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Any suggestions how to improve the World Cruise?


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17 minutes ago, CruisinTexans said:

We used to do that in Hong Kong, but that was when we were docked at Harbour Mall 

 

The Star Ferry was close by, Nathan Road was a block or so away, one could get lost in that Mall:  a 2 day stay always seemed so short to me.  The Sound and Light Show over the Harbor:  one could view that each night and, I think, not tire of the experience.  Great memories!

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Two of the most worthless pillow gifts that we received on the 2008 World Cruise was a travel journal that we were given just before the ship arrived in Fort Lauderdale in the Spring as the cruise ended.  The Hotel Manager explained that "they were in boxes that were under boxes that we didn't find until recently".  

 

The other worthless gift was what appeared to be a piece of "polished" driftwood that may have had some "inscription" on it.  It was ugly and had no use whatsoever.  Some may have taken it with them; I put mine in the trash and I know that I was not alone in doing so.  

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On 9/6/2020 at 7:52 PM, KirkNC said:

 

Another item I would add is HAL sponsored nights off the ship like what they did on the 2019 WC in Amsterdam at the Rijks Museum.  Azamara and Oceania do one of these nights for each WC segment.

 

4 hours ago, rkacruiser said:

 

YES!  During the 2008 World Cruise, we had a night at the Cistern in Istanbul.  Anyone who was on that cruise and attended will tell you it was "A Night To  Remember" in the very best sense.  Numerous food stations many with Turkish offerings, music, belly dancers, beverages, plenty of seating at couches/chairs as well as tables/stools, and seamless, comfortable coach transportation to/from the ship for the party.  

 

More of such experiences would be a better option, I think, than pillow gifts of dubious value or use.   

 

If there were more of these types of experiences offered, it would be a HUGE selling point to me (as someone who is somewhat 'on the fence' about such a long cruise....even in a post-retirement future).

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19 hours ago, cruisemom42 said:

 

 

If there were more of these types of experiences offered, it would be a HUGE selling point to me (as someone who is somewhat 'on the fence' about such a long cruise....even in a post-retirement future).

 

Even without such enticements, a world cruise is a cruise experience like no other.  

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I agree with more 1 or 2 night over nights. One major issue is the tender tickets and their distribution. It's almost impossible to plan an early independent tour in tender ports because you're not assured of getting an early tender.

 

I realize the tender tickets are a touchy subject and, unfortunately, many people come up with various schemes to circumvent the rules. However, there should be a way for those passengers with both ship and independent tours to somehow have preference over those, even high loyalty members, not going on tours first thing in the morning. A good system would be preferable to having to start lining up at 6 a.m. to get an early ticket.

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1 minute ago, bay guy said:

A good system would be preferable to having to start lining up at 6 a.m. to get an early ticket.

 

No.  One is sailing on a world cruise.  A world cruise means a different experience from the mass exodus from cruise ships in the Caribbean when disembarkation begins for the day.

 

Having been a member of independent tours, having such tours begin somewhat later than when the ship's shore excursions begin would be a more civilized way to handle the issue, in my opinion.  That's what my groups arranged.   

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rkacruiser, I agree with trying to schedule tour a little later. However, in some ports with a limited number of port hours, an early tour is the only timing that works. I found that some of those who obtained early tender tickets didn't have scheduled tours and just wanted to go ashore to walk around a little. Of course, that's their prerogative, but some system to help those who choose private tours would be beneficial.

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30 minutes ago, rkacruiser said:

 

No.  One is sailing on a world cruise.  A world cruise means a different experience from the mass exodus from cruise ships in the Caribbean when disembarkation begins for the day.

 

Having been a member of independent tours, having such tours begin somewhat later than when the ship's shore excursions begin would be a more civilized way to handle the issue, in my opinion.  That's what my groups arranged.   

 

I'm having a difficult time with this, not having been on a world cruise.  But why -- if I am one who wants to spend every minute ashore that I can, and I am not taking a ship tour -- why should I have to wait?  Surely they stagger the ship tours also?

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2 hours ago, bay guy said:

I realize the tender tickets are a touchy subject and, unfortunately, many people come up with various schemes to circumvent the rules. However, there should be a way for those passengers with both ship and independent tours to somehow have preference over those, even high loyalty members, not going on tours first thing in the morning. A good system would be preferable to having to start lining up at 6 a.m. to get an early ticket.

 

 

I hear yout anguish.  The problem on a world cruise and a number of cruises I have been on is that there are so many 4 and 5* mariners.  

I’ve lucked out sometimes with co-operation for our independent tours and been treated with disdain on others.

 

When the HD came to the tender people I went up to ask him on one cruise as he had told me that if there was room, independents could go - especially if they were 4* or above.  We were on the next tender. 😉
 

2 hours ago, rkacruiser said:

 

No.  One is sailing on a world cruise.  A world cruise means a different experience from the mass exodus from cruise ships in the Caribbean when disembarkation begins for the day.

 

Having been a member of independent tours, having such tours begin somewhat later than when the ship's shore excursions begin would be a more civilized way to handle the issue, in my opinion.  That's what my groups arranged.   

 

I’m sorry I disagree.  I admittedly have not been on a world cruise but I have taken some longer ones.  Why should we have to wait when the tenders aren’t even full?  I watch.  I know.

 

What I try to do is see when the HAL tours start and plan for the earliest or in between.  We never go later.

 

1 hour ago, cruisemom42 said:

 

I'm having a difficult time with this, not having been on a world cruise.  But why -- if I am one who wants to spend every minute ashore that I can, and I am not taking a ship tour -- why should I have to wait?  Surely they stagger the ship tours also?

 

I totally agree and yes, they do stagger ship tours.  

I haven’t on a world cruise either but I’ve been on some more extensive ones and the HAL tours have different start times.

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On 9/7/2020 at 11:01 AM, KirkNC said:

They have multiple wine tasting and if I remember right a few beer tasting as well.

 

 

Wine events are one of my favourite things on HAL cruises. I looked forward to Grand World wine tastings having a Wow factor. It was disappointing to find the wine tastings on the 2020 GVW to just be the same basic package tasting repeated over and over throughout the cruise. The wine steward who hosted Sip n’ Savour did a great job, but it’s still not the same as the Cellar Master hosted ones on other ships. 
On an amazing cruise where most things were a step up from the average, lacklustre wine events were unexpected. I’m hoping the 2021 Grand Africa can do better in that respect!

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2 minutes ago, Horizon chaser 1957 said:

 

 

Wine events are one of my favourite things on HAL cruises. I looked forward to Grand World wine tastings having a Wow factor. It was disappointing to find the wine tastings on the 2020 GVW to just be the same basic package tasting repeated over and over throughout the cruise. The wine steward who hosted Sip n’ Savour did a great job, but it’s still not the same as the Cellar Master hosted ones on other ships. 
On an amazing cruise where most things were a step up from the average, lacklustre wine events were unexpected. I’m hoping the 2021 Grand Africa can do better in that respect!

The “Wine Guys” were supposed to get on board in Buenos Aires but changed their minds at the last minute.  Jacques was furious as they were supposed to do several tastings.

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1 hour ago, kazu said:

I admittedly have not been on a world cruise but I have taken some longer ones.  Why should we have to wait when the tenders aren’t even full?  I watch.  I know.

I see no excuse why those tenders should not have been filled to their capacity.  Whatever one's Mariner status may be.  

 

2 hours ago, bay guy said:

I found that some of those who obtained early tender tickets didn't have scheduled tours and just wanted to go ashore to walk around a little. 

 

 

That's the ISSUE!  No answer for that situation.  To deny such access to a tender, when there were spaces available, will result in a howl of indignation from some of those who see themselves as "the privileged ones" on a world cruise.  

Edited by rkacruiser
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1 hour ago, KirkNC said:

The “Wine Guys” were supposed to get on board in Buenos Aires but changed their minds at the last minute.  Jacques was furious as they were supposed to do several tastings.


Ah - that explains much! Still, it’s too bad he didn’t step up and fill their shoes.

Edited by Horizon chaser 1957
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I like the idea of having a choice in the pillow gifts so we don't get a lot of stuff we don't want (and most of the crew doesn't want/have room for when passed on by the passengers).

 

They at least have gotten a little better about the journals. On the 2020 GWV they were given on the second day.

 

 

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17 hours ago, rkacruiser said:

I see no excuse why those tenders should not have been filled to their capacity.  Whatever one's Mariner status may be.  

 

 

 

That's the ISSUE!  No answer for that situation.  To deny such access to a tender, when there were spaces available, will result in a howl of indignation from some of those who see themselves as "the privileged ones" on a world cruise.  

Actually not a lot of leeway in the tender process on last few world cruises.  The only ones who got priority were President Club and those with suites.  Give the time and cost of those designations I don’t think anyone can complain.  Everyone else either had to go with a HAL excursion or get in line for a first come first serve ticket.  Each person could only get two tickets and they used a combination of colors and numbers on the tickets to prevent counterfeiting.  Not saying I always like the outcome as in 2019 on Easter Island the process was sooooo slow (there were rough seas) that us and many others were never able to get off.  In 2020 we just bit the bullet and got up ridiculously early and got in line.

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4 hours ago, KirkNC said:

Actually not a lot of leeway in the tender process on last few world cruises.  The only ones who got priority were President Club and those with suites.  Give the time and cost of those designations I don’t think anyone can complain.  Everyone else either had to go with a HAL excursion or get in line for a first come first serve ticket.  Each person could only get two tickets and they used a combination of colors and numbers on the tickets to prevent counterfeiting.  Not saying I always like the outcome as in 2019 on Easter Island the process was sooooo slow (there were rough seas) that us and many others were never able to get off.  In 2020 we just bit the bullet and got up ridiculously early and got in line.

 

Thanks for this clear picture of how it works. It does make one think that if a world cruise in the future is likely to be a one-off event, it may well be worth looking at a smaller ship. I could not even imagine going to Easter Island and not being able to get off the ship. What a disappointment that would be...

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1 minute ago, cruisemom42 said:

 

Thanks for this clear picture of how it works. It does make one think that if a world cruise in the future is likely to be a one-off event, it may well be worth looking at a smaller ship. I could not even imagine going to Easter Island and not being able to get off the ship. What a disappointment that would be...

The track record for Easter Island is about 50/50 meaning the sea conditions prevent tendering about 1/2 the time. We knew that so we had spent 3 days there (we flew from Santiago Chile) earlier in 2019 so it was not as big a deal for us but many others were not happy.  

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53 minutes ago, KirkNC said:

The track record for Easter Island is about 50/50 meaning the sea conditions prevent tendering about 1/2 the time. We knew that so we had spent 3 days there (we flew from Santiago Chile) earlier in 2019 so it was not as big a deal for us but many others were not happy.  

 

If it was solely a result of poor conditions, I could understand. Just wouldn't be happy that there are "haves" and "have nots" in such situations. 

 

You're probably right in that the way to go is a pre- or post- separate tour.

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37 minutes ago, cruisemom42 said:

If it was solely a result of poor conditions, I could understand. Just wouldn't be happy that there are "haves" and "have nots" in such situations. 

 

Tendering anywhere is, as you realize, an "iffy" situation at times.  It's the ship's Master's call and he will always "call" it in the name of safety of the guests and the crew.  I witnessed during my world cruise a missed port in the Adriatic where a tender had to be sent ashore to offload some entertainers.  I have never witnessed a tender being pummeled by such seas!  Captain van Zaane made the correct decision to cancel that port.

 

Covid-19 may upset the situation where some very long time world cruisers believe that they have "entitlements" that we newbies lacked.  Covid-19 may cause a different generation of world cruisers to begin to sail whose expectations will be different than those of the recent past.  

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57 minutes ago, rkacruiser said:

 

T

 

Covid-19 may upset the situation where some very long time world cruisers believe that they have "entitlements" that we newbies lacked.  Covid-19 may cause a different generation of world cruisers to begin to sail whose expectations will be different than those of the recent past.  

 

 Many long time world cruisers already have entitlements, and don't think newbies should share them in any way.  It didn't take Covid-19 to make that happen!

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In so far as tendering on ports with limited time frames, well, deal with it.

 

Most folks tend to rely on the ship’s tours to make sure they get ashore ASAP versus waiting in line early (I’m talking 0400 wake up) to get tender tickets for private tours.

 

For me & my better half and it’s no biggie. I get up early, sit and wait with a book, I-pad & old Walkman. We do a ‘tag-team protocol (1/2 hour to full hour) to eat, get fresh coffee & other early AM needs prior to gathering early tender tickets.

 

We’ve always been on the first or second tender regardless of the PC members / suite members or ship’s excursions. With a group it’s certainly a tad more difficult time-wise but it all has worked out IMHO.
 

BTW, most folks, like ourselves, are 5 star’s (we have 850 plus days on HAL) and on a WC it really doesn’t matter, nor should it (IMO).
 

Arising a bit earlier to avoid  those “expensive ship excursion” ports hasn’t overall been a major issue for us thus far.


We’ll see how the protocols for the COVID -1984 work out next year.

 

Be well.

Bob

 

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I’ve never been on a world cruise though it might be a possibility post retirement. 

I have however followed lots and lots of blogs ( something I am going to miss next year)

 

Easter Island clearly has its own difficulties - but I remember one year - maybe it was 2019 - some Presidents Club cruisers exercising their rights to an early tender even though they had been on EI several times before and had no plans other than a walk, when many with no priority who hadn’t been before couldn’t get off at all.

I’d like to think I’d have been more magnanimous to my fellow travellers in those circumstances and let people who hadn’t been before and for whom a world cruise was probably a one off get ashore.

Many posts on that particular blog seemed to suggest entitlement and newbies not being their sort of people that it has put me off a world cruise with HAL

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