I want to commend David Swanson on his article about Tokyo DisneySea ["DisneySea Gets an 'A'," Nov. 20].
His line about DisneySea being "a great add-on to a Tokyo vacation, and maybe reason for the journey itself," is so true.
I've been to the Tokyo Disney Resort three times. I have been a Disneyland annual pass holder and have gone to Disney World several times, but I think DisneySea is the diamond in the rough of Disney resorts.
Last summer, my family paid $320 for two adults and two children for two days. That included a 3-year-old who was admitted free, but we would have had to pay more than $90 each for one day at any of the U.S. Disney parks. My only issue with the tickets is that the three-day passport lets you park hop only on the third day. The first two days are single park passes.
I also agree with highlighting the Hilton Tokyo Bay. To me, this is the "flagship" of the Hilton chain and has set the standard for any hotel stay for me.
I recently returned from a six-week trip to France. Automated teller machines in Paris are beginning to issue 100 euro notes when withdrawals are made with a credit card. The problem: Few businesses accept them unless for a large purchase of, say, more than 50 euros.
Furthermore, several banks did not have counters or were unwilling to exchange 100 euro notes for smaller denominations even when they had counters.
Finally, the very branch of the bank where I have had an account for more than 30 years would not only not exchange such banknotes but also would not accept a cash deposit of 200 euros (two 100-euro notes) into my account, telling me to do so with my bank card, which I do not have.
Consumer satisfaction has never been a priority in France; it has just reached a new level of antagonism.
As the founder of an early crew-matching website (now defunct), I'd like to add a few comments to On the Spot column ["When Your Love's the Sea," Nov. 20, by Catharine Hamm].
Southern Californians should consider the sailing program at Orange Coast College. It offers lessons ranging from an hour or two in a boat barely big enough for two to multi-week Pacific crossings with an expert captain. They're a great way to build your skills and confidence.
Second, crewing on small boats is definitely a buyer-beware situation. Before you climb aboard, be sure you're traveling on a sound vessel with an experienced, competent sailor. A major storm on the open ocean is not the time or place to discover that nobody thought to bring a sea anchor.
And third, watch out for charlatans. Some boat owners think they're going to find romance, others are trying to hire slave labor, and some will suddenly find themselves short of cash for necessary repairs.