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About Aggiebuttercup

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  1. We traveled with friends and their 12-month old. We requested a table at dinner directly by the windows. The first night, my friend asked the waiter for a plate of fruit immediately, and after that, the waiter brought it without asking every night. Baby ate the fruit while we ordered the rest of the dinner. When baby got fussy, we'd let him down on the ground between us and the wall so he could play without being in the way of the waiters. In Cozumel, we took a cab to Chankanaab. There's a gorgeous little protected lagoon for swimming with a nice small beach.
  2. You might also want to call and price cabins for 6 people. It can sometimes be cheaper to get one of those rooms (even the suites) with that many people. Liberty has a few really nice OV cabins very far forward on deck 8 (and either 7 or 9) that fit 6. We put 5 in ours - there was a bedroom for the adults, a room with a door that had bunkbeds, and a huge living area with a sofa bed. Each of the three rooms had big windows....and it was only the price of a regular OV! Only one bathroom, unfortunately, but we made use of the spa for showering.
  3. Part of the fun for our family is bringing the following day's cruise compass with us to dinner to plan out the activities that we will want to do. Even so, half the time we miss some or all of the ones we planned to do because we got busy doing something else (or nothing at all).
  4. My only Princess cruise was in Alaska. An Alaskan cruise is such a special experience - I loved that part. I thought the crew was absolutely excellent and the ship was in great shape and spotless. The crowd was...older. I was in my early 30s travelling with my mom. Most passengers were closer to her age - mid-50s and up. I found a handful of other people under the age of 40. We'd get together and dance at the "Piano bar" - a piano with four chairs around it. We were the only ones ever listening to him. Pretty much ALL entertainment ended at 11 pm. That wasn't as bad as it sounded, since it meant I could get up early to grab a good spot to look out the windows. My mom had a great time. Princess is one of her preferred lines now.
  5. I cruise both Carnival and RCCL. The two lines are very very similar, although I do like the layout of the RCCL ships better than Carnival's. Adventure is a slightly older ship; because it's not a part of Oasis or Quantum class, you don't have to reserve everything in advance. That means the experience will be more like Carnival's. It's a great itinerary and a good ship.
  6. Be careful if you are flying in that early, especially if you are flying from overseas to a port in the range of the storm. When Hurricane Harvey bore down on Texas last year, there was some confusion over exactly where it would land, and if that would affect the Port of Galveston. RCCL didn't cancel the cruise until the day before it was scheduled to leave. We had several people posting here on CC that they had flown in two or three days early because RCCL was still insisting that the cruise would go on, and then they were stuck in the aftermath of the storm (because by the time the cruise was cancelled most of the airlines had cancelled flights out of the area). If there is a storm headed in the general direction of your departure port, listen closely to the US national hurricane center's predictions, and pay close attention to the roll calls and threads about the storm here on CC. Locals will tell you what the conditions are and are expected to be around the departure point time. [Those of us here in the Galveston area posted when the port of Galveston closed and provided the information that the port had given about when it would reopen...which made it clear a few days out that there would be no RCCL cruise.] RCCL is quite concerned about the safety of their ships and the passengers on those ships, but from what I saw was far less concerned with the safety of those who had yet to board. And read your travel insurance documents closely to see what type of weather-related criteria are necessary for you to get your money back.
  7. There are plenty of hotels along I45 on the mainland. I don't think that would end up being a problem. Restaurants shouldn't be that much of a problem, either - Galveston is a destination all on its own, and there are plenty of weekends where there are tens of thousands of non-cruise visitors to the island. Roads and parking will be the biggest issues they will have to address.
  8. It will be fine. I was in that mode for my last cruise. My family had a blast, in part because we were very very flexible every day. No planning, no rushing, no worries. Have fun!
  9. They've offered kids sale free a lot lately. Every time I've checked for the cruise we are going on, it is more expensive for my family to use that deal than the "normal" price (family of 5; 2 are under 12). Even non-refundable deposits can take advantage of price drops. If you are comfortable paying the existing rate, book the cruise now and then IF there is a sale that is actually less money for the cabin, then you or your TA can call RCCL to get OBC for the difference between the "sale" price and the price you booked under.
  10. The public schools in the Webster and many of the surrounding areas start the week of the 20th, so that mall may not be as crazy as you might think. We always drive to the port from near there, and it's never more than 30-45 minutes....even in the summer when I expected the beach traffic heading to Galveston to be awful. We usually plan to arrive by 10:30, so that timing may help avoid some of the worst of it.
  11. A post on one of our threads here https://boards.cruisecritic.com/showpost.php?p=56536537&postcount=3 makes it seem like there will be an Oasis-class ship will be in Galveston for the 2020 season. The Galveston newspaper has been reporting for months that RCCL is pushing the port of Galveston to get ready for an Oasis-class ship, and it looks like the port and the cruise line are nearing a deal. No one has any insight into whether this would be an addition, or whether Liberty and/or Vision would leave.
  12. I think it cost us $10 to rent snorkel equipment when we went to Chankanaab on our own in summer 2016. We didn't do kayaks, so I don't remember that price.
  13. That was more than 10 years ago, when Galveston was still developing as a cruise port. I wonder if it could be more successful now that they've managed to drive up demand in the area.
  14. The good thing is that "Spring Break" covers multiple weeks. We are cruising on Liberty on "Spring Break" next year, which for us is March 10-17, and I'm going to assume it will be about as crowded and full of kids as summer. Kids Club is first come, first served. Sign them up on the first day, and the staff will be able to tell you how many kids are on board and give advice on times of day it will be easiest to make sure they can get in. When I cruised with kids that age, we didn't really do shore excursions. We found a beach for them to play. It was relaxing and everyone had fun.
  15. DO NOT rely on the cruise line to make the best decisions regarding your personal safety in getting to the port. Last year, when Hurricane Harvey was headed towards the Texas coast, RCCL delayed cancelling the cruise out of Galveston until essentially the last minute. RCCL reps consistently said that the cruise would sail - even though the Port of Galveston was closed, the weather forecast was calling for pure nastiness in the Houston/Galveston area, and Houston/Galveston authorities were begging people to stay home and off the roads. A lot of passengers had made plans to arrive in the port area 2 or 3 days in advance of when the cruise would sail - 1 or 2 days before RCCL actually cancelled it. Many of them actually came to Houston/Galveston, believing that RCCL would have their best interests at heart, and many of them were stranded in their hotels for days when the streets and highways flooded. (At least a few posted here on CC that their cars flooded...no way to get home!) The cruise lines won't cancel the cruises until the last possible moment...and just because it isn't currently cancelled DOES NOT mean that it is safe for you to journey to the port area. Have trip insurance, and be prepared to make a hard decision to stay home if it looks like the port area will be hit hard by bad weather. (And note that Harvey did not actually hit Galveston - its rains just stuck around for days to flood the region.)
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