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About midwestman

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  1. Any pics of menus for the restaurants along the beach? I'm looking for the ones on the beach from where you can see the cruise ships docks.
  2. I'd say they started phasing them out about 6-7 years ago. As I recall, cigar bars were growing in popularity in the early 2000's and Carnival jumped on that trend. And then the popularity began to pull back. Since I started cruising about 10 years ago, I never recall the cigar bars being busy at all. The cruise lines want to make money, and from that point, those cigar bar areas can be transformed into more profitable areas. I liked those cigar bars myself, as they had great ventilation to suck up all the smoke. And they were a great place to smoke them (since there are so few other areas to smoke cigars. But if it means Carnival makes more money and the price of the cruise stays lower, I'm ok with them going away.
  3. I pack my cord in my carry-on (i think mine is 6ft.) I've never had an issue that I can recall. The other post here is a good idea too. If it's packed in the machine's bag I would be shocked if the cruise line has any problems with it. I have seen those surge protectors that turn one plug into 6 be confiscated.
  4. Two questions. If you already have a future cruise booked with Carnival and you've just completed a Carnival cruise and have their future cruise booking offer, can that offer be applied to the upcoming cruise that has already been booked?
  5. I always bring a ziplock bag of sour patch kids to satisfy potential sweet cravings I have (as I don't want to pay Carnival prices int the candy store.) Never had a problem.
  6. I don't know if there is a rule or not, but I can easily see how this could become a problem. A person could stash any kind of narcotic in those boxes and say its their "prescription," and then sell it or abuse it themselves. Better to bring the pill bottle with the prescription label. Maybe a signed doctor's note saying it would be more efficient for the patient to travel with the pill box instead of the bottles might be ok. I get that it is way easier to bring just the pill box, but I think you are playing with fire.
  7. Also think about this...the ship's "tap water," is distilled water. They distill it onboard and it becomes the drinking water. You should be fine. And like others have said, yes you can bring our own on board, and yes you can purchase it from the ship if you would like.
  8. The red frog pub has a few items for $3.33 each. I got the wings on my last trip and they were quite good. The red frog bar does not have food.
  9. Yes, I'd think that this could be a change that comes to all cruise lines, especially the Carnival family, if it is considered a "success." I think we all know that this change is not only for the purpose of "decreasing food wastage," which is a marketing camouflage for its actual purpose. Clearly, the unstated but primary concern is cutting costs.
  10. If you are paying under $670 per person for a regular balcony on a 7 day cruise, then yes you got a deal.
  11. Its short-sighted not to have some kind of travel insurance, whether you use Carnival's or find a different policy. I had to use it once due to my mother's death 4 days prior to sailing. And I've read of the horror stories of not getting it. The case last year of a couple that were gifted a cruise through friends. They chose not to get the insurance. One of them got sick and had to be hospitalized in the Bahamas. Sadly, their medical coverage was Medical Assistance, and the hospital would not accept it. Another story I read. A family trip to Mexico from California. The family decided not to get the insurance for whatever reason. The grandmother in the group did not want to pay for a hotel room the night before the cruise and they decided to drive to the port (4-6 hour drive,) on embarkation day. Along the way, the car broke down. Once that was resolved, they got to the port at 3:15pm, and final boarding was at 3pm. TSA and Carnival denied them boarding. When they tried to get their money from the cruise back, they were told that without the insurance, nothing could be done about it. Travel insurance sure is a waste when you don't need it (and you rarely need it.) But then it sure comes in handy in those rare circumstances.
  12. The difference between Carnival and MSC comes down to personal preferences. I've done both, and prefer Carnival. Sailing with MSC once, my wife and I both felt that unless you booked the expensive Yacht Club "experience," you get treated like a modern day equivalent of steerage. I'm not saying that it was terrible, but you definetely tell the difference For example, on the MSC Seaside, a large part of the ship is reserved for Yacht Club only, and only the Yacht Club dining room gets complimentary lobster. I felt that MSC was good overall. They had good drink specials (such as buy one, get one free beer on tap,) drink prices were fairly good, and I liked the shows, which are slightly shorter than traditional cruise shows. The overall price of the trip was pretty good too. MSC is geared a bit more to Europeans. You'll hear more European languages being spoken by crew and guests, more wine being served, bottled water at dinner is more common, etc. If you decide to go with MSC, here is a tip. MSC will give you a "status match" for their loyalty program. They will base it off your loyalty status with another cruise line or hotel company, but you can only do it once. (And you need to cruise with MSC at least once every 3 years or you lose your loyalty status and have to start over.)
  13. If there is a deal that includes on board credit, and the base fare has not been raised (as Carnival does sometimes to make it look like a "deal" when it acutally isn't,) it's probably the time to book now. Carnival does not offer many freebies these days. Most of the "deals" only include reduced deposit, or "upgraded rooms" (which is just inside room for "better" inside, "better" balcony for a different balcony, etc.) Book it now. On the plus side, most deals offer price protection, so if a better deal with the same or better price comes along later, you can get the better deal/price.
  14. No big shocker here. Most "sales" offer little or nothing in terms of value and savings. Its a sales pitch to make you think you are getting a value. I noticed the whole "past guest offer" didn't offer any real value years ago.
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