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So first off I wanted to say Thank You!! to everyone on this blog who helped to make this an amazing cruise for us. We returned yesterday from our 3-night Navigator sailing. We really did have a great time, and I was forearmed against so many mistakes/ wastes of time because of the advice from you great people! I did want to just let everyone know a couple of things we learned on this trip, some of which I've seen others ask about. Izumi To-Go: On our Nassau port day, Izumi was open for lunch. We didn't get a reservation - were told they weren't really needed for lunch and that Jamie's would be open that day instead. BUT we were able to get Izumi to-go. I've seen folks ask about that and wanted to just share. It took about 20 minutes, and they gave us a bag filled with $65 worth of sushi and appetizers which we ate in the Viking Crown Lounge next door. They didn't seem bothered about it at all and we made sure to tip and say thank you to the waiter for helping. We had an Ultimate Dining Package and were determined to get the most out of it. It was purchased for $69/pp and never dipped lower. We ate Chops lunch embarkation day, Hooked Night 1, Izumi Night 2, and Chops Night 3. I really wanted to try Jamie's Italian and when we asked they said it would be open on our Nassau port day. It wasn't, Izumi was. But at least I'll have another restaurant to look forward to next time. I don't know how to go about confirming which specialty restaurant will be open on the Nassau port day, but that would be good information for someone to find out! 🙂 Playmakers and others: On this Navigator sailing, RCCL charged then credited back our food purchased from Playmakers. Multiple people told us they would so I was ready to fight the charge if need be 😅They wouldn't do the same at The Bamboo Room. One of the people who told us about Playmakers also told us the package would work on Captain Jacks at CoCo Cay, though we didn't try that out. Also, they DID charge me for Johnny Rockets. I'm going to try calling and disputing this since everything said it was included, but we'll see how it goes. Slides: If you want to try the slides aboard ship, go early! We got there fairly early on the Nassau day but apparently not enough. The line, especially for The Blaster (tube slide) was not quick. Once I got to the top I realized the lifeguards were waiting to set people up/ talk to them/ go over safety rules until after the guards at the bottom gave them the all clear signal. As a former lifeguard at a water park, they could really speed that up if they just blocked the slide with their bodies and did it all while the previous riders were getting out. We went about halfway up the tower before hitting the line and it still was about a 25 minute wait. The other mat slide had a shorter line and went slightly quicker. CoCo Cay: I've been to Labadee but never to CoCo Cay. It was wonderful! They were still putting up a few new trees and the existing ones were a little burnt from Dorian but everything else was really top notch. We spent most of the day at Chill Island with a stop at Oasis Lagoon just to check it out. There were plenty of open loungers at the beach but not nearly as many at Oasis Lagoon. Really there were plenty but also a lot of seat saving. I was curious and may try this next time I'm going; there were a couple of cabanas at Chill Island open but ALL of the day beds were empty. Anyone have experience just going to the excursions desk and making an offer to them? They were asking $199 for day beds before our cruise and I would've happily paid $99 for the day. Just a thought. Well, thank you all again for your help and if you have any questions please let me know. Now I'm restarting my count down for our April sailing on Independence with the kids! ~ Paul
What happens after the cruise? Cruise Post Partum How do you cope with post cruise memories? The loss? You deserve better, more. The breakfast menu left the evening before on your stateroom door, a knock on the door with your breakfast when you get up in the morning. Or, going to the main dining room/windjammer for a ready made breakfast every morning. Being served Breakfast, lunch and dinner. Food available all the time. The endless food, deserts, eating every 15 minutes. Find yourself going for an ice cream cone whenever you want. Ordering or getting 2 of something. No extra charge, already included. No need to carry cash, credit or all sorts of ID. Your cruise seapass is all you need. Itâ€™s your room key, your payment card, your access card. Every time you leave your stateroom, you come back and it is all fixed up again. You look for new things left in your room by your personal room steward. Donâ€™t like something or want something, all you have to do is call your stateroom attendant. Bring it to their attention. There is a new schedule every day that you can follow or not. You can stay on the ship or get off at the ports. Order something special at dinner and itâ€™s there for you every evening. They remembered, they call you by name. You are important. A professional photographer wanting to take your picture at every turn to remember your experiences. If you got a beverage package, endless drinks. All kinds of drinks, new drinks, specialty drinks, island drinks. No worries about driving home, finding your place, ect. No car worries. Where to park, is there enough gas in the tank, do I have enough time to get there, did I forget something. Just walk were ever your going, 5-15 minutes from anywhere in the ship. Hungry, walk through the windjammer, on your way. Endless parties and all you have to do is show up. Very little, to no planning. Just get yourself there, be included and have fun. Endless fun. And if it gets too much, just leave. Continual professional production shows available. No driving for hours, just walk there and sit down and enjoy. Want to sit next to the stage, sit next to the stage. Want to sit in the balcony, sit in the balcony. Where ever you want. If you want you can even be a part of some of the shows, or not. Totally your choice. Schedule yourself something to do every minute or, sit by the pool and do nothing, your choice. Get that massage, spend time at the spa. Consult with the experts on how to look and feel younger. Get a massage outside on a beach. Get wild. Visit great and exotic places daily. Have adventures, exploring new worlds and activities at every port. Experience things you would never do at home. Step out of your comfort zone or not. You are the captain of your vacation. Thereâ€™s no one to tell you no you canâ€™t do that because you donâ€™t have the time, money, means. Just do it. Itâ€™s included. All inclusive. Food, Shows, Ports, Room, Drinks, FUN. Then reality sets in, sometimes the last day, sometimes at the airport making connections, sometimes the day you get home. Your going to be living on land again, in some real space with an actual separate bedroom and bathroom. Your glad your going home, but then again, you have to face what you left: work, relationships, commitments, deadlines, quotas, ect. You have to play catch up on the things that didnâ€™t get done while you were gone. Put out fires at work, find out whos been doing what to whomâ€¦.. What to do? Arrange your cruise pictures and relive your cruising experience. Next time take better pictures and include people and yourself in the pictures. Talk about the great time you had. Start planning your next cruise, and maybe even book it. Start saving again and start the process all over again. Counting your cruise points you earned and what is it going to take, to get to the next level. How many cruises? Trying to figure out if you want to try another cruise company, new destinations, new friends, new experiences. All the choices. Try to relive some of the experiences. Go to a show, plan an event, go to a restaurant with a buffet. Dream. Tell your therapist. What do you do in between cruises? What do you do to get over missing the cruise life?