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azsigo 10-27-2007 03:06 AM

My first post guys,
I'm retiring from the military after 20+ years, and am pretty active. I'm looking to do a short cruise to see if I like them. Maybe from LA or San Diego.

I don't mind having seating with another couple or two for one or two meals...meeting people is good, but would also like the option of a burger or buffet or a sit down without others.

No black tie dinners for me. Good on board casino and shows, decent lounges, and active on shore activities is better. Not concerned about 5 star eating (service makes up for that). Just looking for a non stressful environment that gives me a chance to lose money in a casino, watch a good show, and hang out in a port town for a while.

Any suggestions??

azsigo 10-27-2007 03:06 AM

My first post guys,
I'm retiring from the military after 20+ years, and am pretty active. I'm looking to do a short cruise to see if I like them. Maybe from LA or San Diego.

I don't mind having seating with another couple or two for one or two meals...meeting people is good, but would also like the option of a burger or buffet or a sit down without others.

No black tie dinners for me. Good on board casino and shows, decent lounges, and active on shore activities is better. Not concerned about 5 star eating (service makes up for that). Just looking for a non stressful environment that gives me a chance to lose money in a casino, watch a good show, and hang out in a port town for a while.

Any suggestions??

LHP 10-27-2007 08:48 AM

I would give the Paradise a try.

Her cruises are usually reasonably priced. She does 3 and 4 day (I believe) from Long Beach, California.

Even the "formal nights" are not formal on Carnival. You can pass with business casual every night (even "formal night") . Polo shirt and khakis or dress pants and a long sleeve shirt.

Besides the formal dining room, your cruise fare includes hamburgers, hot dogs, a buffet on Lido, 24 hour pizza. sushi during certain times of the day and 24 hour room service. (although a $1 tip for room service is pretty standard)

The only "food" thing has cost extra is soda and bottled water (but you can carry on your own), alcohol and speciality coffees/desserts on the Promenade.

If you are cruising as a single person, you will be hit by the "single penalty" since all rates are based on double occupancy.

The food is not 5 star, but you do get your money's worth.

Give it a try and see how you like it!!

drlivingston 10-28-2007 02:20 PM

Welcome, Azsigo... Cruising will fit into your rigorous lifestyle. I was an army brat and I am very happy with the cruise lifestyle. I have some great friendships that have developed from meeting people in the formal dining room. You always have the lido deck option of eating whatever buffet items that they are serving on that particular evening. That is more of a freestyle dining option. Your "at sea" days are, typically, going to be your formal nights. Avoid them if you must but the food is often spectacular.

Cruise Fanatic 10-29-2007 09:14 AM

Congratulations on your upcoming retirement. I am retired Air Force. Your limited on your choices for a short cruise out of LAX you have either the Paradise (as already mentioned) or Royal Caribbean on the Monarch Of The Seas. Either should be a good choice to give you a taste of cruising. Both have some pretty good rates.

CruiseDad 10-29-2007 10:35 AM

Be sure to check out the military discount. It is usually the best discount going. If you book through Carnival with a Personal Vacation Planner just tell them you are Military, They will ask you to fax your DD214 and a photo ID within 72 hours. It then becomes part of your carnvial record and you will be eligible for Military discount just for the asking. I'm sure other lines are similar. Could be worth a few hundred bucks. I like seeing Dress Uniforms on formal night. Consider bringing it and showing your patriotism, you could be surprised how many people appreciated it.


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