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11 minutes ago, Two Wheels Only said:

Many people bring a "nanny/au pair" type while on a cruise. It isn't as strange as it seems. 

On our very first cruise we had a suite on the Gem. Next to us in a suite was a couple, down the hall from them in a inside cabin was their 4 year old son and a 20 something Nanny. Never saw the kid with the parents, he was always with the Nanny. Thought it was one of the most bizarre things I've ever seen

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, Shoppie124 said:

I was debating the letter due to some food allergies.  If the letter isn't the way to go how can I be sure they don't bring things I'm allergic to?

 

Same here on the allergies. We contacted the Access Desk via their online form, and received a reply after our second submission after about three weeks. Their reply was very comprehensive. They do a fantastic job with allergies based on our past experience. That is mainly why we continue to cruise with NCL, despite the Three Cheese Ziti situation and not allowing topless sunbaking.

 

I would pretty much guarantee that just about everyone on the ship is tuned into the entire allergy thing. An anaphylactic reaction isn't something you want to try managing on a ship unless you are able to intubate someone, and even if you have one in a shore based ER, survival is not a given. Luckily one of us is an ICU RN. You should see our first aid kit!

 

But, you have got me thinking now. I might give a note to our butler regarding our allergies. I hadn't really planned to as I didn't anticipate food being brought to our cabin. Better safe than dead, I guess.

 

We tend to be very cautious when eating out, and we do it very, very, rarely, as you don't know what you might brush up against by accident.

 

I once foned a fish and chip shop in Victoria BC and asked them if they used any sort of kitchen hygiene because of the high prevalence of shellfish allergies in the community, and she thought it was the funniest thing she had ever heard in her life. Truly frightening.

Edited by elwood_98034

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20 minutes ago, Laszlo said:

On our very first cruise we had a suite on the Gem. Next to us in a suite was a couple, down the hall from them in a inside cabin was their 4 year old son and a 20 something Nanny. Never saw the kid with the parents, he was always with the Nanny. Thought it was one of the most bizarre things I've ever seen

I hope that I am never so important that I have to pay someone else to take care of my kids.

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2 minutes ago, elwood_98034 said:

I hope that I am never so important that I have to pay someone else to take care of my kids.

👍

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Nothing I've seen listed seems particularly out of bounds to me. I've not stayed in the Haven but my understanding is this is what the butler is for, that is why their services are advertised for the additional cost. Seeing complaints about people using the service they paid for seems akin to having people complain they let their waiter bring their meals to the table when they were perfectly capable of walking to the kitchen to get it themselves. 

 

I left a note for my regular room steward on our last cruise. I didn't wish to disturb him by calling or interrupting his work on another room and expecting him to remember what I had asked for. I asked if he could leave us extra coffee and creamer and if he could leave an extra blanket, of course along with the words 'please' and 'thank you', and thanking him the next time I ran into him. 

 

Feather pillows/bedding weren't in any of the cabins I've stayed it but being very allergic to feathers I would never hesitate to ask for them to be replaced. Every hotel I stay at I need to include a note while I'm booking to not have them and on a few occasions needed to use my coat as a blanket and clothes as a pillow because I arrived only to find they didn't have alternatives like I needed. Hotels that we drive to I bring my own blanket and pillow for this reason just in case. Feathers aren't a particularly rare allergy, I'm surprised so many places are still using them as the default. As much as I can understand not wanting to be a burden I don't understand how anyone would willingly spend a vacation they spent thousands to enjoy sick, covered in hives or sleeping on the floor or without bedding because they didn't want to ask to have items removed or replaced. 

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I traveled with a 7 month old, a diabetic, 2 people with allergies & a CPAP user - I wrote a note so I would remember everything we needed!

the Butler & room steward were amazing. 

snacks are going to be delivered every day when you stay in a suite best to make sure it’s something you want to eat

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Having always stayed in the Haven, the butlers are extremely busy on embarkation day. I find a letter helpful and time efficient for the Butler. It’s all in the delivery and ensure I lost things I like and enjoy. I do not find this self entitled at all. 

If some folks can afford the Haven, first class, Private school or a nanny then let us enjoy it. The beauty of cruising has options for all budgets. 

Give your butler a note/letter or tell him/her what you like, this is part of their core role and enjoy the experience  

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Any note I have left has been brief, on the first day and I have been told numerous times that it has been appreciated and helpful. Things like emptying the refrigerator please and to keep us stocked up on dark roast coffee. I leave additional short notes for the steward in the morning in the same place every day (can we please have an extra bath towel and tissues?). They appreciate knowing your needs and it's easier for then if you don't hunt them down when they are trying to do their job for their other cabins. If there is a request for the Butler (may we have cheese and crackers later today please?) I leave a note for him/her as well. Either the steward passes along that info or the butler sees it later when they come by.

 

I see absolutely nothing wrong or "self-entitled" about that. It helps make their job easier and they would far rather know what you need/want than have an unhappy camper on their hands. That is their job and they do their jobs very well and with enthusiasm and pride.

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We stay in suites and hand the butler a typed note asking for reservations after we are checked in, that works perfectly.  We usually let him know what snacks we prefer but don't have a long list.  He gets to know us as the cruise goes on and knows our preferences.  Seka is one of the best butlers at NCL, a real gem.  We're not prima donnas, but we are paying for this service so want to help all we can that way.  

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I don't think there is anything wrong with telling the butler a few things.  The Haven advertises the Butler as an amenity, adding that they will do some of these tasks for you.  For example, we had our butler bring French Press coffee every morning, bring extra snacks when we decided to skip dinner one night, and empty the mini-fridge and place a pitcher of OJ in it - as well as milk. I really don't feel that these are unreasonable requests on a 7 week vacation where we are spending $10K+ (and we tipped him at the end).  

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I do utilize my butler probably more than most so I write a note to MYSELF so that I remember to cover everything important the first day - but I have never handed any of them any written instructions.

 

I will say that one of my standard instructions is to PLEASE not bring or leave more food or snacks than is reasonable.  Wasting food drives me crazy and while I love snacks (and variety) it would upset me to come back to my cabin to find plates of food as is pictured above in this thread!  How much of that food is being wasted or are folks actually eating that much stuff in-between meals? 😲 (or maybe it was a party set-up?)  There are some things like nuts that can last a while - but all the cakes, sandwiches, cookies etc. they will leave if you let them are just overwhelming.

 

Also, while we are chatting about snacks - what is it about the Haven that makes people crave gummy bears and M&Ms?  (literally dollar candy 😂)  I love when the butler brings candy - but the handmade truffles & chocolates!  I see gummy bears & M&Ms (and ONLY those candies!) on soooo many people's "Haven list."  Where did that start?  It's so random and weird LOL

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On 6/21/2019 at 5:24 AM, JOHNHOWARTH2 said:

I quite agree. I am still trying to work out if  post number 4 is meant as a joke or not. 

No, not a joke at all.  For $10,000 - $15,000 for a cruise, I think we have the right to ask for a few extras.  What we asked for is minuscule compared to what my employer’s customers ask for.  Of course, they are buying single products that cost between $45M and $70M, so their requests are proportional.

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On 6/21/2019 at 1:31 PM, elwood_98034 said:

I bet they didn't leave a tip at the end of the cruise either.

 

And I guess we can circle back to all those posts where people have said, 'Gee, I didn't see my butler for the entire cruise!'. Maybe now we know why.

Actually, we left a substantial tip for both the butler and the room steward.  Both were excellent and went above and beyond, so we also did with our tips.

By the way, my boss at work sends me written requests multiple times a day.  I do not take them as an insult, I take them as necessary communications to assure we are pleasing our end customers.

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12 hours ago, pcakes122 said:

I do utilize my butler probably more than most so I write a note to MYSELF so that I remember to cover everything important the first day - but I have never handed any of them any written instructions.

 

I will say that one of my standard instructions is to PLEASE not bring or leave more food or snacks than is reasonable.  Wasting food drives me crazy and while I love snacks (and variety) it would upset me to come back to my cabin to find plates of food as is pictured above in this thread!  How much of that food is being wasted or are folks actually eating that much stuff in-between meals? 😲 (or maybe it was a party set-up?)  There are some things like nuts that can last a while - but all the cakes, sandwiches, cookies etc. they will leave if you let them are just overwhelming.

 

Also, while we are chatting about snacks - what is it about the Haven that makes people crave gummy bears and M&Ms?  (literally dollar candy 😂)  I love when the butler brings candy - but the handmade truffles & chocolates!  I see gummy bears & M&Ms (and ONLY those candies!) on soooo many people's "Haven list."  Where did that start?  It's so random and weird LOL

Handmade truffles and chocolates you say? Who knew?  CC never stops being a wealth of information!😀 This will be my first request on our upcoming Breakaway cruise to our butler. Best I got before was the old standby of chocolate covered strawberries. 

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8 hours ago, GA Dave said:

No, not a joke at all.  For $10,000 - $15,000 for a cruise, I think we have the right to ask for a few extras.  What we asked for is minuscule compared to what my employer’s customers ask for.  Of course, they are buying single products that cost between $45M and $70M, so their requests are proportional.

I cannot believe that just because you are obviously rich and spend that kind of money on a cruise,you have the right to demand what you wanted to the slave,sorry servant or butler. Is this really how the high society actually live?

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4 minutes ago, JOHNHOWARTH2 said:

have the right to demand what you wanted to the slave,sorry servant or butler. Is this really how the high society actually live

It’s not about demanding.  It’s about requesting.  Really no different than telling a restaurant server how you like your steak.  

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Posted (edited)
21 hours ago, pcakes122 said:

 

 

Also, while we are chatting about snacks - what is it about the Haven that makes people crave gummy bears and M&Ms?  (literally dollar candy 😂)  I love when the butler brings candy - but the handmade truffles & chocolates!  I see gummy bears & M&Ms (and ONLY those candies!) on soooo many people's "Haven list."  Where did that start?  It's so random and weird LOL

Ellen had a joke about this in her stand up in the late 1990s but it dealt with flying on airplanes.  People demand things on an aircraft/cruise ship that you could not give away free on the streets.  If the flight attendant misses you with a  small bag of peanuts people freak out.  However if you stood in the street and tried handing out this small bag of peanuts on a street corner, few would accept them.  Something about human nature where people are out of their element want and demand things they normally would not want.

Back to topic.  A butler on a cruise ship is not a personal servant.  Many use their butler as personal servants.  The butler may not mind but many do.  IMHO Butlers are not to fetch things for you.  That is misuse IMHO.  They are to deliver things to your cabin which you order.  Some who may have never worked in the service industry don't see the lines between service and servant.  IMHO people leaving long to do lists does border on servant. Why are they not leaving lists for the concierge or waitress?  Maybe because they would think they were nuts.  Before people start flaming, I am not talking about a note i.e. please don't make the bed today or can you bring 2 diet sodas for the fridge.  Also, IMHO its every arrogant to bring money into this equation i.e well I paid over 15k for this suite so I am entitled to do this.  Really?  Whether you paid $2000 or $20,000 the more money you spend does not increase your entitlement to treat staff like personal servants.

Edited by david_sobe

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, JOHNHOWARTH2 said:

I cannot believe that just because you are obviously rich and spend that kind of money on a cruise,you have the right to demand what you wanted to the slave,sorry servant or butler. Is this really how the high society actually live?

Your assumptions are completely off base and insulting.  My DW and I have worked full time plus at “normal” jobs for over 37 years.  At times, we both worked two jobs to make sure our kids were able to go to state college, giving up any trips and extras for ourselves.  We had not made a trip on our own for over ten years and felt it was time to treat ourselves with a Haven cruise.  If us asking for a few simple services from the Butler is making them a slave, then that person is in the wrong line of work.

I guess when you go out to McDonalds, you must cook the food you order and mop the floors when you are done.  If not, you are treating their employees as your “slaves”.

Edited by GA Dave

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Posted (edited)
40 minutes ago, GA Dave said:

Your assumptions are completely off base and insulting.  My DW and I have worked full time plus at “normal” jobs for over 37 years.  At times, we both worked two jobs to make sure our kids were able to go to state college, giving up any trips and extras for ourselves.  We had not made a trip on our own for over ten years and felt it was time to treat ourselves with a Haven cruise.  If us asking for a few simple services from the Butler is making them a slave, then that person is in the wrong line of work.

I guess when you go out to McDonalds, you must cook the food you order and mop the floors when you are done.  If not, you are treating their employees as your “slaves”.

You poor thing. My heart bleeds for you.Yes I can hear the violins playing.😂

Edited by JOHNHOWARTH2

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9 hours ago, ashleyriley said:

Handmade truffles and chocolates you say? Who knew?  CC never stops being a wealth of information!😀 This will be my first request on our upcoming Breakaway cruise to our butler. Best I got before was the old standby of chocolate covered strawberries. 

 NCL makes delicious milk, white & dark chocolate dessert truffles and handmade candies and sometimes even deliver them with bowls made of chocolate.  Maybe you have nut allergies so they haven't sent them?  I don't take photos of my food - but just google "NCL chocolates" and you can scroll down and see photos from people who have photographed them. 😉 

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1 hour ago, david_sobe said:

Ellen had a joke about this in her stand up in the late 1990s but it dealt with flying on airplanes.  People demand things on an aircraft/cruise ship that you could not give away free on the streets.  If the flight attendant misses you with a  small bag of peanuts people freak out.  However if you stood in the street and tried handing out this small bag of peanuts on a street corner, few would accept them.  Something about human nature where people are out of their element want and demand things they normally would not want.

This really is funny and does make total sense!  At least airplane peanuts are WRAPPED.  What blows my mind about the gummy bears and M&Ms is that they are served open in BOWLS - like, how many dirty, germy hands have been digging in that bowl before you got it?  (Do people think their butler is opening and storing a "personal" bag of gummies for them?) In "real life"would these folks eat open candy from a bowl at a building reception desk at a large downtown office complex?  Sorry, but it's just gross to me.

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My 12yo Technical Support Representative saw a YouTube video where someone ordered pineapple gummy bears from their butler. She told us that that was what she planned to do as well.

We bought a five pound bag on Amazon the other day. Some of them will be travelling with us.

 

I figure that the butler has better things to do than run around getting gummy bears for a 12yo.

 

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3 minutes ago, elwood_98034 said:

 someone ordered pineapple gummy bears from their butler.

The thing I still can't figure out is WHY gummy bears & M&Ms.  Like why not Butterfingers, or Reese's peanut butter cups?  The only candy I ever see on "Haven lists" is gummies & M&Ms LOL  Of all the candies in the world, why just those two?

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1 minute ago, pcakes122 said:

The thing I still can't figure out is WHY gummy bears & M&Ms.  Like why not Butterfingers, or Reese's peanut butter cups?  The only candy I ever see on "Haven lists" is gummies & M&Ms LOL  Of all the candies in the world, why just those two?

LOL, I think it's because that's the default that they have in the Haven courtyard. 

 

I personally don't understand the obsession with M&Ms and gummies either. 

 

Once we were in the Courtyard and I saw the staff put out a fresh batch of Gummies and I took a few for an experiment. We had vanilla Vodka in our room. I grabbed a plastic cup and soaked the gummies in the vanilla Vodka. I was thinking they would dissolve. Nope. They just became engorged and were wonderful jello shots by the end of the week. 

 

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