Sunday, July 28, 2013

preparing for my Queen Mary 2 upcoming voyage to Hamburg and return from Southhampton

I have been an indefatigable traveler for almost 2 decades, and I've written and contributed to travel guides, my travel guides are in libraries worldwide (, but I traveled when flying was fun, now I need comforttravel@less$, and at less dollars is the point of my blog—this is an informational about the how-to re comforttravel@$, and I point to how I manage my aim while spending less when choosing an upscale category. 

My readers will find out that I like to travel upscale at budget travel prices.

PLEASE NOTE:  I am not sponsored for taking this trip, and if and when I am, I'll inform my blog readers—be assured, I intend to remain uncompromising and unbiased at all times, my first priority is to present my honest opinion to my readers, not one that is clouded with the need to please the sponsor, as is with many of the travel blogs that are set under a particular umbrella which gathers such bloggers into the fold of the powerful travel blogs that court sponsorship to take their free trips.
So let's begin at the beginning, with an explanation about how it came to be that I decided to take a cruise round trip on the Queen Mary 2.  The airplane option was always the "less" expensive, but not so bad if you knew how to chose a seat at the front of the coach. 
Alas, now coach fares are sold at different levels, with premium at the front of the coach section, less than that is flying in the back of the bus. Even if I book in Business class that doesn't guarantee me a good place, I could end up in the seat right in front of the coach section.  I may not have space in the overhead bin for my carry on without added fees.  But for me flying is no longer an option.  I'm not inclined to pass through the airport body scanners and get some unknown doses of radiation.  I don't care that the Homeland Security says it's safe, which they say, but no long term tests have been made.  Nor am I ready to spend a day at the airport waiting in line, taking my shoes off, taking off my jacket,  etc. and then finally to board, and wait in a stifling plane until the pilot gets permission to take off. 
Then you think your off on a long flight in comfort?  Think again.  You may be sitting up because the seat in front has been set to recline. 
If you want to take cash, your wallet may be surreptitiously opened by some fast fingered security person.  Lost jewelry taken from the carry on may happen to you.  Certainly, you do not want to be one of those random frisked, or wait without your shoes while the security person gladly searches children, old ladies and wheelchair bounds.  Perhaps it may get better if you pay to get profiled in advance, but there is still the body scanner, metal detector, do beware of your earrings, rings and things setting off bells and involving a body frisk.  
What is a traveler who likes upscale, doesn't have their own private plane, and who likes comfort to do? 
You might ask, why not take an upscale tour?  Have you taken a look at the prices?  Also, it's a group travel with the luggage could be lost factor, and a group food experience, which may be fine for some, but if you like great food cooked well, there is no guarantee that a group feed will be a good one.  I've been writing about tours, hotels, and destinations for more than 20 years, and I know what happens even if the price is high.  I'll admit it, I'm fussy, and I want to eat well and comforttravel@less$.
I will blog once a week to tell you, my blog readers, what I did for comforttravel@less$, all my arrangements and reservations that didn't take me any more time than it would take you to plan a budget trip in discomfort.  I've also gotten a great value, which is another factor in comforttravel@less$.  I'll be away for a total of 24 days.  For those who want more time in Europe, pick a return at a later date, or fly back and be uncomfortable at the end of your trip.  You also could opt for a 7 day cruise going to Southhampton, and arrive relaxed and bushy tailed ready for the hassles of carting luggage to your destination or destinations.  I will also discuss the importance of packing less.
My comforttravel@less$ itinerary is as follows:  I'll be gone from September 22, sleep in a single room with Ocean view on the 4th level, arrive in Hamburg 9 days later (October 1), and spend 5 days at the beach in Le Havre, just 2 hours away from Paris and the Eurostar to England.   My return is on October 8, with another cabin Ocean view, this time on the 6th level (just one below the exalted balcony room level) and 7 days later, on October 15 I will dock at the Red Hook Brooklyn pier where I left my car in the cruise parking for much less than you would think.  
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**I am a multitask writer, as I am also in the process of writing my latest fiction novel, Book II, PARIS WARP Jousting Devils And Dragons but this is a trilogy which explores the supernatural as it exists in tandem with the world as we know it. The trilogy starts with Book I, The Haunting And Paradise Taxi/print ISBN 9780615685434 print also available as E-book Nook Smashwords Edition ISBN 9780989053600 BarnesandNoble
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