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Staggered Embarkation times


Fighterone
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Posted (edited)

Before the pandemic, some cruise lines started staggering times for embarkation. They asked what our preferences were. 

 

MSC, understandably, is now staggering times but they did not offer a choice and there is no possibility of changing the time they assign. If you miss the assigned time, you will be allowed 1 hour leeway to board late. I wonder what will happen then. 

 

For Yacht Club passengers, the times are also staggered. We asked if we could board earlier so we could join our friends. We were told "no".  

 

This sailing is less than a month away and there were ONLY 16 YC staterooms/suites booked 2 days ago.  The sailing is out of Miami in just 3 weeks. 

 

We did not ask our T.A. to cross reference our reservations with that of our friends. Would that help? 

 

 

Edited by Fighterone
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I’ve sailed twice with MSC recently around the UK. Both times I received a categoric “no” when I questioned if my embarkation time could be changed. I was advised that the times were computer generated and could not be altered manually 🤷‍♀️

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Well,they stagger the times to avoid crowds at the moment.SO if 40% of the passengers want to change their time and MSC would agree every time then it would be insanely complicated for them to keep the crowds small.It is simply too much effort for them.

(and obviously they don`t need to offer any additional form of customer service other than the absolute minimum)

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7 minutes ago, CruiseMH said:

Well,they stagger the times to avoid crowds at the moment.SO if 40% of the passengers want to change their time and MSC would agree every time then it would be insanely complicated for them to keep the crowds small.It is simply too much effort for them.

(and obviously they don`t need to offer any additional form of customer service other than the absolute minimum)

 

They could let the customers choose a time instead of just give everyone a time. Some people wants to embark early and gets a late time and other wants to embark late and gets an early time! Kind of stupid, I think.

 

Not everyone will be able to get the time they want but they could have some way to solve it. ("First come first served?")

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1 hour ago, sverigecruiser said:

 

They could let the customers choose a time instead of just give everyone a time. Some people wants to embark early and gets a late time and other wants to embark late and gets an early time! Kind of stupid, I think.

 

Not everyone will be able to get the time they want but they could have some way to solve it. ("First come first served?")

If they let the customers choose then 80% will choose something between 11 am and 1 pm.

This will not work. And if they do it at the first come first serve version then the result will be the same that most of the guests will not get the time they want.

I think it is very difficult to find a solution that makes guests and cruise line satisfied.

 

Also you should not forget that for European customers many TA offer packages incl. flights.

And for these guests the embarkation time should fit to the flight arrival time.

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Stealth Cruiser said:

Fighterone, I will also be in YC. My boarding time is 12:20pm. What time were you given?

I think we are on different cruises. Yours is on August 6th right? Too bad!

My embarkation time is also 12:20. My friends' embarkation time is at 11:00. 

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3 hours ago, CaroleC said:

I’ve sailed twice with MSC recently around the UK. Both times I received a categoric “no” when I questioned if my embarkation time could be changed. I was advised that the times were computer generated and could not be altered manually 🤷‍♀️

This must be a pandemic-related issue. Both times we've sailed on MSC we were able to board early, but I can understand their wanting to control things a bit more at the moment. I'll be interested to see what time we're allowed to board for our sailing next month.

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17 minutes ago, DCGuy64 said:

This must be a pandemic-related issue. Both times we've sailed on MSC we were able to board early, but I can understand their wanting to control things a bit more at the moment. I'll be interested to see what time we're allowed to board for our sailing next month.


We had a 12:20 embarkation time for our sailing on 3rd July. We actually arrived at the port quite a bit earlier as we weren’t sure what the traffic would be like. We were prepared to sit and wait until our allotted time, however, there were no queues whatsoever and we were told by the staff greeting guests outside the terminal to just go ahead and check in. It only took 35 minutes from leaving the car to setting foot on the ship and this included waiting for the results of the swab test. We were out on deck having a cocktail by midday 🥂😎

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1 hour ago, CruiseMH said:

If they let the customers choose then 80% will choose something between 11 am and 1 pm.

This will not work. And if they do it at the first come first serve version then the result will be the same that most of the guests will not get the time they want.

I think it is very difficult to find a solution that makes guests and cruise line satisfied.

 

 

I know that for example NCL ask their passengers to choose a time so it can defenitely be done.

 

I agree with you that many should choose a time between 11 am and 1 pm and because of that it's extra stupid not to let thoose who prefer a later time choose a late time.

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1 hour ago, CruiseMH said:

Also you should not forget that for European customers many TA offer packages incl. flights.

And for these guests the embarkation time should fit to the flight arrival time.

 

 

That means that passengers with other travel arrangements will get early times so that thoose flying in the same day can get the late times. Perfect for me!

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1 hour ago, sverigecruiser said:

 

I know that for example NCL ask their passengers to choose a time so it can defenitely be done.

 

It's nice to know that worked for someone. Three times in Miami and twice in Barcelona we showed up at our chosen arrival times only to be waiting for up to two hours. In Barcelona, the times meant nothing. In Miami, there was an attempt to make travelers follow the times, but, well, you know how that goes. On one cruise, they almost had control of the times by holding people at various points before entering the final waiting room. I'm sure it was different for Haven cruisers.

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Posted (edited)

I was on the 3rd July sailing and got 11am check in. Had such a fab time got home and on the Sunday booked to go again on 24th July with my daughter and this time I have a check in of 3pm. It is what it is and I can understand why they do it and we had no issues with check in on the 3rd and got through in less than 30mins so fingers cross its just as quick at 3pm 😁

Edited by Cruiseforever11
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DCL has been doing this since Dream came out in PC.  When you register you pick time.  Preference given to suites.  Once a time slot reaches capacity it is no longer open.  They generally enforce times.

 

Not rocket science.

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Dear lord. What a first world issue when you can only board 1 hour 20 after your friends.

 

Why do people think they are above the rules? They're there for a reason. To allow the safe continuation of cruising during a global pandemic. 

 

The rules are allocated times. Deal with it or don't cruise. 

 

BTW, loving our current cruise on Virtuoso. Allocated 12.20 boarding and missed out on nothing over the 7 nights. Weather is glorious. Ship is amazing. Feeling very thankful we have the opportunity to sail. 

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1 hour ago, stuart2468 said:

Dear lord. What a first world issue when you can only board 1 hour 20 after your friends.

 

Why do people think they are above the rules? They're there for a reason. To allow the safe continuation of cruising during a global pandemic. 

 

The rules are allocated times. Deal with it or don't cruise. 

 

BTW, loving our current cruise on Virtuoso. Allocated 12.20 boarding and missed out on nothing over the 7 nights. Weather is glorious. Ship is amazing. Feeling very thankful we have the opportunity to sail. 

Glad you are enjpying the Virtuosa, we sail on her this Saturday, btw has everyone on this thread got a 12.20 boarding time?🤣 

 

On a serious note to the 99% of people myself included these boarding times are first world problems, but please guys spare a thought for those like my daughter who have special needs and being able to board at quiet times and/or quickly can make a huge difference to their mental wellbeing.

 

So that is another reason to stick to your times as you may well.be helping out those less fortunate than yourself.

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26 minutes ago, nyk24 said:

Glad you are enjpying the Virtuosa, we sail on her this Saturday, btw has everyone on this thread got a 12.20 boarding time?🤣 

 

On a serious note to the 99% of people myself included these boarding times are first world problems, but please guys spare a thought for those like my daughter who have special needs and being able to board at quiet times and/or quickly can make a huge difference to their mental wellbeing.

 

So that is another reason to stick to your times as you may well.be helping out those less fortunate than yourself.

Exactly the reason why people shouldn't attempt to arrive early in the hope they get on early. 

 

Hope you enjoy your cruise. She is a beautiful ship. Everything is open, albeit sometimes staggered opening times, but with the weather due to be even better, it'll be a fantastic cruise. Enjoy!

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, stuart2468 said:

Dear lord. What a first world issue when you can only board 1 hour 20 after your friends.

 

Why do people think they are above the rules? They're there for a reason. To allow the safe continuation of cruising during a global pandemic. 

 

The rules are allocated times. Deal with it or don't cruise. 

 

BTW, loving our current cruise on Virtuoso. Allocated 12.20 boarding and missed out on nothing over the 7 nights. Weather is glorious. Ship is amazing. Feeling very thankful we have the opportunity to sail. 

 

This is a cruise forum. Most of our issues are first world issues!

 

Our next cruise is in July next year and hopefully most of the covidrestrictions are gone then.

 

If MSC before final payment can't tell us what check-in time we will get we might cancel and loose the deposit. You may not care but for us there is a big difference between check in at 10 am and 4 pm.

 

If we decide to cruise without knowing our check in time we will arrive at the port around 10 am even if our allocated time is 4 pm. We will accept what they tell us when we arrive so if they tell us to wait we will wait without arguing with them. It's their rules and we accept them but we will try to do everything we can to board as early as possible because the first hours on the ship is the best part of the cruise. (I mean the first hours when the ship is almost empty so first hours between 4 and 8 is not the same thing as first hours between 11 and 3!)

 

I absolutely understand why they need specific check in times and why they need to enforce them. What I don't understand is why they don't let everyone pick a time they prefer. I understand that not everyone can get the time they want but they could still ask and do what they can to help people get the time they want.

Edited by sverigecruiser
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4 hours ago, nyk24 said:

please guys spare a thought for those like my daughter who have special needs and being able to board at quiet times and/or quickly can make a huge difference to their mental wellbeing.

 

I think you will be OK, our boarding on 3rd July was smooth and fast, there was a lot of protocol, stopping at a lot of tables to check the forms, insurance & to do covid tests etc but honestly it was super smooth with very little queueing, your daughter should be fine

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6 hours ago, stuart2468 said:

Dear lord. What a first world issue when you can only board 1 hour 20 after your friends.

 

Why do people think they are above the rules? They're there for a reason. To allow the safe continuation of cruising during a global pandemic. 

 

The rules are allocated times. Deal with it or don't cruise. 

 

BTW, loving our current cruise on Virtuoso. Allocated 12.20 boarding and missed out on nothing over the 7 nights. Weather is glorious. Ship is amazing. Feeling very thankful we have the opportunity to sail. 

Good grief! Why the snarky comment (not an answer) to a valid question?

 

The OP did not: 1.) state that this is a first world issue, 2.) state they were above the rules and 3.) state that they were going to attempt early arrival.

 

The "deal with it or don't cruise" for a simple question is uncalled for.

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1 hour ago, Stealth Cruiser said:

Good grief! Why the snarky comment (not an answer) to a valid question?

 

The OP did not: 1.) state that this is a first world issue, 2.) state they were above the rules and 3.) state that they were going to attempt early arrival.

 

The "deal with it or don't cruise" for a simple question is uncalled for.

Excellent retort and one I could not have put into words better.

 

It's really unfortunate that some folks can be so nasty on the internet. We cannot block them here but at least we can click on that little button called "Ignored Users" which is what I did for whatever this poor excuse for an Englishman is. 

 

Sorry we will miss each other by just a few days, Stealth Cruiser. 

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3 hours ago, sverigecruiser said:

 

This is a cruise forum. Most of our issues are first world issues!

 

Our next cruise is in July next year and hopefully most of the covidrestrictions are gone then.

 

If MSC before final payment can't tell us what check-in time we will get we might cancel and loose the deposit. You may not care but for us there is a big difference between check in at 10 am and 4 pm.

 

If we decide to cruise without knowing our check in time we will arrive at the port around 10 am even if our allocated time is 4 pm. We will accept what they tell us when we arrive so if they tell us to wait we will wait without arguing with them. It's their rules and we accept them but we will try to do everything we can to board as early as possible because the first hours on the ship is the best part of the cruise. (I mean the first hours when the ship is almost empty so first hours between 4 and 8 is not the same thing as first hours between 11 and 3!)

 

I absolutely understand why they need specific check in times and why they need to enforce them. What I don't understand is why they don't let everyone pick a time they prefer. I understand that not everyone can get the time they want but they could still ask and do what they can to help people get the time they want.

 We also understand the need for social distancing and scattered embarkation times but if only MSC followed the example of other cruise lines and asked instead of assigning embarkation times.

 

I hope they improve their system and listen to folks like you and me. Hopefully this issue will have been corrected by July of next year when you cruise. 

This is only a 4 day cruise, our first one in 16 months. We are excited and anxious to board and enjoy the empty ship, like you mentioned.  

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18 minutes ago, Fighterone said:

Excellent retort and one I could not have put into words better.

Haha, am happy to let others on here do the retorting. I just find rightly or wrongly whatever your opinion on a subject is that if it comes across in a way that winds others up, the huge temptation is to get into a pointless argument over it. It's best I find to ignore what upsets you and just make.your own points that you want to make as some.folks just thrive on conflict sadly, not saying this is the case here btw 😁

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