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I don’t believe that one who has never taken a Crystal River Cruise can really comment.  The answers should come from the river boards and their experiences on Crystal or other lines to compare.

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Looking at excursions from Crystal can make a decision if you want to book definitely or at least you have something to go by which you might want to do privately.  That being said, Crystal has failed to list excursions even within a few months to sailing.  It clearly is messed up.

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3 hours ago, Coral said:

Thank you. Hopefully your comments hold more weight than my comments.

 

I am looking at cruises and excursions before booking. It was the listed excursions on the Crystal Mozart that won me over last fall. Crystal was doing some shore excursions that other lines were not (a plus for Crystal). I understand things can change and nothing is final. 

 

Sometimes Ocean River cruises - it is obvious what I would do in port as I am more familiar with the port but some river cruise ports are new to me and seeing the excursions last year definitely won me over on trying a cruise I wasn't looking to take.

Coral,

 

We did B2B sailings on the Mozart - both Central Danube and Eastern Danube.  There were three overlapping ports: Vienna, Bratislava, and Budapest, but Crystal offered so many excursions that we had plenty of options for both sailings.  Hopefully they will still offer numerous options.  As you say, it does set Crystal apart from competitors.  It was a great experience, and I’m sure you will be pleased with the Mozart.  The service onboard was just as wonderful as Crystal ocean.  The food on the Mozart was perhaps even better than Crystal ocean, and that is saying a lot.

 

Hopefully Crystal will get the websites straightened out soon for both ocean and river.

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24 minutes ago, RLMSLL said:

We did B2B sailings on the Mozart - both Central Danube and Eastern Danube.  There were three overlapping ports: Vienna, Bratislava, and Budapest, but Crystal offered so many excursions that we had plenty of options for both sailings.  Hopefully they will still offer numerous options.  As you say, it does set Crystal apart from competitors.  It was a great experience, and I’m sure you will be pleased with the Mozart.  The service onboard was just as wonderful as Crystal ocean.  The food on the Mozart was perhaps even better than Crystal ocean, and that is saying a lot.

I was on the Mozart in November and absolutely LOVED it! I did an onboard open booking and am looking at maybe the Rhine or another river cruise. I also was very pleased with the excursions offered - especially in Linz. To have Cesky Krumlov, Salzburg and Austrian Lake District were all great, disappointed that I could only choose 2 as they were full day excursions. Crystal did some excursions other companies do not do like Munich from Passau. If I had just seen the itinerary, I may have passed on the cruise (as some companies just do a walking tour in Linz) - because I saw the excursions, I booked it right away. Let me also add that I could easily see the single supplement (which I can't with this website).

 

I would like to use my open booking to book something soon. I think I am leaning towards another river cruise but want to see the excursions (better listed as they are a mess now). 

 

I had sailed Crystal several years ago and loved the Serenity. I equally loved the Mozart. Service, food and ship were amazing on the Mozart. I completely agree with you.

 

I wish I had done a B2B but was glad I was able to do a 10 night cruise.

Edited by Coral

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1 hour ago, MalbecWine said:

Looking at excursions from Crystal can make a decision if you want to book definitely or at least you have something to go by which you might want to do privately.  That being said, Crystal has failed to list excursions even within a few months to sailing.  It clearly is messed up.

On the river cruises - the excursions are included and from my Mozart trip, they were excellent excursions. On my other cruises with Princess I am definitely into booking privately as I like smaller groups and better pricing.

 

I know on Crystal (Ocean) it is different. Sorry to turn this into a River boat thread. I am just trying to look at the excursions on the different rivers in Europe. Since they offered different excursions on the Danube compared to other lines, I want to see what they offer on other routes.

 

Thanks for the support! 🙂

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1 hour ago, MalbecWine said:

I don’t believe that one who has never taken a Crystal River Cruise can really comment.  The answers should come from the river boards and their experiences on Crystal or other lines to compare.

I can do the comparisons if I can easily see the excursions. I can on other lines - just not on Crystal's. I have done one Crystal River Cruise and was very impressed. Crystal's presence is so minimal on the river boat threads - it really is not of much help. I seem to be the only one who responds to questions over there on Crystal.

 

Again - I didn't mean to make this into a river boat thread - it is more of Crystal's website issue when researching cruises. Maybe I will use my onboard booking to book Crystal Ocean. I just want to see the tours before making my decision and seeing how many tours I can book in a day, etc.. (half day vs full day).

 

I will be quiet now.

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Coral, you have not turned this into a river cruise discussion so no worries.

 

And of course and of us can comment because to me the issue is simply the need to show the shore excursions (River, Ocean and Yacht) on the site as early as they are available (even showing prior years as examples as has been the case) and most importantly having them listed by port in the order of the itinerary and being able to click on the tabs to get the details.

 

Also having a tab in the summary that says shore excursions as is the case for other tabs such as cruise fares.

 

I am hopeful that most if not all of this will be doable.

 

Keith

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Hey at least the date on the live views has been correct for a couple of days now. You don’t know where the ships are but you can see ocean. 

There are two areas of web sites - design and does it function. I personally hate the huge white spaces and having to page and page again to find things.  Sure the old site had issues most of which were resolved.  The technical issues will be resolved but obviously not quickly. 

I’m not interested in seeing pictures of all the areas of the ship every time I look for anything.  I want to easily find a list of all ocean cruises in June-July 2020 and today I can’t do that easily on new site. I’m sure I’ll get better if I continue to try but in general this new website is not a step forwards.  If I were still an IT director and produced this web site I’d be looking for a new job. 

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Some progress on excursions and the website.

 

The "List View" wasn't working in Safari recently and is back working again. When I click on the List View - I can then select a city and see excursions just for the city. If I click on map view and then click on a city - the excursions are all jumbled up again and not separated by port.

 

Though - when in List view, if I click on an excursion, I don't get a description. It isn't clickable. If I do it in Map view, I do.

 

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They do very much understand the items associated with the excursions and they are working on them.  Don't have a time frame but knowing that they are working them is terrific.  The work does include organizing them by port.

 

Keith

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For my Tokyo to SF cruise starting in May - they now have the crew and entertainers listed as Keith said they were rolling out.  However, they are sill missing the destination lectures (TBD) and the theme (Movie and Theater) special stuff - TBD.  Since this cruise is a week more that 3 months away you'd think they'd have identified those already - Not a web site issue but...As I've said before thank goodness that their on board experience is infinitely better that off shore.   I'm sure it will be update before we sail

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While the entertainment changes are being added, it is not possible to search on  the content such as a particular entertainer ‘s name. Hopefully this functionality will be added. 

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2 hours ago, TER777 said:

While the entertainment changes are being added, it is not possible to search on  the content such as a particular entertainer ‘s name. Hopefully this functionality will be added. 

 

I wouldn't hold my breath on that, Tracie! It's not too hard to do a Google search. I figure that since the other lines generally don't provide info on entertainment, I'm happy with the information we've always had.

 

Patty

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5 hours ago, Texas Tillie said:

 

I wouldn't hold my breath on that, Tracie! It's not too hard to do a Google search. I figure that since the other lines generally don't provide info on entertainment, I'm happy with the information we've always had.

 

Patty

Patty,  We we’re always able to search on individual names on the Crystal website so I’m only hoping to get back what we once had. 

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5 minutes ago, TER777 said:

Patty,  We we’re always able to search on individual names on the Crystal website so I’m only hoping to get back what we once had. 

 

I had no idea that was ever available. I wonder if I was the only one?

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After reading earlier in in this thread that we could once again book and check cabin availability online, I got excited. Finally, I’d be able to book a Crystal cruise without a TA, as I’ve done for my other 40 cruises (with the exception of my Crystal and SS cruise. At least I could easily see SS cabin availability at online cruise booking sites - I only had to call SS to book).

 

Alas, my excitement was short lived. Only one or two cabin catagories are shown as able to book for any of the cruises in which I’ve been interested. All the other categories say “call for availability.”  Ugh. I don’t want to spend time on the phone researching something that I can find online for all other cruise lines in less than a minute. Crystal needs to enter the modern era and have a website that functions and actually makes it as EASY as possible for the customer to book a cruise.  

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4 hours ago, cruisewmn said:

After reading earlier in in this thread that we could once again book and check cabin availability online, I got excited. Finally, I’d be able to book a Crystal cruise without a TA, as I’ve done for my other 40 cruises (with the exception of my Crystal and SS cruise. At least I could easily see SS cabin availability at online cruise booking sites - I only had to call SS to book).

 

Alas, my excitement was short lived. Only one or two cabin catagories are shown as able to book for any of the cruises in which I’ve been interested. All the other categories say “call for availability.”  Ugh. I don’t want to spend time on the phone researching something that I can find online for all other cruise lines in less than a minute. Crystal needs to enter the modern era and have a website that functions and actually makes it as EASY as possible for the customer to book a cruise.  

 

Call for availability means that category is essentially sold out at this time. 

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Just now, cruisewmn said:

After reading earlier in in this thread that we could once again book and check cabin availability online, I got excited. Finally, I’d be able to book a Crystal cruise without a TA, as I’ve done for my other 40 cruises (with the exception of my Crystal and SS cruise. At least I could easily see SS cabin availability at online cruise booking sites - I only had to call SS to book).

 

Alas, my excitement was short lived. Only one or two cabin catagories are shown as able to book for any of the cruises in which I’ve been interested. All the other categories say “call for availability.”  Ugh. I don’t want to spend time on the phone researching something that I can find online for all other cruise lines in less than a minute. Crystal needs to enter the modern era and have a website that functions and actually makes it as EASY as possible for the customer to book a cruise.  

As mentioned Call for Availability usually means no or very little availability.

The new site does make it easy to book the cruise and you can book it directly using the site, place the booking on hold using the site and for that matter make a booking on the site and designate the TA of your choice on the booking.  The latter two items we could not do a few years ago when booking on the site was available and I don't think all of the cruise lines allow you to do the latter two items.

 

Keith

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Thanks to both TER777 and Keith for the quick replies!

 

This is one occasion where I'm happy to be wrong.  I must pick very popular cruises (both ocean and river), because they're all almost sold out.  While disappointed that I'll miss those sailings, I'm glad Crystal is selling out.  In fact, they're doing better than the competition, which still has plenty of availability for the summer cruises I've been looking at. Good for Crystal.

 

That said, maybe they could take a cue from other lines which say "sold out" or "wait list" for those cabin categories.  It would avoid any confusion.

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Posted (edited)

The website is horrendous.  I just received a small Crystal brochure as an insert in my hime delivery of the NY Times (that must have cost a pretty penny) and decided to look at an ocean crossing in November 2019.  There is way too much fluff that one has to navigate thru to get to substance.  The annoying counters, counting the ports, and other superfluous information should be done away with.

 

I finally navigate to the area with the cruises and click on Trans Ocean and the November cruise is not there,  Wouldn’t Lisbon to Ft Lauderdale with a couple ports thrown in be Trans Ocean, especially when the first 8 days are crossing the Atlantic.  There were other itineraries there, such as to Quebec but not the one I wanted.  I will look at Seabourn for a fall crossing to see what they have to offer.  Even though they also changed their website it is vastly easier to find what one is looking for.

 

Edited by cruisr

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Yes originally I was looking at Barcelona and doing a combo but then liked the idea of just LIS to FLL and so searched that under Trans Ocean.  Guess I still had BCN on my mind when i made my post,  When I went back to the site instead of searching for area of cruise I searched using month, then ship, then length of cruise and I did bring it up that way.  Still don’t understand why Crystal’s IT didn’t include when you search via destinations/trans ocean cruises.

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I've had problems searching for specific cruises also.  I sense that even though a cruise might include several areas the search only includes one.  So, theoretically, a cruise that might start in Europe and end up in South America might not be found if you search on "the wrong " one of those areas.  Probably we and it will get better.  I find amusing the suggestion for similar cruises.

 

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The low solo page on the website still needs help:

 

https://www.crystalcruises.com/special-offers/low-solo-fares

 

It exists so that is an improvement. I used to list maybe 100 cruises. Now it lists 4 and they all expire in the next 3 weeks. Come on Crystal - if the website is supposed to be an improvement, provide improved data, not less data.

 

I did email the email address listed. Hopefully someone will listen.

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