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About Beardface

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    Raleigh, NC
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  1. I think the answer to all your questions is... yes
  2. If anything, that's what drew my wife and I to MSC. We went to Italy on our honeymoon and absolutely loved just removing ourselves from the typical American day to day. The food was excellent regardless of what venue we went to (well, except for one place in Venice we later learned was a bad hotel restaurant) and the general laid back ambiance fit our personality to a T. We have generally alternated between cruises and European vacations, and jumped at the chance to book on the Seaside because it seemed to be a perfect blend of the two. I'm not expecting a very Americanized trip, and will be a bit disappointed if that ends up happening.
  3. I think the big problem is that people have this expectation that MSC is going to serve American style offerings for all their meals. But then the same people will have the expectation of having American styled meals when sailing NCL or RCCL in the Mediterranean. MSC is a foreign line. Their cuisine is going to be based on what their region likes. Sure, they might offer some options for Americans, but you're on a European ship, you're going to get the European experience. I have found through my own experience, that there are a lot of people who just don't like that not everything is catered to them specifically.
  4. How is the bathroom/storage compared to a run of the mill balcony cabin on a line such as NCL or RCCL? For my wife and I, that's where our benchmark is now. We figure as long as its not too much worse than that, we'll be more than fine, given the additional benefits of the YC.
  5. Oh absolutely! This island on its own is looking beautiful, and they've done so much work to revitalize the island that its truly remarkable. My wife and I took a look over the excursion options yesterday and, those alone are worth looking forward to as a part of this port. Even if the YC area isn't available, and we're only stuck with a private roped off area with some cabanas and a wait staff on the beach? Aww shucks, I guess I'll survive.
  6. I'm not going to lie, that looks like a typical run of the mill beach setup on the North Carolina coast. Don't think that I'm complaining about that at all, but... I mean it just seems a little out of place in the Caribbean. The last thing I want when I'm on a cruise is to be reminded of home.
  7. With the Chromecast, make sure you actually can stream the downloaded content before you go. Those devices are built to purely stream from internet services and I haven't had much luck streaming downloaded content outside of using the buggy 'cast screen' option from Chrome and streaming the downloaded content there. So even if you set up your phone as a wifi hotspot, to connect the laptop and tv, you'll still have a bit of trouble getting it to work. I've had much better luck with the HDMI to VGA/Displayport adapter and just hooking the laptop (or HDMI to USB/USB-C in the case of a phone or tablet) and running the downloaded content through there. It just turns the TV into another monitor. Per this comment from last year, there is an HDMI port to the TV that you can use in this fashion. I highly suggest going this route.
  8. There's a chat system where you can send messages to other guests through the app without needing to text.
  9. I figured. I wasn't trying to do anything more than offering a suggestion for the future that I found made traveling much easier for my wife and I over the last few years. No issue with the rest of your statement. The hyperbole lately where everyone has to either be overjoyed, enraged, or disgusted about everything is... tiresome. Like, ok MSC said to provide your own distilled water. That's a minor annoyance at best. To be 'DISGUSTED' over it and take to this forum and put them on blast publicly for it is a big overreaction.
  10. The snipe at Millennials aside, in the future, as long as everything you need to charge can be plugged into a USB port, I recommend just buying a USB hub on Amazon and taking that on future trips. We're able to charge our phones, cameras, tablets, e-readers, etc from one bedside outlet without needing an extension cord.
  11. As you said, the numbers don't tell the whole story. The MSC Seaside has a ratio of 31, and the NCL Encore has a ratio of 32. By those numbers, you'd think that the crowdedness of the ships would be similar, if not slightly favoring the Encore. But when you look into it, the Encore only has one public pool on the top deck with about 1/3 of the outdoor space available without paying a premium where on the Seaside, you have far more leeway on where you can and cannot go with multiple public pools and a majority of the deck space available for use. The Encore is going to feel like an insanely crowded mess up on deck.
  12. There are plenty of reviews and vlogs out there that will help you get a good picture of what you can expect on this line. A lot of people are going to say they are sailing because of the price, because for a lot of people, the price is the differentiator between MSC and the others. I have no qualms saying I am looking forward to my Seaside sailing next year based on price, because my expectation is that the the experience itself will be close enough to my experiences with RCCL, NCL, and Celebrity that the large difference in price is going to more than make up for any small issues here or there. At this point, all these mega lines are just different shades of the same thing, so if one is going to offer me a price nearly half of what the other is, I'm going to take it.
  13. Moral of the story: Book early... We booked our Feb 2020 cruise on Seaside a couple months ago and the prices blew anything we could see on the other lines out of the water.
  14. That's some sharpie intellect right there
  15. Gah, you're 100% correct, thanks!
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