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Showing content with the highest reputation on 06/17/2018 in all areas

  1. 7 points

    Allure June 17, 2018 Sailing

    Intro As my kids are getting older at age 23, 20 and 18, we are doing what may be the last vacation all together as a family. We’ve been looking forward to it for quite a while. We are sailing to Nassau, Cozumel, Roatan and Costa Maya on a Western Caribbean itinerary. I am using my phone for this live blog, so enjoy the inevitable typos. Getting to the Port We flew in the day before our sailing and stayed at the Spring Hill Suites in Dania Beach, about 12 minutes to Terminal 18 where Allure docks. I tried an off site rental car company called Sixt for the first time. They advertise high end cars at lower prices than conventional companies,. As of the writing of this blog, it has been pretty good. The only caution is that getting to the company’s shuttle stop across from the terminal and from baggage claim on no sleep can be challenging. I went ahead of my family to get the car to avoid schlepping. I met them later with the car outside baggage claim. Prior to arrival, I received an email asking if I wanted to make a dollar bid online for additional money, sort of like a blind auction, to secure a Mercedes for the rental. I thought it was a little strange, but I didn’t end up using it. We rented a BMW X3 SUV which is brand new...nice. If you liked Sprockets on SNL, you might like this experience as you move like Dieter to the techno music being played in the rental office while waiting in line. We are glad for the car because we had to make an unscheduled prescription run the night before embarkation. I was also able to go to Dr von D Mizzell-Eula Johnson State Park to see Billy Hirsch’s @CruiseHabit scoping spot for myself. Seeing those sail aways in person is incredible, It was great hanging with Billy despite what Matt may say. And I see you @BigDogRon...:p We will get to the terminal a little before 11:00 am this morning and I can’t wait to share more. Photo 1 — Spring Hill Suites, Dania Beach Photo 2 — Sixt Rental Office Photo 3 — Billy Scoping Photo 4 — Big Dog Ron — I’m crushed 😞 Feel free to check out my IG @dunkelbier_jay for more pics and little videos.
  2. 5 points
    I though I’d add here of my experience of my recent cruise onboard the new renovated Independence of the Seas between the 2-16th June. I’ll start off by saying it was the sixth cruise with RCI, once onboard the Voyager and the fifth on the Indy. Each time I’ve been I’d recommend RCI to everyone, but not anymore the Independence I’m afraid, the refurbishment with the additional rooms which brings another 500 passengers onboard to 4150 is just too much. So many places were overcrowded, most people are aware what mayhem the Windjammer is at peak times, but the whole ship seemed like that this cruise. One problem is the main dining rooms, with the additional tables added it’s difficult to manoeuvre between the chairs and tables, something a lot of waiting staff were telling passengers. The usual problem with sun beds was just made more problematic on sunny days, and on a day at sea when it was windy and overcast (sailing between Madeira and La Coruña) with everyone being inside queuing for a speciality coffee took 40 minutes. We also found the main dining room experience slightly tarnished as the wait between courses was some days up to 30 mins, I don’t think the waiters can deal with the additional tables when it’s full. One place we never see anywhere near busy was Fish n Ships, infact I only saw a few people eating there. I can’t see that staying to be honest, when you take into account how much a simple fish and chip dinner costs. Additional problems on board we encountered were a galley brunch we had ordered before cruising on the last day was changed to two days earlier, not a problem you’d think. Trouble being our stateroom attendant put the notification in our room the evening AFTER the event. A refund was issued and a complimentary Chops Grille was given, but we’d missed the brunch which we had done before on previous cruises and enjoyed. The last problem onboard I found was our main dining room waiter, a week into the cruise he mentioned the guest satisfaction survey we’d receive after our cruise and how vital it was to him that we scored him well. Now, I don’t mind him telling us that once, but that evening he spent each course asking if he’d score a 10 from us which slightly annoyed me. The following evening and the one thereafter was the same, with him even telling my daughter to make sure we give him a 10 score, that was enough for me and we only dined again there on the last formal night, he really did sour the whole evening experiences for us. I will add the other waiter was an absolute pleasure to know, polite, funny and a credit to RCI. Now on to the plus points. The new additions, the water slides, laser tag and skypad are superb. Great fun for us all and really do add to the cruise, we spent many hours enjoying these activities. The escape room was also a great hour spent, I’d never done one before and really enjoyed it and got to make some new friends while playing it. Managed to escape with 9 minutes left. We also dined at Izumi, and what a superb night that was. Atmosphere, food and the whole experience was one of the best, chef Elvis was a pleasure to meet, definitely worth the additional cost for the meal. We also tried Johnny Rockets, a good time with some nice food, although the additional cost doesn’t seem warranted in my opinion. The tours we did with RCI were handles well and ran very well as usual, booked four but one trip was cancelled which was disappointing, other days at port we did our thing which we find more enjoyable. If you ever go to Madeira go on a catamaran dolphin and whale watching, a three trip and a reasonable price and a fantastic experience seeing turtles, whales and dolphins up close. It was the highlight of the cruise, as was Lanzarote, albeit an exhausting one, hired bicycles just outside the port and followed the path 8 miles to the next town. Beautiful weather and scenery, and stopped for a lovely lunch by the beach and tried out the jet skis, another great experience. Overall we had a great holiday again with RCI, but it’s the first time I've finished a cruise and not wanted to go back immediately, certainly not on the Independence. I’ll have to overcome my fear of flying and cruise on another ship, or consider the Navigator which sails from Southampton, I’d love to see Norway some time. I’ve waffled on far too long now, so if you’ve got this far thank you for reading. Take care and happy cruising to you all.
  3. 3 points
    Love the kettle in the room idea. And to my knowledge, it is as @JohnUK said above that for UK sailings, there is a kettle available in every room. I would also say that they need to bring back the small touches too like the chocolates on the pillow, the loving cups, and the midnight buffet. Those are the things I miss the most. As for what should they add, I would love to see RC have the options like Celebrity where you could pick a couple of perks to go with your booking and last but not least, a pool, bar, and eating area on the suite sundeck (but it looks like they might be headed that way already).
  4. 2 points


    Just wanted to say hello! I’ve been reading the blogs, and posts for a long time now, and finally decided to setup an account. I’ve been cruising with RCCL since 2002, first ship was Voyager of the Seas, and basically have been doing the Voyager class ships. This August I will be doing my first Freedom class (Liberty of the Seas). I am kind of set in my ways, hence why I stuck with the Voyager class. My girlfriend talked me into going on Liberty. She has a 13 year old son, and I have a 7 year old daughter. For me girlfriend and son, this will be their first, for me this will be my 10th, and my daughter her 4th. Anyhow, just wanted to say hello!
  5. 2 points
    While on Empress of the Seas, WJ was open until 9pm. They were open again for late-night snack (burgers, hot dogs, nachos, chicken wings, desserts) 1030pm-1230am. Sandwiches only station in WJ 12:30am-1:30am. Keep in mind they do not have a 24-hour food option available on the ship. I think they should at least adopt the late night snack in WJ fleet-wide. Sorrentos is the only hot food option on the newer ships other than room service.
  6. 2 points
    Yesterday, around noon outside the MDR, I was washing my hands in the ladies bathroom. Someone had left a pretty gold ring with a few diamonds and colored stones on the sink. I turned it in to guest services. Hey, maybe the person who lost it reads this! I guess just call the cruise line to claim it?
  7. 1 point
    In am returning right now from Harmony of the Seas. It was our first cruise ever! My hubby and I took our14 year old son, and I just wanted to share his first time with the teen club, which was VERY important to us on our vacation. The first night, there was a meet and greet in the club, and he said that it was PACKED! The kids seemed to exchange Instagram addresses, phone numbers etc. the first night and then arrange to meet up throughout the week in groups of 5-30 kids. He had a blast! The kids met for lunches, dinners, Flowrider sessions, and the late night dance parties were amazing he said. The Hush silent dance party with the headphones was the best party of his life he said. They had games like Battle of the Sexes, which was a boys vs girls very competitive game, karaoke, and many other events. They had an ice skating party, which required long pants, so pack those too! My son is pretty outgoing and had no problem making lots of friends and tearfully told us this morning that he had the best week of his life........ my hubby and I felt like we had a “date” with it being just the two of us for the majority of the week, so keep that in mind parents! To sum it up, have no fears about your teen making friends and finding lots of kids to do fun things with all week! Have a great trip!
  8. 1 point
    I guess we are all here love to cruise with Royal Caribbean. Although I only cruised with RC until now (so I cant compare) I feel we are getting wonderful experience and a good value for our money. Still from time to time I think there are few small things which if RC changed/added could make the experience even better , I guess each one have is own list : Leaving the WJ open for longer hours at the evening - currently, beside the room service its very hard to find something to eat after 9 PM . Iron room - I understand why they will not locate iron on each room but maybe iron room in few places can be used if you need to iron a T shirt, yes I know I can give the shirt to iron for a fee but it takes time to get it back and sometime it cost more than the T shirt 🙂 In room Kettle - just to start the morning with a coffee or tea without going all the way to the nearest station, I know its not a safety issue as you get them in JS and up . if its a matter of stocking the coffee product well , they can say its self service , meaning , if you want coffee/sugar/tea bags, just bring some from one of the coffee places. Room service outside of your room - lets say its night time , WJ is already closed and you do not feel eating a Pizza or sandwich, your partner is already sleeping, it could be nice to be able order food (with the same fee) to some of the other places , maybe even leave some of the WJ table sections open just for it ? Oh and most important , working, friendly, usable website .... I wonder what other people will suggest ?
  9. 1 point
    Just off my very first cruise on Harmony of the Seas! I was on the 10th floor, room 10709, a boardwalk balcony. I was right above Johnnny Rockets. I could see the Fine Line show on my left and the carousel was on my right. It was very noisy, which surprised me, even when the balcony door was locked fully. That darn bell ringer at the carousel! Late at night sometimes groups of people on the Boardwalk would yell and scream, just having a good time, but I prefer quiet to sleep. If you want a quieter inside balcony, please choose a Central Park inside balcony, it was very peaceful, very green, MUCH quieter. My parents had the oceanvie balcony across the hall directly, room 10708. It was absolutely perfect! It was very quiet, great unobstructed view. In each port, they had the ultimate view , each port had the view on THEIR side of the ship, starboard side. We all gathered on their balcony as we went into each port, watching them tie off the ship and the guests going on and off the gangway. I did not realize how COOL it was to have a view of pulling into ports and having this side of the ship to see it from. Hope this advice helps you when choosing a room! 😎
  10. 1 point

    Johnny Rockets Pricing on Allure

    And significantly cheaper as you could order for the entire family for that one delivery price.
  11. 1 point
    Yes. That ☕
  12. 1 point

    Allure June 17, 2018 Sailing

    Jay, Check this out on the Allure (thanks to tiny260): Deck 14, port side all the way forward, through the sliding glass door and you will be on the observation deck right above the bridge. The deck extends out over the bridge "wings" and is a great place when leaving or coming into a port. Word of caution.....very windy!
  13. 1 point
    Oh and Happy Father's Day @DunkelBierJay!! Enjoy your family! What a great way to start Father's Day 😊
  14. 1 point

    Allure June 17, 2018 Sailing

    Have an awesome trip.
  15. 1 point

    Allure June 17, 2018 Sailing

    Following! You'll learn to ignore BigDuckRon - most of us already do.
  16. 1 point
    Following! Have a great trip!!
  17. 1 point

    Working out on a ship...

    12 oz curls
  18. 1 point

    Watching movies onboard

    I have been known to bring my big white bathrobe to cover up with when I watched the movie...
  19. 1 point

    Watching movies onboard

    This is the only thing I have found where Carnival does a better job. They have a huge screen by the pool to show movies. They also have rocking chairs, popcorn, and they aren't blocking the movie screen with the water slides and kids play area like on Adventure of The Seas. The one and only time we cruised on Carnival, we watch the movie by the pool every night. They also have movie blankets you can borrow for chilly nights. On Adventure, the only seats that provided a good view of the screen were the "Suite Guest" pool chairs that are elevated, but those are roped off and us mere mortals aren't allowed to mingle up there. 🙄
  20. 1 point

    When is your next cruise?

    I will wave at you. I will be on the Harmony.
  21. 1 point
    We just transferred our booking to a travel agent, and it was confirmed that it has to be within 60 days after bookimg (we were at day 57 or 58, s just in time!). going to see how it goes. We've already gotten a few perks from TA, so we haven't lost anything by doing so.
  22. 1 point
    Cape Liberty was also surprisingly fast.
  23. 1 point

    Found a ring on Harmony yesterday...

    You definitely did the right thing by giving it to Guest Services
  24. 1 point
    Blog post by @Matt on Barracchina... https://www.royalcaribbeanblog.com/2015/04/14/things-do-old-san-juan
  25. 1 point

    Royal IQ app, waste of money!

    You don't have to purchase Voom to use the chat/text feature of RoyalIQ, they are mutually exclusive and are purchased independently. A Voom plan allows internet connectivity. The chat feature of RoyalIQ is simply that, a chat add-on feature that doesn't use the internet. If your friends had purchased Voom you wouldn't have had to purchase the chat add on within RoyalIQ, you could have used WhatsApp or any other wifi based chat app. Having said that, RoyalIQ is eventually being replaced by the new 'Royal' app.
  26. 1 point
    I blame @Matt, it's his blog 🙂
  27. 1 point
    Ok, we need a used camera gear marketplace section. And just a cruise photos section. Don't put your Nikon stuff on ebay before checking with the group first twangster! I use a d7200 with 18-140 lens and the new 10-20. Before september cruise I would like to pickup a 35mm 1.8 DX for the low light shots and the new 70-300 AF-P DX. All of which will be useless if I ever move up to an FX like your d750 though. I do wish my d7200 had facial recognition like the d750 though.
  28. 1 point

    A Royal Luxury expansion ...

    Lets hope the IT Department of Royal doesn't merge with Silversea... 😂
  29. 1 point

    Johnny Rockets Pricing on Allure

    Remember, breakfast there is complimentary.
  30. 1 point

    Dinner and the 8pm Sailing

    sounds like someone deserves an extra lobster night for all the inconvenience😀
  31. 1 point

    Walking around Old San Juan

    Compañía de Turismo de Puerto Rico This was in December so the Christmas lights were out.
  32. 1 point

    Watching movies onboard

    There is nothing greater than sitting outdoors watching a flick and having the sea breeze. Get a couple of towels for padding and your good to go. Some pizza and cocktails. And the rest is history. Enjoyed Oasis outdoor movies and looking forward to sailing on her again.
  33. 1 point

    Watching movies onboard

    I do this also. That way I can have stuff to watch at the airport, during flight, and sometimes at night.
  34. 1 point
    Ruth C

    Introduce yourself!

    Hello all! I love cruising and am excited to have found this blog. I'm on the June 28, 2018 Symphony of the Seas sailing. I'm hoping to find some advice here on disembarkation times and tips on the ship. This is my 3rd Royal Caribbean cruise, my 11th cruise total. A little bit about me. I'm a romance novel author. I tend to travel as a group of 4-10 (this group is 10). We're a mix of ages -- youngest 8 years old, oldest in late 60s. I usually book one suite and put everyone else in a regular balconies. I book most of my tours independently. This is our second European cruise. Our first was on the Navigator of the Seas in 2013 (Med cruise). Loved it. We stayed in the AFT family suite. Feel free to ask me anything and I hope I find some answers here as well. I'm not a die hard who has written everything down, but I'll share what I know. Thank you all in advance. Ruth
  35. 1 point

    Introduce yourself!

    Hello Royal Caribbean Board Members! I am a cruise and travel lover, and want to be always exploring new places! I will be sailing on Symphony of the Seas at the end of July, and am lucky enough to be doing a back to back sailing for a grand total of two weeks on what seems to be an amazing ship. I plan to be doing a (Semi)live blog about my adventures on this board, and would love to have others follow me. Ever since I set sail in the Caribbean on Adventure of the Seas, I have fallen in love with the water, cruising, and sailing in general. This addiction has let me fuel my traveling needs, and am always to suggest a cruise for a summer vacation. I live in the Great State of Texas with my two parents and my faithful dog named Chewie (yes, Star Wars). Please don't hesitate to ask questions about me or about cruising in general! This an amazing blog and board community, and we are all privileged to have a great team to do this, especially being exclusive to Royal! -Carson
  36. 1 point
    Back of the line, lady!!!
  37. 1 point
    Can you adopt me? So jealous! Jane
  38. 1 point
    We are now 14 days from our cruise, and 7 days from our vacation (we're doing a week in Orlando before heading to the Oasis). It's going to to be a super busy week as I wrap up work and get ready for the cruise. So, in case I don't have time later, I wanted to say thanks to @Matt, @WAAAYTOOOand all the rest of you on this board, especially since many that I want to thank are going to be on the group cruise. Your insight and recommendations have been awesome. My cruise came together faster and better than I expected and this board is largely responsible. Keep up the awesome work! Can't believe it's finally here. I think booking 18 months out is great for getting exactly what you want but is terrible for the anticipation... Those of you who have the luxury of multiple cruises per year make me jealous... Maybe some day soon I'll be in those ranks.
  39. 1 point

    Watching movies onboard

    That's why there is a bar not far away from the viewing area.
  40. 1 point

    Watching movies onboard

    The Radiance class ships still have a small theater, I believe. I don't know if they are systematically removing these or not. I hope they don't. I always enjoyed going there to see a movie.
  41. 1 point
    I even got a new GoPro... so there should be video!
  42. 1 point

    San Juan

    I totally agree with you Suzanne. I too can fly cheaper to San Juan then to Florida, especially during the winter months when I tend to cruise, In Michigan, our "snowbirds" (people who migrate to the south to avoid the harsh winters, and there are many) head south and the airlines know that so they adjust fares to take advantage of the exodus. No savings on airfare here, ever!
  43. 1 point

    Johnny Rockets Pricing on Allure

    Welcome to the message boards! The patty and buns are identical to WJ. The sauce they use and the availability of onion rings is the key differentiator IMO.
  44. 1 point
    In addition to the food while in Bar Harbor, seriously consider visiting Acadia National Park. It's gorgeous and in September, depending on how late in the month you're going, you should have some spectacular foliage on display. I spent four years in Maine while in college, and the months of September and May were always the best in my opinion. For info on Saint Johns temps, take a look at this link at holiday-weather.com site, which another member here pointed me to when I was asking about the temps in Halifax for May / June.
  45. 0 points
    We did traditional dining first sitting at 6pm. We did speak to a couple who were pinnacle C&A members who were far from impressed with having to queue for many things, hopefully it’s just teething troubles as staff get used to the extra workload they have.
  46. 0 points

    Chops Grill lunch

    Wow....is all i can say...was $15 changed to $19 now it's $22. It won't be long before it hits the evening price of $35, oh wait..it's now $49. No more chops for us!
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