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Alaska 2021–CCL not giving up yet


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We have a 7 day booked in July out of Seattle on Freedom for 2021.  I have been waiting for Canada to close the door on ships in Canada waters which they did- no mega cruise ships will be allowed in Canada waters until February 2022.  There are a few people on the Alaska boards throwing out ideas about how the season can still be saved.  I thought that was crazy.  You can’t loophole and piece together an entire industry with all its moving parts.  Even if you could somehow maneuver the allowance of a ship to still continue with an Alaska cruise, there’s no guarantee any of the port businesses will remain open. They have to string together a lot of effort and money just to open for the season. It’s hard enough when there’s no pandemic, but now you would have to also include Covid restrictions. 
 

But, even with the announcement, Carnival isn’t giving up yet!  I got this in my email yesterday.  I think it’s inevitable they will cancel.  But I think their willingness to admit they are still trying to save it is interesting.

 

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28 minutes ago, tallnthensome said:

In other words, we want to lead you on and hold onto your cash as long as we can while you sit around and wait .... without your cash. Nope .....

No, that's not true at all.  What IS happening is that the Alaska Congressional delegation is working on a strategy to temporarily suspend the Pass Vessel Services Act specifically for the 2021 Alaska cruise season thereby allowing Seattle based ships to proceed directly to Alaska without a stop in Canada.  IF they are successful, the Alaska season may still proceed to a certain extent.  They are also reportedly in communication with the Canadian govt to see if accommodations might be made.  None of this could be regarded as 'likely' but Carnival (and others) are trying to give them a chance.

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Not sure why they cant just allow them to stop in port for the 6 hours they are there normally and keep everyone on board.  Would that not satisfy the requirements for the foreign port portion of the cruise?  Surely my govt doesn't think that there is a threat COVID might "jump ship" lol.

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12 minutes ago, kdr69 said:

Not sure why they cant just allow them to stop in port for the 6 hours they are there normally and keep everyone on board.  Would that not satisfy the requirements for the foreign port portion of the cruise?  Surely my govt doesn't think that there is a threat COVID might "jump ship" lol.

"Surely my Gov't doesn't think."   FTFY  (Goes for both of us BTW)

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I had already paid our Alaska cruise in full. I cancelled the excursions and waiting for the automatic refund. Called my PVP and requested all my money back. I did not cancel my cruise yet....so left the deposit. If I cancel then I lose the deposit. If Carnival does go ahead & cancel then they'll refund it.

 

We are taking the money & running - straight to a week in Mexico. I'm tired of the wishy washy cruise industry. Once it is back to normal - and I mean normal.....no masks.....no reservations for casino & pool......then we'll cruise again. For now, we'll go back to land vacatio

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18 minutes ago, kdr69 said:

Not sure why they cant just allow them to stop in port for the 6 hours they are there normally and keep everyone on board.  Would that not satisfy the requirements for the foreign port portion of the cruise?  Surely my govt doesn't think that there is a threat COVID might "jump ship" lol.

Well, that's a possible compromise but not how the law currently stands.

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Just now, jsglow said:

Well, that's a possible compromise but not how the law currently stands.

Well they do a quick stop in Ensenada on Hawaii trips to satisfy the act and its only for a few hours.  Is there something in the current law that states they must disembark?  If your anchored in a Port in my opinion that makes you "visiting" a foreign port but maybe its not that simple?

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1 minute ago, kdr69 said:

Well they do a quick stop in Ensenada on Hawaii trips to satisfy the act and its only for a few hours.  Is there something in the current law that states they must disembark?  If your anchored in a Port in my opinion that makes you "visiting" a foreign port but maybe its not that simple?

I'm not an expert by any means but the days of the 'exchange paperwork and go' ended some time ago.  It's all a labor law issue regarding crew as I understand it.  But even that Ensenada stop is a 'full port stop' nowadays, by regulation.  This is sort of a 'kinda pregnant'  Someone on here can provide greater detail on 'port requirements'.

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27 minutes ago, kdr69 said:

Well they do a quick stop in Ensenada on Hawaii trips to satisfy the act and its only for a few hours.  Is there something in the current law that states they must disembark?  If your anchored in a Port in my opinion that makes you "visiting" a foreign port but maybe its not that simple?

 

The Canadian order doesn't just preclude passengers from getting off a large cruise ship in Canada, it precludes such a ship from even entering Canadian waters. So unless that changes, that alone kills the "hang around a foreign port for a while' idea.

 

Plus, I believe jsglow is correct that those kind of fake stops aren't allowed anymore.

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6 minutes ago, Earthworm Jim said:

 

The Canadian order doesn't just preclude passengers from getting off a large cruise ship in Canada, it precludes such a ship from even entering Canadian waters. So unless that changes, that alone kills the "hang around a foreign port for a while' idea.

 

Plus, I believe jsglow is correct that those kind of fake stops aren't allowed anymore.

isnt it always that what seems to be the simplest solution is always the hardest to implement?  sigh  

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2 hours ago, jsglow said:

No, that's not true at all.  What IS happening is that the Alaska Congressional delegation is working on a strategy to temporarily suspend the Pass Vessel Services Act specifically for the 2021 Alaska cruise season thereby allowing Seattle based ships to proceed directly to Alaska without a stop in Canada.  IF they are successful, the Alaska season may still proceed to a certain extent.  They are also reportedly in communication with the Canadian govt to see if accommodations might be made.  None of this could be regarded as 'likely' but Carnival (and others) are trying to give them a chance.

It has go through the congress and the president, and maybe an executive order..        

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Even if they were able to get around the Canada thing they'd have to get Seattle onboard (no pun intended) with being one of the first ports to allow cruising. I don't think that's happening this year...not from the west coast....But I do think Carnival wants to delay cancellations as long as possible.

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The PVSA is law, so a law must be passed to modify the PVSA, not an executive order. Also, the PVSA has a provision in it that states that waivers can only be granted by the Secy of Defense for matters of National Security.  It is a fairly airtight law.  Violations are fined $778 per passenger.

 

 

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6 hours ago, Circlt said:

We have a 7 day booked in July out of Seattle on Freedom for 2021.  I have been waiting for Canada to close the door on ships in Canada waters which they did- no mega cruise ships will be allowed in Canada waters until February 2022.  There are a few people on the Alaska boards throwing out ideas about how the season can still be saved.  I thought that was crazy.  You can’t loophole and piece together an entire industry with all its moving parts.  Even if you could somehow maneuver the allowance of a ship to still continue with an Alaska cruise, there’s no guarantee any of the port businesses will remain open. They have to string together a lot of effort and money just to open for the season. It’s hard enough when there’s no pandemic, but now you would have to also include Covid restrictions. 
 

But, even with the announcement, Carnival isn’t giving up yet!  I got this in my email yesterday.  I think it’s inevitable they will cancel.  But I think their willingness to admit they are still trying to save it is interesting.

 

image.thumb.png.ba05ac21818ec208f01fc6ce89215ac0.png

F5415E3B-9FE8-4971-85C5-6DBA4F3A019C.png

This is just a stalling tactic to hold onto your money as long as possible.  They will cancel as soon as the last final payment has past.  I am sorry this is happening to you and everyone else that has been giving Carnival interest free loans.

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1 hour ago, PelicanBill said:

The PVSA is law, so a law must be passed to modify the PVSA, not an executive order. Also, the PVSA has a provision in it that states that waivers can only be granted by the Secy of Defense for matters of National Security.  It is a fairly airtight law.  Violations are fined $778 per passenger.

 

 

Well, there are lots of other laws that are being overturned with executive order right now.

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I've read a lot of posts about the PVSA and admit I didn't really know anything about it (Canadian here!)   I read an excellent post on the HAL board regarding the PVSA and thought I would share... just in case others like me wanted to know more about the history of this Act.....

 

chengkp75

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I'll start off with the same response I use whenever someone questions the PVSA from the narrow viewpoint of the cruising industry.  It is the Passenger Vessel Service Act, not the Cruise Vessel Service Act.  The distinction is important, as the legal definition of a "passenger vessel" is any vessel that carries more than 12 people for hire.  So, the PVSA covers not just large ocean-going cruise vessels, but every ferry, water taxi, commuter boat, sight-seeing boat, whale watching boat, casino boat, dinner cruise boat, and even large charter fishing vessels in the US.

 

What do these vessels need the PVSA for?  Unlike the Wikipedia article on the PVSA, and most anti-cabotage articles, the PVSA was enacted long before maritime labor was a factor, and the vessels involved were not going to be built overseas and brought across the ocean for use in the US.  The PVSA was an outgrowth of the series of fires, explosions, and disasters that beset steamboats in the US in the early 19th century.  The US enacted the series of Steamboat Acts mandating safety requirements for these boats, and the shipowners, in an effort to evade the cost of the safety equipment and inspections, started registering their boats (all of which had been built in the US) in foreign countries.  The PVSA forced these domestic shipowners to have all their vessels be US flag, so that they had to be compliant with the safety measures of the Steamboat Acts.

 

To this day, the USCG Marine Inspection Division, holds US flag ships of all types (cargo and passenger) to stricter safety, training, and competency standards than foreign flag ships, even ones that "homeport" in the US.

 

So, for the OP, while the PVSA has little effect in Arizona, it does many other places in the US.  Get rid of the PVSA, and the Staten Island Ferry, the Alaska Marine Highway, the Red and White fleet in San Francisco, etc, would all be allowed to reflag their vessels, hire foreign crew, not follow US labor laws, and not pay US taxes, either on corporate income or crew income.

 

So, today, there are several hundred thousand jobs in the US, held by US citizens, in the PVSA industry (just not many in the cruise portion of the industry), and the PVSA industry generates several hundred million in the US economy.  Add in the tax revenue from all these jobs held by US citizens, instead of the non-US crew on the foreign flag ships.

 

Another feature that those who want to eliminate the PVSA don't take into account is;  why aren't "cruises to nowhere" allowed anymore?  Is it the PVSA?  Nope.  "Cruises to nowhere" are specifically allowed under the PVSA.  CBP has ruled that foreign crew on foreign ships that perform "cruises to nowhere" in the US are working in the US, and therefore require work visas, and require crew to be paid US wages and meet US labor laws.  So, cruise lines have decided, not been ordered to eliminate "cruises to nowhere" for cost reasons.  If a foreign flag cruise ship could be allowed to sail only between US ports (repeal of the PVSA), then the foreign crew would be in the same position, they would need to pay US taxes, and the crew would need to pay US taxes.  The Maritime Administration has studied the difference between US flag operation of ships and foreign flag operations.  Crew costs are about 5 times as much for US flag operations (and that is just for a ship with a crew of 20, not a thousand).  The other part of this, is the "work visa".  Granting work visas to foreigners requires that the person has special skills that are in short supply in the US.  Is there a shortage of housekeepers, waiters, and bartenders in the US?  Plus, our maritime labor unions would have something to say about allowing foreign crew to work in the US.

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6 hours ago, skridge said:

This is just a stalling tactic to hold onto your money as long as possible.  They will cancel as soon as the last final payment has past.  I am sorry this is happening to you and everyone else that has been giving Carnival interest free loans.

Every day is someone's last payment

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I don’t mind that they have my deposit.  It’s only $300, and I’ll get it all back in FCC, plus OBC, and if it helps Carnival stay afloat through all this pandemic economic disaster then let them use it.  
 

What really upsets me the most is that we had booked a fabulous Aft Wrap 😢😩 The truth is I don’t want to go now anyway.  It’s too soon, too many variables and a lot of unknowns.

 

But if they mess with my 2022 Down Under GBR and B2B South Pacific cruises, there’s going to be some loud wailing and gnashing of teeth! 🤬 It’s not outside the realm of possibility!

 

Patience first, then safety.  I’m good.

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10 hours ago, ehyup71 said:

I've read a lot of posts about the PVSA and admit I didn't really know anything about it (Canadian here!)   I read an excellent post on the HAL board regarding the PVSA and thought I would share... just in case others like me wanted to know more about the history of this Act.....

 

chengkp75

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I'll start off with the same response I use whenever someone questions the PVSA from the narrow viewpoint of the cruising industry.  It is the Passenger Vessel Service Act, not the Cruise Vessel Service Act.  The distinction is important, as the legal definition of a "passenger vessel" is any vessel that carries more than 12 people for hire.  So, the PVSA covers not just large ocean-going cruise vessels, but every ferry, water taxi, commuter boat, sight-seeing boat, whale watching boat, casino boat, dinner cruise boat, and even large charter fishing vessels in the US.

 

What do these vessels need the PVSA for?  Unlike the Wikipedia article on the PVSA, and most anti-cabotage articles, the PVSA was enacted long before maritime labor was a factor, and the vessels involved were not going to be built overseas and brought across the ocean for use in the US.  The PVSA was an outgrowth of the series of fires, explosions, and disasters that beset steamboats in the US in the early 19th century.  The US enacted the series of Steamboat Acts mandating safety requirements for these boats, and the shipowners, in an effort to evade the cost of the safety equipment and inspections, started registering their boats (all of which had been built in the US) in foreign countries.  The PVSA forced these domestic shipowners to have all their vessels be US flag, so that they had to be compliant with the safety measures of the Steamboat Acts.

 

To this day, the USCG Marine Inspection Division, holds US flag ships of all types (cargo and passenger) to stricter safety, training, and competency standards than foreign flag ships, even ones that "homeport" in the US.

 

So, for the OP, while the PVSA has little effect in Arizona, it does many other places in the US.  Get rid of the PVSA, and the Staten Island Ferry, the Alaska Marine Highway, the Red and White fleet in San Francisco, etc, would all be allowed to reflag their vessels, hire foreign crew, not follow US labor laws, and not pay US taxes, either on corporate income or crew income.

 

So, today, there are several hundred thousand jobs in the US, held by US citizens, in the PVSA industry (just not many in the cruise portion of the industry), and the PVSA industry generates several hundred million in the US economy.  Add in the tax revenue from all these jobs held by US citizens, instead of the non-US crew on the foreign flag ships.

 

Another feature that those who want to eliminate the PVSA don't take into account is;  why aren't "cruises to nowhere" allowed anymore?  Is it the PVSA?  Nope.  "Cruises to nowhere" are specifically allowed under the PVSA.  CBP has ruled that foreign crew on foreign ships that perform "cruises to nowhere" in the US are working in the US, and therefore require work visas, and require crew to be paid US wages and meet US labor laws.  So, cruise lines have decided, not been ordered to eliminate "cruises to nowhere" for cost reasons.  If a foreign flag cruise ship could be allowed to sail only between US ports (repeal of the PVSA), then the foreign crew would be in the same position, they would need to pay US taxes, and the crew would need to pay US taxes.  The Maritime Administration has studied the difference between US flag operation of ships and foreign flag operations.  Crew costs are about 5 times as much for US flag operations (and that is just for a ship with a crew of 20, not a thousand).  The other part of this, is the "work visa".  Granting work visas to foreigners requires that the person has special skills that are in short supply in the US.  Is there a shortage of housekeepers, waiters, and bartenders in the US?  Plus, our maritime labor unions would have something to say about allowing foreign crew to work in the US.

Great share; I saw his posts on the HAL board as well, which is why I am confident there will not be any exceptions or workarounds to the PVSA.  Maybe the cruise industry realizes it’s a Hail Mary pass, but is making the most $$ mileage from the delay while the mere appearance of possible conversation endures.

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Actually the Jones Act was temporarily over ridden so ships could help out PR when hit with the hurricane so hopefully something will be worked out for Alaska Cruises

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44 minutes ago, dbrucern said:

Actually the Jones Act was temporarily over ridden so ships could help out PR when hit with the hurricane so hopefully something will be worked out for Alaska Cruises

Jones Act and PVSA are not the same thing.  Jones act applies to transport of cargo, while PVSA is concerned with  transport of passengers.  Chengkp75 has explained the difference in much more detail many times on these boards.

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