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I was wondering, would anyone mind sharing their embarkation day rituals? Is there something you like to do immediately as soon as you step on-board? Favorite place to be on the ship for sailing away? Should we do the 1430hrs introduction to the ship tour? We are a family of 3 to include a 13 year old daughter. Youth club registration? Oh, the safety drill I see we are at E4 location, does that take long? Life jackets required? Would love to hear some fun suggestions, thanks to everyone in advance! (We are in an OS so I believe that lounge may be an option.)
I had intended to do a semi-live review of the cruise but decided against due to ropey voom and time constraints of travelling with a 10 year old. I’m also aware that there was another live blog of the same cruise but it’s always nice to see things from two perspectives. This is my first review on here but I took so much good info prior to this cruise that I want to give a little back. I had had a 2.5 year break from cruising due to moving house and other reasons so felt a bit out of touch. So... the contents of this review may not be relevant to everyone as I travel alone with my 10 year old son. No drinks package (but we did the three night dining package), no late nights and not too much partying but lots of family fun. On this cruise we were meeting my parents on board as they had just taken the snowbird migration prior. This is our itinerary - Thursday 18th October - Fly London Gatwick to Fort Lauderdale with British Airways. Stay three nights in Lauderdale-by-the-Sea at Plunge Beach Hotel Sunday 21st October - Embark Adventure of the Seas Monday 22nd October - At Sea Tuesday 23rd October - Grand Cayman (tender) Wednesday 24th October - Costa Maya Thursday 25th October - Cozumel Friday 26th October - At Sea Saturday 27th October - Disembark and return flight to London Gatwick. A brief bit about our pre-cruise ... I rented a car from Thrifty (compact - Toyota Yaris) which did the two of us just fine to get to our hotel and an afternoon trip to sawgrass mills. I drive an automatic at home but stick shift (manual) is still very much the norm in the UK and there was a very confused family in the next row to us so UK travellers beware that almost all rentals in the US are automatic transmission. We collected and returned at the airport for ease and I used the Google Maps app on my phone rather than renting a GPS. It worked well and my roaming package was capped at 140 mins, 100 texts but unlimited data for £4.99 per day with my provider, O2. Next time, I’ll make sure and pack a screen mount bracket for my phone. Our hotel, Plunge Beach in Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, was just perfect. A beach from property with a well kept pool area and a lovely beach bar. It is directly across from a Publix (fantastic supermarket - need this in the UK!) so we were able to buy several meals including breakfast every day here and keep costs down. It become our morning routine to hit Publix at 7am then eat breakfast on the beach watching the sunrise There is a resort charge of $30 a day at Plunge but I felt this was great value As it included valet, bike hire, use of beach loungers, umbrellas and games/toys.