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Old Mar 11, 19, 7:03 pm
  #121  
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Originally Posted by Randyk47 View Post
I’d actually like to see that ad. I think some agency is playing fast and lose with cabin categories as there’s no way Silversea is going to discount what would have to be an Owner’s Suite at $17,000 per person that much.
Just have a look at the VTG site. I think there's published brochure price - one that the cruiseco has wet dreams that everyone will actualy pay - which another responder said they know some people who are perfectly happy to pay. I've even seen that on the cruiseco's own website. One such was a Crystal sailing a few weeks ago (ship has since sailed).
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Old Mar 11, 19, 7:46 pm
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Originally Posted by YVR Cockroach View Post
Just have a look at the VTG site. I think there's published brochure price - one that the cruiseco has wet dreams that everyone will actualy pay - which another responder said they know some people who are perfectly happy to pay. I've even seen that on the cruiseco's own website. One such was a Crystal sailing a few weeks ago (ship has since sailed).
I did some checking and I have no idea where VTG is getting the upper category price for that cruise. It doesn’t match Silversea’s published price for their highest suite by a couple of dollars. VTG’s price matches the lowest suite category which by the way are fully booked. VTG is not being exactly honest. I never have trusted VTG and really don’t now.

As for your other comment I’m not sure exactly what you are getting at. I don’t have the time or interest to research every cruise line and vet whether they actually get their published fares or not. I am absolutely sure Silversea is not going to discount a $16,000/person cabin for $3,500.

Last edited by Randyk47; Mar 11, 19 at 8:13 pm
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Old Mar 11, 19, 9:02 pm
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I've found VTG to be a very good way to search across all "major" cruise lines for the current, publicly available rates at once. Haven't really paid attention to the "brochure" prices as I don't intent to pay them.

I have never actually booked via VTG, though. Every rate and promo I find there I can usually get by just going to the cruise line website or booking via any TA (some of whom will give me an additional discount out of their own commission). And having seen the agency booking mechanisms, when I go the TA route due to not finding what I want directly with the cruise line, all it is is some promo only available via agency bookings.

TL;DR - VTG is a great search engine but IME they do not really offer any particularly special rates.
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Old Mar 11, 19, 10:12 pm
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Originally Posted by obscure2k View Post
Friends of ours are currently on their second Silver Sea World Cruise. This one is for 5 months. They are currently docked in Hong Kong. They are annoyed as Govt officials came on board and removed all of the liquor with exception of beer and wine. Has anyone else ever heard of this happening on a cruise?
Who knows? Chinese can do strange things on a whim. And yes, Libya was famous for this. Other muslim countries have tried it. Obvious outcome.....
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Old Mar 12, 19, 4:42 am
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Originally Posted by obscure2k View Post
Apparently, they confiscated what they found in the public bars, not individual cabins.
There are a couple of people on that cruise who post regularly to Cruise Critic and have been reporting in the cruise. No mention of anything like that posted so far.

Last edited by Randyk47; Mar 12, 19 at 4:48 am
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Old Mar 12, 19, 11:53 am
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We signed up for a 7 day get away on an Alaskan sailing with Crystal about a year ago with our TA. The sailing is a roundtrip from Vancouver and our cost for a standard cabin will be less than $2K/pp Bargains are out there for one to try the luxury lines.
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Old Mar 12, 19, 12:42 pm
  #127  
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Originally Posted by Randyk47 View Post


There are a couple of people on that cruise who post regularly to Cruise Critic and have been reporting in the cruise. No mention of anything like that posted so far.
Here is quote from my friend:
"Another note about our experience in Hong Kong. We’re back on the ship having dinner. One of our passengers just walked by and said that the Chinese government came onboard and took off all the hard liquor. We’re not allowed to have any drink with 20% or more alcohol here. All we can have while we’re docked here in Hong Kong is wine, beer, liqueurs and champagne!!!! No hard liquor allowed!!!!! Bob was refused at the dinner table!!"
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Old Mar 13, 19, 1:13 am
  #128  
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Originally Posted by Randyk47 View Post


I did some checking and I have no idea where VTG is getting the upper category price for that cruise. It doesn’t match Silversea’s published price for their highest suite by a couple of dollars. VTG’s price matches the lowest suite category which by the way are fully booked. VTG is not being exactly honest. I never have trusted VTG and really don’t now.

As for your other comment I’m not sure exactly what you are getting at. I don’t have the time or interest to research every cruise line and vet whether they actually get their published fares or not. I am absolutely sure Silversea is not going to discount a $16,000/person cabin for $3,500.
I see SIlversea doesn't quote prices online, or in their brochure, so I can't verify. I look at within final payment window cruises so maybe the (luxury) cruisecos are dumping cheap.

One cruise I would even think of booking is the 5 Sept Silver Muse TPAC from Alaska to Japan. "From $4,950" on SS site, $3,700 on VTG site.
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Old Mar 13, 19, 1:23 am
  #129  
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Originally Posted by gooselee View Post
I've found VTG to be a very good way to search across all "major" cruise lines for the current, publicly available rates at once. Haven't really paid attention to the "brochure" prices as I don't intent to pay them.

I have never actually booked via VTG, though. Every rate and promo I find there I can usually get by just going to the cruise line website or booking via any TA (some of whom will give me an additional discount out of their own commission). And having seen the agency booking mechanisms, when I go the TA route due to not finding what I want directly with the cruise line, all it is is some promo only available via agency bookings.

TL;DR - VTG is a great search engine but IME they do not really offer any particularly special rates.
Might be when you book. I tend to book my late (within final payment window). I also use cruisecompete to verify if the deals are that good. I booked a Ponant cruise (sitting in BOB waiting to get to PPT to board the ship for a 27 day sailing in 6 days) before final payment and the price couldn't be beat.

VTG was offering various Ponant cruises for >50% off last October, including the cruise I booked for a ridiculously low ~$3,300 while the Ponant site (and most other TAs) wanted $7k+. We were going to just sail the Honolulu-Japan leg (offered at $1,500 while price at that time was over $3k). If we booked the PPT-HNL leg, the 2nd TPAC leg would be free, just $250 in taxes & fees, + a new customer discount of $600 p.p.. This would have brought the 2 cruises down to ~$7k for a window cabin. With the VTG deal, we had to buy both cruises separately but the total cost was $5k, and the first leg from PPT-HNL was booked in a balcony cabin ($400 pp more)..

Cruise reductions disappeared after a few weeks so maybe it was a one-time deal to test waters.
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Old Apr 13, 19, 1:48 pm
  #130  
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The Queen (cunard) in princess suite or queen is a great way to cross the pond
If you wait until next year, the Ritz Carlton Ship may beat them all
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Old Apr 15, 19, 12:25 pm
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Originally Posted by YVR Cockroach View Post
Might be when you book. I tend to book my late (within final payment window). I also use cruisecompete to verify if the deals are that good. I booked a Ponant cruise (sitting in BOB waiting to get to PPT to board the ship for a 27 day sailing in 6 days) before final payment and the price couldn't be beat.

VTG was offering various Ponant cruises for >50% off last October, including the cruise I booked for a ridiculously low ~$3,300 while the Ponant site (and most other TAs) wanted $7k+. We were going to just sail the Honolulu-Japan leg (offered at $1,500 while price at that time was over $3k). If we booked the PPT-HNL leg, the 2nd TPAC leg would be free, just $250 in taxes & fees, + a new customer discount of $600 p.p.. This would have brought the 2 cruises down to ~$7k for a window cabin. With the VTG deal, we had to buy both cruises separately but the total cost was $5k, and the first leg from PPT-HNL was booked in a balcony cabin ($400 pp more)..

Cruise reductions disappeared after a few weeks so maybe it was a one-time deal to test waters.

More and more cruise lines, especially luxury, are trying to break customers of the wait until the last minute mentality. More and more, the very best prices are very early on. Not saying last minute deals are not there, because they obviously are, but expect to see fewer in the future. If we really want a particular cruise, we book it early as possible. Then, keep an eye on sales up until final payment as you can sometimes get the new better deal.
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Old Apr 15, 19, 1:58 pm
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Originally Posted by gretchendz View Post
More and more cruise lines, especially luxury, are trying to break customers of the wait until the last minute mentality. More and more, the very best prices are very early on. Not saying last minute deals are not there, because they obviously are, but expect to see fewer in the future. If we really want a particular cruise, we book it early as possible. Then, keep an eye on sales up until final payment as you can sometimes get the new better deal.
Now that Silversea is under Royal Caribbean I don’t know what the future might be but indeed they have been front loading their offers/discounts. Typically if you book a year or more out they often offer a 10% discount. Of course the catch is they also want immediate full payment though that is refundable up until 120 days before the cruise. They also have a fare guarantee and if they lower the fare for a cabin category they apply the same fare to existing bookings. Since they went to that program I don’t recall many if any late sales. Again, this might all change under RCCL.
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Old May 13, 19, 11:15 pm
  #133  
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Hello,

New poster in this thread; I am more likely to be found over in the Luxury Hotels and Travel Forum. I was drawn to this thread because the notion of "luxury" comprises so many, sometimes contradictory, components. Caveat: no varnish applied below, just my honest opinions.

Jim and I have cruised only thrice: Regent Navigator, ten-night Western Caribbean in and out of Miami; Silversea Amazon cruise, 18 nights in and out of Barbados; Windstar Pride Scotland/Norway/Faroes/Iceland, 12 nights. This later voyage was perfection for us. Meanwhile, we found Regent to be both tacky and pompous, and Silversea to be staid; we were not comfortable on either of those lines. (We booked a Seabourn cruise LA to Miami via Panama Canal but canceled due to illness.) In each case we booked highest-end suite

It was no competition. Windstar is exactly right for us. So, we are sailing the line again in an owner's cabin in July -- Star Legend from Vancouver, BC to Seward, Alaska, 11 nights. Very excited! We'll be joined by dear friends from Brooklyn. May book a winter PanCanal crossing (my Dad was an engineer with the Panama Canal Company, I was born and raised in Panama) ... if Windstar offers it on one of the motor "yachts." No way could we survive the tiny cabins on the sail "yachts."

I was unimpressed by the all inclusive aspect of Regent and Silversea. At the time, excursions were not included; the covered wine was uniformly bad to almost decent. Mixed drinks were decent. Food on both Regent and Silversea was unremarkable or worse. Afternoon tea was crowded and pedestrian.

Thus, Windstar's pricing structure works well for us. We get what we want when we want it and at the desired quality. Finally, Windstar cuisine is great, we loved all our meals. This is a line with no pretensions but great comfort, ambience and value.

Finally, I just do not think true luxury can be had in ships carrying more than 300 or so passengers. After that, the passenger is simply a commodity to be treated as the next guest in line.

By the way, "yachts" is in quotes because I loathe marketing-speak, a topic I likely will return to discuss.


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Last edited by KatW; May 13, 19 at 11:38 pm
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Old May 13, 19, 11:45 pm
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@KatW, you might want to try one of Seabourn's smaller ships (450 passengers). We have found them to have an unpretentious ambiance. While I wouldn't consider the food or included wines great, the totality of the experience is.

BTW, we recently sailed on our first Silversea cruise. We found the food pretty good for a ship, but there were some disappointments. Then again, we have occasional disappointing experiences with even our favorite local restaurants. Still, we have not rebooked on Silversea, preferring the ambiance of Seabourn.
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Old May 14, 19, 12:08 pm
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The "new" Windstar yachts are the "old" Seabourn ships, right? The "little sisters"? We've looked at Windstar (my dad and his wife enjoy) but the lack of balconies is a big con for me. I love to sit on my balcony with a book, binoculars & wine....(and, specifically my own balcony and not shared space, because I'm an introvert ;-) We did our first luxury cruise on Seabourn last Sept (on Sojourn, one of the 450 pax ships) and LOVED it. It was ideal for us. But I can't compare to others yet. (it was oodles better than Azamara, but our itinerary was not too much more expensive than Azamara is these days, or Oceania....)
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