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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-05-2005, 10:05 PM   #21
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Re: Cruisin'

I am going cruising again with the 4 people that I worked with that retired 12/31/04. We had a great time on their retirement cruise last year and we will be going again the end of 01/06! I can't wait!! The only problem is that I still have not lost the weight from the last cruise. I need to be more like Nords and take the stairs and work out this time!!

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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-06-2005, 05:33 PM   #22
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Re: Cruisin'

DW and I are on a western Caribbean cruise starting next week. We have an oudside cabin but not on a walking deck and it is a couple of decks away from the entertainment areas but not too far from the central atrium for convience. We just hope the weather holds so we can get to the ship and get in our 5 nights. I want a window. The room are too darn small for me (I would go nuts on a submarine) and I want to see the ocean when I want to.

We are going on a couple of shore excursions but are keeing the costs down by only doing some simple stuff but things that have more than one activity. I can't wait!!
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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-06-2005, 05:52 PM   #23
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Re: Cruisin'

Hey Nords, good post. Got a question. Does your balance, inner ears or even your knees have some problems after a cruise? I ask because several people told me they were wobbly for a couple of days. Never been on a cruise myself.
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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-06-2005, 06:12 PM   #24
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Re: Cruisin'

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Originally Posted by Eagle43
Hey Nords, good post.* Got a question.* Does your balance, inner ears or even your knees have some problems after a cruise?* I ask because several people told me they were wobbly for a couple of days.* Never been on a cruise myself.*
I've never been on a cruise either, but I suffer from all of these
afflictions. Damn I got old quick!

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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-06-2005, 06:21 PM   #25
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Re: Cruisin'

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Originally Posted by Eagle43
Hey Nords, good post. Got a question. Does your balance, inner ears or even your knees have some problems after a cruise? I ask because several people told me they were wobbly for a couple of days. Never been on a cruise myself.
Been on half dozen cruises and experienced a very slight balance problem once back on dry land, but it only lasted a couple of hours. The weight (gain) problem on the other hand, lasted for weeks and weeks...

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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-06-2005, 06:54 PM   #26
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Re: Cruisin'

Thanks for the thorough information Nords.* Very helpful.

I've only done one cruise - Alaska - and loved it.* I did have "sea legs" for 2-3 days afterward.* Very strange, since I didn't feel any effects while on the ship.

We had outside staterooms with balconies - it was a wonderful luxury to have morning coffee or (evening) cocktails on your own private deck while watching the scenery go by.* I did some amazing watercolors that only I can recognize the subject of.* *

I'm curious about other destinations folks have cruised - I'm not big on the short in-out touristy visit to the ports of call, but really enjoy the shipboard experience.

I'm trying to come up with a "trip of a lifetime" trip for SO's 50th in March.* Maybe cruise the Panama Canal?*
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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-06-2005, 09:23 PM   #27
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Re: Cruisin'

When we would go on port visits during the cruise, we'd get "land-sick" or feel like we were still rocking as if we were on a boat still.

We opted for the "el cheapo" inside room. It was our first cruise and I thought I might like the outside room with a window, but it was hard to justify spending hundreds extra for the window. I'm the type that doesn't care much about how nice the room where I'm staying is. We ended up spending most of our time on the back deck public area looking out over the water. This area was frequently empty so we had it all to ourselves. Additionally, when the water got a little choppy, my wife said she was glad we didn't have a window because seeing the horizon rock to and from would make her more sick. Sleeping till 9:00 or 10:00 every morning was also easily accomplished with the darkness provided by our interior cabin.

Whether you pay $500 or $5000 for your cabin, you get the same room service, the same dining experiences, the same seats in the theatre and the same access to all of the ship.
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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-06-2005, 10:06 PM   #28
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Re: Cruisin'

Our first cruise was when our kids were younger and we did the Big Red Boat with the cartoon characters. We had a window and I also had sea legs when we got back to land. It was a smaller boat. Last year when I went with the retired office gang, we went on a Carnival ship and had an inside room, but I never had the sea legs. We were with a bunch of other people and were only in the room to shower,change and sleep. We were on the go the rest of the time. We did the Eastern Caribbean trip. We will be going on the Western Caribbean trip at then end of 01/06 with Royal Caribebbean cruise line. We will once again have an inside room unless they give us an upgrade, but I really don't care all that much. So far, there are 8 of us going, so I know that we will have a good time!!

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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-06-2005, 10:08 PM   #29
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Re: Cruisin'

I forgot to add that I would love to cruise to Alaska someday. I think that would be a great cruise. Has anyone done any of the European cruises?

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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-07-2005, 09:35 AM   #30
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Re: Cruisin'

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dreamer
I forgot to add that I would love to cruise to Alaska someday. I think that would be a great cruise. Has anyone done any of the European cruises?

Dreamer
I haven't done any European cruises, but I've seen some amazing deals on one-way Transatlantic repositioning cruises that go to or from Europe. You'd have to get one-way airfare unless you stay in Europe all summer. The ships usually depart from the US east coast sometime in May, then return from Europe destined for the US east coast in September or October. Many of these trips are $500-$800 per person for 7-14 days, and you get to visit a few places in Europe. The one-way airfare is the deal breaker for me though.

One day (probably when I ER) I'd like to go to Europe by cruise ship in the spring, hang out somewhere on the Eurasian continent for the summer, then return to the US in the fall by cruise ship. This solves the one-way airfare problem. In fact, no airfare would be required, except perhaps domestic airfare to get you to/from the cruise ship port in the US.

Nords, do you know of any cheap trans-pacific repositioning cruises like the trans-atlantic cruises I referred to above? I've searched and got nothing.

Sheryl, in the last year I remember seeing some really inexpensive panama canal repositioning cruises between So Cal and Florida/Texas. Something like $800 per person for 14 days. I think they were on Celebrity. That would be a really awesome experience.
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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-07-2005, 09:56 AM   #31
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Re: Cruisin'

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dreamer
I forgot to add that I would love to cruise to Alaska someday.* I think that would be a great cruise.* Has anyone done any of the European cruises?

Dreamer
I did the Alaska inner passage trip a few years ago. It was a wonderful trip. We did a lot of fun things including a helicopter trip over a glacier and then spent some time actually walking around on it. We did several boat trips into various inlets looking at wildlife; eagles, bears, moose, etc. The boat goes into several glacier areas where you can watch them calf off and splase into the ocean. We saw many whales and lots of beautiful scenery. I would do it again in a heartbeat. We are thinking about a trip on a much smaller boat that sleeps 100 as it gets into the smaller passages and right up on the whales and other creatures.

You can combine the ocean trip with a land trip to Denali Nat. Park or a cross-Canadian train trip.

Be prepared for the cold since the water is icy in places even in August; especially on the open deck (wind chill).
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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-07-2005, 01:16 PM   #32
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Re: Cruisin'

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eagle43
Hey Nords, good post.* Got a question.* Does your balance, inner ears or even your knees have some problems after a cruise?* I ask because several people told me they were wobbly for a couple of days.* Never been on a cruise myself.*
Funny you should ask that. I don't recall it happening after our seven-day cruise despite some spectacular open-ocean weather.

But I did have a couple days of land-legs after this one. I'd catch my self weaving slightly in my computer chair or the room would move for a little bit after I'd stop. (The "four beer" syndrome.) But I also picked up a nasty head cold from this cruise (my first since ER) so it's probably just a symptom of a skull full of mucous.

I never had land legs on submarines but we avoided rocking & rolling as much as possible. "Dive, make your depth 600 feet!"

Quote:
Originally Posted by justin
I haven't done any European cruises, but I've seen some amazing deals on one-way Transatlantic repositioning cruises that go to or from Europe.

Nords, do you know of any cheap trans-pacific repositioning cruises like the trans-atlantic cruises I referred to above? I've searched and got nothing.
The 800-pound gorilla out here is NCL. They're bringing a third American-flagged ship out here next year, the Pride of Hawaii, and the ship will sail from Europe through the Panama Canal. They really flogged the Pride of America's itinerary when she came out here this year and I'm sure they'll be looking for lots of POH guinea pigs passengers to practice on as they work their way west next year. It's worth keeping an eye on this one since NCL should have the whole aloha process down to a smooth-running science.

NCL seemed to bring an extra ship to Hawaii this summer. I don't know if that's a one-time deal or the annual routine, but in that case you'd be able to score a repositioning from Alaska or Mexico in the spring/fall. Buy a cheap round-trip airfare to Hawaii and throw away the return half.

As far as the prices, well, I need to introduce you to my mother-in-law the budget-cruise fanatic. Spouse's parents have been on 40 or 50 cruises worldwide and she regularly scours the Web for good deals. She found our last cruise on Cruise Deals but there's also SkyAuction and Moment's Notice. And there are probably a half-dozen other places that she's keeping secret until our next cruise...
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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-07-2005, 01:33 PM   #33
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Re: Cruisin'

Nords, thanks for the detailed response!

Have you seen any Hawaii-Asia or the reverse direction repositioning cruises?
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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-07-2005, 01:42 PM   #34
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Re: Cruisin'

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Have you seen any Hawaii-Asia or the reverse direction repositioning cruises?
Never. Kinda ironic since NCL is owned by Genting Group.

I guess there might be something from Residensea or other world tours, but only because I occasionally see ships from other cruise lines parked at the Aloha Tower piers.
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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-07-2005, 06:15 PM   #35
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Re: Cruisin'

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Originally Posted by SteveR
I did the Alaska inner passage trip a few years ago. It was a wonderful trip. We did a lot of fun things including a helicopter trip over a glacier and then spent some time actually walking around on it. You can combine the ocean trip with a land trip to Denali Nat. Park or a cross-Canadian train trip.
We did the inside passage from Anchorage down to Seattle. It's as impressive as it's hyped up to be. We were really worried about the cruise because we are definitely not the "crusing type", but it was pretty nice. The 24-hr buffet was adequate at best, but the sit down lunches/dinners/tea were very good. The whales and glaciers are just spectacular!

We ended up doing Denali by ourselves about a week before our cruise and that was definitely a good decision. We were able to spend 3 days there and try out a bunch of different hikes and stay at a really nice cabin. We met some cruise ship people in Denali and everything about their trip was orchestrated and they really didn't get to do as much as they wanted.

This seems to be true of the shore excursions as well. We only did one excursion through the ship (Yukon Railway). Everything else was planned with a Lonely Planet; either we rented a car when we got to port or we just hoofed it. This was not only a much better experience (ie, more times, less crowds, freedom etc) than the excursions sold by the ship, it was significantly cheaper most of the time. Especially since we had 6 people in our group.

I think places like Alaska and Antarctic are the ideal cruise ship destinations. Places where the scenery in amazing and hard to get to. I'm not so sure that I would like cruising to Europe. Days of empty ocean followed by limited time at culturally interesting ports, not to mention that I want to try local food and mingle with the locals as much as possible.
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Re: Cruisin'
Old 09-07-2005, 06:42 PM   #36
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Re: Cruisin'

Wanderalot - my experience and opinions are similar. The great thing about the Alaska cruise was the scenery. We also flew to Anchorage and cruised back. In our case we went on HAl and came back into Vancouver.

I recommend the one-way. You see twice as much scenery, and no duplication.

Check carefully on whether your line and ship are scheduled for Glacier Bay National Park, or some other (really it's just as good you'll never know the difference) area.

We did several really good shore excursions - one was a helicpoter glacier climb, which required actual crampons, ice-axes and training. The others were helicopter flight-seeing which was really thrilling to my mom, who couldn't get around too much on her own. I did whalewatching and my brother and BF did fishing trips.

One word to the wise - we learned too late that the "good stuff" fills up really fast.

Another word: If you do your own excursion and are late returning the ship will go without you. If you do a ship-sponsored trip they may try to wait. My brother and I got left on the glacier with only one guide because a helicopter broke down and we were the least freaked-out about the potential of being stuck - possibly overnight. [I was already figuring out how to build a igloo with an ice axe]. Finally as it was getting dark the 'copter showed up and we were delivered directly to the dock - we ran up the ganplank and they pulled it in behind us. Talk about dramatic entrances!

Anyway we had a lot of fun and great memories of a good time together and something that my mom had wanted to do all her life.

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