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Everything posted by RuthC

  1. I know it's a short ride, depending on traffic. If you are coming to South Station by train, and not the bus, it's a quick walk outside, where you should be able to find a taxi easily. Then maybe 10-15 minutes to the Black Falcon terminal---tops.
  2. If you look closely at the picture, you will see two columns with two sets of prices. The first column is 'press only', while the second column is 'clean/press'. The price for press only is lower.
  3. I would have my PCC do it now. Early fixed seating is very popular, and there are people who will be shut out of it, or at best have to be on a waiting list and be accommodated after the dust settles. If you take care of this in advance it makes less work for the maître 'd. (sorry, Cruise Suzy, we were typing at the same time. you're just faster)
  4. That wasn't the way it worked, but that doesn't matter any longer. The extra charge for being a solo is no longer! It's all the same per person charge now.
  5. HAL no longer has 'formal' or 'Gala' nights. They have reduced the sartorial splendor to 'dressy' nights now. No jeans allowed in the dining room, and a shirt with collar is the minimum required of men, although you will see some passengers dressed up a good deal more. Women tend to dress a little more.
  6. I haven't enjoyed the entertainment on any HAL ships in recent years as I have say, pre-covid shutdown. There are no production shows as in the past; I am not fond of the dance troupe that I saw on the Pinnacle class ship I was on. There were solo performers who I did enjoy, so evenings weren't a total loss. Sometimes the main stage 'entertainment' is a lecture on the Origins of HAL, or a movie. Hardly exciting, although the Origins story is good to see once. I do not care for the Music Walk on the Pinnacle ships---not my style; nor do I care for the Rolling Stone Rock room on any ship that has it. Too loud!
  7. I've never had any difficulty getting a lounge chair on Promenade Deck whenever I wanted one. However, I was generally by myself, and not with others, so if some or all of you in three cabins are looking for several deck loungers together, that may be a problem. Are you aware that if you have three Neptune Suites in a row, the doors between them can be opened, so you can all get together on that deck? Seats for the late show in the main theatre are plentiful! But, again, if you are looking for several together, that may be a little harder. The early show generally fills up. I can't speak to how crowded the Ocean Bar or Rolling Stone Rock Room gets these days on that ship. Ocean Bar is usually not jammed after dinner, in my experience.
  8. That was because there was an available table in the fixed dining area at the time. Perhaps a table of passengers assigned there had gone to a specialty restaurant, or the Lido, that night. No need to waste the seats, or make you wait.
  9. You're under no obligations to make any recommendations on this forum. That's especially true considering the question at hand---which is would you purchase the stock to get the OBC. As someone who spent more than a few years taking 3 cruises over 14 days each year, getting CCL OBC---$750 after tax income each year (not to mention the dividends paid)---you can bet your cruise budget that if I had it to do over again, even with where CCL is at today financially, I sure would.
  10. It was an abbreviated version of the NYT, but it was 8 pages of current news, delivered daily to every cabin---not just the suites. After the ships stopped delivering, they were available in several public locations, including the Front Desk, Lido, Library, (and guessing) Dining room. The time of day the paper was available varied based on where in the world the ship was at the time. The Times transmitted the data very early in the morning/middle of the night eastern time.
  11. I believe the gray area is where the funnel, and everything that pours into it, is located. It was not noisy when I have walked by. Of the two cabins mentioned, this is the one I would choose. It is close to mid ship, with two elevator banks/staircases nearby, making it handy getting to/coming from any location.
  12. You fail to distinguish between the requirement for near or distant foreign ports under different itineraries. As I and others have tried (apparently in vain) to tell you, there is a difference.
  13. Especially on the R-class ships, I don't find the showers small. True, on the Prinsendam they were real corner showers, but for the most part they are more of a rectangle than a triangle---just with a part of a corner cut off. I'm a generously sized woman, and have never found any of the HAL showers, on any of the classes of ships, to be too small for comfortable use. It's not the the bathrooms are smaller in the insides, as compared to the outside cabins, it's that the shower/sink and tub/sink footprints are reversed. The insides put the sink and vanity where the tub goes in outside cabins, giving the vanity area a lot more storage.
  14. You could not be more wrong with your over-simplified explanation. There are four possible routes, with three possible 'simple' rules: Start outside the US/end in US---no PVSA rule to enforce. Start in US/end in different US city---PVSA requires a distant foreign port. Start in US/end in same US city---PVSA requires any foreign port. Start in US/end outside US---no PVSA rule to enforce.
  15. Just because the ship docks at 7:00 AM, does not mean that disembarkation starts then. Expect it to begin closer to 7:30, with the self-disembark passengers going first. Next, the rest of the passengers will be called to start disembarking, based on the color and number of their tags. Unless you are able to self-disembark, do not plan to be off the ship until around 7:30. If you don't self-disembark, it will be later. Start your time plan from there---and plan for something to go wrong. Personally, I would not risk it.
  16. Did you check the tax rules in Indonesia and the Philippines? That's where the bulk of the tipped crew comes from. They are not from the US, so US rules don't apply.
  17. That's my understanding, too. Wages are taxable; gratuities are not. To charge the gratuities as part of the fare, and increase the wages by the same amount would move them from 'non-taxable' to 'taxable' income. It would effectively amount to a cut in pay.
  18. So that justifies taking it out on the lowest level of employee, who has little in the way of decision making, and even less on ability to correct what went wrong?
  19. I'm especially appreciative of those who keep the public restrooms sparkling and well stocked.
  20. Don't even bother getting there before 1:00 PM, and I would recommend even later than that. I needed assistance boarding, and that always takes a long time. There is no such thing as 'priority boarding' when you need assistance, either. It's first come, first served. If you don't need assistance, it will be easier for you. Just don't get there early. Oh, and the Zuiderdam is much smaller than the Nieuw Statendam, so you won't be jockeying with as many people. Will there be another ship in that day? When BetsyS and I boarded, the Zaandam was doing her usual NE/Canada turnover, which added to the traffic outside, but was totally separate inside.
  21. To a great extent it will depend on whether or not your ship is doing a regular run, or if it has just returned from an extended period overseas. To a lesser extent, it will depend on the size of your ship and how many ships are in that day. When I embarked the Nieuw Statendam in Boston in Aug. '22, it was after the ship had been out of the US for months, so every government agency swooped down to do whatever inspections they are authorized to do. That held up embarkation of a large number of passengers. It took me three hours of sitting and waiting to be brought aboard, so late I missed any opportunity to check in at muster drill. There was also another HAL ship embarking that day, but a smaller ship on a regular NE/Canada run. They didn't have to go through all the difficulties my ship did. They had a fairly easy time of it. I would say each ship's experience that day covered the two extremes of boarding in Boston---especially when there are two ships in town.
  22. Even for those of us who have been known to take a nip or two.
  23. He just doesn't get that there are other points of view, and he never will. A real piano bar isn't a 'show', or a 'performance'; he just doesn't understand the difference. Better to save our breath to cool our porridge.
  24. While I have no desire to attend a 'performance'. I want entertainment! It was memorable for everyone who was there that night. Loads of fun for those who filled the room. But then you weren't there, so couldn't know. It's apparent you don't remember the good old days when the musician played to the room. There was no such thing as 'set lists', and the musicians knew hundreds---if not thousands---of songs off the top of their heads. Toss in a Fake Book, and the piano players could play until 2:00 AM every night, for a long cruise, and not repeat a song (unless requested, of course). The Billboard players know only a few hundred songs, and think that's a lot! It isn't.
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