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MudderBear

Wish they would offer those who cancelled....

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Posted (edited)

The same cruise at the same price and amenities that we had to cancel for this year for the same period next.  If they offered it to me right now for 2021, I'd rebook in a heartbeat.  But, alas, I guess they've considered that internally and passed on the thought.

Edited by MudderBear

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And you think things will be cheaper next year? Their costs, salaries, etc, won't go up? Yes, there might definitely some sales to get people to travel again. Look for those instead.

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35 minutes ago, CruiserBruce said:

And you think things will be cheaper next year? Their costs, salaries, etc, won't go up? Yes, there might definitely some sales to get people to travel again. Look for those instead.

Consider that the cruise lines have been handing out large future cruise credits like candy.  In accounting terms these are "accounts payable" and essentially a liability.  The cruise lines are also bleeding cash at a rate unprecedented in the industry.  So as this situation stabilizes, the cruise lines will need to again ramp up operations, find a way to attract customers who fear being stuck on a prison ship, and also recover from the financial loses by increasing revenue.  They will likely do this by raising prices which, in a sense, minimizes the value of all those future cruise credits.  Of course the higher prices will be an additional barrier to many...who will look for lower cost options such as land travel.  For the cruise lines this all equals an economic nightmare and it is going to take some very skilled management to survive the next few years.

 

When our April Westy cruise was cancelled, HAL quickly refunded all of our money and gave us a nice future cruise credit.   We quickly booked a similar cruise on the Noordam for next year.  The cost was about the same as we had paid for the Westy, but only because we applied the FCC we had received from HAL.  Will HAL be able to attract new bookings at higher prices?  

 

Hank

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Posted (edited)

This world emergency was no  fault of any company and they are losing  quite enough business and money now,    they should not be expected to take such a 'hit' going into next year IMO   If we cruisers  can afford to buy cruises , it is up to us to fund our fuure cruises  IMO    Why should HAL bear the whole finanical burden?  Customers should  'eat'  some of it   No one forces  us to b uy cruises.  There are times, th  rproblerm   lies  t a thecompany's  feet    but  NOT this time, IMO

 

Edited by sail7seas

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My same cruise, next year, BEFORE the crisis was $2,000 more.  That's a big bite.  

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52 minutes ago, sail7seas said:

This world emergency was no  fault of any company and they are losing  quite enough business and money now,    they should not be expected to take such a 'hit' going into next year IMO   If we cruisers  can afford to buy cruises , it is up to us to fund our fuure cruises  IMO    Why should HAL bear the whole finanical burden?  Customers should  'eat'  some of it   No one forces  us to b uy cruises.  There are times, th  rproblerm   lies  t a thecompany's  feet    but  NOT this time, IMO

 

Agree.  But the challenge for HAL, and the other cruise lines, is to resume operations as soon as possible, and fill their ships with passengers.  Unfortunately, cruise vacations are "price elastic" which means that higher prices or costs will have a negative impact on the sale of berths.  While some of us might be willing to pay more to cruise, many others will not.  In fact, when the financial markets take a dive, folks see their net worth decrease and become more cautious how they spend money.  The economists who work for the cruise lines fully understand these issues, but that does not necessarily translate into a solution that will keep the lines afloat.

 

Hank

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We just rebooked our "rebooked" cruise with the present promo and got SBP, grats, and 2 specialty dinners for everyone with no change in fare (note I did not say "free", TANSTAAFL). I estimate it is  a $500 benefit per adult and a $300 per kid. 

We also rebooked our March 2021 under the same promo and estimate a $1000+ total benefit for our family. As always I will monitor the fares and make changes down the road if it is a good move but the monitoring and rebooking fares game is pretty standard operating procedure for most of us. 

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3 hours ago, MudderBear said:

The same cruise at the same price and amenities that we had to cancel for this year for the same period next.  If they offered it to me right now for 2021, I'd rebook in a heartbeat.  But, alas, I guess they've considered that internally and passed on the thought.

 

25 minutes ago, MudderBear said:

My same cruise, next year, BEFORE the crisis was $2,000 more.  That's a big bite.  

 

My thoughts, in no particular order:

 

1.  Depends. Do you want to just score a cheap(er) cruise or do you want HAL to remain a viable company going forward?  Everyone cannot have their cake and eat it too. At some point the rubber hits the road and the costs of all these refunds and maintaining idle ships has to be paid by someone.

 

2.  Is next year's cruise exactly the same in terms of amenities, days, etc. and still $2k more? Or is it part of an amenity-heavy deal that is inflating the price?

 

3. The current price isn't written in stone -- don't prices tend to fluctuate depending on sales, promotions, etc.?

 

 

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I agree... my cruise is now de facto canceled through no fault of my own. (It isn't canceled by HAL yet, but it has to be since I don't see Canada reopening its ports before July 1.) I realize it isn't their fault either, but if they have to cancel rather than me, I expect to be made whole, which would either be a full cash refund (which hasn't been offered yet, only FCC) or the same cruise next year (which at this point is $300 more per person and comes with none of OBC/dining/internet perks that my current reservation has).


I realize this has been a significant hardship for the travel industry, but by the sound of it they're about to get a bailout, whereas their customers aren't.

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I agree.  It’s so much more next year. Some resorts are matching price if rebooked following year.  I wish cruise line would do that too.  

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On 3/25/2020 at 7:44 AM, MudderBear said:

The same cruise at the same price and amenities that we had to cancel for this year for the same period next.  If they offered it to me right now for 2021, I'd rebook in a heartbeat.  But, alas, I guess they've considered that internally and passed on the thought.

 

We go to Alaska pretty regularly.  We have NEVER paid whatever price we initially booked at, and I encourage you to keep checking prices and promos.  Don't expect anything spectacular for price or promo right now (I suspect they are too busy with IMMEDIATE things to think about things in the future) but keep checking.

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d .. amhasppyh forf you tgo haved reookfd again

On 3/25/2020 at 1:11 PM, fatcat04 said:

We just rebooked our "rebooked" cruise with the present promo and got SBP, grats, and 2 specialty dinners for everyone with no change in fare (note I did not say "free", TANSTAAFL). I estimate it is  a $500 benefit per adult and a $300 per kid. 

We also rebooked our March 2021 under the same promo and estimate a $1000+ total benefit for our family. As always I will monitor the fares and make changes down the road if it is a good move but the monitoring and rebooking fares game is pretty standard operating procedure for most of us. 

 

 

Fatcat , I've  lost track of what  cruise    you 'b ooked','   I aam hpppy you have rebooked again and hope you get to go to whereevr it is you keep   booking 

 

 

so  Which cruise is it .  to WHere?

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, sail7seas said:

d .. amhasppyh forf you tgo haved reookfd again

 

 

Fatcat , I've  lost track of what  cruise    you 'b ooked','   I aam hpppy you have rebooked again and hope you get to go to whereevr it is you keep   booking 

 

 

so  Which cruise is it .  to WHere?

 

 

 

Thank you Sail.

 

We had been booked on NA for this past week (Western Caribbean 7 day) but cancelled earlier this month when they made penalty free cancellations available due to it being a 3 generation cruise and our moms were at risk. In the end, the cruise was obviously cancelled but we are happy we cancelled when we did as the stress and worry was just too much.

 

We rebooked at that time for the same itinerary only on Zuiderdam for the week of New Years. Since making the Zuiderdam booking HAL released a promo that made that cruise even better so I emailed our PCC and she switched us to the promo. We also found the promo enhanced our March 2021 11 day on NS as well for only a small fare increase. 

 

Edited by fatcat04

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Rebooking or repricing is simply part of our travel life.  We generally do not ask our cruise agent to do this unless the savings are hundred or thousands of dollars, but it is rare that we will not reprice any cruise.  This is our routine for every cruise line.  Having booked far more then 100 cruises over forty+ years our repricing record was on a long Oosterdam cruise where we saved over $10,000 with a single repricing.  One friend of ours saved over $12,000 on a Princess booking after we suggested he "talk to his cruise agent."  My favorite cruise agent has no problem handling these price change requests, but she does moan about some of her clients who will ask for repricing to save less than $100.

 

Hank

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It is not just the cruise cost.  Many people live close to a port.  Some of us have to fly to a port, which greatly increases the cost.

And then, to be safe, fly in a day early and pay for a hotel room.   Our canceled RCCL cruise is refunding us our full payment, but Delta is not.  They are offering our family an eticket that can, currently, be used up until Dec 31.  Those will probably not be used by anyone in our family, so that is money "lost".

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23 minutes ago, teacherman said:

It is not just the cruise cost.  Many people live close to a port.  Some of us have to fly to a port, which greatly increases the cost.

And then, to be safe, fly in a day early and pay for a hotel room.   Our canceled RCCL cruise is refunding us our full payment, but Delta is not.  They are offering our family an eticket that can, currently, be used up until Dec 31.  Those will probably not be used by anyone in our family, so that is money "lost".

The air thing is a major mine field that is a big topic on some air blogs.  If I had directly purchased air from Delta, I would not now cancel if they were only offering a voucher.  If Delta were to later cancel that flight, and they have cancelled many future flights, you would usually be entitled to a full refund.  So most folks would generally delay cancelling, and accepting a voucher, until they absolutely must cancel.  It is a waiting game, but once you make a decision to cancel you lost many of your rights.  

 

The air becomes even more complicated if you have booked through the cruise line...   Your options depend on whether you booked Flex Air or restricted air and whether the air has actually been ticketed by the cruise line.  If you bought a Flex Air deal then your air is not normally ticketed until about 45 days prior to embarkation and it is possible to simply cancel and get a complete refund.  But those folks who had asked the cruise line to ticket early are probably screwed and may have to settle for a voucher, possibly pay change fees, etc.  Many experienced travelers have advised, for years, to never request early ticketing but there are some cruisers who ignored us because they worried about seat assignments.  Some of those folks are now paying a heavy price for that early ticketing.

 

Hank

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35 minutes ago, teacherman said:

Our canceled RCCL cruise is refunding us our full payment, but Delta is not.  They are offering our family an eticket that can, currently, be used up until Dec 31.  Those will probably not be used by anyone in our family, so that is money "lost".

 

In reality this is a risk that people choose to take by not purchasing the more expensive "refundable" fares.  Or buying insurance that covers these contingencies.

 

This pandemic is not the fault of the cruise lines, and IMO they should not be expected to do anything other than refund monies spent on the specific cruise you booked with them. They are not required to guarantee the same price for the cruise at a later date, as that would be considered a different product.

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Posted (edited)

Cruise pricing goes up and down over time.  People complain on a regular basis when fares go up, or when they go down in the final payment window.    

 

One question.  Would those who want the same fare be willing to accept that as a non refundable price, ie they could would not be permitted to re-price if prices dropped  outside the final payment window prior to their departure?

 

We would always prefer a cash refund over a credit regardless of the incentive.  Too much uncertainty in the industry going forward.  Not to mention the general price competitiveness of the industry.  And who really knows what cruise lines will be in business six months from now.

Edited by iancal

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40 minutes ago, iancal said:

Cruise pricing goes up and down over time.  People complain on a regular basis when fares go up, or when they go down in the final payment window.    

 

One question.  Would those who want the same fare be willing to accept that as a non refundable price, ie they could would not be permitted to re-price if prices dropped  outside the final payment window prior to their departure?

 

We would always prefer a cash refund over a credit regardless of the incentive.  Too much uncertainty in the industry going forward.  Not to mention the general price competitiveness of the industry.  And who really knows what cruise lines will be in business six months from now.

The issue of refundable vs nonrefundable deposits/fares has long been part of a any booking strategy for those of us who play the game.  Just this past week there was another major price drop on our booking for an August Princess cruise.  We e-mailed our favorite cruise agent and instructed her to again reprice that cruise, but not obligate us to any additional nonrefundable deposits.  She was able to do it and save us another $1000. without increasing our current deposit.  If we had instructed her to look at non-refundable options she could have saved us about $1200 by agreeing to boost our deposit by $600 and make it nonrefundable.  In good times we would have done the nonrefundable option, but now, we want to keep our cancellation options open since that August cruise and land trip is a big question mark.

 

Another advantage to having a good cruise agent vs dealing direct with any cruise line is that our agent works for us....not the cruise line.  She is sharp and understands the daily dynamics and what is generally best for her clients as opposed to the cruise line.  The sad thing is that it now means planning for cancellations which is not normally in our DNA.  Out of approximately 150 cruise bookings we have only cancelled twice....once for a death in the family and once for the unexpected arrival of a new grandson.  My cruise agent once joked that she has some clients who cancel more cruises in a month then we have cancelled in over 40 years.   But nobody alive has ever faced a time such as this.

 

Hank

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Posted (edited)

We have only ever cancelled one trip.  Eighteen months ago.  Our first guided tour ever.  It was to China.  DW had a medical issue and was advised not to fly and not to be in an area where specialized medical care was not quickly available.

 

The decision to cancel and take the loss was very easy.   Certainly when compared to what might happen otherwise.  A month later we discovered that our premium credit card included coverage for exactly this.

 

 We have been more than a little surprised reading on this forum about those with potentially serious medical issues  or travel issues taking cruises to areas where they would be at serious risk because of location or facilities.

 

 Ditto for those who apparently  chose to board a cruise ship against  the best advice of medical and health professions not to do so.  Worse still...those who did so and then blamed others for the

predicament of their own making.

Edited by iancal

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14 minutes ago, iancal said:

We have only ever cancelled one trip.  Eighteen months ago.  Our first guided tour ever.  It was to China.  DW had a medical issue and was advised not to fly and not to be in an area where specialized medical care was not quickly available.

 

The decision to cancel and take the loss was very easy.   Certainly when compared to what might happen otherwise.  A month later we discovered that our premium credit card included coverage for exactly this.

 

 We have been more than a little surprised reading on this forum about those with potentially serious medical issues  or travel issues taking cruises to areas where they would be at serious risk because of location or facilities.

 

 Ditto for those who apparently  chose to board a cruise ship against  the best advice of medical and health professions not to do so.  Worse still...those who did so and then blamed others for the

predicament of their own making.

We can actually find a little humor in your last paragraph.  Our family physician, who has been our Doctor for over thirty years, is a golfer...and not a traveler.  He has never supported us living in Mexico for ten weeks a year and has long been critical of any cruise.  In both cases, besides being about his personal likes/dislikes, he thinks both cruises and Mexico involve medical/safety risks that are unnecessary.  This has long been a fun issue between us, but there has also been some degree of seriousness to his opinion.  Ironically, his problem with cruising is that he has always thought of ships as an incubator of all contagious diseases.  You can be sure he would never sign a note saying anyone, at any age, is fit to cruise!  He is retiring in a couple of months and I suspect his DW will eventually get him on a cruise.

 

Hank

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Posted (edited)

Our son and his G/F were/are holding tickets for a trip to Italy.  Of all places Northern Italy.

 

Yes, they are left with a credit and hope they will be able to use it.   Neither of them are overly concerned about the credit.  At the end of the day it is only money.  They are just so very thankful that they were not in Italy when the virus issue erupted. 

 

And no, they are not wealthy.  One is a grad student, the other a contract worker.  But they have perspective.  Health, safety, and well being trumps a vacation all day long, every day.l

Edited by iancal

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We have unfortunately had to cancel several trips for various reasons, but fortunately most times insurance has covered us.   I realize this is unprecedented but I am amazed by those who don’t have travel insurance.  Acquaintances just took a huge hit on non refundable business class air. 

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On 3/25/2020 at 12:11 PM, fatcat04 said:

We just rebooked our "rebooked" cruise with the present promo and got SBP, grats, and 2 specialty dinners for everyone with no change in fare (note I did not say "free", TANSTAAFL). I estimate it is  a $500 benefit per adult and a $300 per kid. 

We also rebooked our March 2021 under the same promo and estimate a $1000+ total benefit for our family. As always I will monitor the fares and make changes down the road if it is a good move but the monitoring and rebooking fares game is pretty standard operating procedure for most of us. 

I don't see that HAL is offering a SBP perk.  Was that from your TA? 

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