Hi. Going through the lower passage in Alaska on the Mariner in three weeks. Anyone have any tips for a first time cruise passenger? Anything about the ship that we should know about ahead of time? Any sites that we should not miss in port? We are stopping at:
We just got off the Mariner on Wednesday. We had the same itinerary. it was a wonderful cruise. The food in the main dining room, the Compass Rose, was wonderful most nights and on one or two nights, it was still great. Go to Signatures one night for sure - the lamb dish was outstanding. One of the best meals I have ever eaten. I was not too wild about Latitudes - kind of dark and my halibut was boring. But other people liked it.
Go to deck 5 in front of the Compass Rose at 2:30. There will be 2 lines for reservations, one for Signatures and one for Latitudes. Get there early so you can choose which night and time you want.
Remember to bring a sport coat and dress shirt for Signatures and Latitudes. All the men wore them. And about half the men wore sport coats to the Compass Rose also. Not necessary though.
The buffet lunch at LeVerandah was wonderful. We ate there each day and got there in time to nab a table on the back deck. It's wonderful. They have self service dessert table with homemade ice cream - 2 flavors each day. Yum!!
Remember to take layers along for the Hubbard Glacier day. It was cold out there!! And windy! Take a long sleeve t shirt, long sleeve sweater or fleece and a rain/wind jacket. Also take a warm hat and some gloves.
Takes lots of short sleeve tops for the port days. It was very hot along the Inside Passage. Into the 80's in Skagway and Juneau.
It's a wonderful ship. I miss it already. What suite are you in?
We were on the same cruise and had a wonderful time. The weather was great, which made the excursions memorable. We particularly enjoyed a helicopter ride and walk on a glacier in Juneau. Only disappointment was the large number of people associated with 3 groups onboard (Perelli, GM, and an insurnace company). Gave a different feel to the cruise than expected...
Have you cruised before when there weren't large groups on board? This was only our second cruise so we didn't know what to expect. Do more people mingle and maybe dine together if there are not so many people with the groups? We were disappointed a little, that when we would ask if another couple wanted to dine together at Compass Rose, the maitre'd said no one was open. But we really loved the cruise overall.
How did you like it? Too bad about the propellers.
Hi, Ginny. We've only cruised once before. It was very different, with assigned table and seating time. This time we were with our extended family. I prefer not having an assigned seating, but I think that the groups on board made it hard to meet other people. I loved the cruise, too, but would definitely ask about groups next time. Too bad about the propellors! Wonder if they fixed them in Vancouver....
Just wanted to say that overall, we didn't mind the people in the groups. We met a few nice people from the Ford group. The only time we were bothered was one night during dinner in the Compass Rose. There was a group of about 10 younger people from the Pirelli group. (sorry about the spelling.) Well, it was like the first time they ever had alcohol or something. One guy in particular was really loud and obnoxious and thought he was really a comedian. They were sitting under the chandelier at the group table and we were in the same area.
Also, during Kenny Smile's last performance in the afternoon when he was doing the "Kenny in the Hot Seat" show, one of the guys from the same group asked a real obnoxious question. Something like, tell me the name of your voice coach so I make sure my kids never use him. The audience did not think he was funny at all.
Who all were you with? We noticed a couple of the extended families on board. I wonder if you were with one of them.
We are already planning our next Radisson cruise. Not sure where yet. What did you think of the onboard credits, etc. that we got for missing Ketchikan?
We were a group of 8- myself, my husband, our two kids (11 and 16), my two sisters, and my parents. I was disappointed (or course) in having to miss Ketchikan, because we were looking forward to the shore excursion there. Overall, we thought that the cruise was great. I thought that the reimbursement for the missed port was OK- what did you think?
I guess we were pretty pleased with the credits. I guess I would have preferred maybe a little more money toward that particular cruise since that is the one that had the mess. But since we had planned on taking another cruise anyway, we are glad about the future cruise credit.
We were on the Skagway railroad the morning after the announcement was made about Ketchikan with one of the crew members. She had a day off and was taking the excursion on her own. She said that Radisson was trying to figure out how to give credits to people and be fair about it. It seemed like she said the credit depended on how much you paid for the cruise. We were in the cheap seats, so maybe other people got more. Whatever.
We are booking a cruise next August for the Baltics. Our travel agent will be on it and I think that it will be fun. It spends 3 entire days in St. Petersburg.
Are you going on any future cruises?
Yes, we had booked Island Wings in Ketchikan. I was disappointed about missing that. Luckily, they will refund our money.
We had 4 suites booked in different categories and we all got the same credit. Our shore excursion in Ketchican was finally refunded when the cruise concierge got involved- the company that we had booked with had initially said that the only refund would be if weather prevented the excursion (I guess something to keep in mind when booking excursions off the ship). I'm not sure if we will use the RSSC credit; the Baltic cruise would be my first choice, too, if we did!