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About jocap

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    UK and N. Spain

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  1. It appears that it was another officer, who was leaving the ship at his home port of Newcastle, who set up the whole thing, Greggs being a famous Newcastle firm. And yes, there were other items such as pastries and stotties provided by Greggs.
  2. Love a Gregg's sausage roll... but there's so much more to Northumbrian food, such as Singing Hinnies and pan haggerty... not to mention Earl Grey's own tea! Oh yes- Pease pudding with ham- filling, but tasty.
  3. jocap


    Brilliant! Well Greggs are a local firm, and what's a tea party without a sausage roll? 😍
  4. Yes, both the newly launched Saga Spirit of Discovery and next year's Spirit of Adventure are listed as Polar Class.
  5. Awful news, Ray... Thanks for the programme news- Channel 5 again, eh? I'll book it to film.
  6. jocap

    Do you Barter

    I remember a British tour rep. in Egypt, who was married to a local Egyptian taxi driver, telling us that her husband would come home depressed if no tourists had haggled with him over the price- same with his shop keeper friends. It seems to be an art with some people, or an amusing game with certain rules. She did tell us about the 50% starting price... part of the game seems to be the mock tears because you're forcing their family into starvation. I'm hopeless at it!
  7. Fred Olsen and Cruise and Maritime are offering cruises which touch Greenland next summer- older, small ships with mainly adult passengers- in fact C&M's Marco Polo must be the oldest cruise ship still sailing. She is adult only. There's also the brand new Saga ship, which is for 50+ years only.
  8. I tried answering gently... no, it wasn't a cruise, but an unexpected trip to Orlando in the '90s, our first excursion on a package tour to the USA. We had researched much about where we were going, but obviously tipping never entered our heads- and the tour rep knew this, which was why she drew us together and told us the customs.
  9. Of course it does; the reason, though is- how do you know what is expected? We had to be told by our tour representative when we first visited the USA, or we would never have known to tip, nor how much. The amount is rarely placed in tourist brochures or cruise line adverts. Most countries we've visited don't use the tips as a significant amount of one's income... we need telling the rules- or is it the law? I still don't know the rules/ law in North America.
  10. I'm not sure it was ever deliberately "stiffing the crew", but a lack of understanding about tipping. P&O used to supply a leaflet about the tradition of tipping on cruise liners, which was helpful for people who wouldn't normally tip very much, or at all, in their shore bound lives. The notion of a certain sum a day wasn't understood nor appreciated- and I've heard endless discussions on board ships sailing out of the UK, mainly from people puzzled as to why they have to give extra for people just doing their job.
  11. jocap

    Pub Grub

    That's sad- I honestly haven't seen it around my area, except where Wetherspoons have bought an old building in Whitehaven. I think every pub around us is privately owned or rented. Getting staff can be a problem, though, because some pubs are very remote.
  12. P&O's Oceana is based in Malta in summer, and does a one week cruise touching 4 Greek islands. The cruise can be extended to 14 days, with Adriatic ports in the 2nd week. Again, a fly/cruise using chartered aeroplanes- no hassle being tipped off the ship until your plane from the UK has landed, and shuttle buses included (like Marella)
  13. Check Marella (used to be called Thomson) They do fly cruises from many local airports, using their own aeroplanes, so the travel is seamless. I think it's Celebration which is home ported in Cyprus- another old ship, I'm afraid..
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