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Everything posted by Temeculaguy

  1. I ordered the $150 (177 with tax and shipping) six pack from e-med on 12/20 for a Jan 8th cruise and it hasn't shipped yet. Walgreens has no rapid test appointments in my state (the most populous one in the country) closest one to San Diego on their website is Vancouver, Washington. I did find CVS had appointments near our home but they are booked up about 10 days out, our hmo only does pcr with 24-72 hr results, which doesn't work since our cruise leaves on a Sunday but I'd like results before flying in the day before on Saturday, I need results in about 20 hours from test to flight. So I get the concern, I'm going to book a rapid test at cvs, hope the emed tests come but anyone looking into it a week out may not be able to get a test and results in the required 2 day window unless they plan well ahead depending on where they live. Maybe this subsides, but if it doesn't it will make for a mess for most cruisers who aren't as OCD as I am with regards to planning.
  2. #11, this is your place and these are your people. Since you can drive to the port (btw parking at the terminal is $20 a day, you have no real alternatives) I assume you live in Southern California. This is not a palm springs resort pool with aspiring actors and actresses, this one has a buffet. 5 months pregnant 46 YO male makes you pretty normal and you will fit right in. Cruise pools are the most accepting places on the planet, I guarantee you will not be body shamed or even feel out of place. My wife was mid 40's on our first cruise and fretted because we live in San Diego and bikini events are horrific for real women with curves. 7 cruises later she realizes she is usually in the top ten hottest women at the cruise pool and still is in her mid 50's (my wife is smoking hot and still turns heads, but living amongst movie stars and models gives a distorted view of ones self). No better confidence booster than a cruise pool vs a southern california pool for feeling accepted. For those from other areas, so cal has probably the highest percentage of eating disorders and plastic surgery on the planet, thankfully cruises are just regular people with regular bodies and regular attitudes. Wear the t shirt if you want to avoid sun damage but not to hide yourself, those people don't go on mass market cruises. We can afford to go where they go because we have been lucky but we prefer the company of real people because still feel and look like regular people, I think you will feel that same acceptance.
  3. I think deep1's analysis is correct. We went on one of the summer sailings out of Nassau on Adventure and I noticed they jacked up the prices or eliminated types of inside rooms about a few weeks out and about a week out it wasn't bookable at all ( I was checking occasionally to get intel for my royal up offer). Turns out the ship was pretty empty once we got on, I think whole sections were vacant on lower floors probably because their computer just dropped cheaper room categories then the whole cruise as it approached capacity (rumored to be 25% in those early days). Our next cruise just dropped off entirely, Liberty on January 9th, less than 20 days away and looking at room availability yesterday it was between 50% and 75% full (hard to tell, could be lower if they held back rooms in addition to what was available). I was trying to see if there were lots of cancellations due to the casino smoking and masking everywhere policy changes even though it is just outside the Jan 5th re-evaluation date that will probably be extended. Whatever capacity number they set today, it was at that number so it stopped taking new bookings. The following week is still available and will likely drop off as it hits the newer lower capacity.
  4. There is no logic to it, My brother and I were both in JS on Adventure this last summer and both booked in JS initially, we paid the same and booked at the same time on a three way call with Royal. We both got offers and bid the exact same amounts for GS and OS. He got his GS two days before me and could print luggage tags immediately. I got my acceptance about a day before the flight and never was able to print tags, still showed the old room right until I got on the flight, then tried in the business center at the hotel in Nassau an hour before our check in, still listed old tags. But like Speednoodles said, it was no issue, the porters made my tags at check in, luggage got to my room at the same time as his so it wasn't an issue at all and i didn't need to pack a stapler. I worried for no reason, pre printed ags are a convenience for them, not you, they will take care of you no matter what.
  5. I think they are geniuses with their royalup. Recently we got our royal up right before we sailed. The wife and I got a GS instead of a JS and since then we've booked more cruises but I don't want to deal with all the suspense so now our minimum class has been pushed up. If I was in charge I's create a formula that gave preference to pushing people beyond their normal comfort zone because it's hard to regress, perhaps they already have. All I know is I fell for it, just paid retail for an OS in March because we have an OS in January and I know very well that we won't want to revert back to a GS. A few years ago we were content with a window now look at the monsters they've created.
  6. We were on AOS out of the Bahamas when only 1 ship was allowed at coco cay and capacity was at 25-30% on the boat, got a floating cabana for $999 and a land based beach club cabana for 599 or 699, whatever half off was. We canceled our admission at 130 or so per person for just admission to the club. Land cabana actually penciled out as a refund and the floating wasn't much of an increase, sale was close in to sailing, if we had 8 people both would have been a savings. It was totally worth it, loved them both, I wish you luck but as capacity increases per ship and multiple ships are there I don't know if it will be as common. I think it's like royalup, supply and demand, we got our royal up on that ship from JS to GS and we likely overbid given the few people on board, but I felt it was worth it. I wish you luck, hell I wish me luck, I have 3 more cruises on the next 8 months, but I'm not as optimistic given capacities are likely to rise. But like others have said, it's still a cruise and it's better than going to work.
  7. I didn't get what I expected, three e-mails later and no response, i guess I will have to call. We went on AOS August 7th, booked a JS, did Royalup to a GS and got only 14 points. I was expecting 4x points since we did a suite, I believe JS qualified so the RU to GS shouldn't have mattered. I was expecting 28 points, since suites get double and it's double that through 2022. We have suites in January and July so I was expecting to make diamond after three suites during the promotion. What did I miss?
  8. Not exactly, but it may not matter. On Friday the bahamas will require you have a negative test (either type) taken within 5 days prior to you arrival in the bahamas. But since Royal requires it already within 3 days, that will suffice. Plus those who already have travel planned soon and already have a bahamas health visa don't need one, but then again you need one for royal. It's misleading because that email can be construed as needing one after arrival but its more clear here https://www.bahamas.com/travelupdates We are getting our test Wednesday, flying in friday, boarding Saturday. On the royal up, we had a JS booked for this Saturday on AOS, bid on GS and OS, OS went expired, GS still pending, so that's likely one more JS up for grabs based on what other's have said. Should know in the morning. When clicking on original invite e-mail its says bids are closed as of yesterday, however it's still within the 54 hours so don't wait till the last minute in the future, it stopped bids and modifications 6 days prior.
  9. One other trick but if you rarely travel it might not make sense for you. I have a few of the airline credit cards which gives each person in your group a free checked bag, so for a week or more if we have three checked bags I only pay for one but for less than a week were usually fine with one checked each. This only works of you fly more than once a year on a particular airline since there is often a $50 or $100 annual fee for the card. Just figure out who goes where you go often enough.
  10. So you know your wife likes to see you in a suit, absolutely you should wear one. Get a rolling garment bag, get a bigger suitcase, pay the fee and take an extra bag, ask for an iron or use the pressing or dry cleaning service on board. Having your wife think you are handsome is priceless, having her attracted to someone else may cost you a fortune. If I'm traveling with other couples I'll coordinate with the men to see of they are going with tuxes or suits. I let my wife pick out which suits ( I only only own one tux so that one is easy). There is no reason to not look your absolute best for her, if she hates suits then you don't need to worry. Personally my wife, who is in her fifties, looks great in dresses and heels and can still tun heads so I'm all about letting her be happy with herself and with me. I've got a large suitcase with a removable hanging garment bag that upon arrival quickly hangs up and stays wrinkle free or has minimal wrinkles. I dry clean everything anyways so I keep it in the bags and it folds just the once. That bag holds enough for the formal nights and dinners so I can wear slacks and a dress shirt to every dinner and it holds all her dresses. I economize by only going with one pair of black dress shoes and one black belt, so I keep to dark colored slacks. Once you add brown tones you double your accessories and shoes, grey still works with with black shoes and belt. . When going with a tux I wear the same black dress shoes not high gloss tux shoes and no tux shirt, a white dress shirt with a bow tie still gives you that 007 look, just avoid the buttoned down collar. We have luggage where the carry on has a sideways strap so it slides onto the checked larger bag so you push a single unit and I drag the garment included bag so for 5 pieces of luggage its three things, two for me, one for her. Maybe your experience is different but many women, my wife included, spend lots of time and energy on hair, make-up, accessories, shoes, etc., you can dress up as a sign of appreciation. But then again my grandsons age 6 to 15 all wore a bow ties to formal night when we took them on a cruise, so I realize were outliers to some.
  11. True that! So hard to revert back but no disrespect to those who just want on the ship at the lowest price because I was that guy at a time in my life. Now JS is the minimum for us but I do not advise skipping steps, let guaranteed resources dictate it.
  12. Before the sale we didn't consider it, I believe it was 1999 floating and 1499 land cabana both in the beach club. Our group of six adults cancelled our 6 admissions at 106 a person (which was a sale price down from 142) and got back 636 then paid 699 for the land cabana which included admission. So it was a $10.50 a person increase to get a land beach club cabana. If you had 8 people already paying for admission they would pay you to get a cabana. Of course their marketing worked, we got a floating cabana for the other day but it didn't break the bank. YOLO They should build another few hundred cabanas and charge these lower prices once things are at full capacity, at 700 a day it should pay for construction costs in pretty short order. I get that there is limited optimal ocean space suitable for floating cabanas but the land based ones should pay for themselves in weeks or months. In fact they can allow investors to build them, at 20k a month rent based on 699 a day, even if food and staffing costs take 50%, the ROI is incredible. Better than any rental property I've seen, I'll pay for it to be built and they can take 50% with no investment. I'll take the weather risk, at these rates it can be rebuilt every year. With only a few dozen cabanas, the law of diminishing returns is not remotely applicable.
  13. Were coming in the day before and staying at the british colonial that night, was going to take a cab. If you come in the day of, apparently you can drop your luggage at the airport and RCL will take it directly to the ship, and they have some shuttles to the hotel to check in, they charge for the airport shuttle but it wasn't much, it was offered when we booked but we couldn't do it due to our flight day and times. Shuttle back didn't work for us because of a late flight out after disembarkation. My challenge is where to store luggage on disembarkation day since we will probably explore Nassau and head to airport at 2 pm for a 6pm flight home. Judging by the fact that flight is full, I image others are in the same situation and royal has something to offer.
  14. like others have said, the website has been wacky all week. One of my cruises vanished (just so happens it's the one I got an unreal deal on early in the pandemic) but I called and was told it is a system wide problem and the TA confirmed I still have my suite which is now sold out and before selling out was 4x what I paid, that was not the booking I wanted to vanish. It all came back tonight but on my wife's login it's still missing. Wait till Monday, but if you already bid on royalup, the third party that handles it still has your offer so you are probably good. I just checked my upcoming offers/bids and it works but it probably didn't yesterday. I've noticed they tend to issue royalup offers 3 days before sailing right now, I'm sailing in two weeks and have tracked previous sailing that have a bunch of suites until 2-3 days before sailing and then suddenly they are all gone. If you are sailing next weekend, it will likely happen tue, wed or thur for a saturday sailing, if it is further out no worries about the website, it should be fixed.
  15. I Love, Love , Love this story! My story is similar bit not all on Royal, yet cruising nonetheless. My wife and I had our first overnight date on a short 3 day cruise that she arranged as a birthday gift to me. Three years later I proposed on a cruise, in Cozumel at the Mayan temple of marriage (long story but the excursion desk helped make it happen) because she is Hispanic and her ancestry (according to her dna) is Mayan. We were married on a cruise with 100 of our friends and family also on the cruise. Next month, on our anniversary, we will be in Cozumel, this time on adventure of the seas. I believe for the remainder of our time on this planet we will be forever tied to cruising. Your story is so similar to ours that I think you will see cruises as a component of your marriage. We are in in our early 50's now but we both see cruises as not just fun but a romantic reminder of our bond, I hope for you that every cruise from here on out will be your honeymoon all over again, I know it is ours.
  16. While I liken myself to be new to RCL I did sail on the viking serenade 25-30 years ago, I remember needing to shimmy sideways to get into the bed since it was about 6 inches from the wall on both sides and the toilet may have been in the shower or so close it got wet when you showered. It was built as a ferry and had the capacity to carry 500 vehicles before being converted into a RCL cruise ship. I had a blast but would avoid that ship today had it not been sold long ago and scrapped by the third or fourth owner after RCL. It's a great frame of reference that makes any ship today a pleasure.
  17. We're going to try all the classes Royal has to offer, going on Adventure, Radiance and Liberty in the next twelve months which represent the three oldest classes in use and then work our way up. Looks like the pre-1995 built ships that were primarily ocean view windows and porthole exterior rooms, limited balconies and suites with the rooms concentrated on the lowest floors have all been removed from the fleet so it appears to be a "can't lose" situation when picking on RCL right now. We've been on those older style ships on other lines and I'd prefer to avoid those, but I don't regret having gone on them and they were all fun in their own way.
  18. Something weird just happened for AOS, for the last week the last coupe of sailings in July were sold out of inside and OV rooms, now there are a ton available. Its possible there were 100's of cancellations if it was a group but unlikely in the same day since it affected more than one sailing. It is also possible they moved a bunch of minimum bids up since it happened seemingly overnight. It is also possible they expanded capacity and the limited capacity was limiting the cheaper rooms. I wonder of if the last few July sailings just had their bids accepted? Personally I want it to be all Royalup since I'm in early August but it looks like whole blocks are open, like 20 rooms together so I'm thinking it's a bump in capacity since I would thing royal up is more spotty since not everyone does it or even gets the e-mail, rather than everyone in the entire section of a ship did it looking at what is now available.
  19. During the last two sales my 3 upcoming cruises all had different prices. Right now my August is going for $58, my Jan 2022 is $50 and my July 2022 is $54, I got the Jan 2021 for $42 but when I did a L/S after it was cancelled, they made me take me a refund of the drink package. I agree with the others, buy it and if it goes down, cancel and re-buy. That $54 is the lowest I've seen because it's in Alaska, been L/S twice and in that time it's usually $67, goes to $58 during sales but the Jan 2022 is out of Galveston and we've been L/S once, it's always been cheaper, between $42 and $54. To me it seems to be related to the cost of the cruise, the one that was cheapest always has the cheaper beverage package and the most expensive cruise is always the most expensive, regardless of the sales.
  20. Am I reading the "six months after the second jab" correctly. Vaccines we first approved Dec 11th. Doctors and nurses and some other vocations were getting second jabs in early January, which are going to start passing the 6 month mark today depending on when they got their first jab and which brand. Nassau cruises are scheduled through September which means March second jobs will "expire" for those cruises yet no scientific evidence on the planet indicates the vaccines only last six months.
  21. I appreciate all the advice, I'll stick with the zoom surf and stream and just buy a day in the Bahamas if i need it (and as pointed out Mexico is covered already). I tried searching the forums before posting but didn't find that March thread regarding the same topic.
  22. Has anyone used the AT&T cruise plan https://www.att.com/international/cruise-packages/ I booked voom surf and stream with my drink package and it came out to about $100, same as the ATT plus ATT has a $50 talk and text no data plus both ATT plans are priced per month. Don't need much usage but traveling with two other couples and would like to be able to text amongst the six of us for logistics but I do like to check my home security system now and again. The Att cruise plan includes the ports we visit and costs about what voom does. Not sure of it covers coco cay but voom does. Has anyone done both and can compare the experience.
  23. I'm new to RCL but I've found this is a complicated arena to get data on as few want to share info because technically the readers are their competitors. I'm going out on a limb, going on one of the adventure sailings out of Nassau in August but now there are domestic options so it's unlikely tons of people will sign up from here on out plus you have to factor in capacity restrictions and our flight is essentially sold out as are many (no two seats together left) as we are about 6 weeks out and anyone looking to book will pick another sailing, I know I would have had I not booked it months ago when it was the only option because air has doubled in price since then. Prices are a bit higher now than when I booked and I booked a JS then bid on a GS and an OS. Only a couple of GS left and a bunch of OS left. I bid about 60% of the difference for GS but near minimum for OS hoping some GS would get moved to OS and I could have their GS. Per couple currently stands at 2850 for JS, 4600 gs and 7300 OS. But I paid closer to 2600 for JS, so my question is, do they go off the dollar net from the customer or the difference between the current prices. I gave all the details because I don;t care that much, I'm fine with a JS, if I get the upgrade, great, if not, I'm still on a cruise and not at work plus I'm not paying 7300, if I get the GS for a grand or the OS for 1500, great, but I don't see 5k more value, that puts it in viking territory.
  24. I got a vax very early on and they ran out of cards so my card was a photocopy of a blank card. I insisted on getting an actual card at shot #2 and was lucky enough the same nurse was there to sign again for shot #1 but I know numerous people who's card is a photocopy of a blank card filled out in pen. This happened when they discovered the vials had more doses that anticipated so there was more vaccine than cards at some locations in the early days. My state (california) has since issued digital cards if you need a replacement or if you want a backup. I'm not here to defend California, admittedly the place is nuts but people lose paper cards, people's houses burn down, paper gets wet, things happen and mandating the original card seems a bit arcane. Since California is about 1/8 of the US population and has a digital vaccine card now, I would imagine acceptance will be forthcoming.
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