From: Ohioguy on 4 Jun 2010 22:58
> He wants magicians, buffets and nostalgia shows. A schooner in Maine is
> wrong, wrong wrong.
I was just trying to think of any positives I might run into on one
of those huge ships. The schooner idea is probably a lot closer to what
I would enjoy, but I have to consider my wife. Also, I hate hot weather
- and I think anything over about 77 degrees is too warm. I'm worried
that a Caribbean cruise would just be in the 80's all the time, and
Although resistant at first, she did say she would go one one of the
New England/Canada cruises, like these:
I worry that they might be the opposite issue, though - too cold and
rainy. I see that they seem to be 2-3 hundred more than the Caribbean
cruises, on average. I'm guessing that this is because of the Fall foliage?
Anybody ever done one of these Canada/New England cruises? How do
they compare to the ones down South?
From: Jack Hamilton on 4 Jun 2010 23:01
On Fri, 04 Jun 2010 20:11:40 -0400, Ohioguy <none(a)none.net> wrote:
>> I forgot to mention, you can get air from the cruise line. I'm not sure
>> if they have prices online but you can ask your travel agent to quote
> That's another thing I wanted to ask - I've never used a travel
>agent. Normally I've just taken a train, bus or car to wherever I was
>going, then camped, stayed in a hotel, or something along those lines.
> I always thought that the travel agents simply made money by adding
>on a couple of hundred dollars to the cheapest thing out there, and
>folks figured it was ok because of the convenience of them doing most
>all the work of getting scheduling and everything to work out. You're
>saying it is not like that?
> If so, I might have to check out a local travel agency before buying
>the tickets myself.
Usually the cruise line is the most expensive place to buy a cruise.
You've already looked on cruisecheap; also look at the prices on
vacationstogo.com and some other online agencies, and also check with
local travel agents (who are not necessarily more expensive, and will
probably provide better service). Some cruise lines prohibit travel
agencies from discounting, but agencies might throw in some kind of
bonus to make up for it.
You are brave, thinking of cruising through the Gulf of Mexico. I
expect there will still be lots of oil around.
From: Jack Hamilton on 4 Jun 2010 23:07
On Fri, 04 Jun 2010 21:00:15 -0400, Ohioguy <none(a)none.net> wrote:
> Is it true that you get some perks if you book your cruise with an
>American Express credit card, or is this just some sort of Urban Myth?
I occasionally get special offers, but I don't think there's any kind of
always-on discount. You might get some kind of travel protection,
depending on the type of card you have. The Platinum card supposedly
offers discounts and upgrades on some cruises.
From: Jack Hamilton on 4 Jun 2010 23:12
On Fri, 04 Jun 2010 22:12:06 -0400, Charles
>In article <5ydOn.76532$304.8267(a)newsfe12.iad>, Ohioguy <none(a)none.net>
>> My preference for a vacation is actually hiking in the wilderness for
>> a week or so, but my wife wasn't interested in that. I find that when
>> I'm around crowds of people, it typically makes me feel worn out. I
>> tend to recharge when I have time to reflect in nature, in my garden, or
>> similar activities. Probably has something to do with growing up in the
>> country, out on a farm.
>Get a balcony cabin and you can sit out there and avoid the crowds.
>Sitting out on the balcony overlooking the sea is restful and you can
>reflect in the nature of the sea. Even on a crowded ship.
Be careful, though, not to get a balcony right under the pool deck, or
you will not have quiet.
From: Tom K on 4 Jun 2010 23:57
On 6/4/10 4:41 PM, Ohioguy wrote:
> It looks like my wife and I will be going on a cruise in early
> October. It just works out that several relatives can come by and watch
> our kids (all are 7 or under). I think this will be the first time my
> wife and I have had a week to ourselves since our first child was born
> over 7 years ago.
> My preference for a vacation is actually hiking in the wilderness for a
> week or so, but my wife wasn't interested in that. I find that when I'm
> around crowds of people, it typically makes me feel worn out. I tend to
> recharge when I have time to reflect in nature, in my garden, or similar
> activities. Probably has something to do with growing up in the country,
> out on a farm.
> Anyway, details: we can take a 7 day cruise, with up to a day allowed
> for travel on both ends. In other words, we can be gone a grand total of
> about 9 days, and wouldn't want to push it past that. Due to a "Disney
> on Ice" show that various folks in the family want to see, we can leave
> either October 1, 2, 3 or 4. Sort of wish there was a website that could
> also lump in airfare - I'm trying to do it separately. (from Dayton,
> Ohio) I think we will focus on the Caribbean 7 day trips.
I would also suggest staying away from Carnival.
In addition... regarding your question about travel agents. Cruise
lines include commission in the quoted fares. If you book through a TA,
the TA gets the commission. If you book directly with the cruise line,
the cruise line keeps the commission. But that's never a good idea.
First off, you want an ally in case something goes wrong (airline
delays, etc.). Second, if there are potential upgrades to better cabins
to be had, or if there is a price drop, a TA can help get those, but if
you book directly with the cruise line... little chance of that
happening. And you want a TA with major cruise experience like many of
the TA's who post here, like Susette and George.
Let me offer some "trade offs"... or other things to think about.
Some cruise lines like Royal Caribbean have the BEST ships. Period.
Ice shows, rock walls, surfing pool, mini golf. But food isn't their forte.
On the other hand, lines like Celebrity and Princess do better with food
and pampering, but the ships aren't like the Royal Caribbean ships with
a zillion things to do. They're more into elegance, rather than non
stop action and activities.
You mention that you do have a day on each end to travel.
Given that... would you consider something in Europe? You might find
something more active, with things to see and do, than the Caribbean.
Maybe something in the Mediterranean. I believe there are a number of 7
day Med sailings. You could visit places like Monte Carlo, Nice, Rome,
the Greek Isles.
Or maybe a northern Europe sailing around the British Isles (England,
Or, how about Alaska? Hiking glaciers. Going on a sled dog excursion?
Whale watching? It's a little late for the Alaska season, so prices
might be very inexpensive in early October.
If you had a little longer, you could even look at something like the
Norwegian Fjords, where you could hike along 10,000 foot cliffs, get wet
I guess I'm saying, don't just think Carnival in the Caribbean.
In fact... if my only option was Carnival... I wouldn't go. I did one
Carnival sailing out of 40+ cruises. It was my first and last Carnival.
To me... the other options (Celebrity, Princess, Royal Caribbean) are
just much better cruise experiences.
And while I do love the Caribbean (snorkeling with Stingrays in Grand
Cayman is wonderful), there's a whole world out there besides the Caribbean.
But if you decide Caribbean... at least expand your horizons past
Carnival. Look at Royal Caribbean, Celebrity and Princess.