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Giantfan13

Our Divina Cruise, the good and the bad

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I knew there wasn't a deck 17 because the Italians believe 17 is an unlucky number

 

Yikes! I'm on Deck 13, unlucky to Americans and my room number is 171. :eek::eek::eek::eek::eek::eek:

 

Len, Thanks for the info, I want to check out your reviews of Alaska and Hawaii when I get a chance.

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Are you serious Kat????? OMG!!! I wished I was on the MSC boards when that little gem of a thread came along. I'd want to read it just for the replies alone!!

 

It wasn't MSC. The thread was something along the lines of things you have found in your cabin and it was on one of the other boards. I wish I remembered which and I would link you!

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It wasn't MSC. The thread was something along the lines of things you have found in your cabin and it was on one of the other boards. I wish I remembered which and I would link you!

Thought it might be Disney as that is the cruiseline you are planning next with your boys so did a search LOL

 

Wish Disney cared. - Cruise Critic Message Board Forums

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Originally Posted by Giantfan13

There was an item in the bulletin about Friday night services. We did attend. Either MSC doesn't understand what is needed, but they had an electric Chanukah menorah, and NO challah or wine. We had about 10 people turn out and one very nice man brought his own prayer book, so he led us in the service. One of the women there was a travel agent and she said she would inform MSC about the other requirements for a Sabbath service. Whether or not they comply, one shall see.

 

Oh, the service is held in the library, just so you know. It doesn't state that in the daily paper.

 

Cheers

 

Len

 

 

thanks for the explanation.

 

i will talk to CD dept and see if they can arrange a wine and challah and proper candle lights.

 

Are you allowed an open flame in the library of a cruise ship? It sounds like a law suit waiting to happen. Even the candles at the dining tables in the Yacht Club restaurant were the little LED ones.

 

And do you know whether the service was one that MSC was responsible for organising, or simply one where they made space and some resources available but was passenger organised? Would I be correct in saying one would judge it by different standards according to which is the case?

 

I'm also wondering how you knew where to go if the daily paper didn't specify that it was in the library. Is there any particular reason this room is considered unsuitable? I am just enquiring as I am not Jewish so I don't really understand the significance of this comment.

Edited by Katgoesonholiday

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Are you allowed an open flame in the library of a cruise ship? It sounds like a law suit waiting to happen. Even the candles at the dining tables in the Yacht Club restaurant were the little LED ones.

 

.

 

"candle Lights" meant lights- either electric or battery, although Breeze allowed a lit candle if not left unattended.

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"candle Lights" meant lights- either electric or battery, although Breeze allowed a lit candle if not left unattended.

 

Forgive me if I am wrong, but I got the impression that Len felt there should be a non electric menorah - eg open flame. I was just wondering if that was even possible given that it doesn't seem like there were staff in attendance.

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You have to have a good sense of humour if you live in dull, dreary rainy Manchester.

oh my goodness that description fits Wales as well, except Wales has more sheep. (I'm an Engishman living in Wales)

 

Pete

 

Add grey to that description and it describes Edinburgh too!

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You have to have a good sense of humour if you live in dull, dreary rainy Manchester.

 

 

Careful. Although true, us Manc's don't like to have it pointed out.

 

And I'm a United fan as well!

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Forgive me if I am wrong, but I got the impression that Len felt there should be a non electric menorah - eg open flame. I was just wondering if that was even possible given that it doesn't seem like there were staff in attendance.

 

Kat- Len reported that they used a "Chanukah Menorah" that is used in Dec. and holds 9 candles or lights.

 

Shabbat is 2 candles or lights. Every cruise ship departing Miami or South Florida on a regular basis offers candles, kosher wine and fresh challah.

 

Some have prayer books available. These are always guest led EXCEPT during major holidays.

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Kat- Len reported that they used a "Chanukah Menorah" that is used in Dec. and holds 9 candles or lights.

 

Shabbat is 2 candles or lights. Every cruise ship departing Miami or South Florida on a regular basis offers candles, kosher wine and fresh challah.

 

Some have prayer books available. These are always guest led EXCEPT during major holidays.

 

Thank you for explaining that to me. I was bought up Catholic (now gleefully free of religion though I still have a BTheol) so have only a rudimentary grasp of the subtleties between different candle stick thingies in the Jewish faith. I could, however, bore you to tears with a deep theological monologue about why one can't use a glass vessel (wine thingy) for the Eucharistic sacrament.

 

I'm guess that on MSC's part there is likewise a touch of ignorance about what is considered 'right' implements of worship at a given time of the year and they have perhaps not been notified of this.

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It is an "European" ship and people want the American atmosphere. Choose an American ship!!!!!This is not the choice that is missing. be a bit adventurous and try other things.;)

Edited by saphir

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I'm confused. The OP is Jewish and tries to follow a kosher diet. No shellfish makes total sense, as well as no pork. No meat dishes with dairy on the same plate, right? Surely MSC could have brought you a steak or chicken breast with vegies and rice or potato. What don't I get here?

 

As far as the salmon, overcooked IS unpleasant. I wouldn't necessarily call it inedible, but I wouldn't be reordering it three times either. You compared it to "fresh salmon" that you cook at home. Your expectation of fresh fish on a mass market cruise ship is unreasonable. It's Frozen fish, and should be compared to frozen salmon you cook at home (which I agree is vastly inferior to fresh salmon, hence, my hesitation to order it on cruises.)

 

Sorry you didn't enjoy your trip. I'm looking forward to our September sailing on the Divina.

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I too do not understand why you would order bad salmon night after night. I can barely stomach eating a good piece of salmon. I could not imagine going on a cruise and ordering the same entree every night, especially if it isn't good! Am I missing something too? I am assuming there was vegetarian options. Or what about all of the pasta that MSC has? Something isn't adding up to me...

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I'm confused. The OP is Jewish and tries to follow a kosher diet. No shellfish makes total sense, as well as no pork. No meat dishes with dairy on the same plate, right? Surely MSC could have brought you a steak or chicken breast with vegies and rice or potato. What don't I get here?

 

As far as the salmon, overcooked IS unpleasant. I wouldn't necessarily call it inedible, but I wouldn't be reordering it three times either. You compared it to "fresh salmon" that you cook at home. Your expectation of fresh fish on a mass market cruise ship is unreasonable. It's Frozen fish, and should be compared to frozen salmon you cook at home (which I agree is vastly inferior to fresh salmon, hence, my hesitation to order it on cruises.)

 

Sorry you didn't enjoy your trip. I'm looking forward to our September sailing on the Divina.

 

Meat/chicken has to be specifically kosher (the way the animal is killed, handled, prepared, blessed etc)...so, if you are kosher, you can't eat just any meat/chicken. Shellfish and pork is NEVER kosher.

 

OP is not actually kosher..but "kosher style". This means that he just avoids certain foods.

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Meat/chicken has to be specifically kosher (the way the animal is killed, handled, prepared, blessed etc)...so, if you are kosher, you can't eat just any meat/chicken. Shellfish and pork is NEVER kosher.

 

OP is not actually kosher..but "kosher style". This means that he just avoids certain foods.

 

When someone uses "kosher style" on a non-jewish board, they may be trying to simplify.

 

 

My guess is OP is kosher using a "Conservative" standard. Meat and chicken must be certified kosher. Kosher fish (fins and scales) is OK even if not prepared in a kosher kitchen.

 

Again- I am assuming, not judging

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AB

 

We did think about getting the balcony, and we almost did. It wasn't a question of money, more the space in the handicapped room. I did call MSC about changing to a balcony room, but there were no handicapped rooms available in the balcony category at that time, so we decided that the extra space was more important.

As I said in my original thread, if we ever do cruise on the Divina again, we will have to have that balcony.

 

As for the best bang for your buck, not if you aren't having a good time. Again, I never said the cruise was terrible, but some of the things that we value when cruising weren't there for us. I would assume 2000+ other people on the cruise had a blast. That's fine. maybe this just wasn't for us.

 

Cheers

 

Len

 

 

I think you may be right about getting a balcony, we have been getting balconies for quite a while now, and can honestly say its the way to go!

Getting up in the morning, having room service bring you a snack, coffee, juice, etc., and just slowly wake up on your own private ocean front balcony makes all the little things later like a crowded breakfast buffet, your eggs not perfect, etc., not really matter that much!

All of my comments on the Divina have been about how the pricing allows those who normally get an inside cabin, or ocean view cabin, experience what we found out years ago, BALCONIES ROCK!!! They make a cruise so much better!

You'll read a lot of remarks in the forums from people who'll state, its a balcony or we're not going!

Whatever you decide, the best to you, and your future travels!:D

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Agreed- but $400 is. One point is nothing to get excited about when you were talking 20% discount for top level.

 

The extra points add up quickly!

You buy a cruise (7 days=7 pts) x 2 people=14pts for a couple.

Add on gratuities spending for 2=$168., add on a couple drinks and you're at $200=1 additional pt., for a total of 15 pts.!

So in 7 cruises you've reached the top level in MSC's loyalty club, and save 20%!!!

You can't achieve the top level on any other cruise line that fast!!!

 

We did a back to back (14 days) on a balcony in May for the same price it would cost us for a week on RCL, Disney, Celebrity, or Princess!

Not only did we get double the cruise for our money, with our on board spending (gratuities, drinks, purchases) we are only 2 more back to back cruises(or 4 single cruises) away from the top level in the MSC loyalty club!

To say the least, we are very happy!:D

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The extra points add up quickly!

You buy a cruise (7 days=7 pts) x 2 people=14pts for a couple.

Add on gratuities spending for 2=$168., add on a couple drinks and you're at $200=1 additional pt., for a total of 15 pts.!

So in 7 cruises you've reached the top level in MSC's loyalty club, and save 20%!!!

You can't achieve the top level on any other cruise line that fast!!!

 

We did a back to back (14 days) on a balcony in May for the same price it would cost us for a week on RCL, Disney, Celebrity, or Princess!

Not only did we get double the cruise for our money, with our on board spending (gratuities, drinks, purchases) we are only 2 more back to back cruises(or 4 single cruises) away from the top level in the MSC loyalty club!

To say the least, we are very happy!:D

 

 

I'm afraid you have misunderstood how the points accumulate.

 

The points are awarded on an individual basis so in your calculation you have 15 points awarded to a couple but they are split one person has 7 points and the other has 8

 

if you only rely on nights on board you will need to complete 15 cruises to get 105 points and get a black card.

 

If you always give the on board spend to the same person (B) and you get $400 (2 points) per cruise

the system will work like this

 

1st cruise person A :- 7pts (CLASSIC) Person B:- 9 pts (CLASSIC)

 

2nd cruise person A :- 14pts (CLASSIC) Person B:- 18 pts (CLASSIC)

 

3rd cruise person A :- 21pts (SILVER) Person B:- 27 pts (SILVER)

 

4th cruise person A :- 28pts (SILVER) Person B:- 36 pts (SILVER)

 

5th cruise person A :- 35pts (SILVER) Person B:- 45 pts (GOLD)

 

6th cruise person A :- 42pts (SILVER) Person B:- 54 pts (GOLD)

 

7th cruise person A :- 49pts (GOLD) Person B:- 63 pts (GOLD)

...

...

 

11th cruise person A :- 77pts (GOLD) Person B:- 99 pts (GOLD)

 

12th cruise person A :- 84pts (GOLD) Person B:- 108 pts (BLACK)

 

If an extra point on spend is earned on cruises 1 to 11 then person B will get Black after 11 cruises

 

 

Pete

Edited by Skier52

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I'm afraid you have misunderstood how the points accumulate.

 

The points are awarded on an individual basis so in your calculation you have 15 points awarded to a couple but they are split one person has 7 points and the other has 8

 

if you only rely on nights on board you will need to complete 15 cruises to get 105 points and get a black card.

 

If you always give the on board spend to the same person (B) and you get $400 (2 points) per cruise

the system will work like this

 

1st cruise person A :- 7pts (CLASSIC) Person B:- 9 pts (CLASSIC)

 

2nd cruise person A :- 14pts (CLASSIC) Person B:- 18 pts (CLASSIC)

 

3rd cruise person A :- 21pts (SILVER) Person B:- 27 pts (SILVER)

 

4th cruise person A :- 28pts (SILVER) Person B:- 36 pts (SILVER)

 

5th cruise person A :- 35pts (SILVER) Person B:- 45 pts (GOLD)

 

6th cruise person A :- 42pts (SILVER) Person B:- 54 pts (GOLD)

 

7th cruise person A :- 49pts (GOLD) Person B:- 63 pts (GOLD)

...

...

 

11th cruise person A :- 77pts (GOLD) Person B:- 99 pts (GOLD)

 

12th cruise person A :- 84pts (GOLD) Person B:- 108 pts (BLACK)

 

If an extra point on spend is earned on cruises 1 to 11 then person B will get Black after 11 cruises

 

 

Pete

 

Pete,,,If I was onboard and decided to purchase a $20,000.00 watch,,,would I then become a Black Card member?

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Pete,,,If I was onboard and decided to purchase a $20,000.00 watch,,,would I then become a Black Card member?

 

Yes!!

 

but not if you spent $20,000 in the casino

 

 

 

Here are the relevant T&Cs from the MSC Club web site

 

2. MSC CLUB POINTS SYSTEM

2.1 Gaining points for previous cruises (points for nights and on-board

spending): When registration for the loyalty programme is confirmed, the

points for nights and on-board spending pertaining to the new member’s most

recent cruise (taken prior to registration for the programme) will be added to

his or her MSC Club card. If a passenger has taken more than one cruise before

registering for the MSC Club, points for nights and on-board spending pertaining

to earlier cruises cannot be requested or obtained (only the points for nights

and on-board spending pertaining to the most recent cruise will be recognised).

2.2 You will gain 1 point for every night actually spent on board an MSC Cruises

ship and 1 point for every 200 euros/dollars spent on board (excluding casino

expenses). Applicable for cruises beginning on or after 15 October 2008.

2.3 Points are non-transferable, i.e. you cannot allocate your own points to another

member or non-member.

2.4 Points have no cash value and cannot be exchanged for cash. They only determine

benefits on MSC Cruises holidays

2.5 The MSC Club points system is used to determine your eligibility for benefits

under the following membership types:

- Classic Membership: 1 to 21 points

- Silver Membership: 22 to 42 points

- Gold Membership: 43 to 99 points

- Black Membership: 100 + points

 

 

 

Pete

Edited by Skier52

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I too do not understand why you would order bad salmon night after night. I can barely stomach eating a good piece of salmon. I could not imagine going on a cruise and ordering the same entree every night, especially if it isn't good! Am I missing something too? I am assuming there was vegetarian options. Or what about all of the pasta that MSC has? Something isn't adding up to me...

 

Fredric

 

have you been reading what I have written?

 

We ordered the salmon one night and it was dry. We told our waiter. He assured us, next time it would be much better. We specifically told him to have it undercooked, instead we got an inedible piece of dry, overcooked salmon. If you told a waiter that you wanted a steak rare and he brought you one well done, would you never order it again?. If you complained to the Maître' D about this and he personally said he would make sure the next time you ordered it, it would be to your perfection, would you not order it again and see if the Maître 'D kept his word?. Well that is what we did, and yes, the least time, when the Maître 'D, personally served us our salmon, it was better, but still not very good. At least this time it was edible. This isn't rocket science, but you seem to want to make it very difficult.

 

As I have said, which maybe you missed, we certainly didn't starve and we did order other dishes. But the fish dinners were our main entrée and, as I have said several times, they were all over cooked, except for the Mahi Mahi which was decent.

 

I'll tell you what, if you are going to cruise MSC on the Divina, you order the fish, you order the salmon and then come back here and tell everyone what you thought of it. I'll be waiting.

 

Cheers

 

Len

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Yes!!

 

but not if you spent $20,000 in the casino

 

I would have thought there may have been a cap on the amount of points you could accrue on one sailing. Good to know there is no cap on the earning potential!!

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I'm very sorry if I've caused any offence at all, it was just maent to be a little bit of light hearted banter, but can we agree to say the English have a strange sense of humour.

 

I apologise for getting your screen name wrong but I make a lot of typo as I find typing very difficult as I have Parkinson's disease and don't have full control of my fingers and thumbs

 

Pete

 

PS you missed my PS on my eralier post

 

 

PPS if you check my posts i think you'll find i managed to correct your screen name in the time allowed for editting

 

Pete

 

My apologies. I did not see your post before I answered you. It had been a very long day, and I was only trying to givera fair assessment of our cruise and trying to help others understand certain things. yet I seem to get criticized for saying the salmon was inedible, and for not having the time of my life on the Divina, as others have done.

 

It is hard to read between the lines as some one is posting something. I post on a NY Giants football board all the time and when we know people, we can read between the lines. here, I am fairly new and I do not know many of the regulars and their posting style.

 

Again my apologies for jumping on your post.

 

Cheers

 

Len

Edited by Giantfan13

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Pete

 

My apologies. I did not see your post before I answered you. It had been a very long day, and I was only trying to givera fair assessment of our cruise and trying to help others understand certain things. yet I seem to get criticized for saying the salmon was inedible, and for not having the time of my life on the Divina, as others have done.

 

It is hard to read between the lines as some one is posting something. I post on a NY Giants football board all the time and when we know people, we can read between the lines. here, I am fairly new and I do not know many of the regulars and their posting style.

 

Again my apologies for jumping on your post.

 

Cheers

 

Len

 

Apologies graciously accepted and It's good to know there is another person I can call a cyber aquaintence, if not cyber friend ( Which is how I would like to be thought of)

 

 

I moderate another cruise forum here in the UK and light hearted banter is all part and parcel of how threads develope it's only when it gets out of control that the moderators have to step in.

 

 

Pete

Edited by Skier52

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