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When and how will you book your next cruise?


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In the future, when and how will you book your next cruise?

 

As of now, any cruises I take will be booked much, much closer to the actual sail date.  For instance, I am researching a thirteen-day Viking Ocean cruise out of London that departs in March 2021.  If the ports are expected to be open and I believe it is safe to go I plan to book January 2021, two months before departure.  I will book directly with Viking, the airline, and hotels.  If the sailing is sold out, I will most likely choose a land-based vacation, not necessarily visiting the same destination.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, HUNKY said:

In the future, when and how will you book your next cruise?

 

As of now, any cruises I take will be booked much, much closer to the actual sail date.  

 

Same here.

 

I'm sitting on a MSC FCC. Have not seen the FCC yet. Will not rebook until I have been issued the FCC. Will not put down cash for a deposit until I am very sure that the cruise will proceed.

 

My thinking is that cruises will safely resume in Europe first. Their epidemic is under control except for UK, Sweden and Russia. These places will not be on my itinerary. 

 

In any case, the big question is when the EU will reopen its borders to the Americas. Now, the regions with the biggest number of infected.

Edited by HappyInVan
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We will book when there's a vaccine in use worldwide and the travel and cruise experience returns to normal.  

 

We will book with the companies that have stepped up and issued timely refunds on the trips that were cancelled this year - whether cancelled by them or by me as a result of things beyond my control.

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We received a casino offer that was a free inside cabin (we pay port fees/ taxes and insurance), free gratuities, free OBc, free drink package and wifi - so we jumped on it, paid extra to upgrade to Balcony cabin.  This is for April 2021.  Had to pay everything up front even though we are still waiting for our refund.  Total was around $1,050.  

I will watch in the future for anything that is within a window of 60 days of cruise leaving.  

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We have our future cruises booked through May 2022 and will continue to book our cruises as soon as any new ones are released that strike out fancy. 
 

We see no downside to booking early, especially if you can cancel at any time for a full refund of your deposit prior to the final payment due date. 

Edited by Ken the cruiser
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19 minutes ago, SargassoPirate said:

We will book when there's a vaccine in use worldwide and the travel and cruise experience returns to normal.  

 

We will book with the companies that have stepped up and issued timely refunds on the trips that were cancelled this year - whether cancelled by them or by me as a result of things beyond my control.

 

Totally agree.....and we will be doing more land based vacations in the States and in Europe....Princess will probably never have us as customers again no matter how things turn out....I would never trust getting on one of their ships now because of their track record with COVID-19 and also their incessant lying about refunds.  Says a lot about a company's corporate culture.

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We will book our next cruise when we know what the post covid on board environment will be, when we assured that ports and venues in those ports are open to cruise ships, and when we feel it safe from a health perspective to book.  Not before.  We would not even consider booking now given these unknowns and the state of the industry.

 

We will book as we book most cruises. Inside the final payment window, a week to six weeks out and we will book through an on line TA.   We have about four extended land trips at the top of our bucket list...when travel commences.  That covers two years.  We do not even have a thought at this point in time at considering a cruise as part of any of them, which is something we usually do.

Edited by iancal
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13 minutes ago, iancal said:

We will book as we book most cruises. Inside the final payment window, a week to six weeks out 

Do you have to compromise on cabin location ? Having said that I suppose we might place to much emphasis on location. I assume you always get a good price ???

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Ombud said:

I've already booked next year with my FCC

Can FCC be used for Deposit ?

BTW we are having mixed emotions, hoping for a return to normal and thinking of Fall 2021.

 

Oh, and PrincessLuver are you going to change your login ID ??????

Edited by Tedferg
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we will be watching the anticipated Carnival start-up 8/1 … see how / if that goes … our deposit date , so far, mid Sept for a late Nov cruise ,  next cruise after that , not until 12/2021

 

will consider booking something in between if the first one is a no-go … usually look online, do a temp hold, then contact my crack PVP - which may be fired by then … not real happy now about a re-fare 

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We won’t book anything until there is a clear picture of what life on board will be.I can’t imagine having to wear a mask on board, or even social distancing on board, so we probably will not cruise until they come up with a real vaccine, not a makes me feel safer vaccine like our fearless leader takes.

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34 minutes ago, Tedferg said:

Can FCC be used for Deposit ?

BTW we are having mixed emotions, hoping for a return to normal and thinking of Fall 2021.

 

Oh, and PrincessLuver are you going to change your login ID ??????

Not exactly. I had 434.32 stuck in refund processing but had been in a bucket that I used + 100 on it's way back to FCD. The 2 cruises needed the full amount as deposit but because insurance on a cruise fare paid entirely with FCC is only $39 I've now overpaid those cruises. 1 will come back as $262, the other will just be more OBC. 

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Really wanting to redo our Alaska cruise in 2021 but not ready to put out the deposit money yet. Cheapest balcony cabins (we need two) would be $800. Won't book anything less than a balcony ever again after all this. 

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4 minutes ago, rocklinmom said:

Won't book anything less than a balcony ever again after all this

totally to the max agree … 

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12 minutes ago, rocklinmom said:

Really wanting to redo our Alaska cruise in 2021 but not ready to put out the deposit money yet. Cheapest balcony cabins (we need two) would be $800. Won't book anything less than a balcony ever again after all this. 

That's a great price for a balcony! My rear balcony is just north of 6000 for 3 before FCC (10 days. Will only be 2000 once all those pesky FCC get over). So I think if it as 2000

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Posted (edited)

Tedferg....the only thing we consider booking is a balcony and above.   We only buy if the price is right.  Typically we will follow three ships on three cruise lines having a similar itinerary.  When our price hits we book.  If we are in middle of an independent land trip we are somewhat ambivalent.  If we snag one fine, if not that is fine too.

 

So far we have been more that pleased with our cabin assignments. On HAL,  and Princess it has typically been gty, on Celebrity and RCI  half the time we have had a gty but within a specific balcony category.  Never had a bad cabin, had some very pleasant surprises on Celebrity and once on Princess with extended balcony cabins.

 

Edited by iancal
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iancal, thanks for the update, this could be a thread on its own, We tend to book early, typically take an Aft balcony because they are cheaper and watch for price drops. Have never had an upgrade so always stayed with original choice. I really enjoy checking hotel, air prices and excursion opportunities. So the whole 'cruise / air / hotel / excursions' is an event for me. I suppose you are sure to be on the ship no matter what and possibly more than one cruise could marry up with air / hotel and private excursions. So maybe I could do my planning and still be confident of landing the cruise.

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I won't be booking any cruises until 1)  Princess refunds all funds owed to me, 2) a vaccine is available, and 3) I have some assurance that life on the ships will be somewhere near where it was, in other words I don't have to wear a mask and stay 6" away for all others on the cruise.  Elimination of the buffet and usage of common items at the dinner table are certainly acceptable.

Edited by TM
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Tedferg...since retiring and having no firm schedule we tend to book independent land stays anywhere from a day to three days in advance.  Earlier if we know the accommodation.   Air is either one way or open jaw.  I came from an environment of frequent and scheduled business travel.  Now we just bounce around where ever we want and make changes along the way.  It is not for everyone....you do have to be flexible and go with the flow sometimes.  We have been doing this for the past 8-9 years.

Edited by iancal
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One problem I've had with one-way tickets is that a lot of countries will throw a huge fuss unless you have an exit plan in place... and some will even fuss about that if you don't have a "home" flight at the end of a process.

 

Singapore got upset with me recently (pre-COVID) when I was travelling on a US passport with one-way tickets taking the route of US-Philippines-Singapore-Taiwan-??? booked, when it really shouldn't matter to them where I go after I leave.

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Our first time in Costa Rica a few years ago was on a one way ticket.  We found out from a few other regulars sitting around the pool at the condo that this is sometimes enforced and said that we were fortunate.  The next  trip we arrived by bus from Panama but was not asked for any proof of departure.   We have done 5 winters in SE Asia.  Thailand says they want evidence of a departure ticket but we have never been asked for one.   We very seldom go anywhere on a return ticket.  Invariably we are departing to a destination or county that is not the same as the country we arrived from.  Last time we went to Singapore we definitely did not have a departure air ticket.   Luck of the draw I guess.

 

Having said than, now we do take the time to check just in case we across some new officious person on the job who wants to see all the boxes ticked!

Edited by iancal
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Posted (edited)

When?  when it is safe to go, as to when is when. For me personally it won't be till 2021 at the earliest I think that it would be sanely safe!

 

How?  as I always have thru my big box membership TA

 

 

Edited by chipmaster
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