Carnival Faster to the Fun (FTTF) on your Galveston cruise

Purchase Carnival Faster to the Fun through their shore excursions page well in advance of your cruise.
Purchase Carnival Faster to the Fun through their shore excursions page well in advance of your cruise.

I am sailing on Carnival next year, and I am excited. I have taken several cruises on Royal Caribbean, and I love them. However, it was time to try something new. One of the things I love on Royal is their suite perks, and this is something where I feel that Carnival is lacking. To make up for that, I just bought Carnival Faster to the Fun for my cruise early next year. While I will obviously review that earlier next year, I want to let you know what it is and how to but it if that fits with your vacation plans.

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Carnival Vista sailings cancelled

With three Carnival Vista sailings cancelled, passengers need to make alternate vacation plans. Carnival offered significant compensation. Galveston is still a great vacation destination for those with tickets booked.

The Carnival Vista has struggled with propulsion issues for the last several cruises. The June 15 sailing experienced minor disruptions, and the June 22 and June 29 sailings were significantly altered. While the ship has always functioned safely, it could not cruise at maximum speed. It now appears that the ship will need to dry dock to repair the problem. There are three Carnival Vista sailings cancelled. Passengers scheduled to depart July 6, 13, and 20 are being offered significant compensation by Carnival for their lost cruise.

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San Juan Embarkation Port and pre-cruise stay

So, overall, San Juan embarkation is smooth and it is an excellent port to embark from.  After landing, we went and picked up our luggage, and, as we flew first class, we got it fairly quickly.  We then headed for the taxi line.  Uber is not allowed to pick up passengers at the airport, so this was the only option.  But, it was set up very well.  A uniformed women took our destination when we reached the front of the fast moving line, told us our fare, and directed us to our taxi.  A taxi ride from the airport to Old San Juan, the best place to stay when leaving for a cruise as the pier is right there, takes about 30 minutes.  The streets can be quite narrow at times, so be prepared to stop a lot.  But, the scenery of the old forts and buildings makes for a pleasant drive. Continue reading “San Juan Embarkation Port and pre-cruise stay”

United First Class Meal and Service Between Houston and San Juan

United First Class Meal from Houston To San Juan.
United First Class Meal from Houston To San Juan.

Ok, as promised, here is a review of our United first class meal and flights to and from San Juan.  When we booked our cruise about a month from our sailing date, we immediately booked flights to San Juan.  Thankfully, the best deal for a flight, after some online searching, was through United. (At some point in the future I will discuss my trials and tribulations with the other major carrier out of my hometown, American Airlines, but I am still suffering from flashbacks).  We booked 2 coach class seats.  The route consisted of 2 flights each way, a Embraer EMB 175 regional jet between Midland and Houston and a Boeing 737-900 for the Houston to San Juan leg. Continue reading “United First Class Meal and Service Between Houston and San Juan”

Carnival Fascination Penthouse Suite Southern Caribbean Cruise Experience – Planning the Cruise

Mr. and Mrs. John Brawley Tophat in United first class on their flight to San Juan.
Mr. and Mrs. John Brawley Tophat in United first class on their flight to San Juan.

Hello all.  Mrs. Tophat and I just got back from an excellent Carnival Fascination Penthouse Suite cruise adventure to the Southern Caribbean.  Over the next few weeks we are going to share with you our entire cruise experience.  We sailed on May 20th from San Juan to St. Thomas, Barbados, St. Lucia, St. Kitts, and St. Marteen.  This cruise was about the ports of call.  We are gold cruisers with Carnival, having sailed with them many times out of New Orleans and Miami, so we were familiar with the Carnival experience.  We booked this cruise online via Carnival about a month before the sail date, so we had few options of cabins, and thus we ended up booking an extended grand suite on deck 6.  But, a few weeks before we sailed, the upgrade fairy called and offered us a Owners Penthouse Suite on deck 12. Continue reading “Carnival Fascination Penthouse Suite Southern Caribbean Cruise Experience – Planning the Cruise”