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Solo on the Sun to Alaska June 7-17 2024


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Hey Cruisers! I will be doing a live of my solo trip of my trip to Alaska on the Sun for any one who wants to travel along with me.

 

My name is Ashley and I am pretty frequent solo traveller, I am single and fortunate enough to have a lot of vacation time. I used to travel with my sister, but she has been busy doing life stuff and hasn’t been able to cruise. Our first cruise on NCL was her last cruise and I’ve since reached platinum😜.  

 

I will be trying out one of the “solo balconies.” There are not a ton of them on the Sun. I am sure some of you Sherlocks at home will probably be able to figure out what room I am, please don’t share. 

 

This was booked pretty last minute for me, generally I book a year out or longer. I was originally booked on the Jewel’s transpacific that ended in Alaska, right when I was booking airfare I realized that was my sister’s due date so I ended up cancelling. Still wanted to get to Alaska this year, tossed around various sailing on different ships, even different lines, but nothing panned out. This year had been pretty stressful at work. One day I was browsing NCL’s website over lunch when I came across this sailing-it ticked all the boxes for me.

 

When I started looking in April, there was lots of availability. By the time my boss got around to approving time off there was a little bit of inventory. Originally I booked a solo inside, with a plan to use points to upgrade to a balcony. When I booked there was an IT issue. It took a few days to get straightened out and I was biting my nails the whole time. Luckily I was able to get the last solo balcony! The ship has been sold out for a little bit now. 

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I am looking forward to your reports...I will be on the Sun in October and would love to get info on the ship! 

I have never traveled solo before and am looking forward to it.

When is your trip,?

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I hope you have a wonderful cruise.

The Sun is a very special ship.  She is laid out differently than most ships.  One of the Main Dining Rooms is just off the lobby.  The theater is in the rear of the ship.  The buffet has lots of outdoor space.  The Observation Lounge is across the front of the ship on Deck 11 with a balcony.

Enjoy

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11 hours ago, lepidoptera said:

I will be trying out one of the “solo balconies.” There are not a ton of them on the Sun. I am sure some of you Sherlocks at home will probably be able to figure out what room I am, please don’t share.

My favorite balcony of all time, because of the location, is on the Sun and just happens to be one of the balconies now designated as solo. Was able to snag it for the repo cruise - Vancouver/Alaska to Hawaii in October.

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@jrt.mom I will be boarding today! Super excited

@www3traveler Yes I saw some of that when I was looking at deck plan. I am excited to get on her and see for myself.

@julig22That’s awesome about the balcony! I did not get any of my top 3 choices for solo balcony, so we will see how things go.

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Yesterday was a super long day. I booked out of the Buffalo airport, since it had better flight times on the way back. Then my flight times got messed around with- my flight time isn’t great anymore on the way back I will have to rush off the ship and my morning flight moved even earlier to 6:20.

 

Buffalo is about an hour away so I ended up getting up at 02:30 to get ready. I hit the road just after 3, parked just around 4;30 and then shuttled to the airport. I did not have to check any bags so I went right through security. So many clueless people. Gentlemen, if you have to stand in front of the screening station holding you pants up until you have your belt back you have chosen the wrong pants! Luckily we did not have to take anything out of our bags, since I don’t know how this crowd would have handled it. 

 

I had planned on grabbing something at Tim Horton’s because that is really all Buffalo has and because I think it is hilarious that NCL has an excursion to Tim’s in Victoria. But the line was too long. 

 

My flights both went fine. Both were completely full. On my flight from Detroit to Seattle my seatmates almost misconnected but ran all the way from the B gates to the A54 and made it there right before doors closed. 

 

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Your flight out of Seattle is at 6:20 A.M.???  Not doable at all!!  That would mean you would have to be at SeaTac shortly after 5:00 A.M.  You may not be clear for disembarkation until almost 7:00 A.M.  Even if the traffic is light, it will still take 30 to 45 to reach airport.

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By the time I landed in Seattle I was getting pretty tired! My plan was to go to the hotel take a nap, freshen up and then head out. My rough plan was to take a Ferry over to Bainbridge Island a visit a yarn shop there.

 

I took an Uber to my hotel. When I got there they were having an IT problem and although they had rooms ready, they could not check anyone in. I ended up grabbing just a few things out of my back pack and going off.

 

My hotel was pretty close to the Space Needle. I had been up it before, but it was on a day without great visibility. Today was lovely and clear, so I decided to walk over and go up. The views up there were worth it! I ended up getting an ice cream and sitting down and watching the view for quite a while. 

 

However, one hand knew not what the other was doing regarding getting down. I saw the lines were long on downstairs section, so I went upstairs. Waited in line for a little bit, told to go downstairs. Waited downstairs, then told line was shorted upstairs and to go upstairs. The group behind me and I were like no we were just there and got kicked out of that line. When we got within the actual waiting area they decided to close it off and allow no one else to get in line. I was at the actual front of the line when they decide that they were shutting down either that elevator or that pickup spot. Originally they were going to make us all queue again, but then one of the employees allowed us to go through VIP section on a different elevator. Overall it over half an hour to get down. By this time I was hot, tired and my phone was dying (I had grabbed a battery pack but the wrong charging cord.)

 

I walked back to my hotel, was able to check in. I originally wanted to just rest a bit, clean up and then go grab dinner. Ended up just relaxing in my hotel room, starting this thread and having a granola bar for dinner. 

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6 minutes ago, www3traveler said:

Your flight out of Seattle is at 6:20 A.M.???  Not doable at all!!  That would mean you would have to be at SeaTac shortly after 5:00 A.M.  You may not be clear for disembarkation until almost 7:00 A.M.  Even if the traffic is light, it will still take 30 to 45 to reach airport.

Oh no I will have to go and edit that! Sorry I was unclear. My flight out to Seattle was moved up to 6:20.

 

My flight home was originally scheduled for after 2 p.m. then they moved it to 11:40 am.

 

Both legs of the trip changed so many times between me booking in April and flying in June. 

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1 hour ago, lepidoptera said:

Oh no I will have to go and edit that! Sorry I was unclear. My flight out to Seattle was moved up to 6:20.

 

My flight home was originally scheduled for after 2 p.m. then they moved it to 11:40 am.

 

Both legs of the trip changed so many times between me booking in April and flying in June. 

11:40 is much better.  You might want to check and see if you qualify for the Port (of Seattle) Valet Program.

 

Enjoy your cruise.

 

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2 hours ago, lepidoptera said:

Gentlemen, if you have to stand in front of the screening station holding you pants up until you have your belt back you have chosen the wrong pants!

Ouch! I felt this personally. 🙂 I refuse to buy new clothes until they're threadbare and reduced to barely covering me. 

 

Now that I have precheck, I'm fine! Plus, I generally wear shorts as airplanes are just giant furnaces that try to reduce me to ash.

 

I love, love, love the photo of Mt. Rainier! Looking forward to seeing the trip through your eyes! 

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2 hours ago, lepidoptera said:

@jrt.mom I will be boarding today! Super excited

@www3traveler 

@julig22That’s  

Duh, I just saw your sailing date in the thread title, I guess I should learn to read! 😁

Anyway, keep us posted! Can you check if they are selling spa privileges and what they are asking for it? Thanks...

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14 minutes ago, cruiseny4life said:

 

 

Now that I have precheck, I'm fine! 

True story...I recently shuttled a friend to our closest airport for a flight. She was late coming to my house to start with, and when we got to the airport I dropped her she said the TSA line was so long she couldn't get through it in time to make her flight. So I ended up driving her to her connecting airport THREE hours  away, and then had to drive the three hours home. If she had TSA precheck she woulda made her first flight. So we both are in the process of getting it so this won't happen again!

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2 hours ago, cruiseny4life said:

Ouch! I felt this personally. 🙂 I refuse to buy new clothes until they're threadbare and reduced to barely covering me. 

 

Now that I have precheck, I'm fine! Plus, I generally wear shorts as airplanes are just giant furnaces that try to reduce me to ash.

 

I love, love, love the photo of Mt. Rainier! Looking forward to seeing the trip through your eyes! 

I get it, I don’t do a lot of clothes shopping either. But there were so many guys waddling around holding their pants up I just had to laugh. Maybe it’s an upstate thing🤔

 

It was awesome seeing Mt. Rainier in person. The last time I was in Seattle, the weather was super Seattle and I did the Space Needle only because I had the city pass. I figured there would be very nice views yesterday and there was.

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Posted (edited)

So today I have had to be like Jello and be flexible. The first 2 things I booked for this trip were tours that I couldn’t do the last time I was in Seattle. 
 

The underground donut tour was booked up last time. I had the 9:00 tour booked for today. Last night they rebooked me on the 11-1 tour due to a guide being sick. I really didn’t want to be finishing a tour at that time, so I tried to rebook on an earlier tour.

 

When I woke up this morning I found out they weren’t able to accommodate me, so I decided to do my own tour.

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The first stop on my tour was at Top Pot Donut. This was the only place I actually had a donut. I went with a maple old fashion. I didn’t really see any special flavors. It was pretty good  I give it 🛟🛟🛟 out of 5. (Credit for the life ring rating system goes to YVRteacher)

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Then I walked over to Dahlia Bakery. I almost left because the line was out the door. Soooo glad I didn’t. There wasn’t a large selection of bake goods, plus dinner was granola bar, so I ended getting their Bacon and Egg sandwich. It was fantastic 🛟🛟🛟🛟. Probably the best breakfast sandwich I have ever had. 

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I then walked down towards Pike Place Market. Stopped in at Target to grab a toiletry I forgot. Then crossed the road into the market. I walked around for a little bit. Looking at the flowers, wish I could bring some on the ship. I ended up grabbing a cider since my water was warm. It was very yummy and I got to try all flavors before going with the Apple and Peach. 
 

I was able to see the Sun from the Market. Which made me pretty eager to go back to the hotel and grab my stuff to board the ship. 

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3 hours ago, www3traveler said:

11:40 is much better.  You might want to check and see if you qualify for the Port (of Seattle) Valet Program.

 

Enjoy your cruise.

 

I may try Port Valet, it looks like it is started up for the season. It will depend on how much of anything I buy. I packed carry-on only and I still have some room in my bags. I didn’t want to have to use the Port Valet and it not be available.

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3 minutes ago, lepidoptera said:

I may try Port Valet, it looks like it is started up for the season. It will depend on how much of anything I buy. I packed carry-on only and I still have some room in my bags. I didn’t want to have to use the Port Valet and it not be available.

From all the recent reports I have read in the last few weeks, Port Valet is up and running.  I think that it was only the first couple of weeks of the Season, it was not.

Check with the Guest Services Desk on Deck 5 to see if your airline and flight time qualify.  The Program is Free.  Worth a check at the Guest Services Desk.

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