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Everything posted by FlyingAnchor

  1. Does this mean we don't need to wait until tomorrow to see what new itineraries they finalize/announce to see if anything fits our schedule/vacation desires?
  2. We booked an excursion through Norway's Best in Flam and they were super responsive to my email questions trying to figure out the timing and how and when we'd get back to the ship. We did the combo Flam Railway/Zipline/Bikeride tour and it was amazing. I'm afraid of heights and survied the zip line and would do it again in a heartbeat!
  3. Thank you! We've never sailed on a smaller ship before so we do want to try it at least once! 🤣
  4. Thank you, both! Knowing these standard selections, along with how minimal the upgrade charge is (compared to X for example) we will probably add on a beverage package if we book the AZ sailing we're looking at!
  5. I think we're going to start looking at smaller ships. We never sailed Azamara when it was part of RCI but we've found an acceptable itinerary on them and several other small ship operators. Just weighing the pros and cons of each and also looking at the ports involved! One thing we've struggled with X over the years is the repetitiveness of itineraries so it'll be nice to find some new ports along the way if we do sail with someone else.
  6. Its this for us. We've been researching day and night to replace both of our upcoming X cruises. Why do we keep paying more to chase a nicer experience on X when they keep cheapening it? We'll see if we find another line to become our go-to or not. The truth is, we don't sail Royal for a reason. Not thrilled to see X watered down over and over again.
  7. Thank you! I read through their website and beverage package PDF but it just says "standard spirits" and doesn't list any kind of brand name. Does anyone know what their standard spirit vodka and bourbon are?
  8. We always tip on Celebrity, too. At least we did until X started charging for room service and we stopped enjoying it on our balcony every morning. A favorite past time of days gone by of ours lol.
  9. We may be replacing a sailing on X to Portugal next year with this same April 2024 Azamara sailing. Our first AZ cruise. Is room service included or an extra charge? I couldn't find any mention of it on the Azamara website. I promise, I did try to check! I must say, the drink package upgrade prices seem VERY reasonable after years of sailing on X!
  10. The new promos are out and they only talk about 3 ships in 3 different regions. No mention of Brilliant Lady. Where did you see these?
  11. We recently booked an alternative/backup sailing with all of this uncertainty and it is double the price vs. what we paid to book the VV TA pretty much the day it was released for sale. 😔 This sailing is our introduction to VV...can't say we're impressed.
  12. I don't drink coffee, I drink iced tea instead. Have to have it! On Solstice last year, one or two bars only carried bottled iced tea. On Apex last week, I didn't see any. What I do is ask for an English Breakfast tea (hot) from Cafe al Bacio with two glasses of ice on the side. This is how I get my fix everyday 🤣
  13. I took my first Celebrity cruise at 28 and haven't looked back since! 🤣🤣🤣 And I love the "Beyond the Podium" series.
  14. Just back from an Apex sailing. Friends of ours we were sailing with surprised us with door decorations to celebrate our birthdays! Believe it or not, this was our very first time ever sailing with a decorated door! It stayed up all week.
  15. Celebrity Equinox on 11APR24. FLL to LIS.
  16. What is different about it? The flow from theater to Cafe al Bacio to Martini Bar is one of our major gripes about EDGE class ships!
  17. I will 100% admit to being one of those people BUT want to share this: We sailed on EDGE not long after it debuted and did not like our IV. It was a Caribbean itinerary, and my major problem with it was that it had a marketing problem. Back then it was marketed as a balcony cabin and a balcony cabin it is not. To me, its a glorified sunroom. On that sailing, we really missed having a traditional balcony to sit on. Last week, we sailed on APEX in Norway. For our Norwegian sailing, the IV was lovely to have! It was cold, we would have spent little time out on a traditional balcony, and I loved sitting in front of that window viewing the scenery and reading my book. When I wanted unobstructed photos I opened the IV, when I wanted to hear the water I just cracked it. And when Cafe al Bacio was way too crowded/loud to sit and read, I sat in my own cabin against that window and read my book in peace and quiet! Is the IV our favorite all of a sudden? No. But it has some pros I refused to credit it with on our original EDGE sailing. And I wouldn't avoid an EDGE class ship anymore like I said I would after that initial sailing due to the IV!
  18. We booked this TA on Brilliant Lady right away when it was released. It would be our very first VV cruise. This thread is making us very nervous, along with some comments we've heard from friends on other sailings about VV as a whole. Portugal is the goal for our TA next year, so we are considering booking a TA on a different line that is one day longer and has one more port in Portugal than this VV sailing. Especially with all of the uncertainty we're reading in this post, we're not confident in sailing in VV.
  19. Just did the 7 night out of the Netherlands on Apex. Flam, Geiranger, Haugesund, and Bergen. Flam and Geiranger were breathtakingly gorgeous. Haugesund taught me more about the history of Norway than any other port, which I appreciated. Bergen was fine. Multiple X excursions were canceled in each port, all within the final week leading up to sailing or after embarkation day. If you go to Flam, I highly encourage you to do the zip line! We booked a combo train/zip line/biking tour and it was amazing. Geiranger we booked the RIB boat and it was great for seeing the 7 sisters and the fjord up close. I'd go back to Norway in a heartbeat. It was magical!
  20. Hello! Does anyone know how long the bikeride from the bottom of the zipline back to Flam takes? We just booked this tour package (train, zipline, bikes) for our upcoming cruise.
  21. We recently sailed Solstice and while the days and ports matched the itinerary we received on our booking confirmation, the actual times in port varied by the time we boarded the ship. 🤷🏻‍♂️
  22. Who is the current cruise director onboard? Glad you had a great sailing. We board APEX in a little over a month!
  23. We absolutely loved your excursion when we stopped in Bonaire. If we ever cruise to Bonaire again we'd do it again in a heartbeat! It was so much fun and also a very unique experience for us. The crew working there were great. When we first showed up I was hesitant (afraid it might be dangerous) and when they gave the safety speech and explained we'd be riding for 45 minutes I thought "What in the world am I going to do for 45 minutes going in circles around this track?" But it FLEW by and I would have stayed even longer if I could have! What a fun activity and we thoroughly enjoyed it. As for the danger, once the crew explained how the carts worked and what to do in different scenarios, any hesitation I had evaporated and my time on the track was full of enjoyment! I just didn't want to be the first person to go down. 🤣 I'm proud to say I didn't roll over at all.* The carts were very controllable and exciting and fun to operate. *Due to the design of the carts you don't actually roll over like upside down. You just sort of tip to the side and the crew comes over and sets you back upright. Off you go again!
  24. I don't know why but I never returned to this post after making it. Thanks everyone for your replies and I hope future cruisers find them helpful! We had a BLAST on this excursion. To this day, it is our favorite excursion we've ever done on a cruise sailing. I recommend it to everyone anytime I hear they are going to Bonaire!
  25. Our first choice is always a ship's tour for the peace of mind in knowing they will return us to the ship. With that being said, we have booked tours through private companies when we find a tour they offer that we like better than the ship's tour, the ship's tour is sold out and its comparable or equal, or we're in port for an extended amount of time and not too worried about being back on a timeline (for example, an overnight). Before doing so, we always check and make sure they offer some type of return to ship guarantee and make sure we fully understand what their return to ship guarantee encompasses. We have also booked Private Journeys through the Destination Concierge onboard and really enjoyed those. They typically hire a driver and use our direction on what we'd like to see. Some of our best tours have come from us asking these drivers what they would show their friends or families if they came into town.
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