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tomatosauce

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  1. By way of background information in the same general area Mystery Island started out the same way with a cruise line deciding to take advantage of beaches, etc. and slowly develop more activities.
  2. I would go the Ovation and New Zealand. The ship is amazing and designed for cold weather and the scenery is amazing especially Milford Sound (photo one) but you can get some amazing photos just seeing the ship coming in to dock.
  3. Here is a photo of the Ovation at dock taken from the platform at the station where you wait to catch the train to the airport. Also a photo of the Opera House taken from the top deck on arrival morning after docking (as an encouragement to consider a longer stay in Sydney).
  4. I walk off with my luggage and I am almost always home by 8am which would be about the time that I would be able to get to the airport. If something happened though a later train is less of a hassle than missing a flight. The train to the airport is about 500 metres from the terminal. Having said that, you arrive opposite the Opera House and right near the Harbour Bridge so I would use the flight as an excuse to stay the day.
  5. With things like iFly, shows and NorthStar booking as early is possible is definitely the way to go. On the other hand I have never made bookings for My Time Dining ahead of time. I am a big fan of turning up when I am ready to eat depending on how the day has gone. There are cruise planner sales when wifi, shore excursions, etc. are cheaper but you may be too late as they have largely moved on from offering sales on the trips this year and have been offering them on the ones next year (Jan-April) instead. You can bring 2 bottles of wine per stateroom. You may also find it cheaper to but a bottle of wine onboard rather than by the glass especially as it can follow you throughout the ship over multiple nights.
  6. Having been in several of the sudio balconies the best of them are the rooms XY50. You get extra space without the cave like balcony of a room like 7648. It isn't that bad actually but it does feel that little bit darker.
  7. Exactly, from the specialty coffee and ice cream end of things including the Ben & Jerry's ice creams.
  8. I have bought a milkshake from the Promenade Cafe on the Explorer to go with a rather nice slice.
  9. The outside seating area for Jamie's is enclosed and is pretty much identical to the smoking area on the other side.
  10. The Ovation is a perfect cold weather ship. You can spend time in the solarium pools and whirlpools in comfortable warmth which looking out through the vast amount of glass. The other great thing about the Ovation is the variety of different types of chairs, couches and loungers that make it that much better for relaxing compared to the Voyager class.
  11. I am a fan of ordering the most appealing appestiser then asking for a garlic bread to be brought with the entree.
  12. I have been in it for passport return and x-ray for returning to the ship. I have heard it being used for sewing and I also happened to be on the annual pole dancing at sea cruise which made use of it.
  13. The other thing to remember is that the RCI cruises out of Singapore are largely 4 nights with some 3 and 5 night ones thrown in and the odd relocation cruise. With 4,900 passengers getting everyone who wants to try it through Northstar or iFly in so short a period is logistically impossible so it makes perfect sense to do something on the demand side of things.
  14. I admit to being very surprised myself as I was not expecting it. I was checking how much I have spent and spotted that I supposedly cancelled it and repurchased it and got some money back.
  15. For my last couple of cruises I have pre-booked the internet and then been surprised to find that they give me the discount as OBC generally with a line about being cancelled and bought again on the purchasing list.
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