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Posts posted by zombiehunter

  1. Thanks for all the replies. Yes my vast knowledge of waiting tables let me know that sometimes people join their party late... You deal with it. It also let's me know that my job isn't over once I take an order.


    I did walk over to the bars, I did try the wandering alcohol minstrels, it was consistently 10-15 minutes for a drink with maybe three under five. So yes...I probably spent 6-8 hours waiting for drinks over the course of the vacation. Except the first day when I was paying for each.


    As far as sharing my drink package... Lighten up, Francis. The 15 drink rule is partly to keep people from getting totally sloshed and partly because of the abusers. I guess I could have just dumped them out or made a stick about not liking them... But it's vacation and three shared drinks does not an abuser make.


    I definitely looked at the app to check my drinks and it didn't show mine vs my gf so I just added to what was there. It was a mess with no real way to prove or disprove anything.


    We did have a good time though. I just see things that could be handled better. And they're not huge expensive things, just small common sense fixes. Like let me use my drink package for a bucket of beer, if I share them then that's on me and my 15 but it would save three trips to the bar.


    I'm not sure who we'll sail next. I kind of want to do RCL for the laser tag haha


    And I was on Dream, 2.27-3.2 from Galveston

  2. Just got back from my first cruise in a long while (other two were RCL, Granduer and Explorer) and the wait times for almost all services were terrible. I don't think I went from "I want a drink" to having a drink in my hand in less than ten minutes with many times being 15 or more. I'm talking showing up early for trivia and not getting back to my group until question 9. MDR service had one good experience, every other time it was like once they got my order I didn't exist anymore. Wandering servers were few and far between and getting one to actually take a drink order required way more than the usual quick eye contact or arm up gesture. MDR server just ignored my app request and brought me overcooked prime rib (which still wasn't bad).

    I had the drink package and maxed it out two out of three days, granted both days I gave a few drinks to my bro in law or sister because I just didn't like the drink or changed my mind after ordering. But The second time I had given away one drink and was told at 330p I had used my last drink. I'd woken up at 9. If I had had that many drinks I'd have been plastered and falling over and with my waiting...I'd also have been in line for more than half of the total time I'd been awake. Annoyingly, there was no way to prove I'd drank my drinks because I'm a normal person and don't keep my receipts but going through the sail app saw one Mich Ultra that I KNOW I didn't drink. I was willing to accept that they just hit the wrong button. But going through the app it almost looked like they were counting sodas and my one coffee drink (poor gf was frozen solid) was counted against me. I thought juices were included but could never find them at the buffet. 

    My steward was cool. He made a penguin when I asked him to 🙂 gf was super surprised and it made me look awesome haha


    Food lines...dear lord. Pizza...didn't even bother half the time. Burgers and Mexican? I had each once because of all the times I walked by there were only the two times that I wouldn't have had to wait with 25 people. And the time I did wait for Mexican when it was my turn the guy behind the glass decided to walk off to restock the entire thing...I worked restaurants in my youth...where's their guy for that? Who just looks the next person in line in the face and walks away? Same happened repeatedly for drinks. Drinks...it's a cruise. People drink A LOT of frozen drinks. Why are there NO frozen drink machines? Why isn't the bartender yelling "anyone else for a Miami Vice?" and then making five at a time? Or the Alchemy bar having two bartenders...each drink is a work of art...staff it appropriately. Mmmm blue cheese stuffed olives 😄 and then the bartender there took five orders and made them all in some weird order where I got my dirty vodka martini last. When I bartended service bar, I took my chits and prioritized appropriately. 


    OOOOH let'ts not forget the time we joined my bro in law and sister in the MDR for breakfast. They had already had their food when we sat down. After waiting and waiting and having servers walk by me a dozen times I literally stood up and flagged someone down...still didn't help. Someone else walked over, started to take my order then said "hold on" and walked away. Like really?


    I thought Pig and Anchor was REALLY good...but I'm easy to please when it comes to smoked meat. I was bummed it was only open for 2.5 hours on sea days only. But I get that, can't really prep it...have to make it then sell what you have. The Blue Iguana and Guy's Burger Joint were both really good! Like really really good. One of those should be open 24 hours a day too!

    Was totally unprepared for the culture shock of no straws. Even though we all brought tumblers with straws it was kind of scary how expectant you really get to see a straw. Not complaining about it, it was just weird and kind of made me mad at myself for how reliant on straws I am. The sugar straws for frozen drinks were a nice touch as were the noodles subbed in for olive stabbers. I liked the lack of straws.

    I was surprised that with everything going on, Norovirus, flu, covid19, there wasn't anyone enforcing handwashing before common dining areas. Maybe I missed the literature that says it doesn't help?


    I know this sounds like the rambling of a man who's impossible to please but I'm really actually very easy to please. Like bordering on simple and easily entertained by a shiny red ball easy to please. So I guess my question boils down to is this pretty standard or did we just get a crap roll on this trip? I know Dream is consistently rated highly but my experience was not one of a consistently good staff. The hilarious anecdote to sum it up on was that our last dinner was the best service and after saying something to my sister she said "that's funny because I could see when we sat down that the server was having an obviously bad day and was pissed at someone about something."

  3. Worth it to me because of the flat rate and everything that's included. We did the Premium Package. $55 is NOT hard to drink in a day when it includes bottled water, soda, beer, wine, frozen NA drinks and liquor. A Captain and coke was like $7.50, bottle of water is a couple bucks...it's just nice not to have to think about what I'm spending. It's also nice to go "you know what? I'll try that random drink the bartender suggested" and not worry about liking it.


    What really grinds me gears though are the people "sharing" the packages. Just jacks up the price for everyone else on board. Even more than that are the passengers who don't even try to hide what they're doing.

  4. Third cruise, contemplating a suite of some variety.


    I was looking at the GS because they seem sweet and was thinking of sharing it with another couple because on our last cruise someone had said something about doing just that. Are there suites with separate sleeping areas or are they all one bedroom and then a pull out sofa? I'm trying to think of an option that gives both couples privacy.

  5. It was my first cruise and I had a good time. The ship was incredibly small but the service was really great. I know it's still a huge ship but we ran into the same people constantly it just felt like there weren't that many places to be. Also, the Centrum for shows was lackluster. Get there early and get a mid level seat or you won't be seeing anything. The options of things to do that weren't sit around and drink, drink and gamble or drink and shop were sparse. Fortunately, I like drinking.


    Food was good, pool area was nice, service was fantastic, everything was really easy to get to since it wasn't far away. I got seasick one morning and my ex could run to the WJ and be back with bacon in like 30 seconds. It did help my queasy tummy. Gotta love greasy food. The trip down the Chesapeake was really cool. There is a lot to see out there. Bring a deck of cards and prepare to make new friends at the bar or at the pool.

  6. Might want to think about getting them a used DSLR for the same price. I took a Nikon D40 on my first cruise and my pictures turned out way better. Stick it on P and hand it to a stranger for a quick "hey can you take this picture?" Or better still, hand it to the guy who already has a camera around their neck. They love taking pictures and usually have no worries taking them for other people.

  7. We are leaving from Cape Liberty on Sunday for our first time. Two questions I would be grateful for any insight on:


    1. If you arrive 10-10:30 as many recommend, can you get right on even though the "recommended time" for our Deck 7 is 1:00 PM? We are in a balcony cabin (not suite) and this is our first cruise on Royal Caribbean.


    2. Does anyone know how much of the parking lot has been wiped out with snow piles from the recent storm? Do you think there will be any issue finding a space? We want as little stress as possible to begin our 7 day trip. Our other option is a limo to/from home for $93 each way.


    Thanks for any recommendations!


    Um...do the limo. It's $20/day so $140 vs zero stress and a nice ride in a limo for $56 more. Maybe make some friends on here and split it further?


    Does anyone have any suggestions on a hotel that will let us park a car there for the cruise and does a shuttle to and from the boat?

  8. Ultimately, the package is intended for the person who purchased it. Anything outside of that is quite literally stealing. Does that stop people from abusing it? Absolutely not. You'll see threads throughout here that show people talking about how that is there express intention...to buy the package and use it for their cabin mate or cruise friends. I know people who've done it with great success and were never questioned by on board staff. Really though, how much is a chocolate milk?


    Also, it's annoying to worry the whole time if someone is going to call you out on it.

  9. What I saw on my cruise was that all the MDR pics were blown out (way too much flash everything was white), they didn't offer digitals (which I could have edited at home) and the prices were ridiculous. My suggestion would be to invest (and it is an investment if you're going to be doing this often) in a basic DSLR and learn to use it. For $300 you can take your own GOOD pictures, of whatever you want, forever.


    The cruise photogs were using Nikon D300S's and D90s with Speedlight flashes, I was using a D40 (8 year old 6.3 mpeg entry level camera with kit lenses and a pop-up flash) and because I had a basic idea of what I was doing my stuff came out significantly better (albeit I still suck at white balance so I had to correct that at home). There's also no shortage of people willing to take your picture so set up what you need and hand it off and you're in business.

  10. I'm a walking pharmacy on board. I take just about anything I could think of needing for anything. For $20 you can get everything you might need at Walmart and it'll fit in a baggie. Other things you can do if you feel regularity is an issue is to make sure you drink plenty of fluids and hit the walking track for a lap or two every day. That mobility makes you poo :) Same advice I give my patients.

  11. So my assumption is the OP will be a "one post wonder" and not come back for any clarification. I'm not an RCI "cheerleader", but this one is on an either risk adverse or incompetent (but unfortunately fully licensed and credentialed) doc!


    Remember (from numerous previous posts, and onboard information) that the ship's doctor is legally an independent contractor and RCI assumes no responsibility for their action or inaction. That provides RCI legal top cover and leaves the doc hanging out to dry. With the OPs history, there's no way on earth any ER would do more than a quick rule out and release, which was what happened. The ship's doc was unwilling to accept that risk and offloaded his or her case on the ER (if you know an ER doc or nurse, this happens all the time).


    Frankly, I hope the OP has private travel insurance and the insurance company goes after the quack that put them in this position. But, this one ain't on RCI, unless they violated their own policies and didn't hire a qualified physician...


    All the time.


    Welcome to Cruise Critic.



    Ignore the RCI fanboys who always side with the cruise line no matter how egregious they acted. So sorry this happened to you on what was to be a 40th anniversary cruise. Assuming what you described is accurate, this was a ridiculous and avoidable overreaction by the cruise line. Very cold and thoughtless they would do this and it should cause people to think twice about sailing with them if they do not make this right. I hope you are able to procure some recourse; you definitely deserve a full refund of all expenses and they should offer you some compensation on top of this to try and make things right. Best wishes to you.


    And ignore the people who don't know anything about medicine.


    Medically speaking:


    They did ABSOLUTELY the right thing. Strokes present with those symptoms. Meningitis presents with photophobia and severe light sensitivity. If you're not aware, meningitis is very contagious and very fatal. I have a similar job to that of "ship nurse". It comes down to a judgement call and unfortunately they made it at your expense. I do the same thing all the time "Oh, you're reporting symptoms of ________" then I look at everything and make my call.


    Speaking to the situation:

    You're a long time sufferer of migraines. As such I have to assume you've had migraines so bad that you've either ended up hospitalized or ended up bedridden for days at a time. KNOWING this...why wouldn't you spring for the $30 travel insurance RCI offers? Knowing that they JUST had a HUGE norovirus outbreak and KNOWING that they're going to be hypervigilant (probably explains the medic at your muster) you have some responsibility to plan ahead. (Possibly ignore this as I think you did have some kind of travel insurance for the outlined reasons).


    I'm a big fan of holding people accountable, but I don't think RCI has much here. They acted in good faith to you and their other customers. They know that people are going to hide symptoms (see previous noro outbreak as evidence), it's human nature. I wouldn't be surprised if they have IR cameras taking heat videos of everyone on board all the time.


    Although, it sounds like you have travel insurance. So I'm not sure why this is an issue. File with your insurance company and let it be their problem. It's what they do. It's why they exist. I'm not sure why you're mad at the cruise line. That should have been your first call, not screaming at RCI for doing what is arguably the right thing.


    Good luck with the insurance!

  12. Can't wait to see the PR and CS nightmare this creates. Do I have to turn the phone off airplane? What if I accidentally buttdial someone? I got 19 text msgs last night...I didn't want that on. What if my phone starts updating apps and goes through a gig of data?


    Have fun with that. If they can fix all that, then heck yes. This app would be awesome. But unless they assure me that it's the only thing my phone will be running I'd never use it.

  13. No regrets. I got my money worth, wife did not. The option to try different things coupled with the benefit of no receipts and no need to track expenses was worth it to us. We also liked that once you use it in the MDR the bar staff, if on top of it, will keep your information and there is no need to keep digging out your seapass. I think there is more to look at than the cost divided by number of drinks consumed ratio, to determine value.




    It was so nice to know that I wasn't going to get hit with a ridiculous bill, it was nice to try whatever I wanted not worrying about "is this the best alcohol for the buck" I can spend...It was totally worth it.

  14. So you're mad at RCCL for an act of God? I've seen glass spontaneously shatter. It was a glass oven door. We were playing cards and it just shattered. Freakin' bizarre. But it sounds like all your concerns can be assuaged by proper parenting. No rough-housing where they can plummet to their deaths, no leaning where they can die. Simple enough to me.


    I suppose it's important to ask: what are you looking for as far as redress goes? Do you just want an explanation or are you fishing for OBC or something?

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