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Celebrity Xpedition runs aground in Galapagos

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It is reported that all passengers were taken onboard Flora  and Flora was towing  Xpedition. From Twitter: 

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Edited by sippican

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What a shame.  Its been a bad year for the Xpedition.  I can't imagine how it could happen.  I'm sure heads will roll.  I hope the passengers will be duly compensated and that the ship and environment were not too severely damaged.

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Glad all are safe. A great trip when we went and yes, so sorry to hear about all the problems the area has had recently. Makes it more "real" when you have been there, experienced the ship and country. 

 

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Wow so unfortunate.  For many this is a very expensive bucket list trip!  I feel so sorry for the passengers.

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Since they already had their official Ecuadorian license to operate the ship in the Galapagos temporarily suspended earlier this year I wonder if it there will be a more permanent suspension after this.  

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Hi,

   I am currently on the Flora, the ship that is taking the Expedition passengers and crew back to Puerto Ayora.  They will stay there overnight, then fly to Quito tomorrow while Celebrity works on adjusting their flight arrangements.  I have heard from the passengers that it was a complete loss of power that caused the Expedition to hit the rocks.  Only a few passengers were onboard at the time, most were on excursions.  They were rescued by surrounding boats until we, the Flora, were able to reach them.  Overnight the Flora tugged the Expedition to a safe location to anchor while they await repair teams.  

   Celebrity is fully refunding the Expedition passengers as well as providing them a future cruise.  Flora passengers are getting a 2-night refund and 2 night future cruise credit as our excursions were cut short yesterday and totally cancelled today.

Gail

snorklefan

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8 minutes ago, snorklefan said:

Hi,

   I am currently on the Flora, the ship that is taking the Expedition passengers and crew back to Puerto Ayora.  They will stay there overnight, then fly to Quito tomorrow while Celebrity works on adjusting their flight arrangements.  I have heard from the passengers that it was a complete loss of power that caused the Expedition to hit the rocks.  Only a few passengers were onboard at the time, most were on excursions.  They were rescued by surrounding boats until we, the Flora, were able to reach them.  Overnight the Flora tugged the Expedition to a safe location to anchor while they await repair teams.  

   Celebrity is fully refunding the Expedition passengers as well as providing them a future cruise.  Flora passengers are getting a 2-night refund and 2 night future cruise credit as our excursions were cut short yesterday and totally cancelled today.

Gail

snorklefan

Thank you for your report.  It's always good to hear from someone who is on board.  Glad no one was injured.

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7 minutes ago, snorklefan said:

Hi,

   I am currently on the Flora, the ship that is taking the Expedition passengers and crew back to Puerto Ayora.  They will stay there overnight, then fly to Quito tomorrow while Celebrity works on adjusting their flight arrangements.  I have heard from the passengers that it was a complete loss of power that caused the Expedition to hit the rocks.  Only a few passengers were onboard at the time, most were on excursions.  They were rescued by surrounding boats until we, the Flora, were able to reach them.  Overnight the Flora tugged the Expedition to a safe location to anchor while they await repair teams.  

   Celebrity is fully refunding the Expedition passengers as well as providing them a future cruise.  Flora passengers are getting a 2-night refund and 2 night future cruise credit as our excursions were cut short yesterday and totally cancelled today.

Gail

snorklefan

 

Thanks for the update!

 

Poor Xpedition can't catch a break this year. I hope that the environment wasn't harmed and that the ship didn't sustain significant damage.

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I am seeing some incredible deals on the Expedition sailings early next year.  I would probably book one,  but mine are planned at least a year in advance.

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So sorry to hear about this! I was on a ship that came way to close to ALMOST hitting a rocky coast, and over 400 were evacuated by helicopter. Hope Celebrity does right by the passengers. 

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5 hours ago, SoCalTraveler said:

We were booked on this trip.  Trying to sort out alternatives.

How were you notified by Celebrity... our trip is coming up... not sure if we will be affected.. but 😵😢

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3 minutes ago, hillslife said:

How were you notified by Celebrity... our trip is coming up... not sure if we will be affected.. but 😵😢

 

I was first alerted by a post on Cruise Critic last night at about 7:55 p.m. PST.  Our TA called Celebrity immediately.  Things were still up in the air.  We packed and loaded the car.  While driving in, I was called by Celebrity at about 9:30 a.m. PST.  At that time, it was uncertain if Celebrity had another ship available for some of us.  At 2:30 p.m., I called Celebrity and was advised that the cruise was cancelled and the other ship would not sail.

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3 hours ago, NMTraveller said:

I am seeing pricing around 2999 pp plus 50% off second person and airfare.

Problem is getting there , went to a show that travel agent had and celebrity rep was there . They said it was about 10k , that is airfare and hotel total package was ten days with a 7 day cruise, had to fly to Quito then take another plane to ship . 

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30 minutes ago, George C said:

Problem is getting there , went to a show that travel agent had and celebrity rep was there . They said it was about 10k , that is airfare and hotel total package was ten days with a 7 day cruise, had to fly to Quito then take another plane to ship . 

We've done this cruise before.  In 2015, we booked our own planes using miles.  This time, we used Choice Air, and boy are we happy we did so.  Celebrity arranges the flight to Baltra.  Consider adding the Maachu Pichu extension as long as you are in the neighborhood.  

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57 minutes ago, George C said:

Problem is getting there , went to a show that travel agent had and celebrity rep was there . They said it was about 10k , that is airfare and hotel total package was ten days with a 7 day cruise, had to fly to Quito then take another plane to ship . 

 

I went all of the way to selecting a cabin on the Celebrity site and my final prices was $6238 for both of us.  You are right I would need the  flight.  I normally just use points and fly.

 

I did not book the cabin as I am booked for vacations for the next year or two.  But the Galapagos is on the list for sure.

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14 hours ago, snorklefan said:

Hi,

   I am currently on the Flora, the ship that is taking the Expedition passengers and crew back to Puerto Ayora.  They will stay there overnight, then fly to Quito tomorrow while Celebrity works on adjusting their flight arrangements.  I have heard from the passengers that it was a complete loss of power that caused the Expedition to hit the rocks.  Only a few passengers were onboard at the time, most were on excursions.  They were rescued by surrounding boats until we, the Flora, were able to reach them.  Overnight the Flora tugged the Expedition to a safe location to anchor while they await repair teams. 

 

I wonder how this happened or if this is the entire story.  We went to the Galapagos a few years ago and when the passengers were off the ship on excursions, the ship was anchored.  If the ship was anchored, even a complete loss of power should not have been a problem.

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My friends were on that cruise. I'm sure glad they got off and are heading back to civilization. I just don't know if Thurston and his wife Lovey and Ginger and Mary Ann would be cut out for being shipwrecked on that island. My buddy, the Professor sure would be, but not sure about the others. 😎

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8 hours ago, George C said:

Problem is getting there , went to a show that travel agent had and celebrity rep was there . They said it was about 10k , that is airfare and hotel total package was ten days with a 7 day cruise, had to fly to Quito then take another plane to ship . 

 

Very few choose to do the 7-day cruise only option. Air to and from Baltra is a challenge.There are very few flights, schedule changes are common, lodging options are few and Celebrity has no obligation to you if you miss the ship.  When you choose any package (including MP) all transportation, both land and air,  is included once you land in Quito. We flew from Miami to Quito for under $500 rt.

 

When pricing the Galapagos trips, people tend to forget that it is all-inclusive, so it cannot be compared to other cruise fares. Once you hit the ground in Quito, you have absolutely no need to spend another dime. Pricing does fluctuate; sometimes there are air included specials, BOGOHO, seasonal differences, and sometimes they just drop. We went last year and are currently rebooked on Xpedition for 2021. Prices dropped significantly and I was able to reprice our 10 day package to around $6000 pp (a savings of over $1000 pp).  Having experienced Xpedition, we feel no need to pay the high cost to try Flora. 

Edited by sippican

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We were on this ship twice. The first time was when they first started cruising down there, and the second was a few years ago when they added the extra deck ontop. Frankly the ship was very nice, but the last trip and we were on the top deck..it seemed very unstable. Glad everyone is okay. That is not a good picture of the Xpedition on the rocks. 

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