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FRED OLSEN CANCELLED ALL CRUISES Till 23 May 20


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Hi, was planning a cruise on Fred Olsen, but it seems now to be cancelled. Nothing wrong with their decision - but no information regarding my options... CMV is much clearer and offering full refund or an attractive future cruise credit of 125%! Fred Olsen on the other hand will contact the guests individually. So I am keen to know, which option Fred Olsen is offering to other forum members. 

 

 

You will know that, along with many other cruise and travel companies, we are facing challenging and unprecedented times at the moment.

With the ongoing situation with COVID-19, multiple port closures and the recent government advisory for cruise travel, we believe it is currently impossible for us to offer our guests the holiday experience that we promise.

We have therefore taken the difficult decision to pause our ocean cruise operations until 23rd May.

Our priority now is to get all existing guests and crew home as safely and comfortably as possible. Any subsequent itineraries will not go ahead once the current cruises have come to an end.

For the time being our river ship Brabant is not affected by the pause in operations and our season will commence as planned on 6th April.

We are aware that if you are sailing with us, you will have many questions about what this means for you and we will be in touch as soon as we can.

We are likely to be very busy in our call centre over the next few days. Please bear with us, there is no rush for you to make a decision. We are working very hard for you and promise that we will deal with each and every one of your questions as soon as we possibly can.

In the meantime, if you have internet access, our website is being updated constantly with answers to the questions we are receiving so please check fredolsencruises.com and you are likely to find what you are looking for.

This is not a decision we have taken lightly, so on behalf of everyone at Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, both at our HQ in Ipswich and on our ships, we are sorry for this short break in sailings and we look forward to seeing you back cruising with us very soon.

 

Guests who were booked during this time will be contacted separately by email and with a letter which will fully explain their options.

 

https://www.fredolsencruises.com/march-may-cruises

Edited by jaykayham
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This was announced about 3pm yesterday.  We had a phone call from our agent soon after who said Fred will contact directly.  Then got an email from Fred yesterday evening.  They are offering a future cruise credit for 125% as an alternative to the full refund you are legally entitled to.  We are taking the refund for reasons I have mentioned on another thread here (security of it + insurance problems re Corona virus if you re book).  Instructions were to email with a request for a refund, which we have done.  If booked through an agent letter may come via them. 

 

If Fred does not have your email address, chances are he will be writing, so will take longer to turn up.  I do not know what his priorities are but we had a cruise which was due to depart soon.

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13 hours ago, jaykayham said:

Thank you, can you explain the insurance problems re rebooking little bit more? Sorry, but I don't understand...

 

Actually I think the offer is re book + an extra 25% voucher.  AXA, (who actually run many of the policies for other organisations) has changed policies, so do not cover for cancellation or disuption due to Coronavirus if book now.  A travel expert on BBC yesterday also said you are not likely to get cover for it now.  They are expecting a second wave at some time, so we would not risk that.

 

Also it seems to be expected that some holiday companies will not survive, so could be problems in the future.  Some people who paid TC with a voucher were not able to get money back as they needed to prove they had paid with cash (a transfer could be OK though).  

 

So basically you claim the cash or take a bit of a gamble.  Looking at Fred's future cruises at present they are not cheap by any standards either and we think they may need to reduce in the future. 

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Thank you "tring" for taking time! ☺️

 

I found the exact same cruise one year later in the 2021-2022 season. I will try to convince Fred Olsen for a free re-booking (without fees and supplement) to this date. I think it is a win-win for both sides, I will keep my ABTA coverage and Fed Olsen my money (as the cruise is full paid in) as working capital. And finally, Fred Olsen will keep one more happy customer! 

Anyone from this forum has tried the same?

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1 hour ago, jaykayham said:

Thank you "tring" for taking time! ☺️

 

I found the exact same cruise one year later in the 2021-2022 season. I will try to convince Fred Olsen for a free re-booking (without fees and supplement) to this date. I think it is a win-win for both sides, I will keep my ABTA coverage and Fed Olsen my money (as the cruise is full paid in) as working capital. And finally, Fred Olsen will keep one more happy customer! 

Anyone from this forum has tried the same?

 

Each must make their own decision, but you would likely not be covered for any cancellation or disruption if due to Coronavirus next year - could check that with a phone call to your insurance company.

 

I do hope Fred survives though.

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So do I hope they survive ...very much so, but every instinct I have right now would be telling me to insist on a cash refund and not take a FCC, despite Fred (and most other cruise companies) offering a sweetener to keep your money. 

 

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Black Watch, Boudicca and Balmoral are now at anchorage in the Firth of Forth.   Other than the skeleton crew who will remain all board, all other crew are being transferred to Edinburgh Airport and the ships will receive support from local services.

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2 hours ago, showingdiva said:

Black Watch, Boudicca and Balmoral are now at anchorage in the Firth of Forth.   Other than the skeleton crew who will remain all board, all other crew are being transferred to Edinburgh Airport and the ships will receive support from local services.

 

Sensible to get the  crew back to their home countries while they still can given how world travel is closing down, I am sure they will all be pleased to return to their families under the current situation, even though they will be without jobs for a while.

 

I do feel for them though and hope all are OK in the future, whatever that will bring.

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8 hours ago, showingdiva said:

Braemar will be joining her three sisters in the Firth of Forth once she has returned to the UK.

 

I think she is more or less mid Atlantic now.  Do you have any knowledge of how the crew are, given more of them tested positive than passengers when the news broke?  I hope they are OK.

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3 hours ago, tring said:

 

I think she is more or less mid Atlantic now.  Do you have any knowledge of how the crew are, given more of them tested positive than passengers when the news broke?  I hope they are OK.

 

I don't sorry.   I work as a cruise port volunteer guide, and would ordinarily be in the final preparations for our cruise season, so know the ship movements.  

Hopefully they are all well now.

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  • 2 weeks later...

A cruise buddy and I were booked on Boudicca for 18th May.  After getting the e-mail, we found a cruise for June next year which we both thought was an ideal replacement.  With the extra 25%, we have got 9 nights next June instead of 7 nights this May for the same price.  The only difference is that this year's cruise included tips and all-inclusive drinks but next year it is tips and £75 per person obc.  We had already paid the full balance but both felt happy to take the risk that Fred Olsen won't fold and that the virus will be gone by June next year 🤞.

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Just a short update regarding my cancellation.

Fred Olsen customer service was outstanding and most helpful. For a rebooking fee of as little as 5GBP I was able to rebook the cruise for next year. On top for my loyalty,  I received a free cabin upgrade, tips included and all-inclusive drinks package. In the end, all the benefits combined are more worth than a free cancellation and new booking with 25% future cruise credit - as the cruise was already 25% more expensive than this year cruise. On top, I will keep my ABTA coverage and full refund protection if the cruise is cancelled again by Fred Olsen due to any unforeseen circumstances (like e.g. itinerary changes). I think all in all, Fred Olsen handled the situation very well and I am looking now forward to 2021! ☺️

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  • 2 months later...
On 7/6/2020 at 11:05 AM, portofrome said:

The web site says now cruises cancelled until September 9th. Still hoping for mine on 24th!

 

New update:

Cruises now cancelled until September 29th. Moved my Balmoral cruise to the Braemar on May 28th.

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12 minutes ago, Coravel said:

We have one booked to the Black Sea on September 1st so that will be cancelled too.  

You should get the cancellation email from FO very soon (mine arrived this morning).

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