Tag Archives: Caribbean

Hurricane Earl Cruise Impacts

Hurricane Earl has caused several ships to change itineraries in order to avoid the storm. Some of the most popular Islands in the Caribbean like St. Maarten and St. Thomas are too close to the projected path of Hurricane Earl. So in the interest of safety and not ruining vacations the cruiselines have altered some itineraries of ships currently cruising the Caribbean.

Carnival Victory, Carnival Pride, Carnival Dream, Norwegian Epic, Enchantment of the Seas, Oasis of the Seas, and possibly the Norwegian Dawn will have their itineraries modified due to the storm. You can see all the details on these changes on the CruiseSource.us Hurricane Cruise Tracker page.

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Answers to Questions Regarding Cruising in the Gulf

See Original Press Release from CruiseDeals.com

The internet cruise retailer encourages travelers to continue cruising from and visiting the Gulf Coast

Charlotte, NC June 18, 2010 — In response to client’s questions and concerns about cruising out of the Gulf Coast this summer or fall, CruiseDeals.com relays that cruise ships are still currently departing as scheduled from the Gulf Coast ports of New Orleans, Mobile, and Tampa to Caribbean destinations.

Gulf Shores Alabama“Fortunately people with summer cruise vacations planned departing from a Gulf Coast port have not yet had their itineraries affected by the massive oil spill,” explained Rich Tucker, cruise blogger and CruiseDeals.com’s business development specialist. “In the event that a port of call is adversely affected, we expect the cruise line to alter the itinerary appropriately, just as they do in the event of inclement weather.”

Fortunately people with summer cruise vacations planned departing from a Gulf Coast port have not yet had their itineraries affected by the massive oil spill.
CruiseDeals.com responds to frequent questions and concerns they have been receiving from their cruise clients regarding the oil spill and their upcoming cruise vacations:

1. If my cruise itinerary is altered, how will I be notified?
If the change is established in advance of your departure, CruiseDeals.com will reach out by phone or email to advise you of the planned changed. It’s also possible that the itinerary could be modified once you’ve departed, in which case the ship’s officers will notify all guests.

2. Am I able to reschedule my cruise for a different date?
That will depend on several factors, including the length of time remaining before your cruise departs and/or whether or not you have trip protection coverage in place. Each customer’s situation will be unique and therefore requires a unique answer.

3. Are people still making new cruise reservations originating out of Gulf Coast ports?
CruiseDeals.com is currently not seeing a halt to any reservation activity in this region, although some clients are inquiring if the itineraries are still operating as normal.

4. Does cruise travel insurance cover the potential effects of oil spills?
Typical travel insurance may not cover the potential effects of oil spills. If you have not yet purchased your cruise departing from the Gulf coast region, be sure to purchase a travel insurance policy along with your cruise that allows you to cancel your cruise for any reason. These policies will give you back a large percentage of your investment for any reason that you decide to cancel your vacation.

5. Is there anything I can do if I did not purchase insurance with my upcoming cruise?
If you have already purchased a cruise and have not made your final payment yet, you may be able to cancel your existing cruise reservation with no penalty and immediately rebook the same cruise along with the purchase of ‘cancel for any reason’ travel insurance mentioned in the previous question. When considering this option, be sure to work with your travel agent to find out what the new cruise fare is and what type of staterooms are available as they might be slightly higher than your original fare and stateroom selection.

“We are recommending our clients visit the New Orleans or Gulf Shores region a day or two before their cruise departs if possible as a small way to help these local economies that rely heavily on tourism,” said Kevin Weisner, vice president of CruiseDeals.com. “There are plenty of other fun recreational activities to choose from other than going to the beach and you’ll get the satisfaction of helping boost their economy.”

For more information on the latest deals in cruising, visit CruiseDeals.com or call 800-668-6414.

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Hurricane Ida, Cruise Impacts

As of 6PM ET, the Cruise Lines do not have any official announcements for impacts to itineraries due to Hurricane Ida. Timing is pretty good because alot of the Ships departed this weekend ahead of the Storm. I’ve heard stories of some rocky seas on Twitter. If you are cruising this week, pick up some Bonine for motion-sickness just in case. I am watching this one very closely, as I am scheduled to depart on the Carnival Destiny out of Miami for the Social Fresh Cruise on Thursday 11.12.09. This has been one of the calmest hurricane seasons ever for the Caribbean and Gulf Coast. Just my luck that a rare late season hurricane is churning in the Gulf of Mexico right before the Social Fresh Cruise.

Monday Morning, I will aggregate all the Cruise Line Hurricane announcements into one post. Hopefully, Ida is another non-event for the Cruise Industry and for the Social Fresh Cruise.

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Hurricane Bill Grows More Powerful

While cruising during Hurricane Season is popular with those of us in the industry because that is when we can find the best deals for ourselves, it can also be stressful. By the way, we all buy travel insurance. Hurricane Bill is now a large Category 4 Storm that is forecast to eventually swipe the Canadian Coast. This is currently good news for Caribbean Cruises. But it is stressful to have such a large storm churning so close to the islands. Hopefully, the forecasts are correct and Hurricane Bill will miss the Caribbean Islands and Bermuda. As of now, my Hurricane Cruise Tracker page with impacts to all cruise itineraries remains the same as yesterday.

Norwegian Cruise Line has made references that with Hurricane Bill’s current Projected Path some of their Bermuda Itineraries may be impacted. Due to the unpredictability of these storms, the cruise lines do not like to make changes until they have too. If you have specific questions about your upcoming cruise please leave them in the comments. I will respond quickly. Otherwise subscribe to CruiseSource.us to stay on top of up-to-date Hurricane Cruise News.

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Sprint Cell – Charges from Cruise

On my NCL cruise, I did pre-cruise research to find out how much it would cost to use my cell phone to call home.  This was a major concern for us because we left behind a 6 year old with a very busy schedule and our 5 month old baby girl.  

We did not want to spend too much money calling home, but we could not go too long without hearing that everything was going fine.  So, I called Sprint prior to leaving for the cruise.  I could not get anyone who could give me a straight answer on how to minimize my costs calling home on my cell phone.  I was told by one agent at Sprint that if I call from the Cruise Ship and my phone was roaming that I would get charged $2.49 per minute on my cell phone bill by the cruise line.   

On the cruise we kept the talking to a minimum.  This made my wife fairly miserable.  I got my cell phone bill today, and it looks like all of the Roaming was included in my Plan.   While in Antigua and Tortola, we were able to make the calls without roaming….so we did not think those calls would be charged.  We have the Sprint Fair and Flexible Plan and it has America Roaming – Included.   The phone calls we made from the ship do appear to be getting charged for roaming.  So instead of paying $25 for the calls we made, I have no additional charges.  We could have called home alot more….

This is just my experience with Sprint on my cruise.  If you are cruising, I would try calling sprint and asking for yourself.  We were very conservative with our calls and now wish we would have used the phone more.  If any of you who visit have similar or different experiences with your cell phone company while cruising please share with comments.  ~Happy Sailing

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Day 7: St. Lucia, NCL Pearl Cruise

Today was our final port call…St. Lucia.  Jess had been upset that we had not goteen very much “color” from the sun.  Well, she got what she wished for today.  After a rain shower, we layed out in Rodney’s bay.  A $6 per person taxi ride from the cruise ship.  After a couple of hours in the hot sun, we both are very sunburn.   Outside of fairly constant salesmen, it was a nice beach.  Crystal Blue Waters and almost white sands. If I was going to come back and do a full week at one of the Islands we have been to; St. Lucia would be the pick.    It is one of the largest islands in the caribbean and it offered the most variety.   There are lots of resorts and even some Burger Kings and Dominos. 

It is dinner time and then we will catch the Thursday Night Football game.  Only two days left and we are looking forward to getting back to the kids.  Happy Sailing!     

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Filed under Caribbean, NCL PEARL, Norwegian Cruise Line, Ship Reviews, St. Lucia, Travel Reviews

The Ruby Princess Inaugural Fall 2008

The Ruby Princess will be the newest cruise ship on the water in November 2008.   The Ruby Princess will be a sister ship of the Crown Princess.  It will have almost 900 balcony staterooms.   The Ruby will cruise the Eastern and Western Caribbean.   

I have a fast growing group taking advantage of the fact that not many people are aware of the Ruby Princess.   Only the most faithful of the Princess cruisers know that the Ruby will be introduced in the fall of 2008 and that you are able to book cabins now.  Due to not many people knowing about the upcoming ship, the rates are low.  As soon as Princess starts to market the Ruby Princess, rates will most likely go up rapidly.   Cruising on a new ship is special and the price people are willing to pay is higher than an older ship.  Today, the rates on the Ruby Princess are very close to its older sister ships.    

I have recently booked 9 Balcony cabins  on the 11.29.08 sailing of the Ruby Princess doing a Western Caribbean Itinerary.   The Rate for the Balconies was  $847 per person and each cabin is getting $50 on board credits.  Currently, there is very little info on the Ruby Princess out on the internet.  After booking my group, I thought it would be good to get a post on the blog to let you know now is a good time to book the Ruby.  

UPDATED July 30th, 2008: Click Here to see latest Deals on the Ruby Princess.

Click Here to read more details and recent press releases on the Ruby Princess.

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Filed under Caribbean