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Old 01-16-2009, 06:01 AM
 
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Another long time program bites the dust.
My take on it was that to many people were participating in it & taking away from their money making events.
http://www.usatoday.com/travel/cruis...=61407596.blog
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Old 01-16-2009, 06:53 AM
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Another one bites the dust, hey wasn't that a song?
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Old 01-16-2009, 06:55 AM
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Queen.
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Old 01-16-2009, 07:52 AM
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I'd only get points if they were awarded for 12 ounce curls.

So they are going to "revamp" the program and when the new and improved one is rolled out, you'll be able to do the healthy stuff except you won't get any points to redeem for merchandise? Nice.

Slippery slope. Those who vigorously defend pay-as-you-go cruising beware - sooner or later your cruise sacred cows will come with an extra fee price tag attached.
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Old 01-16-2009, 08:47 AM
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It's amusing those that want to keep the basic cruise cost down because they don't think they should subsidize someone elses child care, cocktail parties, etc. When the truth is the low cruise rates are being subsidized by the onboard charges. Where on a land vacation could you go seven days for $399/$499 and have all your hotel, meals, and entertainment?

If the cruiselines don't raise the basic fares eveything onboard will soon be ala carte. If that happens, then we all lose because the great cruising experience as we know it, will be no longer.
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Old 01-16-2009, 09:25 AM
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When the truth is the low cruise rates are being subsidized by the onboard charges.
I've never thought of it that way, but you are 100% correct. Those who embrace the extra fees better thank everyone who goes to Rockets, orders room service at 1am, and gets the $14.95 steak in the main dining room.
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Old 01-16-2009, 01:16 PM
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I will spend as much as I can on the ship...well, at least as much as my wife will allow.....:-)

Happy Sailing....

Bob E
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Old 01-17-2009, 06:39 AM
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My guess is that the fares cover the basic expenses of getting the ship underway, but the big money is made through all on-board sales. They sell a can of coke for $2.25 and that soda probably cost them 25 cents, if that. Booze is the same way, as is the food in the specialty restaurants. They need to remain competitive in an econmy that's heading south, so they look for other avenues of revenue in order to maintain low fare structures. It may be awhile before any cruise line reaches the tipping point because let's face it- it's all about being at sea and feeling the salt air on our faces as we sail off into the sunset.
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Old 01-17-2009, 07:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Cruise Fanatic:
It's amusing those that want to keep the basic cruise cost down because they don't think they should subsidize someone elses child care, cocktail parties, etc. When the truth is the low cruise rates are being subsidized by the onboard charges. Where on a land vacation could you go seven days for $399/$499 and have all your hotel, meals, and entertainment?

If the cruiselines don't raise the basic fares eveything onboard will soon be ala carte. If that happens, then we all lose because the great cruising experience as we know it, will be no longer.
I am a great cruise fan and it is probably my favorite type of get-a-way, but it is not(IMHO)as inexpensive as your numbers indicate.

The $399/$499 for a small inside cabin (and very few cruises are at that low rate for 7 days) needs to be doubled because you are usually traveling with a spouse/friend. So that number becomes (rounded) $800/$900. Add in the taxes of about $100 each and you are now at $900/$1000. Add in mandatory tips at a minimum of $10/day and you are at $970/$1070.

Most people do not live near a port and have to fly. Assume $400 roundtrip each(including taxes) and you are at $1770/$1870. Assume a friend drives you to the airport so we won't include the airport parking fee (or taxi fare).

Lets assume you don't pay for any extras - no shore excursions, specialty restaurants, etc -you are at about $1,900 for a family of two to take a 7 day vacation.

I can drive to the beach (mountains/lake, desert), rent a condo, and pay for gas, meals and entertainment well below $1,900 for two people.

As you upgrade your room to oceanview, balcony, or suite, then the savings becomes even greater.

All that said, I much prefer a cruise, but I realize I am paying a premium in order to eat three times as much as I normally do and to enjoy the ambiance of being at sea.

But there are much cheaper US vacation alternatives.Anyway, thats my take on it
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Old 01-17-2009, 09:16 AM
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You are doing a lot of assuming. You could sit here all day and come up with 100,000 plus scenarios of comparing land vacations to cruise vacations. Using your scenario of a mountain vacation someone else could come up with quite higher figures. IE: We'll call them Couple #1 and Couple #2.

Couple #1 rented a 1 bedroom value condo, they drove from Kentucky to the mountains in Tennessee, they ate out at value buffets, value restaurants like Denny's and Shoney's. Their entertainment was a movie, playing miniature golf, go-karts, and the Ripley's Believe it or Not.

Couple #2 rented a 1 bedroom deluxe condo, they drove from Michigan to Tennessee, they ate out at finer restaurants like Greenbrier, Alamo, The Fox and Parrot Tavern. Their entertainment was going to Dollywood, Dixie Stampede, a comedy show, and a murder mystery.

Which couple spent more money? As I said we could come up with thousands of scenarios both land and cruise vacation. Let's not split hairs. The point I was trying to make in my previous post is that basic cruise fares are too low. The cruise lines try to make it up with on board purchases. People will try to skirt around those on board cost, so the cruise lines look at more ways to generate revenue. The result is more nickel and diming, added surcharges and making cuts. It's a vicious cycle. One that could eventually lead to charging ala carte for meals. Then you will be paying that same base fare plus your meals, which at one time were included in that base fare.
 
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