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HAL's Poor Response to Corona Virus


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18 minutes ago, eurolady said:

I have spoken to HAL's hotline twice a day....each time I call I get a different person and a different response...most are clueless (hangup and callback if you get anyone named Annie😲)....each time there is a different answer to the same questions or the conditions are a different rendition....nothing is offered in writing....almost all calls require hold time while the person on the line goes back to a supervisor.    I am shocked at the lack of and quality of customer service displayed. 

You are communicating with the wrong people.  They have no decision making power.  Personally I would present my case in a calm and rational statement to someone who can make a final decision:  OAshford@hollandamerica.com

He knows they did wrong. See what happens. Certainly can't hurt and at least you will know you went to the top.  Also, I agree to spread the word throughout all your social media contacts, local TV consumer reporters, etc.

Jane

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6 minutes ago, jabcruiser said:

You are communicating with the wrong people.  They have no decision making power.  Personally I would present my case in a calm and rational statement to someone who can make a final decision:  OAshford@hollandamerica.com

He knows they did wrong. See what happens. Certainly can't hurt and at least you will know you went to the top.  Also, I agree to spread the word throughout all your social media contacts, local TV consumer reporters, etc.

Jane

Thank you Jane for your input.....I did not mention the emails that have gone unanswered!

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12 minutes ago, eurolady said:

Thank you Jane for your input.....I did not mention the emails that have gone unanswered!

That's too bad.  Sorry to hear that.  Sounds like they are hard balling but keep trying to spread the word anyway.  I feel so badly for you and others who lost so much.  But at least you are healthy and not currently on a cruise to nowhere.  Have they figured out a port yet to disembark?

By the way, off topic, but did anyone happen to watch the CNBC special last night on the corona virus?  Pretty scary because most of our pharmaceuticals are made in China.  Disruption in supply chain could cause world wide shortages of lots of important life saving drugs.  Just makes one wonder how far this is going to go.  

Jane

Edited by jabcruiser
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8 hours ago, eurolady said:

Just received an upgrade offer for this sailing LOL😂....HAL is really out of touch with reality.😠

 

Just received one too to the tune $4299/person to Pinnacle Suite!! Seriously?? I was waiting for cancellation email and not some ridiculous upgrade offer🙄

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2 minutes ago, happyzoey said:

 

Just received one too to the tune $4299/person to Pinnacle Suite!! Seriously?? I was waiting for cancellation email and not some ridiculous upgrade offer🙄

Well you would have plenty of room if you got quarantined 😉

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On 2/5/2020 at 11:13 PM, CCMP said:

I don't think I have seen this mentioned in this forum.  It seems HAL has changed one aspect.  I note this posting which says it was updated yesterday which will reimburse up to $250 per person for flight changes as a result in the change in embark/debark ports:

 

For guests who sail and are required to modify their flights as a result of a change to embark/debark port we will cover up to $250 per person in airline change fees for carriers who are charging fees. This excludes fare differences. Proof should be sent to the following address and compensation will be issued in the form of an onboard credit.

 

Holland America Line
Attn: Guest Relations
450 Third Avenue West
Seattle, WA 98119
Fax: (206) 905-8962
Email: guestrelations@hollandamerica.com

 

We aren't going in any event, but thought this may be of interest to some folks.  It certainly was not in any email I received, but I saw this posting.  

Great but airlines have cancelled so  many  flights .What about all the  airports which refuse permission  for planes from China to land?

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18 minutes ago, sail7seas said:

Great but airlines have cancelled so  many  flights .What about all the  airports which refuse permission  for planes from China to land?

Well, I posted that several days ago and was addressing folks who changed their flights to Tokyo from Shangahi due to the itinerary change.  But, a lot has changed since I posted that. HAL cancelled the Feb. 15th cruise (which I was booked on).  And Japan and several other countries turned away the Westerdam on the cruise which left Hong Kong on Feb. 1.  The people on the Westerdam now were supposed to fly back from Tokyo---but it sure looks like they won't be able to do that, as Japan won't let the Westerdam dock.  I did also see a posting yesterday or the day before on the HAL blog that said HAL would consider extra expenses. But as far as I can tell, the Westerdam is still stranded at sea as Guam, Taiwan, the Phillipines and Japan won't let the ship dock. I hope those folks can get home soon.    

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 I just received this email.....This is for the Feb 29

 

Dear Valued Guest:

 

We look forward to welcoming you on board Westerdam for our now round-trip Yokohama (Tokyo) voyage.

 

We continue to closely monitoring the evolving situation with respect to the new coronavirus that originated in mainland China and wish to reassure you that our medical experts are coordinating closely with global health authorities. For more information, please see the updated Guest Health Advisory attached to this letter.

 

Please be advised that guests who have traveled from or through mainland China, Hong Kong, or Macau, or had contact with a suspected or confirmed case of novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) or a person who is under monitoring for coronavirus in the last 14 days prior to sailing will not be permitted to board the ship. If you will fall into one of these categories, please call us at the number below to process a cancellation and refund prior to sailing.

 

As this is a rapidly evolving situation, we are currently evaluating the port calls on your voyage and anticipate that there may be additional changes to your itinerary as countries adjust their entry criteria.

 

In recognition of the changes to your voyage, each guest who sails will now receive a $250 onboard credit, rather than the $50 onboard credit previously communicated. The onboard credit may be used toward all purchases in the bars, boutiques, and photo gallery, as well as specialty dining, spa treatments and shore excursions. (Cannot be redeemed for cash or used in the Casino.)

 

Should you have incurred expenses related to adjusting your round-trip flights, we will reimburse up to $250 in air change fees. Please present proof of change fees at Guest Services once you are on board for review by our corporate office to be refunded in onboard credit.

 

We understand this may not be the cruise vacation you anticipated, and some guests may prefer not to travel at this time. Should you choose to defer your travel and cancel your cruise you will receive a 100% Future Cruise Credit (excluding independent travel expenses) that can be used on a replacement cruise that sails within 12 months. The terms and conditions of this Future Cruise Credit are listed below.

 

We regret this disruption to your vacation plans and appreciate your understanding. Please refer to the attached Health Advisory for more information about the steps Holland America Line is taking to safeguard our guests and precautions you can take to reduce your risk of contracting a respiratory illness.

 

Should you have any questions, please contact us at the appropriate office:

 

Seattle Office (USD/CAD currency):

Contact us at 1-800-577-1729 or 206-626-7385. We are available Monday – Friday, 7:00am – 5:00pm PT.

 

Rotterdam Office (EUR currency):

Contact us at 00800 1873 1873. We are available Monday – Friday, 9:00am – 6:00pm.

For Netherlands contact us at 0800 724 5425. We are available Monday – Friday, 9:00am – 6:00pm.

 

Southampton Office (GBP currency):

Contact us at 0344 338 8605. We are available Monday – Friday, 9:00am – 6:00pm.

 

Sydney Office (AUD currency):

Contact us at 1300 987 322. We are available Monday – Friday, 8:30am – 7:00pm, Thursday

8:30am – 8:00pm.

 

Thank you for your attention to this important information and for choosing Holland America Line. We are eager to welcome you on board and remain, as always, at your service.

 

Kind regards,


Holland America Line

 

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we are booked on the Feb. 29th cruise for 28 days and are deciding whether to cancel and use the credit on a different cruise or just wait and see what HAL comes up with for an alternative cruise.  We are/were disappointed to not be going to China (it would have been our first visit) but understand that the decision is not in the hands of HAL.  

We are hoping that HAL comes up with a great new itinerary since Asia is out of the picture.  How many others are waiting to see what HAL proposes or are you just cancelling and travelling later in the year?

 

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5 hours ago, tjones21 said:

we are booked on the Feb. 29th cruise for 28 days and are deciding whether to cancel and use the credit on a different cruise or just wait and see what HAL comes up with for an alternative cruise.  We are/were disappointed to not be going to China (it would have been our first visit) but understand that the decision is not in the hands of HAL.  

We are hoping that HAL comes up with a great new itinerary since Asia is out of the picture.  How many others are waiting to see what HAL proposes or are you just cancelling and travelling later in the year?

 

 

Ironically, we are not scheduled to travel to Asia until September and I am already concerned.  If this is like SARS, it won’t be over by then.  I know medicine has come a long ways since then but it takes time to resolve viruses and find vaccines and/or cures.

 

If I were in your shoes, I’d take the credit and choose another cruise that YOU like rather than wait to see what HAL concocts.  Look what happened to the Westerdam.

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6 hours ago, tjones21 said:

we are booked on the Feb. 29th cruise for 28 days and are deciding whether to cancel and use the credit on a different cruise or just wait and see what HAL comes up with for an alternative cruise.  We are/were disappointed to not be going to China (it would have been our first visit) but understand that the decision is not in the hands of HAL.  

We are hoping that HAL comes up with a great new itinerary since Asia is out of the picture.  How many others are waiting to see what HAL proposes or are you just cancelling and travelling later in the year?

 

 

I am cruising mid-April but am not keen on an alternative itinerary -- this one was hand-picked to see Japan during cherry blossom viewing time.  :classic_huh:

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I feel so badly for all involved. The people affected with the virus, those on  the Westerdam,  the Diamond  and those awaiting their cruises.  Half the joy is in the anticipation.   Let’s hope things stabilize quickly for everyone’s sake. 

We were fortunate to go  last year during cherry blossom time.  Hoping you will be able to as well.  

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On 2/8/2020 at 10:34 AM, tjones21 said:

we are booked on the Feb. 29th cruise for 28 days and are deciding whether to cancel and use the credit on a different cruise or just wait and see what HAL comes up with for an alternative cruise

 

i suggest you wait a bit longer.

we didn't hear till about the cancellation and refund plus 50% furure cruise credit till a week before the feb 15 cruise. hal may cancel with refund plus future cruise credit (my guess) or provide an interesting alternative. no rush for you to make a decision.

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21 hours ago, ozcruizer said:

Going by the Cruise Mapper site, the Westerdam is positioned halfway between the Philippines and Vietnam so they are south of Hong Kong.  A cruise with nowhere to go 🙁

I wonder if they are trying to work out something with VietNam?  That was what one passenger speculated. They have cases too but might take them from ship to airport?

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3 hours ago, Viv0828 said:

 

i suggest you wait a bit longer.

we didn't hear till about the cancellation and refund plus 50% furure cruise credit till a week before the feb 15 cruise. hal may cancel with refund plus future cruise credit (my guess) or provide an interesting alternative. no rush for you to make a decision.

 

We're on the 29th sailing too and are waiting it out.  We still want to cruise.  Right now HAL has offered $250/person for the fees for changing our flights from Shanghai & Hong Kong to Tokyo.  Wonder if they'll increase that if we have to change our flights again.  

 

Plus we have $1,000 in flights from Mexico to Toronto to catch our flight to Asia.  Maybe we'll be spending our 3 week vacation in Canada.  LOL

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40 minutes ago, Betty in Cozumel said:

We're on the 29th sailing too and are waiting it out.  We still want to cruise.  Right now HAL has offered $250/person for the fees for changing our flights from Shanghai & Hong Kong to Tokyo.  Wonder if they'll increase that if we have to change our flights again.  

 

Plus we have $1,000 in flights from Mexico to Toronto to catch our flight to Asia.  Maybe we'll be spending our 3 week vacation in Canada.  LOL

 

ugh. you're in a worse pickle than most. if the cruise on the 29th happens it may not even  leave from tokyo. the $250 offer to change flights will probably stand. i still think the odds are in favor of cancellation but that's just a guess with absolutely no evidence to back it up. if i were you, i'd probably wait. once the westerdam docks, you will have more info to make a decision.

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11 minutes ago, Viv0828 said:

 

ugh. you're in a worse pickle than most. if the cruise on the 29th happens it may not even  leave from tokyo. the $250 offer to change flights will probably stand. i still think the odds are in favor of cancellation but that's just a guess with absolutely no evidence to back it up. if i were you, i'd probably wait. once the westerdam docks, you will have more info to make a decision.

 

Betty, I also think you should wait. If all goes well, people will disembark next week and the ship will be empty for two weeks. This buys HAL time to figure out itineraries and reposition the ship. It could turn out to be a very different cruise. But at least there will have been lots of time to scrub the ship and finalize ports.

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47 minutes ago, 3rdGenCunarder said:

 

Betty, I also think you should wait. If all goes well, people will disembark next week and the ship will be empty for two weeks. This buys HAL time to figure out itineraries and reposition the ship. It could turn out to be a very different cruise. But at least there will have been lots of time to scrub the ship and finalize ports.

 

That is exactly what I am thinking too.

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15 hours ago, Rowsby said:

This is some current info from a family onboard....still unknown where they will dock....

 

https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2020/02/09/coronavirus-westerdam-cruise-ship-michigan/4707517002/

 

 

 

Posted 4 hours ago by Holland America:

 

Westerdam Update: Westerdam is sailing for Laem Chabang (Bangkok), Thailand, where the current cruise that departed Feb. 1st will end on Thursday, February 13th.  Guests will be disembarking in Laem Chabang and transferring to Bangkok for their forward travel home. This new schedule has been communicated to guests on board. The cruise was previously scheduled to disembark Feb. 15th in Yokohama, Japan. 

All guests will receive a 100% refund for the 14-day sailing, as well as a 100% Future Cruise Credit.

Following the disembarkation of guests, Westerdam will depart Laem Chabang. The Feb. 15th cruise scheduled to embark in Yokohama has been cancelled. No cancellations for cruises with departure dates beyond February 15th have been announced at this time. However, we are assessing the impact of current port restrictions in Asia on cruises departing Feb. 29th or later. We will communicate details as they become finalized in the next few days. The latest information will continue to be posted under the News & Travel Advisory section of  hollandamerica.com.

Again, we sincerely thank our guests and the crew on Westerdam — and their loved ones — for their patience during this extraordinary time.

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With this virus being as virulent as it is why are people still debatinggoing to Asia ??even if it costsyou $$$ your life is worth more than that ....cancel your cruise now is not the time to be in Asia .even if you could go  there ..no guarantees you will be able to go home after your cruise depending on how far this  illness spreads many airports are closed to anyone near infected areas or potential danger zones ...now what ??

if Cruise lines will not cancel until last  minute time for you to take action before you do the wrong thing 

i love cruising the thoughtof not cruising for the next few months because of this is very tough ...noSpring break or Spring cruise ...no place is really safe at this time ....not even sure about summer or fall ....

ships should getaway from region ...let China control this disease ...keep your pax safe 

cruise lines should do the right thing get your ships out untilthis thing isresolved ...

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just a thought that I wanted to put out there.  Many, many people have more than one passport issued by different countries.  Wonder how HAL are going to be able to check if any of it's passengers on the upcoming Westerdam cruises have such a scenario.  Hopefully it wont be just a case of providing one passport and not the other (which could show recent entries for black listed areas  or countries).  We know someone who went to Israel using one passport instead of her other one as that had stamps for Arabic countries.  Just hoping that no one slips through the net.

 

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