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Topic # 236362 29-May-2018 21:20
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So tonight a friend asked me if I would be interested in a long weekend away on a cruise. We would share a cabin which brings the cost down considerably. I notice there are many types of cabins available but have no idea  as to which one we should consider as they all look the same.

 

My next question is around value etc. Is it really worth it? Love it or hate it? We were thinking of a mini cruise around NZ, for 3 nights only coming up the next weekend. Value wise, it's cheaper than a hotel for 3 nights but I worry about food poisoning or much worse!

 

Any advise for a cruise virgin?


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  Reply # 2025176 29-May-2018 21:20
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Allow me to introduce you folks to our new travel community: TravelTalk NZ.

 

We hope to see you there!

 





I am the Geekzone Robot and I am here to help. I am from the Internet. I do not interact. Do not expect other replies from me.



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  Reply # 2025193 29-May-2018 22:00
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Tell you in a few weeks :)

 

On a 7 dayer around the Pacific islands Ex brisbane on P&O

 

You can't beat room and food for around $140 a night! Even if it is budget FnC/indian mall food now

 

Currently avoiding every spluttering human I can, damned if I want to be away in the mid-tropics when sick!

 

For me, solo internal room was going to be 2300 with a 'free' $600 value package - with $200 onboard spending and a few extras free... didn't seem good value to me! $1500 twin share with no extras. Bit of a no brainer. So we upgraded to a balcony (seat and a water view for pics etc) for a bit more, but twin had no free package - it was extra.

 

But as per fairgo recently, you have to watch the rooms. Some of them come with bunks rather than beds depending on how many its setup to cater for. 

 

It's luck of the draw until they confim the room type. But you can get some internal pics and layouts  https://www.ozcruising.com.au/cruise-ships 

 

They make their money by onboard purchases ($11 beers and $14 cocktails etc) and charging convenience premiums for shore tours etc if you don't want to make your own ways.


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  Reply # 2025196 29-May-2018 22:04
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We been on the p&o cruise for 3 nights. Money wise it was worth it. Food was good but not great. Drinks are not very expensive either. But it's very lazy type getaway. Drink, eat, repeat.

Yes there entertainment like music, shows, quiz, but we are not into it... Live music maybe. Spa was good, but not great again.

I would not want to go any longer than 3 nights.

Oh on the other hand, we opt out of internet, phones, laptops and just relax :)




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  Reply # 2025197 29-May-2018 22:08
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Drinks: beer and house wine 6-8 aud. There are options for fency wine from $10 to $15 a glass and bottles from $40. Cocktails 12. At special cocktails bar from 15, but worth it :)

All price in aud.




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  Reply # 2025198 29-May-2018 22:09
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Some people get hooked doing what you are considering to say they have 'experienced' boat life, and then go further afar. I'm jumping in head first but visiting Noumea and Vanuatu at the same time where I've never been to before :)

 

They're really just like rental vans in NZ, move about and need to keep moving to make money. So often the shorter or 1-way trips are a relocation trip for the boat they can cash up on - same way you can go 1-way from alaska to mid USA etc

 

Drowney but informative.. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZY1BFv8qEeM 


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  Reply # 2025276 30-May-2018 08:01
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Group of us are about to do our first cruise in July, the P&O comedy cruise. 3 nights. 

 

Room-wise, wouldnt worry too much, because honestly, how much time are you planning on spending in it ? Long as its not near anything noisy (friends who are seasoned at cruises ended up in one room above the nightclub and could hear the bass all night) you should be fine.

 

Apparently a lot of the cruise ships now have the food served to you rather than open buffet, so that has helped cut down on spread of infections etc. 

 

For a decent day on board, we've been told to not be surprised spending up to $100 per day. This is primarily for alcoholic drinks. If you dont drink, then obviously be a lot cheaper, and many cruises offer drinks packages. Think P&O is around $7 a day for soft drinks etc, but the alcohol ones are only available for 5+ night cruises.

 

If we enjoy this one, we'll look at making it a annual thing, and even do a 10 night one up to the islands etc.





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  Reply # 2025332 30-May-2018 09:00
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Been on a few now, all around 7 days - Hawaii (NCL) Mexico (Carnival) and Caribbean (Celebrity). I think they are fantastic value. However I would be wary of 3 day cruises, especially if they offer pre-paid beverage packages, as they can be booze cruises full of drunk yahoos. There have been a couple out of Australia that made the news lately and sounded awful. Having said that, I would always get a deal with a beverage package prepaid so you don't have to worry about a bill at the end of the cruise.

 

The Mexico cruises from LA down the Mexican Riviera are great value with the bargain airfares available.

 

I would not be doing a NZ cruise at this time of year - too cold and you are just going to be inside all day. All the cruises I have been on have been mostly about the port visits, even if it's just a free day sitting on a beach.

 

 

 

 

 

 


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  Reply # 2025334 30-May-2018 09:06
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xpd:

 

Group of us are about to do our first cruise in July, the P&O comedy cruise. 3 nights. 

 

Room-wise, wouldnt worry too much, because honestly, how much time are you planning on spending in it ? Long as its not near anything noisy (friends who are seasoned at cruises ended up in one room above the nightclub and could hear the bass all night) you should be fine.

 

Apparently a lot of the cruise ships now have the food served to you rather than open buffet, so that has helped cut down on spread of infections etc. 

 

For a decent day on board, we've been told to not be surprised spending up to $100 per day. This is primarily for alcoholic drinks. If you dont drink, then obviously be a lot cheaper, and many cruises offer drinks packages. Think P&O is around $7 a day for soft drinks etc, but the alcohol ones are only available for 5+ night cruises.

 

If we enjoy this one, we'll look at making it a annual thing, and even do a 10 night one up to the islands etc.

 

 

The big ships now days have many restaurants - typically one huge buffet with just about every kind of food imaginable, a main dining room (MDR) a-la-carte restaurant (all these are free/included in fare) plus a set of "premium" restaurants - typically a steakhouse and a couple of specialty restaurants such as Japanese, Brazilian etc that are an upcharge of around  US$20 pp.

 

Many deals include pre-paid drinks, or you can usually buy this as an add-on for around US$50 per day.

 

I've found the cruises in the massive home ports - Los Angeles/Long Beach, Miami etc are way cheaper than cruises out out of smaller ports such as Auckland and Sydney.


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  Reply # 2025339 30-May-2018 09:22
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We've done a number of cruises, from 9 to 19 nights so far. As for room types, as mentioned above, it doesn't really matter as you only use the room for sleeping and glamming. In saying that, if you're not sure what you'll be like bobbing about in the ocean, a mid-ship cabin lower down in the ship will have less movement than a forward or aft cabin.

 

Keep in mind that he likes of P&O aren't a high end cruise line, so the experience won't be the same as higher priced lines. 

 

As for the often mentioned norovirus, you can do your bit by washing your hands with soap and water regularly (more often than you would at home). Some cruise lines may still be insisting on using hand sanitiser instead, but many lines are/have moved away from this as hand sanitiser doesn't kill norovirus, so I wouldn't rely on it. Sanitiser isn't good to use regularly anyway. After a tip from very long time cruisers, we also take probiotics daily throughout the cruise to keep the gut in good order to help fight anything dodgy. We've never had any problems to date (knock on wood) so will keep doing what we're doing. Of course, avoiding under-cooked foods is also an obvious must-do.

 

Ship prices on alcohol are reasonable compared with the cost of drinking in town etc, so you need to drink a fair bit to meet the ~$NZ80-$100 a day per person to add a drinks package (if not included in the cruise cost). I couldn't drink that much every day.

 

Love cruising. Our next cruise is 14 nights to the Pacific Islands from Sydney.





Keep calm, and carry on posting.

 

 

 

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  Reply # 2025369 30-May-2018 09:28
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Stu:

 

Ship prices on alcohol are reasonable compared with the cost of drinking in town etc, so you need to drink a fair bit to meet the ~$NZ80-$100 a day per person to add a drinks package (if not included in the cruise cost). I couldn't drink that much every day.

 

 

Yeah that's an interesting one - have found that if you book through a travel agent (plug for vacationstogo.com) they can often wangle a drinks package into the fare. I've paid US$50/day for this as well and managed to justify it to myself as it also covered barista coffees, bottled water (for day excursions), smoothies etc on top of afternoon beers/pool cocktails, pre-dinner cocktails, dinner wines, post dinner barista coffee and cocktails. I'm not a big drinker but found I could make it pay. The other benefit is knowing you won't have a bill at the end of the cruise.

 

 


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  Reply # 2025470 30-May-2018 11:05
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We always book through Cruise Sale Finder. We usually get a little extra on board credit than if we booked direct with the cruise line, and sometimes save a bit on the cruise cost as well. Would prefer that than a drinks package, as we wouldn't get or money's worth with the amount of included alcohol we'd drink. Top shelf good stuff isn't always included.




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  Reply # 2025539 30-May-2018 11:39
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Stu: We always book through Cruise Sale Finder. We usually get a little extra on board credit than if we booked direct with the cruise line, and sometimes save a bit on the cruise cost as well. Would prefer that than a drinks package, as we wouldn't get or money's worth with the amount of included alcohol we'd drink. Top shelf good stuff isn't always included.

 

Yep we've done similar in the past and got good deals. Our next one booked through a travel agent at vacationstogogo and he got us a better deal than anything I could find using the usual online deal finders (and I tried many). He increased the OBC, got the drinks package included, got a discount and got us cabins for ourselves and friends on the same cruise grouped nearby. This particular cruise (in Apr 2019 11 day Caribbean ex Fort Lauderdale) is already showing several cabin types as sold out so I don't think there will be price drops, but if there were, then TAs are also able to haggle with the company for compensating OBC top-ups too.

 

The other thing I have noticed about using an agent is they can get specific cabins that are not available through the online systems. In particular if you are wanting interconnecting cabins...

 

Doesn't cost anything to try them out - I would recommend it.

 

 


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  Reply # 2025589 30-May-2018 12:10
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Absolutely agree. They certainly take the "hard" work out of it and they've (TAs) always got us a great deal.




Keep calm, and carry on posting.

 

 

 

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