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FionaMG

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  1. I have twice won prizes in the spa raffle, although they weren't the top ones. One was a foot and ankle massage and the other was some kind of steam room/shower thingy for two (can't remember the name) where they provided us with lotions and skin products to slather ourselves in. My niece also won a prize once and I think it was quite a "high-up" one, a voucher for however much to exchange for her treatment of choice and she did the couples massage. But you definitely have to be there when they draw it. On each occasion I have been there, some prizes have been redrawn because the winner was not present. The tour of the facility itself is painless; maybe 15 minutes, tops. I have never ever won even the teeny-tiniest prize on the free spin.
  2. I believe it's 300 for shorter cruises of up to 5 or 6 nights and 500 for longer ones. On our last two, which were 11 and 9 nights, it was definitely 500. And they don't even ask you for the money beforehand! However, you do get daily reminders about not overshooting your limit on pain of having your account frozen!
  3. This is how they did the calculations when they switched from credits to points. Credit: a host on CC. "Prior to January 2011, there were no cruise points. Each cruise was one credit, with an extra credit for a JS (or better) stateroom and an extra credit for cruises of 12 nights or longer. So you could earn 3 credits per cruise. Credits were converted into cruise points in Jan 2011 using this formula: If credits were 1-4, points = credits * 7 + 1 If credits were 5-7, points = credits * 7 + 3 If credits were > 7, points = credits * 7 + 13" I checked against my own cruise history and the numbers match up.
  4. Bet the Europe prices will be stupidly expensive.
  5. For Lanzarote, I would recommend looking for tours to Cueva de los Verdes (http://www.cactlanzarote.com/en/cact/cueva-de-los-verdes/) and/or Timanfaya National Park (https://turismolanzarote.com/en/visiting-the-timanfaya-national-park/) And for Tenerife, something that lets you visit Teide National Park, where you can (weather permitting) take a cable car ride up to the top of Monte Teide, the highest peak in Spain (https://www.spain-tenerife.com/en/places/teide.html).
  6. And also a 7-night Eastern in January 2021 and the 9-night holiday sailing over New Year.
  7. I suppose a shorter inaugural means less impact on passengers while the inevitable creases are being ironed out. I think some of the 8-night itineraries look quite interesting but I'm not sure I think they're sufficiently interesting to want to pay new ship prices for them.
  8. Yes, that is certainly true, but as I understand it, the person who gave that US price is actually seeing it on the Travel Agent's booking engine. At the current GBP/USD exchange rate, the price shown on Royal's UK website corresponds to $1828. Of course, there are the other factors to take into consideration, such as ABTA and EU (for the time being) protection, but that still seems like a massive difference.
  9. The word over on CC is, and I quote: "They are hosing the Brits. $1318USD for an inside cabin. That’s total for 2 taxes in." I think this is in reference to the 4-night inaugural. The person who posted it is, I believe, a TA. As far as I can see, the sailings are still not available to book on the US site.
  10. It's been reported over on CC that Odyssey has gone on sale in the last few hours. Currently, it appears to be available on the UK site but not yet the US site (I checked both). Inaugural is out of Fort Lauderdale on the 5th of November 2020.
  11. You're welcome. Checking in online is all part of the excitement in the lead-up to your cruise but it's actually not mandatory, so if the technology has a tantrum you can simply take your booking confirmation with you to the port and it will take just a few extra minutes for them to look you up on the manifest and check you in there. Have a fabulous 1st cruise! ☺️
  12. I was able to check in on the app for November 23rd on Adventure. I was getting the same message as you and then one day I decided to try and check in using the link on the cruise planner and I got a pop-up telling me to try checking in on the app. Lo and behold, when I went into the app there was a "check in now" (or something like that) button. It took several days after checking in before I was able to view the set sail passes but I can only see them in the app. If I go into the cruise planner and try to view them it just tells me that the passengers are checked in but the set sail passes are "pending".
  13. Here in Portugal, it's beer and wine at 16, and everything else at 18. My youngest nephew was in the States for a wedding recently, just two weeks before his 21st. However, he was apparently able to drink because of the different date layout, which meant people thought he had turned 21 in January!
  14. There can indeed be big differences in price and, in fact, someone fairly recently on this board did a detailed comparison and ended up booking through a US agent and saving money. I'm afraid I can't remember the poster's name or the title of his thread, but maybe someone else can and can post the link for you. One reason can be that sometimes travel agencies make block bookings of cabins on certain sailings. This means they get them cheaper from the cruise line and can pass on the savings to their customers. Anyway, you do need to make sure you have taken all the details into account. One especially important one is the cost of the taxes. Some sites show you the base price as the lead-in price but then as you get further into the booking you still have to add on taxes. Another thing to bear in mind is that when booking through a US agent you don't get the same protection benefits that you do when you book in the UK, e.g. ABTA protection and the EU rules regarding compensation in the case of cancellations and alterations by the cruise line (although who knows where you'll stand on that until this whole Brexit mess is sorted out). On the other hand, you can benefit from certain US rules such as re-pricing if the cruise fare drops. It pays to shop around too. These boards are sponsored by a US agent - MEI Travel - that posters usually speak very highly of, so it might be worth contacting them too for a quote.
  15. You don't have to upload a photo for check-in and many people who have done so have reported that it had to be redone at the check-in desk in the port anyway, so don't worry about it if the glitchiness prevents you from doing it; it definitely won't be an issue. And, yes, the cruise planner is notoriously glitchy. Although I have checked us in for our upcoming cruise, I can only view the set sail passes on the app. If I go into the cruise planner, it either tells the "information is not available, please try again later" or it says "the passengers on this booking are checked in" but the set sail passes are "pending". 😕
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