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Crystal is now allowing embarkation in Miami, as well as unvaccinated guests


Richk582
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16 hours ago, reenief said:

Just sent this to Crystal:

 

Very concerned about changing ports yet again on the "Luxury Bahamas" cruise. Miami is NOT in The Bahamas. Crystal changed the schedule fully knowing that per Florida laws they can not require a vaccination as a stipulation for boarding. I would NOT have booked this trip knowing that unvaccinated persons were able to board. I just booked my air yesterday and would have to accept a voucher rather than a refund if I cancelled my air. The airfare was $778.00.  I should not have to bear this burden.  This is not acceptable to me. Crystal changed the game and I am put in a very untenable position. I feel manipulated and duped. Currently, I do not go anywhere that there is a possibility that I come into contact with an unvaccinated person and now I will be on a cruise ship with close quarters with them? Since this port has been changed several times since I booked, you need to reconsider Miami as a port just like you eliminated several other ports throughout the past several months. I am angry I am put in this position.
 
I talked to one of your agents (the phone number that was given on the email states that it is not activated)
Although he tried to assuage my concerns, it is still a game changer. Purposely done.  
 
I should not be on the hook with an air voucher for that amount.  I should have trust in your company.  On page 12 of The Bahamas information booklet it states “as the COVID 19 vaccine is a requirement for travel with Crystal” So you which is it?  Talking around both sides of the situation. 
 
I spent thousands to book this cruise specifically because of the COVID vaccine requirement.  I don’t feel I should be uncomfortable and concerned about my heath because you are looking for more revenue.  Which is the only reason you would add this port and especially since this port is notably not in the Bahamas.  

Please let us know if they will give you a full refund. We all booked this cruise in good faith and have been betrayed.  We are being penalized the 25% and this is unethical.  

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36 minutes ago, Gaterp53 said:

Please let us know if they will give you a full refund. We all booked this cruise in good faith and have been betrayed.  We are being penalized the 25% and this is unethical.  

After 17 months of four cancellations, waiting for refunds, deciding on Future Cruise Credits or Cash, rebooking all the crazy details and learning to reading cover to cover those 30 page cruise line contracts; I am Mentally, Physically and Financially exhausted.  I am also so much better educated on the business of cruising.  

 

I cancelled my July 31 Crystal cruise 8 days prior due to my wife getting Covid.  I was penalized 50%.  That is some serious cash. For those that are not aware, if we would have gone to the port of Nassau and she test positive.  We would have been penalized 100%, put in quarantine, stressed out and scared in a international location.  First off topic, Buy Travel Insurance with trip interruption/cancel policy, book with a credit card that covers trip interruption.  

 

Now on topic. I knew what the consequences were if I canceled even for Covid.  I knew that Crystal or ANY other cruise brand could change ports, or basically do anything they wanted to do.  Those 30 pages of contract have very few protections to the guest.  They are written that way most brands are the same.  By reading the document, I was fully aware of what I was getting into.

 

Am I happy about this situation or anyone that for what every reason wants to cancel, "HELL NO".  Do I feel Crystal, NCL or Oceana (The lines I have booked on and cancelled for various reasons) are being unethical, "NO".  Do they have the right to do all this, "YES".  Don't mean I like it, just means i was aware of the possibility. That is honest.

 

We know the rules folks.  We knew the risks and if we did not know them, we should have.  Vote with your pocket book but know, ALL cruise brands are similar. Let us look to make the best our of a really BAD situation.  It is all we have left.

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Posted (edited)

Whether some of the passengers "feel comfortable" about this new arrangement regarding embarkation in Miami and intentionally boarding unvaccinated passengers onboard or not, this decision by Crystal, in my personal and professional opinion, clearly irresponsible and highly problematic. This opinion is mainly based on the fact that the number of new cases, mainly among the unvaccinated, in Florida is extremely high right now.  As I mentioned earlier, the summer cruises on Serenity and Symphony could be the "make it or break it" attempt at its survival for Crystal, and that might be the reason these poorly thought out decisions were made in this manner.  But that does not justify what they are doing.

 

Also, Crystal is not fooling anyone when it said the change to allow unvaccinated passengers was somehow forced to them by the State of Florida.  That is entirely false.  Obviously, I am not trying to defend what Florida and its governor has been doing to politicize this outbreak, but the fact is that Crystal is the one who chose to add Miami as an embarkation point.  Nobody forced Crystal to do this.

 

This whole situation is utterly embarrassing for Crystal.

Edited by Psoque
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We are on the 8/14, and will probably go. Air and hotel all booked. No other options at this point. We will just be careful. We will take an antigen test two days before we leave for our flight. The only problem is if we test positive in our test to come home. 

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Can someone who has recently sailed on Crystal, or recently booked a near term cruise, tell me IF they ask you if you are vaccinated at the time of booking the cruise and giving final payment?  I’m unclear on when this level of detail to Crystal is provided.  Thank you.

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Posted (edited)
38 minutes ago, Psoque said:

Whether some of the passengers "feel comfortable" about this new arrangement regarding embarkation in Miami and intentionally boarding unvaccinated passengers onboard or not, this decision by Crystal, in my personal and professional opinion, clearly irresponsible and highly problematic. This opinion is mainly based on the fact that the number of new cases, mainly among the unvaccinated, in Florida is extremely high right now.  As I mentioned earlier, the summer cruises on Serenity and Symphony could be the "make it or break it" attempt at its survival for Crystal, and that might be the reason these poorly thought out decisions were made in this manner.  But that does not justify what they are doing.

 

Also, Crystal is not fooling anyone when it said the change to allow unvaccinated passengers was somehow forced to them by the State of Florida.  That is entirely false.  Obviously, I am not trying to defend what Florida and its governor has been doing to politicize this outbreak, but the fact is that Crystal is the one who chose to add Miami as an embarkation point.  Nobody forced Crystal to do this.

 

This whole situation is utterly embarrassing for Crystal.

 

I fundamentally agree, especially that this is an unforced error, but I think Florida is more of a problem here than you give them blame for.  Crystal didn't have to do this, but they are sort of backed into a corner on what options they have.

 

  • The marketplace has flipped 180 degrees since these cruises were announced, and the trade-offs built into the original itineraries to allow them to sail are no longer competitive.  That responsibility lays on Crystal, BUT considering they were in completely uncharted territory, I can give you hundreds of similar examples all across the travel industry that didn't work out equally.  For the past year and a half we've basically been using our best judgement, but there's a factor of throwing things at the wall and seeing what sticks and a factor of rolling the dice to each decision -- no matter how fact-based.
  • Their agreement with The Bahamas remains in place, limiting where else they can call geographically.  Buying out The Bahamas agreement and all of the vendor and supplier contracts under it has to be cost prohibitive to any major redeployments at this point.  This is a different type of deployment than Symphony had in Antigua, which was expensive enough to change as it was.
  • So that pretty much limits them to working with Florida, and Florida knows it.  Without any way to quickly overturn the documentation law, here we are.

 

As unhappy as I am about the decision, it's not like I see a better option for them.  They are literally ALL bad.  That doesn't excuse it, but it adds texture for sure.

 

Vince

Edited by BWIVince
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4 minutes ago, hubbards said:

Can someone who has recently sailed on Crystal, or recently booked a near term cruise, tell me IF they ask you if you are vaccinated at the time of booking the cruise and giving final payment?  I’m unclear on when this level of detail to Crystal is provided.  Thank you.

 

I'm booked on Symphony, and I was told I had to be vaccinated and had to acknowledge a clause that I understood that.  They didn't ask me if I was, but will have to show proof at physical check-in.

 

Vince

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Thank you Vince but something doesn’t add up to me.  I don’t mean to add more fuel to the fire but if you have to produce proof at the pier, how do they control the % of unvaccinated guests prior to the start of the cruise?  Shouldn’t this detail be provided at the time of final payment?

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37 minutes ago, Sthrngary said:

After 17 months of four cancellations, waiting for refunds, deciding on Future Cruise Credits or Cash, rebooking all the crazy details and learning to reading cover to cover those 30 page cruise line contracts; I am Mentally, Physically and Financially exhausted.  I am also so much better educated on the business of cruising.  

 

I cancelled my July 31 Crystal cruise 8 days prior due to my wife getting Covid.  I was penalized 50%.  That is some serious cash. For those that are not aware, if we would have gone to the port of Nassau and she test positive.  We would have been penalized 100%, put in quarantine, stressed out and scared in a international location.  First off topic, Buy Travel Insurance with trip interruption/cancel policy, book with a credit card that covers trip interruption.  

 

Now on topic. I knew what the consequences were if I canceled even for Covid.  I knew that Crystal or ANY other cruise brand could change ports, or basically do anything they wanted to do.  Those 30 pages of contract have very few protections to the guest.  They are written that way most brands are the same.  By reading the document, I was fully aware of what I was getting into.

 

Am I happy about this situation or anyone that for what every reason wants to cancel, "HELL NO".  Do I feel Crystal, NCL or Oceana (The lines I have booked on and cancelled for various reasons) are being unethical, "NO".  Do they have the right to do all this, "YES".  Don't mean I like it, just means i was aware of the possibility. That is honest.

 

We know the rules folks.  We knew the risks and if we did not know them, we should have.  Vote with your pocket book but know, ALL cruise brands are similar. Let us look to make the best our of a really BAD situation.  It is all we have left.

 

I think we all understand that the T&C are for the cruise lines benefit.

And many of us have had cruise cancellations, re-bookings, more cancellations. That is part of life with COVID. Most people know that ports can change or be cancelled, though some did not understand that included embarkation ports at the last minute.

 

Are you saying that you understood that the terms allowed Crystal to promise an unvaccinated cruise and then change to allow unvaccinated? Because that is the crux of this issue. 

 

Please correct me if I am wrong--what other cruise lines promised and booked vaccinated only and then changed the terms to allow unvaccinated passengers? And if they did---was there any accommodation of previously booked pax?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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4 minutes ago, hubbards said:

Thank you Vince but something doesn’t add up to me.  I don’t mean to add more fuel to the fire but if you have to produce proof at the pier, how do they control the % of unvaccinated guests prior to the start of the cruise?  Shouldn’t this detail be provided at the time of final payment?

 

Sorry, I was referring to Symphony because I didn't know where you were going with that question.

 

For Serenity, we'll need someone who has rebooked or newly booked to answer how they are collecting that, but yes they are waitlisting people that are not identifying themselves (however that looks now) as vaccinated, and then clearing them from the waitlist as allowed by the vaccination margin.

 

Vince

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Honestly, I'm surprised that after the refunds saga, anyone still believes that Crystal (or any other cruise line) has its customers best interests as a priority.

 

They are running a business. Their main and only priority is maximizing profits.

 

Does anyone really believe that 200+ repetitive posts will change anything? If you really want to make a change, vote with your wallets. Cancel your bookings and demand a full refund. If they refuse, file a dispute with your credit card company. Take them to court if necessary. 

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57 minutes ago, Sthrngary said:

After 17 months of four cancellations, waiting for refunds, deciding on Future Cruise Credits or Cash, rebooking all the crazy details and learning to reading cover to cover those 30 page cruise line contracts; I am Mentally, Physically and Financially exhausted.  I am also so much better educated on the business of cruising.  

 

I cancelled my July 31 Crystal cruise 8 days prior due to my wife getting Covid.  I was penalized 50%.  That is some serious cash. For those that are not aware, if we would have gone to the port of Nassau and she test positive.  We would have been penalized 100%, put in quarantine, stressed out and scared in a international location.  First off topic, Buy Travel Insurance with trip interruption/cancel policy, book with a credit card that covers trip interruption.  

 

Now on topic. I knew what the consequences were if I canceled even for Covid.  I knew that Crystal or ANY other cruise brand could change ports, or basically do anything they wanted to do.  Those 30 pages of contract have very few protections to the guest.  They are written that way most brands are the same.  By reading the document, I was fully aware of what I was getting into.

 

Am I happy about this situation or anyone that for what every reason wants to cancel, "HELL NO".  Do I feel Crystal, NCL or Oceana (The lines I have booked on and cancelled for various reasons) are being unethical, "NO".  Do they have the right to do all this, "YES".  Don't mean I like it, just means i was aware of the possibility. That is honest.

 

We know the rules folks.  We knew the risks and if we did not know them, we should have.  Vote with your pocket book but know, ALL cruise brands are similar. Let us look to make the best our of a really BAD situation.  It is all we have left.

Terrific input thank you.

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Posted (edited)
26 minutes ago, hubbards said:

Can someone who has recently sailed on Crystal, or recently booked a near term cruise, tell me IF they ask you if you are vaccinated at the time of booking the cruise and giving final payment?  I’m unclear on when this level of detail to Crystal is provided.  Thank you.

No, they do not. It is asked when you complete your precruise documentation. We went on the crystal website and uploaded photos of our vaccination cards. In addition we showed at the port AND we shared with Bahamas for their visa process.

Edited by tinaincc
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1 minute ago, tinaincc said:

No, they do not. It is asked when you complete your precruise documentation.

Thank you for the quick reply.  I see you were on the 7/7 sailing.  So, to confirm, there is no physical proof of vaccination in the entire process, just verbal.

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1 minute ago, broker1217 said:

 

I think we all understand that the T&C are for the cruise lines benefit.

And many of us have had cruise cancellations, re-bookings, more cancellations. That is part of life with COVID. Most people know that ports can change or be cancelled, though some did not understand that included embarkation ports at the last minute.

 

Are you saying that you understood that the terms allowed Crystal to promise an unvaccinated cruise and then change to allow unvaccinated? Because that is the crux of this issue. 

 

Please correct me if I am wrong--what other cruise lines promised and booked vaccinated only and then changed the terms to allow unvaccinated passengers? And if they did---was there any accommodation of previously booked pax?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ok, I will address that specific issue based on the experience I have had so far.  This does not make the future a fact, just what I have experienced. I like you booked this cruise out of Nassau (I hated that from the start) because it was a fully vaccinated cruise including the CREW.  I also booked it because by being out of Nassau, it avoided all the issues in Florida.  So a major selling point was "Fully Vaccinated Cruise".  

 

Neither you nor I were given the options of Miami even if the current rules were in place.  That was an option nor fact that we were not given.  If we were, I would have booked Miami even knowing what I know now. WHY, because it would be my choice and I risk.  I resent the fact that this is not my choice or my risk to take.  I like most folks do NOT like being controlled. 

 

It it wrong for Crystal Cruise to change this KEY selling point now, not give those that booked based on a fully vaccinated cruise a full refund.  It is very wrong and I don't like it, not one bit.  Who would.  Not my point.  When I pull the emotions out of it and let me tell you, like you I am verVERY emotional. I know they had the right to do it based on the document they have use agree to.  That is unfortunately also a fact or they could not do it.

 

I am not "Crystalized", I love NCL Haven but not "Havenized" either.  The only options I have is to vote with my pocket book.  I as a guest have to take a bit of accountability for being somewhat foolish even thinking cruise now would be "Just Fine" like it had been 24 previous times.  I feel quite the idiot. Hope the clarifies my position.  

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2 minutes ago, hubbards said:

Thank you for the quick reply.  I see you were on the 7/7 sailing.  So, to confirm, there is no physical proof of vaccination in the entire process, just verbal.

We were on the July 17 cruise. See my updated answer - we showed pictures of our cards about 60 days out to both Crystal and Bahamas Visa group. Then showed the cards in person at checkin.

 

we booked Alaska for next summer and we’re not asked at the time of booking.

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2 minutes ago, hubbards said:

Thank you for the quick reply.  I see you were on the 7/7 sailing.  So, to confirm, there is no physical proof of vaccination in the entire process, just verbal.

I hope I am answering the right question. 1) When going out of the Bahamas, you had to send a copy of your Vaccine Card to get a heath visa.  2) Now the miami is an option, there is a question that says, are all the passengers fully vaccinated.  

I do not recall any request for my vaccine card for Nassau, I might have missed it.  I intended on bringing it because I did not what THAT to be the reason why I was not aloud to board.  

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5 minutes ago, Sthrngary said:

I hope I am answering the right question. 1) When going out of the Bahamas, you had to send a copy of your Vaccine Card to get a heath visa.  2) Now the miami is an option, there is a question that says, are all the passengers fully vaccinated.  

I do not recall any request for my vaccine card for Nassau, I might have missed it.  I intended on bringing it because I did not what THAT to be the reason why I was not aloud to board.  

I could have sworn that we had to provide a picture or the details when we did the initial “check in process” on the crystal website. I could be wrong. I definitely had to upload to Bahamas visa site and I had to show at the Nassau airport when entering the country and at the embarkation check in

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Just now, tinaincc said:

I could have sworn that we had to provide a picture or the details when we did the initial “check in process” on the crystal website. I could be wrong. I definitely had to upload to Bahamas visa site and I had to show at the Nassau airport when entering the country and at the embarkation check in

Hell Tina, I have done so many online Check-ins, cancellations, Visa; I can't remember so what I said was my memory.  In full disclosure, I did have a Stroke a few years back.  It did effect my memory a bit, that was not a joke, it was serious.  So, you may be right.  

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Posted (edited)
17 minutes ago, Sthrngary said:

I hope I am answering the right question. 1) When going out of the Bahamas, you had to send a copy of your Vaccine Card to get a heath visa.  2) Now the miami is an option, there is a question that says, are all the passengers fully vaccinated.  

I do not recall any request for my vaccine card for Nassau, I might have missed it.  I intended on bringing it because I did not what THAT to be the reason why I was not aloud to board.  

 

The only time we uploaded a picture of our vaccine cards was to obtain the Bahamas health visa.  We showed the physical card during check-in onboard the ship.

 

ETA - we may have also shown the card along with the passport and check-in documents prior to entering the testing hall at the convention center.  We had them all in one package so not sure if it was required then or if it was a matter of convenience.

 

 

 

Edited by pnsnkr
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Just now, Sthrngary said:

Hell Tina, I have done so many online Check-ins, cancellations, Visa; I can't remember so what I said was my memory.  In full disclosure, I did have a Stroke a few years back.  It did effect my memory a bit, that was not a joke, it was serious.  So, you may be right.  

Sorry to hear that. Clearly your ability to articulate in writing was NOT impacted. I love to read your writings!

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18 hours ago, BWIVince said:

 

Not to take away from your point, but if you just booked the air yesterday, doesn't your airline have a 24 hour refund policy for nonrefundable tickets?  Point taken on the sentiment, but you should actually have a legit out here.

 

Vince

You only have a 24 hour window.  I got the Crystal change email after that expired.  I am not able to cancel my air to get a full refund.  I would have to receive a voucher. This was much to late in the process to change the game.  

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1 hour ago, bitob said:

I have given some thought as to what Crystal can do to discourage unvaccinated travelers from booking:

 

Ban them from all the bars!

As far as I can tell, that is what they have done. Other than their rooms, it looks like the only other options are Waterside and The Galaxy.

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