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10 hours ago, OlsSalt said:

 

What can I say. I am in the camp with those who think the surcharge is a good idea. Who is HAL supposed to listen to? Do I also represent 10 other voices of approval.

 

 It has gotten a little verbally dangerous to agree with this policy change on this thread, so how does HAL know the real approval/disapproval ration on this policy change test just by reading CC? Certainly the most vitriolic CC disapproval came after the unlimited in-cabin wine bottles change, yet HAL persisted. 

 

Obviously this test policy is extremely upsetting for many of the posters here - something that upsetting should lead to them seeking a less stressing vacation choice. I validate their choice to move on. Life is too short. 

 

So has it occurred to you that some people might not be upset specifically at this change but because this change is the latest in a string of unpopular changes like the wine issue, the cutting of lido entertainment, the loss of a promenade deck, the Crows Nest change, etc?  HAL is becoming a different line and people don't like that.  I would think a loyalist such as yourself should be able to respect that and sympathize.  

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50 minutes ago, Aquahound said:

 

...because this change is the latest in a string of unpopular changes...  HAL is becoming a different line and people don't like that...  

 

Exactly.

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There are so many companies nowadays that offer cruises at similar price points. NCL, RCL, Celebrity, Princess, HAL, etc., so there is always stiff competition to be had. HAL already has a reputation of being the cruise line for the elderly and thus loses out on potential business from younger couples and families. When I'm on a cruise, I like that it's all inclusive. I don't mind paying extra for specialty restaurants sometimes, but only if the cost is not exorbitant. After all, the room and board is supposed to be included on your stay aboard. If it is an issue of food waste, surely an anti-food waste campaign could be mounted on board asking people to only take what they can eat? A few well-positioned posters in buffet would go a long way towards helping lower food waste.

 

Sure, $10 doesn't seem like a large amount. But I agree with another poster who said previously that if $10 for a second entree goes well, perhaps they will begin to charge $10 for certain "specialty" dishes in the main dining room too. It's a slippery slope. Furthermore, due to the large number of cruise lines to choose from, people will make their decisions based on the little things a company has to offer. Maybe it wouldn't be as big of a deal as their reputation for catering towards the aged, but perhaps there will be people out there who are turned away from the $10 for the second entree deal. Not necessarily because of the price, but because perhaps they perceive that many other services that HAL offers are also like that - extra charges for a nice pool lounger, extra charges for priority seating at shows, etc. 

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By the way, we have seen Average HAL fares increase by sometimes 50% compared to 2015, at least for European cruises, but quality has dropped  in those 4 years. Some examples that we noticed ( at least on our last 2 cruises in 2018) that are obviously not deal breakers nut are nevertheless disappointing: No more outside BBQ’s, no more King-crab legs in the MDR, no more free sparkling wine when waiting for a MDR table in Open-seating, no more region-related small gifts ( Mask in Venice, fan in Spain,...)

 

chocolade parade is a nice and classy addition though.

 

 

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10 hours ago, BCCRUSINGCOUPLE said:


I would love to know your reason why it’s a good move. What angle are you looking at this from


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

Honestly, I dont think Old Salt  is or has any" Angle"  other than  just expressing that he disagrees with you.       I think, its just his  objective rational  that he sees it as no big deal and appropriate to the situation.  he is good with it!        That's my take on his opinion and it is shared by many on this thread.  Not everyone think it is  all that bad.     

 No different from your strong opinion that this is a travesty  and your good with that from your view point.

Petty simple , not everyone agrees either  way. 

 

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2 hours ago, Aquahound said:

 

So has it occurred to you that some people might not be upset specifically at this change but because this change is the latest in a string of unpopular changes like the wine issue, the cutting of lido entertainment, the loss of a promenade deck, the Crows Nest change, etc?  HAL is becoming a different line and people don't like that.  I would think a loyalist such as yourself should be able to respect that and sympathize.  

No doubt, change is an adversary to the past.  HAL  is changing and if you were used to the old HAL  that can be troubling.  Totally understandable.   But  looking around, I see everything changing,  Alvin Toffler  wrote of this in "Future Shock" and how it destabilize people.       Too it is also  important to realize that change is coming and is not sitting on the side lines. 

The more we try to hang on to the past the more frustration we will experience.    Each day is a new day, judge it for what it is not for what last week or yesterday contained  judge it for what it is .      

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I suspect that this charge is going to be a bit unpopular. Why? Because it comes across as nickel and  dime-ing. This comes on top of what we have already noticed as reduced main course portion sizes on our last Holland cruises. Plus, why is the main dining room singled out? Anyone who has ever eaten in the buffet will readily admit to seeing large, if not enormous, quantities of food going to waste up there. To be clear, I am 100% in favor of reducing food waste - it bothers me and my wife to see gluttons ordering up food and then leaving large amounts uneaten. I just think adding extra charges is not going to work out well in the court of cruisers' opinion.

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12 minutes ago, stratixman said:

I suspect that this charge is going to be a bit unpopular. Why? Because it comes across as nickel and  dime-ing. This comes on top of what we have already noticed as reduced main course portion sizes on our last Holland cruises. Plus, why is the main dining room singled out? Anyone who has ever eaten in the buffet will readily admit to seeing large, if not enormous, quantities of food going to waste up there. To be clear, I am 100% in favor of reducing food waste - it bothers me and my wife to see gluttons ordering up food and then leaving large amounts uneaten. I just think adding extra charges is not going to work out well in the court of cruisers' opinion.

People need to realize that anytime you book ANY cruise line in the mass-market tier of cruise lines  you should expect a nickel and dime experience, with all sorts of extra charges from Juice-soda,restaurants, liquor, CD's,  art auction,photos, shore ex, port, tax.... The list goes on.

It comes with the territory and should be no surprise     

If you dont want to get nickel and dimed then go with any one of the inclusive lines.    When you see the difference in price from their mass  market cousins   its easy to see just how much  the mass market boys expect to garner from a passenger.

Edited by Hawaiidan

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On 2/24/2019 at 6:21 PM, ABoatNerd said:

Yes it is.

 

But of course, there are other options out there - land trips with private car and guide.

 

The cruise lines are treating guests with contempt these days - they assume that "obedient consumers" will continue to re-book. Hence their approaches as noted on this thread.

 

Well cruise lines, there are many ways to spend $, cruising is just one option.

 

Arrogance eventually has consequences.

 

No cruises booked for me.

 

Could not be said better! When I first heard this I could not believe! In my 137 cruises I maybe ordered a 2nd entree 5 times.  That said, hearing this now just further cements my disdain for cruising which is a vacation the quality of which is dictated by Wall Street!

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I will not be sailing HAL any longer when there is a surcharge for a second entree.  Because of dietary restrictions as well as general dislike of the food, I almost never order a starter, salad, soup, or dessert.  My usual dinner consists of one fish entree and one vegetarian entree, with nothing else.  I do not want to go to the buffet for this.  I will either sail on other lines or go on land trips.  HAL used to be my favorite line, but I've sailed all the mainstream cruise lines and am happy to do so.  It's been fun, HAL!

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13 minutes ago, Hawaiidan said:

People need to realize that anytime you book ANY cruise line in the mass-market tier of cruise lines  you should expect a nickel and dime experience, with all sorts of extra charges from Juice-soda,restaurants, liquor, CD's,  art auction,photos, shore ex, port, tax.... The list goes on.

It comes with the territory and should be no surprise     

If you dont want to get nickel and dimed then go with any one of the inclusive lines.    When you see the difference in price from their mass  market cousins   its easy to see just how much  the mass market boys expect to garner from a passenger.

 

Why "should" we expect a nickel and dime experience from the upper tier mass market cruises? (I include Princess, Celebrity and HAL here, for reference.)  Traditionally what has set them apart from the Carnival/NCL tier has been somewhat subtle in definition, but basically is a greater attention to service and detail and fewer non-included items (and/or pitches for the same).  

 

Nickel and diming does not fit with HAL's brand image, whatever you might think. And there have been numerous instances in all industries of failures when brands stray too far from their image. 

 

The present is a time of great change in the cruise industry. In part they have brought problems upon themselves by building a huge number of new ships with lots of capacity that realistically keeps them from being able to increase prices. 

 

I am not arguing that ships need to find additional revenue streams, but they need to do it in ways that do not erode their image or customer base.  If it is one thing I have noted through the years of participation in these forums, it is that passengers mightily protest the taking away of something that has always/traditionally been included. The same is not true when NEW revenue streams are introduced, like specialty restaurants. 

 

So come on, HAL. Surely with all the high ticket marketing talent you've hired, you can come up with something better than a $10 charge for an extra entree in the MDR. 

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40 minutes ago, stratixman said:

I suspect that this charge is going to be a bit unpopular. Why? Because it comes across as nickel and  dime-ing. This comes on top of what we have already noticed as reduced main course portion sizes on our last Holland cruises. Plus, why is the main dining room singled out? Anyone who has ever eaten in the buffet will readily admit to seeing large, if not enormous, quantities of food going to waste up there. To be clear, I am 100% in favor of reducing food waste - it bothers me and my wife to see gluttons ordering up food and then leaving large amounts uneaten. I just think adding extra charges is not going to work out well in the court of cruisers' opinion.

 

Careful - you'll be accused of "fat shaming"...🙄

 

I would love to see a count done of those who promise to leave HAL because of a $10 charge.  How many other places have people stopped patronizing because of a small upcharge?  How many stopped going to their favorite resort when the dreaded "resort fee" was implemented?    Would you rather have HAL jack up the cruise rate or try to keep the base rate low and make up revenue with add-ons?  Kind of like the LCCs- you pay $39 for your airfare, but you pay $50 for one bag, $20 for a carryon, etc.    For me, even having to pay for that 2nd daily cabin cleaning would be OK.  There are hotels out there that actually PAY you (take money off your bill or give you comp breakfast) if you select the Green Choice and forego service.  HAL must think that enough people are ordering that 2nd and 3rd entree that it could be a modest revenue stream.  

Edited by slidergirl

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On 2/24/2019 at 6:36 PM, sail7seas said:

I wonder if that means that those   of   us who sail solo and pay for two persons will get a $10 credit each day for 'mystery person for whom we paid but   eats no food the whole cruise as  they do not exist but for full      payment for them  being rendered?

As a 'single' cruiser I believe this to be an outstanding proposal.  

 

Laughing-Mouse.jpg

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We’ll be dead soon.

All of us. Most of us sooner than we’d wish.

But I honestly doubt that ANY of us will die of starvation or malnutrition. In fact, I suspect that more than a few of us would live longer - and be healthier - if we ate less and laughed more.

That’s what we choose. We consider a cruise successful if the ship made it to the disembarkation port and we didn’t spend the last portion in a canvas sack in the freezer. Hey, it happens.

If we sailed for a few weeks and didn’t gain 10 pounds? Our choice. Gained 15 pounds? Our choice.

HAL wants to charge extra for a second entree in the MDR? Their choice. 

Not paying it? My choice.

The villagers can grab their torches and storm the bridge if they want - I’ll be on deck watching the sea.

And I won’t be hungry!

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10 hours ago, slidergirl said:

 

Careful - you'll be accused of "fat shaming"...🙄

 

I would love to see a count done of those who promise to leave HAL because of a $10 charge.  How many other places have people stopped patronizing because of a small upcharge?  How many stopped going to their favorite resort when the dreaded "resort fee" was implemented?    Would you rather have HAL jack up the cruise rate or try to keep the base rate low and make up revenue with add-ons?  Kind of like the LCCs- you pay $39 for your airfare, but you pay $50 for one bag, $20 for a carryon, etc.    For me, even having to pay for that 2nd daily cabin cleaning would be OK.  There are hotels out there that actually PAY you (take money off your bill or give you comp breakfast) if you select the Green Choice and forego service.  HAL must think that enough people are ordering that 2nd and 3rd entree that it could be a modest revenue stream.  

 

I'm not an experienced cruiser like many others on this forum. I've just done 3, with a 4th to come soon. Even then, I don't associate HAL with nickel and diming like I would with a cheaper cruise line. It's true that this line is not all inclusive, but it seems to be on the higher end of the mass market options. For me, such a price increase in the main dining room, what you expect to get in a cruise for free, would not be in line with their brand. From a monetary perspective, I can see how it would add to their revenue stream as many people often like to indulge whilst they're on a cruise, but I do wonder how many people indulge because it's free.

 

I don't necessarily think that many people are going to up and leave HAL just because of this change alone, but I do think that it contributes to a person's overall perception of the company in general. They may perceive that this change is the beginning of more nickel and diming practises where they will soon have to pay extra to reserve a showtime, for a beach lounger by the pool, etc.. Or they may simply choose another cruise line which appears to have more perks included in the price of the ticket, as the vast majority of cruisers are not line loyalists. I know of times in our family where we've chosen to stay at another hotel because we've seen a ridiculous "resort fee" at the hotel we were originally planning to stay at. It's not necessarily that loyalists are going to stop patronizing, because they've stuck with the brand for years. It's that this could be the start of new changes that turns newer cruisers off from becoming loyalists. It will be my first time cruising HAL this summer, and frankly I am quite disappointed with this. We were picking between a few lines and were unsure about HAL, and learning of this change has certainly made me question if this is the experience we will be having on our cruise in general - having to pay extra for everything. 

 

Upping specialty prices, adding more specialty options/paid activities, sure, but I think adding an increase in an area that we typically associate to be the included part of our ticket, to something that has been long seen as free, has had an added consequence. 

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17 minutes ago, simplyrubies said:

Upping specialty prices, adding more specialty options/paid activities, sure, but I think adding an increase in an area that we typically associate to be the included part of our ticket, to something that has been long seen as free, has had an added consequence. 

 

Well said.

 

You just made the point beautifully that some of us were trying to convey.

 

Thank you for saying it so well 🙂 

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I suspect that it will take a great deal more than this surcharge to make any HAL loyalist or cheerleader switch cruise lines.  HAL knows this.  

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2 hours ago, cruisemom42 said:

 

Why "should" we expect a nickel and dime experience from the upper tier mass market cruises? (I include Princess, Celebrity and HAL here, for reference.)  Traditionally what has set them apart from the Carnival/NCL tier has been somewhat subtle in definition, but basically is a greater attention to service and detail and fewer non-included items (and/or pitches for the same).  

 

You make a good point here.  I remember when NCL and Royal Caribbean were pretty classy cruise lines.  It wasn't that long ago.  They weren't Cunard but they were still really nice.  I have fond memories of being greeted with champagne, escorted to my cabin at embarkation, and white glove service in the dining room with excellent meals.  Then look what happened.  NCL totally flipped with the advent of Freestyle and RCI slowly morphed into the largest at-sea amusement parks.  Both nickel and dime you the death nowadays.  Carnival, well, I think they were always at their current tier.  

 

Now look at HAL.  Larger ships, more specialty restaurants, less freebies, declining MDR, charge for second entree.  Hmmm.  Does this pattern look familiar?  It may be upper tier mass market now but you know the saying: Those who do not remember the past are doomed to repeat it.  

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5 hours ago, Despegue said:

chocolade parade is a nice and classy addition though.

 

Yes, it is and the "goodies" are really good!  However, for those of us who dine during the second seating, the timing of the Chocolate Parade can be a problem.  Sometimes, my table has yet to finish dinner when the Parade takes place.  Or, it takes place very soon after our dinner is over.  Do I want--or need--another dessert so soon?

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Where are these cheaper cruise lines? Our HAL cruise was $2000-$3000 cheaper then carnival, RCCL and Norwegian, same dates ( or with in a day or 2) similar itinerary   

Edited by Jareds_mommytoo

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For the record, no $10 charge was listed on any menu for KONINGSDAM 10 day cruise that we disembarked Wednesday.

I was offered a second piece of halibut one night by the waiter and one night my wife requested additional shrimp, no charge.

There were listings each night for a $20 Lobster and $36 tomahawk steak as upcharge items to the MDR menu though.

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For some of us this could be the proverbial 'straw that broke the camel's back'...........for a variety of personal yet cumulative  reasons.

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21 minutes ago, foodsvcmgr said:

For the record, no $10 charge was listed on any menu for KONINGSDAM 10 day cruise that we disembarked Wednesday.

I was offered a second piece of halibut one night by the waiter and one night my wife requested additional shrimp, no charge.

There were listings each night for a $20 Lobster and $36 tomahawk steak as upcharge items to the MDR menu though.

It's not on the Konigsdam (yet).  It's a "test" on 4 ships.

Announcement:

March 1, 2019

 

(9:50 a.m. EST) -- In an effort to crack down on food waste, Holland America Line is testing a menu upcharge in the main dining room of four ships.

Passengers sailing on Nieuw Amsterdam, Eurodam, Zuiderdam and Oosterdam will notice the option to order a second entree for $10.

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7 hours ago, cruisemom42 said:

 

Why "should" we expect a nickel and dime experience from the upper tier mass market cruises? (I include Princess, Celebrity and HAL here, for reference.)  Traditionally what has set them apart from the Carnival/NCL tier has been somewhat subtle in definition, but basically is a greater attention to service and detail and fewer non-included items (and/or pitches for the same).  

 

Nickel and diming does not fit with HAL's brand image, whatever you might think. And there have been numerous instances in all industries of failures when brands stray too far from their image. 

 

The present is a time of great change in the cruise industry. In part they have brought problems upon themselves by building a huge number of new ships with lots of capacity that realistically keeps them from being able to increase prices. 

 

I am not arguing that ships need to find additional revenue streams, but they need to do it in ways that do not erode their image or customer base.  If it is one thing I have noted through the years of participation in these forums, it is that passengers mightily protest the taking away of something that has always/traditionally been included. The same is not true when NEW revenue streams are introduced, like specialty restaurants. 

 

So come on, HAL. Surely with all the high ticket marketing talent you've hired, you can come up with something better than a $10 charge for an extra entree in the MDR. 

Ok   would you trade the $ 10 charge  for a 15-20% fare increase?

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