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jason99 10-21-2010 06:11 PM

My wife and I are trying to decide between going for 7 or 14 days out of San Juan on a Southern Caribbean Cruise. We were thinking of doing 7 days and then a week touring Puerto Rico ourselves just for a change and to hang out at the beach and do some scuba diving but then on the other hand it would be easier just to plan on staying on the boat the whole time and doing the 14 day but I have only been on one other cruise with a bunch of friends years ago (and my wife has never been on one) so I have a few questions just wondering if we will get tired of being on the ship for 2 weeks, or maybe not tired of it but wondering if it will put us over our budget. Here are a couple of my questions. Any input would be great.
1. I think i would be interested in those courses they mention, peculiarity the cooking and photography courses BUT do those cost anything?
2. We are going to "splurge" and get a balcony because they are very reasonably priced on this cruise and i can't imagine a better spot to just sit and chill reading a book but because of this i don't want to be spending a lot of extra money so.....
2a) on most of the ports in the southern Caribbean are we going to be able to head off and find a nice beach to hang out and do some snorkeling on our own without much of an expense?
2b) Is there anything stopping me from buying a few bottles of wine in Puerto Rico and bring them into our room to enjoy on our balcony?

3. Is there enough variety of food that you are not sick of it after 14 days?

That is all i can think of right not but i am sure i will think of more.


jason99 10-21-2010 06:52 PM

Just thought of one more..

We don't really drink much pop (soda for you americans) as we prefer juice, ice tea or milk. Are the juice and milk included? I'm quite sure tea and coffee are correct?

peter l 10-22-2010 10:03 AM

Hi Jason99, and welcome to Cruise-Chat. I'm sure that you will get lots of great input from the group here. I'll try to answer some of your questions but you'll get many from a lot more seasoned that me.
I know that I could spend 14 days (haven't done it yet) on board as 7 never seems to be long enough for us. Perhaps, if money is somewhat of an issue, you could look at the difference between staying on board for 14 days vs a hotel stay. You could always check out all inclusives in Puerto Rico also. The longest we have stayed in San Juan was two days prior to our last cruise. We have been there several times and there is plenty to do and see there. To answer some of your questions:
1. Some courses are free and others are not. You would have to check in the info provided.
2. Once you have a balcony, you will never go back; it is so great to have it available to watch as you port and just to relax on sea days and no better way to wake up or just before you go to bed that enjoy looking out at the sea.
2a)You can research using the find button in various sections (Port Chat for instance) and get lots of recommendations on beaches and other things of interest that can be done by taking a taxi, public transportation in some cases, or within a short walk that cost very little.
2b) Bringing alcohol on board is a no-no and it will be held until the night before you finish your cruise and its just not worth trying it.
3. FOOD - There are so many choices on ships that I would think that you can definitely get by with being spoiled for 2 weeks. There are great selections in the dining room and other venues on board that come with the price of your cabin. You will find many juice selections, milk, tea and coffee at all your sittings that are included.

I'm sure you'll get lots of help with your questions.

Good luck


Jill SC 10-22-2010 12:30 PM

We never cruise for less than 14 days. There is lots to do on board and you will not find it a problem. And most princess ships have laundrymats so you don't have to pack extra clothes for a longer cruise.
There is lots of variety of food so even repeats like chicken will be prepared differently. Milk with your meals is not a problem and you can find iced tea and juice as well as tea and coffee.
Many of the computer courses have a fee, but there are often cooking demos, digital photography lectures, language and dancing lessons which do not cost anything. And sometimes there are guest lecturers on board that can be very interesting.
The Caribbean is great for planning your own thing and finding transportation off of the ship. Just remember to give yourself extra time to be back on board the ship.

jason99 10-22-2010 04:59 PM

Well we have booked, now just wondering if i should change my room or not. It was $100 extra (total for two) to upgrade to a BD balcony room. What i really want is a BD in the middle of Baja deck but right now am at the back of the ship on Aloha. Is it worth it to upgrade or should I just go with the min and be surprised as to what room we get. The guy from Vacations to go was telling me that BD balcony's on Baha deck are larger, is that correct? Wanted to be mid ship thinking it will be more handy and so that it is calmer for my wife who thinks she may get sea sick.

Any thoughts?

jason99 10-22-2010 05:00 PM

Oh, and thanks for the input so far, i was surprised by the comment about the alcohol as i thought i read somewhere else on the site you could bring a bottle or two??

Any info on if there is any cost for photography courses and/or cooking would be great.

Bub 10-24-2010 08:23 AM

Hi Jason,
You will love the balcony !! On Carnival, adult guests are allowed to bring 1 bottle of wine each. Princess does not permit this I assume.


Cruise Fanatic 10-24-2010 09:01 AM

Wine is an exception. Most cruise lines will/can charge a corkage fee if you bring it to the dining room. We have a frequently asked questions section which links to cruise lines beverage policies. See here.

jason99 10-24-2010 06:59 PM

Thanks, that gives the info straight up, guess if i read the whole contract i would have known that. If anyone has anymore info about the courses that would be great or if they have taken them if they were good or not.....

Travel Bear 02-19-2011 05:12 PM

We were on this ship from San Juan last May and will be agin this April. You can bring wine and soda on board the ship. You can not bring other types of alcohol. There is a duty free store in the port or you can purchase in San Juan. We brought 2 6 packs of soda and several bottles of wine in the port stop, placed them directly in our carryon and walked on. There is no need to hide your purchase - it is allowed.

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