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Showing content with the highest reputation since 08/06/2020 in Posts

  1. 12 points
    Curt From Canada

    Missing Cruising Friends

    My Soulmate and I just met cruising friends (for the first time since the end of February) IN PERSON. We were distanced and had lunch on our porch. It was glorious. It got us thinking about how many friends we have made through cruising, and how we miss them more than the ships and cruising experience. I am afraid 2020 is a loss, and we have hedged our bets for 2021 with only cruises out of European ports. Still, we hope that we see our cruising friends again, and make even more in the future. To all the people we have met, for all the funny and fascinating conversations ... thank you. To all the people we have yet to meet ... we can't wait. To everyone ... we hope that you Stay Safe, Stay Apart and Stay Connected. Curt from Canada
  2. 12 points
    I started deleting posts that were so far off the mark of the rules, but consider this the last warning about this. This forum is not the place to debate masks, political decisions, or who is to blame for the spread of the virus. No matter which video, link, meme or @twangster quote you can find, you will NEVER CONVINCE SOMEONE ELSE YOU ARE RIGHT AND THEY ARE WRONG. It's frustrating, I get it. I see the same things and shake my head, but ultimately these discussions do nothing but upset everyone, and the same people who felt one way still feel that way after the thread is locked by our mods. Before you post about COVID, think "is this post I'm writing primarily about Royal Caribbean/cruising, or is this venturing into political territory?". I'll leave this thread open if you have questions, but enough is enough. I thought closing threads and deleting posts would have sent the signal that sort of chat is not welcome here, but I'll make it crystal clear.
  3. 9 points

    Not ALL bad news!

    I just wanted to share some good vibrations. While I had two cruises cancelled this year (May, Oct), and I am still waiting on taxes and fees to be refunded, I have made the best of a bad situation. I gladly chose the 125% FCC and the 125% cruise planner credit. I have done all the bookings myself, mostly through email using RCI sales reps I have used in the past, because I’m in the UK and don’t really have a goto travel agent. So the good news is I have been able to go from an 8 night sailing to a 12 night sailing (with nothing but gratuities, taxes, and fees to pay) using the 125% FCC and have amassed $1400 OBC to spend. I have lost out on about $125 OBC credit but considering the 4 extra nights and the itinerary (Canary Islands, Portugal, and Spain) I am super excited! I didn’t even have to pay a deposit, as FCC was reinstated while I was on the phone finalising the booking. So yes, it has not been ideal, I am still looking at a much better cruise than I started out with in my opinion. The new booking is for July 2021, so hopefully 3rd time lucky.
  4. 9 points

    One shot to get it right

    If testing is part of the new reality (and how can it not be ?), passengers will pay for it, one way or another. Even if there is not a direct charge, the cost will be passed on. In fairness, this is true for many other public industries...not just cruises.
  5. 8 points
    Odyssey lifeboats on their way to the shipyard!
  6. 8 points

    One shot to get it right

    It sounds like they are not going to rush back in because they want to avoid creating a mess off the bat. So I think they intent to get it mostly right the first time. There are going to have to be some tweaks and adjustments, but I think their intention is to be on the right track, rather than start cruising with one plan and have to completely re-think everything.
  7. 8 points

    Id like to give a gift cert 250

    Sorry, I have to edit the info and close thread. There is way too high a chance this is not on the up and up (no offense to the OP, just no way to know).
  8. 7 points
    This sunset courtesy of cruising in general.
  9. 7 points
    I think this is the one that will actually mean something. Of course, Royal will never announce that they are recruiting/manning ships, but we will know...there are plenty of people out in the etherworld that have connections and will hear when Royal starts to hire. That is when we will know things are moving. Presently, they are still trying to get staff OFF the ship and back home so it doesn't seem like things are turning the corner yet. ...but I am sure we will hear about it once Royal, or any of the other lines, start hiring.
  10. 6 points

    One shot to get it right

    They'll have to make adjustments as they go. They will have a plan A, B, C, D (and so on) in place. I do believe they will have thought of most scenarios before they sail again but there's no way it's a one size fits all kind of thing.
  11. 6 points
    I’ll call my friend who was a former hotel director for Royal and pick his brain. He’s currently HD for a river cruise line here in the states but stays in contact with his RC peeps. Of course he felt we’d be good by October but we all know now that isn’t happening. Your very first signs will also be when we can gather in larger groups again. That has to happen on land before it can happen at sea.
  12. 6 points

    Good news?

    I'd say it's not bad news
  13. 6 points

    Untouchables on MDR menu

    And oh so much better for you than the 8 tablespoons of butter on the escargots. 😁😂
  14. 6 points

    Terrible phone representative service

    I can attest to the call back sentiment. I called and was horrified by the representative, I was not comfortable with him didling with my reservation. His answer to my question was not sitting well. I was kind and ended the call, then called right back! The next representative was amazing, my inquiry was answered in seconds....always be kind, but hang up and try again. It is amazing how different the reps can be, just night and day! I did this because the amazing friends on this blog educated me, so appreciative.!!!!!!
  15. 5 points

    One shot to get it right

    Agreed, but this sort of notion has me thinking about what is an "appropriate" level of cases? Zero? 1% per ship? 5%? After Royal Caribbean formed the Healthy Sain Panel, there was an interesting quote from a video that resonates more with me now. I could be wrong, but those quotes sound like they are prepared for cases to be on ships. Mitigated and controlled a heck of a lot better than Diamond Princess ever was, but I think the reality there could be cases onboard and managed without shutting down the industry may be the norm to expect.
  16. 5 points

    Corny Jokes

  17. 5 points
    Ill take a test to get on board...sure..... https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/cruises/2020/08/10/royal-caribbean-cruises-likely-have-covid-19-testing-upon-return/3302471001/ But what happens when people get false negatives??????
  18. 5 points

    Who is the CEO?

  19. 5 points

    Good news?

  20. 5 points

    Covid 19 Memes

    It took me a minute to get this one.🤣🤣
  21. 5 points

    Disembarkation TImes?

    This is what we almost always do. When we first started cruising 20 years ago, like so many people, we waaaay overpacked which necessitated using the luggage service (our hands had to be free for the duty free alcohol 😉 )....now, we pretty much have our packing down to a science and even for a 7 night cruise my husband and I have 1 suitcase and 1 backpack so we can walk off whenever we want. Much easier (in my opinion).
  22. 5 points
    Id keep and eye on Chris Wong's channel on You Tube. I imagine the employees wont be allowed to announce anything, though....but staffing the ships for sure, will be a good sign. First and foremost, the CDC has to lift the no sail order. At this point, I sincerely doubt my March sailing on Harmony will go.....or at least it wont be what it is now. Less days, different ports, and such.
  23. 5 points
    The Healthy Sail Panel will have some initial thoughts near the end of August. I'd suggest waiting to see what of those are made public rather than wild and unsubstantiated speculation by those like me who have no idea.
  24. 5 points
    Several years ago our Oasis Cruise was partially chartered by LulaRoe. They make obnoxious leggings for women but men were wearing them too. It’s a MLM scheme and those people kept trying to sell to passengers. They were quite annoying. Men in leggings 😳
  25. 5 points

    Untouchables on MDR menu

    I think my 10+ whiskey on the rocks per day is still only about half the caloric intake of the French onion, thank you very much
  26. 5 points

    Good news?

    Ironic that they lifted the International Travel advisory but Americans are banned from almost everywhere on this planet.
  27. 5 points

    Good news?

    I will take this as a positive! Certainly a step in the right direction. Many more steps to go ... but we need to start somewhere. 😁
  28. 5 points

    FCC and rebooking

    What if you re-book your new cruise (the one that you are trying to use your FCC on) with a travel agent? Have them deal with Royal. @Matt only posts facts on the blog so this should be able to be done. This is one of the reasons I use a TA. I can do everything, but like you said, I don’t particularly want to be tied to the phone and my free time is more valuable than that.
  29. 4 points
    I posted this EXACT post, word for word, around a month ago: Even the subject line is the same. 😔
  30. 4 points

    Allure 2 bedroom grand suite 12638

    Cruisedeckplans.com is my go to site for all things photos/deck plans etc. It's so helpful!
  31. 4 points
    Hoorah for progress! It's the little things in life that keep me going right now!
  32. 4 points
  33. 4 points

    Covid 19 Memes

  34. 4 points
    A great discussion topic. For me I've tried to gauge how probable the cruise is. My nearest cruise has a low probability of occurrence, so I left it alone. My spring '21 I have a "little" more hope so purchased some discounted specialty dining.
  35. 4 points
    Getting late. Almost time for... ...a hot tub before bed. There's nothing like a relaxing sea day before a port call the next day.
  36. 4 points

    Who is the CEO?

    Michael Bayley is CEO of Royal Caribbean International (a single cruise line). Richard Fain is the Chairman (or maybe CEO or both, doesn't really matter) of the parent company Royal Caribbean Group (which owns several cruise lines).
  37. 4 points
    Congratulations in advance ! What a great milestone !
  38. 4 points
    I dropped by the Royal Transporter with bags packed but it seems my timing was off. Radiance was at Hubbard Glacier while I was drinking Painkillers, I mean medicating against the virus on Jost Van Dyke. I could beam over to Radiance where she was or pick another ship. I love the Caribbean but was really looking forward to cooler weather. The crew suggested New England. That's actually a pretty decent idea. Cruising with the Royal Transporter team opens up a whole new aspect of cruising. "Surprise me" I said. "Something on a New England cruise... but keep it on a Royal Caribbean ship" (I need my points to keep climbing the Crown and Anchor ladder). I'm not sure where I'm heading but I'll find out when I get there.
  39. 4 points
    Cruise relaxation mode engaged. I heard in a press briefing a Painkiller might prevent Coronavirus. I looked at my watch and it was 5 o'clock. Unsure of the recommended dose, I had several.
  40. 4 points
    LOL. I call this "dialing for yes." If I get an obviously clueless CSR or next-level-up, I'll thank them for their time and call back and roll the dice again. FWIW: I've found the Casino Royale reps to be pretty on top of their game. Call usually answered in under 2 minutes and I usually get a very competent person on the other end of the line. I don't know if my CR status confers any extra consideration, but my default is to always call the Casino Royale # first since they've always done a good job at handling requests.
  41. 4 points

    Checking in “snag”

    Go ahead... Laugh... One of these extensions will be the last and there will be a first new sailing. Nobody knows when that is...
  42. 4 points
    Unfortunately, no. I do suggest that if you are going to Life & Shift, that you manually cancel the Cruise Planner items yourself for the original cruise. It will make getting the Cruise Planner refunds much easier as there was an accounting issue where the refunds were being applied as payment to the new cruise in some cases.
  43. 4 points

    Travel Agent vs. Next Cruise?

    If you booked your existing cruise with a TA and visit NextCruise while onboard, any NextCruise booking will AUTOMATICALLY be assigned to the same TA. If you didn't book your existing cruise with a TA and booked it direct with Royal, then any booking made at NextCruise will remain unassigned to any TA. You can instruct NextCruise NOT to automatically allocate a booking to your existing TA but unless you explicitly do so, any new booking will be assigned to your TA.
  44. 4 points
    Later as we approached Miami under the cover of darkness it was almost time to debark. I looked down to see the Captain on the bridge wing. Our eyes met and I gave him the nod. He understood. Warp drive engaged, we are heading back out to sea. When it's a made up cruise you can do things like this. I think I'll stay on Empress one more day, there's an island calling my name.
  45. 4 points
    The forward deck area is a great place to sail into the sunset but after dark it's also a great place to stargaze. On this occasion that included Milky Way gazing. I caught some lightning on the horizon from a distant storm in this next photo. Forget sailing into the sunset. Tonight we sail away into the Milky Way.
  46. 4 points
    I appreciate all the info an experience from you all. I was leaning Sky class, and based on the discussion will likely go for it now. And the comes the debate between a GS (aaugh, deck 12, no 8, no 6) and the splurge for the loft. Maybe I'll ease into it and save the loft for a future milestone.
  47. 4 points
    How you proceed will depend upon what you want to do. If you want to Lift & Shift your cruise forward to the same time, next year, you can get your Travel Agent or Royal Caribbean to help you with determining your options for that. This option price protects your cruise and extends it 1 year into the future (+ or - 4 weeks on either side of the original sail date). Royal is being very accommodating with this option, giving you plenty of options for changing ships but keeping your current price. It has proven to be very popular for people who can wait a year to sail. If you want to book another cruise, but not have it price protected through L&S, you can either get a Future Cruise Credit (125% of the cruise fare value) or get a 100% cash refund, which would go back to your original form of payment. If money is a concern for you, then you would need to wait until you either get the FCC or get your money back to book the replacement cruise. While it has been taking VERY long to get your money refunded, recently the process time has improved. If it were me, and I knew which replacement cruise I wanted to book, I would go ahead and book it now and apply the FCC or refund later. With this latest round of cancellations, there will be a rush to rebook and perhaps price increases as a result. I would want to get in there ahead of the rush...but that's just me. Whatever you decide to do, you must either notify your Travel Agent or Royal and let them know what you want to do. Good luck !!
  48. 4 points
    A new Twangster blog!! A new Twangster blog!!! I don't care if it's completely fake and all the pictures have been seen before, IT'S A FREAKING NEW TWANGSTER BLOG!!!!!
  49. 4 points

    Untouchables on MDR menu

    @Matt 's "perfect" MDR menu:
  50. 3 points
    I think this. And also, the US needs to start on a downward trend on new cases/day, and keep going down. I simply don't see the CDC even considering letting cruising start from US ports before then.
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