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Silversea TRYING to attract KIDS

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We have two Seabourn cruises under our belt & our first Silversea cruise coming up in early December.  We have not experienced any children of any age on our two cruises, and frankly, I did not expect any, given the reputation of both cruise lines.  As a grandmother of 6 & counting......ages newborn to 18....I know my children would never even think of sailing a small ship with our grandchildren.....one that has no children’s programs or suitable entertainment.  But that is us.   What I think Silversea May be trying to tap into is parents with pre school children or infants who want a lovely cruise, can afford it, abhor all those activities & entertainment venues on large ships......they have no need of them.  I am seeing this phenomenon quite a bit as we travel......well heeled parents seeing the world with infants & toddlers in tow.....which is wonderful.  We chatted with a lovely Canadian family with a sweet toddler at an adjoining table in a cafe in Saint-Emilion who had rented a home for a week in that village and another week in San Sebastián.....they mentioned they had seen our beautiful Seabourn Ovation in Bordeaux & said someday when Sofie is grown, we will sail in that style.....but not now.   Sensible, cultured parents.....not willing to chance upsetting others or themselves in situations that are not suited for young children. Unfortunately,  not all parents think this way.

 

Unfortunately, this is a slippery slope for luxury lines.....as it will alienate many of us.   We sail for the quiet & lovely experiences afforded to us on Seabourn or Silversea.....if that changes, we will as well.  I love & adore my grandchildren to the moon & back, but they (no matter how well behaved) have no place on these small ships. We chose these lines for a reason......my grown children chose Disney etc. for their reasons.  Travel is wonderful for children, we have done it with our own children & now with our grandchildren.  However, I can’t fathom sailing small luxury ships with children of any age.  

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Posted (edited)

CaptF.,

 

Thank you for interceding with Silversea management regarding their children and baby cruise promotion.

 

It would appear that this is at best a clumsy and badly executed diversion for us and a strong message to Silversea to be more thoughtful with what they are doing... At least they seem to get it, finally. Doing things right i.e. professionally the first time is not too much to ask!

 

Let’s see what adjustments they put through, the sooner the better.

 

Happy and healthy sailing!

Edited by markham

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The U.K. website is still showing all 308 cruises available for the Kids Offer, as it was yesterday, including the 2020 WC. Apart from the fact that nothing has changed, would SS honour a booking made under this offer yesterday or even today. 

Come on SS management, get your act together!

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19 hours ago, Tapi said:

This is wonderful news! We are a family of 4, including 7 and 9 year old children. Time to give Silversea a try! 

 

Before someone starts slinging mud this way, please hear me out. Our children may be a bit out of the norm. We’ve taken the time to teach them proper etiquette and protocol in various settings. They are cultured and multilingual. At their young age, they have already visited 17 countries, and sailed over 10 times across 5 different cruise lines. From Malta to Alaska to Cuba and places in between. They know what’s expected of them while traveling and they behave accordingly. 

 

I understand that many of you may be worried about the possibility of sharing the ship with hordes of poorly behaved and untraveled children, but I have a feeling that Silversea will be attracting a different type of family than the ones that may frequent mass market, family and budget friendly cruise lines. 

 

Humbly I request, please give families like mine a try. I promise, my children won’t be banging their silverware, or throwing crumbled crackers at your table while screaming at the top of their lungs. 😉

 

I find it interesting that every parent who wants to bring his kids on to a luxury line has the most unique, sophisticated, well travelled, well behaved children on the planet. So wheredof all those unattended brats who scream in the pool, run up and down the corridors, push all the elevator buttons and run around the restaurants come from?

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I’ve addressed this subject several times, and no matter how reassuring parents try to be, I have to stick to my original position. Silversea ships are NOT suitable for children. They may the best behaved, most charming kids in the whole wide world, but they will be bored.

RCLC; this is a big mistake!

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22 minutes ago, CruisinPashmina said:

I’ve addressed this subject several times, and no matter how reassuring parents try to be, I have to stick to my original position. Silversea ships are NOT suitable for children. They may the best behaved, most charming kids in the whole wide world, but they will be bored.

RCLC; this is a big mistake!

I totally agree with you!

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On 8/13/2019 at 5:03 AM, markham said:

Does any other luxury line choose to make such a grab for children? 

Ritz Carlton does.

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, CruisinPashmina said:

I’ve addressed this subject several times, and no matter how reassuring parents try to be, I have to stick to my original position. Silversea ships are NOT suitable for children. They may the best behaved, most charming kids in the whole wide world, but they will be bored.

RCLC; this is a big mistake!

I'm 55 and will be sailing for the first time with Silversea on the Muse next June to Alaska and worried I will be bored. 😄 Seriously, I'm looking forward to it.

Edited by lastchamp64
typo error

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, wripro said:

I find it interesting that every parent who wants to bring his kids on to a luxury line has the most unique, sophisticated, well travelled, well behaved children on the planet. So wheredof all those unattended brats who scream in the pool, run up and down the corridors, push all the elevator buttons and run around the restaurants come from?

Let me get some clarification about your statement . Because there are many “unattended brats who scream in the pool, run up and down the corridors, push all the elevator buttons and run around the restaurants”, does that mean that all children are that way? Is it possible that there could be children who are being raised better than that? Respectfully, I believe that your generalization is as broad as saying that every adult lacks proper manners, social behavior and etiquette (or the opposite). We all know that neither one is fully accurate. 

 

Do you want to know where the children that you describe come from? Take a vacation on a family friendly cruise line or to a family friendly destination and you should have your answer quickly. Children are usually a reflection of the adults that are raising them.

 

When we’ve sailed on family friendly cruise lines, there are many children that do fall under the description that you gave, but there are many more who don’t. All you have to do is sit at your MDR table and watch. Watch the adults behavior, their adherence to dress code and protocol and normally their children are following suit. We sailed on the Disney Fantasy a few years back, where easily more than 90% of tables were occupied by families with small children, and the differences were striking. You definitely couldn’t lump all of them under one description. 

 

My children are far from perfect, and I’m not one of those delusional parents who believes that their children can do no wrong. But I’ll tell you what I am. I am a father who has bent over backwards to make sure that my children know more about the world at their young age than most adults do in a lifetime. I’ve also worked tirelessly so that they are NOT the brats that you describe. What was not acceptable behavior for me when my parents were raising me is not acceptable behavior for me kids now that I’m raising them. 

 

I do know that we live in a time when behaved children seem to be an exception and not the norm, so I can’t fault you for thinking the way you do. It’s an eye opening sign of the times when people feel compelled to compliment your children because they do something as basic as saying “thank you”. 

 

Edited by Tapi

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You will love it..unless an ankle biter gets bored.. seriously..you will love experiencing Alaska..it is so beautiful. I have cruised  there 3x and would go again in a minute. Now looking at a TA Vancouver to Tokyo in 2020. 

Btw: when we took our children and grandchildren, we went on Celebrity..lots do do for ALL kids’ ages...5 to 15. It was a wonderful choice. My late husband, and I would never choose any line but SS for ourselves and our adult “ Children”, but little,and even teenage kids need activities designed for them. Celebrity was terrific. Because there were 16 of us, we booked private tours thru our TA. Less $$ and it all worked out beautifully.

 

 

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32 minutes ago, Tapi said:

I do know that we live in a time when behaved children seem to be an exception and not the norm, so I can’t fault you for thinking the way you do. It’s an eye opening sign of the times when people feel compelled to compliment your children because they do something as basic as saying “thank you”. 

 

 

Interesting that you should mention this.  I have been vocal on this board about my desire to ban at least infants and toddlers from Silversea.  But I am also one of the people who feel the compulsion you mention.  I regulary remark appreciatively to the child and parent at a fast food ordering counter or some similar place when I hear the child saying "please" or "thank you."  I generally get a kind remark in return.  Occasionally, I get a strange look (perhaps because neither child nor parents feels these courtesies are remarkable or worthy of comment.)

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Posted (edited)

Hi Folks! This was just posted by Mark Conroy Managing Director, The Americas on a Facebook forum:

Mark Spencer Conroy MARK HERE! This was a mistake. We do have a children offer for some of the summer cruise & holiday cruises. There is no children offer on any segment of the World cruise.

 

I hope that this now puts to rest that this was not intended as a game changer for the Silversea luxury brand and was intended as I reported earlier that it was only intended to be some summer and holiday cruises. The website will take a while to change and please empty your cache so you don't see the old pages. Many thanks to all those that brought this situation to our attention so quickly.

Have a good evening!

Edited by Capt.F
typo

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6 hours ago, Capt.F said:

Hi Folks! This was just posted by Mark Conroy Managing Director, The Americas on a Facebook forum:

Mark Spencer Conroy MARK HERE! This was a mistake. We do have a children offer for some of the summer cruise & holiday cruises. There is no children offer on any segment of the World cruise.

 

I hope that this now puts to rest that this was not intended as a game changer for the Silversea luxury brand and was intended as I reported earlier that it was only intended to be some summer and holiday cruises. The website will take a while to change and please empty your cache so you don't see the old pages. Many thanks to all those that brought this situation to our attention so quickly.

Have a good evening!

Thanks for posting, however it seems to have escaped your attention that most of the discussion on this board has actually been about the wider picture of cruising with SS and not just the World Cruise.

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I agree with Silver Spectre.

 

Addressing this issue for only the World Cruises is unsatisfactory. 

 

There is a larger point here and there are too many other land and sea options that offer the upscale, adult only, relaxing atmosphere that we are looking for.  We have no interest in spending our summer vacation in the midst of babies and toddlers who have been incentivized to come onboard at a discount.

 

We took a break from Silver Sea for the last couple of years because of an absolutely terrible, down-market experience on our last cruise. It was such a bad experience, in fact, that Silver Sea provided us with a substantial discount on a future cruise which we have been ambivalent about using because our last experience was so bad.   

 

After much thought, we figured we would return to Silver Sea for the inaugural sail on the Moon for next summer, which we expect to be a special, sophisticated and upscale experience. 

 

Now this cruise has been designated as one of the "family discount" cruises.  It is hard to believe that they would do this for a special event like an inaugural sail, and we are again rethinking our plans.  We've had great experiences the last two summers trying alternatives to Silver Sea.  

 

Is Silversea worth returning to as currently managed?  Are they really focused on the customer experience?

 

 

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I agree about the disruptive behaviour, noisy mealtimes, rudeness and lack of appreciation for others. 

 

I'm sure children can be just as bad. 

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Is Mark Conroy playing games with Silversea loyalists who are concerned about children on board whose parents are being newly incentivized to join cruise ships that are clearly designed for adults? He knows - or should appreciate the concerns we have - and should make more effort to explain what direction Silversea is heading for.

 

To repeat the obvious, there are no second swimming pools for active kids, no kids’ clubs unless lounge space adults would use is removed from circulation, and little space for deck sports. You want to add 20 or more children and babies on my cruise? What are they going on sea days that won’t alter the calm of a normal Silversea cruise? What is he thinking? 

 

Silversea is an upscale i.e. expensive RCL suite class alternative money maker for rich parents? One without RCL climbing walls, wave makers, playrooms with video games? Does he imagine their suite butlers will somehow band together and entertain these kids? Puleeeez!

 

Nope, I cruise on Silversea for refined cuisine and the mellow vibe. Don’t put my cruise at risk. I easily go elsewhere, and I will do so, if things don’t calm down.

 

Over to you, Mr Conroy.

 

Happy and healthy cruising!

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3 hours ago, Silver Spectre said:

Thanks for posting, however it seems to have escaped your attention that most of the discussion on this board has actually been about the wider picture of cruising with SS and not just the World Cruise.

Indeed it has not! Although the "mission"initially was to get to the bottom of this "promotion" was self-serving (World Cruise), I was certainly getting ready to focus on Grand Voyages and Silversea in general. Once I got into the weeds with management and satisfied my immediate concern, I moved in the direction of the entire Silversea "brand" and pushed hard that someone created -- whether purposely or not, big smoke signals that Silversea had decided to move in a new direction. A direction that I thought was contrary to what loyal SIlversea guests thought Silversea was all about. 

 

Without getting into the weeds on conversations with management - those of us that have many years sailing with Silversea know that although children are not prohibited per se - (as they have always had some general rules about it) - Silversea has never been an appropriate cruise line to bring kids. Certainly certain ships are clearly inappropriate under any circumstances!

 

So why then would anyone think such a promotion was a good idea? It wasn't that's for sure and Mark Conroy clearly stated "it was a mistake". So thank you for bringing this promotion to the forum. Well done!

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Many thanks, Capt F, for your efforts.  I hope that this "mistaken" marketing effort and the customer response might lead to a rethinking of the entire matter.  I doubt that Silversea would suddenly embrace a Viking/Virgin policy with a minimum age of, say, 16.  But I do hope that they will consider either entirely banning infants/toddlers (less than 3 years old) or decreeing that infants/toddlers are not permitted in traditionally quiet indoor spaces (e.g., all restaurants, Panorama, etc.).  If parents insist on bringing infants/toddlers onboard, they can eat at the Grill or from the room service menu in the parents' suites.

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Posted (edited)

Some insightful and thoughtful comments on this board that generate the following thoughts:

 

Incenting people to bring young children on a cruise with special promotions and discounted fares is much different than accepting them at regular rates. The former can result in large quantities of children on a cruise, which on a small ship without dedicated space and programs for children can be disruptive to adult passengers and negatively impact their enjoyment of the cruise.

 

The Boomer-plus generation (age 52 and greater) represent the largest demographic cohort in the western world, and a huge source of revenue for the travel industry, particularly cruising. Most of this group are now empty nesters with more time and money for travel, and many want to enjoy their travel without young children disrupting their enjoyment. Viking and Virgin are trying to capitalize on this reality, as are a number of land-based resorts. Cruise lines like Silversea will have to decide who their target audience is, and how best to keep them loyal, perhaps without tilting too far in one direction or the other.

 

Personally, my wife and I enjoy children and have 2 of our own that we have cruised with over the years. We always took them on large ships with programs and facilities for children, and never took them on luxury lines where they would have been out of place and potentially negatively impact the enjoyment of others. We have a grandchild on the way, and will be following the same philosophy for family cruises in future.

 

My wife and I will be cruising with Silversea in mid-December (our 3rd with the line), and our experience (including the number of young children on board) will influence our future cruise decisions. We are retired and frequent cruisers, with a healthy bucket list of cruises we still want to take, including to Japan and Africa. These are expensive cruise destinations, and we don’t want to waste our money on a luxury cruise line that is incenting families to fill our ship with young children without regard for its impact on our enjoyment.

 

Just my views.

Edited by commodoredave

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This promotion goes against all that Silversea professes  to stand for and can only lead to reduced enjoyment for the majority. 

We have already abandoned any thoughts of Christmas and new year cruises as was our custom due to the number of children getting higher each year. With 4 cruises in the pipeline our next one is September so unlikely to have much effect on that one. However  there is time for this to impinge on next years bookings so some serious consideration will have to be given to our future commitment to Silversea. 

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15 hours ago, Stumblefoot said:

Ritz Carlton does.

And they have been in the luxury cruising market for how long. A strong, established brand like SS does not need to go down this route.

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So the WC segments are now removed from the offer, however there are still 284 cruises showing, including the maiden Moon t/a. It appears that SS will listen to long term World Cruisers but are still happy to upset all their other long term clients.

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29 minutes ago, Silver Spectre said:

So the WC segments are now removed from the offer, however there are still 284 cruises showing, including the maiden Moon t/a. It appears that SS will listen to long term World Cruisers but are still happy to upset all their other long term clients.

 

I have it on good authority that the kids and baby promotion will be removed from the Moon's inaugural sale on August 6th. 

 

I, and those in the group which have booked with us, are very happy this is being addressed.  

 

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1 hour ago, Silver Spectre said:

And they have been in the luxury cruising market for how long. A strong, established brand like SS does not need to go down this route.

 

I understand.  I was just merely answering the question as when they launch the brand, their strategy is targeted at a very different segment of the market while trying to redefine what luxury is at sea.  Not agreeing with it, just pointing it out.

 

15 minutes ago, Silver Spectre said:

...there are still 284 cruises showing, including the maiden Moon t/a. It appears that SS will listen to long term World Cruisers but are still happy to upset all their other long term clients.

 

My whole point on this subject is while so many are in a tizzy here and over in the Facebook group, this is nothing new.  It’s just merely formalizing pricing.  

 

Silver Princess started cruising with us on SS when she was 10.  The cost of her fare has always been less than the new “family” discount.  So, it appears, poor ol’ SS Marketing has shot themselves in the foot once again by promoting what they’ve always done rather than keeping it quiet (to those who think SS should be child free), while at the same time promoting a price increase (to those who already know what a 3rd passenger discount typically is).

 

Oh, by the way, Silver Princess wanted to celebrate her 21st birthday on board SS in style and grace.  Imagine that!  A kid not looking for a wild drunken party, but rather a refined and elegant experience amongst those who appreciate the same.  Why?  Because she’s experienced it on SS first hand.  She remembers the conversations she had with likes of Duct Tape and Rojann who treated her as a young lady, not a child.  As such, she’s as loyal to the line who has doted on her for a decade, as her parents are.  Seems to me that is sound marketing to gain a customer for life at such a young age.

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1 hour ago, Stumblefoot said:

 

My whole point on this subject is while so many are in a tizzy here and over in the Facebook group, this is nothing new.  It’s just merely formalizing pricing.  

 

 

 

I Was watching that on Facebook and found it quite strange that any posts that dare to criticise anything about Silversea are met with a very curt “we are not the complaints department” and the posts are removed, whilst this one seems to be left to run. Most curious.

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