Last Updated: 21-DEC-2008


12 day Caribbean cruise with Oceania


This was a 12 day Caribbean cruise with Oceania departing from Miami on 11 March.

We booked this cruise with Vacations-to-go on the web in September and for the two of us we 
paid under $4,500 including gratuities and $100 ship credit.

We decided to drive down and after dealing with a few inches of snow we left at 9:30 am and we got
into Savannah, Georgia around 7:30 PM. The following day was an easy 7 hour drive to our hotel in Ft. Myers, Florida  
 
We spent a few days in Fort Myers  staying at Fairfield Inn.

We stayed in Sleep Inn, Miami Springs which allowed up to park for free on the back lot..

We got on the ship at 2:00 or so.  No problems and the process was quick (less than 20 min).  

Photos

  • Drive down and around Flordia
  • Miami and the first few days on the ship
  • Virgin Gorda
  • Gustavia, St. Barthelemy, Guadeloupe
  • Roseau, Dominica
  • St. Lucia
  • Antigua
  • Tortola, British V.I.
  • Samana, Dominican Republic
  • Grand Turk, Turks & Caicos Islands
  • The last day on the ship and the the drive Home


    SHIP LAYOUT: I did not like a few aspects of this ship as much as some of the other ones that we have been on. First, the layout did not allow access to an upper deck in the rear of the ship. This area was reserved for the crew and could not be accessed by the guests. Another thing is that they kept it way too bright at night in the upper front of the ship. They did turn off the lights during the star program but it would be nice if they would shut off some of the lights after say 11 as it would not bother 95% of the guests as they have been asleep for many hours by then. This ship did not have a promenade deck that you could walk around on. It was on the sides but not in the front or back. I did not realize how much I missed this as I liked to sit on this area on some of the other ships. Also, being a smaller ship this lower deck picked up a great deal of spray depending on the weather. OCEANIA ALCOHOL POLICY: Now this I liked ! Wide open. The security guys when you came onto the ship with a bottle would joke with you. We ALWAYS either bring our own stuff on the ship (soda, wine, beer, or the local hard stuff ) or go without. WE DO NOT PAY for the overpriced drinks and generally make fun of those who do. Yes, we understand that they sell the cruise at a lower price hoping that they can make some $$ on the drinks but not from us. (On this cruise we actually got a $140 shipboard credit REFUND and they paid us in cash as they have no ability to refund it to our credit card) Also, the alcohol policy was so lax that we even had people in the fancy dining room drinking wine that they brought in during dinner and nothing was said. Hopefully other cruise lines will learn from this. DRESS: One of the reasons that we took this cruise is the “country club casual” dress code. No ties / suits or any of that crap ! I don’t dress like that in my very successful life so why the hell would I do that on vacation !! Other cruise lines better get a clue !! I will spend my money where I can relax , pack less and not have to show off when I am on vacation ! Being dressed up does not make the food any better. CASINO: It was very small but had slot machines and some table games. As a person that studies trends I did find that the slot machine odds seemed to be better / worse at different times of the day. So, taking a break from the sun I got even more $$ back from Oceania in the form of nickels. Also, the machines did not pay you in cash instead they printed a bar-coded receipt that you took to the cashier and they would pay you. This was a smart way of doing it. INTERNET: Because of pets at home and a ongoing home renovation project we paid for one of the internet plans. Figuring on how much time that I needed was not easy but we went with the 100 minutes for $80 plan. I must say that I was very impressed with the speed and the billing structure. First I would try to limit myself to 7-8 min a night and I could not figure out how it was charging my time. I would find that I could be on 10-12 minutes but it would only bill for 7 so it was very fair. Also, the speed was very good. I was checking web cameras and accessing web based mail but the speed was excellent. We would only access it after 9-10pm so I figured that the use was low. They had a computer lab with a number of laptops and 2 dell systems in the library that we would use. Also, they had wireless hotspots in these areas for you to access the web with your laptop. I did bring a laptop but I found that using the ship’s computer systems was much easier. Here is the Internet plan information: SECURITY: Each time I go on a cruise I notice more and more cameras which I don’t have any problems with. We had a small safe where I kept the passports and cameras but it was too small for the laptop. Our room steward was very friendly and I quickly assessed that he was not a problem. As usual we don’t leave anything out and had no problems at all. The getting on/off the ship security was very laid back. The normal swiping of your card (which brings up your image on the system) and the metal detector / x-ray machine. Generally the security guys did not seem to be too worried about finding anything as they spent more time worrying that someone would fall due to the age of the passengers. Getting back to Miami and going thru customs was a joke. The “do you have any Cuban cigars” question was it. I am sure that they ran some dogs past our checked luggage but the carry-on that we both had were never checked. I wonder if the cruise lines that cater to the younger crowds are checked more ??? I guess I will never find out !! ARRIVAL / DEPARTURE TIME: I was impressed that we got to the ports on time and also departed generally before they said (with the older crowd we think that most people got back very early) We have been on other cruises where we would be hours late at many of the destinations. Yes, because of the weather and the age of the passengers, tendering was slow at first but we expected this.


    All photos were taken with a Nikon Coolpix 5400 5.1meg pixl camera. All video was taken with a Sony DCR-HC32 Handycam and converted with Microsoft Movie Maker software

  • Itinerary

    Day 01 Mar 11  SUN  Miami, USA                   Depart  6:00 pm
    Day 02 Mar 12  MON  At sea
    Day 03 Mar 13  TUE  At Sea
    Day 04 Mar 14  WED  Spanish Town, Virgin Gorda   Arrive  9:00 am - Depart 6:00 pm
    Day 05 Mar 15  THU  Gustavia, St. Barts          Arrive  8:00 am - Depart 6:00 pm
    Day 06 Mar 16  FRI  Roseau, Dominica             Arrive  8:00 am - Depart 6:00 pm
    Day 07 Mar 17  SAT  Castries, St. Lucia          Arrive  8:00 am - Depart 6:00 pm
    Day 08 Mar 18  SUN  St. John's Antigua           Arrive  9:00 am - Depart 6:00 pm
    Day 09 Mar 19  MON  Road Harbour, Tortola        Arrive  8:00 am - Depart 4:00 pm
    Day 10 Mar 20  TUE  Samana, Dominican Republic   Arrive 10:00 am - Depart 6:00 pm
    Day 11 Mar 21  WED  Grand Turk, Turk and Caicos  Arrive  8:00 am - Depart 4:00 pm
    Day 12 Mar 22  THU  At Sea
    Day 13 Mar 23  FRI  Miami, USA                   Arrive  7:00 am
    


    Cruise Log

    Total mileage on this voyage
    
    Ports                                                     Mileage
    
    Miami to Spanish Town, Virgin Gorda                        1,055 nm
    Spanish Town, Virgin Gorda to Gustavia, St. Barts             99 nm
    Gustavia, St. Barts to Roseau, Dominica                      180 nm
    Roseau, Dominica to Castries, St. Lucia                      135 nm
    Castries, St. Lucia to St. John's Antigua                    206 nm
    St. John's Antigua to Road Harbour, Tortola                  182 nm
    Road Harbour, Tortola to Samana, Dominican Republic          279 nm
    Samana, Dominican Republic to Grand Turk, Turk and Caicos    229 nm
    Grand Turk, Turk and Caicos to Miami                         677 nm
    
    
    TOTAL                             3,042 nm
    
    3,042 nm = 3,500 land miles = 5,633 Kilometers
    


    Ship Facts

    Regatta Ship Facts:
    
    Guest Capacity:  684 
    Tonnage: 30,277 
    Builder: Chantiers de l'Atlantique, St. Nazaire, France  
    Entered Service:  1998 
    Maiden Voyage:   July 5, 2003 
    Former Names:  R2 
    Length: 592 Feet  
    Beam: 83.5 Feet  
    Draft: 19.5 Feet  
    Decks: 11 
    Guest Decks:  9 
    Guest Staterooms:  342 (314 outside/26 inside) total (92% outside): 
                             6 Owners Suites with private balconies (Square footage: 962*) 
                             4 Vista Suites with private balconies (Square Footage: 786*) 
                            52 Penthouse Suites with private balconies (Square footage: 322*)
                           171 Staterooms with private balconies (Square footage: 216*) 
                            83 Oceanview staterooms (Square footage: 165) 
                            26 Inside staterooms (Square footage: 158)
                               *includes balcony 
    Staterooms with Private Balconies: 233 (73% of all outside staterooms)  
    Third/Fourth Berths:  132 
    Pools: 1 
    Whirlpool Spas:  3 
    Dining and Snacks:  4 restaurants: The Grand Dining Room; Toscana (Italian); Polo Grill (Black Angus Steakhouse); Terrace Cafe 
    Showrooms/Lounges:  Regatta Lounge, Horizons, Martinis, Grand Bar, Polo Bar, Grappa Bar, Upper Hall 
    Guest Services:  Casino, Spa, Fitness Center, Jogging Track, Beauty Salon, 2 Shops, Library, Card Room, 
                     Photo Gallery, 4 Elevators, Self-Service Launderette, Medical Center, Internet Cafe. 
    Number of Crew:  400 
    Crew Nationality:  European 
    Propulsion Diesel Electric - Two 6750 Kw propulsion motors  
    Maximum Speed:  20 Knots  
    Lifeboats: 2 lifeboats, 4 tenders, 2 rescue boats  
    Registry: Marshall Islands  
    


    DAILY SHIP GUIDES / MAPS / OTHER INFO

    DAY 01 Miami, USA

    DAY 02 At sea

    DAY 03 At sea

    DAY 04 Spanish Town, Virgin Gorda

    DAY 05 Gustavia, St. Barts

    DAY 06 Roseau, Dominica

    DAY 07 Castries, St. Lucia

    DAY 08 St. John's Antigua

    DAY 09 Road Harbour, Tortola

    DAY 10 Samana, Dominican Republic

    DAY 11 Grand Turk, Turk and Caicos

    DAY 12 At Sea

    DAY 13 Miami, USA


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