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alishac

Members
  • Content Count

    543
  • Joined

About alishac

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Orlando, Fl
  • Interests
    Travel, animal rescue, foodie
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Celebrity
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    San Juan

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  1. We just disembarked the Edge on Sunday out of Ft. Lauderdale and had an amazing cruise. When my husband scanned his card to exit the ship, an alert pinged in the system and the staff person said that he had been selected for a "random" customs check. There was a customs official waiting right at the podium where we checked out, and led us through the terminal to the baggage area and dropped us off with another customs official who had us fill out the old customs form that you used to complete on the ship before leaving. When we were done, we were led to the customs office where several other passengers were also waiting. Someone there took our customs form and went to the back room for about ten minutes, and then came out and asked if we had made any purchases onboard (even though my husband had clearly listed the items we'd purchased on the form). We told him that we had purchased a bracelet, and he asked to see our receipt so he could see if it had been stamped by the ship that it was made in the US. 1. Our receipts were packed away, and 2. the bracelet was Bulgari and clearly was not made in the US. The customs official then pulled out a paper with a list of passengers and the purchases they'd made onboard, and said that it was likely the item, which he knew was jewelry, was not made in America (which we already knew). He then said that because of this we would have to pay duty. As we were waiting to pay this duty that had to be calculated in the back room, we realize that everyone else in the room that was waiting had also made purchases onboard and were being checked against this list that customs had of our purchases. This check was clearly not random - customs had pulled the list ahead of time and had made sure that the passengers were marked with an alert when they were disembarking. They were then requiring everyone who had made an onboard "duty-free" purchase to pay duty. Some of the officials were nicer than others--some were outright harassing passengers who didn't have their receipts with them, even though customs already had a list of what everyone had purchased. We waited 30-45 minutes to go through this process, as they would go in the back room for long spans of time doing I don't know what. One couple had to wait so long that they missed their flight. One elderly woman in a wheelchair on a group tour was left by her group of 40 because they could not wait for her. Now we have made onboard purchases in the past, and have never had this happen, even in the days when you had to fill out the customs form and we would always list our purchases. So be warned - if you make a large purchase on the ship thinking you will avoid paying duty, this is not the case (at least not in Ft. Lauderdale). What made this very frustrating was that there was no way that Celebrity was not aware that this was going to happen - the alerts were placed on our cards and there were customs officials on the ship waiting at the podiums as people disembarked. Also, when the onboard shops manager was called down to clarify a purchase and a guest complained to him, he said that it was the guest's responsibility to keep their receipts and know the requirements. I am not saying that if a duty was owed we should not have had to pay it, but Celebrity should notify guests of this when they make these purchases instead of blatantly lying to them and saying they are duty and tax free. It felt like a scam, and left a bad taste in my mouth. SO be warned before making a duty-free purchase onboard.
  2. Can't wait to hear more details about the tour. In my cruise planner, there is an option for double occupancy and single occupancy, and for both options I have to select number of people on tour, and then it charges me for two people. It is very confusing. Should I just select double occupancy and one person and show up with two so that I don't get charged double?? Wish their website wasn't so difficult to use.
  3. We have a 4-day cruise booked on Breakaway in April and are considering buying the spa pass to the thermal suite, but the prices aren't yet posted in the planner. Does anyone have an estimate of what the cost is for a pass on a 4-day cruise? We're considering switching to a spa cabin, but not if the price for the pass is comparable to upgrading. Thanks!
  4. We will be on this sailing as well, and can't wait! We were on the Edge in March, and my favorite spot for the Magic Carpet was when it was parked on deck 5, when it's closest to the water. We would watch for the times in the daily and get there as soon as it parked to make sure we got a good spot.
  5. I'm really hoping all the SS suites will be sold out and they'll have to put us in a CS.
  6. Really enjoying your review. I love the format of it, especially the highlights and lowlights.
  7. Wow, I didn't know you could ask to be put back in the guarantee pool! We have a suite guarantee booked for the 12/8/19 Edge sailing and still no cabin assignment. Good to know that if we don't like the assignment we can be put back in the pool.
  8. I have noticed the same thing. It seems they've changed the website to look more like the royal caribbean website, but I liked the old Celebrity version better. I've found with excursions I have to wait for it to load and then filter by day in order to see individual port options.
  9. Does this apply to the Edge as well? I thought I had read something a while ago that said the one day spa pass did not apply to Edge.
  10. So excited to be following along with you, hcat! I can't wait to hear how you like the art tour. I'll be back on the Edge on 12/8 and I'm considering that tour, so I'm curious to hear what you think of it. If you happen to have a few spare moments and pass by the ilounge, would you mind checking to see if the iPad Pros that they sell are WiFi and cellular capable, and if they also sell the pens and keyboard that go with the Pro? I would appreciate it, but only if you have the time 😀
  11. Are they WiFI and cellular capable? Do they also have the keyboard and pen? (If you have time to check 😀 )
  12. Wow! I didn't know they were normally so expensive. I was asking for my husband, but if the prices are that good I might have to get one too.
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