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  1. I take this a step further. I EAT with the kids at the Windjammer at 6pm then drop them off at AO at 7pm and then enjoy dinner in MDR at 8pm.
  2. Have not been there yet but wife and I are doing B2B cruises out of Sydney to both NZ and SP in March/April of 2020. We are flying in 4 days earlier and going to the Blue Mountains on our one paid excursion from the hotel. The rest of touring in Sydney will be by ferry and walking. I have done quite a bit of research and planning so if you have any questions, ask away.
  3. Reading the NZ government site it states that cruise ship passengers do not need a NZ Visa unless they are staying overnight off the ship. Also states that the US is an exempt country for visa. If cruise originates in Australia you will still need their ETA visa. But as with all things, read the online info for yourself and check with Royal Caribbean for all required documents.
  4. if you have someone back home not cruising with you then have them check you in at the 24 hr mark before your flight. I do this a lot for my daughter. Usually she ends up with a late A group or early B. Just need to make sure they do it at the 24 hour mark. Do not wait to check in at the airport. You will literally be the last to board. Another option, befriend someone on the cruise that has the internet package and check in via your new found friend. Just remember to buy them a drink. I actually did this for someone on a cruise and was happy to help. Just need to ask.
  5. My feelings: Order as much as you want, try new things, multiples of any item you really like, just try to keep waste to a minimum.
  6. Yes, For the main dining room on non-formal nights, casual is becoming more and more common. Shorts and flip-flops are out but I have even seen that as well. Formal nights and special restaurants are more formal dress up but even that has been sliding downhill in my opinion.
  7. Wife and I are doing a B2B out of Sydney to NZ and SP totaling 4 nights pre-cruise and 24 at sea in March of 2020. Same feelings here. Also curious to see how we handle that long a time away from home, especially the grandkids who are all local. Packing logistics , food redundancy, repeating entertainment as we are on Radiance. I am sure I can "tough it out" but not so sure how the wife will handle it. If we enjoy this month away, next is B2B or B3B European. If not it's back to 7-10 day Caribbean or solo cruising. We shall see!!!
  8. Also if you add card at check in on board, make sure all in your party that you want included are listed. Happened to me on Oasis and I had added CC at check-in but was called to desk the last night as my wife had an outstanding balance. She had not been included on card at check in even though we were in same cabin. No big issue but lost an hour in long line.
  9. I usually choose based on the itinerary and the company I am keeping. European/multistep then I choose later MDR. Caribbean trip/beach stops, with younger family then early. A few things to think about: When choosing later dinning I will often check out WJ earlier and see what's of interest and likely pick out a few(?) things to nibble on. If I choose early then often I visit WJ later for a snack or coffee and desert. I am Diamond level so now I usually do a later dining so I can enjoy the lounge or Piano Bar, as usually the lounge is clearing out by 6:00 for others going to early seating dinner. Both options have plus's and minus's.
  10. This August will be 21 years. My wife was my donor. Our miracle.
  11. Great question. I am a transplant recipient and take 12 different meds. I have a 2 week pill holder that I take preloaded with my meds. I always carry a printed list from my medical records of all my meds just in case I am questioned. I do carry my 2 main rejection meds in the original packs just in case. Those are my main meds that I can't do without. A couple other thoughts, I pack an emergency 2 day kit in a separate area just in case I am separated from my other meds. It gives me a window to get an express delivery just in case. Also I am going on a B2B cruise to SP and NZ, 24 nights total. I plan on having my doctor write a letter on official letterhead with a list of my needed meds and reason for them. hope this helps.
  12. I agree with pick a budget and stick to it. Our "budget" has been super low, inside cabin, without spending an extra dime other than gratuities which we prepaid all the way to a suite for a special occasion but still with limits. Personally I do not see the need for specialty restaurants as the included food is just fine. Also prepay any thing you can before the cruise. Watch for the discounted planner deals. Last thing, I never skip when it comes to tipping the staff. They work way too hard to make me a happy cruiser.
  13. On Oasis there was a very nice selection of breakfast items. More than enough to choose from especially to take back to your room. I asked a staff person for a tray and they did accommodate me although I have seen others post say trays are not available. Doesn't hurt to ask for one, can only say "no". I have never been refused.
  14. Did a cruise out of Barcelona a few years back. There wasn't a hotel that we found that was super convenient to the cruise port so we stayed by the Basilica in an apartment about a block away, Marina Apartments on Marina. It came with a full kitchen, living area and king bed. We used the Hop on Hop off bus, a three day pass I think, to move around the city. Besides the Sagrada Familia we enjoyed the Casa Balto, Park Gruell, and Magic Fountain area. Are only day tour was to Montserrat which was very informative and beautiful. Las Ramblas was cool to walk but I would not eat there, lots of better restaurants around. Do hit a few neighborhood tapas bars, soo much fun. Make sure you purchase tickets ahead of time. You will save so much wait time. We took taxi from airport to apartment for convenience. Subway system was easy to use as well. Check out TripAdvisor and you tube for info and videos. English was spoken by most staff. After cruise we took RC transfer to airport with no issues. Always felt safe and followed the same common sense we do back in the US.
  15. Agree with that it is too short a window if the flight is before 11:00. Even with early disembarkation, good luck.
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