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tmg698

First Cruise on Royal

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Going on Harmony of the Seas in April 2020

All pervious cruises have been on Carnival

A few questions:

How much are the pictures? Do they print them or are they digital? Do they offer picture packages?

Is a dining package worth the extra cost? If so which places should we try?

Feel free to give me any tips and suggestions.

Thanks

 

 

Edited by tmg698

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5 minutes ago, tmg698 said:

How much are the pictures? Do they print them or are they digital? Do they offer picture packages?

$20 to start for one. Either/both. Yes.

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11 minutes ago, tmg698 said:

Going on Harmony of the Seas in April 2020

All pervious cruises have been on Carnival

A few questions:

How much are the pictures? Do they print them or are they digital? Do they offer picture packages?

Is a dining package worth the extra cost? If so which places should we try?

Feel free to give me any tips and suggestions.

Thanks

 

 

If you look in your your cruise planner under internet you will see some packages available. You can get both kinds of packages.  Dining package worth is entirely subjective.  Only you know can know if it is worth it.  I think they can be good value when they go on sale.  If you get one on Carnival I'm sure you'd be happy with one on Royal.  

Edited by Tree_skier

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The only specialty restaurant we tried on Harmony was Sabor.  The service was great, but the choices were not that exciting at all.  We actually preferred the windjammer options on Mexican night!  

 

We shared a table in the MDR with some platinum Carnival folks.  Harmony was their first RCCL trip.  They said the biggest difference for them (aside from the massive ship) was how the cruise directors operate.  On Carnival, the cruise director comes over the loudspeaker every hour or so to let you know what is going on.   I can't recall the cruise director on Harmony talking over the loudspeaker more than 4 times on the entire cruise.  So if you aren't one to read the Cruise Compass and plan your day that way, you may not like it as much.   

 

On a ship this big, plan early and often.  If you have My Time dining, set it up in advance.  Sign up for the shows ahead of time.  

 

Also, the most important tip I can give anyone on Harmony is KEEP YOUR ELBOWS IN when going down the ultimate abyss.  My wife didn't listen and had some nasty rub burns on her elbows that lasted a week or so.  

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I haven't been on a Carnival cruise yet, so I can't give you any comparisons or tips for the differences, but a group of us went on Harmony June 2018.  It's a huge ship.  So much so that there were still places I never made it to after a week!

 

We were in a balcony overlooking Central Park and, at the time, that included a specialty lunch which we had in Jaime's Italian (it was very good!).  And, because my son was totally intrigued by it, we booked a night in Wonderland, which I think was well worth it!  The food was delicious and the experience was inventive and unique.  Plus, they have a great cocktail bar.  Other than that we didn't try other specialty restaurants and were quite satisfied with the included offerings on the ship.

 

No matter what you decide about specialty restaurants, do make your reservations in advance.  For everything.  I had a party of eight to make reservations for so hopped on them in the cruise planner as soon as they showed up.  I did this for dinner in the MDR and for every show.  And we got to see every show as planned because I didn't wait until we got on board.  You can always make changes once you're on the ship, but there's just no guarantees so better safe than sorry in my book.

 

I thought the Harmony was a beautiful ship.  Our cabin was spacious and well laid out.  I loved being above Central Park where we could listen to live music in the evenings from our balcony.  And for such a massive ship they do a good job with traffic flow so that it doesn't feel like you're on board with nearly 6500 passengers!  I still prefer the Radiance class vessels.  They're just more "intimate" and they have a real Solarium with a covered pool and sea views from practically everywhere.

 

I'm sure you'll have a wonderful time!  Enjoy your cruise!

 

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On 10/3/2019 at 1:31 PM, tmg698 said:

Going on Harmony of the Seas in April 2020

All pervious cruises have been on Carnival

A few questions:

How much are the pictures? Do they print them or are they digital? Do they offer picture packages?

Is a dining package worth the extra cost? If so which places should we try?

Feel free to give me any tips and suggestions.

Thanks

 

 

You look at your pictures on the computer.  Then you pick out and pay for the ones you want.  You have to come back at a later time to pick them up.  Personally, the one thing we do not like on the Oasis Class ships.  It is really hard to look at the pictures, and it is a pain to have to come back later to get them.  I understand why they don't print them all out, but the system to now get the pictures is very cumbersome.  We saw many people, just say the heck with it and walk away and not get anything.

 

Dining package - depends if you want to eat in different venues.  For us, we think the dining room is more than enough.  We do MTD and go eat when we feel like it, we never make reservations when it is just the 2 of us.  

 

Make reservations in your cruise planner for the shows.  Then you just go and get your seat.  Make sure you are there no later than 15-20 minutes before the show starts as that is the time they open seating up to anyone that does not have a reservation

 

Harmony is a beautiful ship, we have been on her twice.  Central Park is a place we love walking through on our way to our cabin each evening before we call it a night.

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We just got back from our first Royal cruise and were on the Harmony.  

 

1. We didn’t buy a dining package. We were glad we weren’t tied down to dinner reservations and could pick and choose from the included options. We weren’t fans of the buffet, but we generally don’t like any buffet. We aren’t big eaters. 

 

2. I was very glad I had made reservations for MTD and shows in advance. They just appear in your cruise planner, so be looking for it. 

 

3. We loved the app for searching through the activities and then could add them to our calendar so our family could see what we were interested in. Also it was easy to see our charges and we were able to get several charges fixed at Guest Services before the crazy rush at the end of the week. 

 

4. It was super fast to get on/off the ship!  Very easy process. 

 

5. Check excursion , beverage and dining prices often because the prices change a lot. You can cancel and rebook to get the lower price. 

 

6. Coco Cay was amazing, which is why we picked the cruise and was a place we want to go back to. 

 

We we didn’t even come close to doing everything on this ship in a week!  Already trying to find a time to go back. Enjoy your trip!

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We think Wonderland is great to do once 🙂. Also, if you have the drink package, you can use it at the Wonderland bar, even if you aren’t eating there

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If you like food, then get the 3 night package when it is on sale. If you are adventurous, do Wonderland but you really can’t go wrong with any of the options. 
 

What kind of room did you get?  Just curious 😁

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We are Platinum on Carnival and Emerald on Royal.  We enjoy the cruises on both just fine.

 

I prefer the buffet options on Carnival and in general find they offer food all the time while Royal closes up a lot of the venue early.   Most notably, no ice cream in the evening 😞

 

In general I have preferred the entertainment on Royal, though I can't remember any really poor comedians on Carnival and the guy we saw on Royal last month did not even resemble humorous.  The reservation system on Royal takes some re-orienting and although I guess it helps, I didn't always like dealing with it personally.

 

I think the digital options for Carnival pictures are a little cheaper than Royal.  And apparently not all Oasis class do pictures the same.  On the Allure they had a system with "towers" of boxes of printed pictures - eg ours was  "13 slot 89" and you could take them out and look at them to select one to buy.  One downside for our group was that we had to search several locations on the last night to find all the pictures.

 

Each ship, ship class and itinerary will be subtly unique.  We enjoy trying to find what we enjoy in each trip and making the most of it.

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             Did a 9 night on Harmony last march/april with DD (18 at the time). Did the 3 night dining package, used it at 150 CP, Jamies, and Wonderland. Wonderland is worth doing once, just for the experience. DD loved Jamies, I think she ordered chicken alfredo even though it was not on the menu. Although some claim Jamies filet is better than Chops, I preferred the Chops filet (did not have dinner at Chops, but had Chops filet for lunch boarding day and at breakfast last morning). 150 CP was pretty elegant for this florida cracker . Cheese plate for dessert was quite interesting. 

             We went night one, and used the other 2 on nights where the MDR menu looked so so. Daughter likes to dress up, so we made sure to make formal night both nights. Although we had CK access from JS, we kept to the MDR. We ended up with wonderful table mates using MTD.

           

 

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On 10/4/2019 at 4:42 PM, karena1 said:

You look at your pictures on the computer.  Then you pick out and pay for the ones you want.  You have to come back at a later time to pick them up.  Personally, the one thing we do not like on the Oasis Class ships.  It is really hard to look at the pictures, and it is a pain to have to come back later to get them.  I understand why they don't print them all out, but the system to now get the pictures is very cumbersome.  We saw many people, just say the heck with it and walk away and not get anything.


Since many people wait until the last night to order pics (to be able to compare them all and decide which you want), it would be nice if they would deliver the pics to the rooms after printing.  (BTW, it's the same exact system on Mariner, so this is not limited to Oasis class ships.)

It's a bit of a PITA to have to leave a bar or show and pick up your photos on that last night....

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1 hour ago, brillohead said:


Since many people wait until the last night to order pics (to be able to compare them all and decide which you want), it would be nice if they would deliver the pics to the rooms after printing.  (BTW, it's the same exact system on Mariner, so this is not limited to Oasis class ships.)

It's a bit of a PITA to have to leave a bar or show and pick up your photos on that last night....

yes it is the same on Mariner, but we never get pictures on 3 night cruises so I haven't had to deal with it.  My problem with it is that there is writing across the pictures so really hard to see if you like them or not.  Then because we each get a free picture, you cannot pick them both at the same time, you have to go through the entire process and then go through it again.  Then having to come back to pick them up is a PITA.  They need to figure out how to make it easier - like you said, deliver them to your cabin.  Cannot tell you how many times we have seen people just give up and leave and decide not to buy anything b/c the process is such a pain.

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7 minutes ago, karena1 said:

My problem with it is that there is writing across the pictures so really hard to see if you like them or not.


You can move the watermark so you can see the faces better, etc.

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On ‎10‎/‎5‎/‎2019 at 8:28 AM, jakeil7 said:

If you like food, then get the 3 night package when it is on sale. If you are adventurous, do Wonderland but you really can’t go wrong with any of the options. 
 

What kind of room did you get?  Just curious 😁

Ocean View front of ship deck 10

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On 10/5/2019 at 8:49 PM, brillohead said:


You can move the watermark so you can see the faces better, etc.

I know, but the whole process is very cumbersome

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2 hours ago, tmg698 said:

Thanks for all the info and suggestions.

We went on Harmony Last November and are booked again for next month.  I will probably do a live review again 🙂  In the meantime, there are many tips and pictures from our cruise last year in my review below:

 

 

Enjoy planning this new adventure!

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Was on Symphony last January and I can say that I highly recommend getting a photo package ahead of time.  The price for 12, digital only, photos was $100 without one.

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