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douglanglois

Just scored an upgrade to Yacht Club on the Meraviglia - any tips on taking full advantage?

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Any tips on getting the maximum benefit from the amenities of MSC Yacht Club? The wife and I are generally pretty low maintenance, so left to our devices there's a good chance we'd never even think to ask and end up missing out. I'm not sure we even get the full service from a regular cruise porter, never mind a butler!

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4 minutes ago, Preziosa said:

How did you get that upgrade....what did you do....

 

Well you know, I'm kind of a big deal...

Kidding. After much discussion of the relative merits, we put in an offer via the plusgrade program.

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MSC staff and butlers do a great job.  The first day upon boarding the maitre de or host/ess will track you down and try to get an idea of when you want to eat even though there are no set times in YC.  You'll meet your butler at some point, he may ask if you want beds separate or together.


In the lounge, just sit down and someone will readily take your drink order.  Up by he pool, they aren't as quick to do so, so we just walk up to the bar and order.

 

Guessing you'll also have access to the spa for free.  You'll have a wristband that does everything except let you on/off the boat as far as charging for things or unlocking your door.  The butlers also usually escort you to places like the nightly shows if you desire.  They'll also escort you off and in some cases back on the ship.  If you are at GC, there is a separate line to get on the tenders.

 

Concierge in main area to help with reservations.

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Eat, drink an be merry.

 

Enjoy the perks that are specific to YC, such as the Top Sail Lounge, One Pool, access to the thermal area of the spa.  Preferred and escorted exits on port days are swell.  We are also relatively low maintenance, so shoe shine, laundry, and a caffé latte in the morning are pretty much it for us.

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Congratulations to you! Enjoy. Our first MSC cruise (and YC experience) starts in two days. 

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22 minutes ago, Zephyr173 said:

Eat, drink an be merry.

 

Enjoy the perks that are specific to YC, such as the Top Sail Lounge, One Pool, access to the thermal area of the spa.  Preferred and escorted exits on port days are swell.  We are also relatively low maintenance, so shoe shine, laundry, and a caffé latte in the morning are pretty much it for us.

Have never asked a MSC butler to shine my shoes.

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I have done so prior to the first gala evening on each YC cruise.  Just remember it's preferable (as a courtesy to the butler) to give your shoes the day before.

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3 hours ago, douglanglois said:

Any tips on getting the maximum benefit from the amenities of MSC Yacht Club?

I haven't sailed YC before, but if I did I can only imagine the things I would request just to see how far they would go to accommodate me. You're welcome to take this list and call it your own...good luck!

 

- Have the butler iron your shorts each day while you're at breakfast.

- Tell GS you have an aversion of 'crushed' ice and you'll need one of those block cubes in the glass for each drink order.

- Have the butler iron your socks and fold them in to a tight triangle each day while you're at the YC pool.

- Let the YC Matre D know you prefer your vegetables to be arranged on your plate in the form of a smiley face.

- Let the butler know it would really make your day if he could share one or two 'Dad jokes' whenever you run in to him.

 

Of course as the trip progresses you'll come up with dozens more ideas like this that'll take your trip from good to GREAT!

 

Enjoy.

 

 

 

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4 minutes ago, Ray_Ray said:

I haven't sailed YC before, but if I did I can only imagine the things I would request just to see how far they would go to accommodate me. You're welcome to take this list and call it your own...good luck!

 

- Have the butler iron your shorts each day while you're at breakfast.

- Tell GS you have an aversion of 'crushed' ice and you'll need one of those block cubes in the glass for each drink order.

- Have the butler iron your socks and fold them in to a tight triangle each day while you're at the YC pool.

- Let the YC Matre D know you prefer your vegetables to be arranged on your plate in the form of a smiley face.

- Let the butler know it would really make your day if he could share one or two 'Dad jokes' whenever you run in to him.

 

Of course as the trip progresses you'll come up with dozens more ideas like this that'll take your trip from good to GREAT!

 

Enjoy.

 

 

 

hahaha they will had you a laundry slip and charge the account

hahahahaha

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5 hours ago, douglanglois said:

Any tips on getting the maximum benefit from the amenities of MSC Yacht Club? The wife and I are generally pretty low maintenance, so left to our devices there's a good chance we'd never even think to ask and end up missing out. I'm not sure we even get the full service from a regular cruise porter, never mind a butler!

 

Congratulations on a scoring an upgrade. Was this complimentary or did you bid?

 

IMO, the best part of YC is that there is zero crowding in top sail lounge and the pool. No need to secure a chair. We didn't find service exceptional in YC, but we seem to be in the minority. We didn't ask our butler for anything really as I'm just not that type. For us, the ONLY time being in YC had a great benefit was debarkation. We got into Miami several hours late and it took until 2 p.m. to debark the whole ship. We had a flight out at noon and our butler escorted us to the front of the line. That was worth a bunch!

 

Oh, you can over ride the elevator with your YC card.  Some people like doing that. Personally, I think it's in extremely poor taste and would never ever attempt this. Ever. Seriously, who can't wait for an elevator to stop at a few extra floors?  But again, I seem to be in the minority as many YC guests liked to use this feature. 

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We like to do the elevator access just to see how often it works. Read reports of Divinia being spotty and it was.  Seaside seems to work better though, but not 100%.

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12 hours ago, BermudaBound2014 said:

....Oh, you can over ride the elevator with your YC card.  Some people like doing that. Personally, I think it's in extremely poor taste and would never ever attempt this. Ever. Seriously, who can't wait for an elevator to stop at a few extra floors?  But again, I seem to be in the minority as many YC guests liked to use this feature. 

 

Well said, agree entirely so we are in that minority also....have never used it on our 3 YC cruises, and would only do so in an 'emergency' situation e.g. DW requiring a quick expedite to cabin for urgent wc use!

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Let the YC restaurant staff sing "For he's a jolly good fellow" for you with every meal conducted by your butler. Yes, every meal includes breakfast also, certainly. 

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14 hours ago, BermudaBound2014 said:

 

Congratulations on a scoring an upgrade. Was this complimentary or did you bid?

 

IMO, the best part of YC is that there is zero crowding in top sail lounge and the pool. No need to secure a chair. We didn't find service exceptional in YC, but we seem to be in the minority. We didn't ask our butler for anything really as I'm just not that type. For us, the ONLY time being in YC had a great benefit was debarkation. We got into Miami several hours late and it took until 2 p.m. to debark the whole ship. We had a flight out at noon and our butler escorted us to the front of the line. That was worth a bunch!

 

Oh, you can over ride the elevator with your YC card.  Some people like doing that. Personally, I think it's in extremely poor taste and would never ever attempt this. Ever. Seriously, who can't wait for an elevator to stop at a few extra floors?  But again, I seem to be in the minority as many YC guests liked to use this feature. 

 

We bid for the upgrade. 

I was having the same thought about the elevator override. We were on the Seaside in the summer, and when it was busy, it was quite annoying seeing the elevator zip past with the YC-override symbol showing. I think most of us have come to terms with the fact that money buys privilege, but this particular upgrade feels like something taken away from regular passengers, rather than just an extra bought by YC passengers. Felt a bit 'in your face'.

To make matters worse, I was told there were a bunch of teenagers in yacht club that had decided tying up the elevators was great sport.

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We are traveling with another couple, but they have not received the upgrade email (yet).  They have a guaranteed cabin and has not been assigned a cabin yet for our April cruise.  When do you assign the cabin?

 

We are debating on whether to upgrade because our friends will not be in the YC.

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3 hours ago, lifeasme123 said:

We are traveling with another couple, but they have not received the upgrade email (yet).  They have a guaranteed cabin and has not been assigned a cabin yet for our April cruise.  When do you assign the cabin?

When booking a cabin category as guarantee MSC now shows the following:

 

Your stateroom will be assigned approximately 4 days prior the date of sailing. Kindly note that in case of a guarantee stateroom booked for 4 or more passengers, you may be assigned 2 separate staterooms instead of a quadruple stateroom (with no price difference). In this case, the staterooms will be on the same Deck and same ship side, as close as possible to each other but without a connecting door.

 

With the ships using the new bidding system I think they are less likely to assign guarantee cabins before the last minute.

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On 1/14/2020 at 12:34 PM, douglanglois said:

Any tips on getting the maximum benefit from the amenities of MSC Yacht Club?

Please understand that I grew up with irrationally frugal parents where we combined soap scraps to create new bars and spent cross-country vacations in campgrounds, with KOA as the exception because it was "too fancy". Suze Orman could best explain what happened when I became independent of my parents. So from that perspective, the two things that are most intoxicatingly delightful for me about MSC Yacht Club are: (1) anything that is slightly "askew" or would require waiting in line is taken care of, such as the time that my luggage was confiscated because my awesomely over-engineered nail clipper designed by orthopedic surgeons was mis-identified as a forbidden tool in X-ray inspection by ship security (photo below with butler taking care of the situation in the background), and (2) no lines! (See South Park: Season 5, Episode 6, Cartmanland.)

C58742AC-53FD-4949-BC0A-2068356B507D.jpeg

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May I ask a question as I was recently upgraded also via bid.  My edocs still say "Bella" on booking info page, on embarkation sheet, and luggage tags.  Is this case with you? Original experience still on docs?

 Futher back it has a page that lists all the plusgrade amenities. 

 

Trying to get Q answered, CS with Meraviglia gave another number to call, cant reach that.

Thanks if anyone can answer this one.  

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I am going to answer my own question, and hopefully it helps someone else.  I called the second customer support number, which they asked me not to post because it is for travel agents (I am NOT a TA!)   I think they gave me the number to get me off the phone.

 

Here is the answer--they cannot remove the "experience " of the original reservation.  However, at embarkation the agent will have  "hidden" notes on the reservation that show the YC upgrade and amenities thereof.    Whew!

 

She did give me an email address to share with CC members--turnaround is generally 2 days.  Perhaps it is on this board somewhere but I have not found it.

 

msccruisesexistingreservations@msccruisesusa.com

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1 hour ago, brandy3415 said:

May I ask a question as I was recently upgraded also via bid.  My edocs still say "Bella" on booking info page, on embarkation sheet, and luggage tags.  Is this case with you? Original experience still on docs?

 Futher back it has a page that lists all the plusgrade amenities. 

 

Trying to get Q answered, CS with Meraviglia gave another number to call, cant reach that.

Thanks if anyone can answer this one.  

 

When I view my reservation online, and on pages 3&5 of our E-ticket packet, our experience is listed as yacht club.

Did you try clicking "Request E-Tickets" on the website again after you got the upgrade notification?

Edited by douglanglois
Edited to add suggestion.

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Funny.  When I request e tickets it gives me my old cabin number!  The ones I have on for me page 4-your cruise booking information, while 'experience' is Bella the category is "YC1 -Yacht Club Deluxe Suite".   These came by email minutes after the bid was accepted.   Page 6 -purchased services says only "Plusgrade".  Page 7, has full description of YC amenities, also under 'purchased services.  

 

And as I stated above, the very nice travel agent support agent said that it was not possible for them to remove the experience part.  Maybe because I was Bella?????She did not say.   I am now going to cease worrying that I will be turned away from Top Sail or the restaurant!!!

 

Thanks for your input!

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I'll suggest a few small things:

  • If you know what you think you'll want in your mini-fridge, ask for it when you meet him/her. That way when you come back in the evening it'll be all ready for you from then on.
  • Go to afternoon tea in topsail lounge
  • Ask for a cheese plate to be made up and delivered to your room. 
  • Ask for coffee/tea to be delivered each morning.
  • Specifically on the Meraviglia, ask for a curry --- you have to ask the day before - the chef is from India and makes excellent curry, but needs to plan it so it doesn't negatively impact the ability to make/serve the rest of the planned meals. 
  • If you find something you really like one day, and nothing on the menu the next day appeals to you, see if they can make the meal you really liked. For example, if you like cheese risotto, and but they have a risotto that doesn't appeal to you, you can ask if they can make the cheese risotto.
  • If you have already booked the Cirque shows, tell the concierge ASAP and you'll be switched to the YC seating area.

Personally, my butler was only so-so, so don't go in expecting super service.  I would have complained, but I heard that any complaints mean automatic firing, and while it wasn't top notch service, it wasn't worth having the person fired for.

 

BTW - the reason your ticket says Bella is because outside of YC, you only get the level of experience you paid for originally. You will NOT get drinks, etc. at outside bars unless you paid for a drink package. You will get access to the thermal spa, and access to the special seating areas for the theater and Cirque - and the topsail lounge and restaurant you can eat and drink at - you just can't get a drink outside the YC without paying for it.

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9 hours ago, Lookn4Sun said:

I'll suggest a few small things:

  • If you know what you think you'll want in your mini-fridge, ask for it when you meet him/her. That way when you come back in the evening it'll be all ready for you from then on.
  • Go to afternoon tea in topsail lounge
  • Ask for a cheese plate to be made up and delivered to your room. 
  • Ask for coffee/tea to be delivered each morning.
  • Specifically on the Meraviglia, ask for a curry --- you have to ask the day before - the chef is from India and makes excellent curry, but needs to plan it so it doesn't negatively impact the ability to make/serve the rest of the planned meals. 
  • If you find something you really like one day, and nothing on the menu the next day appeals to you, see if they can make the meal you really liked. For example, if you like cheese risotto, and but they have a risotto that doesn't appeal to you, you can ask if they can make the cheese risotto.
  • If you have already booked the Cirque shows, tell the concierge ASAP and you'll be switched to the YC seating area.

Personally, my butler was only so-so, so don't go in expecting super service.  I would have complained, but I heard that any complaints mean automatic firing, and while it wasn't top notch service, it wasn't worth having the person fired for.

 

 

Having been in the Mera YC twice, and another booked, this is the best and most balanced suggestions and comments I read on this thread.....All of it is sound, and those things (with suggested timelines) would never come across as demanding. The one thing that disappointed us was the afternoon tea, we thought it was average at best....but go and experience it as YMMV.

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9 hours ago, hamrag said:

 

Having been in the Mera YC twice, and another booked, this is the best and most balanced suggestions and comments I read on this thread.....All of it is sound, and those things (with suggested timelines) would never come across as demanding. The one thing that disappointed us was the afternoon tea, we thought it was average at best....but go and experience it as YMMV.

I'm flattered.

 

I was trying to think about how to describe the YC experience and the butler - whom, BTW, is shared among, I think 8 cabins on the Meraviglia.

 

One way to think of it as that the YC and the butler are there to help your trip be as stress free as possible. YC members get less stress when boarding, don't have to deal with the crowded buffet or dining room or pool deck or bar; delicious food is easy to get (with quality between the MDR and the specialty restaurants), you only have to worry about high end drinks, they help you get off at ports, they make sure your room is as you want it, they will escort you to shows and help make sure you have a good view (or in the main theater at least a seat!),  you get access to the places to relax and unwind in the thermal spa, etc..  If you are on a longer cruise, they will start to remember you and your preferences - if you order a Pina Colada Zero every day around 5 as your pre-dinner drink, by the third time they will more than likely see you and suggest it if not start making it. You tend to know the servers and others in the dining room.

 

While some people want to "test the limits" or push to see what they can ask for, I'd suggest you think what will make your cruise as relaxing, stress free, and comfortable as possible (within reason). Want to have coffee each morning without having to order it? Done. Want to have large print version of a newspaper? Done. Want to order a pizza because you slept through lunch and don't want to deal with the pool deck or buffet? Done [as long as the pizzeria is open, which was noon to midnight on the cruise I was on]. Want to arrange (and pay) for a private tour during one of the stops? Done. Don't like the pillow you have? Need another blanket? Done.  Want to surprise your SO with towel animals on a particular night? Ask and it's done. Never want to leave your room and just want to enjoy your suite because you just want to totally decompress/write your novel/whatever? Order every meal and/or pizza from room service --- note, however, that they will not deliver food from the dining room unless you are sick, so that might become old very fast! Want to relax right away? They can help you unpack. Want to spend as much time as possible enjoying the last day/night? They can help you pack. 

 

A bit off from the original question, but I hope that helps the OP and others when thinking about how to utilize YC and the butler.

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