Category Archives: Cruise Vacation

Holland America EZpay – New Interest-Free Installment Payments

You may be able to budget for that bucket list world cruise, after all.  Holland America’s new EZpay payments plan may make it possible.  Did I mention it’s interest-free? Holland America Nieuw Amsterdam in San Juan – yes, you can book this in EZpay. Holland America’s EZpay lets you pay off your cruise vacation over time in equal installments.  The payments for the balance of the cruise are spread out until the time of final payment.  Payments are auto-charged to your credit card every month.  Think QVC […]

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Sherry and the Recurring Missed Connections |

When it comes to travel, nothing seems carved into stone.  As least, not the way I travel.  But I’ve never missed connections. Til now. Yes, I’m smiling…I’m heading back to Chicago aboard the Southwest Chief. If you follow me on Instagram, you might remember that I was recently aboard the “new” Norwegian Joy for the U.S. Inaugural preview cruise.  It was a short jaunt.  Just three nights, April 26-29, non-stop from Vancouver, BC to Los Angeles.  Sounds easy enough.  I never considered missed connections in the realm […]

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Carnival Sunrise Cruises from Norfolk Begin Inaugural Season

Cruise News Carnival Sunrise docked at the Decker Half Moon Cruise Center in Norfolk, VA. Carnival Sunrise cruises from Norfolk debuted last week from Decker Half Moon Cruise Center. This follows an extensive $200 million renovation that added a variety of food, beverage and entertainment innovations as well as stateroom upgrades, Carnival Sunrise inaugural season will offer four- to 14-day voyages to the Caribbean, Bermuda, Bahamas, the Panama Canal, New England and Canada.  The first four cruises Carnival Sunrise cruises are from Norfolk. “The introduction of Carnival […]

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How to Travel with Pets Aboard Queen Mary 2 Kennels

Kennel Master taking his charge out for fresh air. Cruise with your cat, dog (or ferret!) using Queen Mary 2 kennels. Update May 11, 2019:  Information here is from Cunard Customer Service, the department in charge of Queen Mary 2 kennel requirements. What if your employer wants you to relocate to London. Or you’re lucky enough to spend a summer vacation in the pastoral English countryside. An apartment in Paris with your poodle? It would be wonderful to visit your relatives in England (or vice versa in […]

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Victory Cruise Lines Builds State-of-the-Art Small Ship for Alaska |

Rendering of Ocean Victory: Victory Cruise LInes I’m not the only one heading north to Alaska lately.  Victory Cruise Lines has released new design details on their upcoming new ship Ocean Victory.  Under construction and set to launch in May 2021, the 200-passenger ship is designed for cruising Alaska. The ship will be equipped with 20 zodiacs and dozens of kayaks.  Guests will have the opportunity to participate in active adventure and up-close animal viewing.  Onboard  enrichment will include marine biologists, scientists and naturalists.  They’ll lead expeditions, […]

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What the Cruise Lines Don’t Want You to Know

I’ve been a solo cruiser for a very long time and usually by choice.  In the beginning, it was usually because a roommate had to cancel.  But if you’re just about ready to commit to your first solo cruise or only have a couple under your belt, here are some things to know before you go. Sailaway aboard Holland America’s Koningsdam, heading out on a 14-day voyage from Ft. Lauderdale to Rome. As an experienced solo cruiser, you never hesitate to set out on your next cruise.  […]

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Cruise Line Gratuities Guidelines 2019

You might want to tip a favorite bartender at the beginning of your cruise. How to tip, how much, when and to whom? Your cruise is paid in full. All that’s left to do is pack your bags, head to the pier and board your ship. But keep your wallet handy because there are gratuities to pay even before your cruise begins. How much, to whom and when to tip can be the most confusing part of a cruise vacation. Plan ahead with these helpful guidelines for […]

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Princess Cruises Daily Gratuities Are About to Increase

Cruise News It was bound to happen.  Following in the footsteps of Carnival, Holland America and Norwegian, Princess Cruises daily gratuities are about to increase. New Princess gratuities charges Beginning on May 1 and beyond, every passenger will see a $1 per day increase in their automatic gratuities, beginning on all cruises that depart on May 1 and beyond. If you’ve reserved a standard cabin – interior, oceanview or balcony – your new charges will be $14.50 per person per day. Those in mini-suites will pay $15.50 […]

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8 Tips to Reserve Your Own Shore Excursions

The first time booking your own shore excursion can be daunting… Whether it’s your first visit to a new port or maybe your third or fourth, chances are you’ll want to leave the ship to see and explore your destination. Really enjoying the Key West Food Tour that I found on my own. There could be a zillion reasons why people choose to not buy a cruise ship shore excursion.  But I think the main reasons are: they’re too expensive, too slow, too fast, too crowded, too […]

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Norwegian Joy Inaugural Cruise Preview from Vancouver

Following a $50 million-plus makeover, Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Joy arrived into Vancouver on Thursday, April 25, 2019. With her gleaming lotus blossom bow, the inaugural cruises mark the ship’s North American debut. Norwegian Joy arrives to in Vancouver before relocating to Seattle for a summer of Alaska cruises. Norwegian Joy was launched in 2017 and built specifically for the Asian cruise market.  The second in the Breakaway-Plus class and now sister ship to the 2018 Norwegian Bliss, the cruise ship just completed a massive overhaul, ready […]

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