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Archive for February, 2013

Current Cruiseline Promotions Feb 06

Current Promotions for the most popular US cruise lines: Norwegian, Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Princess, Disney, Celebrity & Holland America

Norwegian

Catch the Upgrade Wave

Free Stateroom Upgrades: Book a cruise 3 days or longer and receive free upgrades on all ships and destinations in 2013 and beyond.

Kids Cruise for 50% Off: Book a cruise to Europe and kids 17 and younger sailing as a 3rd or 4th guest in a stateroom cruise for 50% off.

E-Coupons: Once booked and checked in online, you will be given electronic coupons worth over $300 for some of the most popular amenities at sea.

Air & Cruise Deals: Norwegian offers great air and cruise deals to Europe and Hawaii. Select your departure airport to see package pricing.

Hot & Last Minute Deals

Preferred Programs: WorldPoints Rewards, Latitudes, AARP, American Express, Military & Diamond Resorts Int.

Carnival

Early Saver: If our price drops,  your price drops, guaranteed

3 Day Sale: Up to $250 cash back + Free Upgrades

Special Past Guest Deals

Special Exotic Cruise Deals

Explore Europe: Get cash back + free upgrades + 50% reduced deposits

Search for Exclusive savings for Military, Seniors, VIFP & Resident

Royal Caribbean

Conquer the space between a rock and “I rock.”

Free Beverage Package on select Atlantic crossings

Journey to Middle Earth

Search for exclusive savings for Military, Law Enforcement, Seniors & Residents

Weekly Tuesday Sale

Princess

Denali On Sale

Cruise Deals & Air Steals

Top Cruise Deals

Military Benefit Program

Disney

Fall Perks: Great Rates & Onboard Credit on select Dream sailings

Florida Resident Rates

US Military Rates

Order your free Disney Cruise Planning DVD

Celebrity

123Go! Three big offers. Choose yours and go!

Offer 1: Free Beverage Packages

Offer 2: Free Gratuities

Offer 3: Free onboard credit

Caribbean Shore Excursion Packages

Save on Reflection Specialty Dining Package

Holland America

1 Week Sale Extended: 50% Reduced Deposits

Weekly Top Cruise Deals

Sail & Save

Find all/more pricing for Seniors, Military, EMT, Firefighter, Police, Interline, Past Guest, Singles & Teachers at Vacations To Go

Carnival Sunshine Feb 06

Yesterday I brought you information about the Quantum class by Royal Caribbean. It will for sure be a class of it’s own like the Oasis class.

But Carnival has stepped up it’s game with their newest ships: Magic, Breeze & Sunshine.

The Carnival Sunshine is a little different though. While the Magic & Breeze are new builds Sunshine is a refurb of the Carnival Destiny delivering a lot of the successes of the Magic & Breeze but also bringing some new amenities.

Carnival Sunshine Virtual Tour

Carnival Sunshine @Carnival.com

New amenities include the Speedway Splash Slides, waterfall on the Serenity deck, Havana bar & JiJi Asian Kitchen.

It will surely be a hit as the Magic & Breeze have been. These new amenities along with Carnival’s already diverse itineraries and lower pricing make them a strong contender for most average cruisers.

It will be operating 7 Day Caribbean cruises out of New Orleans starting in November of 2013 for just over $400 per person for an inside stateroom.

7 Day Western Caribbean to Montego Bay, Grand Cayman & Cozumel

7 Day Eastern Caribbean to Key West, Freeport & Nassau

Quantum Class Feb 05

Royal Caribbean’s Sunshine Project is officially the Quantum class featuring 2 new ships: Quantum of the Seas & Anthem of the seas.

Quantum Class Info

I posted this yesterday but wanted to give some more details.

Honestly I don’t like the name Quantum of the Seas. It just doesn’t have the finesse that their other names have.

These ships are supposed to be bigger than the Freedom class ships but smaller than the Oasis class ships.

It will most likely have Neighborhoods like the Oasis class but I wonder if it will have the space or design for inside facing balcony staterooms and the Aqua Theatre.

I wonder what NEW features they will have. Ocean plaza, fireworks, ice bar, ropes course, “Haven”, etc… What will it bring to the industry?

I can’t imagine they’d bring out a new class of ships and not add anything exclusive or innovative so we’ll see.

Maybe it will have a full deck length lazy river? What other new features would you like to see?

So long no sea Feb 05

Ya I know it’s been a while. Our last cruise was our Babymoon before we had our first child. I don’t think I’d recommend cruising while pregnant. I didn’t have morning sickness but I definitely felt the motion of the ship more and had some other uncomfortable moments. Sleeping on the couch for a week watching cruise videos on YouTube would have been nice. Oh well – live and learn.

So here it is 9 months after my sons arrival and no we don’t have any cruises or vacations planned. He’s a daycare kid which means he’s constantly sick. So until his immune system is stronger and he’s had more vaccines we won’t be cruising. I do hope to take him to Disneyland or Disneyworld though. That will require lots of planning which is my favorite part.

This hasn’t stopped me from keep up with Cruise News or watching cruise videos on YouTube. I’ve been asked by several coworkers about how to find a good cruise deal or how to decide which cruise line and/or ship to go on. So here’s an update.

New cruise ships I’m most excited about

1) Carnival Breeze

With it’s new eateries & bars, Waterworks, Comedy Club, Spa & 5-D movie theater it has a great mix of new amenities, less gaudy decor than other Carnival ships, itinerary & price. She sails from Miami on 6 and 8 day cruises to the Caribbean.

6 Day Caribbean to Key West, Grand Turk & Nassau

6 Day Caribbean to Grand Turk, Ocho Rios & Nassau

8 Day Eastern Caribbean to Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Maarten & St. Thomas

8 Day Southern Caribbean to Grand Turk, La Romana, Curacao & Aruba.

6 Day sailings start around $400 per person for an inside while an 8 day sailing starts around $500.

These are great itineraries!

2) Norwegian Breakaway

With it’s new eateries & bars, water slides, shows, spa & fireworks it has a great mix of new amenities and activities with contemporary styling. I have yet to cruise on Norwegian but do think we would enjoy Freestyle cruising.

She sails from New York to Bermuda, the Bahamas & the Caribbean.

7 Day Caribbean to Port Canaveral, Great Stirrup Cay & Nassau starting at $500

7 Day Bermuda to King’s Wharf starting at $900

12 Day Southern Caribbean to San Juan, St. Thomas, St. Maarten, St. Lucia, Barbados & St. Kitts starting at $1300 in Jan 2014

If I could take 2 weeks of vacation I would definitely splurge on the 12 day itinerary.

Some of my new favorite cruise videos are below.

I hope you enjoy and add them to your favorites too!

NCL Breakaway: FIREWORKS

NCL Epic: explains Freestyle cruising

Royal Caribbean Allure of the Seas movies

National Geographic Cruise Ship Diaries Honeymoon Seas onboard Costa Serena

Big Bigger Biggest: Cruise Ship

Relaxing time lapse

Allure of the Seas trip review

Mighty Ships: Oasis of the Seas

Online Research

The only thing I would add to my previous Online Research post is the new website CruiseWise.

Special Pricing (interline, military, past guest, state, teacher) – http://www.vacationstogo.com/

Actual pictures of rooms – http://www.cruiselinerooms.com/

Anything & Everything – http://www.cruisecritic.com/

Everything, ports & roll calls – http://boards.cruisecritic.com/

Deck-on-Deck info & ship tours – http://www.cruisedeckplans.com/DP/Main/virtualtours.php

Travel Insurance – http://www.insuremytrip.com/index.html?linkId=30002

First Time General Info – http://www.cruisecritic.com/ftc

Great overall site: http://www.cruisewise.com/

Tips

1) Read recent reviews of both the ship & itinerary.

2) Get a cabin on a lower deck, between cabin decks (not below or above public spaces) & mid ship.

3) Make a packing list and don’t wait till the night before to pack.

4) Get travel insurance! This will cover over seas medical, evacuation, trip delay, job loss, etc.

5) Extras you might not think of: safety kit, poncho, highlighter, sticky notes, card games, popcorn.

6) Afraid you’ll get seasick? Wear sea bands for a non-medicated remedy – Walmart.

7) Are the beaches rocky? Take water shoes.

8) Don’t over-pack. Take multi-use clothes and coordinate with only a couple pairs of shoes.

9) Going to beach and getting in the water? Get a water proof pouch for your money & credit cards.

10) Know your cruise lines price protection policy and watch for price drops.

11) Carry copies of your PP & DL ashore along with emergency numbers & port authority number.

12) Keep track of the time when ashore. Don’t miss the boat!

13) DON’T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT YOUR PASSPORT AND DL! ALWAYS KNOW WHERE THEY ARE!

Sooooooo happy cruising y’all or in my case happy researching & obsessing!

If you have any questions leave a comment below 🙂