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About AryMay

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

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  • Interests
    Photography, cruising, travel
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Holland America, Princess
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
  • If you have a personal or hobby CRUISE or TRAVEL BLOG, include the url here:

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  1. After cancelling our cable TV a couple of years ago, my go-to entertainment has been travel vlogs on YouTube. The choices are pretty lean during this pandemic, but my favorite is still Kara and Nate. They are currently traveling the U.S. in a campervan, but in the past have done some pretty exotic travels around the world. They were voted the best travel vloggers on YouTube and for good reason...they are always upbeat, are great storytellers and they do a fantastic job on the video editing. Most of their travels are land-based, but they have done multiple cruises as well. The other vlog that I have been watching lately is Tread the Globe. A British couple attempting to drive around the world in their small campervan got stranded in Turkey when the pandemic began and now are traveling throughout Turkey. Our planned trip to Turkey got cancelled in May so it is fun to watch what we "should have seen". Not the greatest storytellers or videographers, but they put out a couple of longer videos each week.
  2. I'm not 100% sure, but from looking at photos of the exterior of the hotel I think the rooms that had the outdoor space were all on the same level as ours facing the front of the hotel. Here is a photo I found online and I've drawn an arrow pointing to where our room was located. Our sitting area was behind the bushes and the flags. And this is one of my photos showing what the outdoor space looked like from inside our room. As inviting as this photo may look, it was in full sun and the weather was way too hot to make use of this space when we were there. I had booked a room with a king bed, but we agreed to take a room with 2 twin beds just so we could check in early. Our friends had the corner room next to ours (which also had twin beds) but was a much larger room.
  3. I can't remember the exact distance, but the walk from the van to the beach was fairly long. I would estimate maybe a mile and a half round trip? The path was covered in gravel and level. It was extremely hot the day we were there (upper 90's) and being in the hot sun maybe just made the walk seem longer! On the other hand, there were penguins the entire length of the trail so we walked slow taking lots of photos. Most were huddled under the small bushes seeking shade. Once we reached the beach we had plenty of time to just sit and watch the penguins lined up along the shoreline. The only negative to our tour was that I was worried that we were going to get back to the ship late. Our all aboard time was 3:30 pm and it was exactly that time when we got back to the ship. The drive to El Pedral is pretty long so if we would have had any type of delay, we would have been in trouble.
  4. Our cruise went in the opposite direction...from Santiago to Buenos Aires and included Antarctica. Not sure which ship you are on or what your specific itinerary is, but for the most part, I don't think it would matter which side you have a cabin. We did not have a balcony so spent a lot of time out on deck and would go from side to side. This was especially true in Antarctica where the scenery was 360º! When the ship is sailing through the smaller channels, there will be scenery on both sides. Otherwise you will probably be too far from shore to see anything anyway. Let me know if you have any other questions. I am in "cruise withdrawal" mode right now and miss having a trip to plan. Also, there is a link to my blog in my signature. The daily posts from our cruise might be helpful in your planning or just give you something to help pass the time until you cruise!
  5. Glad you were able to get things worked out. We had a wonderful day at El Pedral in February 2019...one of our favorite tours!
  6. Not sure if they are open or not, but I follow them on Instagram and they have daily posts. Perhaps you could inquire through social media?
  7. I had requested refunds on several FCD's at the end of March and just received the money today. I'm feeling a mixture of happiness and sadness all rolled together.
  8. After reading through the guidelines, I took note at this statement: Cruisers will also be required to fill out a new health declaration prior to boarding specifically designed to screen for COVID-19. During the cruise, anyone found to have falsified their answers will be disembarked at the next port of call. I can't imagine ports are going to be welcoming ships if the plan is to dump off any passengers who might be at risk of being infected.
  9. I am the original poster and am surprised to see this thread resurrected after five years! But to respond to the previous post...we did not near noise from the elevator. Surprising since the cabin seems to share a wall with the elevator shaft. (When friends saw our cabin on the deck plan they commented it looked like you had to walk THROUGH our room to get on the elevator!) 😆
  10. You might want to compare other companies in addition to Travel Guard. There are several online sites where you can do a side by side comparison to compare features. The one I use is Trip Insurance Store. The owner, Steve, is a frequent poster on CC and has always been helpful in helping me decide which policy fits my needs the best.
  11. Why don't you insure just the deposit initially so you can get the pre-existing coverage? The premium for $600 shouldn't be too high. When final payment is due, then increase the coverage for the full amount within the required time to keep the pre-existing coverage (usually within 14 days after payment). Also, depending on the company, if you cancel before final payment and don't lose any money, the insurance premium can be applied to a different future trip.
  12. I am the original poster on the above thread. I called HAL 5 days ago to request a refund on my FCDs. The person who I talked with did not have a clue at first what I was asking. She put me on hold multiple times while she was "checking". Eventually she took my name, Mariner #, and the FCD #. She said it would take 3 to 5 business days for the refund to show up on my credit card. So far nothing, but I would have been surprised if it did get processed that quickly. I know things must be totally crazy at HAL right now so I will give it a few more days and then follow up with my PCC if I haven't gotten the refund.
  13. A year ago we took a Pullman bus from Santiago to San Antonio and it was a fairly easy and much cheaper (~$6 per person) than private transfers. We each had a large piece of luggage + a carry on size bag that were placed in the luggage compartment under the bus. Our backpacks stayed with us on the bus. The buses ran very often so there was no need to purchase tickets in advance. We arrived at the bus station at 10 am and we were able to buy tickets and make it onto the 10:20 am bus. The bus was less than half full. This information is a year old so not sure what you would find today. If you want to read more details about how this all worked for us, here is a link to my blog post that includes a lot of photos: Santiago to San Antonio by Bus
  14. Forgive me if this topic has been addressed already. I did a search, but am not finding the info. We (my husband and I) each have two future cruise deposits that we purchased while on previous HAL cruises. Both for shorter cruises (@$100/each) and longer cruises (@$300/each) for a total of $800. I have looked over the certificates and know they are "supposed" to be refunded at the end of 4 years if not used. Is it possible to get a refund on these now? At the time we purchased the FCD's we fully intended to use them. Now...I'm not sure. Has anyone got a refund on unused FCD's before the 4 years are up? If so, how do I handle this?
  15. So, so glad to know you are home, Sherita!! Rest up and stay healthy.
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