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Old 03-16-2011, 03:23 PM
 
Location: Now in SP, hopefully for a very long time
249 posts, read 396,950 times
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I was kidding, of course... well... half. After the Iceland volcano, and the rest of the problems, we don't know.... But I read that this problem is going to lead to decrease in fuel price.

$91 is USD, sold by the travel agency... and I just booked a train (TGV) from Rome to Paris, sleeping "seat" (?), 1st class for 65 euros
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Old 03-16-2011, 05:26 PM
 
14,253 posts, read 15,350,468 times
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Originally Posted by Allwyna View Post
I was kidding, of course... well... half. After the Iceland volcano, and the rest of the problems, we don't know.... But I read that this problem is going to lead to decrease in fuel price.

$91 is USD, sold by the travel agency... and I just booked a train (TGV) from Rome to Paris, sleeping "seat" (?), 1st class for 65 euros
Allwyna .. check out getting a train from Civitavecchia to Rome. It costs $7 in economy and $11 in first class or $14/$18 for the fast train. Just make sure you can get a cab from the dock to the train station.

Train Tickets: Fares & Schedules from Rail Europe
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Old 03-16-2011, 08:42 PM
 
Location: The Chatterdome in La La Land, CaliFUNia
38,894 posts, read 20,188,043 times
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Originally Posted by Allwyna View Post
No time to go to Cruise Critic yet, but it is a good site, and I will.

However, I just called the cruise line. my cruise is going to cost me (AGAIN) the double... because of extra fees (tips, are they really mandatory... $12/day ?), tours if I do any, internet ... and the transfer from the port to Rome downtown is $91!! NINETY ONE DOLLARS???? . I hope it is at least by private limousine!

I have to sort that out. Plus the rest... Rome-Paris, then Paris-Tampa, one way or another. I hope I don't have to give-up on my stay in Rome, I was so eager. I am French, have lived all over the world and I don't know Italy... always money issues. I have seen on C-D Europe how to stay for cheap in Rome.

But since maybe in a few weeks the planet earth won't exist anymore, it is better to do it now .
I was looking into a single's studio on the Norwegian EPIC that requires a flight to Barcelona which costs MORE than the 7-day cruise package. Pllus the 12 bucks per tips AND the expensive excursions! The whole thing would cost me at least 3 grand! I cannot afford that especially as the cruise itself is advertised at 1099! Sheesh!
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Old 03-17-2011, 06:37 AM
 
Location: southwest TN
8,225 posts, read 14,953,051 times
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Originally Posted by Chatteress View Post
I was looking into a single's studio on the Norwegian EPIC that requires a flight to Barcelona which costs MORE than the 7-day cruise package. Pllus the 12 bucks per tips AND the expensive excursions! The whole thing would cost me at least 3 grand! I cannot afford that especially as the cruise itself is advertised at 1099! Sheesh!

We just returned from a 12 day cruise out of Barcelona. For 2, not counting excursions, including airfare and a 2 night stay in Barcelona prior to the cruise, it cost us around $4000.

I think you need to find a different travel agent or take over the arrangements yourself. For the first time ever, we used a travel agent for our cruise. We were more than disappointed. First, everything she found for us, we found online at a better price (and she then booked us at the price we found) - we could have booked it ourselves! Then, she kept pulling up 5* accommodations on the outskirts of Barcelona for enormous sums. We took that one ourselves and found a great B&B in the middle of Barcelona, near Las Palmas. It was the BEST part of our trip. There was another couple from our neighborhood who went on the same ship (we met them at embarkation) whom she stuck in a hotel an hour's cab ride from Barcelona. They hated the hotel and didn't get to see half of what we did in Barcelona. My point is this: everything is available online - but it takes work to find it.

Then there is always Price-line but you don't get to choose your hotels/arrangements. We want the control over where we stay, but others love it.

OK, AirEuropa - I hate the airline and we will never fly them again - but if cost is more important than comfort or being on time, then go for it. No knee room (if you're tall, be willing to sit with your knees under your chin); if you're heavy forget it!); too much heat on the side 2 seats, freezing in the middle 4; and expect a 2 hour delay getting off the ground - at least. Oh, but don't worry about making your connection because they are 2 hours behind even locally. However, they cannot be beat on price

Also, since Rome seems to be your prime objective, why not find a cruise that leaves/ends from Rome. There are several. Then you can arrange round-trip airfare and add a few days to stay right in Rome.

Be prepared, though: Rome is dirty. It is crowded and the drivers are rude which creates a near-gridlock most of the day (unlike Barcelona). Graffiti is quite prevalent and we didn't see the pride in their home (city/ state) that we saw in Barcelona. Vatican City is a very small part of Rome. It is definitely worth seeing and I wish we'd had more time, but I'm not so sure I'd make it a priority to spend a lot of time in Rome nor to make it a focus of a trip. Italy on the whole, yes; with Rome being a part of it.

Whatever you decide, have a great trip.
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Old 03-17-2011, 10:56 AM
 
14,253 posts, read 15,350,468 times
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Originally Posted by NY Annie View Post
We just returned from a 12 day cruise out of Barcelona. For 2, not counting excursions, including airfare and a 2 night stay in Barcelona prior to the cruise, it cost us around $4000.

I think you need to find a different travel agent or take over the arrangements yourself. For the first time ever, we used a travel agent for our cruise. We were more than disappointed. First, everything she found for us, we found online at a better price (and she then booked us at the price we found) - we could have booked it ourselves! Then, she kept pulling up 5* accommodations on the outskirts of Barcelona for enormous sums. We took that one ourselves and found a great B&B in the middle of Barcelona, near Las Palmas. It was the BEST part of our trip. There was another couple from our neighborhood who went on the same ship (we met them at embarkation) whom she stuck in a hotel an hour's cab ride from Barcelona. They hated the hotel and didn't get to see half of what we did in Barcelona. My point is this: everything is available online - but it takes work to find it.
Glad you enjoyed Barcelona. My sister lives there and we visit quite often. It is a great city.

Generally speaking, you are better off booking flights and hotels yourself. I usually look for options on Expedia and Hotels dot com and then go to the airline/hotel own site for booking. There is rarely any price differential and, with hotels at least, you sometimes get better treatment/upgrades if you have booked with them rather than with a third party. Again, sites like Cruise Critic are very good for hotel recommendations.

Depending on the cruise line, you can sometimes get a better deal going through a travel agent rather than direct. Many cruise lines see the TA as a key sales channel and do not offer direct buyers a better deal. My TA always gives either a free tour or $200 on-board credit as a thank you for putting the business through him.
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Old 03-17-2011, 10:57 AM
 
14,253 posts, read 15,350,468 times
Reputation: 13682
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chatteress View Post
I was looking into a single's studio on the Norwegian EPIC that requires a flight to Barcelona which costs MORE than the 7-day cruise package. Pllus the 12 bucks per tips AND the expensive excursions! The whole thing would cost me at least 3 grand! I cannot afford that especially as the cruise itself is advertised at 1099! Sheesh!
Have you researched doing the flights yourself? There are plenty of options for getting to Barcelona from LA and with different airlines.
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:03 PM
 
Location: El Dorado Hills, CA
3,694 posts, read 8,351,817 times
Reputation: 3813
Quote:
Originally Posted by 20yrsinBranson View Post
I am thinking about a cruise. Here are my requirements....

Minimal children on board (No disney)
Warm weather (no Alaska)
Return trip to US port
Prefer itinerary other than Mexico (been there already)

Based upon your experiences what would you recommend? I'd LOVE to go to Aruba or possibly the Bahamas or maybe even Bermuda (do they have cruises to Bermuda????)

Advice and suggestions appreciated. thanks

20yrsinBranson
Did you ever find a cruise that fit your needs? Google Adults Only cruises. They are limited but available if your timing is flexible.

We've been on a couple cruises (RC and Carnival) and I much prefer going to a beach resort. There are a number of Adult Only All Inclusive resorts in the caribbean. Once you add in buying drinks, tipping, paying for transportation to a beach, and paying for lounge chairs/umbrellas at the beach, the all inclusive resorts tend to be a much better deal. And you have the option to go out and enjoy the local nightlife...if you don't get too far out of town.
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Old 03-18-2011, 12:17 AM
 
Location: The Chatterdome in La La Land, CaliFUNia
38,894 posts, read 20,188,043 times
Reputation: 35922
Quote:
Originally Posted by NY Annie View Post
We just returned from a 12 day cruise out of Barcelona. For 2, not counting excursions, including airfare and a 2 night stay in Barcelona prior to the cruise, it cost us around $4000.

I think you need to find a different travel agent or take over the arrangements yourself. For the first time ever, we used a travel agent for our cruise. We were more than disappointed. First, everything she found for us, we found online at a better price (and she then booked us at the price we found) - we could have booked it ourselves! Then, she kept pulling up 5* accommodations on the outskirts of Barcelona for enormous sums. We took that one ourselves and found a great B&B in the middle of Barcelona, near Las Palmas. It was the BEST part of our trip. There was another couple from our neighborhood who went on the same ship (we met them at embarkation) whom she stuck in a hotel an hour's cab ride from Barcelona. They hated the hotel and didn't get to see half of what we did in Barcelona. My point is this: everything is available online - but it takes work to find it.

Then there is always Price-line but you don't get to choose your hotels/arrangements. We want the control over where we stay, but others love it.

OK, AirEuropa - I hate the airline and we will never fly them again - but if cost is more important than comfort or being on time, then go for it. No knee room (if you're tall, be willing to sit with your knees under your chin); if you're heavy forget it!); too much heat on the side 2 seats, freezing in the middle 4; and expect a 2 hour delay getting off the ground - at least. Oh, but don't worry about making your connection because they are 2 hours behind even locally. However, they cannot be beat on price

Also, since Rome seems to be your prime objective, why not find a cruise that leaves/ends from Rome. There are several. Then you can arrange round-trip airfare and add a few days to stay right in Rome.

Be prepared, though: Rome is dirty. It is crowded and the drivers are rude which creates a near-gridlock most of the day (unlike Barcelona). Graffiti is quite prevalent and we didn't see the pride in their home (city/ state) that we saw in Barcelona. Vatican City is a very small part of Rome. It is definitely worth seeing and I wish we'd had more time, but I'm not so sure I'd make it a priority to spend a lot of time in Rome nor to make it a focus of a trip. Italy on the whole, yes; with Rome being a part of it.

Whatever you decide, have a great trip.
Thanks for the input but the price was due to my own independent search of airfare to Barcelona and the excursions that the cruise list on its site. As I'm not an experienced traveler outside of the US, I'm not about to take any chances on finding my own excursions as delays could mean that I miss my ship whereas the cruise-sponsored ones can communicate with my ship and have them wait in the event of a delay. I actually am not that interested in seeing Italy or Spain but was attracted to this particular ship due to pricing for single travelers, a rarity among cruise companies. I probably will need to forgo the cruise for now and focus on US/Canada trips for the mean time.
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Old 03-18-2011, 12:21 AM
 
Location: The Chatterdome in La La Land, CaliFUNia
38,894 posts, read 20,188,043 times
Reputation: 35922
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Originally Posted by Jaggy001 View Post
Have you researched doing the flights yourself? There are plenty of options for getting to Barcelona from LA and with different airlines.
I did and the cheapest flight I found after researching multiple airlines was approximately 1400 roundtrip ... The rest were close to 2K ... That is way more than I'd want to spend on airfare ... The whole idea of a cruise is to have a more affordable vacation where I get to see multiple sites but most ships do not cater to singles and the Norwegian EPIC has limited itineraries so I'll have to shelved the cruise trip for now.
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Old 03-18-2011, 07:09 AM
 
Location: southwest TN
8,225 posts, read 14,953,051 times
Reputation: 14983
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chatteress View Post
Thanks for the input but the price was due to my own independent search of airfare to Barcelona and the excursions that the cruise list on its site. As I'm not an experienced traveler outside of the US, I'm not about to take any chances on finding my own excursions as delays could mean that I miss my ship whereas the cruise-sponsored ones can communicate with my ship and have them wait in the event of a delay. I actually am not that interested in seeing Italy or Spain but was attracted to this particular ship due to pricing for single travelers, a rarity among cruise companies. I probably will need to forgo the cruise for now and focus on US/Canada trips for the mean time.
May I suggest you fly cross country and take one of the cruises out of Florida. Cruises up to a week are now going for under $400 pp, so you could get a cabin for $800 and there's now a fare war on domestic flights.

We are looking at 3 now: Jamaica and some islands; Puerto Rico and a couple more places; and Bermuda. None of them go to ports in Mexico since that is what you wish to avoid.

We have had good luck booking directly through Carnival and getting better prices than any others we can find online through any of the cruise discounters - and often with upgrades and the same with airlines - we look and search through cheapflights and whatever and then book direct with the airline for an even better price.
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