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Will cruise get canceled and/or airline go out of business before we sail next year?


chees

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I also posted this on the 'Cruise Air' area but wanted your thoughts on HAL changing the cruise:

 

We are sailing in January 2010 from Rio to Valparaiso (Santiago) around the horn and into Antarctica. My issue is -- I'm a detail freak so I will be checking airfare now to get the best deal and purchase when the price is right (to/from SFO).

 

1 - HAL has already canceled the 20-day same itinerary cruise after this one (1/30/10). Any chance they will cancel this cruise (1/10/10 on the Veendam) also and I will be stuck with a pricey plane ticket to South America I won't be able to or want to use (especially if I purchase through LAN)?

 

2 - Will the airline go out of business before my travel or change their routings so much that they don't get me there in time, service that city, etc. (i.e. a domestic carrier like American/Delta pulling out of that market)?

 

I honestly don't know what to do as everything is in flux because of the economy. Any suggestions on when to purchase air?

 

Thanks, Tina

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Either could happen. Or neither could. Who can say? My only suggestion is to plan what you want to do and act on it, being sure to take out trip insurance. Plan to fly in at least one day before embarkation to cover any necessary flight cancellations/rerouting that may come up.

 

Good luck.

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Anything is possible; no one here has a crystal ball. :D Why not purchase trip insurance to guard against something happening? You can insure the airline tickets separately if not purchased as a pkg. with the cruise.

 

Roz

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I agree with Jim. Get insurance. Likely flight schedules will change. Plan a day or two early arrival. Getting stuck in fear of the future doesn’t do me any good.

Enjoy your cruise!

John

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My sister and BIL did this cruise Dec/Jan (Christmas/NewYear 2008/2009) on the Amsterdam. They took HAL air and they were lucky they did. They arrived at the ship with only 1/2 hour to spare. Because they had the cruise line air, the ship waited for them.

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Maybe you should consider HAL air (even though you don't get the best price or best flights) so that if the cruise is cancelled it's all in HAL's lap?
I'm normally not a big fan of HAL air, but in this case, I think this is a very good piece of advice. At least by purchasing the whole package with HAL, you are covered if the cruise gets cancelled. You are also covered for any flight problems since HAL tends to take care of you if there are flight problems more than they would if the air were not booked through them.

 

With a cruise of this nature, I would definitely consider purchasing my air through HAL.

 

Blue skies ...

 

--rita

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The problem I found with cruise air is it was double the price of booking it myself. I got tickets to Copenhagen for $1,300 a piece. HAL wanted to charge me $2,600 a piece. $3,900 more for 3 tickets.

 

I bought trip insurance $500 to cover both the cruise and air. Also, because the economy is so shaky, I spend another $100 to purchase the 'cancel for any reason' protection. So even with all that, I still came out $3,300 ahead vs. buying the cruise air. IMHO, in this economy, it's wise to buy insurance. Just make sure you use someone who is reputable.

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If I am not mistaken HAL will help you get a refund on air that you purchased if they cancel or drastically alter a cruise schedule. The Panama canal cruise that was to leave Fort Lauderdale April 27 was pushed back to May 1 due to dry dock issues with altered ports to make up the time. The people who booked last year were not happy with the change, canceled the cruise and HAL got them refunded air.

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I purchased my insurance through travelinsured dot com. It was recommended by several people on this board. They show only Washington state residents as ineligible for 'cancel for any reason' insurance. No mention of NY state or any other state.

 

They have an easy to use website that will give you an automatic quote. I purchased it online but have emailed them once and called them twice with questions and they were very responsive.

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If you purchase your air and cruise on American Express, they will cover you if the airline or cruise company go out of business. I always buy travel insurance, which covers delay of trip, lost luggage, pre-existing medical issues, and most anything else that could go wrong. I sleep much better having the insurance.:)

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I purchased my insurance through travelinsured dot com. It was recommended by several people on this board. They show only Washington state residents as ineligible for 'cancel for any reason' insurance. No mention of NY state or any other state.

 

They have an easy to use website that will give you an automatic quote. I purchased it online but have emailed them once and called them twice with questions and they were very responsive.

Note the 75% limit on cancel for any reason protection.

 

"“Cancel For Any Reason” Protection:

Not available for residents of Washington State

If You purchase the Cancel For Any Reason protection and You cancel Your Trip for any reason not otherwise covered by this plan, the Insurer will reimburse You up to the lesser of the limit shown on Your Confirmation of Benefits or 75% of the prepaid, forfeited, non-refundable payments or deposits You paid for Your Trip provided You cancel Your Trip more than two (2) days prior to Your Scheduled Departure Date."

http://www.travelinsured.com/TIDocuments/Product%20PDF%20Features%20and%20Benefits/WTP-4.2008(Rev.2a)-web.pdf

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Another option is to purchase air using airline miles as they can be returned to your account (albeit for a fee -- but a fee that is much smaller than the full cost of a ticket) if something happens to the trip. If you do not have quite enough airline miles they can be purchased from most airlines for a fee -- but they are still returnable and usable at a later date so the original investment is not lost. (FYI -- American is currently offering a bonus of 30% more miles if you purchase miles in the next few weeks)

 

When we did our South America/Antarctica voyage we used miles to secure business class seats. We were short a few miles on that goal when it came time to secure seats so we spent a few hundred dollars buying more miles and then saved thousands of dollars over the cost of purchasing business class seats. We felt that was a great investment.

 

A second advantage to securing our tickets with miles came when our ship was delayed on its way to Antarctica by three days, so we arrived in Buenos Aries at the end of the voyage three days late. Cruise line air would certainly have saved us here, but we were able to save ourselves and change our return flight date -- something that would have been a very expensive proposition had we purchased revenue seats independently from HAL.

 

Just another alternative to the huge cost of cruise line air.

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The problem I found with cruise air is it was double the price of booking it myself. I got tickets to Copenhagen for $1,300 a piece. HAL wanted to charge me $2,600 a piece. $3,900 more for 3 tickets.

And that's exactly the problem I have with HAL air. But ... that said, I've been told that in some rare cases ... such as for cruises leaving from "exotic" countries or off-the-beaten-track cities, the HAL air could actually work out cheaper than doing it on your own.

 

That's what I've been told anyway ... though I have no personal experience with this since most of my cruises have departed from more popular destinations in the U.S. or Canada, and the air was far cheaper if I arranged it on my own.

 

Blue skies ...

 

--rita

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