It is fine except for losing one half day in Sydney. Our flight from Cairns back to Sydney is not arriving until 8:25 p.m. We were supposed to have afternoon at leisure and evening at leisure. We won't get to the hotel until at least 9:30. Day lost. Had I known this schedule we would have stayed an extra day in Sydney. Princess customer service did call us 2 days later and gave each couple 2 dinners at the Crown Grill for our trouble. We leave for Auckland in 3 days. I will write a review when I return.
  15. Everything matches now. Even if it wasn't what we booked or wanted we will be fine and have a good time. We are still trying to get something from Princess saying we are going to be in the same group. Not sure it will happen.
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