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CafeBruno

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  1. We got the same offer a couple of weeks ago, free oceanview or pay to upgrade. Our offer did not come with free casino play or free casino drinks. The upgrade costs plus $200 per person had to be paid at booking, and the $200 PP is returned as OBC on the sailing. We actually booked 2 sailings with this promotion, both in Neptunes, as we figured this would be the most affordable way to ever book one. Now just hoping they will actually sail. We also bought "cancel for any reason" insurance for both. As I mentioned in another thread, I have no idea how we qualified for the offer. It was emailed to my wife and the cheap upgrade prices only showed up online when I logged in under my wife's Mariner #. Logging in under my Mariner # showed normal prices, like 3x higher than when logged in under my wife's name. Our booking invoice says it is a casino rate, but my wife never gambles (I do some), so no idea how she got the offer and not me. We are also 3 star. Anyway these are best best deals I've ever seen, so I sure hope we stay on this mailing list.
  2. Hi, I received an email offer for a free oceanview cabin, with very cheap upgrade prices (like 75% off) for 2021 cruises, so I booked on and paid the upgrade for a Neptune. When I sent in my request for Shareholder OBC, I received this response from HAL: Thank you for contacting Holland America Line in regards to your Carnival Shareholder benefit being applied to your reservation XXXXXX based on your status as a CCL stockholder. Unfortunately, we are unable to apply the shareholder benefit due to the fare your reservation is booked under. The shareholder benefit is not combinable with reduced-rate promotions. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you. We are looking forward to welcoming you on board in the near future. Just wondering if this is normal? I guess I shouldn't complain since the Neptune price was so dirt cheap, but just wondering if this has been others' experience also. One other weird factoid is that the rate shows up as a casino rate - which is very odd since my wife (to whom the email offer was addressed in the email) has never set foot in the casino. I do play occasionally, but again the email addressed my wife, not me. And the email offer never mentioned the casino, play requirements, anything like that. Maybe casino rates don't also qualify to use the Shareholder OBC? Thanks
  3. Yes, we did this on the website last week, super easy, no problems. We got an email offering for a free oceanview cabin or very cheap upgrades for a selection of cruises in Jan. - April 2021. Booked an 11 day S. Carib. cruise on Nieuw Statendam in a Neptune for about 25% of normal price, applied my FCC to it, no problem. Saw that the extra OBC from the FCC was applied to the new booking. Now just hoping it actually sails.
  4. We are also on the NS, on the 2/23 14 day cruise, and we were offered the Club Orange for $15 per person per day, and we accepted at that price. I was not planning to accept it, but decided to try it for the potentially quicker and fresher breakfast and dinners, including mimosas at breakfast. I like the idea of breakfasts made to order in the CO galley, and the extra dinner entree choice, which I believe is prepared there in the CO. Potentially a calmer breakfast than the Lido, which can be a zoo, and also sounds like the dinner service is a bit faster than the main dining room experience, which is a plus for us. Again, it was worth it to us at $15 PP, but I would not have accepted at $25. Wonder why we were offered $15, and you $25? Maybe you could try calling them and asking for the $15 price?
  5. I think you will really enjoy HAL and the Eurodam. Although we haven't sailed NCL, we “graduated” from Carnival and RCI to HAL couple of years ago and we found it’s perfect for us. Yes, classier is accurate in my opinion, or maybe more refined and mature. No bellyflop contests by the pool. Many fewer kids. Way less crowded; 2100 passengers vs. 4000 or more. I have never once seen drunken adults yelling and acting like they are at Cousin Jethro's bachelor party on HAL, like I have on Carnival. You won’t get that corny, fakey “ARE YOU HAVING A GOOD TIME????? I CAN’T HEAR YOU!!” stuff like on Carnival, which seems part of every show or pool activity. Service seems more genuine, personable, and consistent on HAL. As early 40’s people, you will be in the minority, as HAL’s guests skew older. But I don’t think you will feel out of place at all. Enjoy your cruise!
  6. I did the exact same thing!! I agree with you that HAL probably just missed a giant increase on that one. I didn't want to say anything in case HAL is reading this board. But hopefully, they are just allowing one final reasonable cost option, instead of a lot of them back on Dec. 31.
  7. Last week, I was shopping for our Feb. 23 14 day Nieuw Statendam cruise, and put some stuff in the HAL website shopping cart, but didn't actually buy them - in-room liquor, internet package, shore excursions, etc. Today I checked again and the liquor i was planning to have delivered to our stateroom more than doubled in price! My bottle of Absolut vodka went from $43.75 last week to $69 today, an increase of 58%. My bottle of Crown Royal went from $53.75 last week to $92 today, a 71% increase!! Needless to say I cancelled them both. Really wish I had completed the purchase last week at the reasonable prices - but I will not buy at the new prices. Seriously HAL, a 71% increase???
  8. We have purchased the $25 HMC beverage package twice, once in 2017 and again in 2018, both times bought it the day before from a table set up to sell the package. Both times it ended up as more trouble than it was worth. When we bought the package on the ship the day before HMC, there was no separate card or sticker; they said that the accounting dept. would know not to charge us on our ship folio for HMC drinks. When we ordered drinks on HMC the next day, we told them we had the package, and they had us sign a paper chit/receipt for each drink. Then that night on our ship folio, both the $25 charge, plus each individual HMC drink charge, hit our folio, thus double charging us. On our 2017 trip, they figured this out and removed all the double charges except one for $8 by the time we left the ship the day after HMC, so we didn't sweat the approximately $8 overcharge. On our 2018 trip the double charges were not removed by the time we left the ship, so I had to call HAL and ask them to correct the overcharges after we got home....HAL did correct it and credit us for the overcharges about a week later. But having been overcharged twice for this now tells me the use of paper chits makes this a system that is very prone to errors, so we will not buy the $25 package when we return to HMC next month. But hopefully they've improved the system since then.
  9. We were on the Eurodam for 16 days in October. and the HH was 3:30-4:30 pm in the Crows Nest, and from 4 to 5 pm in the Tamarind Bar. There were no others listed in the W & W (i.e. Ocean Bar and Billboard were not listed, except for the $15 daily martini tasting in the Billboard at 6 pm). The 4 pm Tamarind was VERY popular, and we found we needed to be there 15 minutes early to get a seat. Many days we saw quite a few people (including us) turned away, as it was already over capacity.
  10. Thanks very much for the replies and the clarification on the remaining cabin inventory, I appreciate it. I think I will wait as suggested and see if a better deal comes along; if not we will be perfectly fine in a verandah. Silvertogold, we paid significantly more per day for our last SS, but that was a very special occasion...15 days on the Westerdam last year, San Diego to Fort Lauderdale through the Canal, to celebrate my retirement. I am now trying to be more careful in shopping for great deals. Thanks again
  11. Hi, we currently have a guarantee balcony on Eurodam, on 9/19/19 16 night circle Hawaii cruise (round trip from Vancouver). Got what I think is a very good deal on it, $1699 + $203 port charges/taxes per person. We've just been offered an upsell to a Signature Suite for an additional $1150 PP, which is $144 total per night extra for the SS cabin. What are your thoughts? Take it, or wait, knowing that we are still 6 weeks out and we would be fine with the balcony guarantee if a better offer did not come along as we get closer. We've stayed in both types of cabins in the last couple of years and while we loved the SS, not sure I would upgrade unless it was really a smoking deal. Not sure if this offer qualifies. And I've been checking the cabin inventory on the HAL website and it seems like there is still quite a bit of availability in the balconies, SS's and NS's. Thoughts? Thanks in advance.
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