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"Wandering Wino's&quo

Unhappy people on the Oosterdam 10/15/05

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Today on the Oosterdam out of San Diego there are a lot of unhappy people that have discovered that Holland America has bumped the late seating passengers to 6:15 and cancelled the 8:00 dinning, all for a large group that has taken over the entire dinning area. Not a pleasent way to start your long awaited cruise.

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Uh Oh!!:eek: I have late seating for next week. I hope that this doesn't happen to me.

They have already bumped me once, from 8:00 to 8:30. If it happens again, I am going to be one very unhappy cruiser.

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I imagine they aren't too thrilled. At least they didn't assign them 5:45! (That happened to us on the Zuiderdam in July.) Ugh! That is a horrible dinner time at sea....Bet the large charter group has lots happy campers at dinner.

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Today on the Oosterdam out of San Diego there are a lot of unhappy people that have discovered that Holland America has bumped the late seating passengers to 6:15 and cancelled the 8:00 dinning' date=' all for a large group that has taken over the entire dinning area. Not a pleasent way to start your long awaited cruise.[/color']

This is exactly why I feel that the cruise lines should be forced to disclose in advance of sailing the identity of groups that comprise over a certain percentage of any sailing. Now this sucks and is really not fair to all those passengers. What happens on port days when they get back late from an excursion? Guess they're stuck with the Lido on those nights, huh?

 

Hope HAL is at least offering these people some compensation for this change.

 

Blue skies ...

 

--rita

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My body thinks that a meal before 8:30 or 9:00 is lunch, not dinner.

 

If this happened because you booked late, and all the late dinner seatings had been taken, you would be disappointed, but understanding. For them to do it this way, I would be livid. susana.

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What an irritant it is. I was lucky in keeping my late seating that I requested on my recent cruise. However, which seating I get at dinner is not a big issue to me either. I have heard so much lately about big groups kicking everyone else out - either in terms of taking up dining or chartering the entire ship. I was actually rebooked from one cruise to another simply because one large company decided to charter the ship for a corporate function and so we get kicked off. I found out what company it was and still feel like writing a letter to them telling them they prevented me from taking the cruise I wanted especially since it was one of those once a year repositioning. Still that is probably neither here nor there.

 

Groups complain all the time about how they have problems booking all together but they are an irritant to singles or couples who feel sometimes they are pushed out of the way for a bigger block of purchasing power.

 

I guess there is no magic answer. I'd truly hate to be the personnel who have to book these groups and try to accomodate everyone. Its almost always a lose-lose situation and you end up bearing the brunt of the results. Glad I am only a passenger.

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I know that you shouldn't have to do something like this just to get the seating time you would like, but try what we did on Zuiderdam last week. Because DW and I renewed our vows, it was impossible for us to eat during our assigned time. So, I went to the matri'd and asked if we could change to the 8:00 seating. What he did was check his list to see who had reservations in the Pinnacle Grill and sat us at their table. He gets a listing from the Pinniacle Grill for each seating each day.

 

Richard

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I'm sure the displaced folks were upset. Although I know it's HAL's right, it just doesn't seem right that they would bump an entire seating ... especially those who booked a year in advance to get the accommodations they wanted. But, I guess money speaks loud and strong in these cases.

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This is exactly why I feel that the cruise lines should be forced to disclose in advance of sailing the identity of groups that comprise over a certain percentage ....

 

Hope HAL is at least offering these people some compensation for this change.

 

Blue skies ...

 

--rita

 

If they did that to us, compensation would have no relevance. They would have so severely impacted our enjoyment that an offer of a shipboard credit would be insulting.

 

If they take our reservation, confirm in writing at the time of deposit we have 8:00 seating, if it says 8:00 when we get our documents that is what we expect and have paid for. It matters VERY much to us to not have dinner at 6:15. We would not be in the dining room at that hour and they have, therefore, removed a very important part of our cruise.

 

I would be inflexible in my acceptance of them giving this large group priority over all others.

 

I don't want credits, shipboard credits, soothing words.....I want what I bought and paid for. I would not make a final payment without the confirmation of our dining time.

 

It truly matters that much to us. For those who say, No big deal, great. I'm happy it doesn't matter to you. For DH and me, we would be beserk.

It sure sounds to me like this group is so big that dining hour will not be the only thing that will negatively impact on the other people aboard who are not a part of the group.

 

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I know we are among the minority who like to dine at 5:45 but we would be very upset if we had to dine say at 8:30 - it would make a mess of DH's medications.

This past January on the Westerdam there was a large group who did have the 5:45 and 6:15 dinner times. I can't remember the name of the group or which week it was. But one of the leaders of the group glared at us nearly every evening as one couple wanted a table for 2 by the rail. From what we were told on the side, she had asked the maitre'd for our table but he wouldn't move us.

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If they did that to us, compensation would have no relevance. They would have so severely impacted our enjoyment that an offer of a shipboard credit would be insulting.

 

If they take our reservation, confirm in writing at the time of deposit we have 8:00 seating, if it says 8:00 when we get our documents that is what we expect and have paid for. It matters VERY much to us to not have dinner at 6:15. We would not be in the dining room at that hour and they have, therefore, removed a very important part of our cruise.

 

I would be inflexible in my acceptance of them giving this large group priority over all others.

 

I don't want credits, shipboard credits, soothing words.....I want what I bought and paid for. I would not make a final payment without the confirmation of our dining time.

 

It truly matters that much to us. For those who say, No big deal, great. I'm happy it doesn't matter to you. For DH and me, we would be beserk.

It sure sounds to me like this group is so big that dining hour will not be the only thing that will negatively impact on the other people aboard who are not a part of the group.

 

 

My Friends feelings exactly. They called me from the ship yesterday around 4:00, there are four couples sailing together, all in S. Suites. Reservations were made for this cruise well over a year ago and yes their documents showed confirmed dinning: Main Upper. The group of a thousand are from Princess House. What I find remarkable given the size of this group of a 1,000, and the fact my friends had confirmed with Ship Services a couple months ago that the four couples traveling together would all be seated together (a problem in the past) for Main Seating Upper level, for which they received assurance that this would be the case. How at the last minute could such a major change take place, shifting main seating to 6:15 and canceling the 8:00 seating?

From what I understand, after speaking with several staff members that were unable to help, they spoke to the Hotel Manager and he agreed to seat them in The Pinnacle Grill on Sunday Night, the first Formal night and comp. the meal. This group already had made reservations, again over a year ago for Pinnacle Grill on Monday and Friday nights. Given that the Pinnacle's menu stays the same all week, my friends thought a possible solution to this problem would be for them to dine in the Grill each evening at 8 or 8:30 and to be given the opportunity to have food that is being served in the main dinning room served in the Grill. Apparently this is not possible. Knowing this group as I do, I'm certain they will make the best of this situation, but as I said before "not a happy way to start a long awaited vacation".

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I just went to Princess House's Web site. From what I've read, they will be doing award ceremonies at dinner. This seems to be some sort of selling of home products scheme.

 

Group cruisers drive everybody else crazy at best and really ruin the experience for others. A few months ago, I started a thread for everybody to enter group cruise information when they came across it. Unfortunately, the thread almost became a fist fight. But this information is needed. I am considering starting a webpage just for this information. And then anyone who wishes, can e-mail me with information and I will post it. It could be another important reference like CruiseCal. I like the idea that it would really be a communal undertaking.

 

I found they have another cruise planned for the Zaandam. susana.

 

http://www.princesshouse.com/EN/Travel/alaska_cruise_with_PH.asp

 

http://www.princesshouse.com/EN/home/index.asp?sessionid=&ctd=

 

For eight days and seven



nights—May 19-26, 2006

bask in the luxury of a

Princess House Travel Trip

in the most spectacular

surroundings. It’s Mother Nature

at her best and it’s like nothing

you’ve ever seen!

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I like your idea.

I remember when that thread was started - after a while I quit reading it.;)

I know that I would like to know if we are going to be cruising with any large groups.

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We would not be happy campers upon finding out but it would not ruin our vacation! :) You learn to adapt, overcome and go on!

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If this happened to me I would demand that the ship either refund my cost entirtely and return me at their expense to port of departure. I don't care how big or corporate a group is they have no right to interfere with my booked accomidations. Next the ship will want to move booked passengers from veranda cabins and suite so some corporate executive can have the cabin and they stick you in an inside double bunk room.

Once you have confirmation of your booking whether it is a cabin or a seating, the ship must get your permission for any change and offer compensation as well. If you only like to travel with an aft veranda cabin and a late seating, that's what you should get no matter who else is on the ship.

If they tried that on me, I would be calling the New York Times, the cruise c omanies and the Maritime commision and raise hell and definately let everyone on CC know what an inconsiderate company they might deal with and of course, never sail with them!:eek:

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I was thinking the same thing as Sail. If this group has already taken over a whole dinner seating, What else on the ship are they going to take over?

 

How many lounges or other areas will be closed off so they can have their meetings, meet and greet cocktail parties or whatever.

 

They are obviously a pretty big group to get a whole dining room and dining time to themselves.

 

I know some people get touchy when it comes to the subject of informing PAX of group cruises because the subject may turn personal on the group sailing.

 

But MHO, I don't care what the group is. A gay group, a church group, a Morticians convention, or group of septic tank salesman *LOL* Any inordinately large group on a ship will have an impact on the other pax

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I think a Web site would be a good idea!

I remember your thread about large groups booking HAL cruises, and it was really helpful.

 

As far as dinner seating, I can see how it could negatively affect a person's cruise experience.

 

DH's illness and med schedule makes a late dinner impossible for us. If we couldn't dine at the 6:15 seating [or the 5:45], we'd end up in the Lido every night. That would be disappointing. Dinner is often a very social experience, a fun time for many, and opportunity to discuss the day's adventures, etc.

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I remember a thread a while back, in the Royal Caribbean forum, about a couple who found themselves on a cruise with a large group of Asian Amway members. Not only did it create dining issues, but many public rooms were taken over by this group for seminars in effect closing down a good portion of the ship for all other cruisers. I would be very angry if I couldn't use some of the public venues even though I believe my fare covers all areas of the ship unless advertised to me as costing extra such as the Pinnacle Grill or the Spa.

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I think this might be called 'bait and switch', and these people should contact a lawyer immediately.

 

Lane

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Wow! This is coming close to being a fist fight. Actually I have nothing against a warning about a large group so that people can be more informed about the chances of being bumped and make a decision over whether they want to rebook or cancel. A large group does impact a lot of the "others" that have to put up with it.

 

At the very least the cruise lines should be able to take into account people with eating issues. My mother's beau is a diabetic and must eat at regular times throughout the day and would like be an early sitter. Now if he get's bumped would he have to stay up in the Lido deck every night just because a bunch of sales people want to party and pat themselves on the back. I know already a bunch here made mention of people who HAVE to eat at specific times so I would think that a big organization like a cruise line should be better informed of this possibility when making such arbitrary decisions.

 

A lawyer? Now that is going too far and I can see a whole new market for ambulance chasers making money from people being inconvenienced and clogging the courts with rather insipid cases. Of course most would be settled out of courts but non-cruisers really would not give any sympathy.

 

I guess I would be accomodating as I do like to think the world doesn't revolve around me but I think there is a breaking point. And I do agree with those who say where does the inconvenience end? BTW, it was Avon that purchased the ship for the whole cruise I was knocked off from and there was only 800 on a ship that could accomodate 1800. There, got it out of my system.

 

As for KrazyKruisers friends who had the table for 2. Good for them and if one of the group leaders glanced at them they should have just yelled out "We paid for this table months ago. Too bad!" Finally a place where the server said that the big puchasing block came too late.

 

Still money from a big purchasing block is all more powerful and I feel if they lose your business from not traveling with them anymore because a big group blocked you out they wouldn't even notice. If they lost the big group then they would notice.

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Today on the Oosterdam out of San Diego there are a lot of unhappy people that have discovered that Holland America has bumped the late seating passengers to 6:15 and cancelled the 8:00 dinning' date=' all for a large group that has taken over the entire dinning area. Not a pleasent way to start your long awaited cruise.[/color']

When did they find out???? Did they not know until they sailed?? What Hal did is just WRONG.

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We were on a B/B in Alaska at that time their were only 2 seatings (wish it was only 2 seatings now). Two yea TWO large groups & their co's also paid for them and their spouse, friend, or whom ever. We had cruised many times and always get a table for 2. Well we got it. In the center of the yelling hooting and seat,table & food swaping. It was LOUD and they were up, down switching etc. Our waiter had to expalin the menu to each one, oh good grief. Did we have a miserable time? Yes. But they also took every public room each night and we had no place to go. Oh yes no deck party at sail away time. I asked why, well they took over the crows lounge and requested the band. The heck with the rest of us on the ship. I was told they did take the large groups from co's in hopes of getting some of the people on a repeat cruise. Fine I bet they lost more "old timers" then gaining new. Second week a dance club. Oh boy same routine and they closed the public rooms during the day so they could practice and party. I know a lot of people like the art auction I for one don't. I hate it when they take over the Ocean Bar to do it. We were on the Hawaii cruise in May from Seattle to Seattle. We were sitting at the window during the afternoon and asked to leave they wanted our chairs for the art show. Annoyed? You bet but OK moved to the table and chairs around the clock. You guessed it they asked us to leave they wanted those chairs also. We booked next Sept. two cabins for my son & his wife and us. Booked in May this year for 2006. I will make every effort to find out if there any group going before last payment.

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I agree with so many others here. This would be unacceptable for me. You may think I'm kidding, but it really would spoil my enjoyment of the cruise.

 

They had to know the situation for some time so there's no reason they could not have alerted the passengers before they got on the ship. Because quite truthfully I would not cruise if I had to eat at 6:15. This is one of the reasons we book so far in advance.

 

No group should take precedence over those passengers already booked with deposits who have requested late dining. It's just wrong.

 

I think they should mass attack. Obviously I'm kidding, but I do think there's strength in numbers and if enough people got together they just might be heard. Lucky it wasn't me ... that's all I can say.

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