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Cruising Without Luggage


Azamazingal
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A couple of months back we flew from Glasgow to Athens via London Heathrow for an Azamara fly/cruise package. Unfortunately, there was a massive conveyor belt failure in London, so our luggage was not transferred from one plane to the other.

 

Although we had risen at 5.30am for an early flight it was 9.30pm and dark when we eventually reached the Athens Hilton. This was partly due to a short flight delay but we wasted an hour in Athens airport whilst queueing to report our lost suitcases. This could have been handled better, particularly when they knew in advance that our bags had not been loaded on to the plane.

 

The Azamara rep who was supposed to go home at 8pm stayed on at the hotel and found us an all night chemist and a still open minimart where we could buy toothpaste and other essentials. We were surprised that the hotel did not have a small shop or keep emergency packs.

 

We travelled with another couple who also lost their cases and, after an early breakfast, we cancelled a planned trip to the Parthenon and took a taxi to Marks and Spencer where prices were more than double those for exactly the same items in the UK. After about 30 minutes we two men had bought everything needed for a weeks cruising but two and a half hours was not nearly enough time for the two wives to do likewise! We spent all the next day in Chania touring the dress and shoe shops until the ladies were satisfied.

 

On board, Azamara took full responsibility for the lost luggage and could not have been more helpful. They had booked the flights for us even though they had no control over the situation. They gave us free express laundry, extra OBC, free meals in Prime C and warned the dining room that we might appear a little under-dressed. They spent hours on the internet trying to track down our cases and held meetings to give us the latest updates. German, the concierge, was particularly good in this respect but the hotel director and guest relations team were equally dilligent. We received discounts off a future cruise and one couple was upgraded to one of the "big" corner suites.

 

Our cases were returned to us on day 6 after German tracked them down and took a taxi to the airport to collect them. Of the 22 people affected, 8 had their luggage returned at this stage. Our friends had their luggage delivered to their house after they had returned home. It had been left out in the rain at one stage.

 

We submitted a claim to British Airways for the full amount of the purchases we had made whilst away. This was done on-line and copies of our Greek receipts were easily attached and uploaded. We were paid in full in under three weeks. Our friends' claim was more complicated as their clothes were damaged by being wet. They were reimbursed for purchases and damage in about six weeks after some difficulty.

 

But the whole point of this long rambling report is to say just how little is needed for a one week summer cruise on Azamara. One pair of long trousers and one of shorts; a pair of shoes and sandals, four shirts and a tee shirt, and some underwear. Half of this I wore on the plane. Toothbrush and razor. That's it. The ladies needed more of course but it would all fit into a cabin bag. That's what we are doing next week for the Black sea.

 

If any of the other couples who was similarly affected is reading this, it would be interesting to hear if thay have had the same good response from BA with full reimbursement of their costs too.

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Your story reinforced a message we took onboard a short time ago, whilst taking a small handluggage case can have drawbacks, when travelling with airlines like BA where there is a generous handluggage allowance, we take one each and pack about 48 hours clothing in each.

 

I was heartened, but not surprised, to read of the extent to which Azamara staff went the extra mile - as you say they did not need to it was clearly BA 's issue - was this the Gatwick problem which seems to be recurring or were you caught out the day it went wrong at Heathrow?

 

Thanks again for your reminder that with the right mindset, you can enjoy a cruise with limited luggage

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I was heartened, but not surprised, to read of the extent to which Azamara staff went the extra mile - as you say they did not need to it was clearly BA 's issue - was this the Gatwick problem which seems to be recurring or were you caught out the day it went wrong at Heathrow?

It was Azamara's issue in the sense that they had engaged BA to get us and our luggage to the ship - and they accepted that it was.

This was the Heathrow incident on 27 June IIRC. The BBC reported that up to 30,000 cases were "misplaced" and that BA were paying travellers over the next few days NOT to fly as there was no way that any more cases could travel through the stockpile. The Gatwick incidents were later.

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We had no luggage for 21 of our 22 nights of our last europe trip..Thank you Lufthansa :( Princess was great even though it was not their fault. It was kind of freeing towards the end with the land trip to be travelling with just a duffel bag of clothes.

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We had no luggage for 21 of our 22 nights of our last europe trip..Thank you Lufthansa :( Princess was great even though it was not their fault. It was kind of freeing towards the end with the land trip to be travelling with just a duffel bag of clothes.

 

Stories like this tend to have me overpacking my carry on! The last few trips, and in Venice packing light is its own reward. With no formal nights, we've been able to each only carry a small roll aboard. Whenever a connected flight is involved I worry. So far we've only had lost luggage on our way home when it matters much less. Kudos to Azamara for being so helpful, and the same to the OP for being so flexible.

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We had no luggage for 21 of our 22 nights of our last europe trip..Thank you Lufthansa :( Princess was great even though it was not their fault. It was kind of freeing towards the end with the land trip to be travelling with just a duffel bag of clothes.

 

And Lufthansa is so strict with their carry on allowance you probably didn't have much in that regard!

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I always try to travel with just a carry on and a backpack. It can be done, particularly for a warm weather cruise. We spent three weeks in South America last year (two on the cruise and one on land) and managed just fine. (of course, we took advantage of the washers and dryers on board and the one bag of free laundry we got) I just don't trust the airlines particularly when there are connections. On our Mexico cruise from our home port, I took a large suitcase, over packed and ended up not using half of what I took. It's surprising how little one really needs.

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And Lufthansa is so strict with their carry on allowance you probably didn't have much in that regard!

 

 

Yep. Even after my tale of lost luggage at the airport on the way home they weighed our carry ons and wanted to charge us. Hmmm I think not. They ended up letting us check the duffle bag with our accumulated new purchases for free but only after a supervisor got involved

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Many years ago my husband and I had the luggage lost for a Royal C cruise. That was back I. The days when they took your luggage from the carousel and loaded it for the ship. Therefore no one new if it was the cruise line fault or the airline. Out TA in Canada searched for us and got the cruise line to credit us for their shops as we were at sea before it was confirmed lost or stollen. We had traveled with one bag and a carry on but not enough fro a 8 night cruise. They cleaned my sun dress so many times it fell apart by the end. Our home insurance covered the balance of goods and it was never found. Yes we use carry on's but with restrictions today I have been grabbed for over weight with them. I can now travel China for two weeks with just a carry on ( it helps I am only 5ft tall)

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We just did a 10 day Baltic Cruise on Azamara Journey this July with my wife and I packing into one carry-on-sized backpack each and nothing else. When you put your mind to it, you can do it, but it takes some doing and planning (the SLR camera and the shoes were the hardest parts).

 

Part of the reason we did it is because we visited Copenhagen for 3 days, then Amsterdam for 3 days, then Stockholm for 1 before boarding the ship in Stockholm. We didn't want to be rolling bags around at all. It was incredibly liberating. But, I will admit, free laundry on Azamara was a big help in making the decision.

 

To the OP: In addition to commending you on being able to make it work for your cruise, I commend you on the tone in which you shared your story. For some others, this story would have been a rant on BA, a dissertation on how miserable your trip was, how you'd never again.... Instead it was framed as what you did, what you learned, how great it was to learn that and how great Azamara was on the ship.

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We just did a 10 day Baltic Cruise on Azamara Journey this July with my wife and I packing into one carry-on-sized backpack each and nothing else. When you put your mind to it, you can do it, but it takes some doing and planning (the SLR camera and the shoes were the hardest parts).

 

Part of the reason we did it is because we visited Copenhagen for 3 days, then Amsterdam for 3 days, then Stockholm for 1 before boarding the ship in Stockholm. We didn't want to be rolling bags around at all. It was incredibly liberating. But, I will admit, free laundry on Azamara was a big help in making the decision.

 

To the OP: In addition to commending you on being able to make it work for your cruise, I commend you on the tone in which you shared your story. For some others, this story would have been a rant on BA, a dissertation on how miserable your trip was, how you'd never again.... Instead it was framed as what you did, what you learned, how great it was to learn that and how great Azamara was on the ship.

 

Did this cruise stop in St Petersburg?

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To the OP: In addition to commending you on being able to make it work for your cruise, I commend you on the tone in which you shared your story. For some others, this story would have been a rant on BA, a dissertation on how miserable your trip was, how you'd never again.... Instead it was framed as what you did, what you learned, how great it was to learn that and how great Azamara was on the ship.

Apart from the first 12 hours or so it made the cruise more enjoyable! We met so many nice people. And we were always able to start a conversation on a shared table with ...."We are the ones without any luggage."

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Apart from the first 12 hours or so it made the cruise more enjoyable! We met so many nice people. And we were always able to start a conversation on a shared table with ...."We are the ones without any luggage."

 

On our cruise everyone knew we were the couple with the same clothes. No laundry on that ship other than paid for, but people were dropping things off in front of our cabin. The kindness of strangers was amazing. The kids club gave me glow in the dark T shirt and shorts to sleep in! Well at least my husband could find me in the dark!

You have to laugh at things and chalk it up to experience.

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My experience was flying Delta to Barcelona from JFK. When we arrived, there was no luggage. An entire plane and no luggage. It wasn't lost. It was detained in New York because Delta had cargo that took priority over the luggage. Delta knew what had happened...and even said that it happens all the time. They promised that all of the luggage would arrive the next day. As luck would have it, we were leaving on a 14 night Med cruise that afternoon. 82 people on that plane were going on that cruise. Celebrity was wonderful. They did our laundry complimentary same day, gave us X tee shirts, lent us formal attire, and made lots of calls trying to get the luggage. Our luggage finally arrived when we were in Naples, It was 10 days in transit? By the time the luggage arrived, my bags had more luggage tags on them than places that I had visited. It seemed like the bags were arriving in each port after we had departed. My luggage had been opened and some of my really nice clothing was stolen. I did collect payment from Delta. It was a hassle. Even though it wasn't Celebrity's fault, they were very helpful. I have lost many times at luggage roulette. On another trip, Lufthansa/Swiss Air insisted on checking our carryons and our larger bags. Then they lost everything. We had only the clothes on our backs. We called the 24 hour emergency phone from the tour company. It had a message that it was closed and to call back during regular business hours which was 3 days later. We did get our bags back 2 days later intact. Luckily we had flown into Zurich 3 days before the tour. Another couple flew in the day the tour left and never got their luggage. Tour guide would not even wait for them to fill out the lost luggage form. Needless to say, I will never travel with that tour company again. Traveling has its pitfalls and its pleasures. I now travel lighter. I am still not completely down to a small carry-on. I leave the good stuff home. As I read this posting, I am packing for my cruise next week. Perhaps I will pull a few items out. Wish me luck at LUGGAGE ROULETTE.

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My experience was flying Delta to Barcelona from JFK. When we arrived, there was no luggage. An entire plane and no luggage. It wasn't lost. It was detained in New York because Delta had cargo that took priority over the luggage. Delta knew what had happened...and even said that it happens all the time. They promised that all of the luggage would arrive the next day. As luck would have it, we were leaving on a 14 night Med cruise that afternoon. 82 people on that plane were going on that cruise. Celebrity was wonderful. They did our laundry complimentary same day, gave us X tee shirts, lent us formal attire, and made lots of calls trying to get the luggage. Our luggage finally arrived when we were in Naples, It was 10 days in transit? By the time the luggage arrived, my bags had more luggage tags on them than places that I had visited. It seemed like the bags were arriving in each port after we had departed. My luggage had been opened and some of my really nice clothing was stolen. I did collect payment from Delta. It was a hassle. Even though it wasn't Celebrity's fault, they were very helpful. I have lost many times at luggage roulette. On another trip, Lufthansa/Swiss Air insisted on checking our carry-ons and our larger bags. Then they lost everything. We had only the clothes on our backs. We called the 24 hour emergency phone from the tour company. It had a message that it was closed and to call back during regular business hours which was 3 days later. We did get our bags back 2 days later intact. Luckily we had flown into Zurich 3 days before the tour. Another couple flew in the day the tour left and never got their luggage. Tour guide would not even wait for them to fill out the lost luggage form. Needless to say, I will never travel with that tour company again. Traveling has its pitfalls and its pleasures. I now travel lighter. I am still not completely down to a small carry-on. I leave the good stuff home. As I read this posting, I am packing for my cruise next week. Perhaps I will pull a few items out. Wish me luck at LUGGAGE ROULETTE.

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We also had our luggage delayed for 5 days. Our luggage did not make the transfer from Delta to the regional carrier from Zurick to Sevilla, Spain. Azamara went above and beyond trying to locate our luggage. The communicated with us daily and provided necessaries as well as many t shirts. We bough clothes in every port for the nest day. We had very poor service from the airlines, basically no response after numerous e-mails with no reimbursement for our purchases.

AZAMARA is truly amazing

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A great travel tale and a reminder to me of two things:

 

1. After I pack, I need to "lose" my checked bag before I leave my home to head to the airport.

 

2. Azamara is truly at its best with the on board service team. Nice to hear how well they looked after you for the airport/airline owned error.

 

 

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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We learned how easy it is to go on holiday with just a cabin bag a few years ago, after a trip to Lanzarote. We happened to land during siesta time, and spent a very, very long time waiting for our bags to turn up on the carousel. After that trip, we vowed to travel with cabin bags only. It's fabulous to just walk off the plane and out the doors to your hotel, or back home, when you are tired, to be able to just get on the road back home immediately.

 

If you google 'bundle wrapping', you will find a way of packing that will change your life. I can pack 10 days of dresses, shorts, jeans etc into my cabin bag, and take them out virtually wrinkle-free on the other side. At first, family members laughed at me... but now they all do it!

 

Oh, and as for BA - I won't fly on any other airline. I find their CS to be fantastic; flying so frequently, of course we have had issues from time to time (the most major being an aborted takeoff in a storm), and I've found BA to always rise to the occasion, from organising new flights, free hotel accommodation, meals, compensation, whatever. They just don't quibble, in our experience anyway. Things can always go wrong, it's how the company deals with the issues that's important.

Edited by tusabrat
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