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About Taters

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    Fairbanks, Alaska

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  1. We've been on Hawaii cruises where Kona was too rough to tender in and was cancelled. You are taking chances by not staying with the ship from Hilo.
  2. We received the Early Booking Bonus Signature Beverage Package for our South America cruise scheduled for November, 2020. A nice perk for someone whose spouse doesn't drink. He can have all the Shirley Temples he wants!
  3. I use the pass every day, even on a port intensive cruise. I love coming back to the ship after a lot of activity and going straight to the thermal pool to soak. Sometimes my DH and I go after late dinner seating is over. They close at 10 PM, so we usually have about 30 - 45 minutes, which is plenty of time after late seating. What a way to end the day, and sleep is great after the thermal pool. I have 2 cruises booked on Westerdam and this is what I wake up looking forward to every day. Enjoy!
  4. And today it was announced that Alaska & American are discontinuing their mileage partnership. Sigh... https://www.adn.com/business-economy/2019/10/10/alaska-airlines-to-end-miles-partnership-with-american/ I am going to have to get creative with my air from Fairbanks to Buenos Aires and then Santiago back to Fairbanks. Ugh!
  5. Well, I didn't feel the need to add anything about planning the new ports, as I've been on cruises where itineraries have changed. Yes - NCL has the ability to schedule ports last minute. Have a good day!
  6. Alaska Airlines from FAI-SEA-either SFO, DFW or LAX, then American to EZE.
  7. That's what we've decided to do, too. This will be my 32nd cruise, and the first time to use a HAL transfer, or transfer from any cruise line that we've sailed. We do not want to get robbed.
  8. Honestly, when NCL saw that the weather for the cruise was going to be horrible, they should have simply headed for the Med. There would have been warm ports, nicer weather and even though they'd changed the itinerary completely, people would have had less to complain about.
  9. I think that totally depends on the individual personality, not the cruise line. Just thoughts coming from a person who had 2 great ears and then *POOF* went deaf in a split second. I used to be very social, now, not so much! I still love to cruise, though, and even though I have cochlear implants, they have their challenges and cannot compare or compete with natural hearing. Again, it's completely up to the people who are cruising, and gregarious personalities can be found anywhere.
  10. I love that the feel of a Holland America cruise is still traditional. I have no desire for waterslides or ice skating rinks on a cruise ship. I love the quiet spaces and the thermal spa pool. Life is chaotic enough. Getting away on a cruise is the best way I can think of to disconnect and unwind from my crazy world, and HAL fits this bill for us, hands down.
  11. We gave up on Carnival not after just one cruise, but after 4 or 5 cruises on several ships since 2015. The Pride cruise was simply the clencher for us. We feel that Carnival has spiraled too far down and is not for us anymore. Room cleanliness has been an ongoing issue. Besides dirty bathrooms, the vacuuming issue has been apparent for several years, and we knew that they weren't vacuuming because there were a few small piles of debris that there day after day after day. We did talk to them and nothing changed. The cleaning crew has been stretched too thin and there isn't enough time in the day for them to do their jobs. Supervisors can only crack the whip so many times before they give up. Carnival's cleanliness and service culture has changed. It used to be a great cruise line. Now, it's just not. When staffing levels are back up, we'll return. In the meantime, there are cleaner ships for us with plenty of staff to provide great service.
  12. What beautiful photos. It makes me even more excited for my upcoming Transpacific cruise from Yokohama to Vancouver in April. Thank you! 😊
  13. I've been on several Transatlantic crossings. They have been in April, May, October and December. All have been warm weather cruises. We've always worn shorts during the day (except when in port in Europe and know we will be visiting a cathedral) and evenings have been in the 70s, even in December when we sailed from Barcelona! Days are great poolside and sometimes the weather has dipped into the 60s. I always bring a couple of things with long sleeves for just in case. Have fun! TAs are wonderful cruises!
  14. I am Platinum on Carnival but gave up on them after our 14 day Southern Caribbean cruise on Pride last January. I do not care about the gifts given on each sailing... My favorite perk of being Platinum is the free laundry. Why did I give up on Carnival? On this sailing, they'd just increased the bar gratuities, but there weren't any lido servers on this cruise. Seriously. You had to get them yourself. That was just bad. I do admit that I saw my dining room waiter schlepping drinks out on lido for several afternoons, but really? He worked breakfast, lunch and dinner, so he was clearly working extra. Other than him, I never saw a server. Over the 14 nights, our main dining room dishes were rarely cleared before the next course was brought out, so we were surrounded by dirty dishes for the entirety of many meals. I had to clean my own bathroom. Our towels were replaced and garbage was taken out daily, but our cabin was never vacuumed. NEVER for the entire 14 days. That's something I just can't handle. DH and I were playing cards on one of the 4 top tables out by the Serenity pool one afternoon at sea. When we sat down to play there were 2 dirty plates, a napkin and some silverware that we had to shove over to the side. These were finally picked up by someone 2 hours later. I could go on, but I won't. It is clear that staffing levels are suffering on Carnival, and this has been apparent for at least the past 4 years. Now that Carnival is at this new low, I refuse to go back anytime soon. I do not need a lot of things when I cruise... A good place to swim, a clean cabin, a couple of cocktails and decent food. (I cringe when I think of not enough kitchen staff on board.) I can't get those on Carnival anymore, so I've moved on. I come back to these boards to see if things have gotten better. As someone who has been cruising since 1971, I am appalled at the low depths of service and cleanliness. There are better cruise lines out there, and the prices are very competitive. My next cruise is 16 nights in a balcony cabin, $985 per person with pre-paid gratuities, and we have $300 in shipboard credit. My price for unlimited laundry is $7 per day for the cabin. I'm good. My hope is that someday I will come to this forum to hear that Carnival has improved. We've really had a great time on all of our cruises with them.
  15. I've been on cruises on other lines where they do this and honestly, I do not understand they hype. If I was 12 I would really think it was fun, but with so much plastic garbage on this earth that cannot be eliminated, I think the idea is ridiculous. Just my IMHO. I've seen several of these ducks and left them right where they were, where perhaps a child would enjoy finding them.
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