Since I didn't share many details, I've been getting a lot of questions about our cruise.
So, I thought I'd oblige and answer a few. If you don't care about anymore cruise talk....come back tomorrow and I'm sure I'll be talking about my crazy baby again!
Yay! I know you can't wait!
~Where did y'all go?
We had two days at sea (first and last) and then we stopped at Royal Caribbeans private island Labadee, Haiti and in Falmouth, Jamaica. We have cruised to Jamaica previously and did the popular thing to do on that trip, so we decided to just walk around the secure shopping area, got back on the boat after about an hour, and spent the rest of the day by the pool on the ship. We did however love going to RC's private island Labadee. It was beautiful, clean, and since it's supported by RC, it felt a little more secure. Plus, you could use your sea pass cards (cards everyone gets when boarding you use to buy stuff with) for anything on the island. They have private cabanas that could be rented and would be great for a big crowd, but since it was just the two of us, we were happy with the complimentary pop up cabanas. Also, on they provided a bbq lunch for everyone that day. When in Jamaica, you were on your own for lunch.
~How did you like Royal Caribbean?
We had only sailed on Carnival ships previously, so this was our first Royal Caribbean cruise. Though we have no problem with Carnival, Royal Caribbean did seem like a totally different cruise. First off, personally, we thought the ship didn't seem as ummmmm......cheesy. The ship seemed much more classier than the Carnival ships we had sailed on. Though they both seemed just as clean as the other, for some reason the Royal Caribbean just seemed to be nicer. Our room was for sure much nicer than anything we've had on Carnival.
The biggest thing we noticed though was that there were way more kids on Royal Caribbean than Carnival. My personal opinion, Carnival cruises always seem like one big party (and I have no problem with that) but Royal Caribbean seemed much more family orientated. I've already told several people, but there were a good number of small children on our cruise. I'd say small children made up at least 30% of the cruise population. They renovated the ship a few years ago and when they did, they put in a huge kids splash pad/pool area. It was really nice. Every time we walked by, we'd talk about how much Olivia would love it. Also, we heard from several other parents that they had a great kids camp that was free of charge. They also have the characters from Shrek and Madagascar on the ship all week and kick off the cruise with a Dreamworks parade. Obviously they are trying to compete with Disney, though we all know that is pretty much impossible, I think they did a pretty good job for the much lower price. Personally, the kids didn't bother us and to be honest, it made us miss the girls even more. However, do expect small kids to be at dinner and the shows. So, if you don't like kids, I wouldn't recommend this ship.
All that being said, we really enjoyed Royal Caribbean. The service all week long was exceptional. Anything we asked for was in our hands in minutes. We'd recommend them and plan on cruising with them again. In fact, we're already talking about taking the girls on the same ship next year. However, if we were to take another cruise with just us, we'd probably go with a different line or a different ship.
~Were you worried about the sickness going around lately?
Royal Caribbean has been in the news lately for viruses going around and getting entire ships sick. Yes, I'll be honest, I was a little concerned. As you all know, our immune systems have been kinda weak all winter, but we were past our refund date and too many arrangements regarding the kids had already been made. So, we couldn't back out on the possibility that we could get sick. I just was kinda hoping for the best. Royal Caribbean though was on top of it in my opinion. There were hand sanitizer stations everywhere on the ship. Everywhere !!! They always had at least 8-10 stations before you walked into any dining area and multiple crew members who soul job was to stand there and make sure anyone who walked through the doors sanitized their hands. I seriously saw them turn back several people who did not sanitize their hands and refuse to let them enter till they did. By the first day or two, it was second nature for everyone. So much so, we were all sanitizing our hands even when we walked out of the dining area. From our knowledge, we didn't hear of anyone on our ship getting sick.
(Just under 6,000 people on the ship...that's always crazy to me)
~Did you do any of the drink packages?
In the last year or so, several cruise lines have started offering drink packages. If you're not familiar with cruises, that is how they make their money...drinks. I'm not just talking about alcohol either. Cruise ships usually offer tap water, unsweetened tea, coffee, and lemonade for free. Anything else, even coke, you have to pay for. We originally weren't going to purchase a drink package, but we had been on the boat for two whole hours and had already spent $30 in drinks (only two drinks for each of us), so I quickly talked David into getting a drink package for the both of us. It ended up being worth it for us. We went with the next to last drink package for $55 a day and that got us all the mixed drinks, beer, wine, coke, and bottle water we wanted all week. It was nice because past cruises we've had to keep up with what we had spent all week and let's be honest, that can be a little difficult after a few days of vacation. This way, we knew what our bill was going to be at the end of the week with no worries. It was so nice to just walk up to the bar and get something without having to worry how much had we already spent. In case your wondering, yes, we both got our $55 worth of drinks each day.
I think that covers the questions that I keep getting asked repeatably. If I missed anything you're curious about, shoot me a message and I'll be happy to answer.
Oh, and because you know I like to keep things real....
Seriously y'all, we had a great time. I am so thankful we got the opportunity to go and spend some time together without the kids and I can't wait to do it again.
But.....our marriage real and it isn't sunshine and rainbows all the time.
We did realize that we can't spend more than four days with just the two of us. After four days, we need a buffer. Though the majority of our week was awesome, reality....we fought most of the day on Friday. Yep, we were in the middle of paradise and we were fighting. As usual, we were fighting over something that a week later we couldn't even tell you what we were fighting about.
That's not to say we're heading to divorce court or that we don't love each other any less, it's just the reality. Someone made the comment that our trip seemed to be perfect and it was wonderful, but it was real life too.
Which usually comes with silly disagreements! : )