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2021 Cancelation Policy


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We are coming up on the early payment in full date (qualifying us for the additional 2.5% discount) for January 2021 Miami to LA cruise.  Our concern is not whether the cruise will go as scheduled but what might Crystal's financial position be at the 151 days prior date, the final date we have to cancel and receive all our money back save for $200 admin fee (that becomes FCC).  The CC posts on lengthy waits for refunds - canceled cruises as well as shortened cruises - gives us some concern.  There is no 2021 amended policy (up to seven days with refund of monies and FCC).  Is anyone facing this issue who has made a decision?  I realize that each has a different calculus for making such a decision. 

 

For us, the decision is - 1) pay the remainder next week giving us a relatively small discount (less than $500) with a hard decision made 1 August to cancel or make the cruise or 2) make the decision August 1 to pay or cancel (losing the early payment discount.  We may not know what may happen between August and January but we are not risking 100% of our payments if Crystal fails between now and August.  We are leaning to eating till August forgoing the early payment discount.

 

I would appreciate hearing from anyone.  Are we considering this wrong?  What did I miss in my analysis?  Is anyone facing the same decision who has chosen a path.  Thanks.

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I'd vote for option 2. I have a cruise booked for Oct, 2020 and did not make an early payment. At the first of June I will have to make a decision. If not much changes between now and then, I'll probably cancel, get 75% of my deposit back and 25% FCC, which may or may not ever be useful.  If you've read my other post today, I'm not too hopeful about Crystal's future, but maybe that's just a result of being "locked" in the house for almost 3 weeks now!! Still waiting on my June cruise, rather hoping Crystal will cancel and I'll get all my money back. 😏

 

Patty

 

P.S. Life has been good and I've had a great ride if I never sail Crystal again! 😍

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I would also vote for option 2 if I were you. I have a cruise booked and fully paid for September this year. I have paid full before the Coronavirus crisis. I am not cancelling. I still hope I will be able to cruise, but I would not make an advance payment now in order to earn the early payment discount.

Ivi

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16 minutes ago, Texas Tillie said:

I'd vote for option 2. I have a cruise booked for Oct, 2020 and did not make an early payment. At the first of June I will have to make a decision. If not much changes between now and then, I'll probably cancel, get 75% of my deposit back and 25% FCC, which may or may not ever be useful.  If you've read my other post today, I'm not too hopeful about Crystal's future, but maybe that's just a result of being "locked" in the house for almost 3 weeks now!! Still waiting on my June cruise, rather hoping Crystal will cancel and I'll get all my money back. 😏

 

Patty

 

P.S. Life has been good and I've had a great ride if I never sail Crystal again! 😍

Patty, we are on the October cruise with you, in fact we are on the full 49 day version of the cruise.  We have fully paid for the cruise and do not plan on canceling.  We are confident that Crystal will not fail....really hoping they don’t fail.....praying that they do not fail!  
 

Our “strategy” is to wait and see if the cruise happens, if so we will go if not we will take the FCC and apply it to our 2022 World Cruise.  I obviously don’t want to lose my deposits but I look at it like the stock market and I am willing to accept any losses that occur.  I sincerely doubt that Crystal will be able to refund all cancellations at this time so it really isn’t much of a gamble.

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Texas Tillie said:

I have a cruise booked for Oct, 2020 and did not make an early payment. At the first of June I will have to make a decision. If not much changes between now and then, I'll probably cancel, get 75% of my deposit back and 25% FCC, which may or may not ever be useful. ...

 

We're in a similar situation with an Oct 2020 Crystal river cruise.  We decided against early final payment so it's now due 90 days before "first service" or July 2020.  We're going to decide whether to cancel at the >91 day mark.  At that point, if we cancel we wouldn't make final payment and we'd get a refund for all monies on deposit less $500 pp admin fee, which we'd get as FCC.  We hope, perhaps unrealistically, that the world has normalized by then and the river cruise will be possible, so we can apply FCCs from the recent cancellation of an Asia cruise.

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The Crystal team has been following this conversation. Please know that Crystal is taking both defensive and offensive measures to maintain its strong financial position and has the support of its parent company Genting Hong Kong as the company weathers this unprecedented global pandemic. Please find Genting Hong Kong’s financial statement here.

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Sending the financials is inadequate....Crystal needs to put out a definitive statement about their financial viability....Crystal ops are in a stand alone sub. Of Genting Hong Kong...Genting can cut them lose in any number of ways

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If you read the statement in the report it essentially says they are in hibernation state with most shipboard staff on furlough.  What do you expect them to say when the COVID-19 pandemic has no fixed end date. 

 

I feel more comfortable with Crystal than my upcoming Oceania/Regent cruises and the financial condition of NCL (or Carnival), especially if this eats into the summer cruise season.

Edited by PaulMCO
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We are in a similar situation.  We are booked on the 2021 World Cruise and have paid the substantial deposit.  We decided to wait rather than pay now the full amount due and get the 2.5% savings.  Instead, we'll see where we are in July and either cancel and get a refund (minus $500 per person administrative fee) or go forward.  I'm not sure if the Covid-19 will be gone by January when we are supposed to leave.  I've spoken to several friends who were planning on the 2021 WC and they have cancelled.  This is such a good itinerary.  We still have several cruise ships off the coast of Florida that haven't been able to disembark and I don't want to get into that situation in 2021.  

 

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49 minutes ago, Crystal Cruises said:

The Crystal team has been following this conversation. Please know that Crystal is taking both defensive and offensive measures to maintain its strong financial position and has the support of its parent company Genting Hong Kong as the company weathers this unprecedented global pandemic. Please find Genting Hong Kong’s financial statement here.

I am glad you are following this thread.   The decision for any of us, is as I said, uniquely different but as there is nothing from Crystal a Covid-19 cancelation policy change for 2021.  I am sure you understand - if we pre-pay everything next week we save a few hundred dollars.  Yes, we can cancel up to August but you have our money -- and we cannot use it for a purpose that may be more important.  And even if we cancel, we see from posts on CC (usually fairly accurate) that we may wait more than a month to see the money returned.  And if we pay if August, we lose more money every month or so if we decide to cancel after paying in full.  I read the Ghenting financial statement.  I read a number of company's financial statements.  Some accurately predict what the future holds.  Some do not.  

 

As many who post on this forum, we want Crystal to succeed.  We love the product and have many friends at sea on the crew.  And as many who post here, we have cruised with you many times (over thirty).  We are in unchartered territory and there is reason to believe that the cruise industry will suffer - too many ships, a population of seniors who have been watching ships ravaged by sickness that kills searching for a port and safe haven, and a crushing population that has seen their savings depleted.  One of our friends told us tonight that they were canceling as they did not want to be stuck on a ship.  

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While I agree with most that has been said, and I probably would not take advantage of the 2.5% discount, I believe that getting a cash refund may prove difficult.  Cash flow is king in business and particularly so when in survival mode.  All cruise lines will first do everything possible to survive and that dictates maintaining a positive cash balance as long as possible.  A lot of refunds would  deplete cash flow rapidly and put the future in jeopardy.  This could be similar to a “run on the bank.”
 

Crystal did reach out to us with their statement and I believe they were trying to assure us that they will survive and at the same time I believe they want to tamp down the urge we all have to cancel a cruise and get our refund.  We each have different reasons for our decision and I would encourage those that can to avoid the “run on the bank” with its possible adverse consequences.
 

 I am not a Crystal employee but I do have many employees working in my company.  I have to protect the company in adverse conditions and in the long run that is good for the company, the employees and the customers!  I am confident that this is Crystal’s strategy!

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A couple of posts here have alluded to the long processing time to get refunds, as if that somehow means Crystal is having cash flow difficulties. As a TA, I can tell you without hesitation that both Carnival Corp and Royal Caribbean International, who both dwarf Crystal, are also telling people that refunds will take 60 to 90 days to be received. For those who may not have looked, I would point you to the thread "Crystal & the Corona Virus", the last few pages, and the posts of BWI Vince for a comprehensive explanation of why that is.

 

We have a final payment coming up in July on Endeavor for a late October sailing. I have no concerns about Crystal's financial viability when the time comes to make that payment, but the four week shutdown of Meyer-Werft by the German government decree on non-essential business gives me pause. Also, since the itinerary is Bali to Cairns, I do have some very serious concerns about the viability of sailing in that part of the world in October. These will be the factors that affect our decision come final payment time in July.

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A very interesting thread which is even more relevant to me, as a passenger who is due a 50% refund for the 15th February sailing from Singapore.  I have asked my TA to apply that refund to my pre-existing booking on Serenity's Jan. 5th MIA to LA but haven't had any confirmation of this yet.  I do appreciate there are more immediate concerns for Crystal staff processing this.

 

I also have another booking - Barcelona to Quebec departing August 30.  Of course a lot depends on the Corona situation in Spain by then.  I am tending to hang on for now but I certainly won't be making any early payments for January.  But I'm going to have to think long and hard about accepting any refund offers.

Sandie

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What we expect Crystal to do is come out with a definitive statement covering what they intend to do on refunds should someone want to cancel...Also, a statement that their owner Genting intends to keep the line and will finance whatever short term needs are required 

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10 minutes ago, Golfer71 said:

What we expect Crystal to do is come out with a definitive statement covering what they intend to do on refunds should someone want to cancel...Also, a statement that their owner Genting intends to keep the line and will finance whatever short term needs are required 

Actually they have issued the statement regarding cancellations you mentioned.  Read their policy on cancellations!

 

 Even a sincere statement from Genting about the future would be meaningless at this time, no one knows where this is going.  If everyone cancels all of their booked cruises it is highly doubtful that Crystal and Genting would be able to survive!!  For the sake of everyone, especially the employees, let’s all hope this doesn’t happen.

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19 minutes ago, Golfer71 said:

What we expect Crystal to do is come out with a definitive statement covering what they intend to do on refunds should someone want to cancel...Also, a statement that their owner Genting intends to keep the line and will finance whatever short term needs are required 

If you go to the Crystal Cruises Home Page and click on their advisory alerts it brings up an entire section on cancellations and other related items.

 

https://www.crystalcruises.com/corona-virus-health-advisory/crystal-confidence-policy

 

The cancellation policy has been updated for 2020 and it is reflected in this section for Ocean, River and the Yacht.

 

It also has a section on the refunds noting they can take up to 90 days to process.

 

It also contains a section related to deposits for new bookings.

 

As to 2021 well that is the same as it was in terms of cancellations as is 2022.  Obviously that is always subjective to revision should the virus extend into later this year/into 2021.

 

There has also been communication from Tom Wolber and that is included in the section.

 

As to a Genting Statement not sure why it is needed and really what it would mean.  Either way companies throughout the world including tens of thousands in the USA are challenged right now and I haven't seen parent companies issue statements about their subsidiaries.  As noted in the information provided by Crystal on this thread Genting has taken many steps to reduce cost structure across its business to get through this challenging period.  There are no 100% certainties in life and businesses by the way have to be very careful what they say.  You asked earlier for some definitive statement.  I don't think any company could make such a statement other than to say they are doing everything possible to stem the tide during this challenging time. which has already been noted by Genting.  

 

I am afraid nothing related to the virus and its impact on business and our well being is definitive.   The length of the virus is not definitive.  It's ramifications are not definitive.  How many people get sick is or die is not definitive.  Whether we can rid it is not definitive.  If it does go away it is not definitive whether or not it would come back in the fall/winter.  The timing of a vaccination is not definitive.  When cruise lines will sail again, restaurants and hotels will open, schools will reopen, business will reopen is not definitive.  Wish it all was, but it would be a guess and many of those have already been wrong.

 

Keith

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All well and fine, but Genting is playing with Crystals reputation...I would suggest you carefully review Genting Hong Kong financials(not Genting Berhad)....Crystal is in a stand alone subsidiary with the shipyard....highly leveraged and the cruise ops have not been profitable the last two years and no doubt 2020 as well....Since they have interlocking management, it would behoove the big guys to make a statement about their commitment to the Crystal brand...

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Yes I have read the financials.

 

I don't see Genting playing with Crystal's reputation nor playing games nor do I think a "statement" is needed.

 

Crystal had several unprofitable years while under NYK.

 

Let us hope for everyone's sake (not just cruise lines but for most businesses) that we get past this Coronavirus.  Otherwise the concern won't be Crystal but the fact that the World's Economy could go into a deep depression.  No exaggeration.

 

Keith

 

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Every cruise line is and will have revenue issues.  Virtually all cruise lines have little diversification outside the leisure travel industry.  There will be casualties.  I appreciate the CEO's message although the timing coming a day after Crystal came up on this thread yesterday with a do not worry and here is Ghenting's message interesting.  I believe the CEO was honest but Ghenting cannot guarantee what will happen later this year., what sector needs money first, where is the risk or reward.  

 

I, as many most surely have, checked the wording on the Crystal web page before asking what others are thinking or may have done.  The difference between 31 December and 6 January is a week but the difference in what it may cost us is significant.  

 

I agree with Larry that the lengthy wait for refunds and FCC is not tied to Crystal's financial position.  However, there is no reason why, if they want us to pay in full eight months ahead, that they cannot get us a refund faster than 30 to 90 days.  None.  The charge shows up in one day on my bill.  We are two months into the new world and they should do better.  

 

We will wait till August and forget the 2.5% pay early discount.  That way, we know we will only have to wait 90 days for the down payment (25%).  

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23 hours ago, Crystal Cruises said:

The Crystal team has been following this conversation. Please know that Crystal is taking both defensive and offensive measures to maintain its strong financial position and has the support of its parent company Genting Hong Kong as the company weathers this unprecedented global pandemic. Please find Genting Hong Kong’s financial statement here.

Thank you for posting. I think it is important to receive reassuring communication from Crystal. There is too much speculation on this forum about your ability to continue in business. This is not good. Nobody knows how long this Coronavirus will take, but I wish you the best. I am looking forward to cruise with you again. I have three cruises booked and not cancelling.

Ivi

Edited by travelberlin
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19 hours ago, Roland4 said:

We have a final payment coming up in July on Endeavor for a late October sailing. I have no concerns about Crystal's financial viability when the time comes to make that payment, but the four week shutdown of Meyer-Werft by the German government decree on non-essential business gives me pause. Also, since the itinerary is Bali to Cairns, I do have some very serious concerns about the viability of sailing in that part of the world in October. These will be the factors that affect our decision come final payment time in July.

Roland, 

Per quote below, on another board,  you mentioned that Ontario would reimburse you for an "end supplier failure".  Is there comparable protection for Americans?

 

TICO (Travel Industry Council of Ontario), the travel regulatory body in the province of Ontario, covers "end supplier failure" of a cruise line (as well as airlines) under its protection fund. In the event of a failure you would file a claim under TICO and eventually get your money back. Not entirely sure it would cover 100%, been a while since I have looked at the regulations, but it does provide a level of protection.

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One needs to look at the balance sheet as well as income statement to determine the financial health of any company going forward. Crystal's balance sheet and income statements over the past few years have not been strong. However, we are told that privately held Genting, the parent company, will stand behind Crystal. If you trust Genting, no need to worry. Our group of 6 felt comfortable and trusted them until we found out from our travel agent that refunds for booked cruises would take "60 to 90 days." Upon hearing that, all of us immediately cancelled. Any company that cannot refund my money in less than 60 to 90 raises a huge red flag and does not warrant my trust and faith.

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5 minutes ago, commodoredave said:

One needs to look at the balance sheet as well as income statement to determine the financial health of any company going forward. Crystal's balance sheet and income statements over the past few years have not been strong. However, we are told that privately held Genting, the parent company, will stand behind Crystal. If you trust Genting, no need to worry. Our group of 6 felt comfortable and trusted them until we found out from our travel agent that refunds for booked cruises would take "60 to 90 days." Upon hearing that, all of us immediately cancelled. Any company that cannot refund my money in less than 60 to 90 raises a huge red flag and does not warrant my trust and faith.

 

Just out of curiosity, which cruise lines are currently NOT quoting 60-90 days as a general guideline?  This is n industry-wide crisis, not a Crystal-specific issue.  I I'm hearing most cruise lines are still processing almost all refunds in 15-45 days from actual stories (including Crystal), but almost all cruise lines have had periods in the past month where the volume backlogged was projecting well over the old 30 day standard -- hence the 60-90 day expectation being set.

 

Vince

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