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About Beagle5

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    Melbourne Australia

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  1. Sunset leaving the Stockholm archipelago, Marina July 2019
  2. I don’t want them to discount or offer upgrades (and we are in a B3). I would much rather the ship sails 60% full with passengers who have paid the full price, than 100% full with deal chasers. The lower the passenger load the less prospect of transmission of illness between passengers. I am still in two minds about sailing in July in the med, but if the ships are sailing at less than full capacity it will give me more confidence to sail.
  3. Not a full refund, just a FCC. The email I received states in regard to the 6 cruises with adjusted itineraries eliminating Italy: "All guests who choose to sail will receive a Future Cruise Credit equal to 25% of the cruise fare paid. If guests choose to cancel, refunds will not apply yet they will receive a Future Cruise Credit equal to 100% of the cruise fare paid" I believe there are only three circumstances where Oceania will send you cash: 1. They cancel a cruise entirely and nobody sails 2. A guest arrives at Port having traveled through China, HKG etc. within 14 days of embarkation (according to the current Coronovirus Statement on the website which I assume is still valid). 3. And as has always been the case, you cancel before the cancellation penalty period for your cruise in which case they will refund your deposit less the standard charge (A$350pp for Australians) The new policy is designed to conserve NCL corp. cash and, indeed, encourage loyalists to send them more cash by taking advantage of the new future booking guarantee. I don't mind it so much as I do want them to survive.
  4. Exclusion period which was previously 30 days has also been reduced to 14. That's handy - we will transit Hong Kong 14 days and 3 hours prior to our scheduled boarding!
  5. We have similar for our July med cruises. I booked cheap Finnair business 8 months ago which go via Hong Kong and Helsinki - into Barcelona and out of Milan. First leg to Hong Kong is on Cathay. As it stands we would be denied boarding on Riviera because we would spend 2 hours in HKG airport 9 days prior to embarkation. Which is starting to look a bit odd because there are now only 65 active cases in Hong Kong and 440 in Italy where the cruise goes. Under the current rules we can get our deposit back if we make final payment in early April, and arrive at the ship showing our flight itinerary in July. Oceania say that in that circumstance they will deny us boarding and provide a full refund. Not sure if I want to test them on it. But a five week driving holiday of Spain and France is starting to look more likely...
  6. Pretty sure you both get the beverage package if you select it as your choice.
  7. Having just checked the Oceania website, yes it clearly states the basic package is A$52 per person, per day - so your reasoning is correct (and the prestige package is A$78 per guest per day).
  8. That's right - the beverage packages are priced per person. So yes, on a 20 day cruise if you have a couple of wines a day with lunch/dinnerthen choosing the beverage package as your o life choice you will come out ahead compared to the US800 of OBC. A glass of wine off the menu starts at about USD12 (incl gratuity), so 4 glasses a day for 20 days would be US960. Our last cruise was 12 days and so the OBC made more sense for us. Also note that if you take the beverage package as your OLife choice you can upgrade it when you get on board to the premium package for US 20(?) each per day. With the premium package you can order spirits as well as wine/beer at all times not just lunch/dinner. Edit: Actually - you may want to check with Oceania the cost of the beverage package per person for your cruise. I just checked my current reservation and it is showing A$ 31.76 per day per guest including gratuity for the basic package and $47.65 per guest per day for the premium package. It is possible the $52 you quoted is for both of you not per person like I first thought - best check with your TA
  9. It’s Oceania that have put that pricing structure together for Australia, not the travel agents.
  10. Hi the_travel_locks, Unfortunately, for Australian cruisers, much of what has been written above is incorrect. In particular, in Australia, the base pricing is inclusive of the O-life Choice offer. You cannot deselect it and 'book the cruise without O Life'. The only 'choice' is which one of the three options you take. (Note some cruises are sold with the O Life Ultimate deal where the base price includes all three amenities). I just tried a dummy booking and the Oceania website actually describes the choices as 'selecting which of the following complimentary amenities you would like'. Bizarrely it also allows you to deselect the included gratuities. If you deselect all the amenities and the gratuities the price is exactly the same as if you include them - so the base price is already inclusive of the O Life choice selection and gratuities. Note, I always use a Travel agent for Oceania Cruises. Ours has managed to get us extra OBC because of the volume they do with Oceania. As to which is the right Choice, well, we do choose the onboard credit. We prefer to do our own independent tours. When we have had tours included as part of the ultimate package we have found them very slow (we are early 50s - our idea of a typical port visit is to get off the ship, look for the nearest hill and climb it). The drinks package is OK if you like to drink at both lunch and dinner. But we also like to imbibe at cocktail hour and later in the evening - never at lunch. For dinner we buy wine by the bottle and they will keep the undrunk portion of the bottle for you and you can have it at your next meal at any of the restaurants. There is a 2 for 1 happy hour before dinner and you can also take as much booze onboard as you like and drink it in your cabin. So for us the OBC is the preferred option. On the last cruise it covered: all our purchased drinks, reservations at La Reserve (highly recommended), and 2 x mens haircuts. One of the things I do like about Oceania is that when they shove the account under your door on the final day, for us, it has always shown $0 owing. Happy choosing.
  11. If you mean the B3 extended verandas on Marina and Riviera, then they already have loungers (plus 2 chairs and a small table). No need to request them.
  12. Try here: https://www.qantas.com/us/en/travel-info/travel-updates/coronavirus.html It includes a link the official govt statement - only flights from mainland China. Qantas and Cathay are continuing flights between Australia and HKG
  13. BA have only cancelled flights to Beijing and Shanghai. Hong Kong flights are unaffected.
  14. I booked a cruise yesterday on the Australian Cunard site. The upgrade/no upgrade question was the last before you hit confirm. The default was no upgrade, so you need to actively select the upgrade option. Now if only I could get into voyage personaliser to enter my details..... EDIT: Actually, now that I think about it, the question came up immediately after I had hit confirm and the payment was processed.
  15. We went through the canal on the Marina. I did find it annoying that I could not find a place with an unobstructed forward view. All decks either have some sort of screening to protect from wind or are internal (ie Horizons). The best you could do was try and balance on a small table or lift you camera above the screens
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