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Sunday, March 12, 2023

Celebrity Summit Christmas Cruise - Glad I Did / Wish I Did

I've found that Glad I Did/Wish I did posts are a great way to quickly share with others what worked and what didn't on our cruise. They're also really helpful to refer back to over the years when preparing for our next cruise.


Glad I did NOT bid on a Stateroom Upgrade

I was very tempted to bid on a stateroom upgrade. There were Concierge Class upgrade bids starting at $100 per person. However, after some research on the Concierge Class, I learned that there wasn't a big incentive to upgrade to Concierge Class on the Celebrity Millennium Series ships. The stateroom is no larger than a standard stateroom. The only extra features are a Celebrity embossed key holder and an "Exclusive Welcome Aboard Concierge Class Lunch" (we actually would have enjoyed that lunch). Also, I had selected a neighboring stateroom with Aaron's parents. I would have bid to upgrade Aaron's parents as well, but there was no guarantee that our rooms would still be next to one another, and there was also a risk that one stateroom would get upgraded while the other would not. It's a risk that I've taken with my family in the past, but give that it was Aaron's parents first cruise, I didn't want to accidentally get our staterooms moved to opposite ends of the ship.

After I learned that the rooms that I had reserved were part of the "Sweet Sixteen" on Millennium Series ships with extended balconies, I was very glad that I did not upgrade our rooms. I think we would have actually had smaller balconies in Concierge Class. I was also very happy with our location, as it wasn't too far of a walk from the elevators.


Glad I Decorated our Stateroom Doors

It was ambitious of me to take up hand embroidery to make personalized stockings for our stateroom doors just weeks before our cruise, but it's certainly not the first time I've decided to pick up a new skill with an impending deadline. (The Wish I Did portion of this is "started sooner.") The stockings definitely brought Christmas cheer to our stateroom doors.

Sweet 16 Balcony Stateroom

Glad I Packed a Rain Jacket!

Caribbean weather is unpredictable, so it's always a good idea to pack a rain jacket. This trip, it was put to good use and I'm glad I packed it. On other trips when we have great weather, I'm just happy that I don't have to use it.

Helipad Sail Away

Glad I booked Best of Cozumel Excursion

When in Cozumel, I usually visit the Beach Clubs. I figured that this visit with Aaron's parents would be the perfect opportunity to do a sightseeing tour and explore more of the island. Best of Cozumel took us to the Mayan Bee Sanctuary, Mayan Cacao Factory, and Barriecito for Tequila Tasting. It was such a fun well-paced tour. I would definitely recommend!

Mayan Bee Sanctuary

Wish I read the papers that they delivered to our rooms

It seems like most of the other cruise lines have transitioned to app only, no paper. Celebrity has an app which I used to read the schedule of activities. However, at the end of the cruise when I was packing up, I realized that I had missed out on a lot by not paying much attention to the papers delivered to our room. In addition to Celebrity Today, I received a paper listing all of my Elite benefits which were loaded onto my SeaPass - 10% spa discount, one-time pass to Persian Garden (I did know about this perk, but thought it would be weird for me to leave Aaron's family to use), 1 Deal or No Deal bonus card with a 3 pack purchase, one complimentary scoop of gelato, 40% discount on any digital or photo print package, and more. I also missed out on invitations to several Captain's Club events (though I probably wouldn't have attended since Aaron and his parents aren't Elite), as well as a $50 Spa Gift to apply to any 50-minute or more face or body treatment.

Sail Away Party

Wish we took Professional Photos

I thought that we would take photos on Christmas Eve, but that's when the ship started really rocking and Aaron's mom couldn't make it to dinner. We didn't take a single professional photo on our cruise which is a bummer because we had cute festive outfits.

Hallway Mirror Selfie

On the fence - buying the "All Inclusive" Package

I'm neither glad I did or regret that I did buy the All Inclusive package for Aaron and me, but it's something that I'm not totally sold on the value of. If we had received good bar service throughout the cruise, I wouldn't have even thought twice about it. However, this was by far some of the worst bar service we have ever received on a cruise. As Aaron and I would sit at the bar and continuously be passed over while bartenders chose to serve other guests instead, it started to feel very personal. Did we look too young? Do they think we're bad tippers because we are in our 30s? Were we not being assertive enough? Did they not like Aaron's mustache? (pffft - everyone loves Aaron's mustache!) Was there a sign in the back room with our faces on it that said do not serve these two because we don't like them? Whatever the reason, I feel confident that it wasn't because we looked too drunk because we weren't getting drinks.

Also included in the All Included Package is Basic Internet and Prepaid Gratuities ($155 per stateroom - value at $77.50 per person). So if you take the value of prepaid gratuities from the cost of the package, it's $172.50 for the Classic Beverage Package and Basic Internet Package.... that's $34.50 per day. So even if we placed no value on the Internet Package, if we got just three drinks per day, the package paid for itself. So never mind! I think this is a great deal, even if bar service totally sucked.

Crush Ice Bar

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