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Found 7 results

  1. Hello all! Hoping you enjoy this "live-blog" style recap of my first cruise. A little about myself and the trip: I was completely new to cruising before this trip. I knew it was something I wanted to do, and I knew that I would have time off in-between Christmas and the first Friday of the new year, so I decided it try it out. I tried to get a friend to come along, but ended up deciding to do a solo trip instead. I've done solo traveling in the past, so I was not worried about this aspect. Around the end of July, I worked with a family friend who is also a travel agent to find different cruises that fit my time and budget (including any flights that might be needed). I had looked at itineraries from other cruise lines as well, but this one stood out to me the most. Once I put down my deposit, I started some research and found Royal Caribbean Blog, which proved to be invaluable! Part of my goal with this trip was to see exactly how much I could do included with the cruise. I didn't book any excursions before my trip, or on-board. I didn't purchase any drink packages, preferring to pay by the drink as I realized I would most definitely not be able to keep pace to make the deluxe drink package worthwhile. I did receive $50 on-board credit through my travel agent when she booked for me. I used part of this for a lunch reservation at Chops Grill on embarkation day, which I booked online ahead of the cruise. I did not purchase any Voom packages ahead of time, or on-board. I thought it would be a nice way to start the year, with some technology disconnect. Itinerary 12/30/19 - Miami 12/31/19 - Key West 01/01/20 - Sea Day 01/02/20 - Perfect Day at Coco Cay 01/03/20 - Miami I am still fiddling around with some of the photos I took on this trip, so please feel free to ask any questions in between posts!
  2. Yay! So I booked my first EVER cruise! I am booked on a 12 day Ovation of the Seas from Sydney around New Zealand! The itineraries were released this past week. Thanks to the many people who have posted on these forums as I have lurked and learned from you all! I chose Ovation and leaned toward RCL because of these boards and Ovation was the newest ship in the area (though I think Princess Majestic might be newer). As an aviation geek I can definitely tell the difference between plane types but, I didn't know much about cruising and ships but these forums helped heaps and I am still learning! So I wanted to share a perspective from a Noob when booking a new cruise and hope to share my experience cruising in the future! Negative reviews: There are bound to be some rough currents; meaning, there are ALWAYS going to be whiners and grumps that complain about everything so take these with a grain of salt Positive reviews: There are going to be some over the top fabulousness reviews where everything was awesome...can everything REALLy be THAT awesome...also take these with a grain of salt. Research what cabin you want BEFORE bookings come out. I knew what cabin I wanted based on what was above, below, to the sides and even based on foot traffic and those whited out areas (which I avoided). I booked a forward balcony and it was only 200 more on the TOTAL, not per night. UNFORTUNATELY, the cabin I wanted wasn't showing up online. I wanted deck 9 and there was only one for the whole deck 9 and sailings were just released! I wanted starboard side but had to choose the only deck 9 cabin on the port! (more on this below) BOOK EARLY! I am not using an agent as I like to be in control. I booked via rcl.com Gratuities: for our 12 night cruise gratuities were added on by my choice just before payment and were clearly stated if you wanted to pay now or later. I opted to pay now and just pay the minimum deposit. Gratuities were $222 per person. On the same page it asks for traditional dining which gave the choice of 1730 or 2000. We chose 1730 because we also want to have time to go to the buffet later at night, oink! There was an option for my time dining but seems too much hassle for our first cruise. Keep up on Sales! So the day AFTER we booked our cruise RCL started a new promotion and of course got an email. I took the advice from many on here and did a dummy booking to see if it was cheaper and sure enough it was $256 CHEAPER! I did what Matt and you guys said to do and called up on my lunch break and with no waiting the girl on the phone said yes it is cheaper and she changed it for free! YAY! BUT WAIT....I wanted a specific cabin and asked politely if it were available because it wasn't showing on the website. She said is was available and saw it was the same price category and SCORE! We were now on the starboard side! EMAIL DINING: I emailed dining about a 2 topper. (like the lingo?) They replied and said that things were loaded about 50 days before sailing! So I will request again later. Thanks again for all info on these forums. No question (no matter how many times I saw asked) went unanswered. Cheers!
  3. We leave for our first RCI cruise in 25 days!! Yay!!! But I'm having some anxiety around dress codes. My boys are...casual at best. They are 15 and 12 and to have them wear khaki pants on a vacation is tantamount to torture. I would like to have dinner with them and my dad each evening, and I know dad will want to check out the MDR at least once or twice. My question is, we have late seating and I wonder how casual can my kids be? They live in athletic wear. We are shopping this weekend for clothes (another torture for them) and I want to make sure I get what they need. We also have reservations for Chops one night. Thanks everyone!!! Love the blog and the podcast!!
  4. Hi all! My husband and I are thinking of going on our very first cruise in December on the 4 night Bahamas cruise on the Enchantment of the Seas. I was hoping to get some input from previous cruisers on a couple questions/concerns: - What all is included in the cost of the trip? (I have read different things saying that no drinks are included or that a few drinks are included like water and tea. Just wanted to get an official answer!) - Is the Enchantment ship a stable ship? I know that you can't account for rough seas from a storm, etc. but my husband does tend to get motion sick but I have been hearing that stabilizers are being used a lot more often on cruise ships to help cut down the rocking. Hoping Enchantment uses this as well! Thank you in advance everyone! :)
  5. We are going on the Navigator Of The Seas for the first time In August after being on the Indy a few times was wondering if it has Freestyle Machines and does Sabor cater for someone who doesn't like spicy food as 3 of us do but 1 doesn't so can they do him a steak or a burger etc. Also I love the gym , is it as good as Indys and is it true there s a hot tub in it.
  6. I am a doctoral student (and fellow cruiser) looking to get some opinions from first-time cruisers about participation in online cruise communities and message boards. This is not intended to spam the message boards. I’m seeking help to complete a study as part of my program requirements. You will be asked a few questions about your participation in this community, as well as your upcoming cruise vacation. If you complete the survey within one week, you will be entered into a drawing to win one of two $50 Amazon gift cards. Your opinions are important and your responses are anonymous and confidential. There are no right or wrong answers. The survey should take 10-15 minutes to finish. Click the following link to begin the survey: https://msstatebusiness.co1.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_aXLlzpWuJdtUBBH Thank you for your help and happy cruising! Jennifer
  7. Hello it is going to be my first time on RCCL, my parents and I are going to Alaska on Jewel of The Seas. However, we have only ever done Disney before but decided we wanted to do something different because Disney was leaving out of Vancouver, and RCCL was leaving Seattle. I'm 22, and my biggest concern is that I have no idea how to meet people on RCCL. On Disney, everyone is recurring, and they even have a small group for people in their twenties who are on board to meet. I was not sure if RCCL has anything like this? My impression of RCCL is that it is more of a party ship, and that is something I'm not really used to and was not sure if there were activities for people my age, especially since it is an Alaskan cruise. Also, what do you suggest to wear for Jewel? I am assuming the same that I would wear on DCL, but was not sure if it was less or more formal than DCL. What excursions are also great to do, and what shows would you suggest? I am also a vegan, is there adequate dining for those who don't eat meat? Thanks!!
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