I can't remember who mentioned about the onboard spas..but on VOS, they pushed this what they call, "detoxification" which apparantly is a process that removes the toxins from around the "fat" cells and the water that is trapped is immediatly released. You sweat it all out apparantly. <water retention we say>
I spoke with someone in the dining room waiting to debark. She said she went through it, and it did nothing for her. Granted everyone is different, but it wasn't worth the 150+ bucks she paid.
Sailboat -- Most of us don't live in an expensive urban area like DC or NY, and we certainly are not used to paying these prices! I've never set foot in a Starbucks, but coffee is free (with purchase of a meal) in most restaurants. I can pick up a good deli sandwich for 3.00-4.00. A mixed drink runs 5.00. A hotdog at the ball park is 2.00; we go to games on "Thirsty Thursday" when sodas and hot dogs are buy-one-get-one-free. My family doesn't "do" popcorn at the movies because it's ridiculously priced. The result: Being from the South, I AM shocked at the prices for these things on cruise ships!
Anyone -- Exactly what does the soda card pay for on RC? No room service sodas. What about sodas in the dining room? It covers juice, which would otherwise cost? Please explain!
Ken - They've proven that those 'treatments' don't work on shows like 60 mins., 20/20, etc. They're a bunch of hogwash, so I agree with what you said.
Sailboat - I think that's it too - cruises are promoted as being all-inclusive, so when people have to pay for things they thought were included, it can get irritating.
Mrs. Pete - Having you around for a week would certainly be a plus for us. We spend at least $120 for our family of 4 for dinner and the movies about every 4-6 weeks, the subs we buy are always between $7-$10, DH's coffee is usually $3-$4 a cup, and we go to Disneyland a couple times a month and spend $70-$150 each time even though we have annual passports. We were at the ballpark two weeks ago and a simple bag of peanuts was $5 and the cheapest seats in the house were $5 for the grass (no seats at all!). Most of the regular tickets were $15-$65 a seat. Hot dogs were $4. So, my question is, do you hire yourself out? :grin :grin We could use a money make-over to find the deals you find!
My point again - It's all about priorities and you're own experiences and situation.
Lady Jag -- It's not so much what I do as where I live. I live in the rural South, where the cost of living is low. Of course, there are two sides to that coin: salaries are low too. I'm a teacher with 13 years experience, and I just broke $35,000.
However, I do lots of things to maximize my income. I buy kids' clothes on ebay and at consignment shops (some of my own clothes come from there too). I eat kids' meals on the rare occasion that we go to fast-food places, and I drink only water at full-fledged restaurants. I completely agree with your last statement: it's all about priorities. I believe in slashing little expenses (for things that don't mean anything anyway -- like coffee) so that you have plenty left over for the things that you do care about.
If you seriously want a money-make-over, I suggest reading The Tightwad Gazzette. You'll find lots of crazy ideas that wouldn't work for you, but you'll also find plenty of sound advice that will save you money without causing significant lifestyle changes.
Lady.. THen I'm really glad I didn't fall for it. It's almost as if they use phsycology. They were certainly holding my attention, but I stuck to my guns. If it seems too good to be true, then it probably is.
:lol Too true! :lol If only there was some miracle cure to loose weight while sleeping, wash away wrinkles, and become toned and buff just by drinking one of those powdered shakes!! :lol :lol
Mrs. Pete - In So. Cal., your salary would range from $50,000 to $75,000 depending upon your level of education, but like you said, everything else goes along with that. I'm looking forward to moving to one of those less-expensive towns when we retire so we can spend all our spare time (& money) cruising!
dear mrs pete, rccl use to include the sodas with the meals at no additional fee. but as of a couple years ago they now charge a fee for sodas in the dining room but i am almost sure you may use your soda card in the dinning room if you have one or you may drink complimentary iced tea or lemon ade or juice orange or cranberry or apple is usually complementary at least it was last year. my children usually drink milk which is complimentary also with dinner.
Hey Haggis Hunter! My Scottish husband and I did our first cruise last summer. The biggest waste of money we found were the excursions. We went to Ensenada and Catalina Island and found that all of them drop you off in a shopping area with merchants rubbing their hands gleefully, waiting to fleece the tourists. We honestly regretted not staying on the ship more to enjoy the FREE activities. I'd save the money for a specific place/sight I want to see and not sign up for excursions just for its own sake.
P.S. My Scottish husband asked the waiter on the first night if he could have some extra cookies to take back to the cabin (fresh choc chip cookies were his dessert that night). Not only did the waiter give him a covered plate stuffed with cookies, but he did it every night thereafter, right after dinner. Yum!
don'tr worry Mrs. pete, you do not have to purchase any of these things on the ships. rccl usually has complimentary iced teas and lemon ades you can also get juices at the dinner table for no additional and the beverages at the breakfasat table include coffee and juices no additional fee. unless you want a speciality coffee which is priced like starbucks prices.$$$ yu really do not have to buy the extras that everyone is talking about unless you really want to ,after all we are on vacation. i do enjoy a cappuchinno every now and than, and i do splurge for this. the point i am trying to make is ,you can have a great time ,and not spend the x-tra monies. now, i do not recall bingo being so expensive ,i bought the one card for about 10 or fifteen dollars which allowed me to play all the games in a session. but i only had one card per game. that was fine with me. i had a good time, but did not win. maybe the prices went up? i also saw most people buying the deluxe packages which were 35. and up packages.
I think the alcohol coupons were a rip, drinks were cheaper if you purchased them on your own with tip 3.44 for a mixed drink and the coupons were 5$ and you could not use them for speciality drinks in the souvenir glasses. Only in a regular glass and it would have been 3.44 also. We used the soda coupons in the dining room each night, this must be different than the soda card? I never played bingo, I have never played and don't know how, is that lame or what? One day I plan to try it though not on a ship.
Hmmmmm...Bingo probably does seem like a rip-off until you win the last night's "cover-all" which I did on the Monarch a couple of years ago out of San Juan...the total winnings: a nice, RCCL check for an even (and VERY cool) $18,000...yes, folks, that is Eighteen THOUSAND dollars....makes those soda cards seems like a rip-off to me but what do I know????
And I won the Free Cruise Bingo on the Adventure last September - redeemed my prize to sail on the Mariner this September!!!!!!!!!! I believe I paid $15 for the card. I just had some time to kill before dinner and who would have believed my luck!
You can't win if you don't play, but I don't go crazy. I always play bingo once or twice, and "donate" $20 or so in the casino. It's "vacation money" and I budget just a little to gamble with - always under $100.
I actually thought Bingo was rather fun. My husband and I bought one 3-square packet for $35. We killed some time, had a bunch of fun and I don't think it was too expensive. Of course, the guy pulling the numbers was HILARIOUS so it was worth the entertainment itself.
Talk about high living expenses... I live in San Diego- SHEESH! Most things on that cruise ship was a bargain compared to what I pay for here. I spend about $7 for a lunch a few times a week, $5 for a cup of coffee on the weekend and $7 EASY on an alcoholic drink when I go downtown. It costs almost $30 to fill up my gas tank and $45 for my husband and I to go out to dinner!! Cruise ship prices were not shocking to me...
We spent quite a bit of money on our shore excursions and I found that was TOTALLY worth it! We bought one for each port we went to. BUT... none of the frilly shopping stuff. We bought one snorkel adventure, a kyaking tour and a jungle hike. We saw parts of Mexico that you would NOT see shopping around downtown.
The only thing we bought that was a waste of money was a recording of one of our excursions. Really not worth it...
Bottom line: It's vacation. Splurge, indulge and enjoy yourself!
i would like to say something in favor of the portraits on the cruise ship. my friends were visiting me a couple of days ago and they remarked about the portrait of me and george and the kids on our last cruise that was in my familly room. and it occured to me the only time i really get the whole familly together is when we are on vacation, and thats the only time we ever have a professional photographer take our pictures .it is really nice to see the familly dressed up and together. and i do feel that it is money well spent.
well lady jaq you will really be surprised at this, i go to the movies every week with my two children and my husband for 1.75 each and we go out to eat ,order pop corn, and a large soda for 8.25 total. and eat out either pizza or wendys for 16.00 plus 15% gratutity. with a full salad bar ,so i bet i topped mrs. pete and proud of it. lol