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Showing content with the highest reputation on 07/24/2019 in Posts

  1. 5 points
    📸: Royal Caribbean International “Whenever you are with me, life plays a beautiful symphony!” --- Avijeet Das For Hubby and I, there is no better way to spend quality couple time together than to go on a cruise. We started off that way on our honeymoon back in 2002 and we have tried to get away around this time every year to celebrate our anniversary. Symphony was on our radar almost two years ago. Being huge OA class fans and having sailed every Oasis class ship so far, sailing this one was a given. I booked this cruise knowing that this summer would be our first chance to sail it since she spent last summer in Europe. Even upon booking back in the Fall of 2017, prices were crazy for this ship. However, because of fixed vacation times, that is just something that we are used to. How did the title for this blog come about? Other than being fond of cruising and shopping, I also love music. Trained in classical music since I was a little girl, and with a ship named Symphony, I could not resist to draw parallels between this blog title and music. So why Symphony No. 17? Symphonies written by the same composer are often given a generic name that involves a number so that one can identify which piece it is by that composer. Playing on that thought, this is cruise #17 for us, and, as coincidence would have it, it is also our 17th anniversary on this sailing. Notice the theme? In addition, a Symphony is typically written in four movements. So there lies the logic behind the rest of this title. I expect that those will be our four experiences on Symphony this sailing. <Music geek off> Let’s begin…
  2. 4 points
    So wait. I’m confused. It sounds like you are married to Hubster. Maybe it’s the drink package on Empress. Or is there more going on? Confused.
  3. 4 points
    mworkman

    How do you stand the wait??

    It's called YOLO...book another cruise asap...closes to August..then the wait isn't as bad! 😬
  4. 4 points
    Cabin There is a story here… As noted earlier, this sailing was expensive! Newest ship, summer sailing, just bad news all around for the bank account. We initially booked a Junior Suite with the plan to upgrade to a GS if the prices dropped below “ridiculous” level. Upon booking, the cost of the JS was more than we paid for a GS on Harmony in 2017. Before continuing, let me put in the disclaimer here that this cruise was booked in November 2017, before experiencing Star Class. After grabbing this booking, I noticed over time that the opportunities for people staying in a JS to get into Coastal Kitchen consistently was not promising, especially on Oasis class ships. Being #TeamCK, this was not sitting well with me at all. However, prices over time jumped from ridiculous to beyond ridiculous so there was no way I was going to get into Sky Class. To complicate things further, we booked the Anthem GC for the same month and that sailing was not much cheaper. Fast forward to March 2019, while sailing Harmony (in Star Class), our Genie arranged for a Next Cruise rep to meet with us in our suite. With the upgrade for Symphony constantly on my mind, I asked her to price out a GS for us…just for fun. Due to a slight price drop, $300 OBC from Next Cruise, some TA deals, some wheeling and dealing on my part with Hubby during a dinner at Chops, and a Hubby who spoils me constantly, we said YOLO once again and cancelled our original JS booking and re-booked with the GS. We had to cancel the original to get the $300 OBC but it was fine because the original was a refundable deposit. After returning home and feeling the star class blues, we began reflecting on our sailing in a loft suite. There were several conclusions that we drew. One was that it was such a unique experience, two was that we fell in love with being in that location. Translation…I was hooked! Where do we go from there? I gently hinted to Hubby that it is cruise #17 for us, we are celebrating our 17th anniversary, why not just top off the celebration and go back to Deck 17?!!! That was the only logical conclusion for me! The answer from Hubby was, “How much?” Followed by, “No way, I just let you book us into Sky Class and we just paid final payment for two cruises in July.” True to my Stubborn Canadian Scorpio nature, I monitored the price constantly. About 60 days prior to sailing, the L1 dropped in price significantly. The difference to upgrade was about $800. Forget RoyalUp! At $400pp, Hubby agreed, and the theme of this cruise is No. 17 all the way! Pre-Cruise thoughts - Really looking forward to sailing Symphony, not just because it’s OA class but because all the entertainment will be new for us. - This is our first time in an L1 (Ocean facing Crown Loft Suite). It will be interesting to compare the width of the cabin to the Star Loft. The configuration should be essentially the same. - Because of major food fatigue from our Star Class sailing, we decided to cancel our UDP this cruise so it will be Coastal Kitchen for most meals. Hubby is determined to do WJ recon… - Once again, in the spirit of a live blog, please do not hesitate to ask any questions. I will do my best to find out whatever I can for you. - When responding to a post with a series of pictures, please do not include the pictures in your reply. It just makes for easier scrolling. - Lastly, I will do my best to bring the cruise to you LIVE through Periscope – you can follow me @LoveToCruise2002.
  5. 3 points
    JLMoran

    Unlimited Dining Package

    Damn that intern!! He even gets the Aussies a break, but can help us poor New Jersey shmoes?? NOOOOOOOO. 🤑🤪
  6. 3 points
    JohnK6404

    Oasis class ships......

    Take a peek... they’re on or coming soon to Celebrity... https://www.celebritycruises.com/edge/accommodations/infinite-verandas/
  7. 3 points
    Brobbins246

    How do you stand the wait??

    Yes! Not long after I posted this, I thought about the foreign language idea. I remember some French from high school but could definitely use a refresher. Even more ambitious, I could learn Dutch for the other side of St. Maarten and the ABC islands!
  8. 3 points
    Monie71

    How do you stand the wait??

    My family will be on our first cruise this Christmas—I annoy my kids by announcing how many more days at dinner each night!! So excited!
  9. 3 points
    dodgestang

    How do you stand the wait??

    I drink
  10. 3 points
    Skid

    How do you stand the wait??

    Live vicariously through all the live blogs. They bring back good memories of your own past cruises even if it's not for the same ship. They also give you ideas for your own planning.
  11. 3 points
    In contrast to these reports, there are regions where there has been an effort to welcome cruise ships. I want to give a shout out to NZ and Australia, which we visited in January 2018. Everywhere we went the local community literally rolled out the red carpet. There were lots of volunteers to direct us or give us maps, shuttle buses to connect with the port, etc. Some cities were very new to cruising, or so we were told. Our son was attending Wollongong for a semester, and we were delighted with the welcome they provided, not to mention the free bus that circulates the city and stops near the beach. Now the Radiance of the Seas is one of the smaller ships, and many of the environmental impact concerns seem to be targeting Oasis-class ships, but I wanted to share a short positive note. It was my main take away from the cruise -- the friendliness of folks in Australia/NZ, and the diversity apparent in their cultures, at least in the cities we visited. Happy cruising everyone...
  12. 3 points
    ChessE4

    How do you stand the wait??

    One of the things I do in advance of a cruise is study a foreign language, like French for St Martin (hoping for an excursion to that side of the island) and Spanish for San Juan or Mexico, etc. It keeps me busy. Another thing I do is study the books on tropical fish in hopes of going snorkeling.... Best of luck on your preparations!
  13. 3 points
    Who’s Going? Finally, no kids! It’s just Hubby and I on this sailing. Flight Our plan is to fly from DTW to FLL the day before. Flights to FLL were almost $200 lower per person compared to flying to MIA. Even with the Uber/Lyft cost factored in, we still save by heading to FLL. Pre-Cruise Stay Those who know me can probably take a guess. If I’m staying in Miami… I love the Intercontinental Miami! There’s no other choice. They have one of the best club lounges around. That is one of the things I love most about this hotel other than the location. Complimentary Happy Hour drinks, appetizers, and breakfast are included. Combine that with spectacular bay views, Bayfront park next door, and Bayside Marketplace within walking distance, this property is one of our favourites. The only thing missing is our beloved La Bamba. Itinerary This 7 night sailing takes us to St. Maarten, San Juan, and Labadee. The plan for this cruise is 100% pure relaxation and the ship is our destination. We plan to visit “That Yoda Guy” in St. Maarten and we may not venture off the ship much aside from that. Without our kids, we don’t need to plan as much. With this being our first time on Symphony, we just want the opportunity to explore the ship itself.
  14. 2 points
    WAAAYTOOO

    Royal Genie Question

    We had Sebastian a few years ago on Harmony. He is wonderful. Very efficient and personable. I think we brought him a Washington Nationals ball cap and jersey. He seemed to enjoy the gift but who knows if he was just being nice. The important thing to remember is that they have very little personal space so whatever you bring, it should be relatively small or compact.
  15. 2 points
    Lovetocruise2002

    How do you stand the wait??

    I’m going to go with what @Skid said. Read blogs, watch scopes, get on these boards. Great way to pass the time!
  16. 2 points
    Lanyard for my new sea pass and my "Black Jack for dummies" paper back in case I feel lucky.....
  17. 2 points
    Pen

    Oasis class ships......

    We just booked a balcony for Oct. 4, 2020 on Oasis out of Bayonne. We selected RC neighborhood balcony. So until they tell us our room...we won't know whether it is above Central Park or above Boardwalk. It was too good of a sale to resist :) (Although my sister is hoping we get Central Park :))
  18. 2 points
    And the answers are. Not Scottish. Nothing underneath. And no we did not look. He stated that while eating. Not the first formal night for us to see men in Kilts either. Probably the 5th or 6th time.
  19. 2 points
    Andrew72681

    Solo and Crown and Anchor points!!

    Just go straight for the solo junior suite. You’d only need to spend 33 weeks to go from zero points to pinnacle that way 😎
  20. 2 points
    From crown and anchor legal page. You're welcome! 😀😀😀😀
  21. 2 points
    Interesting you bring this up too, on Grandeur this Thursday as I said they are opening the main dining to room to Suite guests only, so I asked, Not Pinnacle?? As an afterthought he emailed me back, oh yes, Pinnacle too! LOL I'll be dead long before that happens so I guess I'll just have to keep being a Suite snob! LOL
  22. 2 points
    Thank you! You sound like my kids. They claim they are in "post cruise depression". Where on Earth would they learn a phrase like that from?? 😆 Ha! If it was free! Truth is this...there was a time where we could only dream of suites. It was not doable whatsoever. That's why I never take it for granted. For the time being, suites make sense for us. We cannot cruise multiple times a year like some can, so the logic of, "I can take that extra money and put in into another cruise" doesn't apply as much. My job is not flexible with time off. Also, we (even Hubby) know exactly what we like in cruising. We are the minority in that we love spending time in our cabin and our balcony. So the extra space makes sense for us. Lastly, call it getting old or whatever, but I enjoy the suite perks that keep me away from the crowds. So for us, it's not totally a waste of money because we value that when cruising. Would I take an inside cabin? In the end, any cruise is better than no cruise right?
  23. 2 points
    This is what pops in my head when I read ^^^
  24. 2 points
  25. 2 points
    Sleep with one eye open!
  26. 1 point
    Phillo

    Unlimited Dining Package

    a little more palatable on a 10 night cruise though! 🙂
  27. 1 point
    RWDW1204

    Oasis class ships......

    Our travel agent sent us info on this. It's on 1 of there ships now and coming out on another soon. I'm sure your post has got a lot of people further looking into this. Looks pretty cool in what they've done in making these cabins unique.
  28. 1 point
    My Oricsson backpack - when not in use it's very compact and packs easily away, but is big enough for a port day pack. https://www.amazon.com/ORICSSON-Lightweight-Foldable-Backpack-Waterproof/dp/B07C1D8WLR
  29. 1 point
    spiralqueen

    Working on a cruise ship

    I find this to be an interesting takeaway from @KJ1231’s post. I personally read his post as saying that you should treat EVERYONE like they are human beings and not just a job or an economic status. So treating homeless people like human beings, treating cruise staff like human beings, etc. I’m curious where you got the “to be pitied” from his post.
  30. 1 point
    Welcome aboard, @Pippa_OceanTime! Can't believe you haven't been here before. 🙂
  31. 1 point
    9 hours in...and we're on page three already!! 😄 Have an amazing sailing!!
  32. 1 point
    Pro tip - you can edit your description in your profile. Or you can ask Matt to come up with something. Just ask the stubborn Canadian.
  33. 1 point
    You are me and your husband is more or less my wife. JS last year and she's fine with a regular Balcony room; meanwhile, I'm still trying to get us into a JS again just so I can enjoy CK! 😅 But even I have to face the reality that the balcony room really is likely the best we can do unless something opens up last minute for a really reasonable rate (which doesn't seem to happen on Anthem). Have a fantastic 17th anniversary and cruise! Hope you get lots of enjoyable "just us" time, and plenty of empty loungers to enjoy the pool deck! And please, forego a Periscope or two if you can get some quality time with hubby!
  34. 1 point
    KristiZ

    Midnight buffet?

    I haven't seen a midnight buffet in forever. I think the last ice sculpture I saw was in about 2009...
  35. 1 point
    You keep saying that, yet we all know that you started that trend.
  36. 1 point
    Pippa_OceanTime

    How do you stand the wait??

    Enjoy the ride!!!! The count down does come down and it will be very cool to see 600, 500, 400, 100!!!! You will say to yourself "Wow I remember when it was over 600" hahaha
  37. 1 point
    I’m looking forward to that cruise. It’s been several years since I’ve been to Tortola and Jost Van Dyke. In general negative reviews often come from improper expectations. In some ways negative reviews help to keep expectations in check so people are pleasantly surprised when it isn’t as bad as some people report. Make no mistake, Empress is a small ship. If you understand that when you board you won’t be surprised with her size. She has all the essentials requirements for a great experience. She might be the smallest in the fleet but she has the biggest heart.
  38. 1 point
    SuperStarian

    Oasis class ships......

    Virtual Balcony only — I’m scared of heights and loose items flying away. In my irrational fear-induced mind, that includes my rear end! 😂 I’m so excited about the upcoming Infinite Verandas!
  39. 1 point
    Skid

    Oasis class ships......

    Not even sure why, but that made me laugh out loud (in a good way)!
  40. 1 point
    Thank you! Growing up as the oldest child in the family as trained me well 😄 Thanks for following along! Happy Anniversary to you and Jack!! Funny how all teachers have anniversaries around now. You, @mom2mybugs, us, wonder if @Sweety does as well?
  41. 1 point
    LarryR

    Found an item

    I called ROYAL Caribbean and the lady said if they don't get it to the owner they throw it out. I think that's not the case and someone on their end would keep it. I just don't trust their system. I am going to keep trying to find the owner. It is not an expensive item, but still want to try and reach out.
  42. 1 point
    We have several sets of packing cubes ( all Amazon ) but have starting using a better system: Jumbo slider seal zip lock bags. These are rated 2 1/2 gallon , and measure 14 1/2 by 16 inches. Inexpensive. Easy to bring spares. Pack by category and all visible. To compress, just sit or lean on them and zip up. If bag breaks, replace! Can pack by day, various trip segments, weather, clothing type, dirty clothes. Used on multiple trips with weather varying from 90 degrees plus to below freezing, and all in one under 50 pound suitcase. Very easy to partially unpack when traveling pre- or post-cruise. We also take plastic clothes pins for overnight laundry; these go in a quart zip-lock bag.
  43. 1 point
    Brobbins246

    Door Decorations

    I brought a pair of flip flop magnets on my last cruise to put on our door to help identify it. My in-laws came on the trip too, and didn't bring anything to decorate their door with, so we loaned them one of our magnets, and we each had one flip flop on our doors. They were several rooms down the hall from us, and it was helpful to spot their room more easily too, especially since the magnets matched. If you're traveling with others, you might want to make sure they have something to hang up too so you can find their room just as easily as yours.
  44. 1 point
    Atlantix2000

    Found an item

    Um, the odds of the occupant of a specific room on a specific cruise seeing this post on a website made by and for fans of Royal Caribbean is really really small. Even if you post this on all of Royal Caribbean's actual social media accounts (facebook, twitter, etc), I would say you have almost no chance of finding the owner. If you really wanted to return it, the time and place was on the ship.
  45. 1 point
    princevaliantus

    Latest & Greatest !!

    And now for all you cruise fashionistas and/or aficionados, I give you the latest & greatest trend in footwear !! Happy Sailing !! 😎😎😎😎😎
  46. 1 point
    bcarney

    Diamond drink question.

    If you go to the Diamond Lounge, they can make some 'better' drinks for you. I discovered the joy of a simple Lemon Drop there last month on Rhapsody. Well, more accurately the joy of 3 of them one evening... 🙂
  47. 1 point
    Yes. I''ve never had a waiter tell me "no". Just remember that when they bring food from another venue, somebody has had to go and fetch it....so I make sure I let them know I appreciate the effort - nice tip !
  48. 1 point
  49. 1 point
    Also remember that if you are dining in a specialty restaurant but there is something on the MDR menu that night that you really want (lobster tails or lamb shank comes to mind), you can always ask the specialty restaurant waiter to bring you something from the MDR. We do this often. No need to miss your favorite MDR dish just b/c you are dining in a specialty restaurant that night !
  50. 1 point
    Hmmmmm. I thought Radiance was hitting dry dock in 2019. After further research, I'm a confused Baked Alaska.
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