Our cruise week has gotten off to a good start. Our flight to Houston was on time, and pleasant enough (bonus points for United Economy Plus and the electric outlets at the seats, but we had a particularly grouchy flight crew that snapped at my friend for no good reason). Houston (IAH) airport is huge. I mean, really huge. We had an enormous walk from the gate to our baggage claim (several moving walkways and past endless gates). We stopped for a Starbucks on the way, an even with all that, our luggage was just coming off the carousel as we got there; perfect timing really. Getting our rental car was a cinch (shuttle to a big rent-a-car center). We tried Dollar for the first, and probably our last time. Although the initially quoted car rate was inexpensive, they nickeled and dimed until it didn’t seem so cheap after all, and when we inquired about a slightly larger car because we had 4 people and lots of luggage they quoted us a price that would have tripled the rental rate. This has not been my experience with either Avis or Hertz, my two go-to companies for car rental.
Galveston was less than 90 minutes away in Saturday evening traffic. I’m typing this in our room at the Four Points Sheraton. Very convenient location, right near Galveston’s historic Pleaure Pier (amusement park on the pier). We walked to dinner at close-by Fish Tales (we had perfectly good fried sea food served up extremely fast, which made us extremely happy since no one had eaten a full meal all day and it was 9pm–oh, and the hot rolls and the honey butter were delicious too). What made us not so happy at the hotel was that we were informed the WiFi at the hotel was not working when we arrived (about 8:30) and here it is 11:30 and it is still not working and the reception help was not very helpful or apologetic at all (or available on the eternally busy front-desk phone), or offering anything to make up for it. Obviously here I am blogging and not able to get this blog out to you tonight so I am pretty unhappy with the hotel. I’m also not too fond of the old-fashioned noisy window air conditioning units or the $9.99 charge for the breakfast buffet (this place is less fancy than a Marriott Fairfield Inn or Residence Inn where the breakfast buffet is included). Morning coffee at least was free, if uninspired. Besides the great location for a pre-cruise stay, the pluses for the Four Points Sheraton are that the bed does seem comfortable, the rooms are fairly large, the view from our room was of the ocean, and the during-cruise parking is a good deal.
My next blog will be from aboard the Carnival Breeze tomorrow!