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Everything posted by Chadster

  1. Was originally going to Bermuda in October, but decided to jump on a great price and finally head to Canada! Anybody else in?
  2. Thank you to Matt and everybody who was always extoling the virtues of travel insurance! Earlier this year I invested in an annual plan, and I'm so glad I did... I was on a B2B in early November, and the last day of the last leg, I started feeling awful when I first woke up; it felt like a very upset stomach and severe heartburn. It came and went as the day went on, but at dinner, I could barely eat, and finally, I sadly had to bid farewell to my dining companions and I headed off to the ship clinic. A battery of tests, several IVs, and hours in sickbay later, the doctor was concerned it was an inflamed appendix. He arranged for me to be evacuated via ambulance when the ship arrived in Port Canaveral. Let me tell you, that sickbay ICU bed and its weren't anywhere near as nice as my aft cabin! I had gone to the clinic early in the evening, so when he first brought up having me medically evacuated, my concern was immediately that I was somehow going to ruin everyone's cruise due to a hasty return. Thankfully, we were close enough that he just kept me plied with pain meds and antibiotics, and we reached Port Canaveral on schedule. The shoreside docs thankfully determined that nothing had ruptured -- I just had a rather nasty digestive issue. I was sent home with antibiotics. My medical insurance is covering the shoreside medical care thus far, but without travel insurance, my cruise would've been nearly $400 more expensive. Thankfully, Allianz reviewed and approved my claim in approximately 2 weeks after the incident, and I was reimbursed for the shipboard care in full (for those who don't know, they tack the onboard medical expenses onto your cruise statement). If I have anything that my regular insurance doesn't end up covering, I'll submit the amended claim to Allianz for reimbursement. Moral of the story: GET TRAVEL INSURANCE!
  3. On Mariner in early November, there was always a crew member who asked for my selection and pushed the button after I put my cup under the spout. I had one crew member who was always so excited to see me, because I'd always come by early in the morning, and I'd usually be the first person he served, even after being on duty for 30-45 minutes before I came along.
  4. They really like bringing it down to the wire on these things, don't they? Glad they extended, though -- it definitely helps me out, though I do wish they'd have it cover sailings through September 30, 2022, just to be in sync with the FCCs.
  5. A lot of the 3-day sailings for Freedom for both November and December are showing the same thing.
  6. I'm not usually a huge fan of the late-December holidays, but I'm very much looking forward to being on Anthem for Christmas and New Year's Eve. All these pictures have me feeling like a kid at...well...Christmas!
  7. I was mock YOLO booking a cruise that leaves on Halloween, and I was surprised to see that merely paying the deposit today was an option. I scrolled to the bottom after selecting the option just out of curiosity, and I was even more surprised to see this... The final payment would be due on departure day. And if I'm remembering my cruise contracts correctly, aren't final payments due by 5 p.m. on the stated due date? The ship is scheduled to depart at 6 p.m. I'm guessing that the system is extending a "courtesy hold" of sorts because of a deposit being placed. No real question or anything here -- I just saw it and thought I'd share this interesting discovery! Talk about a trick, a treat, or both!
  8. Thanks for the heads up... I'm now gonna be on Odyssey for 5 nights! It makes for an unexpected endnote to follow my 13-day sojourn on Allure.
  9. Looks like I'm going with y'all, thanks to a MyVegas reward! I had been looking at this cruise as a quick introduction to Royal's newest, and suddenly... We may not be going to Labadee, but at least we're sailing somewhere!
  10. I'm looking very forward to being on a Radiance-class ship for my Alaska cruise. It looks so well-suited for that!
  11. You wear pants for work!? Faaaancy! I have definitely worn my "dress shorts" in the MDR along with a collared shirt -- in part because I completely forgot to change one night! But fear not -- I wasn't struck by lightning or anything!
  12. So far, Oasis has been the only ship in the RCCL fleet on which I've sailed, and I can already tell I'm going to miss Central Park something awful. My balcony overlooking the park was utter bliss, especially when the acoustic guitar players would begin in the evenings. I shared pictures of Central Park with my friends and they were in awe that it was on a ship! All that being said, I'm looking forward to expanding my horizons. Anthem will be up next, along with Independence and Mariner this year, and Serenade next year. It's looking like I'll get a sampling of almost every class and who knows? Maybe my answer will change by next spring!
  13. Well, I've been told by multiple folks at RCCL (including the C&A folks) that I only qualified for regular double points as a solo cruiser on my 9/26 cruise on Oasis because it was my first RCCL cruise, and to get the additional "double points", I would've had to already be a C&A Gold level member -- not Pre-Gold as I was at the start of the cruise. So for the 7 days, I got the standard 14 points instead of the 28 under the promo. For my future cruises I booked during the promo period, I'll get the "double-double" points. Of course, it appears that RCCL was a bit inconsistent in applying that, so well-done to the first-time RCCL cruisers who lucked into the double-points promo for that first cruise! Just more reason for me to add another cruise! Oh, noooo!
  14. On Oasis, they also had the velvet rope between the performers in Central Park and the passengers. There was definitely also lots of dancing aboard. I don't have any pictures, but our '70s Disco Party was jumpin', even though people were spread out! And the salsa dancing at Bolero's was definitely hot, hot, hot!
  15. I was just thinking the exact same thing! Fear not -- I don't need to know until late November!
  16. I have to agree with so many about a lot of tips, both for gambling on Royal and gambling in general. My September trip on Oasis was my first Royal cruise, and I told myself before I went that I was only going to play what I could afford to lose. Unfortunately for me, I didn't keep that number constant. I kept letting the siren song of the casino draw me back, telling myself I could lose a little more and still be okay, and I ended up a lot more down than I planned. Not to the point where I've wrecked a bunch of things, but it did definitely make me kick myself. From now on, it's hard-and-fast limits plus any free play/earned play from points...then done. On the upside, after a reminder earlier in this thread to check offers, I see that the points I earned have already gained me a $100 instant-savings certificate, which will come in handy. Still, lesson learned -- walk away when I win and know how much I can truly stand to lose.
  17. I began my Oasis cruise a couple of weeks ago on My Time Dining in the MDR. They put me at a table for two that was a booth-style seat on one side and a regular chair on the other. I was seated on the booth side, and there was a couple at the table on my right. (I ended up spending most of the cruise attached to the dining reservation of a group of fellow solo cruisers I met, and we all ate at a standard 8-person round table. For breakfast, I was always at a two-person table, often with the same booth-seat setup, though I had a few days where I was at a table with two traditional chairs, and tables were spread out a bit.
  18. Ahhh, yes...looks like it'll be a case of "call back until I can get it taken care of" situation if they're apparently doing it in at least some instances. If they were uniformly sticking to the policy, I'd just shrug it off, but now... I hope you can get yours sorted, too!
  19. Honestly, I think it comes down to staffing levels. A lot of the crew who worked in the MDR in the evening were turning around and working in the WJ in the mornings.
  20. No. No buffet. They said they didn't know when or if it would return.
  21. I knew it was you, Pat -- that's why I said it like that. Consider it payback for the early birthday shoutout at dinner that one night. You folks really did make my cruise 10x better, though as I said, I know I would've had fun being much more solo, too. To anyone reading this thread and feeling on the fence about a solo cruise, I think everybody should try it at least once if they get a chance!
  22. I had breakfast in the MDR most mornings on my cruise on Oasis at the end of September, and it wasn't bad; I don't know if it was my bad luck or what, though, but ordering my eggs scrambled was not good. They were not very firmly cooked. Other days, though, I ordered an omelet (or two), and had much better results. I just made sure to also always ask for a double-order of my side items. In the Windjammer, it was a really good experience -- except for the wait time for my omelet. Overall, I'd do both options again, especially armed with the breakfast intel I gathered from my previous cruise.
  23. So, I got back from my first RCCL cruise last week: a 7-day cruise aboard Oasis. I was, of course, "Pre-Gold" when I started the cruise. Apparently, per the C&A rep, "Pre-Gold" didn't qualify for the double-double points for solo cruisers, but rather just normal double-points for solo cruisers as if there were no promotion. On all my future cruises I booked before the Sept. 30 deadline, I'll get double-double points as a solo cruiser going forward, but I'm missing out on an additional 14 points because I wasn't at least Gold status when I cruised on Oasis.
  24. I got back from my first solo cruise last week; I was so lucky to meet up with some great fellow solo cruisers at a meet-up event we had on the first day. But even though we did a lot of things together, I also had a great time just doing some things on my own, too. I also struck up conversations with so many other great folks. But even if none of that would've happened, I definitely don't feel like I would've felt out of place even if I spent the entire cruise in full solo mode. Everyone on board felt so welcoming, and it was so much fun to take part in things -- or just to lounge and enjoy the views! The above activities are just a taste of what we got to enjoy, even though we were all technically "solo". Toss in the carousel, a dance party or two, and it was an utter blast -- even if they clearly kept me around as the trivia "ringer". Point is, don't let your "solo" status. Make it the cruise you want, whether that's time with others or by yourself. I hope you have a blast, Donna!
  25. I'm in by myself as part 1 of a B2B2B. Looking forward to kicking off things in grand style!
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