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  #1  
Old September 12th, 2011, 07:31 AM
Cascade1911 Cascade1911 is offline
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Default Itinerary change due to Katia?

Just returned from my 7 day cruise on Norwegian Gem. Problem is, the only reason I booked the trip was to explore Bermuda. So, of course we ended up going to Port Canaveral, Stirrup Cay and Nassau.

I understand that booking a cruise in September is a crap shoot. My questions are, in as much as Katia wasn't projected to actually hit Bermuda did NCL make the right choice? Did Royal Caribbean and Holland America also avoid Bermuda? Would you expect the Line to offer any compensation (beyond the $48/ person credit for difference in port fees) in the form of future discount or on-board credits etc?
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Old September 12th, 2011, 07:44 AM
msmayor msmayor is offline
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Hindsight is always 20/20...and second-guessing a decision by the cruise line isn't really fair. Could they have gone to Bermuda safely? Maybe...but how pleasant would the voyage have been? How rough the seas? Instead of complaints about the alternate ports they'd have gotten complaints about the terrible sailing conditions.

I would never expect any compensation for a changed itinerary due to weather. You know that going in and accept that the changes may happen. As others have often said, if you have your heart set on reaching a certain port/destination then fly there and stay, don't depend on a cruise ship to get you there.
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  #3  
Old September 12th, 2011, 08:26 AM
Cascade1911 Cascade1911 is offline
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Well, I wasn't really basing my question on hindsight, when the change was made the forecast was for Katia to miss Bermuda.

As for the rest, you misunderstand the focus of my post. I was asking for information and opinions, not second guessing or complaining. I hope that is acceptable to you?
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Old September 12th, 2011, 08:28 AM
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Cruise lines need to be super cautious. They have a lot at stake including the passengers, crew, their ship and their reputation. The fine print has itinerary changes covered from stem to stern and no compensation is likely. I wouldn't expect it. Disappointing yes
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Old September 12th, 2011, 08:35 AM
ikelmay ikelmay is offline
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It was a tough call - we returned from the Veendam yesterday which DID stick to the original itinerary to Bermuda out of New York (we watched the Gem arrive into NYC about an hour after us). We had one night of rougher seas coming back, but surprisingly little bad weather considering the attention the storm got. We had heard about NCL's decision to reroute before we left New York and at the time I thought it was a sensible decision - just shows you how second guessing the professionals is a waste of time. The captain of the Veendam kept us informed and was very measured and calm. We departed Hamilton 3 hours early to give ourselves a bit more time to avoid the remains of the hurricane.
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Old September 12th, 2011, 08:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cascade1911 View Post
Well, I wasn't really basing my question on hindsight, when the change was made the forecast was for Katia to miss Bermuda.

As for the rest, you misunderstand the focus of my post. I was asking for information and opinions, not second guessing or complaining. I hope that is acceptable to you?
Just because the storm was forecast to miss Bermuda doesn't mean it wouldn't have impacted the cruise while the ship was sailing to and from Bermuda.

The cruise line has the right to change its itinerary for the safety and comfort of its passengers and crew, and they're under no obligation to provide any financial compensation for doing so. We've had to miss any number of ports over the years due to weather and have never received any compensation beyond a refund of port taxes, nor did we expect any compensation.
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Old September 12th, 2011, 10:26 AM
Cascade1911 Cascade1911 is offline
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Quote:
if you have your heart set on reaching a certain port/destination then fly there and stay, don't depend on a cruise ship to get you there
Yep, already looking at air and hotels.

I wouldn't have minded as much if the alternate destinations were to some degree comparable. But Port Canaveral and Nassau, REALLY? And Stirrup Cay was probably the nicest construction site I've ever had the opportunity to vacation on. Oh well, no one forced me to book in September so only myself to blame. Live and learn.
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  #8  
Old September 12th, 2011, 11:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cascade1911 View Post
Yep, already looking at air and hotels.

I wouldn't have minded as much if the alternate destinations were to some degree comparable. But Port Canaveral and Nassau, REALLY? And Stirrup Cay was probably the nicest construction site I've ever had the opportunity to vacation on. Oh well, no one forced me to book in September so only myself to blame. Live and learn.
Taking a cruise isn't like driving your car to the mall to go shopping where you can pick when and where you want to go and just pull your car into a parking space. The ship just can't go to another port and pull into a berth without having docking facilities reserved. NCL makes regular port calls in Port Canaveral and Nassau so undoubtedly had docking space available to it.

Where would you suggest the ship could have gone on a one week cruise from NY that was "to some degree comparable" to Bermuda? You can't get very far into the Caribbean and return to NY on a 7 day cruise. Having been to Bermuda many times I can assure you there is nowhere you could have gone on a one week cruise that is even remotely comparable to Bermuda. It's a unique destination.

Last edited by njhorseman; September 12th, 2011 at 11:00 AM.
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  #9  
Old September 12th, 2011, 11:28 AM
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For the last five cruises I've been on, we've missed scheduled ports for four of them. And, I was not traveling during hurricane season. It just happens and the cruise line always retains the right to change ports.

All we received was a refund of our port taxes for the missed stops, and on one cruise, a glass of champagne. You are not entitled to any other compensation.
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Last edited by 6rugrats; September 12th, 2011 at 11:29 AM.
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  #10  
Old September 12th, 2011, 11:28 AM
msmayor msmayor is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cascade1911 View Post
Yep, already looking at air and hotels.

I wouldn't have minded as much if the alternate destinations were to some degree comparable. But Port Canaveral and Nassau, REALLY? And Stirrup Cay was probably the nicest construction site I've ever had the opportunity to vacation on. Oh well, no one forced me to book in September so only myself to blame. Live and learn.
There really is little chance to come up with an alternate that is comparable to Bermuda on a 7-day cruise out of NY...there simply isn't an alternative within proper sailing distance. RCCL needs a 9-day itinerary to get down into the Caribbean. The other alternative would have been Canada, and in the eyes of most expecting beaches and sunshine Canada is far worse than the Bahamas.

Quote:
Well, I wasn't really basing my question on hindsight, when the change was made the forecast was for Katia to miss Bermuda.

As for the rest, you misunderstand the focus of my post. I was asking for information and opinions, not second guessing or complaining. I hope that is acceptable to you?
Sorry, I interpreted your question "...did NCL make the right choice?" came across as second-guessing the decision. You also asked if one should expect compensation, which sounded like you thought it should be appropriate. I apologize if you thought my comments didn't mesh with your questions.
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  #11  
Old September 12th, 2011, 11:30 AM
navybankerteacher navybankerteacher is offline
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Exactly - you can't get to very many interesting places and get back to New York in 7 days. An alternative might have been a cruise to nowhere, but then others would complain . With Nassau and Stirrup Cay, those who'd prefer a cruise to nowhere could pretend that was what they were doing - and just stay aboard, having more of the ship to themselves.
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Old September 12th, 2011, 12:31 PM
bbwex bbwex is offline
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A few things.

While the hurricane may have been forecast to miss Bermuda, Bermuda might have been in the warning area that ships use to project both the path of the hurricane, a buffer zone, and a safe area. Hurricanes do have projected courses, but they don't always read the Internet to see where they are supposed to go!

A ship is not an airplane. A ship travels at about 20 knots (23 miles per hour), which means that it takes time to avoid a sudden change in the storm's path.
With that in mind, ships will give hurricane and tropical depressions a wide berth.

I don't have access to the various projections on Katia, so a) I cannot see what the captain was seeing at the time, and b) the captain did what he felt was safe, and in light of the lack of alternative ports, offered the passengers something that was within range and safe. It's really hard to question the captain's decision.

If you sail in hurricane season, you take the risk of itinerary changes. It is simply a fact of life (and safety).
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  #13  
Old September 12th, 2011, 05:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cascade1911 View Post
Just returned from my 7 day cruise on Norwegian Gem. Problem is, the only reason I booked the trip was to explore Bermuda. So, of course we ended up going to Port Canaveral, Stirrup Cay and Nassau.

I understand that booking a cruise in September is a crap shoot. My questions are, in as much as Katia wasn't projected to actually hit Bermuda did NCL make the right choice? Did Royal Caribbean and Holland America also avoid Bermuda? Would you expect the Line to offer any compensation (beyond the $48/ person credit for difference in port fees) in the form of future discount or on-board credits etc?

I find it odd that the last two Gem sailings went to the Bahamas and the Dawn from Boston has been sailing to Bermuda.
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Last edited by janetz; September 12th, 2011 at 05:43 PM.
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Old September 12th, 2011, 09:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cascade1911 View Post
Just returned from my 7 day cruise on Norwegian Gem. Problem is, the only reason I booked the trip was to explore Bermuda. So, of course we ended up going to Port Canaveral, Stirrup Cay and Nassau.

I understand that booking a cruise in September is a crap shoot. My questions are, in as much as Katia wasn't projected to actually hit Bermuda did NCL make the right choice? Did Royal Caribbean and Holland America also avoid Bermuda? Would you expect the Line to offer any compensation (beyond the $48/ person credit for difference in port fees) in the form of future discount or on-board credits etc?
Hi Cascade - I was a pax on this cruise with you. I was in the terminal & also received the note about the itinerary change. I also heard countless repeated announcements over the loudspeaker that "if you have issues with the itinerary change please see an NCL representative." It didn't matter if someone had already checked in or not...if there was an issue go talk to an NCL rep.

Speaking for myself only, I very much appreciated NCL's decision to avoid the Hurricane. I was on the NCL Majesty when there was ONLY a tropical storm in the Gulf of Mexico ...and all the windows in the Spinnaker Lounge broke in, and all the bottles in the liquor store fell to the floor, and all the bottles in the parfumerie fell to the floor, and there were ropes everywhere for people to hold on to...and they then closed the upper decks to all of us. And these conditions lasted for 2 1/2 days for heaven's sake.

I think, with all due respect, you may have no personal knowledge of what rough seas really are.

I applaud Captain Guvstasen (who had JUST BEEN through Irene) and NCL for giving me, albeit lesser ports, but very calm seas.

Bermuda will continue to be there....book a cruise in April or May.
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Old September 12th, 2011, 10:42 PM
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Sorry for your disappointment but I do not believe you should have an expectation of 'compensation'..... (my least favorite word).

The cruise line does not control weather and their principle goal is safety. They took you aboard and brought you home safely. All facilities on the ship were available to you (I presume or you would have said if otherwise). Every cruise line reserves the right to totally revamp any itinerary at any time for any reason.

Happy you found us though.
Now that you have joined us here, please pull up a deck chair and 'hang out'.
Hopefully your next cruise will bring you to ports you are more eager to visit.

The comments above are correct... where else could the cruise line have brought you in seven days to get you back on time? (There are various laws which greatly impact their choices. If interested read about PVSA - Passenger Vessel Services Act).

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Old September 12th, 2011, 10:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by janetz View Post
I find it odd that the last two Gem sailings went to the Bahamas and the Dawn from Boston has been sailing to Bermuda.
I've already answered this for you on another thread on the NCL board. It's a matter of timing. The Dawn arrives in Bermuda on Sunday and departs on Tuesday. The Gem arrives in Bermuda on Wednesday and departs on Friday. The Dawn would not have been in the path of the storms due to its schedule, while the Gem potentially was in the storms' paths.

Last edited by njhorseman; September 12th, 2011 at 11:01 PM.
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