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kesrya

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  1. I want to thank the folks on this thread who recommended Lucky Catch. When our cruise got cancelled, we changed our vacation over to 12 days between Mount Desert Island / Acadia and Portland so we could still do all the things we looked forward to with the cruise. Yesterday we went out with Lucky Catch. It was our last full day of vacation (we just arrived home this morning), and all four of us (kids 5 and 9) agreed that the Lucky Catch tour was the most fun activity of the whole trip! And our lobsters tasted delicious too 💗.
  2. Given the craziness of the world and travel right now, I'd agree that anything can happen to those prices over the course of a year. But in general, I usually plan my international trips out a year or two in advance and have not found the flight prices to change that dramatically. The key is looking for flight prices the same time of the year you will be traveling. The "reduced air" price on a airline I don't get to choose, on dates I don't get to choose, with up to 2 layovers per the terms and conditions, and not including baggage would be $499. Plus we'd have to pay $100 for our family to be permitted to go 2 days early. I can see flights on the airline my husband has his platinum medallion status through June 2021 right now, and they are $500, we'd get free checked baggage, we'd get to choose a flight with only one, 3 hour layover, and we could go however many days ahead of our cruise as we want. Plus he frequently gets free upgrades and free drinks. So even if the price of the flight increases, those are the peace of mind perks that seem to make booking our own flight and turning down the "reduced" air that isn't really reduced. Plus it looks like the terms and condition says that reduced air cannot be changed, transferred, or refunded for any reason - and his airline lets him make no cost changes and transfers all the time.
  3. Yes, as I mentioned in my original post, this would be for a cruise round trip from Iceland. If you look on the main website, there is a drop down link from the top menu that shows you all the terms and conditions for free / reduced air as well as a chart as to which departure ports it applies to.
  4. Thanks that was helpful. I found the terms and conditions. While I don't see anything in there that is necessarily a deal breaker, there was a chart of the "reduced air" prices from our neighboring airports. I ran some flights directly with the airlines, and found that 2021 flight prices around the same time we would be going in 2022 are roughly the same price - more or less $25 - $50 per person with the airline that my husband has medallion status. I think for the hassle of not being able to control our own destiny, and with the potential for getting free baggage and upgrades due to his status, it is probably better to decline the reduced air. Of course, prices will probably go up over the course of that year, but it seems like for peace of mind, it's worth it.
  5. Thank you that is helpful. I would be okay with a 2 day deviation on both ends of the trip. When you say cancel the transfer, are you saying there is an included transfer from the airport to the hotel? Or does that cost extra. If I'm not staying in a NCL hotel, could I still use the included transfer to go to my own lodging choice? I guess it might not matter because we were thinking of renting a car to get to some off the beaten track areas that my son researched for his Iceland school report.
  6. How does the reduced air deal work with NCL? We are looking to rebook our cancelled domestic cruise for two years from now as a cruise from Iceland. Our TA says we would qualify for reduced air from our home airport. I assume NCL chooses the airline? Do we get to choose the which flight we want? We'd like to arrive a few days early so that we can explore Reykjavik and surrounding area before we embark. We are a family of four if that makes a difference.
  7. Thanks that's a helpful perspective. We are planning to just drive to the national parks that would have been on our cruise stops and do a secluded camping vacation this year for those exact reasons. My husband and I went to Antarctica in 2018 and my son really really wants to go to one of the artics - he has to wait until at least 13 to do Antarctica, but we discussed Iceland and Greenland sooner, so I'm thinking he's gonna vote to wait til 2022 to do this!
  8. My son is named Leif for Leif Erickson and he desperately wants to go to Iceland. So that's great to know that there are so many more cruises out in 2022. I would definitely consider delaying but I'm nervous about delaying a trip a full two years. A lot can happen between now and then. I'll definitely ask if he'd rather wait that long for Iceland.
  9. Thanks all. You've given me some things to consider. I thought about just taking the cash refund. But with the 125% FCC and the 25% off if we book within a month of NCL cancelling our current paid in full cruise, we'd be able to do a cruise that is close to $2000 more expensive than oir original one. I was thinking that is a good incentive to stick with NCL. Sounds like several of you think its not worth the risk. I do know what we would do in the western med ports cause I've been to all those places several times before. I will research the Baltic ports more. Does anyone have experience with Alaska ports? We don't normally do ship excursions - we do our own thing in ports. But is there really anything to do on your own in those Alaskan ports? We don't have any interest in a big ship cruise in August to the Caribbean at this time. We have an adults only tall ship cruise booked in west Indies in late 2021 so want the family cruise to be somewhere else. We loved RCL for the cruise itself (kids club, entertainment, relaxing on our balcony) and we went with family friends who we enjoyed spending time with, but we don't enjoy sitting on a hot beach with a ton of other people. Our kids like history, cultural stuff, and environmental stuff - they are both avid NPS Junior Rangers. That's why they were excited about hiking in Acadia for the NE cruise.
  10. With the announcement of Canada being closed until November, I'm quite sure our first NCL cruise to NE / Canada on Breakaway in September will get cancelled. I'm deciding between 3 cruises next summer to rebook using our FCC. We won't be able to do the NE/Canada itinerary due to next year's school dates for my kids. I know nothing about the other cruise ships in NCL's fleet - we chose the Breakaway cruise completely based upon timing and convenience of the departure port. My kids would be 6 and 10 next summer. They enjoyed kids club on the other cruise (RCL) we were all on, and they also enjoy culture and history. My eldest wants to do international travel very badly (I've been all over the world and he said he wants to do all 7 continents like me). They are all 7 days and we'd get a Large balcony. Balcony space is *very* important to us. Here are the three itineraries we are considering.: Western Mediterranean from Barcelona on Epic - I might be least interested in this one just because I have been to all three countries (Spain, France, and Italy) previously and want to go somewhere new. But my husband has only been to Spain and is interested. We could rebook this cruise for about $500 - $1000 less than our total NE/Canada FFC will be. Not sure what I'd use the extra $1000 for because its not enough for another cruise, but it can't be used for exercusions, etc. right? Baltic Roundtrip from Copenhagen on the Jade - This is the most interesting cruise to me as I've never been to any of these countries (Denmark, Estonia, Russia, Finland, Germany) and I'm really intrigued by these Scandanavian places. Not sure how my 6 year old would feel about these places, but he could always stay on the ship at Splash Academy. I think my husband is least interested in this one. Alaska R/T from Seattle Glacier Bay, Skagway, and Juneau on Encore - there are four different 7 day Alaskan itineraries next summer on 3 different ships and honestly I'm not sure what is different about them other than price? This one is closest to our FCC of the 4, but would still cost us about $1200 more. We'd get a massive balcony (150 feet) at the forward of the ship. We've both always wanted to do Alaska but I worry that the kids are too young to really enjoy this. Also, it only has one stop in Canada (Victoria) so it would not fufill my elder son's desire to check off other countries like the first two would. This is the one my husband wants to do most.
  11. Thank you for this review focused on the ship. We will sail Breakaway for the first time in August and this is very helpful to understand.
  12. Thanks megr! Taking the train up the day before our cruise would defeat the whole purpose of using Amtrak because we would then spend the money we are saving on parking and tolls on a hotel room. But ... our cruise is not set to depart until 11pm that evening! And we are eyeing up the 6:30am train that arrives at NY Penn Station at 9:45am giving us PLENTY of time for delays or surprises. I figured worst case scenario, if something drastic happens, we can still hop in our own car and drive to NYC in time. I once had to do this when I planned to take the Greyhound from DC to Montreal and the bus had sold 20 tickets on the DC bus when there were only 4 seats left, so I missed it. Instead of waiting for the next one, which would have caused me to miss all of my change overs too, I just got in my car and drove. Lesson learned. What is a Red Cap?
  13. Not sure whether to post this here or in NCL forum, but here goes ... We've decided to take the Amtrak from Baltimore to NY Penn Station because it saves a bunch of time, hassle, and money as opposed to driving up and parking. I've never done Amtrak before nor have I done a NCL cruise, so I'm having trouble understanding what the timing for disembark will be and how early we need to arrive at the train station (is it like airports where we need to get there 2 hours before departure and clear security?). Please help me determine the best homeward bound train ticket departure time given these factors: * Our cruise is scheduled to dock at 7am on a Sunday in early September. * We will have suitcases that we need to check at Penn Station * We have two kids, so instead of trying to be the first ones off the ship and stand in a long departure line, I was leaning towards taking the last disembark group and just chilling on board. I've heard the line gets shorter at the end??? * We'll take a cab from the pier to Penn Station * We have nowhere to be, so it doesn't matter to us what time we leave or get home to Baltimore. We are interested in ease of travel - so avoiding lines if possible, and not having to lug our suitcases around NYC for hours after the cruise terminal closes. * While I've never actually taken Amtrak, I have been in NY Penn Station often many years ago when I lived in Northern Jersey and had a friend that worked near the station ... but I'm sure things have changed in terms of train boarding protocols and procedures since then. The potential train departure times would be: 12:05, 12:55, 1:17, 2:05, or 3:04pm.
  14. So as not to continually hijack this thread, I'm going to create a new post in the East Coast departures forum with questions specific to my NCL disembark and then transfer to NY Penn Station. Hope some of you knowledgeable NCL cruisers can help me 🙂
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