We were NOT able to use our debit card because there was a $300/day cash advance limit set by the bank (check with your bank) so we had to switch to a credit card. Now we just bring $1000 in traveler's checks for a deposit and at the end of the cruise we are reimbursed the unused amount. We did use our debit card in town for all our shopping.
MARINER 8/29/2004, SPIRIT 11/17/2004
Star Princess 2003, Glory 2003
Star Princess 2002, NCL Star 2002
Westerdam 2001, Inspiration 2001
Jubilee 1989, Jubilee 1991, Elation 1999
Azure Seas 1982, Tropicale 1988
Our last cruise in 2002, the bill was about $1500 for 4 of us, all excursions booked through the ship (it was our first cruise!), drinks, bingo, pics, etc...And at that time, Rhapsody did not have pre-paid tipping! I know we went a little overboard...cuz that amount did not include the souvenirs and stuff bought at ports! This time, we are booking excursions on our own, and have set a budget . I really like to go "all out" on vacations, but I'm trying to be good!!
Leaving 7/11 on the Elation...can't wait!!!
Having sailed all the upscale cruise lines, I decided to give Carnival a try. There $200.00 hold on your credit card is a real joke. Can't imagine anyone going on a cruise for a week and only spending $200.00. I wasn't aware of this $200.00 hold until I was sitting at the blackjack table and after ordering a drink I was told to go to the pursers office, and this was the first night out, as there was a problem with my credit card. I could charge a luxury car on my c.c. and had a zero balance upon boarding. I was furious to think I could no longer charge until I made a trip to the pursers office. After telling the purser clerk I was not to be denied credit since the money was there everything was straightened out. Never had this problem before, so apparently carnival cruisers are not big spenders.
Carol - if you are an example of the people one might find on the "upscale cruise lines" then I'll stick to Carnival. I go on a cruise to enjoy myself - not to flash my gold card status or bank account numbers. To say that Carnival cruisers are "not big spenders" is downright condescending. Often a credit card company will question charges if your spending routine changes. We had ours denied at a gas station because we had used it in three different states in three days - they were just being cautious - a phone call telling them we were on vacation fixed it all immediately. Happy Sailing everyone - enjoy yourselves - and don't stress. As my Granny used to say "it all works out in the wash" (though I never could figure out exactly what that meant - lol) TTFN Jennifer
It sounds like you put anyone with a high credit limit in the "snob category."
It is because I planned carefully for the future, used credit wisely, and not only paid my bills on time but early, that I EARNED the right to have a high limit c.c.
Yes, I also notify my bank whenever my credit routine changes, so the bank was aware I was on a cruise. The bank did not deny me credit, it was Carnival that asked to see me when I reached the $200.00 mark. It was a little embarrassing to be denied a drink in the casino and told there was a problem with my c.c. Other people at the table looked at me like "you ran out of money the first day of the cruise."
I never flashed my c.c. around and only showed it once at check-in, and I leave my check book at home when I travel.
Sorry I gave the impression that I am a snob, because this couldn't be further from the truth.
Carol - I don't think a high credit limit makes anyone a snob - its remarks like "so apparently Carnival cruisers are not big spenders". Carnival may be value priced but for us it's just more fun. We too have an extremely high credit limit - something that we seldom use - actually from my experience it's the ones with a few bucks that don't like to spend it - my dh is Scottish and a perfect example lol. We run to the "clearance section" first every time. Problem is when we go the kids will go through it all in record time - pity - TTFN Jennifer
Cruise passengers can prepay their sail and sign card before leaving home. I am a travel agent and it is not unusual for someone to give extra money to me and ask me to place it as an on-board credit. I have a customer sailing later this fall who has paid $1000 to cover his bar bill. This is an easy thing to do. Just ask your travel agent.
My husband and I have taken 3 cruises, he usually uses our Debit card for our sail and sign cards. When the kids had sail and sign cards we told them at check-in the girls were not allowed to charge andthing with their sail and sign card, we never had a problem with using our debit card. They only bill once to our account. My husband and I went on a 7 day cruise and our bill was like 900.00 for the whole week and we bought jewelry, watches on ship, my husband bought drinks for 4 other couples a few times and bought a few things from the gift shop, like cigerettes for my husband and some other misc. items and also used it once for bingo which by the way you can pay for that with cash. We even took an excursion in belize and bought a LOT of pictures. Because they are usually formal pictures that you normally wouldn't get if your like my husband. So 900.00 isn't that bad for being on a cruise for 7 days. We did buy our girls drink cards which are seperate from the sail and sign cards which BTW was worth buying if your kids or you drink a lot of soda. They do charge all gratituities first thing and you can change your tip amount if you like. My husband did that because our children shouldn't have to pay tips and we also figured that I did everything for them and not the cruise line staff. Also the last night you do usually get a envelope to tip the matr'de in the dinning room. You can decide if you want to do that but we feel like if you don't do any servise for us then we should be able to decide how much we tip and not be regulated by carnival on how much we should tip. My husband likes to pay cash to our cabin steward if they do a good job and go beyond their call of duty requires. We usually take cash to spend in ports and you do have a room safe in your cabin to hold valuables and money and it locks so no one can get in it. Hope this all helps.
That cleared a lot of it up for me, MrsMagoo; thanks! One question though: for all the ports and stuff, do they still take USD (United States dollars)? Or do you have to change it into the local currency? Also, do they have ATMs on the ship? Thanks again!