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  1. Trying to plan our Alaska Crusie I know Anthem and Quantum are the same class. Which one would you recommend? Which port is better to be able to just walk around at? Ketchikan Skagway Any particular balcony rooms and decks you would recommend for the best views?
  2. Royal is involved in a new terminal in Seward that plans to open in 2026. Should support Quantum class ships. https://cruiseindustrynews.com/cruise-news/2024/03/seward-company-releases-plans-for-new-cruise-terminal-in-alaska/?fbclid=IwAR1eDpBooLSFtwfgMdPkgyQmMjjnEpZW-Lg8PyZR5CWTBpLx7uVpZ28RxGc
  3. Hello Everyone, I am traveling to Alaska with my wife in September 2024 onboard Radiance of the Seas. Our ship leaves 09/13, we are arriving in Anchorage on 09/12 spending the night. We are then taking the Costal Classic Alaskan Rail Road Train departing at 6:45AM Anchorage to Seward to get us to the ship. I did not book this through Royal Caribbean as I don't see it as an option anywhere, so I booked it directly through the Alaskan Railroad. I did some research and found alot of older posts pre covid about how taking the train works but wanted to confirm the process. From the sounds of it our baggage will be taken directly in Anchorage to the ship either by a truck or on the train. Also the train station in Seward is about a 11 minute walk from the pier. Is this still the case? Also does Royal Caribbean offer the Alaskan Railroad because if they do, I'd consider rebooking with them so I don't get left behind god forbid something happened. Thanks in Advance!
  4. what is wrong with this picture? got an extra day in there. Day Port 1 Vancouver, British Columbia Departs At 5:00 PM 2 Inside Passage (Cruising), Canada Day At Sea 3 Sitka, Alaska From 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM 4 Tracy Arm Fjord (Cruising), Alaska Day At Sea 5:00 AM - 9:00 AM 4 Juneau, Alaska From 1:00 PM - 10:00 PM 5 Haines, Alaska From 7:00 AM - 4:00 PM 6 Ketchikan, Alaska From 11:30 AM - 10:00 PM 7 Cruising Day At Sea
  5. We are heading out on our first Alaskan adventure in less than a week! I booked this cruise last June, two months before getting married/going on our honeymoon to Greece and somehow at the time, all I could think was “we’re going to Alaaaaska!” The days have flown by and suddenly this once-mystical seeming month of September 2023 is upon us and we’re finally going to get to see some majestic Alaskan scenery before all the glaciers melt completely. I am most excited to sit out on my balcony and see waterfalls streaming down mountains, and check things off my Alaskan wildlife checklist (which includes a bear, eagle, otter and whale)! Itinerary This 7-night sailing makes four port stops. We were originally slated to visit Skagway on Day 4 but got it swapped for ISP due to the (un)available dock space in Skagway after a landslide last year. I was so sad since I had White Pass Railroad tickets at an amazing price, I so wanted to ride it after seeing it on an episode of Mighty Trains on Smithsonian channel. Guess it means we’ll just have to make it back to Alaska again in the future! (PS. Where my Mighty Cruise Ships fans at??? Best show on TV) Day 1 - Monday - Departs Seattle, WA Day 2 - Tuesday - Cruising Day 3 - Wednesday - Sitka, AK Day 4 - Thursday - Icy Strait Point, Hoonah, AK Day 5 - Friday - Dawes Glacier & Juneau, AK Day 6 - Saturday - Cruising Day 7 - Sunday - Victoria, BC Day 8 - Returns to Seattle Who’s Going - my husband (Adrian) and I (Daryl) Cabin Back slumming it in an Ocean View Balcony on the 12th deck (12254). Alaska is wayyy pricier than the Caribbean so I couldn’t swing a JS this time as it has been consistently priced about $2k more than our balcony. I need that money for lavish excursions!! Pre-Purchases As usual, I had to stalk the DBP for awhile before purchasing, we finally got it at $62.99, the lowest price I have seen since the pandemic! I am guessing sales aren’t great on our sailing since others on September dates have reported $68 as the sale price. We have two specialty dinners booked at Izumi and Wonderland on nights 2 and 4. I am still thinking about adding Jamie’s on night 6... should I give in? It just doesn’t seem worth $49 each. We ate there on Navigator but that was back when it was priced around $32 which seems more reasonable for the fare. I can’t wait to see what Wonderland is all about! I am sure it’s a one-and-done, but figured we have to try it out since it will be the first ship we’ve be on that has it as an option. If all else fails, at least we’ll finally get to taste The World as a consolation prize. We have a two-device Voom plan this time, we will see how speeds compare to sailing in the Caribbean. I am going to try my best to keep the live-ness up on this blog! Pre-Cruise We are flying in a day early simply because it’s a Sunday and my husband and I will already have the day off. There were about 5 safe options that could’ve gotten us up the coast from San Diego on the morning of embarkation but since neither of us have been to Seattle, getting to see a new city was a bonus! We used A2S and got the tickets for $120 each on the day booking opened, now my Google flight tracker says the same exact flight costs $838 per person!! We’re staying at the Holiday Inn Downtown because it’s close to the Space Needle and was one of few hotels available because of 2 large Seattle conferences that start Monday. I booked it last October so I have to assume people trying to find a hotel right now are scrambling. Everything I want to see seems walkable from this location! While in Seattle we are planning on seeing Pike Place Market, walking the waterfront, riding the Wings Over Washington ride (one of my favorite DCA attractions is Soarin’) and visiting the aquarium. I have Space Needle tickets booked for embarkation morning at 10am, mostly since it should be a lot quieter than the alternative options on Sunday afternoon. This is also nice because I was planning on riding the North Star first thing on boarding to see the city but it’s still broken down and will be until Quantum’s next dry dock. Feel free to ask any Quantum/Alaska itinerary questions. Having sailed only Freedom, Oasis, Navigator and Brilliance we are so excited to try out this new (to us) class of ship! Of course these boards/RCblog have proved valuable in getting me up to speed on Quantum class so I would love to help out future cruisers any way I can. Been watching this countdown since it was in the mid-400’s!! Ahhhhh!
  6. Hi All, I'm going to Alaska for the first time a year from now (Aug. 2024). I would love to hear suggestions for Sitka (7.5 hrs), Skagway (10 hrs), Juno (7 hrs), and Victoria (5 hrs) excursions. There will be four of us, kids are 19 and 16. I could see doing one excursion that was $150-200 per person with the others being less expensive. I really think we'd like to go to Mendenhall in Juno. There has been posts about limiting the trips there and I don't want to be rushed with some of the combo packages being offered. Any help is appreciated.
  7. I have an Alaskan cruise next year, when do the Glacier Wilderness Explore Excursions become available to book?
  8. I'm hoping someone can get me an answer as it's not super clear - and my travel agent can't get me an answer until Monday. My fiance and I am booked on the 2024 Quantum realignment cruise from Hawaii to Vancouver, and then the 7 day Vancover-Alaska-Seattle the following week (our honeymoon). We are seeing things on Facebook that seems to indicate this will violate Passenger Vehicle Service Act (PVSA) rules. I'm struggling to understand if we (a) fully pack our luggage and disembark and (b) change cabins, why couldn't the B2B cruise becaus legal two seperately?
  9. Is this trip all the way to Carcross worth the time? Do you take the train round trip or one way with the bus the other way? If you take the bus in the other direction, which way is best to take the train? How comfortable are the buses? We are going in early July 2024 if this makes a difference. TIA
  10. Sorry if this is a silly question but I haven't cruised since the app was available. We are sailing to Alaska in July and have reserved the early seating time. My TA said it was 5:15 but the app says it's 5:30. There's nothing in my calendar. I know it's only 15 minutes and it doesn't really make a difference but I'm one of those crazy people that likes to have a pretty spreadsheet handy, lol. So when I look at the app, is the schedule I see on there for our trip or where the ship is currently located?
  11. I have this booked for our upcoming Alaska cruise and was wondering if anyone has done this and could offer some insight. We are in Skagway from 7am - 2pm. This tour is booked at 11am & it's 2 hours long. Do these types of tours normally leave from the ship or a meeting point in town? Not sure how early we should be looking to head out in order to be back in time to make the tour. Also, it says "ends up at the Brothel" so does that mean we need to get back to the ship on our own afterwards?
  12. This group was extremely helpful when I planned my last Caribbean cruise 3 years ago so here I am again. This time we are planning a trip with extended family so there may be 6-8 adults instead of just hubby & I. This was kind of last minute and we want to go next summer. I'm already overwhelmed. I reached out to MEI but haven't heard back yet. I am looking to the one way cruises as I want to travel to the Fairbanks area and go home from there. Will figure that part out once we book. Opinions on if it's better to do 2-3 days on land before or after the cruise? Not sure if we should book North or Southbound. Also, I'm directionally challenged so knowing what side of the ship is best for viewing the beauty of Alaska would be nice! The one way ship is Radiance. We won't have any kids with us & hubby & I are the only ones who have cruised before so I'm hoping it will be fine. I'm aware it's a smaller ship. For those who weren't sure to book roundtrip or one way I'd love to know how you made your choice. I know balcony rooms seem to be going quick and we need to book soon. I'm afraid to do so directly through RC as each group needs travel insurance. As overwhelmed as I am, it's exciting to be planning a cruise again! Appreciate any advice
  13. As Royal Caribbean kicks off the 2022 Alaska cruise season it's time to look North, all the way North... to the Southeast coast. The Southeast coast of Alaska that is. Serenade of the Seas sails from the Canadian port city of Vancouver, British Columbia heading North to Alaska and back, round trip to Vancouver. Itinerary Sun 01May2022 Vancouver, British Columbia - 5:00 PM Boarding Mon 02May2022 Inside Passage - - Cruising Tue 03May2022 Sitka, Alaska 8:00 AM 5:00 PM Docked Wed 04May2022 Tracy Arm Fjord, Alaska 5:00 AM 9:00 AM Cruising Wed 04May2022 Juneau, Alaska 12:00 PM 8:00 PM Docked Thu 05May2022 Hubbard Glacier (Cruising) 11:00 AM 2:00 PM Cruising Fri 06May2022 Ketchikan, Alaska 2:00 PM 10:00 PM Docked Sat 07May2022 Cruising - - Cruising Sun 08May2022 Vancouver, British Columbia 7:00 AM - Departure This is an unusual opportunity for Royal Caribbean International in a number of ways. First of all Vancouver roundtrip hasn't always been a Royal Caribbean International offering. Secondly an itinerary that includes sailing by two glaciers on Royal is not common. Thirdly, visiting Hubbard Glacier, the premiere tidewater glacier of Alaska, has traditionally meant sailing a one-way North or South itinerary on Royal. Lastly, sailing into Tracy Arm Fjord has not been offered by Royal in some time, even before the industry shutdown. Admittedly this thread may not be live at all times since the internet when sailing this far North can leave a lot to be desired. This year brings some additional requirements introduced since this cruise departs from another country (Canada) and that means satisfying both CDC requirements since we visit US ports and Canadian requirements since we sail from Canada. Despite the anticipated internet challenges as the cruise sails North I thought it would be helpful to discuss the additional requirements introduced by Canada this year due to the pandemic.
  14. I’m going to start by saying that I have excursion anxiety after a member of our travel party made us nearly miss the ship years ago. So many times I book through the ship because this circumstance really shook me up. However as we are sailing to Alaska this year I’m feeling like if there is anywhere to trust a 3rd party it’s Alaska. No language barriers, easy to contact them etc. Would you agree with this? I’m ready to book outside RC and my husband is still worried. also if anyone has amazing suggestions for Juneau or Skagway I’m all ears! 2 adults and our 7 year old.
  15. We are booked on an Alaskan cruise this coming June. A lot of the RC excursions are sold out. I found this Shore Excursions Group and was wondering if anyone had any experience booking through them instead of RC. They have some excursions we are interested in. Their website is: https://www.shoreexcursionsgroup.com/ My biggest fear in not booking directly with RC is the "return to ship guarantee" which you know you have with RC. This group says they have it as well. This is a big trip for us and I am slightly overwhelmed with all the options. Eek! Thanks!
  16. Curious to know if anyone has done an Alaska sailing from Seattle or Vancouver with Holland America, and if so how was the experience compared to RCL? The wife and I have only ever done Alaska on Celebrity and that was over a decade ago, but we have heard from colleagues and family who speak highly of Holland America, in terms of better service and food. A few family who have sailed HAL seem to prefer the experience on board as they have a very diverse Alaska program though not sure about the family demographic? Having only ever sailed Royal recently, what are some thoughts on Holland America for Alaska? They seem to have a great cruise-land tour program that RCL does not offer, and their ships boast on board lectures and chamber music though I also hear the ships shut down by 11 pm... Looking to do Alaska in 2023 when we return stateside again, nothing to Alaska from Singapore unfortunately.
  17. It seems that the engine parts for the Alaska sailings in August and September on Quantum, will not be done on time. I just received an email From Royal that our itinerary for the Sept 12th Sailing from Seattle has been changed to new ports and times "Dear Guest, Due to speed limitations caused by a technical issue with one of the ship’s engines, we’ve replaced our visit to Skagway, Alaska and Endicott Arm & Dawes Glacier. Instead, we’ll visit Ketchikan, spend more time in Juneau, and we’ll visit Sitka a day later. Your safety, and that of our crew, is always our top priority. Our ship has four engines, but one requires some repair and there’s a delay in receiving the parts needed. Additionally, another engine is scheduled for routine maintenance soon, which means we’ll have to reduce our overall speed. Our ships can safely sail in these kinds of situations at reduced speeds, and while we’re working to expedite the repair process, the global supply chain issues that we’re all experiencing are complicating this situation. The decision to modify our itinerary wasn’t taken lightly. We’ve done everything possible to minimize the impact to your time with us, and we’re terribly sorry for the inconvenience." Mon Seattle, Washington 4:00 PM Tue Cruising Wed Ketchikan, Alaska 7:00 AM 4:00 PM Thu Sitka, Alaska 8:00 AM 4:00 PM Fri Juneau, Alaska 7:30 AM 3:00 PM Sat Cruising Sun Victoria, British Columbia 5:00 PM 10:00 PM Mon Seattle, Washington 7:00 AM We previously had the Glacier Inside passage and Skagway in our itinerary. At least they are providing us with an onboard credit: $75 USD for Interior and Ocean View staterooms $100 USD for Balcony staterooms $200 USD for Suites" Hopefully this information helps anyone on this particular cruising and others in September. Although frustrating we have booked a glacier viewing excursion that hopefully will make up for the loss of the inside passage.
  18. We are taking a post-cruise excursion in Vancouver on the Serenade of the Seas in June 2022. Since we are staying overnight in Vancouver to fly out the next day, we decided to take a post-cruise excursion. Specifically, the Sea to Sky Experience and Shannon Falls with Airport Transfer excursion. We chose this excursion because it was on the list of places we wanted to see and since we are staying at the Fairmont Airport Hotel it is where we will be dropped off. We also chose this hotel because we have a morning US flight and the wanted convenience of being right their to catch our flight. I've searched around but couldn't find the answer to my question. If we leave our bags out the night before the end of the cruise, what happens to our bags? Do we claim them then lug them over to the excursion bus? Or do they load them on the tour bus? The tour leaves at 8:30 and ends at the airport. Thank you all for your great advice!
  19. Will be going on a cruise to Alaska soon. Which company should I book my whale watching excursion with? If you can, can you put a link to the website as well
  20. We are sailing on ML in a few weeks from Seward. Prior to joining the ship, we are doing a Celebrity Cruise Tour. I know we need a COVID test no more than two days before the land portion starts, which we will do before we leave home. Then we also need one no more than two days before the cruise starts. On boarding day (Friday) we take a bus from Denali to Seward to join the ship. I've read somewhere that they will stop somewhere in Anchorage where people can get COVID testing done. But, then I've also read that isn't true, that we need to either bring a self-test with us and do the testing (via tele-health monitoring) on our own, or arrange testing on our own. When I called Celebrity they said they will stop in Anchorage for testing, but I don't know if the person understood my question. Would anyone happen to know if they will be stopping somewhere for testing? I am sure it will be more expensive, but it would probably be more convenient. And I've also read that if you do the monitored at home test, that you can't use a cell phone or tablet for that, it has to either be a desktop or laptop computer. Which would be really inconvenient to have to bring a desktop computer!
  21. Going with our 3 grown kids and spouses/partners. Had to schedule that far out due to summer plans already in place for 2022. Really juiced about going since we have been pretty much locked down due to Covid. Mrs Fan and I retired Jan 2020, about 2 months before Covid slammed everything. We had hoped to travel a bunch, but it was not to be. We had to cancel an Alaska Cruise that was supposed to sail in May 2020. We've been to Alaska before with Princess, the others have not. We did a bunch of excursions on our last trip (float plane, whale watching, White Pass train). This time, I want to do a fishing charter for salmon or halibut at one of the stops. Mrs Fan says she will cancel unless she is booked for at least 1 spa day on board - LOL. Probably nothing else at the other stops, but I am telling the kids to do the White Pass Train. Never sailed with RCCL and really look forward to the new experience.
  22. RC cruise planner for our May 23-30, 2022 Alaska cruise on Quantum states, "Two70 and Theater capacity restrictions are allowing us to only offer one show reservation per guest for this voyage." Yikes! Can anyone tell me more about this? We enjoy the various shows on the RC cruises. Thanks for any info you can provide.
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