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AryMay

Members
  • Posts

    2,708
  • Joined

About Me

  • Location
    Minnesota
  • Interests
    Photography, cruising, travel
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Holland America, Princess
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Alaska
  • If you have a personal or hobby CRUISE or TRAVEL BLOG, include the url here:
    http://mysouvenirmemories.blogspot.com/

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1,310 profile views
  1. Your photos are outstanding...thanks for taking the time to post them!! I will have to keep the Ketchikan hike & bike tour in mind if we ever return to Alaska. Have always wanted to try an electric bike! When we did our kayak tour there, it was also at low tide. Amazing how many different sea creatures are exposed at low tide!!
  2. Fun to read a review from someone I've met! (We were on the 2019 SA/Antarctica Zaandam cruise with you.) As much as I want to cruise again I'm just not ready...yet. Until then I am getting my cruise fix thanks to trip reports and especially humorous and well written ones such as yours!! Even in non-pandemic times, "balcony sitting" is our thing when cruising to Alaska. Sounds like you were able to see some great wild life (although it would be hard to beat what we saw in Antarctica, right?) Sorry it didn't work out for your tour with Glacier Winds. Hoping the medical issues weren't too serious. We had a fabulous tour with them several years ago and saw whales bubble-net feeding. Have also toured with Ketchikan Kayak (doing kayaking.) Your hike & bike tour sounded fun. How strenuous was the hiking? Might have to look into this if we make it back to Alaska. Have been telling a friend about the Port Valet program. She is doing a Princess cruise to Alaska next week. Not sure if they have a direct flight, but I will mention the issue with the bag tags just in case. Thanks again for the great review. I have my fingers crossed you might post some photos...
  3. Some of you may be familiar with PescadoAmarillo. She and her husband are avid Princess cruisers who (up until Covid hit) would spend entire winters at sea and faithfully do daily blogs of their journeys. They were scheduled to return to cruising on the August 8th Majestic Princess cruise to Alaska, but at the last minute have added on a week on the Nieuw Amsterdam leaving TODAY (July 31). Jeannie is a talented and entertaining writer and for those of us not yet cruising, following the blog is the next best thing! Here is the link if you want to follow along for the next couple of weeks. Pescado Amarillo Blog
  4. I use a very small, black crossbody purse to carry my phone and the few necessities I like to keep with me on the ship and during excursions…comb, chapstick, key card, When & Where, etc. But one of my favorite and most appreciated purchases is the wrist strap that I have attached to my iPhone. I use my iPhone camera a LOT and didn’t want to take a chance of dropping it. The tab fits between the phone and the case and the tab extends through the charging hole although there is still plenty of room for a charging cable. I purchased mine through Amazon, but here is the actual website: https://www.blackrapid.com/wander-bundle/
  5. I consider our day at Icy Strait Point one of my favorites of all times, but I know this is due in part to two things we had no control over...the PERFECT weather and the many, many whales that were bubble net feeding right along the shoreline. I'm sure I would have had a different opinion if our day had been cold & rainy with no wildlife. We did a wonderful whale watching trip with Glacier Winds in the morning but enjoyed the rest of the day back at the port just as much. There is enough to see and do and if you wish, you could easily enjoy this port without spending a penny. I have posted lots of photos on my blog if you would like to get an idea of what is at the port.
  6. I doubt that we will ever do a world cruise, but this thread got me to thinking… How does this $100 FCR come into play when purchasing travel insurance to cover pre-existing conditions? To get preexisting coverage, most policies require that you purchase a policy within a short time (usually 14 - 21 days) after your initial deposit. Initially I only purchase enough insurance to cover the deposit cost and then increase the coverage when I make the final payment. Does this $100 count as the initial deposit as far as travel insurance is concerned? The premium to cover just the $100 could easily cost more than that and it wouldn’t be refundable. So how do world cruisers deal with insuring your travels and making sure preexisting conditions are covered?
  7. Our cabin was changed in the switchover, but to one less desirable. I called yesterday and we are now back in our original cabin number. Not sure why everyone didn't automatically switch to the same cabin number in the first place. Still trying to decide if we are actually going to do this cruise. I'm holding off booking air until it looks a little more certain the Alaska cruises will go, but in the meantime the airfare prices just keep climbing. I probably wouldn't have even thought about doing an Alaska cruise this summer except I like the idea of a fully-vaccinated cruise sailing at (hopefully) reduced capacity. And believe it or not, after only 2 NCL cruises the triple points would put us at platinum level.
  8. And us as well! A great cruise even if it did get off to a rocky start by leaving a day late from San Francisco. No complaints from us though...we got an extra day to enjoy SF with NCL picking up the tab!
  9. I just watched this video and it makes it sound like the Alaska cruise season could be in jeopardy but honestly I didn’t understand all that was being said. Makes me a little nervous to go ahead and make flight arrangements and purchase insurance if the cruise isn’t going to go. f
  10. I got the email confirming the switch to the Encore, but so far the cruise summary is still showing our cabin on the Bliss.
  11. On our visit we were much more concerned about mosquitos which transmit Yellow Fever. (Iguazu Falls is in the warning area.) Spent a LOT of money to get vaccinated but never saw a single skeeter on the day we were at the falls. I don't recall seeing any snakes, but there was an abundance of spiders hanging around in webs along the walkway to the falls. My husband was most intrigued by photographing them. Probably the biggest danger in the park (at least according to the signs) were bites from the coatis and monkeys. We watched people feed both and the coatis were especially bold when begging. I would keep my distance from both! My blog post from our day at Iguazu Falls
  12. Here are the details for the Best Price. I won't call at this point since I'm not ready to book anything, but the website seems pretty clear that the deposit would not be refundable. Perhaps this started when the Have It All promotion began?
  13. I am finally getting to the point where I am starting to "look" and "think" about booking a future cruise. But...after logging into the HAL website I see I have two choices for pricing...and neither one is great. For one of the summer cruises to Alaska the Have It All Price is $350 more per person than the Best Price. But I'm not excited about paying extra for perks I don't really want in the first place...drinks, specialty dining, wi-fi, and an excursion. (Including free gratuities would have been a little more enticing.) To get the lower price I would have to put down several hundred dollars for a deposit that is totally non-refundable. I am assuming the Have it All Price deposit is refundable, but I didn't actually see that in writing. I know other cruiselines are going this same direction with their marketing, but for me I will continue to just look and think for now and see how things play out in the future. 🙁
  14. I believe Hurricane Irma hit in 2017. We were there twice on a B2B cruise in November 2019 and were able to find shade near the cabanas. It meant sitting in the back row of loungers under the trees, but not a big deal since it wasn’t crowded in the least. As far as the erosion of the sand, I would expect that might just be a result of the tides. When we stopped at HMC on our first week, there was a wide stretch of sand between the loungers and the water’s edge. Also the sea was totally calm. The following week there were large waves and by the time we left the water was washing under the loungers (all the way up to the back row.)
  15. My recommendation? Do both! I realize that the cost in terms of time and money would double, but it would not require any additional international flights. For me the long flights were the downside to this itinerary so I would try to see as much as I could while I was there. You could book the NCL cruises B2B but that would mean visiting multiple ports twice. Another option might be to look at other cruiselines for an itinerary that combines the two routes without overlapping the ports. In 2019 we sailed on Holland America from Santiago to Buenos Aires and the 22-day cruise included 4 days in Antarctica (instead of just the two that NCL does.) The scenery and wildlife we saw in Antarctica was amazing...hundreds of whales (many breaching right next to the ship!) and penguins by the thousands! Also sailing through Glacier Alley and the Beagle Channel were also breathtaking. Looks like HAL is offering this our same itinerary in both 2022 and 2023. We also added a trip to Iguazu Falls once our cruise ended in Buenos Aires...something else to maybe consider? If I only had to pick one of the NCL itineraries, I would be hard pressed to know which was better! I did daily blog posts with lots of photos in case you are interested. Here is a link if you would like to check it out: South America/Antarctica Blog. I have also posted several videos on YouTube from our cruise and those links are in the blog as well. Good luck on your decision and hopefully ships will be sailing soon!
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