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dlf246
03-21-2008, 09:58 AM
Well it's about time for a barely live thread. I say "barely", because there are no promises for how often we post, because I am not good with computers and am paying by the minute when on board! Also no pictures as I do not own a laptop. But I do pledge to try to post some afterwards.

This thread is a eensy weensy payback for the tons and tons of help I have gotten from all you Dis'ers. THANK YOU!

And because there are so many outstanding trip reports out there (Timon, and whatever happened to Tenorator?, wake up wake up wake up tenorator and go on another cruise!

excuse me, back to regular programming. Because of so many outstanding reports out there, I specialize in ONLY reporting differences, and very novel tips. (I take credit for the suggestion in 2006 to bring a windsock to castaway cay to put on your umbrella so you can spot it easier).

We leave in 1 hour to fly to Orlando for DCL stay at airport. We will never, ever, never, fly the same day... because 6 cruises ago, we flew into Seattle, and got stuck at the customs (Canada) and literally walked up to an empty cruise terminal. We walked over to the gangway, which had one person, who took us aboard and then pulled up anchor and left. TOO CLOSE!!

Our outstanding cast includes meself, DW (don't dare ask age), DD18, DS16, DD7.

So if you paid attention, you will probably not hear from us until we have noted a smattering of changes, differences, and other things to cheer about!

dlf246
03-21-2008, 10:01 AM
Oh and one more thing. Our cruise meet thread was started 2 years ago by Gimpeaux. We were on the same spring break western Magic in '06. He left many posts, until poof, early last year no more. I have sent emails via disboards... no response. If someone can rouse gimpeaux, it would sure be nice to know if he and family are ok.....

dlf246
03-24-2008, 11:05 AM
Where does one begin.... This is wonderful!!!

You will notice from our signature that I have done mulitiple cruises on Princess and Royal Caribbean, but doing a SECOND cruise on the Magic, is much better. We had a great time first time, but this time, we are so much more relaxed, and practically doing completely different things. Not by design. For example, last night, I realized that I was looking at the prints on all the stairways, even taking some pics. Last time, hardly glanced. We never, ever swam in Quiet Cove last time, it is great.

I never do sail away parties, and the one this time, was very good. Spending more time on the balcony.

Now onto differences:

1) it is so, so true what other recent trip reports have said. There seems to have been a large exodus of servers/asst servers. We ask for different past servers, and all seemed to have left in past year. Wait staff seems green, but hey, no problem.

2) Food itself seems to be excellent still. Not superb except in Palo :love: , and buffet food is good to very good. One thing that hasn't changed..... cannot believe it, the choc chip cookies are still always overcooked. Why, why, why,

Hey dlf246, you are supposed to just report differences...

oops sorry

On with the differences...:rolleyes1

3) For just our second cruise in 8, we have to periodically retreat from our veranda due to cigarette smoke. There are frequent smokers 2 rooms down each direction... Now this is NOT a DCL thing, this is just the luck of the draw. will it keep us from DCL? of course not. And no, we'll probably still pay big bucks for a veranda....

4) I see Brent in officer's uniform all over, but never introduced.... strange seeing him in the shadows, with Christiaan (sp?) as CD, who by the way is doing great.

5) I am not going to post about the dining rotation change. Looonnnng thread about this elsewhere. Just my opinion: I would avoid stressing about it IF you are arriving at port by noon. Just go to Rockin Bar D like I did on embarking and change your Palo as you prefer. (Me I am a escargot fan, and changed my ressie to keep me at Lumiere's first night)

6) the CM tell me that they have always had foosball tables, but I sure don't remember from '06

7) I don't know if this is a difference.... but no reports of engine trouble.... I plan to ask an officer when I next can ask one. Kinda a touchy subject for me... I had a very pleasant, courteous thread inquiring about this in early March which the Powerful moderators :worship: closed since DCL had assured them that the problem was fixed. But was it???? or do they need to close the newer thread....?!

For those of you about to get on the Magic, You are about to have a fantastic time!!!

Don't forget, there are no promises of further posts on this barely live thread....

nzdisneymom
03-24-2008, 11:40 AM
Looking forward to your report - post when you can!

I remember foosball tables in Dec. 2005 - my boys had a blast playing with some other kids.

nlm
03-24-2008, 12:05 PM
it is so, so true what other recent trip reports have said. There seems to have been a large exodus of servers/asst servers. We ask for different past servers, and all seemed to have left in past year. Wait staff seems green, but hey, no problem.

Yep. Just got off the magic on Saturday and had a new assistant server - she was nice but very shy. Almost every server we had the whole time told us this was their last contract. Our dinner server was sick on Friday/Saturday and so had a server from Palo sub for him. The sub told us that the reason for the mass exodus was the euro exchange rate. He told us to expect more servers from Asian and Latin American countries and less servers from European countries.

4) I see Brent in officer's uniform all over, but never introduced.... strange seeing him in the shadows, with Christiaan (sp?) as CD, who by the way is doing great.

Christiaan was great! From something he said at the Castaway Club meet, it sounds like he reads the board. (Hi Christiaan!) His mom was on our cruise - met her at the cc meet.

ICEMANPAD
03-24-2008, 02:51 PM
Well we will be on the boat next week, but a couple thoughts:

1) - the cookies at the food place at Castaway Cay are usually the best by far...we have been to CC 7 times on four cruises.

2) - No real need to change that Palo ressie...you can actually order a meal off any of the 3 base menus from the wrong restaurant if the entree you want is being served elsewhere that night...thus, the escargot are safe.

dlf246
03-24-2008, 04:59 PM
Ok guys. I walked up to a junior officer (2 bars on this white coat) a little while ago, and said we need an absolute definitive answer: is there or is there not engine trouble on the Magic. He said absolutely not. When I raised the question of the recent Magic getting to CC late, he said it was only due to weather.

ICEMANPAD
03-24-2008, 08:16 PM
That is actually true as I understand it. We have friends who are cast members. There was a problem w/one engine a few weeks ago, but that was repaired...they were late one time last week, but it was weather related...if there were engine problems, they likely would have been late across the board.

dlf246
03-25-2008, 11:06 AM
So sorry I messed up :worship:

On another thread about question of engine trouble there were protests that I had possibly asked not a junior officer, but a no nothing non-officer... well...

At the captain's reception, I was too chicken to ask the captain about engine trouble. But I went to the officer who had the most bars (had 3 bars AND a ball like thing) on his epaulet (sp?). I asked him who was there from engineering. He looked carefully around and apologized and said there was noone. Then I identified myself as from DisBoards :cool1: and said we need a final answer on whether "all 5 engines were functioning fully"? He seemed to pale a bit. And then smiled and said 4 engines were doing just fine. And then seemed to look away like "no more ?". But as a loyal Dis'er, I felt compelled to at least ask, so we will have no delays in getting to ports? And he said no with finality. That was the best I could do, folks. :confused3

Icepadman, I hate to tell you this, but this seems to affect eastern cruises more.

One last thing though, I hope you all notice the tons of posts emphasizing that the weather was awful that week, so probably they're still right blaming weather mostly.

Now enough about engines. No more posts, no more posts, no more posts about engines.....

dlf246
03-25-2008, 11:13 AM
Well, I have to sadly report on the biggest difference ever. We were not able to tender into Grand Cayman. In all of our cruises this was a first. But hey, that is life on a cruise ship.

One strange thing: The announcer said that the port was closed to all 6 ships, but an hour later we saw some tenders going to and fro from a Celebrity ship... Still, I have total confidence in our captain (and port authorities).

Haven't heard yet whether we will arrive in Cozumel earlier.

ICEMANPAD
03-25-2008, 11:51 AM
We had this happen in 2005 and 2006...the first year we were out of luck, but we were able to dock in 2006...the catch is that there is a second better protected docking location to the east of the pennisula where Georgetown is located. Once we were bussed to the town, we could see the waves crashing in to the city center.

Chuck:cool1:

disneyfaninaz
03-25-2008, 12:19 PM
Some of the ships use their own tenders and not contracted ones. Don't know if that makes a difference.

nzdisneymom
03-25-2008, 12:41 PM
Well, I have to sadly report on the biggest difference ever. We were not able to tender into Grand Cayman. In all of our cruises this was a first. But hey, that is life on a cruise ship.

One strange thing: The announcer said that the port was closed to all 6 ships, but an hour later we saw some tenders going to and fro from a Celebrity ship... Still, I have total confidence in our captain (and port authorities).

Haven't heard yet whether we will arrive in Cozumel earlier.

So what happens when a ship cannot port or have guests go ashore by tender? Do they go ahead and sail for the next port or do they just hang out in the area for the day and the guests just have a sea day? Sorry you all missed Grand Cayman.

ICEMANPAD
03-25-2008, 01:27 PM
They go to the next port and you get an extra sea day.

FIREFIGHTERMICKEY
03-25-2008, 01:53 PM
I am becoming very worried .it seems each trip something is wrong. I have never heard of so many port misses. This is a first. What gives?

happymommy
03-25-2008, 02:31 PM
The seas have been especially rough the last week or two. It's not usual, so I wouldn't worry.

Actually, in St. Thomas, we walked around for an hour, then got back on the ship and enjoyed the ship to ourselves! That was wonderful!

cruisecrzy
03-25-2008, 03:32 PM
So sorry I messed up :worship:

Now enough about engines. No more posts, no more posts, no more posts about engines.....

Icemanpad is right....the ship can run just fine on four engines. It has been for awhile....I was on the ship when it was operating only 4 engines and been "chased" by a Cat.1/2 hurricane.

Experiment-626
03-25-2008, 04:11 PM
I am becoming very worried .it seems each trip something is wrong. I have never heard of so many port misses. This is a first. What gives?

Just got off the Magic last week (3/15/08 - 3/21/08) and the rough seas were due to a storm front that passed by St Thomas. We ended up chasing the storms path to Castaway Cay and arrive 2 hours late to the Cay. The captain allowed the Magic to remain 1 hour extra to make up the time lost due to the rough seas (15 to 20 foot seas). It is all a matter of luck as to weather you have good weather or not on your particular cruise. As Christian (cruise director on the Magic) stated during the ride to Cay), just make a deal with King Triton for calmer seas. :rotfl2:

happymommy
03-25-2008, 05:11 PM
Our seas were actually 20-30 foot swells. Isn't that swell?

It was so cool to see the Goofy pool - it was a wave pool Wednesday night with more water splashing out of it than remained in it! We walked deck 10 from one side to the other going to Palo. Could hardly walk straight!

disneyfaninaz
03-25-2008, 05:37 PM
I am becoming very worried .it seems each trip something is wrong. I have never heard of so many port misses. This is a first. What gives?

King Triton gave us his blessing 2 weeks ago. We were on the last Western and couldn't have asked for better weather. We never had higher than 4-8 foot waves the entire week.

SMDent
03-25-2008, 06:15 PM
On the Magic, typing and reporting in before Tuesday night dinner...

We're "swingin" today, 8-13 (15) ft swells and yes, one ship was getting tendered, but it really looked like it was not a fun operation. My dear brother caught some of the action on his camera... not something I'd want to do.

Better to be aboard the Magic than stuck in Georgetown, like my sister and her family in 2005, almost didn't get back aboard the swells were too high.

Well enough for now...:surfweb:

dlf246
03-27-2008, 09:02 AM
We are back to great sailing. Yes as Icepadman said, we were around Cayman for about 2 hours, and then headed early to Cozumel. Arrived there at 7:30AM, 2 hours early. Really helped us, get to scuba earlier.
FirefighterMickey: having read trip reports for years, I really think the missed ports are just statistical luck. I bet if you read another cruise line board the past month, you would seem same bum run of luck.

By the way the captain hung around Cayman (if I heard correctly) to see if they could somehow tender 10 passengers TO the ship. Not clear if they were late at Key West, or :confused3 I don't think they boarded...

If my alter ego, will let me sneak in some things that are not differences...
Once again, most of my crew were in bed asleep before 9PM, so we missed party and fireworks.
Hey, kiddo, only report differences pirate:

ok, ok, back to only differences. Now it is time for eensy weensy pet peeve type differences. I mean, come on, even I know these are teeny, but will continue to serve you Dis'ers :worship:

1) Our stateroom (7566), has had 4 minor problems. Air conditioning did not seem to work at all on arrival. We were told it was because they had not started up all 5 engines yet. When I tried to explain that one of the engines was not working, a Big Dis Moderator Ghost appeared and gave me warning that this thread may be closed. So I quieted up.
However, after we were sailing, we could only imagine some cooling. They sent up an engineer, and we had a cool night, but still warmish next morning. We complained again, and then did not notice any further problems.

2) no tongs with ice bucket. Our stateroom attendant was a little peculiar about this. He strongly implied that we were out of luck, unless he made a special effort. Then one appeared, and when you see how it is simple plastic, I wondered why he made it sound so challenging, except for better tip???? ;)

3) Our coffee table, is stuck. (for those of you who do not know, the coffee table can be telescoped up and down). A mechanic came by and said sorry, no way to fix.

4) Our cooler (cabin attendant corrected me to never call it a refrigerator), was hot. Not lukewarm, but warmish, with very hot coils in back. They replaced it. (don't worry, I tried first to turn knob in back, did not help)

Our server has made a mistake on an order (i.e. wrong salad, or appetizer, etc) every meal so far!! It's not a big deal, though a little annoying that 2 of the times, she kinda looked at us like we had really ordered the incorrect item. DD7 is in love with her (gives her a bear hug at end of each meal), so we're fine with her.

Last picky picky picky comments: the portion sizes to me are much smaller than 2 years ago, but still delicious; so I always order 2 of at least 1 course. No problem. Finally, our table 44 was in the periphery of all 3 dining rooms, 2 times right next to galley door. Now I thought the rotational dining was designed to have at least one table location near center or out of traffic...

One last item: I visited with Brent, who said that he is here to transition with Christiaan (sp?), and C leaves the ship on Sunday. C did a great hip-hop move on stage a few nights ago.

Skuba2
03-28-2008, 07:07 AM
Our seas were actually 20-30 foot swells. Isn't that swell?

It was so cool to see the Goofy pool - it was a wave pool Wednesday night with more water splashing out of it than remained in it! We walked deck 10 from one side to the other going to Palo. Could hardly walk straight!

I have always wondered if you had 4 beers, would that counteract the swaying and make you walk straight. LOL!! We had 20 foot seas on a cruise a few years back. It was kind of fun. Palo ressies were in huge supply as everyone was pretty sick. There are advantages. LOL!

DG

dlf246
03-29-2008, 11:44 PM
Well, we loved, loved, loved the onboard checkin for air flights. Now keep in mind that if you have DCL air, you automatically QUALIFY for this, but must still turn in the vouchers by Thurs night 6PM. A tricky part is to put down the number of pieces of luggage.

Now, we have second thoughts, when 4 of our 6 pieces did not arrive, but 2 carryon luggage we checked in personally at the airport arrived fine. I.e. onboard checkin luggage had 66% chance of being lost, and stuff we checked in ourselves had 0% chance of loss.... As of 11PM local time, they have located 3 of the 4 pieces of luggage....

By the way, the cruise was magnificent. I felt bad posting mainly negative differences. Keep in mind tons of things are the same: great! DD18 who does not like cruising, has changed her mind and loved it.

I have a few other comments, but will have to postpone about a week due to ....... work...

spiritual traveller
03-30-2008, 12:16 PM
We too have just returned from the Western Cruise. We just enjoyed it so very much, that we booked a 8/15/09 Eastern Cruise with them. They offered a 10% discount and a $200 onboard credit, so it was very difficult not too take advantage of it. Not going to Grand Cayman was a disappointment, but it just gives us another reason to book the Western Cruise for sometime in the future. We did the Dolphin Encounter in Cozumel, and I thought for the money we paid, it was well worth it. My husband and my daughter thoroughly enjoyed it, and got to spend alot of time in the water, and interacting with the dolphin. I was an observer and video'd the whole thing from the dock. Unfortunately, we discovered that our camera malfunctioned, and I recorded nothing!!!! Needless to say, my hubby and daughter were very annoyed with me. So much for saving money not purchasing the video sold at the encounter!

Our cabin was an inside, number 7125. It was fine for me and hubby, my my daughter said next cruise we need to have a porthole, so we do!!!

Is is just me, or do any of you still feel the motion of the ship?

JerseyBelle
03-30-2008, 01:00 PM
Finally, our table 44 was in the periphery of all 3 dining rooms, 2 times right next to galley door. Now I thought the rotational dining was designed to have at least one table location near center or out of traffic...

Great report.

We also sailed the 3/22/08 Western.

Our view in all three dining rooms (table 11) was the server workstation. At Animators, my dd10 could hardly see anything because of the workstation. In Lumiere's due to the blocked view, I didn't even know there were roses in the ceiling until we took the Galley Tour. The character breakfast was the only time we ate breakfast in the dining rooms. Half the tables were empty but we were still behind the workstation. It was like having tickets with a obstructed view for 7 Broadway shows. We had a great server though. His name was Josue Moreno Jaimes. We filled out the survey based on the service and the food and chose to email DCL separately with our comments about the need to rotate the location of assigned tables to be fair to all guests.

The 10 people coming on at Grand Cayman did make it on. One of our tablemates had been talking to one of them. It was very rough tendering. I don't know what happened in Orlando but it was probably due to canceled flights. Our tablemates came from Wisconsin and they barely made it in time due to canceled flights. Key West is not set up for taking on passengers. It is some law (the name I can't remember) and that is why they had to fly to Grand Cayman.

I didn't know Christian was leaving. Is it temporary? He was great on this cruise. The teenagers through him into the pool and he was in his full dress white uniform. He made some funny comments about needing to go to Vista Spa afterwards to get his hair done.

The head chef in Animator's is also leaving. Oscar is retiring after our cruise. We attended the Art of Entertaining seminars with him and also had him for our galley tour. He was very entertaining.

JerseyBelle
03-30-2008, 01:06 PM
Well, we loved, loved, loved the onboard checkin for air flights. Now keep in mind that if you have DCL air, you automatically QUALIFY for this, but must still turn in the vouchers by Thurs night 6PM. A tricky part is to put down the number of pieces of luggage.

Now, we have second thoughts, when 4 of our 6 pieces did not arrive, but 2 carryon luggage we checked in personally at the airport arrived fine. I.e. onboard checkin luggage had 66% chance of being lost, and stuff we checked in ourselves had 0% chance of loss.... As of 11PM local time, they have located 3 of the 4 pieces of luggage....

Sorry you experienced lost baggage with the on-board check in of baggage. We thought it was the best thing since sliced bread. Smooth baggage delivery for us. After our first cruise in 2006 I was raving about using a porter and how you sail through customs passed the long line and out to the port check in of baggage but this was so much better. Didn't even have to get our boarding passes printed as they were delivered directly to our stateroom.

dlf246
03-30-2008, 05:00 PM
We filled out the survey based on the service and the food and chose to email DCL separately with our comments about the need to rotate the location of assigned tables to be fair to all guests.



I totally agree. Jerseybelle, thank you for pointing that out to DCL.

Update, 3 of our bags have been found in Texas, and one in California! we noticed that DCL or airline had not removed the onboard luggage tag that has a bar code too. I wonder if that distracted some scanner from the airline tag???

Timon
03-30-2008, 06:23 PM
One thing that hasn't changed..... cannot believe it, the choc chip cookies are still always overcooked. Why, why, why,


I have wondered this too on the last 3 cruises. They would be sooooo good if they were cooked a few minutes less ::yes::


Sorry about your luggage, it's never fun to lose luggage :scared:

dvcbrad
03-30-2008, 07:34 PM
Well, I have to sadly report on the biggest difference ever. We were not able to tender into Grand Cayman. In all of our cruises this was a first. But hey, that is life on a cruise ship.

One strange thing: The announcer said that the port was closed to all 6 ships, but an hour later we saw some tenders going to and fro from a Celebrity ship... Still, I have total confidence in our captain (and port authorities).

Haven't heard yet whether we will arrive in Cozumel earlier.

Your reply is a bit misleading to other readers ... what the Captain said was that those other three ships were in a different harbor. We couldn't get into that harbor as there were six ships scheduled to be in GC that day, and due to closing the main harbor due to weather condtions and the port authorities closing tendering operations there, that only three ships could anchor at the second harbor. The determination of which ships can anchor is pre-determined at randoem approx one year in advance. Let's not get other readers concerned that this particular incident was potentially 'engine-related'.

dlf246
03-31-2008, 01:00 PM
Your reply is a bit misleading to other readers ... what the Captain said was that those other three ships were in a different harbor. We couldn't get into that harbor as there were six ships scheduled to be in GC that day, and due to closing the main harbor due to weather condtions and the port authorities closing tendering operations there, that only three ships could anchor at the second harbor. The determination of which ships can anchor is pre-determined at randoem approx one year in advance. Let's not get other readers concerned that this particular incident was potentially 'engine-related'.

dvcbrad is correct!. I apologize. There were at least 3 ships who could go to a protected part of island. And actually, celebrity did do some tendering. Lastly, a fellow passenger did confirm that the 10 people (who missed boat in port canaveral) on GC WERE able to be tendered to the our before we left.

Experiment-626
03-31-2008, 01:00 PM
Great report.

We also sailed the 3/22/08 Western.

Our view in all three dining rooms (table 11) was the server workstation. At Animators, my dd10 could hardly see anything because of the workstation. In Lumiere's due to the blocked view, I didn't even know there were roses in the ceiling until we took the Galley Tour. The character breakfast was the only time we ate breakfast in the dining rooms. Half the tables were empty but we were still behind the workstation. It was like having tickets with a obstructed view for 7 Broadway shows. We had a great server though. His name was Josue Moreno Jaimes. We filled out the survey based on the service and the food and chose to email DCL separately with our comments about the need to rotate the location of assigned tables to be fair to all guests.

The 10 people coming on at Grand Cayman did make it on. One of our tablemates had been talking to one of them. It was very rough tendering. I don't know what happened in Orlando but it was probably due to canceled flights. Our tablemates came from Wisconsin and they barely made it in time due to canceled flights. Key West is not set up for taking on passengers. It is some law (the name I can't remember) and that is why they had to fly to Grand Cayman.

I didn't know Christian was leaving. Is it temporary? He was great on this cruise. The teenagers through him into the pool and he was in his full dress white uniform. He made some funny comments about needing to go to Vista Spa afterwards to get his hair done.

The head chef in Animator's is also leaving. Oscar is retiring after our cruise. We attended the Art of Entertaining seminars with him and also had him for our galley tour. He was very entertaining.

We were just on the Eastern Cruise (3/15/08) and did not hear any rumors as to Christian leaving. Is there any truth to this? It would be a shame to see him go.

JerseyBelle
03-31-2008, 01:11 PM
We were just on the Eastern Cruise (3/15/08) and did not hear any rumors as to Christian leaving. Is there any truth to this? It would be a shame to see him go.

In the link below a poster explains the Christiaan leaving issue. I don't know if it is true but take a look at post #3.

http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1772309