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Everything posted by pinotlover

  1. Let me first agree with you. We were told by the OCA aboard ship in either 2018 or 19, when the Vista was first introduced, that Jacques would not be included and Barrista was going to be reimagined. So far the only thing she may have, tbd, been incorrect on was the reimagining of the PG which probably needs it the most. This change has been in the works for 4 or more years. Oceania is predominately a North American ( U.S. & Canada)line. Many of those prefer their food simple and boardline bland. I have given up the fight. Almost always, the best food we have on a cruise is not aboard ship, but ashore at lunch or dinner during the rare late departures. That’s not a knock on Oceania food, it just means they can’t compete against local specialties prepared with local fresh ingredients and spices. Jacques is very Americanized French, but not nearly as much so Americanized as the other restaurants. One of the things I enjoy most with one of the other lines is their nightly inclusions of local produce, ingredients, and most importantly menus from the countries visited. There are no highly Americanized Indian buffets in the middle of the Baltic or Adriatic. I didn’t pay to sail to Vietnam to eat American Italian food . Others disagree heartedly. A group of us ate in an incredible restaurant in Saigon, also in Hue. I’m guessing that Embers will be just another American restaurant catering to people wanting American food. It will probably be popular. I’ll hopefully see in Jun 2023.
  2. We haven’t sailed them, but friends love Tauck. We don’t choose to pay for the level of service that line provides, but they have wonderful ships, some great itineraries, and impeccable service. A totally different aspect of sailing versus Oceania.
  3. Interesting! 🥂 If accurate, it will be interesting to see what the lunch menu includes. Certainly not the full evening menu. The watermelon salad and a nice sushi or sashimi selection there would make for a fantastic lunch! Then nappy Pooh time! 🥂
  4. Sorry about the confusion, not what I meant. I believe they do require the fee. My intention was to imply that the decision to not book early ( and then pay the required fee) results in fewer and quite regularly poorer options in flight choices.
  5. Therein lies part of your problem. Aboard ship, those passengers in top suites do get special considerations. Outside of that there is no class differentiation on Oceania. Your treatment is exactly the same as others receive outside the cabin. There is no First Class. Trieste is not a large airport, so your claim of walking a half mile away from the airport is questionable. Fwiw, we always use the bathrooms and ensure we have water for personal use before exiting an airport. Hopefully, the bus will have water for passengers, but it’s never guaranteed. Your tour experience is unfortunate. Personally, I would have found shade long before two hours. Things are tough right now in Europe as in the U.S.. This summer, we had a tour bus show up 45 minutes late for our tour. The driver, who was also the branch manager, begged our foregiveness. Seems the assigned driver had called in and quit that morning leaving them jumping through hoops to get the bus out. Things are certainly a mess right now.
  6. Sports jackets are never required. You will find that the majority of us do wear them to La Reserve, Privee, and occasionally at Jacques and the other Specialties. As an example, at our last La Reserve Dom Perignon dinner aboard the Marina, I believe 10 of the twelve gentlemen in attendance wore jackets. Some follow minimum standards and never wear them at all. Others wear them to certain venues. Your call.
  7. It’s to be ticketed. A different set of long rules, but one can be booked but not ticketed. Then , depending upon airline status, one may or may not be able to do things like seat assignments. Also, until ticketed, all itinerary changes go through the booking intermediary ( O) not the passengers. Once one pays in full they can request for the reservations be ticketed.
  8. This is mostly correct, just the beginning is off base. For simplicity and without a 23 step explanation, think of these bulk rate discount tickets the same as Frequent Flyer seats. The availability of seats on a plane for ff awards or bulk rate tickets is fixed by the airlines for any routing. Having available seats and having available ff or bulk rate seats are two different issues. This means there are X number of seats available on that non stop ORD-FCO ( for example) flight. Like ff mileage seats, they are first come. What do think happens when Princess, Carnival, and O all have ships going out of Rome? Those nice non stops go quickly. Add to that if one chooses to not pay the deviation fee and book at 270 days out, and wait until O books at 45-75 days out, you get whatever is leftover and available on whichever planes and routing O can piece together.
  9. My TA booked us in ona Feb 27th sailing on the Marina in S. A. What we have in common is 1. We both have reservations; 2. As FF constantly laments, our TA held our hands and did it for us instead of DIY.
  10. As Lyn has pointed out, Oceania has a long history of poor customer communications. Proof reading of executive communications is also considered optional with them. I see this as no different than with all the DIYers calling 1-800 and getting multiple answers to the same question. It is what is it is. Hopefully one knows a week before the actual cruise. Until then, have a drink and chill. Most people enjoy the food! 🥂
  11. Also it must be added that the requested food must come from the same kitchen. Since PG and Toscana share a kitchen, items from both menus can be requested. RG and Jacques have individual kitchens and requests can not be mixed and matched from those kitchens. What a Butler will do varies quite a bit. I believe one time each on both an O ship and a R, our Butler said they could/would not serve on our PH balcony. He would do set up inside, and we could take whatever we wished out, but he wouldn’t set up or serve there. We never asked again. Don’t know if that universal across all Butlers and suites or just PH. Maybe a gaint OS gets different considerations, or not.
  12. We’ll it depends! As a routine the ship’s band often plays for 30-45 minutes pre show in the Lounge. The music varies. However, I have been on cruises were individuals talked to the CD, and the band played music for ballroom dancing. Some nights a rather large group would be participating. I think the secret is to talk to the CD.
  13. You completely missed the issue. A credit for O Air is received. No O Air. Then, they request pricing for Biz Class. There is no deviation because there is no contact for Air. Blank slate. At that point it’s all apples to apples with whom ever.
  14. Well a different twist. As pointed out by Khuselid; some here, including FF may be out of date. Recently got an email from one of my private tour Roll Call participates that they (1) took the O air credit, then later; (2) requested Biz Class air fare from O and got a highly competitive price offer. Sounds like that perhaps it’s now a process. I believe that O Air is now actually NCL Air, as is Regent’s. Regent provides Biz Class to all Concierge passengers and above. NCL Air is accustomed to working Biz Class deals. I must admit I haven’t pursued this option in the past, but may well in the future. I have a cruise booked on Vista next June. I continually read of multiple new ships being delayed delivery because of ship yard staffing and supply chain issues. Perhaps transferring flight risks to Oceania for that cruise, if the Airfare is prudent, may be a reasonable alternative.
  15. If memory serves me, in 2017 or 18, Oceania experimented on several cruises with a 7:30 show. Attendance was abysmal. Experiment died. Hard to energize the staff or outside talent for two shows in a night when they’re mostly talking or singing to themselves for one of the shows. It’s a big enough problem with only one show per evening.
  16. Aloha1; A bit confused, maybe didn’t have all the information. A 17 day cruise on the Nautica will yield only one (1) cruise credit, whether a “ b2b” or not. Is there another cruise afterwards not mentioned?
  17. 😂😂 Lots of very detailed information from our resident Influencer. My My! Far exceeds any level of intimate detail we mere travelers need to know. Hand holding? I have a TA and know how to use her! 😂
  18. This isn’t rocket science. Whether one is on a ten (10) day cruise or a 50 day cruise, the Privee has a calendar with only one reservation per evening available. My experience, with the efforts of my professional TA, has been that if the calendar is open for booking, she can book. FWIW, my highly professional TA booked us into Privee on our S.A. Cruise for next March. FP is not until 9/22. Whether it’s Oceania shorex or Privee, I have never found Oceania unwilling to take my deposits/money far in advance of FP. For unexplainable reasons they are sometimes late in scheduling La Reserve dinners.
  19. This link, or the content thereof, should be a sticky. Same question gets asked over and over with this exact correct answer . Isn’t that what stickies are for?
  20. This is correct. The Captain’s welcome party is conducted in Horizons and all the regular bars on ship. The Captain is only in Horizons. The Repeater Party is only in Horizons. For those in Horizons, the wait staff is normally pushing a couple of select drinks they are carrying around on trays. One can order something different, open bar, but expect slow service because most of the staff are really busy. So if you’ve meet the Captain before, or if you learn he’s one of the guys that never shows up a a Cpt Reception, my recommendation is to do the event in one of the bars where you can readily get whatever you desire. I always find the Repeater parties enjoyable and highly informative. The OCA often gives out some great information for those listening.
  21. My TA booked me for our March cruise. It shows on my online account. Did you DIY and call 1-800? 😂😂 Was it a satisfying experience exercising all that control? 😂😂
  22. There is an extreme divergent of opinion of the evening entertainment level on Oceania. Personally we don’t find it nearly as lacking as some. We find many that retire to their cabins by 21:00 like to comment on the quality of ship shows, casino activities, and late night entertainment of which they haven’t a clue. My advice is to go to ship’s evening shows at 21:30; hit Horizons for late Happy Hour, and slide by the Casino in the late evening and judge for yourself. Draw your own conclusion.
  23. Bad advice, based on an era of significantly reduced passenger capacity. I just recently ACTUALLY booked and found my optimum evening already taken and a limited number of evenings still available/open for booking . I believe if one follows Mauibabes’s advice they may well be “ left in the cold”. This Board struggles with the differentiation of those sailing during Covid conditions at very low ship capacity and those sailing at past , and future, full capacity. Our October fully waitlisted cruise versus our recent barely 50% capacity summer cruise is a perfect example. My advice: If one desires a Privee evening, they had better book it sooner than later. Ten is the max capacity. I can’t imagine adulterating a wonderful evening by attempting to exceed capacity.
  24. This thread prompted me to get Privee booked on my next Marina cruise. My TA has taken care of it for me. Looking forward to the new additional menu items. Another wine dinner to be planned! 😁 Since we’re doing South America, I think the wine theme is self evident. Salivating already!
  25. Totally depends upon the popularity of the tour versus what else is being offered that day. I’ve seen 60 passenger buses being entirely full before, and that’s on longer more active tours not just panoramic ones. Some days Oceania will run 2-3 bus loads of the same tour. Meanwhile, other tours may have 15-25 on the bus. It’s really a box of chocolates. If you see a tour that you’re signed up for has sold out, expect that bus to be full. If Oceania is offering 3-4 shorex, at a given port, that are 2.5-3 hours long, and then just one that is 5.5 hours long expect that latter one to be packed.
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