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CDNPolar

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Everything posted by CDNPolar

  1. If you are disembarking on your own with your own transportation, then you MUST vacate your cabin by 8:00am. The problem is that since you are disembarking on your own, you may or may not be able to have your luggage removed or held by Viking Crew. You can generally stay until 11am, I believe but should be off the ship by then. You may have to pull all your luggage around with you which will be inconvenient. (For all those going on Viking extensions or to the airport, their luggage will be transferred to the cruise port central hall for collection. If you are not going at a specific time, then your luggage is there unattended.) If I were you, I would email tellus@vikingcruises.com and ask very specific questions about this situation. 1) Disembarking on own 2) What time to leave cabin? 3) To what time can I stay on the ship? 4) Can my luggage be stored until I want to leave?
  2. In the past I have had a single Canadian penny pulled out of a combination of US coins offered to a merchant, and the Canadian penny was passed back to me with a frown of distrust that I was trying to get away with something.... We cannot assume anywhere in the world that "our" currency is legal tender. It may be accepted and it may not be. Nothing to be angry or upset about. This is why we travel with credit cards and if the merchant does not accept cards, then we don't buy.
  3. Are these suggested gratuities then added to your stateroom invoice and payable at the end of the cruise? Do you also have the option to change or remove the amount? Gratuities to drivers and guides is always - in my opinion - going to be optional and out of your pocket. We see 50/50 where half give something and half do not.
  4. Or, between purchasing SSBP or not purchasing SSBP.
  5. Yes. We eat and try everything, but I have met many people on ships that are terrified of any food that is not "American" and typical for their diet. (I am not bashing anyone here....) These folks go back to the ship. I think that we were "back to the ship" people in the beginning because we thought that we had paid for that food, we should take advantage of it. Now we look for authentic local cuisine - if available - break from the tour and stay on shore for lunch.
  6. The allure of Christmas markets is large for some. After visiting a couple last year, I am not as crazy wild about spending my time trying to see every Christmas market this year. I have the feeling that once you have seen one or two.... Kind of like how some folks feel about churches.
  7. Snobbery is in the eye of the beholder. It will be different for everyone as it is subjective.
  8. Jockey shorts? Not briefs? Speedo like?
  9. My understanding of formal nights are for men, Jackets and Ties.
  10. I am personally preparing for this to happen this fall. We were debating on a which way to have our two cruises this fall go, and we chose the direction that we can fly direct without connections. This way, when we land in Barcelona in October and Amsterdam in November, if we have to do the EES we don't have to stress about a connection.
  11. This may not have been enough for your wife, but we have found time and again that if they are walking around with one white or one red that we don't particularly enjoy, that if you ask, they come back with one or more other options. You are not restricted to what is in their hand when they approach the table. They don't advertise this, but it is a fact.
  12. Yes, there is an included Prosecco in the included wines. It is rarely "carried around" by the servers, you have to ask for it. I do not believe that there is a hard cider. Hard cider is alcohol and alcohol is not complimentary at lunch and dinner.
  13. Everything I have read and continue to read about the EES is that it is set to launch this year in October. The ETIAS was delayed for sure because of the Paris Olympics, but the EES is a separate system, as I am sure that you know. If you are transiting and connecting through a EU airport this year from October on, be prepared for longer wait to get through Passport control unless you hold an EU passport.
  14. So if you don't spend it onboard, you get a cheque from your TA?
  15. All the above very true. I think for residents that live and work in some of these cities, the onslaught of thousands of people being unleashed on a city is too much to deal with. I was born and raised in Toronto. Toronto is not a major tourist draw, but we have our tourist season and times. We do have some cruise ships that dock in Toronto as well. When I am "running" for the commuter train after work and minutes from the next one and a carefully timed routine to get to the station, I can often be interrupted by groups of tourists that are blocking the sidewalks listening to a guide, or staring up at a building. I can only imagine what it is like for locals in some of these cities. We went to Venice off season. Very off season. We were told that the crowds were extremely light and we found it frustrating as a tourist based on the number of people. I cannot imagine Venice in high tourist season. I am not convinced that it is because cruise passengers don't spend enough money. We do fuel the bus/tour industry. I think it is about crowding.
  16. We used to always buy the SSBP on Viking. I think that we thought we were getting greater value. The fact is that we primarily drink wine and we are fine with most of the included wines at lunch and dinner, so we don't feel the need to move onto other wines that we must pay for. Since wine and beer are included with lunch and dinner and you can literally ask for a top up to the brim of your wine glass before you leave the dining room at night, we just don't drink enough to warrant spending on the SSBP. If you are a cocktail drinker, and you are having mid-afternoon, before dinner, and after dinner cocktails (no judgement) then the SSBP is probably for you. Most all drinks are in the $8 USD range. That is the number you should divide into the daily cost to see per person if this is worth it. (You don't say in your profile where you are from and the cost is different depending on where you are buying the cruise and drinks package). If you are from the USA then you are paying $25 per night per person. Because we do not buy the SSBP now, we don't hold back from ordering if we want something different, or a Cognac after dinner because we will never come close to the cost of the package.
  17. However EES is being implemented too and that to my knowledge is being implemented starting October this year. Difference being this is not an apply for before you go but a requirement for finger prints and pictures on entering the EU. The one thing that may be advised is for longer connection time if you are connecting flights in the EU this fall/winter. We know that this will not go so smoothly that everyone will flow like they do now. There will be lines and delays.
  18. Hahaha... Yes, I will suggest that to the other half. He would not care however because I do all the budgeting and he just goes along for the ride.
  19. Viking does NOT have formal nights. One of the reasons we do sail them. If we were to sail a line with a formal night, we would just do the buffet that night. We do like to come back from the days activities and shower and change into clean and nice clothes, but there is no way that I am putting on a jacket or tie for dinner. This is just personal choice.
  20. I may have the answer to this, but this is just my thinking... I do not see here that you called Allainz while you were away and before you made your cancellations and rebooked your flights? Did you contact them before doing all of this? I think that perhaps if you did not contact the insurance company when all this was happening, within a certain time frame, and by waiting until you got home, this is the reason why they are not paying. Insurance as I know it requires you to contact them for their assistance before you do anything - unless of course it is a life threatening medical emergency. Could this be the case? Our experience was a full cancellation for a covered reason, but I called the claim line before cancelling or making any steps towards cancelling. I would hope that if you call them and ask for a direct reason that they denied your claim that they would be obligated to do so and not just direct you to the policy language....
  21. For me it is all about what the policy states for pre-existing conditions and the stability period. I don't think that it matters what medivac insurance you have unless it covers pre-existing conditions regardless of stability. If you don't meet the stability and pre-existing conditions language then you won't be covered. Most insurance is not "blanket" insurance. (This in my knowledge and experience)
  22. Sorry, not questioning what you are being told, but it is only land/car crossing that requires all travelling together to have Nexus. However, it would not make sense for you to go to the Nexus line and your wife the non-Nexus line when arriving back anyway.... Got it.... Thanks!
  23. Would you please clarify this statement? Interestingly we both have Nexus but we never state travelling together coming back into Canada, if asked at the kiosk we state we are travelling independently. Perhaps we are doing something wrong....?
  24. I think that your fears are unfounded and especially around cost. As @Flatbush Flyer states, the premium to luxury lines include so much more that you must look at a per night amount rather than the sticker cost of the cabin. I am sure that some consider us snobby because our preferred cruise line is Viking Ocean, and some friends (at a distance) have commented in ways that suggest they think we are exactly that because of the cost... But, if I met you on a Viking Cruise and you told me that this was your first Viking cruise and you had sailed exclusively on Carnival in the past, I would be immediately interested to hear your experiences with Carnival and what you loved about them to sail that line many times. We don't judge you based on your choices, or consider ourselves better because we are on Viking. We are limited now to experiences on Viking, Uniworld, and Hurtigruten, but the people we have met on these lines have been very down to earth.
  25. Welcome to Cruise Critic! Please be more specific to your question. Your title states "Onboard Currency" so are you asking can you pay for things in cash onboard the ship? Ships are generally cashless and all charges go to your stateroom account and you settle them at debarkation with a credit card, or you may be able to pay in cash your final account... Or are you asking what currency the ship(s) operate in those regions?
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