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  1. Welp, it's happened. 2 days out from our Anthem NE/Canada cruise and we have a Tropical Storm headed to the NorthEast. Will have my eye on Tropical Storm Florence. It doesn't sound like it'll be too strong, and will hopefully turn north of us. But I imagine this would be a hard cruise to divert, unlike the Eastern vs Western Caribbean? I know Anthem is a bit infamous for getting caught in storms, so I really hope we aren't one of them! ? https://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/where-is-tropical-storm-florence-headed-in-the-atlantic/70005957
  2. My wife and i will be sailing the Jewel of the Sea the first week of April. We are flying into San Juan one day early. We are considering staying at the Courtyard San Juan Mirmar and I'd like any recent experiences. 1.) Is the hotel nice, clean and comfortable? 2.) Has the hotel recovered from the hurricane? 3.) Is the hotel convenient from the airport? 4.) Is the hotel convenient to Old Town? 5.) Is the hotel convenient to the cruise port? Any and all guidance will be appreciated. Brad
  3. Royal Caribbean has a total lack of empathy towards customers that have been impacted by Hurricane Irma that have already paid for trips. I reside in South Florida and my home was heavily damaged in the storm. I called Royal Caribbean to see if I could reschedule our trip or even transfer the tickets to someone else to go in our place. I was advised that I could not and the only option was to cancel, but if I cancel we would loose all of our money. I was hurt and angry that Royal Caribbean did not have any contingency plan in place for hurricane victims like myself that have been impacted. Royal Caribbean advised me that they could not make any type of exception. So we moved heaven and earth to make this trip so we would not lose all our money. Please note (we are still going on a trip while our home is still damaged and waiting on the insurance company so we can make repairs to date). Today I received a email advising me that our itinerary has been changed to Jamaica and Nassau Bahamas. Once again I called into Royal Caribbean's Customer Service to see if there was anything that can be done and I was told "NO". We would have never booked a trip to go to the ports that have been chosen for us for the amount of money that we are paying. We have visited those islands countless times and have spent way less. And I definitely did not want to spend my anniversary going back. I am very angry and disappointed in the way that Royal Caribbean is handling this situation. I am also sadden that they don't have any type of alternative options for us. It shows a lack of empathy and total disregard for customers like myself.
  4. Never were truer words spoken than what I typed in the title ...... My wife, Tyna, and I did the exact same cruise last week, that we did last year --- A 5-nighter to Bermuda, in September, on Grandeur OTS out of Baltimore. Expecting the same experience as last year was our first mistake -- even though the ship, cabin, itinerary were identical, the cruise experience was completely different, yet, so much fun..... First off, I must give a "Shout Out" to the Cruise Maryland staff ...... We pulled in the parking lot at about 9:45 and were on the ship by 10:45 ..... had our first Bloody Mary in hand by 11:00 ---- The perfect way to start and enjoy our "Breakfast of Champions" Now mind you, we, along with others that we had made contact with, were watching The Weather Channel like a hawk..... we knew it wasn't going to be easy thanks to Jose, and we were right (I scoped the water splashing out of the swimming pool - who needs a Flowrider? Right?) ---- I must give a lot of credit to the Captain ..... normally, as you come out of the Chesapeake, you go south towards Cape Hatteras, then a track SE to Bermuda ---This time, we came out of the bay, we went due east to stay ABOVE the storm, then arrive at Bermuda from the north ---- Then, on the way back, we stayed to the south of the storm all the way west, then went north to the Bay...... as we were in Bermuda, Jose passed to our west ..... we did a sort of loop around it...... Perfect. NEVER DID WE EVER THINK OUR SAFETY, OR THE SHIPS STRUCTURAL INTEGRITY WAS IN ANY JEOPARDY!!! Fortunately, through all this planning, my wife bought every conceivable seasickness remedy she could find "Just in Case" --- People got sick on this cruise because of the motion (luckily, we weren't two of them) ---- I'd file that under the category "Proper Planning" .... Now, to get to the fun ---- the vision my wife had was to enjoy relaxing around the pool, enjoying some frosty beverages and listening to the calypso music ....... yeah, outside of Sail-Away in Baltimore and again as we left Bermuda --- that just didn't happen (in fact, they drained all pools and shut down the top outdoor deck AND the Promenade Deck that wraps around the ship under the life boats because of the wind and the rocking....Plus, in Bermuda, many excursions were canceled due to rough seas ..... Fortunately, again, knowing what the weather was going to be like - we rescheduled our snorkeling excursion to instead, visit the Crystal Caves (I highly recommend) For us, we took what many considered to be lemons, and turned them into lemonade..... We just let each day "happen" and see where it takes us ..... Tyna caught me on video ATTEMPTING to dance to Thriller on the Centrum Stage night one ..... It was as ugly as you can imagine (Thanks Bud Lite) --- even as I type this, I'm chuckling ...... so much fun. On another day, we did the Sushi Making Class in Izumi (I tolerate Sushi at best -- she loves it) --- it was so much fun, hers looked it was done by a professional, not to be gross, mine looked like a turd --- We laughed so hard for hours over that. One evening, we watched Beauty and the Beast (the new version) on the big screen ..... Yes, my "man card" got taken away on that one, but so did a lot of others ....incredibly peaceful. We met some amazing people, saw some people that were on with us last time, that not only joined us this time, but also will be sailing with is in April of 2019. Once again, I'm shown how, when you're on a cruise, you're amongst family. Here are a few pictures --- including Tyna during the Sushi making class .... and .... us doing a little smoochie, smoochie in one of Bermuda's famous Moongates (with Grandeur in the background) --- a stunning shot if you ask me. Anyhow, lessons learned .... be prepared for the weather, don't expect your next cruise to be anything like your prior cruises, and go with the flow and let yourself be stupid and have fun --- even if that includes attempting to dance to Michael Jackson's "Thriller" (I'm laughing again as I type this) Oh, and next time we go to Bermuda -- and yes, we are, it'll be October of 2018 --- still in Hurricane season , just not at its prime. Mark
  5. Intro/Pre-Embarkation Like so many others we originally had planned to set sail on Oasis on September 10, 2017 for a 7 night Eastern Caribbean Itinerary. Well, that is until Irma (Hurricane Irma) crashed our party. After several days of late night tweeting with Royal Caribbean's Meteorologist, James Von Fleet we got final word that our cruise would begin on September 13 and consist of a 4 night sailing to Cozumel. This wasn't our dream cruise but we were happy and grateful none the less that it didn't get cancelled. We opted to sail and receive 50% of our cruise fare in onboard credit and the other 50% for a future cruise credit. This made it a deal hard for us to resist, as it is basically a free cruise. If anyone wants to hear about our pre cruise adventure/trip/Orlando shore excursion/storm chasing, is be happy to share that in a future post. I travel with my husband, Randall and my almost 3 year old, Sarah. Much of my perspective and observations have to do with what cruising looks like with a toddler and Texan who loves the casino and avoids the Windjammer like the plague. We chose this sailing, ship, and date for a few reasons...let me explain: 1. We originally had booked Allure of the Seas for the week of Labor Day. We chose that week because of the free day off (I work so my time off is limited). We also knew we wanted to try an Oasis Class ship since we had loved our Liberty of the Seas Western Caribbean cruise last year. The girl at the Next Cruise office said Allure was her favorite ship so we rolled with it. 2. Oasis became an option only when I saw a group rate with a kids sail free promo on one of the Facebook pages I follow. So after inquiring, the price was significantly lower for Oasis a week later. Plus at the time I thought I'd be going to Puerto Rico and that gave me the chance to see my family. 3. We knew we wanted to go to Labadee And both the Allure and Oasis had Labadee as ports of call (we'll try again next year, Labadee) 4. My husband really wanted an ocien view balcony and we got a great cabin mid ship. 5. The Dreamworks Experience, my daughter loves this so it's a priority for us when booking. In the end I think we made the right choice both for switching to Oasis as our first Oasis Class ship (won't be the last ?) and for choosing to do the 4 night altered cruise. Thanks for reading, tomorrow I'll take y'all on the journey that was Embarkation Day and the run down of the stuff we did on day 2 ? - Cristina Myers
  6. I have 2 questions. 1. I am scheduled to be on a cruise leaving Port Canaveral on Monday on the Majesty of the Seas and going to the Bahamas. It looks like Hurricane Matthew will effect the cruise is some way. How will I now if anything changes with the itinerary or if the cruise will be canceled? 2. Is there a refund or the cost of this cruise toward another if it is canceled?
  7. The first hurricane of the season, Danny. 75 miles per hour and growing. Danny's winds today, Thursday morning, have increased to 120 k (75 mph) and additional strengthening is forecast during the next two days, As reported by the U.S. National Hurricane Center . Hope your not cruising around these waters over the next few days. Need to keep an eye on this one. Photo from NOAA
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