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westcoastcruiser

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  1. I had been one of those that found them unnecessary. But for our recent trip that started on land in warm temperatures and then progressed to a cruise with cooler temperatures , I have found them quite useful. Our travels also included multiple hotels. This way we could keep warm weather clothing separate in one cube and cooler weather in another. I do believe it keeps clothes from wrinkling and getting shifted in the suitcase. So I am slowly moving to the category where I find them useful .
  2. I must be misunderstanding....you had prepaid gratuities but gave them up to save $39? So your gratuities are less than that?
  3. Yes, Dave, I wondered the same thing...not sure how much the BB rep advocated for us. This last time I could tell the rep “got it”...she was amazing! I guess that is the consequence of booking BB as it is a call center and you get whoever answers. But that is why I called back several times. And while I understand the point about booking at an acceptable price, making the analogy to airline tickets is not quite the same. For us, we do not pay $6-10,000 or more to fly. And if I see a price drop, I will continue to take the time (and it can be time consuming) to call and politely ask.
  4. Our cruise dropped a huge amount after final payment. I called twice and was told “too bad”..but not in those exact words. I called a third time and was offered an upgraded cabin category that, to us, was in an undesirable location, so declined. This final time I called we were given a substantial FCC which we can apply to a future cruise we already have booked. My calls were all about 1 week to 10 days apart. We booked through a big box store so all of my inquiries went through them to HAL. While I would have preferred a price adjustment or additional OBC or something similar for this upcoming cruise, I am appreciative of receiving something. And, yes, I realize that we booked early at a price we were ok with. But the price drop was huge so I am happy HAL recognized this and, as a result, will keep us as cruisers.
  5. Had a similar question since we are doing independent land prior to cruise. Was advised insurance is for the entire trip. As the previous poster said..from leaving your drive until return home. Recommend discussing with Trip Insurance Store which is who I purchased through. Also would not want to have a claim from first cruise that would impact 2nd cruise and be with a different policy. JMO.
  6. A fan of Hotel Jazz as well. Highly recommend it.
  7. Was there noise from the staff using that doorway/stair case? We were across the hall from a staff door and it banged close all hours and was very disturbing .
  8. We did, too. Amazing price difference!
  9. We saved a huge amount booking RT business class to/from Amsterdam. Also saved a lot on a one way domestic after a cruise. The not having to pay until final payment plus the awesome air fares made it a win/win for us. The airline selection may be a tad limited but when going business class that is less of a concern to us.
  10. Tried again today...our class cabin is sold out but other categories similar to ours have dropped in price. The big box TA person I spoke to called HAL and was told it is after final payment and since our category cabin is sold out, there is no adjustment to be made anyway. We have two more long cruises booked with HAL after this one and it is disappointing nothing was even tossed our way. Oh well. We do like our category cabin and, obviously, are ok with the price we paid but some token of loyalty would have been nice.
  11. Definitely Trip Insurance Store and Steve. He and his staff have extensive knowledge and carefully guide you to the correct policy and not try to up-sell. Steve will facilitate any claims processing should there be a need. did not find that to be the case with insure my trip.
  12. We stayed there after an Alaskan cruise and we found it to be perfect. Great location with public transportation close and easy walking to other things. I think you will be more than satisfied.
  13. I have to agree with Trip Insurance Store and Steve. Have had to file claims after purchasing policies from each of them. While there were delays with both, like the personal service of Trip Insurance Store.
  14. Perhaps it has been changed but we were across from one of the crew doors on the Westerdam and it did not have a quiet close and we heard that door slamming shut very very early to very late. It was so disruptive that we requested a cabin change. Since we were on a back to back they did honor our request and moved us. We sre now very aware of similar spaces when selecting our cabin. it seems like an easy fix to put a slow quiet close on those doors.
  15. We have cruised both and even made our own personal list outlining the things we liked about each. For itineraries, unlimited laundry service, length of cruise options, hydropool and San Diego embarkation we like HAL. For loyalty program, price, aft cabins/family verandah on M class ships we like Celebrity. I am sure we noted more items on our list but I do not have it readily available. Food is so subjective although we have never been hungry on a cruise! Staff is outstanding on both ships. We are elite on Celebrity and 3 star on HAL and currently have cruises booked on both. As others have mentioned, a lot depends upon what is important to you. If you want rock climbing walls and belly flop contests, neither of these lines are right for you.
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