March 1, 2011 |
Queen Mary, meet Queen Victoria . That's pretty much how the introduction would go if these two Cunard ships -- one docked in Long Beach, one on its way to the Panama Canal -- could speak. Instead, the ships will exchange a whistle salute amid fireworks when they "meet" Thursday in Long Beach Harbor. Admission to the Queen Mary, usually $24.95 plus tax for adults, will be free to mark what Cunard calls a "royal rendezvous. " Queen Victoria is expected to sail into Long Beach Harbor between 5:30 and 6:15 p.m. and rendezvous with its sister ship between 6:15 and 6:45 p.m. The ship opens to visitors for free at 10 a.m.; guided tours and dining, however, are not free.
January 23, 2011 |
Pondering a cruise? There's an app for that. In fact, you'll find several you can use for planning, booking and enjoying cruises. Unless otherwise noted, all apps work on the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad (a few may also offer a specially designed version for iPad). BlackBerry and Android availability noted as applicable. Most are free or cost less than $5. Before you cruise Cruise Finder, by iCruise: This must-have app has itineraries for every major cruise line, searches for hot cruise deals and includes photos, deck plans, etc., for more than 220 cruise ships.
January 23, 2011
Here is a list of many of the lines that carry passenger traffic, along with a list of their vessels. Ships that are to have maiden voyages this year are also listed; check with the cruise line, though, because dates can change. AIDA Cruises, (011) 49-381-20-270707, http://www.aida.de . AIDAaura, AIDAbella, AIDAblu, AIDAcara, AIDAdiva, AIDAluna, AIDAsol (April 2011), AIDAvita AMA Waterways, (800) 626-0126, http://www.amawaterways.com . AmaCello, AmaDagio, AmaDante, AmaDolce, AmaLegro, AmaLotus (debuts September)
January 14, 2011 |
With Mexican cruises slumping in popularity, two of the largest ships serving the Port of Los Angeles are pulling up anchor for more lucrative markets elsewhere. Royal Caribbean said its 3,100-passenger Mariner of the Seas, after a Mexican Rivera voyage that begins Sunday, will leave the Port of L.A. for South America and Europe, ending up in Galveston, Texas. Norwegian Cruise Lines will pull its 2,348-passenger Norwegian Star out of the port in May. The ship will eventually settle in Tampa, Fla. Cruise line officials and port officials say the moves stem from the sour economy and continuing drug-related violence in Mexico.
January 2, 2011 |
Kevin Sheehan had a heck of a time on some recent cruises. First, he was roundly ridiculed by a tough-talking co-worker for his substandard deck work. Then he flopped in an attempt to lead a thousand passengers in a line dance. Wait. I thought cruises were supposed to be fun. They might be for viewers who tune in to watch Sheehan, 57, learn the ropes on the CBS reality TV show "Undercover Boss" at 9 p.m. PST Sunday. "Every single task I did was overwhelmingly hard 80% of the time," the chief executive of Norwegian Cruise Line said in a phone interview.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 10, 2010 |
They're called "floating cities," massive cruise ships that resemble skyscrapers and offer all the amenities of high-end resorts ? spas and casinos, Broadway shows and amusement parks, fine dining and luxury shopping. But the Carnival Splendor also offers a cautionary tale about just how vulnerable these mega-ships can be. Left powerless by an engine fire shortly after embarking on a seven-day cruise to the Mexican Riviera, the Splendor is expected to be towed into port in San Diego late Thursday.
October 10, 2010 |
Writing a consumer education column is an education ? always for me and, I hope, for readers as well. Each week their letters and e-mails tell of new and horrifying ways they've been victimized, sometimes by travel providers and sometimes, like me, by themselves. (See item 10.) Here are some of the biggest bloopers travelers can make: Failing to buy travel insurance: We heard from many readers after the Chilean earthquake shut down airports and the Icelandic volcano that fouled the skies and snarled travelers' plans.
HOME & GARDEN
August 28, 2010
Geriatrics physician Evelyn C. Granieri says traveling with elderly parents can be simplified. Her suggestions follow. Granieri is chief of the Division of Geriatric Medicine and Aging at Columbia University College of Medicine and New York Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center. • Gear your trip to your parent's health, stamina and mental state. Those who suffer from dementia can become more confused when they travel. • Avoid vacations that involve too much walking if your parent tires easily.
August 1, 2010 |
It was July in the Caribbean, and we were freezing. Five new friends and I, all of us solo travelers, were in the Ice Bar aboard the Norwegian Cruise Line's Epic, shivering beneath silver ponchos with furry hoods. We had paid $20 each for the privilege of having two drinks while sealed inside this 17-degree freezer at sea. We peeked out from our hoods to take in the bar made of ice, the 7-foot ice sculptures — a Viking and a bear — and the ice benches with their white faux fur throws.
August 1, 2010 |
To the solo traveler, the four most annoying words in the English language may be "based on double occupancy." Although the travel industry prefers to think people travel two by two, solo travelers are not an inconsequential demographic. About 25% of all Americans who travel domestically or abroad do so alone, according to a 2009 survey by D.K. Shifflet & Associates, a Virginia-based tourism and travel research company. Norwegian Cruise Line made waves by offering 128 "studio" suites, designed mainly for one person, on its Epic, which debuted last month.