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No more cruises to Cuba?

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14 hours ago, the more ports the better said:

I second the fact that the Cuban govt is “nationalizing” the tour guide industry,  just like they did with sugar and rum in the 60’s.  I’ve been there a few times this year and spoke to a guide who was arrested and spent a few weeks in jail for being overheard telling tourists about living conditions.  We met people outside of the tourist area who said they are determined to make Cuba a capitalist country even if they had to lead the army to do it.  All the educated young people we met wanted either capitalism or they wanted to leave.  One guy told us that his mom was a heart surgeon and was sent to Venezuela for 5 years when he was 12 in exchange for oil.  I hope our govt is supporting them and stirring the pot in the background.   It’s a sad situation all around.

 

Regarding Turkey, we had three guides in 2015, all female and not one had a good thing to say about Erdogan.  One said, no one will vote for him but he’ll get elected to office anyway.  She also said at the rate things were going, she would be required to wear traditional dress and cover everything up in a few years and was very unhappy about it.

 

In Russia, our guides in Moscow and St Petersburg all seemed to think Putin a necessary evil.  He runs everything but encourages free enterprise.  No one seemed to be lacking for opportunity like they do in Cuba.  In Russia, one funny thing I heard was the women complaining that the men just wanted to drink and play video games whereas the women were hustling and starting businesses.  Moscow seemed to be bustling whereas Cuba has a feeling a total repression.

 

just my two cents!

I emailed my tour guide in Cuba and he said the government has already made him close his business..I find it very sad..

Jancruz1

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OMG!! We are supposed to go to Cuba only in November!

I wonder what will happen as we booked the cruise specifically to visit Cuba.

We have not paid except for deposit but we will lose airfare as insurance doesn't cover"Trump administration changing rules"!!!

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Although the State Department said there would be “no exemptions” for Cuba investments, Freyre said the law contains a cutout for technology and travel-related business that would appear to exempt U.S. airlines and cruise ships traveling to Cuba. Washington Post 04172019

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Coralfriend, that's the best news I've seen on this strand.  Hopefully, when all is sorted out, cruise ships will still make stops in Cuba.

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4 hours ago, coralfriend said:

Although the State Department said there would be “no exemptions” for Cuba investments, Freyre said the law contains a cutout for technology and travel-related business that would appear to exempt U.S. airlines and cruise ships traveling to Cuba. Washington Post 04172019

 

If true, that would be great news indeed.

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That would be awesome news!  However it would also make the entire rule change moot because that's 99% of who/what can travel under the previous rules.  Unless it means that ships can leave from Miami and go to Cuba but can't carry Americans? But that wouldn't make any sense, either.  Oy. Once again, their lack of understanding of what they're doing or how to go about doing it leaves us with so many more questions than answers.  I hope it does turn out to be a moot, meaningless thing so the flights/cruises can continue.

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This is still distressing to me in spite of the fact travel agency thinks our Feb 1 cruise will not be affected.  I am still concerned we will not be notified of itinerary change until after final payment.   This happened with NCL cruise (parent company) after hurricane damage.  Our cruise had to be changed and some ships got our itinerary with necessary changes and our ship got an itinerary with ZERO of the booked ports.    Is there any way of finding out if Cuba will still be our itinerary?  Our booked cruise is all Cuba, the absolute best of the Cuba itineraries I could find.

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39 minutes ago, HokiePoq said:

This is still distressing to me in spite of the fact travel agency thinks our Feb 1 cruise will not be affected.  I am still concerned we will not be notified of itinerary change until after final payment.   This happened with NCL cruise (parent company) after hurricane damage.  Our cruise had to be changed and some ships got our itinerary with necessary changes and our ship got an itinerary with ZERO of the booked ports.    Is there any way of finding out if Cuba will still be our itinerary?  Our booked cruise is all Cuba, the absolute best of the Cuba itineraries I could find.

 

I think it is too early for anyone to know anything for certain.  You might hold off on booking airfare etc until things settle out.

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I agree that NO one knows anything right now!

Even our government has not been clear on what is happening so how can the cruise companies know?? Unfortunately we all just have to wait and see. We are going in November and it's also an all Cuba itinerary . Final payment is not due until summer so I'll be waiting to hear something definite before then. We will NOT make final payment without knowing something more certain!

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2 hours ago, HokiePoq said:

This is still distressing to me in spite of the fact travel agency thinks our Feb 1 cruise will not be affected.  I am still concerned we will not be notified of itinerary change until after final payment.   This happened with NCL cruise (parent company) after hurricane damage.  Our cruise had to be changed and some ships got our itinerary with necessary changes and our ship got an itinerary with ZERO of the booked ports.    Is there any way of finding out if Cuba will still be our itinerary?  Our booked cruise is all Cuba, the absolute best of the Cuba itineraries I could find.

I am booked on the same cruise.  Just waiting to see how things shake loose.  Bad thing is I already have my airfare so at the least I will have to find another cruise at that time.  Never get air this early but had to because of the super bowl.  We have some time until final payment.  You can always opt out of the cruise if it is stressing you out.  No way are we going to know anything at this time when the policies have not yet been set.  

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5 hours ago, bunzini said:

I am booked on the same cruise.  Just waiting to see how things shake loose.  Bad thing is I already have my airfare so at the least I will have to find another cruise at that time.  Never get air this early but had to because of the super bowl.  We have some time until final payment.  You can always opt out of the cruise if it is stressing you out.  No way are we going to know anything at this time when the policies have not yet been set.  

Exactly what I would do....except I bought the air as well, afraid to wait due to the Super Bowl.   This cruise date has its challenges!

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Even though we are going in November I also have bought air tix already. The good thing I suppose is that we used points to get paid back for them so I lost points but not real money.

I don't think we'd do another cruise at that time since I am not really interested in more time in the Caribbean and just wanted to visit Cuba!!

We'll all just have to wait and see what happens!

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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, riffatsea said:

We will NOT make final payment without knowing something more certain!

 

12 hours ago, bunzini said:

 Just waiting to see how things shake loose.

 

7 hours ago, HokiePoq said:

 This cruise date has its challenges!

I hope all turns out a-okay for you all!

 

You may want to check out the CC board about cruise/travel insurance.  Depending on your state of residence, there is at least one insurer who will pay $ if your ports are changed officially at least some time period (7 days??) before you leave.   We haven't ever had such coverage, but might make sense in this situation...unless the insurers have already adjusted premiums for the increased uncertainty!  Here is a link to one recent thread mentioning this topic.  See post #7 in the linked thread for mention of the specific carrier.

Edited by babysteps

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22 minutes ago, babysteps said:

 

 

I hope all turns out a-okay for you all!

 

You may want to check out the CC board about cruise/travel insurance.  Depending on your state of residence, there is at least one insurer who will pay $ if your ports are changed officially at least some time period (7 days??) before you leave.   We haven't ever had such coverage, but might make sense in this situation...unless the insurers have already adjusted premiums for the increased uncertainty!  Here is a link to one recent thread mentioning this topic.  See post #7 in the linked thread for mention of the specific carrier.

Very interesting discussion.   We've been on several TAs and I would be most upset to find myself in this position.  Both times we did a TA with NCL we stayed on the ship for the European itinerary.  I bet folks are getting put off the ship who planned to stay for whatever the Getaway's itinerary is. The Cuba thing is more like the hurricane situation in that it won't be the cruise line's fault that the itinerary might be changed.    We've already paid for the usual insurance but that is something to consider in the future.  Thanks for the info.

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1 hour ago, HokiePoq said:

Very interesting discussion.   We've been on several TAs and I would be most upset to find myself in this position.  Both times we did a TA with NCL we stayed on the ship for the European itinerary.  I bet folks are getting put off the ship who planned to stay for whatever the Getaway's itinerary is. The Cuba thing is more like the hurricane situation in that it won't be the cruise line's fault that the itinerary might be changed.    We've already paid for the usual insurance but that is something to consider in the future.  Thanks for the info.

Can't edit this so sorry to reply to my own post.  After reading the other thread I see that the Getaway would not have guests onboard as it was heading to dry dock.    Thanks again for the insurance info.   Didn't realize it was available although our state is listed as one where some of the coverage doesn't apply unfortunately.

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On 4/23/2019 at 6:50 PM, HokiePoq said:

This is still distressing to me in spite of the fact travel agency thinks our Feb 1 cruise will not be affected.  I am still concerned we will not be notified of itinerary change until after final payment.   This happened with NCL cruise (parent company) after hurricane damage.  Our cruise had to be changed and some ships got our itinerary with necessary changes and our ship got an itinerary with ZERO of the booked ports.    Is there any way of finding out if Cuba will still be our itinerary?  Our booked cruise is all Cuba, the absolute best of the Cuba itineraries I could find.

We are on same cruise with you and agree completely. We only booked this cruise in order to see Cuba and have no interest in seeing other Caribbean ports at all. In addition to cruise deposit we have already purchased plane tickets and paid deposit on Airbnb condo for pre cruise stay in Miami. We did buy insurance but the insurance premiums (quite high at our ages) will not be refundable.

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We just booked another cruise to replace the Cuba Cruise. Haven’t cancelled the Cuba cruise yet but most likely will. We found another cruise with some of our favorite ports that will work in our timeline. 

We will give Cuba another try when things calm down in Venezuela.

Our Cuba cruise already has two ports we don’t like so if Cuba is replaced for the Bahamas after final payment then it would be an awful plus expensive cruise.

We are bailing.

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I’ve been on a couple  cruises with muddled, ever changing itineraries.  We were disappointed but still made the trip.  If this were to happen on Oceania I would still make the trip but focus on eating well and relaxing.  If this were to happen on a non Oceania line I might  look to see what I can switch into yet still make use of my prepaid air.  Maybe pay an airline change fee but get my cruise deposit back. 

I don’t have a crystal ball but I expect some kind of a workaround or revised policy.  

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Tend to agree with sammiedawg.  We're booked on a late January/Feb cruise with one night scheduled in Havana.  If it happens, fine.  If not, a bit of a disappointment; but we won't cancel.  We enjoy exploring new ports, especially on small private tours; but the real reason we cruise Oceania is the relaxed, upscale lifestyle on the ship.  We enjoy all the restaurants, use our butler often for room service, take culinary classes, play bridge, read, and just lounge around.  Being away from Northern Michigan in the winter, in and of itself, is a luxury.

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Posted (edited)

This Cuba cruise is our first on Oceania so we will not book another one as we don't really know if we enjoy the atmosphere yet on the Oceania ships.

IF they cancel Cuba then we cancel the cruise.

IF they haven't decided for sure by August, then not sure what we will do????

I have plant tix but don't really want to spend time in Miami or go to the typical Caribbean ports so have no idea what will happen??? Really upset about this!

Edited by riffatsea

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3 hours ago, riffatsea said:

I have plant tix but don't really want to spend time in Miami or go to the typical Caribbean ports so have no idea what will happen??

It must be a hassle to have such unclear information holding your plans in limbo.

 

You could consider looking into flights MIA round-trip to a *non* typical Caribbean port for a land-based vacation - you would still be able to use your existing plane arrangements if Cuba is indeed cancelled that way.  Just you might want refundable ($$$$) MIA-wherever plane tickets and hotel arrangements.  Still a big hassle, but I find having a plan "B" usually makes plan "A" behave much better.  Or, consider non-MIA Florida destinations -- you could rent a car and explore.  Key West, Palm Beach, Capitiva, etc. - whatever meets your fancy.

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@Babysteps,

Yes, everything you say is true about other possibilities but DH really doesn't love to fly so going on another flight after Miami is not part of his wish list.

Staying in Florida is not something that generally appeals to us either .

Cuba was a bucket list for me and somewhere he found interesting as well.

It is too bad that we are in limbo at the moment.

It is certainly a first world problem that I am sure we will overcome!!

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A  new development as of today as Cuban military are possibly helping the socialist Venezuela president stop his coup. 

 The US state dept has  just today said if that is the case  the US will put full embargo on Cuba.   They have already,  I think, closed the embassy.

On another note, as Jan pointed out... our dollars are fueling an oppressive dictatorship  which has for 50 years spread terrorism and violence  throughout  latin america.....   Nothing really has changed 

   

The poor people of Cuba continue to suffer as long as we finance their oppressors...  Yes .you want to see Cuba... but at what price will you make the people there pay for you jaunt ????   

 

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Hawaiidan, that's a reasonable point...but if we take every country that hasn't financed an oppressive regime off the "to see" list, it eliminates virtually the entire globe. Seriously, name some countries that haven't either financed an oppressive regime in another country or been led by its own oppressive regime that's unaccountable to the people.  I'm coming up empty.  Holding Cuba - and Cuba only - to this standard is absurd particularly when Russia is providing more aid to both Cuba and Venezuela than Cuba could ever dream of doing, and there's no limit on travel to Russia.

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Posted (edited)

 and how sure are we that Cuba is the master of this? 

 

Here's a quote by Mr Pompeo to CNN--

          "He (Maduro) had an airplane on the tarmac, he was ready to leave this morning as we understand it and the    Russians indicated he should stay."  "He was headed for Havana"  (CNN 4/30/19)

 

 

Edited by cbb

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