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Independence UK 2020 sailings cancelled

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6 hours ago, Saab4444 said:

Iona is based on the AidaNova design, she will be a great option for 7 days Norway if you want a big new ship. She is bigger than Anthem or Indy and 7 days in a standard balcony cost about 1300 Euro including tips, this is half of Royal‘s 2020 Northern Europe fares. I also trust that the days of a very traditional British style are over with this class of ships.

Oh I might look this up would never have considered them before but fancy Norway as well although our friends are trying to get us to go on brilliance to Iceland next summer as we live in Belgium it's only a couple of hours to the port.

 

 

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Tbh we probably won't go for p&o the demographic is just not for us, much older crowd (no offence!) My mum is 74 and goes on p&o cruises from Southampton and she always says she feels 'young' and that the number mobility scooters outweighs the number of people without a mobility scooter 😲 plus p&o is just to formal for us, we live my time dining and not feeling like we have to dress for dinner like they do on p&o... I guess it's back to NCL or trying MSC then! We had friends recently go on marella (formerly TUI) and they had a great time, they've basically bought old RCL ships and refit them, lots of nice Mediterranean itineraries including drinks and flights for circa £800-1000 pp. Might be worth a look?

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Posted (edited)
On 5/9/2019 at 11:32 AM, FionaMG said:

High. Sailings out of the UK are crazy high. Royal are pricing themselves out of the market, especially with new builds by competitors like MSC and Costa. :classic_sad:

Yes, but quite frankly, there is no comparison between the Italian style ships and the American ones. We have sailed on MSC just once (Reposition Beunos Aires to Southampton) and we were in one the top grade suites. As soon as we got in the stateroom we looked at each other and said "This is not what I would call a suite, just an elongated balcony cabin and smaller than a standard balcony cabin on an RCI ship.

 

We had been warned not to order any meat dishes at dinner, only fish - we of course disregarded this recommendation and ordered steaks on the first night. They arrived looking like flattened pieces of pinky brown lumps of cardboard and tasted even worse than they looked. Vegetables were served uncooked or at best having been microwaved for 10 seconds.

 

The ship itself was lovely, but the crew were badly trained and because all Italian ships act like buses, in that passengers can book a cruise from any itinerary port to another, there were multiple muster drills throughout the cruise. That said, and was the reason why so many people died on the Costa Concordia, although there were 'new' passengers at every port of call, not every port had a muster drill before departure.

 

For those unlucky enough to be in a cabin below the lido and sports deck, it was hell, as until about 2 in the morning, sometimes later, there was organised line dancing, sports games and lots of teenagers running around the deck, whooping it up. Anouncements, of which there were scores every day, were first broadcast in Italian, then French, then Spanish, then English. If there were any Japanese aboard, which is frequent, the announcement was given again by a Japanese translater or tour guide who was leading the Japanese contingent. Needless to say we have never booked an MSC cruise again.

 

Costa is slightly better regarding the food, but with lots of fun loving Italian and Spanish families on most of the cruises, ambient noise levels do not make for a great cruise if you are a mature cruiser. Also, just like at home, Italian families encourage their youngsters to run around the table and grab whatever they fancy from dishes on the table. If you have ever eaten in a local family restaurant in any Italian city, you will know exactly what I mean. It's pure hell for anybody else that happens to be in the dining room, hoping to have a quiet meal.

 

A Costa cruise is a 3-star experience for Italian food, cabin comfort and amenities, but a 1-star experience for English speaking passengers for entertainment and ambience around the ship.

Edited by peterhof

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Posted (edited)
17 hours ago, Windsurfer play mates said:

RCCL have just lost themselves 2 Diamond Members. Presumably Loyalty means very little?

 

Losing 2 Diamond members is in fact a bonus for RCI, as there are so many now, that they have been obliged to introduce Diamond lounges on all new ships and to those that are refitted. On the Navigator for instance, nightly happy hours for Diamond and above, happened in the public Ixia lounge at the end of the Royal Promenade and was a comfortable experience.

 

Loyalty definately does mean a lot to RCI and to every line afloat and they always give extra than what is expected whenever they have to cancel a cruise. Just see what the 2019 Oasis TA booked passengers got after they were forced to have the ship repaired through no fault of their own. Cancelling a cruise this far in advance is not like cancelling one that was scheduled for a few weeks later. Giving a 25% bonus on top of a full refund, plus stumping up for any non returnable flight and transport costs, is I think very fair indeed. On top of which they said that anybody booked on next years Indy TA to the UK would have the option to transfer to the Anthem, probably getting a complementary upgrade I bet!

Edited by peterhof

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21 hours ago, SAmome said:

Have you seen the prices they are charging for 3 night sailings that include coco cay 2020?  I think they'd make more money running 3 and 4 night sailings.

 

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Yes indeed they will, plus of course lots of the more mature passengers will opt to buy the 3 specialty restaurant deal which just now is a bargain at £55 pp. Thus, RCI can cut down the tables in the MDR and maybe reduce the number of staff.

 

Six years ago, when I had lots of time on my hands, I did a best gestimate of clear profit per cruise for a 7-night cruise on a 90,000 tonne ship, which included everything, cost of meals, wages to crew, casino takings, shore excursions, bingo profit, specialty restaurants, port fees, etc. etc etc. and the clear profit figure was just over £1million per cruise. On a ship the size of the Indy, the profit margins produce an even greater sum and on the Oasis class could easily double or tremble the £1million.

 

When you consider that most RCI ships sail practically continuously all year round for ten years and operate on a break down scenario, rather than a pro-active 6-monthly maintenance program, Indy and other ships her size may well return a £100million profit for the company, per year. With 26 ships in the fleet and more to come, that means that RCI ships return a profit figure of approx £2.6 Billion per year. translated to US$ that is approx $3.9 Billion per year - wow

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22 hours ago, Shrewsbury on Tour said:

Aghhhhh....

 

In a nutshell that’s our wedding anniversary holiday gone up the spout...after spending loads of effort and time researching etc

 

novice cruiser sailed once with NCL and Royal Caribbean, so maybe a case of once bitten twice shy...

 

That said is 25% credit confirmed off total cruise fare, or just deposit paid??

 

Need a drink before I tell the wife!!!

I was told last night by the RCI ‘Incident’ agent that it was off the Cruise fare, he even worked ours out so we could use it against our rebooking.

22 hours ago, Shrewsbury on Tour said:

 

 

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Posted (edited)
21 hours ago, Shrewsbury on Tour said:

Now I have calmed down a little...

 

It’s just greed nothing else....pure and simple...

 

Selling a product to someone, take a deposit, then cancel and offer to someone else to make more money..and advertise it on the same day as you have cancelled. For a small business you would be closed in weeks...for a huge corporate company it’s all about $...

 

Loyalty....yeah right....

 

Time to look elsewhere....

 

 

 

 

I haven't a clue about you personally, but I would bet that you have never had any experience in a high managerial position where things can change hourly, let alone daily or weekly.

 

RCI must have been looking at the very poor returns expected from this year's Southampton based cruises and the constant jiggling of advertised cabin prices to trials and tribulations of the sales teams to try to get them sold. We ourselves could not believe how cheap they were being sold, on top of which we get a discount for being Diamond Crown & Anchor members - so we booked the upcoming first cruise on Indy and another, which was even cheaper, on the Explorer in October.

 

No cruise line takes a decision like this lightly and they are fully aware that some of their loyal customers will be upset, but the fact of the matter is that it is a business decision and nothingat all to do withbeing greedy! They, like all public companies that issue stocks and shares, are answerable to their stock (share) holders and are committed to make sure that profits return at the agreed level. They also have to weigh up the fact that contracted and committed sums, which in RCI case relate to the ships they are currently building, are in place and that suffient funds are available to meet the deadlines. In every large company there is normally a 5-year budget plan, maybe longer, and budgeted profits from one year must be sufficient to service the expected outgoings of the next.

 

I consider, having been in this sort of scenario myself when I was working, that the original decision to send two huge ships to Southampton for the 2019 & 2020 season to be a bad one. They could even be considering cutting their losses and pulling one from mainland Europe as well. However, the Brexit uncertainty is relevant only at this stage to the UK people and to UK businesses. I say "at this stage" as things could radically change should the UK crash out of the EU on World Trading terms on 31st October, which is getting more and more likely. Germany car manufacturers for instance could easily see a massive downturn in profits if some sort of trade tariff is instigated following a certain EU ban on imports from the UK.

 

Edited by peterhof

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On 5/9/2019 at 3:02 PM, timf2001 said:

This fills an obvious hole in their schedule, unfortunately at the expense of those planning to visit Europe.  It also leaves RCI without any Norway or Baltic itineraries, as Anthem only sails south out of Southampton.

Yes, I've often thought that all the American ships are missing a trick as lots of UK cruisers like ourselves, have on their bucket list a Norwegian 'Northern Lights' cruise. We have travelled to the Northern Cape on a 'Land of the Midnight Sun' cruise, which was amazing to see the sun go down to the horizon, bounce around for a minute, then rise again, but to see the Northern Lights properly and with some expectation that they will appear, you have to go there between the months of November to March.

 

At present, the likes of Cunard, P&O, Cruise & Maritime and Fred Olsen have the market all to themselves and you have to be very lucky to secure any sort of cabin under £2,000. One day perhaps the penny will drop for one of the American lines and they will send a ship to either Southampton, Dover or Harwich for the winter months. They could then offer Canary Island cruises as well as Norwegian ones and perhaps Icelandic and Greenland ones - imagine the thrill of being able to take a ride on a husky pulled, racing sled over the snow, with the Aurora Boralis in the sky overhead.

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2 hours ago, peterhof said:

When you consider that most RCI ships sail practically continuously all year round for ten years and operate on a break down scenario, rather than a pro-active 6-monthly maintenance program, Indy and other ships her size may well return a £100million profit for the company, per year. With 26 ships in the fleet and more to come, that means that RCI ships return a profit figure of approx £2.6 Billion per year. translated to US$ that is approx $3.9 Billion per year - wow

 

All ships including Royal ships have a mandatory dry dock every 5 years.  That is when they are inspected and carriers such as Lloyds of London renew their insurance certificate.  Once ships hit an older age, closer to 20 years old, that time interval becomes more frequent on a mandatory basis.     

 

Ships do not operate on a "break down" scenario.  Even between 5 year dry docks there is frequent preventative maintenance occurring on a regular basis.  For example, it's not unusual to take one of many engines out of service and perform preventive maintenance on that engine while guests are on board enjoying a cruise.  There is near constant preventive maintenance occurring around the ship.

 

Ship revenue for many major cruise lines can be found at cruisemarketwatch.com

 

https://cruisemarketwatch.com/ship-revenue/

 

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On 5/9/2019 at 9:54 AM, kalaniiwow said:

OK, they changed their minds on twitter. It's now 25% FCC based on the fare (no matter what you've actually paid as a deposit).

 

How do I find or verify this information? I'm not really familiar with twitter, but I do have an account. I tried searching and the only thing I could find was 2 post by others and nothing from Royal. Can you post a screen shot?

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4 hours ago, peterhof said:

Yes indeed they will, plus of course lots of the more mature passengers will opt to buy the 3 specialty restaurant deal which just now is a bargain at £55 pp. Thus, RCI can cut down the tables in the MDR and maybe reduce the number of staff.

 

Six years ago, when I had lots of time on my hands, I did a best gestimate of clear profit per cruise for a 7-night cruise on a 90,000 tonne ship, which included everything, cost of meals, wages to crew, casino takings, shore excursions, bingo profit, specialty restaurants, port fees, etc. etc etc. and the clear profit figure was just over £1million per cruise. On a ship the size of the Indy, the profit margins produce an even greater sum and on the Oasis class could easily double or tremble the £1million.

 

When you consider that most RCI ships sail practically continuously all year round for ten years and operate on a break down scenario, rather than a pro-active 6-monthly maintenance program, Indy and other ships her size may well return a £100million profit for the company, per year. With 26 ships in the fleet and more to come, that means that RCI ships return a profit figure of approx £2.6 Billion per year. translated to US$ that is approx $3.9 Billion per year - wow

Royal Caribbean's 2018 net income is about half what you are projecting. $1.6 billion dollars not $3.9 billion. As a shareholder I am glad to see they are in the black!

 

https://www.cruiseindustrynews.com/cruise-news/20294-royal-caribbean-reports-2018-full-year-and-q4-earnings.html

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18 minutes ago, notladjr said:

Royal Caribbean's 2018 net income is about half what you are projecting. $1.6 billion dollars not $3.9 billion. As a shareholder I am glad to see they are in the black!

 

When you factor in all the land-based operations (and those senior exec's wages!), a new ship every year at around 1 billion dollars a pop, numerous existing ship revitalisations.... I'd say he was roughly correct at $3.9 billion profit from the ships themselves.

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1 hour ago, beardedladies said:

When you factor in all the land-based operations (and those senior exec's wages!), a new ship every year at around 1 billion dollars a pop, numerous existing ship revitalisations.... I'd say he was roughly correct at $3.9 billion profit from the ships themselves.

 Well those new ships and ground based services do have to be paid for so it is unrealistic to look at their gross margin without looking at their expenses which means looking at their net income.

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6 hours ago, peterhof said:

Losing 2 Diamond members is in fact a bonus for RCI, as there are so many now, that they have been obliged to introduce Diamond lounges on all new ships and to those that are refitted. On the Navigator for instance, nightly happy hours for Diamond and above, happened in the public Ixia lounge at the end of the Royal Promenade and was a comfortable experience.

 

Loyalty definately does mean a lot to RCI and to every line afloat and they always give extra than what is expected whenever they have to cancel a cruise. Just see what the 2019 Oasis TA booked passengers got after they were forced to have the ship repaired through no fault of their own. Cancelling a cruise this far in advance is not like cancelling one that was scheduled for a few weeks later. Giving a 25% bonus on top of a full refund, plus stumping up for any non returnable flight and transport costs, is I think very fair indeed. On top of which they said that anybody booked on next years Indy TA to the UK would have the option to transfer to the Anthem, probably getting a complementary upgrade I bet!

 

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Just curious; will those passengers who have already booking parking and mobility equipment (scooters; hoists etc) have to claim on their insurance or will RCI refund them as they  are refunding airfares and hotels?

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Whilst 25% off may sound great.  We booked a cruise up the Baltic's in the school holidays.  The only other options open to us are 3 Mediteranean cruises which are already well booked up - only Balcony cabins and above available.. We don't want to go to the med as we have been before.  We would end up spending more money even with the discount and we have also lost our free drinks package.  Yes they have given us plenty of notice however if you book for school holidays you have to book early.   All the best deals and cabins for summer holidays are now gone.  Our options now are somewhat limited.  Our only option with RCCL is to pay more money , go to a destination we don't want to go to on a ship we don't want to go on!!!!!!!! How can you call this fair!!!!!  I will not book with them again on principle.   This decision should have been decided before they put the cruises on sale.  I'm sorry but you don't treat customers like this!

 

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1 hour ago, beardedladies said:

When you factor in all the land-based operations (and those senior exec's wages!), a new ship every year at around 1 billion dollars a pop, numerous existing ship revitalisations.... I'd say he was roughly correct at $3.9 billion profit from the ships themselves.

I trust you both mixed up revenue and profit.

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1 hour ago, Saab4444 said:

I trust you both mixed up revenue and profit.

Just an observation.

With Royal now reducing ships in the Med. Celebrity have increased the load with Edge, Apex, Infinity and Constellation sailing in the Med and Silhouette sailing from Southampton throughout Summer 2020.

Certainly a better offering than Royal

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2 hours ago, Saab4444 said:

I trust you both mixed up revenue and profit.

I read an article very recently, that said Royal Caribbean’s profit was around $5 million per day. 

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Our cancelled cruise was the May 2020 transatlantic Ft. Lauderdale TO Southampton. What's really annoying is they offer to price protect on 3 other sailings. 2 are transatlantic East to West FROM Southampton. The other is from New Jersey leaving nearly a month earlier. One that would have been of interest, Brilliance, transatlantic  leaving Tampa on the same date as the cancelled cruise, to Amsterdam is not listed and therefore not price protected. It's of course way more expensive. NOT happy!!

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On 5/9/2019 at 12:07 PM, kernow said:

I'm sure it's got a lot to do with less demand. There have been lots of price drops for this year and so many rival cruise lines sailing from Southampton now.

And Brexit will make it worse!

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52 minutes ago, ReneeFLL said:

 

How do I find or verify this information? I'm not really familiar with twitter, but I do have an account. I tried searching and the only thing I could find was 2 post by others and nothing from Royal. Can you post a screen shot?

 

Ok, cancel that. I posted the above question because I had received a call from Royal saying it was only 25% of what we had paid so far. I told her it was posted on CC that Royal had changed their mind and she said that wasn't true. I asked her to confirm it and I got an email later stating that it was 25% of the total cruise fare.

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4 hours ago, eastender said:

Our cancelled cruise was the May 2020 transatlantic Ft. Lauderdale TO Southampton. What's really annoying is they offer to price protect on 3 other sailings. 2 are transatlantic East to West FROM Southampton. The other is from New Jersey leaving nearly a month earlier. One that would have been of interest, Brilliance, transatlantic  leaving Tampa on the same date as the cancelled cruise, to Amsterdam is not listed and therefore not price protected. It's of course way more expensive. NOT happy!!

 

I feel your pain. We were booked on the TA out of Fort Lauderdale and now we have to fly to Tampa to take the Brilliance. The cabin we had in the Indy was picked because of it's location. The cabins on the Brilliance in the exact location don't have the same category number so they won't even consider the price protection. That's what I was told today. I will call again because you often get a different answer from different RC employees. 

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11 hours ago, Suebiker said:

Whilst 25% off may sound great.  We booked a cruise up the Baltic's in the school holidays.  The only other options open to us are 3 Mediteranean cruises which are already well booked up - only Balcony cabins and above available.. We don't want to go to the med as we have been before.  We would end up spending more money even with the discount and we have also lost our free drinks package.  Yes they have given us plenty of notice however if you book for school holidays you have to book early.   All the best deals and cabins for summer holidays are now gone.  Our options now are somewhat limited.  Our only option with RCCL is to pay more money , go to a destination we don't want to go to on a ship we don't want to go on!!!!!!!! How can you call this fair!!!!!  I will not book with them again on principle.   This decision should have been decided before they put the cruises on sale.  I'm sorry but you don't treat customers like this!

 

Why don‘t you book Brilliance to the Baltic? Much better ship for this ports anyway.

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