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Don't set sail on a cruise without doing some research first



 
 
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  #1  
Old April 10th, 2006, 10:34 AM posted to rec.travel.cruises
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Don't set sail on a cruise without doing some research first

To Whom It May Concern:

We came across this information in the trades and thought it would be of
interest to this newsgroup as well. If this is somehow a repeat of an
earlier post, sorry we missed it. This can always be ignored or deleted.

Happy sailing,
John Sisker
SHIP-TO-SHORE CRUISE AGENCY®
(714) 536-3850 or toll free at
(800) 724-6644 & (pagoo ID: 714.536.3850)
http://www.shiptoshorecruise.com




Looking back on it now, when we decided to get married and honeymoon on a
cruise ship with nearly 40 of our family and friends, there are some things
we wish we had known first.

Foremost was this: You cannot honeymoon in any real sense of the word on a
cruise ship with nearly 40 of your family and friends. The Norwegian Cruise
Lines' Norwegian Dream is a 784-foot ship the size of a small building; you
might never see someone for days. It's a floating box with no way off, and
someone you know is always in the restaurant - or the pool, or the lounge,
or the aft bathroom on C Deck. But following our return home from "The
Waltons & Friends go to Mexico" we realized there were some things we'd
taken for granted from past cruising experiences and wished we asked our
travel agent before booking our cruise. The first would be "How much do you
know about cruises?" With the increasing number of options available in
cruise travel these days, it's exceptionally helpful to have someone who
knows the cruise industry backwards and forwards - someone like Roger
Robertson of All Ways Traveling in Lincoln City, Ore. He said many cruise
quandaries can be avoided by booking through a travel agent. "If you go to
the Internet, nobody's going to respond to you," he said. "You need to talk
to someone." As a travel agent, Robertson is admittedly biased toward
personal interaction. And the Internet can indeed save you money, which,
when money's tight, can be a big factor. But on the matter of cruises, we
would suggest he's right, because if we'd had Robertson on our speed dial,
we'd have asked questions like this: 'Where am I sailing from, and does it
matter?' This might seem one of those "Duh" questions; any itinerary clearly
shows where the ship leaves from. Cruise passengers, however, often reflect
their ship's point of origin. More people from Southern California cruise
the Mexican Riviera, more people from the Pacific Northwest head for Alaska
and more people head to the Bahamas from Florida. Leaving from Houston, our
ship was loaded with Texans. Right up front we should tell you we do not
automatically dislike Texans or anyone else from the South. One of us even
descends from Texan stock. However, given they were easily the largest
population on our ship, there were a lot of behaviors that began to repeat
themselves, most notably a propensity for loud, drunken behavior and a whole
lot of smoking. Indeed, by the third day of the cruise, we were told by more
experienced passengers that our sailing was known as the "Redneck Cruise"
because this kind of thing happened every time. Not a problem for a college
spring break excursion, perhaps, but not the best environment for a
honeymoon. Robertson cautions it's not always possible to predict a cruise
population's behavior based solely on its port of debarkation. He does note,
however: "The cheaper a cruise is, the more localized it's going to be. The
shorter a cruise is, the more localized is." What is the demographic of the
people I'm cruising with? Our on-ship experience was not necessarily typical
of each sailing that ship makes. (We offered to prove that by cruising each
week for a year, but our employers found that to be a bit above and beyond
our calls of duty.) Having said that, however, there are some
generalizations you can make about a ship's population, Robertson said,
merely by the cruise line that operates the ship: -- Carnival: "Fun ships,"
they emphasize partying and onboard entertainment. -- NCL: A family cruise
line for people interested in keeping things cheap. -- Princess: Upscale
with an eye towards entertainment. -- Holland America Lines: Upscale, family
cruising. -- Royal Caribbean: Upscale couples. -- Celebrity: Upscale
couples. This reputation, along with the port of debarkation, should be
considered when trying to determine exactly what kind of people you'll be
cruising with. "A Celebrity cruise out of the same harbor will have a more
upscale audience than NCL," Robertson said. Timing, he said, is also
important. "If you are looking for a cruise out of whatever destination, if
it's on spring break in Texas, you know it's loaded with Texans." 'Who will
help you in the case of an emergency?' When we took our cruise in January,
the biggest hazards we'd heard about with cruising were ports being wiped
out by hurricanes - as happened to us - rogue waves and the occasional
missing person. Now, the cruise lines can't do much about weather phenomena,
and crime is, well, crime. And aside from banning smoking altogether, fires
such as the one that burned part of a Princess cruise ship recently, are one
reason to pay attention during that emergency drill. But the Chilean bus
accident that killed 10 seniors from the Celebrity ship Millennium and our
own onshore incident have shown that you do need to think about emergencies
ahead of time. The bus tour the crash victims were on was not affiliated
with the cruise ship. This is not to say you should take only official
tours, but it can make things more complicated if something goes wrong. The
ship typically will not wait for delayed passengers on unofficial
excursions. Some things to remember: -- Assume you will be on your own.
Flight nurses exist to help you get home, but they need time to book
flights, so contact them as soon as you know you need help. Flying Nurses
International (1-808-521-1333, www.flyingnurse.com) bent over backwards to
help us. -- Buy trip insurance. Many people think is just flushing money
down the toilet. But the onboard medical expenses and costs related to
getting an injured friend home have easily exceeded $3,000, and she got off
cheap. All of this will be covered by a policy that cost about $75. 'What is
the smoking policy on the ship?' Whether you agree with it or not, Oregon
and most places out West have basically become areas where unless smoking is
allowed, most people don't. This did not apply to our ship. People smoked in
the hallways, people smoked by the pool, people smoked in the bathrooms. We
cannot begin to tell you how many times we'd be enjoying our spot in the sun
when someone would sit down next to us, light up, and we'd have to move.
Asthma is a real pain. Robertson said each cruise line has different
policies, so if smoking is an issue, be sure to be clear about what you want
when booking your cruise. "You can request cabins and decks that are
nonsmoking," he said. "You wouldn't book a hotel room in Portland and not
ask for a nonsmoking room." 'How old is the ship?' Of all the things we knew
about before our cruise and didn't fully understand, this would have to be
the biggest one. Our ship was built in 1992 and had a major retrofit in
1998. In the scheme of things, eight years just didn't seem like that long
of a time. We've put off sorting our sock drawer for longer periods than
that. But in the cruise industry it's huge, said Robertson. "The newer the
ship, the more dining options it has, the larger the showrooms, the larger
casino they will have." Also, newer ships have far more rooms with
unobstructed windows and balconies. Our initial "premium ocean view room"
had a rather obstructed view for us and a rather unobstructed view for the
people on the observation deck who could walk right up to the window of our
cabin and take in some people watching. And if the ship is full, you're
stuck with that room. Another big problem with an older ship is sea
sickness. Ours lacked stabilization technology. On perfectly flat days this
wasn't a problem. But on days when the seas were choppy - and in January
there were plenty even in the Caribbean - the ship rocked and rolled from
one side to the other. "Most all of the newer ships have got some kind of
stabilization," Robertson said. "The new builds have stabilizer bars that
are the width of the ship that eliminate that pitch and roll." 'What's near
your room?' It's important to see what is above, below, next to and outside
your room. If you don't want to feel the bass from the lounge speakers
through your ceiling or watch people run by all day on the jogging track
from your window, for example, you might not want to leave your room
assignment to chance. "Some people, when I book a cruise, we will
specifically select the cabin then and there, because you know where you're
going to be," Robertson said. He cautions, however, if you select an
individual room, the cruise line will consider you ineligible for any
possible upgrades. 'Is there assigned or open seating for meals?' The
traditional model on cruise lines has been for two or three dinner seatings,
where everyone on the ship has an assigned time and table for their dinner.
These arrangements do not change; the time, location and dining companions
are the same each night. In recent years, however, some cruise lines have
begun open seating. Each night guests can choose where and when they want to
eat. Although this can involve waiting in line sometimes, it usually isn't
too bad, at least in our experience. Having said that, we would have
preferred the traditional model. From past cruises, we know that assigned
seating allowed us the opportunity to get to know our wait staff and other
people on the ship. It was more formal and classy, we think, and we missed
it. This was not a universal feeling. Other people liked the open
arrangements because they weren't tied into a certain schedule and could
pretty much do as they pleased. Although NCL has taken the lead in open
seating with its "Freestyle Cruising" program, other cruise lines offer it
in varying degrees. "They are all getting to some type of almost want-to-be
freestyle cruising," said Robertson. "Princess, for instance, calls it
'Dining Your Way.'" Most, he said, still offer some form of formal seating
for those who want it, however. NCL is the only line that does not. Having
now sailed on three of the major cruise lines, we know better what to watch
out for and what not to take for granted. Sadly, our honeymoon was more
stressful than we'd hoped for, but we enjoyed ourselves and our traveling
companions nonetheless. But we're taking a second honeymoon without 40
family and friends, and sincerely hope we won't run into anyone we know in
the bathroom. We're not even telling anyone where we're going. Safe to say,
however, it will not be Texas.


  #2  
Old April 10th, 2006, 04:13 PM posted to rec.travel.cruises
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Don't set sail on a cruise without doing some research first

[ Snipped Roger Robertson's views on why you need a travel agent.]

While I personally think you should book the boat cruise thru TA myself, I
also agree then you can find far better travel deals to and from the port by
yourself over the internet.

But this so-called report by Roger Robertson seems to be written by someone
who has not used the internet for more than ten hours per year.

Example "If you go to the Internet, nobody's going to respond to you," a
statement that has lots of irony when I am reading it in R.T.C. where
sometimes the problem is the large number of and range of responses.

He seems to not know about the large number of websites not belonging to the
cruise lines where you will find reviews of just about every ship out there.
Nor about the forums on many of these sites too.

Many/Most/Maybe all problems the honeymooners had also occur when you book a
resort, a hotel, or out-of-country honeymoon without doing the research
first. I remember in the carribean resort usenet group that some honeymoon
couple booked a resort that turned out to be a sex-partying place with
unknown couples mating on thier balcony (yuch!).

Basicly, the article seemed to try and make it look like there are special
problems with cruises but all I see is a lack preparation like all too many
couples caught up in the thrill of thier up coming marriage.

Earl Colby Pottinger

--
Cruising, building a Catamaran, Rebuilding Cabin, New Peroxide Still Design,
Writting SF, Programming FOSS - What happened to the time?
  #3  
Old April 10th, 2006, 05:18 PM posted to rec.travel.cruises
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Don't set sail on a cruise without doing some research first

Another big problem with an older ship is sea
sickness. Ours lacked stabilization technology.snip "The new builds have stabilizer bars that
are the width of the ship that eliminate that pitch and roll."



It was upon reading the above that I closed the post and decided there
was nothing worth reading in it.

Stabilizer BARS?

Warren

  #4  
Old April 10th, 2006, 10:38 PM posted to rec.travel.cruises
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Don't set sail on a cruise without doing some research first

Stabilizer BARS?

These are generally on the Promenade Deck level. They allow you your choice
of Stabilizers.....I personally prefer either Jack Daniels or Johnny Walker.


  #5  
Old April 11th, 2006, 05:04 AM posted to rec.travel.cruises
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Don't set sail on a cruise without doing some research first

Yes Warren ...... Stabilizer Bars .......

It is the latest technology, after you have a few Martinis you stay upright and
the ship starts to move around you.

Cal




In article .com, Warren
says...

Another big problem with an older ship is sea
sickness. Ours lacked stabilization technology.snip "The new builds have
stabilizer bars that
are the width of the ship that eliminate that pitch and roll."



It was upon reading the above that I closed the post and decided there
was nothing worth reading in it.

Stabilizer BARS?

Warren



--
NewsGuy.Com 30Gb $9.95 Carry Forward and On Demand Bandwidth

  #6  
Old April 11th, 2006, 05:45 AM posted to rec.travel.cruises
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Don't set sail on a cruise without doing some research first

The comments from some of you are pretty funny and are actually quite
creative. It's good to see that at least a few of you have a sense of humor
and have the ability to not always take something at total face value, even
if in the trade. As for the person who said there was nothing here worth
reading, well that's what makes horse racing, and also why the statement
"this can always be ignored or deleted."

Happy sailing,
John Sisker
SHIP-TO-SHORE CRUISE AGENCY®
(714) 536-3850 or toll free at
(800) 724-6644 & (pagoo ID: 714.536.3850)
http://www.shiptoshorecruise.com



  #7  
Old April 11th, 2006, 11:27 PM posted to rec.travel.cruises
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Don't set sail on a cruise without doing some research first

Thus spake "John Sisker" :

To Whom It May Concern:


Looking back on it now, when we decided to get married and honeymoon on a
cruise ship with nearly 40 of our family and friends, there are some things
we wish we had known first.


I wouldn't take 40 family and friends on ANY honeymoon, regardless of
where we're going.

That was just a plain and simple stupid move.
--
dillon

I didn't climb to the top of the
food chain to become a vegetartian.
  #8  
Old April 11th, 2006, 11:34 PM posted to rec.travel.cruises
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Don't set sail on a cruise without doing some research first

Thus spake "John Sisker" :

snip

Leaving from Houston, our
ship was loaded with Texans. Right up front we should tell you we do not
automatically dislike Texans or anyone else from the South. One of us even
descends from Texan stock. However, given they were easily the largest
population on our ship, there were a lot of behaviors that began to repeat
themselves, most notably a propensity for loud, drunken behavior and a whole
lot of smoking. Indeed, by the third day of the cruise, we were told by more
experienced passengers that our sailing was known as the "Redneck Cruise"
because this kind of thing happened every time.


What a crock of biased ****.

Not a problem for a college
spring break excursion, perhaps, but not the best environment for a
honeymoon. Robertson cautions it's not always possible to predict a cruise
population's behavior based solely on its port of debarkation.


Good point, which the author choose to ignore.

He does note,
however: "The cheaper a cruise is, the more localized it's going to be. The
shorter a cruise is, the more localized is." What is the demographic of the
people I'm cruising with? Our on-ship experience was not necessarily typical
of each sailing that ship makes. (We offered to prove that by cruising each
week for a year, but our employers found that to be a bit above and beyond
our calls of duty.) Having said that, however, there are some
generalizations you can make about a ship's population, Robertson said,
merely by the cruise line that operates the ship: -- Carnival: "Fun ships,"
they emphasize partying and onboard entertainment. -- NCL: A family cruise
line for people interested in keeping things cheap. -- Princess: Upscale
with an eye towards entertainment. -- Holland America Lines: Upscale, family
cruising. -- Royal Caribbean: Upscale couples. -- Celebrity: Upscale
couples. This reputation, along with the port of debarkation, should be
considered when trying to determine exactly what kind of people you'll be
cruising with. "A Celebrity cruise out of the same harbor will have a more
upscale audience than NCL," Robertson said. Timing, he said, is also
important. "If you are looking for a cruise out of whatever destination, if
it's on spring break in Texas, you know it's loaded with Texans." '

snip

Oregon
and most places out West have basically become areas where unless smoking is
allowed, most people don't. This did not apply to our ship. People smoked in
the hallways, people smoked by the pool, people smoked in the bathrooms. We
cannot begin to tell you how many times we'd be enjoying our spot in the sun
when someone would sit down next to us, light up, and we'd have to move.


Most ships have a non smoking side of the pool. A little checking and
a little assertivness would have helped that problem.

Asthma is a real pain. Robertson said each cruise line has different
policies, so if smoking is an issue, be sure to be clear about what you want
when booking your cruise. "You can request cabins and decks that are
nonsmoking," he said. "You wouldn't book a hotel room in Portland and not
ask for a nonsmoking room." 'How old is the ship?' Of all the things we knew
about before our cruise and didn't fully understand, this would have to be
the biggest one. Our ship was built in 1992 and had a major retrofit in
1998. In the scheme of things, eight years just didn't seem like that long
of a time. We've put off sorting our sock drawer for longer periods than
that. But in the cruise industry it's huge, said Robertson. "The newer the
ship, the more dining options it has, the larger the showrooms, the larger
casino they will have." Also, newer ships have far more rooms with
unobstructed windows and balconies. Our initial "premium ocean view room"
had a rather obstructed view for us and a rather unobstructed view for the
people on the observation deck who could walk right up to the window of our
cabin and take in some people watching. And if the ship is full, you're
stuck with that room. Another big problem with an older ship is sea
sickness. Ours lacked stabilization technology. On perfectly flat days this
wasn't a problem. But on days when the seas were choppy - and in January
there were plenty even in the Caribbean - the ship rocked and rolled from
one side to the other. "Most all of the newer ships have got some kind of
stabilization," Robertson said. "The new builds have stabilizer bars that
are the width of the ship that eliminate that pitch and roll." 'What's near
your room?' It's important to see what is above, below, next to and outside
your room. If you don't want to feel the bass from the lounge speakers
through your ceiling or watch people run by all day on the jogging track
from your window, for example, you might not want to leave your room
assignment to chance. "Some people, when I book a cruise, we will
specifically select the cabin then and there, because you know where you're
going to be," Robertson said. He cautions, however, if you select an
individual room, the cruise line will consider you ineligible for any
possible upgrades. 'Is there assigned or open seating for meals?' The
traditional model on cruise lines has been for two or three dinner seatings,
where everyone on the ship has an assigned time and table for their dinner.
These arrangements do not change; the time, location and dining companions
are the same each night. In recent years, however, some cruise lines have
begun open seating. Each night guests can choose where and when they want to
eat. Although this can involve waiting in line sometimes, it usually isn't
too bad, at least in our experience. Having said that, we would have
preferred the traditional model. From past cruises, we know that assigned
seating allowed us the opportunity to get to know our wait staff and other
people on the ship. It was more formal and classy, we think, and we missed
it. This was not a universal feeling. Other people liked the open
arrangements because they weren't tied into a certain schedule and could
pretty much do as they pleased. Although NCL has taken the lead in open
seating with its "Freestyle Cruising" program, other cruise lines offer it
in varying degrees. "They are all getting to some type of almost want-to-be
freestyle cruising," said Robertson. "Princess, for instance, calls it
'Dining Your Way.'" Most, he said, still offer some form of formal seating
for those who want it, however. NCL is the only line that does not. Having
now sailed on three of the major cruise lines, we know better what to watch
out for and what not to take for granted. Sadly, our honeymoon was more
stressful than we'd hoped for, but we enjoyed ourselves and our traveling
companions nonetheless. But we're taking a second honeymoon without 40
family and friends, and sincerely hope we won't run into anyone we know in
the bathroom. We're not even telling anyone where we're going. Safe to say,
however, it will not be Texas.


Again, a biased and baseless claim. Just what I'd expect from a tree
hugging Oregonian.


--
dillon

I didn't climb to the top of the
food chain to become a vegetartian.
  #9  
Old April 14th, 2006, 03:37 PM posted to rec.travel.cruises
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Don't set sail on a cruise without doing some research first

Agree or disagree, at least accredit me with the right information. I
certainly am not afraid the speak out when I feel it necessary, but the
following was not even my original comments at all. Likewise, you'll
probably get better results with fact and figures as a backup to your
claims, than with insults and innuendos.

John Sisker
SHIP-TO-SHORE CRUISE AGENCY®
(714) 536-3850 or toll free at
(800) 724-6644 & (pagoo ID: 714.536.3850)
http://www.shiptoshorecruise.com





"Dillon Pyron" wrote in message
...
Thus spake "John Sisker" :

snip

Leaving from Houston, our
ship was loaded with Texans. Right up front we should tell you we do not
automatically dislike Texans or anyone else from the South. One of us even
descends from Texan stock. However, given they were easily the largest
population on our ship, there were a lot of behaviors that began to repeat
themselves, most notably a propensity for loud, drunken behavior and a
whole
lot of smoking. Indeed, by the third day of the cruise, we were told by
more
experienced passengers that our sailing was known as the "Redneck Cruise"
because this kind of thing happened every time.


What a crock of biased ****.

Not a problem for a college
spring break excursion, perhaps, but not the best environment for a
honeymoon. Robertson cautions it's not always possible to predict a cruise
population's behavior based solely on its port of debarkation.


Good point, which the author choose to ignore.

He does note,
however: "The cheaper a cruise is, the more localized it's going to be.
The
shorter a cruise is, the more localized is." What is the demographic of
the
people I'm cruising with? Our on-ship experience was not necessarily
typical
of each sailing that ship makes. (We offered to prove that by cruising
each
week for a year, but our employers found that to be a bit above and beyond
our calls of duty.) Having said that, however, there are some
generalizations you can make about a ship's population, Robertson said,
merely by the cruise line that operates the ship: -- Carnival: "Fun
ships,"
they emphasize partying and onboard entertainment. -- NCL: A family cruise
line for people interested in keeping things cheap. -- Princess: Upscale
with an eye towards entertainment. -- Holland America Lines: Upscale,
family
cruising. -- Royal Caribbean: Upscale couples. -- Celebrity: Upscale
couples. This reputation, along with the port of debarkation, should be
considered when trying to determine exactly what kind of people you'll be
cruising with. "A Celebrity cruise out of the same harbor will have a more
upscale audience than NCL," Robertson said. Timing, he said, is also
important. "If you are looking for a cruise out of whatever destination,
if
it's on spring break in Texas, you know it's loaded with Texans." '

snip

Oregon
and most places out West have basically become areas where unless smoking
is
allowed, most people don't. This did not apply to our ship. People smoked
in
the hallways, people smoked by the pool, people smoked in the bathrooms.
We
cannot begin to tell you how many times we'd be enjoying our spot in the
sun
when someone would sit down next to us, light up, and we'd have to move.


Most ships have a non smoking side of the pool. A little checking and
a little assertivness would have helped that problem.

Asthma is a real pain. Robertson said each cruise line has different
policies, so if smoking is an issue, be sure to be clear about what you
want
when booking your cruise. "You can request cabins and decks that are
nonsmoking," he said. "You wouldn't book a hotel room in Portland and not
ask for a nonsmoking room." 'How old is the ship?' Of all the things we
knew
about before our cruise and didn't fully understand, this would have to be
the biggest one. Our ship was built in 1992 and had a major retrofit in
1998. In the scheme of things, eight years just didn't seem like that long
of a time. We've put off sorting our sock drawer for longer periods than
that. But in the cruise industry it's huge, said Robertson. "The newer the
ship, the more dining options it has, the larger the showrooms, the larger
casino they will have." Also, newer ships have far more rooms with
unobstructed windows and balconies. Our initial "premium ocean view room"
had a rather obstructed view for us and a rather unobstructed view for the
people on the observation deck who could walk right up to the window of
our
cabin and take in some people watching. And if the ship is full, you're
stuck with that room. Another big problem with an older ship is sea
sickness. Ours lacked stabilization technology. On perfectly flat days
this
wasn't a problem. But on days when the seas were choppy - and in January
there were plenty even in the Caribbean - the ship rocked and rolled from
one side to the other. "Most all of the newer ships have got some kind of
stabilization," Robertson said. "The new builds have stabilizer bars that
are the width of the ship that eliminate that pitch and roll." 'What's
near
your room?' It's important to see what is above, below, next to and
outside
your room. If you don't want to feel the bass from the lounge speakers
through your ceiling or watch people run by all day on the jogging track
from your window, for example, you might not want to leave your room
assignment to chance. "Some people, when I book a cruise, we will
specifically select the cabin then and there, because you know where
you're
going to be," Robertson said. He cautions, however, if you select an
individual room, the cruise line will consider you ineligible for any
possible upgrades. 'Is there assigned or open seating for meals?' The
traditional model on cruise lines has been for two or three dinner
seatings,
where everyone on the ship has an assigned time and table for their
dinner.
These arrangements do not change; the time, location and dining companions
are the same each night. In recent years, however, some cruise lines have
begun open seating. Each night guests can choose where and when they want
to
eat. Although this can involve waiting in line sometimes, it usually isn't
too bad, at least in our experience. Having said that, we would have
preferred the traditional model. From past cruises, we know that assigned
seating allowed us the opportunity to get to know our wait staff and other
people on the ship. It was more formal and classy, we think, and we missed
it. This was not a universal feeling. Other people liked the open
arrangements because they weren't tied into a certain schedule and could
pretty much do as they pleased. Although NCL has taken the lead in open
seating with its "Freestyle Cruising" program, other cruise lines offer it
in varying degrees. "They are all getting to some type of almost
want-to-be
freestyle cruising," said Robertson. "Princess, for instance, calls it
'Dining Your Way.'" Most, he said, still offer some form of formal seating
for those who want it, however. NCL is the only line that does not. Having
now sailed on three of the major cruise lines, we know better what to
watch
out for and what not to take for granted. Sadly, our honeymoon was more
stressful than we'd hoped for, but we enjoyed ourselves and our traveling
companions nonetheless. But we're taking a second honeymoon without 40
family and friends, and sincerely hope we won't run into anyone we know in
the bathroom. We're not even telling anyone where we're going. Safe to
say,
however, it will not be Texas.


Again, a biased and baseless claim. Just what I'd expect from a tree
hugging Oregonian.


--
dillon

I didn't climb to the top of the
food chain to become a vegetartian.



  #10  
Old April 15th, 2006, 08:21 PM posted to rec.travel.cruises
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Default Don't set sail on a cruise without doing some research first

Thus spake "John Sisker" :

Agree or disagree, at least accredit me with the right information. I
certainly am not afraid the speak out when I feel it necessary, but the
following was not even my original comments at all. Likewise, you'll
probably get better results with fact and figures as a backup to your
claims, than with insults and innuendos.


A) where did I claim that you posted the information as your own? You,
in fact, chose to quote the story. Which was probably copyright
material.

B) where do I make a claim that requires documentation? All I do is
point out the fallicies and bias in the article.




"Dillon Pyron" wrote in message
.. .
Thus spake "John Sisker" :

snip

Leaving from Houston, our
ship was loaded with Texans. Right up front we should tell you we do not
automatically dislike Texans or anyone else from the South. One of us even
descends from Texan stock. However, given they were easily the largest
population on our ship, there were a lot of behaviors that began to repeat
themselves, most notably a propensity for loud, drunken behavior and a
whole
lot of smoking. Indeed, by the third day of the cruise, we were told by
more
experienced passengers that our sailing was known as the "Redneck Cruise"
because this kind of thing happened every time.


What a crock of biased ****.

Not a problem for a college
spring break excursion, perhaps, but not the best environment for a
honeymoon. Robertson cautions it's not always possible to predict a cruise
population's behavior based solely on its port of debarkation.


Good point, which the author choose to ignore.

He does note,
however: "The cheaper a cruise is, the more localized it's going to be.
The
shorter a cruise is, the more localized is." What is the demographic of
the
people I'm cruising with? Our on-ship experience was not necessarily
typical
of each sailing that ship makes. (We offered to prove that by cruising
each
week for a year, but our employers found that to be a bit above and beyond
our calls of duty.) Having said that, however, there are some
generalizations you can make about a ship's population, Robertson said,
merely by the cruise line that operates the ship: -- Carnival: "Fun
ships,"
they emphasize partying and onboard entertainment. -- NCL: A family cruise
line for people interested in keeping things cheap. -- Princess: Upscale
with an eye towards entertainment. -- Holland America Lines: Upscale,
family
cruising. -- Royal Caribbean: Upscale couples. -- Celebrity: Upscale
couples. This reputation, along with the port of debarkation, should be
considered when trying to determine exactly what kind of people you'll be
cruising with. "A Celebrity cruise out of the same harbor will have a more
upscale audience than NCL," Robertson said. Timing, he said, is also
important. "If you are looking for a cruise out of whatever destination,
if
it's on spring break in Texas, you know it's loaded with Texans." '

snip

Oregon
and most places out West have basically become areas where unless smoking
is
allowed, most people don't. This did not apply to our ship. People smoked
in
the hallways, people smoked by the pool, people smoked in the bathrooms.
We
cannot begin to tell you how many times we'd be enjoying our spot in the
sun
when someone would sit down next to us, light up, and we'd have to move.


Most ships have a non smoking side of the pool. A little checking and
a little assertivness would have helped that problem.

Asthma is a real pain. Robertson said each cruise line has different
policies, so if smoking is an issue, be sure to be clear about what you
want
when booking your cruise. "You can request cabins and decks that are
nonsmoking," he said. "You wouldn't book a hotel room in Portland and not
ask for a nonsmoking room." 'How old is the ship?' Of all the things we
knew
about before our cruise and didn't fully understand, this would have to be
the biggest one. Our ship was built in 1992 and had a major retrofit in
1998. In the scheme of things, eight years just didn't seem like that long
of a time. We've put off sorting our sock drawer for longer periods than
that. But in the cruise industry it's huge, said Robertson. "The newer the
ship, the more dining options it has, the larger the showrooms, the larger
casino they will have." Also, newer ships have far more rooms with
unobstructed windows and balconies. Our initial "premium ocean view room"
had a rather obstructed view for us and a rather unobstructed view for the
people on the observation deck who could walk right up to the window of
our
cabin and take in some people watching. And if the ship is full, you're
stuck with that room. Another big problem with an older ship is sea
sickness. Ours lacked stabilization technology. On perfectly flat days
this
wasn't a problem. But on days when the seas were choppy - and in January
there were plenty even in the Caribbean - the ship rocked and rolled from
one side to the other. "Most all of the newer ships have got some kind of
stabilization," Robertson said. "The new builds have stabilizer bars that
are the width of the ship that eliminate that pitch and roll." 'What's
near
your room?' It's important to see what is above, below, next to and
outside
your room. If you don't want to feel the bass from the lounge speakers
through your ceiling or watch people run by all day on the jogging track
from your window, for example, you might not want to leave your room
assignment to chance. "Some people, when I book a cruise, we will
specifically select the cabin then and there, because you know where
you're
going to be," Robertson said. He cautions, however, if you select an
individual room, the cruise line will consider you ineligible for any
possible upgrades. 'Is there assigned or open seating for meals?' The
traditional model on cruise lines has been for two or three dinner
seatings,
where everyone on the ship has an assigned time and table for their
dinner.
These arrangements do not change; the time, location and dining companions
are the same each night. In recent years, however, some cruise lines have
begun open seating. Each night guests can choose where and when they want
to
eat. Although this can involve waiting in line sometimes, it usually isn't
too bad, at least in our experience. Having said that, we would have
preferred the traditional model. From past cruises, we know that assigned
seating allowed us the opportunity to get to know our wait staff and other
people on the ship. It was more formal and classy, we think, and we missed
it. This was not a universal feeling. Other people liked the open
arrangements because they weren't tied into a certain schedule and could
pretty much do as they pleased. Although NCL has taken the lead in open
seating with its "Freestyle Cruising" program, other cruise lines offer it
in varying degrees. "They are all getting to some type of almost
want-to-be
freestyle cruising," said Robertson. "Princess, for instance, calls it
'Dining Your Way.'" Most, he said, still offer some form of formal seating
for those who want it, however. NCL is the only line that does not. Having
now sailed on three of the major cruise lines, we know better what to
watch
out for and what not to take for granted. Sadly, our honeymoon was more
stressful than we'd hoped for, but we enjoyed ourselves and our traveling
companions nonetheless. But we're taking a second honeymoon without 40
family and friends, and sincerely hope we won't run into anyone we know in
the bathroom. We're not even telling anyone where we're going. Safe to
say,
however, it will not be Texas.


Again, a biased and baseless claim. Just what I'd expect from a tree
hugging Oregonian.


--
dillon

I didn't climb to the top of the
food chain to become a vegetartian.


--
dillon

I didn't climb to the top of the
food chain to become a vegetartian.
 




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