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  1. One comment to add: if you are on your own, watch out for the "famous" pick-pockets. Even on a ship's tour, be cautious.
  2. American, United, Delta at this time all list Bridgetown, Barbardos. Several direct flights from Canada
  3. Quite simply, the rewards amount to one cent per dollar spent (1%) unless (as earlier stated) the expenditures are with Royal Caribbean. Then the payout is roughly 2%. The notable payout exception is one of the 50,000 point awards: "3 or 4 night sailing for two (minimum available oceanview stateroom). Value of cruise fare for two may not exceed one thousand dollars ($1,000 USD value)." If all monies were spent on Royal Caribbean and the full $1,000 value was used for the stateroom, payout approaches 4%. In this case, you would be spending $25,000 with Royal Caribbean for a $1,000 reward.
  4. Will miss Grand Ladies, the Empress and the Majesty. Many great memories. Glad we did not miss Cuba when the Empress was "called back" in service!
  5. Agree with most: Holiday-themed cruises are just special. Time for family, special shows, decorations, great memories and family photos. New Year's Eve on a ship rivals anything we can think of!
  6. Requirements for cruising in the near future will be very interesting! Proof of negative Covid test? Proof of vaccine (2 shots)? Proof of no contact with Covid-positive individuals? Proof of insurance? Proof of evacuation costs? Waivers? Others? With all this in mind, ready to start cruising again!!
  7. Interesting and informative! Sounds like a full meal may take a fair amount of time to put together.
  8. As of October 1, Carnival has not cancelled November 1 - December 31 sailings from Miami and Port Canaveral. Almost all other Carnival cruises are cancelled until December 31 or later (MANY much later). Would hope for a Royal Caribbean announcement, so can make plans around future booked cruises - such as flight, hotels, tours.
  9. We have sailed on European river cruises, Victory Cruises on the Great Lakes, and four different American Queen/Empress itineraries. Some considerations include (some already mentioned) shore excursions that are included, beer, wine, and soft drinks included (sometimes all alcohol included). There is often a hotel night included in the price, including transfer to the ship. For some travelers, there may be no air fare expense. Some of the shore excursions include pricey admission tickets. Almost always no casinos. Food, in our experience, has been outstanding, with local cuisine often of
  10. Depending on Cunard's timing, it is also possible that your return trip could connect with one of Cunard's "Around the World" cruises, and purchase a segment from London to Ft. Lauderdale (which usually stops in NYC on the way). Your travel agent could do some quick research or your could check Cunard's web site.
  11. Wow - Just watched the Independence at 8:40. Thanks for the link!!!!
  12. On our farther-out bookings (April-May 2021) we have also noted that cruise planner offerings have been minimized, and in some cases almost eliminated.
  13. Think a large part of the answer depends on prior health conditions and age. Also, ship capacity and plans for social distancing!
  14. Hope those thoughts about 2021 for New Zealand (and Australia) not opening are proven to be a bad estimate. We missed three B2B2B cruises from Sydney which included stops in New Zealand, starting early in April, 2020, and ending in Vancouver in May. Being hopeful, we have booked roughly the same three in 2021. Questions to ask: the Australian Visa (which we could not use) will expire. Will the government extend? Should we buy airfare (or use frequent flyer miles) at the 331 day mark? Any opinions?
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