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sazzifrazz

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  1. Looking for opinions on Royal Caribbeans Big French Key beach excursion.
  2. So what has been done so far? Im getting nervous nothing will be completed by 2/2020
  3. I see some people go through Daniel Johnson, others through Justin's Island Tours. There will be 5 adults and one teenager . We don't want to see the shops or the lookout....just the sloths, monkeys and a gorgeous beach. We are in port 9:30-6:00. I'd like to spend a few hours at the beach.
  4. Horseshoe Bay Mullet Bay San Juan Labadee Sent from my iPhone using Forums
  5. We rented a 4 door Jeep at Hertz right at the cruise port. It was is terrible condition . The windshield had a big crack. The bumpers were all cracked and smashed, scratches dents and rust all over the body. Inside the clothe was filthy and the dashboard scratched and marked up. There was rust on the metal parts of the seats and the roll bar lights were completely rusted out and broken. The low tire pressure light was on and the check engine light came on after we got to the beach. I question if it was even a rental or if it was an employers own car. The guy came and took his phone and belongings out of it before we got in it. We should have refused to take it but we just wanted to get the most of our short time in port. While driving the backseat door flew open. Fortunately my 12 year old was wearing his seatbelt. I emailed hertz today....let’s see what they say. Sent from my iPhone using Forums
  6. Ports: Our first port was Bermuda. This was our first time here but definitely won’t be our last. It was awesome. We walked off the ship and straight ahead is the shuttle to horseshoe bay. Its a large mini van, $7pp each way. It was about a 20 minute ride. The drivers get right up on the bumper in front of them and beep a lot so it was a little nerve wracking. When we arrived we walking down a little driveway to the beach and it was beautiful! There were maybe 20 other people there when we arrived. It was $45 for 2 chairs and an umbrella. We never really even sat so next time I wouldn’t bother renting chairs or umbrella. There are two areas to this beach...the main beach has fun waves, and the alcove off to the right is like a little pool with nice snorkeling. We bounced between the two. The beach got really crowded but it wasn’t bad in the water, where we stayed all day. It was too hot to sit out. We went to the snack shack early to avoid crowds. Prices were as expected. I think it was $10 or $12 for chicken fingers, fries and a water. They had wings, dogs, burgers, salads. This was our favorite day of the cruise. We stayed all day, although time flew by. We were able to easily get on a mini shuttle back to the ship without waiting. It was a little bit of a walk to get to the shops near the pier and it was just too hot for us. We just got back on the ship. The line to get back on was about 10 minutes. Second port was St. Marten. We had been here a few times before. I had done research about the storm damage and recovery. The french side was still in bad shape but from what I read the dutch side was 90% repaired. We had rented a jeep from Hertz months in advance, but cancelled a few days before the cruise (more on why later). When we got off we thought we would try to see if we could still get a jeep. We walked about 5 minutes from the ship to Hertz. The lady at the counter said she would give us a 4 door for the same price we had earlier booked for a 2 door. Awesome! We did the paperwork, paid $100 on our credit card. She walked us around back behind the building to a **** box jeep. Another worker came running over to get his personal belongings out. I really don’t know why we didn’t refuse this car. I think we were just shocked and in a rush to get to the beach. The windshield was cracked, both bumpers had cracks and dents, the inside was awful. There was tons of rust, even the overhead lights were rusted out without bulbs. The seats were dirty etc. I really think this hunk of junk belonged to the worker and wasn’t even a rental. Lol We took pics of the damage with the lady right there. We drove off without a map heading towards the dutch side. Driving was kinda depressing. They may have repaired damage but the missing/shredded trees were noticable. If this was my first time here I would just assume its a dumpy island but I know it used to be beautiful. At one point we were driving along on a curve and my sons door flew open! Thankfully he had his seatbelt on. We were in the right e=area but couldn’t find Mullet beach. We saw a woman at a bus stop so we pulled up and I opened my window and asked her for directions. She either misheard me or thought we were someone else but she went to the back door where my son was and tried to open it. I think she thought we were giving her a ride. We laughed about the door and the almost-hitchhiker for days. We drove for a few more minutes and eventually found our way to Mullet bay. The water here is beautiful. Calm waves. The beach area is ok. There is a hill down to the water, but even with my bad back I could do it. We rented two chairs and an unbrella for $15-very cheap! A lady came over very quickly to collect the money and inform us that she was serving lunch and drinks right behind us. She had a personal grill, and a few coolers. We spent a couple hours in the water, chatting with fellow cruise passengers. We were the only ship in port that day. A few catamaran tours pulled up for about an hour each but it didn’t bother us. It wasn’t crowded. We made our way over to the lunch area. There were about 5 adults and 5 kids hanging out under a tarp serving food. We stood there for a minute before they acknowledged us, even though we were the only customer there. The girl was very curt. I was looking around, seeing the containers of food sitting out in the hot sun and I opted for a can of coke and a bag of chips lol. My son ordered a burger before I could say anything to him. My husband followed my lead and stuck with chips and soda. After ordering we stood there waiting...she didn’t tell us the price, or where to get the food. It was super awkward. Finally an older woman came over and they spoke and she told us our total. We paid, she didn’t even speak. No thank you, or your food will be right out. We had to ask where to get the burger and she mumbled something in an annoyed tone. The group continued to chat while we stood there. We finally walked away and waited at a picnic table. My son did get his burger, he said it was good. I had read positive reviews about this snack lady but I found them rude. I wouldn’t buy from them again. We stayed in the water for another hour or so before getting out to dry off. We drove around a bit before heading towards front Street. We had hoped to find parking somewhat near there but we didn’t. The third port was San Juan. We have been several times, and several times we haven’t loved it lol. Today was no different. We were in port early. They told us the shops in Old SJ won’t open till 9:00. We took our time getting off the ship and walked up to old SJ. Even at 9:15-9:30 half of the shops were still closed. We were the only ship in port, you would think the shops would want to take advantage of the 4000 people there. It was really hot. We spent some times exploring and found a starbucks. Wifi and AC were greatly appreciated! We headed back to the ship in time for lunch. I personally don’t care for this port. There wasn’t enough time to go to any beach (but I hear they do have gorgeous beaches). The last port was Labadee. It was beautiful. I knew we wanted to head to columbus cove where the water is calmer and lots of shade. We got on the tram at the first stop. I knew there was a tram stop at columbus cove but the driver stopped at the tram stop before that and told us all we had to walk. Ugh...the sand was think and it was a bit of a hill. The worst part was we had to walk by the very aggressive vendors. I told my son to just keep walking. They were all calling to us “Hello boss lady….pretty lady come here….I have something...let me show you”. I found them so aggressive that I had zero desire to even look at any of their goods. I know they are desperate but honestly if they toned it down people might be more willing to check it out. Anyways...we made our way to columbus cove and had a man set up three chairs under a palm. We tipped him and he was very kind. We spent all morning in the water. It was so nice. We had the BBQ lunch which was also decent. By lunch time the beach was packed and the water was crowded and very warm (eeew). We decided for the last hour we would check out adreneline beach. We were able to get a tram at the columbus cove stop. I guess if the tram has two wagons it can’t go over there, but if it only has one wagon it can. I’ll remember that! Adreneline wasn’t as shady, and there were little waves. The water wasn’t as clear and there was some sea grass areas. I much preferred CC area. We ended the day by stopping in the building with items for sale. NO aggressive vendors in here but there were vendors around the building calling to use from outside. Jeeze!!! The building was packed while the outside vendor booths had no one. That confirms my point...people would stop at the booths to shop if they were so aggressive. It was a long hot day but we loved this port. I liked not having to deal with thinking….its easy to just walk off the ship to the beach and have lunch right there for you.
  7. Just off Anthem yesterday. I also wasn't all that excited about this ship. I really wanted an Oasis or Freedom class. We chose Anthem because we wouldn't have to fly if we sailed out of NJ. I'm happy to say she was a gorgeous ship. I did not find it to have any "wow" factor though. It didnt have a huge multi level dining room or the grand esplanade. I did miss those things. It had a lot of gimicky things-like bionic bar and north star. These didn't particularly impress me. I thought the ship was tastefully decorated with bits of whimsical things here and there. My favorite part was the Solarium pool area-just beautiful! My 12 year old liked the sea plex. We booked the Symphony for February 2020. Now THAT I am excited about!
  8. On July 26, 2017 I booked The Anthem of the Seas 7/26/2018 sailing. My husband, Matt, and I had sailed on the Adventure for our honeymoon is 2003, and then again in 2004. I cruised on norwegian once and it was the awful! Our 12 year old son, Quin, had never cruised before. We chose the Anthem because it was a newer, bigger ship and it went out of New Jersey. We loved that we could drive 6 hours from Massachusetts and not have to deal with flying. I had done some research and found that the corner front facing ocean view cabins were big...like really big. We booked 10110. It was even better than we expected. There was two huge closets and 2 drawers under each, a dresser with large drawers, and above the king size bed as well as above the pull out couch there was huge storage space. We packed 4 huge luggage bags (we way over packed!) and still didn’t even use the overhead storage areas. There was a chair in the window alcove. We did feel the ship moving a bit but it didn’t seem any worse than when we were in common areas of the ship. It was a long walk to things in the back of the ship but for us it was worth it for the extra space. We would absolutely book this type of room again if available. We drove down to southern CT the night before and stayed at a hotel in Norwalk. The next morning we drove to Bayonne. We arrived at the port around 10:30AM. There was a slight back up waiting for people to unload luggage but once it was our turn the guy came over and quickly unloaded for us in a matter of 2 minutes-then we parked in the garage. It honestly couldn’t have been easier. We walked into the terminal (is that what it’s called?). It was a bit chaotic here. We had done online check in and had everything we needed. Once they scanned our info we sat in the holding area for about 30 minutes. I think we got on the ship at 11:45. I had done my homework and had a plan….and then it all went to crap once onboard lol. It was very congested in the area you enter and my head was spinning. I had planned to go to the excursion area and double check to see if they had a bungalow available for Labadee, go to 270 and grab lunch, go to the kids club to check in, and then do bumper cars. Well the excursion area was packed so we skipped it, and we somehow ended up deciding to go to the Windjammer. It was insane in there. So many people, not enough tables etc. Since we didn’t know the layout I felt like we wandered around aimlessly. We got some food and finally found a table outside. Not the most relaxing way to start a vacation. My son is 12, but a young 12 IMO. Royal considers 12 year olds teens and therefore he was too old for the kids club. It had been suggested that we could ask to see if they had room but we were told it was a full sailing and he had to do the teen club ages 12-17. We signed him up for it (more on that later). We headed into the Sea Plex and got in line for bumper cars. It was only a 15 minutes wait-Matt and Quin had fun. Next cruise I will plan to go to one of the smaller lunch places, such as 270 to avoid the first day windjammer craziness. At 1:00 we got to our cabin...which we were more than happy with. I thought the bed was very comfortable, the bathroom roomy enough, and the shower bigger than our previous cruises. We unpacked and stored all luggage under the bed. I’m not going to give a day by day of what we did, instead I will give over views. Dining: We chose traditional late seating 8:00pm. We requested (via email) a table with just the three of us. We were assigned to The Grande. I much preferred the decor/style in the grand to Chic. IMO Chic was ugly...very 70’s white and leather. Just not my style at all so I was happy we were in The Grande.Our waiters were Gede and James. They were both very proficient and we were happy with their service. My husband is gluten and dairy intolerant and James made sure GF bread and almond milk for coffee were on the table each night. These two waiters seemed busier than other waiters in the room. I don’t know if they had more tables assigned to them or what but these guys were running constantly. Now one thing that we thought was very odd was most nights the director of food operations (or some title like that) came on the speaker and told a really lame joke made even stranger due to his broken english, an/or played a part of a song that wasn’t really formal dining room stuff. The speaker was kinda crackly and whoever was playing the music didn’t really know how to get it to start and stop. Each time people kinda looked around like, “WTH is happening right now?!” It was just really weird. The food was pretty good. We noticed each night only about half on the menu changed. There were some starts, entrees, and desserts that were the same every night. This kinda stunk. I think they could have offered more choices. I always found something to order so that wasn’t the issue. I just think RC can improve this area. I know main dining room food has gone downhill over the years since our 2003/2004 cruises-back in the days before they had $ restaurants onboard. We really liked 270. They had great little breakfast sandwiches and fruit cups. We liked getting breakfast here because it was calm and quiet unlike the WJ. The Solarium also had a nice breakfast. On port days we had room service deliver items from the continental breakfast menu for free (just tip). That helped us get off the ship faster. Each afternoon we would get a snack in 270. Their sandwiches are really good. It doesn’t make sense to me that the desserts are in a case and you need to wait in a line at the coffee barista to ask him for desserts. People are ordering fancy coffee drinks that take awhile to make so this seems like a dumb area to keep desserts. I’m not sure why they can’t be open for people to help themselves, or put in the area near the sandwiches. Just a thought. Entertainment: RC does this well. We loved Mo5aic, an acapella beatbox group. Very talented! There was a magician that was also very good. The Royal Swedes band was awesome! They really should be doing something bigger than playing on cruise ships. Hopefully they get their big break. There are three main shows onboard-The Gift, Spectra Cabaret, and We Will Rock You. The gift-the set was very nicely done, the costumes etc. The actors and singers were very good. I just thought the plot/show itself was weird. I know lots of other cruisers commented the same. I felt the same way about Spectra Cabaret. It was just weird. It was my least favorite entertainment of the whole 10 days. We Will Rock You was pretty good. Again-all of the actors/singers did an amazing job it was just the shows themselves were kinda weird. We loved 270 and wish they utilized it more. We heard they sometimes do a virtual orchestra show but we never saw it listed on the schedule. We did see virtual fireworks in there which was fun. The Pools: The solarium is gorgeous and I loved it! We didn’t get to spend too much time in there because our son couldn’t be there (ages 16+). It was nice to get away from the loudness of the main pool. Only once did we see a group of kids, around 14-to his friends about everyone who walked by-about their religion, their skin color, their weight, their clothes etc. He was teasing one of the crew members who was mopping up water on the floor. The lifeguard really should have kicked him out. Unfortunately this pool closed really early. One afternoon we were there at 6:00 and it was already closed. IMO this should be open very late. The indoor all ages pool was a nice option. It was less crowded than the main pool. This also closed early. Main outside pool and hot tubs were open late but the kids areas were closed at 6:00. On se days this pool was packed during the day. I will finish the review tomorrow and try to add pics
  9. Just wanted to come back here and say I did go on my cruise. I had my MRI on that Monday night, Saw my surgeon on Tuesday afternoon. I did not reherniate...I just pulled my back out. He suggested I go on my trip. I left the next day. I had a great time, my back behaved itself. Thanks for all of your input. I now know to book travel insurance right after deposit, and make sure it has cancel for any reason. I already booked my next cruise and I am buying insurance now!
  10. I have not spoken to the insurance co yet. I have an appointment with surgeon Tuesday and will see what he says. If He says not to go I will then call them. i have spent all week battling doctors and jumping through hoops to get an MRI before the trip. We started packing....and believe me I am not lifting a thing!
  11. Talk about cutting it close. I have an MRI Monday evening, appointment with neurosurgeon Tuesday afternoon, supposed to drive down to NJ from Boston Wednesday morning, and get on the ship Thursday! I can't make a decision until I see what the surgeon has to say Tuesday. Yikes! We are going to pack just incase. This has been a nightmare. I have been looking forward to this trip all year. Its honestly been great therapy for me planning it all.
  12. There is a slight chance. If it is not a herniation and just muscle pull I will be going!! Sent from my iPhone using Forums
  13. I booked cruise over a year ago. Last august i herniated a disc and had back surgery. I did Pt off and on to strengthen my back and work on core strength. I bought trip insurance at time of final payment in April. I bought the Worldwide Trip Protector through Travel Insured International. It does not cover pre existing conditions. In december I had an updated MRI that showed everything was looking good. The only medical claims I had during the 60 days prior to purchasing the policy was a few PT sessions. Last week I hurt my back, and I believe I may have herniated a disc. It could be the same disc, or a new disc...I won't know until I can get an MRI. I have appointment with my neurosurgeon on Tuesday. We are supposed to drive down Wednesday for our Thursday cruise. I linked the policy wording about pre existing. 1) . Would this be pre existing? It is a new injury. 2) . It says to notify them within 72 hours of event-I hurt it Friday but no doctor has diagnosed the issue or said not to travel. we need to wait for MRI results for that. Hopefully that will happen over the weekend. The Company will not pay for any expense as a result of any illness, disease, or other condition during the 60 day period immediately prior to the date Your coverage is effective for which You or Your Traveling Companion, Business Partner or Family Member: 1) received or received a recommendation for a test, examination, or medical treatment for a condition which first manifested itself, worsened or became acute or had symptoms which would have prompted a reasonable person to seek diagnosis, care or treatment; or 2) took or received a prescription for drugs or medicine. Item (2) of this Exclusion does not apply to a condition which is treated or controlled solely through the taking of prescription drugs or medicine and remains treated or controlled without any adjustment or change in the required prescription throughout the 60 day period before coverage is effective under this Policy The Company will not pay for any expense as a result of any illness, disease, or other condition during the 60 day period immediately prior to the date Your coverage is effective for which You or Your Traveling Companion, Business Partner or Family Member: 1) received or received a recommendation for a test, examination, or medical treatment for a condition which first manifested itself, worsened or became acute or had symptoms which would have prompted a reasonable person to seek diagnosis, care or treatment; or 2) took or received a prescription for drugs or medicine. Item (2) of this Exclusion does not apply to a condition which is treated or controlled solely through the taking of prescription drugs or medicine and remains treated or controlled without any adjustment or change in the required prescription throughout the 60 day period before coverage is effective under this Policy.
  14. my 12 year old will be wearing khaki or navy blue shorts and a button down shirt with the sleeves rolled. I asked a similar question and was told he will be better dressed than half of the men lol.
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