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About capriccio

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    South Florida & Shenandoah Valley, VA

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  1. As far as I know he is an independent tour guide. Of course you can confirm that with him.
  2. Princess has naturalists on all of their Alaska cruises plus we've had excellent lecturers on some of our longer, specialized itineraries: on last month's Land of the Midnight Sun (Norway) cruise we had both a destination lecturer and and an enrichment lecturer (naval history); on our 2016/2017 South America cruise we had both and our enrichment lecturer was a retired US professor with lectures on archeology, history, etc.; in the more distant past I remember them on our Baltics cruise, Panama Canal transit and on our Amazon cruise. If you are interested in a specific Princess itinerary, I would ask about recent experiences on the Princess forum.
  3. Welcome to cruise critic! I presume you are a US resident (given your Nevada location). In that case, should the fare decrease before final payment you can get your reservation re-fared by Princess (if you booked directly) or your travel agent (if you used one).
  4. Welcome to cruise critic! Obviously, a city the size of Miami has lots and lots of hotels. It would help us to know how you define 'good value', your budget, your travel dates, and any special amenities you are interested in.
  5. OP - you might wish to post this on the Cruise/Travel Insurance forum too: https://boards.cruisecritic.com/forum/499-cruisetravel-insurance/ Best wishes to your sister.
  6. I've lived in four European countries and traveled through much of the world. As a result I know better than to stereotype the population of an entire country as you do. Maybe that comment displays my lack of manners, but I don't think so.
  7. Excuse me for adding what I thought would be an interesting FACT. This thread did begin as a discussion of international passengers.
  8. It wasn't 'poppycock' in the mid-1990s when my children attended an international school in Waterloo, Belgium (in the French speaking part of Belgium if that made a difference). The elementary school used the town's indoor pool for mandatory swimming lessons and all the boys were required to wear speedos. Most American boys (including my 2nd grader) were shocked initially but adjusted fast enough when it was obvious that every male using the pool had to follow the same rule. The story was that in the past the school had asked for a dispensation but the town absolutely refused.
  9. We also use one inside each suitcase with our names, contact info (phone and email; not home address), and itinerary in case our suitcase gets lost and loses the outside tag.
  10. Hope you enjoy it as much as we did!
  11. Gus is great. My comments from another thread: If you decide to go with a tour guide/transportation we can highly recommend TourGuideGus (http://tourguidegus.com/ click towards the bottom of the page for English). We were staying in Rio and had an absolutely fabulous full day tour with him in 2017 and he mentioned that he frequently picks up disembarking passengers, tours for the day, and then drops them off at the airport. We also thought his driver was very good. Gus' English is great and he does a fantastic job of sharing his love for Rio with his clients. He also has a 5 star rating on TripAdvisor: https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g303506-d4976222-Reviews-TourGuideGus-Rio_de_Janeiro_State_of_Rio_de_Janeiro.html#REVIEWS
  12. July too but Princess frequently doesn't sail out of Port Everglades throughout the entire summer (they aren't sailing out of Port Everglades this August either). Here's what the official website (http://www.porteverglades.net/construction/harbor-improvements/) is saying with no specifics regarding timing or impact on ship schedules: harbor deepening and widening Ships are getting bigger, so they can carry more cargo in less time. This is critical in Florida, where so many more people (i.e. consumers) are now living that we surpassed New York to become the third highest populated state in the United States. And, let's not forget Florida's nearly 113 million annual tourists and seasonal visitors who also purchase food, clothing and other goods shipped via ocean. To meet these demands, Port Everglades needs deeper and wider channels so today's modern ship fleet can arrive here safely. The Port Everglades Navigation Improvements Project is currently in the preconstruction engineering and design phase after receiving a signed Chief of Engineers Report from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on June 26, 2015 and U.S. Congressional authorization in the passing of the Water Infrastructure Improvements of the Nation (WIIN) Act in December 2016. Timing for this project is essential as older fleets are being replaced with much larger ships and Port Everglades already handles large ships from Europe and South America that must be lightly loaded because of current safety constraints. The goals are to deepen the main navigational channels from 42 feet to 48 feet (plus 1-foot required and another 1-foot allowable overdepth for a total of 50 feet), and to deepen and widen the Entrance Channel and parts of the Intracoastal Waterway so that cargo ships can pass safely by docked cruise ships. Construction is anticipated to be completed by 2021-2025*, and is expected to create an estimated 4,700 total construction jobs and nearly 1,500 permanent direct jobs locally from the additional cargo capacity. The estimated cost is $389 million (as of October 2016), which will be paid with Port Everglades revenue generated through port user fees, federal appropriations and state grants. No local property taxes will be used for this project because Port Everglades is a self-funded enterprise of Broward County. * Assumes one contract for USCG Station reconfiguration and one contract for deepening and widening. Related Links: Fact Sheet U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Port Everglades Harbor Project Port Everglades Benthic Survey Data Viewer
  13. I believe the time limit for transferring a booking to a TA is 2 months (actually 60 days) not 2 weeks.
  14. Just a caution: the Everglades are a winter destination. That is the dry - and cool -season with many fewer bugs when wildlife are easy to see at watering holes. During the summer they are more disbursed and the weather is hot, humid and prone to drenching thunderstorms.
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