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Crowsie

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About Crowsie

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Edina, MN
  1. When we did our 19 night cruise my hubby's work would only approve the vacation if he took a satellite phone with him. Verizon has a rental program. So..if you're strictly looking for voice access this may be an option to explore.
  2. We did 19 nights Sydney to Bangkok (seems like eons ago). As a young working couple we were only granted vacation permission for such an extended period of time if we agreed to handle some work issues when needed. Therefore, we took a satellite phone with us, so we could communicate with work/home during those long sea days without (or with unreliable) cell / internet service. All of the major cellular carriers have satellite phones available for rent. Also...back then you could carry-on a bottle....and buy bottles from the bar if needed. We like to have cocktails in the cabin as we are getting ready for dinner...so...although I could easily find vodka in most bottle shops throughout the world....finding the Rose's Lime Juice for my gimlet was an entirely different matter. So, I packed a big bottle of that in my luggage. Even now, with the new AIB package, I bring Rose's on board. I will order a double vodka - neat. Carry it back to my stateroom and save in an airtight container so that when DH is making cocktails I have a double shot and the Rose's for my gimlet. I agree with the fully loaded Kindle. I also download any apps (Princess Messenger) to my Ipad and make sure all of my games (Angry Birds, Candy Crush etc) have been updated before leaving home. I pack powdered laundry detergent and dryer sheets in ziploc baggies in my luggage for doing laundy...and get a roll of quarters, as well. A bluetooth speaker and download music to your phone (instead of relying on Spotify or Pandora) for in the stateroom. Extension cord with multiple ports. If you bring your laptop you can offload your sim card from your phone/camera..otherwise you have to pay $$$$$ to have the photo shop burn you CD's...so in that case extra sim cards are a must. We also take portable battery chargers for cell phones/Ipads when flying overseas. Best Buy has a great variety. I put together a spreadsheet for our house babysitters that included trash and recycling pick up days, neighbors for emergency contacts, family emergency contacts, vet info for the puppy, school/friends contact info for the kids etc. Don't forget basics like out of office messages on email/cell phones, stop the paper delivery, have mail collected and arrangements for watering, mowing or snowblowing/shoveling etc
  3. While the food we ate was enjoyable, we were underwhelmed by the menu. Normally, it's difficult to choose among the options because they all sound appealing...not so with the Caribbean menu.
  4. Thanks for the positive info on the band kids.....I will pass it along to our band director! We are happy to have been able to perform for you!
  5. Thanks Cedarmom! With 130 high school seniors I guess that one small pool shower incident is likely to happen. Glad to hear they were in their tuxes and gowns for dinner ;-) They really are a terrific group of kids! Up until Tuesday before boarding I was scheduled to go, but having just disembarked the Emerald the week before the pragmatic side of me took hold and I did the wise thing and stayed home to work. I would have done the same thing with the sunscreen. I will pass your comments along to the band director!
  6. Thanks for the positive comments on the band kids....they are from Edina (MN) High School. I saw the video of the flash mob during the deck party to Uptown Funk and it looked great. They performed that dance number at their POPS concert in February. We're very proud to be able to share our band with Princess Cruises!
  7. We sailed this itinerary on 3/15 and had a fabulous time! We found the ship in excellent condition and the staff uber friendly...especially our waiters in Boticelli. While we were underwhelmed with the menu options during dinner...the food we had was very good. Our cabin was in excellent condition, as well. All in all one of our favorite experiences aboard Princess. Sorry to hear an illness spoiled your trip...that's never any fun.
  8. Wondering if any of you had the opportunity to see the Edina High School Concert Band perform? My kids were in this band when they were in high school (graduated too late for us to be on this cruise...bummer for me!!) I believed they performed in the theater one night, plus some ensembles in the piazza...and I saw a video of a flash mob they did during the deck party. Curious and interested in your feedback! Thanks!
  9. As an ocean cruiser researching my first river cruise, I appreciate this discussion immensely! DH and I (mid 50's with 2 DD's in college) are looking to travel in September 2015 (Bucharest-Nurmemburg-Prague) with my MIL and her sister. Our wants/needs are very different and I'm having brain-meld trying to compare all the cruise lines and inclusions/options. It's my understanding that you are in port all day and sail at night. If this is generally true - then I would be okay with a window cabin or french balcony. I also can't see spending $$ on all-inclusive beverages if you're truely only going to be on board just for dinner and evening activities. I should point out we did by the all-inclusive drink package on our last Princess cruise, but with sea days we definitely got our monies worth on that option. My MIL loves the butler option on Scenic, but I can't see spending extra $$ for butlers, non-pedal bikes or garment pressing (did I mention 2 college tuitions?!?!) I like the idea of a variety of included shore excursion options, however, I could also be comfortable with just going onshore and exploring on our own. I read the CC comparison pdf of river cruise lines to hotel chains and ocean cruise lines...very helpful! I've started a spreadsheet to compare cruise lines/cabin types/pricing/all inclusive...but guess now I have to go back and add fields types/inclusions of shore excursions/gratuities/splash pools/alternate dining venues etc. Bottom line....please keep describing your experiences and features of each cruise line as they are helping me to complete my spreadsheet!
  10. Just off the Emerald on the 22nd (review to come, as well). We, too, did not like the new menu. We are not picky eaters..just the opposite..and we've always enjoyed the menu options and frequently had to "dial it back" because so many items sounded appealing. Not this time. I agree with OP that the heavily Caribbean themed menu was too heavily Caribbean. The Caribbean items we tried were yummy...but there was not enough variation. The biggest disappointment were the cold soups...they only offered 2 or 3 thoughout the week and they served them in a hurricane glass with a straw...a very unappealing way to eat a cold soup. The 2nd biggest disapointment was Italian Night. The Italian specialties were Spaghetti and Meatballs and the "available every night" option of fettucini alfredo. No pesto option, no ravioli option, no carbonara option ..no nothing else Italian. So....disappointing. At least they had Tiramisu on the dessert menu.
  11. Bummer..but thanks for the heads up Pablo. We have all downloaded it just in case it's live!
  12. Hey WisCruiser2 - I assume you leave your phone on airplane mode and then turn on Wi-Fi to assure you're not being charged ship internet access data/phone rates etc? Thanks everyone!
  13. Does anyone know if it's only available on the Regal..boarding the Emerald on Sunday and would love to have the app available
  14. One question..... For those of you that purchased Princess internet minutes and used your own device (laptop/ipad/smartphone).. Did you also incur data charges from your carrier ON TOP of having to pay for the Princess access? Thanks!
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