Tag Archives: Cunard

Cunard to offer turnaround cruises from Liverpool

“Cunard to offer turnaround cruises from #Liverpool cementing the city of #Liverpool as a major cruise destination http://ow.ly/kjDjV

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Old Queen May Be Sold

Old Queen May Be Sold

QE2

QE2 May Be Sold To Help Pay Dubai’s Debts

Only a year after leaving the Cunard fleet for a new life as a luxury hotel in Dubai, the QE2 may have to be sold.

The ship was bought for $100 million in 2007 by Nakheel, a specialist property subsidiary of state-run Dubai World, and has been berthed in Dubai since arriving there in November 2008.

But Dubai World has run into trouble. Shares on international markets have plummeted worldwide today as the company, crippled by its $59 billion debt, has asked lenders for a six-month period of grace on repayment of loans.

Although neighbouring Abu Dhabi has come up with a partial rescue package, a restructuring team from Deloitte has been called in and is likely, according to both The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph newspapers, to recommend that some of Dubai World’s high-profile assets, which include the QE2 and Scotland’s Turnberry golf course, are sold off.

Over the course of the year, little of the planned work has been carried out on QE2 to convert the vessel to a luxury hotel. The ship has been re-flagged and has spent some time in dry dock for work on the hull but there is no evidence that refurbishment has started on the interiors, which, according to announcements made a year ago by Nakheel, were due to be converted into luxury suites and fine dining outlets.

The ship was supposed to sail for South Africa next year — for the FIFA World Cup — but plans have not been confirmed by Nakheel and no statement about the ship’s future was available from the company at the time of writing.

An ill wind always has a silver lining.

Great offers to Dubai are already in the market and Emirates fares have become more competitive in recent weeks. It’s all good news for you as Dubai is such a great product.

Dubai Hotels

Cruise Lines

A common question from our clients about cruising is: “If I book my cruise now, and later the price goes down, will I be able to get the lower price?”

Unfortunately, this decision to re-ticket at a lower rate is not made by Rainbow Travel Inc. It is made by the respective cruise line, and we must abide by the cruise line’s policy. To help our clients understand how this works, I’ll describe the three main types of price protection policies that are currently enforced by the cruise lines (these are subject to change at any time).

Of all the world’s major cruise lines, only Crystal offers an unconditional price-protection policy. If you book a Crystal cruise, and at a later time the price is reduced for the category you reserved, Crystal will automatically adjust the price for your cruise to the lower rate. Kudos to Crystal for having such a customer-friendly policy.

Next, there are several cruise lines that will, in most cases, adjust the price for your cruise if a lower rate becomes available for the category you’ve reserved, but only upon request, and only if the lower price is still being offered for new bookings at the time of the request. These cruise lines do not notify their customers who have already booked about subsequent price reductions. However, if you find an advertisement where the price for the category you reserved has been reduced, our travel consultants can request the new price on your behalf. Cruise lines that fall into this category include Azamara, Celebrity, Cruise West, Cunard, Disney, P&O, Princess, Regent (Radisson), Royal Caribbean, Seabourn, SeaDream, Silversea, Star Clippers, Windstar and Voyages of Discovery. Sometimes there are exceptions when a cruise line introduces a promotion that specifically states it applies to new bookings only.

Finally, many cruise lines have policies similar to the major airlines.  They do not reduce the fares of ticketed passengers when they cut the price for new bookings. Prices are locked in at the time of booking, and if the price falls, the new lower rate applies to new bookings only. If prices are reduced outside of the penalty period, which typically begin about 75 to 90 days before the departure, these cruise lines may allow us to cancel your reservation and rebook you at the lower rate, although in some cases a nominal rebooking fee may apply. But if you are within the penalty period, you would have to pay the applicable cancellation penalties before rebooking, and the penalties almost always cost more than the savings. Cruise lines that fall into this category include Carnival, Costa, Fred.Olsen, Holland America, Hurtigruten, Majestic America (American West & Delta Queen), MSC Cruises, Norwegian, Oceania, Peter Deilmann, Uniworld and Viking River Cruises.