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thecartoonman last won the day on April 23 2018

thecartoonman had the most liked content!

About thecartoonman

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  1. Well back from a very enjoyable 7 night cruise with MSC that took in Cuba. We did travel direct to Miami on the BA A380, which was superb and arrived into Miami at about 19.45pm. We then cleared US Immigration within just 5 minutes of joining the line and our luggage appeared within another 10 minutes and we were out and in the terminal. Now, I had not expected this and it is very possible that our evening arrival time meant that not too many other international arrivals were taking place at this time which may well have helped? Once out in the terminal look for the floor mount
  2. Most cruise lines will overnight in Havana, giving you 2 good days, so if you feel you may need 3 nights you would need to arrive early, or stay on after the cruise which from your comments you may not want to do, though from the information above 2 days would seem to be fine to experience some of the flavour of Havana. It also seems that the Cuban authorities are insisting that cruise passengers undertake a couple of excursions whilst in port and to satisfy this demand the cruise line may include 2 excursions within the price of the cruise, certainly MSC are doing this, so this also allo
  3. Interesting, since on both our MSC Cruises, so far, we felt the food was very good, well presented and not too much, while the main buffet was SO much better in choice and quality than the P&O cruises we have done, not for MSC cardboard toast. We are not fussed about the Theatre shows, which are always going to be a challenge when trying to please 5/6 different languages and particularly when you have experienced the Disney Cruise Line performances, while we would agree that some of the vocalists were average, but then again some were very good particularly one guy on a harp who was a
  4. @@Hi Will try and remember to leave a report after our experience of Miami, the intention is to have a couple of days before the cruise in Miami for a look round and to assist in getting onto US time for the cruise itself, though going to the US is easier than coming back fore the body clock. As we are staying on for 3/4 days after the cruise we will be hiring a car, the thought at the moment is to head to Fort Lauderdale Airport which is much smaller than Miami and from reviews is a much simpler place to collect and return a rental car, then join a shuttle bus to get back to Miam
  5. @All At Sea Thank you for your quick response. Our daughter works for BA, so we are using some of her 'family' flight passes which may prevent a non-direct route when they do fly to Miami direct from LHR, we shall see, but what you say would make a good alternative, particularly if you can route through somewhere other than JFK, clear immigration and then arrive in Miami as a domestic passenger. We are hiring the car after the cruise, so collection will be mid-morning and in daylight, with our body clocks on US time, so this should be easier than your experience and your comments abo
  6. We have done 2 MSC Cruises in 2018 (MSC Poesia and the smaller MSC Opera) and loved them both. The ships were clean, the cabins very comfortable, the food very good and all the staff very helpful and attentive and all spoke good English, which is the first language of the ship, though many of the guests are Italian, French or Spanish with a good smattering of English speakers from around the globe. Their prices are good, the itineraries very varied and linked with their excellent AI Drinks package made for 2 great cruises. You need to go with an open mind, ready to enjoy yoursel
  7. @All At Sea It would appear from 2 posts today that you have recent experience of Miami Airport. We are scheduled to pick up an MSC Cruise from Miami in March 2019 and the obvious airport to fly into is Miami, Orlando is a fair drive away and you then need to rent a car, while Fort L has limited flights. I went through Miami many years ago and it involved quite a lot of walking, we plan to stay a couple of nights before the cruise and then return to the airport to hire a car and possibly head for the Keys, though various reviews speak of the pretty poor experience of the Rental Car C
  8. We recently had the AI Deluxe drinks package on MSC, it was good value and worked almost seamlessly, it was clearly laid out at the start what was included (nearly everything) and there was no maximum drink price as P&O are suggesting and also no limit on how many drinks you could have per day, which does seem very petty by P&O bearing in mind the suggested daily cost. There was a code on our cruise card which told the staff which package we had purchased. Our package entitled us to champagne by the glass, but one waiter advised this was not covered on our drinks package, when we
  9. The lack of any AI packages meant we have booked 2 cruises with other lines this year, when normally we would have stayed with P&O. I have always been surprised when staying at various AI hotels how few people actually drink to excess, there will always be the odd few, but I do think P&O are missing a trick here, how many cruisers not frequenting various forums think like me and do like the option of purchasing an AI upgrade, since it caps the holiday spend and means that you can often enjoy a better glass of wine, or spirit plus other various soft drink and cabin mini bar enhance
  10. I prefer MSC's approach where you can upgrade to various 'all inclusive' packages, but you can also stay on the basic cruise price if you so wish, that way, if you do not drink a lot then this offers you the best of both worlds as you just pay for what you consume. Personally, as a moderate drinker, I like the AI packages and I am not chasing the drinks to maximise my free spend, it's just nice to have paid for it beforehand, this also means you don't have to pay the 15% service charge and as we all know, it's not difficult to run up quite a bill on board, even with moderate consumption o
  11. Have you ever been on any of the Disney Cruise Line ships? Having done 3 trips myself you will be amazed at how many adults are travelling on DCL without children, being Disney everything is provided to a very high standard and they are expert in creating adult only areas where under 18's are not admitted. Yes, there are plenty of children but you could easily get away from them and never a shortage of sun beds. DCL have 2 ships the Magic and Wonder that are just over 80,000 tons, so have that small ship vibe and with a smart casual dress code have hit the right note for cruising goi
  12. Hi I hope you have a great time. You don't say what time of the year you are travelling, but just remember that it takes a good few sailing days from leaving Southampton to get into the much warmer weather, so if you are leaving in the Autumn/Winter do pack some warmer clothes for all of you. RobBar made some useful suggestions, but Disney Cruise Line is geared completely for kids and there is so much more to keep them entertained than on P&O, so just bear that in mind particularly at the start of the trip with the long sea days before you get to St.Maarten. Enjoy.
  13. The Tories fought a poor campaign but highlighted areas that do need a radical review, however unpalatable the truth is and for all her faults, Mrs May is still my preferred choice in looking after our national security than the rag bag of Marxists and lefties hiding quietly behind Corbyn's very carefully placed election mask!! Labour reverted to type and promised a 'magic money tree' all paid for by the top 5% paying 'just a little bit more', if you believe that line then more fool you, everybody will have to pay for it in the years ahead and another visit cap in hand to the IMF is well
  14. Thank you Deck Hand, nice to read a comprehensive review. We intend to do a similar cruise from Malta in September and having been on the Oceana for 2 previous trips I would agree with everything you say, for the money paid you really cannot complain too much, the ship, which I like, does need a refresh since many areas just need a spruce up, or a total replacement, though looking at it's future sailing schedule not sure it's going to be a complete refit? I laughed at your comments on the Horizon Grill, you would not think it was possible to mess up simple food, but the chicken goujo
  15. @Oldworldtraveller Thank you for that, not much to complain about on there, so would be interested to hear from any member who has actually sailed with MSC and/or the ship.
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