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Paige

When to buy the digital photo package?

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So, on these boards, I have read that if a person buys the digital photo package, then during the cruise, they should have as many photos as possible taken in order to maximize the value. That makes sense. However, I have also read a comment from one passenger who says she only got about 20 pictures in the package even though her group posed for many more,  and other people got many more pics ( one person said that they got 133 pictures.)

So my question is, can I buy the digital package toward the end of the cruise? The purpose of buying it later would be to make sure we had enough pictures to make it worthwhile. So, is that possible, or do we have to buy it at the beginning of the week?

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We haven't purchased the package, so I can't give advice on price, but some people have stated that the facial recognition system which RCI uses can influence the number of pictures that are "captured" by your account.  This is in addition to the pictures you register with a photographer by giving your stateroom number.  I did see an ad in a recent cruise compass for $150 for 34 professional pictures.  I recall seeing flashdrives/downloads for about $250 on the ship, but I suggest you check with someone who purchased a package.  You might compare these figures with what you see in Cruise Planner.

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19 hours ago, Paige said:

So, on these boards, I have read that if a person buys the digital photo package, then during the cruise, they should have as many photos as possible taken in order to maximize the value. That makes sense. However, I have also read a comment from one passenger who says she only got about 20 pictures in the package even though her group posed for many more,  and other people got many more pics ( one person said that they got 133 pictures.)

So my question is, can I buy the digital package toward the end of the cruise? The purpose of buying it later would be to make sure we had enough pictures to make it worthwhile. So, is that possible, or do we have to buy it at the beginning of the week?

I'm planning to purchase the package for my upcoming cruise but just waiting for it to show up in my cruise planner.  The prices I have seen vary slightly by ship and I believe it's cheaper to purchase pre-cruise. I've seen on-board prices that range from $249-$329 for the digital all inclusive.  

If you have children (under the age of 21) staying in another stateroom, you would need to ensure they were linked to your package to have them included.  Because of the facial recognition, I've read that some have had to check with the photo desk daily to ensure any "missed" photos were included.  I think it order to capitalize you'll have to have photographers take your picture whenever you see them.  This way you know you've taken enough shots.  They'll obviously be visual upon your embarking/disembarking the ship and at formal nights.     

I know it can be purchased towards the end of the cruise and sometimes RCI offers discounts on the packages during the cruise.  The only downside I can see purchasing later in the week is some of the photos may not be linked to your stateroom and you may not remember which ones to look for.  Since they'll be digital, the hard copies may no longer be out for display.  I've read recently that on certain ships there's a kiosk that you can view your photos from as they don't place them all out for display.     

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Yes, on the Harmony, there are Kiosks, so you don't see the actual prints we used to see on smaller ships.  You do everything on a terminal, and there seemed to be 20 or more of them.    My Cruise Planner for a September 2019 trip shows about $250 for the unlimited digital package and $200 for 20 professional photos.  Not sure how that compares with other cruises.

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We paid £150 for the digital package on a 14 night cruise last year and were really pleased as came away with over 300 photos. Once the photographers knew we had the package they made a point of looking out for us. As we were on indy we could go and check them on the terminals and if any were missing the staff were able to locate them for you 

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18 minutes ago, ChessE4 said:

Yes, on the Harmony, there are Kiosks, so you don't see the actual prints we used to see on smaller ships.  You do everything on a terminal, and there seemed to be 20 or more of them.    My Cruise Planner for a September 2019 trip shows about $250 for the unlimited digital package and $200 for 20 professional photos.  Not sure how that compares with other cruises.

My Allure sailing is Sept 1 and still nothing there yet.  I saw Grandeur prices last month were $249

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On my recent Harmony cruise, I purchased the "All digital Photos" package for $249 pre-cruise.  I saw this also advertised "on sale" on the ship for $299, so purchasing it pre-cruise was definitely far cheaper.  Had two other rooms (with minors) linked to our cabin, and got over 150 pictures.  I reviewed our pictures at a kiosk on the ship a couple of times.  I noticed we were missing pictures (our embarkation group photo, and some specific formal night pictures), and just spoke to a representative in the kiosk area.  I gave the approximate date of time of both photo sets were we missing, and they had were able to add them to my portfolio by the next day.  This worked out very easily.

With the facial recognition, it most certainly isn't perfect.  There was another family on board that must have had similar "digital signatures" to us, as there were about 25 or so pictures from them that I had removed from our portfolio.  Again, it was easy removing them.

Got a link about 3 days after the cruise, and was able to easily download all the pictures in one ZIP file.  Overall, we were very happy with the digital photo package.

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50 minutes ago, MarvinS said:

On my recent Harmony cruise, I purchased the "All digital Photos" package for $249 pre-cruise.  I saw this also advertised "on sale" on the ship for $299, so purchasing it pre-cruise was definitely far cheaper.  Had two other rooms (with minors) linked to our cabin, and got over 150 pictures.  I reviewed our pictures at a kiosk on the ship a couple of times.  I noticed we were missing pictures (our embarkation group photo, and some specific formal night pictures), and just spoke to a representative in the kiosk area.  I gave the approximate date of time of both photo sets were we missing, and they had were able to add them to my portfolio by the next day.  This worked out very easily.

With the facial recognition, it most certainly isn't perfect.  There was another family on board that must have had similar "digital signatures" to us, as there were about 25 or so pictures from them that I had removed from our portfolio.  Again, it was easy removing them.

Got a link about 3 days after the cruise, and was able to easily download all the pictures in one ZIP file.  Overall, we were very happy with the digital photo package.

Did you have to strategically seek out photographers to get that amount of shots?  Also, as far as your kids were concerned, were they photographed while out doing there own thing away from you?   

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12 minutes ago, Mr. Candyman said:

Did you have to strategically seek out photographers to get that amount of shots?  Also, as far as your kids were concerned, were they photographed while out doing there own thing away from you?   

No, we didn't specifically seek them out.  We just instructed the kids that any time they posed for a picture, they were asked for their cabin number, they gave them ours.  This helped to get the photos directed to the correct portfolio.  Even on Cococay, there were many photographers taking pictures, so got many of the kids' pictures as they came off the of the various water slides.

During the formal night picture shots, we were easily able to get 8-10 pictures per "background" doing various poses and combinations (kids only; parents only; full family; etc), so they added up fairly quickly.  They even took 4 shots of our embarkation photo in various poses (standing only; waving; etc).

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3 minutes ago, MarvinS said:

No, we didn't specifically seek them out.  We just instructed the kids that any time they posed for a picture, they were asked for their cabin number, they gave them ours.  This helped to get the photos directed to the correct portfolio.  Even on Cococay, there were many photographers taking pictures, so got many of the kids' pictures as they came off the of the various water slides.

During the formal night picture shots, we were easily able to get 8-10 pictures per "background" doing various poses and combinations (kids only; parents only; full family; etc), so they added up fairly quickly.  They even took 4 shots of our embarkation photo in various poses (standing only; waving; etc).

That was sort of going to be my plan of action.....glad to hear that it should work.  Thanks for the input.

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1 hour ago, Yo2slick said:

Stupid question, when purchasing the photo package only 1 passenger in the stateroom needs to purchase it correct?  

Correct, that is what most people who have posted have done.   The photos are tied to the stateroom and whichever credit card is on file for that room.   But there are some families who have multiple staterooms with extended families.  Not everyone is in the same picture, etc.  So in that case you might need to re-think your photo strategy.   We have only ordered "free photos" we get through the loyalty program or take our own pictures.

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We are going on the Oasis to the Western Mediterranean in September for our 45th anniversary.  I thought the photo package would be a great way to be sure we had photos to remember the occasion.  Does anyone know if it ever goes on sale on cruise planner or if the $249 is a good price?

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