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blossomleh

Marella Discovery Itinerary Change. Colours of the Far East (Merged threads).

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Hi all 

 

We were told a couple of hours after we had left Singapore that there had been a fire on the starboard engine, which thankfully had been put out with no injuries. This meant that we had to miss Koh Samui (for which they gave us £25pp on board credit for) and now after flying in technicians while we were in Bangkok for two days, we have been told the itinerary has been changed again.

 

We are now also missing out on Cambodia and Malacca but going back to Singapore again which isn't high on anyone's list by the sounds of it. They are offering us £250pp for the inconvenience which doesn't sound like a lot considering we have now missed out on 3 ports due to an engine issue. 

 

Has anyone else has any similar issues who can advise on where we stand on this? Doesn't sound like anyone on this ship can help so can't do anything until we get back anyway so haven't tried asking yet. 

 

This is our honeymoon and we were so hoping to see all the ports, especially Cambodia, I've put the original itinerary below if anyone is interested.

 

Thanks in advance for any advice you can give 🙂

 

L x

 

Day 1-2
Langkawi, Malaysia
Day 3
Penang, Malaysia
Day 4
Port Klang (for Kuala Lumpur), Malaysia
Day 5
Singapore, Singapore
Day 6
at sea...,
Day 7
Koh Samui, Thailand
Day 8-9
Laem Chabang (for Bangkok), Thailand
Day 10
Sihanoukville, Cambodia
Day 11
at sea...,
Day 12
Phu My (for Ho Chi Minh City), Vietnam
Day 13
at sea...,
Day 14
Malacca, Malaysia
Day 15
Langkawi, Malaysia

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1 hour ago, blossomleh said:

Hi all 

 

We were told a couple of hours after we had left Singapore that there had been a fire on the starboard engine, which thankfully had been put out with no injuries. This meant that we had to miss Koh Samui (for which they gave us £25pp on board credit for) and now after flying in technicians while we were in Bangkok for two days, we have been told the itinerary has been changed again.

 

We are now also missing out on Cambodia and Malacca but going back to Singapore again which isn't high on anyone's list by the sounds of it. They are offering us £250pp for the inconvenience which doesn't sound like a lot considering we have now missed out on 3 ports due to an engine issue. 

 

Has anyone else has any similar issues who can advise on where we stand on this? Doesn't sound like anyone on this ship can help so can't do anything until we get back anyway so haven't tried asking yet. 

 

This is our honeymoon and we were so hoping to see all the ports, especially Cambodia, I've put the original itinerary below if anyone is interested.

 

Thanks in advance for any advice you can give 🙂

 

L x

 

Day 1-2
Langkawi, Malaysia
Day 3
Penang, Malaysia
Day 4
Port Klang (for Kuala Lumpur), Malaysia
Day 5
Singapore, Singapore
Day 6
at sea...,
Day 7
Koh Samui, Thailand
Day 8-9
Laem Chabang (for Bangkok), Thailand
Day 10
Sihanoukville, Cambodia
Day 11
at sea...,
Day 12
Phu My (for Ho Chi Minh City), Vietnam
Day 13
at sea...,
Day 14
Malacca, Malaysia
Day 15
Langkawi, Malaysia

 

Hi  Blossomleh  i cannot give you any help when your ship breaks down, but the P&O cruise ship Ventura has had the same problem and had broken down for  4/5 nights in Tenerife this week, my only help is that you look at the P&O site and look at Ventura has broken down,  there are a lot of passengers with more knowledge than me that can help you, have a lovely honeymoon.

 

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2 hours ago, blossomleh said:

Hi all 

 

We were told a couple of hours after we had left Singapore that there had been a fire on the starboard engine, which thankfully had been put out with no injuries. This meant that we had to miss Koh Samui (for which they gave us £25pp on board credit for) and now after flying in technicians while we were in Bangkok for two days, we have been told the itinerary has been changed again.

 

We are now also missing out on Cambodia and Malacca but going back to Singapore again which isn't high on anyone's list by the sounds of it. They are offering us £250pp for the inconvenience which doesn't sound like a lot considering we have now missed out on 3 ports due to an engine issue. 

 

Has anyone else has any similar issues who can advise on where we stand on this? Doesn't sound like anyone on this ship can help so can't do anything until we get back anyway so haven't tried asking yet. 

 

This is our honeymoon and we were so hoping to see all the ports, especially Cambodia, I've put the original itinerary below if anyone is interested.

 

Thanks in advance for any advice you can give 🙂

 

L x

 

Day 1-2
Langkawi, Malaysia
Day 3
Penang, Malaysia
Day 4
Port Klang (for Kuala Lumpur), Malaysia
Day 5
Singapore, Singapore
Day 6
at sea...,
Day 7
Koh Samui, Thailand
Day 8-9
Laem Chabang (for Bangkok), Thailand
Day 10
Sihanoukville, Cambodia
Day 11
at sea...,
Day 12
Phu My (for Ho Chi Minh City), Vietnam
Day 13
at sea...,
Day 14
Malacca, Malaysia
Day 15
Langkawi, Malaysia

Hi Blossomleh

Firstly congratulations on your marriage.   We are booked on the January 9th Discovery Cruise so watching with interest anything pertaining to it.  By no means an expert in Cruise law, but a frequent cruiser with past experience of missing ports.   Before we get bombarded, it is safe to say that no one should book a cruise with only the ports of call as priority as weather and countries political situations etc.,  can change in an instance.  These factors are beyond any cruiseline owners control and many a time we have missed ports and private islands due to these factors.  Not once would it enter our minds to either complain or expect any form of compensation as safety is priority.

Nonetheless, the breakdown of a ship (or its propulsion) is something of a grey area.  Granted no cruise line would wish a ship to develop faults, especially at sea but it must take total responsibility when it does occur.   

 

An offer of 250 pounds in compensation is not  (imho) acceptable.

 

 Stressing that you are still on a fabulous holiday, and having a great honeymoon but understanding that  you did not travel all that way to stay in what is essence is becoming an all inclusive hotel at sea.

The staff/crew I would imagine are being fabulous and it is sad to learn on other social platforms that some passengers are giving them a hard time.  My husband, myself and two friends  had an almost identical situation on the NCL Star two years ago (the reason we have booked the Discovery in January 2020).  We were notified 2 days before sailing that the Star had propulsion problems and needed to sail slow so would miss Ko Samui, Saigon and Cambodia and we would spend 3 extra days at sea (reduced to 2 after sailing as the Captain got a berth at Singapore for an extra night)  NCL offered a full refund before sailing and a 15% voucher off a future cruise or we could sail and get 50% of our cruise price in cash and the other 50% in a future cruise credit.  We chose to sail and had the most fantastic time, made better with the knowledge that we had enough compensation to book another cruise.

Hopefully, the offer of compensation will increase as it really is nothing like the cruise you had booked.  Check with your travel insurance when you get home, but make the best of your cruise

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We would have loved to have done this cruise but with no flights from Scotland we decided against it due to the fact that the unpredictable winter weather conditions may have affected our journey down south to join our flight.  Also the thought of the long journey back home after the long flight  back to the UK didn't appeal.

 

With all the problems this year again with engine trouble, missed ports and extra sea days in a way I'm quite glad we decided to give it a miss. I do feel sorry for all the people who have booked this cruise for the itinerary and are now so disappointed by what is on offer. I think had it been us we would have cancelled as the itinerary means a lot to us.

It may not bother the growing number of people who are happy to sit round the pool drinking most of the day. 

 

Am I right in thinking this is the ship that will be doing the US itineraries ? 

 

 

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Not convinced you missed anything at Sihanoukville, Cambodia.

 

Talking to friends who visited Sihanoukville this year, their advice was "don't get off the ship. It's a dump with the Chinese building 39 casinos". Actually, we had already decided to stay on board and not venture into town.  [edit for context: we the are joining Colours of the Far East 1 cruise on 26th December at Laem Chabang.]

 

See also 2018 article: https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2018/jul/31/no-cambodia-left-chinese-money-changing-sihanoukville

Edited by idh2019
relevant info

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Just in case people might start making comments about old worn out Marella ships P&O Ventura, 10 years younger than Discovery last week had engine failure in the Canaries and was towed to Tenerife where she spent a few days. After temporary repairs she is on her way back to Southampton. 600 passengers flew home from Tenerife and the rest are risking it. The next cruise is cancelled, substantial compensation has been offered.

 

so not just 'old' ships break down!.

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 Sihanoukville itself  isn't a "destination" port, but a "gateway" port.

 

It is the gateway port for Phnom Penh, capital of Cambodia.

 

We did a shorex a few years ago and it is a very long day as journey time alone is around 3 and 1/2 hours each way, but we thought it worthwhile as we saw most of the top sights in  Phnom Penh.

 

If you don't want to do such a long shorex (I think we were around 12 hours) there are other options which are much shorter.

 

An internet search on eg "excursions (or shore excursions)  Sihanoukville" should bring up options offered by different companies and there are almost certainly reviews of them on Tripadvisor.

 

IMHO it would be a missed opportunity to experience some of Cambodia if you stay onboard, and  Sihanoukville is usually the only stop in Cambodia.

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On ‎12‎/‎15‎/‎2019 at 12:57 PM, davecttr said:

Just in case people might start making comments about old worn out Marella ships P&O Ventura, 10 years younger than Discovery last week had engine failure in the Canaries and was towed to Tenerife where she spent a few days. After temporary repairs she is on her way back to Southampton. 600 passengers flew home from Tenerife and the rest are risking it. The next cruise is cancelled, substantial compensation has been offered.

 

so not just 'old' ships break down!.

 

Agree that breakdowns happen whatever the age of ship/car/aircraft/etc  (although there are reports of this breakdown being a repeat of last year!!!)

 

Older ships are not the issue being discussed here - it is the lack of communication from TUI/Marella.

 

From what you describe, P&O seem to understand how to keep their customers happy. Also they have taken the ship out of service to get it fixed and  not carried on with a ship limping around the Gulf of Thailand/Malacca Strait with a lot of unhappy customers.

 

So TUI have a social media nightmare (again?). Probably as a result of this they have finally posted an update: https://www.tui.co.uk/destinations/travel-information/marella-discovery

 

But that is not making those going on the cruise in the immediate future any happier by the lack of consistency in compensation:

https://www.facebook.com/MarellaCruises/

 

Do they not care about potential lost repeat business? Or do they just assume that with an increasing number of people who want to go on cruises, those will fill the empty ships? Does not take much effort to find these comments/reviews on the internet and then decide "perhaps not"!

 

@edinburgher: As for Cambodia, I don't think that is going to be an issue - looks like we will not be calling in there.

 

Off to read again the Which website about "significant changes to the cruise":  https://www.which.co.uk/consumer-rights/advice/a-change-was-made-to-my-cruise-itinerary-can-i-get-a-refund

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Have a look at Package Traval Regulations namley Reg 15 Unsatisfactory Holiday Arrangements and possibly Reg 4 Descriptive matter must not be misleading 👍

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Blossomleh - congratulations on your marriage. Its a pity the honeymoon has been affected for you,

 

Last year around this time, the Discovery had electrical problems in the Gulf. On one cruise they missed many of the ports, and I believe passengers received 50% back. The following cruise from Dubia to Langwaki missed a couple of ports in India and the pasengers received around 30% back, so I would agree, that compensation offered to date is low.

 

Your travel insurance may cover some missed ports (LV does), but I'm not sure it covers ship breakdown without checking the policy, so I would check if you are covered by insurance

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We had an email last night changing the itinerary of our cruise on 31/01/2020 due to propulsion problems.  They will miss out two stops due to slow progress and that also means two extra sea days.  The princely sum of £250pp is being refunded for the inconvenience of flying half way around the world to spend days floating around the ocean instead of being ashore.  We booked a junior suite this time and that looks a good idea now, anyone think £250 is not enough?

 

Jan

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We are due to go on Jan 8th. Same e mail received. We are missing 2 ports completely and one of our 2 days in Langkawi. We are also having reduced time in Pattaya and delayed arrival in Singapore at 11 am . We are also very concerned about travelling on a compromised ship ! It seems they have been having problems for a long time now .

I spent over an hour on phone yesterday to the number given and basically told I had no options but accept there gesture of goodwill £250 pp. If I want to cancel it will incur 90% cancellation fee as so close to departure ! There is no option to change to another cruise. Feel absolutely trapped by TUI and disgusted with their customer service. They refused to escalate my call and eventually hung up on me !

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Unfortunately as soon as you accept the 'goodwill gesture' you cannot go any further with a claim. £250pp does appear low but its a lot to turn down if you wish to fight after your holiday. Not much comfort I know but hopefully you will all have a great time. 😎 

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Had the same email from Tui, rung their advice line, Customer Care  unbelievable, “take it or leave it” there’s nothing else they are prepared to do ?? 

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Thanks for the replies so far.  They are definitely doing a take it or leave it attitude and state the refund will be paid with no option to cancel or change, unlike other cruise lines.  This will be our last Marella cruise if this goes on, especially after the dreadful Explorer cruise to the midnight sun last year with the captain of a thousand excuses as to why we had to tender after tender into ports leaving disabled people stuck on the ship.  To add insult to injury the e-tickets arrived this morning with the original itinerary on.

Edited by ekco

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We have e mailed the CEO and also Commercial Director . No reply as yet. I read that the gulf cruise in November had itinerary  changes 3 weeks before departure and they were offered a chance to cancel so there is a precedent .

 

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Interesting.  We need to give it some thought over the weekend and try the dreaded phone lines to see if cancellation is an option.

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We very nearly booked this cruise ,but through ill health did'nt , so we feel reading this very lucky not to have booked.Feel sorry for those people that have commented/booked on this cruise. If it means anything to those people I also would not be happy at what's been offered !! and as a Marella cruiser concerned at the lack of customer care and support.

It will not be forgotten by us in future dealings with Marella. Pull your finger out Marella !!!!

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The cheek of them charging 90% to cancel.  It’s not as if you were sat at home thinking that you couldn’t be bothered going.  It’s their problem, their fault, take responsibility!  My OH is going to try and get through on the phone to ask about cancellation 5 weeks hence. If we wanted to float about in the sea for days on end we would go to the Canaries and not half way round the world, not to mention shorter stops in port.  These ships don’t exactly rush around the ocean at the best of times so how slow is it going to be.

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1 hour ago, ekco said:

Thanks for the replies so far.  They are definitely doing a take it or leave it attitude and state the refund will be paid with no option to cancel or change, unlike other cruise lines.  This will be our last Marella cruise if this goes on, especially after the dreadful Explorer cruise to the midnight sun last year with the captain of a thousand excuses as to why we had to tender after tender into ports leaving disabled people stuck on the ship.  To add insult to injury the e-tickets arrived this morning with the original itinerary on.

ekco could I ask if you did a review on the Midnight cruise as we are going next year, did you actually miss any ports? We only chose this because of problems we had on D2 in September, sorry but I can't fault Tui how they sorted things out for us we were more than happy 😊 

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OH just got off the phone to TUI.  Looks like we are up the creek without a paddle here, no cancellation under 70 days, will check this, otherwise we forfeit the full cost and not just 90% which they told Margaret.  So who is right at Tui?, terms and conditions say 90%  Told to sort ourselves out legally or to email the CEO regarding higher compensation.  No more cruising with Marella for us after this as standards have slipped dramatically in recent times.

 

Pensioncruiser,  we didn’t miss any ports but a lot were tendered, blame put on length of jetty, etc., etc. but it makes the day shorter having to keep getting on and off tenders.  We didn’t like the Explorer, dark and gloomy furniture in the buffet, low grade food.  I could go on and on but you get my point.  The best part was paying the extra for a junior suite which became a nice bolt hole as it had a very big balcony to get wrapped up on the sunbeds with a blanket and watch the midnight sun.

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