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tmt9367

Major itinerary change Constellation 5/7/05

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We just noticed that Celebrity has made a couple major changes to our 5/7/05 Baltics sailing. They have eliminated a stop in Gydansk, Poland and have shortened the stays at a couple of the other ports. We're Elite Captain's Club members and have never had a bit of trouble with Celebrity. Does anyone know what we might expect for compensation, if anything? A customer service supervisor is supposed to e-mail me the reason(s) for the changes tomorrow. I can't wait to hear this!

 

Shaun

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No disrespect meant why you would expect compensation? Have you made final payment?

 

Heard that some changes were made but due to a visa problem with Poland and the result was that it affected the entire itinerary- but I could be wrong there.

 

I am headed for another cruise in a few months too, and have made final payment. But if the itinerary needed to be changed because of circumstances beyond the cruise lines control I would not expect any financial remuneration. I don't know if I would expect anything in any circumstance as my cruise contract does not guarantee me any port or any particular time in port.

 

Sorry for the disappointment tho- and hope the cruise is fantastic just the same.

 

Best wishes. :)

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All the Baltic cruises for this summer on the Constellation have been affected. While some compensation for the time and planning would be very nice, I would not hold my breath waiting for it. Final payments have not been made.........and also it says on the websites, etc. cruise intineraries may change as conditions warrent............Feel sorry for some of the people who have bought non-refundable tickets to events in some of ther ports, with the change in days and times they become worthless.

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Things happen. And everything that happens is not compensable! If you are on the ship and they have to make changes, they usually give out room credits or free drinks for missed or shortened ports. But not before final payment! If you are unhappy, you still have time to get your deposit back and book something else with no penalty. No freebies for this!

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Well doing some figuring we loose 48 hours in various port thru out the 14 day cruise. We go from 132 hours in port to 84.

 

This cannot be all due to the fact that there may be problems in Poland. Of which I have heard nothing of...

 

And of course this means we are on board the ship 48 hours longer, and of course can spend more money on board the ship...

 

Just food for thought...

 

Carlene

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If this is making you VERY unhappy, I would find another cruise to book while you still have time! Try RCL!

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I'm not giving up my aft corner cabin, booked a year in advance and we've made our final payment willingly.

 

I'm also not looking for any kind of compensation. Just stating facts that anyone who can add and subtract can come to the same conclusion. I just know that we will be short changed.

 

Adding Helsinki is a mystery. The Helsinki port authority website shows the Connie was booked for 5-12-05 in April of 2004. But wasn't added until this week, who knows.

 

Oh well, still looking forward to the trip and any day at sea is better than a day on land, and of course I'm on vacation. Not too bad.

 

Carlene

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so I added wrong, graveyard shift will do that... I'll be the first to admit I'm wrong...

 

We do lose 26 hours in various ports, not the original figure of 48, it's still less time than we started with...

 

I'll still be on board...

 

Carlene

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I am on Century June 2 I booked her to sail Caribbean and we arenow going to Scandinavia/Russia-talk about a change in itinerary.We also had a change in itinerary for this cruise. we now have 2 sea days up front and Oslo is our last port,due to dockage problem.I am just greatful that I am going on a cruise.

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Don't expect any compensation -- why should you??? Celebrity reserves the right to make changes in its itinerary, plain and simple.

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Out May 21 Baltic cruise itinerary was changed too. I called Customer Service and got nowhere. They pointed out that their contract says that they can make changes anytime.

 

You can write to:

 

Richard Fain, 56

Chairman, Chief Exec. Officer

 

Jack Williams, 54

Pres and Chief Operating Officer of Royal Caribbean International and

Celebrity Cruises

 

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd ASA

1050 Caribbean Way

Miami, FL 33132

Phone: (305) 539-6000

Fax: (305) 374-7354

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No disrespect meant why you would expect compensation? Have you made final payment? I don't know if I would expect anything in any circumstance as my cruise contract does not guarantee me any port or any particular time in port.

 

Why would I expect compensation? Well first of all, the new itinerary IS NOT what I PAID for. Final payment was also made willingly. Second, I don't believe Celebrity or even tuggers beloved RCL has the right to keep port charges when the port isn't used. I vaguely remember some civil suit about this some time back. Why is it when someone asks about "compensation" it's assumed we're looking for cabin upgrade or better yet, a free cruise? My definition of compensation is a small shipboard credit, free use of a speciality restaurant or even the dreaded apology.

 

I've cruise over 30 times and yes, I know they have the right to change the itinerary. Just because it's writing, doesn't make it a good thing. I can't even get them to tell us, a group of 40+ people, WHY it's been changed. We understand things like weather and safety concerns, but obviously this is not the case. The bottom line is we've lost quite a few hours in the ports we are docking at and we've lost one whole port all together. That's not what we paid for. Flame me if you must, I can handle it. Just put yourselves in our position and I have to believe you would like answers also, if not more.

 

As for canceling this cruise, what about our other arrangements like pre-paid pre & post cruise hotels reservations? What about flight reservations? Should we be responsible for paying fees for cancellations because the cruise line uses bait & switch tactics? I think not.

 

I am grateful to be cruising and contrary to tuggers assumption, we're not "VERY unhappy" and we will have a great time. That's not the point. The point is we want what we originally paid for or something similar. If you care to look at the original itinerary and the new itinerary, you'll see there's a big difference.

 

Thanks for showing the love Cruise Critic members. Now I realize why I rarely use this board.

 

Shaun

PS: tugger, we're also Diamond Crown & Anchor members at RCCL.

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I just checked the Celebrity web site and they have our original itinerary back in. Confusion is beginning to reign. I called Celebrity and they confirmed that the itinerary they would sell today is our original one that did not include Helsinki. We are on the July 2 sailing of the Constellation. You may want to check on the web site and see if yours returned to its previous route.

 

Jerry

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I just checked the Celebrity web site and they have our original itinerary back in. Confusion is beginning to reign. I called Celebrity and they confirmed that the itinerary they would sell today is our original one that did not include Helsinki. We are on the July 2 sailing of the Constellation. You may want to check on the web site and see if yours returned to its previous route.

 

Jerry

 

Thanks for the heads up. Sadly, it has not been changed back to the original itinerary.

 

SDT

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TMT937,

 

Truly understand that has to be a HUGE disappointment when you book over a year in advance- AND when it is a European itinerary especially. It's a long a big investment of time, emotion money, nothing to say of arranging the time off work etc.

 

I am cruising to the Med in two months and if my itinerary was changed like yours :( But like you, I've cruised a lot, and realize that this is just 'one of those things'. You weren't guaranteed a stop in Gdansk, just like I'm not guaranteed one in Portofino. But can sure appreciate the frustration of not being able to hit one of the places you book the cruise to see.

 

You might have gotten 'a lot more love' from members if you didn't mention the dreaded word "compensation". That raises everyone's hackles. You have a reason to rant- doubt there is anyone who cruises regularly who doesn't feel for you.

 

Hope that you do get some kind of explanation from X and maybe a better outcome. Also hoping that you don't give up on this board.

 

Best wishes

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Having been on these boards for a long time, and having scene so much come and go, I agree with Jerry & Shawn, I wouldn't mind any of the changes however when you are shorted 20% of an item you purchased, does that not create questions in your mind as to what the company is doing with the 20% they will gain by those changes made by them?

 

This is not the first or last time with Celebrity we have had to deal with changes, 3 out of 6 cruises have had changes and unless you ask they would be just fine with pocketing the excess they collect. That is not a good business practice.

 

Then there is still the fact of Helsinki port authority reports showing the Constellation booked in April of 2004 for May 12 2005.

 

I am looking forward to a relaxing day at sea, I do love sea days, but 20% is still shorting us of 20%.

 

Happy Cruising,

Carlene

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Why would I expect compensation? Well first of all, the new itinerary IS NOT what I PAID for. Final payment was also made willingly. Second, I don't believe Celebrity or even tuggers beloved RCL has the right to keep port charges when the port isn't used. I vaguely remember some civil suit about this some time back. Why is it when someone asks about "compensation" it's assumed we're looking for cabin upgrade or better yet, a free cruise? My definition of compensation is a small shipboard credit, free use of a speciality restaurant or even the dreaded apology.

 

OK, here's where the fatal flaw comes in the logic that there's a need for compensation: there's absolutely no way for Celebrity to judge what compensation would be appropriate.

 

You say the new itinerary with less port time makes the cruise less attractive and thus less valuable in your estimation. OK, but let's say for a moment that I'm booked on the same cruise. (I'm not, but if anyone would like to sponsor me, I'd be willing to go. ;) )

 

For me, a ship tied to a dock is like an airplane sitting on a tarmac. Not where I'd want to be. For me, and many folks like me, the attraction of a cruise is being at sea. Seeing those lines cast off is probably my greatest moment. If want to visit some town/country to sight-see, I'll fly there there, drive there -- a much more efficient means of seeing someplace new. It's like when I decided to take a train trip one vacation... the fact that it was via a train was the appeal of the trip.

 

From posts on this board, I know there's more than a few folk like me on cruises. Add sea-days to a cruise, and we're happy campers. If a Caribbean Cruise slid right on by Nassau, I'd probably not even notice. So, for me and folks like me, a cruise that now has more sea time may be worth more, not less.

 

So, does Celebrity bill me more, while crediting you? Do they need to maintain a database on each guest's preferences, so they know how any change affects a cruise's value?

 

Of course not. When you book a cruise, you book the cruise for "x" number of days, with meals, accommodations, and entertainment. When scheduling cruises any considerable time in the future, the odds of a change is simply part of the deal. While I can understand that you feel disappointment, that may not be the only reaction to these changes.

 

Hope you enjoy your cruise, where-ever it may go. :) Think of me stuck here on land while you're watching the waves slide by at sunset. :(

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We have had this happen a couple of times on Celebrity, No compensation. It is far enough out that you could always change your cruise.

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Thanks for showing the love Cruise Critic members. Now I realize why I rarely use this board.

 

Admittedly, you have cruised before, and 'you know the drill'. The fact that others have confirmed this (specifically, expect nothing) only serves to rub salt in your wound, however, those are the facts of the matter. This is part of cruising. I haven't been on nearly as many cruises as you have indicated, but I know that things can change, and accept this as part of the process.

 

If you are going to 'throw the bone' out there for others to respond to, don't be angry with the results because it's not what you wanted to hear.

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When you book a cruise, you book the cruise for "x" number of days, with meals, accommodations, and entertainment. :([/quote.

If these were the major criteria,one would only need to cruise around one's own coastline to be happy.

The itinerary is a major consideration,as is the length of stay in each port of call.Any reduction in time spent in,or elimination of,a port can have a major impact,especially if one is travelling a long distance to embark on a cruise.

If these occur during a voyage due to reasons beyond the cruise line's control,then all well and good.To do so before departure warrants an explanation from the cruise company.

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I've had my say about all this on the June 18 cruise change thread, but I wanted to chime in here to agree with:

 

"If these were the major criteria,one would only need to cruise around one's own coastline to be happy.

The itinerary is a major consideration,as is the length of stay in each port of call.Any reduction in time spent in,or elimination of,a port can have a major impact,especially if one is travelling a long distance to embark on a cruise.

If these occur during a voyage due to reasons beyond the cruise line's control,then all well and good.To do so before departure warrants an explanation from the cruise company."

 

On our cruise they did not change ports, just changed dates and times so that we spend 15 hours out in a bay somewhere, waiting to dock in Stockholm and putting St. Petersburg into a Sunday and Monday timeframe instead of a Saturday and Sunday timeframe as originally specified.

 

Many of the museums and historic properties in St. Petersburg are closed on Monday and on the last Monday of the month others close as well for "sanitary cleaning". This is a major impact for us.

 

We have no explanation for these changes and I cannot fathom why this was done except to increase the bottom line for Celebrity at the expense of its customers.

 

Will we still go? Yes. Will we enjoy the cruise? Yes. Does this impact our view of Celebrity as a Premium and Quality cruise line? Absolutely. A Premium cruise line would tell its customers, via its website, why the changes needed to be made so we could avoid all this second guessing and unhappiness. Finally, please consider that they have done this to some 30,000 customers (I am including Century here) representing what, about $90,000,000 in sales, without so much as a howdy do.

 

Changes I can understand - not giving reasons, poor policy.

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Maybe after cruising for a couple of decades, one becomes a bit philosophical about all of this…

 

There are many great things about cruising…but, it also has its (sometimes negative) quirks…One of them is that the itinerary is never really set in stone. Sure, 98% of the time it goes off exactly as scheduled…

 

But, I have been on cruises where ports were skipped or port stays shortened due to weather or to mechanical problems with the ship. I was on one cruise were the entire ship was redeployed from one side of the world to the other due to fears after 9/11…

I’ve had a port stop threatened and shortened due to a labor strike among local dockworkers…

 

My sister was once on a Norwegian Cruise Line cruise where they never hit one single planned port—spent the entire cruise floating somewhere off the coast of Southern California…

 

My upcoming Southern Caribbean cruise says St. Kitts in the printed brochure and Antigua (where I assume we are going) on the website…Changes sometimes get made after the brochures are printed…

 

Everyone booked on the Century this summer found their ship moved from the Caribbean to Europe…

 

It’s always a moving target…on EVERY cruise line…

 

Oftentimes, it’s weather, ship maintenance, changes in political climate, disease (whole Asia itineraries got scrapped a couple of years ago for the SARS epidemic), changes in the conditions at the port (you think a few cruises didn’t reschedule out of Thailand after the Tsunami? They certainly rescheduled some Grenada stops after the last hurricane season)…Often it’s maintenance and availability of pier or port space…

 

Sometimes, like with the Century, it’s purely a marketing decision…

 

Bottom line is that if you read your agreement or any cruise brochure, the line reserves the right to do this…

 

Does it suck? Sure…especially if you booked the cruise because of a certain port or ports…Does it really matter if they give you the reasoning for their change? Not really, they’re not changing it back just for you…But, most times, they’re really not that secretive about changes…They’ll tell you the reason…when you eventually find someone who knows (the rep sitting in the call center on the 800 number doesn’t always know…they usually know little)…

 

BTW, it’s not just Celebrity—it’s every cruise line from the mass-marketed up to the premium lines…

 

Crystal took the Harmony out of various Asian ports when the SARS scare came up…If you were canceled out of one of those cruises and called their customer service folks the fi8rst couple of days, they didn’t necessarily know what was going on yet…Of course, eventually they did…and had no trouble telling the customers…Yes, some were angry, they’d booked the cruise for a reason…but, hey, you can cancel and book another time…

 

Good luck..

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I don't know why "compensation" should be a dirty word. Just as there are things that must be done, there are things that should be done; which doesn't make the "should" any less important.

 

There is one less port, less usable hours in other ports (for example, 7am-2pm is not as usable as 2pm -8pm), the loss of an overnight in Stockholm, etc. This is not a matter of a change in order and a change in one port. To treat every change in itinerary as equal really isn't appropriate.

 

By comparision, Radisson had a real fiasco when the Radisson Diamond was sold and it hedged its bets it would be able to charter the ship for this upcoming summer and fall season. They were wrong and cancelled a number of sailings. Each passenger received a $700 credit towards another cruise in 2005. Radisson wasn't required to do it, but felt for customer relations sake it should do it.

 

I love Celebrity and think anyone looking for a free cruise would be out of line. However, if Celebrity voluntarily gave a $150-200 per person onboard credit to say "Sorry"...and on a 14 night cruise that is pocket change in relation to onboard charges...it would probably go a long way from a customer relations standpoint.

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BTW, it’s not just Celebrity—it’s every cruise line from the mass-marketed up to the premium lines…

 

I think this is a point that has not been stressed enough. You would have this possibility regardless of which cruise line. They all have this.

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