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Riley

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Everything posted by Riley

  1. Most onboard credits can be used on board, meaning to buy drinks, fancy dinners, etc. There should be some "fine print" in your paperwork that specifies what it can and cannot be used for.
  2. They do have water filling stations at/near the Windjammer but some are shut down due to COVID restrictions. If open, it is requested travelers don't fill their bottles directly (I have a contigo and just use a cup for the dispenser and pour it into my bottle). If not open the WJ will have people providing cups of water, lemonade etc. and will be happy to give you a few cold glasses to our in. Alternately the main dining room waitstaff will fill it for you from one of their handy water pitchers... the bar staff will likely do the same but I haven't tried.
  3. That is a good question - if your partner is traveling and registered in the cabin they should get the benefit. There is an email and phone # on the FAQs, an dit might be worth time to ask.
  4. If you plan on any shore excursions don't forget the bug spray!!!
  5. Agreed it is challenging. I am doing two Atlantic crossings (one each way) a couple months apart and - even though I go FtL to Barcelona and then Barc back to FtL because they are different cruise booking numbers I could not book a round trip flight. Would have had to book two one-way tickets at significantly higher cost. I ended up just booking my flights directly. I also agree about "know what you're doing before you call" - the agent first wanted to put us on a flight home from Miami to Chicago via Seattle.... not gonna' happen, buddy.
  6. It depends - I usually see the Shareholder credit applied to the account a few days prior to embarkation - I go to the shore excursions and it pops up as a message. OBC from RCL has been running really slowly, though and if you do not see it by the time you get on board it can sometimes not make it along, especially with back-to-backs. Good luck and stay on it. There is a phone number listed on the RCL shareholder support site and they can usually check and let you know.
  7. For US patients it's no charge: they don't ask for proof of citizenship or anything but you have to register online ahead of time to pick a test time and location (Walgreens site is https://www.walgreens.com/topic/promotion/covid-testing.jsp and you can register up to a week in advance, I think) but I don't know what happens if you enter a non-US based address. Try it out and see if it works. Travel safe!
  8. It depends - they usually re-issue new certificates in 30 days (and are running even slower right now) from when partial credit is used, but you can call RC and use the residual credit if you have the certificate # handy. I have all mine listed on a spreadsheet to keep track. So if you have FCC and apply part of it to a cruise payment you don't have to take that cruise and then wait - you can split apart and use the FCC to pay any booking.
  9. Make sure RC accepts the test you're going to do. They will not accept self-administered at-home tests unless it's proctored.
  10. Check with your credit card vendor as well to see what reimbursement options they offer in the event of cancellations.
  11. They are but not too strictly - if you have a 1 pm tie slot and arrive at 12:30 you should not have a problem.
  12. You can loop it around your lanyard if you don't enjoy wearing it on your wrist. Like other folks say, so long as you have it the crew on ship don't really care.
  13. For back-to-back cruises I know you get a test two days before you arrive back in port. I *think* it is the same procedure for international air.
  14. One point to consider - you would get double points as well as your wife but you would not be able to add those points together. So if you booked 2 rooms you would each get 14 points but NOT a total of 28. Only 14 points would be added to your total.
  15. In the Windjammer they still have a few self-serve stations with water, lemonade and iced tea (they ask you not fill from the tap directly but I just use a plastic cup and pour). If they don't have stations open, just ask at the staffed drink station for a few glasses of water. You can also ask the guys at the main dining room to fill up your bottle - they always have pitchers of ice water. The bartenders will also have ice and water.
  16. We usually bring a big bag of assorted chocolates (think Halloween mix, which you can find year-round) that we hand out to the crew around ship, plus some Tide Pods. Crew have to do their own laundry including paying for supplies and - especially when they could not get off ship - Tide Pods were a big hit. Other than that we ordinarily just leave $$$$.
  17. You can do that, yes. Ordinarily I add $$ to my seapass card at the slots (a small amount like $30, for which I have never seen a fee), play one minimum bet and then cash out.
  18. Yes, if you have a regular dining session (the 5 pm seating, for example, rather than whenever - even if you're "My Time" you can set the same time and table, just request it from the host your first day). You will have a regular table and the wait staff has set sections.
  19. Couple of points as this is always a robust topic: - The casino or guest services can usually break down $20s into smaller bills. I usually carry about $20 in singles and the rest in $10s and $20s to break down as needed. - You can also ask guest services to add an explicit tip: I ran out of cash so visited the desk and asked them to charge me an additional amount to be paid directly to my cabin steward. They had no problem with that. - Totally agree with the comment to note folks who have provided great service and be sure to call them out on the survey. The staff have meetings where good comments are read out and they are recognized, just like any other service group. This is also helpful in staff getting raises and promotions. - I don't prepay gratuities as if something ever really blew up I'd have flexibility on the ship to rectify it or remove that portion, but I usually leave the daily amount alone and tip on top of it. On a 7-day cruise for the two of us I usually tip $20 to $30 for the waiter, $10 to $20 for the assistant, $1 per set of drinks to the bar staff ( we are a high enough level we don't pay for most drinks so there's no 18% added) and $30 to $40 for the cabin steward. On occasion I have tipped more, or (for someone like a head waiter or concierge who went above and beyond and who don't ordinarily get tipped out) offered a $20 handshake at the end of the cruise.
  20. We pack a string bag or a drugstore backpack (light and cheap). I only carry the minimum - towel, seapass card, bottle of water, a little cash and my Rx snorkel mask for example. With an excursion that includes transport, the guide or driver will tell you if you can leave your bag on the bus or not (usually you can) but it's like anything else - don't leave alone anything you'd really miss if it got lost or taken.
  21. Yes it's the little metal one. I don't think they have big tea pots but you can request a coffee carafe of hot water.
  22. Like others have noted, for Diamond and beyond it makes no sense to grab a drink package. The Lattes in the Diamond Lounge via the machine they have up there are pretty decent, especially if you get an extra espresso shot. We are D+ and even my Chicago Irish self has a bit of trouble going through 5 drinks a day plus our carry-on wine plus the "50% off two drinks" loaded onto the sea pass card. A few times I ended up getting a bottle of Pellegrino to go for the room as my final drink.
  23. Yes - the perk is offered as an onboard credit, not a discount off the booking.
  24. For frequent cruising it's totally worth it. Note that the stock award varies by length of cruise - short cruises are $50 (less than 5 days, if I recall) mid cruises (6 to 13) is $100 and long (14 days +) are $250. Whereas yes, it would take many, many cruises to recoup the cost, I look at it as the equivalent of a dividend. I own 200 shares (the award is per cabin and sometimes my spouse and I travel in two cabins, so this way we both get the perk) and am receiving the equivalent of well over a 10% dividend while the stock recovers. t Even if it doesn't increase a dime over what I paid for it, that's a really nice return.
  25. Check with the Miami airport - there is a COVID test site in the terminal.
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