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About CanTex

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    Cool Cruiser

About Me

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    Houston, TX
  1. Most airlines have become so pathetic with their customer service. For a lengthy delay of that nature (mechanical problems), they should have offered your mother one of their "perk packs" that will often include (besides an airport meal voucher) coupons for things like a free drink on your flight, a calling card to call home, discount voucher on a future flight, etc. Sometimes you have ask if it isn't offered. And then insist if they balk. Better still, they will sometimes upgrade you on the re-booked flight... just ask. I don't think a reservations agent on the phone can be of any help in this situation. It's the airline staff on the ground at the airport who need to be handling this.
  2. How did you make the leap to how I am personally responding? I intelligently assess the risk at the time. I'm travelling half-way around the world in a few weeks, so I'm hardly "staying in my house and never coming out!" The flu is not the flu is not the flu. Different strains can present much different potential impacts, and to think otherwise is plainly denying the science and medicine behind this. Please cite your evidence for how you know this will never become more dangerous than any other flu? I had a grandparent die from "ordinary flu" and I don't think he thought it was so ordinary... This is what has gotten so irritating about this forum. You can't say a thing different from the group think here without being pounced on. I'll move on from this thread and leave you to your little dream world.
  3. Well, we seem to have quite the contingent of epidemiologists here (I shouldn't be surprised, as this forum attracts all kinds of experts). I am sure relieved you have proclaimed this new flu outbreak to be nothing to be concerned about. Did you stay at a H-Inn last night too? Seriously, while the current form of the virus is not causing too serious of an impact, it is spreading quite readily. Flu viruses are notorious for mutating and combining with other flu viruses, and there is danger it could transform into a much more lethal form or become resistant to the two antivirals that are currently effective against it. It's not in the news anymore because all the drama is gone, and old news doesn't sell products too well. We are at the end of the season where transmission is no longer favorable in the northern hemisphere. As the southern hemisphere flu season ramps up, we will soon learn if this is going to die off as a fairly benign form of flu or become something to be worried about for next fall. All I know is it is far too early to be blowing this off as nothing to be prepared for.
  4. Have you actually ever tested whether or not those companies are going to be strict about that eligibility? My cable company offered me an even better deal than their new customer promo. once I told them I would probably cancel and look at the AT&T or satellite service instead if they didn't do something to reward my loyalty. Just recently I got a great deal for 1 year of XM radio at almost half the price of the standard deal... in that case I was calling to cancel because I thought it was overpriced for the amount I use it, but at 1/2 the price it was much more reasonable... good for me, and good for them as they still get some revenue which otherwise was going to be lost. I've been similarly successful with mobile phone deals, usually able to get the new customer offers if you press hard enough. Sometime you just need to be firm in letting them know you have options and those eligibility rules seem to suddenly develop some flexibility. Don't count on seeing any of this from RCI though...
  5. There is obviously no explanation yet as to why it is more lethal in Mexico vs. the U.S. Mexico, with over a 1,000 cases obviously has a much large case base... the U.S. base so far is too small to make a legitimate comparison. Maybe the difference is immediacy of health care, use of antivirals sooner, greater proportion of the population is vaccinated against flu strains generally, etc. The more interesting question to me is why this seems to be affecting a narrower age band, and not those traditionally at higher risk. My speculation is that many people over 50 in the U.S. do get flu vaccines each year (standard recommendation), and some form of Type A virus is always in the mix. Perhaps there is at least some partial immunity from this, and why this is hitting the middle-aged population in the U.S. Who knows... I'm sure we'll be hearing a lot in the hours, days and weeks to come. For anyone with travel plans anytime soon (me included), this is worrisome.
  6. You can get some great private tours in all of the Mediterranean ports -- go to the Mediterranean ports of call forum and you will find lots of good ideas and recommendations. Then join in the Roll Call forum for your cruise and you can connect with others to split the cost if you want to share as a group of 4-8. You can get a private driver for a small group for much less than what RCI charges to herd you around like cattle on a 50 passenger bus...
  7. These recent moves by RCI to cheapen their product during a time when value reigns and loyalty matters most may go down in marketing history as right up there with the "New Coke" furor. You don't succeed by pi**ing off your most loyal customers! Look at how upset people got when Minute Maid changed their orange juice carton design... it lasted all of a few weeks before they went back on that multi-milllion dollar blunder. And that's just over what picture is on the orange juice carton!!! The tone of the E-mail that I got from C&A this past weekend about these changes was insulting... it was pitched as if I was receiving some enhanced perks... NOT! And then the cavalier canned response from "Karla Gragg" to everyone's letters takes the cake. Don't let that dissuade you from continuing to voice your feelings about these changes... And each time you decide to take your cruise business elsewhere, don't let that go without letting RCI know what business they lost. Maybe our loyalty will be valued again someday.
  8. I have never seen anything on any other line to compare to the seafood buffet on some Princess ships... those mountains of crab legs and lobster tails were something else. Makes me smile when I read people complaining they're not getting even 1 measly lobster tail on many RCI cruises...
  9. It couldn't be called a "fun ship" if it was restrained in design elements and colors. It isn't for everyone, but once you understand it is in keeping with their long-standing theme, it does make sense to see those eruptions of eggs, Eiffel Towers, urns, etc. in all kinds of bizarre ways. If it really matters to you and you want muted colors and more conventional "Marriott Hotel" style of design, then stay with RCI, Celebrity, Princess or HAL. CCL sure isn't trying to pretend it is like the rest of the masses. Get Out There... Why Not? Have Fun. :)
  10. I pitched this in another thread but it got lost in the uproar. Princess (and other lines) would be wise to consider this. They could offer the status match on a limited basis, e.g. on your first cruise with them or for the next year. That way you get to "taste" what you're aspiring towards and then likelier to want to stay with them. I keep reading those championing the line that other lines are also cutting perks just like RCI. I am not aware that any of these alleged cuts have actually impacted other cruise lines loyalty programs. If someone can offer evidence that Princess, CCL, etc. have reduced a loyalty program perk / benefit like RCI has, please share.
  11. Maybe you'll care when you're old enough to have one of those drinks...:)
  12. It won't stink so much if they give you a Commemorative Laundry Coupon instead... :rolleyes:
  13. Wow, such nastiness that has developed in this "discussion" and equally from both sides. The last month in the RCI forum has been like watching one train wreck after another! The really bad part for RCI and its future is these PR disasters have their origin from decisions by RCI itself, and at a time when they need much different news.
  14. Dare I mention that this was why they ordained some as Royal Champions? I thought one of their roles was to participate in focus group sessions.
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