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About KathyK13

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    Cool Cruiser

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    Rochester, NY

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  1. I read an article yesterday by Forbes magazine that said Viking's CEO has seen his personal wealth drop from $6.2 to $2.1 billion and that the company is strapped for cash after having to issue so many refunds. It's currently trying to raise $600 million at high interest rates to keep the company going until cruising can resume. I suspect that other cruise lines are having the same issues although I haven't seen financial reports on other lines. Vantage might be in the same predicament and may be why Vantage is so slow to issue refunds.
  2. I wish the US was as strict with quarantine rules as Canada is. There was a story today about a college student in Ohio who had tested positive and 'quarantined' in he house he rents with other students. They had friends over. Needless to say, more are now infected. I live in the Finger Lakes region of NY and our numbers have been pretty low for the last month, with masks and social distancing required. There was a spike last week from some people attending a church. The minister was interviewed and he said they didn't know how people got sick; they 'can wash their hands when they come to church and can wear a mask 'if they want to'. Not hard to figure that one out!
  3. Interesting that there's no option for a refund, many lines seem to be doing this. I wonder if the cost of a year's loss in income has put cruise line's finances in a precarious condition.
  4. We rescheduled a Christmas markets cruise from 12/20 to 12/21; although Avalon hadn't cancelled it yet we knew we wouldn't be going. We ended up reserving a different cruise that had 2 additional nights and a better itinerary. With the lower prices Avalon is offering for next year the longer cruise was only $200 more and we received a suite upgrade. I'm surprised your travel insurance wouldn't cover a new booking. I was pleasantly surprised that our insurance company transferred the deposit we made to our new booking. Hoping that by December 2021 cruising will be back to normal!
  5. I clicked on the link and the page was automatically translated to English! Looks like an interesting trip and very inexpensive compared to other lines.
  6. When is your cruise supposted to take place? We had a deposit on an Avalon Christmas Market cruise for December 2020. I just contacted my TA to ask if we could switch our reservation to the same cruise in 2021. Avalon said we could switch the deposit to any cruise in 2021, and there are some very good deals on right now for next year. We did not buy plane tickets thru them, so not an issue for us.
  7. I agree with you completely, Daisi. Every country needs to do what they need to keep safe. We have had low numbers here for quite awhile because we locked down early and opened slowly. But it's a different story in other states.
  8. I live in Rochester and miss being able to visit Canada, but agree that keeping the border closed makes sense.
  9. We live in New York and have friends who have a cottage in Ontario. Would they have to apply to the government for permission and quarantine once the border is open? Doesn't look like the border will be open anytime soon....
  10. I found the image below useful in showing the effects of wearing masks, whether one is ill or healthy. Looks like transmission is slightly smaller when both are wearing masks. I live in NY where masks are mandated in all stores. It's fine with me, I've gotten comfortable wearing one. We live in the western part of the state and are probably starting stage 2 openings on Friday, which covers restaurants (outdoor eating), non-essential stores, salons, etc. I will probably give it a few weeks before venturing to any of these places, waiting to see if there's an uptick in cases.
  11. I have reservations on an Avalon Christmas Market cruise in December with my sister and two friends; it will be their first river cruise. I'm starting to think it may make sense to see if we an reschedule for the following year. It's impossible at this point to know if there will be cruises in December and what the markets will be like, if they do have them. We have refundable hotel reservations pre and post cruise, so we wouldn't lose any money.
  12. Before deciding on a cruise line, I suggest you look into how lines you are considering handled high or low water. Water levels have had an impact on river cruises since we took our first river cruise in 2013. I believe that was the year there was historic flooding and ships couldn't get through in places. In 2018 they had historically low rivers, to the point where the Rhine and Danube were impassable in places. We have been very lucky to have good water levels on the 3 cruises we have taken but as weather continues to be extreme I fear there will be more trouble ahead. While I think the cruise lines did their best in difficult situations, many cruisers were unhappy with how their cruise line responded. We paid close attention in 2018 because we were planning a cruise in 2019, so I created the following thread to get an idea of how the lines were dealing with low water: https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2573333-how-are-cruise-lines-dealing-with-low-water-conditions/ Notamermaid created threads discussing water levels on the Rhine and Danube for each of the past few years. You should find more info there. One more thing to consider!
  13. The only time we use a travel agent is for river cruises. We use a large travel agency we found online. Their office is accross the country but we email and talk on the phone. They give a 15% discount off the cruise price!
  14. Avalon's website states their policy for guests with canceled cruises; right now they are offering to reschedule cruises for the same price as the original cruise plus a $200 discount. I don't know if it will be in effect if your cruise is canceled. Of course who knows what airline fees will be next year? They could go either way....
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