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Hlitner

CoronaVirus Impact on the Cruise Industry

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My goodness, this thread is tossing out all kinds of silly stuff.  So lets talk about it.  As to the Bahamas, they represent a very minor player in the cruise world that accommodates a few very short cruises that are a miniscule player in the overall cruise industry,  In fact, the entire Caribbean is not a major cruise region in the summer market.  What we are talking about is an industry that calls at ports on all 7 Continents.  

 

As to a vaccine, developing a vaccine is now a relatively basic scientific task, but testing that vaccine for both efficacy and safety is a long term task.  It will be over a year before any vaccine is ready for major use.  In fact. we recently heard one of the most respected Disease Docs say it would likely be at least 18 months before any vaccine is ready for mass use.  And it is possible that COVID-19 will mutate and make that vaccine obsolete before it is even ready for mass use.  And keep in mind that the flu, which is a major problem and arlso a killer, has a vaccine which is not used by nearly half of all Americans and even a higher percentage of other folks around the world.  The reality is that even if I had a COVID-19 vaccine today, many folks would refuse the vaccine for their own reasons!

 

As to the financial fall out, I will not even try to type the number of digits that show the loss of value of the we orlds stock markets in the past 10 days.  Suffice it to say that it is staggering. 

 

As to the cruise market, one cannot even calculate the impact that a US Government advisory about seniors avoiding cruises will have on the market.  Yes, there will still be folks taking cruises and looking for bargains. But there will be many more who will see cruise ships as toxic, and either stay home or choose other options.

r

I love to cruise and still have 45 days booked this year after having HAL cancel 30 more days.  We still hope to take those 3 cruises, but now have reason to be skeptical.  Two day ago we were thinking of booking an additional 21 day cruise, but that is now out of the question.  Now, we would not book that cruise if it were free.  Bottom line is that folks like Dr. Anthony Fauci tell us not to get on any cruise we will listen.  

 

What now?  We have been on this earth for more then 7 decades and love to travel.  We have never faced a situation like we see today and we have no answers other then to wait and see.  We hope that things improve in the next few months, but will not bet our lives on it.

 

Hank

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On 3/9/2020 at 5:10 AM, FredT said:

I think the most telling thing is NCL changing policies in that they are ONLY refunding deposits on cruises in the form of Future Cruise Credits.  Someone has calculated that the bad publicity and ill feelings of their customers is less important at the moment than retaining all that cash........

most of the cruise lines are bleeding right now with many Cruises cancelled, income drying up and depreciation, salaries and other expenses.

they have no option but to retain the cash and give FCCs

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On 3/9/2020 at 12:31 AM, drsel said:

Let me guess.
it's an Italian ship with extremely low prices, right?

5 star ship - Pacific Ocean - not an Italian in sight!!

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Posted (edited)

I am sorry but the way people are talking about the end of the cruise industry is just self fulfilling nonsense. Its almost like some want it to happen.

 

And whats wrong with the cruiseline giving credits instead of a cash refund?

 

The cruise industry isnt to blame for coronavirus, China is.

 

And if my next cruise is cancelled I will be booking the same with my credits as soon as possible.

 

Surely thats what you will all do, if you love cruising as much as you claim?

Edited by That sinking feeling

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End of the cruise industry?  That will not happen. What might well happen is some dramatic ( as in size) consolidation. Some lines will go bust. Some major outstanding orders for new ships will be mothballed or even cancelled, and some existing ships "rested" Despite unrealistic interest rates, corporate dept has to be serviced, but the income to do so may NOT, hence bankruptcy, or chapter 11 or whatever.

BUT some will survive, take advantage of idle ships and re build. I do think the Carnival collection of cruise lines must slim down, maybe reduced to say three separate operating companies. I would be surprised if Carnival Corp did not let a couple of companies pass away with the virus! Bet there is no financial cut through to HQ for them !

Some people need to take a step back and look at the overall effect, put personal feelings to one side and look at the numbers both of the virus and the cruise industry as it is now.  There was a thread about overcapacity, which I think started before the virus took off,  there sure as hell is overcapacity now !

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Ok so far, from this thread, I have learned...a contingency plan of utilizing offshore private islands (currently in use) as a 14 day cruise ship quarantine period is a solution the cruise lines are not even considering. In addition, hospital ships capable of treating passengers during a 14 day quarantine period do not exist (please disregard the US owned two ships "Comfort and Mercy" even though " each ship contains 12 operating rooms, a 1000-bed hospital facility, radiological services, medical lab, pharmacy, intensive care ward, CT scanner and two oxygen producing plants. They also have helicopter decks to assist with patient transport.  I also learned the new vaccine created by Greffex is a hoax (even though the CEO was on the news yesterday 3/9/20 discussing its availability and timeline). Finally, Dr. Oz is a quack. Whew...all I can say is thank god for Cruise Critic. 

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Rolloman, At the moment this thread has become a bit like a "barnstorming" session. Ideas got floated, any ideas to address an urgent situation, sometimes what at first seems a nonsense gradually evolves to an answer.

Do not pour scorn on ideas, however fanciable they seem. People are worried and concerned. Maybe your best bet is to batten down the hatches and buy shares in Greffex....and hope you still have enough left for a cruise in 2022

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2 hours ago, Cee_Jay said:

End of the cruise industry?  That will not happen. What might well happen is some dramatic ( as in size) consolidation. Some lines will go bust. Some major outstanding orders for new ships will be mothballed or even cancelled, and some existing ships "rested" Despite unrealistic interest rates, corporate dept has to be serviced, but the income to do so may NOT, hence bankruptcy, or chapter 11 or whatever.

BUT some will survive, take advantage of idle ships and re build. I do think the Carnival collection of cruise lines must slim down, maybe reduced to say three separate operating companies. I would be surprised if Carnival Corp did not let a couple of companies pass away with the virus! Bet there is no financial cut through to HQ for them !

Some people need to take a step back and look at the overall effect, put personal feelings to one side and look at the numbers both of the virus and the cruise industry as it is now.  There was a thread about overcapacity, which I think started before the virus took off,  there sure as hell is overcapacity now !

Sounds a lot like what has already happened in the US auto industry. There are no more Oldsmobiles or Mercurys  being manufactured. But GM and Ford are still in business.

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19 hours ago, SSelinger said:

Have a cruise with family for March 21 on MSC Seaside.  Several of us have medical concerns and the govt suggests we do not go but cannot afford to lose my money.  MSC is dragging their feet compared to the other lines.  Worried in Florida 

 

I intend this as gently as possible: you have already spent that money.  You might not get any value for that money spent, but if you do cruise you will likely spend more money (excursions, gratuities, etc) - even if it is a perfect cruise.  If health issues arise because of the cruise (or added costs from quarantine even if everyone remains healthy), then costs could skyrocket.

It is a difficult situation, and I sympathize.  Will you be able to enjoy yourself or will you be stressed during the trip about what-ifs and canceled ports?  Best wishes in your decision.

 

 

9 hours ago, Hlitner said:

 

I love to cruise and still have 45 days booked this year after having HAL cancel 30 more days.  We still hope to take those 3 cruises, but now have reason to be skeptical.  Two day ago we were thinking of booking an additional 21 day cruise, but that is now out of the question.  Now, we would not book that cruise if it were free.  Bottom line is that folks like Dr. Anthony Fauci tell us not to get on any cruise we will listen.  

 

What now?  We have been on this earth for more then 7 decades and love to travel.  We have never faced a situation like we see today and we have no answers other then to wait and see.  We hope that things improve in the next few months, but will not bet our lives on it.

 

Hank

 

Hank, I respect your opinion and would appreciate your advice.  Do you feel it is irresponsible for healthy, younger, not at risk passengers to continue with booked cruises? 

My husband and I are in our 40's and have two Caribbean cruises booked this year.  Since neither of us are at risk and DH can work remotely (I am a homemaker) if necessary we could adapt to a quarantine (although would prefer not having one 😉 ).  In our situation the risk seems minimal, but I do want to consider others around me.

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6 hours ago, Cee_Jay said:

End of the cruise industry?  That will not happen. What might well happen is some dramatic ( as in size) consolidation. Some lines will go bust.

 

Yep I agree a number of lines will go bust and others may have to drastically reduce prices for a sustained period to attract people.

 

 

6 hours ago, Cee_Jay said:

Some people need to take a step back and look at the overall effect, put personal feelings to one side and look at the numbers both of the virus and the cruise industry as it is now.  There was a thread about overcapacity, which I think started before the virus took off,  there sure as hell is overcapacity now !

 

The numbers relating to the virus are immaterial in regards to the impact to the cruise sector.   The single most damaging thing for cruise lines is the mandated protocols for responding to virus cases on-board.  Nothing more, nothing less.

 

While ever they insist on quarantining every passenger when 1 person gets the virus then the entire industry is going to be up the swanny.  Few will want to spend £000s running the risk of being confined to their cabins for 2 weeks even when they don't have the virus or any symptoms.  

 

The cruise sector HAS to agree a different set of protocols with the CDC/WHO otherwise they will continue to lose $billions in business simple as.

 

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i havent read this thread but i dont wanna start another. 

 

is there a bonus or prize or money or gold bars or something if we use the word pandemic. i do not watch the news etc, just what i see on this forum or FB or a few minutes on the radio but people seem REALLY hung up on getting to use that word

 

so me, as an uninformed citizen, has determined that there has to be some kind of 'something' that is gonna happen when we reach this point. so what is it. does the world close down? do we all get meals delivered to our homes. what is it that makes this word something that so many are trying so hard to want to use? ive heard little tit for tats about arguing with the terms as well so it has to be SUPER critical

 

i await enlightenment. 

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1 hour ago, pacruise804 said:

 d

I intend this as gently as possible: you have already spent that money.  You might not get any value for that money spent, but if you do cruise you will likely spend more money (excursions, gratuities, etc) - even if it is a perfect cruise.  If health issues arise because of the cruise (or added costs from quarantine even if everyone remains healthy), then costs could skyrocket.

It is a difficult situation, and I sympathize.  Will you be able to enjoy yourself or will you be stressed during the trip about what-ifs and canceled ports?  Best wishes in your decision.

 

 

 

Hank, I respect your opinion and would appreciate your advice.  Do you feel it is irresponsible for healthy, younger, not at risk passengers to continue with booked cruises? 

My husband and I are in our 40's and have two Caribbean cruises booked this year.  Since neither of us are at risk and DH can work remotely (I am a homemaker) if necessary we could adapt to a quarantine (although would prefer not having one 😉 ).  In our situation the risk seems minimal, but I do want to consider others around me.

My goodness, not sure anyone would want the responsibility of advising others on such a decision.  But I just saw Dr Anthony Fauci answer this exact question and he hedged.  He said that it was OK for younger low risk folks to go on a cruise, but then added he would not take a cruise..and further said he does not like to cruise.   DW and I have a pretty high risk tolerance and would be on a cruise next month if it were not for the fact that I fall into a high risk category.  To quote a good friend, "be wise, stay healthy and safe, and live to cruise another day."

 

Hank

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1 hour ago, pacruise804 said:

Hank, I respect your opinion and would appreciate your advice.  Do you feel it is irresponsible for healthy, younger, not at risk passengers to continue with booked cruises? 

My husband and I are in our 40's and have two Caribbean cruises booked this year.  Since neither of us are at risk and DH can work remotely (I am a homemaker) if necessary we could adapt to a quarantine (although would prefer not having one 😉 ).  In our situation the risk seems minimal, but I do want to consider others around me.

 

I am not Hank:) But yes, I'd say going on any cruise right now is irresponsible. I canceled all my cruising plans, and believe it is the right thing to do, regardless of one's personal risk profile. 

 

The bottom line is that if an infection occurs on board, you're at risk of spreading the virus before ever being quarantined. The incubation period means that even if the entire ship is quarantined immediately upon diagnosis of a passenger, there would still potentially be weeks of contact between that passenger and others on board. Will you be going on shore during the cruise? putting locals at risk. Will you be disembarking through public spaces? putting other passengers and workers at risk. Not to mention the fact that a passenger could be diagnosed after you had already disembarked and returned to your own community, potentially spreading the virus there. 

 

Some of the arguments I have seen in support of still cruising say that we can't avoid all contact with others, or that we still go to school/work, or that it's a personal choice. All of that is true, but social distancing only works if everyone practices it, and is meant to reduce the communal risk, not just the risk to any one individual. Cruising inherently involves close contact, large groups of people from many places, and movement across different locations. It's also non-essential. On the list of things we can responsibly avoid, cruising is at the top. 

 

We need to think about our communities, and the communities of the places we cruise to. It's not just about a personal risk assessment. 

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10 minutes ago, tiptip said:

 

I am not Hank:) But yes, I'd say going on any cruise right now is irresponsible. I canceled all my cruising plans, and believe it is the right thing to do, regardless of one's personal risk profile. 

 

The bottom line is that if an infection occurs on board, you're at risk of spreading the virus before ever being quarantined. The incubation period means that even if the entire ship is quarantined immediately upon diagnosis of a passenger, there would still potentially be weeks of contact between that passenger and others on board. Will you be going on shore during the cruise? putting locals at risk. Will you be disembarking through public spaces? putting other passengers and workers at risk. Not to mention the fact that a passenger could be diagnosed after you had already disembarked and returned to your own community, potentially spreading the virus there. 

 

Some of the arguments I have seen in support of still cruising say that we can't avoid all contact with others, or that we still go to school/work, or that it's a personal choice. All of that is true, but social distancing only works if everyone practices it, and is meant to reduce the communal risk, not just the risk to any one individual. Cruising inherently involves close contact, large groups of people from many places, and movement across different locations. It's also non-essential. On the list of things we can responsibly avoid, cruising is at the top. 

 

We need to think about our communities, and the communities of the places we cruise to. It's not just about a personal risk assessment. 

I’m still going this weekend. I will only be going ashore on the cruise line’s private island, not just for locals’ protection but also my own. Social distancing helps both the individual and community. And travel is not “non-essential” for me because I am a travel journalist.

 

its not irresponsible to cruise. It’s irresponsible to not practice proper hygiene, social distancing, and, if you have symptoms, self-quarantine, ANYWHERE, not just cruise ships. Are you boycotting public streets in the city, concerts, public transportation, sporting events, planes, movies, etc. etc...? It’s actually easier to practice social distancing on a cruise than most of those other things.

 

Sail responsibly. Don’t board the ship if you have symptoms. Self-quarantine in your cabin if you get symptoms. Wash your hands constantly. Use hand sanitizer. And practice social distancing. And if you really want to be responsible, don’t wait for the cruise to start doing these things. There’s a lot more coronavirus OFF cruise ships than on.

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It's sad a lot of countries are prejudiced against Cruise ships when most infected people are not on them

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If on a ship a person has symptoms they will be quarantined. There WILL be other cases since a person is infectious before showing symptoms and it is known this virus can live on surfaces for a time. SO, you stay in your cabin and what? You use room service exclusively for your food and handle the tray the crew member hands you? Maybe you ask him to leave it outside the door, with people walking past?  

Even as a travel writer spending all the time in your cabin seems a waste of money and your time. Oh yes you are getting off at the private island......off the ship and back on in a crowd who will not be considering your Social distancing being more interested on getting on or off the ship.

 Finally of course when the ship is quarantined and your 14 is up (during which other cases have appeared) your released to your country and may well be required to go another 14 days or maybe you go home, relieved to be out of it and relate your story to friends and family.......and wake the next day with a slight fever.............

 

 

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10 minutes ago, drsel said:

It's sad a lot of countries are prejudiced against Cruise ships when most infected people are not on them

 

 They are not against cruise ship, they are trying to avoid adding to virus concerns. In many of these countries and even states Cruise passengers are a good part of their economies and turning away a ship with thousands of fairly free spending visitors si not taken lightly

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Posted (edited)
25 minutes ago, GlamorousGirl said:

Are you boycotting public streets in the city, concerts, public transportation, sporting events, planes, movies, etc. etc...?

 

Absolutely, as much as possible. As should everyone. I have canceled all non-essential events, travel etc.  It's not an all or nothing situation, no one is arguing that it's possible or reasonable to reduce social contact to zero, but minimizing it as much as you personally can is the responsible thing to do. 

25 minutes ago, GlamorousGirl said:

And travel is not “non-essential” for me because I am a travel journalist.

 

That's obviously an unusual circumstance, and a far more difficult one at that. Your decision would have to contend with a different set of considerations than most of us. For the majority of people, cruising is a luxury or a vacation, and thus non-essential. 

 

25 minutes ago, GlamorousGirl said:

its not irresponsible to cruise. It’s irresponsible to not practice proper hygiene, social distancing, and, if you have symptoms, self-quarantine, ANYWHERE, not just cruise ships.

 

True. But I'd argue that cruising for anyone who doesn't do so for work is, inherently, not practicing social distancing. A cruise ship is not designed to minimize contact between people.

Edited by tiptip
Clarification

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16 minutes ago, tiptip said:

 

Absolutely, as much as possible. As should everyone. I have canceled all non-essential events, travel etc.  It's not an all or nothing situation, no one is arguing that it's possible or reasonable to reduce social contact to zero, but minimizing it as much as you personally can is the responsible thing to do. 

 

That's obviously an unusual circumstance, and a far more difficult one at that. Your decision would have to contend with a different set of considerations than most of us. For the majority of people, cruising is a luxury or a vacation, and thus non-essential. 

 

 

True. But I'd argue that cruising for anyone who doesn't do so for work is, inherently, not practicing social distancing. A cruise ship is not designed to minimize contact between people.


I am “tip”, not “tip tip” and I am not related to nor do I know him/her.  I have posted on these boards since 2007.  I must say that “tip tip” is making sense here.  It is important that we not overreact, but use common sense.  
 

Right now we are snowbirds who are residing for the winter just south of the cruise port in Fort Lauderdale which I believe is the busiest cruise port in the country.  .  According to local television news, four individuals have been tested positive for the virus in this county.  All of them are in their sixties and have been employed by the cruise industry or related vendors.  Right now the Regal Princess is tied up empty of passengers after having returned to port late this past weekend.  Local port authorities claim there is a shortage of cleaning supplies.

 

In my opinion, now is not the time to take a cruise.  Right now, however, people are free to do as they wish.  Good luck to those who choose cruising.

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Does anyone have information on what happens to Royal Visa Reward Points used toward a cruise?  We used $600 worth of Reward Points.  Credit Card company says "unless Royal has a policy change, we lose the points if we change this cruise". I've emailed Royal twice with this question, but no response.

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1 hour ago, drsel said:

It's sad a lot of countries are prejudiced against Cruise ships when most infected people are not on them

 

It may not be fair, but I get it.  Cruise ships move from point A to point B...which is a way of bringing the virus from infected area A to non-infected B.  And given the close quarters and shared food, a cruise ship is a great way to increase the number of infected people while moving from A to B.  It's certainly not the *only* disease vector but it's a highly visible target.

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45 minutes ago, Sea for Two said:

Does anyone have information on what happens to Royal Visa Reward Points used toward a cruise?  We used $600 worth of Reward Points.  Credit Card company says "unless Royal has a policy change, we lose the points if we change this cruise". I've emailed Royal twice with this question, but no response.

Its just like a cancellation penalty where you lose the money paid if you cancel

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10 minutes ago, drsel said:

Its just like a cancellation penalty where you lose the money paid if you cancel

Even under the new policy of Royal Caribbean "Cruise with Confidence" where you can cancel any cruise through July 31st for a Future Cruise Credit to be used before December 31, 2021?

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Thank you @tiptip and @Hlitner. I saw a video today that discussed herd immunity and why it is so important that we minimize the spread of the virus until there is more known and ways to treat it. 

 

There is still 2 months until my next scheduled cruise and the following isn't until November.  In general we are still living our lives (work, shopping, church, etc) and we do have a domestic trip scheduled to visit our daughter at an out of state college for family weekend.  An opportunity might present to help serve with disaster relief in Nashville and I would likely go.  For cruises we will continue to watch and see for international travel but be prepared to cancel if it seems the prudent choice.

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