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About commodoredave

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

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  • Interests
    Cruising, travel, sailing.
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Silversea, Seabourn, Crystal, AMA Waterways, Hebridean,Cunard
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Greek Islands
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  1. Hebridean has stepped up and allowed me to apply my non-refundable deposit to a future cruise. I am very impressed with their consumer-friendly decision. As a result, we will be rebooking for next year, and will continue to book more cruises with them. All's well that ends well!!
  2. We've managed a cash refund for our cancelled river cruise in June, and for deposits on a TA in October, and a Japan cruise next March. We are not counting on a safe cruise until at least mid-summer 2021.
  3. This should not be a huge problem. The cruise lines can purchase small, old vessels for their hospital and quaratine ships -- kind of like the supply ship model. Or some third party can start this as business and offer the service to all cruises line by region.
  4. Seabourn has already announced all sailings are cancelled until at least October. That is a forward thinking and consumer-friendly policy. Some other cruise lines have put greed before safety and announced earlier start-ups this summer, which will likely not happen. One small U.K.- based cruise line is only cancelling cruises one month in advance, which is putting their passengers through hell.
  5. I just wonder how many people will either make a final payment for a cruise they booked before the outbreak of COVID-19, or make a new booking now when there is so much uncertainty. The only bookings I've kept or made are with cruise lines like Silversea who will allow me to cancel and get a FCC.
  6. I recently read that some airlines and at least one cruise line (Genting) are putting in air filters that extract all airborne bacteria, etc. It's certainly an issue we all need to keep an eye on. The cruise lines that make this a priority will get my business.
  7. Spraying alcohol all over the place?! What a waste. I was taught at a young age never to waste the stuff as millions of children around the world go to bed sober every night!
  8. With the exception of the few expedition cruises we've taken, we do the same and just stay on the ship when it's doing the regular routes. We did a Silversea cruise to the Caribbean in December, and we got off the ship just once. It was wonderful when we had the ship and the facilities mostly to ourselves.
  9. The travel health insurance is a very real and valid issue. Perhaps the cruise lines can provide it at a reasonable cost so that people will feel more comfortable while the pandemic is still an issue. I have some other concerns as well. For example, might flights be cancelled; might borders for non-essential travel be closed; might there be a second wave of the pandemic in the fall that would make travel unsafe?; might a smaller cruise line go bankrupt; how long will it take to get refunds (if at all), etc. And I'm not confident that we could buy trip cancellation insurance that would cover most of these reasons, and at a reasonable cost.
  10. I've sent 2 email letters to Hebridean about this subject last week. The response in part was: "Thank you for your email below and please accept my apologies for the delayed response. I have forwarded your comments to our Managing Director, although we are aware of the decisions being made by most of the large cruise companies, which is very much in line with the offer Hebridean is making to guests who have had their cruises cancelled to date." Polite, but shows a total lack of awareness of what many other cruise lines are offering wth respect to cancellation and future booking policies. Hebridean may not have to be as generous as larger cruise lines, but it does need to step up its game and develop a policy that is more consumer friendly that their current policy.
  11. The punch line was meant to be critical of the doctor in question. On reflection, I wouldn't trust him to make me a Latte! So appologies to all baristas!
  12. It's certainly going to be different! Maybe more so in the first six months after operations get restarted. But if there are no serious outbreaks, and if an effective treatment or vaccine is eventualy developed, some precautions will be relaxed. As for me, I don't think I will take a cruise until at least the summer of 2021. And I think we will pass on the mega-ships and sail only on small ships. We won't be able to afford to cruise as often, but the smaller ships seem to offer a safer, and more luxurious experience.
  13. I've cut and pasted below what I think is a very pro-consumer booking policy from Silversea (other cruise lines have implemented similar policies). Silversea is sending a strong signal that it understands the concerns of the travelling public, and will put the interests of consumers above its own. As a result, I have made my final payment for a Silversea cruise next year, and will continue to book future cruises with them. In contrast, Hebridean is sending a signal that it is putting its own interests above that of consumers with its current cancellation policy. I understand that small cruise lines have less financial flexibility with which to operate, but I sincerely believe that the current Hebridean policy will result in more cancellations, fewer future bookings, less customer loyalty, and greater financial difficulty. If there ever was a time for a cruise line to show it cares about its customers, now is the time, especially if they want to survive for the longer term. SILVERSEA CRUISES INTRODUCES NEW MEASURES TO OFFER UNPRECEDENTED FLEXIBILITY TO TRAVELERS (Miami, FL -- April 20, 2020) Silversea Cruises today introduces new measures to offer unprecedented flexibility to travelers, enabling them to start planning future trips by taking away the uncertainties of today. REDUCED DEPOSIT & $1,000 ONBOARD SPENDING CREDIT FOR EVERY BOOKING UNTIL JUNE 30TH Silversea has reduced its deposit requirement to USD 1,000 / CAD 1,250 / BPS 750 / EUR 900 / AUD 1,500 per suite for any new booking made before June 30, 2020. Guests who redeem this offer will also receive USD 1,000 Onboard Spending Credit per suite. The reduced deposit offer applies to all Silversea voyages with the exception of full World Cruises and Grand Voyages. Guests in possession of Future Cruise Credit can also use their credit to take advantage of the offer. EXPANSION OF ‘CRUISE WITH CONFIDENCE’ PROGRAM To provide travelers with peace of mind when planning their cruise, Silversea is extending the previously announced ‘Cruise with Confidence’ cancellation program to all voyages currently scheduled to depart before December 31, 2020. Under the policy, guests may cancel their cruise for any reason up to 48 hours prior to sailing and receive a 100% Future Cruise Credit for the amount paid, valid for two years from the date of issue. When guests opt for Future Cruise Credit and have paid in full, the travel agent's commission is protected for both the cancelled booking and the future reservation on which the correlating Future Cruise Credit is applied. "Our new reduced deposit requirement and expanded Cruise with Confidence program are designed to address the uncertainty that our guests may be feeling these days, while providing additional tools for our valued travel partners that will help boost their business during this difficult period," says Mark Conroy, Silversea's Managing Director for the Americas.
  14. I agree. And it's not just the bankruptcy concern. What if one books a cruise outside the US and can't get to the departure port because of bans on non-essential travel, airlines cancelling flights, travel advisories that invalidate one's travel insurance, etc. This is exactly the scenario I am living through now with our cancelled cruise, and it has been very difficult to get cash refunds from airlines, hotels, train companies, etc. They all want to force FCCs and future use vouchers on us. And it they do agree to a cash refund, they say it will 60-90 days to arrive.
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