Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
farmersfight

Solo friendly cruise line companies?

Recommended Posts

Posted (edited)

Hi veteran solo cruisers. I was about to start cruising solo myself a few months back but then this insidious virus hit and the cruise ships shut down. I was just wondering, which cruise line do you recommend for solo cruising and why? I know NCL has the solo cabins/area and solo lounge but I was wondering what other cruise line is also solo friendly.

 

I've been checking out cruiseplum.com and looking at cruises with no/reduced solo supplements as well as "great deals" for 1 person cruising. Any additional help/info on this topic is very much appreciated!

 

P.S. I don't really care for the solo cabins on NCL by the looks of them. Interior, no window, very small (I do like the idea of NCL's solo lounge though). I much prefer a balcony cabin where I can sit out on my balcony and enjoy my coffee and/or adult beverage of choice!

Edited by farmersfight

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Are you also looking for a cruise romance or just good deal for a solo cruiser?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, drsel said:

Are you also looking for a cruise romance or just good deal for a solo cruiser?

 

Just a good deal for a solo cruiser. Also, the quality of the solo experience with the various cruise lines companies.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really liked my solo interior on RCL as it had a virtual balcony/window. Basically a tv turned on it’s side connected to a live camera feed on the ship. It was better than having a porthole. I do know they also have studio balconies, as I was about to book one right before COVID for next year. These studios are usually on the larger boats. 
I had a great time being solo on my Alaska trip. Met people when I wanted to, was by myself when I wanted to, chatted, etc. I was looking forward to my trip this year in Europe - I was to have a regular interior with virtual balcony/window. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, RCI also has solo/studio cabins but they are VERY hard to book the balcony.  You need to try the day the cruise is released to have a good chance to get it I think, and when I booked an interior studio the TA doing the booking wasn't even aware they existed until she stumbled upon it (and it turned out to be on the same deck as the rest of the group).  I know for sure the Quantum and Quantum-Plus ships on RCI (Quantum, Anthem, Spectrum, Odyssey, Ovation) have these cabins.

 

I never tried to participate in the solo gathering on either of my RCI cruises as I was sailing with a larger group, but I can tell you that the NCL solo program is wonderful (or was on the two cruises I took with them).  I'm not sure how RCI could have done it better.  Also, even though the solo gathering on the larger NCL ships is in the Studio lounge it is for more than the people in the studio cabins, ANYONE sailing solo can participate.

 

The difference with NCL's Studio cabins is that they have (on the Breakaway and Breakaway-Plus class ships) a segregated section of the ship just for them with direct access to the lounge without exiting that area.  I believe the Bliss has 86 cabins in that section.  On the Bliss the Studio cabins have a virtual balcony much like is offered on the RCI Studio balcony (on Anthem anyway), and there's enough "public" space on that ship that you can find SOMEWHERE to hang out (OBSERVATION LOUNGE!). 

 

RCI's Studio cabins are scattered throughout the ship - on Anthem there are TWO inside Studios per deck, one on each side accessed from a door that provides access to the JS near the aft elevators (enter a small vestibule with the doors for the two rooms inside) on their respective sides of the ship and the studio balconies are down on deck 5 I think.

 

Having stayed in both, I'd probably lean toward NCL (on the Bliss anyway, maybe the Encore as that ship would have the new features in the Studio cabins that came on the Bliss but I won't sail Encore for other reasons) because of the Lounge and solo program.  I've also stayed in a balcony on the Bliss, that was nice but the standard size balcony (the outside part) felt small.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As noted, the NCL Studio setup is great for solos. You'll find the Studio cabins & Studio Lounge on Epic, Pride of America, and all the Breakaway/Breakaway Plus ships except Joy. A daily pre-dinner solo traveler gathering is hosted by NCL on every ship, including those without Studio areas. You'll have a dedicated solo host who will set up group dinners and outings to shows and other entertainment. If you'd rather be on your own (like me!), you'll have zero issues in getting a solo table at the included and specialty dining venues (except maybe Teppanyaki). NCL's Freestyle dining is awesome if you can't bear the thought of being seated with a bunch of strangers.

 

NCL used to make it easy to look for sailings with a solo discount but that functionality disappeared after the last website design. Very annoying. I've got three NCL cruises booked, all solo balcony cabins, all at 100% solo supplement.

 

I enjoyed the Studio setup in NCL Bliss. Sure, I couldn't go out on my balcony to drink coffee, so I simply got dressed and drank coffee on The Waterfront or in the Observation Lounge. The free espresso available 24/7 in the Studio Lounge was infinitely better than the free coffee available in the balcony/mini-suite cabins. Studios are tiny but well-designed so I never felt cramped for space.

 

Also as noted, RCL's Quantum-class ships (Quantum, Anthem, Ovation, Odyssey, and Spectrum) have solo cabins including balcony cabins. The first four ships have 12 of those Studio Balconies, located at the aft side of a bump-out which results in larger angled balconies for 8 of them; Spectrum has 18, I think? With a bit of luck I was able to book a Studio Balcony on Quantum OTS next summer, and with even better luck I grabbed of the cabins with the largest angled balcony! However, while Studio balconies were about 1/2 the price of single-occupancy in regular balcony cabins on this particular sailing, I've seen other sailings where regular cabins were the cheaper option. Looking forward to comparing the RCL solo experience to the NCL one.

 

Allegedly there are Studio balcony cabins on the newest MSC ships (Meraviglia and Bellisima, maybe others?) but I don't see them on deck plans and they don't come up in mock bookings.

 

Celebrity Edge and Apex have single versions of the Infinite Verandah cabins. Ah, someday.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, bhsolo said:

I really liked my solo interior on RCL as it had a virtual balcony/window. Basically a tv turned on it’s side connected to a live camera feed on the ship. It was better than having a porthole. I do know they also have studio balconies, as I was about to book one right before COVID for next year. These studios are usually on the larger boats. 
I had a great time being solo on my Alaska trip. Met people when I wanted to, was by myself when I wanted to, chatted, etc. I was looking forward to my trip this year in Europe - I was to have a regular interior with virtual balcony/window. 

 

Hi bhsolo. Thanks for your reply. I think the virtual window in the interior cabins (both solos and regulars) are a great idea/innovation. Definitely helps if you're claustrophobic, lol. I'm really interested in RCL's studio balconies (as hallux pointed out, on the Quantum and Quantum-Plus ships); they seem to be just what I'm looking for. As you said, I like the idea as a solo to be able to meet people when I want, be by myself when I want, chat, etc. Hopefully, there will soon be a vaccine for COVID so we can get back to (& me start) solo cruising. Best of luck with getting to cruise in Europe, if not this year then hopefully very soon thereafter. Thanks again!

 

11 hours ago, hallux said:

Yes, RCI also has solo/studio cabins but they are VERY hard to book the balcony.  You need to try the day the cruise is released to have a good chance to get it I think, and when I booked an interior studio the TA doing the booking wasn't even aware they existed until she stumbled upon it (and it turned out to be on the same deck as the rest of the group).  I know for sure the Quantum and Quantum-Plus ships on RCI (Quantum, Anthem, Spectrum, Odyssey, Ovation) have these cabins.

 

I never tried to participate in the solo gathering on either of my RCI cruises as I was sailing with a larger group, but I can tell you that the NCL solo program is wonderful (or was on the two cruises I took with them).  I'm not sure how RCI could have done it better.  Also, even though the solo gathering on the larger NCL ships is in the Studio lounge it is for more than the people in the studio cabins, ANYONE sailing solo can participate.

 

The difference with NCL's Studio cabins is that they have (on the Breakaway and Breakaway-Plus class ships) a segregated section of the ship just for them with direct access to the lounge without exiting that area.  I believe the Bliss has 86 cabins in that section.  On the Bliss the Studio cabins have a virtual balcony much like is offered on the RCI Studio balcony (on Anthem anyway), and there's enough "public" space on that ship that you can find SOMEWHERE to hang out (OBSERVATION LOUNGE!). 

 

RCI's Studio cabins are scattered throughout the ship - on Anthem there are TWO inside Studios per deck, one on each side accessed from a door that provides access to the JS near the aft elevators (enter a small vestibule with the doors for the two rooms inside) on their respective sides of the ship and the studio balconies are down on deck 5 I think.

 

Having stayed in both, I'd probably lean toward NCL (on the Bliss anyway, maybe the Encore as that ship would have the new features in the Studio cabins that came on the Bliss but I won't sail Encore for other reasons) because of the Lounge and solo program.  I've also stayed in a balcony on the Bliss, that was nice but the standard size balcony (the outside part) felt small.

 

Hi hallux. Thanks for your reply. Great information! Yeah, I had done some previous "research" and I did find out about RCL's solo balcony cabins on their Quantum and Quantum-Plus ships. Also, I did read here on CC how they were hard to book, like you say. I guess there's a lot of other solo cruisers out there that like their own balcony, like me 😉. I agree with you, sounds like NCL leads the way wrt solo cruising with their many more solo cabins (in the same area of the ship) on Epic, POA and their Breakaway and Breakaway Plus ships except Joy (as coastcat pointed out). Seems like RCL "dipped their toes in the water" wrt to appealing to solo cruisers and had a great idea with their solo balcony cabins but they didn't put enough of them on enough of their ships, so they didn't go "all in". But RCL did also create the other categories of solo cabins (inside and OV's), so you have to give them credit for that. Thanks for your comparison of RCL and NCL wrt to solo cruising as you have done both. I just wish NCL had created some solo balcony cabins (like RCL) and combined with their solo lounge and program, it would've been perfect! Just curious, you mentioned that you won't sail Encore, may I ask why? I'm not too worried about a small balcony (such as on the Bliss) because it will just be me. I am worried about having to pay double as a solo for a standard balcony cabin. However, as I mentioned in my OP, the website cruiseplum.com looks like it will help with that in that they list cruises with no/reduced supplements. Thanks again!

 

5 hours ago, coastcat said:

As noted, the NCL Studio setup is great for solos. You'll find the Studio cabins & Studio Lounge on Epic, Pride of America, and all the Breakaway/Breakaway Plus ships except Joy. A daily pre-dinner solo traveler gathering is hosted by NCL on every ship, including those without Studio areas. You'll have a dedicated solo host who will set up group dinners and outings to shows and other entertainment. If you'd rather be on your own (like me!), you'll have zero issues in getting a solo table at the included and specialty dining venues (except maybe Teppanyaki). NCL's Freestyle dining is awesome if you can't bear the thought of being seated with a bunch of strangers.

 

NCL used to make it easy to look for sailings with a solo discount but that functionality disappeared after the last website design. Very annoying. I've got three NCL cruises booked, all solo balcony cabins, all at 100% solo supplement.

 

I enjoyed the Studio setup in NCL Bliss. Sure, I couldn't go out on my balcony to drink coffee, so I simply got dressed and drank coffee on The Waterfront or in the Observation Lounge. The free espresso available 24/7 in the Studio Lounge was infinitely better than the free coffee available in the balcony/mini-suite cabins. Studios are tiny but well-designed so I never felt cramped for space.

 

Also as noted, RCL's Quantum-class ships (Quantum, Anthem, Ovation, Odyssey, and Spectrum) have solo cabins including balcony cabins. The first four ships have 12 of those Studio Balconies, located at the aft side of a bump-out which results in larger angled balconies for 8 of them; Spectrum has 18, I think? With a bit of luck I was able to book a Studio Balcony on Quantum OTS next summer, and with even better luck I grabbed of the cabins with the largest angled balcony! However, while Studio balconies were about 1/2 the price of single-occupancy in regular balcony cabins on this particular sailing, I've seen other sailings where regular cabins were the cheaper option. Looking forward to comparing the RCL solo experience to the NCL one.

 

Allegedly there are Studio balcony cabins on the newest MSC ships (Meraviglia and Bellisima, maybe others?) but I don't see them on deck plans and they don't come up in mock bookings.

 

Celebrity Edge and Apex have single versions of the Infinite Verandah cabins. Ah, someday.

 

Hi coastcat. Thanks for your very helpful information, especially wrt to NCL's solo program. I like the idea that NCL has a dedicated solo host who will set up group dinners and outings to shows and other entertainment. Combine this with mingling in the studio lounge, I can see where it wouldn't be hard to make friend(s) with fellow solo cruisers. I think I can go either way, with others or on my own. I guess it depends on my mood. I agree with you that NCL's freestyle dining would be great for getting a solo table and not have to be seated with a group of strangers. I absolutely agree with you wrt to NCL's website. I also found the website used to be very solo friendly in finding cruises but then for some reason, NCL changed it! Yes, very annoying. You said you have 3 NCL cruises booked in solo balcony cabins all with 100% solo supplements I assume you mean that you have regular balcony cabins booked and that you'll have the pay for the "ghost" cabin mate with the 100% solo supplements. I would consider this also but hate having to pay double (but, at least you will have plenty of room in a regular balcony). That's why I'm glad I found the website cruiseplum.com (have you seen this website?). It's great to be able to find cruises (broken down by cruiseline) with no/reduced solo supplement. Cruiseplum.com also points out that sometimes, there will be hot or last minute deals that will be less than even no/reduced solo supplements. I appreciate your comment(s) regarding the studio cabins on NCL Bliss. From what I have seen here on CC and on NCL's website, the Waterfront and Observation Lounge look like great venues for solos to hang out, especially with a hot cup of "joe", lol. Again, I'm not sure about the small interior solo cabins with NCL; guess I'm not opposed to try one someday but like I said before, I do like me a balcony! Thanks for your great/detailed information wrt to RCL's studio balcony cabins. Yeah, as I mentioned before, RCL seems to be "dipping their toes in the water" wrt to solo cruising, for example (as you pointed out) that 4 of the Quantum ships have 12 studio balconies with the Spectrum having 18; whereas the NCL Bliss, for example, has 86 studio cabins. However, the RCL Quantum ships also have the studio inside and OV cabins so I'm guessing that the number of solo cabins on these ships are higher than 12 (18 for the Spectrum). But I'm sure not near as many as say the NCL Bliss with 86. Btw, congrats on booking one of the studio balcony cabins on the Quantum OTS next summer and one of the ones with the larger angled balcony no less! Oh, and again btw, what was your secret to booking one these (as hallux said) VERY hard to book solo balcony cabins? You don't have to tell me if you want to keep it a secret, lol. I see what you mean with, depending on the sailing, the regular cabins with the no/reduced supplement can sometimes be cheaper than the dedicated studio cabins. This is what cruiseplum.com also indicates. After your RCL cruise, you'll have to let me know how the RCL solo experience was compared to NCL's. Interesting what you said about MSC's newest ships having studio balcony cabins also. Hmmm, wonder how we can find out. Finally, what are the "Infinite Veranda" cabins on the Celebrity Edge and Apex? Just curious. Again, thanks so much for your great reply with the wealth of information.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

No secret at all for booking the RCL balcony! Last month a travel agency I follow on YouTube (we can’t mention TAs by name here unfortunately) announced a mid-June 2021 group cruise on Quantum. I went to RCL’s site to check out pricing, hoping there was still at least one Studio Balcony left - and 11 of the 12 were still open. I just checked this morning and 9 are still available. 
 

While NCL doesn’t have virtual balconies, the Studios in Bliss and Encore (and maybe Escape?) have virtual windows. The older ships have actual windows to the hallway, which is weird. 
 

Yes, I’m paying the dreaded full solo supplement on the upcoming NCL cruises. Two of the ships do have Studio areas but I’m a balcony fan. 
 

The Infinite Verandah on Celebrity’s Edge-class ships is a twist on the balcony idea. Check it out on their site: https://www.celebritycruises.com/things-to-do-onboard/staterooms/veranda-stateroom

Edited by coastcat

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, farmersfight said:

Just curious, you mentioned that you won't sail Encore, may I ask why?

Just some poor design choices.  NCL has an area on some (many?) ships called Spice H2O.  It's an adults-only area during the day and allows for a quiet area to sit in the sun and not have kids running around.  That area was eliminated on the Encore, in favor of moving the laser tag to that space to make more room for the for-cost Vibe Beach Club (similar idea as Spice but costs money, $200 for the week I think).  Look at the aft end of deck 17 on  the Bliss, compare to the same on Encore.  Vibe on Bliss is mid-ship deck 19(?), Encore will be similar but the area much larger.

 

3 hours ago, farmersfight said:

I am worried about having to pay double as a solo for a standard balcony cabin.

In the case of my last cruise, it's a cost analysis.  I priced both the Studio and balcony.  Balcony included reduced airfare through NCL but had full solo supplement (because of the reduced airfare).  When airfare was factored on both, it cost me $60 extra to sail in the balcony and get ALL of the perks rather than just 1 as I would have gotten in the Studio.  I had to fly cross-country as it was out of LA and I live in NY.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, coastcat said:

No secret at all for booking the RCL balcony! Last month a travel agency I follow on YouTube (we can’t mention TAs by name here unfortunately) announced a mid-June 2021 group cruise on Quantum. I went to RCL’s site to check out pricing, hoping there was still at least one Studio Balcony left - and 11 of the 12 were still open. I just checked this morning and 9 are still available. 
 

While NCL doesn’t have virtual balconies, the Studios in Bliss and Encore (and maybe Escape?) have virtual windows. The older ships have actual windows to the hallway, which is weird. 
 

Yes, I’m paying the dreaded full solo supplement on the upcoming NCL cruises. Two of the ships do have Studio areas but I’m a balcony fan. 
 

The Infinite Verandah on Celebrity’s Edge-class ships is a twist on the balcony idea. Check it out on their site: https://www.celebritycruises.com/things-to-do-onboard/staterooms/veranda-stateroom

 

Thanks coastcat! Great you could book an RCL studio w/balcony cabin so easily. Gives me hope, lol. I think I tried to do a mock booking on RCL's website for one of these but I think I remember not being able to find them and mock book one on their website. Probably operator error. I'll try again.

 

Your upcoming RCL cruise on Quantum sounds great. Do you mind if I ask the itinerary? I thought that Quantum was over in China? I know that Anthem sails out of NY (NJ) and I was very interested in a Dec 2020 cruise to the Eastern Caribbean. But with this COVID 19 situation ongoing, I'm almost resigned to the fact that it won't be sailing. I feel the exact same way you do; I'm a balcony fan as well. Hopefully, this COVID 19 situation will change (i.e. vaccine) and your mid-June 2021 Quantum cruise will be a go.

 

Thanks for the link to Celebrity's website page for their Infinite Verandahs. Now that's what I'm talking about, lol! Looks like Celebrity has "one-upped" RCL wrt solo/single balcony cabins. I looked at the pictures and I really love the way the outer wall folds away to the sides to open the stateroom up completely to the balcony. Awesome!

 

Again, thanks for the reply and the valuable information. It's great to get the perspective from someone who has sailed solo on both RCL and NCL.

Edited by farmersfight

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
2 minutes ago, farmersfight said:

I thought that Quantum was over in China?

All the itineraries I saw for that ship were in Asia, yes.  That MIGHT be a factor in the cabins being more readily available.

 

Like you, I was hopeful of sailing this year, even browsing trips up until mid-March, but I've come to realization that's likely not happening.

Edited by hallux

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I’ve always found calling RCL directly to book a studio very helpful. They’ve found them when the website had none. I have also been able to get a non-studio interior w/virtual balcony for a cheaper price than a studio even with paying more. It’s really a matter of checking prices and seeing what it all comes out to. 
For the balcony studios I’ve seen the same thing - listed online but also have called and they’ve found one or the regular balcony room was the same price. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, hallux said:

Just some poor design choices.  NCL has an area on some (many?) ships called Spice H2O.  It's an adults-only area during the day and allows for a quiet area to sit in the sun and not have kids running around.  That area was eliminated on the Encore, in favor of moving the laser tag to that space to make more room for the for-cost Vibe Beach Club (similar idea as Spice but costs money, $200 for the week I think).  Look at the aft end of deck 17 on  the Bliss, compare to the same on Encore.  Vibe on Bliss is mid-ship deck 19(?), Encore will be similar but the area much larger.

 

In the case of my last cruise, it's a cost analysis.  I priced both the Studio and balcony.  Balcony included reduced airfare through NCL but had full solo supplement (because of the reduced airfare).  When airfare was factored on both, it cost me $60 extra to sail in the balcony and get ALL of the perks rather than just 1 as I would have gotten in the Studio.  I had to fly cross-country as it was out of LA and I live in NY.

 

27 minutes ago, hallux said:

All the itineraries I saw for that ship were in Asia, yes.  That MIGHT be a factor in the cabins being more readily available.

 

Like you, I was hopeful of sailing this year, even browsing trips up until mid-March, but I've come to realization that's likely not happening.

 

Thanks hallux for both replies. Yeah, I think I remember reading things (here on CC maybe) about how people missed Spice H2O on the Encore and now they have to pay for the Vibe Beach Club. Your great information verified this. Personally, I could care less for the for-cost laser tag and for that matter, the for-cost go carts.  I see why you won't sail Encore...I totally agree.

 

Thanks for the information about your last cruise. Yeah, I learned that the cruise fare in a regular stateroom with no/reduced supplement (even full supplement) can sometimes be lower than a dedicated solo cabin, depending on the sailing. Excellent cost analysis on your part to factor in NCL's reduced airfare. I believe NCL is unique among the cruise lines in offering reduced/free airfare? You definitely got a bargain since you had to fly all the way across country from NY to LA.

 

I thought Quantum OTS was operating in Asia. Yeah, as I mentioned, I was interested in a solo balcony cabin on the Anthem OTS out of NY (NJ) to Eastern Caribbean in early Dec 2020 but sadly, I can see the writing on the wall... not going to happen. Thanks again.

 

 

Edited by farmersfight

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
35 minutes ago, bhsolo said:

I’ve always found calling RCL directly to book a studio very helpful. They’ve found them when the website had none. I have also been able to get a non-studio interior w/virtual balcony for a cheaper price than a studio even with paying more. It’s really a matter of checking prices and seeing what it all comes out to. 
For the balcony studios I’ve seen the same thing - listed online but also have called and they’ve found one or the regular balcony room was the same price. 

 

Thanks again bhsolo. Great tip to call RCL directly if I can't find studios and especially in my case, studios w/balconies on their website. I agree, you have to factor in all the costs and see which comes out less expensive. A regular stateroom (inside/OV or balcony) might indeed end up being less expensive than a studio stateroom (inside/OV or balcony). That's where I think cruiseplum.com comes in handy because they list all the cruises with no/low supplements and hot or last minute deals on cruises that solos can take advantage of.

Edited by farmersfight

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

RCL will sail four ships on Alaska itineraries in 2021: Ovation and Quantum on round-trips out of Seattle, Serenade on RTs from Vancouver, and Radiance handling one-way trips between Vancouver and Seward. Ovation will visit Juneau and Skagway while Quantum visits Juneau, Icy Strait Point, and Sitka.
 

RCL does not have a permit to enter Glacier Bay National Park so it’s not the best cruise line for that one-time bucket list trip to Alaska. I live about 25 minutes from the Seattle piers so for me this trip is more about a new ship than an exotic destination. 
 

Quantum is based in Asia now, will head to Alaska May-September 2021, and then move to Australia/New Zealand sailings in November 2021.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@coastcat now you have me pondering.  Looking at the Quantum Sept. 27, 2021 cruise.  Good price on the Studio balcony.  Going to sleep on it, the NRD has me pausing (plus if I cruise I have credit I can use on NCL that reduces my booking cost there) and debating taking the NRD or spending the extra on the RD...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
34 minutes ago, coastcat said:

RCL will sail four ships on Alaska itineraries in 2021: Ovation and Quantum on round-trips out of Seattle, Serenade on RTs from Vancouver, and Radiance handling one-way trips between Vancouver and Seward. Ovation will visit Juneau and Skagway while Quantum visits Juneau, Icy Strait Point, and Sitka.
 

RCL does not have a permit to enter Glacier Bay National Park so it’s not the best cruise line for that one-time bucket list trip to Alaska. I live about 25 minutes from the Seattle piers so for me this trip is more about a new ship than an exotic destination. 
 

Quantum is based in Asia now, will head to Alaska May-September 2021, and then move to Australia/New Zealand sailings in November 2021.

 

Thanks coastcat. Yeah, just after I posed my question about the Quantum being deployed in China/Asia, I found a You Tube video on a TA's You Tube channel that was an announcement of the Quantum's redeployment to Seattle for the Alaska round trips in 2021. I almost forgot, but I guess I'm not allowed to name the TA here on CC. Funny, just know I went back and looked at your original post and you mentioned following a TA's You Tube channel as well and coming across the announcement of the Quantum's redeployment to Alaska in 2021. We may be talking about the same TA, the same You Tube channel and the same announcement! Since we can't name the TA here on CC; does the name of the TA start with an "H" and end with "RR"? (4 letters).

 

I was fortunate enough to cruise one way to Alaska out of Vancouver, BC on the now COVID famous Diamond Princess. It was a "bucket list" item and was an exceptional cruise. Princess has a big presence in Alaska and we took one of their Land/Sea cruisetours. Princess does have a permit to enter Glacier Bay National Park, which on our cruise they did. The ships does a 360 degree turn around in Glacier Bay so both sides of the ship get the same fantastic views.

 

Again, thanks for the info on the Quantum OTS, I'm glad she will be sailing out of the U.S. again. Gives us solo cruisers who like their own balconies another Quantum class option in the U.S. with the Anthem OTS being another one out of NY (NJ). I saw where a new Quantum Plus ship is still under construction, the Odyssey OTS. I believe she is supposed to home port out of Ft. Lauderdale, but this COVID 19 situation has probably delayed her completion/delivery.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
42 minutes ago, hallux said:

@coastcat now you have me pondering.  Looking at the Quantum Sept. 27, 2021 cruise.  Good price on the Studio balcony.  Going to sleep on it, the NRD has me pausing (plus if I cruise I have credit I can use on NCL that reduces my booking cost there) and debating taking the NRD or spending the extra on the RD...

 

Forgive my ignorance hallux, but what is "NRD" and "RD" ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, farmersfight said:

 

Forgive my ignorance hallux, but what is "NRD" and "RD" ?

Non-refundable deposit and refundable deposit.  Royal gives you the option to book at a lower rate but not get anything back no matter when you cancel (if you decide to).  The fare difference on that cruise is around $500 so I've saved $250 if I book the refundable deposit and cancel, but have "wasted" $500 if I book the refundable and end up sailing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, hallux said:

Non-refundable deposit and refundable deposit.  Royal gives you the option to book at a lower rate but not get anything back no matter when you cancel (if you decide to).  The fare difference on that cruise is around $500 so I've saved $250 if I book the refundable deposit and cancel, but have "wasted" $500 if I book the refundable and end up sailing.

 

hallux, thanks for the clarification!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, hallux said:

@coastcat now you have me pondering.  Looking at the Quantum Sept. 27, 2021 cruise.  Good price on the Studio balcony.  Going to sleep on it, the NRD has me pausing (plus if I cruise I have credit I can use on NCL that reduces my booking cost there) and debating taking the NRD or spending the extra on the RD...

 

Agreed about the NRD. NCL's CruiseNext certificates take the risk out of indecision and schedule changes - does RCL have an equivalent? 

 

The RCL Studio Balcony pricing is certainly much more wallet-friendly than the usual solo balcony on Alaska trips! The NCL Studio rooms are comfortable and free espresso is awesome, but... it's hard to resist a balcony. Unfortunately for my bank account. 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, farmersfight said:

 

Thanks coastcat. Yeah, just after I posed my question about the Quantum being deployed in China/Asia, I found a You Tube video on a TA's You Tube channel that was an announcement of the Quantum's redeployment to Seattle for the Alaska round trips in 2021. I almost forgot, but I guess I'm not allowed to name the TA here on CC. Funny, just know I went back and looked at your original post and you mentioned following a TA's You Tube channel as well and coming across the announcement of the Quantum's redeployment to Alaska in 2021. We may be talking about the same TA, the same You Tube channel and the same announcement! Since we can't name the TA here on CC; does the name of the TA start with an "H" and end with "RR"? (4 letters).

 

LOL, yes, that's the TA. I haven't booked travel through a TA since... gosh, I'm not sure anymore. A couple decades? As soon as travel bookings went online to the public, I switched to doing it all on my own (not that I'm arranging anything particularly complex, though). 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, coastcat said:

LOL, yes, that's the TA.

 

LOL, wow, that's funny and what a coincidence! I really like that guy Danny...enjoy watching his full ship tours on their You Tube channel. Yeah, I have in the past booked everything myself, heck, when I cruised Italy on the then brand new Carnival Dream, I booked all the shore excursions, on line, way in advance. Saved some $$. Worked out great except for 1 time when a company that was to drive us from Civitavecchia to Rome after our cruise ended. The driver never showed up. Fortunately, there was a cab driver at the port who agreed to take us to Rome. Probably cost me more $$ than with the company I had originally scheduled, but....whatta ya gonna do? That's life. It all worked out.

 

If I booked through a TA, I might go with Danny's. But, not sure. What is the advantage of using a TA vs booking everything yourself? Anyway, I'm now going to go on Celebrity's web site and look at those Infinite Veranda single cabins again. Thanks again for that link! Take care.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
54 minutes ago, farmersfight said:

What is the advantage of using a TA vs booking everything yourself?

Some offer perks, generally on-board credit.  I used 2 different TA's for NCL cruises last year, one offered no perks (AND charged a fee for booking the air since it wasn't part of the cruise) while the other gave OBC.  In some cases it's helpful to just have all the plans (cruise, air, hotel) in one confirmation email or at least coming from one place to make it easier to find.

 

One thing to keep in mind - you can book your cruise yourself through the website then transfer the booking to a TA within 60 days (I think).  That gives you the flexibility to be looking and snag any "hot" room you might find that you decide you want but then get the TA perk.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Forum Assistance
      • SPECIAL EVENT: Q&A with the Quark Expeditions Team!
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...