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TomBeckCruise

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Everything posted by TomBeckCruise

  1. That discussion is one of economics and politics. In the US the two are very intertwined, and that discussion is not appropriate for this website. Thanks to you folks who are in the know about sailing and security.
  2. OT But aren't they govt employees? For profit security, prisons, etc. injects another layer of potential problems.
  3. What you said is pretty much what I thought. That is not what happened. I went through security at the port that included a archway metal detector. Not the ship. The metal detector had a sign on it that said "notify security if you have a pace maker". I did, and I was not given a choice. I received a pat down by private security people. THAT seems odd to me. I have no problem going through a metal detector. I have been through the Zuiderdam detector four times on this cruise, and four times at airports I the last two months. I did not see a wand anywhere. Everything I read indicates that the metal detectors are safe as long as you walk through, and do not linger near one. Wands on the other hand can cause problems, especially if held close to the ICD for too long. So what the people there did was safe based on everything I have read. I am concerned that training is inadequate in Portland, and/or the equipment used in Portland is possibly old and inadequate.
  4. We are on the Zuiderdam on a cruise from Quebec City to Ft. Lauderdale. Our first US port was today. USCBP folks came aboard to conduct a mandatory face-to-passport inspection. There were extremely long lines, but they moved quickly. We went to the back of the line in the mainstage theater, and 15 minutes later we spoke with the US Government official in the BB King blues room. Soon afterwards we left the ship to explore Portland. All security personnel we saw after leaving the ship were not governmental law enforcement. We had our ships id scanned when we left the ship. We had to show it again to leave the port area along with a governmental picture id. When we returned we again showed both ids and had to go through emptying our pockets, and walking through a metal detector. The metal detector had a warning sign for pace makers. I had a cardiac defibrillator implanted earlier this year so I was patted down. Thoroughly. Should we expect to see more non law enforcement personnel performing traditional law enforcement tasks at other US ports? Should I expect to be patted down one or more times daily depending on how many times we go out in each port? We were going out this evening in Portland, not now. Portland is a great place. I don't recall these circumstances in Boston (first US port) or NYC (debarkation port) at the end of our Voyage of the Vikings cruise last year. Did I just miss it? I guess I would not have noticed the pat downs then. Private security?
  5. I was asking about NCL phone agent (employee) or NCL website. I booked with a TA not directly with NCL. Thanks for the replies.
  6. How do you look at available flights?
  7. I need only one injection on an eleven day cruise so I'll do what ever they want. It should be simple. Good to know about hotels too.
  8. I've started using a drug that is given using a click injector (like EpiPen). It is taken every 14 days and will need to be taken on the cruise we will be on in October. Will the ships medical facility let me dispose of the used injector at their facility? Anyone with experience with this? Or diabetes injection needles?
  9. Are there advantages to either. Is the price the same?
  10. We expect to book a West bound TA on Jade soon. One of the perks is the free unlimited open bar. What wines by the glass will likely be available? Any pictures of a alcoholic beverage menu showing wine by the glass?
  11. Sydney to DFW is about 16 hours. Another 1.5 to BNA. I'll take Qantas any day. LAX to NZ is about 12 hours. Some us in Nashville stay overnight in LA or Honolulu to break up the flights. Still not desirable, but better. At least it makes flying to Europe seem like a piece of cake. Third coast, north or south?
  12. Using your example you would have an average annual return on investment of roughly 22-24%. Not too shabby. I doubt there are many people who cruise on a CCL product that often, but if so it's a great investment. We have sailed on HAL once and Princess once in the last ten years. No other cruises on a CCl line, and around twenty cruises on other lines. Our cruise on the Zuiderdam to Iceland, Greenland and Norway last year was a very interesting and enjoyable cruise, and because we missed three ports we received a sizable credit for a future cruise. We now hope to soon take our second HAL cruise in about one year. More realistic for most people would be one CCL cruise per year. If the cruise is 14 days or more the OBC would be $250 and the dividends would be $200. If the cost of the cruise is $8000 the OBC amounts to an additional discount of 3%. That significantly increases the typical travel agent discount of 8-10%.
  13. You can also book with a different TA and also get the CCL shareholder OBC. I compared a big box store's price to other TAs for our next cruise, and big box was not the cheapest. Can one book with a big box and also get the shareholder OBC?
  14. The ports for a Canada/NE cruise are pretty much the same for all the cruises. Just guessing I'd say about 15-16 different ports. The cruise lines seem to be adding more though. Cattl331 provided the best link. I remember the restaurants and locations, but I don't recall names. Sorry Well FIVE FISHERMEN in Halifax.
  15. There is a play in town which might be available. Anne and Gilbert. You can book through the venue website or HAL. You might consider renting a car. Many US insurance companies cover rentals in Canada. Some travel credit cards also cover car rental as primary insurer. Anne of Green gables. We found the PEI very interesting. Eat mussels and raw oysters if you like them. They are different than the ones we get in NW FL. Saltier.
  16. You don't necessarily have to drag luggage across town. You should disembark near the Piazzale Roma. Maybe take a short tram ride from the ship. There are several hotels in the area. Antiche Figure is one of our favorite hotels of anywhere we've been. It is on a canal. Grand Canal? There are other hotels closer. Venice is small so any location is gonna be decent. TAD2005 gave good advice.
  17. All of these posts have been true. You might not like this, but I like the sedateness. The passengers are older. The ships have a roomy feeling. No music so loud that you can't have a conversation. You can find public places to relax and read. Very few out of control drunks. We go to bed, and sleep when we've had one too many. No fighting over seats at the evening shows. I've seen it on Princess. I hope you enjoy HAL. The onboard experience will not be like Carnival though. We've sailed on five other cruise lines. HAL and Celebrity are our first choice. Many things similar and a few differences
  18. Do the two of you use different credit cards? If not your gratuities alone will be about $30/day. Regardless, as Roz said, your card is not charged until the end of the cruise . All HAL charges accumulate until then. There is not an additional hold for daily charges,
  19. We used a credit card for almost every thing.you can get funds from an ATM if you need it. MC or Visa work best. Hopefully a "no foreign transaction fee" card. There are plenty available if yours is not. Use the airport in Amsterdam. We used cash for small purchases and tips for our tour guides. The ship also has currency, but not at a desirable exchange rate. VOV is one of the most interesting cruises we've been on.
  20. Fatcat 04 post has your information. SEVERAL ships are now non-smoking indoors including in the casino. On the Zuiderdam last fall smoking was allowed only outdoors on one deck. Deck 9. We did not sail on HAL for twelve years because of their smoking policy. They are finally getting into the 21st century.
  21. I took your comment about guns in the US to be a comparison of a peaceful protest in Germany to the horrible murder rate we have here. You have a valid point. We have militarized the general public here, and some feel it is now unsafe to go to school, work, a movie or drive on our roads. FWIW, my five year old granddaughter received training on what to do if a "mean person" came to her school. How the US got here is a long and debatable story.
  22. Walfam mentioned a shuttle. Typically a fixed charge divided by the number of passengers or price per person.
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