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Stops at San Juan cancelled for 2020/2021 season!

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If you go to Nueva dia newspaper's web page this is front page news. 90 stops there have been cancelled including symphony and allure! Sorry can post link but it's front page news on the islands paper 

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In reading the article in google translate it seems that the piers are inadequate  for  Royal.

 

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Since it also referenced Freedom of the Seas I would suspect that the stops are for the 2021 and 2022 season that are currently being released  and not the existing 2020 / 2021 season.  

 

They are not really cancelled stops as they never existed they are just stops in the past that are not being continued due to ship redeployment and other ports now being available.  There was the same type of article posted in a Jamaican paper last year when Royal cut back the number of stops there.

 

 

Edited by Ourusualbeach

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I asked the question in ankthersicial media platform and this was Royal Caribbean's  reply

" We have no plans at this time to cancel any sailings out of Puerto Rico. Sorry for any confusion. -Paula"

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28 minutes ago, Ourusualbeach said:

Since it also referenced Freedom of the Seas I would suspect that the stops are for the 2021 and 2022 season that are currently being released  and not the existing 2020 / 2021 season.  

 

They are not really cancelled stops as they never existed they are just stops in the past that are not being continued due to ship redeployment and other ports now being available.  There was the same type of article posted in a Jamaican paper last year when Royal cut back the number of stops there.

 

 

 

So do you think these are day stops being cancelled or do they mean that there won't be a ship based in San Juan for a period of time?

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It'll be interesting to see if Royal is serious about canceling planned stops to the port or not.

 

Reading about what is going on with the whole process of contract award for the repair, improvement and maintenance of the terminals and whatnot in the port area following the impacts of recent hurricanes and general need for maintenance, the cruise companies are not being included at all in the process. There is a lack of communication to all the cruise lines as to what to expect from proposed changes, from the facilities themselves to new port fees.

 

The company that wins the contract will be solely responsible for financing all work at the port and then will expect to profit from port fees, etc. Being excluded from even getting any information about the project could be why Royal is deciding to flex its muscle to try to leverage a change in the process...whether that is to try to have influence in the actual proposals or to just be included in communications about what all is going on.

 

It's much harder to change a home port than it is to reroute a planned stop. For Royal to say no plans to cancel any sailings out of Puerto Rico doesn't mean they wouldn't change a stop to Puerto Rico in the future. But the fact is...and anyone who knows anything about government contracts and RFPs and contract awards, etc., this is a long, drawn out process. 

 

 

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I checked and they are moving the Freedom to Cape Liberty for the summer of 2021 and 2022.  Not sure if theis adds up to the supposed "90 cancelled stops", but locally, the travel/cruise industry in San Juan is being whipped into a frenzy over this.  More in my next post.

Edited by Aviator of the Seas

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5 minutes ago, Host Clarea said:

 

So do you think these are day stops being cancelled or do they mean that there won't be a ship based in San Juan for a period of time?

No ship possibly in the summer of 2021 plus also day stops that had been done in past years not being renewed.  I don't think any of this relates to current itineraries.

Edited by Ourusualbeach

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I want to make sure the thread title is correct.  Are we pretty sure this refers to 2021-2022, or is there still a chance it could refer to 2020?

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Just now, Host Clarea said:

I want to make sure the thread title is correct.  Are we pretty sure this refers to 2021-2022, or is there still a chance it could refer to 2020?

The newspaper article says 2020 and 2021 but I think that is a mistake.  Time will tell.

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Other issues apparently are that the rerouting of the big ships - Oasis, Allure and I believe Harmony, will leave San Juan with less port calls.

 

Anita Latte is on to something, and there is a big perception here in the industry that the company that supposedly is winning the San Juan port management contract, Global Ports Holdings, is detested by many cruise lines which will result in cancellations.  The locals are in an uproar over this because GPH allegedly takes over the ports and all of its related services, including port agency, sightseeing tours, shopping, dining, etc., displacing the locals.  That's the allegation.

 

Not sure how true is that but many people here in San Juan are against the contract.  The argument is that several cruise lines wanted to invest in the port upgrades: Royal Caribbean at the Pan American pier, Carnival at Pier 4, NCL at the Navy Frontier Pier, and Viking at Pier 1, for example.  These offers are being displaced, apparently, in favor of a single port operator, which will disrupt current relationships between cruise lines and local suppliers.

Edited by Aviator of the Seas

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2 minutes ago, Host Clarea said:

I want to make sure the thread title is correct.  Are we pretty sure this refers to 2021-2022, or is there still a chance it could refer to 2020?

I was going by what the news article states.....and it says 2020 and 2021 ....so until we hear different from royal directly, other dates are speculation

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3 minutes ago, Host Clarea said:

I want to make sure the thread title is correct.  Are we pretty sure this refers to 2021-2022, or is there still a chance it could refer to 2020?

I briefly checked RCI's itineraries and it seems like San Juan 2020 is intact. 2021 is when the changes take effect.

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2 minutes ago, Aviator of the Seas said:

I briefly checked RCI's itineraries and it seems like San Juan 2020 is intact. 2021 is when the changes take effect.

 

Thanks, I'll leave the thread title as is until there's more info.

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2 minutes ago, Aviator of the Seas said:

I briefly checked RCI's itineraries and it seems like San Juan 2020 is intact. 2021 is when the changes take effect.

The schedules may not have been updated yet...  This article just came out this morning

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It won't be long  before Coco Cay is the only stop- okay maybe Labadee as well.  😇

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2 minutes ago, molly361 said:

It won't be long  before Coco Cay is the only stop- okay maybe Labadee as well.  😇

If im getting the drink package that might not be a bad option😂.....all private islands hmmmmm🤔

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8 minutes ago, molly361 said:

It won't be long  before Coco Cay is the only stop- okay maybe Labadee as well.  😇

 

Sad but true.

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One additional comment for now.  The same uproar in San Juan happened when they moved the Adventure to Europe during the summers some years ago.  "It was OUR ship!!" Local travel agencies are the most affected.

 

Personally - and I am a local from San Juan so I think I can comment on this - I never thought that the Freedom in San Juan would ever be profitable in the summers.  Packing it 4 to a stateroom, most of whom just consume the basics and don't buy into drink packages or shore excursions, wasn't very sustainable.  Been there, seen it.  Not judging, but that's the reality. I personally decided to stop cruising on the Freedom because of the crowding issue, not being able to predict which sailings didn't have kids sail free, or BOGO sales.

 

A better fit for San Juan has always been a Voyager-class ship year round, and adding a Radiance class in the winter.

 

JMHO, again, as a local.

Edited by Aviator of the Seas

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3 minutes ago, Aviator of the Seas said:

 ...

 

A better fit for San Juan has always been a Voyager-class ship year round, and adding a Radiance class in the winter.

 

JMHO, again, as a local.

 

Totally agree, we used to do an Adventure B2B every Jan/Feb, but have not had the desire to do that with Freedom.

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22 minutes ago, Aviator of the Seas said:

The locals are in an uproar over this because GPH allegedly takes over the ports and all of its related services, including port agency, sightseeing tours, shopping, dining, etc., displacing the locals.  That's the allegation.

 

Not sure how true is that but many people here in San Juan are against the contract.

 

Yes...I was reading that a major local concern was that the port would attempt to be one of those ports that tried to provide for all cruise passenger needs at the port. I was picturing the Costa Maya port...where there is a pool, the bird thing, restaurants and shops and the attempt seems to keep passengers solely in the port area spending $$$ there and not just facilitating the movement of passengers into the town and deeper into the island...spreading passenger $$$ around. 

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With locals and the cruise industry against the plan, I imagine there must be big payoffs--oh, wait, let's call them "fees"-- indicating the government may not have learned any lessons from the demonstrations last summer.

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