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Everything posted by Aquadesiac

  1. Of course, in a perfect world, itinerary is important. However, it is not guaranteed. No cruise line can be certain they can deliver the ports they advertise because situations change on the ground. War in the middle east make it imperative that current WCs change their itinerary to avoid the Suez Canal completely. Russia has been off the radar since they invaded the Ukraine. Myanmar has been on countless cruise wish lists, but inevitably, they are skipped because of internal unrest. Because of that, it's really important that the culture and experience of the line you choose fit your preferences because you'll be on the ship more than in port whichever line you choose. The serene vibe on Viking is one of the reasons we chose it for 2025. Just the sound of "The Traveler," the hauntingly beautiful orchestral piece the line commissioned is enough to lower my BP instantly.
  2. We had actually booked the 2025 WC on QA. We enjoy the music, entertainment, enrichment and sense of "occasion" on Cunard. But the more we thought about our incredible experience on Viking in 2022--bear in mind that this was at the height of the Omicron outbreak--and how deftly that cruise line pivoted, changing the whole first half of the itinerary, and still managed to give us a world class adventure in safety and comfort...well, we decided to jump ship and return to Viking to hopefully enjoy the itinerary we thought we were going to have in 2022. But itinerary isn't the be all end all. We've discovered that we really love smaller ships (QA 3000 pax, Viking 930). We'll still have the music we love, the entertainment, the enrichment we'd have relished on QA. But we'll enjoy them in a much more intimate setting. The only downside is that the DH doesn't have to pack his tux for Viking. (Such a shame! The man looks fabulous in his James Bond duds!) It's not that we dislike Cunard. Far from it. But our previous Viking WC just kept calling to us. It was a new surprise and delight every day.
  3. I'm afraid we're guilty of doing a world cruise on a line we'd never sailed with in 2022 when we boarded the Viking Star. But I'd read enough good reviews and appreciate the way the line supports Masterpiece, so I thought it would be a good fit. I can't say we chose it for the itinerary because the day before we boarded the entire plan was gutted due to shut-downs related to Covid. But Viking put together a plan and we were bound for ports we'd never considered. It was a surprise and delight at every turn! Life is filled with a mix of good and bad. World cruises are no different. And we can't always see which is coming our way, but I try to hope for the good. When I embark on a world cruise, I recite this quote from Emily Dickenson: The soul should always stand ajar, ready to welcome the ecstatic experience.
  4. I think the moral of this story is that everyone has things which are important to them. Some go for itinerary. Some for the shipboard experience. Some have to weigh the costs carefully (which we always try to do). Some don't need to concern themselves with that. We have been blessed to sail on the Pacific Princess WC in 2018 and the Viking Star in 2022 through the Omicron outbreak. The experiences were different, but both completely magical. Our next WC is a circumnavigation on Cunard in 2025. It'll be something entirely different as well. I think the trick is to surrender your expectations at the pier. The trip will be surprising in both good and bad ways. That's why they say travel is broadening. (Or maybe it's just the food...)
  5. Oh, no, my dear. QM2 is all art deco. Very early 20th century. It's the era of the elegant designs of Erte, of Lalique's exquisite glass and the Chrysler Building's symmetry. It's really the last great style of design and Mary has it in spades. And by the way, I'm a great aunt many times over and no one has ever accused me of being...comforting. I'm more likely to lead the kids on an adventure.
  6. When we were on the QM2 in 2019, it was the first cruise on which we were completely unable to connect to the internet in our cabin. Even venturing out to seek nodes on the ship wasn't much better. However, if Starlink is faster, it ought to make using the internet in public places easier. Getting it in your cabin is a function of how close you are to one of those little nodes.
  7. On our 2022 Viking WC, the entire first half of the itinerary was changed due to Covid and restrictions from Australia and most of Asia. Instead, we sailed south around South American, then across to noodle around in the Med. Then we went through the Suez canal to join our original schedule in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. It was the most surprising, brilliant adventure we've ever been on even though it bore little resemblance to the cruise we signed up for.
  8. Okay, here's another question. If one of us becomes too ill to continue, the other will not want to remain on the ship alone. Is there a provision in the lease contract that speaks to this situation? Thanks in advance for your input!
  9. This is a question for those intrepid souls who have booked a cabin on the Victoria Majestic, or are seriously considering it. What company are you using for travel/medical insurance for a voyage that could be indefinite? As we get more grey hairs, our rates go up even for shorter cruises. How have you addressed this issue? Does Victoria require you to be insured for the full amount of your lease contract in case you become too ill to continue traveling? The idea of retirement at sea speaks to me. I hope it all works out for you!
  10. Thanks, Roscoe! You have a very engaging style of writing and I've avidly followed your blogs as well. I especially enjoyed hearing about your shoe shopping exploits in SF before you joined the QV! Hope to meet you on one of the Queens sometime!
  11. Thanks. I'll keep an eye on it in case they offer something again.
  12. From what I gather about the Victoria Cruise, there will be opportunities for language classes on board. I've always felt my education was lacking because I'm not multi-lingual. I know enough to ask where the nearest loo is in a smattering of languages, but to be fluent, to be able to converse without internally translating in a tongue I wasn't born to... that would be a great accomplishment! I love music, so I'd bring a couple of books of piano pieces and look for an unused piano on board. I wonder if there will be a passenger choir for you. You can't help but make connections with people you make music with. The DH and I always enjoy art classes when we're on board..more for the process than the end product, believe me. It's fun to rediscover your playful side. Have a wonderful 3 years, Cheoptera. If you blog about your adventures, I will sign up to follow YOU!
  13. Do you have a link to those last minute deals on Victoria Majestic? I googled it and my Norton tagged it as a dodgy link, so I'm not in the right place obviously. My DH and I are really drawn to this concept, but would like to try before we "buy ." Congratulations love*2*cruise for being a brave soul!
  14. My DH and I have pulled the trigger and booked the 2025 Maiden World Voyage of Cunard's Queen Anne. If anyone's interested in following our plans, preparation and ultimately the cruise itself, let me invite you to hop over to RoundTheWorldWriter and sign up to receive new posts by email. I'll be dropping a new topic once a week until we sail and as often as the wifi on the Queen Anne will allow thereafter! We feel so blessed, excited and impatient (embarkation is almost 600 days away after all!) about this new adventure. It's a full circumnavigation and we're so ready to have Phileas Fogg-style journey! (Minus the inconveniences he suffered, of course. We are traveling via Cunard, after all!) Anyway, just FYI in case you want to get in on the ground floor of preparation for leaving land life for 105 days. Thanks!
  15. Thanks, BlueMarble. Bummer news, but thanks.
  16. I'm on their newsletter list and my question is...where do seniors over a certain age find affordable travel insurance for years at a time?
  17. On the website in our My Cunard section, it hints that a second internet package in the stateroom is available at a discount, but no specifics were given. Does anyone know what sort of discount they mean? Thanks, in advance.
  18. Sounds like you've discovered the right sort of cruising for you, D & N. I have to confess, we didn't jump right into extended voyages. We did 7 nights for years, then 12, then 14, finally a 30 night and we still weren't eager to get off the ship. Please don't misunderstand. We love our land life too. But I have a touch of wanderlust I've never been able to contain. I'm not comfortable flying internationally, so the places we want to see can only be reached by ship. Someday, we'll stay home and reminisce about our adventurous "go-go" years, but for now, we hope to make as many memories as we can. And while we're on Cunard, we hope to be appropriately dressed while we make them!
  19. Not even for smart attire nights? We're going to be on Queen Anne for 98 nights. I don't think Cunard offers true dry cleaning any more and chinos can be washed.
  20. I agree that Formal is very easy for gentlemen to attain--Tux, Dinner Jacket, Dark Suit. It's the Smart Attire that has us all shaking our heads. I wonder if the American idea of Business Casual is more what Cunard had in mind for non-formal evenings. Something like: A navy Jacket sans tie, long sleeved shirt with a collar, and chinos or... A camel Jacket, silk long sleeved mock turtleneck sweater, and chinos (My DH looks smashing in this!) I guess I'm assuming since "chinos" refers only to the more casual fabric, and since they have hidden stitches and are more tailored than any other style of "less-than-suit" pants, they are considered "trousers" for the purpose of Smart Attire evenings, though not for Formal nights. Am I mistaken? We're booked on Queen Anne's 2025 Maiden WC and don't want to run afoul of fashion expectations.
  21. Been checking the internet info in our MyCunard cruise planner and the full cruise plan is for one devise only at a time, but it also says there is a discount for a second internet plan in the same cabin. Does anyone know how much of a discount Cunard offers for this second plan?
  22. Looks like I missed that memo. Wonderful news! Thanks, Hattie! We're booked on Queen Anne's Maiden World Cruise in 2025! Love to travel, but reliable wifi makes it possible for us to stay connected to our land life too.
  23. Even being able to use the internet in public areas would be a huge improvement. It should be less of a frustration with Starlink. I remember sitting in the King's Court, watching my computer chase its tail while I tried to upload a photo to my cruise blog. Then, like as not, I'd be booted from the system before anything could be accomplished. I'm not the most tech-saavy person, so my patience with pixels is limited. My DH, on the other hand, retired from Google. It's so nice to have a techie around the house, but even he couldn't make the old Cunard Wifi hop-to. I'm so hopeful Queen Anne will be fitted with enough routers to spread the signal to the staterooms!
  24. If this really is a Starlink installation, why isn't Cunard trumpeting it? The frustratingly sloth-like internet on our 21 day cruise on the QM2 in 2019 and the fact that we could NEVER connect to the internet while in our cabin (something we've never experienced on any other ship) was one of the few black marks on an otherwise stellar cruise. It would really improve our ability to stay in touch with family to be able to connect more easily. Truly hopeful this Starlink "sighting" is the real deal. Hattie, have you heard anything official about Starlink on the soon-to-be 4 Queens?
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