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20 hours ago, Baron Barracuda said:

Have seen 25+ years of X marketing gimmicks come and go.

 

In near term with fewer ships and reduced loads AI makes business sense.  Increases revenue pp/pd and soaks up a lot of fcc's.

 

In a year or too though, once business normalizes, tough competition will return to the cruise industry and X will need to adjust in order to remain competitive.  

 

 

I agree with Baron Barracuda completely. As I think I have mentioned before, this AI marketing program, if fine tuned to include choices, is no different than the past programs.  1-2-3-Go or Good-Better-Best or all of the names used before.  AI will be useful or not to Celebrity- and time will tell.  It is a program.  If it does not fill the ships at the price they want -or need- it will be changed or abandoned.  If it does not fit your needs tell them with your wallets.  

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15 hours ago, Happy Cruiser 6143 said:

 

I understand that.  If the free Zenith cruise still exists under the new regime.  That was not a big motivation to me.  I was more looking forward to booking cruises without having to worry about whether or not they included any "perks," since the "perks" were included for Zenith.  And although I am not fond of the "new, improved" Michael's Club, that was a good place to meet people.

Can anyone please tell me where X has said that there will be no “perks”going forward for CC members? I understand the impact of the new pricing program on those benefits, but as far as I know, X has not yet spelled out what the perks of the revised CC program will be, if any.

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I have been following this thread through its various discussions of over-drinking, over-use of WIFI, cost of suites, marketing pros and cons and with/without perks pricing. Here is my ego-centric self-involved opinion. I have an upcoming cruise next November which we booked this past July. Our booking included CBP, gratuities, unlimited WIFI and $450 OBC (I am leaving out the extra $200 OBC that X gave us to make up for the non-refunded taxes and fees on our last Covid shortened cruise). When pricing out the same cruise under the new AI pricing structure in a cabin that is one category below the one we booked (to allow for the 1 category Captains Club upgrade) the cost is DOUBLE what we paid, and includes only the CBP, gratuities and the unlimited WIFI (which is the surf only, so lesser value) with no OBC. While I understand the tremendous strain under which the cruise lines are trying to maintain operations, that is not my selfish concern. I must make a decision about what I am, or am not willing to pay for my vacation. From my own perspective, I am not willing to pay double and receive less. I don't presume to tell X what they should do. I realize that once cruising resumes they (and most other cruise lines) will be operating ships at reduced capacity and many, if not most of the passengers will be using FCCs that were issued at 125% of the original payment for at least much of the first year of resumed operations. The basis of my decision is to answer a selfish question. How am I going to spend my vacation dollars to maximize the value to me?

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26 minutes ago, Luvcrusn said:

I have been following this thread through its various discussions of over-drinking, over-use of WIFI, cost of suites, marketing pros and cons and with/without perks pricing. Here is my ego-centric self-involved opinion. I have an upcoming cruise next November which we booked this past July. Our booking included CBP, gratuities, unlimited WIFI and $450 OBC (I am leaving out the extra $200 OBC that X gave us to make up for the non-refunded taxes and fees on our last Covid shortened cruise). When pricing out the same cruise under the new AI pricing structure in a cabin that is one category below the one we booked (to allow for the 1 category Captains Club upgrade) the cost is DOUBLE what we paid, and includes only the CBP, gratuities and the unlimited WIFI (which is the surf only, so lesser value) with no OBC. While I understand the tremendous strain under which the cruise lines are trying to maintain operations, that is not my selfish concern. I must make a decision about what I am, or am not willing to pay for my vacation. From my own perspective, I am not willing to pay double and receive less. I don't presume to tell X what they should do. I realize that once cruising resumes they (and most other cruise lines) will be operating ships at reduced capacity and many, if not most of the passengers will be using FCCs that were issued at 125% of the original payment for at least much of the first year of resumed operations. The basis of my decision is to answer a selfish question. How am I going to spend my vacation dollars to maximize the value to me?

Your assumption that the cost difference is because of the AI pricing might not be correct.  Pricing has gone up significant prior to this change.  It may be because if Supply and Demand caused by the shut down and cancelled cruises.  Or did you check the pricing right before the AI pricing change?

for many years I have see price increases on cruises after I have booked.  Some hard to believe pricing at times.

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2 minutes ago, jagoffee said:

Your assumption that the cost difference is because of the AI pricing might not be correct.  Pricing has gone up significant prior to this change.  It may be because if Supply and Demand caused by the shut down and cancelled cruises.  Or did you check the pricing right before the AI pricing change?

for many years I have see price increases on cruises after I have booked.  Some hard to believe pricing at times.

You make a fair point, but I check pricing often on upcoming cruises routinely (several times per week) and the difference noted in my post reflects the difference from pre and post AI pricing.

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46 minutes ago, Luvcrusn said:

I have been following this thread through its various discussions of over-drinking, over-use of WIFI, cost of suites, marketing pros and cons and with/without perks pricing. Here is my ego-centric self-involved opinion. I have an upcoming cruise next November which we booked this past July. Our booking included CBP, gratuities, unlimited WIFI and $450 OBC (I am leaving out the extra $200 OBC that X gave us to make up for the non-refunded taxes and fees on our last Covid shortened cruise). When pricing out the same cruise under the new AI pricing structure in a cabin that is one category below the one we booked (to allow for the 1 category Captains Club upgrade) the cost is DOUBLE what we paid, and includes only the CBP, gratuities and the unlimited WIFI (which is the surf only, so lesser value) with no OBC. While I understand the tremendous strain under which the cruise lines are trying to maintain operations, that is not my selfish concern. I must make a decision about what I am, or am not willing to pay for my vacation. From my own perspective, I am not willing to pay double and receive less. I don't presume to tell X what they should do. I realize that once cruising resumes they (and most other cruise lines) will be operating ships at reduced capacity and many, if not most of the passengers will be using FCCs that were issued at 125% of the original payment for at least much of the first year of resumed operations. The basis of my decision is to answer a selfish question. How am I going to spend my vacation dollars to maximize the value to me?

You booked your cruise in July. I am sure that many other bookings have also been made for the last 4-5 months for your sailing. The algorithm X uses raises the prices as inventory is sold, so the price would have gone up.

My experience was different than yours. I booked a B2B a couple of weeks before X came out with their new pricing. My TA checked last weekend and the AI pricing was exactly the same as what I already booked, so changing to AI was a no brainer.

When comparing existing bookings to the new AI pricing, everyone’s experience will vary depending on when they booked, and how close to a predetermined capacity the ship is. Personally, I would not use that comparison as a way to determine perceived value for future bookings. Only you can answer your question.

Edited by C-Dragons
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12 minutes ago, jagoffee said:

Your assumption that the cost difference is because of the AI pricing might not be correct.  Pricing has gone up significant prior to this change.  It may be because if Supply and Demand caused by the shut down and cancelled cruises.  Or did you check the pricing right before the AI pricing change?

for many years I have see price increases on cruises after I have booked.  Some hard to believe pricing at times.

 

You're right!  We've been checking prices for the 4 different X sailings we've had booked for over a year and the pricing went way up months ago on all of them and has not changed much, if at all, since the introduction to AI....  

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12 minutes ago, Luvcrusn said:

You make a fair point, but I check pricing often on upcoming cruises routinely (several times per week) and the difference noted in my post reflects the difference from pre and post AI pricing.

Thanks for the follow up/clarification.
 I am not sure what surprises me more.  


1.  That a cruise that you booked in July with the Best package had not significant gone up in price in November.

2.  Or that the change adding the AI pricing doubled the price of the cruise.

 

It is good to have a real life example. Are you sure that you did not make some kind of calculation mistake?

Edited by jagoffee
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I'm sure this has been answered but it would take me an hour to go through every post.

 

If the base fare is $999/person, are alcohol gratuities included or do you pay it separately?

If the base fare is $999/person, are alcohol and internet tax included or do you pay it separately?

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The bottom line is just that. What am I willing to pay out of pocket for a vacation. It's like putting a price on anything that is being sold. Any item is only worth what someone is willing to pay. Each of us will answer that question differently based on perceived value.

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32 minutes ago, NutsAboutGolf said:

I'm sure this has been answered but it would take me an hour to go through every post.

 

If the base fare is $999/person, are alcohol gratuities included or do you pay it separately?

If the base fare is $999/person, are alcohol and internet tax included or do you pay it separately?

When booking AI the cruise fare includes CPB Surf Internet and Tips.   Yes taxes are included and yes gratuities on drinks are included.

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Can I add that for the UK the price for AI has actually fallen. I was following prices for a couple of months before booking and was planning to add drinks and grats anyway. On the base price this would have cost me £300 ($390) extra which was a no brainer- if grats were $180 my drinks package was costing $17 per day for a 12 day cruise.

On the day AI was introduced the price was exactly the same as before with the benefits I wanted but Wifi was added..... so I booked. On rival lines on a roughly equivalent cruise w drinks and grats Norwegian Getaway was £184 per day, Island Princess £235 per day but my booked price only £179 per day.

Today, however price in GBP is down again by £106 ($140)so I am claiming this back under the best price guarantee. Cannot be happier.

 

(Sailing Reflection out of Rome, Italy. 10 Oct 21)

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29 minutes ago, wrk2cruise said:

When booking AI the cruise fare includes CPB Surf Internet and Tips.   Yes taxes are included and yes gratuities on drinks are included.

 

Thanks, and in the past if you booked a sailing with perks, you had to pay the internet & CPB tax separately and the CPB gratuities separately?  Sorry, I've been on Carnival-Crystal and only one X cruise.

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2 minutes ago, NutsAboutGolf said:

 

Thanks, and in the past if you booked a sailing with perks, you had to pay the internet & CPB tax separately and the CPB gratuities separately?  Sorry, I've been on Carnival-Crystal and only one X cruise.

The taxes for internet and CBP  have always been included as bundled perks including gratuities on the CBP (and PBP). The only time you have to add the gratuities for the CBP (and PBP) is if  you are purchasing them as a non bundled perk. Then you pay the gratuities at the time you purchase the CBP (and PBP) and the taxes for the internet service. 

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Heading into re-opening X temporarily enjoys pricing power over the cruising public and through AI is taking advantage of the situation.  They will re-start with only a few ships and operating at reduced loads.  Thus fewer tickets to sell.  FCC's and pent up demand will mostly fill early sailings allowing X to push the envelope on pricing.  In '22 and beyond though all cruise ships will be back at sea operating at full capacity.  At that point we'll see how the AI value proposition (pricing + service) holds up in a competitive marketplace.  If the public doesn't respond prices will need to come down.

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It is my belief that once cruising resumes, there will be an immediate backlog of cabin inventory in high demand and high prices due to L&S and re-booked cancelled cruises and capacity restrictions on ships.  I personally believe that once this backlog is cleared then there will be plenty of capacity and many fewer passengers.  Perhaps second half of 2022 and beyond at that point.  Prices will come back to earth with a little patience.  Book future cruises now for 2022 and beyond even at these high prices with fully refundable deposits to reserve them.  If excess inventory causes prices to crash re-book at the lower prices prior to final payment date.  Or if the prices are still too high just cancel at that point and get your deposit back.  This all is a situation in great flux and it will all need to settle out eventually with market driven forces dominating the discussion.  Not AI or marketing or anything else.  Just market realities.  We just need to have a strategy for it as customers and not jump into marketing games for no reason.

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12 minutes ago, Baron Barracuda said:

Heading into re-opening X temporarily enjoys pricing power over the cruising public and through AI is taking advantage of the situation.  They will re-start with only a few ships and operating at reduced loads.  Thus fewer tickets to sell.  FCC's and pent up demand will mostly fill early sailings allowing X to push the envelope on pricing.  In '22 and beyond though all cruise ships will be back at sea operating at full capacity.  At that point we'll see how the AI value proposition (pricing + service) holds up in a competitive marketplace.  If the public doesn't respond prices will need to come down.

Funny we were typing the same thing at the same time!  At least we agree!

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13 minutes ago, TeeRick said:

It is my belief that once cruising resumes, there will be an immediate backlog of cabin inventory in high demand and high prices due to L&S and re-booked cancelled cruises and capacity restrictions on ships.  I personally believe that once this backlog is cleared then there will be plenty of capacity and many fewer passengers.  Perhaps second half of 2022 and beyond at that point.  Prices will come back to earth with a little patience.  Book future cruises now for 2022 and beyond even at these high prices with fully refundable deposits to reserve them.  If excess inventory causes prices to crash re-book at the lower prices prior to final payment date.  Or if the prices are still too high just cancel at that point and get your deposit back.  This all is a situation in great flux and it will all need to settle out eventually with market driven forces dominating the discussion.  Not AI or marketing or anything else.  Just market realities.  We just need to have a strategy for it as customers and not jump into marketing games for no reason.

I agree to a large extent. Barring a recession, I don't know if there will be that many fewer passengers.  

 

But I feel for all of the cruise travel agents out there.  They are working harder than they ever have but bringing in zero revenue.  One of the few positives I see from the all inclusive pricing is that the TAs will make a commission on the extra portion of the fare devoted to the amenities.  I don't know how many of them close their businesses before this nightmare is over.

 

 

Edited by basenji56
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3 hours ago, TeeRick said:

It is my belief that once cruising resumes, there will be an immediate backlog of cabin inventory in high demand and high prices due to L&S and re-booked cancelled cruises and capacity restrictions on ships.  I personally believe that once this backlog is cleared then there will be plenty of capacity and many fewer passengers.  Perhaps second half of 2022 and beyond at that point.  Prices will come back to earth with a little patience.  Book future cruises now for 2022 and beyond even at these high prices with fully refundable deposits to reserve them.  If excess inventory causes prices to crash re-book at the lower prices prior to final payment date.  Or if the prices are still too high just cancel at that point and get your deposit back.  This all is a situation in great flux and it will all need to settle out eventually with market driven forces dominating the discussion.  Not AI or marketing or anything else.  Just market realities.  We just need to have a strategy for it as customers and not jump into marketing games for no reason.

 

I agree totally with your summary. There are heaps of people like me that just can't wait to get cruising again, when ships return to full capacity (i.e when the vaccine has been distributed), but against that I hear many, many people say that they would never get on a cruise ship. People that have told me this have cruised before and some have never cruised, and will now not even consider it. I think once the fanatics like me have done their first cruise or two (and used their Future Cruise Credit), demand will drop right back. I believe that for a huge part of the market, cruising will take a few years to win back people's confidence. 

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3 hours ago, basenji56 said:

I agree to a large extent. Barring a recession, I don't know if there will be that many fewer passengers.  

 

But I feel for all of the cruise travel agents out there.  They are working harder than they ever have but bringing in zero revenue.  One of the few positives I see from the all inclusive pricing is that the TAs will make a commission on the extra portion of the fare devoted to the amenities.  I don't know how many of them close their businesses before this nightmare is over.

 

 

Keywords:  "Barring a recession."

 

Not sure how this post will age, frankly.

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For the 7 day Caribbean cruises next June only the Suite Class are 

“All Inclusive”.   Any cabin below the SS are not all inclusive.   Folks that don’t want an all inclusive cruise have options next summer.   This was on the 7 day Equinox cruises from Port Lauderdale in June.

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5 minutes ago, Covepointcruiser said:

For the 7 day Caribbean cruises next June only the Suite Class are 

“All Inclusive”.   Any cabin below the SS are not all inclusive.   Folks that don’t want an all inclusive cruise have options next summer.   This was on the 7 day Equinox cruises from Port Lauderdale in June.

Interesting.  I just peeked at a Equinox non-suite aft veranda, it showed tips, wifi and drinks included and I did not select any of the buttons to add anything, just basic cruise.

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Here is what "all inclusive" means to me.  We had a July Alaska cruise cancelled for which we paid a net of  $790 including gratuities and taxes per person.  Now to book the same cruise in July 2021 would be $1250 per person including taxes, gratuities, drinks, and wi--fi.

But here is where it costs me.  We  don't drink and wi-fi is the last thing I want on a cruise.

So if you do the math, it will cost me an extra $460 per person.  I'm really a pretty nice guy and I and I don't mind paying for a cruise, but I don't want to pay for yours as well.  

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I never use wi fi. My phone goes into the safe as soon as we board, and I don't bring a lap top or I Pad.

So now they want me to pay for something I don't use. No Thanks, there are other cruise lines that are comparable to X without the outlandish prices.

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1 hour ago, LGW59 said:

Interesting.  I just peeked at a Equinox non-suite aft veranda, it showed tips, wifi and drinks included and I did not select any of the buttons to add anything, just basic cruise.

I just did 2 trial booking on the Equinox for June, a veranda and AQ and both had the AI perks listed when I went all the way to the end of the process62BCDABB-60FD-45C5-8A20-28D78CB0630B.thumb.png.267680c1d9315e86277a4dbd4bc41d5b.png12420798-4463-4094-97A7-1C8DB89752B4.thumb.png.f715bbe4b2d6db11ccc3bd7c013dae53.png

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