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Not the mention if you want a similar amount of space in your cabin on Oceania as you get on Regent you have to book at least a penthouse, thereby bringing the cost up to the same on both lines, if not more on O.

 

 

 

As a sloop sailor, I am always amazed at how folks would find the smallest cruise ship cabin "too small."

 

 

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Not the mention if you want a similar amount of space in your cabin on Oceania as you get on Regent you have to book at least a penthouse, thereby bringing the cost up to the same on both lines, if not more on O.

 

Good point and very true. For luxury cruisers, being in a small cabin doesn't work for most people (as evidenced by the few small suites on Regent's Explorer that Regent regulars tend to avoid). OTOH, if you are moving up to Oceania from a mainstream cruise line with truly small cabins, the Oceania staterooms are just fine. The PH suites on Oceania's newest ships are fine (we stayed in one) but the PH suites on the other ships are minimal and not something we would book.

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Hi,

Well I was the one who started this thread. We have done NCL Haven on the larger ships and like it. The problem is the lack of choices of where theses big ships go.

So we have our first Oceania cruise booked for next year. We are sailing on the Rivera in an Oceania Suite.

I find their website a bit confusing and am new to this board also.

So Flatbus Flyer you sound very knowledgeable regarding Oceania.

Is there a way I can message you thru the board here and ask a few questions if you don’t mind?

If this is frowned upon on the board I do apologize like I said New here

 

 

 

 

quote=Flatbush Flyer;54691646]Firstly, all that one needs to know as regards "luxury" is that Oceania is a world apart from mass market lines. In particular, if you compare "premium" Oceania to its sister "luxury" line Regent, you'll find the only major difference in the inclusiveness of particular items. Regent includes things like booze and basic excursions while Oceania includes a choice of one of several "no extra charge" items.

 

Often, if you add all Oceania options that would be included on Regent (I.e., comparing apples to apples), you may find that Oceania's price is a true value at hundreds to thousands less than Regent for basically the same product.

 

Do a mock booking on O website and you'll see the specific "O Life" perks for that particular cruise (extent of perks depends on itinerary.

 

Currently, O Life includes unlimited internet (one account per cabin), economy airfare (or air credit) and a choice of X $ OBC or X # of excursions or basic alcohol (wine/beer at meals) per cabin. The basic alcohol option choice can be upgraded to unlimited booze for $20/person/day (which includes the tip). As always, all other beverages, specialty restaurants, etc are included at no extra charge.

 

For example, our next cruise is Sydney to L.A. in May 2018. We opted for $2000/cabin in O Life OBC and the air credit of approx $1000/person. TA is adding $1000 in refundable added OBC and gratuities at about $1350 over 38 days. Given that we prefer a mix of ship/private excursions and not drinking daily on a long cruise, the OBC perk from O made the most sense for this cruise.

 

Always worth mentioning is the other value of what you don't get on Oceania: no photogs, art shows, chair hogs, obnoxious smokers, canned music, mediocre food, the list goes on ....

 

Though basically Oceania loyalists, we always compare a proposed itinerary with all cruise line segments. We have yet to find any comparison of "net daily rate" in light of quality value (particularly the food) that would make Oceania a bad choice.

 

 

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Just want to respond to a couple of comments. First, Oceania is not like their sister company Regent in ways that matter the most. For instance, you really cannot just add in some of the included items on Regent and compare it to Oceania. An example would be the fact that Oceania has included coach air while Regent has included international business class air (an inclusion that costs up to $8K per person - depending upon the destination). However, Oceania is a fine product. I also find their website and promotions confusing. IMO, the posters need to explain what 'O" ships and "R" ships are and an explanation of "O-Life" in clear English would be nice.

 

Second, Oceania is not a luxury cruise line (as per the CEO of the parent company - the man that started Oceania) - it is a premium plus or luxury lite cruise line. Their competition is Azamara and Viking Ocean.

 

I think that you may get a better response on the Oceania board.

 

Note: We have sailed Oceania's Riviera twice - it is a lovely ship!

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Just want to respond to a couple of comments. First, Oceania is not like their sister company Regent in ways that matter the most. For instance, you really cannot just add in some of the included items on Regent and compare it to Oceania. An example would be the fact that Oceania has included coach air while Regent has included international business class air (an inclusion that costs up to $8K per person - depending upon the destination). However, Oceania is a fine product. I also find their website and promotions confusing. IMO, the posters need to explain what 'O" ships and "R" ships are and an explanation of "O-Life" in clear English would be nice.

 

Second, Oceania is not a luxury cruise line (as per the CEO of the parent company - the man that started Oceania) - it is a premium plus or luxury lite cruise line. Their competition is Azamara and Viking Ocean.

 

I think that you may get a better response on the Oceania board.

 

Note: We have sailed Oceania's Riviera twice - it is a lovely ship!

 

 

 

As far as explaining "O Life" et al., just using the "search" function on CC works great.

 

 

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Hi,

 

Well I was the one who started this thread. We have done NCL Haven on the larger ships and like it. The problem is the lack of choices of where theses big ships go.

 

So we have our first Oceania cruise booked for next year. We are sailing on the Rivera in an Oceania Suite.

 

I find their website a bit confusing and am new to this board also.

 

So Flatbus Flyer you sound very knowledgeable regarding Oceania.

 

Is there a way I can message you thru the board here and ask a few questions if you don’t mind?

 

If this is frowned upon on the board I do apologize like I said New here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

quote=Flatbush Flyer;54691646]Firstly, all that one needs to know as regards "luxury" is that Oceania is a world apart from mass market lines. In particular, if you compare "premium" Oceania to its sister "luxury" line Regent, you'll find the only major difference in the inclusiveness of particular items. Regent includes things like booze and basic excursions while Oceania includes a choice of one of several "no extra charge" items.

 

 

 

Often, if you add all Oceania options that would be included on Regent (I.e., comparing apples to apples), you may find that Oceania's price is a true value at hundreds to thousands less than Regent for basically the same product.

 

 

 

Do a mock booking on O website and you'll see the specific "O Life" perks for that particular cruise (extent of perks depends on itinerary.

 

 

 

Currently, O Life includes unlimited internet (one account per cabin), economy airfare (or air credit) and a choice of X $ OBC or X # of excursions or basic alcohol (wine/beer at meals) per cabin. The basic alcohol option choice can be upgraded to unlimited booze for $20/person/day (which includes the tip). As always, all other beverages, specialty restaurants, etc are included at no extra charge.

 

 

 

For example, our next cruise is Sydney to L.A. in May 2018. We opted for $2000/cabin in O Life OBC and the air credit of approx $1000/person. TA is adding $1000 in refundable added OBC and gratuities at about $1350 over 38 days. Given that we prefer a mix of ship/private excursions and not drinking daily on a long cruise, the OBC perk from O made the most sense for this cruise.

 

 

 

Always worth mentioning is the other value of what you don't get on Oceania: no photogs, art shows, chair hogs, obnoxious smokers, canned music, mediocre food, the list goes on ....

 

 

 

Though basically Oceania loyalists, we always compare a proposed itinerary with all cruise line segments. We have yet to find any comparison of "net daily rate" in light of quality value (particularly the food) that would make Oceania a bad choice.

 

 

 

 

 

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There's no "private message" function (at least in the app, which is what I use). So, you'd have to provide an email address (use "dot" instead of ".")

 

 

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Curious about Seabourn and why it wasn't mentioned much in this thread. Would it be a Luxury line or premium? We're considering sailing Seabourn next as we've already sailed with Crystal and Regent and loved them both, but I just love variety and especially being on a fabulous ship, so want to try them all before settling down with one line. Regarding Seabourn, it's something about the small size of their ships that seem appealing. If Itinerary was not a factor, what would your next move be after Regent and Crystal? Would love any opinions and feedback from experiences. Thanks!

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This is kind of what I’ve been thinking. I have friends who insist that MSC Yacht Club or NCL Haven is the way to go, but I’m not convinced. You are still on a ship with 3000 or so other people and that has to influence the experience

 

We are booked on the Viking Sea for a cruise in March because we loved the river cruise we did with them last year, but I’m still exploring other options, trying to see which of those options might fit our cruising style.

 

I’ve been looking mostly at Seaborne and Regent. I’m thinking that Crystal and Silversea might be a bit more formal than we want. Another friend likes Seadream Yacht Club, but most of their ships don’t have balconies and we do like a balcony.

 

I don’t need a butler, not sure I even need a concierge. I do want nice surroundings and accommodations, good to great food in a nice but not too formal atmosphere, and a smaller ship. I don’t need a casino, photographers, a massive shopping area, Broadway or Vegas shows or crowds. I’m good with smaller venues with live and lively music. I don’t need pools crammed with masses of kids or drunk adults. I do want lovely relaxing spaces.

 

We are good with smart casual, but not wild about formal nights - well, I’m okay with it, but we’re retired and DH is done with dress shirts, ties and jackets.

 

We’ll see how it goes on Viking and probably stick with them if it goes well. I do want to have other options, but at the price of a luxury cruise, I don’t want to invest a lot of money, then find out the experience isn’t what I was looking for.

 

 

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You don't need a balcony on SeaDream, because the whole yacht is your balcony. I will agree that your fellow passengers on SeaDream are often grand, but the ambience is so friendly and the service so good that there is none of what some people refer to as ''stuffiness''.

 

I would have recommended SeadDream to Ana who started this thread, but he/she wants substantial entertainment options. On SeaDream one has long boozy dinners, chats with new friends and then goes and makes a fool of oneself singing along with the piano player in the piano bar.

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You don't need a balcony on SeaDream, because the whole yacht is your balcony. I will agree that your fellow passengers on SeaDream are often grand, but the ambience is so friendly and the service so good that there is none of what some people refer to as ''stuffiness''.

 

I would have recommended SeadDream to Ana who started this thread, but he/she wants substantial entertainment options. On SeaDream one has long boozy dinners, chats with new friends and then goes and makes a fool of oneself singing along with the piano player in the piano bar.

 

We would not sail on a boat/ship without a balcony. IMO, there is a huge difference between having a romantic cocktail and canapés on the balcony with your partner and trying to do the same with others. Also, "long boozy dinners" and making a fool of ones self does not necessarily appeal to many luxury cruisers. However, sipping wine at dinner or after dinner drinks in a lounge is wonderful. The fact that you mentioned "making a fool of ones self" would be a deterrent to many.

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Curious about Seabourn and why it wasn't mentioned much in this thread. Would it be a Luxury line or premium? We're considering sailing Seabourn next as we've already sailed with Crystal and Regent and loved them both, but I just love variety and especially being on a fabulous ship, so want to try them all before settling down with one line. Regarding Seabourn, it's something about the small size of their ships that seem appealing. If Itinerary was not a factor, what would your next move be after Regent and Crystal? Would love any opinions and feedback from experiences. Thanks!

 

Your post is a month or so old but I need to respond. Seabourn is definitely a luxury cruise line - one that I would recommend even though we have not sailed on the ship. We are Regent cruisers that have sailed three times on Silversea and have heard wonderful things about Seabourn (better things than we have heard about Crystal).

 

Not sure that there is anything "above" Regent, Seabourn, Silversea and Crystal". Have you tried Regent's newest ship - the Explorer? It is a few steps above Regent's other ships - really a special experience.

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We would not sail on a boat/ship without a balcony. IMO, there is a huge difference between having a romantic cocktail and canapés on the balcony with your partner and trying to do the same with others. Also, "long boozy dinners" and making a fool of ones self does not necessarily appeal to many luxury cruisers. However, sipping wine at dinner or after dinner drinks in a lounge is wonderful. The fact that you mentioned "making a fool of ones self" would be a deterrent to many.

 

TC2, this last post of yours is an example of why there should be an option for “upvotes” on CC.

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We would not sail on a boat/ship without a balcony. IMO, there is a huge difference between having a romantic cocktail and canapés on the balcony with your partner and trying to do the same with others. Also, "long boozy dinners" and making a fool of ones self does not necessarily appeal to many luxury cruisers. However, sipping wine at dinner or after dinner drinks in a lounge is wonderful. The fact that you mentioned "making a fool of ones self" would be a deterrent to many.

 

 

 

I agree completely! Long boozy dinners and making a fool of oneself doesn’t work for me either. On the other hand sipping wine over a lovely dinner with an after dinner drink in a lovely lounge with convivial companions works quite well [emoji16].

 

To me luxury must also include private space for a retreat however brief. We have to have a balcony with comfy chairs. My idea of luxury must include comfortable surroundings.

 

I’ve been leaning towards adding Regent to my must try list. It’s kind of taken over the list. I think even if we really like Viking or love Viking, I don’t want to go steady - I want to date other lines [emoji41]. I must admit I’m intrigued by their Canada itinerary that includes a stop in Bermuda.

 

 

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Your post is a month or so old but I need to respond. Seabourn is definitely a luxury cruise line - one that I would recommend even though we have not sailed on the ship. We are Regent cruisers that have sailed three times on Silversea and have heard wonderful things about Seabourn (better things than we have heard about Crystal).

 

 

 

Not sure that there is anything "above" Regent, Seabourn, Silversea and Crystal". Have you tried Regent's newest ship - the Explorer? It is a few steps above Regent's other ships - really a special experience.

 

 

 

Oh and I wanted to ask what makes the Explorer experience really special?

 

I am particularly interested in a really lovely ambiance, comfortable surroundings, attentive service, good food and wine and especially interesting and friendly fellow travelers.

 

Oddly enough - and probably because I’m a Gemini (my excuse for everything) - I can enjoy myself most anywhere and don’t require any of these things. I am, however at a point in life, where I want them. Treating myself well has moved into the top slot on my priority list.

 

 

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We would not sail on a boat/ship without a balcony. IMO, there is a huge difference between having a romantic cocktail and canapés on the balcony with your partner and trying to do the same with others. Also, "long boozy dinners" and making a fool of ones self does not necessarily appeal to many luxury cruisers. However, sipping wine at dinner or after dinner drinks in a lounge is wonderful. The fact that you mentioned "making a fool of ones self" would be a deterrent to many.

 

Divided by a common language. I would have thought that the use of “oneself” would have given the game away. “Making a fool of oneself” is not about being loutish or obnoxious, but about unwinding, ceasing to take things too seriously and not being afraid to join in the game. It all stems from the tradition of the gentry to dress up and make their own entertainment. A lot of very grand Americans seemed to understand the concept on all the SeaDream voyages I have taken. On one occasion we had a judge from one of the State Supreme Courts, leading us all in a singalong with the piano player. She was definitely making a fool of herself, but she was never the slightest bit raucous or uncouth.

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Oh and I wanted to ask what makes the Explorer experience really special?

 

I am particularly interested in a really lovely ambiance, comfortable surroundings, attentive service, good food and wine and especially interesting and friendly fellow travelers.

 

Oddly enough - and probably because I’m a Gemini (my excuse for everything) - I can enjoy myself most anywhere and don’t require any of these things. I am, however at a point in life, where I want them. Treating myself well has moved into the top slot on my priority list.

 

 

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First, to be fair, while most people love the Explorer, some find her decor a bit glitzy (I do not but the decor isn't going to make or break a cruise for me.

 

Explorer holds 750 guests but you never feel that the ship is crowded. There are nooks and crannies around the ship where you can look out at the sea or curl up with a good book. The public spaces are lovely.

 

There is an infinity pool (small) aft which typically does not get crowded. This another place one can go and have a peaceful time.

 

Most importantly are the suites in the lower levels (not the lowest -- In the opinion of most Regent cruisers, their tiny suites are ones to avoid). However, once get get past the "G" and "H" suites, the suites are beautiful. Double sink bathroom with a large shower and bathtub -- more storage space than you could ever use. Large walk-in closet with built-in drawers. The bed faces the sliding glass door.

 

Just realized that there are some amazing photos of the ship on the Regent website - here is a link https://www.rssc.com/ships/seven_seas_explorer

 

Regent is all-inclusive and that includes top shelf alcohol. It also includes tips and a choice of several excursions in each port (there are also excursions with a charge but many people are perfectly happy to take the included ones). A biggie for many people is that Regent includes Business Class International Air (if you fly across the U.S., it is Coach). In my opinion, it is the Business Class Air that makes the fares on Regent so high but you can opt out of air and get a credit on your cruise (the amount differs by location).

 

The dress code on Regent is Elegant Casual. During the day you can wear shorts, jeans - just about anything but after 6:00 p.m., shorts and jeans are not permitted. Most women wear slacks and a top or a skirt and a top - whatever is comfortable. When we go to specialty restaurants (also included), I tend to wear a fancier top and my DH wears a jacket (not required - men can wear slacks and a collared shirt).

 

There is no stuffiness on Regent - most passengers are laid back and friendly.

 

So, after all of this babbling, the reason I like Explorer more than other ships in the fleet is the spaciousness, suite layout and even the extra specialty restaurant. The service and food are pretty much the same on all Regent ships.

 

I love your attitude and hope that you do treat yourself to all that luxury cruising has to offer.

 

Toryhere - I did misunderstand your post and apologize. My British DH doesn't use the term "oneself" so I am not familiar with the term. At one time we did look into sailing on SeaDream but the experience is not one that we would like but there is nothing inherently wrong with it (other than suite size and no balcony).

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Update to Toryhere - I just spent a leisurely cocktail hour with my DH and asked him to read your post regarding "making a fool of oneself". As mentioned, he was born and raised in London - attended university there. He took your comment the same way that I did. He also explained that not only is the U.S. and U.K. divided by a common language - but this also exists within the U.K.

 

So, I suppose that both sides of the pond need to be careful of what we post to members in other countries - lest we have this sort of misunderstanding.

 

May I also suggest that you add the country that you live in to your signature. This makes it much easier for us to not only know what country you are from but we can also answer questions more accurately since "consumer laws" are quite different in the U.K. than in the U.S.

 

Just adding this to be helpful to all of us.

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I understand exactly what the OP is saying....cruises 20+ years ago, even on "mainstream" lines FELT luxurious, compared to a hotel stay somewhere. Crystal on the table, with real silverware and china....beautiful 5 course meals, artfully presented...and usually a 3-1 ratio of crew to passengers. Yes, the cabins were tight, but you were seldom IN your cabin. Cruising was different then. Of course it wasn't a "luxury" line, but it FELT like a "step above" your normal, everyday experience.

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I understand exactly what the OP is saying....cruises 20+ years ago, even on "mainstream" lines FELT luxurious, compared to a hotel stay somewhere. Crystal on the table, with real silverware and china....beautiful 5 course meals, artfully presented...and usually a 3-1 ratio of crew to passengers. Yes, the cabins were tight, but you were seldom IN your cabin. Cruising was different then. Of course it wasn't a "luxury" line, but it FELT like a "step above" your normal, everyday experience.

 

I understood what the TS (Thread Starter - formerly known as OP) stated about how cruising was 20 years ago compared to now (actually, almost nothing is like it was 20 years ago). Our expectations to change throughout the years and what was luxury in our minds 20 years ago is completely different today.

 

Unfortunately, the TS was mixing mainstream cruise (NCL, Carnival, Royal Caribbean) lines with premium cruise lines (Holland America, Princess, etc.) and premium plus cruise lines (Viking Ocean, Oceania, Azamara) with luxury cruise lines (Crystal Regent, Seabourn and Silversea). In my opinion, unless and until we can classify these cruise lines into groups that we all understand (which is likely different than how CC groups them together), it is not easy to do comparisons.

 

Since this thread is about "Best "Luxury" non-luxury Cruise Lines"., I take it to mean mainstream and/or premium cruise lines with a space that they consider "luxury". For us, even if you are in a 5,000 ft. suite on a mainstream cruise line, you are still on a mainstream cruise line (or premium cruise line). In many ways I don't see the point of paying quite a premium to stay in these special areas when the rest of the ship (shops, etc) are full of thousands of passengers. Having said that, if a mainstream cruiser wants to feel some luxury, I do recommend trying premium plus cruise lines. We have sailed Oceania and it was quite nice.

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In many ways I don't see the point of paying quite a premium to stay in these special areas when the rest of the ship (shops, etc) are full of thousands of passengers.

I can think of a couple reasons why someone would book a luxury cabin/suite on a mainstream cruiseline.

 

First, some people might enjoy the many activities and entertainment available on a larger ship. But they can still get the benefits of their expensive cabin (private dining room with better food, private pools or thermal suites, included spa treatments, etc.).

 

Another reason is that many families travel as multigenerational groups. Grandma & grandpa may want a luxury cabin, but their children and grandchildren can't afford one, so this enables them all to sail together. Having more entertainment and children's activities on a mainline ship will keep the younger ones happy while the older ones read in the library or attend a lecture. How boring a luxury cruise ship would seem to most younger people and children! ;p

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I can think of a couple reasons why someone would book a luxury cabin/suite on a mainstream cruiseline.

 

First, some people might enjoy the many activities and entertainment available on a larger ship. But they can still get the benefits of their expensive cabin (private dining room with better food, private pools or thermal suites, included spa treatments, etc.).

 

Another reason is that many families travel as multigenerational groups. Grandma & grandpa may want a luxury cabin, but their children and grandchildren can't afford one, so this enables them all to sail together. Having more entertainment and children's activities on a mainline ship will keep the younger ones happy while the older ones read in the library or attend a lecture. How boring a luxury cruise ship would seem to most younger people and children! ;p

 

Thanks for the explanation - now I "get it" but it is not something that I would do. Question....... if "you" are staying in an "expensive cabin (private dining room with better food private pools or thermal suites, included spa treatments, etc.), doesn't this mean that you may be apart from your family during a good portion of the cruise?

 

Being a luxury cruiser, I have a problem with the class system on mainstream cruise lines. If I could not afford to have my family stay in the least expensive suite on a "true" luxury cruise line, I would rather take them to an all-inclusive resort somewhere - where we can all be treated equally.

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Your post is a month or so old but I need to respond. Seabourn is definitely a luxury cruise line - one that I would recommend even though we have not sailed on the ship. We are Regent cruisers that have sailed three times on Silversea and have heard wonderful things about Seabourn (better things than we have heard about Crystal).

 

Not sure that there is anything "above" Regent, Seabourn, Silversea and Crystal". Have you tried Regent's newest ship - the Explorer? It is a few steps above Regent's other ships - really a special experience.

 

Travelcat2! I didn't know you responded as was hoping you'd chime in. We haven't sailed the Explorer, YET! We sailed the Mariner last April during her inaugural Cuba cruise and prior to refurbishment. So we really have a lot to look forward to when we book with Regent again... especially with Splendor arriving in 2020!

 

Curious since you've booked Silversea before, why you've never tried Seabourn? Also, in your opinion, what do you think are the main differences between these 2 lines? I know you haven't sailed Silversea before, but you seem like a seasoned cruiser who knows a thing or two about a thing or two ;)

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