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  1. Charles, She may or may not be a terrible journalist. I really do not know or care. But she makes an excellent point about committing murder at sea. You are indeed correct that the FBI is technically and legally involved if an American is part of the crime. You are also correct that the previous or next port being in the USA can also involve them. Technically and legally, the FBI should be involved in those cases. Realistically, they often decline to get involved - unless the crime involves a high profile name. In my nearly 40 years managing Cruise Ships, I have unfortunately been in the middle of many deaths at sea. Most were not suspicious, and did not warrant a visit from the Police or FBI. But there were a surprising number that definitely could have used some sort of investigation. In every suspicious case where FBI investigation was a possibility, we contacted them, but they refused to get involved. We heard many excuses; "Too far away, budget cuts, too busy investigating other crimes, call the local police when you get into port (they were not interested either), we will call you back later". In some of those cases, I believe that passengers got away with murder. But we will never know for sure. Her statement: If you want to kill someone, getting rid of them at sea is still a great choice, especially if your vessel is under the jurisdiction of a country that doesn't have the resources or motivation to care. She was correct.
  2. There will be zero impact. You probably will not be there. The marathon probably will not happen.
  3. But you missed the smaller ships that can still sail in Alaska: Windstar Sea Dream Crystal Un-Cruise American Cruise Lines Emerald Silversea
  4. You missed a few groups that will be unemployed or need to go elsewhere: Full time Port employees Full time Port security employees. Full time Port Agencies Port Pilots TSA Employees Fuel suppliers (my medium sized ship buys 1,500 tons per week; multiply that by 40 and try to sell it somewhere else) US Public Health Inspectors (only allowed to inspect foreign flag ships) Duty Free wholesalers (they have only 2 options; cruise ships or international flyers) Local tour companies Luggage forwarding companies Limousine companies Canine bomb detection companies Medical clinics (that test all ship crew members) Waste disposal companies specializing in international waste Cash delivery companies Tug boat companies The multitude of technical support companies that service cruise ships every week: Food Service equipment Office equipment Beverage Service Equipment Computer systems Carpet cleaners Commercial Laundry systems Upholsterers Carpet layers Air con systems Water making systems Florists Swimming pool systems Ship chandlers Chemical suppliers I manage a medium-sized ship that buys around $1 Million in food, beverage, and consumables every 7 days. Add the other 40 ships that call at the same turnaround port every 7 days. Many of them are are double the size of mine. As a group, we account for about $60 million in sales per week. Where do you suggest the suppliers sell all that stuff if we happen to disappear?
  5. Port of Seattle is now closed to cruise ships until further notice.
  6. An Alaska cruise from Seattle is required to make a foreign port stop. It appears that all Canadian ports will be closed to cruise ships until at least 01 July. Unless your Alaska cruise is stopping in Japan or South America, it will probably not happen.
  7. Actually they are getting their base rate plus their minimum guaranteed income negotiated by their union. This nets them anywhere from 40% - 60% of their normal earnings. Not ideal - but still better than sitting at home and earning nothing.
  8. That is sadly true. But the quarantined crew on cruise ships continue to get paid and are generally safer than at home. They would understandably prefer to be with their families at a time like this, but at least they are earning more money to take care of their families - and staying safe at the same time.
  9. You are correct. It does not mean half - it means most. According to the Alaska Chamber of Commerce, the total for annual tourism dollars is $2.2 Billion; most of which is collected from cruise passengers and cruise lines. When my 3,500 passenger ship calls at Juneau for one day, we leave behind around $1 Million dollars. That is the total for wharfage fees, berthing fees, head taxes, port taxes, union stevedore charges, port security charges, water bunkering, fuel bunkering, food and beverage provisioning, agent fees, crew spending, passenger spending, and tours. During most of the season, you can multiply those numbers by 6 more ships at the same time, nearly every day of the week. Now how many RVs would you need parked in Juneau to generate $7 Million per day ??
  10. All the major cruise lines and their employees are governed by MLC2006, put together by the United Nations. This program spells out the legal responsibilities of all concerned. The employment contracts are legally binding for all. The cruise lines can send crew home early. but they still must pay them a minimum salary for the length of their contracts.
  11. The State of Alaska claims that over half of all visitors to that state do so via cruise ships, which results in around $2 Billion per year into the state economy. Additionally, $33.3 million was attributed to several forms of direct payments from cruise lines: the Commercial Passenger Vessel Tax, the Large Passenger Vessel Gambling Tax, and the Commercial Passenger Vessel Environmental Compliance Program; plus an additional $17.8 million in dockage and moorage fees primarily from Juneau and Ketchikan. That looks rather significant to me.
  12. Corona Virus (Covid-19) was first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, Peoples Republic of China. Based on that, the US Government is now calling it the "Chinese Virus". Norovirus (Norwalk Virus) was first identified in Norwalk, Ohio, United States of America. Based on that, should we not be calling it the "American Virus"?
  13. We need to realise that most of the mass market cruise operators are far from homeless. They possess massive assets and extremely deep pockets. They are not panicking, nor grasping at "last ditch" hare-brained schemes to get back into the game. They have been through situations like this before, and they made calculated, sensible plans to recover. Those plans were very successful in the past; they will be equally successful now. I'm quite sure that your suggestions and ideas were made with the very best intentions. I'm sure that these ideas would be great for someone like you who wants to take an inexpensive cruise (and coincidentally help the cruise lines recover). Unfortunately they do not make any sense to the people, like me, who actually are required by the owners to operate the vessels at a reasonable profit. My ideas for recovery really do not matter. People with much higher pay scales than mine have already made those decisions. Let's just relax and watch the experts make it happen.
  14. Let's have a look at these "out of the box" ideas, while bearing in mind that the mass market lines do not make a penny of profit by selling cruises. They only make profit from selling things to people who go on cruises. 1. How about single supplements of 125% on a wide variety of cruises instead of 200%? Lots of singles would probably jump at the opportunity. Single cruisers on average spend less money per person, per day, than other cruisers. Why would a cruise line lower fares (thereby lowering revenues) to get more people onboard who spend less money (lowering profits)? 2. How about running alaska cruises from San Diego or San Pedro to alaska and back via ensenada to get around PSA act. If alaska ports and some west coast ports remain open it could combine alaska with a coastal voyage into two week itineraries...since canada ports are blocked til july 1 this could hopefully provide some much needed $$ to alaska, west coast and cruise ships who otherwise sit idle in may and June or perhaps beyond....example san diego to san pedro to portland to alaska 7 days to san francisco to ensenada to san diego type itinerary You don't work in the cruise industry, so are probably unaware that cruisers who sail out of Southern California spend fewer dollars onboard, per person, per day, than just about any other demographic. Why would a cruise line encourage lower spending guests in an attempt to recover from massive financial losses? San Diego-San Pedro-Portland-Juneau would take 6 days of high speed (high fuel cost) cruising with mostly sea days, short port stops, and one day in Alaska. Then 7 more days of expensive high speed cruising at sea, with a very short (and expensive) port call at San Francisco, to get down to Ensenada and back to San Diego in 14 days. This makes no sense. 3. Offer extra special senior discounts. Retired seniors have the time and most the money to go on longer cruises. Ask the revenue people at Holland America why they have the lowest profit margins in the Carnival Group. Their demographic is heavy with retirees on fixed incomes who spend less per day than younger passengers. They may have plenty of money. They just prefer not to spend it onboard. 4. Try and schedule as many cruises as possible that pax can drive to and from ports instead of flying. Consider offering free/discounted parking at ports or even free bus transfers from select cities. Cruise Line revenue people will tell you that passengers who drive to the cruise port are trying to save money on air fares. Those same people also try to save money onboard, by spending less per day than the passengers who fly. Generally speaking, the most profitable cruises (mass market or otherwise) are those requiring long flights. 5. Consider offering at least one basic shore excursion per port that is not marked up 300%. A simple 3 hour half day bus tour does NOT have to cost $100. Most cruisers do not realise that Shore Tours are 1) the highest revenue producer for mass market lines, and 2) the highest cost % for mass market lines. The massive liability insurance policies that cruise lines are forced to pay for to avoid all the lawsuits from North Americans, effectively wipes out most of the profits from Shore Tours. Offering discounted Shore Tours will not help cruise line financials. 6. Increase special offers for interline, travel agent rates, military rates etc. These highly discounted rates are normally more last minute filler business and the rates are not published to the general public. Remember that the mass market lines only make profit from selling things to people onboard. Generally when you offer incredibly discounted fares, you attract people who normally could not or would not afford to take a cruise. These people are very happy to get a very cheap cruise - and even happier not to spend any money onboard. I am sure there are many many more possible promos...not all will work but please do something other than drink packages and free internet.....the key is to get people cruising again and to fill every cabin possible. The key is to get the right people cruising again. Adopting the Walmart market business model will get you plenty of "Walmartians". It's bad enough to have to spend a few hours in a Walmart with those freaks; who wants to spend a week with them, 24/7 ? It may seem counter-intuitive, but filling every cabin possible is not the way to make money in the cruise industry.
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