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Everything posted by OceanPatter

  1. Nice photos of San Francisco, nimi17! When working out on the roof of our sports club yesterday (across from the port), the Koningsdam was in prime view. I was so excited to see the trend towards normalcy. Earlier in the week, the Majestic Princess was docked here, representing the first cruise ship in San Francisco since the pandemic started. We’ve been on the Koningsdam twice, once on the Baltic itinerary. Great memories. Safe and pleasant travels to you.
  2. Markham, we’ll look so forward to meeting you on the Quest in 2023! We booked the 45-day segment, which had plenty of availability only a few months ago. We didn’t know how to proceed with travel insurance, and ended up foregoing the early purchase for pre-existing coverage. We’ll just purchase medical evacuation at a later date.
  3. Appreciate your balanced insights. A few months ago, we booked one of the Quest’s 2023 Antarctica sailings. Hoping that will give Seabourn enough time to settle back into normalcy. And Antarctica is the Quest’s sweet spot, no?
  4. Seabourn’s 2021/22 Antarctica season (on the Quest) has just been canceled … so good luck to all of you on the similar Silverseas itinerary.
  5. Patti! So thrilling to read your posts. I know how much you wanted to cruise again with Viking, and now you’re finally onboard with your sister. Wishes do come true. Remember our cruise on the Viking Sea from San Juan to Barcelona? It still ranks as my most memorable … the dinners with you and Louise, our Cruise Critic group dinner at Manfredi’s, and our roll call’s two cocktail parties with Viking staff. Priceless. Wishing you a wonderful cruise around Bermuda, and the joys of many more …
  6. Sorry, Babr ... meant to reply to your comment above.
  7. Thanks, Babr, for the additional guidance. Overall, it's good to get the pre-existing condition covered. On the other hand, it does require one to buy right away. At least we have a few days to mull this over. Travel insurance (trip cancellation), however, does seem pretty expensive, at about 12% of the cruise cost. Our credit card already covers $20K (w/o pre-existing condition coverage), which is great ... but our cruise exceeds that amount quite a bit. Hence the consideration of insurance.
  8. Thank you, Jersey42 and Suzanne123. Forgive me for my basic questions, as we've always waived travel insurance. Because of our ages and an upcoming Antarctica cruise, insurance now seems prudent. Some of the GeoBlue plans seem to duplicate MedJet's coverage for evacuation. We're actually seeking broader coverage for the risk of a medical issue/accident that prevents us from going on the cruise (after final payment). The insurance would mitigate the loss of money spent on the cruise. I know that some credit cards will cover up to $20,000 of the trip cost (for two people), but we need to insure for more. What have you done, or would advise? Thank you.
  9. Sorry for duplicating this post on another thread. I was told that in order to get the pre-existing medical condition coverage, the policy must be purchased within a certain number of days from the cruise deposit. However, if the pre-existing medical condition is waived, there doesn't seem to be a time limit on when the insurance needs to be purchased. Jersey42--I wasn't aware that the pre-existing condition coverage could be purchased as late as a day before the trip begins ... this is contrary to what two insurance agents have told me. Can you please confirm/clarify? Thanks.
  10. Sorry for duplicating this post on another thread. I was told that in order to get the pre-existing medical condition coverage, the policy must be purchased within a certain number of days from the cruise deposit. However, if the pre-existing medical condition is waived, there doesn't seem to be a time limit on when the insurance needs to be purchased. Is this true?
  11. Terry, thanks for highlighting the various news sources. The last one about Royal Caribbean sailing with vaccinated crew is interesting - as the other cruise lines (Crystal, etc.) starting up in the Bahamas, haven’t committed to a vaccinated crew ... to the best of my knowledge.
  12. Wow, awesome photos of the Sun alongside the impressive urban landscape of Shenzhen (particularly that captivating second photo). Thanks for following the Sun’s long journey, Cruise Wonderland.
  13. It has been reported on the Crystal board that the Serenity will start up 7-day cruses in July in the Bahamas. And Crystal has long stipulated that all passengers will need to be vaccinated, in addition to showing a negative COVID test. So there is some movement there ...
  14. Jim, Porcupine 52, SantaFe1, and Cruiselvr04 — such poignant stories you’ve given us. It says a lot about the community you’ve made here. And about your unsinkable optimism. And Jim, you are so right ... it’s about time.
  15. Thank you, chengkp75, for your insightful analysis, as always.
  16. Hi Jim! Can't wait to cruise with you and L again ... in the meantime, you have an open invite to stay with us in SF (reverse migration). While the ban on indoor gyms (like restaurants) has just been lifted somewhat (10% capacity), we've been using an outdoor swim/tennis club that's right downtown. One of us takes water aerobics classes there weekly (masked-up, of course). Wish you were here!
  17. Thanks for checking, Andy. To mitigate the language barrier, it may stand to reason that the staff will be predominantly Chinese.
  18. Thanks for raising such rational points, Jim ... you’ve always been the man-of-reason. Here in the Bay Area (where the ban on indoor dining has just been lifted - up to 25%), COVID is the least of my health worries. There are many other issues that are of greater threat than COVID.
  19. Jim and Andy - the irreplaceable, dynamic duo! Thank you for continuing to enliven this board. For those who didn't google-translate the article shared by Cruise Wonderland, here's a small extract (written from the perspective of a Chinese employment agency): "First, I will show the results of the recent Viking Cruises interview with everyone. Congratulations to the 13 students of our school for successfully passing the Viking Cruises interview. It is expected to board the ship in March. In January 2021, Viking Cruises began to recruit in China. 13 students from our school signed up to participate in the video trial in early January. In early February, the trainees successively accepted video retests from Viking Germany at their homes." What's interesting is Viking's apparent involvement in the selection/training of the staff. I wonder if Viking's role in the joint venture is more than just its contribution of the Sun. Anyone know?
  20. Wow, thanks for the informative ‘finds,’ Cruise Wonderland. Great scoops! I loved our cruise on the Viking Sun and I love traveling in China. When flights open up again, I may consider going over and getting Chinese friends to join me on the Viking Sun ... that is, assuming I can actually purchase a cruise for myself, given that there may restrictions.
  21. Thanks for sharing your experience with the 2nd dose. Have read other accounts of more severe reactions to the 2nd dose. Not something to look forward to ...
  22. Not sure Genting's Dream cruise line is truly 'luxury,' but whatever. On the topic of the Chinese market, it was reported on the Viking board that a joint venture has been formed between Viking and a Chinese company, to which Viking transferred the Viking Sun (built in 2017). Excerpts from an article about the joint venture: 1) this will be China's first entry into the high-end luxury cruise market, 2) cruises will be launched in 2021, offering domestic cruises, and 3) (this is interesting) ... the jv will upgrade and transform the Viking Sun to integrate simple Nordic style w/Chinese culture. Apparently another Chinese joint venture has been formed with Carnival, which will also build new cruise ships for the Chinese market. So Genting is not alone in tapping the considerable Chinese appetite for cruising, luxury and otherwise.
  23. This would make Crystal's ocean ships a loss leader, no? At some point, the other 'revenue streams' should be able to stand on their own, and not require the synergy from the Symphony/Serenity duo.
  24. Under any restructuring of the principal repayment, the lenders need reassurance of the likelihood of repayment. Otherwise, why bother ...
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