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  #1 (permalink)  
Old June 18th, 2007, 06:43 PM
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Default Adventures of the Sea - first time cruiser questions

I'm sailing on Adventures of the Sea on 7/1 - first time on a cruise and I have a couple of questions.

The ship sails at 8pm. All the paperwork says that they allow you to board the ship at 5:00 but what time will we really be able to get onboard? We land in San Juan at 11am and really don't want to be hanging around the city with all our luggage.

Also - how does dinner work that first night? Will they have seatings just like any other night? We're signed up for the late seating.

How much liquor can we bring back into the US when we return? And do we need to pack it in our luggage or is there a way to get airline safe boxes to pack it in that will survive the trip home checked as luggage?

Any tips on the best places to shop and things not to miss would be greatly appreciated. We stop in Barbados, St. Thomas, St. Lucia, Antigua, and St. Martin.

Many thanks!
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Old June 18th, 2007, 09:03 PM
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Hi Ginny726.....my DH and I went on the Adventure back in October 2006, and we loved the ship. There is so much to do and very little time to see and do it all. We flew in to San Juan also but we didn't leave until 10:00pm. We flew in the day before and stayed at a gorgeous hotel on the beach, and we went over to the pier around noon, and was on the ship by 1:00pm. They told us the rooms wouldn't be ready until 1:00pm, but by the time we got on the ship, we went to our room and it was done, so we dropped off all our luggage and went to the lido deck, which is where the pools are and had our first bucket of beer, which consist of 4 beers in bucket of ice. The first night you can either eat at the buffet they have on the lido deck, or go to dinner in the dining room. I'm not positive but I think it doesn't matter what dining room you go to on the first night or but you may want to check with the pursurs desk when you board. We usually don't bring liquor back into the U.S, but they do tell you that your allowed to bring back two bottles per person, and they will box it up if you buy it on board. If you buy it in port you may want to ask them if they have a box to put it in. You will find the best liquor deals in St. Thomas or St. Maarten.
In Barbdos we did the horseback riding excursion, we had a fabulous time, they took us the the highest point in Barbados were would could see the ships at port, and they took us near the golf course were Tiger Woods got married. In St. Thomas we took a taxi to Megan's Bay, very nice beach, which offers a resturant/bar, changing faciliteis, snorkeling, but no water-sports. Coki beach is another beach in St. Thomas which is wonderful, and this beach does offer water-sports. In St. Lucia we did an excursion to the beach, forgot the name of it, but it was a gorgeous beach, with water-sports, and had a hotel on the beach. In St. Maarten we went on our own and went over to the french-side to Orient Beach, it has water-sports, resturants, hotels, very nice place to spend the day, we also went back to town and did some shopping. In Antigua we did another beach excursion, just to warn you ahead of time, this island is very dirty, and the minute you step foot off the ship the locals are bothering you to buy something or to braid your hair. The beach they took us to was nice, but not great, had a small resturant where they offered us a lunch, but the food was sitting outside for hours and just didn't look edible. When we returned from the beach we only shopped near the pier and went back to the ship because we didn't feel safe at this island. I have some wonderful photos that I could send you if you have an email address. If you have any other questions feel free to ask and if I can I will answer them for you. Happy Cruising!

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Old June 19th, 2007, 06:04 PM
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Thanks for the info!

Anyone have any other advice?
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Old June 19th, 2007, 11:13 PM
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Ditto the 1pm time that you can usually get to your cabin. In St. Martin try to see the French and the Dutch sides. In St. Thomas see if you can get to St. John and Trunk Bay. If not Megans Bay is the place. Barbados is very British and interesting, and Antigua is not a usual cruise stop so keep that in mind.
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Old June 20th, 2007, 12:03 AM
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In Antigua, take a tour with Lawrence of Antigua. Look him up on a google search or PM me and I can give you his email address. Great way to spend the day in Antigua. Bob
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Old June 20th, 2007, 10:28 AM
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You're gonna enjoy your cruise. You can actually arrive at the cruise line 5 hours before sailing, at least that's the way it is in the US, even though San Juan is US territory they may have different restrictions.

The first night is kind of free for all because you're dressed so casual getting on the ship and if you have first or last seating they don't mind you coming to dinner in shorts etc.

But the remainder of the trip its presentable to dress casual or formal depending on the events of the night.
Enjoy your cruise.
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Old June 29th, 2007, 10:47 AM
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I think JessieC hit all the points. We sailed on AOS out of San Juan in August 2004 and were at the pier by 11:00 a.m. and was on the ship by noonish. In April, we are again sailing on AOS out of San Juan and plan to be at the pier around the same time. This time around, I have booked our pre-cruise stay with the Caribe Hilton, which is less than a half mile from Pan Am Pier. I would suggest to anyone flying in the day before to plan on being at the pier before noon as the line gets long.

I'm very excited to be on the AOS again. Since this time will make our third time in San Juan, I plan on just enjoying the beach and pool at the hotel and not doing any sightseeing. I will need to find a convenience store to purchase the liquids we aren't supposed to fly with such as shampoo, lotion, sunblock, etc. Any ideas on this?
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Old June 29th, 2007, 12:12 PM
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my understanding is that you will not be able to carry your liquor on the plane.
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