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Dancer Bob

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  1. I'd say there's less here than meets the eye. Re-certifying a ship from outdoor to indoor mustering is a big deal. If Chengkp75 or Heidi13 are lurking, they would know more. As far as I know, the only terminal Costa controls is Savona, everywhere else you're at the mercy of Port Authority and local politics. Can non-Schengen citizens have on-line checkin (thats also UK after Brexit, is it not)? Note "limiting" interaction, not "avoiding". Reduced ship capacity- is this just marketing hype to cover up bookings being way, way down? How long for? Only table service and reducing public area capacity- how is this going to work? Exactly who are the "restaurant" crew? Sounds pretty unsocial, and a real PITA. Does this mean the shops, spa, and photographers are going to stop marketing in the corridors? No more cruise staff activities? Or what? One article CC is currently publishing says no more elevators or public washrooms. I really can't figure out what this does to staffing levels and cost structure, but it doesn't sound good.
  2. Further to the photos above, Cunard's QV and QE are the only ships of this class that I know about, that don't have a retractable roof over the pool. For sure, Costa has two almost identical ships, they spent the money for a roof (insert Mediterranean weather comment here). As well as being wet whenever it rains (insert UK weather comment here), deck 9 is a wind tunnel whenever the ship is sailing into a headwind. I did a winter TA on QE a few years ago, with an "upgrade" to a balconey. The balconey doors didn't seal well and it was very drafty when windy.
  3. I have been in G32 til 5 AM, although 3 AM or even earlier is more common. Avoid the Queens Room on party nights and during galas. The orchestras vary from lacklustre and monotonous to woefully off-tempo. Recorded music during the breaks seems to vary with the sound technician, sometimes quite good. If you're looking for something like mambo, bachata or paso doble, talk to the social hostess, maybe the sound tech can accommodate.
  4. Also, you may have to carry your luggage upstairs and over rough pavement depending on your exact route.
  5. Due to Canadian tax law, I have to make some changes to my retirement funds this year. I'm debating whether to but CCL stock while it's cheap. With all the money governments have decided they have to throw around, I'm expecting inflation to skyrocket and taxes to go absolutely berserk, hugely reducing value of current savings.
  6. Assuming you're flying from DTW or ORD, you'll probably have a better choice of flights to LHR than LGW, nothing to SOU. I'd definitely want to head for London several days early, then a day or two early to Southampton. The National Express bus station in Southampton is near the rail station. I'm more of an Ibis Budget person, it's next to the Novotel, there are several other good choices close to the High street.
  7. Make sure you understand the difference between solo cabin and single occupancy of a double. Solos are notorious for no discounts and selling out early. Since you've been on several cruises- pick the ship that had the most activities you liked, at a price you can afford. You're more likely to find people who share your interests. In my experience, the more expensive the ship and the more grandiose the promises, the bigger the disappointment.
  8. Last year's Annual Report is irrelevant to what's going to happen this year. His speculation is now badly out-of-date, he never mentioned the no-sail orders. I do think the long-term prospects are good, but I expect the short-term to be painful.
  9. I was on Silverseas a number of years ago. As I recall, it was one of the worst cruises I have ever taken, at any price point, and I couldn't wait to get off the ship. I recall the food being among the worst I've ever experienced, I'm pretty sure that was the cruise I thought "no wonder they keep the passengers drunk so they can't taste the food". I don't recall any entertainment past 9PM, the musicians seemed to resent playing later. It's possible there was some heavy drinking in one of the bars, but that wouldn't have interested me at all. For a single female, 60ish, unless you're a heavy drinker, Cunard for sure. I pretty much agree with everything Bell Boy has said. I consider Cunard to be possibly the best cruise line for singles.
  10. There's a salsa convention in Toronto in October, I've seen ads for salsa cruises in the program. I don't have a copy at the moment, but I think they were on Carnival out of Miami.. Be careful, "salsa" can mean very diffferent things to different people.
  11. Can't speak to this specific cabin, but this class of ship (also operated by Carnival and MSC) has cabins which due to odd shape, are only upper/lower, can't put beds together for a double, and end up being sold as singles. I recall being in one next to the elevator, very quiet, and next to the theatre, noisy scene motors during both shows and rehearsals. I also recall being in one near the anchor chains, can't remember when or where, very noisy but only briefly.
  12. I should have mentioned, a few years ago I was on QV, something airborne was going around, everybody got it handwashing or not. My personal observation, the hosts who were on tour every day and then went to the buffet with their favourites later as Lakesregion described, rather than getting plenty of rest, were the worst affected.
  13. Another point- when the partner flops on the host and pants in his face, it greatly increases the risk of airborne transmission. I expect a professional teacher would understand this risk but not the average host.
  14. Remember that the same bunch of people also want early disembarcation. With kids and luggage, it can get pretty chaotic, 30 minutes is optimistic.
  15. I rate tempos +/- 10 % from competition as acceptable social, and include mambo, mazurka, WCS, etc if that's what the crowd wants. Costa's general policy is continuous music with two groups in the main lounge («Grand Bar») from 1800 to 0100, with interuptions for cruise staff paries, which include line dancing. Alternative venues vary, the larger the ship the more the choice. Overall, maybe 60-80% if you bring your own partner. More detail, we should probably move to the Costa board (lots of UK posters there). Years ago on Cunard there would always be a couple of good dancers and several you could work with, but when Cunard joined the race to the bottom a while ago, the good dancers (like my friends I mentioned earlier) stopped coming. These days, I expect more dancing on Costa at far lower prices. International figures can be kept compact. Unfortunately, many teachers ignore floorcraft, and it's difficult when your partner blocks your movement. It's American style with all its prancing and arm waving which causes real problems. Expect the single women to complain, vociferously, to the social hostess about you stealing the hosts, especially if you are more fun to dance with. Several years ago a poster, I believe fantasy51, made some comments about this I cannot now find.
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