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Healthcare Heroes Discount: Very confusing!


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MSC offers a "discount" off of a cruise if you are a front-line healthcare worker. 

The website states that it is up to 50%, and to call them to discuss.

 

When I called, they were almost as confused as I was; the discount varies from 0 up to about 50%, but there is no way to tell which cruises get which discount.

The only way to find out which cruises qualify is to literally book the cruise (and in many cases pay in full), then email an account with proof, then wait 24-48 hours to hear back whether you qualify and how much of a discount you are entitled to, and then they refund you.

 

This is the strangest discount I've ever heard of. It's basically paying for a vacation, with no idea what it costs until after you've already paid a higher price.

 

Has anyone figured out which dates have the discount, so I don't have to guess?

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Posted (edited)
31 minutes ago, jacksonx said:

MSC offers a "discount" off of a cruise if you are a front-line healthcare worker. 

The website states that it is up to 50%, and to call them to discuss.

 

When I called, they were almost as confused as I was; the discount varies from 0 up to about 50%, but there is no way to tell which cruises get which discount.

The only way to find out which cruises qualify is to literally book the cruise (and in many cases pay in full), then email an account with proof, then wait 24-48 hours to hear back whether you qualify and how much of a discount you are entitled to, and then they refund you.

 

This is the strangest discount I've ever heard of. It's basically paying for a vacation, with no idea what it costs until after you've already paid a higher price.

 

Has anyone figured out which dates have the discount, so I don't have to guess?

 

There is another thread on it here

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2759234-special-discounted-fares-through-2021-for-healthcare-workers/

 

For the UK they state

 

To you on the frontline during this COVID-19 crisis. 
You, who have risked your own lives to save ours, worked overtime and made sacrifices for others, you, more than anyone else, deserve a gift.

As we have now begun sailing once again, MSC Cruises is honoured to offer up to 50% discount on the cruise fare to all healthcare workers and their families, as soon as they are ready for a well-deserved holiday. 

Our special ‘thank you’ discounted cruise fares for healthcare professionals and their families will be available for all MSC Cruises’ sailings of any duration for all new bookings made till the 30th of June 2021 on all cruises departing up to 30th April 2022  (WORLD CRUISES excluded). This includes our cruises around the British Isles onboard the newest MSC Virtuosa.

 

To book just call your local MSC Call Centre or visit your travel agent.

 

ELIGIBLE for the promo

- All NHS Doctors/Nurses/Front line and back office workers employed in the Hospital facilities (eg. Hospital/clinics/Covid-19 centers), who have been directly or indirectly impacted by the Covid Emergency
- Other related jobs to Hospital services (e.g. Cleaning service staff) only if directly hired by the Hospitals, not from private companies
- Family Doctors
- Firefighters
- Pharmacists operating during the pandemic
- Private Doctors and medical figures not employed in hospital facilities ONLY IF their specialization is directly related to COVID-19 diseases (eg. Doctors specialized in pneumology, virologists)
- Healthcare Volunteers (Ambulance, Social services) who offered their support during the Covid-19 emergency
- Retired doctors who were called back to service to give support during the pandemic
- Research Laboratories employees only if they specifically perform COVID-19 tests

It is mandatory to provide a certification which can prove to be eligible for the promo.

Valid proof of service has to be sent at the moment of the booking: copy of the ID card of the company/hospital where the passenger is employed, certificate or other official identification. Proof of service has to be brought also at embarkation.
 

 

Promo details:

- Booking validity: the offer is valid for all new bookings made from 31/08/2020 till 30/06/2021; the offer is not retroactive;
- The offer is valid for all cruises departing up to 30th April 2022 (World Cruises excluded) and it is subject to availability at the moment of the reservation;
- The offer is available for all markets (Important note for NO SCHENGEN countries: They are not allowed to travel until the end of May 2021, until further notice)
- Discount is per cabin and applicable to the cruise portion only;
- Discount can be cumulated to the promo rates and MSC Club discount, it cannot be combined with brochure promo targets, group rates and Voyages Selection discount;
- The discount is valid also for Future Cruise Credit Voucher holders only in case the new booking is made within 31/08/2020 - 30/06/2021; for bookings already made it is not applicable;
- The Health worker has to be part of the reservation, otherwise the discount may not be applied (example: we don’t grant discount to a doctor’s son if the doctor himself is not travelling);
- If two or more cabins are booked, the discount will be applied only to the cabin the Health worker occupies;
- the same Health worker may book even more that one cruise, but he/she needs to be personally travelling;
- In case of single cabins, standard single supplement will apply;
- Standard terms and conditions will apply unless special conditions are granted at the moment of the reservation (i.e. flexible booking conditions);

 

https://www.msccruises.co.uk/cruise-deals/health-workers

 

 

Edited by LifeonMars
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28 minutes ago, LifeonMars said:

 

There is another thread on it here

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2759234-special-discounted-fares-through-2021-for-healthcare-workers/

 

For the UK they state

 

To you on the frontline during this COVID-19 crisis. 
You, who have risked your own lives to save ours, worked overtime and made sacrifices for others, you, more than anyone else, deserve a gift.

As we have now begun sailing once again, MSC Cruises is honoured to offer up to 50% discount on the cruise fare to all healthcare workers and their families, as soon as they are ready for a well-deserved holiday. 

Our special ‘thank you’ discounted cruise fares for healthcare professionals and their families will be available for all MSC Cruises’ sailings of any duration for all new bookings made till the 30th of June 2021 on all cruises departing up to 30th April 2022  (WORLD CRUISES excluded). This includes our cruises around the British Isles onboard the newest MSC Virtuosa.

 

To book just call your local MSC Call Centre or visit your travel agent.

 

ELIGIBLE for the promo

- All NHS Doctors/Nurses/Front line and back office workers employed in the Hospital facilities (eg. Hospital/clinics/Covid-19 centers), who have been directly or indirectly impacted by the Covid Emergency
- Other related jobs to Hospital services (e.g. Cleaning service staff) only if directly hired by the Hospitals, not from private companies
- Family Doctors
- Firefighters
- Pharmacists operating during the pandemic
- Private Doctors and medical figures not employed in hospital facilities ONLY IF their specialization is directly related to COVID-19 diseases (eg. Doctors specialized in pneumology, virologists)
- Healthcare Volunteers (Ambulance, Social services) who offered their support during the Covid-19 emergency
- Retired doctors who were called back to service to give support during the pandemic
- Research Laboratories employees only if they specifically perform COVID-19 tests

It is mandatory to provide a certification which can prove to be eligible for the promo.

Valid proof of service has to be sent at the moment of the booking: copy of the ID card of the company/hospital where the passenger is employed, certificate or other official identification. Proof of service has to be brought also at embarkation.
 

 

Promo details:

- Booking validity: the offer is valid for all new bookings made from 31/08/2020 till 30/06/2021; the offer is not retroactive;
- The offer is valid for all cruises departing up to 30th April 2022 (World Cruises excluded) and it is subject to availability at the moment of the reservation;
- The offer is available for all markets (Important note for NO SCHENGEN countries: They are not allowed to travel until the end of May 2021, until further notice)
- Discount is per cabin and applicable to the cruise portion only;
- Discount can be cumulated to the promo rates and MSC Club discount, it cannot be combined with brochure promo targets, group rates and Voyages Selection discount;
- The discount is valid also for Future Cruise Credit Voucher holders only in case the new booking is made within 31/08/2020 - 30/06/2021; for bookings already made it is not applicable;
- The Health worker has to be part of the reservation, otherwise the discount may not be applied (example: we don’t grant discount to a doctor’s son if the doctor himself is not travelling);
- If two or more cabins are booked, the discount will be applied only to the cabin the Health worker occupies;
- the same Health worker may book even more that one cruise, but he/she needs to be personally travelling;
- In case of single cabins, standard single supplement will apply;
- Standard terms and conditions will apply unless special conditions are granted at the moment of the reservation (i.e. flexible booking conditions);

 

https://www.msccruises.co.uk/cruise-deals/health-workers

 

 

Thanks; I did see this. This is fairly non-descript- there is absolutely no way to figure out what the discount is until 2 days AFTER you've already paid the full price.

 

I'd like to know what days would be the least expensive to go, but there's no way to do that other than book multiple trips and then cancel 2 days later once you hear.

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Posted (edited)
16 minutes ago, jacksonx said:

Thanks; I did see this. This is fairly non-descript- there is absolutely no way to figure out what the discount is until 2 days AFTER you've already paid the full price.

 

I'd like to know what days would be the least expensive to go, but there's no way to do that other than book multiple trips and then cancel 2 days later once you hear.

 

I am sure I read that it was originally  50% offered at the start but that has now reduced to 30% for the later bookings plus the voyages club discount if you sign up before or are already a member then you can also get 5%  

https://www.msccruises.co.uk/manage-booking/msc-voyagers-club

 

 

Edited by LifeonMars
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9 hours ago, jacksonx said:

Thanks; I did see this. This is fairly non-descript- there is absolutely no way to figure out what the discount is until 2 days AFTER you've already paid the full price.

 

I'd like to know what days would be the least expensive to go, but there's no way to do that other than book multiple trips and then cancel 2 days later once you hear.


I have booked two UK cruises using the NHS discount, and although the discount rates for each sailing don’t seem to be publicised, TAs are able to find out what they are before booking. I have a 10% in June and and a 30% in July. 
 

This only applies if using a TA obviously! I couldn’t work out at all how to use it on the website, which your post explains. 

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8 minutes ago, Malibustacey79 said:


I have booked two UK cruises using the NHS discount, and although the discount rates for each sailing don’t seem to be publicised, TAs are able to find out what they are before booking. I have a 10% in June and and a 30% in July. 
 

This only applies if using a TA obviously! I couldn’t work out at all how to use it on the website, which your post explains. 


Me too. 10% off the 24th May sailing and 30% off 3rd July. My TA could tell me what discounts were applicable to every sailing. I have seen posted somewhere that one of the early dates in September had 50% off, again the info was obtained from the poster’s TA.

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I’m hoping there might be discounts on the August Seaside cruises but I’m waiting til I’ve been on the June one first as I understand this will mean a 5% discount?


Although I’ve had 5 MSC bookings since end of 2019 I’ve not actually managed to sail yet!!

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43 minutes ago, Malibustacey79 said:

I’m hoping there might be discounts on the August Seaside cruises but I’m waiting til I’ve been on the June one first as I understand this will mean a 5% discount?


Although I’ve had 5 MSC bookings since end of 2019 I’ve not actually managed to sail yet!!


Do you mean the 5% Voyager Club discount? It’s my understanding that you receive this regardless as long as you have signed up to be a member. The NHS discounts are available on all sailings not just the UK ones, for departures up to 30th April 2022. The book by date has been extended until 30th June 2021.

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46 minutes ago, CaroleC said:


Do you mean the 5% Voyager Club discount? It’s my understanding that you receive this regardless as long as you have signed up to be a member. The NHS discounts are available on all sailings not just the UK ones, for departures up to 30th April 2022. The book by date has been extended until 30th June 2021.


Fabulous, thanks for the info 🙂 

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8 minutes ago, ohnonotmeagain said:

50% off September 4th sailings. Booked with TA who let me know discount before I committed. 


Was it you who posted this date previously? I knew I’d read it somewhere lol.

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In September 2020 I booked the Orchestra out of Venice in August 2021. I booked directly with MSC.

 

I got a NHS discount but it was only 10%, which was all priced-up in advance. I was told that the bigger discounts were for the off-peak sailings. I got an extra 5% as sailed MSC before, and the price I got was still great because it included all gratuities and the Premium Drinks package. 

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2 hours ago, dexddd said:

Are there any cabin restrictions?


Sorry, do you mean restrictions as to which cabin you can book to receive the NHS discount? If so, the answer is no.

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16 hours ago, CaroleC said:


Sorry, do you mean restrictions as to which cabin you can book to receive the NHS discount? If so, the answer is no.

Right.  Thanks.

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Beware about booking without hearing back from the department. I called the 877 number last week. The rep was unable to tell how much the cruise would, nor book. Gave me the email address to mail the pictures into. She told me to book the cruise and when they got the discount code from the HH department they could apply it to the booking. I confirmed twice that it was ok to book before approval and she assured me it was. Booked my cruise, sent the email off and got a reply back saying they couldn't honor the discount because it was already booked.  I wish one department knew what the other was doing. I wonder if I could cancel the booking, get approval and rebook with the discount. I think i read somewhere that if the FCC was outside the end of april 2021 you couldn't combine it with the HC heros discount. Guess I will go back to the website and take screenshots.

 

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My wife and I are members of a FB group that a travel agent runs. He would post all the health care workers deals with prices and dates.

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Has anyone booked the Southampton-Genoa on Sep on 14th using the NHS discount? I have until Saturday to change our August Seaside before final payment and wondering about this one. 
 

It takes so long to get through to MSC on the phone to ask and my TA hasn’t got back to me for a week, so long shot but if anyone know the discount percentage that would be great!

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17 minutes ago, Malibustacey79 said:

Has anyone booked the Southampton-Genoa on Sep on 14th using the NHS discount? I have until Saturday to change our August Seaside before final payment and wondering about this one. 
 

It takes so long to get through to MSC on the phone to ask and my TA hasn’t got back to me for a week, so long shot but if anyone know the discount percentage that would be great!

Most of them are 30%, so that would be the best discount perhaps 20%. The September 4th cruise, alone, offers 50% which makes for an incredible deal, but it's the final British Isles cruise so doesn't go near the Med.....which is beautifully temperate at that time of year.

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Posted (edited)

I booked Virtuosa for May 28th and explained my daughter was a PICU nurse, i paid the discounted price at the time of booking - i got a confirmation email after i sent her badge photo to the address I was given.

 

Edited by swimming with spaniels
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My TA eventually said the discount for Seaside in August is 10%...but can’t find any flights. I’m starting to think the only option I’m going to have is to get a voucher for my deposit amount. 
 

Next time I will book with a cruise specialist, no doubt about it!!

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We have one of our cabins booked for December 19, 2021, with a 20% Healthcare Heroes discount. Of course, for our canceled cruise at the same time period in 2020 the discount was 50%. I really felt they should have honored it at the same rate for a rebooking since they canceled the cruise, but no luck with that. Guess we should be glad for what discount we can get and hope the cruise actually goes this time.

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