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wannabecruiseexpert

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Everything posted by wannabecruiseexpert

  1. I've always wanted to play table games but have no clue how to play any of them. People always look like they're having so much fun at the tables. I've heard reviews before of the lessons and they didn't seem great but reading your experience makes me want to do it.
  2. Just curious - have you felt at any point the service you're receiving has been too much? My star class experience wasn't anything like what you've had, but curious if you've felt bothered. Well bothered isn't such a great word but maybe overbearing? Don't get me wrong , we loved all of the attention that we received. For us, it was the right balance of spoiling us versus leaving us alone to let us enjoy ourselves.
  3. If you are just trying to see prices, when we booked, the prices for the additional people were the same as 3rd and 4th passengers
  4. When the summer '23 sailings come out, I will be booking our first (and probably only) Alaska sailing. I know we will choose a quantum class ship, which I understand that class doesn't necessarily do the best itineraries. Are there any pros/cons to book June versus July? Anything specific I should be looking for?
  5. Is Walgreens an option for you? I know you can't schedule 2 weeks ahead like CVS but if you have a local one doing rapid, it may be worth looking into.
  6. My family is on this sailing. It's spring break for us and we are looking forward to it! Only 5 months away!
  7. This makes me sad! Not something we experienced with our little one but for anyone - especially kids - to be ostracized makes me really sad!
  8. I read that as the local law now says either vaccinated or negative test but this specific tour operator is complying with the local law by requiring all to be vaccinated (and not giving an option for negative test). Hopefully you can find something on board like @Atlantix2000mentions
  9. La Bamba looks delicious! That's on my to-do list for next time we sail from there. Happy cruise day!!!
  10. I completely agree. The rocking and swaying is one of the things I miss most when I get home
  11. Glad you made it on quickly! Enjoy the rest of your trip!
  12. I'm trying to decide between these two cabins. Are there any pros or cons for choosing one over the other? This would be my first time on Navigator (have been on Adventure).
  13. I was just thinking about this blog and hoping recovery is going great!
  14. If you have a “party”, at least take pictures of the food!
  15. I’m pretty sure I could have asked for a specific one, but looking at the map, I thought #1 would be perfect for us so that our little one could play in the sand easily. That part worked really good. But now, knowing what I know, I will ask for #10 or #11. We have a sky class suite in April and I’m kind of excited to see how it compares. I’ve apparently done this in the wrong order
  16. Random thoughts I left out - Since we had an unvaccinated child, we had to meet at Studio B for all of our excursions, get a sticker to wear, then go meet on the pier. I understand the staff needs to make sure you’re on a ship sponsored excursion, but the card scanner thing alerts when you get off so I don’t understand the point. DD6 loves to write notes to her teachers, friends, etc. Well she wrote one to Smitha and gave it to her at dinner that night. Later on, I get a message and it’s Smitha telling me she put it up on her board. Made my daughter’s day As a first timer in star class, we really didn’t know what to expect. I was worried it was going to be too much. I’ve read about the phone constantly ringing and doorbell always going off. We didn’t experience that. Our laundry was usually delivered when we were getting ready for dinner, but other than that, most things happened when we were gone. I did expect to see the genie more often. We always went to the dinner she scheduled by ourselves and I think just the first 2 nights she came and checked on us while at dinner and that was it. We saw her at the shows when she walked us to our seats and she walked us outside on our excursion days. We didn’t see her at cococay like I see other genies doing. Didn’t bother me at all because we’re extremely low key but it wasn’t what I was expecting. All in all, I do think star class was worth what we paid, if for nothing more than the great room (got a ton of steps in) and the laundry! Speaking of laundry, do they hide those little tags I’ve seen people talking about here on the blogs? I found 2. I specifically went looking for them on various clothing items but only found 2. There must be a trick to finding them
  17. I looked daily waiting for the price to drop because I would have cancelled and rebooked. It never did get any lower. At least we know next time to stay away from #1. I would say MAYBE 30/35. There are a ton of long benches set up on both sides and on different levels of the boat and not one time was there another family sitting on the bench we were on. When the pirates would do a part of the act, most people would go down to the lowest/main level to watch but even then it wasn't crowded at all! Like I said earlier, they pay a lot of attention to the kids (who want attention) and it ended up being maybe 5 kids who really participated. I can't say enough good things about it. I wished I would have voiced my opinion like steeltitan. Looking back, I should have - not so much for my trip but for future people who go.
  18. You might be right. I was there last week and we were the only ship. It appeared all of the floating cabanas were booked (at least all on my half but I didn't notice any with no people). I could still see all of the options on the cruise planner up until we left as I was checking daily for price drops. Seems the only difference between last week and this week was there being 2 ships.
  19. We ended up staying as late as we could - I think around 4 - and when we got back on the ship, I think all of the food and sun was getting to me as I had a huge headache. We had reservations at Giovannis but I didn’t feel like going so I messaged Smitha to cancel. The 4 big kids went to Coastal Kitchen, DH took the little one to get a salad then dropped her off at adventure ocean and we got room service. I hate that I missed it though Bevis it was one I was really excited to try. There’s always next time! Once I started feeling better, we spent the rest of the evening packing and going to our favorite bartenders to say goodbye and have some last drinks. Then looked through our photos choosing 100 and headed back to get some sleep. Getting off the ship was just as bad as getting on. We must have the worst luck. It was a huge mess. We had flights to catch at MCO at 12 and Smitha advised us that leaving at 8:00 would give us plenty of time. At exactly 8:00, Smitha showed up with the porter. They loaded up all of our luggage and my daughter was finishing getting her shoes on. There was some miscommunication because I said we were ready but she didn’t hear me. We’re just standing there waiting and I assumed she was talking to the porter. A few minutes go by and I ask DH what are we waiting on. He didn’t know either. Looking back, I should have said something. Finally, DH asks her if we’re waiting on our number to be called or something and she’s like….I’ve been waiting on you. She didn’t hear me say we were ready so we were waiting on her and she was waiting on us. She told us we needed our seapass card and should keep out id for DD6 because sometimes the facial recognition doesn’t work well with shorter people. She takes us down and hands us off to one of the ladies at the terminal and had to go get another family. She asks if any of us are using a birth certificate instead of passport and that’s what one of the girls friend had. She said make sure you have it. Well we didn’t know that so it was packed in a suitcase. The lady gave us major attitude (this was probably something I should have known but we are inexperienced cruisers and were just going by what Smitha told us. I assume she didn’t know one of us didn’t have passport. The lady was able to track down our luggage cart (not without mumbling under her breath and giving us not so nice glares) and we went through facial recognition with no issues and the one came through and we were on our way. We ubered to the airport ($126 for UberXL) and got there with plenty of time. Next up - miscellaneous things I forgot to mention and final thoughts
  20. Day 7 (CocoCay) started really early. On day 4 or 5 we had a notice on our door that we needed to schedule DD6 for another covid test. We purposely picked 6:50-7:00 as our time because I thought I read on here that you had to have the results back before you could get off the ship. So I take her down to deck 3 and surprisingly there is no line. I scan her card and they handed me a piece of paper and then was directed to a different room where they had several nurses administering the test. It was, again, the short swab. Very simple and we were sent on our way. I had previously told Smitha we wanted to get off at 9:00 (making sure to give plenty of time for the test to come back). At about 8:50 she messaged me to let her know when we were ready. I told her I didn’t have the results back yet and she said it doesn’t matter and that we should get an email by 6:00 that evening (I ended up getting it about 4). We met her at our elevators and she took us down (both this day and the day she took us to medical, we walked across I-95. I’ve never done a ship tour so found that interesting. She took us to the trams and we waited a few minutes to get on one going to the Beach Club. We booked an over the water cabana a while back and the price never dropped. When we first arrived at the Beach Club, we were given a tour and then taken to our cabana. Matt has a map here https://www.royalcaribbeanblog.com/perfect-day-cococay-map From the maps I saw, it looked like there wasn’t a bathroom close, but there are 2 bathroom “trailers”, 1 on each side at the cabanas. We had cabana #1 and I thought it was going to be perfect for us since I knew DD6 would want to play in the sand. I was wrong. More on that later. We had 7 people and found there is plenty of room for everyone. I loved having the radio. We were able to use our phones to connect to it or you could choose from a few select “stations”. We had 2 very attentive attendants who made sure we always had a drink in our hand. And food. Lots and lots of food. We started with cold appetizers of hummus and tzatziki, ceviche, shrimp, veggies and pita bread Not too long after, they brought hot appetizers consisting of chicken wings, cheese sticks, chicken fingers and fries For lunch, they explained that with large groups they recommend bringing an assortment of all of the lunch foods instead of everyone ordering something specific. We could have ordered If we wanted to but we just took their recommendation. Please ignore all of the feet. I kept making everyone move so I could take pictures but apparently I wasn’t quick enough for this one. This was soooo much food! I tried a little of everything and other than the mac & cheese, everything was great (I’m a southern girl and we know how to make mac & cheese ) Not too long after lunch, one of the many lifeguards told us that at high tide (around 1:00) we may see some stingrays and sharks but don’t be alarmed as they wouldn’t mess with us. We saw 3 different sharks and 2 stingrays. They were very close to us! If anyone was there that day, even on the ship, and heard screaming, that was my daughter I could not believe how close they kept coming to us. They would stay in the Water between the cabanas and the beach and then it would occasionally swim under our cabana and then go back again. It was so neat watching them then watching other people on the beach see them and scatter. Speaking of other people, it got soooo crowded around our cabana. There were frequently people floating on mats right at our steps and at the slide. I got annoyed, but I mean the cabana was right in front of “their” beach. I just wish for the price we paid, we had a little more seclusion. We even had someone come up and ask us to slide down the slide. It just felt awkward. One off my daughters was walking down the path on the way to get a funnel cake and apparently was asked by one of the attendants if she needed something. She told him where she was going and he said no, he’ll get it. I knew that we could ask them to get stuff from outside of the Beach Club but it was so close that we didn’t mind getting it ourselves. Regardless, a few minutes later we had dessert and 6 funnel cakes delivered. All in all, we had an amazing time but I’m not sure I can justify spending what we did. The food was great, but I think all of the other food is really good too. Maybe if we had a different cabana I would have felt different. We never made it to the pool.
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