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About Qchell

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    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Charlotte, NC
  • Interests
    camping, hiking
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Grand Turk

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  1. I completely agree. The number of people in a cabin can make an impact on the price per person. Additionally, cancellation and switching names policies vary from rate to rate and time that it may occur. I would absolutely contact a TA or Carnival directly to see what they recommend you do in this situation.
  2. We've boarded around 1 pm before and practically walked on the ship and our rooms were ready.
  3. We sailed on her a couple of years back, and I have to agree that it felt crowded everywhere. All the new amenities are great fun, but they crammed so many in, that it really reduced the space available to just sit back and chill. We ran into plumbing issues during our cruise. Two nights in a row the toilet would not stop running and nearly overflowed. The second night there were so many people calling in to report issues that I ended up having to literally run down to CS to report the problem. Thankfully the two ladies that were being waited upon discussing an issue with their bill were exceptionally nice and let the gentleman deal with my issue first before resuming assisting them. 🙂 The repair guys were very prompt and were already in my room fixing it before I was able to get back to the room (to my husband's surprise as he thought the knock on the door was me returning and answered it in nothing but his underwear 😄 ). There were buckets up and down the hallways the entire cruise catching drips and we heard from another couple that their cabin had flooded and the entire carpet had to be replaced while we were in port. That said, I have heard that the spa rooms, as they are the newer rooms, are all very nice. We will be sailing on her again in a couple of weeks and have booked a spa room. The bartenders we had at the Alchemy Bar that cruise were incredible and I am hoping we run into one of them there again this cruise. The bands and comedians were wonderful when we were on her and despite the ship having its issues, we still have a lovely time. So while my least favorite of the ones we have sailed on, I am looking forward to seeing her again and being a bit more prepared for her quirks this go round.
  4. Google Chrome is my primary app to cruise the internet. When I want to check out Carnival without logging in, I just switch over to Internet Explorer. None of my passwords, etc. are there so it's easy to surf sites without it automatically logging in or having to log out.
  5. I am good to go. The info was down below the list of documents you can travel with in a separate paragraph which mentions that a birth certificate and government issue ID would work too. We keep meaning to get passports and just keep putting it off. With all these changes to travel documentation and all these different types of driver's licenses, it's time to just take a day and go down to get actual passports and it truly is the smartest thing to travel with.
  6. I just noticed that Carnival's website now states that you have to have an enhanced driver's license to sail. (Yes, I know we should get passports/card - but haven't yet) We sail next month and I do not have an enhanced driver's license. North Carolina doesn't even offer one, they have a "Real ID" (no clue what the difference is). I can drop a bunch of money and get an expedited passport/card if I have to. The travel laws regarding requiring travel with an enhanced DL are not supposed to go into effect until October 2020. Has anyone cruised within the last month or so with a regular driver's license (+ birth certificate) and did you have any issues?
  7. I personally like having the option to pre-pay for the steakhouse. Not sure I would do that with the other options, but it has become tradition that we eat in the steakhouse the first night each cruise. We know we are going to go, so having yet another thing completely taken care of prior to stepping on the ship is very nice. Our S&S bill is going to be practically nothing next cruise!
  8. I often prefer the smaller ships because I feel like I get better service on them and the staff don't seem quite so harried. However, they are lacking a bit in the amenities area. I do agree with everyone so far, definitely go with the Panama option. That is a rare experience and one that I have no doubt will be remembered for the rest of your lives. The other cruise is a regular one going to ports that Carnival frequents weekly, if not nearly daily.
  9. I've never had a 'bad' cabin on any of our cruises. However, I nearly made a mistake our first cruise. I started booking online and then decided to call a travel agent as I had never cruised before and wanted to be sure I was booking what I thought I was booking. Thankfully I did. I nearly booked an interior cabin with bunk beds for my honeymoon. So if you are uncertain as to the type of cabin you are booking, talk to a travel agent or Carnival.
  10. Cozumel also has some great all-inclusive resorts catering to the cruise community. If you live in Atlanta, the Carnival Sunshine out of Charleston would also be a good bet. It has a ton of bells and whistles, a sports deck and a large variety of restaurants and bars. It also has the Cloud 9 Spa, which if you get a 'spa room' or spa pass (available daily or forthe entire cruise) it gives you access to a variety of steam, sauna, and thermal rooms. They are nice! The Serenity Deck (adults only) is absolutely beautiful. It tends to do 5 day cruises to the Bahamas. Half Moon Cay is about the most beautiful beach I have ever been to and is the perfect port for a fantastic beach day. Nassau and Freeport are two of the other regular stops. There is a large variety of things to do in Nassau, but do your research as Nassau can be a bit sketchy. Freeport is not a pretty port to sail into, but they have a lot of excursions that are great fun and there is a pretty cool bar right there at the port.
  11. We tried out the Chef's Table about a year ago on the Elation. We figured we would give it a try since there is no steakhouse on that ship. The galley tour was pretty neat, and the samples were good. The food itself was okay. It was fun to try all this food prepared in these unique ways and combinations that you just don't find in the average restaurant, but I was not blown away by the actual taste of the food. The location where they hold it on the Elation was also bit distracting as well because it is in the library where everyone walking around the atrium can watch this small group of people eating dinner, and you can watch them watching you. That night they were also having a huge party in the atrium, so all the music, cheers and laughter coming from outside the room was a bit distracting while you are sitting at a formal dinner. Overall, it is definitely an experience I would recommend someone try. Getting an inside view of the galley to see how all of this food is prepared every day (and everyone working there was so nice, you feel like a celebrity walking through with everyone grinning and waiving at you) and getting the opportunity to try some very unique foods was an absolute treat. I am very happy that we did it, but I don't see us doing it again.
  12. For my DH and I, it's not worth it. Most cruises we have been on the lines to board are minimal and I truly think we would have only gotten on board maybe 15 min earlier. Many times our room is already ready and even if it is not we only have 1 small carry-on, which fits easily under a deck chair, until our room is ready, which is generally about the time we are finished eating lunch. We rarely go to ports that tender, and when we do, we either book an excursion or take our time leaving the ship as we know the lines are going to be long, might as well enjoy the time relaxing on deck while waiting for the lines to go down. Now if you have a family, especially with young children, and possibly a lot of carry-on stuff, and are going to tender ports, it may be worth it for you. I can definitely see the advantages in that situation. For our cruising style, we wouldn't get much out of it.
  13. The first time my DH and I purchased Cheers it was the second day. He had been dead set against it, and then on the first day we had a couple of drinks at the sports bar while watching a hockey game and then hit up the Alchemy Bar after dinner that evening. When we added up how much we had spent that first afternoon and evening at breakfast the next morning, realized we would have actually saved money if we had had Cheers, and we immediately purchased Cheers. Now we pre-purchase it every cruise and just consider it part of the cruise fare, and with the increase in price on board now - even more worth it.
  14. Having watched the video of two ships being blown into each other a few weeks back, skipping a port due to high winds sounds like a smart decision to me. Especially if that ship had been having propulsion issues the previous day. I would much rather have a sea day than be stuck in a port because it crashed into something. So often you hear of ports having to be skipped, but little mention of compensation for it. Getting $100 OBC as compensation, I feel, was very generous and out of the norm. I hate that you are disappointed, but hope that you had some fun spending that OBC on board
  15. I've never done it as I enjoy the salad, however what you have stated is what I have read a number of times on these boards over the years. Any variance is probably just one of those "depends on who you get" situations. Still debating what I am going to order as an app on our cruise next month.. so many fantastic options!
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