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About Kierste

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    Cool Cruiser

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    Portland, OR
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  1. Thanks Black tink! So teen club is up to 17 and then there is post teen 1820 Society.
  2. Thanks! Very helpful answers! I have flipped back and forth about wanting to go out of California or Florida. Leaning toward Florida, we have done two spring break trips out of Florida and they were NBD, but the California ones are short, 3 and 4 days... I feel like those may have a different atmosphere, maybe not because it is still Disney?
  3. Hi all! Just got home from a multi-island Hawaii trip, that included a few nights at Aulani. We have been cruising NCL every other year or so, and like their casual vibe, plus free drinks always being thrown in is a bonus. Teen dd says before college she wants to do a DCL cruise. We live on the west coast, have never done this side of Mexico, so that is a possibility, or we can head over to Florida and do a cruise out of there. Teen club is up to 17 I see, and looks super cool. So if we wait till her senior year she will be aged out of teen club (thinking spring break or early summer.) So now I am thinking junior year, maybe spring break because that would be easiest if she gets a summer job, 2021. DCL doesn’t seem to release calendars very far out? I like to book as early as possible and take advantage of paying over time. No drink packages? But soda is free? What about things like virgin piña coladas and such? Lattes or mochas? I saw an ice cream shop on one of the ships, is that an upcharge? Dinner... is the early seating solid kids? So if we wanted a “quieter” dinner we should choose the later and hope we stay awake thru it? I read somewhere they rotate you and you sit with the same people every night. Is that mandatory? Can you skip a restaurant or repeat one, or eat with just your family? Castaway cay, it sounds like this port gets skipped a lot. When they skip it what happens? They float around or do they add a different stop? I am sure I will have other questions... but for now the big differences between NCL and DCL are what I am thinking of. We are big DL geeks... we just never did a DCL cruise before.
  4. We were on the Spirit in July and I saw two choices... one was a direct ship to airport, and one had a bus tour of Rome first for late departures. We ended up choosing to stay an extra night in Rome and just took the train back, easy peasy.
  5. When our Dd was younger, we would schedule dinner at 6, tell the waiter that she wasn’t having an appetizer and what she wanted for dessert and they would bring her dinner with our apps and her dessert as soon as she was ready. Then one of us would drop her at kids club at 7 when they opened and come back to dinner if we weren’t finished yet. After a certain age they can check themselves in and out (I think dolphins group which is 10-12.) Now that she has aged up to entourage (teens) there is one night they have a dinner out together, you sign up a couple of days in advance.
  6. We just got off the Spirit a couple weeks ago. Have sailed on the Pearl and the Escape in mini-suites. Our balcony room on the Spirit was noticeably smaller. But we expected as much. Otherwise everything about the cabin, the ship, the crew, was pretty wonderful. I wish the curtains in the cabin were better at blocking out light. It gets light out really early on the Adriatic! But if that is my biggest complaint, it must have been a pretty good cruise! (And it was!) Spent 11 days on the Spirit and could have stayed for more. Enjoy!
  7. Just off the Spirit, our alarm clock was not unplugged one time. But maybe it was just our steward saving me from repeatedly having to reset the time!
  8. I just did the M&G on the Spirit on 7/9, we had about 45 sign up and about 25 attend. Maria, the event coordinator for the Spirit provided name tags for us (and coffee, juice and pastries.) I brought wrapped paper straws to give out, blue lanyards, little highlighters, and some nautical themed pencils, erasers and stickers for the kiddos (thanks Amazon!) I got cabin numbers from the RSVPs and made my own reminder cards and delivered them the night before. I think it was worth the work on my end. We didn’t do any games or anything. The crew talked and I reminded everyone to have fun and if they have any concerns to address them with the crew before the end of the cruise. Then we just chatted. It was a small, but nice M&G.
  9. We just flew out of Rome. We stayed an extra night after the cruise. The airport was absolute chaos on a Friday morning. If we didn’t have sky priority with Delta I am pretty sure we would have been running to make our plane (we arrived 2.5 hours before the flight.). Disembarking was super easy from the ship, and then we actually walked to the train. If you paid for private transport directly from the ship remember it is still over an hour drive. I wouldn’t risk a flight before noon.
  10. Thanks... I know I can book DH with one kiddo and me with the other, and flip around... have seen and heard this done. So unless I decide to get a larger suite, that is what we will likely do. The suite may make more sense with the perks, but not the price! :eek:
  11. Okay but what some people think will happen and what will happen is often very different. When you board that minor’s card have a clipped corner. They show this card when they enter entourage to register and for the first day or so... after that, if they are regulars, the staff knows them and the minor is not asked for their card again. I know this from very recent experience a week ago on the Spirit. We registered my teen into entourage, and did the paperwork, chatted with the teen counselor (there were 2 on the Spirit for the 11 days) and the main one remembered my DD from the Escape! After day 2 they were only checking cards for clipped corners for the kids they did not recognize. Entourage is different from Splash Academy... the teens come and go constantly, they do not check them in and out, as the lounge is mostly a meeting place. If the almost 18 year old in question does not go down and get an unclipped card on their birthday, and/or is a regular and never asked to show their card, they will continue to use entourage for the duration of their cruise with no issues. I would be willing to bet on it.
  12. Returning is likely more okay than leaving... we were stopped in a port getting off the ship, well DD was stopped, because we were in front of her in line and scanned out and started off and they held her asking who her parents were... we started putting her between us :cool:
  13. Hi all, just got off the Spirit... so of course I need another cruise booked. Dd is going to be a HS freshman in the fall, and would like to cruise for her senior trip. As 2020 itineraries are being released now, I realized it won’t be long and 2022 will be released in the grand scheme of things! So in 18 months or so when 2022 starts coming out, I will want to jump on it so I can get the ship (she wants a big ship), itinerary (Caribbean or Mexican Riviera) and rooms I want (would love an aft facing balcony or mini suite, with an inside across the hall.) Here is the catch... she wants to bring a friend. Hence the inside very nearby. But you know how girls are, and high school girls. Just because she has had a bestie since 4th grade, doesn’t mean they will still be besties in 4 more years. And what if the 1st choice parent says no... I can’t take their kid out of the country? Then I need a back up kid... can I book a room and change names at a later date? I know worst case scenario I will be out of luck after final payment (120 days now?) But between now and then, is it kosher to change names? Both girls will be 18 whether we end up going over spring break or in June after grad. I can put them in a room right? Don’t need to change the ressies to make a parent in each room? :confused: Anyone with this experience? And yes, I know Dd is spoiled. But I budget and plan, and that is why I will be booking as soon as I can so I can pay it off over time. TIA...
  14. We just used it for 11 days on the Spirit. You have to download the app before the cruise to the devices you want to use. When you get on the ship you can register your app to your name and cabin and have full free access to your account, reservations for dinners, what is happening on the ship. For $9.95 per device you can add messaging. This allows you to text others on the ship that have also paid the $9.95. We used this daily to text with our teen, who had the app on her iPod. It works great, but you do not get a notification, you have to be diligent about checking for messages. Wasn’t a problem for us, as I knew approximately when she would be texting us. We have done the app 3 times and will continue to.
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