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15 miles from Labadee !!!!


aprilfool

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......of airlines and tour companies allowing you to change your travel to the Dominican Republic. There are hundreds more.

 

Kind regards,

 

Gunther and Uta

 

Re-accommodations

 

Continental is providing the option to re-schedule or re-route your travel once, without penalty, if you are ticketed to/from one of the cities listed below.* If your flight has been cancelled, a refund to the original form of payment can be requested. If you are traveling using a OnePass Reward, redeposit fees will be waived. Travel must be completed by the original validity dates specified on the ticket and changes must be confirmed in the same class of service as the original ticket. The value of the ticket may also be used towards purchasing another Continental Airlines ticket.

Please enter your confirmation number and last name in Manage Reservations or call Continental Airlines reservations at 800.525.0280 in the U.S. 50 states and Puerto Rico or one of Continental's other reservations numbers for assistance before your original departure date and time.

*You may only reschedule or reroute your travel once without penalty unless the specific incident below states otherwise.

EventTravel to/from/throughDatesAdditional InformationHaiti EarthquakeSanto Domingo, Dominican Republic (SDQ), Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic (POP), Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (PUJ)Original Travel Dates:

Jan. 14, 2010 - Jan. 21,

 

Final Travel must be completed by:

End of Validity of ticket (one year from date of issue)Change fees and/or additional fare collection will be waived if the rescheduled flights are booked in the original class of service to the same city pairs as originally ticketed and rescheduled travel commences on or before Feb. 13, 2010.

 

If the new travel commences after Feb. 13, 2010, change fees will be waived, however, additional fare collection will apply.

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......of airlines and tour companies allowing you to change your travel to the Dominican Republic. There are hundreds more.

 

Kind regards,

 

Gunther and Uta

 

Re-accommodations

 

Continental is providing the option to re-schedule or re-route your travel once, without penalty, if you are ticketed to/from one of the cities listed below.* If your flight has been cancelled, a refund to the original form of payment can be requested. If you are traveling using a OnePass Reward, redeposit fees will be waived. Travel must be completed by the original validity dates specified on the ticket and changes must be confirmed in the same class of service as the original ticket. The value of the ticket may also be used towards purchasing another Continental Airlines ticket.

Please enter your confirmation number and last name in Manage Reservations or call Continental Airlines reservations at 800.525.0280 in the U.S. 50 states and Puerto Rico or one of Continental's other reservations numbers for assistance before your original departure date and time.

*You may only reschedule or reroute your travel once without penalty unless the specific incident below states otherwise.

EventTravel to/from/throughDatesAdditional InformationHaiti EarthquakeSanto Domingo, Dominican Republic (SDQ), Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic (POP), Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (PUJ)Original Travel Dates:

Jan. 14, 2010 - Jan. 21,

 

Final Travel must be completed by:

End of Validity of ticket (one year from date of issue)Change fees and/or additional fare collection will be waived if the rescheduled flights are booked in the original class of service to the same city pairs as originally ticketed and rescheduled travel commences on or before Feb. 13, 2010.

 

If the new travel commences after Feb. 13, 2010, change fees will be waived, however, additional fare collection will apply.

Respectfully I can see where you are coming from. However, airlines bring people to these destinations by air with the passenger responsible for their own accommodations... some of which may have been affected by the earthquake.

 

With RCI, Labadee is only a day stop. There is no damage there. No security threats. Nothing that would impede travel.

 

Therefore there's no reason why they should allow you to change plans. If you had purchased travel insurance, I'm sure you could cancel and receive a 75% credit towards a future cruise.

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Yes, you do a lot and that is wonderful. But my answer to your second question is yes, stop letting those children see you dancing around, snorkeling, playing on jet skis, overindulging in food and alcohol - that's just cruel. I would never go to Labadee for that reason. I'm not going to bury my head in the sand, tell myself I've done enough, shove food in my mouth, get tipsy and work on my tan and pretend that the child is not there on the hill begging for food. I'm not going to buy a $20 windchime and think its going to feed that child and feel better about myself.

For those that say tipping Labadee employees helps the relief effort a little I say most likely not. How do you figure the employees of Labadee are going to send their meager cash to relatives, if they even have them, to Port au Prince? FedEx? The place is devastated.

If someone can't see the difference between visiting an imporverished area and spending tourist dollars and drinking, eating and sunning yourself less than 100 miles away from dead bodies being pulled from rubble, stacked on top of each other in the streets, men, women and children and others dying from disease all directly related to a huge natural disaster then I think you're just making it about YOU, trying to not look and see the horror while whooping it up on the zip line. You don't stuff your face in the direct eyesight of a starving child and you don't get your drink on so near the dead bodies laying in the sun.

RCCL could pay its workers there, drop off supplies and pay port fees - it doesn't require going there and making it a day to get off and party. I don't get how others can't have real compassion for others.

 

So how many miles makes it okay to enjoy yourself while bodies are being pulled from the rubble? 200 miles? 500 miles?

 

I don't think moving your party a few hundred or even a few thousand miles away makes you any more compassionate, I think it just makes you feel better not to have the hungry child staring at you...the child is still every bit as hungry as he would be if you were partying 10 miles from him, but you feel better about yourself because you don't have to confront the fact that you are enjoying while he is starving.

 

IMO people taking your position are making it even more about them. You still want what you want, you want your vacation, your good food etc. in addition , you want to be able to enjoy all those things while feeling and, in your mind, appearing to be a good compassionate person.

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The large Spanish travel agencies and wholesalers have allowed their passengers to change their trips to the Dominican Republic to another date or a different destination, and Royal Caribbean Spanish office has allowed passengers to change their cruises.

 

Spanish consumer travel package laws are extremely strict and favor the consumer in this respect.

 

Kind regards,

 

Gunther and Uta

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Why don't all you "noble" people ask the people of Haiti what they want. I gurantee virtually every one will want the cruise ships and their revenue to continue to come ashore at Labadee to bring in revenue and keep as many people working as possible. I hope the cruise lines add MORE stops in Labadee. These people need the revenue, not self-righteous blabber. Two British papers are blasting the cruise lines? The same British press that prints pin-up pictures of skantily clad women to sell papers? Yeah, I respect them.

 

Like an earlier poster said, the "noble" thing is to go ashore and spend more money than you had planned on spending there.

 

People who "might not want to go there" and be near a tragedy, or don't want to stop out of respect, but have no problem vacationing in "luxury" at other stops should re-examine their priorities. I guess it's okay to have a drink on the beach in St. Thomas while people are dying in Haiti. But you can feel very sanctimonious in knowing you didn't have a drink in Haiti.

 

I certainly agree with in terms of helping the economy there in shopping, etc. The problem I have is in what's being reported as "partying on the beach" while refugees are coming in. I would like to think that a bit of decorum would be observed there. I have no idea if what's being reported is 100% accurate or not, so I won't judge based on that.

 

Be that as it may, I say disembark. Enjoy yourself, but be respectful to those who have literally lost all. Reserve the "party" for the ship. But most of all, just help the people in whatever you can.

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If we put aside the issue of the hundreds of thousands of people dead and missing, starvation, poverty, etc., and just focus on the fact that there have been severe aftershocks, I would think that the threat of another earthquake and/or further severe aftershocks would advise that the cruise line not stop there at least for the first week, so as not to put more than 3,000 passengers per ship at risk.

 

I am not totally against the cruise line going there, but I am against the cruise line at least in the U.S. office taking a totalitarian attitude and not allowing passengers to opt out by rescheduling their cruise.

 

Kind regards,

 

Gunther and Uta

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nosmothj - What type of clothing do you take, and how much. Did you need special permission from the cruiseline?

 

We have bought the CD's of the island musicians before, along with their handmade wood instruments. When you say "take some food" do you mean from the cookout, or from the ship or home. I know you are not allowed to take food off the ship, so I assume you mean from the cookout. Are the musicians (I didn't know if they were also employed by RCCL) allowed to accept it?

 

We have three boys. We took old jeans shorts shoes sandals. Also tooth brushes tooth past shampoo and any thing else we could fit. We travel a bit and always take the items that the hotel gives out.

 

Also what we have done for kids is take air matters to float on and leave them with someone.

 

We generally fill a small suitcase and then file it with items we purchase to go home.

 

As far as advising the cruise line no. But I have found several people do it. I generally find some one in the market and ask them to come out and give them the supplies. I tried one time to give it out in the market and it created a stir. So ask someone to come out and give them what you can.

 

As for the food you have to be careful as they can get in trouble. I get a few burgers or chicken and wrap them up and take them over to someone.

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Yes, you do a lot and that is wonderful. But my answer to your second question is yes, stop letting those children see you dancing around, snorkeling, playing on jet skis, overindulging in food and alcohol - that's just cruel. I would never go to Labadee for that reason. .

 

I have one question for you...I assume you love and/or live in NYC? If so, how many parties, drinks or weekends spent in the pursuit of happiness have you canceled because one can pass a homeless, starving person on any block in NYC at any time of the day or night. Did it stop you that these people are just as bad off as the Haitians...just wondering.

 

I'd say what a lot of well meaning people so negative about being happy in a very unhappy, dying world need a little perspective. Actually, nothing you GAVE up would have any bearing on anything that is happening in our world today...simply logistics. Something you GIVE would though.:D

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If we put aside the issue of the hundreds of thousands of people dead and missing, starvation, poverty, etc., and just focus on the fact that there have been severe aftershocks, I would think that the threat of another earthquake and/or further severe aftershocks would advise that the cruise line not stop there at least for the first week, so as not to put more than 3,000 passengers per ship at risk.

 

I am not totally against the cruise line going there, but I am against the cruise line at least in the U.S. office taking a totalitarian attitude and not allowing passengers to opt out by rescheduling their cruise.

 

Kind regards,

 

Gunther and Uta

I understand your concern and frustration. However, there are no fault lines running underneath the north side of Hispanola. Even if there were an aftershock, there's little to crumble at Labadee. Enjoy your cruise.

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I just don't understand. Tragedies happen around the world... does it matter if the tragedy was 100 miles or 1000 miles away before feelings of guilt disappear?

 

I agree.

 

I think we should help, donate and pray. But why is a Margarita more enjoyable on a nearby island? Does physical distance lessen the guilt? This seems like such an odd concept to me. None of us would ever get out of bed if we allowed all the guilt of the pain in this world immobilize us.

 

Plus, I find it strange how we outpour our hearts and wallets to Haiti, when we have so much illness and poverty right here at home that many of us do nothing about. What happened in Haiti is absolutely horrible, but what about in your own city? How many kids go hungry? Seniors without meds? Teens with AIDS? Families without healthcare?

 

Actually, having a cruise beach like Labadee that has always been surrounded by guards seems kind of odd; even before the earthquake, I don't think most Haitians on the other side of that wall were living idyllic lives.

 

Hard questions for us all.

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We have three boys. We took old jeans shorts shoes sandals. Also tooth brushes tooth past shampoo and any thing else we could fit. We travel a bit and always take the items that the hotel gives out.

 

Also what we have done for kids is take air matters to float on and leave them with someone.

 

We generally fill a small suitcase and then file it with items we purchase to go home.

 

As for the food you have to be careful as they can get in trouble. I get a few burgers or chicken and wrap them up and take them over to someone.

 

Good for you!

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If anything good becomes of this maybe it will be that we stop closing our eyes to the conditions in Haiti and start to actually do something.

 

Like what? They are a sovereign nation. The majority of the World is poor. It is not up to us to make every poor nation flourish. We do what we can with pumpuing in tourists dollars and making charitable donations, but I'm not about to feel guilty about being fortunate while others aren't. That's just the World we live in. I am, however, extremely opposed to turning our backs on people in immediate need though, like now.

 

Don't get me wrong. I do applaud your effort.

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We sail on Saturday on Independence. Our ship is due to call at labadee on the Friday.

This cruise was booked months ago and naturally we did not know an earthquake was going to happen.

We went to labadee last year on Freedom, so we are aware of the layout.

Not sure yet wether we will go ashore or stay on the ship. Either way we will donate some money.

It is a difficult call to make and there are valid points raised in both camps as to the rights and wrongs of calling at labadee.

I guess what ever choice we make on the day we will not be alone.

It's just whatever you feel comfortable with.

 

Paul

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Tell you what..if they put me out at sea for an extra day they will be refunding a large amount of money. I would have a hard time believing they could not find another port to call on! They could tender in if they could not dock.

ABSOLUTELY!!! Cuz it's ALL about YOU!!! :p

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I am really ambivalent about Labadee. We were there a month ago, off FOS, and throughly enoyed our time ashore. To be frank, we didn't think too much about conditions the other side of the fence. However,post quake, I just don't know.

 

The UK daily paper "The Guardian" yesterday appeared to be heavily anti RCCI - their front page contrasted a photo of the corpses piling up in Port Au Prince, with one of cruisers enjoying the beach at Labadee with IOS in the background. The banner headline read "No room in Haiti's cemetaries - but the cruises ships still find a berth"

 

However, the arguement then runs over into mass tourism to poor countries/areas etc.

 

As I say, right now I just don't know

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Why don't all you "noble" people ask the people of Haiti what they want. I gurantee virtually every one will want the cruise ships and their revenue to continue to come ashore at Labadee to bring in revenue and keep as many people working as possible. I hope the cruise lines add MORE stops in Labadee. These people need the revenue, not self-righteous blabber. Two British papers are blasting the cruise lines? The same British press that prints pin-up pictures of skantily clad women to sell papers? Yeah, I respect them.

 

Like an earlier poster said, the "noble" thing is to go ashore and spend more money than you had planned on spending there.

 

People who "might not want to go there" and be near a tragedy, or don't want to stop out of respect, but have no problem vacationing in "luxury" at other stops should re-examine their priorities. I guess it's okay to have a drink on the beach in St. Thomas while people are dying in Haiti. But you can feel very sanctimonious in knowing you didn't have a drink in Haiti.

I agree 100%! Don't people realize that the people of h

Haiti are as poor as poor gets? Everyday life for them is terror. Why is it OK to go to Labadee on the average day, but now it's not!! They need the ships to keep coming and keep giving and keep spending money. They count on it!

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The banner headline read "No room in Haiti's cemetaries - but the cruises ships still find a berth"

 

That headline doesn't even make sense. Another fine example of media sensationalism and opinion. Nevermind just giving facts and letting the reader form his/her own opinion.

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In America, we separate the poor from the rich with good and bad neighborhoods and we know the routes to take so we don't have to go through the bad neighborhoods. We don't have the daily reminder that poverty is all around us like depressed and/or third world countries do. Oftentimes you will see a tin hut right next to a walled off mansion. For Americans, when we come across this kind of poverty, I think it is like getting slapped in the face. It's like, 'oh yeah, there are really poor people in the world' and that's not to say we aren't aware of it, we just don't see it's devastation on a daily basis. Well, we are now, especially if you've been watching the news.

 

Long way of saying, anyone that feels sickened by going to Labadee has a right to feel that way and comparing those feelings to passing a homeless person on the street in our home town has no bearing. They are two completely different things. The magnitude of the human suffering going on right now in Haiti is unprecedented in our most recent history. I think we should be respectful of everyone's feelings, including those who have no remorse going to Labadee. It is just a horrendous situation.

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I would not be surprised if they start using the docks at Labadee for supplies to get in. I'm sure that if asked, RCCL would gladly do it. Realize that is 100 miles...

 

I'm not sure of the logistics but it might make sense to get to the other villages or areas that more is needed. I'm sure that they have looked at it.

 

Royal already announced that this would be their intention late last week. I view it as direct support of their charity arm, Food for the Poor.

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I heard an interesting statistic this morning. Haiti is number 2, behind only India in the number of charitable and relief organizations that are permanently in country. There are many countries with these type organizations with larger populations that do not have the support Haiti does. Unfortunately, even before the earthquake what has been created is a dependence on these organizations to provide for them which will make recovery that much more difficult. A lot of money has been poured into this country over the years, yet they still live in poverty. They have had problems for years and will continue to until something changes and cruiselines not visiting will not help.

 

Also, the US military plans to have the Port-Au-Prince pier up and running in the next 2-3 or so days. I saw an interview today that mentioned this too so they will be able to bring supplies directly in very soon. The interview also said that the looting has been minimal and not a problem and the members of the military have been greeted warmly and the US has a lot of support from the people of Haiti.

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Just a thought but what if Royal Carribean had said they were not calling at Lebadee out of respect.

What would everyone's reaction be?

Congratulations on a wise choice? or be saddened that you were not calling?

 

Paul

 

You'd have the exact same situation as you have now, except the tone of everyone's posts would be the opposite.

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I have been a RCCL follower for most of our cruises, but right now I feel they are very insensitive to the tragedy in Haiti. How can you enjoy a day at the beach and party when there is so many people death and a lot more unaccount for?.....Please RCCL have a heart and be more sympathetic about those in dispared....

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Just a thought but what if Royal Carribean had said they were not calling at Lebadee out of respect.

What would everyone's reaction be?

Congratulations on a wise choice? or be saddened that you were not calling?

 

Paul

 

If it was also mentioned that refugees were there seeking assistance, I would applaud the decision though I admit I would be a little saddened in missing the stop. BUT more people need assistance than I need to disembark at a beach.

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