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cloudninecat

How do you handle the Cruise Anticipation Crazies?

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Yes. we stay in the same cabin and we get a handicap inside cabin on Lido because my husband has a hard time walking due to a bad ankle break years ago. We are going on the Breeze to Bermuda Sept.21. and St. Thomas Sept.28, 2019. We will be back on the Breeze, Sept.5,2020 for Western Caribbean. Can't wait. Be sure to check pricing everyday for reduced pricing or OBC.

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6 minutes ago, peteandpris said:

Be sure to check pricing everyday for reduced pricing or OBC.

I have a question about that. Does that apply to a price reduction in the type, or the category? We have the aft wrap and that is almost sold out already. I'm not likely to find a price reduction in that category, so, if the price of balconies goes down from what it was when I booked am I eligible for OBC or only if the price of the aft wrap goes down? 

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The same cabin but you would be surprised if someone cancels it could happen, I was lucky last year on Black Friday, one day sale.

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2 hours ago, cloudninecat said:

First a little background. We took our first cruise in Dec 2016 for our 20th wedding anniversary and then shortly after booking decided we'd rather extend our cruise then stay in New Orleans for a few days, so we booked the next one directly after it (a B2B). Just as I knew I would I loved it. While on the ship I booked my 3rd cruise (if you count my b2b as 2) for Feb 2017 for me and a friend. Then when I got home I talked my husband into booking one with the whole family for July 2017. We had a great time but then the reality of what all those cruises costed us set in. Also the fact that we're both close to retirement age and we just discovered what we want to do when we retire, cruise, a lot. We put ourself on a budget and decided to payoff everything we owe, including our house and live completely debt free (think Dave Ramsey). We're due to have everything paid off by July 2020.😎 

 

Now on to the question portion. I'm officially a cruiseaholic but my pocketbook won't allow a cruise several times a year, yet. While it was always in the back of my mind, "Boy I wish I was on a cruise. I kind of got use to the fact that I'm not on, nor will I be going on one soon. However, since we're due to be out of debt in 2020 and we don't know how long Cuba will be open to US Travelers we booked a B2B cruise for Nov 2020 with the first leg going to Cuba. Now I have the cruise crazies. I can't stop thinking about it. Those of you that book more than a year in advance, how do you handle the anticipation? What are your tricks to keep your mind off how long it is until your next cruise while you wait? . Surely I'm not alone with the cruise crazies. 😨

 

1.  Book another

2.  Pack and re-pack

3.  Shop too much on Amazon

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1 hour ago, cloudninecat said:

I have a question about that. Does that apply to a price reduction in the type, or the category? We have the aft wrap and that is almost sold out already. I'm not likely to find a price reduction in that category, so, if the price of balconies goes down from what it was when I booked am I eligible for OBC or only if the price of the aft wrap goes down? 

 

It has to be the same category as what you booked. But like peteandpris said, even if it sells out, keep checking periodically because people cancel. If you have any doubts, fill out the claim form. The worst that can happen is they say no.

 

Since you mentioned you're all about paying for your cruises before you go, are you aware of the 10% off discount Carnival gift cards through AARP? I looked at a couple of the most recent threads and didn't see you in there. Here's a link to the main thread:

I included a link to their rewards website and an explanation of how to buy the discounted cards on page 115 of that thread, if you're interested. You don't have to be an AARP member. Allstate insurance has a similar rewards program (and you don't have to be a customer), but it's a little bit more of a pain to sign up for that because non-customers have to do it through their smartphone app. Those gift cards can be used for just about everything. Paying on your cruise, Cheers, wifi, excursions, Fun Shop purchases, OBC (but only once you get on board, unless you use them to buy Cruise Cash), etc.

Edited by Organized Chaos

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Thank you so much. I just saved us $50 in a matter of minutes. That was easy. I thought you had to do a bunch of stuff to earn enough to really matter so I never signed up. I know how I'll be paying and saving on our cruise now. 

 

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Congratulations on being so close debt free! We're getting closer & closer as well, and it is the most freeing feeling in the world!!

 

Currently sitting at 31 days to Vista & 327 to Dream. I'm an obsesser. I research the ports, the options, the excursions... I research the boat until I can navigate it in my sleep. We travel with our son (who will be 5 in May), so being able to snake through the crowd with little hesitation is a stress-reliever. I also read all the boards, watch videos, look at pictures...I've been reading reviews.

 

I actually find the planning & imagination adds to it. I think some people see it as a build up to a short trip & then it's over...but I enjoy going through every detail & every option. Maybe it helps me know that I made the most of my time away & I don't come away with any fear of missing out on anything?

 

I'm pretty sure everyone I know can give you a general rundown of how many days we have left. I'm that person. And yes, my husband has commented on the number of Amazon boxes that have graced our doorstep. But hey, I'm a planner. And all he has to do is get in the truck on the day we leave & drive. I predict most anything we can need before we need it...including our last trip when our son busted his chin on the first night. Sent hubby up to Lido for ice while I broke out the (compact but comprehensive) first aid kit. I did realize I would like to add some liquid bandage to that though... 

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3 minutes ago, cloudninecat said:

Thank you so much. I just saved us $50 in a matter of minutes. That was easy. I thought you had to do a bunch of stuff to earn enough to really matter so I never signed up. I know how I'll be paying and saving on our cruise now. 

 

 

You're quite welcome. 🙂 Somewhere on there, maybe if you click on the drop-down menu in the upper corner where your username is, you can subscribe to their email newsletters. This is why I use a spare email address for this...so those things aren't clogging up the inbox of my primary email. Not all of those emails will come with promo codes for points, though. I think I get maybe 1 or 2 codes a week. You're better off doing quizzes.

 

There could be an opportunity for 15% off gift cards in the near future, but we have to wait and see. The U.S. Travel Association puts on an event called Daily Getaways every spring, offering discounts on all kinds of different travel related products and services. Carnival joined them two years ago to offer 15% off Carnival cards. It's only for one day (they have different offers every day for a month) and I think they sold out within a matter of hours. But they didn't do it last year. They are still listed as one of the partners, so hopefully they'll do it this year. In addition to that, last May a company called PayPal Digital Gifts sold 15% off Carnival cards on eBay. It's totally legit, they're owned by PayPal. Again, they had a limited number of cards and sold out within hours, but they ran that sale on a couple different days. It was limited to 3 cards per person and you had to pay using a PayPal account, but those are free to start. I'm hoping that will come up again, too. If it happens, there will be threads that pop up here in the forum.

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What we do for the anticipation is we all come here and yell and argue with each other on their preferences.

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I agree with the 'stay busy' folks: Join your roll-call, do your research, and watch for those ever-elusive price drops! Example, we had nearly a year between booking, and our very first Bermuda cruise. Since we had 3 days in Bermuda, I ordered the Moon guide to Bermuda, and read it, cover to cover. After that, I went to the Ports-of-Call board, here and planned my 3 days of exploring that beautiful island. On that particular sailing (Celebrity Summit) we were lucky to have a very active roll-call -- with lots on on-shore and on-board activities planned. Needless to say, the months until sail-away just FLEW by -- and it ended up being one of our most memorable cruises! 😎

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2 hours ago, Organized Chaos said:

 

It has to be the same category as what you booked. But like peteandpris said, even if it sells out, keep checking periodically because people cancel. If you have any doubts, fill out the claim form. The worst that can happen is they say no.

 

Since you mentioned you're all about paying for your cruises before you go, are you aware of the 10% off discount Carnival gift cards through AARP? I looked at a couple of the most recent threads and didn't see you in there. Here's a link to the main thread:

I included a link to their rewards website and an explanation of how to buy the discounted cards on page 115 of that thread, if you're interested. You don't have to be an AARP member. Allstate insurance has a similar rewards program (and you don't have to be a customer), but it's a little bit more of a pain to sign up for that because non-customers have to do it through their smartphone app. Those gift cards can be used for just about everything. Paying on your cruise, Cheers, wifi, excursions, Fun Shop purchases, OBC (but only once you get on board, unless you use them to buy Cruise Cash), etc.

Thank you! I'd seen posts about the AARP cards before, but since we have the Carnival Mastercard, I didn't think anything of them. I finally ran the numbers & realized this was actually a much better savings than trying to accrue points through my card!

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7 minutes ago, AggieGirl05 said:

Thank you! I'd seen posts about the AARP cards before, but since we have the Carnival Mastercard, I didn't think anything of them. I finally ran the numbers & realized this was actually a much better savings than trying to accrue points through my card!

 

No problem. My wife has the Carnival Mastercard, too, but it doesn't seem to do us much good. Maybe she's not using it enough (don't tell her I said that). We did use it to pay the deposit on next year's cruise because we didn't have any gift cards handy. It got her a $50 credit. Spend $1,000 only to get $50 back? No thanks. We can buy $1,000 worth of discount gift cards and save twice that.

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Another way to use up some of that time while you wait is to watch some youtube videos. Scott Singer has a great youtube site with lots of vlogs on cruises that he has taken. Even if it's not your ship or itinerary, there's lots of info. He started with his first vlog here on CC a number of years ago and he's just kept on going.

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Congratulations on your debt-free plan.  You are really smart to do that.  We were both very frugal all our working years, and are now luxuriating in having some money set aside.

We, too, sometimes feel like the wait is forever.

Sometimes we pretend we're on a cruise, while at home:  Chat about how nice it was that they opened the dining room (actually, our kitchen) just for us.

Put music on and dance in the living room.

Get the washer and dryer going full out, sit in the room just above them, and pretend the vibration is because we are at sea.

I read CC daily, and imagine I'm on this cruise, that cruise.  I read and take part in our roll calls.  I research ports.

We visit local thrift stores weekly, in search of formalwear and other cruise-worthy items.  With no urgency in a purchase, we can wait and get the perfect thing when it appears.

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On 3/27/2019 at 12:55 PM, emoorehead said:

and annoying my son about the location of his black pants that need to be washed so we can pack them for our upcoming cruise

Ahhhh.....another success afternoon of time killing until my cruise. Below is the coversation I just had with my son:

 

Screenshot_2019-03-28-13-57-38.png

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cloudcatnine...congratulations to being (almost there) debt-free and becoming a cruiseaholic.

Yes, we have cruises booked over a year in advance....in the meantime we:

* Continually separate clothes for cruises. (Donate the ones we don't use.)

* Read Cruise Critic. (Get more ideas and perhaps provide help to others.)

* Check for price drops and call our travel agent for adjustments. (This has saved us a lot of money.)

* Check for any airline/airfare changes.  (We are often surprise how many flight times changes.)

* Research all the ports. (Look for DIY excursions...we try (really try) not to book the expensive ship excursions)

* This is important: Lose weight. (We tend to gain a few, ok more than a few, pounds when cruising. Disclosure: We usually cruise for a month or more.)

* Don't laugh....we search and shop for the latest travel accessories...it has become another addiction.

* Our current favorite...watch "Dream Cruises" on AWE, A Wealth of Entertainment...channel 387, if you happen to have Directv/AT&T.  (It feels like we've been on a cruise after watching the show.)

Congratulations again and Happy Sailing!!! ☺️

 

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