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About MarvinS

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  1. Living in Alaska, driving to a cruise port (in the lower 48) is completely out of the question. Not only would I have to drive through Canada to get there, it takes me about 5 days just to drive to Seattle (ignoring Covid), not to mention another cross country trip to an East Coast cruise port! And then I need to get home, so double this! Flying is our only option, and Alaska still has mandatory quarantine requirements for many situations. Leaving Alaska initially isn't a big deal, but on the return, I have to have a negative test result once I'm back in state AND another negative test
  2. I was booked for a Panama Canal cruise on the HAL Rotterdam in January 2022. Just got an email yesterday informing me that HAL just sold 4 ships, and that my Panama Canal cruise was being cancelled. The four ships were the Amsterdam, Maasdam, Rotterdam, and the Veendam. From @SpeedNoodles post, it's interesting that Fred. Olsen purchased two of them, anyway. Wonder where the other two will go??? Now to figure out another way to do my "bucket list" cruise of the Panama Canal... Sure wish Royal Caribbean had ships transiting the canal on a more regular basis!
  3. Living in Alaska for about 38 years, I've been to Seward many times. I've done this Harding Icefield Hike with my family, and it was strenuous, but excellent! Did it on a Saturday in early August. There was still a fair amount of snow on the ground at the top, but the views are spectacular. Hiking boots are very strongly recommended. Took us about 7 hours round trip. The gain in elevation is about 3500' once you get to the top. You can check out this link: https://www.nps.gov/kefj/planyourvisit/harding_icefield_trail.htm There is also a MUCH less strenuous hike that is only a cou
  4. Living in Alaska, I'm staying very on top of this issue and all the news being released. As the above article states, most restrictions in Alaska are being relaxed (not completely, though) this Friday, May 22nd (it's considered our "phase 3"). The 14-day travel quarantine for anyone traveling into Alaska is NOT part of this phase, and isn't schedule for release until June 2nd (that is a part of "phase 4"). The governor is getting LOTS of pressure from the travel & tourism industries, as it has just decimated many businesses (and has already forced several to completely go out of bu
  5. Seabourn just cancelled the summer 2020 season in Alaska...and elsewhere, too. https://www.seabourn.com/en_US/news/pause-global-cruise-operations.html In particular (clipped from their announcement): Seabourn Odyssey: paused through the Europe season, with its operations pause effective through November 20. Seabourn Sojourn: paused through Alaska/British Columbia season, with its operations pause effective through October 13. Seabourn Quest: paused through the Canada/New England season, with its operations pause effective through November 6. Seabourn Encore: p
  6. Princess Cruises and Holland America just officially announced they are cancelling Alaska (and several others) for the 2020 summer season... https://www.princess.com/news/news_releases/2020/05/princess-cruises-extends-pause-of-global-ship-operations-for-remaining-2020-summer-season.html https://www.hollandamerica.com/en_US/news/coronavirus-travel-advisory.html I wouldn't be surprised to see the others do similarly...
  7. This link is the best resource for staying on top of the State of Alaska's COVID-19 mandates and statistical information. It is updated daily. https://covid19.alaska.gov/
  8. Living in Alaska, I see and stay on top of the news daily... Officially, this mandate was recently revised/extended by the governor (about 10 days ago) to be "until further notice". I have seen a proposed plan of reduction of restrictions (5 phase plan) that the governor proposed, and the release of the 14-day quarantine for ANYONE incoming to Alaska (fly / drive / cruise) is supposed to be in phase 4. We are currently in the middle of phase 1, with the governor expecting each phase to be take about 2 weeks each, assuming the new cases of COVID-19 don't start to spike up. This puts the
  9. I've also been caught literally in the middle of this. I had a B2B on Freedom, with the first leg leaving 6/7 (which has been officially cancelled by RC), and the second leg would had left on 6/14 (which HASN'T yet been cancelled). I've already rebooked (same B2B ship & itinerary) for middle of October (10/11 & 10/18). Either way, if RC cancels more sailings in June or not, I will not be going on the 6/14 sailing. I am just hoping RC cancels so I can get the 125% FCC. Otherwise, I will just cancel at 100% FCC under the cruise-with-confidence option.
  10. Regarding the North Slope workers, the 14-day travel quarantine STILL applies to them, even thought they are considered "Critical Infrastructure". The oil producers have been either using in-state personnel, or just extending the work rotation schedules of those employees already working up there (in other words, NOT rotating them out). They did have one confirmed case of COVID-19 on the North Slope, and quickly isolated them from everyone. The producers have also cut production down quite a bit over the last few weeks, and are certainly scaling back on ALL activity. I'm sure this has sign
  11. As I currently reside in Alaska, I'm seeing first hand the impact this current 14-day travel quarantine has had on this state. Obviously, cruising has been completely shut down until at least July, and it has had devastating effects on the travel and tourism industries up here. All restaurant dine-in service has been completely stopped, with local take-out the only option allowed. National and state parks have closed, along with stopping all passenger train service. The governor locked down travel in the state in the latter half of March. This even includes travel BETWEEN communities
  12. I've had a very successful time with the purchase of a single photo package. I've traveled on Oasis, Harmony, and Freedom with a large family group (11-14) each time. My wife and I would have one cabin, and I would put my three minor kids in a couple of other cabins. As soon as I boarded, I would go to the photo studio, and have them link the rooms of my minor kids to my room to share my photo package. The personnel at the photo studio were always very accommodating, and gladly linked the rooms together. I instructed EVERYBODY in our group that anytime their pictures were taken to giv
  13. I sure don't recall being "weighed" for this excursion. Granted, I did this with my own gear, but there is no reason to be weighed for the use of snorkel gear! I would book it and not worry about it!
  14. We went to Roatan while on Harmony last May, and we did the RC Tabyana beach excursion. I thought the snorkeling there was absolutely fantastic. We brought our own gear, but you can easily rent it, too. If I recall, there was also another RC Tabyana beach excursion that included snorkeling equipment for a few dollars more. Check your cruise planner. There is a huge reef just yards off of the shore. The beach is very shallow for quite a ways out in the water, and even for those that don't snorkel, you can wade out into the water waist deep and still see all sorts of colorful fish swim
  15. While on Harmony last May, we visited CocoCay, and were able to use the wow bands for entry into the waterpark. We had our seapass cards with us too, but was indeed able to use the wow bands to come and go from the waterpark with no problems.
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