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About papaflamingo

  • Rank
    3,000+ Club

About Me

  • Location
  • Interests
    Grandkids, sports, cruising
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Royal Caribbean, Regent Seven Seas
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call

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616 profile views
  1. I bet we talked! I was the pilot with the "really cool, macho, smooth talking, manly, inspiring" voice wearing the "cool pilot sunglasses" (at night)! 😜 Seriously, I have the utmost respect for y'all! Y'all do a fantastic job, ESPECIALLY when things go "south," even if you do put us in holding waaaaay tooo much! 😎
  2. Since you're in Europe you will likely see more people dress up. You're husband will easily be in the "well dressed" category. In the Caribbean few even try. We got off Harmony a few weeks ago. I had a sportscoat and tie. I must say I DID feel out of place. Should have worn a t-shirt and shorts. Would have fit in better. No, not kidding, and this was in the Suite Lounge. So not to worry at all. Y'all will look great on Formal Night. Have a great cruise!
  3. I'm a retired major airline pilot. Actually on a flight like this they would carry a rather long reserve. A few hours of reserve fuel is very likely and if they did encounter stronger than forecast headwinds, which does happen, they could end up diverting in route to add fuel. Add to this, the flight may be scheduled for an average flight time and if the headwinds are unusually strong, the plane would be fueled for the additional time. And you can add a great number of unexpected things that could delay or lengthen the flight. I did a flight from Portland to Narita in 2010. Because of volcanic activity the Pacific routes were closed and we had to fly over Alaska and down the Kamchatka peninsula. It added a significant amount of time to our scheduled flight time. I agree with many that the odds are the flight will arrive on time. But I also know that there seems to be more delays on international flights than domestic for a variety of reasons. Small mechanical issues that wouldn't be fixed on a domestic flight will be fixed on an international flight. Late arrivals, weather deviations, etc. I wouldn't do it for any reason. Most importantly, as others have said, the jet lag on a flight like this is tremendous. It takes more than a few hours for the body to catch up. Add to that the stress of worrying about delays. I'd spend the 4 days in Singapore before the cruise then fly directly home. That gives lots of wiggle room on arrival as well as a chance to be on the local time zone to fully enjoy the cruise portion.
  4. I also believe that is correct. Part of the hotel allowance that you get is the cost of the transfer from the hotel to the port. If you take the allowance you are giving up the transfer. I also believe you also lose the transfer from the airport to the hotel when you use custom air and arrive a few days early. Regent transfers are by busses not individual cabs. It would be a mammoth undertaking and expense to have cabs randomly meet people on various days at airports and random hotels. I've only done one cruise, and I did not used Regent hotels or transfers and deviated my air. I set up my own ground transportation.
  5. No, you don't lose the benefits. Some become meaningless with Star Class, even Sky Class. We're D+. For us the biggest benefit is the nightly Happy Hour. With Star Class you have not only the Suite Lounge, but free Drink Packages and unlimited specialty dining, etc. With Sky Class you get the Suite Lounge. The Suite Lounge is better than the Diamond Lounge, but still has Happy Hour for free drinks and appetizers, like the Diamond Lounge. But as Diamond you still get all your Diamond perks, the Balcony discount, use of the Diamond Lounge if you wish, 3 drinks per day loaded on your Seapass. Suite guests don't get those. But you never lose your benefits. The complaints about not being able to take advantage of the Balcony Discount is because other discount programs can't be combined. Some can. I don't get all the whining. I simply price the cruise with the program they're running and price it using my Balcony Discount. I then choose which rate is best. Sometimes it turns out the Diamond Plus Balcony Discount is better, sometimes not. But I still get all the other Diamond Plus perks, priority boarding and debarkation, use of the lounge, the nightly Happy Hour, etc. Honestly, RCCL's loyalty program is vastly better compared to other cruise lines. No other line that I know of gives free drinks for 3 hours or so every night. As to the in cabin amenities, as D+ we get 2 free bottles of wine, 2 beers, 2 waters, cookies, chocolate strawberries. You sure won't hear me complaining.
  6. We were there a few weeks ago. I would say NO!!! I would never pay anywhere near $1000 for a cabana for a day. I struggled when they were $250 in Labadee! But, not to worry. There are many chairs around the beaches at Coco Cay and they all have umbrellas. We wandered off and had no problem at all finding a couple of nice lounge chairs with both trees and a shared umbrella. We were on a FULL Harmony of the Seas so 6000 passengers. Still lots of room. Most, I would say, headed for the pool area. So don't worry. And all the chairs and umbrellas are FREE. Here's a small shot showing how the availability was. And we didn't rush off the ship. Sorry for the size, but I cropped my wife out in order to not create any hate and discontent with her (she's not a fan of being in publicly posted pics). 😎
  7. Just an observation. I agree that there are certain excursions that would seem "obvious." However I was once given the impression (don't really remember where or why) that Regent included excursions are up to a certain monetary value. Any excursion more than that falls into the Regent Choice category. So let's say the max value of an excursion is $150 per person. And the excursion you want is $250 per person. The cost to you would be $100. As I said, not sure if this is the case. Also some excursions that were Regent Choice may actually end up included. We had one on our cruise that on previous cruises was Choice, but for us it was included. As for "deceptive marketing," I would say not. They provide excursions as possible. They just may not be to your liking.
  8. Random comments.... they really want you out of your room by 8. Remember, the crew must do a complete changeover and deep cleaning of every cabin. Having you sit in your cabin until 9 would really get in their way. If I were you, I'd plan to leave the cabin no later than 8, then either grab a quick breakfast if it's still open, or go find a seat in a common area until the crowd thins. Get off the ship, uber to Miami, check in, then wander the shops and get lunch somewhere. I haven't been to Miami for several years, but there used to be a great Cuban Cafe near the American concourse. If it's still there, go and get a Cuban Sandwich! 😎
  9. It really depends. If you want CFAR coverage, you need to purchase within a very short time of your deposit if using third party insurance. Otherwise all you risk losing is the $100 per person change fee. I never buy insurance until final payment. By the way, RCCL insurance has a CFAR clause. If that's your biggest concern, use their policy. Then you don't need to put the money out until final payment. However if your goal is to possibly cancel and NOT take another RCCL cruise, then by all means get it now so you can recover your entire deposit (based on the numbers above). Or if you are concerned a pre-existing condition might pop up (or you have one), then get it now. Really up to you. I'm willing to risk the $100 to keep my premium if I decide to cancel before Final Payment. I'll always cruise again, and I feel that $100 per person is pretty cheap risk. But personal preference for sure.
  10. I don't think they'll let you put a 3rd person in a cabin for 2. Seems the problem in this scenario is that all 3 cabins are double occupancy only. If any of them was a triple occupancy cabin, then no big deal. Probably the best solution is for the parents to move to a triple occupancy cabin and see if they can 3 cabins near each other, even if on a new deck. Isn't "family drama" wonderful! 😏
  11. "Fake sale?" $44 is not "fake" at all. And of course they're on sale because they aren't selling. Not sure what line of business you are in, but would you sell your hottest selling product for a huge discount? NO, of course not. You'd do what all retailers do, you'd sell your worst selling product for a huge discount. Sorry, not trying to be snarky, but come on, why do you think things go on sale in the first place? Not seeing how in any sense of the word that you'd consider this particular sale "fake."
  12. WOW!! Excellent! Thanks. By the way, I've been hanging on your every word on your wonderful cruise. We are doing almost the same cruise next June. We just picked our shore excursions and I would like to say that your reviews helped immensely. Looks like a fantastic cruise. We're counting the days. Thanks so much for sharing it with us!
  13. We did 44 nights on Mariner last year and the only music I remember on the pool deck was when the duo came up a few times during the lunch hour which we all enjoyed. Other than that it was a very quiet and relaxing place to enjoy the sun and pool.
  14. Thanks for the good news! My wife will be happy that they are considering this, happier when it's implemented. And you know the old saying... "Happy wife, more cruises booked!".😎
  15. Not really. We had issues like this in the airlines. When the noise abatement laws were implemented for passenger jets, many of the old aircraft could not meet them and were banned from certain airports. Navigator is the oldest of the fleet (I think I'm correct in that). She's also the smallest. Likely the next to be retired. However as the smallest ship she's brings the ability to get into certain ports that bigger ships can't go in. I also believe she has an ice rated hull so that makes her ideal for Greenland cruises like we'll be on in June. For this reason Regent may certainly choose to keep her around. Just a thought.
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