Crystal Esprit - bad decision

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#1
7 Posts
Joined Aug 2009
We are booked on the Esprit St. Martin/BVI cruise in November. As those islands have been tragically destroyed by Irma, that route is no longer feasible. Crystal has not yet determined if or where Esprit may be repositioned. They are offering those who are booked 3 ridiculous options:
1. Crystal Serenity 14 day Caribbean. This cruise is currently priced at $780 per person less than the price we paid for Esprit.
2. Crystal Bach - choice of 2 14 day river cruises in November. The current pricing on that is roughly the same as paid for Esprit, but airfare to get there is about $1,000 in coach and $5000 in business class. Passengers booked on Esprit are unlikely to want to fly coach. And anyone who has a job is not likely to be able to add 9 days ( including travel days) to a planned one week vacation.
3. Credit for a future cruise. Not a refund, a credit.

Here's what the "mass" cruise lines are doing for their cancelled cruises:
Norwegian- full refund PLUS 50% discount on a future cruise PLUS up to $300 for fight change fees.

MSC and Disney - full refund PLUS 25% discount on future cruise.

RCI and even Carnival are giving full refunds, not credits.

New management is not off to a good start. I do hope they reconsider this decision. There's a lot of competition in the luxury cruise industry, and this is certainly not the way to retain loyal customers.
#2
Oregon
1,185 Posts
Joined Feb 2004
Wow. That is not going to fly with Crystal loyalists such as ourselves. Seriously? We are not going to put up with this kind of treatment as customers. Disgusting. This is an ominous sign. I hope is it is not a sign of things to come. We do have a choice of cruise lines Crystal. Oh wait I know Edie used to read cruise critic faithfully. I bet the new guy doesn't.
#3
1,985 Posts
Joined May 2000
Originally posted by queenofdirt
We are booked on the Esprit St. Martin/BVI cruise in November. As those islands have been tragically destroyed by Irma, that route is no longer feasible. Crystal has not yet determined if or where Esprit may be repositioned. They are offering those who are booked 3 ridiculous options:
1. Crystal Serenity 14 day Caribbean. This cruise is currently priced at $780 per person less than the price we paid for Esprit.
2. Crystal Bach - choice of 2 14 day river cruises in November. The current pricing on that is roughly the same as paid for Esprit, but airfare to get there is about $1,000 in coach and $5000 in business class. Passengers booked on Esprit are unlikely to want to fly coach. And anyone who has a job is not likely to be able to add 9 days ( including travel days) to a planned one week vacation.
3. Credit for a future cruise. Not a refund, a credit.

Here's what the "mass" cruise lines are doing for their cancelled cruises:
Norwegian- full refund PLUS 50% discount on a future cruise PLUS up to $300 for fight change fees.

MSC and Disney - full refund PLUS 25% discount on future cruise.

RCI and even Carnival are giving full refunds, not credits.

New management is not off to a good start. I do hope they reconsider this decision. There's a lot of competition in the luxury cruise industry, and this is certainly not the way to retain loyal customers.
Do you really think that the new CEO made this decision during his first afternoon on the job? I think this is very unlikely.

As I understand the situation, the Esprit cruise has NOT been cancelled. Nor were the islands "destroyed." They were severely damaged but are still there.

The itinerary of the November sailing may (probably will) be changed, but there may very well still be a Caribbean sailing. (UPDATE: In another thread a guest on the yacht today confirms that Esprit will sail the Caribbean with itineraries TBA.)

As I understand your message, Crystal is simply offering options for those who do not want to live in uncertainty about the November cruise and its itinerary and would like to move now to other options (including booking air, hotels, etc.). If the November sailing is cancelled, further options will probably be offered. In any case, I think it is misguided to compare what other lines are doing with cancelled sailings and Crystal is doing with a sailing that is likely to have a different itinerary from that advertised (and could, in the end, be cancelled -- in which case other compensation may be offered.)

BTW: You mention Serenity and Bach possibilities and calculate the value of the offers. Does Crystal specify the kind of cabin offered? C? A? PH? Those values would be different.
#4
London, UK
1,673 Posts
Joined Apr 2010
I have not been offered anything as yet but I have not asked and my TA knows I am currently on another Crystal cruise.


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#5
Fishers, Indiana
378 Posts
Joined Jul 2004
Originally posted by queenofdirt
We are booked on the Esprit St. Martin/BVI cruise in November. As those islands have been tragically destroyed by Irma, that route is no longer feasible. Crystal has not yet determined if or where Esprit may be repositioned. They are offering those who are booked 3 ridiculous options:
1. Crystal Serenity 14 day Caribbean. This cruise is currently priced at $780 per person less than the price we paid for Esprit.
2. Crystal Bach - choice of 2 14 day river cruises in November. The current pricing on that is roughly the same as paid for Esprit, but airfare to get there is about $1,000 in coach and $5000 in business class. Passengers booked on Esprit are unlikely to want to fly coach. And anyone who has a job is not likely to be able to add 9 days ( including travel days) to a planned one week vacation.
3. Credit for a future cruise. Not a refund, a credit.

Here's what the "mass" cruise lines are doing for their cancelled cruises:
Norwegian- full refund PLUS 50% discount on a future cruise PLUS up to $300 for fight change fees.

MSC and Disney - full refund PLUS 25% discount on future cruise.

RCI and even Carnival are giving full refunds, not credits.

New management is not off to a good start. I do hope they reconsider this decision. There's a lot of competition in the luxury cruise industry, and this is certainly not the way to retain loyal customers.
I'm sorry your Esprit cruise was affected by the hurricane. However, I think what Crystal is offering is not unreasonable, especially because your cruise was technically not cancelled, but most likely going to be modified. I think booking a Caribbean cruise a long time in advance comes with a risk of weather, other natural disasters, or political instability causing changes in itinerary. Hopefully Crystal will find alternative ports of call that may be even more interesting (smaller, less traveled, less touristy) than previously scheduled.
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#6
Sydney, Australia
4,774 Posts
Joined Dec 2012
Originally posted by ijkh
Oh wait I know Edie used to read cruise critic faithfully. I bet the new guy doesn't.
I don't believe that was the case with Edie - but she certainly had people tasked with doing so. I have no idea what Tom Wolber does or will put in place
#7
7 Posts
Joined Aug 2009
Originally posted by Psoque
I'm sorry your Esprit cruise was affected by the hurricane. However, I think what Crystal is offering is not unreasonable, especially because your cruise was technically not cancelled, but most likely going to be modified. I think booking a Caribbean cruise a long time in advance comes with a risk of weather, other natural disasters, or political instability causing changes in itinerary. Hopefully Crystal will find alternative ports of call that may be even more interesting (smaller, less traveled, less touristy) than previously scheduled.
Thank you for that clarification. Much appreciated. I was not made aware that the cruise was still an option, but with a different itinerary. I thought those were the only 3 options.
#8
1,985 Posts
Joined May 2000
Originally posted by queenofdirt
Thank you for that clarification. Much appreciated. I was not made aware that the cruise was still an option, but with a different itinerary. I thought those were the only 3 options.
Pleased you are reassured. If you have 14 days AND if they are offering a verandah cabin, I think I might grab that offer. The value you mention is probably for a window suite, without port charges/taxes. The value of a verandah cabin with the add-ons might be even higher than what you paid for Esprit.
#9
88,576 Posts
Joined Jul 2000
Originally posted by queenofdirt
We are booked on the Esprit St. Martin/BVI cruise in November. As those islands have been tragically destroyed by Irma, that route is no longer feasible. Crystal has not yet determined if or where Esprit may be repositioned. They are offering those who are booked 3 ridiculous options:
1. Crystal Serenity 14 day Caribbean. This cruise is currently priced at $780 per person less than the price we paid for Esprit.
2. Crystal Bach - choice of 2 14 day river cruises in November. The current pricing on that is roughly the same as paid for Esprit, but airfare to get there is about $1,000 in coach and $5000 in business class. Passengers booked on Esprit are unlikely to want to fly coach. And anyone who has a job is not likely to be able to add 9 days ( including travel days) to a planned one week vacation.
3. Credit for a future cruise. Not a refund, a credit.

Here's what the "mass" cruise lines are doing for their cancelled cruises:
Norwegian- full refund PLUS 50% discount on a future cruise PLUS up to $300 for fight change fees.

MSC and Disney - full refund PLUS 25% discount on future cruise.

RCI and even Carnival are giving full refunds, not credits.

New management is not off to a good start. I do hope they reconsider this decision. There's a lot of competition in the luxury cruise industry, and this is certainly not the way to retain loyal customers.
Isn't there a key difference?

You said the cruises were canceled.

Has your cruise been cancelled? I don't think that is the case.

Please see the post from Roland (Larry) who is on Esprit right now.

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showp...81&postcount=8

Keith
#10
Florida
11 Posts
Joined Mar 2015
Originally posted by ijkh
Wow. That is not going to fly with Crystal loyalists such as ourselves. Seriously? We are not going to put up with this kind of treatment as customers. Disgusting. This is an ominous sign. I hope is it is not a sign of things to come. We do have a choice of cruise lines Crystal. Oh wait I know Edie used to read cruise critic faithfully. I bet the new guy doesn't.


Once one cruise lines does it they all follow. Royal caribbean is being run by an ex executive from carnival go figure


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#11
Central NJ
1,685 Posts
Joined Dec 2005
Originally posted by Keith1010
Isn't there a key difference?

You said the cruises were canceled.

Has your cruise been cancelled? I don't think that is the case.

Please see the post from Roland (Larry) who is on Esprit right now.

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showp...81&postcount=8

Keith
k1 - methinks it was speculation or jump to conclusion before investigating further as to what the situation really is. Does not sound as if the OP called Crystal to find out what is really going on, yet.


I wonder what is happening in the Roll Call, anyone know? How are those passengers handling or what is the discussion?

bon voyage
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#13
4,543 Posts
Joined Jul 2005
Originally posted by PaulaJK
I don't think that the OP said their cruise was cancelled...just that they are being offered alteratives.
The "options" the OP sited from the mass market lines applied to the cruises specifically impacted the weekend Irma hit. The only agent communication I have seen regarding potential itinerary changes is from Norwegian's Escape sailings moving from Eastern to Western. None of the other lines, including Crystal, have sent out anything that I can find. This makes sense given that no one as yet knows if/when the affected islands will be in a position to take in ships. It seems from past hurricanes in the islands, that after the immediate danger has passed, tourist infrastructure tends to get priority of repair. All of these islands may be back in business in some limited form by the time Esprit arrives in mid-November. I asked the Captain last night, and said they will leave for the Caribbean as scheduled on October 15.