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Observations From The Poop Deck- Equinox Aug 1


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Got to Port Everglades at 10 am expecting long lines waiting for covid testing. Pleasantly surprised. Most passengers were those waiting for rides from last cruise. Pulled up to the Priority curb at Terminal 25. Waiting porter waved me in. Unloaded DW 8 bags for a 7 day cruise. Porter asked her how long of a cruise was she intending on taking with 8 bags?  She said just 7 days and tipped him. He turned to her and said "Well, have a nice cruise and thank you for such a generous tip." She waited for me to park the car in the parking garage at the far left terminal door. The doors were all open and passengers were checking into the air conditioned terminal building. About a total of 50 passengers in total queued and only 4 Retreat passengers ahead of us. No waiting to get inside the air conditioned terminal. The attendant scanned our boarding pass, our vaccination card and our proof of a negative antigen test with yesterdays date (within 48 hrs). We were emailed on the way to the port that no antigen test was now needed for the fully vaccinated, but the negative tests appeared to be important enough to scan into his documentation. We were asked to take a seat for a few minutes until another attendee approached the 6 of us Retreat guests and escorted us into the elevator to go through the screening machines and into the Retreat Lounge in the terminal. Again we had a seat and had a second check-in and waited for the ship to allow us to board at 11:30. Went directly to our stateroom, dropped off our carry-on luggage picked up our room cards and off to Luminae for lunch. Lunch menu was the same as that of Luminae on the Edge. We all wore masks at the port and in the terminal, but threw them out when we got to our stateroom. This was one of the fastest, least crowded boardings we ever could imagine. We were prepared for the worst. I guess second sailings are better than first, we were on Edge's second as well.

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I have never know any porter to look at their tip.   They always put it in their pocket and never made a comment.

 

We had one that that made us line up and demanded that we show him our  boarding pass and said it was $3 per bag.   I took his picture and called the port authority.   I was told that it wasn’t allowed and there were paid a hefty union wage because they belonged to the Long Shore Union and tips weren’t required or necessary.    The picture showed his badge.   I gave that to the representative and they said that he will be removed from the port as what he was doing was illegal.    Don’t know if it ever happened but I don’t like extortion.   

 

This was in Ft Lauderdale 

 

Happy cruising 🌊🚢🇺🇸🌅
 

 

 

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53 minutes ago, miched said:

I have never know any porter to look at their tip.   They always put it in their pocket and never made a comment.

 

We had one that that made us line up and demanded that we show him our  boarding pass and said it was $3 per bag.   I took his picture and called the port authority.   I was told that it wasn’t allowed and there were paid a hefty union wage because they belonged to the Long Shore Union and tips weren’t required or necessary.    The picture showed his badge.   I gave that to the representative and they said that he will be removed from the port as what he was doing was illegal.    Don’t know if it ever happened but I don’t like extortion.   

 

This was in Ft Lauderdale 

 

Happy cruising 🌊🚢🇺🇸🌅
 

 

 

I bet most porters and others we tip can palm a tip and know what it is by a unnoticed glance as we hand it over. 
 

Glad you nailed that guy. That’s ridiculous. And most of the time many of us tip better than what some Idiot tries to press for. 
 

den

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7 hours ago, miched said:

I have never know any porter to look at their tip.   They always put it in their pocket and never made a comment.

 

We had one that that made us line up and demanded that we show him our  boarding pass and said it was $3 per bag.   I took his picture and called the port authority.   I was told that it wasn’t allowed and there were paid a hefty union wage because they belonged to the Long Shore Union and tips weren’t required or necessary.    The picture showed his badge.   I gave that to the representative and they said that he will be removed from the port as what he was doing was illegal.    Don’t know if it ever happened but I don’t like extortion.   

 

This was in Ft Lauderdale 

 

Happy cruising 🌊🚢🇺🇸🌅
 

 

 

I saw that happen at Ft L a few years ago as well.  It's called extortion.

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10 hours ago, miched said:

I have never know any porter to look at their tip.   They always put it in their pocket and never made a comment.

 

We had one that that made us line up and demanded that we show him our  boarding pass and said it was $3 per bag.   I took his picture and called the port authority.   I was told that it wasn’t allowed and there were paid a hefty union wage because they belonged to the Long Shore Union and tips weren’t required or necessary.    The picture showed his badge.   I gave that to the representative and they said that he will be removed from the port as what he was doing was illegal.    Don’t know if it ever happened but I don’t like extortion.   

 

This was in Ft Lauderdale 

 

Happy cruising 🌊🚢🇺🇸🌅
 

 

 

We've boarded cruises xxx times in Ft Lauderdale and this  " experience " is kinda hard to believe ---

" I have never know any porter to look at their tip " ? 

Trust me--- they can tell by looking at you--- the old " fold it up the size of a postage stamp " trick is their clue to a lousy tip. I always let them see what I'm giving and get a " Thanks , Sir ".

" Lined up and demanded to see boarding passes " ? 

Why would he want to see your boarding pass ? You wouldn't be allowed to enter the port without one . They check your pass at the entrance to the port. 

" Took his picture and called the port authority and gave it to them " ? 

How did you take his picture showing his badge and how did you give it to the Port Authority ?

" Tips weren't required " ? 

Oh Yes they are---- IF you want your bags to get on board the ship.

 

 

 

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OP,

Very happy to discover this thread. I enjoyed reading your "cruise ramblings" from the Edge too. Have a wonderful cruise and keep it coming!

 

Way to go DW! 8 bags? only??? LOL!😁

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1 hour ago, Pinboy said:

 

" Tips weren't required " ? 

Oh Yes they are---- IF you want your bags to get on board the ship.

 

 

 

That would be the extortion part.  🙂

When I saw it the porter was literally standing by the bags asking which belonged to whom.  He would then stand there, Cheshire Cat grin firmly in place, with one huge hand on the bags and the other palm up in from of the pax.  We travel with 2 very full bags and tip $5 per bag.  Had he been our porter I'd still have given in to the extortion but it would have been cut in half.

 

Only saw it the one time in FtL.  Never anywhere else.

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We preferred the Luminae seating arrangement better on Equinox than the Luminae on Edge. The distance between tables is greater. We were really packed together on the Edge. The menu was exactly the same. Daniel Bouchard"s signature dish of Tangine Moroccan Chicken was the same signature dish on Edge. Once again the staff is very grateful for our return to cruising. Dining in Luminae appears to be the highlight once again. The attentiveness and the added reminders that if there is anything we would prefer that is not on the menu, please ask. A walk through of the Oceanview Cafe buffet has only two differences, on the Equinox one can retrieve their own dishes and cloth napkin wrapped utensils, while on the Edge we were handed individually, not allowing guests to rifle and touch another's plate. The other is on Edge we had hand washing stations as we entered and exited. I noticed another anomally in the Luminae, which Equinox wins out over the Edge, this mornings pastries tray. The same delicious sampling (I tried 5), but the pastries were actually still warm as was my apple crepe entree. Both were delicious, but I recall not as warm on the Edge. From a past kitchen tour on the Equinox, the Equinox boasts no micro waves in its kitchen, everything to order. Which after this mornings first breakfast I wonder if the Edge must pre-prepare and have the courses sitting accounting for them not being as warm.

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3 minutes ago, morpheusofthesea said:

We preferred the Luminae seating arrangement better on Equinox than the Luminae on Edge. The distance between tables is greater. We were really packed together on the Edge. The menu was exactly the same. Daniel Bouchard"s signature dish of Tangine Moroccan Chicken was the same signature dish on Edge. Once again the staff is very grateful for our return to cruising. Dining in Luminae appears to be the highlight once again. The attentiveness and the added reminders that if there is anything we would prefer that is not on the menu, please ask. A walk through of the Oceanview Cafe buffet has only two differences, on the Equinox one can retrieve their own dishes and cloth napkin wrapped utensils, while on the Edge we were handed individually, not allowing guests to rifle and touch another's plate. The other is on Edge we had hand washing stations as we entered and exited. I noticed another anomally in the Luminae, which Equinox wins out over the Edge, this mornings pastries tray. The same delicious sampling (I tried 5), but the pastries were actually still warm as was my apple crepe entree. Both were delicious, but I recall not as warm on the Edge. From a past kitchen tour on the Equinox, the Equinox boasts no micro waves in its kitchen, everything to order. Which after this mornings first breakfast I wonder if the Edge must pre-prepare and have the courses sitting accounting for them not being as warm.

We are very fond of the Solstice class and are looking forward to Equinox because it always gets very high marks for dining.

 

QQ about Edge since you've been on her.  Nearly all the pics we've seen appear to show very hard surfaces and sharp lines.  Is that pervasive around the ship or am I misinterpreting?

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Did not win my MoveUp bid to the Penthouse. Was told by concierge the Retreat is booked. I asked while waiting in the terminal lounge after they gave us blue tracer wrist bands. Must remove when in shower or pool. Very happy with stateroom. Very quiet night, just a couple of closet hangers slightly tapping against each other. Night light built into bathroom mirrors, no need for tealights. Last evening's show had a very good singer from Las Vegas. She had an uncanny ability to sing popular songs and even sang like the superstar that made the song popular, eg. Gloria Gaynor, Donna Summer,  Judy Garland, and even Barbra Streisand. She several times thanked everyone for sailing again. Her finale was "Happy Days Are Here Again". It is a theme repeated by all ship board staff. Many of the staff have still not been able to return from their home countries. From what I can ascertain, those that are on board, many, never went home during this pandemic fearing this might happen.

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3 minutes ago, morpheusofthesea said:

Did not win my MoveUp bid to the Penthouse. Was told by concierge the Retreat is booked. I asked while waiting in the terminal lounge after they gave us blue tracer wrist bands. Must remove when in shower or pool. Very happy with stateroom. Very quiet night, just a couple of closet hangers slightly tapping against each other. Night light built into bathroom mirrors, no need for tealights. Last evening's show had a very good singer from Las Vegas. She had an uncanny ability to sing popular songs and even sang like the superstar that made the song popular, eg. Gloria Gaynor, Donna Summer,  Judy Garland, and even Barbra Streisand. She several times thanked everyone for sailing again. Her finale was "Happy Days Are Here Again". It is a theme repeated by all ship board staff. Many of the staff have still not been able to return from their home countries. From what I can ascertain, those that are on board, many, never went home during this pandemic fearing this might happen.

What suite are you in, Sky, Royal or Celebrity? 

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9 minutes ago, morpheusofthesea said:

Did not win my MoveUp bid to the Penthouse. Was told by concierge the Retreat is booked. I asked while waiting in the terminal lounge after they gave us blue tracer wrist bands. Must remove when in shower or pool. Very happy with stateroom. Very quiet night, just a couple of closet hangers slightly tapping against each other. Night light built into bathroom mirrors, no need for tealights. Last evening's show had a very good singer from Las Vegas. She had an uncanny ability to sing popular songs and even sang like the superstar that made the song popular, eg. Gloria Gaynor, Donna Summer,  Judy Garland, and even Barbra Streisand. She several times thanked everyone for sailing again. Her finale was "Happy Days Are Here Again". It is a theme repeated by all ship board staff. Many of the staff have still not been able to return from their home countries. From what I can ascertain, those that are on board, many, never went home during this pandemic fearing this might happen.

So how does MoveUp work?  Like a blind auction?

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20 minutes ago, cltnccruisers said:

about Edge since you've been on her.  Nearly all the pics we've seen appear to show very hard surfaces and sharp lines.  Is that pervasive around the ship or am I misinterpreting?

I really hadn't noticed. We all have different reasons for cruising and picking ships and cabins. I enjoy sitting all afternoon in the shade and comfort of a modest balcony. I bring my tape measure. This balcony is 25' x 6'= 150 sq ft. !/3 of it is useless for us with a jaccuzzi. I have found that the smallest balcony I would be comfortable with is 75 sq ft. So for me cruising is all about a balcony. For DW cruising is all about having enough closet and drawer space for all her accoutrements.

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14 minutes ago, cltnccruisers said:

So how does MoveUp work?  Like a blind auction?

Dear

We're excited to let you know that you're eligible for a stateroom upgrade on your upcoming Celebrity EquinoxSM cruise (reservation number.

For a limited time only, you can place bids on available upgrade options, with the innovative Celebrity MoveUp technology. Tell us what you'd like to pay to make your extraordinary vacation even better. If your bid is the winner, we'll let you know before you sail. Upgrade opportunities are limited, so don't wait.

When you upgrade to one of our extraordinary suites, you get access to The Retreat®, which has a private restaurant, an exclusive lounge that rivals any high-end resort, personalized butler service, a dedicated concierge, and much more.

If you booked your cruise through a Travel Advisor, they can guide you through the Celebrity MoveUp process.

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Posted (edited)

Thank you so much for these posts - glad to hear that Covid tests are no longer going to be required if you have proof of vaccinations 

We are due to board the Equinox on September 26th - can't wait !! 

We will be sailing in a Sky Suite - love those Aft Suites ! 

Can you further explain the tracer wrist bands ? - Are they for everyone ?  

 

Edited by GreenValleyDogWalker
oops
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2 minutes ago, terrydtx said:

Then you can't be too unhappy about not getting the move up. I enjoyed following your  posts on the Edge. 

Thank you. You are correct in your assumption about the cabin. We thought we had a shot at the Penthouse with all the turmoil regarding current events, but we are competing with diehard fellow cruise enthusiasts in the Retreat. You have also been very kind in all your postings. Thank you.

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4 minutes ago, morpheusofthesea said:

Dear

We're excited to let you know that you're eligible for a stateroom upgrade on your upcoming Celebrity EquinoxSM cruise (reservation number.

For a limited time only, you can place bids on available upgrade options, with the innovative Celebrity MoveUp technology. Tell us what you'd like to pay to make your extraordinary vacation even better. If your bid is the winner, we'll let you know before you sail. Upgrade opportunities are limited, so don't wait.

When you upgrade to one of our extraordinary suites, you get access to The Retreat®, which has a private restaurant, an exclusive lounge that rivals any high-end resort, personalized butler service, a dedicated concierge, and much more.

If you booked your cruise through a Travel Advisor, they can guide you through the Celebrity MoveUp process.

So you have to already be in a suite to be eligible?  Makes sense.  We've always been happy with our balcony staterooms on the Solstice class.  We got bumped to concierge once on Infinity - just called out of the blue.  Best parts of that were the embarkation day lunch and the debarkation day breakfast in the observation lounge. 

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Posted (edited)
19 minutes ago, GreenValleyDogWalker said:

Thank you so much for these posts - glad to hear that Covid tests are no longer going to be required if you have proof of vaccinations 

We are due to board the Equinox on September 26th - can't wait !!  We will be sailing in a Sky Suite - have a bid for an upgrade - but I guess the retreat rooms are all booked at this time 

 

From what I have read, it seems that negative Covid tests are required before sailing starting with any cruises from August 6 on. 
Also, I was under the assumption that move up bids were available starting 21 days before sailing. How were you able to bid being almost 2 months out? 

Edited by choochella
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7 minutes ago, choochella said:

From what I have read, it seems that positive Covid tests are required before sailing starting with any cruises from August 6 on. 
Also, I was under the assumption that move up bids were available starting 21 days before sailing. How were you able to bid being almost 2 months out? 

You mean negative tests I hope - 'cuz that's what we're shooting for.  🙂

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Posted (edited)
12 minutes ago, cltnccruisers said:

You mean negative tests I hope - 'cuz that's what we're shooting for.  🙂

Oops!! Made the change. Thx! Yes, definitely what we’re shooting for lol!

Although, after reading the instructions from X, it seems this test is required for cruises from August 6 to September 6. 
Figures. Our cruise is September 5. 🥺

Edited by choochella
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1 hour ago, cltnccruisers said:

So how does MoveUp work?  Like a blind auction?

Yes -- you receive an invite and when you log on it shows each option open for bidding (those rooms may not be available) and it will show a Min - Max bid range.    You enter a bid in that range.   If you win the bid your CC is billed immediately (usually first sign you won if you have bank notifications turned on) and your room will show in your reservation summary. 

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