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Old 07-23-2012, 08:33 PM   #586
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Sad the report is at an end. Thanks so much for sharing your trip with us!
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Old 07-23-2012, 09:27 PM   #587
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Originally Posted by CSHaydt View Post
I have to admit (and yes i read all your posts about nickle and diming) i'm married to a CPA so those little pay here and there things would drive us CRAZY!!!!!!!!! We don't typically do the specialty restaurants and i do the reservation times in WDW really far in advance - i don't think i want to do them on the cruise too. Also food quality means a lot to us, and it sounds like it's not that great on RC - we did a RC cruise about 8 years ago and we were disappointed in the food back then.

Thanks again for this awesome trip report! It made all the difference to me! Thx. Again!
I'm still not quite sure about the nickle and diming thing I've heard people speak of. Other than soda.... They do have iced tea and flavored water, you know. There are specialty restaurants just like Disney. There are pay for coffee drinks, just like DCL. So I just don't get what people are talking about, no offense. Johnny Rockets, maybe??? There are plenty of really good free options, you know. And the food in the MDR was the same or better than the Disney regular dining room too.

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Old 07-24-2012, 11:10 AM   #588
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Originally Posted by livingis2me

I'm still not quite sure about the nickle and diming thing I've heard people speak of. Other than soda.... They do have iced tea and flavored water, you know. There are specialty restaurants just like Disney. There are pay for coffee drinks, just like DCL. So I just don't get what people are talking about, no offense. Johnny Rockets, maybe??? There are plenty of really good free options, you know. And the food in the MDR was the same or better than the Disney regular dining room too.

Ron
I am also a little confused about that. We just sailed the Freedom and didn't feel like there were any more additional charges than DCL. They had all the same stuff as included, except for soda and bring your own alcohol. There is much fervor over the towel deposit be found it to be a non issue. We checked out a towel on the first day and just exchanged for fresh towels when needed. Turned them in at the last opportunity. They have the speciality ice cream in Ben and Jerry's and the cupcake cupboard. They do charge for some of the fitness classes, but the charge is small and primarily there to make sure people who reserve a spot actually show up. I think it was $10.

For DCL ... You want a bottle of water, you pay. You want pictures, you pay. You want soda from the bar, you pay. You want speciality restaurant, you pay. You want snacks before the show, you pay.

Once you buy the soda card on RCCL, you get about the same stuff as you do on DCL as included. Except with RCCL you can get soda from the bar with your soda card, so no extra charge.
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Old 07-27-2012, 11:53 AM   #589
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Thank you so much for taking the time to create such an in depth trip report! It sounds like you had an absolutely wonderful time.

My husband and I are spending our anniversary on the Allure in October and I came across your TR. I have spent so many productive hours that past few days reading the report and taking notes. You have been an incredible help!!
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Old 08-06-2012, 09:03 AM   #590
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You should put these all together in a PDF and then publish them as an e-book. I think you would be surprised by how many people would download them.
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Old 08-07-2012, 08:17 AM   #591
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Few Questions

When you board the Allure are you aware at that point what restarants are pay and what are not?

Are the restaurants that are included spread equally around the ship?

I read there is flavored water, is this on the Oasis also and where do you find it on the Allure?

My Son and his wife just went on the Oasis, they were able to take 2 bottles of Wine or champagne, do you know what the regulations are on this?

Can you take on your own soda?

What about packets to add to water?

Is there soda water available for no charge?

How Fancy was formal night?

Did you do any kind of meet and greet for sailing, is there any boards like this for Royal?

Lastly, Was thinking about doing a room with a balconey over the boardwalk in which you can also se som of the ocean, do you know if these are truly ONLY the ones on the very end or canit be a couple in from the end?

Thanks So Much we are getting ready to book our first amily NON Disney Cruise, I am both SAD and Excited!!!
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Old 08-07-2012, 08:41 AM   #592
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I can speak to the Oasis...

Yes--for both, the "pay" restaurants are listed right on the RCCL website. They are also noted on the cruise materials by a $ sign. 150 and Chops and Giovanni's are all next to each other in Central Park. On Oasis, Izumi is right next to Windjammer, and the Solarium Bistro is pay just for dinner. The other pay restaurants, Johnny Rocket's and the Mexican place on Allure (It's Seafood Shack on Oasis) are both on the Boardwalk.

Flavored water was great and is on both--it was in the Solarium, Park Cafe, Windjammer, and maybe Cafe Promenade, but I think they may have only had water

I didn't think you were allowed to bring on any alcohol, so don't know about that. I also don't think you're allowed to technically bring on soda--flavor packets would be fine.

Formal night was definitely fancy, but there were people dressed in a variety of things. I will say that I found the Oasis this summer to in general be MUCH dressier than the Dream last April. On formal night there were quite a few tuxes, etc. It was more that after dinner, walking around there were more people wearing sort of "cocktail party" clothes than cotton dresses and shorts. After formal nights, I changed out of my long dress, but I put on my cocktail dress I brought--people were definitely more dressed up.

The kids and my mom had a boardwalk balcony room and it was about 4 rooms from the back--definitely could see part of ocean--and on decks 12 and 14 you have the back "secret" balconies!

Honestly--I wouldn't do a week long cruise on DCL now--Oasis just had so much more for a week--pools, rock wall, flowrider, availability of food, etc. I'd do Dream for a 4 night again, but a week long I'd do something else--have a great time!!!
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Old 08-07-2012, 08:55 AM   #593
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Can you tell me more about the back secret balconies and where they are,

Are they also overlooking the boardwalk?

thanks
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Old 08-07-2012, 09:03 AM   #594
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they're on at least decks 12 and 14 (no deck 13!!) and maybe another floor...

You should definitely go over to cruisecritic site to look for specific info. The decks look right out the back of the ship and are over the Aquatheater so you can see the shows and things from them. No one is ever on them because you access them from going all the way down the room hallways.
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Old 08-07-2012, 09:31 AM   #595
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oh got you

thanks
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Old 08-07-2012, 12:29 PM   #596
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hart6066 View Post
Yes--for both, the "pay" restaurants are listed right on the RCCL website. They are also noted on the cruise materials by a $ sign. 150 and Chops and Giovanni's are all next to each other in Central Park. On Oasis, Izumi is right next to Windjammer, and the Solarium Bistro is pay just for dinner. The other pay restaurants, Johnny Rocket's and the Mexican place on Allure (It's Seafood Shack on Oasis) are both on the Boardwalk.

Flavored water was great and is on both--it was in the Solarium, Park Cafe, Windjammer, and maybe Cafe Promenade, but I think they may have only had water

I didn't think you were allowed to bring on any alcohol, so don't know about that. I also don't think you're allowed to technically bring on soda--flavor packets would be fine.

Formal night was definitely fancy, but there were people dressed in a variety of things. I will say that I found the Oasis this summer to in general be MUCH dressier than the Dream last April. On formal night there were quite a few tuxes, etc. It was more that after dinner, walking around there were more people wearing sort of "cocktail party" clothes than cotton dresses and shorts. After formal nights, I changed out of my long dress, but I put on my cocktail dress I brought--people were definitely more dressed up.

The kids and my mom had a boardwalk balcony room and it was about 4 rooms from the back--definitely could see part of ocean--and on decks 12 and 14 you have the back "secret" balconies!

Honestly--I wouldn't do a week long cruise on DCL now--Oasis just had so much more for a week--pools, rock wall, flowrider, availability of food, etc. I'd do Dream for a 4 night again, but a week long I'd do something else--have a great time!!!


Good answers! I know what you mean about having a hard time going on a 7 night Disney after being on the Oasis. I'll be on a 7 night Disney in September and I'll definitely miss the flowriders, zipline, ice skating (and ice shows), all the food choices, etc. etc......

On the Allure it wasn't very formal overall. There were a few tuxes and gowns, but mostly dress shrits and slacks for men (with and with jackets/ties) and cocktail type dresses for the ladies. Also a lot of Dockers and button down shirts for the men.

As far as bringing soda. Officially I don't think you are supposed to bring it, but it is not enforced. I brought a carry-on full of about 40 Coke Zeros and customs wanted to look through it, but after checking to make sure there was no booze they passed me and my soda right through. I saw a lot of people walking around with sodas that were obviously brought on board.

Ron
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Old 08-07-2012, 01:58 PM   #597
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OK the slacker is officially back to answer questions. I am going to do one page of replies per day and that should catch me up in no time!
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Old 08-07-2012, 03:01 PM   #598
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Pages 32 and 33

Quote:
Originally Posted by ColoBlu6 View Post
Having fun reading your TR..
Awesome! Glad you like(d) it!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by JKSWonder View Post
Giovanni's looks really good. Mike and I also tend to order the same things in restaurant. I don't know if that's because we have been together for so long or because we are the most boring couple ever!

Little Sarah asleep sitting up on the couch is adorable.
LOL- same for us! I'm going to go for 'been together forever' but a little bit of the latter may apply!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by iloverags2 View Post
Fantastic update! Giovanni's sounds wonderful (and how awesome you had a much better table and much better server for this dinner). And how cool is that cat walk? Good eye in spotting that!

What a bummer about the karaoke. Keeping my fingers crossed there was at least one other chance to squeeze that in for the kiddos!
Nope, it really wasn't as easy as Disney to find kids/family Karaoke. BUT they will for sure get their sing on aboard the Fantasy come Sept!

Giovanni's was awesome! For sure my favorite restaurant (that we've tried) on Allure!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jenseib View Post
That food looks great! I am now officially starving.
oh my gosh me too. Between looking back at these pics and looking forward to the Food & Wine menu lists....oy...

Quote:
Originally Posted by MAGICFOR2 View Post
Giovanni's looks great, except for all the close tables. Seems like the menu is alot like Palo's, with a more comfortable atmosphere. Glad you enjoyed it!
Yes, it was a lot like Palo! It was so yummy! Have to say I am really looking forward to Palo on the Fantasy!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Misskitty3 View Post
This is a fantastic TR!! How fun to see all the great things you got to experience on your cruise!
Thanks! So glad you enjoyed it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by lucas View Post
I'm looking forward to reading it!

I've seen Tinkerbelltwins over on the Turnkey Cruise thread. I'll have to say hi to her.
Beth and Steve are a lot of fun, and the girls are just dolls. You will enjoy cruising with them! We are actually thinking of making our rebooking cruise for Thanksgiving 2014 on the Fantasy! Gobble Gobble!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wlamas View Post
What a great TR!!!. I'm dying to see the rest of it!!. And to see your score and final conclusion!.
Well the score is pretty much that Shrek pummeled poor Mickey in the ship department. LOL. the Fantasy has some features I am really looking forward to checking out (Aquaduck, Satellite Falls, etc.) but the Fantasy is still like a cruise ship...Allure (and Oasis) are almost in a different category all to themselves.

Not to say we don't still enjoy Mickey! We are super excited for our cruise on the Fantasy next month!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by livingis2me View Post
Oh if Disney would've just put in a little effort and followed RCL's lead when it comes to the pools.

Do you think we'll find the family pools this empty when we are on the Fantasy this September??? I'm sure we'll have a great cruise either way.

Ron
The way this upcoming cruise has been struggling to get filled, actually I am cautiously optimistic that we just may not be body-to-body in the pools. We shall see!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheryl726 View Post
Another great update! It seemed like a great day at sea! I am amazed at the number of empty pool chairs, thinking that you'd never see that many empty chairs on DCL!
I know, it was actually puzzling to me. The second sea day was overcast, but still warm. But because of the lack of sun I could see why maybe some folks weren't out on deck- the first sea day though was sunny and beautiful. I sure don't know where everybody was but I'm glad that they were where they were! Haha!

Quote:
Originally Posted by iloverags2 View Post
Holy Smokes! Were they serving free drinks the night before or something? (Speaking of drinks, I so love RCI's drink in a pineapple...yumola!)
Oh yeah, it was delish. I could use one of those right...about...NOW!

Quote:
Very cool you tried out the flowrider. Not sure I would be able to manage that!
It was a LOT harder than I thought! I've never been known for my balance and agility though...I tend to be a bit clumsy. So I'm not surprised I wasn't very successful. LOL

I did Boogie Board too- that is a lot of fun, but I preferred doing it when the Flowrider was not split in two with the net down the middle. I didn't have as much success when it was halved off- I kept slowly creeping to the edge. And since they had the divider out the entire cruise, I didn't do it much.

Definitely worth the try though...at least once!

Quote:
Hmmmmm...I never thought about the bellyflop losing it's intimacy at a larger pool, but that certainly makes sense. Guess I will have to sail Allure/Oasis and find out for myself, eh?
Yep! It was still fun and I really enjoyed the extras that you get by having the jumbo-tron screens out there - like the instant replay and underwater view. But we just enjoyed the one on Independence of the Seas more. it seemed more like we (the audience) was more a part of the festivities then and not just watching- an audience..if that makes sense. Yep, you will just have to try it! Hehe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PixieMom712 View Post
I am really enjoying your trip report, thanks so much for all the pictures and detail!

We are about to go on our first cruise and I have to admit this seems overwhelming to me and I'm glad we're starting out on the Magic .
Thanks so much, I'm so glad you like it! Yes, Allure is quite different than the Magic. Don't get me wrong though we had amazing cruises on the Magic!!!

Quote:
I was reading the posts you linked to in post #1 and am going to go back and read between now, so if you've already answered this please disregard. How much were the specialty dinners you haven't quoted? Specifically Chops and the Italian restaurant. Thanks!
Chops was $30 per person.

Giovanni's Table (Italian) was $25/pp

Samba Grill is normally $25/pp but we got the MTD (My Time Dining) Half Price Special that they offered (not sure of they still offer it and it is not always available on every cruise)..so it was $12.50 each- (it is worth every penny even at $25/pp)

Rita's Fiesta is $25/pp including the alcoholic drinks- $10/pp without the drinks (kids).

Hope that helps!! We found the quality of food in the Specialty Restaurants to be well worth the additional cost. (Where Rita's was lacking just a bit in food made up for in atmosphere IMO)

Quote:
Originally Posted by kthshh View Post
Loving your trip report and glad you posted it. My family and I have only done a Carnival cruise, and we enjoyed it very much. We definitely want to do a Disney cruise and possibly a Royal Caribbean one as well. I'm glad you took the time to post this report.
Thanks so much, I'm glad you enjoyed it! We are looking to try Carnival someday- especially the new ship the Breeze intrigues us. DCL and RCCL are awesome cruises too. IMO you can;t go wrong!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TotallyAngelic View Post
I was so pleased when I decided to read a trip report over breakfast this morning after a long absence from the trip report boards ... and this is what I found .. another fantastic report from Jen and her lovely family Lets just say it is now 11:30 am and I have achieved nothing remotely purposeful this morning as a result .. but it has been a fabulous start to the day. So interesting to read about the other cruise experiences out there.
LOL I hope every day in between has been awesome! So glad you are loving it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sejejoemmiev View Post
Great trip report! You have convinced us to try a cruise other than Disney! This ship looks Amazing! We have a Fantasy cruise booked for summer 2013, and I think the summer of 2014, we will book the Allure! Our kids will be older and it will be the right time to try something new and exciting! Thank you for your very detailed trip report and pictures. It is a great overview of what to expect!
Awesome, I'm so glad this TR has helped you make that decision! I think you and your kids will LOVE Allure. And I really think being an experienced Disney cruiser helps out when you prepare to go on Allure. Us Diser's know one thing- and that is how to PLAN. A skill that comes in handy on Allure for sure!
Enjoy your cruises (and look for my Fantasy TR coming very soon...VERY soon! Woohoo!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by jenseib View Post
Another fabulous update. What kind of drink is in the pinapple? It looks so cute.
Oh it was soooo gooood. It was a "Lava Flow" which to me seemed a lot like a Pina Colava- it was Frozen Pina Colada with a ribbon of raspberry in it ....YUM!

Quote:
Originally Posted by JKSWonder View Post
I was wondering the exact same thing!
Aw shoot, now I don't know what you were wondering. That's what I get for waiting so long to reply! LOL! But you were probably wondering where all the people were! I know I was. It's like a huge group of thousands were just locked in their staterooms. It was so odd! But I loved every second of it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by PrincessTrisha View Post
Still loving this review. I am thinking that maybe the Oasis or the Allure will be our October 2014 cruise (October 2012 will be on the Carnival Dream, October 2013 will be the Disney Fantasy).

Really love all the different areas on board. And you are doing such a wonderful job on this review showing off this amazing ship.
Thanks Trisha, hope you and your parents are doing well! have fun on the C Dream this fall- that is another ship I hope to check out someday. I think your plans for the future cruises are absolutely perfect!!! If I do say so myself!

Quote:
Originally Posted by wdwmom2 View Post
nenner1

Just found your TR today. A friend told me about an Allure TR here on the DIS boards and I had to check it out!!!

I thought, nenner1, nenner1, boy that name sounds familiar. Went back to CC to check out my TR on the Allure cruise last March(my user name there is sharod), and there you where. You told me you have/had a Canon S3 also. You said you "rocked" auto. My your S3 RIP. I am sure you miss it.

Looks like you had a great trip. Great pics and commentary!!!

I hope someday to be able to be back on the Allure. She sure is a beautiful ship!!!
YES! That's right! Thank you SOOOOO much- your review on CC was so helpful to me in planning! This is my way of returning the favor!

My poor S3- but did you know it took a licking and kept on ticking? Yes, once it dried out it was OK- it still works!! It has a few issues now- the lens sticks when turning it on and off, among other minor annoyances. But to have survived that soaking is pretty impressive. I did get a Rebel T2i for Valentines day last year and I have been slowly learning how to use it. But both of my Canons will be coming with us on the Fantassy!

Thanks again for reading! And for your contributions in posting your experience on Allure- it helped us get the most out of our cruise! We are so grateful!


OK gang, I'll be back tomorrow with more!
Jen
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Old 08-17-2012, 04:04 PM   #599
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Great trip report! I understand everything you are saying with RCL and DCL. We are platinum on Royal and Gold on Disney (almost platinum, prob next year). The nickle and diming thing drives me insane. I just don't see it and I am a fan of both cruise lines.

We sail the week after you on the Fantasy - pretty bummed we aren't on the same sailing! We live in Celebration and are Rays fans so I loved seeing your hubs shirt in the one pic.

Thanks for the report!
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Old 08-25-2012, 07:22 AM   #600
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Originally Posted by livingis2me View Post
I'm still not quite sure about the nickle and diming thing I've heard people speak of. Other than soda.... They do have iced tea and flavored water, you know. There are specialty restaurants just like Disney. There are pay for coffee drinks, just like DCL. So I just don't get what people are talking about, no offense. Johnny Rockets, maybe??? There are plenty of really good free options, you know. And the food in the MDR was the same or better than the Disney regular dining room too.
Ron
DD and her husband were just on RCCL's Radiance of the Seas in Alaska.
Since i was heavily involved in trip planning (not to mention trip financing), i have to agree with this...i didn't see nickle and diming at all..
they wanted bottled water, so they bought a water package with two cases (they drink a lot) ...
but at the end of the cruise, they had an entire case of water left and you know what? RCCL refunded them the cost of the unused case of water...
do you think disney would refund you anything after you've purchased it?

they also wanted pop, so they bought the soda package...and they loved the soda package - every bar they sat in, they had another diet coke....never had to pay a penny for it....

and speaking of refunds...
when they were in Juneau, DD's husband was feeling really ill when they were at mendenhall glacier, so he went back to the ship and didn't go on the whale watching excursion they had booked for the afternoon.

RCCL refunded the cost of his whale watching excursion (over a hundred dollars)..

do you think disney would ever refund the cost of an excursion you didn't go on (especially when you came up to guest services the day after the excursion)?
i doubt it..

DD was very impressed by all aspects of her cruise - the service, the entertainment, the activities, the organization...she said it was the most fun she's ever had on a cruise!! by the way, this was her first non-dcl cruise..

Quote:
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Did you do any kind of meet and greet for sailing, is there any boards like this for Royal?
go to the cruisecritic.com forums - go into the RCCL roll call boards for the Oasis and you'll find the meet and greet there..

RCCL actually has official RCCL meet and greets with food and prizes - go to the cruisecritic.com boards to find out about them..

DD loved her meet and greet!! (she won something but i can't remember what)..
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