FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Update: July 2009
01. Does the price you quote
include all port charges and taxes?
02. Is there a charge for
the dance classes that are offered on the cruise?
03. Is there something added
into the price of the cruise for the SSQQ people that is not
included in the price listed on the Cruise line’s website?
No, SSQQ does not add a surcharge Our original group
prices are always significantly below
the prevailing rate. You must sign up in a timely manner to
take advantage of these reduced prices.
What is the Prevailing Rate?
The "Prevailing Rate" is the price the
cruise line quotes on a daily basis. This price is
fluid. I have actually seen it change twice in the same day.
We are given a discounted group rate with a time limit to
sell these cabins. Unfortunately, after we pass the
deadline, our group discount disappears. At this
point, the price for all cabins becomes the daily
I want a cabin to myself.
I looked online and the rate for a
balcony room $979 but you show a rate of $1942? What
am I missing, why are the rates
so far off?
The rate you are looking
is for a
double occupancy without taxes. Single
occupancy rates are typically double MINUS taxes for the
second passenger. There is no surcharge added to the SSQQ
price. I am simply passing on the daily rate quote from
06. Is there availability of a
quad room and is it possible for a second couple to pay the
deposit next week?
Both triple and quad cabins are limited.
All persons sharing a
triple or quad cabin must be named and deposited at the time
The cruise line
will not hold a triple or quad without full deposit.
07. I know I am late, but can I
still get the original group price?
Every cruise is different. Please check our website for
pricing. Once we are past final
payment date, pricing will ALWAYS be at the
(Note: The "Prevailing Rate" is the price
the cruise line quotes on a daily basis. This price is
fluid. I have actually seen it change twice in the same day
08. Do you believe the
prevailing prices for the inside cabin will remain the same
for the next week?
The prevailing rate is subject
to constant change. It may even change hourly. I have no
way of know when prices will increase.
09. I just found out that I get
air miles credit on my Continental OnePass account for the
cruise we just made if the cruise was booked "on-line". Do
you know whether I can get this, since this booking was done
on a group-basis?
Sorry, but the only "air miles" credit you can receive
are those linked to the credit card you paid with.
Hopefully, all the benefits of cruising with the group
offset the air miles perk offered by on-line booking.
10. Besides airfare and other costs
associated with getting to the cruise ship, can you
detail for us what additional costs there are for the
Included in the cruise ticket price is the entertainment, most meals
(main dining, buffet dining, room service), your
accommodations, and activities including the amazing fitness
center. You are expected to tip your cruise staff, but you
can purchase tips in advance so you don't have to worry
about it during your cruise.
Here is the traditional breakdown
a day per guest
Dining Room Waiter:
a day per guest
a day per guest
a day per guest
Alcohol and soda are extra, as well as specialty dining venues,
casinos, shopping, and shore excursions.
11. Can I
add on the additional gratuities and pay for that ahead of
Does the price stated on the
registration from include air? Is it a complete package?
Cruise, Air and ground transportation???
No, we sell only the cruise fare unless you purchase air
from the cruise line.
13. What does double occupancy
mean? Do I cut the price quoted in half?
may not cut that rate in half.
A double occupancy rate means that there are two people
sharing a cabin. Our rates are always quoted double
occupancy per person. Each person must pay the per person
I have been receiving all kinds of
info XXX as a past cruiser for double upgrades. If I signed
up for an oceanside room, could I get a balcony for that
When you see "double
upgrades", it is referring to upgrades within the same
category. There are 6 different levels within each
category. There would never be an upgrade from an oceanview
to a balcony
I see that there is a
special promo going on right now.
How long does this promo last?
The promo may be withdrawn at any time. If you are
interested, please get me your registration form ASAP. If
there is a rate that is lower than the established group
rate, you should book immediately. The rates are subject to
16. I heard that there was a
special Senior Promotion for people 55 and older. I am 53,
can I get the promo price?
Sorry, no. The cruise lines are very strict. You
identification must show that you are 55 or older.
17. Does SSQQ Travel happen to
give teacher discounts?
18. If I book thru AmEx, there
are coupons available. May I still get the AmEx coupon
discount applied to my booking?
Sorry, but no.
19. I have a discover card with
a bunch of points on it and one of the options is a $120
dollars off an Oceanview room.
Would I be able to use this?
You may use the discover card to pay for the cruise.
You may not use points to pay for the cruise through me.
Typically, our group rate is substantially below any other
rate available. Hopefully, our
lower group rate and trip benefits is enough to offset using
20. Do you know if American
Express Reward points can be used to purchase the Cruise
21. I am unable to pay until I
received my tax return. Will there still be some cabins
left at the lower rate?
I have no way to predict
01. What name do I put on the
Your Legal name-- The name must match the passport
exactly. Middle names are not necessary.
What are the passport
Please click into the
following link regarding any issues pertaining to passports:
What are the immigration procedures, particularly for
someone who's not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
Please see cruise line’s
website for specifics.
04. Do you have to have my date
Yes. This is a requirement to get you onboard the ship.
I promise not to share the information.
May I give you my registration
info over the phone?
Email or fax is the best
means. All information must be accurate. Written format
provides documentation should any issues come up later in
06. Where can I find my booking number?
Your booking number can be found on the cover of your
Sailing: XXX XX, XXXX
Booking: here is where
your unique number is located
Cabin: your cabin location
07. What happens if I forget my
cruise booklet or forget to pick it up at the studio?
Can I still get on board?
Yes, you can still get on
board. However, if you forget your passport, you
better turn around and go home and get it.
These days, no one goes anywhere without legal
08. Do I need to send my
registration form or putting my name down would be enough?
I will need a completed registration form including
credit card and expiration date.
09. Can I request e-docs?
documents for everyone. If you do select e-docs and you are
sharing a cabin, please be aware that now
your roommate will not receive paper
documents. He or she will have to use e-docs as well.
Here is an
example of what happens with e-docs.
Sent: Thursday, July 30, 2009 3:38 PM
Subject: Documents for SSQQ 2009 Conquest Cruise
After reviewing all the hard documents that I received
from Carnival, it appears that I do not have cruise
documents for the four of you.
I phoned Carnival inquiring as to why and was informed
that one of the passengers within each of the
reservations has requested e-docs. As explained in a
previous group email, once Carnival receives an online
e-doc request from a passenger, the hard document will
not be generated.
To the roommate of the passenger who requested the
e-documentation-- I am sorry, but I will not have a
packet for you either. You will have to request
e-documentation as well. Carnival will not issue you a
hard document. They are firm on this policy.
If you don't know how to request the e-docs, here is
what to do:
1. Go to
2. Then look in the drop down box for My Cruise.
3. Select My Documents.
4. You will see a page that asks for your booking
number/last name/ship/sail date
after you enter the information, a page will come
up that says My Documents
and your names below.
5. Click on View.
6. This will pull your e-docs up, then hit print.
You will need to do this for your luggage tags
and cruise contract.
Why should I book as part of
your group versus booking on my own?
Unless you book
directly through me, you can't participate in any of our
activities during the cruise. That said, there
are many good reasons to join us. Here is a list of past perks provided by SSQQ as our way of
thanking people for becoming members of our group in
addition to receiving the low group discounted rate:
1. SSQQ pre-Cruise meeting
2. Free Admission to the SSQQ Saturday Party prior to
departure the following day.
3. Private cocktail party
4. Free dance lessons
5. Champagne party
6. Chocolates delivered to cabin
7. Group dining
8. On board credits
10. Organizing Group photo (and posting it on the Internet)
11. Rick's Cruise Writeup
12. SSQQ Cruise After-Party
02. If we decide to book
independently through our own travel agent, can we still
participate in SSQQ activities - or are they simply
ship-sponsored dances which SSQQ dancers will attend?
Unless you book
directly through me, you can't participate in any of our
activities during the cruise.
If you choose to book independently through another
agent, you are on your own. Of course this is your
prerogative. Please ask yourself this question, would you
have been interested in this cruise without the SSQQ Group
being on the ship? Please see the following link for
BOOKING THRU SSQQ
03. We have inquired of our
travel agent about booking the cruise, and have found a very
good price to be available directly through them. I assume
that's OK with you. If so, that leads to the next
question, which is how we relate ourselves to the SSQQ
group. Does Carnival care or need to know in advance that we
You must book through SSQQ to be part of the group.
Please read this link:
THRU SSQQ and
04. Just to let you know – myself,
my husband, my sister’s family, and my mom and dad are
currently making arrangements to go on this cruise. We
felt we needed to make the arrangements separately, since my
mother wanted confirmation that all of our cabins would be
adjacent. Anyway, I’m excited to know we will see some
familiar faces, and maybe we can join your group for some of
I would be most appreciative if you would rethink your
booking arrangements. I am able to secure whatever
cabin locations you wish; I hope you haven't already booked
the cruise. Please read this link:
THRU SSQQ and
05. How much time do we have to register?
Every sailing is
different, but my rough guess is if
the ship isn't sold out, 72 hours is the narrowest window
imaginable. Of course the cost will be at the prevailing rate.
To be guaranteed a spot at dinner with us, 30 days.
06. How much is the deposit and
when do I have to pay?
There is a $250 per person deposit required. If you
reserve a single occupancy, you must pay $500. The deposit
must be paid to the cruise line by the date stated on the
the credit card billed directly from the cruise line?
I want to pay my
sister’s deposit (and mine) with my credit card. Will that
be ok to do? Should she register with her credit card?
(She will be paying the balance with her card).
Of course you may pay
for you sister's deposit. All I need is a registration form
with your sister's and your info including credit card with
expiration date and let me know what type of cabin you
prefer. When it is time for final payment, I will charge
the balance of her fare to her credit card. It's very easy
09. What is the best time of day to get ahold of you by
this is a part-time job for me, I do not keep regular hours.
I find it easiest to use email since I can use links to
direct you to places on the SSQQ web site where you find
01. Can you waive my
cancellation fee that is stated on the registration form?
Sorry, but no. This is a time intensive job for me that
requires a tremendous amount of
attention to detail. I am entitled be paid for my
I had the mistaken idea
that if I waited to purchase air, I could find a bargain
well under the RCCL quote. After all, the fares last summer
were nowhere near as high as they are for this summer. XXX
and I agree that we are just not willing to pay $XXXX or
more for airfares and therefore wish to withdraw from this
cruise. We checked the SSQQ website and see that we should
expect no return of our deposit, if we are reading the
registration page correctly. We also see that we are in the
$250 penalty stage. Will you please waive the cancellation penalty?
Sorry, but no.
03. I need to cancel. Is it
possible to "change" the room into someone else's
name for your usual "switch" fee?
Sorry, but no. One of the names on the reservation must
be on the original booking.
I had to cancel from the
trip. When can I expect my deposit refunded from the cruise
If you are prior to a
penalty stage, you should receive your refund within 10
XXX will not be
going on the cruise, and I need to decide whether or not to
go on my own or cancel. Please let me know my options at
your earliest convenience.
1. Because you signed up with XXX, you are responsible for
the entire cabin. You will be responsible for paying the
single occupancy rate.
2. You can find a roommate to fill XXX’'s spot. (There is
a $50 name change fee from the cruise line)
We will advertise the opening on the SSQQ website, but you
will be ultimately responsible for the cabin. 3. 3. You
may cancel and pay all applicable cancellation penalties.
I have to cancel. Can I
get my refund on a different credit card?
Sorry, no. The cruise
lines require that the original credit card must be issued
If XXX and I are
unable to go, may my elder daughter and husband still go at
the lower rate?
Sorry, no. There must
be one original passenger left in the booking.
08. What is the payment
schedule and when does the cancellation fee go into effect?
Please refer to the trip's
registration form for that information.
09. What are the cancellation
policies for the ssqq cruise? What is the time frame to
cancel and be fully refunded? How would I go about canceling
and getting my money back?
Please refer to the trip's
registration form for dates and fees.
10. I know I am way past
the deadline, but can you hold me a cabin until I am ready
I am unable to hold a cabin
without a full deposit. Prior to the first deposit
deadline, the cabins are allocated by whoever sends me their
registration information including credit card first. If
you are after the deposit deadline, you must pay the
prevailing rate. The prevailing rate quoted is only good
for the day it is given.
I would like to join your cruise, but
am not ready to commit. Don’t want to pay that cancellation
you still add me, but not charge me the deposit yet? I want
to make sure I get the cheap rate.
Sorry, but no. The
cruise lines require the deposit to confirm a space.
We want the last
cabin but I can’t get a hold of XXX to pay for it. I filled
out the registration sheet with my credit card but can you
just charge $200 on it to hold the room until tomorrow
because XXX is going to pay for it with his credit card?
Carnival won't let me hold a cabin unless a have the entire
deposit amount of $500.
13. Can you give me an
extension on the final payment date?
Sorry, but no.
The final payment date is set by the
cruise line. I have no control over it.
You will need to figure out a way to secure the funds by the
date stated on the registration form. If a credit card is
denied and full payment isn’t applied by final payment date,
you will risk losing not only your spot, but also you will
forfeit your $250 deposit and the cruise line may cancel
I just found out that my job is
forcing me to work during the cruise date, so I emailed you
to cancel. Why was I billed an extra amount for my
If you have a roommate that is not canceling, whether or not
we arranged that roommate for you, the single supplement for
your roommate will be added to your cancellation charges.
for any extra charges to your roommate falls to the person who cancels.
Once you cancel, the cruise company now
categorizes your roommate as a SINGLE
As an example, a man
actually did cancel from the 2009 trip six
days before sailing. His roommate had
paid $515. The single occupancy rate
was $984. Carnival Cruise Line now
expected to be paid an additional $469.
Yes, this is a stiff penalty, but It isn't fair to hold the former roommate
accountable and it isn't fair to expect the
travel agent to pick up the difference
I was wondering how does the
process work if you have to match up to stay in a room?
I do it by age first.
If there are a lot of people to
match up, I then try to match by type of dancing the person
is interested in.
Can I reserve a cabin to
Yes, of course. You
will have to pay a $500 deposit to secure a cabin and then
be responsible for paying a single occupancy rate. It is
usually double less the taxes.
I have a cabin
reserved as a single occupancy; it is possible to add
someone (of my choice) to my cabin?
Yes. You will now have to pay the double occupancy per
person rate. I must have the
additional person's completed registration info to change
04. Can you hold a cabin for me
and I will let you know later who my roommate is?
If you choose to book an entire cabin, I will need the
name of the second passenger by
the final payment
date. You will also have to pay a $500 deposit. I can
only "match" up roommates until
You will be responsible for paying the
single occupancy rate should there be a change in your
Can you find me a roommate?
If you register within
our initial deposit guidelines, there is a very good chance
that we can secure you a roommate. After our first cutoff,
you have three choices.
Pay the single occupancy rate
Find your own roommate
Go on a Wait
How do you go about matching up
If you register prior to
the first deposit, I use the following guidelines:
First by cabin choice, Second by age, Third by type of
we guaranteed the roommate that we put on the registration
form? We want an inner room, is there any left?
If you sign up by the
first deposit date and provide a full credit card deposit, I
can secure your space. Re, the roommate--yes, you will be
guaranteed the roommate requested on your registration
form. (providing of course that that person agrees and also
provides a full deposit before the deadline.
If I purchase the air through
the cruise line, will I get ground transportation to and
from the ship too?
Make sure that
you sign me up for transfers.
I will need detailed
flight information to get the transfers secured.
I purchased air
transportation through the cruise line. When will I get my
60 days out.
Would you please let us know which flight you are taking?
We don’t know when to leave in order to get there a day
early so we can look around xxx. And, are you spending the
night in xxx before the cruise? If so, where? Do you know
anything about the hotels there?
I am able to book the cruise for you, but remember, I am not
responsible for your air transportation, ground
transportation to and from the cruise line, or your hotel
stay unless you book it all through the cruise line. I
would recommend researching the following websites:
www.fodors.com. They have been very helpful to me.
you book our airfare for us?
The only airfare that I get involved with is air booked
through the cruise lines. This includes ground
transportation from and to airport to port. Travel must be
for the day of embarkation and debarkation.
Can you give me a sense of when fares
are likely to be best (now, 15 days out from the travel
date, standby and etc.)? I get a little claustrophobic, so
what kind of “equipment” would be best for me to look
for when booking a trans-oceanic flight? Once I flew an
airbus from Seattle with zero leg room; my knee touching the
seat back in front of me, and I had to stand much of the
trip to feel comfortable.
There is no getting around feeling "claustrophobic" on a
long flight when you are flying coach. The best way around
it is to get an aisle seat. Please remember that this is a
part time job for me.
you know if one airline
is better than the others in terms of space?
Do you have a recommendation on which airline? XXX
is concerned that we won't be able to get to the hotel
Saturday and won't be able to get to the cruise ship Sunday
because we don't speak the language. Can you reassure him
that we won't be stranded somewhere? Does the hotel have a
transport from the airport? We will probably stay at the
zzz, yyy, or ooo. Do you know anything about any of them?
I have enough air miles to cover my
plane ticket. The only draw back is getting there a day
early and leaving on Tuesday, which means a hotel room. I
am wondering if that would offset some of the costs for
staying over? Can you give me some idea of hotel charges
and taxi fares?
understand that you can purchase transportation from the
ship to the airport after you get on the ship.
Yes, you may purchase ground transfers if your flight is for
the day of embarkation and debarkation.
do I get from the airport to the ship? Will there be a
ship’s courtesy coach, will there be a city bus, or will I
need to get a taxi?
The most economical way would probably be to share a taxi.
We will have a pre-cruise meeting where you can meet the
fellow travelers and find someone who wants to share or you
may purchase ground transfers if you flight is for the day
of embarkation and debarkation.
what time should we make our return flight for? I don’t
know what time the ship docks or how long it takes to get
from the ship to the airport.
The cruise line provides guidelines. I have this
information posted on our trip
13. How can I get a travel
buddy to carpool and/or share hotel room?
You can check the list of who is going on the cruise
information page of our website. I'm sure you have the
email of at least 5 people on the group, contact them and
ask. Our group is very friendly and always willing to share
expenses when possible. Last resort – send me an email
request and I will forward to the group.
ARRANGEMENTS AT DINNER
01. Can I sit with my friends at dinner?
Yes, of course. Please make a note on your registration
02. Would you please assign me to XXX’S dinner table for the
duration of the cruise?
can assign you for the first and last night, but
we usually ignore any assigned
seating during the cruise.
To make the waiters happy, we sit at our
assigned seats the first and last night of the trip, but
then sit anywhere we wish within the group
during the middle days of the trip
03. How about the Dinner Seating arrangements/time?
sit together as a group for dinner. You have an
assigned seat on the first night, but are free to sit where
you wish on the remaining evenings.
We typically have the second seating.
However, there are always a few people who strongly prefer
the "Other" Seating time. I can arrange this easily if
you let me know ahead of time.
01. Is there a pre-trip meeting?
there is a
pre-cruise meeting. We go over all
details. It is usually 2 weeks prior to a Caribbean sailing
and 3 weeks prior to a destination sailing. In addition, I
group emails providing any needed
information pertaining to the cruise.
do we get the tickets, etc?
Cruise documents are handed out at the pre-cruise
03. Do I have to attend the pre-cruise meeting?
No, especially if you are a veteran
of a previous trip. For those of you who are tenured SSQQ Cruisers, you
may simply pick up your documents at the studio any evening
except Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday after the meeting.
However, if this is your first trip with
our group, we encourage you to join us. This is a
great opportunity to ask any question you wish. Just remember No Sympathy will be extended to those
who miss in regards to anything but the
most essential questions.
Is there a way to
purchase "trip" insurance in case we had to cancel for any
Yes, through our
insurance provider, Access America. Please email for a
quote. In addition, we have a page
on Travel Insurance
you can look at. This article gives examples from our
previous trips where Travel Insurance came in very handy.
02. I just found out I have
jury duty on XXX. Would the trip insurance cover this?
Yes, jury duty is
covered if purchased through our provider, Access America.
Better yet, why don't you simply reschedule to a time
that will accommodate you? The court
allows you to do this.
XXX has the cruise on our
sailing date listed at $999 for a balcony room. Do you know
why are your rate is so much higher?
There are several different categories of balcony
cabins. The rate of $999 is for a BI. There are only four
category BI cabins on the ship. It looks like it may be a
case of false advertising because there was only one
cabin available. The rate of $999
is for cruise only. You need to add another $63 in taxes.
Total is $1062. The cabin and balcony in this particular
cabin will be smaller.
Do I have to select from
only the cabins that you are offering?
I can get you included in the group in any type of cabin you
prefer. Just tell me what category you would like. The
rate will be at the prevailing rate. (this is the price that
is being advertised daily)
Can I get a specific cabin?
Yes, you may always select a location within the
category you request. (Mishap, Forward, Aft, or near
elevator) Please be aware that once a cabin # is assigned,
you have given up any chance for an upgrade.
04. Can I get a cabin next to my buddy?
Yes, of course. However once a cabin is assigned, you
relinquish any chance of receiving an upgrade.
05. Can you put our cabin as
close to XXX and YYY as possible?
I will forward your request to XXX and YYY and if they
agree, I will do what I can to make sure you are close to
06. Is there a safe in the cabin?
there an iron in the cabin?
Irons are considered fire
hazards and are prohibited.
You need to send your
clothes out to be pressed.
08. What items are not
allowed onboard the cruise ship?
Weapons, illegal drugs,
and other items that could interfere with the safe operation
of the ship or the safe and secure environment of our guests
and crew are prohibited.
The following are examples of items that are
not allowed onboard. These and
other similar items will be confiscated upon being found.
Firearms & Ammunition, including realistic replicas.
Sharp Objects, including knives and scissors. (Note:
Personal grooming items such as safety razors are allowed.)
Illegal Drugs & Substances
Candles & Incense
Coffee Makers, Irons, & Hot Plates
Baseball Bats, Hockey Sticks, Cricket Bats, Bows & Arrows
Skateboards & Surfboards
Martial Arts Gear
Self-Defense Gear, including handcuffs, pepper spray, night
Flammable Liquids and Explosives, including lighter fluid
Dangerous Chemicals, including bleach and paint.
08. What is the square footage of the cabins?
Most cabins are about the size of a
college dorm room. They do contain a private bathroom
specific dimensions, please go to the cruise line's website.
09. What size beds are in the rooms?
Two twins that can convert into a queen.
10. What kind of electrical power will be on the ship. Will
it be compatible with US power or the European power?
Electrical Voltage is North American standard -- 110
On our trips to Europe, the hotels furnished adapters on
request. The cruise ships, however, all used the
standard 110 volts.
I want to share an Inside Cabin
with my boyfriend - I was looking at the photos on cruise
line’s website, and their pictures of the Inside Cabin
showed 2 single beds. Is it possible to have one bigger bed
(full/queen/king) in an Inside Cabin instead of two single
The two individual beds
can be pushed together to make one
queen size bed.
Will you please let the
cruise line know that the beds should be together and not
Re, the beds-- should
the beds not be arranged the way you like upon arrival, all
you need to do is
speak with your cabin attendant. The beds
can be arranged as singles or a queen. I will request that
the beds be placed together. However, if they are not, just
talk to your attendant on the first day. He will correct by
like a nice balcony cabin. Can
you tell me the difference?
The higher and more
mid-ship the cabin is located, the more expensive the
cabin becomes. I can get you onboard in whatever
category cabin you wish.
did a check on my reservation and it states "Stateroom:
Deck Eight,Deluxe Oceanview Stateroom #XXXX" and not a
balcony as per registration request. Can you please let
me know what is going on?
refers to its category
Balcony staterooms as deluxe oceanviews.
The cabin does have a balcony. The next category up is
For example, here is a direct paste
from RCCL's website on E1/2/3
Superior Oceanview Stateroom
Two twin beds (can convert into queen-size),
private balcony, sitting area and a private
bathroom. (206 sq. ft., balcony 42 sq. ft.)
Deluxe Oceanview Stateroom
Two twin beds (can convert into queen-size),
private balcony, sitting area with sofa, and a
private bathroom. Rates vary from deck to deck.
(184 sq. ft., balcony 46 sq. ft.) .
Can you please tell
me what the balcony cabin looks like?
Is there a sliding door
that will let us go outside?
Please go to the
cruise line’s website. Click on the ships. Then select
the specific ship. Then go to deck plans. You will be
able to see cabin specifics there.
Every balcony cabin we have seen had a
sliding door to the outside balcony.
16. How do I
get a Cabin Upgrade?
you wish to be 'assured' of a better cabin, you
will need to pay for it.
It is true we
usually receive several free
upgrades for every trip, but we can't
depend on them. I am the
one who decides which passengers get these special upgrades.
I assign this perk based on two criterion: earliest
passengers booked and passengers
who have traveled with us on several previous cruises.
Upgrades are one of the many
rewards for traveling with the
However, if you "ask" for a free upgrade,
I have bad news.
I have a firm
who ask for Free Upgrades automatically
go to the end of the line.
17. If we purchase an oceanview
cabin would it be possible to get an upgrade on a later date
to a balcony cabin?
The ability to upgrade to a balcony would be based on
the ship's availability at the time of your request. You
would have to pay the prevailing rate for the balcony.
There are no "free" upgrades from an oceanview to a balcony
DANCE CLASSES ON CRUISE TRIPS
01. Are the dance classes included in the cruise price?
Yes. We generally have three sessions
on the Caribbean Dance Cruise.
However there aren't dance classes
on the Destination cruises. We
have discovered that the passengers want to spend all of
their leisure time in port seeing the sights, not on the
ship taking a dance class. There seems to be enough dance
venues onboard the ship in the evenings to satisfy our group
needs. Most of us are too pooped from the day to stay up
much past midnight”
02. How many dance workshops are scheduled?
We have three for the Western Caribbean Sailings.
03. Are there beginner dancers that join you for the
cruises, or are they all seasoned veterans?
We have all levels of dancers. The cruise is a great
way to meet new people. I might add
the moment someone decides to sign up for the dance cruise,
they typically take some of our group classes as a way to
04. I just signed up for your dance
cruise. Are there any classes I should take before the
Everyone on our trips is surprised by
the amount of Ballroom Dancing. In addition to the two
Formal Dances, there is always a Ballroom Combo in the
Atrium that plays ballroom music.
Swing Dancing is the most valuable. In particular,
Foxtrot, Waltz and Cha Cha come in pretty handy as well.
MEDICAL AND EMERGENCY QUESTIONS
01. Are there any medical facilities or such a thing as
a ship's doctor? How would a medical emergency be handled?
medical emergencies are very rare on cruise trips, but the
ship is still required to have a well-trained doctor on
So far, we have been pretty fortunate. One man had a
battle with kidney stones. Another woman caught a
24-hour virus. The worst problem so far was a bout
with pneumonia. Fortunately he had travel insurance,
so he was able to dodge a stiff bill.
Should you require medical attention while on board, the
infirmary staff is available 24 hours. The medical staff is
from the fields of Emergency Medicine and/or Family
Practice. The physicians are independent contractors and,
as such, are entitled to render services at a customary
charge. The charge for their services will be applied to
your onboard account.
02. How can someone reach me in case of an emergency?
contact you via the Maritime Telecommunications Network
Shore-to-Ship telephone service at 1-877-225-7447
01. Could you please call or Email me
with information on apparel, etc. How many formal nights
02. I have lots of girl questions on clothing, packing and
I will cover all those topics in my
group emails and at the
01. I am a past cruiser on xxx;
do I still get my perks?
Yes, please provide your past guest number on the cruise
I have been on several XXX Cruises in the past, but not for
several years. Is there a time limit for the 'past
Please call the cruise line’s toll free number and a
representative will check your history.
03. What about past cruiser
It is the passenger’s responsibility to secure the
coupon and then give it to me. After I have the coupon in
hand, I will apply any applicable discount.
Please be sure to thoroughly read the fine print. Cruise
coupons are specific to ships and sail dates. Some cannot
be applied to groups. Coupons must be applied prior to
04. Did I see a communication
regarding a party on the cruise for previous cruisers only?
How do they determine if you have been on XXX Cruise line
before?I mean, they didn't tattoo me with a XXX
Cruise mark. I went several years ago on the XXX.
Yes. There is a party on board the ship for previous
Carnival Cruise Line Guests as well as
RCCL and Norwegian. Basically every cruise line has
this feature. Please call the following XXX
Past Cruiser Line directly. They
will confirm your status and provide you with your past
05. I am recently
divorced and have gone back to using my maiden name. I
registered using my maiden name and now I just realized that
my past guest status was in my married name. Will you
contact the cruise line and have them change my name on my
past guest status so I will get all my benefits?
It is the passenger's responsibility to contact the cruise
line's past guest department directly when there is a change
of name or address.
You will need to phone the Past Guest Department at 1
800 929-6400 and let them know about your name change,
so you will receive your past guest benefits. Or you may
email a CCL representative
Be sure to include your past guest number. If you do not
know your past guest number enter your date of birth and
zip code.The system will only match you if your last
name, date of birth and telephone number
match Carnival's past guest database EXACTLY due to
You can e-mail the Crown & Anchor Society at
Or you can call the Crown & Anchor Society at
Hours of operation are Monday through Friday, 9 AM-11 PM
and Saturday through Sunday 10 AM-8 PM EST
01. How much cash should I bring? I don’t
have a clue what is reasonable per person. Is it $150/day or
I can't give you a specific dollar amount because the amount is
totally an individual matter based upon personal preferences.
Are you planning on gambling while onboard the ship? How many
beers/margaritas are you planning on drinking while you are on
shore? Will you be using taxis while in port? What about all those
"street vendors" who are selling T-shirts, beach towels, etc.?
Are you going to want to get a massage on the beach in port?
You can use your Sail and Sign card for all purchases made on the
ship including shore excursions offered through the ship.
Use your own judgment. Will a couple hundred dollars be enough?
Only you can be the judge of that. . .
02. Can I receive a cash
advance on my credit card ?
Guest may use a debit or credit card,
while on board, to obtain a cash advance. Global Cash Access (GCA)
provides guests with cash advance services by using the guest’s
credit card or debit card, provided that the guest has an available
limit.For this service, GCA charges 5.5% of the value of the cash
advance requested or a flat fee of $5.50 if the amount requested is
$100 or less. There could be additional fees charged to the guest's
account by the credit card issuer. Both the Guest Services Desk and
the Casino offer this service.
03. Can I get cash on the ship?
Yes, there is an ATM machine. However, the supply of
money may be depleted prior to the end of the cruise.
04. Can I cash checks on board?
Guests may use their personal checks on board to acquire a cash
advance. Global Cash Access (GCA) provides this service by debiting
the guest's checking account, using the account number on the check.
Limits are determined by the monies currently available in the
guest's checking account that the check is drawn on. Just like a
debit card transaction, the money is immediately debited from the
For this service, GCA charges 5.5% of the value of the cash advance
requested or a flat fee of $5.50 if the amount requested is $100 or
less. As part of this transaction, a new GCA check is generated for
the transaction amount and the guest is requested to endorse it over
to CCL in order to receive the cash. The guest's personal check is
returned to them after the bank account number is obtained from the
bottom of the check.
Both the Guest Services Desk and the Casino offer this service
returning guests get a discount?
Hi Marla, I definitely want to go again. I had so much fun last
year. Please add my name to the
list. Currently, I've no roommate though I'm inviting a few friends
to join me. My birthday is close to this trip,
so this cruise would be a great present to
myself and great way of celebrating.
By the way, since I am a past guest, is this the correct rate for me
or would the rate be lower?
Sorry, the price isn't any lower due to your past guest status.
The cruise lines set the policy; I have no choice but to follow
01. I have not taken a lesson at
SSQQ for a long time. Do I have to be a member now to be
able to go on the cruise?
Cruise is open to all.
Is there a maximum total of people who can go on the
The thing to remember is that almost all cruise trips sell
The good news is that as long as
there is space on the ship, I can continue to add people to
the group. The bad news is the only
space available is usually the expensive cabins (for obvious
reasons - price - they are the last to go). For
certain, you will have to pay the "Prevailing Rate" which is
always higher than the original group discount.
03. Can we bring a bottle back with us from any of the ports
Yes, you may bring back wine. It will be stored as you
get back on board the ship until you are ready to debark.
04. Is there shopping on the boat for anything we
Yes, there are several different types of shops on board
the ship. Please refer to the cruise line’s website for
If you are a first-time cruiser, rest
assured that practically whatever you forget can be
purchased on board or at the first port of call.
05. Where can I get luggage tags?
The tags will be included with your cruise documents.
You may get additional at the pier if necessary
when you prepare to board the ship. When you are
packing to leave the ship, you can get extra tags at the
06. How do I
get to the cruise ship in Galveston?
Go see our
Map to Galveston
07. What does PAX mean?
08. How can I get reserved parking at EZ Cruise in Galveston?
The EZ Cruise Parking Private Lot is located at 2727
Santa Fe Place @ 26th
Covered Parking is available and buses can handle your
luggage. Credit cards accepted. Parking is $55/7 days
drive up or $50/7 days if booked online at
Sorry, you will need to handle your own parking
09. What is a Tender?
Some harbors are not deep
enough for the massive cruise ships. The ships have to
put down anchor offshore. Consequently they have to
use smaller boats to ferry you to shore. These boats
are known as "tenders". It is always important to be
sure you know what time you are expected to be at the dock
to catch the final tender of the day.
10. Is the ship docked to a pier you can walk out on or do
you have to take a small boat from the ship to the shore?
Please refer to the ship itinerary
for each port. If it states
TENDERED you will be using a small boat to go to shore,
otherwise you will be walking ashore.
11. During the cruise, what will I
need with me to get back on the ship?
At the pier, you will receive a SeaPass /Sail & Sign
card once you're all checked in. That card is one of the
most important things you'll have onboard - besides your
camera and sunscreen. The card works as:
Your boarding pass at all ports of call
Be sure to keep it with you at all times!
12. Do I need to pack my hair
A hair dryer is provided in the bathroom or at the
desk/vanity in the stateroom.
13. Is there a curfew?
on board the ship. However there is always a deadline
to get back to the ship if you are onshore.
14. Will my cell phone work in Europe?
It depends on your cell phone plan. Call your provider
and ask them. They should know.
we get a list of everyone's room number?
Yes, it will be in a group email sent following final
Do you know of anything the ship
does for birthdays or can do? If I bring balloons, do they
have helium or can I bring a small disposable tank of that?
Royal Caribbean offers
Birthday, Anniversary and Special Occasion Cakes for a
nominal fee of $7.95 USD.
There are two types of cakes available: chocolate sponge
cake with chocolate butter cream or vanilla sponge cake with
vanilla butter cream, both are decorated with flowers on the
left side of the cake. These cakes are 6" round and serve
2-10 people. The name will be written on the cake with a
candle placed on top. A minimum of 6 hours advance notice is
required. All cakes that are ordered by 12 noon will be
served that evening in the main dining room.
The cake will be charged to your Seapass card or credit card
upon request at time of ordering the cake onboard the ship.
If you don't want to purchase a whole cake, just tell the
Main Dining Room waiter about the special occasion and who
it's for. The waiters will sing a birthday song - with a
slice of cake (based on the daily cake offerings for that
evening) and a candle prior to serving you the dinner
dessert, free of charge.
Sorry, but no you can't bring helium on board the ship, nor
does Royal Caribbean have the capability to provide helium
for your request.
17. Is there any type
of special celebration for anniversaries?
Yes. If you don't want to purchase a whole cake, just
tell the Main Dining Room waiter about the special occasion
and who it's for. The waiters will sing a
birthday/anniversary song - with a slice of cake (based on
the daily cake offerings for that evening) and a candle
prior to serving you the dinner dessert, free of charge.
Refer to the cruise line’s website for additional info.
18. Will the ship furnish a significant dance band (5 or more
piece) for the Formal Night Dancing?
Typically there is a live band for all
Formal Night parties. Sometimes it is an actual
orchestra, sometimes it is a trio. I don’t know
the specifics as to what band is playing on the ship.
Please contact the cruise line directly.
19. It appears at though a lot more women are going on this
cruise. That makes it less fun
for me. Do you think you could put
an M or F on
the list of who is going by their
name so I can decide if I wish to go?
This would not be appropriate.
and I have decided to be roommates. As we are new in our
relationship, we would like to keep this matter private as
long as possible. Can we expect
your discretion until we become more public with it.
Of course I will maintain your privacy.
What will happen
if there is a hurricane?
Hurricanes are a real problem for our
summer dance cruises. Since the Hurricane Season
encompasses the months of June through November,
the presence of these powerful storms remains a real threat. So
far, out of our nine summer cruises, five have been directly
affected by Hurricanes.
Fortunately, in four of these situations, our ship simply
skipped a scheduled port and went somewhere else. No
big deal. However on our ill-fated 2005 "Rita
Rhapsody" Trip we ran into major Hurricane-related
headaches. You might want to
read the story for more
Due to the unpredictable nature of hurricanes it may not be
possible to give information about itinerary changes in
advance of the sailing. The cruise line's main priority is
the safety of it's guests and crew, as well as the
vessel. It is rare for a cancellation to occur due to an
impending hurricane. In some instances an itinerary
deviation is implemented to avoid a storm. Hurricanes have
been known to change their course drastically at the last
minute. Guests that have any questions should contact the
cruise line's Reservations department the day prior to
sailing, as that is when we will have definitive
information. They will always make decisions that assure the
cruise experience will be a great one and that all on board
are totally safe.
Hurricanes, tropical weather
won't dampen cruises
Thurs., August 9,
2001 6:00 p.m. ET
Written by Lucas J. Mire,
It's one of Mother Nature's cruel
jokes that summer vacation time
coincides with hurricane season.
Each year, the millions of
vacationers who take to beachfront
or island destinations could find
themselves in danger if a tropical
storm or hurricane develops.
Even if the storms aren't
particularly deadly - - the recent
soaker Tropical Storm Barry, for
instance - - they still can unleash
rains that could put a damper on the
perfect summer getaway. At worst,
mandatory evacuations could truncate
the tranquility of your beach
Not so if you're on a cruise ship,
say industry executives.
"Fortunately or unfortunately, our
captains and all of us have lived
through plenty of hurricane seasons,
and we do think ahead for
contingencies, of where to go if a
storm developed," said Roger Blum,
cruise director for Carnival
That's good news for cruisers
because experts at The Weather
Channel say the worst of tropical
season is still on the horizon.
Cruises are made for fun in the
"Although we've had two tropical
storms already, the entire peak of
the hurricane season is yet to
come," said Stu Ostro, a senior
meteorologist at The Weather
Channel. "And that includes the peak
in typical cruise routes to and from
the Caribbean islands."
Ostro said that tropical storms
Allison and Barry were typical
early-season storms, and set the
stage for the predicted
above-average 2001 hurricane season.
"Allison and Barry formed in the
Gulf of Mexico, which is typical of
early season storms," he said. "But
now we're getting to the time of
year where hurricanes that are borne
in the Atlantic sweep across the
Pete Donohue and his wife Dana
showed up for their honeymoon cruise
and were told they were sailing to
different islands because of a
hurricane brewing in the Caribbean.
The news didn't ruffle their plans,
or enjoyment of the trip.
"They said, 'here's your new
itinerary,'" said Donohue, whose
cruise was rerouted from the eastern
Caribbean to the western Caribbean.
"And, you know what? I couldn't have
Captains use radars in conjunction
with other tools to monitor the
Blum says Donohue's reaction is
"Very few people are upset, but some
are disappointed. The reality sets
in that there's nothing they can do
about it," he said. "The vast
majority of people appreciate that
we have the flexibility to stay out
the away of the storm and still give
them a good vacation."
"I was originally looking forward to
going to St. Thomas, but what are
you going to do?" asked Donohue.
Blum says Carnival takes the
unpredictable nature of tropical
weather into account when setting up
back-up routes for cruises.
"We already plan ahead, but it's
difficult to plan too much in
advance because each storm is
different," explained Blum. "It's
difficult to figure out, so we take
each storm and situation
"I never saw rain during the day and
it was never even rough. You would
have never known there was a
hurricane," remembered Donohue.
Even if the ship would have run
across a hurricane, Blum says
Carnivals' ships are more than able
to handle the brutalities of
If showers do show up, passengers
can take advantage of indoor
"In the Carnival fleet, the ships
are big enough to withstand
hurricane conditions, but we will do
everything possible to avoid it,"
said Blum. "It isn't just the
safety, it just wouldn't be
comfortable. Kathy Lee wouldn't be
out on the deck with a piña colada."
Ironically, ships may be able to
avoid the big storms, but still can
be doused by scattered showers. An
on-and-off rainstorm dogged a
four-day Caribbean cruise Michael
Lappin and several friends took last
"The weather was pretty miserable
the whole time; not storming, just
raining," said Lappin, who made the
most of inside entertainment offered
on the ship. "It wasn't the cruise
ship's fault. You can't control the
weather. The staff kept everyone
After all the contingency plans are
made and precautions are taken, Blum
says there's not much else to be
"We just watch The Weather Channel
and get out of the way," he said.
22. What's SSQQ’s view on
bringing a teenager along? She's 13 and tends to ignore us
completely, even on cruises. Just does the teen program.
You may certainly bring your 13 year old daughter
along. Please be aware that there are rarely any other
children or teenagers in the group. She
may feel "out of place" if she
sticks solely with our group. The cruise line has a
teen program though.
23. What’s the weather like in XXX?
Go to Yahoo or Google and type in “Ask
Weather". Once you get to their website you just type in
the city/country name and it will pull up the current
weather but there is an option to pick a month. You will
get the average high/low, humidity and precipitation,
etc. It is an easy way to get all of the advance info for
planning all in one place.