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About Heidi13

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    British Columbia
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    Travel, Photography, Swimming, Walking Dogs, Football (Glasgow Rangers)
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    Viking Ocean
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  1. We already have a Viking River and Ocean Combo booked for middle of next year and when everything resumes will be booking a Viking River in Egypt. After that, possibly another Viking Ocean World Cruise.
  2. We have taken 1 Viking cruise. switching to them after many years with one of the Carnival brands. During our 4-months aboard Viking Sun, both the ship's compliment and company were exceptional, during some rather trying times. However, I have no illusions that any cruise line will meet all of our needs. Viking doesn't follow the industry standards, with payment in full dates and TA perks limitations being 2 negatives. Unless you book on board or have another cruise booked, about the best payment date is about 1 yr before departure. You can delay booking until a payment date you are comfortable with, but note many cruises sell out > 1 yr in advance. For TA perks Viking has a policy limiting the OBC a TA can provide. For cruises over 15 days it is $500 pp in the currency you book the cruise. For 119 night, we were limited to CAN $ 500 pp from our TA. Definitely disappointing, but the Viking experience definitely makes up for these challenges.
  3. The Sitmar ships purchased by P&O are all either scrapped or out of service Fairsea - started life as the Cunarder - Carinthia. Became Fair Princess when purchased by P&O. Sold in 2001 and scrapped at Alang in 2005. Note - I recall she had an E/R fire when beached at the breakers Fairsky - became the Sky Princess. The last name I recall is Antic, but I can find no record of her being scrapped, but she is not included in Lloyds List Fairstar - scrapped at Alang about 1997 Fairwind - another original Cunarder - Sylvania, which became Dawn Princesss. Scrapped at Alang about 2004. The 3 ships Sitmar had on the ways when purchased by P&O are all still operational: Fair Majesty - sailed the inaugural voyage as Star Princess. Was assigned to various Carnival brands before P&O Australia sold her to Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV) as Columbus. After her 2020 World Cruise was cancelled, she was laid-up in Tilbury (London Cruise Terminal). She was detained by MCA in June due contraventions of MLC 2006. CMV called in the receivers last month. The status of their ships has not been confirmed. Regal Princess - shortly after the keel was laid, P&O purchased Sitmar, receiving the 2 new building sisters. Became Pacific Dawn with P&O Australia, who sold her to CMV in Nov 2019. In Feb 2020 she was renamed Amy Johnson, but never sailed. Status depending on CMV administration outcome. Crown Princess - sister ship to the Regal. Operated by P&O Australia as Pacific Jewel. Sold to an Indian company in 2019 and renamed Karnika.
  4. In my experience it has nothing to do with the age of the ships, as every pax ship I worked on had interior Assembly Stations. Although I have never worked with Assembly Stations at the Survival Craft, I suspect the main difference is build cost. When the Assembly Stations are in the interior they must have adequate structural fire protection (SFP), must be rated for the number of pax and have approved routes to the Survival Craft, with those routes also requiring structural fire protection. When modifying the Survival Craft from lifeboats/liferafts to Marine Evacuation Systems (MES), we had to upgrade the SFP and conduct computer modelling of moving pax from the Assembly Stations to the new locations of the MES.
  5. In 45 yrs of sailing that hasn't been my experience. Back in the 70's & 80's the meals we received were superb and the service was outstanding, with the waiters well versed in the art of silver service. While the mass market MDR's have dropped the standards, that doesn't apply to the premium/luxury lines and as others noted, the mega ship specialty restaurants. In 4 months aboard a Viking ship, we had some exceptional meals in the MDR, alternative restaurants and even room service. Yes, one evening the Executive Chef cooked us a couple of T-Bones and sent them to the cabin. The meals on Viking are definitely comparable with some of the best restaurants in Metro Vancouver. The Halibut and Dover Sole I had on a couple of evenings were cooked to perfection, with the Halibut being vastly superior to our last visit to our local fine dining restaurant.
  6. Not aware if Uganda had any kids from the US, but when I sailed on her we did have 1 class of older kids from Canada. That was a fun cruise, as I recall the Canadian kids challenging the Officers to a hockey match. The Canadian obviously played ice hockey, while we played grass hockey. On board, we played deck hockey. We doctored up the sticks with varnish and hung them around the radar mast to dry. We also made rope pucks and added multiple layers of varnish. For the match, we all wore cricket pads. Great times, as with the UK kids we played deck football. For the adult pax, she was an incredible ship. Basically one of the last ships with multiple classes, as the kids and adult pax had their own respective areas and never mixed.
  7. Arr!!, that must be the landlubber's translation of, "The sun is over the yardarm" 😁🍻
  8. Favourite ships tend to change over time. 1) SS Oriana - brilliant party ship, especially when sailing out of Sydney for the Australia season. That was important when only 19 yrs. 2) SS Uganda - the old 1st Class lounges were just so opulent, with rich wood panels and furniture. With only 300 adult pax they were never crowded. Nor our favourite ships are the opposite end of the spectrum, with the Scandinavian decor of the small Viking ships.
  9. As the ships are on hot layup and ready to resume service on fairly short notice, all scheduled maintenance of the structure, lifesaving, fire-fighting, machinery and the numerous Flag State and company documents must be maintained. In addition, they will be working on projects normally completed in the shipyards. Therefore, I suspect they are maintaining full deck & engineering crews and a minimum number of hotel. They require a couple of cooks and with > 100 crew the Doctor must also remain. With the infected crew member, false negatives are possible, but 2 of them, I suggest make that less likely. Assuming the crew are not getting shore leave that is also an unlikely cause. However, the crew do have interaction with people from the shore - taking stores, bunkers, water, etc and also shipping off garbage, recycling, used oil, etc. The ship's agent will also visit the ship on a regular basis.
  10. They now have another Stena Ro/Pax in the H&W Drydock, so I suspect the Sun has moved to the fitting out berth to vacate the other drydock. When the Stena ship moves, I suspect she will have to move again.
  11. Haven't been tracking any TRS activity, but the dangerous quadrant is considered to the front and to the right of the track in the Northern Hemisphere. While the Masters are trained in Meteorology, these days, as the Chief mentioned they also receive routing suggestions from weather advisory providers. With an approaching TRS, it is prudent for the Masters to weigh anchor and move to safer waters. As the Chief indicated, the Master must comply with the company's policies, but he/she does have the over-riding authority to take any action deemed necessary for the safety of the ship that is required, in their professional judgement, including contravention of the company procedures. When at sea, the Master can only "Hove to" the vessel in heavy weather, which is putting the head to wind and maintaining minimum steerage speed. The vessel can only anchor in relatively shallow water, requiring 4 to 6 times the depth of water in anchor chain. In poor holding ground, deeper water, high winds and high tidal flow, a prudent Master will increase the scope of chain even more.
  12. Simple economics is the reason it wouldn't work, in addition to a plethora of international regulations, the least of which is compliance with crew visas and the ISPS Code and the Ship's Security Manual. The first thing they teach you when going to sea is that ships don't make money in port. If ships could make money alongside the TAR day would be many hours longer alongside the dock, to make life easier on the crew. Another consideration is I suspect many people have no desire to go to Florida due to their COVID numbers. Even if the border was open, we certainly wouldn't go there.
  13. The CLIA is mostly comprised of cruise lines with a focus on the US market. Although Viking is definitely an exception, as they don't follow industry norms. Another few non-members are: Fred Olsen Hurtigen Saga Hebridean P&O Australia Cruise & Maritime Voyages Pullmanter Saejet (owns old Oceana) Lots more, but those are the ones I can think of without researching.
  14. Dukefan - excellent responses. I suggest this could be the classic example of a little knowledge...... The actual workings of the discretionary charges are a closely guarded secret, at least on the cruise lines I know. When our son was Senior 2nd he was not privy to the program and even good friends that are Masters or Pursers/Hotel GM's don't discuss any specifics of the subject.
  15. All CMV ships were detained by MCA in June and then last week the company went into Receivership.
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