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Old 01-26-2008, 12:23 PM
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Hi I am new to this forum. but I have found a lot of help full info. here. This is my question the wife and I are planning a south american cruise. We have narrowed the choice down to a rccl on the Radiance of the seas and hal on the MS Statendam. We'er in are late 30's and have done a mediterranean cruise on costa {loved it} and a caribbean cruise on carnival {did not like as much as costa}. The wife and I loved the entertainment on costa and did not like the amount of drinking in the carnival and how informal the cruise was . We saw 3 fight on the ship and people wearing short in the dinning room , the food was great on both ships . Keeping that in mind , I would like some opinions on which cruise would be better for us
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Old 01-26-2008, 01:07 PM
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Given what you have posted, perhaps HAL is more to your liking. Much more formal than RCI which I gather is what you'd prefer.

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Old 01-26-2008, 01:42 PM
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Hi leedeeanne, and welcome to cruise-chat.com!

I also believe that HAL would be more to your liking, in general. But, I'd like to know more about your past cruises, and what you'd like to expect from your next. Which Costa and Carnival ships were you on? Do you prefer large ships (~80K+ gross tons) or smaller ones (<60K)? Set dining times, or the flexibility of dining when you wish?
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Old 01-26-2008, 01:57 PM
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Hi leedeeanne,

Welcome to Cruise-Chat! The time frame of your cruise would help as the experience can be different on RCCL depending on whether kiddos are in or out of school. I don't think your experience on CCL could be classified as the norm. I've been on several ships and a couple with CCL and never witnessed a single fight on any. Seen a few times when it looked like it might be possible but never actually blows exchanged. Three on one sailing has to be a fraternity convention or something. They have also changed some rules to cut back on the rep of drunken party ships. They now require at least one pax in each cabin be at least 25 yrs of age.

On HAL you'll be youngsters and on RCCL there won't be the really formal, tux wearing kind of thing and there will be a lot of families. I don't know between the two what would best suit what you're looking for, hope this helps. There may be other choices inbetween the two lines you listed that you may want to consider. Perhaps Princess or Celebrity would be a compromise between the two.

Cheers, Neil
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Old 01-26-2008, 05:25 PM
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My first cruise was on the costa concordia my second cruise was on the ccl glory. I think I need to cerify when we were on the glory there was only one fist fight the rest was just pushing and swaring that happen to the first 2 day of the cruise the rest was great.I liked sitting down having drinks with new people , sitting at dinner and listioning to there storys. It is just that we took ouwer kids and my mother on the ccl cruise and I did not like how the fights dominated the conerstion so much . I have read the age of the cruiser on hal are a lot older my concern is the there will not be alot of things to do in the evenings{ I may not party like i am 23 anymore but i do not have one leg in the grave yet } . I have read some good thing about rccl I just do not know if rccl is a party ship . the cruise we are looking at would be at the end of nov of the begining of jan 2009
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Old 01-26-2008, 05:41 PM
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Curing holidays, when kiddos are out of school there will be far more children onboard RCCL and Carnival as well as all other lines but especially these two. I agree that HAL may be a little more senior than you're looking for. My advice would be to get a good T/A that knows the cruise industry well and have them provide some direction on what would be a good experience for your exact wants, needs and age preferences. Off the cuff with the limited info I have now I'd again have you look into Princess and Celebrity. Both a little more formal and a little less over-run with kiddos and 20 somethings during the holidays.

Cheers, Neil
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Old 01-26-2008, 05:54 PM
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Another thing to consider is that there will likely be few kids on the itinerary you are considering. Many pax will instead be drawn to the ports, themselves. So, I'd go by itinerary first, ship second. As far as differences between the ships, Statendam is smaller and more intimate (but not tiny by any means) whereas Radiance of the Seas may offer more amenities.

As an example of itineraries with few kids, we did a Norwegian Fjords/Arctic Circle cruise this past summer, and there were only a handful of kids onboard, even though school was out. The age of my fellow cruisers doesn't bother me so much. On a port-intensive cruise such as the one you are considering, you'll be meeting some very well-traveled folks, as we did on our cruise, and I've usually found their stories very enjoyable.
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Old 01-26-2008, 05:54 PM
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Sorry I forgot to answer lisap question . I have only been on the mega liners I do not know what to expect on a smaller ship . We liked having dinner with new people , set dining times? we liked how when dinner was done on the costa cruise you would walk down to the theater to see the show , then after we would go some drinks. On the costa cruise there was 2 shows that started after each dinner sittings every night. on the glory there wasn't 2 shows every night, you would have to get there early to get good seats and 2 nights the entertainment did not start until 11.30 or midnight and for the last question the kids will not be with us so some adult entertainment would be nice
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Old 01-26-2008, 05:59 PM
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Hi again. We cross-posted. See my response just above yours.

HAL has a new option called As You Wish Dining where you are not assigned a table and dining time, but can arrive at the dining room when you like. It's pretty new, and has already been implemented on Statendam, so they should hopefully have any kinks worked out by the time you'd travel. You can still request a set dining time, as HAL is keeping traditional dining in place for roughly half the passengers. You should request either traditional or As You Wish dining when you book.

We found HAL entertainment to be very good -- not great, but above expectations. I haven't been on Royal Caribbean since 1999, so I can't comment there.

I do suspect the demographic will be older on HAL, but probably not by a lot given the itinerary.
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