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About Phillo

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Melbourne, Australia
  • Interests
    Holidays, community radio, podcasting, electronics/gadgets.
  1. ha! Doesnt surprise me. Not that this applies to me.... but i have been told that if the french know you can speak the language (even if its basic) they expect you to speak it and will let you suffer. Still... i love France. 🙂 Cant wait to go back at some point.
  2. If you are in the tourist areas (predominantly Paris) then they generally all speak English. They just dont want to. If you follow the advice given earlier and show respect by attempting their language and saying "Bonjour... parlez vous anglais?" (good morning... do you speak english) then you are usually fine. I hate to say this (considering most people on this forum are from the US) but about 10 years ago I was on a round the world holiday and had been in NYC before heading to Paris. As a result, my wife and I were wearing NY caps and _some_ locals were quite rude. They said "are you American...?" and I said " No... Australian". They just smiled and spoke to me in perfect english from that point on. I never wore those hats again in France! 🙂 Back to the original question though..... You will be fine in the main parts of italy. only 2 years ago we drove from Florence to Sicily and there was only 2 small towns in the whole trip where language was a concern.
  3. As a first time cruiser.... I would just say - Don't get a preconceived idea in your head about what you are going to do BEFORE the cruise. Go through the cruise compass and try a heap of the activities available at least once. It gives you an idea of what you do and dont like! As for flights.... what other airports are nearby? Miami is relatively close isnt it? Why not fly to there if it gives you more choice on flights and costs? note: I am not in the US, so i havent been to florida _yet_ so i have no idea about the airport/transfer nonsense that goes on. 🙂
  4. I was disappointed with the removal of Johnny Rockets too. Oh well... you cant win them all. For those interested, there is a facebook page "Singapore Cruise Society" where they are getting pics from people on the ship whilst the work is ongoing. Quite cool seeing it all!
  5. Your points are totally valid. The voyager amplification is a bit underwhelming compared to the others... but I am hoping that what they do do is good. We were on a P&O ship earlier this year (a smaller one) and it really only had 2 additional dining options - chef's table and the grill. So this will certainly be a step up compared to that. That said... if they do have a ship permanently in AU waters, you would hope that it would have more of the options available similar to the US market. The one thing we arent privvy to is what the onboard spend is like in each individual country. Do AU cruisers spend equivalent amounts to US cruisers? Its clear that Asian cruisers dont and the offering is adjusted.
  6. They need to also upgrade Station Pier in Melbourne. probably one of the best ports for NZ cruises too. I also find the White Bay terminal in Sydney strange. a great port.... but limited to certain ships based on what can fit under the harbour bridge.
  7. The private island concept in this area is interesting. I wonder which country will provide the land? It certainly wouldnt be Australia. The cost of doing business on Australian territories would make it prohibitive. The Bahama's works well for florida because you can do 3 and 4 day itineraries easily. Where here... you would need to do them all from Brisbane to come close to that timeframe. Additionally, I wonder if it came to be, would it be a purely Royal Caribbean product or would it be shared with Celebrity to get the economies of scale for the destination.
  8. I agree with you there. They actually did (almost) the reverse of that earlier this year. I would have done it if I didnt have to actually work for a living! 😉 and yes... you are right. 45days over 3 itineraries. SYD>SING>DUBAI>BARCA
  9. I beat you by a few weeks. I am on the repositioning cruise between Singapore and Sydney! 🙂
  10. Yep.. Singapore. AND Todays the day!!! it goes into dry dock this afternoon Singapore time.
  11. You would be surprised. I was looking at the Celebrity (au) website and they have a transpacific cruise in April 2021 that is just about sold out. (suites only left). Admittedly it _only_ holds 2900+ pax. Side note though.... if they were going to have a ship out here year round, wouldnt it spend the winter months out of the new (yet to be completed) Brisbane terminal? It can supposedly support mega ships (ie: Oasis class). The only thing is.... where would it go if they dont do tenders? https://www.portbris.com.au/cruise/
  12. November 16th on Voyager out of Singapore! (First Royal Caribbean cruise too!)
  13. Who needs all that stuff? You just need Australian style Bunnings Sausage Sizzle. Snags, Onion and white bread. 🤣 Note: Only the Australians on this forum will have any idea what I am talking about. ha!
  14. Another service to have a look at if you fly a lot (as there is a subscription fee for using it long term) is www.faredrop.com (I am not affiliated, nor have I used the site). For future flights, you can set where you want to go and when and they will send you an alert when discounted pricing becomes available.
  15. While I would just stay in Rome, out of the two choices presented: Florence. If you want to go somewhere in florence like the Accademia, look at grabbing a tour from one of the vendors that are around the area. You will not have to line up to get in and can see it quicker. Also... for a day trip, I always do the Hop-on-Hop-off buses. The one in florence will take you around past all the key sites. As much as I love Venice, doing it on a day trip is not a great idea. I know its sacrilege saying this on this type of forum, but the cruise ships cause a lot of issues in Venice during daylight hours. The amount of people that flood the city is incredible and makes it difficult to walk around. We stayed for 3 nights there and Venice at night was just beautiful once the massive groups of tourists left.
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