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Cancelling Cruises because of the C word


davemorton
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8 hours ago, davecttr said:

It could be that going anywhere in a week or two will be discouraged, especially on a cruise ship.

When the first ship comes back to Southampton carrying even 1 passenger or crew with symptoms and is anchored off the IOW and not allowed to dock... That's when it will really hit home and something will have to be done... 

Andy 

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18 hours ago, Denarius said:

Exactly. But sadly we are not. My concern is that as the situation develops it appears quite likely that those of us over 70 will be advised by the government to avoid crowds, which would rule out cruising. It would be foolish to ignore such advice, but taking it would result in a financial loss which increases the nearer you get to sailing. If P&O were to emulate Princess and state that under such circumstances the non refundable part of the fare would be credited in full to future bookings, I might be inclined to wait and see. But P&O show no inclination to do so, as befits a company which is still advertising short notce bookings on their website with a picture of Florence in Italy.

The U.S. Center for Disease Control has just told older adults to avoid long trips and to not cruise now.  Lovely as I'm booked for an 8 week trip to U.K. which includes 3 cruises--one Fred Olsen, one CMV and lastly one P&O.  All fully paid for and U.S. travel insurance companies saying they will not cover Covid-19 as a reason for cancelling.

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Gazroberts80 -  I won't quote your post as it is a long one but thank you so much for your very well reasoned and balanced views on the current situation.  Your background provides you with some insight.  

I agree the spread of the virus on board a ship with the best will (and procedures) in the world is never likely to be contained - well it will be on the ship but not from spread between passengers.  There is too much potential for contamination and transmission.

We have decided  to cancel our next cruise and look forward to enjoying our cruises in the future.  We are fortunate that we haven't yet paid in full but it is due.  Disappointing but minimising risks seems to us the way to go.

Many of those who have already paid are understandably very concerned and in the light of recent advice about not travelling on cruise ships for the time being, make P&O's lack of response all the more reprehensible.  

Edited by kruzseeka
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10 hours ago, cruisenewbie1976 said:

 

Not if you believe some of the stories coming from Grand Princess. 

I was talking about the Royal Princess where they have cancelled the cruise, returned all their money and given them a 100% credit for a free cruise when all of this over. P&O won’t even let you cancel and give you your money back!

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8 minutes ago, AndyMichelle said:

When the first ship comes back to Southampton carrying even 1 passenger or crew with symptoms and is anchored off the IOW and not allowed to dock... That's when it will really hit home and something will have to be done... 

Andy 


I have assumed, maybe naively, that an ex-UK round trip cruise, if affected as you describe, would return to the UK early and passengers would be taken to a quarantine location within the UK. The hospital in Wirral would probably be full, so I suspect that we would be sent to a location where we would feel at home, maybe Butlins’😉 By the time we get to the phase where it is widespread and difficult to avoid, I guess we would return to the UK and be asked to self isolate at home. Fine if you have a private car at Southampton (as we do) but more of a challenge if you have traveled by coach, train or plane I guess. 

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For some time now, P and O have been cutting back on the facilities they provide for their cruises. Although P & O suits my budget, I have become increasingly unsatisfied with their cutbacks.  If they continue to refuse to treat their passengers with respect and adjust their cancellation policy it may be the final straw for me

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Earlier in this thread, at least one poster was referring to big price drops of P&O cruises which, due to the very high levels of cancellations, wouldn’t have surprised me. I also received a marketing email from P&O’s biggest UK cruise specialist the other day referring to big price drops. However, having spent some time looking at these ‘offers’ (and also the cruises we are booked on) I cannot see any really cheap cruises. Many are Saver fares, so if you factor in the loss of OBC that many of us received with Select fares the ‘saving’ isn’t worth the risk of getting a cabin in a poor location - so situation normal. I also looked at the price per night for balcony cabins and suites of these ‘offers’ and they are no better than we usually achieve by booking at launch. Am I missing something or are the bargains on inside cabins, which nobody wants at present for fear of being confined to one?

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Just seen this on another site

 

travel.state.gov/content/tra...2EgWiKr6B0EseM

Passengers on Cruise Ships

U.S. citizens, particularly travelers with underlying health conditions, should not travel by cruise ship. CDC notes increased risk of infection of COVID-19 in a cruise ship environment. In order to curb the spread of COVID-19, many countries have implemented strict screening procedures that have denied port entry rights to ships and prevented passengers from disembarking. In some cases, local authorities have permitted disembarkation but subjected passengers to local quarantine procedures. While the U.S. government has evacuated some cruise ship passengers in recent weeks, repatriation flights should not be relied upon as an option for U.S. citizens under the potential risk of quarantine by local authorities.  

This is a fluid situation. CDC notes that older adults and travelers with underlying health issues should avoid situations that put them at increased risk for more severe disease. This entails avoiding crowded places, avoiding non-essential travel such as long plane trips, and especially avoiding embarking on cruise ships. Passengers with plans to travel by cruise ship should contact their cruise line companies directly for further information and continue to monitor the Travel.state.gov website and see the latest information from the CDC: cdc.gov/quarantine/cruise/index.html.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Tablelamp said:

I am embarking on a cruise on 17th May. I am 78 and have pre existing medical conditions. Including high blood pressure and COPD.  I am wondering whether to contact my doctor now, or wait a while and see what happens. My balance is fully paid.  Any advice or suggestions would be very welcome.


I would suggest you are in a similar position to many of us.

 

I am sure your GP would write such a letter and would certainly do so if Public Health England issue specific advice to “At Risk” groups to minimise situations in which they find themselves in large gatherings.

 

I would hold firm on claiming on your insurance as I would hope as the situation progresses P&O will be forced to change their cancellation policy, especially if the travelling party contains people over a certain age. This would likely allow you to transfer your booking to a later date, in either 2020 or 2021. 
 

Obviously if they don’t move on their policy a Doctors note could be used to reclaim your money on your travel insurance. 
 

I think the next 2-3 weeks will provide clarity on policy changes and if it doesn’t then I would recommend pursuing the route of securing a Doctors note and claiming on your insurance. You still have 6 weeks before you sail, so you have time on your hands to see if/how the cancellation policy changes over the next 2-3 weeks. 
 

 

Edited by Gazroberts80
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59 minutes ago, Selbourne said:


I have assumed, maybe naively, that an ex-UK round trip cruise, if affected as you describe, would return to the UK early and passengers would be taken to a quarantine location within the UK. The hospital in Wirral would probably be full, so I suspect that we would be sent to a location where we would feel at home, maybe Butlins’😉 By the time we get to the phase where it is widespread and difficult to avoid, I guess we would return to the UK and be asked to self isolate at home. Fine if you have a private car at Southampton (as we do) but more of a challenge if you have traveled by coach, train or plane I guess. 

Do you not think the UK might not take the American approach and leave the ship floating until everyone is tested? 

Also, we have a few ships repositioning soon, so not just round trips from Southampton... 

With the exception of us cruisers, nobody would want more of the virus being brought in... 

Andy 

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39 minutes ago, Vampiress88 said:

Just seen this on another site

 

travel.state.gov/content/tra...2EgWiKr6B0EseM

Passengers on Cruise Ships

U.S. citizens, particularly travelers with underlying health conditions, should not travel by cruise ship. CDC notes increased risk of infection of COVID-19 in a cruise ship environment. In order to curb the spread of COVID-19, many countries have implemented strict screening procedures that have denied port entry rights to ships and prevented passengers from disembarking. In some cases, local authorities have permitted disembarkation but subjected passengers to local quarantine procedures. While the U.S. government has evacuated some cruise ship passengers in recent weeks, repatriation flights should not be relied upon as an option for U.S. citizens under the potential risk of quarantine by local authorities.  

This is a fluid situation. CDC notes that older adults and travelers with underlying health issues should avoid situations that put them at increased risk for more severe disease. This entails avoiding crowded places, avoiding non-essential travel such as long plane trips, and especially avoiding embarking on cruise ships. Passengers with plans to travel by cruise ship should contact their cruise line companies directly for further information and continue to monitor the Travel.state.gov website and see the latest information from the CDC: cdc.gov/quarantine/cruise/index.html.

 

 

That is the game changer.  I know this is a PO part of the forum but the 3/4 day cruises out of Miami etc might as well tie up for the summer.

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25 minutes ago, Gazroberts80 said:


I would suggest you are in a similar position to many of us.

 

I am sure your GP would write such a letter and would certainly do so if Public Health England issue specific advice to “At Risk” groups to minimise situations in which they find themselves in large gatherings.

 

I would hold firm on claiming on your insurance as I would hope as the situation progresses P&O will be forced to change their cancellation policy, especially if the travelling party contains people over a certain age. This would likely allow you to transfer your booking to a later date, in either 2020 or 2021. 
 

Obviously if they don’t move on their policy a Doctors note could be used to reclaim your money on your travel insurance. 
 

I think the next 2-3 weeks will provide clarity on policy changes and if it doesn’t then I would recommend pursuing the route of securing a Doctors note and claiming on your insurance. You still have 6 weeks before you sail, so you have time on your hands to see if/how the cancellation policy changes over the next 2-3 weeks. 
 

 


I think you are correct. Somewhere at the back of my mind is the thought that I entered into a Contract with P and O.  If for whatever reason, P and O cancel / amend the cruise, they will have broken the Contract and must refund.    
 

I don’t think it is a matter for my insurance Co.  unless I choose, on my Doctor’s advise to cancel.  Am I being too simplistic?  

 

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Thanks Gazroberts80 for your post

 

for information here is the text of the CDC second paragraph 

 

This is a fluid situation.  CDC notes that older adults and travelers with underlying health issues should avoid situations that put them at increased risk for more severe disease.  This entails avoiding crowded places, avoiding non-essential travel such as long plane trips, and especially avoiding embarking on cruise ships.

 

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13 minutes ago, AndyMichelle said:

Do you not think the UK might not take the American approach and leave the ship floating until everyone is tested? 

Also, we have a few ships repositioning soon, so not just round trips from Southampton... 

With the exception of us cruisers, nobody would want more of the virus being brought in... 

Andy 


I was only referring to round trip cruises from Southampton Andy (which both of ours are) but, to answer your question, no, I don’t think we would be left floating. The Diamond Princess situation proved that quarantine on a cruise ship causes the virus to spread like wildfire and I think that the political fallout and constant TV imagery of a cruise ship with many elderly UK residents floating off the Isle of Wight would be enormous, especially as it is highly likely that deaths could occur. At the moment, only a minuscule proportion of the UK population has the virus. If predications are correct, in a few months time it will be widespread and attitudes and policies will be different. It seems as though we are already at the end of the ‘contain’ phase.

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Just now, Selbourne said:


I was only referring to round trip cruises from Southampton Andy (which both of ours are) but, to answer your question, no, I don’t think we would be left floating. The Diamond Princess situation proved that quarantine on a cruise ship causes the virus to spread like wildfire and I think that the political fallout and constant TV imagery of a cruise ship with many elderly UK residents floating off the Isle of Wight would be enormous, especially as it is highly likely that deaths could occur. At the moment, only a minuscule proportion of the UK population has the virus. If predications are correct, in a few months time it will be widespread and attitudes and policies will be different. It seems as though we are already at the end of the ‘contain’ phase.

I would like to agree with you Selborne regarding quarantine onboard ship, but so far there is no sign that local authorities are willing to change their attitude and allow docking and safe disembarking home for self isolating, which IMO is the best way to handle outbreaks on cruise ships.

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2 minutes ago, terrierjohn said:

I would like to agree with you Selborne regarding quarantine onboard ship, but so far there is no sign that local authorities are willing to change their attitude and allow docking and safe disembarking home for self isolating, which IMO is the best way to handle outbreaks on cruise ships.


You’re right John, but we have yet to have a UK based ship hit problems on a UK round trip itinerary (other than the odd port change). Although UK passengers are affected, they have so far been in far flung places, so it’s not had to be a UK government call. I think that the optics would be very different in the scenario that I describe. 
 

As if the potential for a Coronavirus outbreak wasn’t enough to make many of us reconsider whether or not to go ahead with our cruises, we now have a stock market crash (down 8% this morning, making a total drop of almost 25% in recent weeks). I’m sure that I won’t be alone in thinking that cancelling a cruise will help offset some of my losses!

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7 minutes ago, Selbourne said:


You’re right John, but we have yet to have a UK based ship hit problems on a UK round trip itinerary (other than the odd port change). Although UK passengers are affected, they have so far been in far flung places, so it’s not had to be a UK government call. I think that the optics would be very different in the scenario that I describe. 
 

As if the potential for a Coronavirus outbreak wasn’t enough to make many of us reconsider whether or not to go ahead with our cruises, we now have a stock market crash (down 8% this morning, making a total drop of almost 25% in recent weeks). I’m sure that I won’t be alone in thinking that cancelling a cruise will help offset some of my losses!


confused? What do you mean losses

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11 minutes ago, Selbourne said:


You’re right John, but we have yet to have a UK based ship hit problems on a UK round trip itinerary (other than the odd port change). Although UK passengers are affected, they have so far been in far flung places, so it’s not had to be a UK government call. I think that the optics would be very different in the scenario that I describe. 
 

As if the potential for a Coronavirus outbreak wasn’t enough to make many of us reconsider whether or not to go ahead with our cruises, we now have a stock market crash (down 8% this morning, making a total drop of almost 25% in recent weeks). I’m sure that I won’t be alone in thinking that cancelling a cruise will help offset some of my losses!

I’m sitting tight, they’re only paper losses at the moment. I’m also looking for a few bargains, it’s getting the timing right which is the tricky bit. Given a little time I’m fully expecting the market to recover all of its lost ground and the paper losses will disappear... hopefully.

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23 minutes ago, Vampiress88 said:


confused? What do you mean losses


Financial losses due to the fall in the stock market, so that affects anyone with shareholding’s or a defined contribution private pension (which most now are). 

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20 minutes ago, Les_ldh said:

I’m sitting tight, they’re only paper losses at the moment. I’m also looking for a few bargains, it’s getting the timing right which is the tricky bit. Given a little time I’m fully expecting the market to recover all of its lost ground and the paper losses will disappear... hopefully.


You are of course correct that they are paper losses until you need to sell, but I bet that many retired folk draw down savings to pay for big expensive cruises, many of which will be stock market based. History does indeed show that markets recover, but the scale of the fall in recent weeks (now officially a ‘bear’ market as falls of over 20% in a matter of weeks) is bound to affect short term spending habits, I would think. 

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It’s getting near:

 

Posted at 9:489:48

UK hospital staff member tests positive

A healthcare professional at University Hospital Southampton, UK has tested positive for coronavirus. They are now in isolation at home. 

The staff member worked a single nightshift in the surgical high dependency unit on 6 March. 

Patients and staff who came into contact with the staff member have been informed and will be isolated, the hospital said. 

The high dependency unit has been closed to new admissions. 

The hospital said all other services are operating normally.

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17 minutes ago, Selbourne said:


You are of course correct that they are paper losses until you need to sell, but I bet that many retired folk draw down savings to pay for big expensive cruises, many of which will be stock market based. History does indeed show that markets recover, but the scale of the fall in recent weeks (now officially a ‘bear’ market as falls of over 20% in a matter of weeks) is bound to affect short term spending habits, I would think. 

Very true. I am in the fortunate position of not having to draw down yet, but I realise that some don’t have that choice. Todays chaos on the markets has been caused directly by the Russians refusing to play ball with the oil market and wouldn’t surprise me if they did it on purpose to destabilise western markets... time will tell. Anyway that’s enough of politics, let’s hope the current situation is short term and we can all soon get back to enjoying our cruises.

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1 hour ago, Selbourne said:

As if the potential for a Coronavirus outbreak wasn’t enough to make many of us reconsider whether or not to go ahead with our cruises, we now have a stock market crash (down 8% this morning, making a total drop of almost 25% in recent weeks). I’m sure that I won’t be alone in thinking that cancelling a cruise will help offset some of my losses!

20% for me as of now.  Not particularly concerned, though, because I've been through much the same situation several times before and the worst possible thing has always been to sell.  Sticking has always proved the right approach for me.

 

I take your point about the impact on purchases of cruises though.

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