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Everything posted by Giantfan13

  1. We just do not liker all the way aft as my DW is a very light sleeper and she says she hears the engines all the time. Happy wife, happy life, so prefer mid ship, especially if we are lower. Cheers Len
  2. Thanks for all who responded with those helpful suggestions. I guess it wasn't so much the question of what I would get for any upgrade I might want to bid on, but more the location. As I said, I just do not want to be all the way forward or aft while crossing the Atlantic. I purposely picked the cabin we are in for that reason. If I read the rules, if I submit a bid and it is accepted and they put me in a different cabin and location, I have no choice but to accept it even if I hate the location. Is that correct? Cheers Len
  3. I would also tell you to forget any notion of doing a ship's tour. The private tour companies get you a 72 hour visa and you will tour, at the most, with 16 or so people instead of 60. They will cater any tour to what you might want. You also have to understand that the private tour companies will go out of their way to make you happy and come back to CC with a great recommendation. Most ship's excursions couldn't care less if you recommend them or not. A private tour company can and will change your itinerary according to the weather, traffic and any other things that might arise, but they will make sure you do see everything you are entitled to see. We used SPB Tours, which have been one of the highest rated tour companies in St Petersburg. They will or can arrange tours at many of your other ports and the more you book with them, the cheaper the price gets. When we toured with them, we mentioned that we would like to see the Grand Choral Synagogue in St Petersburg. We are of the Jewish faith and really wanted to see it, but it wasn't on our itinerary. You could have guessed that they did arrange a visit there for us and the rest of our group. Tell me any ship's excursion that would do that. You will never remotely have any chance of missing your ship. Most companies book the furthest places on day one and then usually keep you local on day 2. Do yourself a favor and take everyone's advice and find a company you are comfortable with and use them. Cheers Len
  4. We are sailing the Allure, TA on March 1. We have booked an inside cabin, mid ship, I believe on deck 9. Now we received the 'bid on an upgraded cabin' for this cruise. Since this is our first time on the Allure, we really know nothing about the cabins. Price wise we still would like to stay in an inside cabin, but they offered several cheap upgrades. Like what is a 'Neighborhood view' inside. That is available for like $20 PP more? And, I guess, my main question is, if you do this upgrade, can they assign you a cabin anywhere on the ship, like right up front or all the way aft and on any level. We like where our present cabin is located and for a TA, we want to be mid ship. Should we really forget anything about upgrades? Cheers Len
  5. Try making a reservation and you will have no wait time. Cheers Len
  6. WE haven't booked an excursion thru the ship in almost 20 years. No need to. With some reasonable research you can have the same tours and more, at a more reasonable price. As long as you stay with reputable tour companies and there are hundreds of recommendations for so many ports of call, you will be fine. I look at it this way, if anything happened and you missed your ship that tour company would be mud and would never have another tour booked. I have found that private tour companies will go out of their way to make sure you have a great time, come back on CC and recommend them. Do you really think that RCCL cares if you have a great time. If you do, fine ,if not, there are thousands of others who will probably sign up. The, of course, is the Do It Yourself option, which in many European ports is so easy. Grab a copy of Rick Steves books, with what to see, terrific walking tours with little cost to you. Another suggestion, when we did a Baltic cruise, we emailed the tourist info center for each port and asked them to send us maps, walking tours and any info they could, and most did. Do a bit of research and ask questions on the ports of call boards, and you will see how easily it all opens up for you. Chers Len
  7. Kind of figured everyone would say that. Thanks Cheers Len
  8. Thank you all so much for the excellent responses. I want to make sure I got this correctly. If I were to stay in Venice, then it is a requirement that I would have to schlepp luggage to the train station? If I were to stay in Mestre, it would be much easier to go from the hotel to the train? Flying into Venice, I would require a taxi to get me to Mestre? (about 45 Euros) or a bus from the airport to the train station (Venice/Mestre)? How far would be have to go from say customs to where the bus is and do they have those carts to help with luggage? And, if I do manage our luggage thru the Civi train station, then it is two buses to get to where we board? Do the drivers take your luggage on these buses or are you responsible for them? Once again, thanks for all the great suggestions. I know I can always count on CC for help. Cheers Len
  9. We are arriving in Miami, off a RCCL cruise on Friday, Nov 20. Ship is suppose to arrive in Miami at 5 AM. We are coming off two cruises so we will have several pieces of luggage and will be hard to self disembark. So say we disembark the usual way, what time should we be looking to book our flight back to NY? Can we make an 11:00 flight or is that cutting it too close. We are what one may call, nervous nellies about these things so I don't want to have to fret if we may be running a bit late. The next flight available is 12:30--would that be a safer bet. We would love to make that early flight, but not at the cost of a worrisome trip. thanks for any advice. Cheers Len
  10. We are doing a Mediterranean cruise on NCL end of Oct from Rome. Then on returning to Rome, we are doing a TA on RCCL back to Miami. Now, we were thinking of flying into Venice a few days early, spend a day or two there, take the train to Civi and board our first ship. So my questions, from Venice Airport, what's the best way to get into Venice and our hotel (which we haven't booked yet). I would assume taxi. We are two seniors and would have two large suitcases and probably a couple of carry ones. We don't do well, schlepping luggage up and down stairs and all around town. We are also not in the category of, what the heck, we'll pay whatever they want to get us from here to there, if you know what I mean. So about what would a taxi cost if that is our best option. Second, getting to the train station from our yet to be announced hotel. If my understanding of this is correct, you can't take a taxi there? Is this correct? What would be the procedure for catching a train schlepping wise and cost wise? Third, when we get to Civi by train, what's the best way to get to the cruise port or hotel by the cruise port. I thought I read that via train you again have to haul luggage up or down staircases?? is this the case. Any other options? Sounds complicated, but if it is too stressful or too expensive, maybe another time and we will go to Rome instead and then shuttle to Civi. We are looking to book our airfare, we just have to know where we are going to fly into. Thanks all Cheers Len
  11. I can understand the way they are thinking, but really. Next they may stop people from throwing coins into Trevi Fountain. Last time we were in Rome, we sat on the Steps until sunset, watched the sun set down the avenue right across the street. Just a marvelous experience. At that time, they weren't allowing anyone to eat or drink on the Steps, which I can understand.
  12. We have been to Civi several times, as a departure point and as a cruise stop. As a whole. there really isn't that much to do, but we wanted something different. On exploring this site, and others, we came across a Thermal Spa/Baths, Ficoncella Thermal Baths https://civitavecchia.portmobility.it/en/ficoncella-thermal-baths. Now this was something we were interested in. We had to get a taxi to take us there and also made arrangements for him to pick us up at a certain time and it all worked out wonderfully. The taxi is sort of expensive, but the baths are only about 1-3 euros, depending on how long you want to 'soak'. The day we went, we were the only 'tourists' there and had a wonderful time with some of the locals who frequent this place. Anyway, it suited us fine, had a memorable day doing something no one else ever did, visiting Civi. Cheers Len
  13. Just heard this on the radio this AM, but I'm not sure if it has been mentioned here. Anyway, I heard people are no longer allowed to sit on the Spanish Steps???? Has anyone heard anything about this? Cheers Len
  14. Thank you all for some of the suggestions. I kinda figured, with the amount of luggage we have, the train might not be the best idea. (and as to the luggage, we will be away almost a month (7 day cruise+14 day cruise and assorted pre and post cruise stays and to tell my DW she can't pack this or that, well you do it, not me 😁). We have been to Civi a couple of times already and have done about what there is to do there. We even tried the hot baths last year, and that was pretty nice. We haven't booked any hotels or planes as of yet, so I just don't know exactly where we want to stay. If we fly in the day before the cruise, we will most likely do the shuttle from FCO to Civi and spend the night there. We are using miles and it is too early to book. CruiseMom, you mentioned that the shuttle will leave you off at the terminal, is that the cruise ship terminal, or will we have to take a bus to get there? Again, thanks for all the help and advice. Cheers Len
  15. We are doing an NCL cruise out of Civi at the end of Oct. We will be flying into Rome (haven't made our plane reservations yet). So is there a train from the airport to take us to Civi, or do we have to go to Rome first and then Civi? Is there a train that goes from the airport to Rome, or do we have to take a taxi. I have read the thread about the express train from Rome to Civi, but we are two seniors with 2 big suitcases and probably 2 mid size carry ones also. This might be a trick if we had to maneuver them on trains and/or buses. Part 2 is, when we disembark our NCL cruise, in Civi, we have a TA scheduled for 2 days later. Should we schlep everything into Rome for those days (we have been to Rome a couple of times already), or just get a place in Civi for the two days and if we wanted to go to Rome, take that express train? Just one other thing, we can't afford any private transfers. Schlepping on the train/bus isn't a good thing especially if we have to walk with all this luggage, so would taxi or maybe shared shuttle be better? Cheers Len
  16. Hi Phew just read all pages to this thread, but I have a couple of questions that I have not seen mentioned. We will be arriving on RCCL March 11, 2020. So average wise, what type of weather can we expect then. We are from the Northeast in the US so we don't mind cold, but temp wise, about what can we expect. We are both seniors. I have a little mobility issue, in that I use a walking stick when we are wondering around towns. We were considering the HoHo bus, just to get us around and to the top without struggling along. That said, I went on Trip Advisor and saw these tours with these little cars for, what seemed like a very reasonable price. Do you know anything about these things or the companies that use them. We also considered a Segway thing, but the last time my DW tried that, well, let's just say it didn't go according to plan. I am an avid amateur photographer, and love the winding narrow streets in many European cities. I would assume Malaga would be another that I would love? Anyplace special in the city that stands out more in that request and if we decided to do the HoHo would that get us there? Thanks for all your time and help with many of these questions. Cheers Len
  17. As has been said, the further north you go, the more snow you will see. Last year was the hottest on record for Alaska, so who really knows what will happen to most of the snow. Let's put it bluntly, the earlier you go, the more snow you will see. Cheers Len
  18. Don't doubt th9is is the price as of today. I did a quick check and there were cheaper rentals, but all were extremely high. I can guarantee that once you get to within 4 months of the trip, the cars will be al least half of what you were quoted. Depending on the car, you will be able to get a decent size car for well under $100 a day. Cheers Len
  19. We have been to Ketchikan several times, did all the 'regular' stuff, so we also wanted a relaxing day in town. We did dome pretty good shopping as were there in September and stores were marking down merchandise. We wanted to do the Married Man's trail and we followed the stream/river quite a while past where the trail starts. There were thousands of Salmon all thru the river. If you follow it for maybe 1/4 mile past the waterfall, there is an opening, sort of a small beach area where you can picnic, just hang out for a while. At this spot, the water is very shallow and there were many kids and adults in the water trying to catch the salmon. Nice place to hang out and just relax. Cheers Len
  20. We were in IPS in September and sure don't recall seeing 'tons' of vendors anywhere. If you want to go out, you should book ahead of time and sure yourself a spot. In Juneau, there are scores of vendors around the square, when you get into town. Cheers Len
  21. Just be forewarned, we arrived in Seward and it was really storming. We had a 6 hour Kenai fiord cruise booked but because of the weather, rough seas and heavy rain, they gave us the option to cancel, which we did. So what else to do in Seward but head for the Sea life Center. I guess this was the only thing in town to do and the place was so mobbed that there was a line, in the rain, out the door. We have been to many such places, so we just decided it wasn't worth fighting all the crowds and we left. Talking to locals, when it does rain like that, the Sea Life Center absorbs everyone as there really isn't anything else to do there. Cheers Len
  22. We did the bus for $65PP. 2+ hour ride thru wonderful scenic country. No stops and drops you off right in Seward. Cheers Len
  23. All three ports are very easy to do on your own. Juneau have a square full of vendors looking to book you on a tour, excursion or whatever. Decide what you might want to do and pick one. If you just want to stay local, either book a bus to Mendenhall Glacier, do the hike to Nugget Falls and spend some quality time there. You can also get there via public transportation for a lot cheaper. You can also do the Mt. Roberts tram which is right in the heart of town. Just buy a ticket and off you go. Skagway--we rented a car and drove off to Emerald Lake in the Yukon Territory. Very easy drive (you cannot get lost), maybe a few hours each way depending on where you want to stop and how many stops. Just a gorgeous ride and well worth it. You can also walk up and buy tickets for the White Pass train, which is the sort of main attraction there. Very nice trip and well worth the cost. Ketchikan--A good town to shop, if that is your wish. We have done many things here, but on our last trip, we walked around town, visited Creek Street and walked the Married Man's Trail to see thousands of salmon along the way. Totem Park is another option as well as the Lumberjack show. All easy to do on your own. Many here do a flight into Misty Fiords, expensive but also, well worth it. Cheers Len
  24. Don't know where you get the figure of $300+ for a 2 car rental? We rented a pickup truck from Budget (hold 5 easily) for about $30 per day. We stayed in Anchorage for 4 days and it cost us $150 total. Cheers Len
  25. I don't know about an excursion, but we have been to Civi several times and there are many taxi's/vans at the dock offering rides to Rome for, what I felt, was a very good price. Cheers Len
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