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About Notlad

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  1. Life is all about risk management. If I were in my 20's or 30's and healthy I would probably take advantage of the current and coming cruise bargains. However I am 61 and a diabetic. My wife is 68 years old. The mortality rate for someone my age with diabetes who get the coronus virus is 7.2% vs the overall rate of 3.4%. With a cruise ship being a giant petri dish I believe you have a much greater chance of catching the virus due to the close quarters should a fellow passenger have it. With that in mind my risk management assessment says my wife and myself need to not cruise until this pandemic subsides. Thankfully our next cruise isn't until the beginning of December so hopefully things will be better then. However our 40th wedding anniversary trip to England in August is worrisome at this point. I fully support the Federal government warning people about the increased danger of catching the coronovirus on cruise ships. Hopefully in coordination with the CDC the cruise lines can put some good screening measures in place that at the least includes temperature checks before boarding and ideally as test kits become available testing of passengers (not sure if that is feasible unless the test is an instant one). I know at least one cruise line is screening passengers for fever. That is a limited measure though because it appears coronovirus has a 2 to 5 day period after infection before fever and other symptoms.
  2. For my September Greek Island cruise on Jewel it has been $19.99 per day since it showed up on my cruise planner.
  3. Because of the restrictions banning passenger brought extension cords and power strips I just let them know I have a CPAP machine and require an extension cord and they provide it.
  4. Oh it was more than $100 on the HAL cruise! LOL!! Just in the past it has only been about a $100 on my previous cruises including RCCL ones.
  5. We took a 4 year break from cruising then tried HAL's Nieuw Amsterdam the end of November last year. I usually only gamble a hundred bucks on cruises, including my past RCCL ones, but this time I gambled a bit more although at the end of the week I only lost $137. I was shocked two weeks after returning home to get an email with "exclusive casino offers' that included free inside cabins on a lot of sailing and inexpensive upgrades to other catagory staterooms and suites. April 7th we are going on our "free" cruise (we still had to pay port fees , taxes and airfare to Florida but still a $1200+ value free). We could have upgraded to a balcony for $598 total and a suite that would have cost me $4300+ to book otherwise for just $1598. Would have definitely done the suite if we didn't have a 2 1/2 week trip to Italy and Greece in Septyember that includes a 9 night Greek Island cruise on Jewel of the Seas. While we are on Jewel in September I will gamble more than the hundred bucks or so I have in the past on RCCL and will be curious to see if I start getting casino offers like HAL sent me.
  6. It's fun reading everybody's status and strategy for moving up. Also I appreciate the good advice on trying to go ahead and book the one additional cruise tht will be me to the 80 in case they change the program and I need to ask them to grandfather me in. My only issue is that we took our first HAL cruise after Thanksgiving last year and HAL thinks I am a big enough gambler that they gave me a free cruise next month on their new ship Nieuw Amsterdam. I would like to book an Alaska cruise for 2021 but don't want to jump the gun just in case HAL decides to keep on giving me free cruises. Who knows though if this September I impress RCCL enough in the Casino maybe I will get some good casino offers from them!
  7. I did the all access tour on either Mariner or Independence, can't remember which right now, and it was very much worth it for me. I am fascinated by cruise ship operations and so to see I95, the food storage area, giant freezer and refrigerator rooms, engine control room and last but not least the brdige was fascinating. I wish I had done it years before. We spent probably 15-30 minutes on the bridge and got to ask the Captain any questions we wanted to. By the way the only two places we had serious security was the engine control room and the bridge. If anybody would have had intentions of doing something nefarious they would not have gotten very far!
  8. I thought I was sitting at 30 points Crown & Anchor points but when I looked discovered I was actually at 36. Our next Cruise in September will be our first as Platinum. Finally out of the basement! After this September 2019 9 night Greek Island cruise on Jewel we will be at 45 points. I have booked a 15 night Caribbean / Transatlantic crossing junior suite on Independence of the Seas for May 2020 which with the doube points will be 30 added to my 45 for a total of 75. That means by the end of May 2020 I will be only 5 points away from Diamond status! After a four year break from cruising starting last November with a cruise on HAL I am back in the game!
  9. Thanks for the info. After our first HAL cruise a couple of months ago my quality time in the casino earned us a free cruise we are taking April 7th so I am curious to see how RCCL operates their casino guest program since our next two cruises will be on RCCL. We have cruised RCCL several times before but really didn't gamble on the ships then.
  10. A couple of months ago we had an interior cabin in almost the same exact spot on Holland America's Nieuw Amsterdam and really enjoyed it. I usually book midship so was concerned about being right at the front but the only issue that came up was on the last night crusing back to Ft. Laudersale. Middle of the night some weird loud noises and vibration we didn'ty experience at all the other six nights. We were actually above the pool deck and only one deck and a few steps from the private cabana we had rented for the week. It was heavenly! This will be our first junior suite ever (we usually book inside cabins and have had a few balcony ones as well). We will be celebrating our 40th wedding anniversary so splurging.
  11. If you plan to gamble some on a RCCL cruise and want to get some "Casino Royale" benefits from it does that happen automatically as long as you have your seapass card in the machines tracking what you spend or do you sign up for Casino Royale?
  12. Wow! I hate to hear you had such a bad experioence. I do a lot of research and check reviews, etc for things like limo companies but I read just the other day that for $60 someone can buy a few hundred positive reviews for their site / business. I had a similar situation to yours a few years ago in Honolulu. Small limo company that I booked as a surprise for my wife to take us from the airport to our hotel. He never showed up and when I called the number just got a recording. Luckily for me at the limo waiting area there was another limo driver with the opposite problem. His booked fare never showed up. After an hour of so and a bit of chatting he told me he couldn't book me directly as that violated taxi / limosine rules for the airport but if I called his office and booked him he could take me right then so I did. I left a voie mail with the limo service I had booked that I expected no charges to my credit card and to their credit they didn't. However they also never emailed or called with an apology. When I am in Miami or Fort Lauderdale for a cruise now I use Lyft or Uber.
  13. Do you guys tend to get motion sickness from other things? Like trips in cars, amusement park rides, etc? If not I wouldn't worry about it. Unless you encounter heavy seas there is very little motion on these large modern ships. During a t/a if they encounter rough seas they will deploy the stabilizers which will help a lot as well. Sounds like you have a good plan with the ginger and seabands. I would take some Dramaine II (the version that doesn't make you drowsy) just in case.
  14. A few years ago when we did a T/A to Rome one of the members of our Roll Call group on the CC forum arranged transportation and opened it to as many people as wanted to sign up. When all was said and done he had a full size tour bus full of people signed up! The only glitch was we had to wait a bit for the bus but once it got there it was great and took folks to their hotel ,or if their street was too narrow like ours was, close to it. I don't remember the particulars but I do remember it was much less expensive than any other alternative. Said all that to say you ought to check out your ship and date's CC roll call and see if some enterprising person hasn't done the same thing or at least maybe folks have posted solutions they have found. We have a Greek Island cruise in september leaving and returning to Rome and on our roll call a guy arranged private transportation for 8 and let the first six people who signed up join in. My wife and I did so we have transportation from the port to the airport for 23 euro's per person including tip. Much less than a private car or taxi for two.
  15. I would love to go on one of those but WOW that pricing is not budget friendly, I know there are a lot of expenses involved in them booking the guests, venues on board, etc and they are in it to make some money as well so it may be fair pricing but still high for a cruise / Star Trek convention. My Star Trek fan dreams came true in 2016 when I won two of 500 tickets to a private Star Trek fan event held at Paramount Studios in Hollywood. It was to promote Star Trek Beyond and Star Trek's 50th anniversary. It was in May 2016 and the stars of the film as well as producer JJ Abrams and director Justin Lin were all there as well as an entire soundstage of costumes and props from the film. We were given a swag bag that included limited edition numbered posters, custom t shirts, champagne, etc, etc. Best of all we were given "golden tickets" inviting us to the world premiere of Star Trek Beyond two months later in San Diego. The world's first outdoor IMAX premeire. So of course I had to fly back to California again from Nashville for that! LOL!!
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