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Everything posted by DrHemlock

  1. Gee, we're just off of Insignia where both the king's and queen's cut of prime rib were on the Polo menu as they have been for years. In fact, I had the queen's on two occasions (rare, of course, as prime rib should be) and was a happy camper. Is it maybe missing only on Vista as they seem to be taking O in new culinary directions?
  2. It's not enough to have a dress; you must, in fact, be wearing it. ๐Ÿ˜Ž
  3. Yes, and doesn't "Simply More" make them ever so much more desirable? (Ugh....) ๐Ÿคจ
  4. Don't know. I meant simply that we've cruised on all of O's ships except Vista so I couldn't comment on their shopping. But you're right; it was not exactly clear.
  5. Regional products? Decidedly no. Basically the same over-priced O-branded clothing, jewelry and watches on every one of our cruises aboard all ships except Vista. I suspect it's because there already are "regional products" for sale on the dock or in the terminal of every stop along the way. OTOH, assuming you may be referring to the more artistic, less touristy types of regional products: that would require an O marketing specialist or department to seek them out, bring them aboard, price them accordingly and try to get them sold before hitting the next port. Not likely in our lifetimes.
  6. Firsthand experience multiple times aboard different R & O ships: Told by reception that it can be refunded the afternoon or evening before disembarkation. It always worked as stated. Could it have happened earlier? Can't say; I had no reason to ask as the given answer was reasonable and convenient (for us). I'd be wary of trying it on the morning of disembarkation because your shipboard account will have already been closed, IIRC.
  7. Starship Troopers. On the other hand, the nightly show performers aboard a T/A in November could be called "Stormship Troupers."
  8. Due to technical reasons, regular cookies are now being replaced by shortbread.
  9. No, they gain thousands in revenues from cancelled ports and excursions. With a now-reduced total number of port stops and excursions available for the entire cruise, customers with SM "Use It Or Lose It" excursion allowances will have to try and find other excursions in other ports to take, thereby filling up excursions that might otherwise go begging...if any are to be found, as several posters here have said some ports and excursions get booked out early, leaving no availability left. And, any of the "UIOLI" money that ends up left on the table because no interesting or available alternate excursion(s) could be found simply stays 100% in O's pocket. (Not an accountant or insider, so it's JMO.)
  10. Yes and no. We often hear loud conversations (especially phone calls to family ashore) through the wall from the adjacent A2, but I don't recall hearing anything from the Vista suite on the other side. I'm not familiar with the YouTube video you reference but I can tell you from having sailed in forward-facing A2s on decks 7 and 6 on all of O's R-class ships that there are no connecting doors, neither with each other nor with the adjacent Vista suites. The deck plan at the top of this thread confirms it as there are no double-hashmarks (or whatever they're called) shown between the A2s and the Vistas. (Look at 7022-24 and 7025-27 to see the connecting door symbol.) OTOH, we once investigated forward-facing cabins on Riviera or Marina (I forget which) and those did connect to the adjacent suites. Maybe one of them was where the YouTube video was shot.
  11. Also Regent (last time we were aboard, anyway). But then, you've paid more for the welcome.
  12. We can corroborate this as we always book the forward-facing A2 cabins between the Vista Suites, and have done so both on our preferred deck 7 and second-choice deck 6. On 7, there's never a sound from above. On 6, one can hear the show below (especially if there's loud heavy-beat music involved) and one can also hear afternoon rehearsals which can be annoying while trying to nap on a sea-day or after returning from a morning tour and lunch. Go with 7.
  13. And their Parmesan is the real stuff from Italy; not the facsimile from Wisconsin.
  14. Sorry...I forgot to add that there is no such door on the port side where 8000 and 8002 are located.
  15. Absolutely, especially in Saigon and Hanoi. Vietnam's economic progress over the past 50 years has changed the social landscape, but it's still a top-down one-party country which new generations find chafing after their exposure to the internet, US (and other foreign) movies/TV and US/foreign visitors. They'd like to try their hand elsewhere but they need hard currency in order to travel so they maintain now-legal US dollar bank accounts in hopes of pursuing their dream. This info is based on my experience teaching conversational English at Hanoi's Foreign Trade University in 2012. I doubt it's changed since then.
  16. I would respectfully disagree with Redtravel's "at least 15 people." Not that 15 wouldn't be a boon, but just a couple of brave young people (because they know the drill) or fragile older people (because their presence will be respected) will suffice. Go with them and do what they do. However, if no locals appear for you to cross with, then do exactly what Idubs said for exactly the reason given: it's important to maintain a steady pace for predictability. Hint: start watching locals crossing as soon as you arrive, before you need to cross; see how they do it so you'll be prepared with a plan when it's your turn.
  17. We have cruised in both of those cabins on R ships. They are the best of the PH3 category for the reasons you describe, whereas 8001 and 8003 are not recommended for exactly the reasons WildWanderers describes -- plus the fact that they're beneath the gym. Weights being dropped and the bunka-bunka-bunka of an early-morning aerobics class over your head could be annoying. The drawback of 8000 and 8002 is that they're nearest the bow, which some cruisers find uncomfortable in bouncy seas. Well, shoot, we find it uncomfortable, too, but that's what ginger extract tablets (or seasick meds) are for. If you're a good sailor, you'll love it there.
  18. I had no trouble getting a double Absolut on the rocks at the captain's party aboard Nautica in late October '23. And the captain was there, too...which had not been the case on our previous cruises during Covid.
  19. Me, too. I occasionally have to ask my DW to remind me of her name.
  20. Never been asked for our name in GDR on any of 17 O cruises; only cabin number. Perhaps, based on reading the above, it's because we don't have pre-stated and arranged dietary restrictions. If we did have, then they might want to verify name with number just to be sure.
  21. If you check the itinerary on their website, it shows that Oranjestad, Aruba, is the final port of arrival on Nov. 22, with a disembark time of 8 AM. https://www.oceaniacruises.com/caribbean-cruises/new-york-to-oranjestad-INS241108/?sr=%2Fcruise-finder%23time_frame%3D2024-11%26ship%3DINS%26sort%3Dfeatured%3Adesc%26page%3D1%26pageSize%3D10 Sometimes, in some locales (e.g., Tokyo on Insignia this coming March), the ship arrives early on the next-to-last day of the cruise. Thus, pax have a day in the city before disembarking the next morning. But I've never seen that in the Caribbean on our half-dozen or so cruises there.
  22. Happens at beach resorts, too. One of you has to wake up at 6:00 and head to the beach to grab two loungers -- then enjoy the sunrise without coffee. The other wakes up whenever she wants, moseys down to the shore to park, holds yours while you go to breakfast, then you return and hold hers while she goes to breakfast. Since the beach resorts we frequent tend to be in foreign locales, residents of those countries also staying at the resort have no compunction about dropping stuff from "saved by a book" loungers onto the ground and taking them over, so there's always gotta be one of you there to attest that the other will be right back Would that work on a cruise ship? Maybe not. On the one hand, it's a hassle. On the other, it seems only fair as the resort (or ship) is simply unable to provide a lounger for every guest because there's not that much space. (Looks like I was typing at the same time as Harters, and that we have similar taste in vacations.)
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