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Everything posted by monorailmedic

  1. Stoked! Which staterooms are you thinking about? I should probably tell people about this, huh?
  2. As @JLMoran mentioned I have some MSC content up (link to all posts tagged with MSC below). https://www.cruisehabit.com/tags/msc If you click on the first love blog post above it links to the rest of them. I suspect we'll be on MSC again in short order once sailing is again possible - potentially within weeks of it being an option, and we'll be sure to post a live blog then as well. Let me know if there are any specific questions you have.
  3. It's the luggage that really gets in the way of this. You know, parents have kids carrying their small suitcases, they let go of the handle, it hits terminal velocity as it barrels toward the ground... Alright, clearly safety-nets are the answer here.
  4. Moderator Note It's clear now that this was not an announcement from Disney but analyst speculation. We're all clear on this now and the thread has been annotated up at the top to avoid confusion. It is of course important to verify information, but mistakes happen. Now that we're all clear, lets have some friendly chat as I research how to hypnotize myself into believing I'm on a ship.
  5. I'm still working on some other items (video and such) from that sailing, but you can check out the Celebrity Today (daily program) from that sailing here: https://www.cruisehabit.com/content/celebrity-infinity-february-2020-2-night-nassau-celebrity-today-shore-excursions
  6. Sorry for taking so long to chime in. We've sailed Royal, Celebrity, and many other lines, and ended up booking one of these 2 night Infinity sailings for last weekend. In fact, we did so while on Brilliance of the Seas a few weeks earlier. I've long felt that if you like the way Royal does things, but for a particular sailing, you're not going with anyone that needs rock walls, flow riders, etc to make the cruise awesome, then Celebrity offers a really great product, that trades some of those things you might not need on a given sailing, for a less crowded experience. The sa
  7. This is really good stuff, but if you could plot dates (potentially on different charts depending on itinerary region) I think it'd be more telling. This is because lines move around rooms to facilitate better lead pricing, and that need is tied closely with how quickly a ship is filling up (and of course, how quickly specific categories are filling up). There is forecasting which takes care of a lot of the pricing up to this point, but GTY moves allow them to do some real-time tweaking, and it seems likely you'd see some real differences in how this works for a dog sailing vs a popular one.
  8. I've never specifically asked about a seperate vegan menu in specialty restaurants on RCI, but I can't tell you I've not seen any of them present a separate lacto-ovo menu (like the MDR does), so I'm going to say no. That said, you can of course leverage the standard plant-based options in other venues, and you'll find mixed success in special requests from specialty restaurants. They've always been accommodating, but depending on the chef, manager, etc, the level of creativity can vary quite a bit. I'd consider having a chat there a day befor eyou plan to dine to then see, based on what th
  9. Awesome job - tons of great info and pics! Glad you enjoyed the sailing.
  10. We enjoyed Seaside quite a bit - which isn't to say there weren't things we'd have preferred differently. MSC still really over-complicates (in my opinion) some things, such as drink packages, the different "levels" such as Fantastica, Aurea, etc. It's already hard for people to try anything new with the right expectations, and the way they do some of these things adds to that challenge. That said, we enjoyed the cruise quite a bit, finding the food and service good. Many complain the buffet is repetitive, and to some extent it repeats more than other lines, but like the packages complicat
  11. For any dining request, I recommend heading to the station at the entrance to the MDR. There should be someone there as soon as boarding starts. Just let them know what you'd like. Unless traveling with a group, whenever we've had fix seating/traditional dining, we always request a two top, and out of hundreds of nights at sea, we once dined with another couple on the first night (though we could have just gone to another venue if we wanted).
  12. Just saw this today after disembarking. While I don't know for sure, I am reasonable sure the answer is no. They're different business units, and I think they may actually use different companies to manage the casinos as well. I recall reading once that there is a process for redeeming them by mail if this happens - but that was a long time ago so not sure if it's still in play, but it's worth asking.
  13. Great commentary. I explain RCI vs X this way often. If you want those high-energy activities, like rock walls, flow riders, etc - then you won't find it on X, and RCI does a GREAT job here. If you see those spaces and wish they were used for things a bit slower paced, then take a look at X. They are both great lines, each with their strong points and differentiation, but it's also quite comfortable switching between the two depending on the occasion, who you're traveling with, etc. We're back on Edge for the third time in just a couple days. Excited to be back, but we'll be
  14. I can't speak to bourbons, but for scotch they're selection has become much better over the past couple of years - mostly in the pub, but if you ask the right person very nicely, they'll move bottles around. We mostly drink Islays and were delighted they started carrying Ardbeg 10 and often Talisker 10. They've got some Highland and Speyside offerings as well. Here are a couple of the more recent (post addition of other scotches) pub menus from some ships in the fleet, which will also show you the bourbons. https://www.royalcaribbeanblog.com/menus/king-country-pub-menu-brilliance-of-t
  15. This is true. Your "building" of points starts at zero even though your loyalty level carries over. Would it be nice if this were handled differently? Sure, that'd be neat. Would it lead to all the more people having top tier statuses, which seems to upset those that have said statuses? Probably. (this gets to the "when everyone is special no one is special" paradox) Do I personal think it matters? Nope. For me, I've yet to identify a reasonably attainable loyalty perk that is worth compromising experiences for. Others may hold a greater value to certain perks and feel otherwise, whic
  16. I was there this past April and had a nice time. It's been a staple for years and my visit made me realize that this is the case for good reason. No, it's not one of the all-inclusives with a lot of entertainment options and such (though there is an $18 option to enjoy those things if you're so inclined). It is a nice beach however, with friendly folks service reasonably prices food and drink. Matt's write up from July 2018: https://www.royalcaribbeanblog.com/2018/07/25/excursion-focus-paradise-beach-cozumel My visit there in April 2019: https://www.cruisehabit.com/holland-ameri
  17. Yep, I've only driven to the port for a cruise out of Miami/Ft Lauderdale once in the past five years or so, and I regretted it. For me personally, the convenience or curb-to-curb service is worth it to the point that if the cost to park there was 20% less I'd probably still take Uber/Lyft. As for Brightline, I want to like it - I really do. Right now the cost is a bit high in my mind considering the length of the trip. That said, the cost from WBP to PM compared to NE Boca (I'm right on the Delray Border, E of 95) is as much as $30 more. So for me, curb-to-curb is $120 RT. If I had a Br
  18. Yep, it's happened before - it's just not terribly common. In Jan and Feb of 2021 Constellation will be calling on Labadee.
  19. You can find a few posts from a live blog on Infinity along with some other info at the below link. https://www.cruisehabit.com/tags/celebrity-infinity I'm happy to answer any Celebrity questions I can. We've sailed several X ships and will actually be on Equinox in less than three weeks. You'll find a lot of similarities to RCI, but quite a few things setting them apart as well. The more favorable passenger : space and passenger: crew ratios, we find, result in better service than on contemporary lines. If you're a dessert person, make sure to try a few of the pastries, cakes, e
  20. Very true, and that's because out of all the perks (save for the free Pinancle cruise, which falls into the "not reasonably attainable" category in my mind), the diamond drink benefit is probably something most would agree to be the most valuable, regardless of how much or little it might move the needle for any individual. Hey @Matt, when was the last sailing you didn't buy a drink package? (honestly don't know) That's pretty awesome. I'd love to see that work out for others. Like I said, for me, a few drinks from a selection that isn't interesting to me doesn't help. If they adde
  21. First, I should clarify that I mean the value to the cruise line. Of course they want to offer things that have at very least a perceived value (if not actual) to the guest - that's how they aim to hook people into coming back again and again. To some guests, sure, that perk may be the difference between buying a drink package or not, but I'd bet that's the case for a reasonably small number - in part because of the restrictions on the number of drinks, in part because of the restrictions of what the drinks are. If tomorrow you gave me diamond drink benefits, I'm sure I'd not use it a s
  22. There are a few points that I can't shake when thinking about cruise line loyalty programs (for RCI and others): I've yet to find any reasonably attainable perk that is worth compromising new experiences for. Companies have loyalty programs because they can offer things of less than consequential value to keep customers. If the benefits held that much value, it wouldn't make any financial sense for a line to offer them. Digging in deeper for a loyalty program is, in a funny way, showing to cruise lines that they work - they can offer something of little value and get you to shel
  23. Ask once on board. I have heard of people being able to get kettles from their stateroom attendant on UK sailings - but I've heard others that have not had any such luck. I'm not sure if this simply varies by sailing, if a limited number are available, if sometimes stateroom attendants bring them but it's not official policy, etc.
  24. This is (and please feel free to point to policies stating otherwise), pretty much the policy for most every domestic flight I've been on. I know Southwest says 45 mins - and there may be others, but the point is it's a reasonably common requirement. International flights sometimes require an even longer lead. I agree, but I also think that they were fighting an uphill battle. Customer service issues plagued AirTran - and even when temporary, it can be very damaging to an underdog brand. Another challenge was the legacy of their original name...ValueJet. FLL has a lot of Je
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