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Everything posted by RCVoyager

  1. We did a 12 night repositioning cruise from Ensenada, MX (just south of San Diego) to the islands. It was remarkable and a really good value. The 5 days across the ocean were wonderful sea days. Then there was 7 days in the islands. The cost was not much more than a typical 7 night cruise. We did it on the Carnival Spirit. I'm guessing there are many choices. April and October would be the months. I will say some things didn't go perfectly smooth. We think it was because most of the trips most of us go on are done by the cruise line every week. A repositioning cruise is out of the norm, and it showed itself a couple of times.
  2. Always go a day ahead. It's not just the insurance/money. It's about your vacation.
  3. For ease, you can water taxi right to the beach that is in the center of town. It's right in front of the ship. It's a little worn because it's so easy to get to. There are many other beaches on the island. Orient Beach is on the French side and is a world famous beach. You will see some topless beachers there. The last time we were at Orient Beach, there was a ton of sea weed. I don't know if that's still the case.
  4. It was you who introduced the cost into the conversation in your original post. There was no hi-jacking of this topic. Just experienced posters with material information to add.
  5. Actually everything I stated is factually correct. NCL did extend two ships in the 1990s. There were massive overruns on the Empress refurb, and the refurb did not involve an extension. And yes, extensions seem to have dried up. I only tried to add to the conversation by pointing out that NCL did it 20 years ago. Not sure why you say I 'readily admit I don't know if any of it is true'. I do know it's true. Peace.
  6. NCL extended two ships in the 1990s. I don't think they were all that thrilled with the outcome. Don't know if it was the cost or the result, but ship extensions seem to have dried up as an option. Think of the cost overruns on the Empress and that didn't involve cutting the ship into two pieces to add a third.
  7. For us, the Sheraton Old San Juan is perfect for 1 night. If doing two or more, I would look at one of the resorts.
  8. Probably because of Allure's current propulsion issue. There are beaches along the Condado. They would be easy to get to. I might suggest spending some time in Old San Juan if you haven't before. Incredible history there.
  9. Let's not forget to cross the river and have some Hofbraeuhaus.
  10. I showed the 'turkey drop' episode to my son a few weeks ago. Les's description of the turkeys falling to the Earth is some funny tv for sure. Not much worth watching on tv today though.
  11. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
  12. I agree on the beauty of the sail away from Miami. I love sailing by South Beach. On a sad note, the jetty as you leave the harbor (I think the one on the North side) is the one hit by the Marlins pitcher, Jose Fernandez, and his friends a couple of years ago.
  13. The Oasis is 5 times the size of the Titanic (in displacement).
  14. The topic on the News and Rumor page about Holland charging for a second entree begs a question. Some swear by Royal. Some by Princess, Carnival, Celebrity, ect. Here's the question: If you could take all branding out of the ships, is there that much difference going from Royal to Carnival to Princess to NCL and on down the line of the mainstream lines? I think there is a notable difference in the ships, but really from line to line, I think the experience is about 90% the same. I'm specifically asking about the on board experience.. not itineraries. Thoughts?
  15. Not sure you will find lobster tails or prime rib at the lido, but a good thought.
  16. If you treat others with respect and kindness, not for your own profit, but because it is the right thing to do and should make you feel better about yourself, you will oftentimes be rewarded by others, including the person you are currently being nice to, with good tidings beyond what you paid out by being kind in the first place. Not always, but it often does work that way.
  17. I'll go out on a limb here: For the most part, I've found that when you treat anyone with kindness and respect, the other party will do the same. I've found that to be especially true in the travel/tourism industry. I'll give you an example: Two weeks ago, my wife and I spent a wonderful week in the Turks and Caicos Islands. We wanted to have dinner at an oceanfront restaurant called 'Hemmingways' on our last night (Friday). Being that my cellphone was expensive there and we had a car, I stopped in on Tuesday to make a reservation. The nice lady said "sorry, we're booked to half Friday, and since it's supposed to rain Friday, and half of our seating is on the beach, we can't add any more reservations now." She went on to say, "come by Friday morning, and we'll see if anything has changed." I stopped in Friday morning at 10:00 only to be turned away without a reservation again by the same nice lady as there was still rain in the evening forecast. She was as pleasant as can be, and I was to her as well. She did say that "if you and your wife can be here at 5:45 this evening, I will try to help you". We arrived at 5:45 and it was not raining. She said "I was hoping you would come back, and I was able to save the best table on the beach for the two of you". We had a really good, albeit pricey, meal with a front row view of the sunset over Grace Bay Beach. Point is, kindness, respect, and working with people goes a long way. Talking down to people and issuing threats seldom works. Based upon the reaction of the OP to other posts in this thread, I can see what happened.
  18. It is kind of fun to watch people running and make it onto the ship. It does put a different light on the situation when they don't make it. However, there is a 99% chance this was not a simple misfortune, but rather a neglect of responsibility. If we can leap from misfortune to neglect, we can then leap to the possibility that it's not the first time they've pushed the envelope in any number of instances when in a public setting. In that you get a little piece of karma. I wish they'd have made it and this topic didn't come up, but as mentioned, there is a very good chance this isn't the first time.
  19. I have cruised with the Barenaked Ladies twice. Both were chartered cruises through a company called Sixth Man. While these two cruises, when only considering the ship and itinerary weren't the best of the cruises I've been on, when combined with the entertainment, they remain the best cruises I've experienced. On both trips, the band set the tone at the outset. They were there with their families, and so if seen with family, they wanted privacy. Other than that, they wanted to meet the passengers and talk to them. They had many more events than were promised in the schedule, and they signed and talked to passengers constantly. It really was an up close experience. On top of that there was the now famous "Barenaked at Sea" photo and we met the band Gaelic Storm which is without a doubt, the most entertaining and fan friendly band there is right now. So, no it's not really a random famous person sighting, but it was an up close experience for sure.
  20. Hi Breezy. I have no problem with Hawaii. If do prefer the Caribbean. My comment about the long tour was exactly that. I was a poor tour. Too much time on the bus. It had nothing to do with the beautiful state.
  21. I agree with this. We had a great time, but we felt rushed almost every day. At that time, in order to get to Pearl Harbor, we had a book an all day tour through Carnival. Pearl Harbor was awesome, but the rest of the tour was not so great. If we did it again, we would book the tour again so we could see Pearl Harbor, but then grab a cab at the end of Pearl Harbor and skip the bus and the rest of the tour.
  22. Hey Tiny. I'm always interested in what happened to the old ships I have been on, and I look at cruise history in the profile of other posters on the forum. The old NCL Seaward is alive and well and still serving her owners. She is now the SuperStar Libra sailing for Star Cruises. Pretty cool.
  23. It sounds like a repositioning cruise. They are generally in April and October as the ships reposition seasonally. We did one a few years ago on Carnival. They are generally a good value, and we did note a few things not timed out perfectly by the cruise line... I think due to the fact they don't do these cruises every week. We would do one again in a second it the opportunity arose.
  24. I never miss a chance to talk about Gaelic Storm because I think the plastic world of today's entertainment is missing out on the absolute best. If you get a chance to spend 15 minutes check out the songs 'Damn Near Died in Killaloe' and 'Raised on Black and Tans'. Fans also love 'Don't Go For the One' and 'The Night I Punched Russell Crowe in the Head' which is billed as a true story. Here's another great story abut them. One night in Indy they did an all ages show (many of their shows are 21 and up). My friend's son was about 11 and LOVES Gaelic Storm. Pat saw us in the crowd and saw the boy with his 'Designated Driver' shirt on. Pat called the boy up onto the stage and had him play the symbol in the song 'What's the Rumpus' which has a heavy symbol. By the end of the song, Pat had Michael running across the stage jumping in the air and coming down hard on the symbol. The kid will never forget it. Additonally after every show, they come out and do a meet great until every fan has gone. No other band would dare do such a thing. That's Gaelic Storm.
  25. It really was a lot of fun, and something none of us will forget. I have a copy of the photo that was given to everyone who did it by the Barenaked Ladies. They were amazing hosts. Totally accessable and did more appearances than advertised. I also have an 8 X 10 portrait that was also a gift from the band. It is the 5 of them and the 4 of us in our travel party. Not only that, but that was the cruise were we discovered Gaelic Storm which has become the favorite band of virtually everyone in my family and many of our friends. Great music, an unmatched stage presence, so entertaining, and the most fan friendly band you will ever meet. A couple of years later my brother became ill with ALS. The last time he saw Gaelic Storm he had a cane. Patrick, one of the two front men, asked him about it. He was visibly shaken as he had gotten to know us. We lost my brother 5 years ago, and Pat still asks me about him and his family every time I see the band. Even dedicated a song to him last Spring in Indy.
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