Jump to content
milpston

B2B Allure Of The Seas Pictorial Review - 31st March 2013 & 7th April 2013

Recommended Posts

336_zps12a7e71c.jpg?t=1366832165

The Oasis Of The Seas next to an NCL ship

 

 

This was one of the moments that helped me and my Wife-to-be decide that we would have to include the Allure Of The Seas as part of our Honeymoon. Having enjoyed 7 nights on the Oasis Of The Seas in January 2011 we were eager to try the Allure. This photograph along with the two below were taken in Nassau, Bahamas. It was also later that evening that I proposed to Sally and she accepted :-)

 

In truth, the decision in regards to our honeymoon was probably made during this week. We enjoyed my Sister's wedding in St Thomas and it was the perfect week.

 

337_zps527a3ecf.jpg?t=1366832168

They were taken on a ferry over to Paradise Island.

 

339_zpsfcb993dd.jpg?t=1366832165

The Oasis is obviously the one on the right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Although I had seen cruise critic prior to our cruise in 2011 I had never visited these forums. I was totally unaware of the vast amount of information and knowledge which they contained.

 

I gained lots of information and tips from reading them and I don't think there is even an inch of these mighty ships which have not been covered. I became an addict as I know many of you do too!

However, I do believe that everybody that sails on them will enjoy a unique adventure. I wanted to take the opportunity to share my views of a voyage on her. I am also aware that when you are planning a cruise and getting as excited as I was that you can't possibly read too much about it when counting down to that all important sale date!!

 

For those reasons if I there is interest in this review I will, over the next few weeks, give my review of my back to back sailing of the Allure. It will be more of a trip report than a formal review and I will offer my personal views of what the Allure has to offer. I will compare it to my experience on the Oasis and I will answer any and all questions as I go along. I have not done a complete tour of the ship as this is available elsewhere but I have hundreds of photographs of the things I experienced which I am more than happy to share...... Once I get used to using Photobucket for the first time ever :rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Although I had seen cruise critic prior to our cruise in 2011 I had never visited these forums. I was totally unaware of the vast amount of information and knowledge which they contained.

 

I gained lots of information and tips from reading them and I don't think there is even an inch of these mighty ships which have not been covered. I became an addict as I know many of you do too!

However, I do believe that everybody that sails on them will enjoy a unique adventure. I wanted to take the opportunity to share my views of a voyage on her. I am also aware that when you are planning a cruise and getting as excited as I was that you can't possibly read too much about it when counting down to that all important sale date!!

 

For those reasons if I there is interest in this review I will, over the next few weeks, give my review of my back to back sailing of the Allure. It will be more of a trip report than a formal review and I will offer my personal views of what the Allure has to offer. I will compare it to my experience on the Oasis and I will answer any and all questions as I go along. I have not done a complete tour of the ship as this is available elsewhere but I have hundreds of photographs of the things I experienced which I am more than happy to share...... Once I get used to using Photobucket for the first time ever :rolleyes:

I would be interested in your review and your thoughts on the Oasis. I'm on Oasis in June and would like to book Allure next year

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I would be interested in your review and your thoughts on the Oasis. I'm on Oasis in June and would like to book Allure next year

 

Thank you for being my first, and hopefully not my last, poster. The ships really are almost identical. I have all the Cruise compasses from both sailings and as and when I can, between working and sleeping, I will be scanning and posting them all in my day by day review. I have to get my camera lead from about thirty miles away and I will then be including lots of pictures of the Allure.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To introduce myself

 

I am 33 years old and from Essex in the UK. I was travelling with Sally (32 when departing the UK) and my Step-Daughter Chloe aged 11 years. Chloe is celebrating our honeymoon with us for the cruising portion of our honeymoon. We were also joined by Sally's parents on the second leg of the back to back. (lucky me ;-))

 

I have previously cruised twice which were both with Royal Caribbean. Sally and Chloe have previously sailed just the once on the Oasis.

 

Sally and I were engaged on the Oasis and married on the 28th March 2013 just two days prior to our departure on honeymoon.

 

I am a holiday addict. Unfortunately finances dictate that we do nt holiday as often as I would like but when I do I put every effort into the planning. For me it is half of the fun!!

 

523_zpsdf0e1fdc.jpg

This Picture was taken on the Oasis in 2011

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Planning

From the day I returned in February 2011 I was building my supplies of holiday brochures and a few months later I began getting quotes from Travel Agents for the B2B cruise. I found travel agents were able to offer much better deals than I could get directly from Royal Caribbean.

 

I soon found that I was unable to book flights from the UK until about 11 months before when the airlines released their flight schedules. This was frustrating. I could book a package with RCI but these were at, what I felt to be, fairly inflated prices for the flight. I also wanted to continue our honeymoon for a third week for just Sally and I whilst Chloe would spend a third week with her Grandparents. This appeared to create complications with booking the cruise directly so I decided at this stage to book each part of our honeymoon individually so that it could be tailored just the way we wanted it.

 

Unfortunately this meant that any firm plans had to be put on hold until the end of April 2012. The wait for the flights to be released was almost as bad as the wait for the actual honeymoon. I decided to hold fire on booking the cruise until I was certain what the flight prices would be. We were a little inflexible with the dates as we wanted 2 of the weeks to fall within the 2 week Easter school holidays.

 

Initially we were planning on getting married at one of the stops on the itinery. Due to a few changes in family's circumstances in the intervening months much of our family were unable to make it as was originally hoped. Due to this we decided on a wedding at home. We knew there was hard saving ahead to make sure that we would still have the honeymoon we dreamed of. In retrospect it was the right decision. We had our dream honeymoon and also enjoyed a wedding where we had all our friends and family with us. We just had to spend a little more to have it that way as the budget was ever expanding......

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

SUBSCRIBED!!!Any info I can get from the Allure is welcome. Thank you for taking the timeto do this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

amazing beginning, and don't forget to include the wedding photographs. beautiful bride and handsome husband, looking forward to the full report

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Congratulations to the newlyweds!

 

It's very kind of you to take all of us sailing along with you on your honeymoon :) .

 

I'm especially looking forward to the 2nd part of your story, as we'll also ge on the Allure for the Western itinerary. And the Cruisse Compass, please!

 

Your writing style is captivating, and good photos, too.

Thanks again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
To introduce myself

 

I am 33 years old and from Essex in the UK. I was travelling with Sally (32 when departing the UK) and my Step-Daughter Chloe aged 11 years. Chloe is celebrating our honeymoon with us for the cruising portion of our honeymoon. We were also joined by Sally's parents on the second leg of the back to back. (lucky me ;-))

 

I have previously cruised twice which were both with Royal Caribbean. Sally and Chloe have previously sailed just the once on the Oasis.

 

Sally and I were engaged on the Oasis and married on the 28th March 2013 just two days prior to our departure on honeymoon.

 

I am a holiday addict. Unfortunately finances dictate that we do nt holiday as often as I would like but when I do I put every effort into the planning. For me it is half of the fun!!

 

523_zpsdf0e1fdc.jpg

This Picture was taken on the Oasis in 2011

 

Smile Sir....You have that pretty lady next to you!!! HA!:p

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Congratulations on your wedding! I look forward to reading your review. I was just on the Allure 4/7-4/14 so I am interested to get your take on the ship and all it had to offer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Great start, and I look forward to more!!

 

Thank you. It's a slow start but I will get there :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
amazing beginning, and don't forget to include the wedding photographs. beautiful bride and handsome husband, looking forward to the full report

 

Thank you. I will certainly try to include a couple later on. As we have only just returned we are still to choose all our photographs from our photographer. That is something that ma in the come coming few days.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Congratulations to the newlyweds!

 

It's very kind of you to take all of us sailing along with you on your honeymoon :) .

 

I'm especially looking forward to the 2nd part of your story, as we'll also ge on the Allure for the Western itinerary. And the Cruisse Compass, please!

 

Your writing style is captivating, and good photos, too.

Thanks again.

 

I will certainly be adding all th cruise compasses. If I can work out how to scan them I'll do it that way. If not Ill take photographs if I find it speeds thing up a little.

 

Thank you for the compliment. I have never done anything like this before so any encouragement is appreciated.

 

I am off out to collect my camera leads this morning so that will allow me to get started properly!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Smile Sir....You have that pretty lady next to you!!! HA!:p

 

Haha. I am very aware that I am now married to a pretty lady. Most of my smiling is done from the other side of the camera (when I am not swearing at it for producing something nowhere near as good as I would hope). Unfortunately I am just a point and shoot merchant :p

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Congratulations on your wedding! I look forward to reading your review. I was just on the Allure 4/7-4/14 so I am interested to get your take on the ship and all it had to offer.

 

I have plenty of photos of random people on my travels. You may well make an appearance at some point so keep your eyes peeled.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looking forward to your review and any information on the Allure. There is a group of 6 of us doing a B2B on the Allure at the end of November and first week of December.

 

My dad is one of the ones going and he did the pre-inaugural and the inaugural cruise on the Allure so he does have some info to give us. But it is always good to get information from others!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for posting your review. I'm addicted to reading as much as I can about the Allure!

Edited by Bella O

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for sharing the review and photos.

 

Keith

 

You're welcome. Save you thanks to see if I do a decent job. I am just finding my way at the moment really.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thank you for posting your review. I'm addicted to reading as much as I can about the Allure!

 

Haha I remember the feeling well. Just wish I had another one to look forward...... one day I'm sure

 

Looking forward to your review and any information on the Allure. There is a group of 6 of us doing a B2B on the Allure at the end of November and first week of December.

 

My dad is one of the ones going and he did the pre-inaugural and the inaugural cruise on the Allure so he does have some info to give us. But it is always good to get information from others!!

 

I hope I can be of help in some small way. I will do my best..... as I sit here with my tan fading fast :cool:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One Step Closer

Fast forward to May 2013 and finally all parts of our honeymoon were available to book. The final decision was made on the wedding venue and that we would get married 2 days before flying out on our honeymoon on 30th March.

After speaking to a number of travel agents, web companies and price beater websites we settled on what would be our best deal. We booked the cruises on a cruise only basis through our local travel agent along with our hotel for our third week also. The translatlantic flights were booked directly with British Airways. I'm not sure our travel agent was overly happy with me booking my flights on my mobile whilst sitting in front of her but I wanted everything in place swiftly so that nothing could go wrong. Our flights for our third week were booked online along with our hotel for the first night in Fort Lauderdale on another website.

Cabin selection - This was not something that I spent too much time pondering. When on the Oasis in 2011 we were in cabin 8176. This was a port side Superior Ocean Balcony (D4 grade I seem to recall) on deck 8. We loved it. I did not wish to cruise without a balcony because it is one of my favourite places to be..... and I am a smoker .....(Not too many disapproving looks please :p). The location on deck 8 was perfect to walk straight into central park and make our way from there. I also preferred the port side in general for the itinerary of the Eastern Caribbean. For these reasons we went for cabin 8200 which was slightly further along the corridor (D1 grade) with a slighty larger balcony as it is on the "hump". I toyed with the idea of a junior suite but decided that this would put too much pressure on the finances or would cast doubt upon us being able to do the third week.

We chose My Time Dining again as the early seating for dinner was a little too early for use and the late seating a little too late. This is partly because once Chloe is hungry she wants to eat!!! haha

Happy with our choices it was all booked :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Can't wait for more................. :)

 

Thank you..... I promise after the next post or two I'll be into the pictures now that I have a lead to plug my camera in again....... I just hope I don't waste too many hours trying to get the photos uploaded :rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The real planning begins!!

From this time onwards I think I may have visited the Royal Caribbean website almost every day. When I found the cruise critic forums most of my non-sleeping and non-working hours were spent in the same position in front of the laptop.

I was surprised that 7 months before we were due to sail the excursions became available to book. Sally and I spent a couple of days flicking through them before making our decisions. I would be surprised if many people booked their excursions before we did so I was happy to have the full choice of the available trips. I also read that I could cancel any of them up to 24 hours before the excursions and receive a full refund. For this reason I decided to keep it simple and book them all through Royal Caribbean. I know I could have saved some money and booked them direct with the companies involved by I liked the security that this option offered. I have had last minute itinerary changes in the past so I didn't want to throw any money away.

We decided that we would keep all the excursions along with some other bits and pieces as a surprise for Chloe. We shocked ourselves that we managed to keep them from her until we met the tour reps on the day of each excursion :)

About 5 months before we were able to book all of our restaurants. I wont go into detail here as I will do that as I go through day by day. I'll also include the prices of each thing we paid up front in case anyone has an interest.

In early January 2013 the shows for the first week were available for booking. By this time I had been checking the RCI website about three times a day so that i could get a full choice and book them in around our dinner reservations. I decided to book all of the shows for each week to give us a better chance of actually getting around to seeing them all. The shows for the second week didn't become availabe until much later. I think by this time I was driving them mad by calling them every few days. I was only ever told that they would be available, "soon". This done nothing to relieve the planner in me and I was even told on one occasion that the shows were no longer available and I would have to wait until I was on board to book them. Once I assured the lady on the telephone that she was wrong she checked and came back with, "they'll be available soon"..... great! Eventually they were all done along with soda packages for both weeks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This is the spreadsheet I had by the time we departed. I decided to keep it very basic rather than planning too much in advance. Everyone loves a spreadsheet!!! :p.... Except for Sally.... she was already at the point of wanting to place it where the sun doesn't shine for me :p

Love the spreadsheet!! I'm driving my DH crazy with mine, he said just tell me where to go and what time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for taking the time to put together this Allure review! I know they are alot of work!

 

We sail her in, oh, about 199 days or so, but who's counting?:D

 

Really looking forward to all the future installments!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for taking the time to put together this Allure review! I know they are alot of work!

 

We sail her in, oh, about 199 days or so, but who's counting?:D

 

Really looking forward to all the future installments!

 

 

You're very welcome. I'm hoping I'll grow to enjoy it.... once I finish fighting with photobucket!! I am avery jealous that your cruise is still to come where as ours is over :(

 

 

I am enjoying your review. I love all the background stuff.

 

Haha, just thought I'd give a slight insight into how obsessed with organising our honeymoon I was for the best part of two years!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Finally we were there....

The wedding went like a dream and we were both very happy with the way it all went. All the planning and money spent was well worthwhile and there were no hiccups or disappointments whatsoever. Most importantly I ended the day with my dream Wife:)

On the day following the wedding we had breakfast at the hotel with our closest friends and family before heading home to start the packing. It has to be said that we were buzzing. We had a fantastic wedding day and we had the honeymoon all ahead of us. The plan was to get on with the final packing of luggage during the morning and early afternoon so that we could get a nice early night. The plan was to be up at about 03:00 to get a nice early start and head to Heathrow airport.

Well..... I think we finally started the packing at about 20:30 so the early night was pretty much out of the window. This was a bit of a disaster for me as if anyone likes their sleep it's me! I am usually like a bear with a sore head any time before about 11:00!! I'm sure the fact that we were heading off on our honeymoon would make me feel a little better though!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

:confused:03:00 30th March 2013

I have to say that I bounced out of bed in a pretty spritely fashion (for me anyway). Sally was already in the shower and I was raring to go. I wanted to go and wake Chloe up by banging a wooden spoon on some saucepans in her bedroom. Sally didn't let me do this as Chloe can be even worse than me in the mornings! For some reason Sally seems to think that I like to wind Chloe up now and again. I dont know where she gets this idea from :p

 

We finally left home at 04:25 which was only about 10 minutes behind schedule. I think this was mainly due to me checking, double checking and triple checking that we had the usual passports, e-tickets, various booking confirmations and receipts etc. I am not really the OCD type but I do have a habit of forgetting things. If I have something in my hand I am likely to leave it just about anywhere and forget all about it! That's why I have to keep re-checking.... in case I have taken something out whilst checking and put them down :confused:

 

DSC00324_zpsfd1df1cf.jpg

 

Sally had one task whilst I was driving to the airport. She had to take a photograph of one road sign for Heathrow Airport whilst we were on the way. Above was the best of her three efforts. You will see that our photography skills are pretty equal over the next two weeks :p

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This is the spreadsheet I had by the time we departed. I decided to keep it very basic rather than planning too much in advance. Everyone loves a spreadsheet!!! :p.... Except for Sally.... she was already at the point of wanting to place it where the sun doesn't shine for me :p

 

Always love a good spreadsheet!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Love the spreadsheet!! I'm driving my DH crazy with mine, he said just tell me where to go and what time.

 

It should be a rule that no-one is allowed to go on a cruise without a spreadsheet! :p

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Always love a good spreadsheet!!

 

I'm glad it's not just me. Sally wasn't quite so keen on it though so i kept it fairly light so that she and Chloe didn't feel like they were in the army :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

06:00 Our arrival at Heathrow

With our professional photographic exhibition begun we arrived at the airport bang on time. I had booked a meet and greet service for the parking of our car for the three weeks. Once we had navigated to the correct place in the short stay car park at Terminal 5 we met a member of staff from Mighty Parking (less that £90 for three weeks parking which I thought was pretty reasonable). After a quick check round the car we were off into the terminal to find that we could not not check in until 06:40. Better early than late eh??

We used the time to visit a couple of the shops to buy a couple of last minute essentials. These were luggage locks and travel adaptor plugs. I had only been planning for 2 years so I couldn't be expected to remember everything ;)

After a small, extortionately priced and not very good breakfast at Wagamamas airside we were on our way on time. I should add that, on Sally's advice, I bought an electronic cigarette in the airport for £6.99 that could be used on the flight. She was well aware that she would be stuck sitting next to me for the best part of 10 hours whilst I was unable to smoke and just what a good mood this puts me in.

Our flight left right on time and we were soon informed that the expected flight time would be 8 and half hours which was less than I recalled last time. The flight was very good and I was pleasantly surprised how good the "skycig" was. I took to strolling to the back of the plane and puffing on it and it is probably the most chilled out long haul flight have done for years. When you sucked it the end lit up, I got a small hit of nicotine and I actually blew out what looked like smoke. There was no smell to it whatsoever and it evaporated immediately without bothering anyone. I was chuckling as I could see people whispering in their seats, "that bloke's smoking at the back". I checked and it was perfectly legal and accpetable to use.

The only thing that put a dampener on my flight were the people sitting in front of me. It is a personal thing but I have a real pet hate for people reclining their seats on flights. Now, I know they are fitted with recliners for a reason and they are there to use but it just annoys me. I would never dream of reclining my seat unless the person behind me already had. I feel like it is an invasion of space. What really annoyed me was that these people would insist on have their seats reclined even whilst meals were being served. This was despite being told on numerous occasions by Air hostesses to put them up during meals. As soon as the hostess walked away they would recline them again which pretty much shoved my meal through my chest. I was reduced to putting my knees firmly into their back but Sally soon told me off and made me behave.

For me, arrival into the US is where my holiday begins and it's next up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Explore the Night. Sweepstakes - Enter now for a chance to win win a free cruise for two with Azamara Club Cruises!
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Community Contests
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×