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BTHodgeman

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About BTHodgeman

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Minneapolis, MN
  • Interests
    Beekeeping, Lego, and travel.
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Carnival
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Southern Caribbean

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  1. Honestly, it's not even a data/technology issues. Royal does it. On Labadee, some of the bars have registers and some just have paper pads. The drinks package is valid there and, presumably, the drinks are "rung in" when back on the ship. The only difference I can tell is that RC doesn't have a per day drink limit and Carnival does, so they would potentially have no way to enforce the drink limit... As others have said, I think it is a matter of making more money by not honoring the drink package on land. I can't entirely fault them, but I do understand that people would be disappointed...
  2. @mitsugirly You can also wire funds to the casino. Depending how much you’re spending, this may be somewhat of a hassle, and also may have a fee, depending where you bank. I will find the link when I’m at an actual computer but basically you wire the money, and then submit a form with your reservation number, sail date, etc. and then you can get the cash from the casino cashier.
  3. Haha! I can only imagine.... At least the message I wanted to send was a good one! :)
  4. Actually, I can't... An error message pops up saying I am only allowed to send 0 messages per day. haha Here's the high-level overview for how we did the pub crawl: Entry fee is $20 per person Participants will receive their first card and 4 "tickets" upon paying their entry fee (we gave each participant two 2-part raffle tickets, but any four random slips/tickets would work...) Tickets can be redeemed in any order at any bar (i.e. you can take all 5 cards at once if you want, or go the traditional route and get one card per stop.) Cards must be signed with a Sharpie in front of the organizer to keep things fair High hand gets 70%, low hand gets 30% of all money collected Note: we played with multiple decks, so technically the highest hand would be 5 of a kind (typically a royal flush would be highest possible hand). Aces play "high," so the lowest possible hand would be an unsuited 2-3-4-5-7. Be sure to set an end time where everyone must be to compare hands so the winners can be determined and paid out. The organizer can play, but we let other participants select our cards to keep things fair. One thing we didn't call out is that anyone can join the group -- even if they're not playing or drinking. The primary goal is to meet other people and have a fun time. Let me know if you have any questions!
  5. Hi Nancy! Nice to hear from you!!! I'll send you a message through here, but basically you have it all right.
  6. Absolutely. I pretty much hate drinks that are overly sweet, yet I love the concept of a rum punch, rum runner, mai tai, etc. At the pool bar, I would regularly ask for just a dash of the juices/sweet liqueurs and for the drink to be topped off with soda water. They always accommodated, and the drinks were refreshing and not sweet or overly heavy.
  7. Agreed! Plus, plenty of shady places on the boat to sit and relax while others are out snorkeling. I am not sure if they have beer, but I know that they offered several other beverage choices. And the price is only $65 for the 4-hour tour.
  8. The all-day pass is usually only a few dollars more. In all, we rode it 9-10 times. There was never a wait of more than 2 minutes. Granted, we were the only ship in port that day... Also, the attendants never made us watch the video after the first ride. It took longer to walk from the exit of the ride to the entrance to ride again (about 30 seconds) than it did to get on the ride and enjoy it all over again. With multiple rides, you can have multiple experiences... Ride to the top, and slowly make your way down the track... Ride to the top and use no brakes on the way down... For the extra $4, we go our money's worth on the coaster!
  9. Totally agree with this. The only gray area being that the front side of the ticket (with printed barcode, machine number, date, time, etc.) says "valid for 30 days," and the fixed text disclaimer on the back says "valid until the end of the current sailing." I would imagine that the barcode on the front would be tied to the 30-day disclaimer printed on the front, but I would also not be surprised if the casino had a way to nullify any unredeemed tickets after the end of the sailing, and they probably actually do so in order to close out the books and determine profitability of each particular sailing. One way to test it would be on a back-to-back with a $.25 ticket. :)
  10. Difference being that for MGM Grand, unclaimed tickets are a liability on their balance sheet (due to Nevada laws that require them to hold them for a period of time after expiration, and eventually require that the funds be turned over to the state). Las Vegas casinos are quite happy to redeem via mail and well beyond the expiration date. No gaming laws at sea, so I would imagine there is not the same 'incentive' for RC to want to redeem expired tickets and/or mailed in tickets.
  11. Since the charge is identical to anything else you charge to your room (drinks, merchandise, dining, etc.), RCI bills it the same way. Your credit card company has no clue how the money was spent, and RCI does not code it as a cash advance, so there would be no additional credit card fees. (This can be a major benefit of being Prime and then earning credit card rewards on $$ download to the slots.)
  12. That is correct. They are ship-specific, and while they do say "expires in 30 days" on the front side, if you read the fine print on the back, they say something along the lines of "all tickets expire on the last day of your current sailing, and they cannot be redeemed via mail." Not sure how strictly they enforce that...
  13. You can use your Sea Pass. If you're not Prime or above (earned 2500+ points in the casino Apr 1-Mar 31), there will be a 5% charge assessed. Unlike Carnival, the money is not in a separate bank. Whatever amount you charge to your card will load to the machine, and like most land-based casinos, when you cash out, you get a ticket. Any amount charged is charged to your Sea Pass account. Depending on what you're going to spend, it may be cheaper to use the on-board ATM. I think the fee was $6 on my last cruise... so if you're spending more than $120, it would make sense to take out a few hundred or whatever you plan to spend rather than pay the 5% fee.
  14. We did a TA in 2016, and while I didn't necessarily notice too much added, there was plenty to do. One thing that I haven't seen otherwise on Carnival was the addition of an enrichment speaker. We didn't love his topics, but I think he did 6-7 lectures during the sea days. There also was lots and lots of bingo, trivia, dance lessons, etc. As @cellfree mentioned, the sea days went by quickly and we never really just hung out or had any downtime.
  15. Also did not receive one on our first day recently on Navigator. We did learn what time/location it was being held, but already had plans for that time by the time we figured it out. It seemed about 50% of people (according to the social page) did not receive their invites...
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