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Everything posted by F1guynz

  1. I have found their Australia/NZ website a bit flaky with this. If I search for a cruise without signing in, go to the booking page and then sign in from the booking page I don't get the Crown and Anchor discount. However if I sign in before I search and then go to the booking page I do see the discount. If you have received a Crown and Anchor discount you should see it as a line item in the fare breakdown. I am not sure whether the same feature/bug happens on the US website as there are differences between it and the Australian one.
  2. We have booked a GS Explorer for March 2019 for 9 nights up to the Islands. We looked at Ovation which is doing the same cruise 2 weeks later but a GS cost $4000 more. Not good value for money in my opinion. We are on Ovation later this year but RCI charge such a premium for sailing on her I think it will be a one off.
  3. I have printed copies of the last ones at home. I will compare these to the latest ones tonight and see if there are any differences. Looking forward to booking next week
  4. Here is the link to the updated itineraries https://secure.royalcaribbean.com.au/media/pdf/reports/170522_RCI_201819_ProgramRelease_FA_Consumer_AU.pdf
  5. Here is the link to the updated itineraries https://secure.royalcaribbean.com.au/media/pdf/reports/170522_RCI_201819_ProgramRelease_FA_Consumer_AU.pdf
  6. I asked RCI Customer Service about this when we were booked in a suite and my parents were not and they said they could only do that if the booking number was the same. In reality through when we went to the port they allowed us all to check in together so it is worth a try. You do sound like you will have a lot of people checking in together at the same time though so they may not be as lenient. With regards to the lounges I have always seen they are pretty strict on entry and check out any people they haven't seen before to confirm they are allowed in the lounge, so I think you will be out of luck there. The lounges are already busy with people who are allowed in and the first time we went in they came around the tables to check that you were allowed in. After that they just checked any new people in who came in throughout the cruise as they get to know the people pretty well. Their cruise documentation makes it clear that friends and family travelling with you that do not meet access rules are not allowed in. This is one rule I haven't seen them bend. Enjoy your cruise.
  7. It is available on the following ships: Adventure, Brilliance, Freedom, Independence, Jewel, Liberty, Mariner, Navigator, Radiance, Serenade and Voyager. We did it on one 7 night cruise and one 14 night cruise. On the 14 night cruise the show was on twice but I can't remember how many times on the 7 nighter. You need to reserve it through the cruise planner to ensure you get place. I think it is pretty popular.
  8. Maybe they were being humorous but ultimately I think that the release date delay is the result of last minute negotiating going on to return a fourth ship to the Australian market. I certainly hope this is the case as not having a fourth ship reduced the choice of itineraries available. The other wish that people in this region have is for a ship to based in Australia year round. Currently P&O, Princess and Carnival all have ships here year round but I prefer RCI. People like to escape up to the Islands during winter because it gets so cold down here. It is hard to describe but as RCI are only here between October and March if you want to do more than one cruise if feels like no sooner than you have flown to/from Sydney that you have to go back again for another cruise because the season feels so short. It would be nice to be able to cruise in June/July to spread things out a bit. Looking forward to seeing the hopefully updated itineraries.
  9. Their comment "manoeuvring their mega-ships around the world is a mighty task at times" doesn't quite make sense to me. They already announced what the itineraries for Australia / South Pacific would be and it seems it is pretty straight forward to get the ships to Australia from Singapore/China and Vancouver, Also as they are taking bookings for all the other regions that know what ships they have available for this region. I wonder if there are now back room negotiations to get Voyager back to Australia for 2018/19 season as the financial impact of having one less ship would be pretty significant for the tourism industry. I think it came as a bit of a shock to everyone when they pulled Voyager from the market and now the ports are scrambling to come up with a solution. Time will tell I guess.
  10. I find overbooking a strange concept. To me and long as I have paid and not been refunded then it should be irrelevant to any company whether I turn up or not. You have sold me the space for a set date/time and whether I use it is up to me. Airlines and apparently now cruise lines are just playing the numbers by selling tickets to space that has already been paid for in the hope they can double dip. Probably in the past they just overbooked by small number of tickets but over time have become more aggressive with this policy so that now it has become newsworthy. I don't like the unnecessary stress this causes people when they have done nothing wrong.
  11. We have done this twice on different ships.It was a good laugh and the first time we did it we actually one the prize pack for correctly guessing the murderer. When we did this on Voyager it was at Chops and the second time on Radiance it was at Giovanni's. It is a set menu at the restaurant so bear that in mind. The last time we went the older couple next to us thought they were booking Giovanni's and didn't realise they had booked the Mystery Theatre. They were disappointed because the lady couldn't eat some of the set menu and RCI couldn't/wouldn't offer an alternative. The second time we saw the show on Radiance was about 14 months after the first on Explorer but the show was identical (including the murderer) so that is something to consider if you have already seen it once. I am sure you will have a great time.
  12. I think you are right, you would need around 6000 people on an Oasis ship for a charter. I was joking about hiring one of the smaller cheaper ships for 7 days. I guess that ultimately if you were prepared to pay enough to RCI you could take less people if you wanted to, but you would be wearing the cost unless you set the cabin prices really high.
  13. On the RCI charter website they have indicative pricing for chartering their ships. If we could find 2000 people on royalcaribbeanblog.com to go maybe we should just hire a ship. Picking an itinerary we all agree on might be a sticking point. :-) "The charter rate will be based on full double occupancy regardless of how many people sail, pre-paid gratuities based on double occupancy and any applicable fuel surcharge based on full double occupancy. The client will be responsible for taxes & fees based on the actual number of guests and will be required to pay for the actual gratuities should more than double occupancy sail. Additional taxes & fees will apply for triple and quad berths above double occupancy. Pricing varies based on ship, sail date, itinerary and level of customization. Actual pricing must be provided by your Charter Sales Manager, but the following ranges may be used in the pre-qualification process to determine viability:" Ship Class 3 & 4 Night $700,000 – $1,690,000+ Vision Class 4 & 5 Night $1,000,000 – $1,760,000+ Radiance Class 4 & 5 Night $1,300,000 – $1,700,000+ Voyager Class 4 & 5 Night $1,800,000 – $2,800,000+ Freedom Class 7 Night $1,800,000 – $2,500,000+ Vision / Radiance Class 7 Night $2,800,000 – $3,800,000+ Voyager Classes 7 Night $3,900,000 – $4,500,000+ Freedom Class 7 Night $5,000,000 – $7,700,000+ Quantum Class 7 Night $6,500,000 – $11,000,000+ Oasis Class Charter pricing will generally be most attractive in non-peak season such as September, October, early December and/or January and will be most expensive from May through August. Product in Alaska, Bermuda or Europe may exceed the ranges outlined above.
  14. I think their Loyalty programme is definitely one of the better ones out there. We cruise in a Grand Suite and usually do 14 day cruises so it only took three cruises to become diamond. Once you reach diamond level the perks ramp up and the big plus we enjoy is we never need to buy a drinks package. We can use the drink vouchers and both the diamond/concierge lounge for "free" drinks.(even though the policy is not to take the drinks from the lounges the first thing the concierge said to do was ignore that rule and take our drinks to the restaurant if we wanted). We don't drink a lot and would much rather spend the money saved on drinks packages on the speciality restaurants so it works well for us. The priority boarding is also a great perk and it normally means we can get on the ship pretty rapidly and start enjoying our cruise. We certainly don't use all the perks but the ones we do use improve the experience for us. Plus it costs nothing to join and any rewards received are a bonus.
  15. I haven't connected an Apple TV but I have an HMDI adapter for my iPad which I used to connect to the TV and stream with no problems. It should work also work with an iPhone. If you don't have the streaming package Netflix allows you to download some content which you can then watch through the TV using the connector. I didn't need an HMDI cable either, I just unplugged the PS3 in the room and used that cable.
  16. I feel this a problem wherever you are. We live in New Zealand and all the RC cruises are generally Australia to NZ or up to the South Pacific islands. As the interaries are limited I wish they would change up the ships more often so at least something was different. To be fair they have introduced Ovation OTS last year but they charge a big premium to go on her. I would like to go on Freedom class ship because over the last few years the choice has only been Voyager, Explorer and Radiance. A lot of people do seem to enjoy going on the same ship doing the same thing every year but I think you lose the WOW factor after a while.
  17. Especially as the first 6 days are sea days. Resistance is they key! I don't normally have something sweet at breakfast, lunch and dinner time at home. Why on a ship do I suddenly feel the need a sweet after each meal.Maybe that isn't just hand sanitiser when you enter the windjammer of restaurant. It is a subliminal spray to make you eat more,
  18. I saw this on our Ovation cruise. It is $470 NZ (about $322US) for a 14 night cruise. It works out at about $33nzd per person but you can also dine at the speciality restaurants for lunch on sea days as part of this package so seems like great value. The only issue I have are there are so many restaurants to try on Ovation, many complementary including the Coastal Kitchen. So we would not get full value for the cruise. When you look there are not that many pay restaurants on Ovation. Isumi, Chops, Winter Wonderland, Jamie's Italian off the top of my head. Ultimately I think the 5 night dining package will still be best for us on our next cruise. Part of me still wants to book this but with six complimentary restaurants (and some of these look pretty cool from the menus), plus faithful old windjammer it feels like it would be underused. I don't have an American appetite so small portions do me.
  19. The suite lounge on Voyager and Explorer were quite small compared to Radiance. VOS and EOS were always busy and it was more difficult to find seats than on Radiance. The lounge on Radiance was much larger and had sea views with an outside area to use if the weather was nice.
  20. I wish they would do one Auckland to Auckland via the South Pacfic on Explorer OTS. ATM only Radiance comes out of Auckland and even though Radiance is newer it feels more dated than Explorer. Actually I like to try different ships rather than go on the same ones each year so I wish they would swap Explorer for Mariner or Adventure (even though technically they are nearly the same as Voyager and Explorer). As itinaries are limited here I would like to see different ships to keep things fresh. I guess I am in the minority because most people seem happy sailing on the same ships year after year. Oasis class are too big for Australia and NZ but I would like to see a Freedom class ship here in the next few years. It is cool having a quantum class ship here but you certainly pay a premium cabin price for a near new ship compared to ships from the '00s
  21. When I was talking to the concierge about this on Radiance he said the problem is that a ship the size of Radiance on a 14+ cruise will make the same money as an Oasis class will make in 7 days.. From a purely financial point of view the bigger ships make more money and they don't seem to have trouble filling them so why would you build something smaller as the payback over the lifetime of a large ship would be much greater. I guess in the future small ships will be the domain of more specialised luxury cruise lines. The flip side of that is that RCI keeps complaining that in Australia and NZ that our current cruise terminals cannot support the size of the large ships and are now demanding that new cruise terminals be built to accommodate the ships or they will go somewhere else. Catch 22 really as if you build bigger facilities then they will probably build even bigger ships.
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