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Holiday Bookings for Summer 2021


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2 hours ago, Gareth said:

Indeed, they understand that, and understand it well.  I was thinking more of how UK consumers take to not having their money returned to them when the service paid for is not provided.  Memories of last spring will linger long in the minds of many, and it will be largely that experience that will be causing many to hold back from handing money over this time around when there is still so much uncertainty.

We were on CF in September. We paid cruise prices for what was a below economie service (We did not expect any more than what we received) A token voucher for the difference in service levels would have been nice. I got what I paid for in the speed of the crossing the rest of the cruise experience is wasted on me 

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Hong Kong has had the benefit of dealing with SARS which at the time they treated as an atypical pneumonia. It killed 10% of the population of Amoy Gardens after it nearly wiped out the Prince of Wale

Loose talk! We will never get to the situation where 'everybody has been vaccinated' as people cannot be compelled to have it and making it compulsory simply isn't on the cards. I get really fed

It's not COVID per se that's causing the problem but the uncertainty. I'm afraid the only option is for all those companies in the tourist industry to band together and put pressure on those gove

3 hours ago, jonno said:

How many travellers turn their nose up at Economie and the ships without a precious a la Carte?

I think that individuals want different things from the crossing & as long as it is clear what we will get and the price we can choose.

On the French routes, in most cases it would be quicker to go on the tunnel or even the Dover - Calais route so BF have got to offer a reason other than speed of crossing to use them.

Reasons for me would be a good sleep (Happy with Economie), or a good relaxed meal in the decent restaurant, I  would not call it a la Carte as it is really a few fixed price groupings (ie menu). 

Price is also important & with CV on a normal car with 2 people on a longer break, BF is usually cheaper, especially when the tolls and petrol are taken into account.

 

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Like many, I am eagerly anticipatng the relaxation of travel restrictions so we can go abroad and enjoy ourselves once again.

But in today's paper I read an article on the sitiuation in Afganistan where people are desperately resorting to 'snake oil' opium based 'remedies' in an effort to ward off the virus in the absence of any proper vaccines. All this on top of their other troubles. Puts things into perspective a bit doesn't it?

 

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7 hours ago, Shipping Forecast said:

Too many want champagne for lemonade prices and don't understand ramifications of what buying cheap means for supply, experience or after sales. Cheap does not equal value, nor long term prospects. In many cases value is something Europeans understand better than the UK.

You may be right but a hell of a lot of us book crossings early to avoid price increases.if you are flying easy jet and Ryanair comes to mind,then if the bars were open your weatherspoons and and other outlets offering cheap prices are always busy.it is human nature to look for cheap deals.stay safe

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Book early and pay the high rate Flexi fare, or book at the last minute and pay the low rate economy fare?. I take some convincing that booking early is going to be cheapest. 

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I was always pretty dubious about this three level fare system, I remain unconvinced that leaving the booking to the day before you leave will save you a lot either.

Rhys

 

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Brittany Ferries head of communications, Nigel Wanncott, said new bookings for summer 2021 are already 50% down on pre-Covid years, and those who have booked in advance are starting to cancel. “We’ve already written off spring. Now people who have booked for summer are beginning to wobble – it’s not an exodus yet but we are worried. A disastrous summer where people are discouraged from travelling would put us in a serious situation.”

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I'm absolutely staggered that the above was released to the public. What did it achieve? Mostly speculation on some unknown factors. 

How a business or indeed anything reacts to change (that includes us ,the customer) is the biggest challenge we all face every day, esp. in todays climate. Imagine a ships skipper going public about tonights crossing with all the operational considerations, then tells the world it looks bad!!

I suppose if Mr Wannacott reads these posts here he will get an idea how we are moving our bookings/feel about vouchers etc.

No more speculative gloom sir. Push on.

"where people are discouraged from travelling would put us in a serious situation.” Is this his real message?

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8 hours ago, Penlan said:

I was always pretty dubious about this three level fare system, I remain unconvinced that leaving the booking to the day before you leave will save you a lot either.

Rhys

 

My limited experience shows that if you book very early the Flexi ticket works out about the same as the economy one booked a few days before departure. On the popular Spanish crossings leave it till the last minute and it will be fully booked. France may be different   

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Given that the 3 tier ticket system only started last Easter, it is difficult to be sure of the affect, however the ‘correct’ ticket to buy will depend on factors such as:-

  • Limited supply of cabin type such as pet cabin or Commodore
  • Peak or off Peak
  • Flexibility of dates
  • Likelihood of wanting to change dates
  • Deposit size.

However last year made all of the above irrelevant!

I had a couple of flexi bookings and had partial refunds when a Spanish trip became a French trip & I switched one of the returns to a cheaper crossing when they started Cherbourg.

The ‘correct’ answer will depend on circumstances.

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Looking again at a booking I made last July it seems that the difference between the cheapest and most expensive has grown significantly. I didn't note the prices for the economy at the time but seem to think the difference was about £40.00 now its about £80.00 per crossing. So my previous post is probably no longer correct

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16 minutes ago, IanN said:

Looking again at a booking I made last July it seems that the difference between the cheapest and most expensive has grown significantly. I didn't note the prices for the economy at the time but seem to think the difference was about £40.00 now its about £80.00 per crossing. So my previous post is probably no longer correct

They currently have an offer of an extra 15% off economy tickets, I suspect they are trying to get some cash in the bank.

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1 hour ago, David Williams said:

They currently have an offer of an extra 15% off economy tickets, I suspect they are trying to get some cash in the bank.

My brain hurts! Wondered what the discount for economy was as I couldn't find an economie sailing. Any way not a good option with the current situation 

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HMG are still insisting this morning there won't be any vaccine passports. They are simply dodging the issue. As the year goes on it is virtually certain that people may  need to be able to demontrate that they have been vaccinated in order to engage in certain activities. These could be in the UK, for cruises, for air travel and for entry to another country and the card you presently get and which could easily be forged, is unlikely to be sufficient. Although it is a can or worms with all sorts of issues, including discrimination, the issue, isn't going to go away.

What would happen if, say in the late summer, Spain and Greece (or France!) say, 'yes it's OK to come here on holiday' as long as you have irrefutable proof you have been vaccinated'. At that point a large proportion of the UK population will have had both jabs and there would be a real outcry if HMG did not provide some sort of acceptable document as other countries are already planning. It might then be seen that the vaccine refuseniks are obstructing the freedom of the jabbed!

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19 minutes ago, cvabishop said:

What would happen if, say in the late summer, Spain and Greece (or France!) say, 'yes it's OK to come here on holiday' as long as you have irrefutable proof you have been vaccinated'. At that point a large proportion of the UK population will have had both jabs and there would be a real outcry if HMG did not provide some sort of acceptable document as other countries are already planning.

If international standards exist, I am sure that the BMA will negotiate a large fee that will allow a certificate to be completed by a Doctor.

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2 minutes ago, David Williams said:

If international standards exist, I am sure that the BMA will negotiate a large fee that will allow a certificate to be completed by a Doctor.

Perhaps the simplest solution would be for those wanting to travel etc to pay for an antibody test at an approved laboratory, for the results to be cross checked with the vaccine record and a certificate issued. Vaccination in itself isn't the solution if you head off on holiday the very next day without giving it time to work. 

Ed

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Vaccination in itself isn't the solution if you head off on holiday the very next day without giving it time to work. 

I don't think anyone is suggesting that. But introducing additional layers of extra and country specific bureaucracy isn't the answer. There will have to be a simpler solution which is internationally accepted. Clearly some countries are thinking about this but the UK seems to have its head in the sand at the moment. While in France, at the curent rate it will be sometime next year before everyone (who is willing)  is vaccinated but presumably this is 'according to plan' as Macron says...

Anyway, it's not just foreign travel which is the issue, visiting UK leisure and other facilities is also an issue. If the owners don't want to let in unvaccinated people, will they be legally compelled to? Would you have a football ground with areas where the vaccinated can mingle but the unvaccinated must social distance?

 

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The organisation who can internationally create certificates is the World Health Organisation and they are looking at solutions (including Digital), it is not just about one course of vaccinations.

The person who can 'sign' it is the person with access to the medical records which in the UK is the Doctor.

At least in the UK we have decent records kept.

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it is not just about one course of vaccinations.

No, it would need to show if your vaccinations are up to date and which variants they protect against. If it is the WHO it will probably take forever as politics will kick in. In the meantime the holiday countries will be looking for something sufficient to get their tourist industries restarted this year. Maybe the EU would be able to agree a common policy for the Schengen area. Maybe......???

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There is talk of an EU approved thing, but don't expect it soon. 27 different health systems and government administrative systems to blend together. Not knocking the EU on this as all international standards are hard to develop and implement. By the time DSC VHF radio was implemented it was obsolete, and AIS is a bit of the same.

Getting something accepted beyond one country's borders will not be easy.

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Getting something accepted beyond one country's borders will not be easy.

Agreed, which is why Greece and Spain, and maybe some others will be looking for a 'quick and dirty'  solution. They will be guaranteed plenty of takers.

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My point is that if the EU judge the AZ vaccine to be inefficient in those aged 65+ then they might refuse older UK residents access to France etc. Likewise if the USA believe the Sputnik V vaccine is risky then they could refuse EU visitors given it with no choice from coming into the country.  Basing the certificate/passport on antibodies would be a fairer solution, preserve some sort of medical confidentiality and reveal which variants people are protected against.

Ed

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Spain Deaths per 100,000                  125

Greece Deaths per 100,000                  54

UK Deaths per 100,000                       159

Data as of the 31/01/2021.

So why would other countries be more inclined to go for a quick and easy solution? They seem to be doing as well as the UK if not better

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Something along the lines of the Pet Passport , microchip under the skin  and maybe a  barcode tattooed  on the arm  , call it Scan and Travel  , maybe Ryan Air could push for it .

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