November 22, 2013 | By Colleen McDaniel | 4 Comments
MSC Divina is making its debut sailing from its new Miami homeport. The Italian line, which generally has plied the waters of the Mediterranean, is dipping its toe in the Caribbean in a big way, offering deals and holding contests to entice North American travelers to a product relatively unfamiliar to this market.
hasn’t taken the move lightly. In fact, Ken Muskat, senior vice president of sales and marketing for the line, said everyone in the company has been uniquely focused for five months on making sure Divina’s move to Florida is a successful one. “It’s a market we have to be in,” Muskat said.
While the ship still is clearly an Italian product — and Muskat said the ship won’t abandon its Mediterranean roots — here are five reasons North Americans should give Divina a shot.
November 22, 2013 | By Brittany Chrusciel | No Comments
You’ve got questions, we’ve got answers. Every other Friday we will bring you a piece of reader feedback and our response. Have a question about cruising? Notice an error on our site? Want to just drop a comment for our consideration? Submit your own feedback by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org, and maybe we’ll select your submission for our next Feedback Blog.
This Week’s Feedback:
“I submitted a review I did for the NCL Gem ship over a week ago, but I don’t see it online yet.”
We often get questions about member reviews that were submitted, but haven’t yet been posted to the Cruise Critic site. Our community team is a small staff that monitors our boards and handles many incoming reviews day to day. While the posting process is not instantaneous, our staff does do their best to publish the review as soon as they can. For any review-related questions, you can always submit inquiries directly to Reviews@CruiseCritic.com. From there, someone will be able to provide you with a status on your latest review!
November 21, 2013 | By Cruise Critic | 4 Comments
Is Majesty of the Seas
the ideal first cruise? It seems to be for one-third of our editorial team, who all sailed the Royal Caribbean
vessel as their first mainstream cruise. All had different experiences – Erica Silverstein boarded as a 17-year-old during a family vacation in 1994, Ashley Kosciolek celebrated college Spring Break with friends in 2007 and Brittany Chrusciel took her first work trip on the ship just last week as an adult in her mid-20s.
By surveying their experiences, we’ve realized that while Majesty might not be the newest, biggest or fanciest ship, it’s reliable and friendly – and consistent. On this #ThrowbackThursday, take a look at how the three trips compared over a nearly 20-year period.
(Remember, we want your #ThrowbackThursday cruise photos! Send them to email@example.com with Throwback in the subject line.)
Erica (7 nights in the Western Caribbean): “Majesty was pretty new at the time, and we thought it was so cool. I remember walking around the deck, feeling like I was in some tropical fantasy and maybe I would have an onboard romance.”
Ashley (3 nights in the Bahamas): Booked through Expedia at the last minute, the cruise itself cost less than the airfare to get to Miami. “When we first boarded, we were bombarded with offers to buy the Drink of the Day, and, being college students, that’s just what we did. We also let some friendly crewmembers talk us into buying soda cards. They were a total rip-off – man, were we gullible!”
Brittany (4 nights to Bahamas and Key West): “As a Semester at Sea graduate, returning to a ship each day during my four-night Bahamas sailing did feel like coming home. The idea of having nothing to do but drink, eat and be merry, on the other hand, was an entirely new concept.”
Want more memories? Read on!
November 21, 2013 | By Brittany Chrusciel | No Comments
Everyone is looking for the deal of the century. So how do you choose the one that’s right for you? Check the Lido Deck each week to get the scoop on our favorite deals — then grab the phone and pack your bags.
THE DEAL: CruCon Cruise Outlet is offering a one-day Black Friday sale on November 29, 2013, with bonus offers for pre-registering by November 21.
See why this is such a bargain … and what you need to know.
November 20, 2013 | By Gina Kramer | No Comments
Every Wednesday, we’ll be taking you on a journey around the world to some of the most interesting places our members have trekked, swum or merely witnessed from afar while cruising.
Whether these photos inspire you to plan a relaxing escape or walk on the wild side, we hope they ignite your senses and give you ideas for your next cruising adventure. If you have a photo you’d love to share, send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
or post it in our member photo gallery
Thanks to member Familygoboston for submitting this photo of Quito, Ecuador’s countryside, taken during a Galapagos Explorer 2 cruise.
November 20, 2013 | By Jamey Bergman | No Comments
View of Marksburg Castle from the ms Gerard Schmitter
I’m onboard CroisiEurope
’s ship, Gerard Schmitter, heading down the Rhine from Cologne to Strasbourg, in the company of travel agents and other industry professionals.
I’ve been on river boats before, but never Croisi – so here I share with you a handful of things that stood out about the ship and the line as a whole in my first 24 hours onboard. Read on to find out more.
November 19, 2013 | By Chris Gray Faust | 24 Comments
With experience comes wisdom – and that holds true on cruise ships too. We’ve fallen guilty to newbie moves, such as assuming that welcome cocktail is free (it’s not!) or misunderstanding the ship’s departure time and doing the river equivalent of a pier run (that one was my dad’s fault, I swear).
On a recent Cruise Critic Facebook
thread, our veteran fans shared their favorite rookie mistakes. One newbie move that remains cool, no matter how many times you’ve sailed, however: A genuine sense of excitement upon embarkation. Because how can you not smile wide when vacay is about to begin?
“Blowing the whistle on your life jacket during muster. Yuck!!” –Martha Miller-Thode
“Coming out to the pool deck at 12 pm expecting to get a chair!” – Melissa Schnepp
November 19, 2013 | By Sue Bryant | 2 Comments
A recent post on the Cruise Critic Message Boards
from a member expressing her shock that the food on her cruise was – wait for it – frozen, got a lot of responses from members.
Most of them were very gently ribbing her about fresh fish caught at night with nets strung from the back of the ship and cows mooing softly in the hold.
Our favorite funny response came from nukesailor who wrote: “The snails used for escargot are raised free-range on a ranch in the Midwest. A couple of times a year the fully-grown ones are rounded up and herded to market. This takes a looooooooooooooong time. Or course, there’s always the dangers of snail rustling or, if spooked by a whiff of garlic, a snail stampede. Not a pretty sight. They can run as far as a hundred feet in a week, leaving slime trails everywhere. Terrible slip hazard.”
I hate to shatter illusions about delicious, fresh food on a cruise but like the many members who jumped in with kind but firm responses – yes. The food on your cruise is frozen.
Are you surprised? Read on!
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