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Thread: Alaska

  1. #21

    Default Re: Alaska

    Quote Originally Posted by gnohz View Post
    My brother and I are doing the planning. He's doing all the details like renting the car, accommodation etc and I'm helping him in looking for places to visit.

    Oh I realised no need to wait till July for the "report". I'll do a short write up on our itinerary and let you know again. It should give you a rough idea of how we're going about our trip

    Last time when I travelled around Japan while I was there for a year, I did all the planning by myself. Big headache true, but I preferred travelling by myself, cos I had a bigger headache when I was bringing other friends around The biggest problem was that they did not help in planning at all!! So I was like the free labour tour guide
    That's good you got people to help you - easier to plan right? As much as I like to travel alone, which I am fine, but in some places, travel with another companion is good, because cost can come down by half!!! If I had someone with me for my NZ trip, I am certain I would have spent only half the amt (I did not even had to pay for flight, and yet it still cost me $4K for that trip!!!).

    So for the sake of saving time on having to plan as well as some savings in cost, decided to go via tour... It may not be the way to go for most people here (I think), but at times, we have to compromise on certain things - Heck, I am actually going to Hokkaido via tour this May!

    Quote Originally Posted by Lolrence View Post
    Norway would be the best place, since it's the furthest up north of all the choices, and the band of lights are the strongest there. Iceland would be a good alternative, and with their economy situation now, will be a good time to go.. From what I've seen, those places don't seem to get as much fog in the sky, and will be a better alternative. YMMV

    Personally, I'm the type who likes to plan my trip and choose places I want to go... cause I backpack alone most of the time, and I do know what specific things I want to see/experience.. So maybe you can list down what you're actually hoping to see or do, so that we can advice further..
    One trip at a time.. So, will look at this once Alaska is done.

  2. #22

    Default Re: Alaska

    You're right about the saving cost part if you're travelling with one more person, especially for some hotels, they have a semi double room so you can share the cost!

    Anyway, here is our rough itinerary. Will be updating it as we get more details confirmed. Hope I have some time to update when we're on our trip!

    Alaska and Vancouver Itinerary

    Hope this helps!

  3. #23

    Default Re: Alaska

    Ah.. Ok, you are taking Diamond Princess of Princess Cruises.. So you packing in a jacket/suit for the formal nights? There are 2 of them... Well, enjoy and let us know how you find it...

    Thanks for sharing your itinerary.

  4. #24

    Default Re: Alaska

    I don't think I will be bringing a formal suit, can't be bothered Will be wearing just smart casual. Anyway, I found out that some people even wore Hawaiian shirts! lol... so I guess it doesn't really matter, as long as don't wear pyjamas can le.

  5. #25

    Default Re: Alaska

    Bringing a suit is a pain but it was fun to have a prim-and-proper formal dinner on board a grand cruise ship. Didn't see any Hawaiian shirts; most of the non-Asians were dressed to the nines with tuxes and gowns. Bring a tie - won't take up too much space and you can "up" your dress level a bit if you feel under-dressed. Or you can just opt for anytime dining if all these formalities pain you.

    Diamond Princess is a great ship, enjoy her when you are on board.

    Didn't get hit by any bloodsuckers even when traipsing through some damp fjordlands at Misty Fjords, but it could be that we were smelling of seaweed and starfish from kayaking in the rain.

    Have fun you guys, it is going to be a very memorable trip!
    Nikonian since 2003
    F55 | D700

  6. #26

    Default Re: Alaska

    Quote Originally Posted by Entity View Post
    Bringing a suit is a pain but it was fun to have a prim-and-proper formal dinner on board a grand cruise ship. Didn't see any Hawaiian shirts; most of the non-Asians were dressed to the nines with tuxes and gowns. Bring a tie - won't take up too much space and you can "up" your dress level a bit if you feel under-dressed. Or you can just opt for anytime dining if all these formalities pain you.

    Diamond Princess is a great ship, enjoy her when you are on board.

    Didn't get hit by any bloodsuckers even when traipsing through some damp fjordlands at Misty Fjords, but it could be that we were smelling of seaweed and starfish from kayaking in the rain.

    Have fun you guys, it is going to be a very memorable trip!
    You were on the cruise before? Was it the same cruise ship?

  7. #27

    Default Re: Alaska

    Quote Originally Posted by Entity View Post
    Bringing a suit is a pain but it was fun to have a prim-and-proper formal dinner on board a grand cruise ship. Didn't see any Hawaiian shirts; most of the non-Asians were dressed to the nines with tuxes and gowns. Bring a tie - won't take up too much space and you can "up" your dress level a bit if you feel under-dressed. Or you can just opt for anytime dining if all these formalities pain you.

    Diamond Princess is a great ship, enjoy her when you are on board.

    Didn't get hit by any bloodsuckers even when traipsing through some damp fjordlands at Misty Fjords, but it could be that we were smelling of seaweed and starfish from kayaking in the rain.

    Have fun you guys, it is going to be a very memorable trip!

    Hi Entity,
    You took Diamond Princess?

    Bringing a tie instead of a suit is a great idea, cos our trip will still continue for another few weeks in Vancouver so we're trying to cut down as much as possible

    Thanks!

  8. #28

    Default Re: Alaska

    Quote Originally Posted by Lolrence View Post
    Norway would be the best place, since it's the furthest up north of all the choices, and the band of lights are the strongest there.
    Slightly off topic.

    But, Lolrence, have you backpacked in Norway? It's on my must-visit list, but the trip won't happen till 2013 since my trips for the next 2.5 years are already planned. Anyway, I'm gathering info now. I'm hoping it'll be like my hiking trip in the Italian Dolomites: bus journeys between cottages and 'short' day hikes each day.

  9. #29

    Default Re: Alaska

    @Alpc - Yes I was on the Diamond Princess last year, it is one of the fleet's newest ships. You would probably have to see your luck whether it is going on the itinerary and dates you want. There are a few other ships that are relatively new, see if you can book those.

    @gnohz - I brought a suit even though I was going on land for another 2 weeks, it did take up some space in the old luggage. Well I was thinking since I was already lugging my black shoes and black pants, what is one more jacket? Ladies have to bring a dress and heels, equally as troublesome. I figured since so much money was spent on this journey I wanted the full experience - suit and all <haha>.

    Vancouver is great too, you will look smart there with your tie.
    Quote Originally Posted by Alpc View Post
    You were on the cruise before? Was it the same cruise ship?
    Quote Originally Posted by gnohz View Post
    Hi Entity,
    You took Diamond Princess?
    Nikonian since 2003
    F55 | D700

  10. #30

    Default Re: Alaska

    Quote Originally Posted by doodah View Post
    Slightly off topic.

    But, Lolrence, have you backpacked in Norway? It's on my must-visit list, but the trip won't happen till 2013 since my trips for the next 2.5 years are already planned. Anyway, I'm gathering info now. I'm hoping it'll be like my hiking trip in the Italian Dolomites: bus journeys between cottages and 'short' day hikes each day.
    Nope, never been there... wish I have the chance though... Alaska in autumn and Iceland is top of the 'cold places' list for now. Followed by Antarctica if I've the $ :P

    It should be a good time to view the lights when you go over in 2+ year's time... all the best

  11. #31

    Default Re: Alaska

    Dang it, mother just informed that we had to go in June for the trip, so I guess it will be more expensive since it would be the high season for both here (flights) and there (cruise)...

    Still can't figure out what cruise to take, there is so many there, including this Diamond Princess. There is also some information that some ship tends to get more kids on board than the others...

    Anyway, counting down to my Hokkaido trip, 2 more days to go... Once that is done, will continue the search...

  12. #32

    Default Re: Alaska

    Quote Originally Posted by Alpc View Post
    Dang it, mother just informed that we had to go in June for the trip, so I guess it will be more expensive since it would be the high season for both here (flights) and there (cruise)...

    Still can't figure out what cruise to take, there is so many there, including this Diamond Princess. There is also some information that some ship tends to get more kids on board than the others...

    Anyway, counting down to my Hokkaido trip, 2 more days to go... Once that is done, will continue the search...
    You mean you have to go in June to Alaska? By the way I heard that June is one of the better months to visit since it's still at the beginning of the tourist season, and there's less rain. But it's better to plan at least 6 months in advance and do the bookings as soon as you confirm your itinerary, cos we have a few problems when doing certain bookings

    I think I read about the ships' descriptions about the type of people and age group at some website.

  13. #33

    Default Re: Alaska

    6 months... Er... What problems and what bookings??? Ok, then need to lock down the dates but that means I need the ships' sailing dates - when is that out??? In Sept???

  14. #34

    Default Re: Alaska

    Nothing serious, just that we couldn't get the timing for the tour that we wanted (eg cruise tour at seward) so we have to go with something else. Alaska is extremely popular and people interested normally do their research around half a year before ^^;
    I'm not sure how soon the sailing dates will be out, but we were a little late in planning So make sure, you read about what you can do, where you want to go, how many days you want to spend, discounts and prices etc. We took about a month for our itinerary, and changed it about 3 times due to various constraints.

  15. #35

    Default Re: Alaska

    I am doing it 1 year ahead that's kiasu enough I think!!!! Yes, doing my research now...

    How late were you? I am having problems in getting people to take me seriously in getting research done way ahead, they still think it's easily done - no problem in getting it done even with less than 2 months ahead... Hiaz, what to do?!?

    But then i think next year's timetable is only out later.. So now just trying to read stuff to narrow down till the time-table is out... Anyway, first thing to do I think should be to get my recent trip photos out, before I forget them... ahahahah

  16. #36

    Default Re: Alaska

    The trip was over, now back to focus on this... Found Princess Cruises, Regent Seven Seas and HAL cruise departure dates and cruise details. Only found Royal Caribbean 2010 cruise details, which I presume will be similar, except for the actual departure dates. Trying to get Silverseas but issue with the plugin on firefox...

    Looks like have to check with some local travel company to see if they got any pricing for next year...

  17. #37

    Default Re: Alaska

    Quote Originally Posted by Alpc View Post
    The trip was over, now back to focus on this... Found Princess Cruises, Regent Seven Seas and HAL cruise departure dates and cruise details. Only found Royal Caribbean 2010 cruise details, which I presume will be similar, except for the actual departure dates. Trying to get Silverseas but issue with the plugin on firefox...

    Looks like have to check with some local travel company to see if they got any pricing for next year...
    My wife and I just got back from a Holland America northbound cruisetour from Vancouver to Anchorage. We booked everything online - don't think there is a local agent. Anyway it was first class service all the way. We're more the backpacking type too and this was our first cruise but we found it really relaxing not to have to plan our transport/accommodations etc. I'd really advice to bring a jacket for the formal dining. It's pretty fun to dress up once in a while anyway. I think 90% of the people on my cruise dressed up on formal nights. Also, if you're into wine or beer or brewed coffee, you should look into HAL's website where they sell gift cards for 10 or 20 glasses or cups. You can get 10 glasses of house pour wines at any of the dining places onboard for around S$40. This is much cheaper than buying drinks individually when you eat.

    We're now sorting thru our millions of photos Remember to bring a longer lens if you're into wildlife spotting. The animals come near the bus sometimes but not always!

  18. #38

    Default Re: Alaska

    Wow! HAL cruise... You do know that, according to all I read, this is usually one of the most ex cruise of the lot (which is why 1st class service :P)... I am now curious of how much you had spent. Yike, formal wear, I hate bring it when the other 2/3 of the trips I will not be using it... Hmm... Maybe on this cruise it's a must, while the others are not?!?!? Was the temperature cold over there at this time?

    So how long is longer lens that you are talking about? The longest is the 200mm reach of my 18-200mm lens. Is that enough or should I start going for a 300, 400 or 600mm lens? :P

    Looking forward to viewing your photos...

    Ok, so there are people who was on Princess cruises and HAL, anyone went on the Royal Caribbean one?

  19. #39

    Default Re: Alaska

    3 week ago back from my Alaska Cruisetour. More Info at my site:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/kskong/...7624140444583/

  20. #40

    Default Re: Alaska

    Quote Originally Posted by K S Kong View Post
    3 week ago back from my Alaska Cruisetour. More Info at my site:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/kskong/...7624140444583/
    Sir.. I am drooling...

    I got to ask this - What makes you decide to go with their cruisetour instead of just the cruise and how do you find the whole trip?

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