Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
Daniel A

New To Oceania With Questions

Recommended Posts

1 minute ago, Flatbush Flyer said:

Ain't that the truth. What a mess that can be.

 

Another item worth mentioning - even when you live close enough to easily/quickly drive to a cruise or air port- is to think about staying overnight(s) "close in" before air or cruise travel.

 

Here's a pic worth its weight in gold as a lesson about always having precruise time buffers: 

We were waiting for our driver to transport us to SFO for a same day transpacific flight. He often crosses this bridge for the trip. Fortunately, that day, he came from a different bridge. Traffic on the pictured bridge was held up for several hours due to falling concrete from roadbed above. 

 

IMG_5086.JPG

We winter in Florida and we always book a room at a cruise port hotel with cruise parking and shuttle.  Takes all stress away from what can be a stressful day for DW.  Plus I get to have a couple of mimosas at breakfast.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 hours ago, Flatbush Flyer said:

The O Life booze can be upgraded to Prestige for $20/person/day.

Usual NY Port is West side Manhattan.

 

FWIW, I hope you used a TA who is a top seller of Oceania and is, at least, covering your gratuities (but preferably also sharing commissions).

I have been digesting all of the GREAT! recommendations and we are getting closer to 'pulling the trigger' on this cruise for next July.  A few more questions would help us:

 

How would I go about finding "a TA who is a top seller of Oceania and is, at least, covering your gratuities (but preferably also sharing commissions)"?

 

Most of our experience is with Princess and we are usually comfortable with their minisuites.  (Especially on their older ships...)  Are the Insignia's Penthouse Suites roughly comparable in size and features?  It looks like the balcony is smaller on Insignia from what I've seen on YouTube.

 

The Owners Suites do appear to be a bit much for such a short cruise, so we can live with and enjoy ourselves.  Maybe we will meet up with some you on that cruise...

 

No matter what we do, I can't express how grateful I am that all of you took the time to help me out with this.  

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Now another question:  If the category Penthouse I want is wait listed and the next category higher is available, if I deposit on the higher category and the lower waitlisted comes available would I need to rebook the cruise?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Daniel A said:

 

How would I go about finding "a TA who is a top seller of Oceania and is, at least, covering your gratuities (but preferably also sharing commissions)"?

Use your favorite search engine to find travel agencies that are members of Oceania's  Cruise Connoisseur Club .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Flatbush Flyer said:

So, once again: If anyone is wondering about taking the air credit vs the air tix, and you're wondering how the option of bizclass works, NEVER NEVER take the O bizclass add-on.

My O agent told me that in so many words.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/27/2020 at 5:23 PM, Mura said:

We were in a VS on Insignia back in June 2006 on an Iceland cruise and don't recall a problem with using the veranda, but given the cool weather (and the port intensive cruise) we probably did NOT try to use it.  We've been Visas on Marina several times and again did not perceive the wind problems others mention. My memory could well be faulty!

 

Yes, you have to be careful to turn all lights off (and make sure the curtains are closed) because these suites are forward.  The only time we had a problem in this respect was on Marina when the housekeeping staff didn't quite close the curtains in the living room.  We received a call asking us to turn off the deck lights but they were not on. ( I often have said that you need a Ph.D. in light switches when in a suite on Marina/Riviera.)

 

As to the departure port, there was one -- ONLY one -- cruise a couple of years ago (maybe three) where at the last minute the port was changed from Manhattan to Brooklyn.  Not everyone got the message in a timely fashion ... But that was only one time as far as I know.

 

Others have told you that you can get a credit (not a great one recently) if you opt out of the "free" air.  It depends on the route.  Being in NYC we usually book our own air, but on a few occasions we have used O's air.  These days we prefer biz class which is prohibitively more expensive on O that doing it on your own.  On one or two cruises O offered PE at a reasonable price which we did use.  Not that such would be pertinent to a Bermuda cruise from NY!

 

 

 

 

Have always taken the air credit (we live in San Francisco) and use credit card miles to fly. Also, on shorter cruises (ten days or less) we bring a couple of bottles of wine each and supplement it with the wine we can order for dinner. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, powlan said:
On 8/27/2020 at 5:23 PM, Mura said:

 

Have always taken the air credit (we live in San Francisco) and use credit card miles to fly. 

+1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • To answer your question on casinos, I don't know the answer to the Bermuda question. The smaller  Oceania ships, of which Insignia is one, have almost dead casinos. No craps and very little play.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is what I am seeing on the Web (2014): Whether this is still the case I do not know.

 

Bermuda's Parliament has given the green light to cruise ships keeping their casinos open while overnighting in port on the island. ... Under the act, ships would be able to operate onboard casinos while in port, between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Paulchili said:

This is what I am seeing on the Web (2014): Whether this is still the case I do not know.

 

Bermuda's Parliament has given the green light to cruise ships keeping their casinos open while overnighting in port on the island. ... Under the act, ships would be able to operate onboard casinos while in port, between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m.

That's still true, but the cruise lines have to obtain a license for each ship upon which they wish to have the casino operational. However the license fee only applies to ships carrying more than 2,000 passengers. Since all Oceania ships are smaller than that there's no cost to obtain the license. Bottom line...yes the casino will be open at night while the ship is docked in Bermuda.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 minutes ago, Daniel A said:

Where does Insignia dock in Hamilton?

right intown

caught in the rain ..ship is so close

 

Docked in Hamilton

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Does Oceania do automatic upgrades?  We plan to book a Penthouse Suite since we don't want the Vista Suite.  Is it possible that Oceania would just upgrade up to a Vista Suite without our agreement?  (I wouldn't mind an upgrade/upsell to an owner's suite 😄 but not a Vista Suite.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, Daniel A said:

Does Oceania do automatic upgrades?  We plan to book a Penthouse Suite since we don't want the Vista Suite.  Is it possible that Oceania would just upgrade up to a Vista Suite without our agreement?  (I wouldn't mind an upgrade/upsell to an owner's suite 😄 but not a Vista Suite.)

No automatic upgrades unless you have a guarantee cabin. Even then, it would likely go from B2 to B1 or so.

As for Vista, there may be upsells but no free upgrades.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks to all.  I have booked a Penthouse through an online agent who is covering gratuities and $400 OBC.  Thank you for letting me pick your brains.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, Daniel A said:

Thanks to all.  I have booked a Penthouse through an online agent who is covering gratuities and $400 OBC.  Thank you for letting me pick your brains.

Just make sure the "OBC" is from the TA and not just the O Life perk selection.

If you selected O Life, you have a choice of the booze, tours or OBC amenity. To that, you can add whatever the TA provides. So, in most cases, any TA added OBC will be non-refundable. 

If you don't mind, how long a cruise is it and what is the penthouse fare per person. I ask because I want to know if you got value in your TA added perks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, Flatbush Flyer said:

Just make sure the "OBC" is from the TA and not just the O Life perk selection.

If you selected O Life, you have a choice of the booze, tours or OBC amenity. To that, you can add whatever the TA provides. So, in most cases, any TA added OBC will be non-refundable. 

If you don't mind, how long a cruise is it and what is the penthouse fare per person. I ask because I want to know if you got value in your TA added perks.

It is a 7 day Bermuda cruise.  We selected the drink option so the OBC is from the TA plus the gratuities.  The PP fare is $3349 for the PH1.  Let me know what you think...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Does Oceania guarantee the ship will wait if your Oceania excursion is late returning to the ship?

Share this post


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

Does Oceania guarantee the ship will wait if your Oceania excursion is late returning to the ship?

usually

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, LHT28 said:

usually

 

I believe that they will wait for late excursions but not late flights (even if bought through Oceania)

I could be wrong.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Paulchili said:

I believe that they will wait for late excursions but not late flights (even if bought through Oceania)

I could be wrong.

I was more looking to see if there was an advantage to using Oceania's excursions over using a less costly third party.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Daniel A said:

I was more looking to see if there was an advantage to using Oceania's excursions over using a less costly third party.

The advantage is usually with the private tours - especially if the cost is shared with a few other passengers.

Private tours are customized to what the participants agree to (shopping vs no shopping, what sights to visit, fewer people - less chance for stranglers, etc) But the ship will definitely not wait for late private tours (maybe a few minutes if the ship is informed).

If your priority is not missing the ship, take a ship's tour.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, Paulchili said:

The advantage is usually with the private tours - especially if the cost is shared with a few other passengers.

Private tours are customized to what the participants agree to (shopping vs no shopping, what sights to visit, fewer people - less chance for stranglers, etc) But the ship will definitely not wait for late private tours (maybe a few minutes if the ship is informed).

If your priority is not missing the ship, take a ship's tour.

Thanks.  DW gets nervous when there isn't a guarantee that the ship will wait.  Even though some private tours guarantee 'return to ship', that could involve needing to meet the ship at the next port of call.  We've taken private tours and DW keeps looking at her watch and becomes anxious if we hit traffic etc.  She is always relaxed when she knows the ship won't sail without us.

Share this post


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

It is a 7 day Bermuda cruise.  We selected the drink option so the OBC is from the TA plus the gratuities.  The PP fare is $3349 for the PH1.  Let me know what you think...

There's all sorts of ways for the TA to cover the gratuities AND even come up with $400 OBC. 

Oceania's (or the TAs "consortia" deal) incentive funds for new O cruisers could be covering much if not all of it (though, if that OBC is refundable, thtbis coming from the TA). 

But, cash is cash. And I'm guessing your little deal represents about 6-7% of the commissionable fare. Not bad for a start!

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
28 minutes ago, Daniel A said:

Thanks.  DW gets nervous when there isn't a guarantee that the ship will wait.  Even though some private tours guarantee 'return to ship', that could involve needing to meet the ship at the next port of call.  We've taken private tours and DW keeps looking at her watch and becomes anxious if we hit traffic etc.  She is always relaxed when she knows the ship won't sail without us.

News Flash for DW: No cruise ship on the face of the earth can guarantee that it will "wait for you" whether it's their tour or a flight it arranged.

 

"Time and Tide wait for no man" (or woman) when the Port Captain says "bye bye." READ THE FINE PRINT. At best, what the ship (or any excellent private tour company) will provide is no incurred costs for you in meeting the ship at the next port. Of course, that's little consolation when the next port is four days away on a transoceanic cruise.

That said, O will always try to wait. We've experienced that on several occasions over the years. Fortunately, it was never more than 30 minutes (and it affected multiple tours onnthe other side of a fire endangering the only island road back to the port).

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
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...