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Everything posted by Beejay4016

  1. Love the Volendam, and we will love her even more now. I'm assuming the showers are now like those in the lanai rooms - nice. Ah, this is such good news, almost better than a cup of coffee. Cheers
  2. Hi there, That is fantastic news as we've done a few HAL cruises and I hate those shower over bath arrangements. We are toying with a Zaandam cruise in April of 2021, and the cabins I'm looking at fall within those C-category numbers. Just not sure whether to book early, with absolutely no sweeteners thrown in (we're in Australia) or to hold off and hope for some special deals to pop up later in the year. Cheers.
  3. Not surprising. I read yesterday in a news report that some people on the Ovation are complaining about missing a port or two as a result of the White Island disaster. As the reporter (who happens to be on board) commented, "At least we get to go home." People just never fail to surprise or, sadly, disappoint.
  4. We've opted for the drinks package. For less per day than any drink package we've bought on Celebrity or HAL we get our daily gratuities included - and on our 10 night cruise we only pay for nine. I considered it a real bargain.
  5. Oh goodness, @Fact Finders, I have just been reading your numerous posts on TA and am stunned that you and your wife both came down with gastro while on the cruise but self-diagnosed that it wasn't Noro Virus and refused to be quarantined. I think your attitude would leave most people speechless. Your willingness to spread your bug throughout the ship says more about you than any of your - again - numerous posts could ever say about the ship or the shipping line. You do realise you lost all credibility with that selfish behaviour, don't you? Actually, I have to admit, the good thing about your experience, irrespective of how accurate your relating of it is, is that I am never likely to bump into your on a CMV cruise. Now, please put my mind at rest and assure me that you never plan to sail with either Celebrity or Holland America Line.
  6. I'm intrigued by your name "Fact Finders". When I link onto that it looks more like a group or an organisation. Are you an individual or some sort of self-styled travel writer? With a name such a "Fact Finders" you seem to be promoting yourself as something along the line of the ABC style Fact Checkers team rather than just a browned off passenger.
  7. Prayers for those on board that they soon have some news of their families and loved ones, and prayers for those at home who are hearing of this terrible news through media outlets. After all the bushfires, and now it seems that most of those missing are Australians, it just seems that the country is crying. So, so sad.
  8. So incredibly sad. My heart goes out to the loved ones of those who were on the island, and those onboard ship who are waiting for news of friends and family. Just such an awful, awful thing to happen. On top of the terrible fires that just seem to go on and on down the Eastern seaboard, the tears will never end. And just before Christmas as well. So sad.
  9. I totally agree with SeaDog on this one - apparently the skipper shut off the power systems as a safety precaution. Wise thing to do. I think that it must have been a hell of a slow news day to get the amount of coverage here that it received. I mean, really, "ghost-cruise-ship", for goodness sake.
  10. Hi SeaDog. Yes, I know that, but after doing one P&O Australia cruise I was not keen to do another one. I'm so glad that the lovely old Ryndam is moving to new owners, and am looking forward to crusing on the VdG soon.
  11. Hey people, it is so worth reading Roscoe's blog - great photos, excellent comments, lively and entertaining as well as being informative. A top job, Roscoe; I'll look forward to checking out your future blogs.
  12. We did the Norwegian fjords on Ryndam; she is just the perfect size. Look forward to seeing her in Australia for CMV.
  13. That's great, Rosoe; I'll follow it. Many thanks for the link. Cheers, Bev
  14. Hi Mummsie. Do post a review once you've got time post-cruise. We love sea days also. I hope your trip is a delightful one. 🙂
  15. We've had freakish weather this week. Last Sunday was about 38 degrees, and then it got cooler and cooler and cooler and wetter. Friday was very cold with incredibly strong winds and pelting rain, lots of hail in some suburbs. There was quite a bit of storm damage around the place. It happens every so often, though, so no need to call Greta and tell her about it. 😉
  16. Definitely skip the duty free if you have time and visit one of the large liquor outlets such as Dan Murphy's, Cheap Liquor, or BWS. The prices are usually better than at duty free stores and the range is much larger.
  17. I definitely second the suggestion of catching the ferry from Perth rather than Fremantle as the trip down the river from Perth to Fremantle is lovely.
  18. The weather here on Friday was absolutely horrendous. Not a good day to be visiting port. I'm sure they were glad to depart.
  19. Oh dear, what an awful introduction to a cruise line. I do feel very sorry for you. I never judge a company by what goes wrong but on how things are handled when they go wrong. It sounds as if you really weren't treated as you should have been. I do admire your spirit for still trying to enjoy yourselves.
  20. Wow, if Christmas wasn't already organised for us, I would be sooo tempted by that one. We've done two NZ cruises, one on the Noordam and one on Celebrity Solstice. Solstice is lovely, but HAL does offer better service, and we just prefer cruising with them. Love, love, love the piano bar on Noordam.
  21. It was just the transit experience, Joybook. I see you're in Sydney, so I don't imagine you get to have that transiting pleasure. As I say, Brisbane and Melbourne do it so well. Perhaps when the new airport is built all will be perfect. 🙂
  22. Hi fellow cat lover. Yes, I was shocked by Sydney's transit area. I have to say, the main airport area is fine, with plenty of places to sit, eat, drink, and, of course, shop. I guess that's why we were so shocked. I'm glad you're not transiting through there, so you should have a good experience. What you mention about St Martin's airport is staggering. As you say, in first world countries we expect so much. Yes, a good sleep on a long-haul flight is a great way to go. The most comfortable lie-flat, and consequent sleep, we've ever enjoyed on a long-haul was Perth to Paris in Air Asia X's "business" class (sadly, they no longer do that flight). The food was - well, it was there, the service left much to be desired, the cabin was a tad hot, but the bed and bedding were superb. I think we got at least 8 hours solid sleep, and hit the ground running when we got to Paris. Air Mauritius was also excellent that way, but Air France was simply a comfy seat that reclined to an extent. The food with them was wonderful, though. Swings and roundabouts. Sadly, I think our days of flying business may be behind us now and premium economy may be the best we can hope for. Anyway, I ramble. Have a lovely time, and enjoy Sydney airport. The views flying in and out are fantastic. Cheers, Beejay
  23. We had to transit through Sydney when flying Queenstown, NZ to Perth in June. It would have to be the most shambolic, dirtiest transit area for people changing from international to domestic that I've ever seen. People from various countries had to collect their luggage, walk a long way to the transit area, which was shabby in the extreme, then slowly snake their way, pulling and pushing their luggage and trying to keep a hold of their kids etc, to the few staff who were on duty. After checking in, it was then a case of go sit in the most basic of rooms (could never be described as a lounge) and wait, with no order regarding priority or flight time, for buses to then take you to the domestic terminal. The buses would then be heavily overloaded and certainly not a pleasant place even for a short drive with some of the enormous amounts of carry-on that some people have with them. I think the Sydney airport people need to check out Brisbane, for instance, to see how good it can be. We love Sydney, but were disgusted by the whole arrangement, and felt quite embarrassed that so many overseas visits have to go through that.
  24. Top suggestions. I would suggest that once you leave the ferry at Barrack Street Jetty, a great place to have lunch and enjoy a view from Rottnest to the Hills is C-Restaurant, a revolving restaurant serving French/Australian fare. It's just a short walk straight up Barrack Street from the Jetty to St George's Terrace and to the left. The food really is excellent, and the views are fantastic. Whatever you do, whether it's C-restaurant, a HOHO bus, or a visit to Rottnest, enjoy.
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