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Crystal Cruises Clientele Not Rich Enough For Harbour Island & Exumas?


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Remember how each of you would feel if lots of people show up to your neighborhood and to your town.  Or if they decide to build something right near you.  It's OK but just not in my place.  This is human nature.

 

Timbuktu123 I agree with you. This will go well with good planning and cooperation.  This is one of the good things about the coordination between Crystal and the local folks that took place to plan these itineraries.  Crystal does have an excellent reputation working with local communities and as I mentioned as an example was NWP.  The challenge will be having a new Shore Excursion Management team but hopefully they will do as you mentioned.  

 

When we visited NWP we were given a briefing on proper etiquette and I have to tell you while it was oriented towards NWP it truly can apply to most everywhere we visit.  Seemed so simple but.......I know it would have been a wakeup call for some people.

 

I think we all know that not every person acts the same so while it's nice to think Crystal guests act perfectly all the time we all know this is not the case.  If they did why would we hear about people hogging chairs at the pool.  Not good etiquette IMHO.

 

Anyway, it's actually good that the concern has been expressed in the press although as I mentioned my experience is that some of this can be exaggerated  by the press.  but the upside is Crystal can prepare for the visits including organizing tours, etc.

 

Keith

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16 hours ago, ChatKat in Ca. said:

There was an announcement in the last few days that a Megaship is sailing the Bahamas. I think it was either Celebrity or RCCL.

 

I remember sailing in Alaska while we were waiting to enter the College Fjords. On Radisson with 700 pax on a new ship.  Some one yelled out "Look Wildlife!".  Everyone ran to see what was there.  It was a Carnival Ship.  It was funny at the time.  That's probably the same thing the residents are feeling and they are lumping all cruise passengers in one boat.

This one reminded me of another one. I remember something similar when we were in port with a ship quite a bit larger than the Crystal vessel and someone said "I would never sail on a ship with so many guests".  I didn't say anything but I was thinking to myself when Symphony or Serenity are in port with say a 350 or 450 passenger Silversea and Seabourn ship, some guests on those ships are saying the same thing about the Crystal vessel.  For them the Crystal ships are too large.  I guess it's all about perspective.

 

Keith

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On 3/27/2021 at 11:13 AM, So_Tweetie said:

I was surprised to read this story suggesting that a couple of the ports slated for our summer cruise itinerary don't want to welcome Crystal Cruises because they prefer "high-end" clientele. Personally, because of the mask requirements and other flaming hoops we will have to jump through in order to visit the Bahamas, I wasn't planning to get off the ship to begin with. After reading this I don't think I will leave the ship at all, I find it insulting. I would understand if their issue was that they don't normally accommodate 900 tourists at one time, but this seems to be more focused on the wealth of those tourists coupled with profound ignorance of the Crystal clientele.

 

https://ewnews.com/not-all-on-board-exuma-harbour-island-concerned-with-mass-cruise-tourism-plans

Thank you for posting this article.  I have never gone on Crystal Cruises and this will be my first cruise with them.  I, like you really did not care about the itinerary.  However, after reading the article, I am even more excited.  All me to explain.  

I am 63, been on 24 cruises and for the longest time wanted a way to improve my cruising experience. I have utilized NCL Haven and Celebrity's Retreat.  I love the Haven and have written many op-eds on it.  Yet what I have always wanted to do is go on a Luxury Cruise.  My bucket list is a 10-plus day Mediterranean Cruise for my 45 wedding anniversary. My concern was not knowing what it would be like on a smaller ship and at a luxury segment.

Then Crystal brilliantly came up with this Bahama cruise.  Now I will be the first off the ship in these ports.  Why, because Crystal made sure their itinerary was special.  The area's simply don't understand the difference between a 5000 passenger mainstream or Premium cruise ship and a Luxury ship that will limit the guests to 900.  What I think will happen is the Crystal Guests will visit, we will be kind, generous and welcoming.  The next thing you know, they will beg for the next Crystal ship to come to port. 

Our world can be a very tough place when we worry about how a cruise ship will negatively impact an area. That all cruise ships are the same.  That anyone whom travels with a cruise ship will destroy a lovely community.  The best thing that can happen is we openly embrace each other and enjoy the best parts of life.  

The bottom line is, "People don't know what they don't know!"  Let's educate them.  Cruise well everyone. 

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On 3/27/2021 at 3:03 PM, suspaul said:

We’re scheduled for the August 7 cruise and it was my understanding....from a Crystal rep last week that they’ll be sailing at 50% or lower capacity, not the full 900.

 

has anyone else heard or been told this?  If they’re sailing at capacity I may be rethinking paying the deposit.  
 

thanks for any inout you can share

It is my understanding that they will be at a 900 Capacity.  That came from an interview with the interim CEO.  I was kind of confused when I heard this.  I thought this ship was originally 980 passengers and when they refurbished it they took it to 900.  I am sharing this because it is a point of confusion for me as well.  That interview I referenced is on YouTube and is quite long.

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13 minutes ago, Sthrngary said:

It is my understanding that they will be at a 900 Capacity.  That came from an interview with the interim CEO.  I was kind of confused when I heard this.  I thought this ship was originally 980 passengers and when they refurbished it they took it to 900.  I am sharing this because it is a point of confusion for me as well.  That interview I referenced is on YouTube and is quite long.

 

The Serenity went from 1070 to 980. The Symphony went from 922 to 848. 

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Hopefully the locals will not greet us the way our Silversea excursion was created leaving the port in the Congo where the locals threw rocks at our buses.

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I know we keep focusing on the 900 capacity number because it’s the number Crystal keeps using in press, but if Crystal is serious about holding 40 in-service cabins for quarantine then the actual sold capacity is going to be a good bit lower than 900 in reality.

 

I admit these sailings seem to be attracting a lot of new-to-Crystal guests that may be less likely to have single occupancy cabins, so there probably won’t be as many berths lost to solos as we usually see on Crystal, but there should still be a good number.  Plus there are always a number of rooms out of service for maintenance and “restorative cleaning” on any given sailing, and a handful of spares in case anything else happens (aside from the quarantine 40). 
 

Vince

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9 hours ago, PaulMCO said:

Hopefully the locals will not greet us the way our Silversea excursion was created leaving the port in the Congo where the locals threw rocks at our buses.

Sounds like Y'all made a nice impression.  I guess that is a moment you will not forget.  😂

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Vince, excellent points as usual.  

 

I am thinking out loud but if the capacity is 980 I would assume the 40 rooms you mention would equate to the difference from 980 to 900 so I think that is how they get to the number.

 

I too wouldn't get to hung up on the number as you note as other factors come into play as you mentioned.  I think we'll still see some people traveling solo and we should remember the numbers also include folks such as those who are part of enrichment and some who are part of entertainment such as land based performers and some of these folks travel by themselves.  And not all rooms across all sailings will be sold out.

 

For anyone expecting the ship to travel with a low occupancy rate it's really not possible unless fares are substantially higher in order to make a profit or certainly break even.  

 

I actually think the bigger challenge are the venues such as specialty restaurants since they would seat less people with more social distancing.  We know that seven days cruises are a challenge in normal times.

 

This is why I remind people to just be flexible and go with the flow.  These are going to be great cruises but people need to remember that things will not be as they were used to because of COVID-19 protocols so I would remind the seasoned Crystal cruisers to not try to compare how things were as adjustments are being made for the well being/health of everyone on board and as Jack Anderson noted they will be more rather than less cautious.  As time goes along if things go as planned and there are no issues then there could be some adjustments made.

 

Hopefully, most will just be happy to be there and will wear smiles on their faces.  Now, if you want to sulk just wait till you put your mask on so no one will now.  Just Saying.  LOL.

 

Keith

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On 3/29/2021 at 1:48 PM, PaulMCO said:

Hopefully the locals will not greet us the way our Silversea excursion was created leaving the port in the Congo where the locals threw rocks at our buses.

 

Could have been worse.  Could have been a port call at North Sentinel Island.

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On 3/29/2021 at 4:48 PM, PaulMCO said:

Hopefully the locals will not greet us the way our Silversea excursion was created leaving the port in the Congo where the locals threw rocks at our buses.

That's terrible!

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3 hours ago, Stickman1990 said:

Welcome back.....it’s been a while - have you been social distancing from us 😉😂

 

Canceled cruises have been a downer.  Since it now looks like a number of my booked cruises will happen, I'm dipping my toe back in.

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FWIW a any reports I’ve read here of this cruise “not being wanted” had nothing to do with the quality of the passengers, but rather with the capacity of some of the islands to handle 900 “drop ins” on any given day.  And fears from some Harbour Island hoteliers that this could somehow damage their business.

 

A couple years ago the Europa 2 stopped at HI without any real prior arrangements and made a very bad impression when about 400 people expected sling chair accommodation on Pink Sand Beach.  Those folks are even hoity-toitier than Crystal pax!  So people really don’t know what to expect.

 

I gather Crystal are doing a great job of preparing the way, though.

 

Please feel free to ask us locals on here about what to expect.  FWIW each one of these stops is a gem.  Especially HI and Eleuthera.  Though I may be prejudiced.

 

Nyloc in Nassau

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11 hours ago, FlyerTalker said:

 

Canceled cruises have been a downer.  Since it now looks like a number of my booked cruises will happen, I'm dipping my toe back in.

Not just cruises.  Have not been on a plane in 14 months.  With 8 million miles on various airlines -- it has been 50 years since I have flew less miles.   At least with lifetime status that remains the same.

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I am hoping Crystal can come up with enough excursions and/or beach parties, etc to keep a majority of the passengers occupied. It would be really great if they did a beach bbq like Seabourn with a lavish spread including grilled lobster at a beach resort (the best beach day that we ever had). That would ease the strain on these small islands. I am also hoping that we will have some info prior to the April 5 deposit as to what they have planned because as of now there is nothing except an ability to use a resort on Bimini. They don't even state if that is complimentary or we have to pay.

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Here in Maine - there are been several articles and comments in news about why allow cruise ships - and it's great that ships are currently not sailing into Portland and Bar Harbor.  The fact that the cities are hurting for the business and residents tend to not go where tourists go anyway seem irrelevant to these.  So as said - it may not be rich enough but just don't like people coming into their world.

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12 hours ago, xrvlcruiser said:

Nyloc,

 

The last time I was on Eleuthera, I flew back to New York on Pan Am. I guess that dates me!

 

Looking forward to returning!

 

Peggy

That was indeed a long time ago, Peggy!  From Rock Sound International Airport.  

How the place has changed!  But some of it for the better ... 

 

As far as the Harbour Island and Exuma folks not wanting Crystal's visits, I don't think that reflects the view of the "real people".  Last night's Cable news had a long piece with various Exuma folks saying how exited they were for the planned visits.

 

Nyloc in Nassau ...

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  • 2 weeks later...

I was wondering why I can't get a response from anybody on Harbour Island about renting a golf cart.  First I emailed one line, last Friday, and immediately got a very short "we are booked"  back...NOTHING else...like maybe, "thank you for your inquiry but".  They didn't even ask which size I was wanting.   I told my husband at that point, that I thought something was up, but he told me I was crazy...lol.  As usual!

So then I decided to email 4 others on that same day.  So far I have heard nothing at all.  Seems a little unusual for companies that supposedly (from Trip Advisor) have excellent customer service and respond right away.

When I read this, I now understand.  Too Bad...I guess they just don't want our money...or don't need it.  My husband's argument was, why would a small business turn down money....I think I may win this one...rofl.

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15 minutes ago, Reba 954 said:

I was wondering why I can't get a response from anybody on Harbour Island about renting a golf cart.  First I emailed one line, last Friday, and immediately got a very short "we are booked"  back...NOTHING else...like maybe, "thank you for your inquiry but".  They didn't even ask which size I was wanting.   I told my husband at that point, that I thought something was up, but he told me I was crazy...lol.  As usual!

So then I decided to email 4 others on that same day.  So far I have heard nothing at all.  Seems a little unusual for companies that supposedly (from Trip Advisor) have excellent customer service and respond right away.

When I read this, I now understand.  Too Bad...I guess they just don't want our money...or don't need it.  My husband's argument was, why would a small business turn down money....I think I may win this one...rofl.

Please keep in mind that sometimes how people respond and how quickly they respond varies by island/country.

 

I can tell you when I worked we dealt with a lot of places around the world including the Islands and getting commitments for things was not so easy.  We are used to can you get it done today or what date can you get it done by and that is not often the way they do things.  Oh not just the Islands.  Had the same time with the Italian Phone Company and we were physically sitting with them in Italy in their conference room.  

 

Keith

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2 hours ago, Keith1010 said:

 are used to can you get it done today or what date can you get it done by and that is not often the way they do things.

 

 

It's called island time.😎

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