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  #1  
Old February 21st, 2008, 10:56 PM
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Default GCT last minute deals

I am looking at GCT's last minute deals. (Google 'GCT deals'). There are 5 of them, all river cruises. They sell lots of things. Anybody want to speculate why all the deals are river cruises ??
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Riverboat Arapaima Peruvian Amazon April 2012
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Costa Fortuna Caribbean February 2009
Cochin Kerala India Houseboat December 2008
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Chardonney Rhone and Soane 2006
HA Zaandam Panama Canal 2006
River Aria Danube Eastern Europe 2005
Celebrity Constellation Trans Atlantic 2004
Cunard Caronia Canaries and Madeira 2003
MSC Melody Brazil 2002
Ankhanhut River Nile 2001
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Carnival Tropical Southern Carib 1990
HA Niew Amsterdam West Carrib 1987
Carnival Holiday South Carib 1980
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Old February 21st, 2008, 11:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by p598738 View Post
I am looking at GCT's last minute deals. (Google 'GCT deals'). There are 5 of them, all river cruises. They sell lots of things. Anybody want to speculate why all the deals are river cruises ??
I'm sure they want to fill their boats. Not cost effective to run a boat cruise with empty cabins. These are mostly all cruises in March and it's not the most poplular time for people to take vacations on riverboats.
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  #3  
Old February 22nd, 2008, 08:14 AM
JerseyGem JerseyGem is offline
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Default last minute deals

I agree with Carole- the boat is going to sail with or without a full passenger load (with the same number of employees to pay, etc). Why not fill it? Ocean cruises are the same. DH & I frequently do last minute deals (river and ocean cruises) because we're retired with few commitments (and because we're thrifty!). We don't mind traveling at the last minute. In 8/07, we did GCT's The Great Rivers of Europe with 7 days notice- a great last minute deal- and paid less than half price. And next month, we're doing their Springtime in Holland and Belgium for a significant savings.

So why aren't the ships booked solid? March is an iffy month, plus we're sailing over Easter. Many people don't want to be away from family at holidays (our DD is 24 and will spend Easter with the BF's family). And what about the dollar? Many of our friends won't even consider going out of the USA because the dollar is so low compared to other currencies. However, we feel that this is an advantage to GCT's river cruise-the prices have already been established and they're in dollars. Yes, we'll buy souvenirs (and of course beer and chocolate from local sources), but over all we shouldn't be too affected by the weak dollar.

Finally, many passengers on river cruises are older than on GCT's (or OAT's) more active tours. And sometimes older people have health issues that can keep them from vacationing at the last minute. They have to cancel, so a cabin is suddenly availabe. GCT has their deposit, so why not get a little more for the empty cabin by booking it at a steep discount? If you want to look for a last minute deal on a specific cruise, find out when the final payment is due or the last day that booked passengers can cancel without penalty. Keep your eyes open at that time- cabins may be suddenly available.

And is anyone else going to Brussels on March 20?
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  #4  
Old February 22nd, 2008, 09:09 AM
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I wonder why we don't see deals on the other (non cruise) trips.
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Riverboat Arapaima Peruvian Amazon April 2012
Celebrity Constellation 14 day Carib. Feb 2011
Costa Fortuna Caribbean February 2009
Cochin Kerala India Houseboat December 2008
NCL Dream Boston/Halifax+Sidney N.S./Maine 2008
Gate 1 MS Deutschland Rhine/Moselle 2007
Norwegian Majesty Boston/Bermuda 2007
Chardonney Rhone and Soane 2006
HA Zaandam Panama Canal 2006
River Aria Danube Eastern Europe 2005
Celebrity Constellation Trans Atlantic 2004
Cunard Caronia Canaries and Madeira 2003
MSC Melody Brazil 2002
Ankhanhut River Nile 2001
Nordic Prince Mexican Riveria 1997
Carnival Tropical Southern Carib 1990
HA Niew Amsterdam West Carrib 1987
Carnival Holiday South Carib 1980
Carnival Marti Gras Nassau St Thomas 1975
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  #5  
Old February 22nd, 2008, 10:32 AM
CPT Trips CPT Trips is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by p598738 View Post
I wonder why we don't see deals on the other (non cruise) trips.
A cruise has a lot of fixed costs and few variable costs (more passengers equal much lower per person costs). The other trips have few fixed costs and a lot of variable costs (per person costs change very little with the number of travellers).
Empty cabins on a cruise ship only save the owner a few bucks a day for food. But they still need to pay all the crew, fuel the ship and pay docking charges - and they are the big costs.
Below capacity on a land tour? No expense for the room in a hotel you don't use, no expense for the meal(s) and no expense for the air or rail travel from one city to another. (these are the big costs on a land tour). OK, a bit higher per person cost for the bus driver and fuel for the bus (peanuts in the overall scheme of things).
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  #6  
Old February 22nd, 2008, 02:23 PM
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Default last minute deals

Hi all,
Can someone steer me in the right direction where I can find these last minute things?
My window of time is summer.
Thanks!!
Tina
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  #7  
Old February 22nd, 2008, 02:56 PM
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Paul W gave the suggestion of doing a Google search on 'GCT deals' and I found a page full of deals. If you look there, you will find some deals for March and April. But keep checking back, I'm sure they will post more as time draws nearer to summer.

My husband and I have never used GCT, but have friends who use them all the time for their travels. They are generally pleased with the service.
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  #8  
Old February 22nd, 2008, 08:24 PM
JerseyGem JerseyGem is offline
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Default Mrs. Dave

Here's the link for GCT's homepage. The Last Minute specials start half way down. I think other tour groups (Vantage, OATS, etc) also highlight Last Minute deals on their homepages. Good luck!

Click here: Grand Circle Travel : International Travel Vacations, Tours and River Cruises
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  #9  
Old February 28th, 2008, 09:58 PM
Precious Patty Precious Patty is offline
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And is anyone else going to Brussels on March 20?[/quote]

We are going on GCT from Basel to Brussels and will be flying out on March 20. Are you going on the Romance of the Rhine and Mosel?
Patty
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  #10  
Old February 29th, 2008, 07:15 AM
JerseyGem JerseyGem is offline
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Default Precious Patty- Springtime in Holland and Belgium

Hi Patty- No, we're on GCT's Springtime in Holland and Belgium. However, your cruise (Romance of the Rhine and Mosel) is on our wish list. (When we see a last minute special.) So when you return, please let us know how you liked it! We did the Great Rivers of Europe last August, and we noticed that many of the stops along the Rhine are different on those two trips-so we'd have quite a variety of towns and excursions.

Have you cruised with GCT before?

Have a great cruise!
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  #11  
Old March 6th, 2008, 09:10 PM
Precious Patty Precious Patty is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JerseyGem View Post
Hi Patty- No, we're on GCT's Springtime in Holland and Belgium. However, your cruise (Romance of the Rhine and Mosel) is on our wish list. (When we see a last minute special.) So when you return, please let us know how you liked it! We did the Great Rivers of Europe last August, and we noticed that many of the stops along the Rhine are different on those two trips-so we'd have quite a variety of towns and excursions.

Have you cruised with GCT before?

Have a great cruise!
Yes, we went on GCT's Great Rivers of Europe last spring and enjoyed it so much that we booked another trip scarcely a year later. Looks as if the weather is going to be quite chilly this time, but we are counting the days--two weeks today!
Patty
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  #12  
Old March 7th, 2008, 09:04 AM
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Question JerseyGem : When Are You Going ?

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Hi Patty- No, we're on GCT's Springtime in Holland and Belgium.

We are on the GCT Holland & Belgium in Springtime APRIL 19th River Ravel cruise and would like to read your comments and tips - especially if you are going before us !
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  #13  
Old March 7th, 2008, 11:58 AM
CPT Trips CPT Trips is online now
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JerseyGem's DH here .

dlhamlten
We are before you . . . March 20 to 31. I guess you will have better weather and flowers in the fields. You can safely ignore that part of any review we write.
Our trip is Brussels to Amsterdam on the River Concerto, which way are you? Is this your first GCT? The Ravel is slightly smaller and a not the same design as the Concerto, so we can't offer you any insights on the ship.
Post any specific questions you have and we'll be sure to pay attention to those aspects of the trip.

Precious Patty
Which stateside airport are you using? We fly direct to Brussels from Newark on Continental.
Are you staying a few days in Brussels? We'll have 3 nights there . . . we're looking forward to sampling the beer.
Our first GCT trip was last August (last minute, one week notice). This one was more like a month in advance. we'll be on the same ship as we were on for the other cruise.
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  #14  
Old March 7th, 2008, 01:41 PM
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Question Holland / Belgium Questions

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Originally Posted by CPT Trips View Post
JerseyGem's DH here .

dlhamlten
We are before you . . . March 20 to 31. I guess you will have better weather and flowers in the fields. You can safely ignore that part of any review we write.
Our trip is Brussels to Amsterdam on the River Concerto, which way are you? Is this your first GCT? The Ravel is slightly smaller and a not the same design as the Concerto, so we can't offer you any insights on the ship.
Post any specific questions you have and we'll be sure to pay attention to those aspects of the trip.

.

We are actually doing the reverse Itinerary - Amsterdam to Brussels -. It will be our second GCT Trip after Egypt last year which was very well done.

I would be most interested in which Optional Tours you take and your evaluations of them. Any Tours / Events you were disappointed with ?

Did you run across any particularly good restaurants or shops that you recommend ?

What was the policy about buying Tulip and other bulbs ( and Cheese ) to bring back to the States as far as what Customs allows ?

Thanks in advance.
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CELEBRITY Infinity February/March 2013 South America to Antarctica
OCEANIA Marina Nordic Explorer September 2013 Baltic/Russia - Stockholm to Southampton

NOW Where ................................???????????


EMERALD PRINCESS - Southern Caribbean Medley
The Schooner STEPHEN TABER - Penobscot Bay, Maine
VANTAGE Discovery II - Culinary French Waterways - Burgundy, Beaujolais & Provence
OCEANIA Regatta - Amazon Interlude - Rio de Janeiro to Miami

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  #15  
Old March 7th, 2008, 02:40 PM
CPT Trips CPT Trips is online now
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Oh Lord, don't ask me about cheese. I bought some gouda in the Amsterdam airport duty free shop last year. Supposedly it was packed for transport through Paris to the states. We'll cut the long story short with Paris at lunch, time security wanted my cheese, DW had visions of me being hauled off by the gendarmes - my Geneveer made it, but not the cheese!!!

That said, are you flying home direct, or will you have to change planes anywhere? That will matter as far as bringing things in your carry-on.

Are you staying any nights in a hotel? Where?
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Old March 7th, 2008, 03:01 PM
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Since we live in Atlanta, we will be on non-stop Delta flights to Amsterdam and from Brussels. No connections, fortunately, and only 1 iteration of Security.

We have been to Amsterdam before and will not be doing a pre or post-trip stay.

The only Hotel we will be in is the NH Atlanta ( coincidently ) in Brussels.
__________________
CUNARD Queen Mary - Transatlantic
CARNIVAL - 12/92 Festivale & 2/98 Imagination
PRINCESS - Alaska ( Crown- 8/1993 ) & Mediterranean ( Grand - 5/2005 )
ROYAL CARIBBEAN -Rhapsody of the Seas
CELEBRITY - Galaxy Caribbean
NCL -Sea & Seaward - Caribbean
WINDJAMMER BAREFOOT -S.V. Polynesia
ROYAL CARIBBEAN- Serenade of the Seas 4/2006 So. Caribbean
CARNIVAL - Miracle 9/17/2006 West Caribbean
XPEDITION CELEBRITY Galapagos Islands Dec 2006
CARNIVAL Legend 2/2007
GRAND CIRCLE TRAVEL M/S River Anuket Egypt Nile River 4/2007
CELEBRITY Summit - Hawaii Circle 10/2007
CRUISE WEST - Spirit of Yorktown -Baja/ Sea of Cortez/ 2008
GRAND CIRCLE M/S River Ravel Holland & Belgium April / 2008
CARNIVAL Holiday Mayan Riviera Cruise " June / 2008
ROYAL CARIBBEAN Jewel of the Seas Transatlantic 09/2008
CELEBRITY Constellation Eastbound Transatlantic April / May 2009
CRUISE WEST - Spirit of '98 Northwest Passage July/ 2009
CARNIVAL Triumph October/2009 New England & Canada
The PAUL GAUGUIN January/ 2010 French Polynesia Adventures in Paradise !
CARNIVAL Destiny November/ 2010 Exotic Eastern Caribbean
GRAND CIRCLE River Harmony Great Rivers of Europe Vienna to Amsterdam June 2011
AMERICAN CRUISE LINES American Star New England Islands September/2011
OCEANIA Nautica Imperial Interludes Feb/Mar 2012 Bangkok to Beijing and Back to 'Nam
CARNIVAL Freedom November 3-11,2012 Virgin Islands
CELEBRITY Infinity February/March 2013 South America to Antarctica
OCEANIA Marina Nordic Explorer September 2013 Baltic/Russia - Stockholm to Southampton

NOW Where ................................???????????


EMERALD PRINCESS - Southern Caribbean Medley
The Schooner STEPHEN TABER - Penobscot Bay, Maine
VANTAGE Discovery II - Culinary French Waterways - Burgundy, Beaujolais & Provence
OCEANIA Regatta - Amazon Interlude - Rio de Janeiro to Miami

" If you can afford to go First Class and don't - your heirs will ! " --- Anonymous
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  #17  
Old March 8th, 2008, 08:24 AM
JerseyGem JerseyGem is offline
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Default hotel and cheese

dlhamlten: Since you're flying home direct (and avoiding the horrors of CDG), you probably will be able to bring cheese into the USA, as long as it's packaged properly (sealed). However, I remember reading (maybe here on CC) that tulip or other bulbs are a problem with USA customs. I'll try to research on a dot gov site.

Also, your hotel may change by the time you receive your final docs. We were originally told the Atlanta but are actually staying at the Hilton Brussels (Boulevard de Waterloo 38). (Just a head's up in case you're planning something specific for the Atlanta.)

We (CPT Trips) intend to do several of the optional tours, so we'll post when we return. Also, we are planning to do a "beer tour" (pub crawl?) in Brussels (with friends of my cousin who live near Brussels). And assuming we recover from that, we want to take the train to Brugge the next day (our full, free day in Brussels).
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  #18  
Old March 12th, 2008, 10:58 PM
Precious Patty Precious Patty is offline
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Precious Patty
Which stateside airport are you using? We fly direct to Brussels from Newark on Continental.
Are you staying a few days in Brussels? We'll have 3 nights there . . . we're looking forward to sampling the beer.
Our first GCT trip was last August (last minute, one week notice). This one was more like a month in advance. we'll be on the same ship as we were on for the other cruise.[/quote]

We are flying British Airways Phoenix to Heathrow (poor us) to Basel, Switzerland where our cruise originates. We are cruising from Basel to Brussels. Our cruise is GCT's Romance of the Rhine and Mosel.
Patty
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  #19  
Old March 13th, 2008, 11:02 AM
CPT Trips CPT Trips is online now
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Patty - your trip is on our "to do" list. Let us know how it is. We did one of the optionals you have available - Marksburg Castle. We enjoyed it . . .

If either Dewy or Gusta are PDs on your tour, say hello from us (Randy and Lynn). By the way both were super.

Heathrow! It does have a reputation. May I suggest you check out whether you will need to go through security over there. If so, I think you are limited to one carry-on . . . no personal item in addition and no extra for any kind of medical device (such as a CPAP)
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Old March 16th, 2008, 10:47 PM
Precious Patty Precious Patty is offline
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Originally Posted by CPT Trips View Post
Patty - your trip is on our "to do" list. Let us know how it is. We did one of the optionals you have available - Marksburg Castle. We enjoyed it . . .

If either Dewy or Gusta are PDs on your tour, say hello from us (Randy and Lynn). By the way both were super.

Heathrow! It does have a reputation. May I suggest you check out whether you will need to go through security over there. If so, I think you are limited to one carry-on . . . no personal item in addition and no extra for any kind of medical device (such as a CPAP)
Randy and Lynn,
Coincidentally we also went to Marksburg Castle last spring on GCT's Great Rivers cruise. We enjoyed it too, but will pass on it this spring.

On British Airlines website it states that two carryons are now allowed--a carryon bag and a briefcase or purse. I sure hope that doesn't change while we are in the air, as when we flew over last time I got on with bag and purse and had to stuff my purse in the bag before I could get off at Heathrow. We did have to go through security again and then run for our flight.

I will be happy to post a trip report when we get back. We are sure excited and can't wait for Thursday. Would love to hear of anyone else on GCT's Romance of the Rhine and Mosel March 20-April 4. I should have done a roll call, I guess, but I'm a newby here.
Patty
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