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FEMA has Chartered Carnival Facination


Darcy03231
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When FEMA actually gets in the way of economic recovery by hoarding hotel rooms and now cruise ships. Insane!

 

So where should the FEMA people stay? Or do you want them to pack up and go home?

 

I feel badly for the people of Puerto Rico and acknowledge that this will essentially cut the amount of tourists coming into Puerto Rico in half over the next few months (as I can't imagine anyone other than cruisers coming to Puerto Rico right now), but you can't have it both ways. Those trying to fix the infrastructure so things can get back to normal need a place to stay.

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So where should the FEMA people stay? Or do you want them to pack up and go home?

 

I feel badly for the people of Puerto Rico and acknowledge that this will essentially cut the amount of tourists coming into Puerto Rico in half over the next few months (as I can't imagine anyone other than cruisers coming to Puerto Rico right now), but you can't have it both ways. Those trying to fix the infrastructure so things can get back to normal need a place to stay.

 

Barracks? Camps? Why destroy an entire industry while "trying to help"? And what are they actually doing, anyway? I've seen policemen, firefighters and soldiers from the states, and they're doing great work. But FEMA workers? They must be working FROM their hotels and now their ship because no one has seen them.

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Barracks? Camps? Why destroy an entire industry while "trying to help"? And what are they actually doing, anyway? I've seen policemen, firefighters and soldiers from the states, and they're doing great work. But FEMA workers? They must be working FROM their hotels and now their ship because no one has seen them.

 

Unfortunately, true.

 

FEMA has been suspiciously "invisible" there, however there are many others who have gone to PR to help. People I work with finally got power back on Monday and were able to get back to business.

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The ship is being chartered to house FEMA workers in the Virgin Islands (St. Croix), not San Juan.

 

I just read that. I must have missed it the first time around.

 

Looks like the available hotels in San Juan will continue to remain at near to full capacity.

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The release says, " All guests who were booked on one of the canceled cruises will receive a full refund of their cruise fare as well as all pre-purchased shore excursions and beverage packages."

 

 

What happens with airfare, nonrefundable hotel reservations, etc.??

 

 

As we well know, cruisefare is only one element of a cruise vacation.

 

Has this happened to anyone here, especially at such a late date?

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The release says, " All guests who were booked on one of the canceled cruises will receive a full refund of their cruise fare as well as all pre-purchased shore excursions and beverage packages."

 

 

What happens with airfare, nonrefundable hotel reservations, etc.??

 

 

As we well know, cruisefare is only one element of a cruise vacation.

 

Has this happened to anyone here, especially at such a late date?

 

 

Good question. Never happened to me Peri but possibly it would be covered by travel insurance. I would like to know.

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The release says, " All guests who were booked on one of the canceled cruises will receive a full refund of their cruise fare as well as all pre-purchased shore excursions and beverage packages."

 

 

What happens with airfare, nonrefundable hotel reservations, etc.??

 

 

As we well know, cruisefare is only one element of a cruise vacation.

 

Has this happened to anyone here, especially at such a late date?

 

One reason why I fly Southwest so not to lose airfare funds and never book non refundable hotel. I know that is not an option for everyone. The hotel we had gave us a refund even thought it was stated as non refundable since we told them we kept calling but getting busy signal. The hotel mgr tried calling the his own number and admitted it wasn't working so gave us the refund.

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Your travel insurance will cover your airfare and deposits on hotels.

 

Aviator - can you please send pictures of San Juan? You always tell us that San Juan is in much better shape and that we should stay and help the economy. If you send pictures of hotels that are open and restaraunts with people inside, beaches with people on them etc , this would give the cruisecritic members a better view of what is really happening there. All we hear through the media is how awful things are. Thanks!

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Cruisers on the 10/14 roll call have reported that the airport is running on generators and to bring hand fans, wear light weight clothing and bring bottled water. There was also a warning about not drinking the tap water. I plan to buy several bottles of water at JFK to have with me.

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Your travel insurance will cover your airfare and deposits on hotels.

 

 

Not everyone buys travel insurance. (We don't for cruises, for example, although we do for more major expenditures like Europe trips, etc.) At this point, with 25 cruises, we are self-insured and way ahead of the game.

 

So, failing travel insurance, it looks like it's up to the goodness of the other providers as to how they'll handle refunds/credits.

 

LittleClover, I'm glad your hotel took care of things for you! And yes, SWA is great when it's an option.

 

Good luck to everyone who was on the Fascination!

Edited by RadioPeri
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Sorry radio - I just assumed. Been on 45 cruises and all have been insured, so I am sorry to assume that you had it. We have had to use ours several times ( once being a substantial amount of $$) Good luck! Maybe your providers will at least offer you travel vouchers for your next journey.

 

Aviator - still waiting for some photos from Puerto Rico. :cool:

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The release says, " All guests who were booked on one of the canceled cruises will receive a full refund of their cruise fare as well as all pre-purchased shore excursions and beverage packages."

 

 

What happens with airfare, nonrefundable hotel reservations, etc.??

 

 

As we well know, cruisefare is only one element of a cruise vacation.

 

Has this happened to anyone here, especially at such a late date?

 

 

We had a trip scheduled for April 2017 that we had to cancel 2 months before our trip (DH had a heart attack - he's made a full recovery) and I hadn't purchased insurance yet. Luckily, both the resort and condo we were staying at were within the cancellation period (45 days before). Our airfare, however, was not. I called JetBlue and explained the situation and they canceled the flights and put all of the money in a travel bank for future use (it's what we used for our upcoming trip).

 

I would call everyone and explain what happened. Maybe they'll offer to refund, but the more likely scenario would be for them to offer a credit toward future travel.

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Aviator - still waiting for some photos from Puerto Rico. :cool:

 

Even if I knew how to post photos here, maybe now that's besides the point. The issue now is not whether the hotels and attraction are/will be ready in time for your trips. The problem now is that FEMA has essentially taken over all available rooms, with the resulting strangulation of ancillary businesses. The Caribe Hilton just announced a stop sell AND CANCELLATION OF EXISTING reservations through December 31!

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Even if I knew how to post photos here, maybe now that's besides the point. The issue now is not whether the hotels and attraction are/will be ready in time for your trips. The problem now is that FEMA has essentially taken over all available rooms, with the resulting strangulation of ancillary businesses. The Caribe Hilton just announced a stop sell AND CANCELLATION OF EXISTING reservations through December 31!

 

You do realize that it's not just FEMA taking over those hotel rooms?!! There are also members of the armed forces and other people helping that stay in the hotels. You have personal from other companies that have been hired to come down and help rebuild systems. I personally know one company who is there doing that. They are staying at the hotels. Where would you like them to be housed?!!!

 

I truly understand what it's like to have hurricanes disrupt lives. I live in Florida and went through quite a few hurricanes including Wilma over in Naples and we just had Irma. I have friends who have lost jobs, homes and other things. The Ritz Carlton here in South Beach just laid off 100 workers because they will not be able to open again until 2018 from Irma damage. It's awful just what damage from these storms do to people's lives, it really is.

 

The hotels are also canceling because they don't have the staffing and availability of handling full boat loads of guests at the moment. Just like supplies are having issues getting to people, workers are having issues getting to work. Full powers is not restored. It's just a vicious cycle.

 

Sorry for the struggle your island is going through.

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Even if I knew how to post photos here, maybe now that's besides the point. The issue now is not whether the hotels and attraction are/will be ready in time for your trips. The problem now is that FEMA has essentially taken over all available rooms, with the resulting strangulation of ancillary businesses. The Caribe Hilton just announced a stop sell AND CANCELLATION OF EXISTING reservations through December 31!

 

 

What ancillary businesses are being "strangled?" I would imagine that with hotels at or near capacity anyone working in those business would be back to work. I would also imagine that any restaurants that are open are catering to whomever is staying in the hotels. Of the approximately 19,000 disaster aid workers in PR right now, only about 1,400 of them are FEMA workers.

 

The other issue is that even if hotels were available for tourists, how many of them would actually come to Puerto Rico right now with the conditions as they are. I know I wouldn't be going if RCL wasn't forcing me to. As it is I canceled our pre and post cruise stays (and our hotel is up and running). I'm now coming in late the day before, spending one night and then boarding the ship as soon as possible.

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Sorry radio - I just assumed. Been on 45 cruises and all have been insured, so I am sorry to assume that you had it. We have had to use ours several times ( once being a substantial amount of $$) Good luck! Maybe your providers will at least offer you travel vouchers for your next journey.

 

Fortunately, we are not affected by the cancellation; we're not scheduled to cruise again until Celebrity Summit on 12/2. My question was really intended to educate myself (and others).

 

I'm with you in wishing the best for all those who find themselves impacted by this.

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What ancillary businesses are being "strangled?" I would imagine that with hotels at or near capacity anyone working in those business would be back to work. I would also imagine that any restaurants that are open are catering to whomever is staying in the hotels. Of the approximately 19,000 disaster aid workers in PR right now, only about 1,400 of them are FEMA workers.

 

I am thinking all business. Tourists drink a lot. Workers who had to wake up early to work the next day don't. Tourists will pay for $60 dinner for 2. Workers will just eat sandwiches. Workers are not going to buy too many souvenirs.

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I was going to comment on the above post, but I cannot find the words.

 

You and I both.

 

The point I was trying to make, but I guess not clearly, is that the disaster relief workers that are staying in PR now are what is driving their hotel/restaurant businesses. Aviator seems to be under the impression that if the workers would get out of the hotels the tourists would come flocking back. Until power is restored, the roads cleared, and tours/attractions are up and running I don't see that enough tourists would go to PR to bring in enough business to help PR's economic recovery and replace the income the disaster relief workers are bringing in. Right now PR needs the disaster relief workers to get their infrastructure fixed. Most tourists aren't coming back until that happens.

 

We're frequent visitors to PR (short non-stop flight for us - makes a great long weekend getaway) and feel for everyone there. I would love to see everything up and running in the near future and people coming back, but I think its going to be a long road. It's been a little over three weeks since Maria hit and most of the island is still without power. I really don't think that many tourists are interested in vacationing in a disaster area. I know I wouldn't plan a vacation to PR in the near future.

 

The only reason we're going at the end of the month is to catch our cruise. We usually stay 2-3 days pre-cruise and 2-3 days post-cruise. We changed our plans to come in the day before the cruise and leave the day the cruise gets back. Right now there's nothing there to see/do. Another poster was searching for stuff to do and all the tour operators are closed right now.

 

Posters that have cruised last week reported that once on the ship they weren't allowed back off. When we've cruised before we were able to get on and off until right before the ship left, just like any other port. The ship isn't even offering any tours in PR.

 

A poster who lives in San Juan has made comments about walking around areas in Condado and OSJ indicating that it is safe during the day, leading me to believe that you don't want to be walking around at night.

 

None of this leads me to believe that PR is ready for tourists.

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I agree with everything you said. We are disembarking in Puerto Rico on Nov 12th and have chosen to fly to Fort Lauderdale to spend a few days before returning to Chicago.

We had two hotels cancel our post cruise reservationsin San Juan. The prices on the few that are "available" are very high (not worth the price) They will probably cancel in the long run anyway. Changed our flights, booked a new hotel and booked a our flight back from FLL.

 

Even if we were able to secure a hotel in San Juan, what would we do? We would be confined to our hotel with a bunch of volunteer workers.

We will return after the island has their infrastructure back.

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Not everyone buys travel insurance. (We don't for cruises, for example, although we do for more major expenditures like Europe trips, etc.) At this point, with 25 cruises, we are self-insured and way ahead of the game.

 

Not specifically directed at you, but I've seen this comment often the past few weeks -- I actually work in the insurance industry (not travel, but..) and I still don't purchase every recommended insurance, and did not purchase travel insurance for my last 3 trips. HOWEVER If I was cruising during peak hurricane season.. I would have. All about evaluating the risks.

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