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swelch

New England/Canada cruise questions

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This will be my first "cold weather cruise" and I am not sure what to expect and pack. We will be on the Caribbean Princess.   If it is cold will they heat the pools and/or hot tubs?  If it is raining will they close them?  What about the outdoor movie nights?  Is there a dome or cover to protect from rain or do they just cancel the shows?  If it's not rainy but cold do they allow you to bring a blanket from stateroom?  Also I have a question about anytime dining.  We are a group of six, so will that likely make it more difficult to get a table together nightly?  Will they break us up?  When I tried to sign up for traditional dining, it said the 5:00 was full but the 7:15 had a wait list.  If we do go with the 7:15 dining time, if there is room, do we need to let the waiter know ahead of time when we try the specialty restaurants, which we plan to do each of them.   Thanks so much for any help!

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In regards to your dining, as soon as you can after boarding go to the dining room and get your table set along with your party.. once that is done then you can ask for the same table throughout  If you booked with the cruise line, and have the booking #'s they should be able to link them so you are dining together. I packed a good jacket with a hood and a sweatshirt for going on tours, depending on your itinerary and dates it can be chilly. Pools are not heated. if you plan to go to a specialty restaurant you can let your waiter know the evenings you will not be dining. I didn't notice to many people using the pool on our Royal Caribbean cruise until we got further south after Boston. Again i don't know your ports. 

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If you are doing New England cruise in the fall on Caribbean Princess;  this ship does not have a covered pool;  the ship provides blankets for movie nights.   The area is not covered.  The hot tubs will be heated

Edited by AF-1

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Also, depending on when you go, it may not bee that cold. We had T-shirt weather all the way to Maine in October of 2010. You may actually fare a bit better in AT dining as a group of six vs. a party of two who does not want to share.

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5 hours ago, swelch said:

This will be my first "cold weather cruise" and I am not sure what to expect and pack. We will be on the Caribbean Princess.   If it is cold will they heat the pools and/or hot tubs?

Hot tubs are heated all the time, but they are usually not that hot. Pools can be heated, but expect cooler water. 

If it is raining will they close them?

Pools remain open unless there is rough seas that makes them dangerous to use.

What about the outdoor movie nights?Is there a dome or cover to protect from rain or do they just cancel the shows?

No domes. There is some cover under the deck above. Movies are run in the rain, not cancelled.

If it's not rainy but cold do they allow you to bring a blanket from stateroom?

There are plenty of freshly laundered blankets, provided by the attendants, at the movie. There are no individual blankets in cabins.

Also I have a question about anytime dining.  We are a group of six, so will that likely make it more difficult to get a table together nightly?  Will they break us up?  When I tried to sign up for traditional dining, it said the 5:00 was full but the 7:15 had a wait list. 

Tricky to answer. It is more difficult to get 6 together just like it would be in a land restaurant during busy times. ATD tends to be very busy between 5:00 and 5:45. By 7:15 you can usually be seated fairly quickly. You should speak with the maitre'd on boarding day. Afternoon hours will be posted in the Princess Patter. Get there early.

If we do go with the 7:15 dining time, if there is room, do we need to let the waiter know ahead of time when we try the specialty restaurants, which we plan to do each of them.

It is nice to let your waiters know. It isn't required.

Thanks so much for any help!

See above. You will be going in the summer, expect nice weather.

One point. Theater shows fill early. Arrive 45 minutes before show time. A show like Bravo will fill an hour early. 

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Plan on dressing in layers.  Keep an eye on the forecast.  When we went in October of 2015 it was windy and cold. Also be sure to have some sort of rain jacket as it might rain.

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In regards to the pools: They were heated on the Regal in October. As far as I know, the only ships that have covers on pools are the Island and Coral.

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20 minutes ago, releck97 said:

In regards to the pools: They were heated on the Regal in October. As far as I know, the only ships that have covers on pools are the Island and Coral.

Grand, Golden, Star, Sapphire, Diamond, Island and Coral Princess all have covered pools.

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1 hour ago, TracieABD said:

Also, depending on when you go, it may not bee that cold. We had T-shirt weather all the way to Maine in October of 2010. You may actually fare a bit better in AT dining as a group of six vs. a party of two who does not want to share.

Or you can have near white out conditions and a ton of snow like we did in October in Quebec City. Expect anything! 🙂

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To all who have been on this cruise; when is the best time of year for viewing; Sept or Oct; or does it matter; since it is pretty all the time in New England.  Thanks for any and all replies.  

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3 minutes ago, AF-1 said:

To all who have been on this cruise; when is the best time of year for viewing; Sept or Oct; or does it matter; since it is pretty all the time in New England.  Thanks for any and all replies.  

I went October 14th once and we were too early for fall foliage! It can change every year.

 

Several people say Columbus Day but that doesn't seem to work for coastal cities.

 

This site is very good if you want to look at historical reports. It appears to have a lot of ads now but it is the best site that I found for looking at past years and a variety of cities:

 

https://www.foliagenetwork.com/index.php/foliage-reports/foliage-reports-northeast-us/foliage-reports-northeast-us-archive

 

We had another trip were we were past color in Quebec City (snow) but other places were behind in color and we hit Boston on Halloween and it was their best day so far that year (perfect peak day). So that year, the Southern Part of NE was pretty late that year.

 

When I studied reports, I figured mid October was best for color. September coastal is way too early for colors but you may have better weather.

 

 

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Coral,  thanks for the feedback.  I will look at your weblink.  Have a nice day

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56 minutes ago, AF-1 said:

To all who have been on this cruise; when is the best time of year for viewing; Sept or Oct; or does it matter; since it is pretty all the time in New England.  Thanks for any and all replies.  

I live in Boston and generally speaking Columbus Day weekend is the most popular for leaf peeping. Now, in reality every year is different depending on the type of summer we've had.  It really affects the colors and timing.

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4 minutes ago, Baystate said:

I live in Boston and generally speaking Columbus Day weekend is the most popular for leaf peeping. Now, in reality every year is different depending on the type of summer we've had.  It really affects the colors and timing.

Thank you.  But as you know; we will have to book the cruise way before we know if the summer was wet or dry.  But thank you for the info

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4 minutes ago, AF-1 said:

Thank you.  But as you know; we will have to book the cruise way before we know if the summer was wet or dry.  But thank you for the info

That's why I noted the Columbus Day weekend timeframe  😉

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16 minutes ago, Baystate said:

That's why I noted the Columbus Day weekend timeframe  😉

Oddly - if you look at the historical data - Columbus weekend works farther inland but not along the coast where cruise ships go - it is early except for far North (Quebec). A few years ago, I went back and looked at the previous 10 years. 

Edited by Coral

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When I lived in Boston -- it was always mid to end of October. Early October is better for good weather. Someone pointed out the difference between inland and coast. This is very important as the coastal areas are the last to change.

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22 minutes ago, Coral said:

Oddly - if you look at the historical data - Columbus weekend works farther inland but not along the coast where cruise ships go - it is early except for far North (Quebec). A few years ago, I went back and looked at the previous 10 years. 

This may be true. I live along coast, but when we go leaf peeping we always drive north to NH/VT or west along the Mohawk Trail.   I just naturally think of this time as prime foliage season. 🙂

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3 minutes ago, Baystate said:

This may be true. I live along coast, but when we go leaf peeping we always drive north to NH/VT or west along the Mohawk Trail.   I just naturally think of this time as prime foliage season. 🙂

It probably is for where you are going. 

 

You live in such a beautiful area! 😎

Edited by Coral

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3 minutes ago, Coral said:

It probably is for where you are going. 

 

You live in such a beautiful area! 😎

True story, lol. I guess I wasn't thinking it through. Glad that you and CaribbeanIsland corrected me. It would be terrible to give out erroneous information and someone uses it as fact.

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5 minutes ago, Baystate said:

True story, lol. I guess I wasn't thinking it through. Glad that you and CaribbeanIsland corrected me. It would be terrible to give out erroneous information and someone uses it as fact.

Every year is different and every location is different. It is hard when you go clear North also as you will miss it and hit it in other ports.

 

I think it was 2009 which had to be an odd year that peak was Halloween in Boston. It was just stunning. I wish I could do day trips to Vermont. One place I haven't been to but is on my "bucket list". 

 

Thankfully there are websites that track this stuff.

Edited by Coral

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I also am going to say mid October for coastal areas. By that time and farther on in the month -- one has the potential for worse weather. It is a compromise between better weather and better colors. A land trip is a great option for looking for colors.

 

One year we did this cruise the first of October and had horrible rain the entire trip. You also always have a chance for hurricanes also. Lovely thoughts! Maybe a land based trip where you can go farther inland is better. I also use the leaf network page when I drive North.

Edited by Casey12

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We did this cruise from Quebec to FLL October 19, 2015 and we had beautiful weather although in the 50's until we got to Boston then it began to warm up. We stopped at a Port soon after leaving Quebec, the name i forgot,  PEI, Portland & Bar Harbor Maine, Boston & Charlestown, NC.  It was cold and breezy along the coast in Maine. I did fine with my sweatshirt & jacket on the tours, also brought some sweaters for on board. During the day we wore mainly levies on the Tours and also brought along a poncho in case it rained.

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Thank you everyone for the feedback.  I appreciate it

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Thank you SO MUCH!   Very helpful for packing and being prepared for any weather.  What an adventure this may turn out to be!  Hopefully no hurricanes.  The rest I can handle!

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