Oceania Cruises is known for its high-end, casual country-club-style luxury. Join host CruiseCompete CEO Bob Levinstein and guest Bob Durnan of Cruise Vacation Outlet for an in-depth discussion of the Oceania experience. Bob shares his insider knowledge gained as a top luxury agent, and a veteran of 54 cruise sailings.
Hello and welcome back to CruiseCompete's Cruise Podcast where we share tips, ideas, and inspiration to help make your next cruise a fantastic experience. I'm your host Bob Levinstein . Today we'll be talking about Oceania cruises with Mr Bob Durnan of cruise vacation outlet. Oceania is known for its high end country club casual style. Bob is a top luxury cruise agent and a veteran of 54 crew sailings . We'll be back with Bob right after this cruise. compete.com is a simple concept. We give you the tools to find the perfect cruise and request quotes. Independent travel agents can then see your requests and they respond with the best custom cruise offers they can all competing to offer you the best deal. You compare these offers in one convenient place along with consumer ratings and reviews of the agencies as only the best agents survive in this competitive environment. You'll have some great options to choose from. You then remain anonymous unless or until you decide to contact the nation by phone or by email to ask questions or to book. Find out why more than a million cruisers are members of our free unique service and start saving both time and a significant amount of money on your cruise vacation via cruise compete today.Speaker 2:
Welcome back to the program. My guest today is Mr. Bob Dunan ] , a senior agent at cruise vacation outlet and a veteran of more than 54 cruises. Bob, welcome table to speak to you. Always great to talk to you my friend. So your favorite cruise line is Oceania. Y correct. Um, I find it's more of what I prefer in a cruise. It's more of an adult cruise. Uh, the, the food on there is exceptional. The service is exceptional and I just , I just than what I like. What , uh, what kind of , uh , uh, folks are typically typically on an Oceania cruise are there little bit more fluent , better , more well-traveled, you know, a little extra cash to spend, engender , educated. So you find more interesting, more interesting stories, more interesting advice, more interesting places they'd been, yeah. You find very well traveled. Now they know . And the way to find out about different places around the world that you may not have thought about going and you can go toSpeaker 3:
now you're a bit of a foodie. So tell me about some of the things that you like to cook and how those compare to , uh , to what you tend to get served on. Uh , Oceania cruises. Well , I'm bad when it comes to restaurants. I mean, I was a broker on wall street for 17 years and you know, when you're , when they come out with Zagats we won't use your , went through the first 20 to 25 top restaurants within the first couple of weeks. So, wow . The food, the food quality on Oceana is similar. I find that, you know, definitely well above most of the cruise lines. What are , uh , what are some of the favorite things you've , uh , you've been served on on Oceania? I absolutely loved them. Land shops , uh , breakfast, lunch and dinner. Once you got to ask us , they'll bring him tea in the middle of the night. Uh, the stakes were really good. Um, each of the , each of the restaurants has something different. In of the bending on the ship you're on , you can have two to two to four different restaurant, five restaurants to eat at the buffet is for me and has most everything you really want. Are there, are the restaurants on the Oceania that they have a , are they all included or are there, are there , um, yeah, specialty ones. The specialty restaurants are included except for the, the wine restaurant was basically that you have to order in advance and you have to, you know, you pay a price for it, but the rest of them you get to pick one each. And depending on the category, once you get on the ship you can pick more. Oh, nice. Is there a particular, a particular restaurant you've experienced on a, on us Janea ship that , uh , that stands out above the others? Um, I mean , I like the mall. I mean each one, you know, has it's own its own flavor and it's , and it's really good and the stakeouts is great. Um, I mean, just, just all three of them . Well , four of them were really good.Speaker 3:
Um, so when you go out to choose a cruise, what , uh, how do you go about it and , uh, what kind of , what goes into you to the decisions that you make? Well, for me, I like to find stops. I haven't been to a , I mean, granted there are cruises where I've gone back to because I liked them. Southern Caribbean. I find it a lot more diverse than if you go in into regulate Eastern or Western Caribbean on a regular cruise line because you can only go to Mexico and Jamaica, you know, San Juan so many times, you know , once you get to the Southern Caribbean, the islands do change. Yeah. I feel the same way. I really like the , uh , Aruba, the , uh , snorkeling and Aruba is pretty impressive. No, most, most of the islands down there. You can do all kinds of fun stuff. What about in Europe? My favorite cruise at a 54 was a the Christmas market cruise. We went from a, we did three nights in Budapest and eight night cruise, one night at Nuremberg and then three nights in Prague. Wow . Going back to do that when it was so nice. So that, so this is a river cruise, which , which one? Oh, that one was a , I'm a waterways [inaudible] and it wasn't bad . Second out of it. How does the [inaudible] compare to Oceania? Um, it's a different flavor. Yeah, you're going, it's comparing apples to oranges. It's a smallest ship. Again, it's a more upscale clientele base, better educated people, more well traveled. And the food was absolutely phenomenal on Alma waterways . I got along with the chef all week long. My wife thought I was arguing with them. She has asked me to stop arguing with him and he goes, we're not arguing with discussing food. It's nice at the ends of the crews . He came to my cabin and gave me a memory stick, would over a thousand of his recipes. Wow. That's pretty great. Pretty great relationship. There's kind of like shack . No , we had a great time. It wasn't a bad second on that cruise. Wow. So what I said I was going to say I met Mimi from the drew Carey show. Oh wow. That's exciting. Yeah , she was across the hall from me. Some really, some pretty, a pretty diverse passengers. Do you find people from a , are they, are they mostly U S or are they spread out among different , uh, different countries of origin? The majority of the people were from the U S there was some, there were some Canadians , um, a few people from overseas in Europe, a few , uh , it was a couple, two or three couples from Japan. So you got to get a little bit of everything. But everybody on the ship didn't matter who you sat down with. Everybody was, was in a great mood, having a good time. And we had Santa Claus on ships, so , you know, Hey, I've been kinda like that. What a , what about the , uh, the land portion, you know, being a , being in Prague, being in some of these other ports and the Christmas markets , uh , did appreciate the most. Um, I mean, honestly, my favorite town we visited was pre-sale was, it was mainly along the new river in Germany. Oh. And they, when , when we would get known if they told us that they would to , um, markets, it was the big market that everybody goes through. And then there was a small one. Don't try to find it. Well, I found that as a challenge. I wanted to go find the smaller than we did. And I literally thought I was walking back into an old Frankenstein movie. I was waiting for people to come out with pitchforks and torches looking from Frankenstein. It was just the buildings on that old . Wow. So it really, yeah, we, we, we've found the small market and then , uh, we were looking for the large market and we got turned around a little bit and stopped the woman with a little little girl and it was about a foot of snow on the ground. It was snowing out. And as the woman that she knew where the big market was, you says, yeah, sure. And she walk like five blocks. It brought us to the market. Wow. That's pretty nice. You know , I told her I did not find the first person that wasn't happy to have a tourist in their town on the whole cruise. Oh, that's nice. Did you , uh , did you stock up on , uh, on gifts for relatives and uh , and friends for the holidays ? Um, well we , we picked up some stuff, not much, but I tried bringing back a bunch of, a bunch of salamis in the, in smoke cans with they, they wound up taking it away so don't, don't get it. Oh, let me , somebody ate , well, yeah. Well they didn't take the off , which was good. Oh, that's good. Yeah. You were talking about, we were talking about earlier about how, how free with the R with the caviar on, on Oceania. Oh, absolutely. There's one night on every cruise at nights along the, with in the, in the buffet area they have, so they had a fish section where they had a whole tuna and they would cut and tuna right off the tuner split around at the thing. The same thing with the salmon and a couple of other fishes and , and they , they had a three pound tin of black caviar and grab what you want. You know, they don't care. You know, they , they're going to go through when we're together. And I happen to like caveats. I grabbed a couple of tablespoons poles wide shutters, making a pig of myself, but Hey was free. Why not go for it? That's what, that's what the cations are about, right? Oh, absolutely. The overindulgence that's why you got to go on the short skirt and she could walk off all the Fuji. What is that look like? A Bordeaux Shania . There's no entertainment. You don't go on Oceana for the entertainment. I mean, it's minimal at best. Um, they do have on the Riviera , they do have a , a couple of good comedians and then they have a couple of different , uh , music groups. But you know, it's , it's minimum at best, you know, it's nothing to complain about, but you go on Oceana more for the itineraries and, and the, and the things of that nature.Speaker 4:
any , uh , any advice for , uh, for people that have not been on the line or , uh, people in general in terms of cruising on, on Oceania? Well , if you're going to book Oceana, you want to book it as close to when it comes down as possible and cause the highest and the lowest cabins are always going to sell out first. And then the stuff that Jim between, if it comes within 60 to 90 days, sometimes they offer reduced rates to upgrade , uh , you know , balconies and concierges class and 10 houses. It's less now than it used to be, but they still send me stuff all the time.Speaker 1:
Well, it's really great that they take such great care of you. Bob, thank you so much for being on the program. Uh , again, my guest has been Bob Durnin of cruise vacation outlet. I'm Bob Levinstein of cruise competes cruise podcast. Thank you for listening and have a great day.