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About RSLeesburg

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  1. We sailed on Harmony over Thanksgiving, and there were only a few times where we felt a bit crowded, but there were many times when it felt empty. In terms of activities and entertainment, no other ship comes close. That being said, we actually prefer the next class or two smaller - Freedom class (Freedom, Liberty, or Independence), or Voyager class (Navigator, Explorer, Mariner). In 2017, we did the 9-night Southern Caribbean cruise out of Miami. It was fantastic - it felt much less crowded than our 7 night Thanksgiving cruises, the ship had plenty to do, and the islands could not be beat.
  2. We booked a CS for the 14 day South American cruise on Silhouette next December, and our deposit was $1,350 for two adults and one child, so sounds similar to what others are paying... this will be our first cruise with X
  3. We took that same land tour in 2018, and I cannot imagine them trying to squeeze 6 people into one room. Unfortunately, I am not sure the TA or RCI reps will be much help. You might be better off calling the hotels direct to see how they handle similar situations. If you want to learn more about this specific tour, check out my review.
  4. We sailed on Radiance SB in 2018, and we had a post-side balcony and it provided great views - but cannot comment on whether the starboard side had even better views. Here is the link to my review. PS: Our son was also 8 on this cruise...
  5. We did 10 day Alaska cruise/land tour with RCI. They had a 3 day land tour that specifically targeted towards families (9B). We filled up one bus, and there were plenty of kids all different ages on the tour. I posted a review with lots of pic here - see link in my signature.
  6. We had 1598 on Navigator in 2017, and we did not have any problems.
  7. Here is a list of ships with nurseries; https://www.cruisecritic.com/articles.cfm?ID=3231
  8. 1. To TA or not. In general, we always book direct with the cruise line; however, for Alaska, if you can save money using a TA, then I would recommend it. Alaska is all about the excursions, which can be very costly - so, where you can save money, do it. 2. Specialty Dining. Despite the numerous free dining options, almost all ships have restaurants that cost more (specialty restaurants). This perk would give two people free meals at one or more of these. This is great if you want to feed kids and drop them at camp, while parents enjoy a nice meal together, or you can bring kids and pay extra for them - some lines allow kids under a certain age to eat for free in specialty restaurants, or offer a reduced fee for kids. I am not sure how NCL handles it. 3. All cruise lines have special needs departments. You should contact them immediately with food allergies, so they can alert the dining staff on the ship. And to be extra careful, you should meet with the dining manager at Main Dining Room to talk about their food allergies. The ships can accommodate most allergies, but you really need to inform everyone along the way - do not assume that they will know just because you called ahead. 4. What is included/not included. You will get the basics in your cruise fare - food at some dining areas, coffee, water, kids club, and entertainment on ship. You will pay extra for specialty dining, soda/booze, some activities, and excursions. In your cruise fare, there will also be port fees/taxes and gratuities. In terms of excursions, we sailed in Alaska in 2018 with a land tour - on RCI, but I think you could get a good idea about things to do/see. Our son was 8 when we sailed. The link to this review is in my signature below.
  9. We stopped in Icy Straight Point last year - it is nice, authentic. We booked our whale watching excursion at this stop, and that was great - lots of whales, and would be perfect for little kids.
  10. We just returned from Boston where we spread my wife's mom's ashes. We did not do this from a cruise ship (although I really wanted to use this as an excuse to book a cruise), but we used a company called New England Burials at Sea. They handle these types of burials across the country, and it was fantastic. One comment about Alaska - I thought Captain Brad told us that US Federal Law requires ashes to be deposited 3 miles from shore (with exception of Cali, who have so many burials at sea that they requested an exception, and only need to go our 500 yards or something like that). So, not sure if many of the cruise ships get out that far or not in Alaska. When we sailed last year, it seemed like we were fairly close to shore most of the way.
  11. From what I have observed, Coco Cay has become a major stop for the shorter RCI cruises - with Mariner and Navigator (both larger ships) switching over to the 3/4 day cruises, I think Coco Cay is meant to entice larger groups of families to take these shorter cruises. I know my wife has mentioned a few times that we should do one, as they look like great weekend/long weekend getaways. And, when you add in the Oasis class ships going to Coco Cay, it can get very busy there. However, I thought I read something that RCI was planning several more private islands around the globe, so maybe some of these will be included on Celebrity itineraries...
  12. We sailed on Radiance last year in Alaska - loved this ship so much, we booked Serenade for Christmas this year...
  13. lol... we flew up Thursday night and went to Long Wharf, Aquarium, and Faneuil Hall on Friday. It was empty. Yesterday it was packed and I heard someone commenting about the cruise ships in port. All I can say is that those folks on Anthem had a beautiful day in port - the weather has been outstanding this weekend! Heading back down to West Palm this afternoon, and hoping to get a glimpse of Serenade in port, as we board her in December.
  14. Yesterday we caught the ferry from Hingham to Boston and saw three ships in port. It was my first time seeing Anthem in person, so grabbed a quick pic with my phone. She is sandwiched between Sapphire Princess and Zaandam. I did not realize that Boston could service that many ships at one time...
  15. I don’t know if the pricing works out, but we booked a 14-day South America cruise for 2020 on Celebrity Silhouette over Christmas and NYE.
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