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Everything posted by bobroo

  1. Couple things; I am looking forward to hearing the stories of our Anthem bound friends and how they have addressed the weather situation on the east coast and the all-of-a-sudden cruise delay. I am confidant these veterans will give us a master class on what should be done when the poop hits the fan and your cruise doesn't happen as expected. With yesterdays shut down of the Global Entry program at JFK airport "because the state of New York gives drivers licenses to those in violation of immigration status" and of all the cruise ships docking in the U.S. today, a Friday....there is only one being singled out, there is only one with Chinese travelers, and that one just so happens to be docking across the river from NYC. This is just a certain someone venting their anger. Carry on.
  2. FYI the difference between a hotel and a motel: Hotel= room doors exit to interior of building Motel=room doors exit to exterior of building
  3. Back in the day before drink packages you'd be billed at the end of the cruise and you'd receive your account print out just as you do today; letter sized papers tucked behind your stateroom room number in the hallway. If you woke up early enough not only would you get your bad news but you could see how many sheets of paper other staterooms received. As embarrassing as it was for how big my tome would be; it was good to see that there were others that had screws from their number plate ripped out of the wall. Then there would be that quiet, older couple down the hall and their single sheet....I knew they were weird. Drink packages are a BIG improvement.
  4. PHEW! 'Cause I can tell the difference between someone who lives in New Jersey and someone who lives in Manhattan. I'll just chalk it up that the certain person is terrible at USA geography.
  5. I suspect this is political bullying by one certain person. Question from a naive midwesterner, if you are hate'n on New York; that means you are hate'n on New Jersey too?
  6. Part of my point is that a lot of the integrity of the top tiers has already been lost--we don't even get free tattoos anymore. And, we top tier folks are constantly being told that Royal does not want to honor the perks freely given in the past--bacon wrapped scallops have been replaced by chicken balls. From a business point of view, you want to become a Pineapple from Day 1??? No problem, please remit your payment of $227,500; we'll send your welcome letter and gold name tag in 2-3 weeks. Oh! there's two of you? No, the BOGO sale doesn't apply to cruise point purchases, sorry. Your total is $455,000. I don't believe there is a logjam at the top levels. At this point in time it's just that the top levels are continually spending money and re-booking without being provided the same incentives. Royal has seen that they can take away/restrict the bennies without much backlash. Royal can afford to give a lot of free booze to someone who paid at least $26,000 to get it. I don't see any logjam; I see a company that properly curated customers. Listen, Royal over the years has been a wonderful way for me to vacation. I enjoy it and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. I also highly recommend it to others when I think it will be a good fit for them. RCL has also enabled me to see places and experience things that I otherwise would never have done on my own; I owe them a deep debt of gratitude for this. These experiences have made me a better person. As stated in a previous thread, I don't need a lapel pin to tell others where my allegiance is, I think you can tell by the way I act onboard. If there are people who would like to ignore the intangible benefits of cruising and travel by buying some instant happiness, why not just put a number to it? It's free money. Maybe this type of buy-your-way-to-the-top program will be more palatable if it's just looked as an extension of the Royal Up program?
  7. If Royal Caribbean was financially savvy they would look at all other successful customer retention programs and allow C & A members to buy cruise points. Seriously, why would they not take cash in exchange for doing nothing more than typing some characters on a keyboard to raise a C & A status??? I 'd estimate a C & A point to sell for about $325. By tabling this idea, here is a great way for some RCL middle manager to rocket his/her way to the upper level of management by creating this program of pure profit.
  8. If the new MSC screening process has an intelligence component; ie: “is this window open or closed” Then I’m all for it!
  9. My experience with HTL was awesome, I’m surprised at your experience. There are other vehicle rental outfits, mopeds rent for about $25-30 for the day. I have deleted the phone number I had for our salesperson. ☹️ if you are an adult, you don’t need a group tour for Cozumel. The highway is a circle around the island. There is a gas station for refueling right outside the port. It’s impossible for an adult to get lost. The beaches on the other side are as simple as pulling off the highway and parking. The bars and restaurants along the way? Really awesome! Know why some of them don’t have electricity or WiFi? Because the margaritas are so good and the hammocks so comfortable you would send in your resignation.
  10. No, I refuse wear the lapel pins; just not my style. However.....there is nothing more flattering, team supporting, or otherwise says Royal Caribbean Girl than when the ladies wear their Royal Caribbean jewelry on formal night. IMO, that resonates way, way more than the pineapples and their everyday badges.
  11. It's not personal, it's just that the traffic and summer congestion of Rome can be overwhelming. I'm sure your tour operator will be well familiar and adjust accordingly. If you would like to get off any ship as soon as possible there are a couple ways to get ahead of the masses. One, find out ahead of time where to disembark. Get a couple opinions to verify. That morning, get as close to that spot as possible--early! Another way is to make friends with a person who has stripes and ask them for the favor to escort you out. The C & A person is the person I would start with.
  12. Nothing against private operators, but most experienced European cruisers will tell you that not taking a ships excursion in Civitavecchia is just plain foolish. Jus' say'n.
  13. Qaqortoq.........Did your cat just jump on your keyboard???
  14. I am a big fan of Pelican boxes, although I would never intentionally bring one into the water. Having a “home” where the Seapass, wallet, eyeglasses, and phone go makes organization easy for me. I also think that not only do they keep things dry but also keep sand out.
  15. I think a $165m amplification of all lounges across the fleet is long past due.
  16. I don’t understand.....what matters is that you and your colleagues are on the same boat. Not what cabin you or your friends are in. And, you are claiming that Royal Caribbean is just giving away a grand suite to someone who has effectively purchased a balcony??? As a Diamond Plus status, you don’t know Royal by now that they don’t elevate anyone by two cabin grades especially one of the big rooms without collecting big additional $$$? C’mon..... Have the DL concierge do the few keystrokes required so that have you all dine and sing Happy Birthday at the same MDR table and enjoy your time together on your holiday.
  17. Please post a picture of your surprise face once you realize Cozumel, Roatan, and Playa Maya were not the dangerous third world countries full of thieves you thought they were. And maybe another pic when you realize each port is unique and wonderful and can begin to see why people cruise to these places time and time again.
  18. A first time cruiser might fly-in the day of a cruise. A veteran cruiser would NEVER fly-in the same day. Place yourself wherever you see fit along the continuum.
  19. This comes from the mouth of an idiot but on a serious note, why doesn't RCL create a gondola-like mode of transportation (just like a ski lift) to/from an airport to a cruise terminal??? In a circumstance where they are very close together like Fort Lauderdale or San Juan or Tampa. Explain it off to the public that RCL is taking responsibility for it's passengers, reducing traffic congestion, eliminating chaos at the cruise terminal, and they are Saving Waves by reducing emissions on a meaningful scale. In comparison to other recent RCL projects like making their pier in Miami 200' longer, their new corporate headquarters, or "amplification" of an already existing revenue generating ship; some gondolas, some cable, and some access to public ROW would be comparatively cheap. At this point in time RCL spends hundreds of millions of dollars on each of many infrastructure improvements. A guy would like to think they wouldn't bat an eye to a cheap one that took responsibility for their passengers. Of course RCL would charge for the ride, just please God don't make it more than the cost of my flight. But I'm not very bright....
  20. If Swimming With Pigs at Coco Cay doesn’t work out, try Eating With Seagulls......it’s free! 😀
  21. Here is my Youtube review of #9658 from two years ago. It's the book-matched cabin to the one you've asked about.
  22. Royal Caribbean could solve this whole getting from the airport to the cruise terminal problem quickly and economically by making a zipline. Just like Labadee.
  23. Boarding times for Honolulu are "normal". Your 1:00 arrival at Honolulu Harbor will be just fine. The ships depart late because Royal is doing all it can to make sure same day fliers with a delayed flight make it onboard. Because of the distance and the weather of Hawaii, a delayed flight can quickly become really delayed.
  24. I suggest heavily medicating yourself before watching the Puerto Rican TV show. It's bizarre....like H.R. Puff N' Stuff bizarre.
  25. I do not know who the dive provider in Aruba is. Couple things: Concern (or perhaps anxiety) about potentially doing a backwards roll is real and many people have the same issue; by no means are you alone. Letting your dive master know is most important. Any dive operator will work through it with you or figure out another way for you to get into the water in a way in which you are comfortable. That's what dive masters do; it's their job. A port stop in Aruba probably means you are leaving late in the evening. Often the ship leave at 10 or 11pm. That opens up a really good opportunity to not use ships excursion. Let me explain... most posters here will tell you that when you go to Aruba you want to go to Palm Beach or Eagle Beach, that's where "the action is." And that is completely true, the rest of the island is a desert best I can tell. So, be proactive and get on your computer open up Google Maps. Type in Aruba and then click on satellite view. Wow! there's the top of a cruise ship! There's the port, it's not like there is going to be two. Now where is that Eagle Beach or Palm Beach in relation to that cruise ship? Wowsey! Not walkable, but certainly a short cab ride. Then type in "scuba" under the "Nearby" tab. Your map now looks like it has the measles with all the red dots of dive providers, and most of them are located right where you'd like them. Go to those dive provider websites and get a feel for who they are, what time there boats leave, cost, will the dive operator pick you up at the port?, some online reviews, and email them your questions. While you are on that map page look at what restaurants are close by, what else might be interesting to spend some time at. In short, your plan for Aruba might be: grab a cab or find the dive provider waiting for you just outside the port gates, do your diving, grab some food and beers, go do something else that's in the vicinity, then have dinner--there's loads of restaurants, and finally return to the ship. If hailing a cab from a curb is uncomfortable any big hotel will have couple just waiting for you at their entrance. Because the ship leaves so late you've got plenty of time to get back onboard-- on your schedual--not theirs. On the other hand you can sign up for the ships excursion. How do you find out who you are actually diving with? Go online to some scuba related chat rooms and do some searching. As a last resort you can find out this way; when you get onboard you can ask the Shore Excursions desk but if your ship has the little scuba shop--they definitely know. Then go to that dive op's website and find the background information about them. And find them on a map too. Having a loose idea where things are in relation to one another is always a good idea. You'll like the time you spend in Aruba, especially if you make a day of it. The diving? It's even better in Curacao and Bonaire.
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