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Coronavirus and Seadream Med itineraries


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56 minutes ago, Jim Avery said:

SD I shows still alongside in Barbados.  No new voyage info listed.  Might be spending a while in Barbados.

 

Jim, I think they're planning to head to Portugal pretty soon.  Not sure what happens after that.  Perhaps drydock?

 

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Why would any of these ships go in dry dock?  Isn’t that usually done when work is being done on the ship?  SD has already postponed the planned SD2 massive redo dry dock until at least this fall, if ever.  Would seem dry dock is more expensive.  Less costly just to wet dock somewhere?  Here off coast of South Florida I can see on marine radar that about a dozen ships are just floating or anchored between here and the Bahamas.  Also a dozen docked in Barbados including SD1.  Why wouldn’t they just float out at sea or stay someplace with cheaper rates to see what happens?  Still feel for the crew stuck on board with families thousands of miles away.  If as reported the USA doesn’t stick with restrictions and gambles we can ease up while the rest of the world takes this more seriously, who will travel anyway?

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27 minutes ago, JES4845 said:

Why would any of these ships go in dry dock?

 

I'm no expert but it seems to me that there is always work to be done on these ships and better to do the work at a time when it's not possible to operate voyages with paying customers.

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Couple of practical considerations to add to the mix - upon arrival in places such as Portugal, it is my understanding the ship and crew are subject to 14-day quarantines so no work for those 2 weeks - plus unless something changes, not clear that the workers and contractors in the dry dock facilities are allowed to go to work there given the tight European country restrictions that basically amount to a lock down even now in the UK.  Also dry docks often take months of planning - lining up supplies, drawing up plans, etc. - depending on what work is involved.  We’ve seen contractors on SD ships for weeks/months during voyages prior to dry dock to get ready for same.

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On 3/23/2020 at 9:55 AM, Jim Avery said:

SD I shows still alongside in Barbados.  No new voyage info listed.  Might be spending a while in Barbados.

 

Jim, looks to me as if SD I has moved over to St. Vincent.  Is that what you are seeing?

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  • 3 weeks later...

While we are all understandably frustrated with refund and rebooking issues with airlines and cruise companies, today’s thoughtful, balanced approach to these issues in a New York Times column is worth a read:

 

Who Owes You a Refund? Should You Even Ask?
https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/18/your-money/coronavirus-refunds.html?referringSource=articleShare

 

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JES -  thanks for posting that link, which I think captures the issue very well. Most of us who are on this forum, and fortunate enough to be able to afford a Seadream cruise, have effectively become “loan officers”. Our dog walker who lost 99% of her business and has no health insurance?  Check.  Our favorite local restaurant that is selling gift cards and has committed to 70% of the cash going to employees?  Check.  A vacation cottage supplementing the income of a retired couple?  Check. Our daughter’s wedding photographer (the wedding is postponed indefinitely) who now has zero bookings for peak season?  Check.

 

Had Seadream been more transparent about how this cash would be used to support its amazing crew, there might have been a Check.  But right now that cash is competing with the needs of many others, including of course food banks and homeless shelters.  Seadream has just not acknowledged that we are all facing choices.

Edited by Reunionmama
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Totally agree ... communication should have been much, much better ... and could still be.

 

We have been frequenting as many smaller businesses as we can here in South Florida since we know these folks and often their families ... same for long time bar/restaurant staff who have lost their jobs for now ... we all need to lend as many helping hands as one can afford.

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42 minutes ago, Reunionmama said:

JES -  thanks for posting that link, which I think captures the issue very well. Most of us who are on this forum, and fortunate enough to be able to afford a Seadream cruise, have effectively become “loan officers”. Our dog walker who lost 99% of her business and has no health insurance?  Check.  Our favorite local restaurant that is selling gift cards and has committed to 70% of the cash going to employees?  Check.  A vacation cottage supplementing the income of a retired couple?  Check. Our daughter’s wedding photographer (the wedding is postponed indefinitely) who now has zero bookings for peak season?  Check.

 

Had Seadream been more transparent about how this cash would be used to support its amazing crew, there might have been a Check.  But right now that cash is competing with the needs of many others, including of course food banks and homeless shelters.  Seadream has just not acknowledged that we are all facing choices.

I agree that we all need to help out where we can.  I am allowing tenants to continue to stay in a rental house I own rent-free as they have lost their jobs. It’s the right thing to do and I didn’t wait for them to have to ask for this. I also use small local businesses as they need the support. 
This doesn’t apply to the situation with Seadream however.  I cancelled a November cruise with them more than a month ago and well before final payment was due.  They sent me an email stating I would receive my deposit back within 14 days.  After a month I had heard nothing and sent them an email- in return I get a form letter email reply ( identical to the one our friends received) stating  refunds will now take 90 days since they are working at home, which is nonsense especially as I requested the refund before everything got shut down and other companies have managed to get things done promptly while also having employees work from home.  I also feel bad as I had encouraged friends to join us on this sailing since we had a great 1st experience last year and they are also now dealing with the same issues- needless to say their first experience of Seadream has not been a positive one.  What is most annoying is that I have reached out 3 times and been told someone would call me and no one has ever followed up ( again unlike other companies who garner good will just by speaking to their customers). I do not believe they are holding on to my money to treat their crew well either, based on other posts I have read.  They have been completely focussed on their bottom line from the start of this pandemic- sending out Instagram posts that were insensitive at best ( champagne and caviar in the surf after a pandemic has been declared!) and continuing to sail well beyond when they should have shut down ( and refusing refunds to passengers who did not want to sail at that time). Even now they are taking bookings for May which is ludicrous ( where I’m from we are still in lockdown at least through May ).  They just have not treated their passengers well and the refusal to communicate speaks volumes.  I will take my refund and spend it elsewhere 

Edited by Christi209
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Also, choosing to leave deposits with small local companies such as a camp or gym or dog walker so that they can stay financially afloat is not the same as leaving a deposit with a cruise company such as Seadream.  I am happy to help the former but it is not my responsibility to provide an interest free loan to a privately owned luxury yacht company.    If the company has financial issues then they should look to a bank for help- not to their passengers .  My contract with them states, as does their initial email, that I would receive a refund of my deposit upon cancellation as long as it was 120 days prior to the sail date ( and the email stated the refund would be posted within 14 days) .  I expect them to uphold The terms of the contract and not use my funds as a free loan

Edited by Christi209
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Christi209.. I agree with your comments and unfortunately SeaDream Corporate has left much to be desired on several other issues over the years.  We kept coming back because of the product and the outstanding crew.  Let's hope that they somehow pull out of this. but I am worried.

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 4/15/2020 at 10:02 AM, ctbjr1309 said:

The SD website now showing first scheduled cruises to be May 22 on SDI and May 25  on SDII.

 

https://seadream.com/voyages/

 

It looks like SD1 is still booking voyages from Nice on 25 May and Rome on 29 May, even though it is on the way to Oslo? Likewise, SD2 is still taking bookings for Rome on 22 May, even though it is sitting in Lisbon with a skeleton crew. Perhaps those have already been canceled and they just haven't updated the website? 

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2 minutes ago, ExoticDestinations said:

 

https://seadream.com/voyages/

 

It looks like SD1 is still booking voyages from Nice on 25 May and Rome on 29 May, even though it is on the way to Oslo? Likewise, SD2 is still taking bookings for Rome on 22 May, even though it is sitting in Lisbon with a skeleton crew. Perhaps those have already been canceled and they just haven't updated the website? 

 

Almost 100% certain you are correct - this is very outdated information.  As you said, SD1 is on its way to Oslo for unspecified Norwegian voyages (rumor is something for locals there) with a bunkering stop in Rotterdam.  SD2 has skeletal crew of only those with contracts about to run out (trying to figure out how to get them home safely).  Other crew once told to return around June 1 have not been contacted to return (which normally would have happened by now).  All academic with countries still largely closed and barely any relevant flights, etc.  Website very misleading - purports to show only a few rooms remaining for summer voyages where we know many of us once had reservations but cancelled them.  SD continues to say reason for attempted retroactive 90 day refund policy is so many refunds to fund and process.  Which is it?  If there are only a few rooms remaining, then there weren’t many cancellations.  We know the opposite to be true, yet the poor communication continues.   We were once patient but no longer.

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Good Points JES4845 and ExoticDestinations...

 

I am losing confidence in SD on a regular basis.  And I do feel for their loyal crew.  If they are not planning to resume cruising out of Rome in 11 days (as their web site states that they are still doing), why not just update their site?  This is a pretty simple task. 

 

I wonder what would happen if someone would contact them today and try to book the trip; would they accept the booking? 

 

Our final payment is coming up in a little over a month for our next cruise, and I am over 90% sure that we will cancel, and then get into the 90 day refund period for our deposit.  At this point, I hope they they can do it in 90 days, although I am worried.

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47 minutes ago, BeignetBoy said:

Good Points JES4845 and ExoticDestinations...

 

I am losing confidence in SD on a regular basis.  And I do feel for their loyal crew.  If they are not planning to resume cruising out of Rome in 11 days (as their web site states that they are still doing), why not just update their site?  This is a pretty simple task. 

 

I wonder what would happen if someone would contact them today and try to book the trip; would they accept the booking? 

 

Our final payment is coming up in a little over a month for our next cruise, and I am over 90% sure that we will cancel, and then get into the 90 day refund period for our deposit.  At this point, I hope they they can do it in 90 days, although I am worried.

Credit card companies do not feel 90 days is reasonable  . Sea dream told me 10-14 days when I cancelled my November cruise back in March .  After waiting 30 days with no communication from seadream I had my credit card company deal with it and received the refund of my deposit shortly thereafter .. their complete disregard for their clients and refusal to communicate made me unwilling to take a chance on them

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My Friend booked on our August 29 out of Malta trip and paid in Full end of February.  Within days, she realized (Pre-covid) that the airfare was unaffordable and she canceled.  They told her 3-10 days for her refund ($10K) and that was March 3rd.  Now it's May 11th and she got American Express involved.  Amex requested the emails and communication and took the charge off her card.  I canceled the same trip due to the obvious uncertainty just before the 120 day period, about 30 days ago.  I hated to do it..as it was a big trip, but I had little trust that the ports would accept these Americans and that SeaDream would be forthcoming with port information and rule/restrictions.  They tried to entice us with future cruise credits, etc but we opted to cancel.  They told me 90 days to get my deposit back.  We will fight for the money through AMEX but we are doubtful we'll ever see it other.  It's been 30 days so far.  We've done 3 SeaDreams.  I'm worried they will go out of business.  I feel like many others, that the lack of information is really concerning.  I hope they make it through this.  I feel that if they communicated with their loyal guests we'd be more apt to book future cruises with them rather than hold on to our money.  

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1 hour ago, beachbooles said:

My Friend booked on our August 29 out of Malta trip and paid in Full end of February.  Within days, she realized (Pre-covid) that the airfare was unaffordable and she canceled.  They told her 3-10 days for her refund ($10K) and that was March 3rd.  Now it's May 11th and she got American Express involved.  Amex requested the emails and communication and took the charge off her card.  I canceled the same trip due to the obvious uncertainty just before the 120 day period, about 30 days ago.  I hated to do it..as it was a big trip, but I had little trust that the ports would accept these Americans and that SeaDream would be forthcoming with port information and rule/restrictions.  They tried to entice us with future cruise credits, etc but we opted to cancel.  They told me 90 days to get my deposit back.  We will fight for the money through AMEX but we are doubtful we'll ever see it other.  It's been 30 days so far.  We've done 3 SeaDreams.  I'm worried they will go out of business.  I feel like many others, that the lack of information is really concerning.  I hope they make it through this.  I feel that if they communicated with their loyal guests we'd be more apt to book future cruises with them rather than hold on to our money.  

 

Amen - well said.  They needed to trust all of us who have been the mainstays of their customer base over the years.  We might have only cancelled this year’s voyages and waited on future ones, but the lack of communication, the changing offers of future credits, the new 90-day refund lag, and citing the closure of offices in Miami by the local government were all too much for us to stand pat and merely hope.

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I don't see a way they can execute a summer season even with re-positioning SD1 to Norway when it is running at half crew.  Wouldn't they need to bring more back staff from places like the Philippians/Thailand, and/or recruit/train new people, and/or cut amenities and quality?  Or maybe they could further transfer staff from SD2, and then mothball her somewhere cheap? Plus they fired 95% of their shore side team such that they can't even keep their website updated or reply to simple emails. 

 

So is it reasonable to see them sailing again before September/October at the earliest?

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