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Posts posted by BVILady

  1. 4 hours ago, Travel Lady in CT said:

    "most excursions on the world cruise I will do with local companies".  What sites do you use to find excursions with local companies?  

    I  have been on the World Cruise with at7Seas and joined him in quite a few of the excursions he booked. Towards the later part of the cruise other passengers would also join him, because local excursions were with less people then ship-excursions. The picking of local companies is again a matter of research. Lot's of places you might find tours locally offered by international companies like getyourguide, Viator, Tripadvisor or civitatis but other places local companies are not affiliated with chains. Just let Google do the walking 😉

    • Like 2
    • Thanks 1
  2. 16 hours ago, Janet&Carl said:

    I have been reading the board and still undecided on which world cruise.  I am surprised that no one mentioned which ports the cruise goes to as a priority.  I have short listed cruises and in doing so have added up how many port days to sea days.  Some of the cheaper ( Princess, Cunard)  have really bad ratios.  Next criteria is how many are new ports.  Having flown half way round the world to most cruises (which has been one of the biggest expenses of each holiday) to book a holiday that just repeats what we have already done would be crazy. 


    So food is not that important, most lines have something I can choose to eat and I can buy specialty restaurant access on cheaper lines that dont provide a good menu.  Entertainment is ok but not the be all and end all of my considerations.  Comfort and service with a smile is important I get that on most cruises.   We prefer serene, quiet environments to loud party scenes. We are easy going and dont complain about very much at all so most lines suit us.  We have tried 7 different lines and can find good and bad in all. 


    So given the above considerations and the fact that this may be a one of experience the more ports the better and the more new ports going to places that are still on our list to see is the primary consideration.  

    that is the reason why I will not be able to take any more World Cruises, which is a pity. I did love to unpack ad pack only once, but life is short and I want to see as much as possible of this beautiful planet.

  3. On 3/6/2024 at 1:56 AM, rog747 said:


    Dress code must haves?

    Oh yes.

    Since 2017 I am now travelling Solo, thus on a Formal evening, I need my personal Butler/Valet to help tie/fasten my black tie, and put my cuff links in LOL !

    But when sailing in Steerage (Britannia, but of course, I jest) then my very helpful Room Steward always assists.

    OOps, he will be in trouble there because I do not know how to tie a black tie, wondering who can help, maybe we have to purchase a clip-on.

    • Haha 1
  4. 55 minutes ago, Victoria2 said:

    I must have missed the QG reference and you are quite right. Dinner can be served in the cabin. We have had a couple of cabin dinners [with friends] and the experience was quite delightful.


    However, 2025 is still some way off and  BVILady's circumstances might improve this year. Time can be a healer so why not wait awhile  BVILady  before making a decision.

    Thank you all for the positive comments. I think some commenters have not read that I had booked the cruise by itinerary not aware of strict dress-codes. I travelled 2023 and now will travel 2024 for 5 month, so far I have 3 month scheduled for 2025, so might not do as much research on cruise-lines as I probably should. My son has decided to come and I have booked his cruise yesterday and we are looking forward to the itinerary, even quite a few ports are already well known to us, but not Sardinia and Corsica. We will be in Rome a few days before this cruise and I am looking forward to getting him a nice suit, always loved Italian men's wear. 

    • Like 8
  5. 22 hours ago, bazzaw said:

    I live in  a similar style in Austrlalia - will soon be doing my 10th Cunard cruise , this time around Japan. Most of my Cunard cruises have sailed out of Southampton and we have enjoyed the formality of the line . BUT - this time, the cruise is only 10 days long, we have been on QE six times before and we are only sailing on her again for the itinerary. I am now completely over bringing a Tux with me  and I dont own a dark suit, so I will simply wear trousers and a shirt at night ( probably with a blazer jacket) and not participate in the so-called Gala nights in the MDR 

    I am waiting for my son to decide, but I am not willing to pay the equivalent of 4 person fare for 2 persons and then being excluded from the Gala-night menu, just because the cruise-line is stack somewhere in the 1950's 😂

  6. On 1/24/2024 at 10:28 PM, Cruise Junky said:

    I’d love the time and money to string a bunch of cruises together with land trips in the middle..ie transpacific followed by a month in Aus then find a Sydney to Asia cruise, spend a few weeks, find a Dubai to Europe then time in Provence, Tuscany and then a transatlantic home.  

    I am currently working on something similar for Europe in 2025. It get's a little boring going to the same ports over and over again. It will not be similar to a World Cruise but just Europe and again 2 month, like my kids and I did in 2022, considering they don't have more then 2 month time off. On the cruises I have so far picked I have been to a few of the ports already but the one's we have not been to make up for that. Will spend time in between in places I have not been to since 1971 like Malta. Have found some excursions there I am looking forward to take. To early to look for accommodations and flights but checking on what is offered for 2024 it looks like it will be a great trip. I am fortunate to speak German besides English so for 2026 I have booked a cruise going through the Caribbean Islands offering more ports then the one's which are usually included in all North American Cruise-lines. Funny thing is living in the Caribbean I will fly to Europe to take this cruise. I will get off in Rio but the cruise continues around South America but have been there several times already.

    • Like 2
  7. I don't know, I had booked that cruise because I liked the itinerary. If a black suit is not going to be enough (which I will have to talk him into already), I will just have no choice then to cancel and cut my losses with the deposit already paid. Never thought we well-traveled island-people will end up not being suitable for any trip. 🤣😀🤣 This is just too much trouble for the money we are spending.

  8. I do live on a Tropical Island and even fur funerals or weddings gentlemen do not wear suits. How does the Tuxedo-Rental work, anyone can advise me on that? Is there an option for us to eat at the Buffet on Gala Nights, I really don't want to have to buy a suit for these 2 weeks, he will never have use for again. We will be in Europe for about 6 weeks, the suit will take up luggage-space we don't have. Whenever he travels with me and his sister he needs available empty space in his suit-case to take back our purchases which don't fit in our suit-case 🙂 So he will need a smart black pants, dress-shirts and one or 2 ties and dress-shoes.

  9. I am also on Costa Deliziosa and in contact with At7Seas. Here is a message from him:


    “I can’t follow this report up, because I got blocked for my obscene and abusive language, for being intimidating and other things. I have not even an idea what I did wrong in particular, but obviously my style is unwanted. I am sorry and I thank you for following me on this short part of my voyage. At 7 Seas”


    I followed the blog and am very sorry t see that.

  10. I am also on the ship for this World Cruise. I have been on Costa before, including last years World Cruise and always like the food. I have to say the food on this cruise is excellent. I have never been a person taking pictures of my meals, but I am actually tempted now. I am at the early sitting at dinner and quite a few people find the wait for the 2nd show at 21.00 kind of long, so that might be why people might not be hanging out longer after the shows. I am enjoying your reports and pictures a lot. Please keep them coming. Thank you very much.

    • Like 2
  11. 13 minutes ago, NE John said:

    Your son may enjoy dressing up, who knows? Many younger people I speak with and show pictures from Gala Nights are excited about the idea of dressing up and participating in Gala nights. Not all, but many more than I thought. Note that there is also a minimum dress code for “Smart Attire” nights to consider too.  He mainly has to realize that Cunard doesn’t have all the amusements and activities that the Mega/Mall ships offer; overall, Cunard is more laid back and quiet but he’ll be kept busy. 

    thank you, he is laid back, we live in the Caribbean so I am pretty sure dressing up is not what he is looking for, will have to twist his arm hard.  What will he need for smart attire?  Thanks


  12. I have not been on Cunard before but am booked now for 2025 on Queen Victoria, due to the schedule offered. I usually do only book according the schedule suiting my fancy and am not loyal to any cruise-line.  I am currently on a World Cruise with Costa but had a nasty fall before my departure and will have to rest about 4 weeks out of my 4 month cruise instead of taking excursions, Now I am questioning how advisable it is for me to travel solo and consider maybe talk my son to book the cruise also, The problem is he is in IT and probably never has even worn a tie. What would he necessarily need to come along, if he should decide to. I do get that schedules say Gala Night black/white - again what is the minimum requirement. What, even for me, stands Masquerade or Roaring Twenties for. Will hate to have to cancel the cruise and naturally take a loss on the deposit.

  13. exiledowl thank you so much for pointing to Phoenix Reisen. I went on their website and discovered the same cruise At7Seas will be going on and he fortunately was able to put me onto the segment of the Caribbean and South America to Rio, which was better suitable for me, having been around South America already twice. That is the best cruise for the Caribbean Islands I have seen so far with visiting so many islands usually not on cruise-schedules and spending the night in several. Should you have previously been in Buenos Aires I recommend doing the excursion to Iguazo Falls. I did it early this year on the Costa World Cruise and loved it. 

  14. Good Afternoon. Does anyone have an e-mail address for HAL to get that done. Have been hanging on the phone for too long and no luck with the chat, it doesn't connect at all. Thanks in advance. Booked already but cannot find anything to change this on their website. Do not recall even being offered the option when I made my booking, just cabin-category.


  15. On 11/24/2023 at 6:02 PM, SargassoPirate said:

    This discussion is much like asking "which car would you recommend?"


    I have done some 50 cruises on various lines and am Elite on Princess and Diamond Plus on RCI.  I booked each for the itinerary and the price point at the time. I have enjoyed every cruise, except for the 7 days I spent on the prison ship NCL Epic.


    Each line and each ship has its cheerleaders and it's detractors.  


    I booked a world cruise first to circumnavigate the globe. Second was a line I was familiar with. Third was the price point.  


    I don't eat in specialty restaurants, don't drink much, and don't feel compelled to get off the ship in every port.  Give me somewhere to get something to eat when I'm hungry, a real promenade to enjoy being at sea, a wee dram of a good scotch in the evening, some pleasant music (not over amplified)  in the evening and I'm good.





    lol, not really "which car would you recommend" - I see it what do you want to spend and what do you expect to be covered. I am not like you, I will definitely be on shore in every port, since my reason to go on a World Cruise is to see the world. 

    I am still swallowing on the price I had been quoted for single-occupancy by Viking, which had been around $ 100,000. So when you look at  Heidi 13 calculations I would have been charged about $ 30.000 for business-class airfare. Corresponding with other people on another board, calculating their business class flight to Japan might be $ 8000 p.p. - but now is late in the year to compare price for 2024 to the date they will need it for 2025. Early booking it might be less anyhow. When it comes to the OBC, how much would I have gotten? Also drink-package, I hardly drink anything, wine with dinner, most of the time not even with lunch - and lunch would only be on seadays anyhow. And now learning that the better wine is not included, so I wouldn't even have been able to select that! Got on HAL the HIA package (early booking perk) which includes 2 dinners in a Specialty restaurant which I really don't need and booking in advance being solo-cruiser will be difficult. Just read on Facebook how people compliment the quality of HAL food in the Main-Dining Room these days. My main-factor selecting a cruise is the itinerary, date and price - so that is why I am not loyal to any line. Looking forward to all the cruises I have currently booked. Hope you enjoy your Princess cruise!

  16. 10 hours ago, islandwoman said:

    So if I read this correctly, Viking's OBC and the cost of flights accounted for the small differential in the two (Princess and Viking) World Cruise daily costs?

    So the cost of flights would be a large amount of money I would give to Viking without any reason to me. I get my flights on my airline/credit card points, only had to pay for one flight on my 2023 cruise because it was effected by Holiday black-out dates for reward tickets due to my departure airport. I usually take day-flights Premium Economy and if available night-flights lay-flat business class. Got plenty of points right now for my 2 long distance trips in 2025 to be most probably covered. I also have booked quite a few excursions not with the cruise-line but individually because they were more attractive  Usually I do prefer to book with the cruise line but sometimes something better comes along. Both times when I was in Manila (HAL and Costa) I was very happy I did so, watching the traffic in Manila.  I also did notice that an excursion I had booked with Costa being much more reasonable priced then one I saw on an itinerary on Oceania (same excursion - port-agents do contract with local tour-companies)  So again I do not see why I would pay about $ 60.000 more to Viking then I pay as total for a more main stream cruise line (everything included)  and Costa Deliziosa is not a Mega-ship with less then 2600 passengers, so quite acceptable to me. So if someone tells me that in the end Viking is a better deal, I cannot agree to that. But everyone to his/her own. Gail and Marty if you are comfortable on HAL, go for it. I do like HAL, have been on several cruises with them and currently booked for March 2025 Japan/South Korea - looking forward to it. And can't wait for my Cunard Med-cruise also in 2025. I don't think I will do another World Cruise, have been in to many ports already several times and now picking shorter cruises with at least a few ports I have not been to yet and do land-stay's in between. Can't wait to finalize all my bookings later in 2024 with accommodations and flights for 2025. Keeping my fingers crossed that I will be able to live the nomad life for a few more years. And that the world is not messing up my plans again - like with Covid. 

    • Like 2
  17. 42 minutes ago, Heidi13 said:


    Having completed 2 World Cruises and booked, then had to cancel a 3rd, I'll suggest you need to consider more than the base fare.


    Our Princess WC (less expensive Line) was about 1/2 the base fare of the Viking WC (more expensive Line). However, once both cruises were over, the actual cost per day was virtually the same. I note this is highly dependant on cruising style and some pax may not want/need the extras included in the more expensive Line.


    Oceania and Viking are fairly comparable in standards, as those were the 2 Lines we shortlisted after dumping Princess after 40 years. Some of the key differences for us:


     - Number of pax and the available space is vastly superior on Viking and I assume also Oceania. Nowhere on the ship was crowded and they had quiet areas all over the ship to sit and read. On Princess, the ship had more than double the pax and always felt crowded, with queues for everything.


     - World Cruise and Segments, on Princess, to fill the ship they had 2 separate World Cruises, 4 segments and a series of coastal voyages. On departure Sydney < 500 pax of 2,200 were on the same WC. A couple hundred departing Sydney were only aboard 1-night disembarking in Melbourne and another couple hundred got off in Freemantle. Throughout the entire voyage, we got the impression it was a series of B2B2B.... cruises, not a World Cruise. On Viking, we also had 4 segments, but at least 50% of the pax were on for the entire cruise. Viking did a vastly superior job of creating a WC atmosphere. Note: subsequent Viking WC's have no segments. When paying the premium for a WC, it is important that the atmosphere is appropriate and it isn't a series of B2B's


     - Two of the key human necessities are a roof over our heads and food on the table. On WC's lasting up to 6-months these are important considerations.


     - Cabins, we booked m'ship balcony cabins on a lower deck on both ships. The Viking cabin was 50% bigger and had a better layout. The Viking bathroom was bigger, so it could be used by both of us and the shower was huge. On Princess the bathrooms are tiny. The Viking balcony was also vastly superior. The Viking cabin stewards ( yes plural) were way more attentive than Princess. On Princess the single steward could bid for more cabins, so to increase their tips, with our single steward handling about 20 cabins. On Viking, out primary steward had about 10 - 12 cabins and had an assistant he shared with another cabin steward. The Viking cabin service was significantly better, especially since they had more time.


     - Ship design, the Viking ships are very well designed and their fleet is maintained well. I only recall minor issues on the Viking cruise and the cabin steward noted most of them and requested work orders to fix before we even knew about an issue. With Princess, the ship resembled a Greek Tramp Ship, the hull was in poor condition, the balcony doors in many cabins leaked, with no repairs made. When it rained the cabin stewards had to place towels in the tracks to save the cabin getting wet. The ship had plumbing leaks everywhere and they didn't use buckets on most of them, They placed an extra square of old carpet letting the leaks drop into the floor. Lots of alleyways smelled damp. We had a number of electrical power interruptions, including the entire aft section of the ship one day.


    - Food, clearly very subjective and highly dependant on the Executive Chef. On Princess the food quality was the worst we had ever experienced with the Line, having noticed it gradually decreasing for over 30 years. Meals were well presented, but generally served below optimum temperature and the meats were low quality. I recall Lamb chops one night and every table sent them back. Needed a chainsaw to cut them. Menus on Princess were repeated every cruise and were just your basic Princess menus. On Viking, the menu never repeated, although some dishes were repeated, an entire menu was not repeated. Viking did a vastly superior job of including local options on the menu under the "Destinations" section. The meals on Viking were as well presented as Princess and are actually cooked to order, rather than being mass produced per mega ships. The quality of products on Viking was vastly superior. The Viking buffet has vastly superior option to Princess. Oceania is known for the best cuisine at sea, so may even be a step up from Viking.


     - Since Viking, and I assume Oceania, deal with an older demographic on all their cruises, they are well prepared to deal with an older demographic for a number of months. All the entertainment on Viking was well done, not glitzy broadway shows, but excellent vocals and audio/visuals. The lectures are again excellent and relevant to the age group. On Princess the entertainment was rubbish and they still promoted the usual wacky pool games, marriage shows, etc.


     - On board experience, when on an extended cruise, I am on holiday, wanting to relax during sea days and make the most of every opportunity in port. I'm not interested in photographers sticking cameras in my face, shops expanding into alleyways peddling inches of junk and receiving reams of promotional material in the cabin. On Princess the daily adverts received went straight in the bin. I'm also not interested in having better quality meal items in the MDR at an extra cost. These are common on many mega ship Lines, but not Premium/Luxury Lines. By the time we left the Princess Cruise, the constant bombardment with upsell was annoying, whereas on Viking you are left alone to enjoy the cruise.


     - Another key factor is Viking consider the Pax as responsible adults. They have no restrictions for bringing drinks aboard and will even serve your own brought aboard wine in the MDR, with no service charge. Same in the bars, with the only cost being mixers. On Princess and most mega ship Lines they even restrict bringing water aboard, never mind alcohol.


     - When heading ashore, Viking provide unlimited bottles of water for each pax, at no charge. Mega ship Lines charge a fortune for a bottle of water. Viking also provide filtered still or sparkling water in the cabins daily.


     - Although I have been retired for 12 years, I spent many years in the industry, so knowing something of a Lines operating procedures, especially Bridge & Engineering, is of interest. When we dumped Princess and researched a new cruise line, this was one of my criteria. Having researched Bridge procedures across the cruise industry extensively, I eliminated one of the cruise lines based in mainland Europe that does WC's. Their procedures may have change now, but I still wouldn't sail with them.


    Overall, our 2 completed WC's on a mega ship and smaller ship cost virtually the same per day, but the overall standards on the smaller, higher base fare cruise was vastly superior.

    Cabin-Stewards, I had 2 - a main-steward and his helper, 

    Why would I want to bring drinks with me onboard, when I supposedly have unlimited supply of top-shelf drinks. And if spending a few Dollars for a bottle of water will bankrupt me, I should have stayed home. For budget-conscious people they can always fill up their bottles at the bufffet.

    Costa Deliziosa is well maintained, I didn't see any rust-spots or anything else bad anywhere - and I am living in the tropics and had managed a hotel here for 35 years, so I do walk around with open eyes. 

    Costa World Cruise had 3 segments as far as I read, but I did not notice that, because I did see the same people the entire cruise. The 2024 apparently did not have any segments, they only opened the booking of segments a few month ago I see on facebook. But then people say they cannot find the segment they were considering.

    Food, I am not a gourmet but I have all my life have eaten in upscale restaurants and I had no problems with the food on Costa - ok I have always loved Italian food, being European. 

    I am always booked into a LUXURY interior cabin, so I do spend lot's of time in the public places and I was perfectly happy with the view and had no problem with any noise. 

    I am cruising solo, so my cabin had plenty of space for me on my own, no complaints there. Naturally I would have loved to have a luxury suite, but not for the price. 

    Bridge procedure - I have no idea what that means and since I don't know what that means I also have not noticed it having a negative effect on my cruise. 

    Basically I am not convinced that whatever you are claiming to be the a plus for booking a luxury cruise line is not worth the difference in price to me. 

    I just do not understand how you come up with the endprice being the same to what you spend on Viking and what I would have spend on Costa. As I had mentioned already previously, I did everything I wanted to do - 2 overland-excursions and any excursion I wanted, had any drink I wanted to and plenty of cappuccinos, had shipped one suitcase home, had insurance and actually did include my 1 flight and my hotel prior the cruise in my calculations and my total was $ 40.000 - against the price Viking had quoted me, which was over $ 100.000 and did not include the excursions I would have booked, because looking at it, I did not like the ones included in Viking fare. 

    Just my cheopo 2 cents.

    • Like 1
  18. looks like a big waste of time and money to me. Pack, Unpack, Pack, going through the airports, flying to different destinations going through customs and immigration at each destination , check-in and check-out of hotels. There is just not enough time at each destination to make it worthwhile to have all these headaches. To avoid all these headaches is why I am cruising and on my land-trips I do stay in each destination about 1 week, to be really able to explore the place.

  19. On 11/19/2023 at 3:09 PM, Shipperz said:

    I’m considering a world cruise. I’m looking for a watch that counts steps and I can manually change the time. 

    I have not found one, was also looking for a fitness watch I can also use in the water, have not found any. So happen to travel now with 2 watches, 1 for the water where I manually can adjust the time and my fit-bit, just have to remember to take the fit-bit off when going into the water - real pain. If anyone is aware of a watch fitting all my requirements I would love to hear about it.

  20. 8 hours ago, Go-Bucks! said:

    I did the Oceania world cruise (161 days), then stayed on the ship for the next 3 cruises (another 31 days); total of 192 continuous days. It was amazing, especially being on a smallish ship. Highly recommend Oceania!

    It all depends on your financial situation and attitude towards Spending. Even I do have no problem spending my children's inheritance (just joking would never touch my real-estate), I just don't see any reason to spend 3 or 4 times as much on a cruise then is available to me with another line. Considering 190 days that will be also to long for me, need to see my Adult Children and my dog in between. I am not loyal to any cruise-line. I have no problem spending extra on excursions or whatever else I like, but I do that at home too. Having been on Costa 2023 World Cruise, it did offer me everything I could have asked for. Now I am booked on Costa, Cunard and Holland-America for my next 3 cruises, one of them being Costa World Cruise. The fourth cruise I am considering is another Costa but will wait for when I get onboard to get my discount. Like At7Seas I want to travel and see as much of the world as possible for as long as I will be able to, but not waste my hard-earned money. So besides cruising I do quite a lot of land-vacations. 2025 will be a mixture of 4 cruises and 6  or 7 land-stays, split into 2 long distance flights, one East and one West. I am 74 now, holding my fingers crossed that I will manage to do so a few more years.

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