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About Walfam

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  1. The cruise line should know. IIRC from our Panama Canal cruise, we were told they have an appointment or reservation to enter the canal at a certain time and that reservation is booked at least a year in advance.
  2. That has been my experience on every cruise ship I've ever been on.
  3. Some of the price difference is because the 10-day cruise (whether HAL or Princess) does not stop in Cartagena, Colombia, so less port fees in the fare. We did the 11-day HAL Panama Canal cruise earlier this year and if I could do it over again, I would do the 10-day instead. Cartagena was not worth it to us, after stopping there. JMO The half-day stop there was not enough time, we sat in traffic 50% of the time, and barely made it back to the ship from our non-HAL shore excursion. With a day at sea after that port, I was sweating bullets until safely back on the ship. Princess has the MUTS and it might be a nightly thing? IDK My sister and her hubby only cruise on Princess, and they like the MUTS. We like to sit out on our balcony at night. Having a movie blaring on the top deck would not appeal to us, so we stay with HAL. We could hear the Princess movie/music two docks over in FLL port, the morning we returned. Ugh. That's not to say we will never cruise on Princess (never say never) but just for now, we prefer a quiet balcony in the evening.
  4. There is a separate line for shuttle buses, can't recall if it is after the taxis. Prices are publicly posted outside at the shuttle line. They fill up quickly so no waiting around to fill one before you go to the airport.
  5. TSA pre-check is not always guaranteed to the subscriber. TSA has the right to do this for random screenings. A few years ago, at our local airport the pre-check line had to go thru regular screening for a long time because, they said, the machine was broken, and we all had to remove our shoes for the regular line. 🙄 No guarantees. Mobile passport is not available at all airports. One has to look for the signs on the wall, which are sometimes small. Current list: Mobile passport Global Entry is not available at all U.S. international airports. CBP has a list on their website of airports that participate. Participating GE airports. YMMV
  6. I'm really confused. Maybe because I'm not as travel savvy as all of you, but this website Travel.state.gov says for the Dominican Republic: "TOURIST VISA REQUIRED: Not required for visits shorter than 30 days" So, what's up with that??? We've been looking at a winter cruise and I'm not going to pay for a visa to stop at Amber Cove for a day. ETA --- CIBT's own website says one is not necessary .Link to CIBT site
  7. We did the Panama Canal cruise earlier this year on the Zuiderdam and i did not have to show a passport in Costa Rica. However, in today's world, the rules change often.
  8. Sharing a table with strangers is one of the serendipitous delights of travel, whether cruising or land based. It's just a meal, not a lifelong commitment.
  9. Thank you Petunia1950 for the explanation. Roz and Miss *G* - the rudeness of some people is appalling, isn't it?!?! It's like their good manners took a vacation, too.
  10. Is that because there is no Pinnacle Grill on these new ships? Or do NS cabins have to pay for Club Orange on those ships to eat there? I'm still trying to figure out the CO thing. Thnx.
  11. We have a Newk's here, and we have eaten there many times. I've never seen a hand washing station but then I don't even know where the restrooms are. A hand washing station would be better placed up front, near the entrance where orders are placed, and where customers can see it, IMHO.
  12. sevenseasnomad - please post here, after your cruise, if you thought it was worth it. Thnx.
  13. We were on the Zuiderdam several months ago when there was a minor noro outbreak, not even enough sick people that it showed up on the cdc.gov website. As someone previously mentioned, HAL had their Lido employees serving the bread rolls as well as the cold beverages (tea, water, lemonade, which are usually self serve), etc. Our server in the MDR told me they wipe down the menus after each use. HAL did everything possible to contain it and we were impressed.
  14. Thank you for your lovely and very informative review! We are cruising almost the same itinerary in HAL next year. Your opinions and input have been most helpful. And Beaver Tails are now on my bucket list. LOL
  15. I am hypoglycemic, and always need a late evening snack before bedtime. We always do first seating dinner in MDR. The late night Lido has always had some nice small plates with protein, which I truly appreciate.
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