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german_navy

Alternative to Celebrity

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tfred,

 

I agree with you about upgrading to a certain degree on X. But if one upgrades to one of the top suite levels, a separate restaurant and lounge is provided. These areas are very uncrowded. But a negative is that a separate pool is not provided (it is in MSC Yacht Club on most ships). A positive is upper level X suites are approximately twice a large as what you'd get on a true lux line or in the YC. On our two X suite cruises this year, all tips and all drinks in any bar were included, as was laundry in the royal suite. So X suites or lux line? There are plusses and minuses to either. But the rate increases for X top suites on future cruises tilts the scale away  from X top suites and toward lux lines or MSC Yacht Club (if one wants to save a bit on money).

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We have never used the "free" Regent air.  They reduce the all inclusive price and we supply our own.  Works fine for us

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Bosoxi, 

 

We have used Regent's "free air" once. And we were shocked to find that all their air in N. America was "cattle car" economy. And it is not upgradable to business/first with cash or points. But we were able to upgrade our domestic leg to "premium economy" with points and not die from it!  You see, we are old and live pretty much in the middle of the US, so our N. American legs can be a bit long. Also, I have heard stories about a Regent cruiser booked out of Florida to board a ship in Europe (with flights available from his city to the port) who was forced to fly economy to Newark, NJ in economy to get his business class flight to the European port. And if I were desire to take a Regent European cruise, I have no idea how to get a discount for only the N. American leg, while taking their business class overseas. In any event, I find their "discount" for not taking whatever air they wish to put us on to be rather skimpy.

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Hank, 

 

Thanks to your advice, we are looking at a Seabourn cruise in N. Europe in a 300 sq. ft. balcony suite with a per diem price pp of $500. Don't know whether we will book it or not, as the business class air to Europe is now costing more than the cruise! We are also looking at an MSC YC Cruise of similar itinerary in the same size balcony suite at $300 per diem pp, with the same concern about the cost of anything but "cattle car" air. We find economy air to be painful to us as we are old, We'd really like a cruise on X royal or celebrity suites, as we really like the space it affords us. But we have done our research on these for N. Europe and have come up with nothing that is financially attractive -- and I wish we had.

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Dolebludger,

 

I am 6'5" and well into my 70s, so I share your concerns with air travel.  For  years I would travel from home in Virginia to our vacation place in Naples, FL,  almost always in coach.  Very doable as the flights were not terribly long and there was a break in Atlanta.  Now the thought of flying to Europe in coach is enough to keep me on my porch.  You are correct in saying Regent's air adjustments are skimpy, but as I previously noted, there is more than one way to skin a cat.  We are booked on the Edge TA next November, far too early to worry about airfare.  If it means flying over days early in order to have a premium seat, that's a price I'm willing to pay.  Better a hotel in Italy than a coach seat overnight.

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10 hours ago, Doug & Cindy Scrap Hunter said:

Looks like there are lots of better options to consider.  It doesn't look like Celebrity is going to work for us.

Oh ! thank you so much, best thing I've hear all day.

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We also hate cattle car air on anything over 3 hours.  Sometimes the cruise lines will have some decent Business Class prices.  Other times we will consider paying the big bucks or finding a deal with a consolidator

 

Hank

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Jody, 

 

I don't think anybody here advises anybody to forever reject Celebrity. True, there are options, but Celebrity suites still retain advantages. If you book a royal or celebrity suite you will have much more spacious accommodations than options mentioned here, though at a higher price. You pay more, but you get more. 

 

The obscene cost of air above cattle car class has simply made some of us look for good cruises at lower cost, which we would not otherwise have done if airline economy class remained as it was 25 years ago and did not offer seating now suitable only for children. In other words, inflated airline prices are putting economic pressure on the cruise lines. 

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Dolebludger, I suspect Jody posted that remark due to the posting history of the poster they quoted.

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12 minutes ago, richsea said:

Dolebludger, I suspect Jody posted that remark due to the posting history of the poster they quoted.

Exactly, although maybe it’s better to ignore Dong’s posts as it only feeds his warped mind.

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On 10/27/2018 at 9:31 AM, Ex-vogue model said:

Really appreciate this detailed feedback. We are booked next September inYC around the Baltic’s on the Meraviglia. We booked mainly due to the pricing as Celebrity and Azamara are so expensive at the moment but to also try out the YC experience. Really looking forward to it and your review of YC has helped enormously, thank you! 

 

 

Hi Gaynor,

 

Let us us know how you get on 😉. We really enjoyed our Princess Alaska experience, so much so that we’ve booked another cruise next year. Tbh, it was a no brainer: 13 nights on Princess was less than 7 nights on X. We are enjoying trying different lines until I find a suitable deal on X to use my 2 placeholders. As you know, we have to travel at peak times and the increases to prices on X, during these times, have gone through the roof! I still have a Royal placeholder to use too 😄.

 

DH still wants to sail Japan, so we may consider that for 2020; I’m loathed to book that through X though as it always appears to be one of the common sailings that are chartered and subsequently cancelled. This may be another one to consider on Princess.

 

Hope all is well with the family 😘?

xx

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1 hour ago, villauk said:

 

 

Hi Gaynor,

 

Let us us know how you get on 😉. We really enjoyed our Princess Alaska experience, so much so that we’ve booked another cruise next year. Tbh, it was a no brainer: 13 nights on Princess was less than 7 nights on X. We are enjoying trying different lines until I find a suitable deal on X to use my 2 placeholders. As you know, we have to travel at peak times and the increases to prices on X, during these times, have gone through the roof! I still have a Royal placeholder to use too 😄.

 

DH still wants to sail Japan, so we may consider that for 2020; I’m loathed to book that through X though as it always appears to be one of the common sailings that are chartered and subsequently cancelled. This may be another one to consider on Princess.

 

Hope all is well with the family 😘?

xx

Hi Jenny,

 

I certainly will let you know how we get on.  So pleased you enjoyed Princess, it's a line we have never cruised with but would certainly consider. X are getting very expensive - we have a cruise on hold to Tonga in 2020 but will reconsider if MSC Yacht Club come up to scratch.  We also had a Japan cruise booked for next October and exactly what you said happened, they cancelled it for a charter and no other dates were suitable.  I was very annoyed to be honest as we got a really good price on it for a suite so I just got the refund.  We're doing Azamara in May 19 which I'm looking forward to - probably one of the best cruises we have been on was the Quest last year so I really recommend Azamara!  We are all good thank you and hope you are all too - keep on cruising!! :):)

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On 11/6/2018 at 11:24 AM, Ex-vogue model said:

Hi Jenny,

 

I certainly will let you know how we get on.  So pleased you enjoyed Princess, it's a line we have never cruised with but would certainly consider. X are getting very expensive - we have a cruise on hold to Tonga in 2020 but will reconsider if MSC Yacht Club come up to scratch.  We also had a Japan cruise booked for next October and exactly what you said happened, they cancelled it for a charter and no other dates were suitable.  I was very annoyed to be honest as we got a really good price on it for a suite so I just got the refund.  We're doing Azamara in May 19 which I'm looking forward to - probably one of the best cruises we have been on was the Quest last year so I really recommend Azamara!  We are all good thank you and hope you are all too - keep on cruising!! :):)

 

 

Didn’t realise it had actually happened to you regarding Japan; I’m not surprised though. 

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Those Japan cruises tend to get cancelled due to chartering from Chinese.  It happened to us twice.  Finally in 2015 we were able to cruise on Millennium on the Japan and China cruise.  It was fabulous.

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HAL and especially Koningsdam and Nieuw Statendam offer much the same experience as X, but with a better price/quality, no class-system and better food.

forget the image of retiree-ships, the latest vessels are designed by Adam Tihany .

 

we are Elite on X but their current pricing is simply ridiculous compared to competitors delivering an equal product.

 

Also in terms of Safety, HAL is top. 

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We sailed on MSC Seaside in September, in a Yacht Club Deluxe Suite and enjoyed it very much. When we got home, we started looking for another cruise on it, but the new prices were Celebrity high pricing. Yesterday my second favorite travel agent called me (my favorite doesn't do MSC) and told me about a deal coming in October. 14 day Caribbean in the Yacht Club Deluxe Suite for $2697.50 p.p. which included taxes and fees, unlimited internet for two, and the deluxe drink package for two which was good at almost any bar plus the minibar in the room. . She said she would spring for the gratuities. No extra obc. A comparable sailing on Celebrity would be an 11 day Caribbean cruise on the Equinox. The Aqua cabin with all four perks is $2768.11 and the Sky Suite is $3823.11. Cost per day: MSC Yacht Club $193, Celebrity Aqua $251, and Sky Suite $348. 

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4 hours ago, grandgeezer said:

We sailed on MSC Seaside in September, in a Yacht Club Deluxe Suite and enjoyed it very much. When we got home, we started looking for another cruise on it, but the new prices were Celebrity high pricing. Yesterday my second favorite travel agent called me (my favorite doesn't do MSC) and told me about a deal coming in October. 14 day Caribbean in the Yacht Club Deluxe Suite for $2697.50 p.p. which included taxes and fees, unlimited internet for two, and the deluxe drink package for two which was good at almost any bar plus the minibar in the room. . She said she would spring for the gratuities. No extra obc. A comparable sailing on Celebrity would be an 11 day Caribbean cruise on the Equinox. The Aqua cabin with all four perks is $2768.11 and the Sky Suite is $3823.11. Cost per day: MSC Yacht Club $193, Celebrity Aqua $251, and Sky Suite $348. 

 

That's a good price for 14 nights although the itinerary sucks.  Apparently their private island won't be available yet as they show it going to Nassau.  It's basically a B2B combining a western & eastern.  However, the MSC website shows no availability in the Yacht Club.

Edited by Happy Cruiser 6143

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3 hours ago, Happy Cruiser 6143 said:

 

That's a good price for 14 nights although the itinerary sucks.  Apparently their private island won't be available yet as they show it going to Nassau.  It's basically a B2B combining a western & eastern.  However, the MSC website shows no availability in the Yacht Club.

 

I just checked the MSC website and it shows the following Yacht Club cabins as available: 16002, 16048, 18008, 18012, 18043, 18045, and 18036. The price on the website is the same as it was all week.

I agree that the iteneraries leave a lot to be desired, but we’ve been down there so many times, we very seldom get off the ship to do anything but stretch our legs. We were down there in September, on the Seaside and the end of October on RCL’s Allure of the Seas.

 

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@german_navy

I totally share your view and background in reference to not only wanting to spend time with your german countrymen and preferring some more "international" interactions ;-)

 

Nonetheless, I would highly recommend to have a second look at the TUI "Mein Schiff" fleet.

We have found a (temporary? for longer?) home there, after X has significantly raised prices while doing cuts and no longer offers the 12+ day itineraries and very uninspired 7-day routes.

To date, the S class are still our favourite ships, but closely followed by the late Mein Schiff's (all new-builds MS 3-6 and now the "Neue 1" / "Neue 2" are more or less identical, save for details).

Some of the advantages:

- Very little nickle-and-dimeing going on, and if, then in a very non-pushy fashion. Truly relaxing.

- Really great value with very few upcharges. Food not quite like on X, but very close.

- Port times are awesome. No casinos that need to open and waste public space ;-) (well, there is a very small one which doubles as a smokers lounge *G*)

- Ship has a good size, somewhere between M and S class, does not quite reach S class in terms of "uncrowded feel" but still plenty big. Nothing out of this world fancy, but modern and with some nice features like the huge pool and the deck 5 promenade going all around the ship.

- May not matter to you, but the line is extremely family friendly and all the kids/baby programs seem a lot more relaxed than on U.S. lines. They even still offer great babysitter service on request/availability. Also, free babyphones with video and things like that :-)

- The areas in the back outside (think sunset bar) aren't as perfect as on S class, but it's still a ship where a regular passenger can roam from front (front lounge) all the way to the back ("aussenalster" bar) and not half of the ship is blocked by some VIP scheme.

- Great ice cream is free all day. No $4 scoops for coconut and shenanigans like that. ;-)

- The ship is really well designed, e.g. almost no such thing as a "bad" balcony with restricted views.

 

obviously, there were many things we liked better on X (and even some on NCL), but it's always somewhat of a mixed bag and a compromise which in the end also needs to fit the budget... That's why they have our business at the moment, despite some of your countrymen *LOL*

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