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Everything posted by Sushitex

  1. Also, laxative pills dental floss multi-vitamins (I like gummies!) Benadryl (good for seasickness if in the evening) GasX and prepackaged, nutritious snacks for diabetic hubby (cashews, peanuts, cracker sandwiches)
  2. Ha! I never thought about insect repellent, and it was recommended for Gumbalimba Park (in Roatan) by a fellow cruiser. We did not check the ship's store, but did look at the little stores at the pier area in Roatan. Only the small pharmacy stocked Off, at $12 for a small can! I ended up trying a bit from an "all-natural" insect repellent pump at a nearby kiosk. It must have worked, because no bugs "bugged" me at Gumbalimba. Hubby also tried a bit of the stuff on his arms, but had to quickly wash it off once the attendant pointed out that it contained aloe (he's sensitive to aloe.) Next cruise, I will try to pack our pump bottle of Deep Woods Off.
  3. We’re on the second of 4 cruises on the Adventure. So far, the Windjammer has been open for dinner. We like eating dinner in the MDR, so not sure about crowds in the WJ at that meal. Breakfast and Lunch have not been crowded in the WJ because the ship itself is not crowded ( less than 1200 for each cruise.)
  4. We’re on our second leg of 4 B2B’s on the Adventure. During the first cruise, our Cruise Director went into quarantine and Sani did assume her duties. The 2 production shows are not going on right now ( besides the ice skating show.) However, service everywhere has been great and the entertainment team remains upbeat. Tonight, several crew members were transferred to and from the Serenade, which was docked alongside us in Cozumel. The 800 point instant certificate promotion has been going, off and on, for a few months. Hubby and I have made use of it, and it’s a great deal, but once you get your certificate, don’t waste any time in booking a cruise, because the popular (summer) weeks are going fast. Oh, and the way it’s currently been working, you earn one certificate and receive it at the end of your cruise. Then, on the second day of your next cruise, you’ll receive another, similar certificate, unless you earn a “better” certificate by earning more points. However, a casino host on the Liberty warned us that this promotion could stop at any time, so take heed.
  5. Thanks for posting the video. We’re on the Adventure and she pulled into dock in Cozumel this morning (a scheduled port stop) alongside the Serenade. A few crew members shed a little light as to exactly why Serenade was here (crew being transferred both ways) but the video host also confirmed what 2 fellow cruisers told us they witnessed today: people in Hazmat suits about to escort or moving themselves to the Serenade. Our ship’s departure was delayed a few hours due to the transfers. BTW, we’ve been onboard for 2 cruises and yes, the production and ice shows have been canceled for both cruises. However, the Entertainment Team has still been great and upbeat.
  6. We just returned from B2B2B on the Independence 5 days ago. When you look at the Royal app or the Cruise Compass to check out the schedule or venues, or when making reservations for shows on the app, the status of the show or venue is clearly marked “V” for vaccinated folks only or “E” for everyone, which includes unvaccinated people. We played a lot of trivia, mostly in the Schooner Lounge, which is a vaccinated-only area. During one trivia, one family brought along a toddler. I’m not sure if they realized their mistake or a staff member said something, but I saw what I presume to be the Dad leave with the little one, only to return a few minutes later without little one. Maybe Grandma was conveniently on board, lol? Bolero’s and the Star Lounge also offered trivia and games , but I think they were mostly “E” shows. During one game in the Star Lounge, the host asked everyone to mask up because there were younger kids present. Everyone complied except for one guy. I’m not sure if he was asked to leave or he changed his mind, but I think he eventually put on his mask. We don’t drink booze, so I can’t say that we sat at the Schooner Lounge bar. However, lots of people were playing trivia or other games while sitting at the bar and drinking beer or whatever. Lots of people sat at the casino bar, as well, and because both venues are open only to vaccinated people, they had the option of wearing masks. Most chose to not wear the masks.
  7. During one of our last pre-pandemic cruises, hubby was trying to download funds from our credit card for the second time on a slot machine, and noticed that it would no longer do so. He had planned to use the money that he cashed out in other slot machines and at table games. A staff member in the casino told him that so many people try to use the slot machines as a free ATM that they allow people to use it only once and then they lock them out. After verifying that hubby was a Prime member and that he was truly trying to gamble on the slot machines, etc., they did something to unlock him and he was able to continue the process. Now we just charge the money we will use to our room - it’s tied to our credit card, there are no extra fees, and we earn double points with the credit card. If we do want actual cash, we both are currently Prime, and they will waive the transaction fee for Prime and higher-level members. However, we no longer see any point in carrying around large amounts of cash.
  8. We have 2 upcoming cruises on the Liberty - 1 in mid-October, 1 on Dec. 12. I believe that one of them originally was supposed to go to Grand Cayman and Falmouth, but now both cruises are slated for Roatan and 2 ports in Mexico.
  9. I hope so, keeping my fingers crossed!
  10. On the Independence out of Galveston? We are scheduled on the September 19th sailing on her. 2 out of our 3 bids already were "expired" (rejected) but the other said "pending" a little while ago. We are more anxious about our Covid-19 test tomorrow, but thinking about the possibility of upgrading is keeping me distracted, a little.
  11. Hubby and I are doing the same as the OP: boarding on the Oasis on November 3 through the 7th, then going on the Freedom on the 8th. Just an FYI regarding the Oasis cruise: this morning, we received an email from Royal, notifying us that, as expected, Labadee (the only port) has been dropped and will be replaced by Cozumel. Oh joy - we live in TX, and sail out of Galveston most often, with Cozumel almost always being a port of call. Back to the Freedom - we are slated for a B2B2B on her, beginning on November 8 and ending on the 19th. Both the Freedom and the Oasis will be "new" ships for us; so far, our Royal cruises have been on the Liberty, Enchantment and Majesty.
  12. We ordered the monitored home test kit set from eMed on Monday morning, and received it around 4 p.m. on Wednesday, a very hot time of day in south TX. Fortunately, the Fed Ex person rang the doorbell and hubby heard it (I thought it was a doorbell ringing on a tv commercial, lol.) Anyway, it's in our spare bedroom, and it's usually pretty cool in there.
  13. It's been 9 years, but on our cruise to Alaska, I had read a guidebook and we took a public bus to Totem Bight State Park. It was chilly and rainy at first (the sun came out later) so it was pretty much deserted on the bus and in the park - it was a cool place to visit and wander around in. I believe that we rode the bus back to town and did a little souvenir shopping, then walked back to the ship. We would love to return for a second cruise to Alaska, and since Sitka was not even an option, we'd love to go there. Our favorite port had to be Skagway - we booked an independent tour. They took us on the Yukon Railway, then a minibus that went into Canada and we stopped to eat lunch and play with the Alaskan sled puppies (and dogs) at one training "farm." It was absolutely one of our top shore excursions.
  14. We are on the same cruise. I'm wondering if the stop will be replaced by Perfect Day or Nassau (hopefully Perfect Day.)
  15. Just a little over 2 years ago, we sailed on our first Royal cruise, the Liberty of the Seas. We had previously been on 7 Carnival and 3 NCL cruises. Honestly, I booked the Liberty because it was cheaper than the Carnival ship going out of Galveston that June (probably the Vista; we cruise on her next weekend, lol.) Be prepared to be "wowed" by the technology on the newer Royal ships. The Liberty offers ice skating shows, FlowRiders, The Perfect Storm (water slides, etc.) and (in my opinion) overall, better entertainment than on most of the Carnival ships that I have been on. The major change for us, though, was learning about Club Royale, Royal's casino program. Although husband has gambled on every Carnival ship, we have never understood how the program works (still don't, for the most part.) Club Royale has a website and a brochure that tells you exactly what tier you are as a gambler, and what benefits you might obtain. What a game changer for us - by the end of that 7-night cruise, hubby had earned Prime status as well as 2 comped cruises (a certificate cruise and an annual "tier" cruise.) This won't occur during every cruise of course, but it did happen during our first Royal cruise. Of course, no cruise line is perfect. We missed the friendlier atmosphere (the entertainment crew) that we have seen on most Carnival ships during that first cruise. However, we were impressed with the friendly staff on the Enchantment of the Seas (our second Royal cruise ship.) We are also looking forward to our upcoming cruise on the Harmony, which will actually be a B2B in late January/early February. We'll be staying on the 8th deck because I am curious about the Central Park area. BTW, we haven't totally left Carnival - we have some cruises booked with the line. After several years of receiving no offers from Carnival, husband was mysteriously sent several casino offers this past spring. We are not picky; we're grateful. Can't wait until we are all cruising again!
  16. It's funny that the Carnival Glory was mentioned in a previous comment. The Glory was the last Carnival ship that we sailed on (March 2019) before going on 5 Royal cruises, beginning in June 2019 and ending the day when cruises were stopped (March 14, 2020.) I don't believe the Glory was garish; she certainly had some friendly and lively entertainment crew members (trivia hosts) anyway. On our first Royal cruise, I was blown away by seeing things like Flowriders, The Perfect Storm and Ice Skating Shows - we were on the Liberty OTS - but honestly, didn't feel that friendly buzz with the crew except for our wait staff and maybe the room steward. I felt more crew friendliness when we sailed on the Enchantment OTS a few months later, and during our second Liberty OTS cruise. As far as food goes, we really enjoyed the BBQ place that was up on the second level of the Marketplace Buffet on the Glory, and Johnny Rocket's on the Liberty OTS, even though it had a surcharge. The food in the main dining rooms in both lines each have their shining stars - the chocolate melting cake from Carnival and the steak and turkey entrees with Royal are my favorites. What swung us over to Royal was the fact that on the Liberty OTS, the casino host bothered to take the time to give hubby a brochure explaining the Club Royale program and was there to answer any questions. Never before, during 7 Carnival cruises, had anyone explained how to earn comps in their casinos, even though hubby had actually once earned a comped cruise. To this day, we are not sure what level of player he is with Carnival and how their system works; with Royal, we knew how to achieve Prime tier status just by reading the brochure. Now there's a little twist. After 5 years of "crickets," Carnival started offering hubby a few comped cruises about 3 months ago, so we have a few lined up for this year and next year. However, the number of those cruises pales in comparison to the number of casino offers that Royal has been sending us. "Us" because I also reached Prime level on that last Royal cruise. I have yet to gamble on a Carnival ship, but who knows, I might just do that on our upcoming Carnival cruise next month.
  17. We won’t be on the Odyssey until Feb. 12 of 2022 (hubby’s 2020 Prime Tier cruise) but congratulations on your new ship assignment! Hope you’re still assigned on the ship in February. Do you work in the casino?
  18. If you believe the source, here’s some more entries for your Google Sheet: https://www.cruisecritic.com/ab/agents/variation-a/news/6165/ Yes, other lines are mentioned, but there’s the Independence and the Mariner... I’m terrible with spreadsheets in general, I will leave this up to others to add to the Sheets, lol.
  19. Another news source: https://www.cruisecritic.com/ab/agents/variation-a/news/6165/
  20. Funnily enough, when I clicked the above link, there’s the Carnival Vista moored at the dock. That’s ok, last Thursday, Carnival Players Club sent hubby a casino offer for a cruise in either July or August. We could not say no ( Club Royale has not been so generous lately ) and we’re booked on the Vista for the July 17th cruise. It’s all good, lol. Hope to sail out of Galveston on the Explorer in late August.
  21. Fortunately for us, hubby and I have been fully vaccinated since February, so we're okay with having some non-vaccinated folks onboard. We can also live with wearing masks and social distancing - we just did that (in most places) for a week in Las Vegas. Like everyone else, we JUST WANNA cruise, lol! ?
  22. This is probably a good sign: Yesterday afternoon, Carnival sent hubby an email offering a comped inside room for either the Caribbean or Alaska for dates in July or August. We hurriedly booked 7 nights on the Vista out of Galveston, paying just the taxes/port fees. I wrote "hurriedly" because the website must have been inundated with other people doing the same thing, it was going in and out - it wasn't long afterwards that he received the "OH SNAP, no more cruises available" message when he tried to do a mock booking a few minutes later. Our new cruise begins on July 17. The earliest date I saw for Galveston was for July 15 on the Breeze. Anyway, just the fact that Carnival sent out some last-minute offers for FL and Galveston sailings indicates (to me) that they are serious about sailing this coming July and August.
  23. Weirdly enough, for my next 3 cruises (late August, September) I cannot purchase any VOOM Internet plans, which are normally the only things I purchase anymore using the Cruise Planner, except for the random shore excursion. I hope that this doesn't portend any bad news concerning those cruises which are all out Galveston. BTW, has anyone read/heard any news whether or not Galveston will have unvaccinated or vaccinated-only cruises yet, for either Royal or Carnival? Crickets is what I am hearing so far...
  24. It has to be playing trivia games, lol. When we used to sail on Carnival ships, we collected many "ships-on-a-stick" and several medals. On Norwegian, it was points that could be traded in at the end of the cruise for some kind of souvenir. With Royal, lots of Royal-branded pens, key chains, luggage pulls, and those oh-so-coveted highlighters!
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