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Unread 6 May 19, 11:44 AM  
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mitch84
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Mobile Solo from Southampton- June 19

Well, its been some years since I have written a trippy, and as such I thought I might give this a go.

Some background, I recently got married (March this year) but my husband unfortunately is self employed, and tries to take only 3 days leave a year outside of Christmas and other bank holidays. We also have horses, and a puppy, so its expensive and tricky having no one at home.

Im on a fixed term contract with work, which is finishing at the end of July, and so I was trying to take very minimal AL (to the point of only taking 2 days for the wedding) to get paid out for it in case I didnt find another job straight away. However it has got very quiet at work, so they have asked me to take a week off in June or July.

I came home on Thursday fairly miffed, as I hate wasting leave, but my husband suggested I find a cheap week somewhere as he knows I love to travel, and he really isnt bothered.

I have done a fair bit of solo travelling, and by far my favourite experience has always been cruising. I have cruised with Thomson twice, and NCL once, and whilst I loved both NCL was a world apart.

One of my bucket list items is a Fjords cruise, which had benefit because it could be done from this country, so would save on flights and possibly hotels the night before.

I had a bit of a google, there was no NCL short fjords cruises this year so I went straight onto Thomson/Marella. They had a 6 night (3 port) AI cruise leaving Newcastle 7th July which was well priced, and so I nearly booked that.

I do like a drink, so do prefer AI or a drinks package, so I can have what I fancy, rather than worrying about my bill at the end.

I did have a look through other cruise lines. And ended up looking at P&O. I know they have a drinks package at 39.95 a day. To be honest I wont drink more than this, I know that, but it will be nice to work my way through the cocktails and wine list, rather than sticking to house wine.

I found a 7 night (4 port) from Southampton on the 1st June. It was coming in at 878 (without the drinks package) so slightly more than the Marella option, but it did work out that for another 100 I could have an extra day away and another port.

My husband told me not to rock the boat for a haporth of tar and to book the P&O, especially as I had never cruised P&O before and could be a more premium product.

So Im booked on the Azura in an inside cabin. 1st June which is under 4 weeks away, Im planning on keeping spending money down, and wandering around rather than lots of shore excursions.

So your cast of one is

Me- Mitch - 34

Loves dogs (especially black labradors), horses, wine and cheese and good food in general, I love walking and so will walk anywhere I can rather than get a bus etc.

This is a photo from my last cruise, rather cold in St Petersburg



Edit at 1 week to go

I have sorted my parking due to a very very kind Dibber.

I also managed to get Flam railway tickets after Melanie told me to keep checking.

My cabin was allocated, no upgrade for me, but it's an inside cabin nearer the back of the ship on Deck E which is quite a central deck I believe. I'm happy as I'd rather be at the back of the ship than the front, I'm also near a lift but will be trying to use the stairs as much as possible.

I've bought a few holiday bits from Primark and toiletries from Boots.

I'm definitely doing the drinks package as I know I'll cover the cost both in wine and cocktails but bottles of water, coffee etc too.

I have a budget of 50 for 'select' dining. I'm definitely doing Sindhu the Indian for 20, but contemplating the 28 Epicurean too, I'm hoping for a embarkation day deal on one of these, as then I should have enough pennies for the 7.50 Beach house. If I scrapped the Epicurean I could probably do Sindhu Dinner, Sindhu lunch, Glass House and Beach house which may be better value. Decisions Decisions.

I also have an in port budget of 50 per port. I have used 52 for the Flam railway which was my big ticket thing. In Stavanger I'm going to go to the Canning museum or the petrol museum, in Bergen hopefully up the funicular and walk down, and in Alesund I might do the HOHO bus as if its a nice day I could maybe fit in the open air museum and the aquarium.

I know it sounds very penny pinching, but I'm going away without my husband, and solo cruising isn't the cheapest in the world.

8 sleeps - very excited..
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Edited at 10:29 AM.
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Unread 6 May 19, 11:53 AM  
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I already have travel insurance with cruise cover thankfully as we are going to Venice on an NCL cruise for our honeymoon in October, my husbands first cruise.
I now just need to work out how to get to Southampton, I looked at trains because im from the North West, so about a 3.5 hour drive, but it isnt direct, and isnt cheap a month out. I also quickly discounted National express at over 9 hours.
I am going to quickly phone cruise connect tomorrow morning, just to see what the specified cruise coaches are looking like, but I think I will possibly be looking at parking near the port and getting a bus transfer.
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Unread 6 May 19, 11:57 AM  
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Im not planning on booking shore excursions. The only specific thing I was really keen to do was the Flam railway, but it is booked up direct already. I think I will just get off the ship as early as possible, and see if I cant get a spot.

I will probably do the Funicular in Bergen and walk back down, and then just walk around Stavanger and Alesund. I do like a museum so maybe head there
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Unread 6 May 19, 12:20 PM  
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I did a cruise a couple of years on my own, from Southampton. I booked an outside cabin with just a window but a couple of weeks before departure I received a free upgrade to an outside cabin with balcony.

I hope you are lucky too. Going that far north in June means it might not get completely dark. Spooky !
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Unread 6 May 19, 12:35 PM  
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Originally Posted by ERICSMUM View Post
I did a cruise a couple of years on my own, from Southampton. I booked an outside cabin with just a window but a couple of weeks before departure I received a free upgrade to an outside cabin with balcony.

I hope you are lucky too. Going that far north in June means it might not get completely dark. Spooky !
Yes apparently so, no chance of the northern lights because it is too light.
I would have loved a window, or a balcony even more so, but I was hoping to get the trip under 1000. I have failed 1157 inc drinks, but thankfully I have a green light and a nice husband.
I am never bothered about an inside cabin, but may have to get up early some mornings to see the fjords x
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Unread 6 May 19, 12:39 PM  
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Have you looked at split ticketing for the trains?
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Unread 6 May 19, 01:22 PM  
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Crazy thought Mitch, but I live in Southampton about 15 minutes drive from the docks. If you fancy parking on my drive I can drop you at the docks if you don't want to get involved with parking etc. just a bit of pin money towards petrol would be all I'd need.
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Unread 6 May 19, 03:00 PM  
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Originally Posted by Astrid View Post
Crazy thought Mitch, but I live in Southampton about 15 minutes drive from the docks. If you fancy parking on my drive I can drop you at the docks if you don't want to get involved with parking etc. just a bit of pin money towards petrol would be all I'd need.
Wow, sometimes the genuine kindness of Dibbers really blows you away.
Im just out at the moment but will PM you tonight when I get in x
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