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Cruises - Class, or trash?

Straights with mild wanderlust and mild travel funds seem to enjoy taking cruises to Alaska and the cleaner parts of the Caribbean. But cruises seem to have a lot of food poisoning, balcony murders, crew labor abuses, and pollution problems. Also, they seem like they're just a floating hotel full of fats and drunks.

Are they ever worth it, or are they just a low-rent way to get loaded in the sun for a week without having to speak a word of Spanish or carry a suitcase through a hotel lobby?

by Anonymousreply 412November 24, 2021 8:40 PM

This should've been a poll.

by Anonymousreply 1August 26, 2021 4:49 AM

R1 The last several polls I've seen on here either have ludicrous/spammed results, or aren't touched by readers at all.

At least this way, I'll get called an elitist cunt in text form!

by Anonymousreply 2August 26, 2021 4:51 AM

The Titanic had both. Pity it didn't make it all the way to New York.

by Anonymousreply 3August 26, 2021 4:55 AM

It just seems like being locked up in a shopping mall to me, which sounds excruciating. Maybe a small river cruise, or something that doesn’t cater to the great unwashed.

by Anonymousreply 4August 26, 2021 5:07 AM

Indeed, R4. I wouldn't mind a three or four day European river cruise, as part of a larger itinerary. But I don't want to go anywhere near anything resembling a Carnival cruise ship. I don't like crowds as it is, so that would be a living hell.

by Anonymousreply 5August 26, 2021 5:12 AM

Datalounge seems to feel about cruises the way it feels about sex: disgusting and inappropriate. I have done dozens of cruises (gay and straight) and never faced anything more than sea sickness during a storm. No murders. No epidemics. Yes, sometimes people die -a lot of old people go on cruises...

The class/trash factor is entirely dependent on the cruise line, departure port and destination, the size of the ship, and just plain, old pricing. Go on a cheap cruise and you're likely to run into cheap, trashy people. Go on a high-end ship and you'll find things are quite different.

by Anonymousreply 6August 26, 2021 5:15 AM

Trash

by Anonymousreply 7August 26, 2021 5:22 AM

Would they be any fun if you don't like to drink, sunbathe, or wade around in a public pool?

by Anonymousreply 8August 26, 2021 5:33 AM

[quote] [R1] The last several polls I've seen on here either have ludicrous/spammed results, or aren't touched by readers at all.

What are spammed results? How do you know the readers don't touch the poll?

by Anonymousreply 9August 26, 2021 5:35 AM

R9 Because the numbers don't ever seem to move, at least not like they used to.

Then you see other polls that seem to get dozens of votes within ten minutes, but at perhaps 2am EDT, hours after your average DataLounger has passed out in his Barcalounger with a Parliament slowly burning down to the filter.

by Anonymousreply 10August 26, 2021 5:40 AM

If you really want to "Cruise", check some of the Non-Carnival, Princess, Holland America lines. There are some truly lovely cruise lines out there with out the tacky American riff-raff buffet, no fat people diabetes scooters, no casinos, screaming kids & water slides...... Smaller cruise lines get you better experiences as they can get in to smaller ports that dont cater to the floating malls that pull in full of tacky, fat Americans..... We did a Seabourne cruise 3 years ago & it was beyond lovely- spendy yes, truly wonderful- we'll never step foot onto another cruise line. Even Cunard seems too big & tacky for us...

by Anonymousreply 11August 26, 2021 5:59 AM

R11 I've heard Holland-America is on the tasteful end of the spectrum, as far as major lines go. They cater to old people, so their ships have far fewer children onboard. Seaborn is also upmarket, but pricey and with limited itineraries compared to the majors. Disney is supposed to have flawless hospitality and clean ships, but you just can't do it without a thousand little shitbags running around everywhere.

by Anonymousreply 12August 26, 2021 6:02 AM

Megatrash

by Anonymousreply 13August 26, 2021 8:37 AM

Carnival is trash. The rest are nice. Royal Caribbean and Celebrity are top tier.

by Anonymousreply 14August 26, 2021 8:45 AM

Floating incubators.

Don't do it.

by Anonymousreply 15August 26, 2021 8:59 AM

Cruises? I prefer Penelope over Tom.

by Anonymousreply 16August 26, 2021 9:00 AM

Ick.

Some of the river cruises advertised on PBS look nice.

About 30 years ago, I had lunch on the QEII when she was docked in Manhattan. My boss was working with someone from Cunard. I don’t remember much except the tableware was lovely quality, and I enjoyed walking up and down the gangplank. Boss gave me a commemorative tin filled with chocolates. The chocolates were little disks flecked with minty candy bits that weren’t peppermint; they were menthol and tasted terrible. I keep buttons in the tin now.

That’s the extent of my cruise experience and it was enough. I think the days of elegant and glamour cruising are OVER.

by Anonymousreply 17August 26, 2021 9:35 AM

What does one DO all day?

by Anonymousreply 18August 26, 2021 10:00 AM

I adore old movies and stories set on the glamourous ships of the early to mid 20th century (as long as it's first class) but I personally have zero desire to be on any modern tacky cruise ship. They're just huge ugly Raddisson Inns packed full of middle class yahoos all desperate to have "fun" cooped up all together on a cruise to nowhere.

OH, and the ships are always breeding grounds for various nasty viruses.

by Anonymousreply 19August 26, 2021 10:43 AM

There is at least one line that the old school tasteful set used up until Covid but I don’t know how they will fare going forward.

by Anonymousreply 20August 26, 2021 11:42 AM

I liked the few Norweigen cruises I took.

by Anonymousreply 21August 26, 2021 11:47 AM

I love the idea of being able to stare at the ocean and scenery, however, not for more than a few hours.

Also, I'm not afraid of water and am a good swimmer. Yet, I became uneasy when a boat I was on in Lake Michigan went so far out, I couldn't see land. I was drunk off my ass then, too. So, based upon that experience, I'm probably not an ocean cruiser.

One of my favorite DL threads.

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by Anonymousreply 22August 26, 2021 12:46 PM

I went on a Royal Caribbean cruise that friends of mine planned. I wouldn’t do it again, but I can see why some people enjoy it.

The good: beautiful views of the ocean; fun and kind of a throwback to travel by ship; escargot at dinner every night; really kind and helpful porters, waiters, and other service staff; I slept like a baby!

The bad: so many drunk people and people who seemed to lose all their manners once they stepped on board, including treating the staff terribly; trying to navigate mass group activities like lunch or walking off the ship with thousands of people at once, and 90% of them can’t seem to follow basic directions—it was like being in the kindergarten class line from hell, or some corral with a bunch of confused cows; the decor was so ugly everywhere you turned

by Anonymousreply 23August 26, 2021 12:58 PM

Manny, Manny!

On the serious, there are a wide range of experiences to be had. If you want a déclassé experience, you're welcome to stand on line for Guy Fieiri's Burger Joint on the Carnival ships. You can also go on Oceania Cruises and have a menu that curated by Jacques Pepin, made by on-board executive chefs who are graduates of European culinary schools. And there's a lot in between.

Whenever these threads come up, it's inevitable that we'll get "like being trapped in a mall" or "floating Petri dishes." You get everything from gaudy chain restaurants (every ship Carnival has unveiled since about 2010), chic urban hotels, or refined ocean liners of days past like the Cunard Queens.

It's not my preferred way to travel, but I've been on five, including two on the dreaded Carnival, and had wonderful times. I find the industry fascinating for some reason.

by Anonymousreply 24August 26, 2021 1:13 PM

From the Carnival Horizon (the big martini-glass looking thing is an LED screen.)

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by Anonymousreply 25August 26, 2021 1:18 PM

To the Nieuw Amsterdam.

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by Anonymousreply 26August 26, 2021 1:18 PM

To the Queen Victoria.

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by Anonymousreply 27August 26, 2021 1:19 PM

Only if I could push Kate Winslet overboard somewhere in the West Indies at 0300. "I'll tell ya who the kween of the wairld is, bitch!" (distant splash, muffled scream)

by Anonymousreply 28August 26, 2021 2:33 PM

Full Speed Ahead!

by Anonymousreply 29August 26, 2021 2:36 PM

Going one one (my first) at the end of next month to Alaska. I was supposed to go two years ago but of course it was cancelled.

I'm looking forward to it as I've never been. If I hate it, I hate it, but at least I tried it.

by Anonymousreply 30August 26, 2021 2:36 PM

Many ships are sailing at less than 50% capacity right now and the vax requirement should help cut down on the number of deplorable Karens in the short term.

by Anonymousreply 31August 26, 2021 2:38 PM

[quote]The last several polls I've seen on here either have ludicrous/spammed results, or aren't touched by readers at all.

I have sufficient.

by Anonymousreply 32August 26, 2021 2:41 PM

And kids, too.

Judge me, but I'm going on one out of Jersey in October. Testing requirements are stringent, vaccines are required, and mask rules are in place. I don't know if it's a good idea, but I don't really want to fly anywhere in Europe with the situation in flux. And given how things are right now, I don't even really want to travel domestically. Reduced capacity plus all the other measures makes this arguable safer than going into a mask-free environment when no one knows their status.

by Anonymousreply 33August 26, 2021 2:44 PM

That’s like lumping all hotels together, when a Super 8 and a Four Seasons. Naturally you pay more for better service and clientele. At least that’s what I do if I can help it.

by Anonymousreply 34August 26, 2021 2:47 PM

With*

by Anonymousreply 35August 26, 2021 2:48 PM

Cruises may not be DL's cup of tea, but one of the lasts trips my mom took before her health went into serious decline was a cruise to Alaska that she thoroughly enjoyed. I don't think the things people say about cruises aren't necessarily true, but for an older person in not-so-great health and limited mobility, the cruise was the only way she could've seen Alaska before she died. In a COVID world, however, I don't that it makes sense anymore. I'm not sure who this applies to (apparently not QEII or Viking), but I think a smaller, more elite cruise line would be a better choice now for people like my mom who can afford, but have serious physical limitations

by Anonymousreply 36August 26, 2021 2:48 PM

One of these days, when I have the time and money, I am 100% doing an Asia cruise with Azamara or Oceania. They get into small, less developed ports, and generally overnight in a few of them so you get to see a lot more. I mean, what other opportunity would someone have to take a cooking class in Cambodia?

For the record, I'd love to do it as an overland journey as well, but that's a lot more planning.

by Anonymousreply 37August 26, 2021 2:55 PM

[quote]What does one DO all day?

Most of the time, the ship pulls into a port around 6:00 am. Then you disembark and go out to explore the area or take an excursion. Then you return to the ship in the afternoon. The ship then leaves port around 5:00. After enjoying the sail-away, you get cleaned up and ready for dinner. Following dinner, you catch the show in the main theater, or enjoy a few drinks in one of the lounges, or take a stroll around the ship, or dance the night away in the club or all of the above depending on your stamina. Then you go to bed and when you wake up, you're in a different port and it all starts over again.

by Anonymousreply 38August 26, 2021 3:37 PM

And then there are sea days, where you can take classes, play Bingo, gamble in the casino, sit by the pool, go to the gym, try to pick up desperate dads in the steam room...

Depending on whether or not one is a FAT WHORE you can also spend all day in the buffet.

by Anonymousreply 39August 26, 2021 3:44 PM

trash, even the arctic ones

by Anonymousreply 40August 26, 2021 3:46 PM

My other two bucket list cruises are an icebreaker to Antarctica and a Norwegian fjords Northern Lights cruise.

by Anonymousreply 41August 26, 2021 3:54 PM

I’d love to go on an Antarctic cruise R47, but holy shot are they expensive.

by Anonymousreply 42August 26, 2021 5:01 PM

Well, they're long, there are only a few ships with ice-hardened hulls and even fewer that are actually able to punch through. It doesn't surprise me.

There are also some Canadian High Arctic cruises that are interesting, but...

by Anonymousreply 43August 26, 2021 6:21 PM

I did an Antarctic cruise because it's the only way to go there. It was a small specialized operator (Quark). Big boats go there, but because of capacity controls on Antarctica, the big boats mostly provide views but little experience of the place. There were many positives--great info from naturalists, two excursions by Zodiac per day (we were lucky with the weather). The food and service were great. Unfortunately, many people (including me) wound up with respiratory infections. The people were mostly well travelled and from diverse walks of life---no fat whores. Still, I'd only do a cruise to a place that isn't accessible any other way.---u=you'll get the clientele and the tailored kind of experience. A floating hotel type thing would bore me to death and you seem guaranteed to see the same people all the time.

by Anonymousreply 44August 26, 2021 6:54 PM

Yeah, I think Quark is the one one with an icebreaker, and she's not sailing now.

I'd love a cruise that goes to both to the Antarctic Peninsula and Tierra del Fuego.

Of course, I'm a weirdo who would jump at the chance to be an expedition doctor on a research mission over the polar winter, so don't trust my judgment.

by Anonymousreply 45August 26, 2021 7:03 PM

Quark has doctors on their boats---I don't know how they hire, but I wouldn't be surprised if it's locum tenens.

by Anonymousreply 46August 26, 2021 7:04 PM

Quark always did know how to entertain!

by Anonymousreply 47August 26, 2021 7:05 PM

I’ve been on a dozen cruises in Celebrity ships. When you book a suite, you can get into a private bar, and you have a dining room separate from the main dining room. First time we did this, I knew I could never go back to a regular cabin and eat at the buffet or the main dining room.

by Anonymousreply 48August 26, 2021 7:11 PM

I like them. The cruises I've been on, Princess and Royal Caribbean, have been really enjoyable. I like that everything is in one place -- good restaurants, buffets, etc., bars and discos, lots of room to tan and drink. You wake up in a different place each day. The best one I've taken so far started in Rome, went up to the South of France, back down to Italy, over Greece (Athens, Santorini and Mykonos), Corfu, Turkey and up to Venice. You take a train across Italy back to Rome. All for around a couple of grand. Definitely good value for the money.

by Anonymousreply 49August 26, 2021 7:39 PM

There is a park nearby where people still cruise.

by Anonymousreply 50August 26, 2021 7:49 PM

Crystal Cruise ships: Class

Norwegian Cruise ships: Trash

by Anonymousreply 51August 26, 2021 7:56 PM

Trash. And yes, it should have been a poll. The excuses are BS.

by Anonymousreply 52August 26, 2021 8:03 PM

[quote]It just seems like being locked up in a shopping mall to me

To me it's more like being locked up in a hotel. I hate cruises that have a lot of "sea days" (days where you don't visit a port.) For example: cruises from the West Coast to Hawaii have five consecutive sea days in each direction. No thank you. I want to stop at least every two days.

As others have pointed out, asking OP's question is like asking "Hotels: class or trash?" Or "Resorts: clash or trash?" There is a wide variety of cruises, ships, destinations, etc. I've been on NCL (Norwegian), Holland America, Celebrity, Princess, Royal Caribbean, and Carnival. Most of the cruise ship companies have multiple lines, usually at different price/"class" levels. Carnival, Royal Caribbean, and NCL are the lower-end lines of their respective companies. Carnival's mid-level lines would be Princess and Holland America; RC's is Celebrity. NCL doesn't really have mid-tier brand, but they have two upscale ones: Oceania and Regent Seven Seas. (Carnival's upscale brands are Seabourn and Cunard; RC's is Azamara. Of course there are other lines, but these are the most common ocean cruise lines used by Americans.

by Anonymousreply 53August 26, 2021 8:06 PM

[quote]NCL doesn't really have mid-tier brand, but they have two upscale ones: Oceania and Regent Seven Seas. (Carnival's upscale brands are Seabourn and Cunard; RC's is Azamara.

NCL's mid-tier brand is called The Haven, and it's actually a ship-within-a-ship on most of their newer vessels. All of the lines do it now, but NCL took it to the next level, and it almost seems like their next ship, Norwegian Prima, is going to be half reserved for the well-to-do.

I would say Oceania and Azamara (and Viking Ocean) are boutique lines, moreso than luxury.

RCI also owns Silver Sea, as of last year.

by Anonymousreply 54August 26, 2021 8:23 PM

It all depends. As one Data Lounger once coined cruises, they can be "Walmart on the Water." Then again, as other here can attest, there are cruises that cater to the more well-heeled clientele.

I would love to take a cruise in the Mediterranean on the "Sea Cloud" or embark on an expedition with Lindblad Expeditions.

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by Anonymousreply 55August 26, 2021 8:45 PM

[quote] try to pick up desperate dads in the steam room...

Since you brought up the subject, which cruise lines are the best for meeting lonely married men?

by Anonymousreply 56August 26, 2021 8:48 PM

I was hoping someone here would cop to taking a Gay Cruise, and would have some filthy stories to tell.

by Anonymousreply 57August 26, 2021 8:52 PM

[quote]I was hoping someone here would cop to taking a Gay Cruise, and would have some filthy stories to tell.

I've been working on getting into Gay Cruise shape by my next big birthday. Hang on for about a year and a half.

by Anonymousreply 58August 26, 2021 8:58 PM

I haven't been on a gay cruise per se. But a few years ago I did a Royal Caribbean cruise from Sydney to Auckland. Unbeknownst to us until we boarded, it turned out that there was a special bear gathering also on board. Like hundreds of bears. For the most part, they seemed to be having a good time. We didn't interact with them much, except at the pools and a couple of times in the evenings at the bars. And one of them kept hitting on my husband, but that was mostly harmless.

Sorry. No filthy stories to tell.

by Anonymousreply 59August 26, 2021 9:04 PM

Yeah I took the Carnival Ecstasy as my first cruise during Christmas and Christmas Eve because my mom really hates her inlaws. It sucks because my great aunt died a week later and I missed seeing her for the last time. Anyways it was 50% kids, every show sucked, and we left out of Charleston to Nasau so it was freezing for half of the trip. Me, my dad, and my sister had to follow my mom around and do whatever she wanted or we would get yelled at (in public) for ruining her dream. Like there was more that went awry, and I was on the verge of murdering my BPD mom.

by Anonymousreply 60August 26, 2021 9:09 PM

Ah, Carnival Ecstasy, one of the few remaining Fantasy-class ships.

Four of her sisters were scrapped last year to help keep Carnival afloat. So to speak.

by Anonymousreply 61August 26, 2021 9:13 PM

I would also suggest that after the evening show perhaps “Ace” will come back to my room and give me the real entertainment I came for on this ship. I’ve course I expect him in my room every night. That pesky Doc keeps trying to get in my pants. Ew

by Anonymousreply 62August 26, 2021 10:24 PM

I've been on a few. Did a Carnival one in my early 20s that, at the time, was very fun, but couldn't take that kind of party anymore. And nowadays I would deem it really gross and low. A few years ago I did a Disney cruise with my sister, our parents and her kids. I was dreading it due to the family/kid element, but it ended up being a really nice voyage. I don't know if Disney is considered more upscale for cruises, but there were more than enough adults-only spots on board if you needed peace and quiet, and the entire experience, from presentation to service, was really top-notch. Also had a really nice hookup on it, so that was a plus.

However, Disney does attract a lot of . . . let's just say weird, people. You get those moms who have their entire family dressed up the same, the dad looking like he's gonna put a bullet in her brain at any moment. And seeing thousands of girls dressed up as princesses turns incredibly creepy as the trip goes on. Also, my sister's cabin was next to a mom and daughter who were horribly obese. We were at a bar together and she was commenting on how bad they smelled whenever she encountered them in the hall (they were very nice ladies). The bartender overheard and said heavier-set people can't fit into the reduced-sized showers in the cabin and, thus, they basically don't bath at all during the trip. So that was lovely.

by Anonymousreply 63August 26, 2021 10:36 PM

Disney charges too much for what it is, but they do keep the kids busy and out of sight all day long.

by Anonymousreply 64August 26, 2021 11:15 PM

I know a guy who led some of those gay windjammer cruises to the Caribbean in the 70s. He said they were hotbeds of gonorrhea and truly scary because some of the island destinations were very gay unfriendly. He remembers trying to get his clients off an island where they'd been harassed and chased back to the pier. They all huddled out at the end of the pier while the natives fired guns into the air and yelled at them from the trees lining the shore.

by Anonymousreply 65August 27, 2021 12:51 AM

A lot of the Caribbean has gotten to be a bit more welcoming. The French and Dutch islands even have marriage equality now. Even the Caymans, who turned the first Atlantis cruise away, has civil partnerships.

Jamaica being the big exception.

by Anonymousreply 66August 27, 2021 1:03 AM

Which island, R65?

by Anonymousreply 67August 27, 2021 1:30 AM

I've done six or seven gay cruises. They are very relaxed. Ship staff tell me that they love the all-gay groups because we tip better, are much more considerate and polite, and more fun to be around. As far as the "cruising" goes, there is a lot of sex going on all over the place. I've done my share of slutty things at sea, but never came home with an STI. I think the Dataloungers who swear that the ships are hotbeds of gonorrhea are trying to find an excuse for boarding with it...

Other than the sex, gay cruises are pretty much like every other cruise. Some really nice people, some turds. You walk on the decks and enjoy the view, lounge by the pool and enjoy the view, go to the spa for a massage, facial and mani-pedi, and indulge in whatever entertainment you enjoy. Personally, I bring a few good books to enjoy with a nice drink by my side.

by Anonymousreply 68August 27, 2021 3:01 AM

I think just floating around in the Caribbean full of middle class str8s and their brats sounds like hell on Earth. The one tour of Italy, Greece, Turkey sounds better. I’d probably prefer to be on the Titanic 2 in terms of style,lol.

by Anonymousreply 69August 27, 2021 3:54 AM

Seems to me negative posts here are by people "supposing" but who have never been on a ship. The positive posts seem true. Seabourne is lovely, expensive, worth it. Same with Cunard, with them since 1982 ….. QE2, Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria, Queen Elizabeth. I always tell people to not spend big money at first, book a cheapest Inside Single cabin on Cunard, cross the ocean …. $3,000 will do it. Hate it, you are not out much. Love it, go on again, go Balcony or Suite, spend $6,000, $12,000. more. The fag fantasy of a ship full of lonely sex-starved husbands on the down low is just that, fantasy. Yet I have had a few, and single gays, gays on in groups, wait-staff, crew ….. crew is not to mix , but when one wants you, he knows how to get to your cabin. Walking on deck, the sauna, the gym, the pool, library, in bars. the disco, even when dining …. like "real life" you pass by, eyes click, off you go! It takes one to know one, so if sex is what you want, you'll probably find it. Life at sea is great. Try Cunard

by Anonymousreply 70August 27, 2021 4:44 AM

[quote]The fag fantasy of a ship full of lonely sex-starved husbands on the down low is just that, fantasy

We have, or had, a delightful poster who worked for Royal Caribbean as both a crew member and an entertainer. He has a great story about, during his entertainer days, when he wasn't bound by the "no sex with passengers" rule, he picked up a guy. After their encounter, the guy said he was cruising with his family, and that the poster had actually invited the man's daughter onto the stage in one of his shows.

As far as Cunard...ships are lovely, and I find the Cool Britannia appealing, but I don't think I'd function well in the high formality. Plus I wouldn't know which fork to use.

Imma stick with Celebrity and HAL. Just enough elegance to be on my wavelength.

by Anonymousreply 71August 27, 2021 1:36 PM

50% of the crew on cruise ships are gay, I'm not talking about the work staff, which are 95% Filipino and straight, I mean the officer staff in white uniforms. And yes, they'll hook up with you if you're discreet. Viking and Cunard especially.

by Anonymousreply 72August 27, 2021 2:07 PM

The problem with most cruises is that they are Middle America's buffet-all-you-can-Las Vegas-style vacation of choice.

These types want a 5 star experience for the price of 2 stars (but hey they should discount them more because MIDDLE AMERICA is giving them big bucks despite their sillu freedom-crushing vaccination and mask requirements).

They have nothing interesting to talk about except sports and work (men) and kids/grandkids/great-grandkids and which Chicos they got their cruise attire at (women). They know or care nothing about the destinations they are visiting and the majority would just as much stay on the ship the entire time eating at the buffets or sitting in the casino.

They get to play dress up Country Club chic at overly regulated dinnera (literally you are assigned times and table mates) and take tacky photos that they can buy for $300 and post up back home.

My parents and best friend love cruises, which makes the inner Middle America in me painfully self-conscious and self-loathing at the same time.

I went on one cruise and it was a gay one, needless to say I was done with cruises even before Covid.

by Anonymousreply 73August 27, 2021 5:36 PM

R73 Sounds awful. My travel buddy and I have been all over the world, but he swears he'll never do a cruise. He likes to immerse himself in the local destination - the food, the hotels, the STIs - and a cruise is just a floating hotel full of fat fucks. It's worse than staying home, because at least at home, you can wander around naked and order a pizza when you want.

by Anonymousreply 74August 27, 2021 5:39 PM

[quote](literally you are assigned times and table mates)

Not any more.

Ta.

by Anonymousreply 75August 27, 2021 5:45 PM

Assigned table mates?

Can't I just shovel the chicken wings and macaroni salad into a little mound on my plate and go eat it on the toilet, just like I do at home?

by Anonymousreply 76August 27, 2021 5:51 PM

No. Middle Americans need discipline when it comes to fine dining. They have to be dressed accordingly and follow the rules. Othwrwise, they revert to their slovenly low-brow ways and would have their three-course meals in flip flops and boxer shorts.

by Anonymousreply 77August 27, 2021 6:56 PM

The only cruise I would consider going on..

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by Anonymousreply 78August 27, 2021 7:43 PM

I've been on three cruises in the past five years:

A week's circumnavigation of Iceland (Windstar)

Zig-zagging around the Irish Sea (Ponant ship chartered by Tauck)

Down the Danube from Budapest to Bavaria (Viking)

No kids on any of those, with most fellow passengers far from fanny-pack sporting buffet addicts. Will answer questions, if you'd like to hear details.

by Anonymousreply 79August 27, 2021 8:16 PM

r79 Those sound great. On my last cruise (Buenos Aires to Santiago), they had a presentation about Galápagos cruises -- those sounded fascinating as well. I've never been on one of those smaller ship 🛳 cruises.

by Anonymousreply 80August 27, 2021 11:47 PM

Family friends did a six week cruise (northern Hemisphere wintertime) cruise from Florida around Tierra del Fuego and back up to California, which they didn't regret, but found a lot to take in!

by Anonymousreply 81August 28, 2021 12:01 AM

I've been on Royal Caribbean to Ensenada several times and Holland America to Alaska once. Both were nice, not trashy. We were lucky on one of the Ensenada cruises to be with a high school theatre group who entertained every night. Believe it or not, they were great! I ran into the teacher at breakfast and he astonished me by saying that the group had only been together for a month--they way they performed and played off each other I'd thought they'd been together for years. That was just serendipitous, though--the entertainment is usually pretty subpar or average.

by Anonymousreply 82August 28, 2021 12:08 AM

Yes, R79, tell us more. Where did you stop on the Viking river cruise? Were the other passengers as high-end as they look in the brochures?

by Anonymousreply 83August 28, 2021 12:10 AM

I wouldn't say Viking attracts an upscale crowd like that, but unless you're a snob they were really nice, far from boorish!

We started with a couple of days to see Budapest, then on to Bratislava, Slovakia with an outstanding guide; Budapest tours were great as well. Next, I think was Krems, Austria where we didn't do the tour at the monestary making apricot stuff. It was Sunday, a lot was closed, not wildly interesting. That happens. Next Linz, Austria with an excursion to Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic - - yes, the Austrian hills really [italic]do[/italic] look like the Sound of Music poster! Sorry we couldn't see Linz, too.

Vienna next with an afternoon tour - glad we saw it, but not rushing back. Baroque architecture truly overwhelming. Then Passau, Bavaria which was a decent final stop (the river too shallow beyond there for cruise ships). Castles along the Danube as you cruise by are impressive!

I'd recommend the trip. As far as Viking goes, I'm considering thd Rhine as a "sequel" based on another passenger's comments as being different enough not to be paying for the same trip twice.

by Anonymousreply 84August 28, 2021 12:30 AM

Ensenada? Dear Lord. Even Mexicans won't step foot there.

Was that supposed to be a plug FOR cruises?

by Anonymousreply 85August 28, 2021 12:31 AM

Thanks for the info, R84. This looks amazing. A chance to wear some nice winter clothes, as well. Or would it be TOO cold on the ships?

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by Anonymousreply 86August 28, 2021 12:45 AM

Sounds like a good time! I've been to Berlin which is a terrific destination. You'll be on the boat a lot of the day. You'll be in Western Europe not Siberia in terms of winter.

Good luck!

by Anonymousreply 87August 28, 2021 1:02 AM

That Ritz Carlton Cruise looks great.

by Anonymousreply 88August 28, 2021 1:47 AM

r85 All West coast cruises have to visit at least one foreign port, so if they're not going farther into Mexico, Ensenada is the closest available place to visit.

by Anonymousreply 89August 28, 2021 3:26 AM

R89 is referring to the Jones Act, which says foreign-flagged vessels (which all cruise liners in US waters are) cannot transport passengers directly between two American ports. That would classify them as domestic transportation, and foreign ships cannot do that. But if they stop at another country in between, that magically makes it okay.

If you want to know more about how the Jones Act needlessly fucks over Americans, consult a Puerto Rican or a Hawaiian. It's the main reason stuff shipped to those islands is so expensive. There simply aren't many US-flagged ships anymore. They're all foreign. So they all have to stop somewhere international on their way to drop off Toyotas and frozen Whoppers.

by Anonymousreply 90August 28, 2021 8:05 AM

"Vienna in one afternoon"

by Anonymousreply 91August 28, 2021 8:39 AM

Since the Normandie's been gone for 80 years, I'd say la trash.

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by Anonymousreply 92August 28, 2021 8:55 AM

Beautiful R92 — Pure sophistication and elegance.

Thanks for sharing.

by Anonymousreply 93August 28, 2021 9:21 AM

Oh, R84, I only dream about it. Unless I win the lottery I'll never be able to afford to travel in the way I prefer again. Luckily I got to go many places during my earning years. I 'took my retirement' you could say during my 30s, 40s and 50s. Good thing, too, because now I get tired easily and annoyed by every inconvenience. But thanks for the good wishes.

by Anonymousreply 94August 28, 2021 5:14 PM

Cruises are filled with trashy, tattooed, fat bellied Americans. The only way to get through one while having fun is to just go with the cheesiness of it all

by Anonymousreply 95August 28, 2021 6:01 PM

I’d love to see the Baltics on a cruise.

by Anonymousreply 96August 28, 2021 6:02 PM

A friend went on a Disney cruise with his sister’s family. He enjoyed it. It ran like clockwork and the food was better than expected. He hung in the kid-free areas and met a lot of closeted dads.

by Anonymousreply 97August 28, 2021 6:08 PM

R74, the ship itself is the destination. Ports of call are incidental to most people.

Don't lump all cruises into a single category. A Celebrity cruise is night-and-day different from Carnival or Royal Caribbean. And the home port plays a huge role in the kind of clientele you'll see.

A word in praise of Carnival: I've done at least a dozen cruises on Carnival ships over the last 30 years. They are stereotypically glitzy, Vegas-y, and yes -tacky. The food is often surprisingly good. Their vegetarian food and Indian food (a nightly option) are great! In all of my cruises Carnival has never fucked up or fucked me over -I can't say that for most other lines. On my last Carnival cruise, out of Galveston, this eldergay was the Body Beautiful by the swimming pool -and that's saying a lot. I've never seen so many scooters and power chairs in one place! But I had a great time nonetheless. The weather was beautiful, the pool and spa inviting (and not much used), and the service was outstanding.

Years ago I braved a New Year's cruise on a Carnival ship. There were two assholes who boarded drunk and then proceeded to raise hell through the first day (a sea day). At one point security arrested them and confined them to their cabin for trying to climb the ship's funnel. I heard through the grapevine that they totally demolished their cabin, and neighbors had to temporarily move out in order to sleep. The next morning there was a special announcement as we were coming into our first port. General debarkation would be delayed a few minutes as they had to remove a pair of unruly passengers. Honest to god, you could hear a cheer going around the ship! The crew then paraded the pair up and down every public deck so the two morons could apologize to everyone they saw before they and their baggage were thrown off the ship. I later heard from a crewman that the apologies were a requirement for the ship not to press criminal charges. As it was, they had to pay for the damaged cabin, lost their cruise fares, and had to put up on Mexico and find their way home at their own expense. Any ship can have rotten people board -but how they handle it says a lot about the ship and cruise line.

If you want to avoid "Middle America" on a cruise, here's the simple recipe: pay more. The more expensive the cruise, the less likely you will see the horrors you fear. If you leave from a non-US port you'll be amazed at how different it is! R96 I did a Baltic cruise on Holland America (an all-gay cruise) that was simply the best. Passengers from all over the world. Nearly all were seasoned travelers. Educated and multilingual. Go on a cheap Caribbean cruise out of Florida or Texas and you'll have a very different experience...

by Anonymousreply 98August 28, 2021 6:53 PM

I recall a short Celebrity Cruise my husband and I were on a few years ago which also had a large group of NY Jets fans aboard. They were part of a group cruise who paid through the nose to hang out some very minor members of the Jets. They were INCREDIBLY rowdy the first night, running up and down the halls drunk, but quieted down after that. I assumed that they'd either gotten a stern talking-to, but I think it's more likely that some of them were put off the ship in Key West, given that I didn't see many of them again.

I'm exploring South Pacific cruises. I would love to see the smaller islands like Vanuatu and New Caledonia.

by Anonymousreply 99August 28, 2021 7:09 PM

I saw on a 7 day Celebrity cruise with some friends. The secondary day I was sitting at the pool bar having a few drinks. I struck up a conversation with a man and his wife sitting next to me. We talked for about an hour and went our separate ways. The next day they were sitting at the same place. I walked by and he asked me to join them. About a half hour later, she left to get reservations for something they were doing that night. I told him that I had to get my hat and sun glasses if I was going to sit there any longer. He said he’d walk with me. He knew I was with friends. He asked if I had my own cabin, and I said yes. We went inside. He then wanted to see the balcony. I grabbed my hat and glasses and he sat down on the chair in the room. I really didn’t think much about it. He was a Connecticut highway patrolman. He sat across from me and started casually adjusting himself. I knew that was it. We dropped our swim trucks and had a great 69. I’ve loved cruises ever since. True story.

by Anonymousreply 100August 28, 2021 7:43 PM

Right when I was starting to lose weight, on that same Celebrity cruise I was talking about, I ended up in the steam room alone with a clearly gay guy, probably 50-ish. In retrospect, I realize he was hitting on me, I was too bashful at that point, but quite a bit further on my journey, I'd think about it.

by Anonymousreply 101August 28, 2021 7:53 PM

[quote] Unless I win the lottery I'll never be able to afford to travel in the way I prefer again

That is sad.

by Anonymousreply 102August 28, 2021 8:55 PM

R95 is either a self-loathing American, or more likely, a non-American who gets a thrill throwing out such ignorant statements.

by Anonymousreply 103August 28, 2021 9:14 PM

For how many does the lottery figure in one’s retirement plan?

by Anonymousreply 104August 28, 2021 9:16 PM

R104 Either that or slot machines? A few million Americans.

by Anonymousreply 105August 28, 2021 9:18 PM

Money is not a problem for me, but not dying is. I'm only 68, and thought I'd have many good cruising years ahead of me, but who knows now?

by Anonymousreply 106August 28, 2021 9:31 PM

[quote]Ports of call are incidental to most people.

"I ain't PEOPLE! I am a - "a shimmering, glowing star in the cinema firmament."

by Anonymousreply 107August 28, 2021 9:31 PM

We’ve done several cruises and a crossing (Southampton to NYC) on the QMII. The crossing was very nice, food was excellent, you did have to dress for dinner (3 nights were tux, others were coat and tie). QMII was only half full, but the crowd was either gay men or retired straights. There was a ‘friends of Dorothy ‘ gathering in a different lounge or bar every evening for cocktail hour. The first cruise was a Viking river cruise (Passau, Germany to Budapest) which was delightful. About 200 passengers, ports of call were great, food was wonderful. Really like the smaller ships. In 2016 we did a Regent Sevens Seas cruise from Rome (Civitavecchia) with ports of call in Sicily, then up the Dalmatian coast, ending in Venice. RSS is an excellent line. Food on a par with Cunard, and unlike Viking, the chef could source local food in the ports of call. One of the shore excursions was with the chef to the local markets in Rovinj, Croatia. Had a RSS 14 day cruise around the British Isles booked for 2019 as my retirement treat before Ms COVID-19 reared her ugly head. Will cruise again, but only on small luxury ships. One retirement side hustle was port services for the cruise lines departing NYC. I’ve been on a Carnival ship for work. I wouldn’t board it as a passenger if it was given to me. NCL is a floating hotel. Disney cruisers drink the Disney kool aide (and when you work a Disney cruise portside you have to drink the kool aide also. Cunard (even though it was not a cruise) remains at the top of my list.

by Anonymousreply 108August 28, 2021 10:16 PM

Sorry the RSS cruise around the British Isles was September 2020, not 2019.

by Anonymousreply 109August 28, 2021 10:22 PM

PLOT TWIST!

Royal Caribbean was supposed to send their newest, and largest, ship, Wonder of the Seas, to China permanently. However, they just announced that it's going to spend its first year in the Caribbean and Europe. It was designed specifically for the Chinese market, so they must know something that makes the idea of keeping her home-ported there either politically or economically unfeasible.

by Anonymousreply 110September 18, 2021 3:01 AM

Class, Ass, or Gas?

by Anonymousreply 111September 18, 2021 3:05 AM

I’ve sailed with Carnival and RCI. In my experience, Carnival has better quality food. RCI dining room served lukewarm food and had cramped cabins.

And I’ve posted here and elsewhere - if you go on a cruise, avoid the Jacuzzis and pools. People pee in them and worse. I saw people who jumped right out of bed and head straight to the them without even showering first. Even though they use chlorine, it is still someone’s urine on your skin.

Loved the steakhouse on the CARNIVAL MAGIC. The Italian spot was nice too. The bands were passable, not spectacular. If they were, they would not be on the cruise ship circuit. I was shocked when Jennifer Hudson made it as far as she did on AI; she’s mediocre, like most of the vocalists on cruise ships.

And I always pay single supplements for my cabins so I can have it to myself. Even when I travel with family. And I even get the balcony. I can spend hours on my balcony, reading and listening to music on my iPad.

by Anonymousreply 112September 18, 2021 3:27 AM

The Linblad cruises around the Galapagos are wonderful. They have scientist on board who give presentations and act as guides. Passengers must be accompanied by guides when they get off the ships. Transportation from ship to shore is by Zodiacs. The scenery and wildlife on the unspoiled islands are unbelievable. We saw whales, dolphins, sea lions, sharks, iguanas, tortoises, albatrosses, blue footed boobies, and lots more. They are utterly unafraid of people since they have never been threatened. Wet suits are provided for diving or snorkeling.

The ships are small and passengers and crew intermingle all over the ship and in the dining room. There is also a self service lounge with snacks, soft drinks, and coffee The passengers on the ship were mostly mature or elderly and extremely well educated and interesting people. No children were allowed. It is not a glitzy typical entertainment cruise, but it is an unforgettable experience. We spent an optional couple of days in Ecuador before going home. The trip was expensive but worth it.

Linblad also has small cruise ships that tour Scandinavia and Antarctica, but I haven’t been on them.

by Anonymousreply 113September 25, 2021 6:07 AM

An excursion trip is fine; and I could do a ferry, one place to another, all depending on details. But a cruise seems very unlikely ever for me.

The low rent people, the booze cruise set, the idea of Disney princesses or families, the pigs at the buffet, the idea of sailing at night and having most of six hours to see a city...none of it sounds attractive at all.

Maybe a Norwegian fjord/Northern Lights cruise might be a mostly simple and civilized option (or maybe I just don't know the details that would make me say no).

I prefer spending time in cities with a luxury of time: by days, not hours; in a nice hotel room with more than 7'2" ceilings, with a choice of where to eat and with whom, and to not be tied to an itinerary not my own.

by Anonymousreply 114September 25, 2021 9:13 AM

Can anyone find the thread of the guy who was interfered with by a Disney character on a Thanksgiving cruise? I lost it when my HD died a year ago. It's got to be one of the top five threads on this site for pure puerile fantasy humour.

by Anonymousreply 115September 25, 2021 7:28 PM

I hope this works.

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by Anonymousreply 116September 25, 2021 7:29 PM

R114 -I read over and over in these threads that you only find "low rent people" on CHEAP cruises. Go on one of the premiere lines, or choose a destination like the Mediterranean or the Baltic. Or simply choose a longer sailing, anywhere. Three and four-day cruises are party trips, nothing more.

by Anonymousreply 117September 25, 2021 7:34 PM

The three cruises I've been on featured educated professional travelers (around Iceland, around the Irish Sea, and down the Danube). But, OK, keep equating "cruises" with jumbo ships in the Caribbean.

by Anonymousreply 118September 25, 2021 8:37 PM

For the Youngs there's nothing wrong taking a cheap cruise to cover a lot of ground. To get best prices it's always good to book locally at the last minute. . Many cheap cruises leave Venice, for instance ( cruising down the Grand Canal is quite magnificent) usually stop in Dubrovnik then thru the Corinthian Straights and on to the Greek Isles.

My bf and I did this in our early 20s and we had a great time and we learned a lot at every stop. A plus was a hot hung German guy who kept getting drunk and removing his clothes. He was ejected finally in Crete but we enjoyed him while we could.

by Anonymousreply 119September 25, 2021 11:30 PM

[quote]thru the Corinthian Straights

I guess gay cruises are not permitted passage.

by Anonymousreply 120September 25, 2021 11:37 PM

...... Strait

by Anonymousreply 121September 26, 2021 7:35 AM

R6, But the desolate expanses of deep, dark ocean---they don't give you pause?

Or the very limited actual visits to shore areas, never mind inland?

by Anonymousreply 122September 26, 2021 8:34 AM

My family has cruised a lot over the past 30 years. We most enjoy longer cruises in far-flung destinations. You don't get the trash and the kids that way, and it's a fun, relaxing way a family group of 20s-90s can spend time together with great times and itineraries to remember. Covid screwed our plans for Norway last year. Hoping to make that happen next year.

by Anonymousreply 123September 26, 2021 11:39 AM

I went on a Carnival cruise 15 years ago. I don't remember the buffet food being bad at all. I remember people sunning themselves while drinking buckets of domestic beer and then showing up to dinner dressed like it was the senior prom.

by Anonymousreply 124September 26, 2021 11:52 AM

Replying this far down might be a waste of time (does anyone read every post?) but I thought I'd weigh in because this is a conversation I often have IRL. As someone said upthread, it's hard to get past the "Trash, floating mall, Petri dish" comments to have a valid discussion. Cruises are not for everyone, true, but people shouldn't have to be defensive if they like them, or if they're not for you it's easy to opt out of the conversation. When I say that I've enjoyed cruises and crossings people want to know why and require accounting for my time on board a ship. Hey, I'm not a salesman -- I won't try to convince you to go on one. My first cruise was with a family group and I signed up reluctantly. It was fun, but one large group was enough for me. My husband and I have gone on quite a few more and we enjoy ourselves. Doing what? What anyone does on a vacation. I prefer quiet time to read, do puzzles, nap, watch movies, etc. I actually love sea days -- I could watch the water for hours, catching the breeze, and just daydreaming. He works non-stop (ER nurse) so any chance he gets to relax and not be on call or in demand is fine by me.

Regarding your, erm, fellow passengers. Yes, they may not be part of Mrs. Astor's 400 but there is no reason to be disparaging about it. My only criticism would be that many of them seem to do everything by the book. They seem to be most comfortable in group activities, which isn't for me, but if they're enjoying it who am I to judge -- or even care? The avoirdupois, let us say, is in constant evidence, it's true. It makes an odd sort of sense for the heavier traveler to go on a cruise: it is less active, there's plenty of food, and you see many people like you. BTW, I've been on many ships with multinationals and it ain't always the Americans who are fat. The problem with Americans is they do not dress for their size. And yes, God yes, are they loud!

Think of cruises like any other destination or activity. Shopping? Well, there's Dollar General and there's Tiffany. Resorts? Well, there's an all-inclusive in Punta Cana and the Aman resort on Bali. Nightlife? Well, there's the Las Vegas Strip and there's West End theater.

by Anonymousreply 125September 26, 2021 1:23 PM

[quote]They seem to be most comfortable in group activities, which isn't for me, but if they're enjoying it who am I to judge -- or even care? The avoirdupois, let us say, is in constant evidence, it's true.

I say this as a guy who's been fighting to get into actual cruise shape (and eventually gay cruise shape), but when I watch cruise videos on YouTube and catch views of some of the more...voluptuous...passengers, I have to wonder how pleasant being jammed into tiny cabins with even smaller showers can be for them. Even a lot of the furniture would seem to be a challenge.

I mean, live your bliss. But maybe put on clothes that fit your body.

by Anonymousreply 126September 26, 2021 2:40 PM

R125 I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member.

by Anonymousreply 127September 26, 2021 3:21 PM

Never been on a cruise but have had great fun in Rome watching US tourists running around trying to pack in all of the sights in the historic centre plus a visit to the Vatican Museum and St. Peters Basilica.

It slowly dawns on them that it's not possible and that the journey between Civitavecchia port and Rome Termini (80km, 50 miles) takes an hour in each direction.

If they get their return train times messed up a Taxi will relieve you of $170 (minimum, more at weekend, evening) to reunite you with your cruise ship.

In normal times this happens every day.

by Anonymousreply 128September 26, 2021 3:23 PM

Friends of mine love it and if it makes people happy, go for it.

But being trapped on a big boat filled with flyover fraus and booze is my idea of hell, and the ports of call sound like you're dumped into tourist pits. Not my cup o' tea.

by Anonymousreply 129September 26, 2021 3:46 PM

Let's get this outta the way: Paw Paw, here, is old. The one and only cruise I did was throu the Caribbean for a week. I was on assignment from a newspaper, writing a travel story. Costa Riviera cruise. OMG! The fucking vessel smoke stacks belched bits of ash all during the trip, so anything I wore on deck had indelible black spots all over it. Many of my clothes were ruined/unwearable. I very much disliked the fixed seating arrangement at dinner: The loudmouth DRUNKS (they prided themselves in it) I had to eat with thought they had the corner on FUN! And they thought they were some kind of hot shit because they were from New Orleans. Changes, apparently, were not permitted. Another minus. I eventually made other plans for dinner. Most of the people on board were mind-their-own-business and decent. On some 'theme night' -- I think it was a Toga Party -- I came back to my cabin to find the crew had turned down my bed and arranged my night clothes with fruit (think banana) placed provocatively on top. I laughed, actually, but that shit would never fly now. I disliked the claustrophobic cabin and the feeling (personal, I know) of being imprisoned on the ship, unless it stopped somewhere for an excursion. The excursions were fun, and not overly orchestrated. The local people seemed about half and half as far as enjoying and welcoming the tourists or seeming disdainful and dismissive of them while they took our money. I have never had the least desire to go on a big cruise again. I might consider a smaller, riverboat cruise. But it's not high on my list of travel goals. Covid makes the prospect of travel aboard a huge vessel REALLY unattractive. Unless you can go very high end, safety protocols will be sketchy and so will a lot of the people on board. NOPE.

by Anonymousreply 130September 26, 2021 4:03 PM

Even the swankiest most luxurious cruises are trashy because cruise ships are environmental catastrophes. A cruise on a SMALL luxury yacht or better sailing yacht seems the best. Not a super yacht. Some boat about this size.

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by Anonymousreply 131September 26, 2021 4:11 PM

Bigger ships = bigger profits.

by Anonymousreply 132September 26, 2021 4:24 PM

River cruises tend to be much nicer, smaller and expensive, so you will not have to deal with Joe and Ginny Average with their pack of insufferable (b)rats, nor Wayne and Chantelle Chavvy with their unsightly tattoos and repulsive, violent drunken behaviour. They simply cannot afford it and on top of that, these cruises tend to be oriented towards cultural trips and tasteful events, which tend to have the effect of insect repellent spray to the family holiday-package and sangria/night club/hook up gangs.

For the same reason, as R79 / R84 mentions, the people who tend to go in these cruises are politer, more respectful and cultured, which makes for a much more pleasant experience. Also, if you like walking and having enough time to see and fully appreciate everything around you, you will love them. The only downsides of these cruises is that they are limited by the fact that not all rivers are navigable and thus, your choices are somewhat limited; also, water flow will affect your experience. Also, unless you are willing to spend a very considerable amount of money, cabins tend to be on the medium-to-smaller side.

I have never gone on a transatlantic cruise, but I've had obnoxious colleagues who went (typical obnoxious karens and their brutish husbands, who think that drinking supermarket prosecco and eating crême brulée with strawberries makes them aristocrats) and precisely because of this, I wouldn't set foot in one of them unless they actually paid me A LOT.

by Anonymousreply 133September 26, 2021 5:38 PM

Increasingly, European river cruises are a crapshoot. In the summer, water levels drop to the point where many itineraries are not navigable. In the fine print of your cruise contract you'll see the ugly truth: when the water is low your "cruise" becomes a bus tour with hotel stays every night! I can't count how many times that has happened to friends in the last few years! In 30+ years of ocean cruising I have had one incidence of port order being switched to avoid some bad weather, and one time skipping a tender port (where you can't dock, but go ashore in small boats) because the seas were too choppy for the shuttle launches. This is not to say that I wouldn't do another European (or other) river cruise -just that you have to plan very carefully and do a little research about the likely water conditions before you book.

FWIW, if you find a few fellow passengers you just can't stand it's much easier to avoid them on a ship as opposed to a river boat.

by Anonymousreply 134September 26, 2021 5:47 PM

The Great Lakes are becoming a popular cruise destination. Several purpose built ships are under construction. Three are currently planning to debut on the lakes next summer I think. It’s very popular with German tourists. Up until the fifties, tons of vacationers took overnight cruises between the United States and Canada.

by Anonymousreply 135September 26, 2021 5:59 PM

After the first day I get utterly bored.

by Anonymousreply 136September 26, 2021 6:03 PM

A 7- or 10-day cruise can provide a perfect recovery from an emotional jolt. Not to mention, last-minute deals can be very good.

You can spend the entire time watching the scenery, going to onboard restaurants for three meals a day, laying by one of the pools, taking in a show every night, gambling in the casino, and sleeping. I find cruises can be nicely distracting.

You can also be very active, taking an excursion or two at each port of call, engaging in onboard sports.

Or you can party all night, sleep all day, and drink whenever you want.

To wit, you can make any experience you want on a cruise.

by Anonymousreply 137September 26, 2021 6:25 PM

I've been talked out of the European river cruises - several posters here have nothing but bad things to say about them.

However, I hope when/if I travel there we are able to independently take a boat ride between two cities so I can experience the Rhine or Danube.

by Anonymousreply 138September 26, 2021 6:46 PM

So has anyone ever gone on a cruise not identified or billed as a gay cruise, only to find a plethora of available cock?

by Anonymousreply 139September 26, 2021 6:47 PM

For those who've cruised (ships) on the more expensive cruises, are the passengers on the older side?

by Anonymousreply 140September 26, 2021 6:55 PM

[quote]Unless you can go very high end, safety protocols will be sketchy

I mean, my cruise next month requires everyone who can be vaccinated to be vaccinate, no exceptions, and everyone must have a negative test within two days of the departure. And they require masking except on open decks, in cabins, and in other designated areas that are for vaxxed guests only.

Honestly? Feel safer with that flying to a resort somewhere.

by Anonymousreply 141September 26, 2021 7:12 PM

I felt the Danube cruise was fine, R138. What do you think is so bad about them? My mom was scheduled to go on a Rhine cruise with Viking with a relative just as covid hit. She got some of the fare refunded in cash, but still has some credit towards a future trip; we're thinking of the Rhine next spring. (Her cousin isn't concerned about health matters, but second-guessed herself about spending the money.)

The ones I've been on have had a minimum age of 18, but even then 40s = spring chicken. One of my cruises was rather upscale, so the passengers I felt expected an awful lot of hand-holding by staff. There was one Joey Buttafuoco-ish guy on another, but more the exception.

I had understood that Transatlantic crossings are very elderly straights + assorted homos? My parents got hit with low water levels in Eastern Europe becoming a bus tour, not much fun. The thing about the Danube is that the castles were built to impress Travelers by water (still do!), so I got a few excellent photos as we glided by.

Windstar was probably my favorite cruise line. Getting to see so much of Iceland without having to travel on a bleak two-lane road most of the time was really a plus! Their Mediterranean cruises are reported to be outstanding.

by Anonymousreply 142September 26, 2021 7:29 PM

Those of you who say that higher-end cruises are devoid of trashy passengers are living in the past. There are plenty of people who have money and no taste or manners.

by Anonymousreply 143September 27, 2021 12:59 AM

"For those who've cruised (ships) on the more expensive cruises, are the passengers on the older side?"

Often they are -but it's still a mixed (money) bag. What you generally don't see are families with small children. The music and shows are aimed for an older, more sophisticated crowd. (That said, Carnival often has string quartets performing in the smaller lounges.)

by Anonymousreply 144September 27, 2021 2:33 AM

I can't say enough good things about how Celebrity does it, as far as the big ship lines go. They're targeting affluent Millennials and younger Gen Xers without kids. They have DJs and stuff, but also more refined stuff.

No lie, the best performance I ever saw on a cruise was a woman who essentially did a cabaret act in the main theater. She'd have been a big hit on that scene in NYC.

by Anonymousreply 145September 27, 2021 2:52 AM

R125, I read every post... because I have no life.

by Anonymousreply 146September 27, 2021 3:51 AM

But, r125, on my many lengthy summer travels by leased cars throughout Europe and the UK, I never had the urge to put puzzles together or otherwise sit around. I could do sedentary just fine at home (and, alas, now am doing).

I read cruise itineraries now and can't help but think, "But only two miles down the road is...."

by Anonymousreply 147September 27, 2021 4:03 AM

[quoteYou can spend the entire time watching the scenery, going to onboard restaurants for three meals a day, laying by one of the pools, taking in a show every night, gambling in the casino, and sleeping. I find cruises can be nicely distracting.

[quote]You can also be very active, taking an excursion or two at each port of call, engaging in onboard sports.

[quote]Or you can party all night, sleep all day, and drink whenever you want.

R137, I see your point and can understand the appeal — but for others, not for myself.

The idea of a luxury hotel as a base to seeing multiple cities and the connecting landscapes is appealing, but when it comes to the details it falls apart for me. In hotels I prefer luxury in architecture and guest rooms (with high ceilings and views) more than in buffets and cocktail lounges with or without string ensembles. I prefer historic hotels in city centers where I can step out and have a local breakfast, or explore for hours without worry of a whistle blowing that tells me I have an hour to be back on ship. I prefer to meet local people of the place I'm visiting rather than a load of Americans or Brits comparing everything to "back home." Having hours and not days to visit a city, well it makes sense for some Rhine-side town, maybe, but not a city, not even for one that isn't packed with obvious things to see and do.

It's an upside-down travel world for me where all the emphasis is on the journey and planned activities and little on the destination/s. Swimming pools, bars, sports facilities, gambling, eating in the same restaurants every day, surrounded by the same fellow travelers, even eating three meals every day...it's just not my idea of luxury or travel.

by Anonymousreply 148September 27, 2021 9:05 AM

I've cruised with several lines. I've been on about 25 cruises. My favorite right now is Crystal. I've done both their river and ocean cruises. The standard of service, accommodations, and the food and wines have been excellent. I am spoiled now for most other lines. Crystal is expensive and completely worth the price.

I dislike flying, so if I have the time and can cruise to a destination, I'll sometimes do that. Cruises have relaxed their formal dress policies, which is a great thing. Who really wants to pack a lot of formal wear? Some lines still have an optional formal dress for those who just live to schlep along their tux or evening gown. I love the 'nice resort casual' option. On the better cruise lines, you'll see people very nicely put together fashion-wise at all times, and dressed 'resort casual. If you choose to cruise on Carnival Lines, you'll see Ma & Pa Kettle in their denim and burlap ensembles, just like at the local Walmart.

So class or trash? Often depends on which cruise line one chooses.

Ever get norovirus or food poisoning? Yes, I've had both, but never on a Crystal cruise.

One last thing ... a friend once took a job on a budget cruise line, quit after a short time, and let me know how disturbing the level of care and sanitation was on the ship. Nightmare stuff. I imagine bad things happen on high-end cruise lines too, but not as frequently. The last cruise I took was in early February of 2020. I believe I contracted COVID on that one. I didn't realize what it was at the time, but by the time I got home, I was extremely ill, and learned that many others on the ship came down with the same illness. I ended up in the ER. They never did figure out what exactly it was, and they ran tests on me for several hours. COVID wasn't being talked about at the time, but a few weeks later it was all over the news.

by Anonymousreply 149September 27, 2021 12:24 PM

The mealtime situation varied among the cruises I've taken, R148. I'm not a morning person, so brought a book, although one day on the Danhvd cruise I was seated with a woman and her mother, which is where I learned that the Rhine experience is definitely not the same trip. Haven't had many lunches onboard due to excursions. If I had a full breakfast that day, all I needed was a snack (coffee and cake) at a local cafe, usually. Dinner on Viking was a bit frustrating as there was no maitre d' seating, so folks separated into cliques fairly early on.

[quote] a load of Americans or Brits comparing everything to "back home"

Not sure I understand that? I suppose a Wheel of Fortune prize winner might do that, but on most trips it isn't their first time abroad.

Many of these places are ones where an excursion has given me enough of an idea, not real keen on returning (looking at you, Vienna); I would like to revisit Belfast, NI and Linz, Austria (latter was a jumping off point for a day trip to the nearby Czech Republic).

by Anonymousreply 150September 27, 2021 3:03 PM

Booked an Atlantis gay cruise many years ago with stops in the Greek Islands and southern Europe. I had a great time visiting interesting places during the day and partying every night. A white party one night, a black party the next....Honestly, I was a bit stressed before the cruise with more than 3000 gay men. I went on a strict diet a year before the departure and exercised daily at the gym. Also bought new clothes and swim trunks. In the end, it was completely unnecessary. Everyone had a good time. Young, old, fat, or whatever... Met a lot of interesting people including a guy on the nude sunbathing deck who did the most amazing things with his massive appendage. It would rise and fall, turn and bend on its own. Somehow, we always managed to sit next to each other during the trip. The steam room was also rather interesting

by Anonymousreply 151September 27, 2021 4:39 PM

R114 Not to mention they are extremely "sanitary" but not....

Safe and clean for the mild adventurers of Middle America who want to taste exotic foreign lands while having a tour guide safely show them around just in time to get back to the boat and its safety and cleanliness before nightfall.

Oh, but on the topic of sanitary, they were Covid hotbeds at the same time. Among other things.

As for the high-end river cruises, who wants to float by Europe, except affluent seniors? They probably already experienced all of Europe's treasures in their younger days and the cruise is a new perspective. Nothing like wandering around a city/castle for a day.

by Anonymousreply 152September 27, 2021 6:59 PM

I've spent a lot of time up and down the Rhein (Partner's German), and for what they charge you could stay in the best hotels and eat at the finest restaurants on the river for about 1/3rd what they charge. You're also missing some wonderful small villages the cruise ships sail right past.

I can understand it if you're doing eastern Europe or Russia, but it's not exactly like Germany is all that intimidating. I mean, there are easy two lane highways and great hourly train service up and down both sides of the Rhein, and English speakers are everywhere. A good guidebook or a couple hours watching YouTube videos and you can easily come up with an itinerary that's as good or better than what the cruise offers.

by Anonymousreply 153September 27, 2021 7:46 PM

I've read that the Russian riverboats have horrific sanitary conditions, as well as rats.

by Anonymousreply 154September 28, 2021 12:08 AM

No, R154! The rats in the kitchen are not unsanitary -they're on the menu.

by Anonymousreply 155September 28, 2021 12:19 AM

I’ve gotten cock on a few cruises. Like fish in a barrel

by Anonymousreply 156September 28, 2021 12:33 AM

[quote]I can't say enough good things about how Celebrity does it, as far as the big ship lines go. They're targeting affluent Millennials and younger Gen Xers without kids. They have DJs and stuff, but also more refined stuff.

I did a 7-day Celebrity cruise along the Inside Passage of Alaska and enjoyed it far more than I expected. The scenery was staggeringly beautiful, and the ship had a naturist who presented very interesting programs (some of which were piped into your room if you liked).

Food and wine were quite good (tons of fresh seafood) and the head chef was Indian, so lunches were great too (skipped the pizza and burger stations and ate Indian).

There was nothing for kids to do, so: no kids. And the staff was lovely and charming.

by Anonymousreply 157September 28, 2021 2:21 AM

Going on a cruise implies that you don't have your own yacht, so yes, they're trash.

by Anonymousreply 158September 28, 2021 4:49 AM

It's always interesting in these threads that almost all of the negative comments are from people who've never cruised.

by Anonymousreply 159September 28, 2021 7:29 AM

R159 agree. I’ve been on 7 and counting. I’ve been mostly on Norwegian. If you go with the right people, it’s a great vacation.

by Anonymousreply 160September 28, 2021 9:16 AM

The only cruise I’ve ever been on was a 3 day trip in the Halong Bay, in Vietnam. I deliberately picked one of the poshest ships available, a yacht with only 20 cabins. The price tag was that of a 5 star hotel. It was fabulous. Service was absolutely top notch. Comfort perfect. The food and drinks a delight. The other passengers very civilised. I met lovely, upscale, people. I would definitely do another cruise like this. However, one of these Carnival cruises with 5,000 déplorables on board? No fucking way!

by Anonymousreply 161September 28, 2021 11:09 AM

They don’t call them “Cruise Ships” for nothing

by Anonymousreply 162September 28, 2021 11:16 AM

Traveling the seas in a jammed packed ship is something I've always thought was a type of Hell. And every video of a cruise ship at sea I've ever seen validates that opinion. They all seem to be packed to the gills with people I would have little interest in being around for any length of time. It's as if they took a huge Walmart and floated it out to sea.

by Anonymousreply 163September 28, 2021 12:25 PM

Once again, what r159 said.

by Anonymousreply 164September 28, 2021 12:54 PM

I have a gay friend, mid 30s, plays a lot of golf now and was a athletic standout his whole life. He went on a Disney cruise with his younger sister to help with her 2 kids. Everyone thought they were a couple. He said he could have gotten so much Dad cock it was unbelievable. Most of these Dads appeared miserable stuck on a boat with the complaining wife and screaming kids. My friend would start a conversation about golf or football. After a few drinks….Bam.

by Anonymousreply 165September 28, 2021 1:05 PM

Even before I was closer to cruise shape, I got cruised in the Turkish bath.

by Anonymousreply 166September 28, 2021 1:12 PM

[quote] Most of these Dads appeared miserable stuck on a boat with the complaining wife and screaming kids.

A younger fellow (I was twice his age) confided in me that his longtime live-in girlfriend was pressuring him for a wedding ring followed quickly by a kid: "Honestly, I can think of one guy who is okay with that, while the rest of them ended up regretting, resenting it." Sure enough, roughly a year later he was married with a baby, referring to the boy the one time he came up in conversation as "the kid" as though it were someone else's he was looking after.

Back on topic, pick a cruise with a minimum age!

by Anonymousreply 167September 28, 2021 1:30 PM

Virgin Voyages. Have to be at least 18..

by Anonymousreply 168September 28, 2021 1:34 PM

[quote]It's always interesting in these threads that almost all of the negative comments are from people who've never cruised.

There are people who are drawn to that sort of thing from both ends of the economic spectrum. And there are people, from both extremes and in between, who fundamentally find that sort of travel not to their taste.

Not all "who've never cruised" are saying that all cruises are seaborne Wal-Marts, some are simply saying that they've no desire to cruise for reasons that vary by individual. In my case, I wouldn't dismiss the idea out of hand, but it's a style of travel so at odds with my own habits and tastes in travel that it's an unlikely proposition.

I like to change my schedule, to change plans, and often, to pack loads of things into one day and abandon all plans the next, to decide to go here rather than there, to have breakfast for dinner, to eat dinner when other people are asleep for the night, to lose myself in a neighborhood I've never explored, to not be burdened by too many fixed seating times and advance bookings and having to be here or there at a date and time certain all of which is made easy because you're on a fucking boat all day every day, except for too brief excursions. "Excursions" are the point of travel for me, not riding about in a sardine can, whether in the air on on the sea, and no matter how luxurious (especially when the ceiling is so low.)

I would go fucking nuts sitting poolside for days on end at some all-inclusive resort, no bigger decision than when to go to breakfast, when to go for lunch, when to go for dinner, or attending a lecture or a theme party or an orchestrated activity or another night at one of the X-many bars. The same concept transferred to a cruise ship is no more attractive for me.

by Anonymousreply 169September 28, 2021 2:44 PM

[quote]I would go fucking nuts sitting poolside for days on end at some all-inclusive resort, no bigger decision than when to go to breakfast, when to go for lunch, when to go for dinner, or attending a lecture or a theme party or an orchestrated activity or another night at one of the X-many bars. The same concept transferred to a cruise ship is no more attractive for me.

I agree about all-inclusive resorts, but you have a bit more freedom with cruises. I mean, I'm not saying that the ports are all fantastic--anyone who's been to Grand Bahama Island can attest to that--but you do have a lot of options of what to do when you're there, and it doesn't need to be through anything orchestrated.

Would I prefer getting a BritRail pass and just wander the countryside? Yes. But I'm less comfortable doing that now, and there is something to be said for the simplicity of only having to unpack once.

by Anonymousreply 170September 28, 2021 2:56 PM

The only thing more boorish than a cruise are the boors who take them.

Offsite Link
by Anonymousreply 171September 28, 2021 3:50 PM

What’s the QM2 like? Has anyone ever sailed on her?

by Anonymousreply 172September 28, 2021 3:54 PM

People! Wake up! A cruise is NOT "travel" -it's a vacation. Travel is when you go to places in order to see and experience things that are unique to where you are visiting. As <169 says, you change your plans on a whim, purposely get lost in a new part of town, and come into contact with new people and cultures. Travel is wonderful. Cruising, on the other hand, is simply a vacation that happens to transport you to a few different places -the real destination is the ship itself. These "sardine cans" are in fact quite spacious, and offer more activities every day than any land resort and many destination cities! Ice skating? Check. Rock climbing? Check. Go-carts, water parks, theatre, jazz clubs, discos, bars, spas, libraries, behind-the-scenes tours, karaoke, bingo, glass blowing, arts and crafts classes, gyms, fitness classes, dance lessons, cooking demonstrations, piano lounges and cabarets... More things than you could possibly do during the length of the cruise -without ever getting off the ship. Plus the various ports to explore -with or without an official shore excursion. Now, many of us want to stay far, far away from some of the activities I just listed -and that's okay. Nothing in so in-your-face that you can't ignore it.

The pleasure of the cruise is is NOT having to do things. You can relax however you like, free from the guilt that you should be out doing something "worthwhile" -improving yourself or your mind - or seeing once-in-a-lifetime-bucket-list sights. Your phone doesn't ring. No CNN or daily newspapers. You get to disconnect from work, from social media, and generally withdraw from the world in a place that offers fun and food and no responsibility for a little while. Maybe you don't lead the kind of life where that is an attractive idea. I sure as hell do. I spend most of my year on the run, working long hours in highly-stressful situations, making life-and-death decisions. I love to go to other countries and travel. In fact, I've been pretty much everywhere. Antarctica is still on my bucket list, but that's about it. But a couple of times a year I just need to get away from it all, unwind, and indulge in absolute non-responsibility. I need someone else to cook and clean and deal with my laundry. I need spa pampering and warm, gentle breezes.

And I never kid myself that a four-hour visit to a port counts as "having been to" a place, or that having climbed Dunn's River Falls in Ocho Rios a dozen times means that I know Jamaica, it's people, or its culture. Not everyone needs to go on a cruise -and not everyone would enjoy one. But like most things, you can't really knock it until you've tried it. The secret to enjoying a cruise isn't the perfect itinerary or the classiest ship. It's boarding tired and stressed with the goal of unwinding and coming home an inch taller once your muscles have unclenched.

by Anonymousreply 173September 28, 2021 4:04 PM

I don't know that I discount the idea of having been to a place because I went there on a cruise. Frankly, I didn't need more time on the island of Guernsey nor the Isle of Man - they're just not that big! A full week around Iceland stopping at various places along the way gives me the right to say I've "seen" the country, other than just the capital region.

by Anonymousreply 174September 28, 2021 4:16 PM

I once went with family on a Norwegian cruise line trip to Disney World and the Bahamas. Overall it was very much a Disney theme park type experience, with every detail well controlled and everybody behaving themselves.

by Anonymousreply 175September 28, 2021 4:43 PM

I've never had a desire to cruise, just as I've never had the desire to go to Paris, Hawaii, etc. I've worked in hospitality for 21 years and cannot fathom the idea of being in a small room--anywhere--for the duration of even a short cruise. But to each their own.

My mother--who's the snootiest of the snooty--went on a Disney cruise with my father, my sister and brother-in-law, and my two nephews. I expected a report from her of how unbearable it was, yet all I got was that the crew was nice and the kids were entertained. Again, to each their own.

by Anonymousreply 176September 28, 2021 4:56 PM

Honestly, for all that the name Disney implies, they keep the kids out of sight and out from underfoot all day. They have plenty of spaces for adults only.

In fact, since they've been so strict about vaccine requirements, the Disney cruises that have gone out since they started sailing again have had minimal children.

by Anonymousreply 177September 28, 2021 5:02 PM

[quote]These "sardine cans" are in fact quite spacious, and offer more activities every day than any land resort and many destination cities! Ice skating? Check. Rock climbing? Check. Go-carts, water parks, theatre, jazz clubs, discos, bars, spas, libraries, behind-the-scenes tours, karaoke, bingo, glass blowing, arts and crafts classes, gyms, fitness classes, dance lessons, cooking demonstrations, piano lounges and cabarets... More things than you could possibly do during the length of the cruise -without ever getting off the ship.

That's a very un-enticing list of activities. I've been know to go to a bar, yes, and I suspect a cruise ship might increase my appreciation for them for the duration of the voyage. To a theatre, yes (but if I want to see a drama or comedy, I prefer London, or a production of some quality.) If I want a library, I have a nice one at home, and I can download almost anything to a tablet. Go-carts? Are you fucking kidding? Water parks? Karaoke? Dance lessons?

I understand the concept of a cruise, which as R173 says "is NOT 'travel' -it's a vacation." If I want to lounge about, and sometimes I do, I go to a hotel in a city or a rural area or on a coast and lounge. In a hotel. But I'm not trapped with the same people for for every cooking class and lap on the go-carts should I like. I can go to a bar down the street or on the other side of town. I can see an historic library in a beautiful building, or hear live music in a language I don't know. I can have a breakfast that wasn't prepared by the same people who prepared my breakfast yesterday, and the day before, and the day before that; the same people who prepared my lunches and dinners all those days. I can alternately fuck and take some sun and sleep and do nothing much but in luxury for days on end if that's my plan.

You present an image of a cruise as a destination for people who are maybe tight on vacation time, or are timid or lazy about making their own plans. I don't need a boat to organize my itinerary, whether to explore or to just fuck and laze about and drink and eat and sleep. I can do those things without third-party help, wiithout go-carts and rock climbing. I'm not afraid to jump on a plane at the last minute with some thrown together clothes and a credit card. I can figure things out along the way as I've done before many times, whether it's an ambitious or a lazy agenda in mind. For someone comfortable traveling without handholding, without money belts and fanny packs, without a tightly organized schedule with Chinese menu options for my excursions and diversions, a cruise ship —even a much more upscaled version of the picture you paint— doesn't have much appeal.

They make perfect sense for some people. They just don't make perfect sense for all people. It's not unfamiliarity with the concept of cruise ship travel or it's high-end or low-end variations that put some people of the idea, it's just that they recognize it's not for them, and not for everybody.

by Anonymousreply 178September 28, 2021 5:05 PM

R157 said "the ship had a naturist "

I believe you mean "naturalist", unless there was someone running around naked the whole time.

by Anonymousreply 179September 28, 2021 5:17 PM

See, even the Walmart on the water type of ships can be fun. But it depends on the type of person. I don’t mind crowds (well now I do) and don’t mind a cheap trip. Carnival is a low class option but I’ve been on royal Caribbean and loved it. I’m a let lose and have fun type. I too don’t like kids, but there are enough adult only areas to avoid major issues.

I like food, sun, and sex. All things offered like a buffet on cruises. But I’ve just turned 30 so I’m sure I’ll become a typical DL grump in the coming decades. For now, I like the idea of taking a cruise.

by Anonymousreply 180September 28, 2021 5:33 PM

[quote]I like food, sun, and sex.

So your dream would be getting fucked on the outdoor buffet, right?

by Anonymousreply 181September 28, 2021 8:48 PM

Why would straight married men be down for gay sex, on a cruise. Or anywhere. Straight me don't fuck other men.

by Anonymousreply 182September 28, 2021 10:16 PM

men.

by Anonymousreply 183September 28, 2021 10:16 PM

[quote]Straight me don't fuck other men.

We all know that they're so stupid.

by Anonymousreply 184September 28, 2021 10:28 PM

[Quote]Cruising, on the other hand, is simply a vacation that happens to transport you to a few different places

Speak for yourself. Most of us live for the excursions or roaming around on our own in ports of call. It's a good way to see and learn a lot and to identify places one would like to revisit for a longer stay.

by Anonymousreply 185September 29, 2021 8:16 AM

Straight men love having their cocks sucked though. Most wives won’t do that.

by Anonymousreply 186September 29, 2021 10:58 AM

R178 Who’s trying to convince you to go on a cruise? Posters here are just posting about their experiences and impressions. As you say, some people enjoy cruises and some don’t. If it’s not for you, don’t go.

by Anonymousreply 187October 1, 2021 12:41 AM

No gay is having straight cock on any straight cruise except in their dreams.

by Anonymousreply 188October 1, 2021 1:09 AM

[quote] No gay is having straight cock on any straight cruise except in their dreams.

Depends on how you define "straight".

by Anonymousreply 189October 1, 2021 1:12 AM

R186 I believe you are incorrect.

by Anonymousreply 190October 1, 2021 1:19 AM

Mandatory view before booking a cruise: The Last Voyage, The Poseidon Adventure, Titanic, Voyage of the Damned, Ship of Fools and Love Boat

by Anonymousreply 191October 1, 2021 1:26 AM

Flying out tomorrow for Alaska!

I am looking forward to it, but I am somewhat terrified I will test positive for COVID at the pier.

I am fully vaccinated, and had a PCR test on Wednesday (but don’t have results yet) but as we’ve seen, at isn’t 100%, so I will be … perturbed if I test positive even though I’m vaccinated, always wear a mask, etc.

Is really being a fat, alcoholic whore for 7 days too much to ask?

Will report back.

by Anonymousreply 192October 1, 2021 1:30 AM

Trash.

by Anonymousreply 193October 1, 2021 1:58 AM

We used to hire a Gulet back in the early/mid 1990's that came with a crew, Inc chef.

Just used to make our own itinerary really around the Turkish coast, sometimes family & friends would come along.

It used to cost £500 ($700) a week + flights (£90 - $120 each return) for the whole boat including food and drink. Though most evenings were in port and we ate at restaurants.

I got increasingly sea-sick as I got older though so we stopped in around 1998.

I'm a bit agoraphobic now and can't even stay in hotels, so we hire villa's. I doubt mass cruise ships will ever figure in my life.

Offsite Link
by Anonymousreply 194October 1, 2021 2:31 AM

Bon voyage, R192!

by Anonymousreply 195October 1, 2021 2:31 AM

Damn, it must be tight with all that crew stuffed into the bow.

by Anonymousreply 196October 1, 2021 2:36 AM

R196 Probably was, but we only slept on the Gulet if the next place was quite distant and it need to sail overnight or a very early start.

We usually stayed at a decent hotel near the port. It cost $30 (T£4 million) for 5* suite back then.

by Anonymousreply 197October 1, 2021 3:02 AM

r191 They show "The Love Boat" episodes on the in-room TV on Princess cruises.

by Anonymousreply 198October 1, 2021 3:24 AM

Dying to move upscale to HAL or Celebrity.

by Anonymousreply 199October 1, 2021 1:55 PM

[quote] The Last Voyage

Only if I can fuck that DIVINE Woody Strode…what a magnificent looking man he was…

by Anonymousreply 200October 1, 2021 6:18 PM

R199 Celebrity is so much better than Holland America. I've had a number of cruises on both lines and Celebrity far outshines HAL by miles. The rooms, entertainment, food, surroundings, all of it are better on Celebrity. HAL is for cruisers 70 and up. It's like God's waiting room.

by Anonymousreply 201October 1, 2021 11:49 PM

[quote] I've read that the Russian riverboats have horrific sanitary conditions, as well as rats.

All ships of cruise-size have rats. In any case rats serve the ecological purpose of devouring trays. It’s just a pity they’re, you know, rats.

by Anonymousreply 202October 2, 2021 10:56 AM

Is the food actually any good, or is there just a lot of it?

Fat people seem to confuse one with the other when they rave about how well they ate on a cruise.

by Anonymousreply 203October 4, 2021 12:20 AM

The ones I've been on haven't been pig-outs at all.

by Anonymousreply 204October 4, 2021 12:37 AM

[quote]Is the food actually any good, or is there just a lot of it?

Depends on the line. But on our first cruise on Celebrity, my husband--a very picky eater--kept ordering things he wouldn't normally eat because he wanted to try them.

by Anonymousreply 205October 4, 2021 1:01 AM

Depends a lot on the chefs in charge if the food is interesting or good IMO. Celebrity is ok in the regular dining room from what I've experienced. I stay in suites on Celebrity. We have our own little dining room. The suite cuisine is head and shoulders above what is offered in the regular dining room. We also have our own bar-lounge area where we can go any time for comp drinks, etc.

On HAL ... and I've been on several of their ships, the food was usually so-so. I'm thinking it may have been HAL where I ordered some type of steak dish and the meat was so sub-par that I complained. I also had an ugly run-in 2 years ago with the jerk that ran the main dining room. We nearly came to blows during the dinner session. I ripped him a new asshole and the other diners applauded. Things were that bad.

I've noticed that on many ships that the pastry chefs are often the stand-outs. Great bread, rolls, and pastries.

The buffet is good for lunch because you can create your own salads and skip the rest of the nasty crap.

The luxury cruise lines (Crystal, Silversea, etc) have great chefs, great food offerings.

I feel like standards are slipping somewhat on many other lines. I guess I'm a snob.

by Anonymousreply 206October 4, 2021 2:43 AM

Most ships these days offer premium a la carte dining options -but as I'm a vegetarian they never seem worth it (steak houses...). That said, I've found the vegetarian entrees on most lines to be a notch or two above the meat dishes -likely because they are made in smaller batches, or more likely to be made to order. Carnival specialized in vegetarian Indian food on the nightly menu, and it is quite good. I generally find most cruise food to be a bit bland, but Celebrity's offerings were quite tasty.

Many people overeat terribly on a cruise, but through the years I've learned to eat when you're hungry, and stop when you're satisfied (duh) -and only order dessert if it's something that sounds really good. I'd rather have an extra appetizer than a meh dessert.

by Anonymousreply 207October 4, 2021 4:02 AM

My mom and I went on a cruise that was run by the tour company Tauck, but on a ship from the French line Ponant. The food was awful; as an example, the soup left me wishing they'd just oprned a can of Campbell's. Most folks ordered off of the American sub-menu (burgers, etc) instead. These were educated, veteran travelers, [italic]not[/italic] bumpkins.

Windstar, on the other hand, was absolutely terrific. Dinner was plated from the menu, not buffet. Equivalent of a "nice" restaurant back home. Also, Windstar features a smaller, more... upscale restaurant on each ship, with each passenger entitled to book one meal there; my dinner there was a very good pork chop, big enough to be hooked onto Fred Flintstone's car. Viking food was decent, but nothing memorable.

All alcohol was extra on Windstar (without a package), while Viking included "house" wine and beer with meals.

by Anonymousreply 208October 4, 2021 1:38 PM

A lot of the upcharge restaurants are great. Our first Celebrity cruise, we ate at the French restaurant (which has now sadly been replaced with an Italian steakhouse) and it was perhaps the best meal I've had in my life. We didn't order it, but I watched them flambe chateaubriand tableside for people.

by Anonymousreply 209October 4, 2021 1:59 PM

R11 "Our uniformed staff members plunge into the water and invite guests to wade in and get iced champagne and caviar at a surfboard bar."

by Anonymousreply 210October 4, 2021 2:06 PM

[quote] I stay in suites on Celebrity. We have our own little dining room. The suite cuisine is head and shoulders above what is offered in the regular dining room. We also have our own bar-lounge area where we can go any time for comp drinks, etc.

Mary!

by Anonymousreply 211October 4, 2021 2:07 PM

We were in a suite on Celebrity Solstice on our combo delayed honeymoon/my med school graduation trip to Alaska. I honestly didn't find Luminae that much better than the main dining room.

by Anonymousreply 212October 4, 2021 2:12 PM

I was going to do a Canaries-Azores cruise this fall, but a volcano erupted!

by Anonymousreply 213October 4, 2021 2:18 PM

Back here in the real world, cruises have a few competing stereotypes:

* Crowded floating booze barges for blue collar 20somethings

* Crowded floating high calorie buffet tables for the same blue collar crowd once they have kids, with plenty of booze too.

• Uncrowded upscale ships to Alaska, Antarctica or upscale European river cruises for affluent retirees and their families.

There is no universe where affluent 30, 40 or 50somethings are regular cruise-goers.... EXCEPT for Disney.

That's part of the "we do everything for the kids" mentality from parents and grandparents and the same grandparents who are paying for a Disney Cruise when the kids are 3 and 5 are taking them to Alaska when the kids are 10 and 12.

FWIW, I have two co-workers who went on Disney cruises. Both had been dreading them, imagining the sort of corpulent turkey-leg chomping Flyoverstanis and huge crowds and lines one sees at the theme parks and both came back fans--kids were well occupied all day by highly trained international staffers, adult activities were uncrowded and enjoyable, food was very good and not served in vast quantities. The kids had an amazing time too, which seemed to be the point of the trip. Not all that surprising--Disney is a classic B-School case study of operations done right--the theme parks run like clockwork too.

by Anonymousreply 214October 4, 2021 2:26 PM

My Viking trip had several folks in their 40s and 50s. Windstar slightly older, but not nearly 100% senior.

by Anonymousreply 215October 4, 2021 2:50 PM

Very few actual blue collar people take cruises--usually they are older and more small business-types (the owner of the plumbing company not a plumber). The people I've known who've taken the cheapie cruises have been pretty middle class.

You begin to see regular cruisers in their 50s--DINKs with some vacation time, family types whose kids are leaving the nest.

My only cruise experience was a trip to Antarctica--no other way to do it. The food was generally good, the people were experienced travelers, the time was well programmed and we were lucky with the weather. Still I'd only ever do a cruise again if it was some specialized destination that can only be reached by boat. I've actually done long trips on boats, including overnights and they haven't necessarily been deluxe--I actually enjoyed going hammock class on the Amazon (the few cabins lacked a/c and were stuffy and humid) but that was just a couple nights and not a "cruise" experience. The idea of seeing the same people, having often contrived activities and being compelled to dress up on vacation sounds awful. I'm also aware that infectious disease (food and airborne) is a real problem and the Antarctic cruise head a lot of sniffling and coughing. If I'm going to do something meant to be relaxing, I'd rather be in one place and truly have control over what I do and I've done that---trips to Cape Cod, a week on Kauai, etc.

by Anonymousreply 216October 4, 2021 2:56 PM

Given that America no longer has a middle class R216, I suspect we are all talking about the same people.

You call them "middle class", we call them "blue collar"

Paul Fussell is on our side

by Anonymousreply 217October 4, 2021 2:58 PM

[quote]Very few actual blue collar people take cruises--usually they are older and more small business-types (the owner of the plumbing company not a plumber). The people I've known who've taken the cheapie cruises have been pretty middle class.

Go on YouTube. Look at any random video of a Carnival cruise.

by Anonymousreply 218October 4, 2021 3:17 PM

I was quite impressed by how much Carnival has upped its game cuisine wise. Much improved compared to 20 years ago…

Of course, you have to pay extra for some of it, but it’s so much better.

by Anonymousreply 219October 4, 2021 7:18 PM

R212 It pays to get to know who is serving you, who is in charge of Luminae, and take good care of them. I've never had a sub-par experience. I suppose it also has a lot to do with the chefs on that particular cruise. I've always found the quality of the food much better than in the regular dining room. I also enjoy their specialty restaurants. Many times what I've been served is a great value.

by Anonymousreply 220October 5, 2021 12:30 AM

The whole family is TRASH!

by Anonymousreply 221October 5, 2021 1:25 AM

The Kid Rock cruises sound ... interesting.

[quote]Once we arrive on the sand, the first activity of the day is the Lucky Bitch contest, in which various ladies get up on a picnic table and, like, do stuff to get the crowd excited. Tits, of course, play a vital role. One contestant asks, "If I get naked, can I meet Kid Rock?" The winner ends up being a buxom brunette named Tina who managed to keep her top off the longest. Her prize is a merch certificate (redeemable in the onboard gift shop), a plastic tiara, and a sash that says MISS LUCKY BITCH 2013. I ask Tina if she was happy to beat out some of the skinnier, blonder women up on the stage. "Oh yeah," she says. "And you know why I won?" She clutches her boobs. "Because these are real. And bruised!"

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by Anonymousreply 222October 5, 2021 2:17 AM

[quote]. Many times what I've been served is a great value.

It may seem like a good value, until you realize that the price you're paying is in addition to the cost of the meal in the regular dining room that you chose to forego.

by Anonymousreply 223October 5, 2021 5:51 AM

I remember seeing something about a Goth cruise or at least a cruise that ran concerts and events for Gen X people. They had some decent bands and it seemed kind of fun.

by Anonymousreply 224October 5, 2021 6:57 AM

Celebrity runs some of those type cruises R224. Music cruises are big business, very popular.

by Anonymousreply 225October 5, 2021 8:37 AM

Star Trek: The Cruise is incredibly popular and apparently a lot of fun.

I do want to do it one of these years.

by Anonymousreply 226October 6, 2021 3:38 AM

Thanks for that reminder R226. My travel coordinator from many moons ago mistakenly booked me onto a Star Trek cruise. It was awful because I wasn't a fan. All the regular activities were cast aside for constant theme stuff. When I cruise I am there to enjoy the sail rather than the ports of call.

by Anonymousreply 227October 6, 2021 4:26 AM

R227: Do you know how to read. I think you should have caught the mistake early enough to cancel. I don't know which is worse to contemplate: a theme voyage or one where people don't know what they're getting but like being on a boat.

by Anonymousreply 228October 6, 2021 12:42 PM

It's a full-ship charter. How did you accidentally book it?

by Anonymousreply 229October 6, 2021 12:44 PM

It's 2021, R227. It's safe to come out of the Trekkie closet and admit you like it. :)

I'm sure there are support groups out there to help you on your five-year mission.

by Anonymousreply 230October 6, 2021 4:05 PM

That's like those guys who "mistakenly" get booked onto an all gay cruise.

by Anonymousreply 231October 6, 2021 9:19 PM

I've only been on NCL and Carnival, and the last one I was on was for NYE 2010. That was one of the first of the new "Destiny" class YUGE ships from Carnival and they took so much common space out (like more lounges, reading areas, etc) to make room for more cabins. Boarding and debarkation was a nightmare. Because kids were out of school it was packed with everyone's brats and they expected the staff to babysit their kids, not paying for Camp Carnival, while they ran amok in the halls, parents drunk at the pool or casino. Kids were running up and down halls on all floors. I hated a lot this particular cruise because of it. The destinations and food were fine but it was a very cramped ship. Of course my group of friends were also perma-drunk but we planned it that way.

The cruises I took in the 90s and aughts were fine up until this one. I don't think I would do one again except for river cruises or those small Alaskan cruises that let you off at night to stay in hotels, and they go through small waterways and passages.

by Anonymousreply 232October 6, 2021 9:27 PM

Miss Stefanie Powers talked about appearing on a cruise in Oman. Wot? Does she dance? Or did she merely reminisce?

by Anonymousreply 233October 7, 2021 4:08 AM

She sings quite well.

by Anonymousreply 234October 7, 2021 4:54 AM

Well on my 2nd to last day of my cruise.

It was 10/2-10/9 on the Norwegian Encore.

For people worrying about Covid, the Norwegian went to every length to account for it. Must be fully vaccinated two weeks prior to cruise. PCR test required 72 hours out. Then an antigen (quick) test at the pier before you board the boat. All the staff are wearing masks but passengers are not required to. Some do (I did while seeing a show and if I was waiting in a line for some reason).

by Anonymousreply 235October 7, 2021 9:23 PM

This was my 1st cruise and I enjoyed it more than I thought I would, though I kind of lucked out I have found out. It has barely rained the whole time, which is unusual for Alaska this time of year. Perfect weather (high 40’s).

The ship is fully staffed (1700) but at 50% passengers (2100) so the service has been amazing.

The food ranges from fine (buffett/cafe) to great (extra/upcharge resturants). Even the “extra” resturants are fairly cheap for what you get, and most passengers get 2-4 meals over a week included.

The drinks aren’t heavy (or light). I’ve noticed they use those pour things religiously so just a single shot in each drink.

The staff is almost uncomfortably polite. It just a step above groveling, which I suppose makes people happy, but it makes me a little uncomfortable. They are almost all from the Phillipeans, so I don’t know if it is a cultrual thing, or they are cracking a whip on them behind closed doors to “encourage” this behavior. They are all amazingly nice and accomodating.

Lots of people I’ve talked to said this was their 1st cruise.

Janeau (at least the part they take you to) was basically just a block of jewelry and souviner shops. I did do a whale watching thing (and saw multiple Orcas and humpbacks so that was cool).

Ketchican is also touristy.

There is a daily gay (says LGBT) meetup at a bar on the ship. No lesbians but around 15-20 men show up every night and shoot the shit for 30 min to an hour. It was pretty fun. I met and had dinner with a few couples this way (I’m traveling alone) so this was nice.

Mostly 40-50 year old straight couples on the boat, which I’m told is kind of young for Alaska. Usually runs older.

My only “complaint” really so far is … it is kind of exhausting. I get turned around constantly and have walked the length of this boat dozens of times (and this ship is HUGE), and my feet are killing me. Throw in visiting towns, etc.

by Anonymousreply 236October 7, 2021 9:24 PM

Redhead, hope you get laid on your last two nights!

by Anonymousreply 237October 7, 2021 9:30 PM

Oh and I’ve seen ONE child and maybe 10 teenagers the whole time.

The child had Down’s syndrome so I assume he was vaccinated via a medical exception. I’ve heard multiple people say how nice it was. Not that they all hate kids, but many said parents just let them run wild. There is stuff for kids to do, but it is all extra $$$

And the onboard WiFi blocks porn. :)

by Anonymousreply 238October 7, 2021 9:56 PM

The onboard wifi blocks porn? What are you supposed to do all day? ;)

by Anonymousreply 239October 7, 2021 10:09 PM

I was just at a Marriott and found that when I’m connected to WiFi I can’t get my Grindr messages. So some WiFi networks can be real cock blocks

by Anonymousreply 240October 7, 2021 11:42 PM

Made it home safe and sound.

Post cruise Covid test was negative.

I will say, it is a bit like being trapped in a mall for 7 days, which was fine for me. I just wanted to be a drunk bum the whole time.

For “high-energy” people, someone who always has to be doing something, it may not be for you.

by Anonymousreply 241October 11, 2021 10:54 PM

I have a fat, white trash, work colleague who is on a cruise right now. If I had to spend any amount of time with her at sea under “normal” circumstances, I’d kill myself.

by Anonymousreply 242October 11, 2021 11:11 PM

R227, did you use this travel coordinator for any upcoming airline travel?

If so, I’d double check your itinerary before you wind up in space with William Shatner.

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by Anonymousreply 243October 11, 2021 11:17 PM

I get that, and I saw a fair amount of people who I probably wouldn’t want to spend time with R242, but my ship was the size of a 10 story office building. If I wanted to avoid someone, it would be easy.

There were gay couples who I met that I was hoping to run into again, but never did.

by Anonymousreply 244October 11, 2021 11:18 PM

I’m happy that you had an enjoyable experience R244.

The woman I’m talking about would be a likely suspect for the inspiration behind DL’s epic Sows at the Trough thread. I wouldn’t wish this cow’s company on anyone.

by Anonymousreply 245October 11, 2021 11:22 PM

Cruises - Bad trash

Cruising - Good trash

by Anonymousreply 246October 11, 2021 11:28 PM

I book a winter cruise this past weekend. So very excited for a sunny vacation during in bc those cold winter months. I checked to make sure the ship’s recent refurbishment didn’t remove the male sauna. It still exists so I will be checking it out one night around 5pm to see if the stories are true.

by Anonymousreply 247October 12, 2021 6:47 AM

Whelp, COVID negative and all packed. I guess we'll see how this goes.

by Anonymousreply 248October 16, 2021 8:52 PM

Sailing on the Atlantis all-gay cruise to Mexico in two weeks. Can't wait to be around all those semen -I mean seamen!

by Anonymousreply 249October 17, 2021 12:52 AM

David Foster Wallace wrote my favorite piece on cruises. Some of it reads dated though.

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by Anonymousreply 250October 17, 2021 12:55 AM

[quote]For “high-energy” people, someone who always has to be doing something, it may not be for you.

I don't really understand this. There is ALWAYS something to do on a cruise -- it just depends whether or not they are the kinds of things you enjoy doing.

by Anonymousreply 251October 17, 2021 2:27 AM

My idea of a busy day on a cruise is an hour in the thalassotherapy pool, followed by a massage and a nice dinner.

by Anonymousreply 252October 17, 2021 2:30 AM

Never worth it. Much cheaper to book a 5* hotel with a room on the beach in the country you prefer than spaz round all of them in some tiny cabin.

by Anonymousreply 253October 17, 2021 3:11 AM

^ With 6,000 of your equals?

by Anonymousreply 254October 17, 2021 3:13 AM

[quote] Oh and I’ve seen ONE child and maybe 10 teenagers the whole time.

Given that school is in session now in the U.S., it's surprising you saw any children or teens.

by Anonymousreply 255October 17, 2021 3:16 AM

I've been on several recent trips and people are traveling with school age children.

by Anonymousreply 256October 17, 2021 3:36 AM

I've done over 50 cruises. I am currently on currently on Virgin voyages Scarlet Lady. It is an absolute game changer in cruising. No children, no tipping, no up charges in any restaurant, free Wi-Fi, Late calls at all ports. Food is terrific and ship is beautiful. And at least on this voyage, the gays and lesbians have shown up to support it.

by Anonymousreply 257October 18, 2021 6:34 AM

Where are you cruising to/from R257?

by Anonymousreply 258October 18, 2021 10:53 AM

R257 I was looking at Virgin but it’s way outside of my price range. I’ll get on there one day. I’m only 30 So plenty of time to get there. Is there a free sauna? Any action in there?

by Anonymousreply 259October 18, 2021 5:28 PM

Surprising amount of gay couples floating around here. Maybe they just stick out more, but I’d estimate maybe 15-20%.

Relatively few kids, which is great.

by Anonymousreply 260October 18, 2021 6:35 PM

I’d like to do an Atlantic crossing in a liner. It would be fine to wear a suit on one of the formal nights.

by Anonymousreply 261October 18, 2021 10:25 PM

In 2002 my partner and I went on one of the last cruises on NCL's SS [italic]Norway[/italic] (formerly the SS [italic]France[/italic]) before the boiler accident that ultimately sent it to the scrap heap. By then it was NCL's downmarket ship, but my partner is an ocean liner nerd and couldn't have been happier. It was kind of run-down, but you could still see evidence of its former glory in the assigned dining rooms and the nightclub/lounge.

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by Anonymousreply 262October 18, 2021 10:44 PM

How is the food on Røkke's REV Ocean? I've heard the crew is spectacular.

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by Anonymousreply 263October 18, 2021 11:29 PM

R262 she was a beauty with the style of the grand old dames of the sea. Glad you two got to enjoy that shop before the scrap yard.

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by Anonymousreply 264October 19, 2021 2:06 AM

R262 The best room on the Norway. They certainly improved the interior design from the France's 1960's Dr No chic.

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by Anonymousreply 265October 19, 2021 3:34 AM

I love all your posts on cruises, TheVoiceOfTheNight. Are you a travel agent? Keep them coming.

by Anonymousreply 266October 19, 2021 6:44 AM

Instagram, R257?

by Anonymousreply 267October 19, 2021 2:16 PM

[quote] Are you a travel agent?

Long, long ago in another life. These days I’m just a civilian fascinated by the industry.

We watched the absolutely cracked-out ice show last night. It would have been good to drop acid to.

This is my first and quite likely last time on Royal. I’m having fun. Food’s fine, entertainment is okay (I’m going into the production of Cats with my detached sense of irony), service is okay. But the constant upselling is really starting to annoy me.

Plus the thicc guy in the steam room yesterday seemed to actually be there for the steam.

To my surprise, I’ve only seen one piece of Trump paraphernalia. And after looking at the very white Facebook group for the sailing, I was pleased that the actual composition is a bit more like a cruise leaving from the NYC area. And some of the twinky South Asian and Filipino crew are hot AF.

by Anonymousreply 268October 19, 2021 2:24 PM

I’m sailing on Royal in January. I’ve only been on one cruise back in middle school. It was on Riyal, I loved it. My parents said avoid Carnival. Norwegian was too expensive compared to Royal’s ports. I hope they don’t try to upswell on everything.

The person taking about a 5 star hotel being the same price is insane. 5 star hotels charge for meals at an inflated rate, because the property is “fancy” and “special”. Rooms can be $300-600 a night at five star properties. That’s much more than a cruise ship, even a balcony for comparable rates when you consider cruises will feed you at no additional cost and has largely free entertainment.

Both trip styles have their positives and drawbacks.

by Anonymousreply 269October 19, 2021 2:34 PM

I’m hoping it’ll calm down the deeper we get into the cruise. But it’s been bombarding us with suggestions that we book specialty dining…which we already did. Even our waiter at dinner last night did that. With that said, I can highly recommend the steakhouse.

I’m dreading my massage for that reason. I’m just going to say up top that they’ll get a better tip if they skip it.

We had a medical emergency this morning, so they kind of hit the gas into Florida.

by Anonymousreply 270October 19, 2021 2:46 PM

[quote]But the constant upselling is really starting to annoy me.

This is what drives me crazy too -- all of the constant promotions of questionable artwork, jewelry, medical and dental treatments, etc. I think next time I'll try one of the more upscale lines (I've only done HAL, NCL, Carnival, Princess, Celebrity)--I hear there's much less of that.

by Anonymousreply 271October 19, 2021 3:57 PM

I think I’ve also lived in New York too long. I am constantly being surprised by how overweight Real America is.

I feel shitty pointing that out, especially since I used to be so big, and I’m paranoid about what I’m eating here. But I’m also working out every morning and taking the stairs as much as feasible, even though I’m on Deck 14.

The first night, I saw a woman with four ramekins of French onion soup in front of her.

by Anonymousreply 272October 19, 2021 6:02 PM

The art upsells - are we talking Disney Main Street awful?

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by Anonymousreply 273October 19, 2021 6:48 PM

R268, do you have to wear a mask on the ship?

by Anonymousreply 274October 19, 2021 6:51 PM

[quote]The art upsells - are we talking Disney Main Street awful?

They're not far from it.

[quote][R268], do you have to wear a mask on the ship?

In some places. Have to wear them walking between spaces and in areas where unvaxxed (basically, parties traveling with little kids) are allowed. Not on the open decks or in the spaces that are vaxxed only. They have separate shows for vaxxed versus unvaxxed.

I'm actually surprised, everyone is handling it well.

by Anonymousreply 275October 19, 2021 6:57 PM

They have separate shows for vaccinated and unvaccinated? That is fucking ridiculous.

They should bite the bullet and just require it (my cruise did). I talked to multiple people who didn’t want to get the shot, but they did to get on the cruise because they missed it.

by Anonymousreply 276October 20, 2021 12:13 AM

It is required.

The exceptions are kids under 12. Since they can’t be vaccinated they, and their parents (who have to be vaccinated) are kept separate. Anyone over 12 had to show proof of vaccination.

It’s actually a good system. The vaxxed get to take their masks off.

by Anonymousreply 277October 20, 2021 1:44 AM

I’m looking at Princess or Celebrity out of Fort Lauderdale next spring. I will bite the bullet and pay the single supplement for a Caribbean cruise. Booking through Vacations To Go.

by Anonymousreply 278October 20, 2021 11:39 AM

My friends and I sat through one of the art shows on a cruise. The art is total crap and a ripoff. We were drinking and really enjoying the way some of these idiots were believing how great the deals were for such beautiful art. Good times.

by Anonymousreply 279October 20, 2021 12:15 PM

We're looking at Princess in Norway next summer.

by Anonymousreply 280October 20, 2021 12:24 PM

The Bizarre World of Art Auctions at Sea

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by Anonymousreply 281October 20, 2021 6:54 PM

I can't believe that fake vaccination documentation isn't rampant ... I don't trust anyone these days.

by Anonymousreply 282October 20, 2021 6:55 PM

They all get tested before boarding the ship as well, vaccinated and unvaccinated people.

by Anonymousreply 283October 20, 2021 8:10 PM

Yeah, we had to have a confirmed negative test within 48 hours of sailing.

by Anonymousreply 284October 20, 2021 11:35 PM

I'm still afraid of a last minute false positive reading.

by Anonymousreply 285October 20, 2021 11:50 PM

I was terrified of that as well R295, but I ended up fine, but if you go to cruisecritic.com, there are a few stories of people testing positive at the pier. Sounds like it is really hit or miss depending on the cruise line.

by Anonymousreply 286October 21, 2021 12:24 AM

We ended up with about 3000 people. So not a lot of positives, false or otherwise.

Royal Caribbean’s private island is really nice.

by Anonymousreply 287October 21, 2021 12:40 AM

VacationsToGo.com is a wise choice, R278. They usually have the absolute best prices/deals.

by Anonymousreply 288October 21, 2021 3:16 AM

I’ve had my issues with some of the stuff throughout, though I’ve been having a good time.

I can say this unreservedly: the diving show is INCREDIBLE.

by Anonymousreply 289October 21, 2021 4:22 AM

The art auctions. Holy shit, what crap. Never would I ever...

by Anonymousreply 290October 21, 2021 6:25 AM

I read advice a long time ago that the idea of attending the art stuff is to enjoy the free champagne, period.

by Anonymousreply 291October 21, 2021 1:02 PM

Except it’s crap champagne.

I’m sorry to keep kvelling over the diving show, but it’s honestly one of the best things I’ve seen on a ship. Leaving aside the fact that I got to enjoy the sight of a bunch of Boomer Trump voters grooving to a (very good) mix of 80s songs which included “Straight Out of Compton” and “Don’t Believe the Hype,” the performers, who were some combo of diver, dancer, and acrobat (some of the women also did synchronized swimming) were all fine as fuck.

by Anonymousreply 292October 21, 2021 1:25 PM

TheVoiceoftheNight keep the updates coming. I’m living vicariously through these messages as I await my 2022 winter voyage. Also, how cool to speak with someone on a ship with these little nuggets about your travels. Like getting a telegrams from some old dame traveling on a grand ocean liner.

by Anonymousreply 293October 21, 2021 1:43 PM

We’re alongside the Celebrity Equinox and the Virgin Scarlet Lady in Nassau today. I am looking at both with envy.

There’s nothing about being here that excites me, so this is a spa day.

by Anonymousreply 294October 21, 2021 1:53 PM

My ship is going to Nassau. Can you give any tips because it looks sort of like a bore outside of pricy Atlantis Hotel. I’m debating a half day out there then head back to the ship to take advantage of ship activities. My ship is Royal Caribbean so we will also visit CoCo Bay, which looks like a better beach day than Nassau.

Any tips on Nassau would be greatly appreciated for good beach or fun activity outside of Atlantis.

by Anonymousreply 295October 21, 2021 3:17 PM

[quote]Virgin Scarlet Lady

Seems like an oxymoron.

by Anonymousreply 296October 21, 2021 3:50 PM

It’s apparently pretty fab. All of the balconies have hammocks, not chairs.

by Anonymousreply 297October 21, 2021 4:42 PM

Atlantis is apparently requiring even more stringent COVID testing than the Bahamian government, so you have to produce a negative test within five days. So no one from my cruise ended up being able to book an excursion anyway.

I was thinking about doing one of the Pearl Island beach stops. Just looked the most idyllic. But my husband is off diving, and I didn’t want to do it alone.

Also, it’s cloudy AF, so it’s not like the weather is really cooperating.

by Anonymousreply 298October 21, 2021 6:09 PM

They’re having a Thomas Kincaid seminar tomorrow.

That’s it. That’s the post.

by Anonymousreply 299October 21, 2021 6:34 PM

[quote]Atlantis is apparently requiring even more stringent COVID testing than the Bahamian government, so you have to produce a negative test within five days. So no one from my cruise ended up being able to book an excursion anyway.

It's outrageous that a gay cruise company patronizes and enables homophobic countries like the Bahamas.

by Anonymousreply 300October 21, 2021 6:35 PM

What gay cruise company?

by Anonymousreply 301October 21, 2021 6:38 PM

No, Atlantis the resort.

Atlantis Events tends to stick to friendlier countries, after they were turned away from the Caymans their first time.

The Caymans are…if not the best place, better. They have a civil partnership law now, and more or less equality in certain other areas. Not great, but a long way from what it was.

by Anonymousreply 302October 21, 2021 6:41 PM

The champagne at the art auctions is swill. I just walked over to the bar and got a margarita.

by Anonymousreply 303October 21, 2021 11:29 PM

Nassau is a pit and I recommend avoiding it at all costs. Perfect port for staying on board and taking advantage of spa deals and/or the pool. The Atlantis Resort (not affiliated with Atlantis Events cruises) is a total tourist trap. Overpriced and overcrowded.

by Anonymousreply 304October 22, 2021 2:25 AM

Yeah, it seemed the vast majority stayed aboard, tho the crew member I’ve been talking to on Grindr says that’s in part due to the fact that the ship can only dock at the furthest slip, and no one (read: no overweight American) wants to walk that far.

by Anonymousreply 305October 22, 2021 2:45 AM

R304 - The first time I was there was 40 years and it still had bits of 'old town' to it. At home, somebody I knew was the child of a couple that were 'in service' to the Sassoon's back in the day- his (Sassoon's) wife 'Barnsie' thought the kiddie was 'such a nice little boy' and doted on him, even paid for his entire college education. He ended up having an incredibly charmed life.

by Anonymousreply 306October 22, 2021 2:47 AM

R304 - Oh god, that is just so sad to have to read that. You're right of course, and what the hell could possibly be done to fix that. Good luck with that. Bermuda has slid downhill considerably in the last several years. And a lot of people have moved out.

by Anonymousreply 307October 22, 2021 3:21 AM

r307 Bermuda and the Bahamas are not the same place. Bermuda is not even in the Caribbean.

by Anonymousreply 308October 22, 2021 3:31 AM

I read an article a couple of years ago on how Nassau was floundering since the new huge cruise ships started taking over. No one is tempted to leave the ship since there's so much to do onboard. Also, due to the crime and lack of anything interesting to see, no one is spending money ashore. The Bahamas have been raising port fees to compensate.

by Anonymousreply 309October 22, 2021 6:22 AM

I think I have observed the most ridiculous thing possible. We were in the buffet eating breakfast, and I looked over to the next table, and the woman sitting there was using a McCormick pepper shaker that she’d clearly brought from home.

I have so many questions.

by Anonymousreply 310October 22, 2021 2:14 PM

Ask them and report back.

by Anonymousreply 311October 22, 2021 2:22 PM

Could it be one of those pepper shakers that's also a grinder for peppercorns themselves? I had an acquaintance who would sneer nastily at crushed black pepper flakes as "sawdust." Could it be that she prefers a specific kind of pepper, rather than the standard black pepper on the table?

It's an unusual setup, and she shouldn't complain if others see it as perhaps tacky. Although, at a breakfast buffet it's not as egregious (for lack of a better term); doing so with plated dinner service would be carrying things much further.

by Anonymousreply 312October 22, 2021 2:25 PM

No. It was just the ground, McCormick black pepper like you’d get at the grocery store.

My second thought was that she was microdosing shrooms and had the ground up bits disguised as pepper.

by Anonymousreply 313October 22, 2021 2:27 PM

What are balcony murders?

by Anonymousreply 314October 22, 2021 2:29 PM

Then it's likely something else she's carrying around in that used bottle. If it is McCormick ground black pepper, that's nuts.

by Anonymousreply 315October 22, 2021 2:32 PM

[quote]My second thought was that she was microdosing shrooms and had the ground up bits disguised as pepper.

I like how you think.

by Anonymousreply 316October 22, 2021 2:50 PM

I’m honestly not sure which explanation I prefer.

I’ve been trying to go to the gym early, before people get up. I had a lie in today, so it’ll be mid-morning before I get there. I was worried that it would be packed on a sea day, but looking at my fellow passengers…

I don’t know if I mentioned this, but RCI coffee is almost completely undrinkable.

by Anonymousreply 317October 22, 2021 2:59 PM

R308 - Well, they used to be, haha, inasmuch as they were both stamping grounds for rich white people. I've given up on the Bahamas, much prefer Bermuda now, but it's a summer visit so the timing is different.

by Anonymousreply 318October 22, 2021 5:05 PM

Did you get the drink package, R317? If so, is it worth it?

by Anonymousreply 319October 22, 2021 5:57 PM

Yes and no. I’ve been trying not to overindulge, just because I worry about calories. But I got super drunk off of really good margaritas yesterday.

If you drink a lot, it’s a good deal.

I have kind of a disturbing thing that happened on Scruff, but I’ll save that for when I have a keyboard.

by Anonymousreply 320October 22, 2021 6:08 PM

I will say that as far as the Bahamas go, as bad as New Providence and Grand Bahama Island are, Virgin has its own private resort on Bimini that’s supposed to be really nice. They have excursions beyond that, and if you scuba dive, Bimini is supposed to be amazing.

Most of the private islands for the various lines are okay, although Royal had recently pumped a lot of money into theirs.

by Anonymousreply 321October 22, 2021 7:43 PM

The Bahamas away from the cruise ports are beautiful. Spent a tremendous week on Eluthera a number of years ago.

by Anonymousreply 322October 23, 2021 5:59 AM

R322 - Yes, and the crime rate is next to zero there, too.

by Anonymousreply 323October 23, 2021 5:45 PM

I’m about an hour from heading into the production of Cats.

May the Broadway queens and ladies in waiting forgive me.

by Anonymousreply 324October 23, 2021 5:49 PM

Any half-way-decent production of Cats includes fit guys in tights. That is justification enough, R324. :)

by Anonymousreply 325October 23, 2021 6:07 PM

Pro tip: Get there early to avoid sitting near the litter box.

by Anonymousreply 326October 23, 2021 6:39 PM

I’m in the theater now.

This is a crowd who will REALLY enjoy Cats.

One of the other Oasis-class ships has Hairspray, which I would have loved.

by Anonymousreply 327October 23, 2021 6:53 PM

Voice of the Night, are you on a 2 week cruise? It seems you've been on the ship for awhile.

by Anonymousreply 328October 23, 2021 7:10 PM

R327 "fine as fuck.... "twinky South Asian and Filipino crew are hot AF".

'

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by Anonymousreply 329October 23, 2021 7:23 PM

R328 TVOTN is actually dead. This his is ghost typing to us between haunting that poor theater with its ill fated production of Cats.

by Anonymousreply 330October 23, 2021 7:40 PM

I’ve booked Princess next summer…cannot wait.

by Anonymousreply 331October 23, 2021 8:01 PM

Bless me Miss Lupone, for I have sinned. It has been two years since my last Broadway musical.

I don’t know quite what I was expecting from a cruise ship production of Cats, but I don’t think it was that. I mean, it was a full production, which surprised me. It’s just such a weird choice for this environment, being plotless and with only a single memorable song. The cast certainly tried, but it only came alive when Rum Tum Tugger (who had a great ass), Skimbleshanks, and Mr Mistofolees were on stage. Grizabella could belt when it came time to go for the balcony, but she was kind of subdued the rest of the time.

In the name of Elaine, and Chita, and Bernadette I pray.

by Anonymousreply 332October 23, 2021 8:56 PM

Look at it this way - just about anything would be better than Miss Saigon!

by Anonymousreply 333October 23, 2021 9:01 PM

"Titanic" would be an excellent choice!

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by Anonymousreply 334October 23, 2021 9:13 PM

I saw that shit twice, r33. Somehow, I thought that show was good the first time around. Paid to see the 2018-2019 traveling revival when it came to my city because I was in lust with a chorus boy I randomly started following on Instagram. When they came to town, I just had to see him and get his autograph after the show, Mary! God bless the creation of Chorus Boys. But during the second showing, I brought my mom and was embarrassed by the actual story halfway through the show.

4 hours and $450 I'll never get back. If I could sit through Miss Siagon twice in a week then I can sit through a cruise production.

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by Anonymousreply 335October 23, 2021 9:17 PM

I never saw it once, but my ex had the misfortune of sitting through STOMP I believe three times.

by Anonymousreply 336October 23, 2021 9:47 PM

Some downtime on my laptop before our last dinner. I did enjoy myself a lot, but I don't think I'll be rushing back to Royal Caribbean any time soon.

Ship - This thing is ENORMOUS. We got an upgrade to a cabin on the ass end of the ship, so there's been so much walking. Which is a good thing, but it can be annoying as well. I appreciate that there are so many different things available, but the tradeoff is that it takes forever to get anywhere. Although post-workout (on deck six) climbing the steps to deck 14 and then walking to the opposite end of the ship was a good cooldown. Most of the public spaces were really nice, although the Promenade was the closest I've found to "cruise ship as shopping mall" I've experienced, and, when crowded, was off-putting. The largest ship I'd been on before this was Celebrity Solstice, and that was more in the Goldilocks zone. That said, I really liked some of the parts, like the Central Park open-air garden. The Solarium is a really nice space, but it's not fully enclosed so you couldn't really use it if it was windy or cold or both.

Food - I know most people go on cruises to overindulge. However, it would have been awesome if they had one or two healthier choices on the menu. I managed to do okay, but it was hard when basically every dish had some kind of very starchy side. We hit two of the specialty restaurants, the Chops Grill steakhouse (big thumbs up), and 150 Central Park (allegedly locally sourced). The latter was fine, but not really quite worth the surcharge. Buffet was...underwhelming, but I managed okay. Never made it to the smokehouse (they were really pushy about it). I didn't try the Chipotle-like place, but my husband did. He called it "A step above Taco Bell" but he loves Taco Bell, so...

Drinks - The jalapeno margarita in the sports bar is one of the best things I've ever tasted. Pool bar had really good tropical stuff. The Rising Tide (the bar in the middle of the ship that goes up and down between the Promenade and Central Park every twenty minutes or so) was fun, and had the twinkiest bartenders. The pub was fine. RCI's signature Schooner Bar was also fine. The Bionic Bar, which has two robotic arms mixing the drinks (you order via iPad) was flat-out gross. I ordered to different things and couldn't finish either.

Entertainment - I cannot say enough good things about the AquaTheater show. GREAT mix of (many atypical) 80s songs with a mix of acrobatics, diving, and dance. The guys were hot and in tight shorts or Speedos. It was a perfect show for the DL. Starts with one of the acrobats flying over the audience. He does a tightrope walk 60 feet above the audience later. It's GREAT. Cats was...well, it's about Cats. The live music was hit or miss. And we completely missed the comedians, because I've never seen a funny one on a cruise.

Service - Our stateroom attendant was great, and we left him a little extra money because he had to deal with some truly vile people who were our neighbors. As it was, I HATED the constant upselling. Additionally, we ended up asking to switch tables at dinner because the waiter wouldn't stop asking me if I was sure I wanted dessert. The third time he asked in the course of a single dinner, I end up snapping "I said no, please stop asking." I hated Karen-ing, but I would have thought after one time, the message would have gotten across.

by Anonymousreply 337October 23, 2021 11:23 PM

Gym/Spa - Gym was actually fairly nicely equipped. Managed to get a full workout in without needed to resort to the machines, even if my compound lifts were primarily on the Smith machine. Lots of dumbbells. The thermal suite is in the bowels of the ship, and is small. Not sure if it was worth it, and it definitely wasn't cruise-y, just for being co-ed. I did run into the same group of bears there, but I guess they weren't interested. Had a good massage, but again the masseuse was really pushy. I'm used to that though.

COVID - Handled very well. They were good about enforcing mask use, and required that elevators only had six people at a time, unless it was an entire party. Some of the other passengers weren't so good about that. We got to the bank at the same time as a part of four, and the first elevator that stopped already had four people on it. We got on, and then the party that was already there told the other group of four "Come on, we don't mind." I did an "Excuse me, *I* mind."

Gay Stuff - Pretty well attended meetups in the wine bar every night, although we only went once. The vast majority of our fellow gay passengers looked...well, like the rest of the passengers. There were a few lesbian couples who kept to themselves, and to DL's collective horror, two older trans women. I was on Scruff and Grindr a few times. Guy from Grindr who was either closeted, cheating, or both gave me a really good blowjob before muttering "This never happened" as he was leaving my cabin. Slightly more disturbing, I was hit up by a 50-ish guy wanting to know if I would have sex with his 25 year old kept boy in front of him, which....no.

Had fun. Might do again with a fullship gay charter, but not with the civilians.

by Anonymousreply 338October 23, 2021 11:24 PM

This male couple from the UK reviews cruise ships; they seem to know what they are talking about…

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by Anonymousreply 339October 31, 2021 4:01 PM

Well, folks, I am leaving in a few minutes to head to the pier for the all-gay Atlantis cruise to Mexico. Say you'll miss me and don't do anyone I wouldn't do (no catty comments -I'm not as big a slut as I hope to be)!

A week without Datalounge... Is it even possible??

by Anonymousreply 340October 31, 2021 4:03 PM

Can I have your stuff?

by Anonymousreply 341October 31, 2021 4:26 PM

Hey, r159, I've never parachuted, either, but I'm pretty sure I wouldn't like it.

I've been all throughout Europe by car and a few times on bus tours. And even on the latter, where at least one sees scenery not restricted to water or coastline, it was very frustrating not to be able to stop on a whim, eat somewhere that didn't accommodate tour buses, and linger or change itinerary.

So don't get on a high horse about we just don't and can't know what we're missing by never having cruised. I know I might be missing out on shipboard luxury, shipboard haute cuisine, shipboard relationships, shipboard activities.

Much of which, minus the actual ship and the empty expanse of deep ocean water or the slow-going on riverways, can be had in infinite variety on one's own schedule in travelling by car.

Now, if that driving is what is the sticking point, then that's that. Or packing and re-packing, getting place to stay and to eat. But all that effort is part of the travel experience.

Of course, exceptions exist. I daresay a cruise is the best and probably only way to see the grandeur of Alaska.

by Anonymousreply 342October 31, 2021 5:44 PM

[quote]This male couple from the UK reviews cruise ships; they seem to know what they are talking about…

There are a couple of cruise vlogging gay couples. There's another one called JJ Cruise.

Ben and David have started getting hosted cruises from different lines, so I look at some of their reviews with a side-eye.

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by Anonymousreply 343October 31, 2021 5:46 PM

I thought that Ben and David prided themselves on paying for their own passages. They said that it keeps them impartial. How disappointing this is to hear r343.

by Anonymousreply 344October 31, 2021 8:11 PM

Eldergay Gary Bembridge is also very good. Does he have his trips sponsored by the cruise lines too?

by Anonymousreply 345October 31, 2021 8:12 PM

Forgot to post the link

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by Anonymousreply 346October 31, 2021 8:13 PM

At least some of them are R345, because he has said so, but he doesn't generally say one or way or the other consistently (as he should I think).

by Anonymousreply 347October 31, 2021 10:00 PM

This guy is my favorite! Not sure if he’s gay or not, but he’s a real Disney stan. His baby brother pings, however. But his voice and enthusiasm crack me up!

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by Anonymousreply 348October 31, 2021 11:09 PM

Michael Kay is a piece of shit.

He lied about being vaccinated and danced around Disney World flaunting the rules for the unvaxxed guests. It got him kicked out of being invited to Disney media events.

by Anonymousreply 349November 1, 2021 12:24 AM

^^^^^ really r349? I’m shocked to hear about that! Silly man!

by Anonymousreply 350November 1, 2021 1:30 AM

Yeah, when Disney initially relaxed the rules for visitors who were vaccinated (on the honor system) he was running around without a mask.

Then when he and his brother went on a cruise over the summer, they filmed themselves going through the procedure for unvaccinated guests (which was allowed at the time). So, Disney stopped inviting him to events and he got super bitter.

I know way too much about this.

by Anonymousreply 351November 2, 2021 1:59 AM

[quote]He lied about being vaccinated and danced around Disney World flaunting the rules for the unvaxxed guests.

Oh, dear.

by Anonymousreply 352November 2, 2021 2:24 AM

Bitter how r351? Did he complain about the way that he was treated? To flout the pandemic guidelines is foolhardy and irresponsible.

by Anonymousreply 353November 2, 2021 2:34 AM

People trash Michael Kay even on Disney Vlogs without mentioning his name and in the comments underneath which do. He's got quite the reputation especially for getting another vlogger banned from WDW and Universal.

Everyone then realized he was being a shit stirring queen, wiser heads prevailed and the ban was lifted.

by Anonymousreply 354November 2, 2021 2:35 AM

^so he is gay, then?

by Anonymousreply 355November 2, 2021 11:46 AM

He's a doughy, unkempt schlub who wears clothes that are at least a size to small for him and show off every inch of his shapeless body and looks at least a decade older than he actually is. Even if he is gay, we have sufficient.

[quote]Bitter how [R351]? Did he complain about the way that he was treated? To flout the pandemic guidelines is foolhardy and irresponsible.

Until the crowds started picking up, he would post videos of himself twirling on Main Street talking about how it was tragic that there were hundreds of thousands of people dying, but wasn't it awesome how low the crowds were. It was vile.

Anyway, since he lost his favored status, he started posting a lot of videos that are very bitter in tone. WDW just started a new paid skip-the-line service, which requires use of your phone, and he made a video that was essentially a temper tantrum where he talked about how having to be on your phone ruins the experience, while using his phone the way no one actually would as an example of same. He also made a video recently experiencing the Halloween festivities in Celebration where he had a lot of video of other people's children, which is fucking creepy.

by Anonymousreply 356November 2, 2021 12:35 PM

Is bring into Disney a gay thing? There was a guy on Wheel Of Fortune who watches videos of princesses with his nieces.

by Anonymousreply 357November 2, 2021 1:31 PM

There are a surprising number of hetero Disney vloggers. Actually, I can think of more het than gay ones.

And then there are the gay-for-pay ones like Kyle Pallo, who's basically running a Disney-appropriate OnlyFans. He aims himself at middle-aged queens like a heat-seeking missile.

by Anonymousreply 358November 2, 2021 1:56 PM

Disney fanatics are just plain weird. I’d rather do an amusement park over a theme park, yawn. Unless I’m 80 abs can’t walk or 8 abs into the bullshit.

I would like to try a Disney cruise cause I heated their product is top notch.

by Anonymousreply 359November 2, 2021 2:05 PM

R356 /VOTN, he sounds awful. But I can’t stop watching his YouTube channel. It’s car wreck good.

by Anonymousreply 360November 2, 2021 2:11 PM

Kyle Pallo is an interesting one. He often features his sister. And sometimes his family. He has never featured a partner which a lot of vloggers do. He even addressed questions about his single status. He's good looking and young so people are what's up with that? He in a nice way says pretty much it's none of your business. He said simply if I ask a woman to marry me I'll let you know.

And yes the overwhelming number of male vloggers are straight and have girlfriends and wives which share their love of Disney. It would have to be that way otherwise it would drive a spouse to divorce.

Some of these people make their living off of their vlogs and I know they get financial gifts from their watchers but it's enough to make a secure living? And they go to Disneyland too. I always think they have family money to spend so much time in theme parks and traveling.

by Anonymousreply 361November 2, 2021 2:38 PM

Kyle did a cruise recently with another vlogger, Patrick Dougall who primarily does Disneyland and general SoCal content, and who is gay as far as I know. He's also super cute and bubbly, and probably should be annoying but somehow just isn't. There was a real lack of sexual heat between them, which is why I think Kyle is just playing the lonely old gays.

As an example of finances, Patrick has over 200K followers on YouTube, which is into six figures just from ad revenue, before adding in in sponsorships and things he has. That's not even the upper end of things. The completely odious Tim Tracker has almost 900K followers, although they've been struggling with their numbers.

And a large number of them also have Patreons in addition to the cash gifts. Kyle gets Disney resort stays gifted to him all the time.

by Anonymousreply 362November 2, 2021 3:53 PM

VOTN, how do you know all this?

by Anonymousreply 363November 2, 2021 4:37 PM

DL isn't the only gossip site out there. I randomly happened upon one that largely focuses on YouTubers and InstaHos, whichhas a lot of info about the various Disney personalities.

It's a fascinating world. I think it's filled the MichFest-shaped hole in my life.

by Anonymousreply 364November 2, 2021 4:50 PM

Can you give us some links VOTN?

Gary Bembridge comes across as if he has some coin, since a lot of the cruise ships he sails are premium brands.

by Anonymousreply 365November 2, 2021 5:05 PM

Modern cruising is a cesspool with excremental pax.

by Anonymousreply 366November 2, 2021 5:12 PM

Never mind, VOTN, I just googled his name and DISNEY together…wow. This guy and his family have issues. Allegedly he had to take out a restraining order on his own father! News at 11.

by Anonymousreply 367November 2, 2021 5:15 PM

Read this shit here…

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by Anonymousreply 368November 2, 2021 5:21 PM

If you can stand it, find the video where he went to the Halloween Boo Bash dressed as Spider-Man.

A very aged, rotund Spider-Man.

by Anonymousreply 369November 2, 2021 6:09 PM

Looking for it, but so far, no luck…but there’s entire forums dedicated to the Kay Family…they’re fucking loons, if these stories are to be believed! Some even hint at incestuous relationships between the brothers! What a rabbit hole to go down….

by Anonymousreply 370November 3, 2021 1:44 PM

I'll spare you the effort and spare Michael the click. This is an account that takes some of the vloggers (they focus mainly on the obnoxious Trackers and Michael, but have done others as well) and edits them. Still gives you a good idea without the ad revenue going to the person. Also, it's only 4 minutes instead of 20.

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by Anonymousreply 371November 3, 2021 2:15 PM

I have always thought it would be a fun trip to go from ocean to ocean through the Panama canal. What say ye, people who have done it?

I still haven't done a cruise, other than on a small ship going from island to island in Greece, but the thing that appeals to me about them is being able to get somewhere without having to fly there on a super long flight (like Australia).

by Anonymousreply 372November 3, 2021 2:33 PM

Oh r371, that’s so unfortunate looking. He actually painted his face with the Spider-Man mask? Whaaat?

by Anonymousreply 373November 3, 2021 2:38 PM

[quote]I have always thought it would be a fun trip to go from ocean to ocean through the Panama canal. What say ye, people who have done it?

It was a popular one for people who can do more than a week at a time. There were also choices that would remain a roundtrip from Florida, but would sail past the first lock. I don't know what the experience is like after they opened the third set of locks for the bigger ships.

Which still doesn't allow everything, because a lot of the biggest ships are too tall to fit under the Bridge of the Americas.

by Anonymousreply 374November 3, 2021 2:51 PM

I did the Panama Canal cruise from Ft. Lauderdale to Los Angeles a few years ago. It was a holiday cruise -- we actually went through the canal on Christmas Day. Our ports were Aruba, Cartagena, one each in Nicaragua and Costa Rica, Huatulco, and Cabo San Lucas. I live in Southern Calif., so it was nice to only have to fly one way. (I also did Disney/Universal in Florida for a week pre-cruise.) The canal itself was really interesting. I wish we'd had a stop in Panama somewhere, but it was not on the itinerary.

by Anonymousreply 375November 3, 2021 3:30 PM

Some lines lik HAL do partial Panama Canal cruises-they go halfway through and then turn around. Usually from Florida’s west coast.

by Anonymousreply 376November 3, 2021 3:47 PM

I did the Panama Canal on the Island Princess in 2019. It is one of two they own (I think they've retired them) that were designed specifically to use the old locks, which I really enjoyed. We had a day going through the Caribbean locks, visiting islands in the lake, then met the ship back on the Caribbean side. I thoroughly enjoyed it, even though the ship was feeling a bit dated. I think they only take bigger ships through the new locks now.

by Anonymousreply 377November 3, 2021 5:24 PM

I knew a couple of people who did the six-week trip from Florida to California going around South America via Cape Horn. Described it as a lot to take in.

by Anonymousreply 378November 3, 2021 7:49 PM

Anyone have any experience with Pied Piper?

by Anonymousreply 379November 4, 2021 2:24 AM

[quote]I knew a couple of people who did the six-week trip from Florida to California going around South America via Cape Horn. Described it as a lot to take in.

Royal Caribbean just announced their first-ever world cruise Miami to Miami. 270 days, with pricing starting at $60K per person. Plus I'd say factor in at least about $20-30K for incidentals. It's a cool itinerary, with overnights in Rio, Buenos Aires, Lima, Hong Kong, Beijing, Tokyo, Mumbai, Alexandria, Israel, Athens, Odessa, Istanbul, Venice, Barcelona, Paris, Saint Petersburg, Reykjavik, and New York. Sailing through the Straights of Magellan, the Straight of Hormuz, the Suez Canal, and the Bosporus

Honestly? I'd totally do it. But I would also worry about becoming a great big fat person having to be so sedentary for so long. But it does include business-class air, WiFi, booze, laundry and tips.

If anyone's interested, I'll be happy to start a GoFundMe today.

by Anonymousreply 380November 4, 2021 1:04 PM

I'd be interested in a world tour, but not sure what I'd do with my house and dog for 2/3rds of a year.

by Anonymousreply 381November 4, 2021 2:25 PM

Exactly, R381. I had really considered one of the Princess world cruises that last 111 days. They have great stops and it would be the only way to make it to many of the places without soul-destroying, 24 hour plus, plane rides. But then we got a dog and so that was that. I could have found someone to drop by the house occasionally over that time but you can't leave a dog with someone for that long. It was going to be the big retirement celebration.

by Anonymousreply 382November 4, 2021 3:23 PM

I wonder how much it would cost to hire a male escort to accompany me on one of those round-the-world cruises ...

by Anonymousreply 383November 4, 2021 3:26 PM

Does that recall that one hysterical thread about the queen who met a waiter on a cruise? Ages ago…

by Anonymousreply 384November 4, 2021 3:31 PM

Royal Caribbean has officially taken possession of Wonder of the Seas, now the world's biggest cruise ship. But it won't have its first cruise for another few months, so they're moving it from the yard in Brittany to Marseilles for some additional work.

They got some shit for not punch-listing Harmony of the Seas before it debuted, so I'm glad they're working out the kinks first.

by Anonymousreply 385November 6, 2021 6:31 PM

Some of these ships are getting too big. Too many people onboard. Service could potentially suffer. One complaint is that it takes too long for the dining room waitstaff to deliver the meals to the passengers. More often than not, it arrives cold or lukewarm.

by Anonymousreply 386November 7, 2021 4:55 AM

I've done most of my cruising on Princess, which doesn't have a lot of big attractions (go karts, FlowRiders, iFly, zip lines, etc.) but friends who've done those big ships on other lines have complained that the wait times and limited hours for them have made them mostly inaccessible. I've also heard issues around getting into the main shows and embarkation/debarkation for excursions. Another drawback to the huge ships is the inundation of smaller destinations when a couple of a medium-size city ships unload.

by Anonymousreply 387November 7, 2021 11:15 AM

R387, can you discuss more about your experiences on Princess? That is the cruise line I am leaning towards using as it seems to be the best price and size fit for me.

by Anonymousreply 388November 7, 2021 3:04 PM

There are a number of things I like about Princess, R388. I like that they have established, interesting itineraries everywhere in the world, not just focusing on the Caribbean and Alaska. It seems a lot of the other competing lines throw in a few sailings internationally but kind of half-heartedly. That said, if you want to do Alaska, Princess is number one there, so you get priority for sailing into Glacier Bay. Also, since their upper decks aren't covered with attractions, water slides, etc. they're much better for actual sightseeing when you're in a fjord or going through the Panama Canal, where you can go to any side, forward or back for the best views.

Service and food are usually top-notch, and they pioneered the Anytime Dining option instead of fixed seatings, which really helps you want to take advantage of the main dining experience instead of just hitting the buffets. The passenger mix really depends on the length of the cruise and time of year. We've using gone for the 2 week cruises in remote destinations (Patagonia, the Baltic/Russia, the Med, etc.) which filters out most families with school-age kids. However, some week-long trips in Carribbean and Mexican Riveria will get you hundreds of kids, but you usually don't see them as they're in the kid venues or buffets (another reason to use the main dining rooms).

I've been cruising with them long enough to remember when their discreet LGBT meetups were listed on the schedule as "Friends of Dorothy" meetings, now they're hosted by cruise staff and usually have decent turnouts. It's hit or miss. Shipboard activities are the standard mix of casino, game shows, trivia, bingo, dance, challenges, usually a bit goofy but fun if you like them. One of the nice things about cruising is you can be as active as you feel, and it's especially nice if with a group because everyone can do their own thing.

Another thing I really like is they have their EzAir booking service integrated into the cruise personalizer. I've found it far better than online sites like Travelocity at finding great fares and being flexible for changes or cancellations. It eliminates that whole hassle.

Princess' excursions are usually a bit pricey, but often excellent. We've usually done better finding our own third-party tours, or grabbing a taxi at various ports and exploring on our own.

by Anonymousreply 389November 7, 2021 9:25 PM

Just home from the Atlantis all-gay Halloween cruise aboard the NCL Bliss. The ship itself was okay -crew was nice, dining room service was good. Cabin service was the worst I've ever seen. My room was never made up before 4:00 in the afternoon (and I left it at breakfast). Food was mediocre -a few great dishes and some terrible crap. All the entertainment was Atlantis' -except for the musical SIX, which was really, really good.

The passengers were a mixed group -all ages (including a 93-year-old celebrating his birthday) and all body types. Tons of eye candy running around in thongs and harnesses. Everyone was friendly and sociable. Only a few orgies in the sauna...

I look forward to another Atlantis cruise in the future -but not with NCL.

by Anonymousreply 390November 7, 2021 9:35 PM

I took a Carnival cruise to Cancun and Yucatan with my mom before she died. The people were nauseating Texas Maga trash. The entertainment was tawdry and embarrassing. The food was perfectly okay. The onshore side trips were lovely. If you're planning on doing this, I suggest taking lunch away from the dinner hall and having dinner brought to your room. The linens were lovely; the movies were current; I slept like a log. I'd do it again provided I had no contact with other passengers.

by Anonymousreply 391November 7, 2021 10:14 PM

Thanks, R389. All very useful. I'm looking at Princess for an ocean-to-ocean Panama Canal cruise, a northern lights cruise above the Artic circle in Norway, and/or an Alaskan cruise. I'd also love to do their 'round-the-world but, as noted above, not sure what we would do with the dog and house during that length of time. Having someone house sit for that length of time makes me uncomfortable to even think about it.

by Anonymousreply 392November 7, 2021 10:17 PM

Carnival's steakhouses and Italian alternative eateries are the best food onboard. I ate at Guy's Burger Joint once; all the other times it was a long line. And forget about the Seafood Shack. It was hardly open.

by Anonymousreply 393November 7, 2021 11:24 PM

Took a Carnival cruise to Canada about ten years ago and was shocked how good the food was.

by Anonymousreply 394November 8, 2021 1:51 AM

It was Soylent Green.

I don't know if the Carnival guests were blue, white or pink collar but they all watched Fox News and made a point of telling me how much they hate Hillary. I'd be hard pressed to find anything in common with them. Several at the table from Hell were retired cops and military.

by Anonymousreply 395November 8, 2021 3:56 AM

R392, thanks. I just signed up for the Land of the Midnight Sun Norway cruise next August. Maybe I'll see you there.

by Anonymousreply 396November 8, 2021 5:07 AM

I guess that I can relate to r395. My first Carnival cruise was to the Canadian Maritime Provinces and my tablemates were very nice. We left out of NYC, so we had a contingent of trash from Staten Island and Bensonhurst…disgusting people. But my dining companions were all from the Midwest. A single closeted fellow and an older straight couple. The wife was suffering from dementia and her husband wanted to take her out on one more cruise before moving her into a nursing home. It was almost like an episode of the Love Boat. The gay guy was a nebbishy likable sort who wanted to show me his balcony cabin. Nothing happened; we weren’t each other’s type. But they were very nice people. That was on the Carnival Victory.

The second one was two years ago on the Carnival Magic. I went with my aunt and uncle and we had a blast. We met several people onboard and enjoyed ourselves thoroughly. But the MAGAts were always around. Luckily I was distracted by the nice weather and good service.

What bugged me about the first cruise was the passengers with unruly teens. They let them run rampant and some of them managed to get a hold of some liquor. Including a girl who decided to come into the show lounge to vomit. I’d like to know who gave them the liquor. Some of them lay down on the floor outside the disco because the crew wouldn’t allow them inside. Security had to find their parents and forced them to take responsibility for their children. I watched a kid fill his plate with food at the Lido buffet , drop it, then he shrugged his shoulders and walked away, leaving the mess for the crew to clean up. Sad, because the ship itself was quite nice. But the NYC crowd was rude and nasty.

On the Magic, the young people were well behaved except for some dirty dancing near the pool. The cruise director actually stopped the music at one point to chide them for their inappropriate behavior. But that crowd was much nicer than the other one on the Victory.

Maybe that’s why I am cruising with Princess next year…

by Anonymousreply 397November 8, 2021 1:27 PM

Just booked Holland America to Mexico again. Don't have to fly, and no formal nights to deal with. I look forward to some sun and sand in February.

by Anonymousreply 398November 23, 2021 11:42 PM

The formal nights are what hold me back from Princess. That, and their ships aren't quite as innovative as the comparable ones on HAL or Celebrity.

by Anonymousreply 399November 24, 2021 12:21 AM

Although their ship for 2023, Sphere Princess, which will burn LNG instead of diesel, sounds promising.

by Anonymousreply 400November 24, 2021 12:25 AM

I detest formal nights. I haven't worn a tie since I retired in 2010 and I'm certainly not going to wear one ON VACATION. If I'm stuck on a cruise with formal nights, I just avoid the dining room and any formal activities.

by Anonymousreply 401November 24, 2021 3:25 AM

That's why I regularly go to Mexico, R401. Even Holland America doesn't do formal there. On the two "gala" nights a simple sport coat (sans tie) is totally fine.

by Anonymousreply 402November 24, 2021 4:26 AM

Celebrity also has Evening Chic nights in lieu of formal night. Don't even need a jacket if you don't want.

While I didn't clutch my pearls, I was surprised what Royal Caribbean let into the dining room, even on the formal nights. Saw a good number of t-shirts and even a few guys in basketball shorts. It may have been due to the buffet being closed for dinner, but still. Even if I was rolling my eyes at the guys in the fancy stuff, at least put on pants.

by Anonymousreply 403November 24, 2021 11:15 AM

This is an honest question as I haven't been on a cruise yet: isn't there a way to eat somewhere else if you don't want to dress up for formal night? I honestly wouldn't mind the dressing up part, as I already have a tux and a bunch of suits from work, but I really don't want to have to pack a suit, dress shirt, tie, and dress shoes to lug around on vacation.

by Anonymousreply 404November 24, 2021 2:22 PM

r404 Nearly every cruise ship has a buffet that is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. And most have other dining options as well.

by Anonymousreply 405November 24, 2021 2:37 PM

Yes. The buffet is always catch-as-catch-can. NCL doesn't really have any kind of a dress code, and usually the upcharge restaurants just want something like Resort Casual.

But in the era of checked bag fees, the lines--even Cunard, which was formal to the point of being stuffy--have relaxed things a lot.

by Anonymousreply 406November 24, 2021 2:39 PM

Princess' formal nights are really relaxed. It mostly takes place in the Atrium. It's fun for those people who like to dress up and play at the old-time romance of cruising. However, the only actual restriction is being dressed at least smart casual in the dining rooms (I just wear slacks and a nice shirt). You're welcome to eat at the buffet in your swim trunks and Hawaiian shirt if you want.

by Anonymousreply 407November 24, 2021 3:43 PM

[quote]You're welcome to eat at the buffet in your swim trunks and Hawaiian shirt if you want.

Oh, no I definitely want some fine dining and I'm perfectly okay with a collared shirt and pants (don't want a tie, indifferent to jacket). It's just that Princess' website says suits/tux for men on formal night.

I don't know if I'd go to the buffet in a bathing suit, even during the day.

by Anonymousreply 408November 24, 2021 3:57 PM

I only remember seeing a few people turned away from the restaurant on Princess for attire, for faded blue jeans and tank tops, as I recall.

by Anonymousreply 409November 24, 2021 5:26 PM

True formal nights are rapidly becoming a thing of the past on most cruise lines. As was already pointed out, more and more people fly with only carry-on bags, and no one wants to bring a tux and accouterments to only wear once or twice. But another part of the equation is that people increasingly don't care about dressing up, and the lines are between a rock and a hard place when it comes to enforcement. People are quick to complain, withhold tips, and play judge over who already got in dressed like them. What fun is a formal night when there are people running around in shorts, tank tops, and sweats?

Back in Ye Olde Days formal nights were an expected part of cruising. I can only recall one or two guys who passed on the coat and tie (opting to hang in the buffet or on deck all evening), and most wore a real tux (just had a horrific flashback of a guy in a baby blue tux with velvet lapels -it was the 70s, and a guy in a camouflage tux during the Reagan years) or at minimum a dark suit with a bow tie. I would often wear my kilt and formal Highland wear. I'm a proud Scot, and it's a great ice-breaker as everyone feels entitled to come up and comment/ask questions.

As I get older (and older, and older...) I find myself siding with those who say they are on vacation, and simply don't want to be bothered bringing so much stuff aboard. I really can do a 10-day warm-weather cruise with just a carry-on bag, and it is so much easier getting on and off the ship that way. I noticed online that my next cruise has an unlimited laundry service for $65 for the week, so I may try cutting my usual packing in half!

by Anonymousreply 410November 24, 2021 6:46 PM

[quote]I'm a proud Scot, and it's a great ice-breaker as everyone feels entitled to come up and comment/ask questions.

Was the most common question "What are you wearing underneath?"

by Anonymousreply 411November 24, 2021 8:10 PM

Number one comment: "You're so brave!"

Number one question: "So, is it true about what you wear under the kilt?" (or some variation of that)

I just smile at the women, but if a cute guy asks, I ask him if he's man enough to find out.

by Anonymousreply 412November 24, 2021 8:40 PM
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