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Currently on SD II - Ask your questions


EuropeCruiser73
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Thank you for all the great info and pictures !

 

How is the Wi-Fi? We have to work remotely in order to travel as much as possible. Ideally, we work in the early mornings and no one is ever the wiser. Our last trip on SD in 2019, the internet was so bad that they refunded us the charges but we were left finding Internet cafes at the ports to work. The cell phone connection was not enough bandwidth from the ship. It was a real bummer to spend port time working. 

Thank you  for any updated info on the Wi-Fi!

 

cheers!

Sandra 

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5 hours ago, beachbooles said:

How is the Wi-Fi? 


Thank you  for any updated info on the Wi-Fi!

 

Hello, we are currently on SD2 and I am pleasantly surprised with the improvement in the wifi signal.  I'm not trying to work on the ship but find that web browsing and email correspondence are significantly better than the last time I was on board.  On the other hand, we have friends currently on board SD1 who report no improvement in wifi strength.  Since SD2 has been in drydock recently, perhaps that explains the difference.  SD1 is scheduled for drydock in April.

 

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I need to supplement my post above regarding improvement in internet speed on SD2.  I mentioned this to a senior crew member last night.  He said that during drydock SD invested in a supplemental system that pulls the internet signal from local cell towers.  This has worked quite well in Europe.  Obviously it will not work during the transatlantic.  Also, the thought is that it may not work so well in the Caribbean due to there being fewer cell towers available and to the available signal being not as strong as in Europe.

 

So, while my assessment of the wifi situation in Europe stands, it likely won't be the case for the crossings and the jury is out in regard to the Caribbean.  And this applies only to SD2 currently.  SD1 is due for drydock next Sprng.

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We just got off SeaDream II last week. The above post makes sense, because the ship’s Wi-Fi service was better when close to ports and towns. When at sea, the internet service was still as slow as ever. They even warned us when we purchased the service that is was not great service and only good for texting and emails.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

Terry and Mike

Interested in the cruise you just got off of.  We will be on SD2 on 12/27, and really want to know what it was like.  We've done may sailings, and we're excited to see the renovations.  But we are anxious to know what the experience was like in this new world.

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On 12/20/2021 at 4:22 PM, TrapperZimmy said:

Terry and Mike

Interested in the cruise you just got off of.  We will be on SD2 on 12/27, and really want to know what it was like.  We've done may sailings, and we're excited to see the renovations.  But we are anxious to know what the experience was like in this new world.

It was very nice.

 I had not sailed SD before, so to compare the renovations would be difficult, but I can share my thoughts on the current style.  I found the cabin to be beautifully done, shades of oatmeal and grays, set off with pale woods. Very relaxing and elegant.  The mattress was extremely comfortable, and the bed linens were soft and of high end quality.  

We also found the food to be of a very high bar, with most meals being outstanding in presentation and flavors. Some notably excellent dishes were a Peking Duck, and Lamb Chops.  

The staff was delightful and extremely accommodating. 

As you've sailed them many times, you are familiar with, and a fan of, the tribe and the vibe of the SD concept.

Towards the end, we had a guest test positive for Covid, the Captain informed us of this at a cocktail party on Thursday night, and we were all sent to isolate in our rooms. Thursday dinner was served in our cabins, and we sailed back to San Juan Thursday night. We were all given PCR tests on Friday, and remained in our cabins through breakfast and lunch while we awaited the results.  Most guests were freed from their cabins on Friday evening around 7:45pm and had dinner in the dining room. As my PCR test was inconclusive, along with several other guests, I had to have an additional test on Friday evening and await the results in the cabin through Friday night's dinner, which was served in our cabin.  We received a call around 11:15pm on Friday night that my test was negative, and we were free to leave our cabin. We then sailed back south to Jost Van Dyke and did a beach party day on Saturday, and then back to San Juan where we disembarked as scheduled on Sunday.  We were told the guest who tested positive for Covid was removed from the ship in San Juan on Friday. 

Let me know if there was anything specific you were interested in that I missed. 

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Wow. Thank you for your candid response. It does sound like SD handled this as well as it could be handled. These are just not normal times, and we can't expect them to be. But I'm wondering (and I don't know that you know this, but perhaps someone else does), what happens if you are the unlucky person who tests positive while on the voyage? You are removed from the ship - what does that mean? Where do you go? You don't have a house to go to. I'm assuming that you're not ill enough to go to a hospital. You've tested positive for Covid, so you can't in good conscience get on a plane (although from San Juan you could, if you had no conscience - there are currently no testing requirements to travel from San Juan to the US). Do you check into a hotel that has room service and just stay there for however many days? And then when you leave say "Oh, by the way, clean the room really well because I had Covid." Does SD help you, or just remove you from the ship?

I know this is my anxiety talking because we're boarding next week, but these are the things that are keeping me up at night. 

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Excellent job Zimmy of putting forth our travel anxieties.  We are reluctantly staying off cruises due to the excessive restrictions placed only on cruise ships.  Unfortunately, the episode described above has much more chance of happening on a cruise than your chance of a serious health event from covid.  I hate the inconsistencies.  Hotels, airlines, bars, restaurants don't have to test their clients, report positives, restrict the movement of their clients as cruise lines do.  Can you imagine if all hotels had to test all their clients and report results to the CDC?  What then would the hotels do?  Send the positives to a cruise ship for quarantine??

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1 hour ago, Zimmy said:

Wow. Thank you for your candid response. It does sound like SD handled this as well as it could be handled. These are just not normal times, and we can't expect them to be. But I'm wondering (and I don't know that you know this, but perhaps someone else does), what happens if you are the unlucky person who tests positive while on the voyage? You are removed from the ship - what does that mean? Where do you go? You don't have a house to go to. I'm assuming that you're not ill enough to go to a hospital. You've tested positive for Covid, so you can't in good conscience get on a plane (although from San Juan you could, if you had no conscience - there are currently no testing requirements to travel from San Juan to the US). Do you check into a hotel that has room service and just stay there for however many days? And then when you leave say "Oh, by the way, clean the room really well because I had Covid." Does SD help you, or just remove you from the ship?

I know this is my anxiety talking because we're boarding next week, but these are the things that are keeping me up at night. 

It is my understanding that the information has to be reported to the local health authorities, in this case in San Juan, and the client is passed from the ship over to them. At that point, it is whatever the local health authorities have as policy, which is usually a local hotel that is designated as a quarantine facility, and the guest has to stay there for the set amount of days required, and then fly home. Yes, ordering from room service and staying put. According to SeaDream docs it is on travelers dime. 

 

We had this happen in Portugal in early September of this year, on an AMA river cruise. They handled it a bit differently in that the positive guest and traveling companion were quarantined to their cabin for the 2 days left in the sailing, and the rest of us were left to enjoy our trip and the ship.  At the end of the sailing, these 2 guests were escorted by a ship personnel to a quarantine hotel where they would remain for 14 days there, ordering room service. After this period of time they would be allowed to return to the U.S. On AMA it is on the travelers dime as well. I posted a daily update on this sailing, and on this incident back when we sailed which started in late August 2021 and went into September 2021, if you want to read it. 

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Thank you. And I'm glad that the two of you were safe and not among the infected passengers. It is helpful to know the procedure about the local health department, and a quarantine hotel. As careful as we are (and we are very careful), we are certainly aware that this can happen to anyone. So we are sailing with our eyes wide open. But I did have concerns about being "abandoned" in a foreign country with Covid. And I expected that should this happen to us it would be our financial responsibility, and hopefully covered by our travel insurance. But I guess I was just looking for some security in this unsure world we currently live in, and you have provided that. For this I thank you. Happy Holidays.

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2 hours ago, Zimmy said:

Thank you. And I'm glad that the two of you were safe and not among the infected passengers. It is helpful to know the procedure about the local health department, and a quarantine hotel. As careful as we are (and we are very careful), we are certainly aware that this can happen to anyone. So we are sailing with our eyes wide open. But I did have concerns about being "abandoned" in a foreign country with Covid. And I expected that should this happen to us it would be our financial responsibility, and hopefully covered by our travel insurance. But I guess I was just looking for some security in this unsure world we currently live in, and you have provided that. For this I thank you. Happy Holidays.

It is my understanding that the local health authorities check in with the folks who are in the quarantine hotels daily, to monitor their symptoms and also to make sure they aren't slipping outside. So I believe you won't be abandoned, just bored!

Happy holidays to you as well, and wishes for a smooth and healthy sailing!

 

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Having an upcoming cruise (Jan. 23) and having been on a June cruise that was Covided (new word) I am curious as to how it went on SD.  Did you get to all your stops? Was it all "bubble" excursions?  Any places where you were free to walk around town?  Masks?  Our June cruise went to NONE of our scheduled stops so we are hoping things have gotten at least a little better. 

Any info, much appreciated.  Merry Christmas all!! 

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14 hours ago, cabosal1 said:

Having an upcoming cruise (Jan. 23) and having been on a June cruise that was Covided (new word) I am curious as to how it went on SD.  Did you get to all your stops? Was it all "bubble" excursions?  Any places where you were free to walk around town?  Masks?  Our June cruise went to NONE of our scheduled stops so we are hoping things have gotten at least a little better. 

Any info, much appreciated.  Merry Christmas all!! 

I'm not the original poster, but can speak to our sailing of December 13-19, 2021. We made it to all of our stops except for the 1 day where were isolated in our cabins, and sat docked in the San Juan port. As mentioned above, this is due to a passenger testing positive on Thursday evening during the sailing, and us all being retested on Friday. This caused us to miss a day of our itinerary that was going to visit Soper's Hole in Tortola, and Norman Island. 

We had no bubble tours, and were allowed to roam freely in all of our stops (St John, St Barth's, Nevis, Jost Van Dyke) - hiking, shopping, eating/drinking, whatever. We wore masks while in shops or businesses in town.

 We were supposed to wear masks onboard the ship when moving through public spaces, but we found that passengers were not very respectful of this policy. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Although I intended to provide updates while on board, there was just too much time without connectivity.  So you are getting it all at once.  I'm not going to talk about Covid because I've addressed that in a separate thread.  I also want to note that our cruise started out with the sad news that our friend Vandrefalk passed away over Christmas.  We will miss her on Cruise Critic, on the ship, and on land.  Zimmy and I are glad we got to visit with her and the Colonel this summer.

 

Yes, the yacht looks great.  Although there are new loungers and pads for the bali beds, and twin 2-person Jacuzzis in the Crow's Nest, the most visible changes are in the staterooms.  Take a look at the pictures EuropeCruiser had posted on page 1.  Light colored wood brightens up the room, but even more so the lighting is all new.  Dimming fixtures in the ceiling in both the bed and sitting areas, and above the desk.  Wall mounted lights and reading lamps above the nightstands resulted in clear space on the top of the nightstand.  For those of us who use CPAP machines, that's a big deal.  On the wall above the inboard nightstand there are 110 and 120 volt outlets.  Above the outboard nightstand there are USB and USBC ports.  (I would have preferred it the other way around since the left side is my side of the bed, but we managed to deal with it.)  There are also 110 and 220 volt outlets, and USB and USBC ports by the desk, and 110 and 220 volt outlets on the other side of that little wall, next to the big mirror.

 

Much more storage space.  First, the bed is on legs and the entire space underneath it is open for storage.  No more dealing with that heavy access panel.  SDII previously had underbed access only on the inboard side, so now you have the entire bed area for storage.  The sofa, however, no longer has storage space.  The life vests have been moved to the third closet, but the fridge was moved out to under the desk.  The safe is still in that closet, but there are now about 7 nice sized drawers in that closet.  There are also 3 nice drawers in the desk.  The shelf in the sleep area now has three drawers on either side, but they are smaller front-to-back.  They are still good for storing a lot of stuff.  Above all the drawers are very shallow drawers that really aren't good for storing much except maybe makeup and papers.

 

The big change in the bathroom is the combination bidet and Jacuzzi.  Just kidding.  The only change in the bathroom is the pumps for soap and hand/body lotion over the sink and for body wash, shampoo and conditioner in the shower.  Although we were told that Bulgari products are available on request, we were quite satisfied with the Elm environmentally conscious products.

 

The only thing we really missed were the two hooks on the wall next to the sofa.  We were told they are being shipped from Europe and will eventually be installed.  In the meantime, we just set out bathing suits out on the veranda to dry.  JK, again.

 

Next post will be about ports.

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