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Old February 12th, 2006, 06:03 PM
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Default If You Are Really A True Cruiser

you have got to cruise the new RCI ultra voyager ship ..in thinking about the related threads posted on this topic I have come to the conclusion that a true disciple of cruising will go on that ship whether we have reservations or not

How can you say what you won't do until you at least give the ship and RCI a chance..It reminds me of the parallel of what the public stated when Boeing introduced the 747 back in the 70's..who would fly on an airplane that hold 300 people ? Same logic, who would cruise on a ship that holds 5000+

It's all about criticial customer paths (flow thru)...and a true cruiser must have confidence that the best minds are working on how to occupy the passenger to avoid bottle necks

I posted that I was of the school of thought that I would not want to cruise on that ship (I like the 800-1200 psgr range)..then I thought about it, I can't say what I won't cruise until I have cruised it

Every true cruise IMHO, wants to cruise at least once on every new major innovative ship that can be built..we can't help ourselves, we are addictive
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Old February 13th, 2006, 02:17 AM
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My only problem with these MEGA MEGA ships is that there's no connection with the sea. I sailed on Explorer of the Seas once, and about the only place you could look out on the water was from the pool deck.

That's why these indoor promenades and gimmicks like bowling alleys, ice skating rinks, etc are ( in my view) waterbound Malls of America.

I think I maxed out about 100.000 tons for appreciation of the engineering.
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Old February 13th, 2006, 07:37 AM
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Kuki..understand your position and to a great point agree with you, however

a) I think there is a comparision to be made with the airlines...as the big 3 (Star, Carnival, Royal Caribbean), continue to get bigger and build bigger ships it will open up the opportunity for niche cruise lines to fill the void with smaller and more intimate ships (i.e. Oceania etc), but we will have to pay a premium (which I think people will do for avoiding crowds and remaining in contact with the ocean)..in the airline biz the legacy carriers (United, American, Delta) got so big and out of touch with the customer both fare wise and service wise, that it created openings for Southwest, Jet Blue etc

b) the economy of scale dictates that you have to continue to design features that will a) attract people to try cruising and b) provide activities that will balance out customer touch points to prevent bunching up and choke points

As has been stated many times before on these boards, the ship is the destination, not the ports

The cruise industry has created a monster that they have to constantly feed to survive..that is not a bad thing per say..but the results of that thinking is these huge ships...I think they know what they are doing and I think RCI will start charging a premium to sail it's smaller class ships which cruisers like you and me will pay for gladly
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Old February 13th, 2006, 10:29 AM
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I am with you Kuki. I go to sea to be at sea. There has been talk and rumor that the Genesis project will not have an outside promenade deck. From the pictures it appears that way. Then you will truly have the floating mall. Not for me, but I am sure it will have a great pooldeck where I can hang out while everyone else is shopping and ice skating. If I wanted to ice skate, I would vacation up north in the snow. If I wanted to bowl(a la NCL) I would get a shirt with my name on it and join the other blue collar workers at the local bowling alley.

If I want to have fun in the sun, lay by the pool, visit exotic islands, drink at the pool bar, listen to the Raggae band, check out chics in bikinis, participate in the belly flop contest, stand by the rail on the promenade deck and have my after dinner smoke while watching the sea go by at 20+ knots, sit in the Schooner bar and listen to the piano man near the big windows and get up and do it all again, then I will go on a cruise.

"wait a tick, I am in just over 90 days!"
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Old February 13th, 2006, 11:56 AM
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Kuki and Dave the Wave...you are both missing my point..Royal Caribbean is not building the ultra class voyage series for us..they are building it for the next generation of cruisers, which are in fact the teenagers..

Dave The Wave..your two sons are the perfect example of my thought process..If I were Royal Caribbean, I would prepare a special mailer to every past cruiser between the ages of 5-16 who have cruised and participated in their youth programs to highlight the "gee-whiz" features and provide for them an onboard credit (just for them) providing their parents book a cabin..you don't think your sons would want to do all the neat stuff and bug you to death until your reserved a cabin. Unlike us "mature cruisers" the younger generation demands different experiences every time they cruise or else they will find either some other type of vacation activity to do or another cruise line that will offer them different experiences

It's also aimed at the very active 18-30 year olders who thru market trak surveys are telling the cruise lines give me more activities to do while I'm onboard. The real money is building brand loyalty to the next generation, not so much worried about the current repeat cruisers..The cruise line knows that Dave's kids will have much more disposable income when they grow up then their father and since thanks to their Dad, they are already hooked so the ultra voyager will keep them onboard, not Dad

DTW..fyi, i take issue with your comments about wearing your bowling shirt and the type of folks that sport attracts..bowling is cool and folks from all economic backgrounds love bowling..prior to Katrina, one of the most popular places to go out in New Orleans was a place call Rock and Bowl where you could bowl, do zydeco dancing and see all the cool people even your girl Brittany (who's nick name on her bowling shirt is "Speedo"
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Old February 13th, 2006, 12:51 PM
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Venice,

I apologize. I did not know you were a bowler. Do you have your own shoes and ball? My brother has a neighbor, we were visiting one afternoon, sitting by the pool having a beer, the conversation got around to NASCAR and bowling. She has a bowling ball with the #24 and a likeness of Jeff Gordon painted in it. That is the ULTIMATE!!

You have a good point about the next generation cruisers. At Honda they are doing the same thing with the new Civic and Element. Get them now and have customer for life. Me, I can lay around the pool all day with a bucket of beers and don't have to do a damn thing.
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Old February 13th, 2006, 02:14 PM
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actually, my nephew bowls on a professional circuit , just below the PBA and he can actually make a living at it !!!!

No need to apologize and yes I own my own shoes and ball..I bowl with the Special Olympics unified bowling league (pairing one "athlete" with one "non athlete")..my "athlete" has about a 20 point average better then I so he carries me thru tournaments...And yes Dave, bowling is a GREAT way to meet women !!! Bet you didn't know that your girl Brittany bowls in a big Special Olympics Hollywood star fundraiser, every year (see she's not all bad)


Your car analogy is right on the mark...They want to get you as a teen with the element and by the time it gets to be your age and financial success, you'll be driving an affinity. Once again, American car makers don't "get it"..the beauty of driving a VW beetle is I started with a 59 vw beetle when I was 16 (paid $99 for it) and will drive a beetle until I can't drive no more (2007 beetle ragster-$27,000)

I think once you and your sons are on the Freedom next year you will be singing a different tune when you get back and will be talking about the ultra voyager class ship and when you are going to cruise on it..hope you have color coded speedo's to match the bottom of the pool
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Old February 13th, 2006, 07:01 PM
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Dave The Wave..I sent you a pm message..let me know if you do not receive it
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Old February 14th, 2006, 12:14 PM
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No, I didn't. I had one from Decmeber from someone else though. I thought you got a notification on those????
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Old February 14th, 2006, 01:34 PM
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Venice posted )...and a true cruiser must have confidence that the best minds are working on how to occupy the passenger to avoid bottle necks

I say that the best minds of the time came up with asbestos as a wonderful insulator, and we all see how well that worked out.
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Old February 14th, 2006, 02:05 PM
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wouldn't mind the big ships since we are free not to book them but they may really ruin it for the rest of us--clog up ports even more than present congestion etc.....one thing is a constant--ports are not going to get bigger so these ships will overwhelm them! maybe they will just float them out at sea--fine with me! We are trying a big ship in sept (QM2) so I'll have a better feel for the biggies!
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Old February 14th, 2006, 03:52 PM
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Sal7202..what makes you think it was the best minds that came up with it..remember someone came up with ****** (VBG)

Dave The Wave...don't know what happen..perhaps you have a filter that blocks out any inbound e-mail that begins with ...Brittany Spears will be crowned teh Queen of the Mardi Gras Fat Tuesday Parade "
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Old February 14th, 2006, 04:41 PM
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Quote:
If you build it they will come.
It is a very true statement. I certainly agree with Venice that the Genesis and Pinnacle type ships are not being built for the "old time" cruisers, they are being built for the next generation of cruisers who are looking for a more non-traditional cruising experience.

Even though I have no real interest in the Mega-ship that does remind me of the "Sprawl of America" of cruising, I do feel that the ship will sail full on almost every sailing. The cruising public will speak with their wallets and that will determine the success or failure of the venture.

I recall many of the same issues were raised when Voyager was announced and set sail back in 1999 and 2000. It has become a roaring success.

I'm sorry to say that many of us old timers. (Yeah, I've been cruising for six years) are becoming the minority.

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Old February 14th, 2006, 08:44 PM
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Mike..I think you are right in respect that the "ttraditional" (won't say old), cruisers are reaching the point in the power curve where in terms of numbers , we are starting to diminish, but in terms of repeat business we are strong..the cruise lines have sophisticated marketing measures that ensure the adjustment of inventory so the ships will never sail empty, as long as the economy is strong

however, I go back to my original post..we should at least do one sailing on an ultra voyager class ship, if for no other reason then to say we have been on it and will never go again..to say that we won't even try it, seems to me to be a violation of the cruiser oath...you can't prejudge something like this, who knows, we might like it
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Old February 14th, 2006, 10:17 PM
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These are all good points I must say. My wife and I are in are late 20s to early 30s and believe it or not we are more of your traditional types. We prefer the more pure type of cruising enjoying the ocean, people, service, music.......... I do not think that age is the only factor. I have an older brother that loves the Voyager style ships with the interior Promanodes and that type stuff. I just hope that the major lines like RCCL and Carnival will still build the mid size ships to cater to the more traditional type cruisers like many of us. Happy Cruising!!!!!!!
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Old February 14th, 2006, 11:57 PM
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Venice,

I will probably sail on it if it's built. I do believe you cannot judge anything until you have first hand experience with it. I don't relish the thought of doing it on my own. Voyager was too large for my tastes BUT if I was cruising with my family, especially younger kids and teens it would be one of my first choices.

Otherwise if it was for my wife and I it wouldn't be an option.

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Old February 15th, 2006, 11:14 AM
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Mike..good point..I am seriously looking at a barge cruise out of Venice that only holds 6 guest...I like to go from one extreme to the other

To validate your point..I think repeat cruisers know what they like and have a tendency to stick to what they like (which accounts for a high number cruising the same ship every year to the same ports)...when you put out as much money that we do for a cruise, you are looking for a gurantee return on investment...if we are going to experiment with a different "style" of cruising it will be driven by external factors (i.e. your kids) or price (can't turn down a good deal on a cabin whether it's on an ultra voyager or a barge)
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Old February 15th, 2006, 01:57 PM
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I beleive I am the type of person that these ships were designed for. I have neither the time nor current inclination for an extended Eurpoean, transoceanic or transcontinental cruise. If I want to go to Europe, I'd like to spend a few days in a location then move to another loction for another extended period of time. If I'm interested in exploring a region, I'd do a river cruise or a train excursion.

I am looking for a family vacation, a getaway, a destination. We tend to view the cruise as a floating Sandals or Atlantis or similar type resort in a warm weather destination. My idea of being adventurous at sea wouldn't be with 800 other passengers, but a family sail around the Virgin Islands ina small catamaran or sailboat, maybe with a crew maybe on our own.

The ship is our destination, the ports are merely a 4 hour diversion. Those that can afford the time for a 26 day Mediterranian Cruise, certainly have options.

We leave in about 30 days for our vacation on the Navigator. We are looking forward to it.
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Old February 17th, 2006, 02:03 PM
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My DH and myself are in our 20's (not much longer but still right now). We enjoy the smaller ships and the atmosphere. One of the things the cruiselines do not realize with all this market research (I was a marketing major) is that more activities does not always mean larger ships with bowling and additional costs. I know that I would like a better variety of activities sometimes and that might mean something as simple as a game on the ship, a cooking class, or a tour of the bridge. Sometimes activities are suppose to be there and get cancelled. Not everyone is like Dave (nothing against you Dave) and wants to sit around working on a tan and drinking beer. Some of the younger crowd along with the "Traditional" crowd wants to have non-alcoholic activities. Not to say they won't drink every now and then but not everything on a ship needs to be based on alcohol. There is still a lot of fun to be had and a lot of friends to make. It might be a good idea for the ship to stop while at sea one day and have a way to go do watersports in the water. I don't know if this can happen but it seems to be a great idea. I always thought that their island was a great idea. Who knows, if the lines would read our board all our problems might be solved.
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Old February 17th, 2006, 04:17 PM
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more activities translate in to more incremental revenue that in turn keeps the base cost of the cruise competitive with a land base vacation
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Old February 18th, 2006, 01:01 PM
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As an industrial designer, we plan to take the new Freedom (after the noveltyhas worn off a bit) just to see the design and logistics aspects, and how well (or not) things work. Of course, if we have a pina colada or two during our "inspection", thats okay too!
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Old February 18th, 2006, 01:25 PM
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Janet Cruiser..you are always welcome to come to New Orleans and inspect our levee system and stop by the french quarter and have a hurricane (VBG)
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Old February 18th, 2006, 03:03 PM
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What's the matter with drinking beer and working on your tan? I would like to tour the engine room or bridge though.
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Old February 18th, 2006, 04:51 PM
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DTW..you are not allowed to bring your beer into either the bridge or the engine room

on the FOS, they will have a tanning salon for men so you don't have to worry about working on your tan during the day..just do it at night while you are sleeping
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Old February 19th, 2006, 01:10 PM
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I will definitely try this new class of ship. I have to see it for myself and will reserve judgement until after I've sailed. To date, the Radiance Class is my favorite size ship. We are sailing on Freedom in September and I am very much looking forward to seeing it (at least once!).
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Old February 19th, 2006, 02:10 PM
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Marylou..thank you for validating my point..I know you won't depart with a preconceived judgements about the ship one way or another

if i were not trying to figure out how to go to venice again, i think i would venture on the FOS with my grown son who loves cruising

it will be interesting as to the first wave of reviewers
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Old February 19th, 2006, 02:26 PM
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DTW, nothing is wrong with it, just some don't do it. I myself get burned not tanned so it would not do me any good to bask in the sun. I do enjoy different activities throughout the ships (i.e. tours, games, pool things).
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Old February 20th, 2006, 08:48 PM
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My husband and I got hooked on cruising 4 years ago on our first cruise, a 7-night E. Carib. on Explorer. Of course we had nothing to compare it to, but we saw plenty of the ocean, not just from the pool deck. We sailed Explorer the next year and Adventure the year after. We have an Ocean View cabin. We often sit on the promenade deck and relax/read/stare at the water. Most of the lounges have seats close to windows as do the dining rooms. I don't know if we will sail on Freedom or "Genesis", but won't rule them out.
We do like the smaller ships we have sailed, but really don't think we see more ocean from them.

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