Author Topic: Cruise Lines and Experiences  (Read 65525 times)

Offline Marco Polo

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Cruise Lines and Experiences
« on: April 29, 2013, 04:21:50 PM »
I cannot seem to find this posted anywhere. Thought would be nice to have a thread on cruise experiences and TR's.

My cruises have been with Celebrity and Royal Caribbean.

Celebrity- Cape Liberty NJ > Bermuda. We had two days down to Bermuda, stayed for three days and then had day/two days back.

Royal Caribbean- Cape Liberty NJ > San Juan > St. Thomas > Samana DR > Haiti. 2+ days to get to San Juan, spent five hours there and went on to St. Thomas where we had all morning and left around 4PM. Next was Samana and then Haiti, each place we had all morning and left around 4PM, about two days for the way back.

If anyone has any particular questions about the cruising experience or what i did at each location, feel free to ask.

« Last Edit: April 29, 2013, 05:15:16 PM by Marco Polo »
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Offline chavie

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2013, 09:18:17 PM »
Hi! Thanks so much for adding this.

Just booked for June 16 on Celebrity Cruise from NY-->Bermuda. 2 days travel, 3 days docked, 2 days return. Seems like you had basically the same itinerary.

This is our first trip outside the US/Europe/Israel. This is our first time cruising.

1) What did you do for Kosher food?
    We reserved the Kosher food offered by the cruise line, but it's only lunch and dinner, 1 serving each, and probably nothing   
    great. We were told we can only bring non-perishable food on board. What did you do and how was the food on the ship?

2) Did you book your excursions prior to traveling? What did you do in Bermuda and how should we plan?

3) What did you do on Shabbos?

Thank you so much!!

Offline Marco Polo

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2013, 09:48:24 PM »
Hi! Thanks so much for adding this.

Just booked for June 16 on Celebrity Cruise from NY-->Bermuda. 2 days travel, 3 days docked, 2 days return. Seems like you had basically the same itinerary.

This is our first trip outside the US/Europe/Israel. This is our first time cruising.

1) What did you do for Kosher food?
    We reserved the Kosher food offered by the cruise line, but it's only lunch and dinner, 1 serving each, and probably nothing   
    great. We were told we can only bring non-perishable food on board. What did you do and how was the food on the ship?

2) Did you book your excursions prior to traveling? What did you do in Bermuda and how should we plan?

3) What did you do on Shabbos?

Thank you so much!!
I PM'ed you back on this. You can post it in here if you would like.
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Offline Achas Veachas

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2013, 09:49:49 PM »
From what I hear, it's possible to book yourself on the same boat as a Kosherica cruise on regular fare, eat the Kosher food supplied by the cruise line (airline food basically) and then you get to enjoy the entertainment at a fraction of the price. Anyone can confirm?

Offline Marco Polo

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2013, 10:02:15 PM »
From what I hear, it's possible to book yourself on the same boat as a Kosherica cruise on regular fare, eat the Kosher food supplied by the cruise line (airline food basically) and then you get to enjoy the entertainment at a fraction of the price. Anyone can confirm?
The only thing different would be going to the "kosher" concerts. It can be done.
You most likely will not be able to eat any of the kosher food they will be making on board as the Kosherica guests will get arm bands.
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Offline Achas Veachas

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2013, 10:26:10 PM »
The only thing different would be going to the "kosher" concerts. It can be done.
You most likely will not be able to eat any of the kosher food they will be making on board as the Kosherica guests will get arm bands.
So in other words, you won't get the Kosherica food, just the entertainment.

Offline Marco Polo

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2013, 10:27:53 PM »
So in other words, you won't get the Kosherica food, just the entertainment.
Exactly. It may be YMMV with the food, but most likely not.
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Offline ual902

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2013, 11:00:26 PM »
From what I hear, it's possible to book yourself on the same boat as a Kosherica cruise on regular fare, eat the Kosher food supplied by the cruise line (airline food basically) and then you get to enjoy the entertainment at a fraction of the price. Anyone can confirm?

 I'm not even sure if you could join the Kosherica Minyan, as they check for your Kosherica band as you enter, correct me if I'm wrong!


Offline Achas Veachas

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #8 on: May 06, 2013, 11:14:58 PM »
I'm not even sure if you could join the Kosherica Minyan, as they check for your Kosherica band as you enter, correct me if I'm wrong!


Even for the Minyan? I was under the impression that they would only check for the dining.

Offline ual902

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #9 on: May 06, 2013, 11:25:54 PM »
Even for the Minyan? I was under the impression that they would only check for the dining.

Let's put it this way, you and the owner \ manager of Kosherica will not feel comfortable about the situation as the owner of Kosherica pays for the minyan room etc.. 

Offline Marco Polo

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #10 on: May 07, 2013, 08:46:00 AM »
Let's put it this way, you and the owner \ manager of Kosherica will not feel comfortable about the situation as the owner of Kosherica pays for the minyan room etc..
Are you sure they pay for the minyan room? I think if anyone comes with a large group, the cruise line becomes very accommodating to your needs. I don't believe they charge extra for the room.
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Offline mordyl19

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2013, 12:18:03 PM »
Hey Great Post, I am looking for a Royal Caribbean cruise leaving from Cape Canaveral. Where can I find good deals for Cruises specifically Royal Caribbean.
I am not 100% sure about this. But I am going to click it anyway.

Offline Marco Polo

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2013, 12:23:55 PM »
Hey Great Post, I am looking for a Royal Caribbean cruise leaving from Cape Canaveral. Where can I find good deals for Cruises specifically Royal Caribbean.
IME/O, vacationstogo.com has the best pricing you will find on cruise deals. Checkout the site and use the 90-Day Ticker to search for what you want.
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Offline mordyl19

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2013, 01:40:34 PM »
Thanks for the website info.
I am not 100% sure about this. But I am going to click it anyway.

Offline Marco Polo

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2013, 01:52:14 PM »
Thanks for the website info.
If you have any other questions, let me know.
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Offline lfas25

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #15 on: June 13, 2013, 04:00:03 PM »
I cannot seem to find this posted anywhere. Thought would be nice to have a thread on cruise experiences and TR's.

My cruises have been with Celebrity and Royal Caribbean.

Celebrity- Cape Liberty NJ > Bermuda. We had two days down to Bermuda, stayed for three days and then had day/two days back.

Royal Caribbean- Cape Liberty NJ > San Juan > St. Thomas > Samana DR > Haiti. 2+ days to get to San Juan, spent five hours there and went on to St. Thomas where we had all morning and left around 4PM. Next was Samana and then Haiti, each place we had all morning and left around 4PM, about two days for the way back.

If anyone has any particular questions about the cruising experience or what i did at each location, feel free to ask.

I'm thinking about going on a cruise, which of the 2 you have mentioned here did you enjoy more?
Why did you prefer to leave out of NJ over FL?


1) What did you do for Kosher food?
   
2) Did you book your excursions prior to traveling? What did you do in Bermuda and how should we plan?

3) What did you do on Shabbos?

Thank you so much!!
Do you mind answering these questions?

IME/O, vacationstogo.com has the best pricing you will find on cruise deals. Checkout the site and use the 90-Day Ticker to search for what you want.

How far in advance did you book / do you think you get the best deal?
I only paid 15% by switching to dansdeals

Offline Marco Polo

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #16 on: June 13, 2013, 04:31:59 PM »
I'm thinking about going on a cruise, which of the 2 you have mentioned here did you enjoy more?
I liked the Royal Caribbean cruise more as it stopped at multiple locations and the Celebrity cruise to Bermuda just docked on the island. I also really enjoyed the RC ship as it had ice skating, roller blading, rock climbing, mini golf, multiple pools/hot tubs and some really great nightly shows. They also had a nice sports bar where i was able to watch the NFL playoffs while i was away.

Why did you prefer to leave out of NJ over FL?
I live in NJ, so not having to waste a day/time/money flying to FL was really nice. It also is nice to be close to home when you get back instead of having to fly back home.

Do you mind answering these questions?
1) (I have a lot in my mind about his, so i may start rambling. Please excuse this and any potential lack of grammar/spelling) They have airplane meals on the ship. You should contact the cruise line before you depart and make sure they know you want kosher so they are fully stocked. You should also pre-order all your meals, otherwise you will be waiting at your table a long time. What we do is right after we get on the ship and drop our carry on bags at the room, go to the dining room and ask to see the kosher list and order your dinner then. The cruise lines are very accommodating when it comes dietary needs. We have them set our table with plastic plates and cutlery in addition to any other special requests we may want (packaged salad dressings...). I will tell you what i personally did with food, but it all depends on how strict you are. We would have them bring basic salads, steamed vegetables, fish and even sushi for some meals (they usually have a kosher kitchen on board in addition to kosher utensils). For any of the hot food we would get, we would have them double wrap it in foil. My MIL would also ask to see packages for lots of the food and even was able to get into the galley (kitchen) because she was on some kind of diamond member tour and looked at the packages for any signs of it being kosher. We figured out that the wraps and tuna fish were kosher and got those as well. If you are going out on a day excursion, you can order any of the food for breakfast and then pack it away in your bag. The ships don't really like that, but...

2) We did not book any excursions prior. You should probably decide early on what you want to do, as a lot of the ships excursions fill up very fast. (a lot of the excursions are overpriced and can be done on your own cheaper) In Bermuda we got a three day ferry/bus pass which we used to travel around the island (if you are there for more than a day, you should get this). Bermuda was mostly beaches and we spent most days going to different ones. They also have some kind of dolphin experience which we did not do and seemed very expensive. They have a fort/museum you can check out which is right next to the dock, they have a glass blowing shop near the docks as well. Bermuda is not a cheap destination, the prices are very similar to the states and did not have any real bargains.

3) The ship officially has Friday night services which depending on who is leading, can range from not really religious to orthodox/modern orthodox. You can request to get a bottle of wine for the service to make kiddush (make sure to have them send cups as well). I would say to bring a couple small bottles to make sure you have. We had them make us challah for shabbat (again, depends on what you are comfortable with) or you can probably bring a few rolls. After dinner we sat at the nightly show (not very much in the spirit of Shabbat, but again, personal preference). They usually have a card room somewhere on ship which you can get cards or other board games to pass the time.

How far in advance did you book / do you think you get the best deal?
If you can handle it, you can find good deals right before the cruises leave if they haven't booked up yet. If you want to book in advance, i believe 60 days before is a good time to book.

Hopefully this helps. If you have any other questions, feel free to ask.
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Offline lfas25

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #17 on: June 13, 2013, 04:58:26 PM »
Hopefully this helps. If you have any other questions, feel free to ask.

Thx.

I am at the very beginning of the trip idea... If I have any other questions I'll let you know.
I actually work a few blocks away from Cape Liberty NJ
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Offline Marco Polo

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #18 on: June 13, 2013, 05:02:46 PM »
Thx.

I am at the very beginning of the trip idea... If I have any other questions I'll let you know.
I actually work a few blocks away from Cape Liberty NJ
Thinking now, the only potential downside to leaving from NJ, is if you leave in the winter, it does not get warm until the second day or so. Other than that, it is really convenient for me as i live in Teaneck and it only takes 30 min to get there. 
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Offline mordyl19

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Re: Cruise Lines and Experiences
« Reply #19 on: August 01, 2013, 07:43:59 PM »
I am looking to book a cruise to Alaska. Which Cruise Line would you choose or have experience with Holland America, Celebrity, or Oceania?
I am not 100% sure about this. But I am going to click it anyway.