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Cruising during Hurrican Season


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Hello all,

We are taking a chance this year and are sailing in late September. We are going on the Navigator and sailing the eastern Caribbean. I know that this is still hurricane season. Has anyone cruised RCCL during hurricane season with any problems? What is the weather is really bad? Does the ship go elsewhere or do they postpone the trip? I'm hoping there will be no problems, but you just never know. Any weather-related advice is much appreciated! TIA!

 

Jenni

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We have had 12 cruises during hurricane season, and we have been so lucky, never had a problem. The weather is beautiful in the Carribbean barring major storms. If there is a hurricane, ships can and will sail around them. You may have a little rough sailing for a period of time (always one of my favorites--call me strange). There are also times when you may not be able to sail ontime as has happened recently.

 

Don't worry, buy insurance and enjoy....

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Jenni, we just cruised this past September with no problem. Don't let the season stop you. You can get some very good prices for that time. If the weather does get bad, the ship may change the itinerary so don't get upset with that. If you book an eastern for example you may wind up doing a western or simply have extra sea days. In any event, you will be safe and best of all, you'll be on a ship.

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We cruised this past September (the week of Labor Day)...our first cruise during hurricane season. We were on the Caribbean Princess and the water was very rough! Nothing like when we had cruised in January previously. The CB is a huge ship, holds over 3,500 people and the ship was tipping front to back 7-10 feet solid for the last 3 days. We didn't get sick, but I can see how a lot of people did. The water was so rough that when we went to the Princess Cays (similar to coco cay) they had to keep the side thrusters on to keep the ship in place to tender...they also cut the day short by several hours because of the rough water. The Captain took us around on the other side of the Bahamas the last day so that the water wouldn't be as rough. We had a great cruise, but I doubt we will cruise that time of year again. We didn't spend any less for our room than if we had gone in January. Just not worth it to us.

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We sailed on the Mariner in October at the same time Hurricane Wilma was beating down Mexico's door. We were on the eastern itinery which was not affected except that all the western cruises joined us in the east for that week. So the ports were a little busy. But it was all fine. At one point Captain Johnny told us we may have to stay out to sea an extra day because forcasters put Wilma in Florida on Sunday (the day we were due back in to Port Canaveral). He kept us well informed and in the end we were able to dock in time because Wilma slowed down. The next cruise left early though so that they could get out of harms way with plenty of time.

 

Usually, if there is a hurricane in the area you are sailing they will change the ports. Your cruise will be cancelled or shortened only if the hurricane is in the state that you are departing from or if the previous cruise has been delayed at sea.

 

Make sure you have trip insurance and have a great time. I personally feel that taking a cruise vacation is the safest during the hurricane season because the captain has the option of changing course and allowing you to enjoy your relaxation on board at least. (I know many honeymooners in Cancun or other parts of Mexico who spent almost their whole honeymoon shacked up in a shelter at the same time that we were on our honeymoon cruise having a wonderfully romantic time)

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Hello all,

We are taking a chance this year and are sailing in late September. We are going on the Navigator and sailing the eastern Caribbean. I know that this is still hurricane season. Has anyone cruised RCCL during hurricane season with any problems? What is the weather is really bad? Does the ship go elsewhere or do they postpone the trip? I'm hoping there will be no problems, but you just never know. Any weather-related advice is much appreciated! TIA!

 

Jenni

 

My number 1 advice is to try and go down to Miami a day ahead of the ship sailing. That way if there are any airline schedule problems, you will hopefully be able to make your ship. My husband and I are going down two days early because it is September. I want to know I am at least in Miami. :)

We have sailed at least 10 times in Hurricane season and will do so again in September on the Navigator. You have to be prepared to miss ports, change course and things like that. Mother Nature does not always let people plan ahead.

My other advice is to plan to have a good time, know that RCCL will try to keep you safe and out of harms way by sailing away from, or around a storm. The ship we will be on is so large that it can withstand bad weather. Just plan to enjoy being on a ship no matter where it takes you.

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What are the chances of a hurricane that late in the season???

 

http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/archive/2005/GAMMA.shtml

http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/archive/2005/DELTA.shtml

http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/archive/2005/EPSILON.shtml

http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/archive/2005/ZETA.shtml

 

:eek::eek::eek::eek:

 

LOL don't worry... have a blast!

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I speak from experience. It's no problem if you're out to sea -- the ship will take a different route, steer clear of the hurricane, etc. But, it's a real problem if you aren't on the ship -- but instead are in Miami waiting for the ship to come in. We had to fly into the path of Hurricane Jeanne two years ago because Jeanne was set to hit Miami on Saturday and the Navigator was to leave Miami on Saturday. RCCL didn't give anyone the option to re-book until late Friday. By then, of course, we were already in Miami and had spent a great deal in airfare to get our group there from the West Coast. There was no turning back for us. Insurance would not cover our airfare if we had chosen to re-book the cruise (when RCCL finally gave the option) and fly home, since we'd used 1/2 of our air tickets.

 

We had to hunker down in Miami and wait for the hurricane to hit. I went out and stocked up on food, water, flashlights, batteries, etc. Fortunately, Jeanne didn't hit Miami square on. But, the NOS was kept out to sea two more days -- great for those on board. Not real neat for those of us who had our 7-day cruise cut to 5. We did receive a $500 per cabin credit for the missed days. Insurance covered our hotel rooms for the two nights we were delayed.

 

But, overall is was not fun -- way too stressful to be caught in Miami with a hurricane bearing down -- not knowing if we'd have to evacuate inland, not knowing if we'd get a hotel room if we did, etc. And, given what we saw with Katrina and Wilma this year -- I'd think long and hard before cruising in hurricane season again. Note that hurricane season starts June 1 and usually ends Nov. 30, though it lasted clear through Dec. this year.

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Well, back in 2002 my wife and I were on a cruise and we skirted hurricane Michelle. We had 27 Ft. seas and the ship rocked pretty good. My wife got sick one night, but then took bonine, and from then on, she felt fine. We were booked in Sept. of last year, and hurricane Rita changed our plans, we were supposed to leave out of Galveston just when the hurricane hit the Texas, La. border. Needless to say the ship didn't make it in to port, so we missed that cruise. Royal Caribbean of course gave us credit, and we just got back this last Sunday from the cruise we took in place of this. One other cruise we took in fall, we couldn't anchor in Grand Cayman because of high seas, so we went to Belize instead. Don't want to scare you, but you will be taking a chance. If you can be a little flexible with your plans, the rates are sure attractive enough to make it worth your while. We have booked four cruises in the fall, never had any problems until this last fall.

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Just booked the Radiance for November 5, 2006 :D Wooo hooo!

What are the chances of a hurricane that late in the season???

 

Well, they're predicting that it's going to be pretty good. We got rerouted this last year on a 10/28 cruise on Grandeur because of Wilma. After we got home, there were several more tropical "events" if I remember correctly lasting all the way into December. Who knows, I wouldn't sweat it.

Wraithe

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In 2004 (?) Hurricane Charley was approaching Florida and the Sovereign left the port SEVERAL HOURS EARLY at the request of the Coast Guard. Lots of folks missed the ship.

 

Our TA called our cells first thing in the AM to be sure we were on time. Luckily our group had left the evening before (by car) and planned to arrive at the dock around 11 AM so we had no problem.

 

I guess the moral of the story is to plan to arrive early. Those on same day flights never made it as the airports closed early the day of the cruise.

 

I will add that after sail away - the seas were perfectly calm.

 

We often take a 3-day during hurricane season and have only had this one instance of concern.

Have fun

Marci

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We are apparently in a period of heavier than normal hurricanes. This year will most likely be like the previous two before it. As a resident of FL I will tell you that September is the "busiest" month for hurricanes but we had a storm out in the Atlantic at the beginning of Jan 2006. Unfortunately the storms don't always know that there is a season :D

 

If you get a good price and are adventursome I say go for it. If you will be totally devastated if your itin is altered or your trip shortened/lengthened than I would say stay away from the carrib. between mid August and the end of October.

 

Just my 2 cents

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We'd only been affected by hurricanes at our home, not at sea until last Dec, after hurricane season officially ended! Hurricanes are now in "normal" cycle, meaning more often and more severe...possibly for 10-30 years. The ships will always avoid the hurricanes, but that means longer cruises for some and shorter cruises for others...sometimes it even means leaving from one port and returning to another. Our cruise left Dec 3 and went to the southern caribbean--we missed St Kitts and almost missed St Lucia because of storms kicked up by the last hurricane of the season way off in the Atlantic. It did make for a real fun ride on the Brig Unicorn in St Lucia. If you don't cruise during hurricane season, invest in the company that makes blue tarps...we Floridians are using a lot of them!

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Hurricanes are a part of my life living on FL since i was a baby! I agree with what the others said. You may miss a port ot get your cruise lenghtened (sp?) or shortened bu a day or 2. The one undisputable thing to do is buy travel insurance, hell most TAs include this as a booking perk now-a-days. This is my 2nd time on this ship, there is so many things to see and do aboard her, you wont mind if you did end up missing a port.

 

BTW when in September are you sailing? If you are doing Navigator, Easten, late in the month you are probally on our sailing. We have a roll call started, just click on my ticker below.

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We're sailing the Navigator July 1st and are a little concerned but figure what the heck, longer at sea days or more at sea days? We can take that. Hopefully not a shortened cruise though. Anyone know if first part of July is really bad or just the beginning and hopefully we'll be lucky????

 

Sue

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We're sailing the Navigator July 1st and are a little concerned but figure what the heck, longer at sea days or more at sea days? We can take that. Hopefully not a shortened cruise though. Anyone know if first part of July is really bad or just the beginning and hopefully we'll be lucky????

 

Sue

 

Early July should be ok for you. Typically the season doesn't kick into high hear until August. The water just seems to not be warm enough to support a storm. Of course there are always exceptions but I think you will be ok.

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We actually sailed into a hurricain on the Enchantment (a smaller ship by comparisson). The winds were over 100 mph. It was in October. The higher you got on the ship, the more people were sick due to motion. It lasted for days and room service had a 7 hour wait :eek: ! I am not one to get motion sickness, so I was fine. Motion pills did help everyone else in my family. There was alot of brocken dishes and people rolling out of be. It left us with some interesting stories. We have traveled in hurricain season for years and this was the only time we got caught. As you can see though, we are not afraid to try again... We are on the Sept. 30th sailing of the Navigator. That being said, do not expect any kind of compensation from RCCL if your number of ports change (and scheduled ports). This is the risk that you take for the cheaper fare.

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:mad: We were on the Carnival Conquest when Katrina hit. We left from NO and ended up in Galveston.:mad: That place is ugly. Any ways. We were very fortunate the fist few days of our trip. The weather was great. We didn't know that a hurricane was brewing. It wasn't until Friday when we pulled into Cozumel port that we heard Katrina was going to strike some where along the Gulf Coast.

On Friday night the captain thought he would try and out run the satorm and get us back to NO. That didn't happend. Sometime during the night the coast guard had closed the mouth of the Mississippi. The boat began to rock...hard.

We were actually part of the lucky few passengers that didn't have any transportation issue when we got to Galveston. We had booked our air, hotel and cruise all through Carnival. Carnival were the ones that spent countless hours rearranging flights for passengers that bought air tickets through them. This didn't cost anything..$$$$$ A group of people that we were traveling with spent two days in-line at the internet cafe trying desperately to make new travel arrangements. The new plane tickets cost over $1000.00 for four people one way to Chicago. When they got back home thier travel insurance re-imbursed them but still needing to come up with that kind of money at the end of a vacation.:(

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You are not strange. I too enjoy rough sea days-people tend to stay in their cabins more so you have more room on deck, in the casino, etc. I will be sailing at the end of August & this will be my third time sailing at that time of year & have no problem with it.

 

Sandi

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The prices are usually good for August, September and October for cruises and you should not worry as the ship won't go near any storm, just be prepared to miss ports as others have said. We would cruise that time of year due to the low prices, but I feel like I need to be home those months just in case there is a hurricane and I need to prepare the house for the storm and evacuate.

I agree with everyone else........... get the insurance!

 

mercedesmom2002 - you should be fine the first week of July. :)

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