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Carnival introduces quicker boarding of ships by kiosk

Carnival Cruise Lines is trying a new, speed-up check-in system at the Port of Miami FL. As in airports, cruise passengers will be able to board their ships by quickly swiping ID cards at an electronic kiosk that replaces the time-consuming live guard station process.

We recently returned from a cruise of the Mexican Riviera, and all facilities and services aboard the ship were easily and conveniently available. However, when boarding at the original Long Beach CA pier and at every port stop along the cruise, passengers  had to wait in hour-long lines for the guards in the terminal to go through the tedious security procedures before they allowed boarding.

Before arriving at the port of embarkation for the cruise at Carnival’s Miami pier, passengers who want to use the quick check-in kiosks are required to pre-register online and must be citizens of the U.S., Canada or other nation that issues visa waivers for US travel. The check-in requires passengers have authorized credit or passport cards to swipe at the kiosk, as is the usual procedures at airports. After passengers clear the security check-in procedure, they will be given their stateroom keys by cruise staffs as they arrive onboard.

If Carnival’s experiment proves effective, plans are in the works for the kiosk check-in procedure to be installed for other Carnival sailings. While we recognize and appreciate the need for tight security, we hope the kiosk check-in procedures will soon become universal for all cruise ships, and eliminate the frustration of long, time-consuming check-in lines.

Albuquerque NM: International Balloon Fiesta PDF Print E-mail

The 43rd annual celebration is scheduled from Saturday, October 4, thru Sunday, October 12. Senior visitors can expect brilliantly cloudless skies and daytime temperatures in the comfy high 70s.

Some 50,000 visitors are expected during the nine-day series of events. Following the dramatic dawn mass ascension of the hot air balloon ceremonies to start it off, scores of entertaining and competition events are scheduled. They include colorful parades, dance, music, sports, evening fireworks, art, food and drink varieties and much more.

Balloon Fiesta Park, 5000 Balloon Fiesta Parkway NE, Albuquerque NM 87113, www.balloonfiesta.com

Norwegian Cruise Line Scores “The Perfect 10” PDF Print E-mail

Whether for achieving Olympic glory or winning beauty contests, the Perfect 10 is a great score. Passengers signing up for any NCL cruise through October 14 can hit the number as onboard credit equal to 10% of their fares.

An example can be if you pay $2,000 for your cruise, you’ll get the max of $200 onboard credit for drinks, spas, retail store and other purchases. www.ncl.com

Monte Carlo, Monaco: Fantastic Scene From Fairmont Balcony PDF Print E-mail

Breathtaking view of the city and waterfront from the luxurious Fairmont Hotel, as pictured by your travel4seniors.com editor’s camera. Average early October daytime beach temperature is 70º. Room rates start at about $300. Fairmont Hotel, 12 Avenue des Spélugues, Monte Carlo, Monaco 98000. www.fairmont.com/MonteCarlo

Virgin Air: Branson Says Galactic To Fly Space Trial Soon PDF Print E-mail

More than 700 very, very rich people have already booked flights as passengers on the Virgin Galactic first commercial space flights. Sir Richard Branson is charging $250,000 each for the sky-high experience.

First, they must anxiously await the results from the first test launch into sub-orbital flight expected to happen later this year, with the onboard crew to include Branson, age 64, and his son, Sam. If it’s successful, paying passenger flights into space may take off as early as mid-2015.

If you just happen to have a quarter of a million bucks to spend, you can get complete details and schedule your out-of-this-world adventure at www.virgingalactic.com/booking

Dusseldorf, Germany: Airline Meals To Your Front Door? PDF Print E-mail

Here’s the scenario. You’re back home after many flights. Do you miss the linguini of your favorite Venice café? Do you long for some Hong Kong dim sum? Are you hungry for Cabo San Lucas tapas?

No, you desperately crave airline food! With that situation in mind, consider www.allyouneed.com. The German company believes all you need are the same types of meals delivered to aircraft for serving during flights. They’ve come up with a bright idea to prepare airline meals and bring them to eager customers at home.


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