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Everything posted by pinotlover

  1. Don’t forget Oceania allows you to book up to 30 days prior to your cruise and get full onboard credits, which includes current fare discounts and OBC. Discuss with your Travel Agent.
  2. No apology needed. The large Agencies, that are OCC members, have numerous Agents working for them. Some of those Agents may be Oceania specialists, while others may be Regent or even other cruise line specialists. Therefore, it was previously important to find both an OCC member Agency, but also an Agent working for that Agency that specialized in Oceania. Industry turnover has been such in the past two years, it’s hard for anyone new to the system to get square footage.
  3. Let me add, the airport was a quagmire! We quickly ended up putting on a mask. In the Admirals Club, people were hacking, coughing, and some visually ill. Many not wearing masks, when they entered, were soon digging for them. We ended up leaving and waiting in a mostly remote part of Philly’s airport. We spoke with a couple that got off a Viking cruise. They said most coming down with Covid, on their cruise, did so on Day 3-4. Only a few tested positive later in the cruise. That negative pre-cruise test means little because of infection time.
  4. In Europe, starting a cruise tomorrow. Not on Oceania. No pre-Embarkment test required, only fully vaccinated. But, daily temperature check requirement for all passengers. We were told too many people getting Covid in transit and testing negative upon arrival. This way everyone gets a temperature check daily, and if high , off to mandatory testing. No escape and hiding with negativity on pre-cruise check.
  5. I believe if you read the CC threads here on this Board, you will predominantly read about passengers on cruises with 50-60% occupancy. That answers your question most accurately.
  6. 😂 Opps! Should have been Ray ! 🥂
  7. To the OP, Peter; Please find the Feb 27, 2023 B.A. -Miami Roll Call. I have posted several available shore excursions for that cruise that may provide you with plenty of information. My email address is included in one of the posts, so feel free to contact me. You’ll notice our listed tours are 50-70% less than those similarly listed by Oceania, and always small group.
  8. I know of zero Travel Agents that are OCC members. She may however be a top producing Travel Agent that works for an OCC member Travel Agency. Otherwise, I generally agree with you.
  9. Let’s set the stage by saying not all cruises are the the same in this regard. 1. On many cruises that are 12 days or less, one will often find a younger crowd than on those 14-15+ days. The longer cruises are most often nearly totally retirees and quite often older retirees. The differences between the “ night life” on those cruise categories can be huge!!! 2. There are upscale Agencies that put together college Alumni group cruises that book with Oceania. Plus there is Food & Wine Trails that book group trips, with outings, on Oceania.These groups often bring more age diversity and livelihood to cruises than normally exist otherwise. Night life can be abundant on those cruises. Some Oceania cruisers specifically search out and hide from these cruises with more fear than of those that might have of smaller children. Livelihood is almost profanity to some. 3. Cruises that cater primarily to Americans, Brits, and Canadians are often lower key than those catering to Continental Europeans, Aussies, Kiwi, and/ or Far Eastern Asians typically have more energy and night life. So, as you can see, the answer to the OP can be highly variable. I wish them Luck and joyful cruising. If you are considering a specific released cruise, your TA can probably give you a heads up on who is booking the cruise.
  10. Unusual service indeed! In these troubling times, I’d first ensure she didn’t have Covid, or something similar, and not just down and out for a few days. Hopefully, she bounces back. If you’ve experienced good service in the past, I wouldn’t act too hastily right now. I’ve had friends, in the past month, that were vaccinated and boosted, and got really sick for a week or so from the new variant.
  11. I have two additional thoughts/questions. 1. Since the ships have been running at reduced passenger levels, are most of those few aboard cruisers not travelers? Is the ship their destination and any port visits secondary? 2. All of the shore tours I put together are 6-8 hours in length. Not typically strenuous, but all day events so to see and do as much as possible in the ports I may never visit again. I have received emails from fellow passengers asking me to consider only doing 2-3 hour tours in that is all they are interested in. Did two years of not sailing only mean the average demographics likewise increased by 2 years?
  12. Bermuda is a wonderful place to visit. Easily and typically inexpensively reached from Dulles. I have never understood why people brave the Triangle to visit by ship, losing visiting time in transit. Wonderful restaurants on both ends of the country, so absolutely no need for the best cuisine at sea. Lots of places where a cruise ship is practical. IMO, Bermuda isn’t one of them. I suppose the ole Cruiser vs Traveler concept. 🍷
  13. Honesty, I am now completely booked up for the next two years. Since Oceania changed its release program and made itineraries available two years out, instead of 18 months the game changed. Traditionally I would buy that FCC, as it was a good deal. However, timing is everything and with the requirement to book within a year and sail within two, the timing might not always be right to buy. Unlike some posters here that claim to “ always “ do certain things, I don’t always do anything except review what’s practical at the time.
  14. For the first time, I am likewise having trouble filling shore tours. One of my larger question surrounds just how many are going to actually be on the ship. I have Oceania cruises booked over the next year that have gone from fully waitlisted, to availability in most all categories, then back to partially waitlist, then fuller availability again! Availability for our October cruise is opening up and we’re well past final payment! People seem to be booking and cancelling with abandonment. My theory on the OP is that many aren’t willing to fully commit to any thing, and booking and cancelling Oceania tours are easiest for them.
  15. Perhaps you should explain this. If you book a seventeen (17) day cruise from X to Y, that actually consist of a seven (7) day cruise and a ten (10) day cruise, are all those remaining aboard at Day 7 tested. It’s only one cruise credit!
  16. Roll Calls provide the opportunity for serious Travelers to experience tours at far lower costs than offered by the ships. Oceania preys on those that choose to use Mother Oceania for everything. A perfect example is when our Roll Call group, that paid $150 each for an all day tour, was joined on our tour with four fellow passengers that paid $350 each to Oceania for the tour. Those four, after lots of jokes and ridicule, did learn about CC and its Roll Calls that day! 😂 If course, there are those that claim never to pay retail and believe $350 -25%. Is less that $150! Oceania math! 🥴
  17. Asian rack of lamb! 😂😂 Part of that Americanization thing. Except for a cold weather thing, in a small part of China, lamb and Asian don’t go together. Even then it’s served as a stew or stir fry! Doesn’t mean it’s not tasty, just that it’s an American Fusion dish, nothing Asian about it at all.
  18. It’s primarily a Cruiser vs Traveler decision. Here’s the scenario for our next O cruise. We board on a Tuesday in Bilboa, Spain. As is typical in Spain ( and Portugal) most everything is shutdown on Mondays, including the famous Guggenheim Museum in Bilboa. The ship doesn’t depart until 10:00 p.m.The port is about a 30 minute cab ride from downtown. Probable scenario: Cruisers will skip the Guggenheim to board early; while Travelers will visit the Guggenheim, and the other attractions closed on Mondays, and board later in the afternoon. The Cs and the Ts will be easily distinguishable, with each having a different game plan. Each to their own.
  19. I have never seen them listed on any of the ships. Availability of any specific name brands has been sporadic of late. Even the retail stores are having difficulties keeping any specific name brand on the shelves. Good Luck.
  20. Regarding the Feb 19 Marina charter, most everyone knew months in advance who the charter was for. The TA, bloggers, and Influencers were gloating about their upcoming cruise and spilled the beans. I wonder if our Influencer here got an invite for this cruise or the early pre cruises or Inauguration cruise?
  21. I still ask: Who chartered the ship?
  22. Perhaps it shouldn’t matter, BUT?? It would be interesting to know who chartered the entire ship. That’s a bunch of ,000s. The last one I personally remember was in Feb 19, on the Marina cruise directly after ours in the FP. Similar cancellation and charter. Passengers turned out be to all Travel Agents and Industry reps, writers, bloggers, Oceania Influencers, etc. Purpose was pure marketing. Wine, Dine, and serve then have them go home to push the Product. A lot of availability on many of those now released 2024 cruises. Give a bit another year for Covid to pass, and stories of Covid Jail, and a huge marketing event, on the new ship, may be in order. That’s a lot of $,000,000!
  23. My primary request is that Oceania make a mostly unambiguous dress code and then ENFORCE it. Should not be too much to ask. If shorts aren’t allowed in the Specialties, then turn everyone away at the door wearing them. Fairly simple to me, but they don’t. Yoga pants and a T-shirt is not country club casual anymore than my sweatpants and a T-shirt. Gentleman remove their hats indoors. You might be from Midland, TX, but you’re not sailing in Midland, TX! Whatever happened to “ When in Rome…,.,,”? People get goofy with YWYW . Your way may be to dress slobbishly with a cap on backwards. It’s not always YW, grow up Boomer, it’s not the 60s anymore.
  24. Ah! You’re talking about the great ship lineup, where people start getting in line before 7:00 for an 8:00 disembarkment. Suitcases, bags, carry ons blocking the aisles. People ignoring their assigned times, much like their boarding time. Probably worst experience than boarding early. All that to maybe catch an early flight? Maybe or maybe not catch it! We hide from the race race to both board and disembark. Walk off graciously and catch an afternoon flight, or one early the next day.
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