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A couple of very specific new-cruiser questions


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I need a little help.  I'm about ready to pull the trigger on a 16 day 2023 Eastbound TA on Riviera; might extend it to Venice, too.  I'm a long-time cruiser, most often with Celebrity.  Unfortunately, they've lost my love.  I travel solo and am used to paying double for a cabin. That's a given. However, if I already receive beverage package and wifi from my cruising tier, Celebrity has now decided that I should also be charged two times more with their "all included" pricing. That's three drink packages and three wifis and there's only me, and I can only use one device.  Really rubs salt into the wound. 

 

I'm glad I read some of the "new Oceania cruiser" threads or I would have booked the wrong cabin.  Earlier today I was all set to book a Cat B but then found out that that category doesn't include hot breakfast.  My #1 deal-breaking requirement for a cruise is room service hot breakfast, frequently poached eggs, because I won't ever make it for myself.  

 

I've searched this board and haven't found any specific info on gluten free.  Just the usual day ahead menu selection.  So, do they have GF options at afternoon tea?  How about in the morning? Same bread/toast option every day or is there a second choice?  Any muffins?  Anything GF at Barristas?  Anything crunchy like tortilla chips?  I can bring my own almond crackers, nuts, and such if needed.  Since the cruise originates in Miami, it wouldn't be too difficult to bring along a disposable bag for crunchies and maybe wine, especially if I drive.

 

Speaking of wine, I know I can bring my own aboard but it's hard for me to manage heavy things by myself.  I've researched the 7-bottle wine package which would be just about the right amount for me (only drink a glass or two at dinner).  If a bottle isn't finished, it is available the next night?  Must all bottles be consumed in the main dining room? 

 

The cruise I want to book ends in Civitavecchia on Good Friday.  I'm guessing that booking my own flight(s) home to Orlando with miles might be a sportier proposition the week before, during, and after Easter. Since I don't need a flight to Miami but might need one home, is just one-way from Rome (or anywhere in Europe) possible?  Website doesn't indicate that it is.  My agent is going to ask some of these questions for me tomorrow, but I usually get the best answers on these boards.

 

I have plenty of time before this cruise but before I commit to booking, I'd like to know more about GF, wine, and flights.  Thank you.

Edited by goofysmom99
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36 minutes ago, goofysmom99 said:

I need a little help.  I'm about ready to pull the trigger on a 16 day 2023 Eastbound TA on Riviera; might extend it to Venice, too.  I'm a long-time cruiser, most often with Celebrity.  Unfortunately, they've lost my love.  I travel solo and am used to paying double for a cabin. That's a given. However, if I already receive beverage package and wifi from my cruising tier, Celebrity has now decided that I should also be charged two times more with their "all included" pricing. That's three drink packages and three wifis and there's only me, and I can only use one device.  Really rubs salt into the wound. 

 

I'm glad I read some of the "new Oceania cruiser" threads or I would have booked the wrong cabin.  Earlier today I was all set to book a Cat B but then found out that that category doesn't include hot breakfast.  My #1 deal-breaking requirement for a cruise is room service hot breakfast, frequently poached eggs, because I won't ever make it for myself.  

 

I've searched this board and haven't found any specific info on gluten free.  Just the usual day ahead menu selection.  So, do they have GF options at afternoon tea?  How about in the morning? Same bread/toast option every day or is there a second choice?  Any muffins?  Anything GF at Barristas?  Anything crunchy like tortilla chips?  I can bring my own almond crackers, nuts, and such if needed.  Since the cruise originates in Miami, it wouldn't be too difficult to bring along a disposable bag for crunchies and maybe wine, especially if I drive.

 

Speaking of wine, I know I can bring my own aboard but it's hard for me to manage heavy things by myself.  I've researched the 7-bottle wine package which would be just about the right amount for me (only drink a glass or two at dinner).  If a bottle isn't finished, it is available the next night?  Must all bottles be consumed in the main dining room? 

 

The cruise I want to book ends in Civitavecchia on Good Friday.  I'm guessing that booking my own flight(s) home to Orlando with miles might be a sportier proposition the week before, during, and after Easter. Since I don't need a flight to Miami but might need one home, is just one-way from Rome (or anywhere in Europe) possible?  Website doesn't indicate that it is.  My agent is going to ask some of these questions for me tomorrow, but I usually get the best answers on these boards.

 

I have plenty of time before this cruise but before I commit to booking, I'd like to know more about GF, wine, and flights.  Thank you.

Contact O special services to alert them about GF and, once onboard, someone in F&B will assist with menus/orders/etc


Though pre/post Easter is school vacations/spring break, you may not get the FF  points break you expect. Nonetheless, you can contact the O air department about one way air in O Life (with partial credit back to you.

 

With the occasional exception and/or loss leader, the 7 bottle deal (@>$40/bottle) is not much of a deal since the retail US price of most of the wines on the list are <$15. A better option is to get hold of the “bin end” list once onboard. Prices of what they’re trying to unload tend to be more reasonable. But, post Covid layup, it may be slim pickin’s forctgr immediate future.

 

Whether it’s your personal wine (for which you’ve paid a $25 corkage/bottle) or O’s wine, the wine steward will store it for you and retrieve it (any restaurant onboard).

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My wife requires GF and loves Oceania. She gets the next day's GDR dinner menu the evening before and chooses what she would like, usually giving the chef a backup choice.  If the chef is unable to modify a dish to be GF, the server will have recommendations.  GF items are available elsewhere but not guaranteed GF unless preordered.  Let me know (dourobert@gamil.com) if you would like to get more details from my wife.

 

The wine bottle(s) can follow you around but I'll leave that for somebody else to explain as I rarely go through more than one!  And as frequent B1 customers facing cold breakfasts,  we usually go to the GDR. 😞

-Rob

 

 

 

 

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Goofys

GF is no issue at all on Oceania, as mentioned above. Nor is any other restricted diet from Vegetarian, Vegan, Plant Based, Low Sodium, etc.

Wine, bring some of what you like aboard and pay the corkage.

Consider the lowest Concierge level and your room service options will be enhanced. Also your dinner room service will be from the GDR so that is a benefit rather than the RS menu. You also get additional amenities.

if you wanted to push on to Venice, book it as well because the prices on ALL cruises go up July 1.  
You should get a Free Air Credit for the Flight you will not need. Also, your return flight will be Free Air and if using Oceania air, add the Premium Economy Upgrade.

 

Anything else you want to ask tonight, it’s  10:00 your time but 7:00 my time, shoot me an email, gerryesker@gmail.com

Ciao,

Gerry

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Getting to your flights. If you use Oceania air and go home anytime other than disembarkation day you will be charged a deviation fee. I don't know the price on the deviation for a single. Is it double? Perhaps someone with experience on this could answer it.

 

Once you've paid the deviation fee you have the option of flying from another city, probably anywhere in Europe, but you might, and probably will be charged a differential over and above the flight cost. 

 

You can also pick up a bottle of wine at any port stop during your cruise, you're not restricted to embarkation day. I know it's a TA but there will probably be a few ports in there. 

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As far as bringing wine onboard at embarkation, you do not need to carry it onboard.....we have it in a sturdy box, slap a label on it with cabin number, etc. and give it to the porters with our luggage shore side -  it usually beats us to our cabin!

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18 minutes ago, basor said:

As far as bringing wine onboard at embarkation, you do not need to carry it onboard.....we have it in a sturdy box, slap a label on it with cabin number, etc. and give it to the porters with our luggage shore side -  it usually beats us to our cabin!

Or, if you don’t mind carting it atop your roll-aboard (with other valuables):

These sturdy boxes (available free with purchase from many winery tasting rooms) are lightweight and travel flat. They come in 2,3,4,6 bottle size and make great under-bed storage, carrier for in-port wine purchases and we leave them onboard when we depart.

 

A34AD2DD-18E5-4605-8D2A-DA0567B8B765.jpeg

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One question you asked is "do you have to drink all your wine in the GDR", the answer is no you can get it in any restaurant..you can also drink it in your cabin without the corkage fee BUT please dont carry it into dinner or around the ship that would spoil it for the rest of us..it has to be consumed in your cabin UNLESS you pay the corkage fee..

Jancruz1

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2 hours ago, ORV said:

Getting to your flights. If you use Oceania air and go home anytime other than disembarkation day you will be charged a deviation fee. I don't know the price on the deviation for a single. Is it double? Perhaps someone with experience on this could answer it.

I booked the 17 November 2021 Rome to Miami TA as a single. I paid the deviation fee to arrive in Rome before the cruise departs. I was only charged the deviation fee once, $175.

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3 hours ago, ORV said:

Getting to your flights. If you use Oceania air and go home anytime other than disembarkation day you will be charged a deviation fee. I don't know the price on the deviation for a single. Is it double? Perhaps someone with experience on this could answer it.

From other threads, it seems the per person deviation fee is $175 per transaction.  If you both ends at the same time, it's $175, total.  But if you do one end initially, then the other, it's $175 × 2...you're charged for two transactions.

 

 

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2 hours ago, Jancruz said:

One question you asked is "do you have to drink all your wine in the GDR", the answer is no you can get it in any restaurant..you can also drink it in your cabin without the corkage fee BUT please dont carry it into dinner or around the ship that would spoil it for the rest of us..it has to be consumed in your cabin UNLESS you pay the corkage fee..

Jancruz1

Thank you.  Since I usually drink a single glass of wine at dinner and never drink in my cabin, my concern was having access to the unused portion elsewhere on another night.  I'm delighted that the bottle can follow me.  

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2 minutes ago, goofysmom99 said:

Thank you.  Since I usually drink a single glass of wine at dinner and never drink in my cabin, my concern was having access to the unused portion elsewhere on another night.  I'm delighted that the bottle can follow me.  

Yes, the bottle follows you.  The waitstaff marks it with your stateroom number and stores it for you so you have access at any dining venue. 

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4 minutes ago, goofysmom99 said:

Thank you.  Since I usually drink a single glass of wine at dinner and never drink in my cabin, my concern was having access to the unused portion elsewhere on another night.  I'm delighted that the bottle can follow me.  

I believe it can follow you to any dining venue but not to any bar....never been an issue with us since we have never had any wine left in a bottle at the end of a meal 🙂

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3 hours ago, Flatbush Flyer said:

Or, if you don’t mind carting it atop your roll-aboard (with other valuables):

These sturdy boxes (available free with purchase from many winery tasting rooms) are lightweight and travel flat. They come in 2,3,4,6 bottle size and make great under-bed storage, carrier for in-port wine purchases and we leave them onboard when we depart.

 

A34AD2DD-18E5-4605-8D2A-DA0567B8B765.jpeg

Thank you for the visual aid!  I think this might actually work for me.  I could buy 6 bottles at home, drive to Miami, and bungee it onto my rolling cruise suitcase at my hotel and then to the pier.  I've checked the port days and stores will be open so I could reuse the box for a few bottles more and leave it behind at the end.  On westbound TAs, because I can drive a one-way rental home, I usually buy wine and olive oils (great thank you and Christmas gifts) and lug it off the ship. 

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Goofsmom99, 

Love the pic of Scooter, your GSP. Here’s a pic of our Maggie, a rescue. She’s helping me to dream about my next cruise. Best dog ever!

image.jpg

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18 minutes ago, PhD-iva said:

Goofsmom99, 

Love the pic of Scooter, your GSP. Here’s a pic of our Maggie, a rescue. She’s helping me to dream about my next cruise. Best dog ever!

image.jpg

I love GSPs and used to have two.  First one was a rescue.  Got Scoot as a pup.  She's 14 1/2 now and still hanging in there.

Girls at Christmas.jpg

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19 hours ago, goofysmom99 said:

Earlier today I was all set to book a Cat B but then found out that that category doesn't include hot breakfast.  My #1 deal-breaking requirement for a cruise is room service hot breakfast, frequently poached eggs, because I won't ever make it for myself.  

Indeed you will not get poached eggs in a Cat B stateroom.  However, in previous Oceania days the standard room service menu offered a Mediterranean Vegetable Frittata and Sliced Salmon Gravlax, listed under the Appetizers.  Offered 24 hours a day.  Of course the Gravlax came with pumpernickel which may exclude it from your options.  Because you are sailing a transatlantic you will have a number of sea days which means you can enjoy the lovely service of breakfast in the Grand Dining Room.  All up to you.  If you are choosing the Cat A stateroom for poached eggs alone, there are indeed other options.

 

Post #3 from Duorobert is spot on for dietary requirements.  Advance notice from your TA/yourself plus meeting with the Food & Beverage Manager once onboard will go a long way to make your cruise wonderful.

 

Happy sailing!

Katie

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Posted (edited)
19 hours ago, goofysmom99 said:

I need a little help.  I'm about ready to pull the trigger on a 16 day 2023 Eastbound TA on Riviera; might extend it to Venice, too. 

Goofysmom99, if you extend your TA on Riviera onto Venice, then I will see you onboard! My SIL and I are booked on that cruise. Join us!

Edited by PhD-iva
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38 minutes ago, PhD-iva said:

Goofysmom99, if you extend your TA on Riviera onto Venice, then I will see you onboard! My SIL and I are booked on that cruise. Join us!

As much as I'd love to join you and have given it serious thought, unfortunately, it's simply too port intensive to end the cruise.  I don't have that much stamina anymore and need a sea day here and there.  Would consider combining the same cruises in the opposite direction, though,  so I'll be watching for Fall 2023.

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58 minutes ago, goofysmom99 said:

As much as I'd love to join you and have given it serious thought, unfortunately, it's simply too port intensive to end the cruise.  I don't have that much stamina anymore and need a sea day here and there.  Would consider combining the same cruises in the opposite direction, though,  so I'll be watching for Fall 2023.

There is no "rule" that says you have to get off the ship on a port day.  We often take a port day as a "sea" day, and we are not alone.  Enjoying the view, eating on the Terrace outside deck, drinking a glass of wine on our balcony -- can be very enjoyable regardless of stamina.

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6 hours ago, PhD-iva said:

I booked the 17 November 2021 Rome to Miami TA as a single. I paid the deviation fee to arrive in Rome before the cruise departs. I was only charged the deviation fee once, $175.

You would ONLY be charged once for air and deviation..

Jancruz1

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34 minutes ago, BarbaraM said:

There is no "rule" that says you have to get off the ship on a port day.  We often take a port day as a "sea" day, and we are not alone.  Enjoying the view, eating on the Terrace outside deck, drinking a glass of wine on our balcony -- can be very enjoyable regardless of stamina.

My sentiments, too.  I've visited the ports so that's often my choice.  In my dotage, I cruise to be waited upon, listen to the sound of waves, and sniff the breeze.  Already have a Venice, Rome, Ft Lauderdale B2B booked in October 2022 on Celebrity.  That one is 9 days with 2 sea days built in.  I like that it begins with an overnight in Venice for jet lag but the cruise is overpriced.  I'm waiting to see if prices come down (lots of open cabins for the 1st leg of a popular B2B), or maybe begin in a lesser cabin, and finally to see if Celebrity decides to sell the ship (it hasn't been refurbished). 

 

BTW, I pulled the trigger today and booked the 2023 TA on Riviera.  I'm thrilled to be planning/researching something new!  

 

Another newbie question, is there any benefit to a cabin nearer forward or aft elevators?  TIA.

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2 hours ago, goofysmom99 said:

Another newbie question, is there any benefit to a cabin nearer forward or aft elevators?  TIA.

Forward

Closer to the laundry rooms

Or if  in a PH or Concierge cabin  you will be close to the private lounges

closer to Horizons  & the theater

 

Aft closer to food venues

 

We  prefer more aft  cabins

YMMV

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, LHT28 said:

Forward

Closer to the laundry rooms

Or if  in a PH or Concierge cabin  you will be close to the private lounges

closer to Horizons  & the theater

 

Aft closer to food venues

 

We  prefer more aft  cabins

YMMV

 

 

 

Thank you. I like food better than laundry - aft it is.

 

Which brings me to a laundry question.  I don't like to do laundry on vacation unless there's no other option.  Does O have a paid laundry service available?  I'd only want it once or twice for PJs and bloomers.  I save worn out unseen stuff that's ready to be tossed and don't bring it back home.  After living in "loungewear" for the past year, I'm definitely well stocked for the next trip.

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