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Everything posted by 1982CruzStart

  1. Thank you fro taking us along on your trip. As always your pics and commentary were fabulous. Sorry that it has come to an end. I will really miss my daily read. In particular, I appreciate the review of some of the ports that we will be visiting this summer as we do the Barcelona to NYC on Grandeur.
  2. I think it depends on the cruise. We were able to book the classes on Grandeur this summer over a year before our cruise. it was well before the shore excursions.
  3. Voyager vs the explorer class ships. Explorer class ships are newer and more updated though they have their issues. They have an extra specialty restaurant. In the F class suites and I think the Concierge suites the bed faces the ocean and though it may seem minor it really is an improvement over the older ships. The concierge suites on explorer class ships have larger balconies and to me better locations on the ship. Having remarked on the above all our cruises except 1 have been on Voyager and we have enjoyed them all. In the past, we booked almost solely for itinerary and Voyager was going where we wanted to go except the 1 cruise where Explorer was going where we wanted to go. We have made the decision now to book explorer class because we like the extras of that class though we still make sure the itinerary is the most important thing. We won't book Mariner because their basic suites are smaller and that doesn't work for me. Size of cabin is more important than larger public rooms.
  4. For someone without loyalty status on Regent you may want to consider the Concierge suite inspite of the cost because of the following: 1. fly in 1 day early with Regent air otherwise you fly in the same day unless you deviate 2. hotel room included along with the transfers from the airport to hotel and then to the port 3. same booking dates for shore excursions and dining reservations as the passengers with loyalty status which means you have better access to them than if you book a suite below concierge 4. in suite coffee machine 5. as Jeb_bud says you have 4 wifi logins instead of 1 As everyone gets free laundry now it may not be as important for you to be near the laundry.
  5. If memory serves and it has been awhile we had generally pretty good seas on both our cruises to SA. I don't remember any really bad seas on either the east coast of Africa or the west coast.
  6. Thank you so much for all your time and work to take us along on your trip. Great pictures and commentary. Sorry you won't be joining us on Grandeur for the transatlantic in August. Save travels home.
  7. to add. Lunches in the speciality restaurants are only on the Explorer class ships. It doesn't happen on Navigator, Mariner and Voyager. Lunch is served in CR on those ships.
  8. that must have changed. When we were on Explorer they were both open on sea days and 1 of them was open alternately on port days. As CR isn't open for lunch at all they need both of them plus La Veranda and the pool grill open on sea days to accomodate all the guests.
  9. I agree with 'mom says'. If you have too many bags to comfortably take on the train then drop your passengers and baggage off at the port and then drive back to the airport and drop the car off. The train cars that go to and from the airport or designed with extra room as they expect baggage with their passengers. i have family that use the long term parking at the airport if they stay in downtown Vancouver rather than pay the expensive hotel rates. If you are staying over 1 night in Vancouver before or after the cruise you can sometimes find hotels out near the airport that will allow you to leave your car at the hotel for the week. You can take the hotel shuttle to the airport and catch the train or if you can't be bothered just take a taxi or rideshare down to the port. Have a wonderful cruise.
  10. We just renewed in 2023 so we are spared the increase until 2028 but by then we might not need one. I think at $50USD for 5 years it is a steal and we don't use it that much but still well worth it. At this point if i was renewing right now i still consider $120USD for 5 years a pretty good deal for the convenience.
  11. We have done at least 2 or 3 cruises with Regent that required a yellow fever shot and for each one we got the official exemption form as my DH couldn't have the shot and had no problems. That is not a confirmation as i have no authority to give you that but it was our experience.
  12. Thank you Carol for posting the pictures. Brought back great memories of our stay there on our post cruise also in 2018.
  13. We did a similar cruise on Celebrity a few years ago. At that time Regent wasn't sailing to Japan so opted for Celebrity. We did all private tours except 1 as the group we participated with through CC roll call was not putting one together so we tried a Celebrity ship tour. It was so bad we swore we would never take another ship's tour. Go to the roll call for your cruise and try and put together private tours with other passengers. Everytime we have cruised with Celebrity that is what we have done and had some fabulous private tours with other passengers. Have a wonderful cruise.
  14. We have done 2 safari post cruise tours with Regent. The first and our favorite was Kapama private reserve just outside Krueger. The lodge was lovely, the staff great and the food delicious. We could watch a few animals right outside our balcony. One of the benefits of letting Regent do everything is that when there was a flight issue from Jo'burg to the local airport, the tour company jumped in and arranged a bus so that we didn't miss any more time. Otherwise we may not have been able to arrive until the next day, missing 2 precious drives. They kept our excess luggage for us and it was waiting when we got to the hotel in Jo'burg. We had transfers to the airport from the hotel. We had 2 game drives per day. They served a light breakfast early in the morning, we did the game drive and then came back to a huge breakfast laid out for us. We had the opportunity to go to the cheetah rehab facility 1 day between game drives and it was fascinating. On another day between drives we were able to do an elephant encounter that was very memorable. These elephants are rescues only. A once in a lifetime chance to get up close with an elephant. There was the opportunity to do one game drive by elephant but we opted to not do so as the time was shorter, you tended to see less and we wanted to maximize animal viewings. We saw a group of elephants playing in the water, a cheetah that had been released from the rehab center just lounging around a tree and many more up close encounters. Half way through each game drive we stopped for a snack and drink. Morning was coffee etc, afternoon was a cocktail as we watched the sunset over the mountains. The afternoon drive was half in the dark so we were able to see nocturnal animals. The only animal we didn't see was the elusive leopard though our ranger did everything to make that happen. We even had a game drive on our way to the airport to catch our flight. They have a local airport literally across the street from the reserve. We were flown back to Jo'burg for an overnight there. It was late December and we had perfect weather, not too hot, no rain and no bugs. It was great. We recommended it to friends on another post cruise tour and they loved it as well. There was a couple at the resort that had made all their own arrangements off the ship. The 2nd one was at Shamwari Bayethe at the Riverdene facility. Luxury tents with small individual plunge pools. Each very private. We had a very good time there as well but because it is a much bigger reserve than the first one, we spent more time driving during the game drives then seeing animals. We did however see a leopard and it was just lying by the road and didn't seem bothered by the vehicles nearby. The staff was great, the food very good and the accomodation very comfortable with monkeys hanging around the outside of our door. The one downside for me is that we didn't have the same ability for extra experiences that we had at the first one. It meant a lot of downtime between the morning and evening drives without access to lodge facilities like the first one. Bill, regardless of what you end up doing it is an experience that you will never forget. I understand people telling you to do it on your own, stay longer etc but some of us don't have the luxury of the extra time to stay longer or the time to do all the research to book everything yourself.
  15. So sorry to hear you are gone. You will be greatly missed on this forum as you were the one person we could always count on to help us out. i thank you very much for all the help you gave me. I wish you all the best in the future.
  16. that seems very strange. I would email Mike Moore (mmoore@rssc.com) or Jenifer(darn it, i can't remember her last name, if i find it i will post it). I believe she is incharge of the Seven Seas Society which should mean she is responsible for SSS OBC. I find Mike to be very helpful. If he can't fix it, he sends it on to the correct person.
  17. the issue is that you don't turn gold until you board the ship. No gold benefits until you are onboard.
  18. Our $100 OBC for being Gold was applied to our account as soon as we booked and then when we purchased shore excursions the OBC was applied automatically against the cost and we paid the rest on checkout.
  19. Though on the other side of the pond, within the last 2 weeks we deviated our flights for our August cruise and we are booked with BA for 2 parts of the itinerary.
  20. I didn't say the cruise was terrible, i said it was our worst cruise with Regent. Your experience and mine were obviously different or at least the things that negatively impact us during a cruise are different. As always the staff were wonderful, the food was okay but rarely outstanding so i ended up eating the same food often that was a very good. The menu was uninteresting for us so ended up mostly ordering from the always menu. Our 1 night in Setti Mari was not good, a venue in the past we had frequented and enjoyed, but avoided the rest of the cruise as it was that bad. We enjoyed most of the ports that we took excursions on. The scientific team was fantastic and i consider them part of the Antarctic experience that made the whole trip worthwhile regardless of the other experiences. As i said it hasn't stopped us from cruising with Regent as we have 2 more cruises booked with them.
  21. We did this itinerary on Voyager last year. All but 1 of our Regent cruises have been on Voyager. I have to say that this cruise on Voyager was our worst cruise with Regent. A number of factors contributed to that experience with the exception being the great crew. However the 3 days sailing in Antartica made the whole thing worthwhile and wouldn't have missed it for the world. We are continuing to sail on Regent for now as we've had many great experiences. We decided that going forward we will only sail on the newer ships. I am so sorry that you missed a day there and other ports. It sucks when you had such great hopes, they are dashed and to add insult to injury you suffer the preceived indifference of the people responsible to provide the experience regardless if the circumstances were beyond their control.
  22. We have done a pre or post cruise tour everytime it was included in the cruise fare. One time we did both the pre and post cruise tours, one included and one we paid for. We have had very good success with all of them. I can't speak specifically about Athens. Ours were in China, South Africa twice, Egypt twice, Cambodia and Chile. Chile being the most recent one a year ago. They have been well run and good experiences. We found the detailed itinerary to be very accurate. Have a wonderful cruise and tour.
  23. Thank you for taking us along with you. Looking forward to your perspective. Have a wonderful cruise.
  24. Another option is to email Mike Moore and he will take care of getting you back on the mailing list. At some point Regent changed sending email information from me to my DH. He then would forward it to me. I emailed Mike and within the promised time frame he arranged for me to get the emails and my DH stopped getting them. I believe his email is mmoore@rssc.com. For those that want to be removed from the mailing lists i recommend that you email him as well and I am confident he will take care of you.
  25. Same thing happened to me. I booked an interview which required a round trip of about 8 hours and an overnight stay but before the date for the interview I received notice that the renewal was approved and they automatically canceled the appointment.
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