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Brilliance of the Seas PHASE-1

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Sarge6870

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For many of us, so called, "VETERAN" cruisers, booking another cruise is similar to a conveyor belt. Let me explain. You have the "been there, done that" mentality and just plan everything accordingly as you have done in the past. Then again, some of us "Veterans" still go into booking a cruise blindfolded. We start with, "Hey, Let's go on a cruise"!! Then comes the when, where & which questions. And of course the money issue. So when my wife approached me (as she always does when she wants to cruise) and said, "Look into it", I felt the feeling again! The "CRUISE feeling. That's all she said!! No when, where or which. Well, look at the picture that accompanies this post and you'll see where MY mindset was when she volunteered me for this task !!

So it begins! After interrogating her for some input (goodness knows I do NOT want to mess up the plans), a decision was made...."End of the year". Ummm, HUH? That's right, she wanted to go the end of the year and the rest was on me! Seeing as to how she had put her trust in me for the last eight cruises, that gave me a little bit of confidence. A VERY little bit!! But, on goes the Cruise planning conveyor belt (now known to me as the CPCB). I took many factors into consideration in planning the preliminary steps. "Let's see, been on Carnival five times, on Celebrity once, Princess once and Norwegian once". I then realized one of the only lines we haven't been on yet was Royal Caribbean. THAT'S IT!!!! We'll do RCCL!!! PHEW! Since we recently moved to Tampa, Florida, pickings were slim. When we lived on the East coast of Florida, we had Jacksonville, Port Canaveral and Fort Lauderdale to choose from. All within decent driving distance. But, after some research, I found the Brilliance of the Seas sailing for 7 days from Tampa on November 16, 2013!! WHOO-HOO, the biggest job is done!! And the itinerary was awesome. I venture in to planning this cruise as though I am new to cruising. Because, in fact, since I have never sailed on RCCL before, I feel as though this IS my first cruise.

My BLOG will cover the initial planning phase right through disembarkation to include updates from the ship during the cruise and a review at the end. This will help not only those passengers aboard the M/S Cruisecrazies that are new to cruising, but will also help veteran cruisers that have never sailed on RCCL before. It will also be a bunch of laughs along the way. So I guess we go into this on foggy seas!!

Join me over the next 11 months for a FULL cruise from the planning phase to disembarkation. I look forward to seeing you deckside!!!

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Congratulations on your new blog, Sarge!

As you know, I am sailing on the same ship in October and look forward to reading about your experience. In the meantime, it'll be very interesting for our readers to compare our notes as we blog our individual takes on the ship, don't you think? A Battle of the Brilliance Blogs, I call it - LOL!

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Thanks Jan. The Official launch of the blog will begin tomorrow night. I have always wanted to do this so it should be informative, funny and I will be keeping it updated during the cruise. Battle of the Brilliance Blogs? Trying to steal my thunder Jan (lol)!!!

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Welcome to the community, man! I look forward to following along with your blog! Of my 29 cruises, only 1 has been with RCI, so I'll really be tuning in to see if you can sway be back on! I'm an NCL guy myself, but would love to get back out there with Royal Caribbean! :-)

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Thanks for the welcome CM3000!! The initial installment for the BLOG, called "Planning Island" is up for you to read. I will be following that story with installments between 2 - 5 days apart and will increase as the cruise approaches and will be daily onboard during the cruise. I loved the Dreamward when we sailed to Bermuda in 1995. Soon there after, they cut it in half and added (I believe) 50 feet to the mid-section then renamed it the NCL "Dream". I've been reading some good reviews about the B.O.S. Looking forward to finally scratching RCCL from my bucket list!!!

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Tampa is our favorite Florida port. Our last cruise from there was on the HAL Ryndam. The RC Brilliance may be in our future!

This will actually be our 1st time cruising from Tampa since we moved to the area last May. When we lived on the East coast of Florida, we usually cruised from Port Canaveral or Ft. Lauderdale. We stayed away from Miami because we are not fans of that port!! Glad to hear from ya Keith&Rita :)

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Welcome Tim - I'm sure the blog is going to be much help to many. I see you live in Tampa, so do we! We are also excited to have the Brilliance out of Tampa this year.

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Tim we haven't booked anything yet - generally we like to cruise at the beginning of December. Tampa is a great port to sail out of. Oh and by the way Port Canaveral is only 2 hours away - we are in Temple Terrace, you are a little further away in Oldsmar ......

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We'll be on the Brilliance January 4th, 2014 for 5 days of relaxation. Really looking forward to it. We were on her sister ship, The Jewel of the Seas, in 2010 to Panama...great trip (11 days) and great ship. It will be interesting to compare the two ships! BTW, we are from Asheville, NC.

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