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Old 04-17-2012, 04:25 PM   #361
MinnieDiva
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Have I ever mentioned that I am not by nature a patient person? You might have figured this one out on your own, but I like to get things done and settled and that will be that. I have come, I have planned, I want to make reservations! (I think there needs to be a Latin translation for that...it could be my own family crest!!)

So, in my quest to entertain myself their afternoon, I went to go make Go-Car reservations for our first full day in Barcelona. Why so soon? Because I COULD!! And it's KILLING me not to be able to do so with other items. Breathe in, breathe out.....So come to find out after going further into the reservation process than ever before, that they will charge you NOW!! Uh, really? How about a hold with charge only if you don't cancel X number of days out? Oh, and another reason I wanted to do it now is that I'm afraid their rates might rise! I looked into doing this in San Francisco when we were there a few weeks ago and it is significantly more expensive in SF than in Barcelona. And yes, I am taking into consideration the exchange rate. But moving on...no way am I parting with money for this now. So, this gets tabled for a year...and I think if I broach the topic of booking some of the other things that I could book Mindy might kill me.

On the bright side, I'm glad to know that I get to pre-pay this activity! (BTW, apparently tax gets charged later...???) I prepay tips, I prepaid "credit" to my onboard account in AK...much to Mindy's chagrin. I have no doubt she'll tell you her perspective on that matter. I even (gasp ) just made an interim payment on the cruise!! Why? Because I'm getting 5x points until the end of this billing cycle. I'm padding my Disney Visa with points, baby! Woot! That, and while my goal was to NOT spend the money I'm saving for the cruise, reality is that's not happening. So, spend it once and I won't spend it again (no really...way too spun up to live on a deficit on my credit card. It gets paid off monthly or sooner!)

Some people argue on these boards that if you pre-pay tips what happens if the service isn't up to par? Well, have you ever heard of any DCL staff that just plain sucked? Me neither. I've heard people whine that x,y,or z wasn't perfect...but some people have unrealistic expectations. For both of my cruises, I ended up adding significant amounts to the servers and room hosts. I'm willing to risk it. Just my opinion.

So, to branch off the topic of Med cruise planning, I get to actually plan a cruise for just Sean and I!! Baring having any difficulties moving a previous reservation from this September to March of next year (Friday is 11 months out...then I should be able to finalize things), we are going to do a 4-night Dream to the Bahamas after our Tower of Terror 10-mile run for our 15th anniversary!! I am not a big proponent of cruises to nowhere (of which I do consider this, as I probably won't even get off the boat in Nassau), but how better to celebrate an anniversary? No kid (who was sooooooo peeved when she heard), and nothing but the adult pool area! So...Palo or Remy? Or both? Ahhh....something else to plan!!
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Old 04-17-2012, 09:25 PM   #362
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Originally Posted by MinnieDiva View Post
So, in my quest to entertain myself their afternoon, I went to go make Go-Car reservations for our first full day in Barcelona. Why so soon? Because I COULD!! And it's KILLING me not to be able to do so with other items. Breathe in, breathe out.....So come to find out after going further into the reservation process than ever before, that they will charge you NOW!! Uh, really? How about a hold with charge only if you don't cancel X number of days out? Oh, and another reason I wanted to do it now is that I'm afraid their rates might rise! I looked into doing this in San Francisco when we were there a few weeks ago and it is significantly more expensive in SF than in Barcelona. And yes, I am taking into consideration the exchange rate. But moving on...no way am I parting with money for this now. So, this gets tabled for a year...and I think if I broach the topic of booking some of the other things that I could book Mindy might kill me. !!
Yes my obsessive planning friend...you are overtaxing my brain. I'm still in the mode to get through the 2012 vacations - which haven't started yet I might add. I know I will have to deal with this one soon enough, in that I probably will have to make an actual commitment and book airfare in June or July.
Quote:
Originally Posted by MinnieDiva View Post
On the bright side, I'm glad to know that I get to pre-pay this activity! (BTW, apparently tax gets charged later...???) I prepay tips, I prepaid "credit" to my onboard account in AK...much to Mindy's chagrin. I have no doubt she'll tell you her perspective on that matter. I even (gasp ) just made an interim payment on the cruise!! Why? Because I'm getting 5x points until the end of this billing cycle. I'm padding my Disney Visa with points, baby! Woot! That, and while my goal was to NOT spend the money I'm saving for the cruise, reality is that's not happening. So, spend it once and I won't spend it again (no really...way too spun up to live on a deficit on my credit card. It gets paid off monthly or sooner!):!!
I understand why you would pay some however the way it usually works out for me is that I'm paying off the cruise balance from a different cruise and don't want to increase my payments to pre pay..I still think you should never pay in advance but that 's just my opinion.

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Originally Posted by MinnieDiva View Post

So, to branch off the topic of Med cruise planning, I get to actually plan a cruise for just Sean and I!! Baring having any difficulties moving a previous reservation from this September to March of next year (Friday is 11 months out...then I should be able to finalize things), we are going to do a 4-night Dream to the Bahamas after our Tower of Terror 10-mile run for our 15th anniversary!! I am not a big proponent of cruises to nowhere (of which I do consider this, as I probably won't even get off the boat in Nassau), but how better to celebrate an anniversary? No kid (who was sooooooo peeved when she heard), and nothing but the adult pool area! So...Palo or Remy? Or both? Ahhh....something else to plan!!
Hmm...well it is a cruise to nowhere...something I've been chastized for going on and mine's for 8 days.. Lori said their Remy dinner lasted 4 hours and wasn't really her cup of tea....I would still with Palo...but I'll be going there at least 4 times in the next 5 months...
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Old 04-18-2012, 08:55 AM   #363
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Kim, For a milestone birthday for me last year Steve and I left the twins with Gram and flew down to do a 3 day on the Dream. We were going with the kids again for a double dip in August so it gave us a chance to check out the new ship. We avoided the main dining rooms completely and did two nights at Palo and one night at Remy. Remy was a huge treat and we thoroughly enjoyed the awesome slow-paced meal. We had splurged and did concierge so was able to book all of that. We also booked a Cabana at Serenity Bay which was a huge luxury for just the two of us. It was awesome to have the bikes at the ready, cold drinks in the fridge, magazines to thumb through on cushy loungers, etc. etc. Loved, loved, loved all of it. So much fun.

So I highly recommend an adults only cruise now and then. It was four nights of adult time. We flew down the night before at stayed at the Port and took DCL transport back to the airport. The girls loved all of their Dreamy and Ron Jon presents when we returned (yes, I did feel a smidge guilty). Ends up no need for mommy guilt as the girls had a fantastic time with Gram.

I'm also one to prepay tips ahead of time.

Beth
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Old 04-18-2012, 09:32 AM   #364
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I'm so glad to see that I'm not the only one that is planning what they will wear over a year from now. After I read lornak's trip report I looked at her clothes and decided that I must have outfits that are way better than what I have. After all, I plan to show off photos of my Med cruise to anyone that will look at them for years to come. so I've already started picking up pieces for my 2013 wardrobe. Then I won't be hit with a giant shopping spree right before the cruise. I also showed my DD13 the photos on the disneyfalcon TR and she decided that she must have a wonderful dress for formal night. And if I knew what size she'd wear next year I'd probably go and buy that right now too!

I also try to prepay as much as I possibly can. I work very close to a Disney store (like, it's around the corner) so every payday I walk around the corner and add money to my Disney gift card and I plan to put that on to my onboard account. And I'm counting down the days until I can book my hotel in Barcelona! I just read an article about booking flights to Europe and it said that the best prices can be found 21 - 22 weeks prior but I don't know if I can wait that long!
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Old 04-18-2012, 11:19 AM   #365
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I just read an article about booking flights to Europe and it said that the best prices can be found 21 - 22 weeks prior but I don't know if I can wait that long!
I read that same article however, I found last time that we got the best prices when the air fare was released. The prices just went up after that.
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Old 04-18-2012, 03:01 PM   #366
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I completely agree with you about needing to plan and book things early… part of the reason why I need to write a PTR, so that I can play and plan and feel like I am doing something lol I also agree about pre-paying tips - while I haven't done it for our cruise yet, it is what I plan to do. Very rare is it to come across a CM who is not up to that standard.

I am so jealous of all of you with Disney visa's… not only are they adorable, but you get points and awesome perks. Maybe one day Canadians will be allowed lol

Also, congratulations on getting your adults only anniversary cruise! Will you be writing a report for that trip as well?
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Old 04-18-2012, 05:08 PM   #367
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Yes my obsessive planning friend...you are overtaxing my brain. I'm still in the mode to get through the 2012 vacations - which haven't started yet I might add. I know I will have to deal with this one soon enough, in that I probably will have to make an actual commitment and book airfare in June or July.
Not until at least the middle of July. 330 days minimum.
Hmm...well it is a cruise to nowhere...something I've been chastized for going on and mine's for 8 days.. Lori said their Remy dinner lasted 4 hours and wasn't really her cup of tea....I would still with Palo...but I'll be going there at least 4 times in the next 5 months...
Rub it in whydontcha? Anyway, if Lori wasn't thrilled, it probably meant that there was too much green stuff and no vanilla sauce (lori...you still out there? Hugs!)

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Originally Posted by tinkerbelltwins View Post
So I highly recommend an adults only cruise now and then. It was four nights of adult time. We flew down the night before at stayed at the Port and took DCL transport back to the airport. The girls loved all of their Dreamy and Ron Jon presents when we returned (yes, I did feel a smidge guilty). Ends up no need for mommy guilt as the girls had a fantastic time with Gram.

I'm also one to prepay tips ahead of time.

Beth
So glad to hear you had a good time! Sean and I have never been away quite this long before, and we figure though she'll be a bit sad, she'll be so busy with school and swimming that it won't be much of an impact.

And I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one to pre-pay!

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I'm so glad to see that I'm not the only one that is planning what they will wear over a year from now. After I read lornak's trip report I looked at her clothes and decided that I must have outfits that are way better than what I have. After all, I plan to show off photos of my Med cruise to anyone that will look at them for years to come. so I've already started picking up pieces for my 2013 wardrobe. Then I won't be hit with a giant shopping spree right before the cruise. I also showed my DD13 the photos on the disneyfalcon TR and she decided that she must have a wonderful dress for formal night. And if I knew what size she'd wear next year I'd probably go and buy that right now too!

Woot! No kidding, Lornak's clothes were awesome! We were at REI today picking up the Pacsafe purse (more on that later) and I tried on a bunch of stuff so I'd know how they fit so when they go on sale I can snag a better deal! Sean actually found 2 pairs of pants on the clearance rack. One was not Med-appropriate (too heavy), but the other pair was a pair of pants that have zip off legs to make shorts. Now, he has a few of these type already, but this particular pair was not only styled a bit differently, but they were a steal!! Originally $100, now $29!! LOVE that!

I also try to prepay as much as I possibly can. I work very close to a Disney store (like, it's around the corner) so every payday I walk around the corner and add money to my Disney gift card and I plan to put that on to my onboard account. And I'm counting down the days until I can book my hotel in Barcelona! I just read an article about booking flights to Europe and it said that the best prices can be found 21 - 22 weeks prior but I don't know if I can wait that long!
DO NOT wait that long. I saw that article too, and I hunted for a deal for a really long time. For our August cruise, i don't think I booked until like February. And I want to say that I'm pretty sure there were better deals before that. Summer Europe fares have been rising year by year, and with fuel the way it is, I doubt we'll see any lessening next year. Have an idea of what you deem reasonable to spend, snag that deal, and then stop looking. Being a summer cruise, we're kind of at the mercy of high season rates. Besides, those "cheap" fares usually have you flying at awful hours with really, really long layovers. Which would be good if you wanted to tour some other city, I suppose....

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I read that same article however, I found last time that we got the best prices when the air fare was released. The prices just went up after that.
You lucky ones that live on the East coast get all the better deals
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Old 04-18-2012, 05:11 PM   #368
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Originally Posted by Disney9.9.10 View Post
I completely agree with you about needing to plan and book things early… part of the reason why I need to write a PTR, so that I can play and plan and feel like I am doing something lol I also agree about pre-paying tips - while I haven't done it for our cruise yet, it is what I plan to do. Very rare is it to come across a CM who is not up to that standard.

I am so jealous of all of you with Disney visa's… not only are they adorable, but you get points and awesome perks. Maybe one day Canadians will be allowed lol

Also, congratulations on getting your adults only anniversary cruise! Will you be writing a report for that trip as well?
If I write a TR, it'll likely be after the fact. There will be plenty to write about, I'm sure! Lots of firsts: first WDW race, no kids, the Dream, Art of Animation resort...hmmmm, now that you mention it, I might....
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Old 04-21-2012, 12:42 PM   #369
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The Purse!!!

I promised I'd give some infer on that Pacsafe purse I got for Ashleigh. To remind you all it's this one:

http://www.rei.com/product/834097/pa...-2011-closeout

It was their "deal of the day" about 2 weeks ago, and I ended up spending about $30 on it. Pretty good deal, if you ask me, considering the quality of construction! And....I almost didn't want to give it to Ash, I liked it so much. I think I may have to order one for myself!

Now, I'm not much of a purse-person. I usually carry a black Coach bag (that I got for free ) that I'm not really thrilled with. I don't like how the inside little pockets fail to hold items in place and then everything ends up in the late section with absolutely no organization and then you end up digging around the entire back for everything. Ug! I usual buy clothing with pockets so I can avoid carrying a purse altogether! BUT....here's some pics of the Pacsafe's details!!:



The back zippered area:



See the velcro straps over the side pouches??



2 interior zippered areas (the little one on the bottom has a clip for keys in it):



And one of the safety features:



The purse strap can also be unlocked, unhooked, wrapped around a chair leg or other fixed object, then re-hooked and locked.

It's a little big for Ashleigh right now, but as long as she doesn't over stuff it, it'll be ok. she was able to stuff a large hardbound harry potter book, a sweatshirt, and her camera in it with no organization whatsoever and said it felt fine to carry. I could fit my iPad in there, as well as all the other various thinks that need to be in a purse...

I'm still trying to decide what color to get. I like the red one, but I NEVER wear red. Ever. Don't really own anything red. I'm thinking the light taupe would be useful, since I really don't have one that light in color...
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Old 04-21-2012, 04:35 PM   #370
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Nice bag. I have a nerdy looking one that we bought in 2007 for the Med cruise. It is this one: http://www.pacsafe.com/www/index.php...n=detail&id=22 I even bought it in green for the discolors. LOL... I might look to upgrade but I haven't decided. We have 2 of them and I wear one and dh wears one. I carry 1/2 the waters and carries the other half. I haven't really given our kids anything to carry yet in Europe. Maybe I shoud.
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Old 04-21-2012, 05:11 PM   #371
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MinnieDiva View Post
I promised I'd give some infer on that Pacsafe purse I got for Ashleigh. To remind you all it's this one:

http://www.rei.com/product/834097/pa...-2011-closeout

It was their "deal of the day" about 2 weeks ago, and I ended up spending about $30 on it. Pretty good deal, if you ask me, considering the quality of construction! And....I almost didn't want to give it to Ash, I liked it so much. I think I may have to order one for myself!

Now, I'm not much of a purse-person. I usually carry a black Coach bag (that I got for free ) that I'm not really thrilled with. I don't like how the inside little pockets fail to hold items in place and then everything ends up in the late section with absolutely no organization and then you end up digging around the entire back for everything. Ug! I usual buy clothing with pockets so I can avoid carrying a purse altogether! BUT....here's some pics of the Pacsafe's details!!:



The back zippered area:



See the velcro straps over the side pouches??



2 interior zippered areas (the little one on the bottom has a clip for keys in it):



And one of the safety features:



The purse strap can also be unlocked, unhooked, wrapped around a chair leg or other fixed object, then re-hooked and locked.

It's a little big for Ashleigh right now, but as long as she doesn't over stuff it, it'll be ok. she was able to stuff a large hardbound harry potter book, a sweatshirt, and her camera in it with no organization whatsoever and said it felt fine to carry. I could fit my iPad in there, as well as all the other various thinks that need to be in a purse...

I'm still trying to decide what color to get. I like the red one, but I NEVER wear red. Ever. Don't really own anything red. I'm thinking the light taupe would be useful, since I really don't have one that light in color...
I'm actually having a hard time carrying a purse again now that I am working...got so used to putting cell in one pocket, small wallet in the other...it's my preferred method. Don't know if my pacsafe fanny pack will be usable on next trip, may be too big...LOL
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Old 04-21-2012, 05:25 PM   #372
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Nice bag. I have a nerdy looking one that we bought in 2007 for the Med cruise. It is this one: http://www.pacsafe.com/www/index.php...n=detail&id=22 I even bought it in green for the discolors. LOL... I might look to upgrade but I haven't decided. We have 2 of them and I wear one and dh wears one. I carry 1/2 the waters and carries the other half. I haven't really given our kids anything to carry yet in Europe. Maybe I shoud.

I wouldn't consider that geeky. Functional, yes. DD isnt going to take it on excursion, I don't think. I'd be willing to bet she gets annoyed witht the strap rubbing after a while. We'll have to test that theory this summer. My intent was for her to carry it for the plane. She can carry her own entertainment!

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I'm actually having a hard time carrying a purse again now that I am working...got so used to putting cell in one pocket, small wallet in the other...it's my preferred method. Don't know if my pacsafe fanny pack will be usable on next trip, may be too big...LOL
Now a fanny pack, I would never wear one. Doesn't it have an adjustable strap? And I wouldn't think you'd have to bring it as Jim's going to have the backpack, right?
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Old 04-21-2012, 05:36 PM   #373
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Now a fanny pack, I would never wear one. Doesn't it have an adjustable strap? And I wouldn't think you'd have to bring it as Jim's going to have the backpack, right?
I used it last time...I like to carry my own camera and stuff so that I can do what I want...If I had that attitude last time, I would have missed pictures because he wasn't able to go everywhere we did.
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Old 04-21-2012, 07:06 PM   #374
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I used it last time...I like to carry my own camera and stuff so that I can do what I want...If I had that attitude last time, I would have missed pictures because he wasn't able to go everywhere we did.
My preference not to wear a fanny pack is just that...i dont like them. I just happen to prefer the camera bag. And you did get some great pics!
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Old 04-21-2012, 10:45 PM   #375
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P.S. I bought the Rick Steves' Rome book today. The 2012 version. I even contacted the apt manager that I want to rent from. I know it is a bit early but I really want this apartment because it has a washer and dryer and RCCL and NCL don't have self-service laundry. I found a lot of apartments just have the washer but you hang your clothes out to dry on a line. You see, I'm already missing Disney. So, I figured we'll need to do laundry between the 2 cruises. I can't figure out how people do long Europe trips without laundry. There is no way I'd want someone else to wash my underwear.
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