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GTJ

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  1. Today I was near the Waldorf-Astoria hotel and, indeed, their check room also remains in full operation. It is located on the lower level, between Lexington Avenue and the hotel's driveway, and adjacent to the window at which one pays for parking at the hotel. It is separate and distinct from the concierge or front desk. For those unfamiliar with the hotel's location, it is on the east side, in the block bounded by Park Avenue, 50 Street, 49 Street, and Lexington Avenue.

  2. I am pretty sure the coat check in Macy's has closed but I'll check as well.

     

    I was in midtown earlier today and checked in at Macy's. The coat check is still in place and doing much business. Looking into their storage room I saw mostly shopping bags, but I also saw a few large pieces of luggage on wheels. The coat check is on the lower level of Macy's, closest to the Broadway side of the building.

  3. One more addition:

     

    New York Luggage Storage

    270 West 36th Street (between 7th and 8th Avenues)

    8:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.

    +1 (212) 643-1369

    $3.00 to $9.00 per piece per day (depends on size) according to web site

    $7.00 to $10.00 per piece per day (depends on size) according to advertising card (advertising cards include $5.00 discount coupon)

  4. A recurring question here is where to store luggage for the day before or following a New York cruise. Here, hopefully, is a complete list of the various transportation facilities in New York City and businesses that are otherwise engaged in luggage storage. Every location requires patrons to show identification with a photograph.

     

    List additions and corrections welcome.

     

    Pennsylvania Station

    Eighth Avenue, between 31st and 33rd Streets

    Departures Level, southwest corner of station

    Luggage storage operated by Amtrak

    5:15 a.m. to 9:45 p.m.

    $4.50 per piece per day

    Must have ticket on Amtrak or New Jersey Transit (not Long Island Rail Road)

     

    Port Authority Bus Terminal

    625 Eighth Avenue (between 41st and 42nd Streets)

    Subway Concourse Level, New Building, Baggage/Package Express counter

    Luggage storage operated by Greyhound Lines

    7:00 a.m. to 12:01 midnight

    +1 (212) 971-6331

    $8.00 per piece per day

    Must have ticket on any bus line serving Port Authority Bus Terminal

     

    Schwartz Travel Services

    355 West 36th Street (between 8th and 9th Avenues)

    8:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.

    +1 (212) 290-2626

    $7.00 to $10.00 per piece per day (depends on size)

     

    Schwartz Travel Services

    34 West 46th Street (between 5th and 6th Avenues)

    8:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.

    +1 (212) 290-2626

    $7.00 to $10.00 per piece per day (depends on size)

     

    Luggage Storage NY

    46 West 46th Street (between 5th and 6th Avenues)

    +1 (347) 525-3490

    $6.00 to $10.00 per piece per day (depends on size)

     

    John F. Kennedy International Airport

    Terminal 1, Lower Level

    7:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.

    +1 (718) 751-2947

    $4.00 to $16.00 per piece per day (depends on size)

     

    John F. Kennedy International Airport

    Terminal 4, Lower Level

    24 hours daily

    +1 (718) 751-4020

    $4.00 to $16.00 per piece per day (depends on size)

     

    John F. Kennedy International Airport

    Terminal 8, Lower Level

    6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.

    +1 (718) 995-9292

    $8.00 to $18.00 per piece per day (depends on size)

     

    Newark Liberty International Airport

    Terminal C, Lower Level

    Luggage storage operated by NBS Storage and Delivery

    7:00 a.m. to 1:00 a.m.

    +1 (908) 933-0503

    $10.00 to $16.00 per piece per day (depends on size)

    Must have ticket on Continental Airlines

     

    No luggage storage

    Manhattan Cruise Terminal

    Brooklyn Cruise Terminal

    Cape Liberty Cruise Port

    LaGuardia Airport

    Grand Central Terminal

     

    Additional notes

     

    Most hotels offer luggage storage, albeit designed for their guests. Nonetheless, some travelers provide a suitable gratuity to the bell staff and store their luggage at the hotel, even when not a guest. A number of people have stated that there is luggage storage on the lower level of the Waldorf Astoria (301 Park Avenue, between 49th and 50th Streets) where luggage is taken without any inquiry as to guest status.

     

    Some other travelers have noted that Macy's department store has a coat and parcel check in their "Cellar" on the lower level. Macy's is located in the block bounded by 34th Street, Broadway. 35th Street, and 7th Avenue. Store hours vary each day and season.

  5. PLEASE...rethink this. You won't know what your getting, how old it is or if it's safe!! The price may seem attractive, but the after effects may really hurt you. I have heard MANY stories of how people bought prescriptions at ALL 3 of these ports and became ill. PLEASE, For your own safety...get your scripts filled at HOME!!:eek:

     

    But if one's home country is a country that doesn't have reliable medications, then medications from Belize, Honduras, or Mexico may well be safer. Not everyone's home country has the best medical care, and indeed, many people travel from their home countries to foreign countries (especially to the United States) for medical care. Someone living in, say, Haiti, might well take advantage of being on a cruise to buy medicine in a foreign country because it could be newer or safer than medicine purchased at home.

  6. Can anyone recommend a HoHo company in New York as we've decided this will be the best way to see as many sights as we can in such a short time!

     

    You really have no choice (at least with respect to guided hop-on hop-off tours) here since the last two companies to operate this service have merged. You're pretty stuck with Gray Line New York, part of the Coach USA system (and managed by ShortLine).

     

    http://www.newyorksightseeing.com

     

    Of course if you're willing to give up the guided service then you can buy an all-day "Fun Pass" that will let you hop-on and hop-off all local buses (as well as all subway trains) for a fraction of the Gray Line cost: $8.25 per person. But you will have to plan out your own journey if you do this.

     

    http://www.mta.info

  7. While Mexican pesos are always accepted throughout the entire country, U.S. dollars are widely recognized as well, especially in Cancun. You generosity will be equally appreciated regardless of the currency used.

     

    The more difficult question is the quantity of the gratuity. Generally, tipping is Mexico is at a lower rate than in the United States (e.g., the standard tip in a restaurant is 10 percent in Mexico compared to 15 to 20 percent in the United States). Mexicans in resort areas may expect to receive U.S.-style tips from U.S. visitors, but should U.S. visitors really be expected to tip at U.S. rates while in a foreign country with distinct customs?

  8. Generally, Mexico is much more conservative than the United States. Shorts are frowned upon and going naked is offensive. That being said, Cancun is largely dominated by Americans, and as such Americans may accept nakedness and Mexicans living and working there may be more tolerant of American misbehavior because of the money it brings to the community.

     

    I would ask the question: Is this trip is a carefree holiday where you want to let loose with other Americans on foreign soil, or do you want to respect Mexican society?

  9. I've been to Altun Ha and I've stayed a few nights in San Ignacio, the community located closest to Xunantunich (but we were these to see different archaeological sights in the Actun Tunichil Muknal cave that was used by the Maya, an activity you won't have time to do during a one-day shore excursion). Nonetheless, I am somewhat familiar with Xunantunich.

     

    As a sight itself, my vote would be for Xunantunich. The ruins are more impressive and there's a neat hand-operated ferry near the entrance. But, the journey there is quite long (about 2 hours each direction), and depending on the time in port, you may not get as much time there as you would like. On the other hand, Altun Ha is much closer, and you'll have more time to explore. I would go to Xunantunich only if the time in port is at least 7 hours. Otherwise, Altun Ha is fabulous.

     

    In either case, bring insect repellent, sunscreen, good shoes, long-sleeved shirt, long pants, and a hat.

  10. BTW, don't go on about doing laundry...we are going to be on holiday for 6 weeks, so it needs to be done!!!!

     

    It is something I always plan in advance so I know many changes of clothing to pack between laundromats. I despise having to shell out the huge fees for hotel or ship laundry so I always make sure as well to scout out where the laundromats are located. There's also that satisfying feeling walking off the vessel in front of the crew with your "protest" over their fees in the form of a filled laundry bag . . . and returning later to have your laundry scanned in the x-ray!

     

    I can't give you advice for St. Thomas as we did our laundry in the Caribbean in Arbua.

  11. Hello everyone. We sail out of Manhattan on Oct. 4 on the lovely NCL Dawn.

     

    After we hand off our luggage, we want to purchase soft drinks and bottled water for the cruise.

     

    Could anyone recommend a nearby grocery store?

     

    Also, what is the best way to traverse 12th Avenue? Is there a crossover?

     

    Thanks to any who answer.

     

    There are crosswalks opposite each pier, i.e., 48th, 50th, and 52nd Streets. For a supermarket try D'Agostino at 815 Tenth Avenue (54th Street).

  12. Has anyone tried taking the free water taxi or shuttle to IKEA in Brooklyn and getting to the port (Red Hook) from there? Is it far or will they not even let you walk?

     

    Interesting routes for getting there.

     

    By "shuttle" I assume you really mean the store's free bus service connecting it with nearby subway stations. I don't think you would want to bother with these bus routes since you're then left with the issue of getting to the pier itself. The MetroCard that you will have used on the subway includes a free transfer to local bus routes so why not just take the regular bus from the subway to the pier? Any subway into downtown Brooklyn, then the B61 to the stop at either Van Brunt St & Summit St or Van Brunt St & Commerce St. Then walk to the pier via the entrance at Imlay St & Bowne St.

     

    The ferry is not a bad idea. It will drop you off at the rear of the IKEA store, south of Beard St, between Dwight St and Otsego St. From there I imagine it would not be difficult to find a car service or taxi on Beard St (at least during business hours), and the ride should only be about $5 or so. You could certainly walk to the pier (I'm not sure what you mean when you ask "[W]ill they not even let you walk?"). It would easiest if the gate on Wolcott St (west of Ferris St) into the terminal were open, but I haven't been to the terminal enough times to find out if the gate is regularly open or not. If not, then you would have to walk all the way north to Imlay St & Bowne St to enter, then essentially walk all the way back south. Nonetheless, anyone reasonably fit and not hauling heavy baggage should be able to walk it (a bit less than a mile via the Wolcott St gate, and a bit more than a mile via the Bowne St gate).

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