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Everything posted by Mcc

  1. Yes you do need a passport. On Caribbean Princess Round Britain all passports were surrendered on board prior to the call at Cobh. Apparently then the authorities look at random passports regardless of whether they are EU or not. The rules appear to change every year as the previous year on the same itinerary and ship, we did not have to surrender them, merely use them at check in.
  2. You have to keep a child off school for 3 days if they have been vomiting or had tummy upsets so whats the difference in keeping someone off school to go on holiday? Many parents see schools as cheap child minding facilities anyway. School days are much shorter these days than years ago with the result that there is more homework given even in primary schools. This does not stop schools closing at lunchtime for Open days, and end of term. There is also alot of time wasted in school time, preparing for Nativity plays, school productions etc. Add all this up and it can amount to more than 1
  3. I dislike the idea intensely. It is like 1974 with Big Brother watching every move. We have 3 cruises booked on Princess next year and hope we can opt out. Apart from that a wrist band leaves white marks when sunbathing:)
  4. I am booked on Caribbean Princess for Xmas and New Year Caribbean cruise and have just had a letter from Princess advising of a changed itinerary due to technical problems which affect the maximum speed of the vessel and offering $50 pp refundable obc as compensation formissing St Marten and being replaced bt St Thomas and reduced time in some ports. This was particularly annoying as it occurred just over a week after I made the final payment. I notice from other sites that similar letters have gone out for other cruises beginning with its Transatlantic crossing in September. We were on Caribb
  5. You are lucky to be able to print them. Neither the P and O nor Princess cruise personaliser ticketing options work on old operating systems so despite my having 2 laptops, I have to either rely on my travel agent printing and posting them to me or visiting a library. Unfortunately my two local libraries have now shut down due to cutbacks. I also have a problem with my forthcoming Xmas Princess Caribbean cruise in that I am spending 5 weeks in the US pre cruise with no access to a printer and travel agents generally can only access etickets a couple of weeks before departure. I am planning on
  6. We always find it a problem to use up on board credit as firstly we are non drinkers, secondly the offerings in on board shops are not to our taste. We are not spa enthusiasts, nor foidies sinspeciality restsurants are a waste of time and we dislike organized excursions as we have done over 100 cruise and seen everything we have wanted to. We just enjoy cruising in the sun and seeing different places everyday. On a recent 12 day cruise we had $400 each obc so once again, family members got new watches courtesy of the cruiseline. i would much prefer a reduction in price.
  7. Saga also do a card for over 50s but you can have a second cardholder who can be under 50. This is a Visa card. We have used this and the Post Office card (MasterCard) all over the world in the past 20 years or so. Just remember when making transactions to do it the currency if the country you are visiting and do not let metchant convert charge into sterling as the exchange rate is less favourable. We do not use them to withdraw cash though as this does incur a fee.
  8. No not a balcony for us. We much prefer a totally dark cabin, especially for sleeping. Not only that it depends where you are docked if you have an outside or balcony cabin, you could get the sun streaming in all day. We were once moved to an outside cabin due to plumbing issues with our inside cabin and found it got stifling, even with air con on its lowerst setting and leaving the curtains drawn. We asked to move back to an inside as it was a 35 night cruise. One must also bear in mind that in some ports, ships are docked parallel to each other which could result in privacy issues if you wan
  9. It depends how desperate you are to sit together. Just remember that they can change planes at a very late date. We boarded one once, having pre-booked seats, to find that our row did not exist!
  10. A table for 2 everytime. We dislike sharing tables and conversation and prefer a quick service. I hate ut when people wt adjoining tables for 2 try to start a conversation. If they want to chat they shoukd opt for a larger size table and not hog the already scarce tables for 2. Our last cruise was spoiled by two very loud couples, both occupying tables for 2, conversing with each other every night.
  11. Plenty of lifts and stairs (not like Britannia). Well organised buffet. A decent library. A limit on mobility scooters. The big American ships are full of them. I am sure the majority of users are too lazy to walk the distance round these vessels as once in port, there are alot fewer in use. Having said this, we dont like the monster ships and prefer small ship traditional cruising.
  12. We had one on Oceana cruise ladt year 4 weeks before embarkation and printed e tickets the same day.
  13. Cost us £7 in June. Too far to walk as once the dock gates are reached it is a long roundabout route to the ship even though you can see it almost in front of you.
  14. We went on Oceana last year on a Saver fare. We were allocated second sitting so we went to Maitre d' on boarding and said he could allocate the table to someone else as second sitting was late for us and we woukd use the buffet instead to eat earlier. He asked us what dining arrangements we woukd like - first sitting or Freedom and we chose first sitting. There were plenty of tables that were not used at all during our two week cruise on first sitting. Another cruiser we met had changed to Freedom dinibg with no problem either.
  15. Giants Causeway - bit of an anticlimax and certainly not worth a 2 hour drive from Belfast.
  16. We arrived early (11.45 ) for a Caribbean Princess cruise departing the Mayflower terminal last month having been given an embarkation time of 14:30. We were embarked straight away and having carried on our own luggage, had unpacked and were in the buffet by 12:15.
  17. It seems to be and of course the Americans can benefit from huge last minute bargains which are unavailable to us Brits. Not only that, they have better booking conditions in that deposits are refundable up to final payment date if you cancel. There are also allowances for when prices are reduced to compensate early bookers who have paid more. We have met many Americans who book several cruises a year then change their minds before final payment is due and get all their deposits back. Last year on Royal Princess Xmas cruise the last minute offer for Americans was less than $600 for a 10 nigh
  18. We were on Oceana at the end of August for 2 weeks. I could not fault the cruise for what we paid. The only niggle was that tables in the main dining room were almost always empty on first sitting but all the people on our table for 6 attended each evening. We would have liked to be one of the lucky couples who ended up being the only ones on big tables. Marco Pierre White was on for 2 days and there was a special menu for formal night whilst he was on board. Unfortunately we did not like most of the courses on offer and for some reason the "always available " menu was not available that night
  19. It annoys me when having been allocated a table for 6 in the main dining room that there are consistently completely empty tables all cruise or some only partly occupied. This happened to us on our recent Oceana cruise and unfortunately for us our table was fully occupied all cruise whilst others around us were completely empty. It is extremely frustrating as I would never choose to share a table with strangers in a restaurant.
  20. It is not surprising. I have recently booked a cruise for Xmas 2016 and it was less than we paid for the identical cruise Xmas 2011. I would prefer tips to be included but have not experienced particularly good service on the cruise lines who have included them with the exception of Thomson and Seaborn.
  21. We have cruised at Christmas for many years with several cruiselines, usually in the Caribbean. The best ones have been when we have spent Christmas Day in port. Christmas Day at sea can be low key in order to give staff a taste of Christmas too. There is often little choice of venue for eating dinner on Christmas Day and even when you have opted for Anytime Dining, this is often unavailable on Christmas Day and you have to queue up a few days before to be allocated seating in the main dining room or ignore this and be given what is left. NCL made more of Christmas Eve formal dining. The Ame
  22. I am a regular cruiser and I am booked on Royal Princess for the Christmas cruise and after watching the programme, I wish I wasn't! I just hope its the usual TV "set up" scenes. I don't think the programme will do anything to encourage people to go on Princess.
  23. We did it last year on Caribbean Princess. Apart from the fact we booked it at the last minute at a bargain price, we thought it was one of the best cruises we have ever been on. (We have cruised worldwide since 1970 on more than 100 cruises). There were only 2 sea days out of a 12 night cruise so be prepared to be exhausted as there is so much to see and do in most of the ports. There is no need to go on the ship's tours as in most places there is good local transport or locally provided (and cheaper) tours. the city of Belfast put on free shuttle buses into the city centre. We did our res
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