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Posts posted by Aus ATC

  1. On 11/7/2020 at 7:49 PM, Aus ATC said:

    Final payment due on Monday for our Radiance OTS cruise out of Brisbane mid-January.  Only have to pay for the taxes and port fees etc (used an FCC for the bulk), so will probably go ahead.  Hope springs eternal.....

    Just an update.  Went to make final payment - couldn't do so on line.  Rang the call centre and Royal are not chasing final payments yet for January cruises - they are still undecided if it will go ahead or not.  Apparently we will be advised soon as to status - my guess is that it will be cancelled, based on the fact they didn't want my money.

  2. Hi,

    Our cruise was cancelled back in June.  I had paid the $400AUD deposit and around $2000AUD in the cruise planner.  When the cruise was cancelled, according to the information at the time I was expecting to have the cruise planner purchases refunded (at 100%), and the deposit turned into a AUD$500 FCC.  Instead I received a $3000 FCC (125% of all payments to date - I didn't do anything about it then).


    I now see there is a 125% OBC credit option, and that can be used for a future cruises cruise planner.  Maybe this is new since my cruise was cancelled?


    As I am not sure we will be able to use the full $3000 FCC before 31 Dec 2021 just on fares, so I'm wondering if the cruise planner component ($2400) could be "moved" from FCC to OBC, so we can use it on an upcoming cruise we have already booked.  Or should I just ask to have returned what should have previously been refunded (but at 100%)?


    Hope this makes sense!!

  3. We have just taken a punt on a Royal Carribean cruise to the Pacific islands for next January - ex BNE.  Given we had some FCC, and the price was attractive, I figured we had nothing to lose.  The cruise would only go ahead if the circumstances permit it, and if it doesn't our FCC will just be reinstated.  And we can cancel up to 48 hours prior.  Now to see how it all unfolds.....

  4. I watched the 4 corners show.  I came away thinking that good "investigative journalism" could have reported a lot more about the timeline of events as has been revealed in the commission of inquiry - in particular the delayed update of the case numbers on board (ultimately after disembarkation), the failure to execute priority testing of the swabs taken off the ship, and also some questioning of the key protagonists about why the focus seemed to be on "no evidence of COVID-19" rather than "we can't rule it out therefore let's be cautions".


  5. 13 hours ago, johnlcruise said:

    Here is an interesting read from a stranded crew member that finale made it home.


    Really highlights the disconnect in policy - true, cruise ships have had their share of issues.  But now they are floating quarantine centres - if there is no evidence of COVID-19 on board, why can't the crew be treated as "ordinary citizens" and allowed to travel home without restriction?

  6. 16 hours ago, SeaDog-46 said:

    Mic you left a word out - SERVICE.


    When I went to sea I worked on Cargo Liners.   Pre container refrigerated vessels that mainly ran from UK to Australia & NZ.

    Prior to each vessels planned voyage, notices were placed with agents & in the maritime press.  These stated that the named vessel would be accepting cargo for listed ports at a certain berth warehouse up to a certain date.  This was the service.

    They also carried a few passengers. Up to 12 with no doctor onboard.

    When I emigrated to Australia I came out on the P&O liner Iberia. She departed Tilbury & picked up passengers in Rotterdam, Cape Town & Durban for landing in Cape Town, Durban, Fremantle, Adelaide, Melbourne & Sydney. This was a liner voyage as apposed to the repositioning cruise I did a few years ago on the Sapphire Princess. She departed Southampton landing & picking up passengers in Rome & Dubai.  As it was a cruise we went to various other ports between these two ports.

    ss Iberia.JPG

    Sapphire Princess Las Palmas.JPG


    Thanks for the photo of the Iberia!!  I came to Australia as a toddler with my parents aboard that ship in August 1964.

  7. 22 minutes ago, DiamondFour said:

    All this police investigation is doing is a corrupt cover up for multiple government departments that stuffed up and are trying to blame Princess and innocent crew members for their stuff up. 


    I would be interested in the evidence pointing to a crew member as the "patient zero" in this case.  A nice deflection that the media will (has) pick(ed) up on to lay further blame on the company. I presume they have not actually identified "the individual concerned".

  8. From MSN News (AAP):


    Sky News says it's aware of tapes of phone calls from Carnival Australia and the Ruby Princess to the NSW Ports Authority where the ship made it clear it didn't believe there were cases of COVID-19 on board before it was given permission to dock.

    The Sunday Telegraph reported a decision by the Port Authority of NSW to not to allow the Ruby Princess to dock in Sydney was overturned by the corporation after a call from a senior Carnival Australia official,


    Would certainly be interesting to see those transcripts...


    Seems quite a leap from an email reporting passengers with "flu like symptoms, but testing negative for influenza" (surely the alarm bells would ring with this preliminary assessment) to "didn't believe there were cases of COVID-19 onboard".


    Time will tell (maybe - truth will likely be another casualty here).

  9. We have 2 cruises booked - Alaska ex Vancouver in late August, and then Vancouver to Hawaii in September.  With the first final payment due late May, we will sit tight for now and see how things develop.  Obviously a few things have to line up - travel restrictions lifted, Qantas resuming international flights, Canada re-opening its ports after 30th June, cruises generally being viable and the itineraries remaining (mostly) unchanged, and self-isolation on return from overseas no longer being required. 


    We have been looking forward to this holiday for a couple of years - but if it doesn't come to pass, our plan B will be to use the time off work to see some more of this great country we call home (and maybe some time in NZ if they will have us) .....

  10. 5 hours ago, wolfcathorse said:

    I asked my ta who asked RCI why they send out offers for cruises that show as being sold out. the answer was that RCI keeps some cabins in inventory so they can get people to bid on them. In other words, the ship may be sold out if you want to book on line, but they have set aside cabins to offer for bid.

    Sounds like a curious business model - surely an outright sale of an in demand cabin would bring in more cash than an upgrade bid (and then reselling the cheaper cabin).

  11. We have $950 OBC for an upcoming cruise.  $600 from the 4 perks (Australian bookings are priced with gratuities included so the 4th perk is an additional $150 per person), $200 from a "sale" booking, and $150 from a future cruise credit.  Will probably take a couple of ships tours to make use of it.

  12. 13 minutes ago, WestLakeGirl said:

    But then there would be unpopular announcements of increases in cruise fares.  Comes out the same.....

    Probably no announcements - how would you know from one day to the next if the price has increased/changed due solely to this?  

  13. 16 minutes ago, TeeRick said:

    One issue is associated with the country tipping culture of the cruise passenger.  Passengers from the USA tend to tip for everything towards 20% while others from other countries tip much less or even not at all.  No right or wrong answer based on where you live.  So it would indeed be easier and more fair to just charge a higher price per cabin with all gratuities included and just pay the crew a fair wage, period.  And not count on the passengers to supplement the wages by chance.  Then those who want to tip even more for great service could still do it freely and selectively. There would be no need to pass on gratuity increases and make all of these unpopular announcements.


    Our cruise fares "down under" for Celebrity (and other cruise lines) include gratuities in the fare (not as a separate line item) - reflects our "all inclusive" pricing (and wages) model here.  The perks packages on .au bookings come with an additional $150USD per person OBC in lieu of the gratuities option.  We will choose to tip our room attendant, and some of the servers who we have developed a rapport with during a cruise, in cash at the end, to say thanks.

  14. A supplementary question or 2 for the San Francisco locals, if I may.  We have 3 nights in the city before flying to YVR to pick up a Celebrity cruise to Alaska.

    1 - We have booked Hilton Financial District at a good price - seems an OK if not perfect location.  Sort of central to most things if not close to any (we don't mind a bit of a walk).  Are we "on the money" with this assessment and will it be OK for 2 days of sightseeing?


    2- We have an 0800 flight on a Sunday from SFO - will a taxi be easy to get around 0530 to get us to the airpor tin time for check-in etc?  I gather there is a fixed price pre-booking service for $35 (plus tip) for transfers from the city to SFO.


    Thanks in advance.

  15. Do cocktails like a Martini, Cosmo etc come in under $15.00 - if made with "semi-premium spirits" (say like Grey Goose, Bombay Sapphire) which on their own are just under $15.00?  Or will our Martinis be made with "well spirits"?


    (Our first NCL cruise in a week or so, so very interested in the answer!)

  16. We are finding it hard to justify the cost difference for our upcoming 7 night cruise - but a question for seasoned NCL folks (our first time on NCL).  Will cocktails made with spirits priced under $15.00 be covered?  On other cruises we have enjoyed a martini or cosmopolitan pre dinner - will they be covered by the UBP/PBP $15.00 limit if made with Grey Goose/Belvedere?


    So I guess the question is how much are the typical cocktails?

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