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A Royal Tarnishing


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our first cruise as D+ and we only spent $35 for a weekend cruise.

Balcony Discount, BOGO @ Chops on Friday, two free pics, free gratuities, free beer in cabin, free Asti in cabin. NO OBC, but we did get a generous FCC because of a backed up shower on FOS last summer. Paid for a soda package, 3 or 4 drinks (DL provided the rest), and two bottles of vodka in shops.

 

we did drop $400-$500 in casino though. :o

 

Being a Diamond certain saved us money last cruise on drinks/coffee, but then I think we splurged a bit more on the restaurants, and that damn Casino! I forgot about that dint in the wallet :)

The loyalty program certainly got us back cruising with RCI and it would take a good deal from another company to lure us away (besides Celebrity - but that is same parent company).

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I can guarantee you diamonds spend on average less than a new cruiser. A diamond is less likely to buy into all the random crap that RCI sells like the 20 dollar photos, many of the spa products, etc. They also get balcony discounts, and likely have OBC in some form or another. This all reduces the amount a Diamond spends.

 

 

What you say is true. However, one thing that can be said about diamonds, and above, is that they like to cruise. Attracting new cruisers is important but many of those folks will be one time wonders. The cruise lines really need a good mix of both. They need the new cruisers to make money on all the extras as well as hope that they turn into cruise lovers. They also need a hefty population of folks that take cruise after cruise. They may not spend as much in other revenue producing areas of the ship but they do fill cabins. And not just the cruise lines but a good portion of the ships' crews depend on cabins being filled in order to make their livelihood.

 

RCI is in the process of adding diamond lounges to all of their ships. I don't read that as looking to dump the repeaters in favor of attempting to fill the ships with new cruisers. They need both groups. And I am quite sure that they know it.

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The 4 Disney Cruise Line ships—with their distinctive designs and decorative gold swirls across their bows—inspire awe wherever they pull into port. Mixing grand elegance with an element of fun, the Disney Magic, the Disney Wonder, the Disney Dream, and the Disney Fantasy were created specifically with families in mind. Now, discover the enchanting delights of sailing to exotic destinations aboard ocean liners that have "something for everyone" built right in.

 

Sorry but I have never felt the slightest bit of awe looking at a Disney ship. Now, seeing Oasis or Allure, or even the Freedom sisters.... Yup, they do it for me.

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I agree. At some point the diamond happy hour will likely be reduced to beer and wine.

 

I actually could see this happening in the D Lounge. Another change, almost imperceptible to most, is the lounge hours are now 5-8pm, not 8:30 as they once were . . at least this was the case on the last 3 ships we were on.

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What you say is true. However, one thing that can be said about diamonds, and above, is that they like to cruise. Attracting new cruisers is important but many of those folks will be one time wonders. The cruise lines really need a good mix of both. They need the new cruisers to make money on all the extras as well as hope that they turn into cruise lovers. They also need a hefty population of folks that take cruise after cruise. They may not spend as much in other revenue producing areas of the ship but they do fill cabins. And not just the cruise lines but a good portion of the ships' crews depend on cabins being filled in order to make their livelihood.

 

 

 

RCI is in the process of adding diamond lounges to all of their ships. I don't read that as looking to dump the repeaters in favor of attempting to fill the ships with new cruisers. They need both groups. And I am quite sure that they know it.

 

 

I agree they need a good mix, if anything to just spread the word. Also give something for people to aspire to. Who wouldn't want to be like Super Mario?

 

I think they are not trying to weed out all the diamonds and pinnacle. Just the ones that continue to have the "olden" days of cruising level of expectations.

 

Most have accepted the change in the industry as have I. It is sad to see the days of having a beautiful non rusting ship in dock gone though. Seeing the Independence next to the Disney Fantasy in dock was almost embarrassing with all the rust everywhere on the IOS and not a painter to be found, whereas disney was painting over things that weren't even rusting..

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Sorry but I have never felt the slightest bit of awe looking at a Disney ship. Now, seeing Oasis or Allure, or even the Freedom sisters.... Yup, they do it for me.

 

 

 

 

I have to agree simply because there is nothing else like them. Sure Disney has cool horns and a character on their butts but inspiring? Too many others similar.

 

I remember in my boating days the QEII would stop people in their tracks. I remember chatting with a Customs official in Beemuda. She was no longer the biggest and far from the newest but she turned heads in Bermuda. That was Cunard funnel people recognized......something about it.

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Travel plus

 

 

So u r saying that RCCL doesn't experience problems. A little far fetched to even remotely think they don't .

 

All cruise lines/ships have issues.

 

 

You're right. And it was long ago that Allure was having problems.

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YOU are waiting your print trying to explain this to some. They don't have a clue that 75% of RCI's income comes from booking cabins and d's and above have spent many thousands contributing to that 75%, way more than 1st timers

 

I've heard the opposite, from RCI management - they would give away the cabins (and sometimes seem to at the last minute) to fill the ship so that passengers will spend a lot of money onboard.

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My first Diamond cruise, will be on the Maiden Voyage of the Quantum of the Seas, this November. I was looking at a transatlantic on Allure or the next new Royal ship and found their prices to be outrageous.

 

I decided to book the December 2015 transatlantic, on the Crystal Serenity. When I looed at all what Crystal included, compared to fares of over $3,000++ with Royal. With RCCL, you have to add so much to the base costs: gratuity, drink package, ice cream (Ben & Jerry's free on Crystal), shore excursions, specialty dining, stocked stateroom bar (replenished daily), etc.

 

The crystal ship was over $6,000 but is all inclusive, of all listed above, with a much (so I have heard) higher class of operations. The drink package at Royal would be over $120 per day for a couple, plus gratuities at $28 per day, 4 specialty dinners $70, $12 Ben & Jerry's per day, flowers in cabin $60, stocked beverages in cabin $30 per day approx.., shore excursions $300 ($1680+392+280+168+60+420+300=$3300)

 

So the Royal base price of $3,000+$3,300 incidentals is the same price at just over $6,300 as my 2015 Crystal Crossing, on the Serenity.

 

I had wondered for a while, if upgrading from Celebrity to a Luxury line, would really cost more, if one considered the extra charges incurred; thus the total cost of the trip. When one factors the often outstanding air values offered, including deeply discounted business class options then: the Luxury line option is not only cost effective, but actually can be cheaper, who would have thought??

 

Last note, I don't believe Chops is worth the money: on the Crystal cruise all specialty dining is included, including the NOBU Sushi and that is a big deal!!!

 

In the future, I will no longer bother with the onboard/future booking, as it has been completely gutted. I will book through the casino department and use my MGMMirage Mlife Gold benefits; along with the casino rates, that are now offered since Jan 1st, 2014. I get free dining, drinks, specialty events, etc. This is better than what is being offered: plus the Casino Royal Department, can directly book my cruises!!! :p

Edited by gkbiiii
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I too am disappointed in the new negative changes. However, I am willing to accept them because I have seen the reduction in cruise prices as well. I have been cruising RC for 10 years now. I used to pay about $650- $800 per person for a 7 night Caribbean cruise ( inside room). I paid 890.00 once. I now have a 6 night cruise on the Independence booked for 383.00 person, and a 7 night for the Allure can be had for 712.00 per person - also inside rooms.;)

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I too am disappointed in the new negative changes. However, I am willing to accept them because I have seen the reduction in cruise prices as well. I have been cruising RC for 10 years now. I used to pay about $650- $800 per person for a 7 night Caribbean cruise ( inside room). I paid 890.00 once. I now have a 6 night cruise on the Independence booked for 383.00 person, and a 7 night for the Allure can be had for 712.00 per person - also inside rooms.;)

 

 

Yep, we just booked a 7 night on Allure Labor Day week for $678 pp using a discount but the per person rate was approx $800 before the discount. Our first cruise was on Sovereign, 5 day/4 night, $750 total for two people and Oasis last summer for $950 pp. Also all inside rooms. Our land based vacay a few years ago was $3000 (AI resort) in Jamaica. When I compare that trip with our cruises I feel like we are getting a huge bargain....but that's just me :)

 

 

 

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No reason for them to stop cutting if people keep booking. If bookings start going down, then they will have to think about their level of cost cutting.

 

I highly doubt they would make that connection. They would assume revenue was down and increase advertising and/or lower prices.

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I too am disappointed in the new negative changes. However, I am willing to accept them because I have seen the reduction in cruise prices as well. I have been cruising RC for 10 years now. I used to pay about $650- $800 per person for a 7 night Caribbean cruise ( inside room). I paid 890.00 once. I now have a 6 night cruise on the Independence booked for 383.00 person, and a 7 night for the Allure can be had for 712.00 per person - also inside rooms.;)

 

 

That is nothing compared to the prices in the 80s and early 90s where it was 2000+ for an oceanview for a 7 night. That would be 4000 to 5000 plus in todays dollars. Of course it was truly luxury then with service that was flawless. Now I pay 700 for a 7 night cruise in 2014 dollars. I don't think them memorizing my name before I boarded was worth the extra 4000 dollars.

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To say Diamonds spend less is only true if you count in all those pictures we already have and never display! It took us quite a long time to get to this status....many rooms, tips, drinks, casino $$ and yes, pictures. Today, our status doesn't hold much. We do get the discount on the balcony, but years ago, we were able to use any coupons or discounts out there that included OBC, free dinners, free spa treatments, etc and our loyalty level discount..not so today. We do get a great discount on a balcony, but don't you think we kinda earned that discount by staying loyal to RCCL? Why we can't combine discounts is very confusing to me. Double dipping? if you want to call it that, but letting a first timer have a $300 discount, plus $200 OBC, free dinner, free spa, adds up to a lot more than my $350 off a balcony! We should be treated as a customer who wants to book a cruise and partake in their WOW sale, then if we want to book a balcony or above, let our Diamond status shine! :p Losing the $100 OBC or up on a future cruise credit might mean less cruises for Royal. I don't like booking a particular week ahead of time, but knowing I'll cruise again it was a no brainer to purchase the future cruise credit. As far as the DL changing to Beer & Wine only?? Count on it! The last cruise we were on didn't have a DL per se, but we were invited to a diamond happy hour every night, (what's the difference?) and there were no snacks and only beer and wine were offered. As for the gal who gets all that free stuff in her room?? good for you! I get my diet coke (2 whole cans) and after one evening I usually get some chocolate covered strawberries. That's about it.

Hey, things change...I get it. But why stay loyal to a particular line if the perks aren't there? I'll still cruise, as I say, A bad day on vacation, beats a good day at work!

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To add to the tarnishing . . they have eliminated the C&A balcony discount for cruises less than 6 days......

 

 

Good catch. Wouldn't have seen that w/o logging on to the C&A site otherwise. zit looks like they increased the balcony discount for everything 6 days or longer however.:confused:

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Good catch. Wouldn't have seen that w/o logging on to the C&A site otherwise. zit looks like they increased the balcony discount for everything 6 days or longer however.:confused:

 

No, they are the same discounts for longer cruises.

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No, they are the same discounts for longer cruises.

 

 

The Diamond discount (> 6 months went up to 250 from 225). It looks like all of the Diamond level discounts on longer cruises went up as well. Maybe it's different for different levels?

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People, its just a way of doing business in todays world. I guess I'm one of the people that is considered the "type" that the new age cruise lines want to attract. Have not cruised much and really like the product, (if you haven't seen what is being taken away you don't miss it ) They will not focus on the savy and experienced loyal cruisers because frankly in 10 - 20 years you will not be cruising much if any. I would trade many of the "perks" that some consider a huge loss for the current drink packages (and no, I'm not a drunk but I'm on vacation and like to relax and have a couple each day). They really don't "owe" you anything ! you chose to buy a product and at the time it was considered a great product,,, if the product is no longer a great product in your mind,,, then you will have to move over because there are lots coming behind you to grab their new found "great product" and will enjoy it. When and only when the ships start sailing half full will you ever see some of the perks that you once had return.

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People, its just a way of doing business in todays world. I guess I'm one of the people that is considered the "type" that the new age cruise lines want to attract. Have not cruised much and really like the product, (if you haven't seen what is being taken away you don't miss it ) They will not focus on the savy and experienced loyal cruisers because frankly in 10 - 20 years you will not be cruising much if any. I would trade many of the "perks" that some consider a huge loss for the current drink packages (and no, I'm not a drunk but I'm on vacation and like to relax and have a couple each day). They really don't "owe" you anything ! you chose to buy a product and at the time it was considered a great product,,, if the product is no longer a great product in your mind,,, then you will have to move over because there are lots coming behind you to grab their new found "great product" and will enjoy it. When and only when the ships start sailing half full will you ever see some of the perks that you once had return.

 

You consider 10-20 more years of cruising to be inconsequental?:rolleyes:

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