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Everything posted by tennis

  1. I do not think it is unreasonable for Oceania not to make their requirements unequivocally clear. We are not sailing until February on Riviera and should not have to read tea leaves to understand what they require. Both NCL and Regent have better explanations. Our TA asked them to clarify and their response was “read the website”. There wouldn’t be questions if the website was clear. My conclusion is that they do not want to be consistent so they can pick whichever one works best for them at the time.
  2. R0 is the rate of transmission. The Diamond Princess was the only closed system they could use for estimating the R0 for Covid-19. The profile of those onboard the ship is not consistent with the profile of the general population so comparing the R0 for the Diamond Princess to the transmission rate for the general population or other forms of transportation is comparing apples and oranges. Passengers were mainly in their 70’s and almost 50% had an underlying disease. Plus applying that to cruise ships today is another example of comparing apples to oranges. Cruise ships have changed their ventilation systems, capacity, crew to passenger contacts and passenger to passenger contacts.
  3. I am glad some senators are pushing the CDC. I agree cruises should start and anything that gets the CDC moving is welcome. There is no data to show it is more hazardous than any other form of travel. (I do think individual countries should be free to ban cruise ships visits because it is within their purview). I do not believe everyone should be required to have a vaccination. I have been vaccinated and think the risk is not substantial for someone my age. There are educated people who understand how the vaccine was created that believe the roll that RNA has in cell expression may pose a risk to younger people because their rate of cell replication is much greater. It hasn’t been thoroughly studied. So the risk of the vaccination may be greater for some people than Covid-19 so they shouldn’t be required to have the vaccination. I am not anti vaccination just think the risks for different populations should be considered. I am glad for anyone pushing the CDC to do anything to get everything back open. If you have not noticed the CDC has been wrong on many critical areas related to the virus. The contagion (insignificant from surfaces or outdoors), death rate (orders of magnitude less than they asserted), hospitalizations (order of magnitude lower than estimated), treatments (don’t use ventilators), use of masks (the only controlled studies show no effect vs no mask mandate).
  4. The cruise lines will still have all employees vaccinated. I will be vaccinated and based on comments most everyone else will be voluntarily vaccinated. I don’t see the problem. I will go on the cruise because I have been vaccinated.
  5. We did cancel the April 30 Marina cruise. I didn’t want another $10,000 tied up for several months when it takes so long for refunds. In Charleston, SC it appears vaccinations are going well. The State organization responsible for managing distribution keeps their web site up-to-date and they are taking appointments for those over 70 now - ahead of schedule. Apparently more healthcare workers and other high priority people have chosen not to get vaccinated than they expected. I know several people in their 70’s that got their first dose this week. You just call or go online to make your appointment. I still think it will be 6 - 8 weeks before we will be able to make appointments which is earlier than our son-in-law who has had several kidney transplants. He has been on immunosuppressant drugs since he was seven. I think he should have a higher priority for receiving a vaccination than we do but I am sure there are all sorts of exceptional cases. Overall I think South Carolina is doing a good job.
  6. We are booked on the Marina 4/30/21 sailing from Athens. I am guessing most on this board think it will be cancelled. Is that correct?
  7. Thank you Regent! The majority of our refund showed up today as a credit to our credit card account. This was the refund for our cruise that we were supposed to depart for tomorrow.
  8. We just made the final payment for the Jan 3, 2021 Riviera cruise from Miami. I may be the eternal optimist but am still hoping that we may be able to go. We have been to all the Caribbean Islands many times and do not mind if they are not able to go to some of the ports. I’d volunteer to be on one of the trial runs. I agree with the posts above about no negativity from those who do not want to cruise. Seeing the announcement really made me excited. I feel so sorry for the people that have had their livelihoods destroyed by the shutdown.
  9. Explorer cruise scheduled to depart 11/6/20. Cancelled by Regent 10/5, refund requested 10/5, and refund request confirmed 10/5. For a point of reference we had booked our own airfare on Delta. I called to check if I could get it refunded or would only get an credit. They would refun because they cancelled the fights I originally booked and we had the refund within 72 hours;
  10. “The more ports the better”: You are right, the number of cases is not meaningful. For it to be meaningful you have to know the population it is taken from. Many people have multiple tests while they have Covid-19. People are more likely to be tested if they are sick. Tests are more readily available now and so more people get tested. So we have no idea which population has been sampled. My group of friends is the elderly segment of the population and I still only know one person who even had Covid and they have had no after effects. Other people have different friends and will therefore see a different sample of the population. However, many media outlets have worked overtime to make this seem worse than it is, so people are only told about bad news, not any of the good population samples. Paul chili: The Atlantic does not have a reputation for accurate reporting but for opinion and editorial content so I wouldn’t use them as a reference point. If you can give a link from the CDC that would be great. If you do decide to cruise then you should be responsible for any of the outcomes. If you are not comfortable with any possible negative outcomes then don’t cruise. But why someone would insist that adults who want to cruise and will be responsible for themselves should be prevented from cruising sounds like life when I lived in the Soviet Union. No one is insisting that anyone else take a cruise.
  11. I can’t wait for cruises to restart. If you can fly and stay at hotels there is no reason people should not have the freedom to cruise if they choose to do so. Giving people freedom to make choices is politically motived? Yes, I think it is great that lifetime bureaucrats who have no accountability for the downsides to shutting down industries and putting people out of business can be overruled by people that are accountable for their decisions. If you are uncomfortable with a cruise line’s safety protocols then you don’t have to cruise. Freedom is wonderful.
  12. I haven’t flown nearly as much as Tapi but my experience On Delta was very good. Everyone I could see complied and if you look at data it bears out his comments on the effectiveness of the airlines‘ procedures. In my opinion we’d all be a lot safer on a cruise ship than flying and going through airports.
  13. I agree that there is no reason that cruise ships are not allowed to sail. I was on the crowded flights and in crowded airports And busy hotels and restaurants In August and agree it is Safer and much easier to distance on cruise ships. It does seem as if cruise companies are being treated more harshly than other forms of travel. As I have posted several times I am ready to cruise any time. However, the countries are required to approve opening of ports and they have not done this. Our November Explorer cruise is about 7 weeks away. There is no way this cruise is going to sail with passengers from the US. Earlier posters had thought it might change from departing Barcelona (The port is closed indefinitely) to Athens but the EU is still not allowing US tourists so Athens wouldn’t work. Israel has just implemented more quarantines for everyone and US tourists are definitely not allowed. I have been looking forward to this cruise for a long time and really wanted it to go. However, when even transiting some airports in the EU is not allowed or is difficult this cruise is not going to happen for US passengers. I do not know how many of the existing passengers are from the EU Or Canada so it might be possible for them and it would be great for them if they could go. After all this time I still only know 1 person that has had Covid-19 and they had mild symptoms.
  14. I agree it is ridiculous. I understand their cash flow issues, but I also have cash flow issues. We are booked on the Explorer November Barcelona to Dubai cruise. It is obviously not going. Barcelona cruise port is not open. Israel is not open for cruises. EU is not open for cruises for Americans. The only reason this was not cancelled at the end of August was because they want to hold onto our money. At this point I do not want FCC, I want my money back so my only alternative is to wait until they cancel. I do not think I will ever book another Regent cruise based on how they handled this. I am disgusted. When there was any chance it would sail I was fine with their not cancelling but now it is beyond any reasonable chance. Give me my money back so I can do something else.
  15. For clarification: 1) I do not quote secondary sources for data. The data quoted is not from some unknown website but from the CDC - look it up if you want. It takes time and some tenacity but I am used to data analysis. As they say, you can have your own opinion but not your own facts. I use t-tests to determine if there are significant differences between populations. 2) I do not use estimates or guesses (like the comment that the CDC thinks deaths are understated). This is not data and based on nothing more than someone’s opinion. 3) I posted information that I thought would be encouraging to most people. Based on what I have read on this post I have been doing a lot more travel than most others and so my info on what most North Americans are doing while traveling would not necessarily be observed by others. If anyone has multiple serious diseases, then by all means take the necessary precautions that are suitable for your personal situation and follow your doctor’s advice. But having facts is usually helpful in making decisions about when you might cruise again. I was very encouraged by the data and information and thought it would be encouraging to others. If you do not find it encouraging, fine but do not question my source of data. If I state it is from the CDC then it is from CDC.gov and not my opinion.
  16. Those eager to cruise again and interested in data would find it interesting what the CDC posted on their website this week. Guess how many of the US deaths attributed to Covid-19 had only Covid-19 listed on the death certificate. Would you guess maybe 40 - 50 %? No, the total was 6%! Only 6%. In addition the average # of comorbidities listed on the death certificates was 2.6. So over 50% of those that have died had at least 2 other serious diseases. If you go to the site you might also like to look at the actual data on total deaths versus time. It has really tailed-off. I haven’t seen any of this data reported in the news. This is very encouraging news and maybe if it got publicized we can back to normal sooner rather than later. On another topic, there have been several comments related to people following mask and other guidelines onboard cruise ships. We have returned from our trip to Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons. Everyone we saw in airports or on planes wore masks without prompting. We were on 4 different flights and they were all packed. Everyone we saw in Yellowstone complied with indoor requirements, even using hand sanitizer upon entering Around Old Faithful it was very crowded and some people did not comply with the 6 ft or mask rule But if you wanted to distance yourself it was easy. Nowhere else in the park did we see spacing or mask requirements violated. In Jackson we saw 2 people not comply with mask requirements and in one case the store clerk immediately told them to put on a mask. There were lots of people in both parks and so compliance with the requirements was very high. Hopefully this would be the same on cruise ships and is reassuring to everyone.
  17. We just flew from the East Coast to the Rockies - wore masks the whole way. We are in Yellowstone and having a marvelous time. We are ready to cruise as soon as the cruises go. I have just rechecked my statistics on deaths in SC and it is still the same. There is no statistical differences in deaths this year than in the previous 5 years. Not my opinion - just facts. So don’t trash me because you don’t like facts that don’t agree with your feelings.
  18. Unfortunately most people do not realize how the CDC calculates flu deaths. It is based on what they calculate as “excess” deaths. They calculate how many people would “normally” die for each week and then use an algorithm to calculate excess deaths. That is why it is important to compare total deaths. The way that the CDC is doing it the comparison of flu deaths to Covid-19 is comparing apples to oranges. I have done the statistics to compare annual deaths in SC. There is not a significant difference between deaths this year and the previous 2 years. Also, hospitals get a bonus reimbursement if Covid-19 comes into play but do not for flu deaths. Do you think there may be some bias in reporting of Covid-19 deaths? I am disappointed that if I can download the data from the CDC and spend my own time doing the statistical analysis that our vaunted media outlets are unable to do the same. As the hackneyed statement goes “if it bleeds. It leads”.
  19. I will cruise now - even if I have to wear a mask. I spent a large part of my professional life doing statistics and know that the risk is negligible unless you are elderly and obese and in congestive heart failure, kidney failure or have diabetes. I have used CDC data and looked at deaths for the last 20 years. I will forgo having daily or twice daily cabin service. I will thoroughly wash my hands anytime I leave the stateroom and maintain social distancing. I would have no concern about catching Covid-19 or a negative outcome if I did catch. There is a risk to everyday living and the risk of dying from Covid-19 is not significantly higher, despite all the CDC and press hysteria to the contrary. I live in SC and personally know only 1 person that Has tested positive for Covid-19 and they had mild symptoms. I still hope my Nov 6 Regent Explorer cruise isn’t cancelled but have just about lost all hope.
  20. I think everyone can have a different perspective. I only know 2 people who have had Covid-19, one was asymptomatic and only found out when tested before surgery. The other had very minor symptoms. I am in the elderly category so you’d think I’d know a lot more people who had it. My son-in-law has had 2 kidney transplants so we are careful to ensure we do not expose him since he has been on drugs to prevent rejection since he was 7. So from my perspective I can’t wait to travel and am willing to protect myself from getting exposed and would definitely quarantine so we would not expose anyone after we travel. Cruises are voluntary - no one is forced to go - so I hope our November cruise is not cancelled.
  21. We made our final payment for the Explorer November cruise from Barcelona to Dubai. I find it outrageous if they cancel it now and then take months to refund the money. We still do not have a complete refund for a Celebrity cruise they cancelled in May. When I book a cruise I do not expect to give an interest free loan to the cruise companies. I understand the cash flow problem but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t get my money back immediately.
  22. I am ready to start cruising now. I’ve noticed that many Oceania cruises in November show most categories as waitlisted. When that happened before cruises got cancelled. I was hoping it just meant that they were limiting the passengers onboard. We have a Regent cruise scheduled in November and O cruises scheduled for January and April. I sure hope they all go. I think I am responsible for myself. I’m for making up my own mind (And following local laws) about when I need to wear masks, keeping myself socially distanced, not going anyplace that I think is a risk to me and repeatedly washing my hands. I do not know anyone who has had Covid-19 and required any kind of medical treatment - let alone go to the ER or hospital. I only know one person personally that has tested positive and they only had a fever for a couple days. I do not know what the procedure is elsewhere but in this area anyone who has had contact with some one testing positive is tested, anyone undergoing elective surgery and anyone who has symptoms is tested. Considering that most people tested think they might have it, the percent positive is very low. I don’t know how cruise lines survive if they don’t start sailing soon - I sure hope they do.
  23. We were in Oregon for the first time 2 years ago and loved Hood River area, their Rogue River and Willamette. We just got back from the Smokey Mountain area in North Carolina. They ran their steam engine train at 50 % capacity so it was OK but a little long for our 8 yr old granddaughter. We also went white water rafting where they ran the buses at 50% capacity. There was horseback riding, tubing and hiking. She loved the gem mining where they spike buckets of dirt with a few gems which she loved to find. They ran the lodge restaurant at 50 % capacity. We had a great time but feel sorry for the hospitality workers because they have to be making much less so we were very generous tippers. Still hoping our cruise in November is not cancelled.
  24. Except for the 6 ft distancing rules pretty much everyplace in Charleston we normally go is open except churches and ours will open in July. I don’t go any place that requires masks and the only places I know that do that are Costco and a garden store. We are in the camp of this being way overhyped based on our data analysis. I did statistical analysis for many years and I enjoy doing it.. In South Carolina there is no statistical difference in deaths this year and the previous 4 years based on CDC data. I do wash my hands every time I come home from anywhere and keep my distance in public places. We definitely will fly. WE are going to Yellowstone and Grand Tetons in August flying into SLC. Those National Parks will not open lodges, only cabins and will only have carryout food. We decided the hopefully much smaller crowds will balance the more basic accommodations and food. We will drive with our granddaughter to the NC mountains for our annual trip with her in 10 days.. We’ve checked on attractions and restaurants and they are open. I’ll bring disinfectant to wipe down all the surfaces in our rooms (and surfaces we will touch on the planes in August) - even if my husband laughs at me. The cruise we had booked with her on Harmony of the Seas was cancelled. I will be very sad if our Explorer cruise in November is cancelled. This will be our first Regent cruise so we are not nearly as experienced as everyone else on this board and I am delighted to take advantage of all your knowledge. Thanks for sharing. For those on the West Coast, my brother is going to Lassen National Park in Northern California this week. He says the hiking is great, the scenery is great and it is much less crowded than Yosemite. So it might be a place you can drive to and have a nice vacation.
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