Posted by: sdallnct | December 12, 2009

Vacation Day 1 – Travel Day

We flew from Dallas to Miami today. We wanted to get to Miami a day early just in case any travel issues.

Since I travel a lot I pick up quickly on little things that seem to indicate how a trip will go. Well right off the bat I we had a nice little surprise. No longer being a Gold level flyer I expected to pay $20 per bag at check in (2 bags = $40), which is annoying.  Yet when we checked in, it was “only” $30 total. Yes, I know, no big deal over $10. But every sign, everything we saw, everything on line showed it should have been $40. I took this as an sign that we will have a great trip!

I wore boots and a Western Hat for the trip. I’ll wear the boots on the cruise, but I wanted a hat for Halloween down on South Beach (and ended up wearing during the cruise as well). No problem getting through security. I figure wearing what we normally wear in Texas will be a great costume in South Beach!

We spent the nearly three hour flight reading reviews of the Valor and reading about tips and “tricks”. You know, important stuff like where to find the ice cream and good pizza!

South Beach Halloween!

There are some things that are just great things to do. Corrected Scott in CostumeI’d love to be in New York for New Years Eve. If you have such a “things to do list” add Halloween in South Beach to it. I expected some wildness, but was unprepared for the sites. There was great food, great drink and of course great outfits! And even those not in costume were dressed to impress. I had my picture taken with an Angel of sorts. Maybe it was Halloween but everyone was fun and friendly. We stayed out till about 2:00am and had a blast!

Tip of the day: Get in early enough to stop and pick up drinks. It is Carnival policy that allows you to carry on one bottle of wine per person and a “reasonable” amount of cola or other non-alcoholic drinks. I recommend this. You may also want to “sneak” aboard some rum or vodka. I’ll try to talk more about this later, but I packed in my check in bags a 1/2 bottle (375ml) of Captain Morgan’s and 1/2 bottle of Absolute Vodka. I wish I had taken full bottles!

Note we did get a soda card, wife and I “shared” it. Even with both of us I do not believe it is a good value. Especially considering Carnival allows you to bring on soda. Excellent lemonade and sometimes punch is available free of charge. The water on board is obviously filtered, fresh, readily available along with ice.


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