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  1. A few other details that might be of interest. The man who previously developed many of the current dining programs at Princess is now in charge of all Hotel Operations - including Food and Beverage - at Windstar. You will recognize his style on many of the new offerings. The new Star Grill will also feature soft serve ice cream all day. The new Windstar Entertainment lineup includes 2 Duos and 1 Trio, as well as an Entertainment Manager who also performs several times each week. All of the entertainment that was offered before will still be there, in addition to many new c
  2. Cinders, Great news for you. Cruise Executives have indeed brought back much of the style and service we once loved and now long for. It is there for the asking - and paying - on many small elegant upscale cruise lines. Today, unfortunately, many cruisers want all the old frills at all the old prices. That’s just not going to happen. If you really want to cruise today - in the grand old style - you can buy that cruise today. But don’t expect to find it at Walmart.
  3. Well, you are going to have to ignore that idea. At full manning and with full seating (pre-COVID), the mass market chips did not have enough service staff working onboard to fully service the Main Dining Rooms, Specialty Restaurants, and Lido all at the same time. Typically we put minimum staff in Lido in order to provide full service to the Main Dining Rooms. If the Lido happened to get busy, we would pull wait staff from the Main Dining Room to cover, but then received complaints about slow service and long waits in the Dining Room. With our new COVID rules and manning, the service st
  4. This is not a very confusing concept. Think about it a bit. Why do most countries require people to go through immigration and customs procedures when entering the country?? 1. Immigration clearance is performed by a country’s immigration officials to ensure that people entering the country are legally allowed to enter and stay for a limited time. Every international carrier (train, bus, airplane, ship) that carries people across an international border must inform the local immigration authorities and prepare the passengers to be inspected on their first port of entry into the
  5. As I mentioned in my post, the mass market ships with 2 seatings already do not have enough tables and chairs to seat and feed everyone. Yes, removing tables and chairs to achieve social distancing is an easy thing to do. Since you asked, what you are missing is the problem of seating and feeding the people who would have been sitting in those chairs that have been removed.
  6. Most cruisers fail to understand the logistics of mass market cruise ship dining rooms. As the ships get bigger and bigger, they can no longer handle feeding everyone at the same time. So they resort to feeding you in shifts, like in a factory or a school. (One of many good reasons to sail on smaller ships) Even with 2 seatings and additional specialty restaurants, many ships have challenges feeding everyone. You may have experienced this yourself when the Maitre d’ gave you a pager or suggested that you come back later. When the mass market ships re-start, they will most likely
  7. OK, I’ll bite. You’re crazy.
  8. It may seem odd to sail the Caribbean in Summer, but it also seems downright foolhardy right now to visit any part of the USA for any reason. There are too many sick Americans, too many Americans who refuse to take this pandemic seriously, and too many Americans who have claimed they will refuse to take the vaccine. I love my elderly parents dearly, but I refuse to visit them in the USA, risking my life and theirs.
  9. Isn’t it interesting that a single (now disputed) positive COVID case on a cruise ship gets everyone’s panties in a knot. Meanwhile, there is a substantial number of cruise lines - many in Asia - that are operating very successfully, with zero COVID cases. But nobody here seems interested in the positive news. “If it bleeds, it leads”
  10. There are several Japanese cruise ships successfully sailing around Japan as we speak. Most are a bit smaller than the ones you are looking for. Currently they are carrying only Japanese citizens.That will probably change - but we do not know when.
  11. I was a Senior Officer on Pride of Aloha. 7-day domestic cruises around Hawaii. We were required to file illness reports to CDC and Coast Guard between every Hawaiian Port on our itinerary. No exceptions were made for long or short distances between those ports, nor the distance from land where we sailed. Prior to that, I served on NCL’s Norwegian Star, doing 7-day cruises around Hawaii, with a foreign stop at Fanning Island. We were required to submit illness reports every day between all ports, domestic and international. Were all these reports legally required? Both
  12. There are several cruise ships operating around Japan. Japanese passengers only. So far, no COVID problems. Japan has the 11th largest population (126 million) in the world. They are currently 48th in the world for corona virus cases; just a few less than the state of Nevada, which has 3 million people. Japan has done almost no corona virus testing. It is illegal for the Japanese government to close businesses during a pandemic. Everything is open. Nobody in Japan thinks the pandemic is a hoax. They take it very seriously. Everybody in Japan wears
  13. Several Asian cruise lines have been sailing around Asia quite successfully - with zero COVID cases onboard. Perhaps the real problem is not the cruise lines sacrificing health safety to make money. Maybe they need to market their cruises to countries that take the COVID Pandemic a bit more seriously, and are more careful and considerate for the health of others.
  14. You can add Dream Cruises, Crystal Cruises, NYK Cruises, Mitsui OSK, and Japan Cruise Line to the companies re-starting cruises in Japan. Passengers on those cruises will be from Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, China, and a few European countries. A number of these itineraries will also call at South Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Taiwan. It is unlikely that Americans will be able to get tourist visas anytime soon, to allow them to take these cruises.
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