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Joanne G.

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Everything posted by Joanne G.

  1. I thought maybe it's a conflict between Royal/Celebrity and something else on my computer, such as anti-virus software. But I really don't care anymore. After cruises on the Anthem and the Equinox this year, next year's cruises are on lines where I don't have any log in issues - not that that's why I picked the other lines LOL!
  2. Sure, but my understanding from the post by @Kellie in Texas is that the stuff-the-bag special for a flat rate is only offered at select times during the cruise. Otherwise, items sent out in the bag are washed at the per-item price, correct?
  3. Same here. It's made me dread needing to log in. 😲
  4. My experience was several years ago and through a travel agent. I stand corrected if my experience is no longer the situation.
  5. I’ve had the same problem for months, long before the recent issues. Just about every time I log into either Celebrity or Royal on my desktop computer, my password isn’t recognized. Sometimes I can “change” it to the same one that was just rejected, and other times I have to make up a new one. I’ve cleared history and tried different browsers, and it still happens. It’s beyond annoying, but I have pretty much given up on finding a solution. I’ll follow this thread for any new ideas.
  6. That has been my experience - not long waits on hold and U.S. based agents. I called regarding a price drop after final payment and was offered a choice between a cabin upgrade or a future cruise credit, not an onboard credit as I was hoping for. Maybe others have gotten an onboard credit as mentioned in another response here, but that was not an option for me. Also, I was told that adjustments for price drops are not offered at all within 60 days of sailing, and luckily I was about a day or so before that point. That may vary by itinerary, and there may be some flexibility, but that’s what I was told. Regarding the Free at Sea for drinks - it’s true the gratuities are equal to about 2 drinks a day. But do check the actual cruise fare with and without the Free at Sea drinks (and dining). When I unchecked these two in the booking process, the base cruise fare was less. My upcoming NCL cruise is a port-heavy northern European itinerary, and I knew I’d be off the ship for long days and going to bed early for morning excursions - not much time to drink. And I had no interest in specialty dining. So I passed on the drink and dining packages for a lower fare. On the other hand, I made good use of the $50 per tour excursion credit. That was a big savings. I even booked two excursions in some ports. (It’s $50 for the first person on the reservation, not $50 each for two people.)
  7. I’m with you. I like to be prepared, and I get euros and/or British pounds from my local bank before the trip. They don’t charge a fee, and if the exchange rate is a few fractions of a percentage point more than an overseas ATM, that’s insignificant for the quantity I am getting. I can specify some small bills which are useful for tipping tour guides. I generally take ship-sponsored excursions on my European cruises, and I can’t count on the opportunity or time to hunt for an ATM when on a group tour. And by getting currency before my trip, I don’t worry about my ATM card being compromised overseas. We all manage our money in the way that works for us, and this works for me. I get a lot less currency these days than I did before Covid, as credit cards are so widely accepted, even for small purchases.
  8. I typically do not add anything extra. I don't drink a lot, and I don't need a bartender to get to know me or provide any special service. It's entirely up to you. If you do want to tip extra, you can either add it to the tab or tip in cash.
  9. Yes, they are. I was on the Magic earlier this month in a standard balcony cabin, and that’s what mine was like.
  10. The lease agreement may include payment of a percentage of sales. Whatever the arrangement, I remain baffled by the amount of space taken up for selling high-end accessories and jewelry. I never see a lot of people in those shops, but it must work for the cruise lines and the vendors as ships on all the major cruise lines have these shops.
  11. Interesting. I've read other accounts like yours, in which people on a wait list were given spots and charged for the excursion without a notification in advance. It seems like a potential problem if someone had made alternative arrangements with a private tour operator. Maybe I should reconsider my suggestion in post #5 to have a Plan B for a port in which you are on the wait list for a Princess excursion.
  12. I was on the waitlist for an excursion on a California coastal cruise a couple years ago. I did get an email when a spot opened up, and I had a short time period - I think 48 hours - to accept and pay for it. Not wanting to depend on an email, I also checked the excursion just about every day for availability. Good luck - and have a Plan B for that port.
  13. Carnival has only one ship in Europe this summer, and it sails out of Dover for its Northern European itineraries. I doubt they would plan their European operations around a problematic home port. Same situation last summer - Carnival had multiple cruises out of Dover. I was on 3 of them, and there was never any indication of any issues related to immigrant traffic affecting port operations. Nor was any such incident every mentioned on the Carnival CC board. I'd say you will make your port stop in Dover unless weather or mechanical issues cause your ship to miss it. Have a great cruise.
  14. Thank you all for the information and the tips for getting an early breakfast. One excursion is scheduled to start at 7:30, so the earliest room service time (6:30 - 7:00) on the order form that @BirdTravelsposted wouldn't work. I appreciate knowing the other options. And thanks for the good wishes - we are getting excited for our trip.
  15. I use them, and yes, I leave them on all night. One has lasted me for 8 - 10 nights, but I'll pack two in order to have a back-up. They are small and cheap and give me just the amount of light I want in the bathroom at night. I put them away during the day, so as not to freak out the cabin attendant who might not immediately recognize that they aren't real candles!
  16. I have used them on land vacations in Europe, not on cruises. They are a booking agent, offering the opportunity to book tours offered by multiple tour companies. I have always been satisfied with tours booked through them. The times and duration of the tours have dependably matched the descriptions, which would be very important if you are considering them for a cruise port tour. As they are a booking agent and not a tour provider, you can do independent research on the company actually running the tour. The Get Your Guide description will tell you the name of the operator. An advantage to using Get Your Guide rather than booking directly with the tour provider is that, in most cases in my experience, you can reserve your place, but your credit card won't be charged until a few days before the tour. This offers flexibility if your plans change and is even better than canceling a paid tour and waiting for a refund. I had to miss a tour once at the last minute because I wasn't feeling well, and there was no refund. So that would presumably also be the case if your ship missed a port, or arrived late into port, without notice due to weather or some other unexpected issue.
  17. We will be on the Getaway in Europe next month. We have a few early morning excursions and are considering ordering breakfast from room service in order to avoid crowds in the buffet on the mornings of port days. We would be ordering just cereal, milk, fruit, coffee - no eggs or other hot items. Does NCL still use the old-fashioned door tags to hang out the night before with our order and chosen time? If not, can we call the night before with our order and to specify a delivery time? If we have to call in the morning, how much time should we allow? We are booked on NCL excursions with no flexibility in meeting time. In general, is room service dependable? We are in a standard balcony cabin without any special services or amenities. As an alternative, what is the buffet like for breakfast on early port days? Is it a madhouse, or can we plan on getting in and out fairly quickly? Thank you for any insight.
  18. I don't believe kettles or coffee makers are ever available on Carnival. I had one on a Princess cruise out of Southampton, presumably due to demand from UK passengers, but not on my Carnival cruises out of Dover. Have you tried asking in the specialty coffee shop if their water is hot enough for tea as you like it? I hope you find what you want. I don't drink tea, but I would be dissatisfied if I couldn't find acceptable coffee onboard.
  19. Last summer on the Pride, the cruise director was Frankie Portero. I just sailed with him again on the Magic earlier this month. He said during the Q & A, in response to a question about his favorite ship, that he loves the Sprit class ships due to their layout and smaller size. (But as we were on the Magic, he diplomatically said he loved that ship, too.)
  20. I haven't been on either of these cruises, but I have cruised in Europe and around Hawaii, flying from the Midwest. Both options for flying sound too close for me, but everyone's tolerance for risk - and tolerance for jet lag - is different.
  21. I get notifications of the flash sales on my phone through the app. So download the app if you haven't done so already and log into it to make sure your cruise is showing. I haven't routinely checked my booking, as I caught all the sales due to the notifications from the app. But it can't hurt to check your booking around Memorial Day, Labor Day, 4th of July, and Black Friday. It was around those holidays when the best sales happened for my cruise. The savings were significant. Good luck!
  22. Just got off the Magic yesterday. Sailed with Frankie. Reminisced with him about the eventful July 9 and July 21 Pride cruises last summer. I booked the Magic with the FCC credit that I got for that memorable experience! 😄 He said he is fond of the smaller Spirit class ships and has been on all of them except the Spirit. But he diplomatically said that he loves the Magic, too! He spent the prior cruise onboard but not as the CD, just getting a feel for the operations. The April 4 cruise that I was on was his first on that ship. He also said they can put in requests for their preferences for ships and/or home ports, and Carnival tries to accommodate them as much as possible.
  23. I do not wash my clothes in hot water at home, but I accept that anything I send out on the ship will be washed in hot water and dried in a very hot dryer. I only send out items that I feel will be ok with that treatment once in a while, even if that's not my normal care at home. I've had some wrinkling among the items I have sent, but no permanent damage such as shrinking or color-fading. As I mentioned in my previous post, I find 100% cotton knits are the most likely to shrink, so I try to build my cruise wardrobe around either cotton/polyester blends or woven cottons. For those items that I don't want to send to the ship's laundry, I wash them out in the bathroom sink and hang to dry on the clothesline in the shower or any other place I can improvise, using inflatable hangers and clothespin/hook combinations. I use a product called "Sink Suds" from Amazon - small packets of laundry detergent, though you could simply use the shampoo provided in the shower. Wrap the wet items in a towel to get out as much of the water as possible before hanging to dry. The pool towels are great for this purpose - easily swapped out for dry ones at the pool. Enjoy your 20-day cruise!
  24. I’ve sent out my cotton nightgown, socks, undies, jeans, workout shorts, cotton capris, and cotton pants. I don’t send out nice t-shirts due to fear of them shrinking in the hot water and hot dryer. I think bras and bathing suits are too delicate for the industrial treatment and are easily washed out by hand. The cotton pants and capris came back nicely folded but quite wrinkled. I used the iron in the public laundry room to make them presentable. I have also used the public laundry rooms, but, in my experience, they are often busy unless you are willing to do your laundry very early in the morning or very late at night or during a port day. People on these boards have said they have written special instructions such as “cold water” or “delicate cycle” or “low dryer heat”, but I am not at all sure those instructions are followed. I only send out what I feel won’t be damaged by super hot water and super hot drying.
  25. At least with Carnival you can count on prices going up LOL. I’ve got cruises booked on Royal Caribbean and Celebrity, and their excursions, drink and dining packages, in-room beverages, and hotel packages (in Europe) go up and down randomly with “flash sales.”
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