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kearney

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About kearney

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Atlanta, Georgia, USA
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Royal Caribbean, Celebrity

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  1. Question for experienced M class passengers.... how easy is it to get around using a scooter on this class of ship. DH has mobility issues and has started using a scooter. I know the ship is smaller, so I wondered about getting around in the public areas. The S class and Edge had nice open spaces... but we have been concerned about older class ships ..for spacing.
  2. Example of C2 on deck 6 facing aft. These cains are a bit cheaper than the A1s... there are two of these on either side facing aft on Deck 6... as you can see.. you see a bit of the lifeboat davit. We usually get an A1 facing forward. If you stand at the rail you can see more of other peoples verandas but you are not looking into cabins... and you have to stand at the rail. I did not notice a difference in wind between that C2 facing aft and the A1 facing forward. Note that each strip of 'wood' flooring is about 5" wide... so you can get an idea on how deep it is... now they do vary a bit in size, across the A1 and the few C2 cabins on the hump... near aft elevator.
  3. We like the Comfort Suites on Federal Highway in Diana Fl... very close to airport (free airport shuttle) and at the desk you can sign up for the shuttle service to port for about $10/pp. Hotel is very close to the port as well. The hotel is relatively new... clean... free breakfast and wifi. There is a sea food restaurant close by that over looks a marina... nice loberster cobb salad and lobster mac and cheese and other dishes... feels like Cheers bar. Rooms are large and quiet... On one side of the hotel you can see the ships from top levels. Comfort Suite Federal Highway. Ft Lauderdale
  4. I am sorry, but I worked for a pharmaceutical company and at one time a consumer products company. They don't think that way... first of all... consumer products companies..the ones that make the cold products are not the same as the pharmaceutical/biologic companies that work on vaccines... FYI very little money is to be made producing and selling say..flu vaccines. I know it is hard to believe...but not all people who work for big companies are like Doctor Evil... they actually want to do good things for the public. Now there are a few of those ass holes who are sitting in jail that give everyone else a bad name. The challenge is that viruses can mutate and the vaccine you develop may not work on the modified strain... reason why each year they have to tweak the flu vaccine and why the vaccine includes three strains. WHO monitors strains in the southern hemisphere and makes the call in Feb... giving vaccine manufactures (w FDA participation) the strains they believe will be in the North in the winter. It takes months to produce... most flu vaccines are produced in fertilized eggs... three eggs per dose. Now I hear this virus will not be produced in eggs...so perhaps it can be produced faster..but we still don't know if it will be effective... yes promising initial results... but todate we are not even sure if someone who has the antibodies is protected from getting it again. We have to wait and see... but in the meantime there are actually good people working on this..not all people with big generous hearts serve coffee at Starbucks... many work in corporate America everyday trying to make safe and effective products for everyday people.
  5. The first time we had a beverage package after over 25 cruises, was on our March 2 Reflection cruise. This trip came with 4 perks... including the premium package. Now being Elite, we usually confined our alcohol consumption to Captains club cocktail hour plus a few bottles of wine over the trip.... When I have tracked we would spend about $350-$400 on alcohol over a 10-11 day cruise. So this is why we normally wouldn't get a package. So this trip we decided to go ahead and try it out. Well my worst fears have been realized. I enjoyed having the flexibility. Now... to see if it was worth it... I did track our spending on specialty coffees (usually I just get some whipped cream in the buffet and add it to a cup of coffee) and drinks.... With gratuities... if we had purchased the same drinks on our own.. we would have spend about $1700 on an 11 day trip.... factoring out the drinks we had during the captains club cocktail hours.... the tab was closer to $900. Now to be fair DH ordered quite a few Mcallan doubles... which at $24 a pop adds up quickly. If we go on our next cruise scheduled for Dec... we again have the 4 perks with premium beverage package. Bottom line... if you don't mind or prefer limiting your alcohol consumption... go without... but it was nice not to have to think about the bill at the end of the trip.
  6. Here is a question, if Royal were to declare bankruptcy (not saying they will.. just that NCLs discussion of this has me thinkgin) and you booked cruise AND airfare directly with the cruise line. What are the odds of getting your money back for the cruise and airfare? Anyone have any educated thoughts on this? Where do customers stand in terms of priority vs vendors etc? I know shareholders are out of luck, but not sure what happens to passengers... Does anyone know if the travelers insurance provided by the cruise line covers bankruptcy? I always use an independent travel insurance... no so much for bankruptcy concerns ... but more for coverage issues. Anyway... before I consider another cruise, I would like to have an idea on the level of risk (other than disease) that I might be taking. Don't mean to be negative, but it is something I need to consider... I have one cruise booked...but still have months to go before final payment and the deposit was only $200..
  7. This is the most recent thing I have found.. 4/15 deals with what cruise lines will need to do in order to sail in US waters... Many steps make sense... but some seem over the top to me and I am not sure how they will be able to comply. Part of CDC concern is overloading local hospitals and resources...so they want ships to be able to provide hospital level care... including ventilators which suggest to me a much higher level of care and medical staffing... I also wonder how they execute social distancing on a ship... CDC orders for cruise lines April 15
  8. They have been looking for a vaccine for the common cold for decades... with no success. Since the common cold is a form of the coronavirus... I really wonder about the possibility that a successful one can be developed quickly. I worked back in the early 2000s on a flu vaccine that was hoped to be part of a pandemic flu response. One of the things I learned from our research team... is that a vaccine that works in a hamster only proves that it works on a hamster. Until we get a successful human trial and not a safety study,... I just don't think we will see something in time to save the 2021 or 2022 seasons. I think 2020 is done. We do know that the annual flu vaccine is often a miss and again they have been working on a universal flu vaccine (one that would work on multiple strains) for at least a decade. Short of that, we need an effective and cost effective treatment that has a high success rate. I am concerned about the patient cost of Remdesivir.. I think that is one reason people were so hopeful for a low cost generic hydroxychloroquine drug. I keep hearing mixed results for that... but I suspect that its effectiveness is tied to using zinc and azithromycin combination and it may only work in a subset of people. I did read one doctor having luck using a different antibiotic than azithromycin... since it could contribute to heart issues for some patients. In any event... if they could come up with an approved drug treatment... that might help cruise lines conform to CDC needs in that they might need fewer ventilators and medical staff than the would need if they sailed today. Reading the requirements... I just don't see cruise lines returning to anything that resembles past operations in a very long time... and if they do start up again... it will be a very different experience... at least that is my concern...but then again... what won't be changing? Even going out to eat or to the theater is likely to change noticeably
  9. Given the Coronavirus... they may want to remove the books and offer ebooks for those with notebooks or ipads. Think of how many different people might have handled a book.. you don't know.
  10. I wonder about a vaccine.... they have been searching for a vaccine for the common cold for decades... and nothing... I really wonder if they will come up with one that is better than the annual flu vaccine...some depends upon how much it mutates...but I just think that by the time they find one...prove it works... they still need to produce it and that can also be complicated depending upon how they need to do it. I assume they wont use eggs... that can take quite a long time if they use that as a medium.. Anyway... looking at the requirements makes me nervous for the industry... Everyone is worrying about June or August... I wonder if cruising will be viable period and if so... will I enjoy it?
  11. I just took a quick look at the CDC orders.... personally I don't know how they (cruise lines) can actually comply with the request without resulting in increasing the cost of cruising some 3 or 4 fold (at least). I have pulled a couple of requirements to provide an example of items that make me wonder how they can fulfill these requirements..... here are a few of them f. Onboard isolation, quarantine, and social distancing protocols to minimize the risk of transmission and spread of COVID-19; Okay this makes sense... but how do you do this on elevators, in the main dining room, buffet, theater etc... one idea... cut occupancy 50% and then have two or three seats between groups in the theater. Remove bar stools, pool chairs so people are sitting further apart. Limit how many people can be in a shop at a time... close the spa.. since those services are hands on... Are hot tubs okay? g. Onboard medical staffing, including number and type of staff, and equipment in sufficient quantity to provide a hospital level of care (e.g., ventilators, facemasks, personal protective equipment) for the infected without the need for hospitalization onshore; Wow, hospital level care... how many doctors and nurses would have to be added to the crew.... how many ventilators would be acceptable 5, 10 50? Also "without the need for hospitalization onshore" suggests that each ship also needs to be able to provide ICU level of care... is that even possible? h. An outbreak management and response plan to provision and assist an affected cruise ship that relies on industry resources, e.g., mobilization of additional cruise ships or other vessels to act as “hospital” ship for the infected, “quarantine” ship for the exposed, and “residential” ship for those providing care and treatment, including the ability to transport individuals between ships as needed; So does this mean that each cruise line needs to have a hospital and a quarantine ship floating around the Caribbean, Alaska or near Hawaii... just in case? Oh that won't cost anything So I only pulled a few of the required elements for a plan to return to cruising. It looks to me like a wish list. Personally I think this would kill the cruise industry... completely unrealistic. I wonder if the US navy will be developing a similar plan... would be interesting to see if they will give sailors enough space for proper social distancing.. and no sharing of beds/bunks... if they are not going to make similar changes... why not.. don't they care about the lives of our sailors? Anyway.... if his goes through say good by to cruising or be prepared to pay a much much higher fee... and less fun.
  12. Small point, but in the buffet the plates and coffee mugs are not plastic like on Royal... but are ceramic/china and the glassware in the main dining room is Riedel and personally I just feel food and drink seem to taste better when served on a nice plate or in a glass with a nice sharp edge... Table cloths at dinner also add to a more elegant feeling... even when wearing capri pants instead of a cocktail dress. While I have no issue with children onboard.... Celebrity generally has fewer kids... I assume due to longer itineraries and lack of slides and flow riders and such. We started sailing Celebrity about 4 years ago after many years on Royal. I still like Royal, but boarding a Celebrity ship felt comfortable from the first minute and 7 cruises later... can't wait to go again... someday
  13. I am curious, I assume those buying stock are not concerned about the possibility that a few of the cruise lines might go under or be consolidated. I am glad that there are still optimists around.... but I really do wonder about their ability to weather the storm... so to speak. The latest CDC 'request' that cruise lines present a plan for preventing and mitigating an outbreak with "limited reliance on state, local, and federal government support" has me concerned. I am not sure what a cruise line could do that wouldn't completely ruin their business model and compel such a price increase that would undermine demand. Until there is a vaccine (sufficient quantities say 2 years away), or an effective and easy to implement therapy... like a pill or two... the only 'plan' I can think of would encourage social distancing.... So perhaps sail half full to allow more social distancing in dining room and theaters (leave an empty seat or two between groups of guests?)... perhaps replace buffet with another dining room.... supply masks for passenger attending muster drill... elevators... forget about it..... But how do you care for say 100 or more passengers or crew who get sick... who takes care of them... where do you care for them? How do you avoid pulling up to port and asking the local hospital to take on your passengers? Any thoughts on what they might put in their plan for the CDC? Alas, we are still learning about the virus... not sure how you come up with a plan given that it can be spread by those without symptoms... and while you can limit passengers you accept to healthy younger people... there have been enough healthy younger peopld getting it... that this is not guarantee and you really cut into your loyal passenger base... If they can crack the code shares will fly... but personally I would prefer to buy an Amazon or Alphabet... they will be here next year.. not sure all the cruise lines will be in their current configuration... given their debt and limited ability to cut costs while not operating... ships still have to run and be kept clean with some level of staffing...unlike some businesses...which can be shut down and lights turned out. Interested in peoples thoughts about this. I love cruising ,,,in fact got off Reflection Mar 13 and have another one scheduled for Dec... but if I have to be bubble wrapped to sail... I might just stay home... or rent a condo someplace.
  14. Did I miss something or am I confusing cruise lines... but can't you cancel within 48 hours and get your money back? Or was that just Royal. If Celebrity has that offer, why not just go ahead and cancel? what am I missing?
  15. I read that too, but wonder about cases in Southern Hemisphere. Perhaps they brought it into the area... not sure.
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