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Everything posted by Coreysgrl06

  1. Here are the dailies for day 4 and 5 as well as the schedule for Splash Academy. I failed to include our experience in Bermuda. This was our second time there. It’s so beautiful and the weather was perfect. We went to Snorkel Park Beach. It was a 10 minute walk from the ship. It was $15 per adult and $5 per kid. They had a DJ then a live band. For $20 you can get a chair. For a family of 4 to pay for admission plus chairs it was overpriced so we sat on our towels. The staff tried to clean the beach but I noticed a lot of broken glass pieces on the sand and in the water. I’ve heard that at night it turns into a club so I’m wondering if they allow people to drink on the beech and leave their trash behind. The beach was also very rocky. We had a couple drinks at the bar and they were pretty good. The prices were $11-$15. We wanted to eat there but chicken fingers and fries were $22. So we ate back on the ship. The beach had a bounce house for kids, cornhole and a basketball court. It could be a great option if it was better maintained. Next door they have Fun Golf, mini golf. It’s $15 per person. I recommend it! You’re right on the water and the views can’t be beat. The owner is really cool and he has a cool bar and terrace where you can view the sunset. I would go back to mini golf not the beach. We also visited Clocktower Mall, Duch pops, Island Outfitters and Alex’s ice cream. Last time we took a full island tour so it was nice to stay local. My parents enjoyed visiting Calico Jack’s for some beers.
  2. Entertainment: I never felt like there was a lack of things to do. This is why Escape is one of my favorite ships. They had a lot of live bands that would appeal to different people of all ages. Howl at the Moon is so much fun. There was standing room only the 2 nights I went. The entertainers are so talented and great with the audience. We didn’t make it to Choir of Man, I heard it was cancelled due to a medical issue. We attended the Welcome Aboard show and it was a lot of fun. It featured The Company Men. They were an interesting mix of guys. In my opinion they were mildly entertaining. They had two shows in the Supper Club and I didn’t attend those. Our cruise director was Jeff. He was a lot of fun but not as present as cruise directors I’ve seen in the past. It seemed they had about 3 other assistant cruise directors who I constantly saw. Bruno and JM were our favorites. There was a lot of trivia and really fun game shows. Everything was well attended. We knew that we had to show up to the Atrium 20-30 minutes early if we wanted a seat. One day we sat on the floor. The Atrium gets full so fast. We had an 80s party one night. It’s usually in Spice H20 but it rained and they moved it inside. The 90s party and GLOW party were a ton of fun! The farewell party was held in the Skyline and it seemed like a small venue for the final party. The cruise director didn’t show up for this party. Instead 2 of the assistants were there to lead line dances and didn’t even stay for the whole hour. Maybe they let them get off work earlier now. A few nights we ended up in Skyline for the late night party. We had DJ Will. He was an okay DJ. Seemed like he had a set playlist and wasn’t reading the crowd. Many songs were repeated at different parties. For all the football fans, no need to fear. You have many places to watch the games throughout the ship. Splash Academy: My kids loved every moment here. The counselors are amazing. The kids were never bored. They had a lot of activities to keep them busy. I liked the scheduled hours they had. After 11pm they charge $6 an hour and an additional $4 for a sibling. I read years ago that the Splash counselors are not included in the prepaid gratuities so I always make sure to give them a tip at the end of the trip. They definitely deserve it. I like the process they have to check the kids in and out. It made us feel more secure leaving our children for hours. The only thing that I heard complaints about is the new way of signing up for the academy on a daily basis. We used to have to get on line early to get the kids in. Now they have a virtual queue. You sign up on the NCL app and you wait for them to send you a free text message indicating they are ready for your child. It’s best to sign up an hour before the club opens because it is first come first serve. There is a physical standby line but I heard parents saying that they waited over an hour to get in and some kids couldn’t get in at all. One evening it was an hour before we got the text and by then our kids were falling asleep. So make sure you register your kids on day 1 and make good use of the virtual standby especially if you have a lot of kids on the ship NCL App: The app worked well. Most of the time I used my phone to view the freestyle daily. We didn’t really have any hiccups using it. If anyone has any questions please feel free to ask and I’ll try my best to answer.
  3. Some call it Jersey Week. Some school districts have the entire week off and some have Thursday and Friday off during the first full week of November. Many parents use that time to take the kids out.
  4. O’Sheehan’s: We went here for late night food and for lunch twice. It’s not as good as it used to be. We were seated fast despite there always being a long line. After that the service is very slow. Even getting drinks served was slow even though the bar is a short walk across from the restaurant. The wings are terrible now. They weren’t cooked through and they are soggy. The seasoning is paprika heavy and no other flavor. The sweet chili sauce is very good. Buffalo sauce not so much. We had pretzel bites and loaded nachos which were good enough. Garden Cafe: Always packed but never hard to find a seat. You may have to walk a little but not a big deal. One morning a server took note of us and offered seating upstairs in the American Diner. He took my kids plates, put them on a tray and walked us upstairs to the Diner where they had a lot of seats. I really appreciated the personal attention. Food was just decent in the buffet. We stuck to the same meals each day. We only went to the buffet once for dinner. One night they had a special kids night in addition to a steak and shrimp night. We never got the steak and shrimp because the line was sooo long. But we did enjoy the kid friendly options. The pizza is the best in the buffet. If you order it off the kids menu it’s trash. Not sure why it’s so different. The wings in the buffet are also terrible and undercooked. Savor/Taste/Manhattan Room: Service was very slow at Savor. It was much better at Taste. We only went for dinner on 2 nights. I enjoyed all the food we had at both restaurants. We ate dinner at the Manhattan Room on the final night. The food was so good! I like that they have a live band while you eat but they would play for such short amounts of time and then take a break. We could barely hear the singer. Food Republic: As always it’s amazing! Nice sized portions and I like ordering multiple options and sharing amongst the table. It’s so easy to order off the tablet. We didn’t wait for long before being served. I would go back again and again if I could. I absolutely recommend it. Cagney’s Steakhouse: Slightly disappointing this time. We used our 1 free specialty dining option here. So we were able to get one appetizer, one salad, one entree and two sides, and one dessert. The shrimp cocktail was good, crab cake decent, Caesar salad the best, iceberg salad good but huge, fillet mignon tough and hard to cut, strip steak cooked well, seven layer cake heavenly but very rich. I couldn’t finish the cake. Starbucks/Dolce/Bake Shop: Good coffee that’s overpriced, prepare for long lines but quick service. Despite the high price I preferred the Starbucks coffee over coffee we had in the buffet. It was always terrible. We finally tried Dolce and the Bake Shop. They are tucked away. The gelato was so good and they had a nice range of flavors and I loved the variety of cupcakes. Next up entertainment…
  5. After lunch we made our way to the poolside and had our first drink and listened to the DJ. Multiple announcements were made to go to your muster stations 🙄 and then finally we heard the announcement that our room was ready. It was around 1:30pm so I thought the timing was good. We utilized the stairs to avoid the crowds and we happened to see our bags in the hallway on our floor so we grabbed them and went to our room. Room: Deck 11, 11274, angled balcony. Even though we had 4 people in our room it never felt cramped. We made good use of the storage to hold all our stuff and we had room to spare. There was some rust on the balcony walls. There was a strong urine smell only in the bathroom. I learned from our online cruise group that it wasn’t just our bathroom that smelled. Also throughout the week many rooms on our floor had toilets that stopped working. Then randomly you would hear a symphony of toilets flushing as they were fixed. Our room steward quickly introduced herself. Jenny consistently greeted us by name when she saw us in the hallway. I was so impressed. She was wonderful all week. We are Silver Latitudes Rewards members so we had 2 small containers of Flow water in our room when we arrived in addition to our invite to the Latitudes party, held in the Supper Club. Spoiler alert: We didn’t attend the party sadly. Bars: We visited almost all the bars during our trip. The service is consistently slow. With so many people on the ship, I certainly felt for the staff. At times I wish there was a better process. There were only 2 times where I felt like I was bothering the bartender. One bartender at the Skyline Bar was visibly annoyed with everyone and told us he was going to sleep. I’m sure it’s not easy dealing with the late night inebriated crowd. The drinks were all delicious and I love the unlimited beverage package because I can try so many new drinks. A recent cruise review mentioned peanut butter whiskey and that’s my favorite. This was my first time going to Tobacco Road and it was worth it! We paid $2 because it’s over the $15 limit. Internet: We had 75 mins included and I used about 30 mins to book a hotel for an upcoming convention. The internet worked well for me and it wasn’t very slow. My husband used some of his minutes to set his football fantasy lineup and he didn’t have any complaints. Our son was able to easily connect to the internet on his phone and he purchased the unlimited internet plan. We saw the changes on our account, one of which was $589. He’s 10 so he wasn’t aware of the cost. We went to the Internet Manager and he blocked our kids access to the internet then we had to go to Guest Services to have the charges removed. They had us sign a paper indicating we wanted the kids account blocked. Next up, Restaurant thoughts… I included all the Day 1 info we received in our room
  6. Just got off the Escape this morning and I wanted to share my thoughts. A little background: This was my third time on the Escape. We are a family of 4 with two kids. We went with a group of 19 family members and friends. They range in age from 14 to 70. Our promo included the glorious unlimited beverage package, 1 specialty dinner, 75 mins of internet and the $50 shore excursion credit (the last one we didn’t use). We stayed in room 11274, an angled balcony room and our second time staying in this same room. Let’s go back to the beginning: We prebooked our parking at the terminal and that made the process so smooth. We chose an arrival time of 10:30-11:00am. Once in the terminal the line moved quickly to show our passport and go through security. The line was a bit slower when we waited to be checked in by NCL staff and receive our key cards. It took a total of 1 hour to arrive and be on the ship. So I have no complaints there. On the ship: We went directly to the Garden Cafe (don’t judge me 🫣) for lunch. I immediately noticed the options and quality of the food had declined somewhat. We stuck to the basics, burgers fries and chicken strips. My son complained about the chicken. The burgers and fries were consistently good throughout the week. My kids also complained about the juice options on day 1. They said it tasted like medicine. we learned that the ship was at full capacity with 5100 passengers and I think around 1000 kids. We absolutely felt like it was packed everywhere (ALL WEEK) so of course the buffet was chaos. It’s been said many times to avoid the buffet but I would agree. We chose to go to the buffet to find quick options to feed the “starving” children. After lunch we were directed to check in at our muster station. We checked in near Savor. It was very easy. They made multiple announcements remaining people to check in. I don’t know why it’s so hard to get people to check in. I like this process much more than the old muster drills. More thoughts to come including all dailies…
  7. Can anyone on the August 22nd Escape cruise, please take pictures of the dailies? I want to see the schedule for the 5 nights. I know things often change but I would like to get an idea of what to expect for my upcoming cruise. thank you 😃
  8. I have looked at the Spark page that lists daily events but how do you see what’s on the schedule for a specific ship like Scarlet Lady? I would just like to get an idea of what activities are available and when they are usually planned.
  9. Has anyone ever prepaid for parking at the Manhattan Cruise Terminal? I’m wondering what the process is like for my upcoming cruise out of New York.
  10. Yes there’s a bar. You can get mixed drinks in addition to wine and beer. They made great mimosas in the morning
  11. We are taking our kids on the Escape November 5 because they are off due to the teachers convention the 9th and 10th. It is our first time doing a cruise during Jersey week so I’m not sure if it’ll be full of kids.
  12. They do have a club. It’s the Skyline Bar. On our last two cruises we had great DJs and lots of people dancing. The bands were great at that point. Not sure how they are this year. We also had a Glow party, a 90s party and Latin party that was well attended .
  13. This makes complete sense. Thank you so much for your reply
  14. Yes 🤣 I do like to plan ahead as much as possible 🤷🏽‍♀️
  15. Hi does anyone know when Virgin releases more itineraries? I see they have cruises for this year in November but the 2024 schedule stops at October.
  16. Hi I’m new to Royal and I want to book an Alaska cruise for 2024. I’ve been watching the prices for one option in August all month and each time they extend the sale the price increases. I’m only familiar with Norwegian and I haven’t see the same increases all in one month before so I am wondering has anyone seen any of the Alaska cruises decrease in price? I want to be adjust my budget/expectations accordingly. Thank you!
  17. One time we found out the coast guard was doing an inspection so the main lot was still full. We simply drove 2 blocks down to another public lot and paid for parking there. It saved us around $80 and the walk was quick to the pier. Our family was able to park in the cruise terminal lot without any issue because they arrived a bit later than us.
  18. I read years ago that the staff in the kids club don’t get to share the gratuity. Does anyone know if that’s still true? Last cruise we went on we gave the kids club staff a separate tip. I understand if no one has the answer. Just curious
  19. Thanks for your help. I’ll search FB for my sailing
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