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Everything posted by Roz

  1. @Evilmuffin, I can't remember what I've worn on a cruise let alone what someone else did.
  2. @The-Inside-Cabin, my last HAL cruise was a b2b Coastal and Alaska. The menus you posted (thank you!) were nothing like what I experienced on gala nights.
  3. I wear the same outfit twice all the time (shhh...don't tell the gala night fashion police).
  4. I've often wondered why they don't do a happy hour mid or late afternoon. A chance to indulge in some libations and socialize.
  5. I find the non-gala night menus to be better than gala nights. That's what I meant when I said gala night menus are uninspired, IMO. I can't afford the lines you mentioned. If you can, good for you. Go forth and book them, and leave the meatloaf behind.
  6. Then that is a big change from previous HAL cruises I've taken. I apologize if I gave wrong or misleading information.
  7. There are 2 gala nights on a 7-day cruise. I find the gala night menus in the MDR to be rather uninspired.
  8. My experience with group bookings is that generally they're less expensive than booking on your own, but apparently that's not the case in the cruise world.
  9. So I'm starting to check out hotel prices and locations for my South American cruise that starts in Buenos Aires. One of the hotels HAL uses is the Sofitel Buenos Aires Recoleta. HAL wants $489 for one person for one night, but when I go to the Sofitel website I can book it independently for around $168. Holy Mother of Pearl! How can HAL justify those prices and why do passengers pay them? Even if transfers are included, it doesn't justify such a wide discrepancy in price.
  10. Agree. Battered and fried squash salad? Shaved cukes? A fried steam bun? An orange dreamsicle for dessert? MDR for me.
  11. This is one of the reasons I like sailing lines like Uniworld and Tauck. All tips are included.
  12. This was one of the reasons I canceled my December cruise that started in Amsterdam. Too many hoops to jump thru with ever changing requirements.
  13. To quote The Bard, all's well that ends well. First let me say I have a super TA. She's a top producer and has pull with tour companies and cruise lines that I don't. Yesterday I was able to work with her to get my river cruise moved to Dec. 2022. It will cost $300 more and she was able to get them to waive the air cancellation fee because I'm rebooking, not asking for a refund. The ship leaves Amsterdam on Dec. 20 which means I'll spend Christmas in Antwerp. Ideally I wanted the Dec. 6 cruise (same as I had for 2021) but they're sold out so I'm on a waitlist. I'm not against spending Christmas in Europe, it's just that places will be more crowded (including airports!) and I imagine the airfare will end being more than I paid originally. We shall see. I felt much better after receiving the confirmation of the change. @*Miss G* and @Lois R, glad to hear your tests went smoothly and more importantly, you got your negative results back in time for your trip. Thanks to everyone for your kind word and advice and hanging in there with me. Now I'm off to tackle changing my trip insurance.
  14. @Coral, I have insurance but it's not Tauck's. I agree with you that their insurance is pricey for what you get, especially the medical coverage. I'm going to work with my TA to see what Tauck will offer. Trying to arrange all those tests on the trip you described would leave my head spinning! Talk about a logistical nightmare. On an ordinary trip it can difficult enough to figure out flights, hotels, transfers, etc. let alone add in tests with precise requirements as to type and time frame.
  15. I would be OK with the testing if the required tests were readily available at the airport or cruise terminal, depending on one's travel requirements. If I could test at the Nashville airport, I would be able to easily make it home if I was positive. If the Netherland's timeframe was 72 hrs. instead of 48 I could probably do it.
  16. My personal preference is to do independent sightseeing before the cruise, which is why I chose the Budapest to Passau itinerary.
  17. Last night I talked with my family and they are concerned about me traveling by myself to Europe and something going wrong, and they are more concerned about the toll all of this stress is taking on my body. I had open heart surgery back in May and this isn't helping. I emailed by TA this morning and told her I'm canceling and would re-book with Tauck for a 2022 cruise if it would be more financially advantageous to do so, but this whole ordeal has left a bad taste in my mouth. I tried reading Tauck's cancellation policy but it's hard to understand and I'm not clear on what happens with my airline tickets. Final payment is October 7. I will admit I'm OK with getting vaccinated and I'm even OK with wearing a mask, but this endless testing with so many ridiculous requirements is wearing thin real quick. I don't know how productive it is to test vaccinated people with no symptoms. I do know it's a money maker for the companies that guarantee quick turnarounds for travelers. I'll report back after I hear from my TA.
  18. Wow, did not know about this place. That would work. Only 20 miles from my house. And as you said, things could change between now and December. Many thanks, @anthonyy7. I feel better already.
  19. Good morning. I tried to read thru all the responses. Thank you for taking the time to answer. I have a CDC vaccine card but Vanderbilt University Medical Center put a QR sticker on it. Are they the only place that does that? I've not scanned the sticker. I got an email from my TA this morning but she doesn't seem to understand the problem. She thinks I'm concerned about getting a test in Amsterdam to board the ship. If I'm reading Tauck's website correctly I only need to be vaccinated to board. I need a test with negative results within 48 hrs. of liftoff in Nashville. That's my main issue. The hospitals here offer Covid tests to people with symptoms or direct exposure or those scheduled for medical procedures, but results take 2-5 days. I'm not knowledgeable enough to be able to determine if the tests offered at Walgreen's or CVS, other than the PCR test, will pass muster. I may go to a pharmacy and show the requirements to a pharmacist and have them tell me what I need and if they offer it. The Netherlands' website says no self-tests but I can't determine if that includes the tests that are shipped to your house and you stick a swab up your nose while someone watches you do it on a Zoom mtg. I'm on information overload and trying to sort it all out. I also feel like I'm spinning and going around in circles.
  20. "No other type of test, including self-tests and serological tests used to detect antibodies in blood, is valid." Does this include the BioNax test CCers are using and recommending?
  21. I just checked Walgreen's and CVS. They only offer one of the tests the Netherlands will accept (PCR) and results take 1-2 days to come back and results aren't guaranteed for travel. Appts. are limited. The closest rapid antigen test is offered in VA so that's out. They offer something called the Rapid Diagnostic Test (ID NOW) but I don't think it's accepted.
  22. I saw that. It costs $200 and you pre-register. My question is would UA allow me to board in Nashville without the test, and then get it at Newark before I board the plane for Amsterdam? I live in a Metro area and state with a low vaccination rate and high number of Covid cases so tests are hard to come by and are being rationed. My vax card has a QR code on it, so I'm not sure about uploading it but I'll check on that. Thanks to everyone for your advice and guidance.
  23. I was not able to find this information explained concisely. It was not clear to me. Thank you and I will verify with my TA. I don't know if I will be able to get the test (and more importantly the results) within the 48 hr. window. Is the departure time based on when I fly out of Nashville or out of Newark?
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