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Will COVID-19 sink the cruise industry?

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Posted (edited)

TA email this morning that our cancelled March and June2020 sailings monies have been successfully transferred to March and June 2021 sailings. For some reason they refunded deposits instead of applying ?? Now just have to hope all is clear with second wave. What happens with monies if covid still around next year without vaccine, will cruise lines allow the $7000 on each to be FCC again if we decide in Dec that March is too iffy?

P.S. I guess we will just have to cross that bridge when we get to it.

Edited by rattanchair
P.S.

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On 5/26/2020 at 5:58 PM, rattanchair said:

The only  proposed sailings starting  this summer are outside the US. Perhaps there is a possibility that all US home based cruise ships will have to be re-flagged as US, like the one Princess has for the Hawaii market. Either that or cruise from home based Caribbean ports instead of US ports. If re-flagged, the cruise lines will have more stringent laws to comply with. Maybe it would be cheaper in the long run to just acquiesce to CDC 'suggestion' in the no-sail-order of cruise industry providing itself with 3 vessels, one for quarantine, a second as a hospital, a third for hospital staff and transfer vessels between ships. They are probably 'crunching' the numbers still. Push will come to shove if and when the no-sail-order is extended. A game of 'chicken' since these are foreign flagged vessels. The US does not want a repeat of the cost and spread of contagion caused by the Diamond Princess. It wants that any plague  will be contained out at sea and not brought back to the US, regardless of whose citizens are on board.

P.S. US citizens "caveat emptor".

This should not be a huge problem. The cruise lines can purchase small, old vessels for their hospital and quaratine ships -- kind of like the supply ship model. Or some third party can start this as business and offer the service to all cruises line by region. 

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On 5/27/2020 at 11:16 AM, rattanchair said:

TA email this morning that our cancelled March and June2020 sailings monies have been successfully transferred to March and June 2021 sailings. For some reason they refunded deposits instead of applying ?? Now just have to hope all is clear with second wave. What happens with monies if covid still around next year without vaccine, will cruise lines allow the $7000 on each to be FCC again if we decide in Dec that March is too iffy?

P.S. I guess we will just have to cross that bridge when we get to it.

We've managed a cash refund for our cancelled river cruise in June, and for deposits on a TA in October, and a Japan cruise next March. We are not counting on a safe cruise until at least mid-summer 2021.

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I've started a new discussion thread on CC as per above that you may be interested in. I'd certainly like to hear your views.

Thanks. 

 

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I listened to Allan Joyce CEO of QANTAS talking about the loss of 6000 jobs from the airline.  He made an  interesting observation that he did not expect International flights to recommence until July 2021.  It raises serious questions about cruise lines and travel agents still taking bookings for 2020 and early 2021 cruises when it is becoming increasingly unlikely people will be able to join a cruise that requires an international flight.  It is about time major players in the industry took a reality check.  I have been told by my travel agent that  I will loose $650 of an $800 deposit if I cancel.  This is the case, even though they have been unable to book the flights for my March 2021 Dubai to Barcelona booking. These flights should have been Booked back in May.  I even tried to negotiate transferring the deposit to a domestic package but the agent was not interested.  When things return to normal I will be taking my travel business elsewhere and I hope some operators start thinking about life on the otherside instead of burning bridges with their current customers.

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On 6/25/2020 at 4:30 AM, Bron62 said:

I listened to Allan Joyce CEO of QANTAS talking about the loss of 6000 jobs from the airline.  He made an  interesting observation that he did not expect International flights to recommence until July 2021.  It raises serious questions about cruise lines and travel agents still taking bookings for 2020 and early 2021 cruises when it is becoming increasingly unlikely people will be able to join a cruise that requires an international flight.  It is about time major players in the industry took a reality check.  I have been told by my travel agent that  I will loose $650 of an $800 deposit if I cancel.  This is the case, even though they have been unable to book the flights for my March 2021 Dubai to Barcelona booking. These flights should have been Booked back in May.  I even tried to negotiate transferring the deposit to a domestic package but the agent was not interested.  When things return to normal I will be taking my travel business elsewhere and I hope some operators start thinking about life on the otherside instead of burning bridges with their current customers.

Bron62, the big cruise lines recently pushed back restarting their operations until September 15, and even that is ambitious, so you may not be far off with a July 2021 restart for most cruise lines. Although, as I reported in my recent blog post, smaller lines that fall under the CDC passenger limit for sailing in US waters plan to open sooner, although those that embark/disembark outside of the US may have challenges with international airlift. 

As for cruise lines that impose greedy cancellation policies, the travelling public may have a longer memory than cruise executives think. And those who have not yet booked, would be silly to book a cruise before July 2021 with a cruise line with unfriendly cancellation policies.

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Cruise ships are meant for constant use and maintenance. Idle ships are a waiting disaster. Anyone who has had a boat in the water knows it’s a hole to throw money in! The plumbing will rot from lack of use. Salt water and air will corrode everything. Mold is likely. Bed bugs likely. Rust is inevitable. Something that is full and running everyday and being maintained is going to rot very quickly while idle for months and months. Many older ships are going to be scrapped. Skeleton staff onboard can only do so much. Restructuring is inevitable. Financial decisions are coming soon and the future is bleak. I love cruising and have enjoyed over 40 but these companies are in a terrible position.

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On 7/8/2020 at 10:16 AM, cementhands said:

Cruise ships are meant for constant use and maintenance. Idle ships are a waiting disaster. Anyone who has had a boat in the water knows it’s a hole to throw money in! The plumbing will rot from lack of use. Salt water and air will corrode everything. Mold is likely. Bed bugs likely. Rust is inevitable. Something that is full and running everyday and being maintained is going to rot very quickly while idle for months and months. Many older ships are going to be scrapped. Skeleton staff onboard can only do so much. Restructuring is inevitable. Financial decisions are coming soon and the future is bleak. I love cruising and have enjoyed over 40 but these companies are in a terrible position.

Cementhands, you are absolutely correct as this story by Bloomberg News confirms: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-07-08/coronavirus-travel-what-happens-to-cruise-ships-during-covid-19?srnd=premium

I owned a cabin cruiser that was left idle every summer in Florida when I returned to Canada after a lovely warm winter. Each December when I returned the boat had problems caused by being idle. It was an expensive lesson. Now I rent boats instead of owning!!

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