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Everything posted by nycruiser80

  1. My guy does. He uses a program that gives him updates daily. That is how he retains a loyal clientele. He books and take care of it call. Though the onboard credit he offers will fluctuate if the price drops by a lot as the onboard credit comes from his commission. Either way I still come out ahead so I am happy. My last cruise back in February he was notified of a substantial price drop I qualified for. Even though he lowered his onboard credit I did very well.
  2. I was a TA so I am partial. I use a TA who is great (a former colleague). I prefer booking with a TA as they advocate for me, price check daily and advise me of any price drops and best of all I always get an onboard credit on every sailing. I always come out ahead financially when using a TA. I don't understand how people pass up free gratuities or free onboard spending money to book direct but to each his own I suppose. The price my TA gets is the same a booking direct in addition he has many group sailings so if I book early I tie into those and pay a better price than booking direct. Duri
  3. Sad to see this. Thankfully some deluxe/luxury ships are still being built with full or partial promenade decks. The Spirit of Discovery/Adventure the Regent Explorer come to mind. From the renderings it appears Cunard will be using Koningsdam design which means no traditional promenade deck for their new build.
  4. Interesting observations. I am 39 and have been fortunate to have been cruising for the last 30 years or so. In that time, I have seen many changes but one notable change is the more inward trend of ship design. As the OP suggested, I too consider this to be a way for people to stay inside and hopefully focus more on onboard spending. Keep people inside to bolster onboard revenue. Most of the new ships lack an outdoor promenade deck which I miss greatly and if they have one it is sheltered with lifeboats and very narrow with no seating. I remember reading this was done as an enhanced safety m
  5. On my Azamara cruise last year I saw Ana Rucner in a Cello Concert at Mestrovic Gallery in Split. It was wonderful and a highlight of the trip.
  6. I had posted this idea in another thread. When they both came together for the the health panel I started to think that they maybe interested in combining forces. In that thread, someone who claimed to work as a consulting person within the cruise industry alluded to this being a possibility but also said that they couldn't say more. In my mind, if NCL and Royal did this I feel that Royal would fold NCL ships into their brand as I would think Royal has better brand recognition and NCL ships have a lot of innovative features like Royal Caribbean. Celebrity would stay as is. Azamara
  7. It’s business. I may not necessarily agree with all of that model but a business conducts itself as it sees fit. I am selling my coop (condo) at the moment and the real estate made me sign paper work stating that I agree to pay any administration fees (For advertising and the like) if I elect to back out. In addition, airlines charge customers fees for making changes and even booking on the phone. Of course when you become a travel agent you do realize that you will go through a lot of people who waste your time but for some agents they see fit to charge for their time.
  8. I used to be a TA and knew of some agents who did that and continue to do so. A large part of travel agent work is research and planning and often times you may spend days on arranging someone’s trip and then they don’t want to take it. Generally, the few agents that I knew who do that specialized in luxury land travel in Italy and Asia which required a lot of leg work to arrange including making long distance calls. Having been in this business you get a lot of shoppers as well as people who quite frankly consume a large part of your time but then again as the professional it is your job to c
  9. No, I don't work in the industry. I was a travel agent years ago and love to cruise other than that I was just speculating. I wish you could tell us more!
  10. I have been thinking about how NCL and Royal Caribbean teamed up with the health task force they created. Now with this name change for the parent company of Royal Caribbean, I am wondering if they are considering joining forces with the NCL group (NCL, Oceania, Regent). In my short time as an executive assistant to the CEO of a non-profit company, I was there for a merger and before we merged we created a new name and logo for our company and then proceeded with the merger. This is of course is speculation, but I could see both lines shedding older tonnage and Royal Caribbean mer
  11. Sad to see this happen. I sailed the Horizon back in 1990 on her 9th cruise. She was a beautiful ship back then. Prior to that, I sailed Chandris Fantasy Cruises which was the parent company of Celebrity Cruises. Chandris had old ships with great prices and had wanted to create a new ship for their line to replace one of their old vessels. In any event, the Bermuda government had a few spare contracts for exclusive docking rights of cruise ships in the two main ports but would only offer it to a premium cruise line which Chandris was not. So the powers that be at Chandris decided to use the ne
  12. I cruised on the Noordam and Maasdam in the past and found their space ratio to be good. There was always a quiet spot that could be found. My last Holland America cruise in 2016 was on the then new Koningsdam. The ship had great interior decor but I found she was crowded. I remember there was never a seat to be had in the Crows Nest in addition on my sailing they were allowing certain crew members to hang out in the Crows Nest and that also created a situation where you could not get a seat. To top that off they created a narrow promenade deck devoid of lounge chairs making this once useful l
  13. Bring back a real promenade deck not like the one on Koningsdam and her sisters.
  14. Thank you for this. Seems fair Celebrity is charging for this.
  15. Thank you! This looks wonderful! I am actually looking at a window suite on the Grand for a Baltics cruise next year but I have to put this one on my bucket list.
  16. Thank you all. I realize the amenities are for paid suite guests. Wasn't sure about the dining scenario especially when there is a couple who are in a suite and when traveling with a single in a standard cabin. Celebrity does allow a non-suite guest into Luminea or at least they did on a Celeb cruise I did a few years ago, maybe they put a stop to this I don't know. I had stayed in a Sky Suite with my partner and when I asked if my single friend in an inside cabin could join us in Luminea they allowed it. We didn't dine every night at Luminea but when we did they obliged very easily.
  17. Tried searching for this and I couldn't find it. If I were to travel in a Window Suite say on the Grand Princess and I had a friend traveling solo staying in an inside cabin could that friend join us for dinner in the Club Class dining area? Would they be able to join us at the suite mimosa breakfast?
  18. That's great. I used to be a travel agent myself and I thought this was against the rules. Years back when I started, in the late 90's, we could do this then almost all of the major lines stopped the practice. My former coworker is now my travel agent and is not allowed to do this but I guess certain agencies can? He gives me OBC's and free grats or puts me into a group to get better rates instead which are great too. I always come out ahead than booking direct. As long as you have it all in writing you should be good to go. Just make sure that all credit card transactions go through the cruis
  19. I sailed on the 9th cruise of the Horizon back in 1990! Was such a great ship especially coming from the old Chandris ship's which I cruised as a kid. Too bad they didn't mention any of their founding ships in their video. A week or so ago I stumbled on a channel on YouTube that had some of the old promotional videos of the Horizon and Meridian, among other ships. They seem to update the channel every week with some other old cruise video. I remember having the Horizon video and watching it constantly, I was a kid back then and obsessed with cruising. I was very happy to find this
  20. Possibly and I just didn't realize at the time. I asked my travel agent/friend and he said that he can't discount any major line including Princess but his place has Princess group space blocked and a lot of it (during normal times) so I get that lower rate and OBCs. Wonder if Princess will stop agencies from offering lower rates once we are in this new environment.
  21. I used to be a TA and way back when, yes, they allowed it. We used to be able to apply our commission to the fare and undercut the cruise line as we saw fit. I left the business back in 2012 and at that time I wasn't allowed to do this with any major line. Instead, what many of you are getting are group rates that your TA has (which at times come out lower than the cruise line directly) or some high performing agencies get preferred pricing on certain, low performing sailings. These preferred prices are dictated by the cruise line and are offered to certain high-performing agencies
  22. This has happened to me twice. One time I used a big box agency for the 1st time and their OBC never made it to my account. They were very hard to get by email while I was on the cruise. When I got back, I spoke with someone at the big box agency and they refunded my credit card the exact amount of the OBC as I had documentation that I never received the OBC they promised. The next time I used a travel agent that is independent (he is actually a former colleague of mine when I used to be a TA). One email to him and it was all straightened out. The next day I received the OBC. If this happens
  23. Half of 70,000 is 35,000 if you divide that by 3 months (Jan, Feb, Mar) the deaths are still higher per month than the figure you quoted for the flu in 2018 (5,000 per month for the 2018 flu deaths vs 11,600 COVID deaths all using your numbers). Not trying to launch a debate. Please don't think I am attacking you, I know sometimes the written word is taken the wrong way. Just stay well and respect this disease. Whatever it is families are hurting. I just lost a loved one who had Covid on Saturday and it is all very real to me. In all, I know 7 people who have had Covid. Two were no
  24. I was a travel agent and enjoyed the work but pay is low. If you are just doing it for your own commission be careful as some agencies probably would not keep you as they want you to produce. Getting clients and retaining is tough and requires diligence as many people see travel agents as an annoying middle man. Though, having been in the business, I realize the worth of a travel agent in getting me additional perks that the cruise line can't offer by booking direct. Having worked as a travel agent during 9/11, things do get better and people will travel and cruise again. My forme
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