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SkygazrMatt

"Extended Layover?"

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Hi there. I have a question about customizing an itinerary....

Is it possible with any ships or lines to debark at a port of call - where the ship is only staying one day - and stay at that port until the ship (or line) comes around again in a week or so, then re-embark and continue the cruise? Is there a name for this kind of booking?

 

My wife and I are interested in an Asia or South Pacific cruise, and also want to spend a week or so in Hong Kong. Lots of interesting itineraries stop in Hong Kong, but only for one night.

 

Thanks!

 

Matt in Norcal

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If you could get the cruise line to allow this, know that you would have to pay for the cabin for the two full cruises, since the cruise line would lose the revenue from those cabins otherwise. Visa requirements also change from being a day visitor on a cruise ship to an extended stay. The cruise line would also have to make arrangements with the customs and immigration officials in Hong Kong to specifically clear you into the country (just as if you arrived on an airline for a week's visit), and then back out of the country when you reboard. This also forces the ship to change the passenger manifest each time you leave the ship or return, and this can result in additional cost to do so. Due to the cost of paying for two full cruises, this is a very rare request, and I doubt that most lines would honor it. Probably your best bet would be to find a cruise that embarks/disembarks in Hong Kong.

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Might want to check other cruise lines, as our next cruise spends 3 days in HK.

 

Any more than that and most people would do a land tour, as that is probably more cost effective than booking 2 cruises. The other option is a boarding or disembarkation at HK.

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If you could get the cruise line to allow this, know that you would have to pay for the cabin for the two full cruises, since the cruise line would lose the revenue from those cabins otherwise.

 

If the cruise line doesn't mind the extra paperwork, maybe at a fee, a very creative TA could organize a "relay-race" where each time the ship visits HK the cabin is filled with passengers who just spent a week in HK.

 

Then again, why don't the cruise lines organize such thing themselves? My own cruise to St Petersburg would have had much more value if the overnight could have been extended to a week.

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If the cruise line doesn't mind the extra paperwork, maybe at a fee, a very creative TA could organize a "relay-race" where each time the ship visits HK the cabin is filled with passengers who just spent a week in HK.

 

Then again, why don't the cruise lines organize such thing themselves? My own cruise to St Petersburg would have had much more value if the overnight could have been extended to a week.

 

Why don't the cruise lines organize this themselves? Simple. They are not selling land vacations, and make no money on this. And what happens when the creative TA can't find someone to fill the cabin for a given week? Who swallows the cost? Cruise line? TA? the unlucky pax who gets off? the unlucky pax who gets on after the vacancy? Sorry, sounds like a logistical nightmare to me.

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If you are in the area, before or after your cruise, just FLY to Hong Kong and do your land visit. MUCH easier.

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Why don't the cruise lines organize this themselves? Simple. They are not selling land vacations, and make no money on this.

 

They'd be selling cruises that went one way, like segments on a WC. It's up to the cruiser how to spend the night in HK in absence

of the ship.

 

And what happens when the creative TA can't find someone to fill the cabin for a given week? Who swallows the cost? Cruise line? TA? the unlucky pax who gets off? the unlucky pax who gets on after the vacancy? Sorry, sounds like a logistical nightmare to me.

 

Airlines have this problem each flight, for each seat. But yes, it is pretty complicated :)

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They'd be selling cruises that went one way, like segments on a WC. It's up to the cruiser how to spend the night in HK in absence

of the ship.

 

 

 

Airlines have this problem each flight, for each seat. But yes, it is pretty complicated :)

 

So what is the advantage to the cruise line to break a cruise down into short segments? This increases their booking cost, their turnaround labor, and would be necessary to advertise and attract a different demographic to those who want a full cruise. Don't see the advantage to doing this. And really? Are you equating an airline (transportation industry) with a cruise (hospitality industry)? If the cruise was a ferry, with minimal amenities, used as a form of transportation, that would be a more fair comparison to air travel.

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I did two cruises where they either started or ended in Hong Kong. When it started in HK, I went four days early and toured HK and then boarded the ship. On the second cruise, it ended in HK and I stayed for 5 days after the cruise and then flew home.

 

Like others have said, if you want to do this, you will have to pay for two full cruises, and knowing that cruises in that part of the world tend to be very long, the cost will be quite high.

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Might want to check other cruise lines, as our next cruise spends 3 days in HK.

 

Any more than that and most people would do a land tour, as that is probably more cost effective than booking 2 cruises. The other option is a boarding or disembarkation at HK.

 

My thoughts exactly. :)

 

JB :)

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Back in the 1980's, this was done on a limited basis. In 1981, on the Starward, 40 passengers got off the ship in Port Antonia, Jamaica, and we stayed for a week in a small resort that was owned or leased by the cruise line. At the end of our week, we got back on the ship and another 40 got off, freeing their block of rooms for us. We then finished the cruise. It was a very memorable 2 weeks, and I wish someone offered something similar today, but the obstacles are understandable.

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So what is the advantage to the cruise line to break a cruise down into short segments? This increases their booking cost, their turnaround labor, and would be necessary to advertise and attract a different demographic to those who want a full cruise. Don't see the advantage to doing this.

 

They do break down World Cruises into segments, with all the problems you mention. They also sell 3 and 4 night cruises, scraping the bottom of the barrel.

 

For example, HAL offers 14 night cruises Amsterdam-St Petersburg-Amsterdam. There's one overnight in SPB, the next day all aboard is 5 pm.

 

If you manage to get off the ship at exactly 8, quod non, return at midnight, get off at 8 again, and immigration magically does not take a full hour, let's say you'd get 18 hours "quality time" in St Petersburg. To rush through Peter & Paul, 2% of the Hermitage ("hurry up, next group is waiting"), eat a bit, see the Swan Lake and maybe a few hours on a boat tour the next day. That's it. That's the cruise advertised as "See the wonders of St Petersburg!" People from New Zealand already spend 18 days to visit Petersburg, certainly some of them would like the very highlight to be longer than 18 hours. On my cruise, there were many from NZ, and probably none of them would need to ask for the days off to add 7 days, nor would they need to save for the trip. The demographic needed is already there.

 

The choice would be between "14 night cruise, 2 days in beautiful SPB, $4000" and "21 night cruise, including 7 days of magic in SPB, $6500". $1000 extra for the trouble, leaving $1500 left to pay for the hotel and restaurant. Those 7 days would be taken care of by a local company that already organizes the shorex now, no reason for X or HAL to find out what hotel or which restaurant.

 

Also, a free 7 more days to sell more excursions, shopping advice, free chips to play in the world famous SPB casino, a visit to the diamond museum with a coupon for Faberge eggs at 30% discount, all the usual ways to squeeze money out of pax except that for those 7 days you don't even need a ship. The ship would be sailing at a virtual 150% capacity, at higher fares, and some people, like me, would appreciate it a lot.

 

And really? Are you equating an airline (transportation industry) with a cruise (hospitality industry)? If the cruise was a ferry, with minimal amenities, used as a form of transportation, that would be a more fair comparison to air travel.

 

The hospitaly industry usually (there are exceptions) doesn't mind if I book for just one night, eat just one meal, or visit just one day of a 3 day congress. I wouldn't have high hopes for a land based resort where you need to book 14 days as 7 days would be too much work.

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And that hotel can have a reasonable expectation that someone will come along and book the vacant room, while a ship has a hard time getting someone onboard after the original guest has left, and the ship has likely sailed. But no one has still given an example of a benefit to the cruise line to do something that complicates their business model.

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And that hotel can have a reasonable expectation that someone will come along and book the vacant room, while a ship has a hard time getting someone onboard after the original guest has left, and the ship has likely sailed. But no one has still given an example of a benefit to the cruise line to do something that complicates their business model.

 

Totally agree, hotels get lots of walk-up business, yet to see it on a cruise ship.

 

Certainly can't think of any upside to this option for the cruise lines. Cruise lines want each cabin filled and when cruises don't sell, the initiate fire sales to fill the cabins. Why - because they make more money once they get you aboard the ship. Having pax stay ashore for up to say 50% of a B2B would put a serious dent in revenues.

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If you are in the area, before or after your cruise, just FLY to Hong Kong and do your land visit. MUCH easier.

Yeah, that's the best option. I did a cruise from Singapore to Malaysia and Thailand and afterwards spent a few days in Singapore and took a landbased bus tour back to Malaysia...before then flying into Bangkok for a few days ((and I did HK on my way to the cruise!)

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And that hotel can have a reasonable expectation that someone will come along and book the vacant room, while a ship has a hard time getting someone onboard after the original guest has left, and the ship has likely sailed.

 

I didn't mean that "suddenly" a cabin sails empty from SPB to AMS because pax decided to stay a week longer. Pax would just book two 7 day, one-way cruises. The ship would know who's in which cabin months or even years in advance.

 

My last 14 night cruise was also sold as two 7 night cruises. Actually, we were the exception and most people booked one of the 7 day cruises.

 

But no one has still given an example of a benefit to the cruise line to do something that complicates their business model.

 

It doesn't complicate things. Everyone wanting to do the original 14 night cruise can book it. However, some people would just like AMS-SPB, others would like SPB-AMS, and yet others would like both of them but with a pause in between. The latter three groups, who weren't interested before, would also start bidding for the same cabins, leading to higher fares. That's a win.

 

The major advantage however is that the captive audience remains captive for 3 or 4 weeks, but only use 2 weeks of an expensive ship. I'm always told that the fare is barely enough to sail, where profit is made when people start buying drinks, art, and shorex. By combining 2 cruises, the cruise line can offer a shorex that takes 7 days. 7 days extra to sell a visit to Moscow, a few more Faberge eggs, an original Russian massage.

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I didn't mean that "suddenly" a cabin sails empty from SPB to AMS because pax decided to stay a week longer. Pax would just book two 7 day, one-way cruises. The ship would know who's in which cabin months or even years in advance.

 

My last 14 night cruise was also sold as two 7 night cruises. Actually, we were the exception and most people booked one of the 7 day cruises.

 

 

 

It doesn't complicate things. Everyone wanting to do the original 14 night cruise can book it. However, some people would just like AMS-SPB, others would like SPB-AMS, and yet others would like both of them but with a pause in between. The latter three groups, who weren't interested before, would also start bidding for the same cabins, leading to higher fares. That's a win.

 

The major advantage however is that the captive audience remains captive for 3 or 4 weeks, but only use 2 weeks of an expensive ship. I'm always told that the fare is barely enough to sail, where profit is made when people start buying drinks, art, and shorex. By combining 2 cruises, the cruise line can offer a shorex that takes 7 days. 7 days extra to sell a visit to Moscow, a few more Faberge eggs, an original Russian massage.

 

Shorex is not that large a profit center for the cruise lines, as they are only getting a markup over what the excursion operator charges. Onboard revenue (drinks, casino, dining) are where the profit is made. The only way a cruise line would make a significant amount on something like this, would be if they invested in the excursion operator, hotels, restaurants (i.e. and all-inclusive at the port), and that capital investment would need to be repaid before any "profit" would come.

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Shorex is not that large a profit center for the cruise lines, as they are only getting a markup over what the excursion operator charges. Onboard revenue (drinks, casino, dining) are where the profit is made. The only way a cruise line would make a significant amount on something like this, would be if they invested in the excursion operator, hotels, restaurants (i.e. and all-inclusive at the port), and that capital investment would need to be repaid before any "profit" would come.

 

Specialty restaurants even cost money. https://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?p=39539044&highlight=specialty#post39539044

 

I thought that shorex did count as "onboard spending".

 

The ships make money by having "Shopping experts" sending people to the right shops, without owning those shops.

 

Anyway, if the line isn't interested in earning money from the land based part they can leave it up to the TA or a tour operator who will like such tourists, and still the group of potential pax would increase leading to higher fares. A week extra in SPB would be fantastic. Another example, the lousy 2 or 3 ports, total 20 hours you get to spend in "Amazing Iceland" is IMHO an insult to people expecting to see Iceland after sailing 1000nm. I know cruises are "a taste of this, a taste of that" but this is like announcing the restaurant is closed when the spoon almost reaches your mouth.

 

It wouldn't be very fair though to bring A+ passengers to SPB on an expensive ship and then let the tour operator extract money for a full week with only money making tours and visits to tourist shops.

 

The lines could add a hefty surcharge to the fare when passengers book a return cruise within one or two weeks. (Similar to what airlines do to seperate business from holiday flights).

 

Bottom line is that this is almost business as usual for the cruise line, they can make longer cruises a lot more attractive by allowing guests to turn an overnight into a week, and they would make more money. The benefits are clear, and I still don't see where all the extra work would come from.

Edited by AmazedByCruising

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I didn't mean that "suddenly" a cabin sails empty from SPB to AMS because pax decided to stay a week longer. Pax would just book two 7 day, one-way cruises. The ship would know who's in which cabin months or even years in advance.

 

My last 14 night cruise was also sold as two 7 night cruises. Actually, we were the exception and most people booked one of the 7 day cruises.

 

This is what has been said earlier.

 

Book B2B cruises, and arrange to off the ship for the middle period.

 

However, you are paying for days on the ship, that you will not be there. So if you can afford to do this, go for it.

 

But if you can afford this, why not, before or after the cruise, FLY to the desired place and stay as long as you want?

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This is what has been said earlier.

 

Book B2B cruises, and arrange to off the ship for the middle period.

 

However, you are paying for days on the ship, that you will not be there. So if you can afford to do this, go for it.

 

I can't afford paying for an empty cabin, but all it would take is a 14 day cruise to be split in 2.

 

But if you can afford this, why not, before or after the cruise, FLY to the desired place and stay as long as you want?

 

Nope :)

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Shorex is not that large a profit center for the cruise lines, as they are only getting a markup over what the excursion operator charges. Onboard revenue (drinks, casino, dining) are where the profit is made. The only way a cruise line would make a significant amount on something like this, would be if they invested in the excursion operator, hotels, restaurants (i.e. and all-inclusive at the port), and that capital investment would need to be repaid before any "profit" would come.

 

I suspect this may vary by cruise line and itinerary. With our previous cruise line in Alaska, shore-ex did actually provide the highest net earnings. Regarding bars, the best performing bar was one that was located on deck 2 or 3. I found this highly surprising, since I am aware of how little they pay for booze.

 

It was confirmed by the Shore-ex Manager, who we knew very well, as she came from the same town as us.

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I can't afford paying for an empty cabin, but all it would take is a 14 day cruise to be split in 2. :)

 

You don't want to pay for an empty cabin, so why do you think that the cruise line wants to have an empty cabin that is not paid for?

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I suspect this may vary by cruise line and itinerary. With our previous cruise line in Alaska, shore-ex did actually provide the highest net earnings. Regarding bars, the best performing bar was one that was located on deck 2 or 3. I found this highly surprising, since I am aware of how little they pay for booze.

 

It was confirmed by the Shore-ex Manager, who we knew very well, as she came from the same town as us.

 

Gross maybe, not net.

 

ShorEx costs are high.

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You don't want to pay for an empty cabin, so why do you think that the cruise line wants to have an empty cabin that is not paid for?

 

My try at translating Dutch to English and all meaning gets lost :( Which is my problem, of course, so let met try to explain.

 

X offers 14 night cruises Amsterdam-St Petersburg-Amsterdam. One week to get there, one overnight, 6 nights to return.

 

14 nighs is a long cruise, most cruises are 7 nights or less. Cruise lines offer 2 night cruises.

 

The only thing X needs to do is to offer segments. 7 night cruises AMS-SPB, 7 night cruises SPB-AMS. Many, if not most, will book B2B AMS-SPB-AMS.

 

That must be possible, and no cabin would be empty. Some people from let's say New York, can just manage 7 days and would like to see Amsterdam and St Petersburg. They can't do the whole 14 days, and they don't care flying to Amsterdam and flying back from Petersburg.

 

Then, TAs, touroperators, the line itself, can think of vacations that start with AMS-SPB, a week or two in SPB, and end with SPB-AMS.

 

I just don't understand why many 14 day cruises aren't offered as 2 segments.

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My try at translating Dutch to English and all meaning gets lost :( Which is my problem, of course, so let met try to explain.

 

X offers 14 night cruises Amsterdam-St Petersburg-Amsterdam. One week to get there, one overnight, 6 nights to return.

 

14 nighs is a long cruise, most cruises are 7 nights or less. Cruise lines offer 2 night cruises.

 

The only thing X needs to do is to offer segments. 7 night cruises AMS-SPB, 7 night cruises SPB-AMS. Many, if not most, will book B2B AMS-SPB-AMS.

 

That must be possible, and no cabin would be empty. Some people from let's say New York, can just manage 7 days and would like to see Amsterdam and St Petersburg. They can't do the whole 14 days, and they don't care flying to Amsterdam and flying back from Petersburg.

 

Then, TAs, touroperators, the line itself, can think of vacations that start with AMS-SPB, a week or two in SPB, and end with SPB-AMS.

 

I just don't understand why many 14 day cruises aren't offered as 2 segments.

 

But then, to stay at one end, you would have to stay in SPB for 14 days, making a 28 day trip.

 

AMS - SPB - 7 Days.

 

17 days in SPB (cruise ship goes SPB - AMS for 7 days, then AMS - SPB for 7 days).

 

Then SPB - AMS for 7 days.

 

And how many cabins are they doing to sell for BOARDING in SPB? Not a huge cruise market there.

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Gross maybe, not net.

 

ShorEx costs are high.

 

Negative, as I mentioned the same thing, figuring they were meaning gross revenue. Confirmed by Shore-ex Manager and also the Captain, who I sailed with many years previously when we were both cadets.

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But then, to stay at one end, you would have to stay in SPB for 14 days, making a 28 day trip.

 

AMS - SPB - 7 Days.

 

17 days in SPB (cruise ship goes SPB - AMS for 7 days, then AMS - SPB for 7 days).

 

Then SPB - AMS for 7 days.

 

And how many cabins are they doing to sell for BOARDING in SPB? Not a huge cruise market there.

 

Yes, it's 14 days if you insist on going back on the same ship, and that ship would need to sail consecutive cruises AMS-SPB-AMS for a long time which doesn't happen. Hong Kong would be difficult as well. Philipsburg, St Martin however resembles a subway station.

 

I also agree that boarding in SPB doesn't happen often. But it does happen, so the port is capable of arranging it.

 

Probably the market for guests wanting to book SPB-AMS is almost the same size as the amount of people who booked AMS-SPB. When the season starts, some cabins SPB-AMS will probably be cheap, and when the season ends those will be expensive but the AMS-SPB trip would be cheap.

 

Allowing creative holidays where an overnight becomes a week would raise the value of all cabins when TAs or tour operators would see an opportunity to sell better vacations. When ships would offer 7 night segments of a 14 night cruise but nobody books those, nothing changes. IMHO it's risk-free, with a big potential to earn more.

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Negative, as I mentioned the same thing, figuring they were meaning gross revenue. Confirmed by Shore-ex Manager and also the Captain, who I sailed with many years previously when we were both cadets.

 

I still don't see it.

 

I have priced the same excursions directly with the companies versus booking through cruise line. At times, the cruise line has been cheaper. And it has never been more than about $50 more to book through the cruise line.

 

That takes a LOT of people booking to make that kind of revenue, when you look the profit margin on alcoholic drinks.

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Yes, it's 14 days if you insist on going back on the same ship, and that ship would need to sail consecutive cruises AMS-SPB-AMS for a long time which doesn't happen. Hong Kong would be difficult as well. Philipsburg, St Martin however resembles a subway station.

 

I also agree that boarding in SPB doesn't happen often. But it does happen, so the port is capable of arranging it.

 

Probably the market for guests wanting to book SPB-AMS is almost the same size as the amount of people who booked AMS-SPB. When the season starts, some cabins SPB-AMS will probably be cheap, and when the season ends those will be expensive but the AMS-SPB trip would be cheap.

 

Allowing creative holidays where an overnight becomes a week would raise the value of all cabins when TAs or tour operators would see an opportunity to sell better vacations. When ships would offer 7 night segments of a 14 night cruise but nobody books those, nothing changes. IMHO it's risk-free, with a big potential to earn more.

 

If they have two ships, one AMS - SPB at the same time the other does SPB-AMS, it still means a 21 day trip. 7 out, 7 in SPB, 7 back.

 

And most people cannot do that. And again, what happens if you have few people getting back on? You have empty cabins.

 

Or worst, ship A drops off 500 cabins of people. When ship B arrives in 1 week, they have only 400 cabins for people getting back on. Or the ship sailed with 100 empty cabins.

 

STILL, NO UPSIDE FOR THE CRUISE LINE.

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If they have two ships, one AMS - SPB at the same time the other does SPB-AMS, it still means a 21 day trip. 7 out, 7 in SPB, 7 back.

 

Yes, that is the idea. Instead of one overnight you get to spend a week in SPB. Which some people might like better than booking a cruise that is advertised as "See the wonders of St Petersburg" or similar, where in reality the 14 day, 336 hour cruise consists of 18 hours of St Petersburg. That it is when you're first to disembark and everything goes smooth.

 

And most people cannot do that.

 

Let's agree that most people can't afford a 14 day cruise on HAL or X anyway. Not many can spend 14 days off, even fewer can afford the fare. The only reason these cruises exist is that besides "most people" there are also "some people" who can manage 14 days and pay for the trip. Many of those who can afford it don't need to ask their boss to get an extra week.

 

And again, what happens if you have few people getting back on? You have empty cabins.

 

Or worst, ship A drops off 500 cabins of people. When ship B arrives in 1 week, they have only 400 cabins for people getting back on. Or the ship sailed with 100 empty cabins.

 

You are still picturing this as if the ships are a subway where people decide to get on the ship or decide to enjoy a coffee first and then get on the next one. That's not how it would work. Every cabin is booked months or years before, and that wouldn't change. All ships would sail at capacity as they always do.

 

STILL, NO UPSIDE FOR THE CRUISE LINE.

 

There is no "upside" for the cruise line to have dancers and a piano man, a CD, paintings, specialty restaurants, and real grass on the upper deck, either. Actually, why would they even sail at all? Fuel is expensive, even more than all crew combined. Your cruise contract explicitly states that there is no reason the ship should sail at all.

 

Anyway, the upside is extremely simple: people will pay more for a better vacation. If some people really want to enjoy SPB longer than a few hours, and want to pay for it, they can. If actually nobody cares about SPB, no harm done either.

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Spend some time looking at itineraries that you are interested in, that have the variety that you are looking for. Then book your first cruise. Pick cruise #2 that is a week or two ahead and book that cruise.

 

They are completely separate cruises, one is not connected to the other.

 

You also would need to get your own visas for whatever location you would be staying independent of the cruises.

Edited by SPacificbound
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Yes, that is the idea. Instead of one overnight you get to spend a week in SPB. Which some people might like better than booking a cruise that is advertised as "See the wonders of St Petersburg" or similar, where in reality the 14 day, 336 hour cruise consists of 18 hours of St Petersburg. That it is when you're first to disembark and everything goes smooth.

 

Let's agree that most people can't afford a 14 day cruise on HAL or X anyway. Not many can spend 14 days off, even fewer can afford the fare. The only reason these cruises exist is that besides "most people" there are also "some people" who can manage 14 days and pay for the trip. Many of those who can afford it don't need to ask their boss to get an extra week.

 

Anyway, the upside is extremely simple: people will pay more for a better vacation. If some people really want to enjoy SPB longer than a few hours, and want to pay for it, they can. If actually nobody cares about SPB, no harm done either.

 

Here's the problem with your argument, and you even mention it yourself. You say most people can't afford a 14 day cruise, or get 14 days off, but then you propose that they take 14 days to do a 7 day cruise and a 7 day land stay. So, you still are excluding that demographic who can't get 14 days off from work, and I doubt that 7 days on land would be much cheaper than the cruise, let's be generous and say 60%, that's still a significant addition that these people would have to make to take the extended land stay.

 

That 7 day cruise threshold is key. That is the demographic dividing line that the cruise lines have identified years ago. One demographic takes 7 day or less cruises, and one demographic takes cruises over 7 days. The cruise lines market the cruises based on the demographics, and don't seem to have any trouble filling the ships with either demographic. They just present fewer of the longer cruises because the demographic for them is less than the 7 day demographic. So, if there is a demographic that can afford, both time-wise and economically, a 14 day cruise, why should the cruise line give away half of that money to a land based operation? Get 'em on the ship and keep 'em there.

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Here's the problem with your argument, and you even mention it yourself. You say most people can't afford a 14 day cruise, or get 14 days off, but then you propose that they take 14 days to do a 7 day cruise and a 7 day land stay.

 

No I propose 7 days on the ship, 7 days on land, 7 days on the ship to sail back, 21 days total.The 14 day cruise is extended by 7 days on land in the middle instead of before or after the cruise.

 

So, if there is a demographic that can afford, both time-wise and economically, a 14 day cruise, why should the cruise line give away half of that money to a land based operation? Get 'em on the ship and keep 'em there.

 

Given the option between line A and B, where A offers 14 night cruises to SPB with 1 overnight and B offering the same cruise, but also allows to stay a week in SPB, I'd choose line B. And I probably would book the hotels and tours through line B as well. Line B would offer a better product, and gets 7 days extra to extract money from me.

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No I propose 7 days on the ship, 7 days on land, 7 days on the ship to sail back, 21 days total.The 14 day cruise is extended by 7 days on land in the middle instead of before or after the cruise.

 

So you are restricting the demographics even more by extending the cruise. Trust me, the cruise lines have studied their market and know that those sell even less than a 14 day cruise. Wonder why not every line offers a world cruise?

 

Given the option between line A and B, where A offers 14 night cruises to SPB with 1 overnight and B offering the same cruise, but also allows to stay a week in SPB, I'd choose line B. And I probably would book the hotels and tours through line B as well. Line B would offer a better product, and gets 7 days extra to extract money from me.

 

How does the cruise line get 7 extra days to extract money, when they are only getting a mark-up over the land concessionaire's charge? And while this may be your personal preference, I would have to say that the cruise line marketing departments have decided that the cost and expense of adding another embarkation terminal with infrastructure and problematic airline connections and the attendant compensations does not outweigh any additional revenue generated by a few cruisers who can afford a 21 day vacation.

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Here's the problem with your argument, and you even mention it yourself. You say most people can't afford a 14 day cruise, or get 14 days off, but then you propose that they take 14 days to do a 7 day cruise and a 7 day land stay. So, you still are excluding that demographic who can't get 14 days off from work, and I doubt that 7 days on land would be much cheaper than the cruise, let's be generous and say 60%, that's still a significant addition that these people would have to make to take the extended land stay.

 

That 7 day cruise threshold is key. That is the demographic dividing line that the cruise lines have identified years ago. One demographic takes 7 day or less cruises, and one demographic takes cruises over 7 days. The cruise lines market the cruises based on the demographics, and don't seem to have any trouble filling the ships with either demographic. They just present fewer of the longer cruises because the demographic for them is less than the 7 day demographic. So, if there is a demographic that can afford, both time-wise and economically, a 14 day cruise, why should the cruise line give away half of that money to a land based operation? Get 'em on the ship and keep 'em there.

 

And the demographic that can take a 21 day trip (7 days cruise, 7 days land, 7 day cruise) is even smaller. Both time off and cost.

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You are still picturing this as if the ships are a subway where people decide to get on the ship or decide to enjoy a coffee first and then get on the next one. That's not how it would work. Every cabin is booked months or years before, and that wouldn't change. All ships would sail at capacity as they always do.

 

So how many rooms are available for this plan?

 

100? What happens if you only sell 50 on a cruise. But you sold out on the 14 day, just cruise?

 

Do you sell those rooms to non-extended layover? Or you can't, because the previous cruise you sold all 100. And on the next cruise, you already sold all 100 cabins, so you will have 100 AMS-SPB, but only 50 coming back.

 

There is no way to be sure you fill all the available extended layover cabins on all legs all the time.

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Well, there variations on the idea that apparently work.

 

Next June, Queen Mary 2 leaves New York and visits in turn: Southampton, Hamburg, Bruges, St Peter Port (Guernsey), Hamburg, Southampton and New York. It can be booked to and from New York as a 23 night "Grand Bruges and Guernsey" voyage, or in any of multiple shorter segments.

  • New York to Southampton
  • New York to Hamburg
  • Southampton closed-loop to Bruges & Guernsey via Hamburg.
  • Hamburg closed-loop to Bruges & Guernsey
  • Southampton to Hamburg
  • Hamburg to Southampton
  • Hamburg to New York
  • Southampton to New York

...as well as a follow-on cruise of the northeast US and Canada originating in Hamburg, Southampton or New York.

 

Managing cabin inventory over all of these segments in at least three different sales markets is challenging, but Cunard seems to be willing to give it a go.

 

We've booked from New York to Hamburg and from Hamburg to New York and Cunard will manage to fill the stateroom during the five nights that we're in Germany.

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Well, there variations on the idea that apparently work.

 

Managing cabin inventory over all of these segments in at least three different sales markets is challenging, but Cunard seems to be willing to give it a go.

 

We've booked from New York to Hamburg and from Hamburg to New York and Cunard will manage to fill the stateroom during the five nights that we're in Germany.

 

And I thought extending SPB to a week would probably be feasable and profitable, and very nice for the cruisers with some puzzles for the sales department. Someone at Cunard must have decided that spending a lot on software, I guess millions, would pay off. The highest fares possible, where the ships always sails full, with a zillion variables (fuel, port fees, eggs, weather conditions, age, language, country and income of the guests, probable on board spending, probable % of return guests, the list is endless).

 

I hope X and HAL will be inspired by how the competition can offer such a huge list of ways to enjoy a 23 night cruise, and will offer OP a bit more than one night in Hong Kong in the future.

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