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Do the cruise lines watch cruise critic closely for passenger reactions and for input into their products?


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When NCL Jade had to sail in Europe for 7 years, one of their staff joined the main UK cruising forum- I asked questions and received answers. Fred Olsen also answers questions on that site.

RCI asked the then CC admin of the UK page a question about 18 yr olds drinking with a letter from a guardian; CC answered that an 18 yr old was an adult so could not have a guardian. RCI changed its policy and 18yr olds were allowed to drink if the ship was leaving the UK- eventually followed by most other US based lines. So RCI knew exactly who to ask...

We had the same entertainment officer on 2 cruises, and he used to end the evening by saying that he was going off to read about himself on Cruise Critic. 😆

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21 hours ago, Aquahound said:


I can recall 2. 
 

Several years ago, there was a policy change with RCI’s loyalty program that created an uproar. I think it had to do with the concierge lounge. RCI walked it back and credited the feedback on CC.
 

Not too long ago, NCL tried to create a policy forbidding people from taking food out of the buffet. It was to force an up charge room service on passengers. The policy was quickly reversed and Cruise Critic was quoted as a source of angry customers. 

 

On Celebrity a couple of years ago they have a very popular grill outside of the buffet area where you could get hot dogs, burgers and fries.   They decided to make the burgers some expensive supposed Kobe beef burger and charge a ridiculous price.   There was major blowback on the Celebrity board and the change was made back to the old burgers quite quickly.   

Edited by dkjretired
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20 hours ago, LocoLoco1 said:

Some employees/contractors... in any industry, glean the Internet; Data Mining for all sorts of reasons. Planting leading questions too ??? Probably. 

Yes, I think there are industry reps on Cruise Critic, how active? is a good question.  I think Cruise Critic is composed largely of dedicated cruisers who spend time thinking about travel.  As a business owner I have learned to ignore, with compassion, a pure complaint but if there is a great suggestion in that complaint I carefully consider that suggestion.  

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I believe the cruise lines do pay attention and wonder (sorry about this going "vaccine") if they will consider the informal survey on CC asking if cruisers want a vaccine mandate for cruising. It appears to be an overwhelming YES!  Not a scientific study, but probably as valid as you can get. None of us are being paid for our advice...or are we?  

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1 hour ago, richstowe said:

Are you asking for vaccination to be mandatory in order to cruise ?

Totally missed the point.  Which is whether the cruise lines will read the thread/ poll and consider it when making policy.

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51 minutes ago, Essiesmom said:

Totally missed the point.  Which is whether the cruise lines will read the thread/ poll and consider it when making policy.

This thread has made me wonder. Do people who post/reply here actually represent the majority of cruisers? 

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42 minutes ago, clo said:

This thread has made me wonder. Do people who post/reply here actually represent the majority of cruisers? 

Since the membership here represents a small percentage of total cruisers (2%? 3%?) I rather doubt it.

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46 minutes ago, clo said:

This thread has made me wonder. Do people who post/reply here actually represent the majority of cruisers? 

They are perhaps 2-3 % of the crowd on any cruise.  

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41 minutes ago, wheezedr said:

They are perhaps 2-3 % of the crowd on any cruise.  

Unless someone does a study on the topic, the cruise critic crowd is one of the few sources for opinions on cruising. So, to the original point, I believe that the cruise lines are watching the threads to see if the steadfast and dedicated cruisers insist upon a vaccine rule. Of course, parents of those under 16 may feel differently. I imagine that group is a small number of CCs.

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Two personal stories, but keep in mind these both happened nearly 2 decades ago in the early days of CC.  There was a period of time when RCCL (now generally called RCI) put a lot of pressure on their waiters (and other staff) to get "Outstanding" ratings from passengers on the ratings forms given out the last night of the cruise.  At one point the situation got out of hand and waiters would almost beg their tables for "Outstanding" ratings saying things like "excellent and good are not good enough."  It was the same with many cabin stewards and it got annoying.  There were many posts here on CC critical of the practice.   During that same time period we did a cruise on RCCLs Sun Viking where the Dining Room Manager was a friend (he had actually been our waiter when we were all younger.  He told us that the company had called all the Dining Room Managers to Florida for a big meeting and a top executive walked into the conference room with a stack of print outs from CC about the evaluation arm twisting.  The word went out that the practice must stop.

 

The other incident around the same time was surprising.  One day I received a personal e-mail from the CEO of one of the major mass market lines (not RCCL) thanking me for posting some kinds remarks.  In those days it was possible to get contact information from our CC Profiles.  

 

Do the cruise lines still read CC?  I would assume they have one or more folks assigned to monitor (and quietly contribute) to all the popular social media blogs including here on CC.

 

Hank

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3 hours ago, sparks1093 said:

Since the membership here represents a small percentage of total cruisers (2%? 3%?) I rather doubt it.

I'm unsure how to describe what I'm really asking. It's not the number of participants but rather do they represent a broad spectrum of people who cruise?

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Two ways to look at the question of 'do CC contributors accurately represent a broad spectrum of cruisers: 

1. Many of those on CC represent MANY cumulative cruises. I've taken over 15 and many of you have taken many more. So, our opinion is quite valuable because we generally cruise frequently, regularly, and on different lines and ships within lines. Most everyone here doesn't give a rote answer that applies to every company or cruising experience. Our advice and thoughts on a Caribbean cruise is quite different than sailing in Europe. 

2. We are often influencers of others. I bet other people call you and ask your advice when they are booking their first or second cruise. So, our opinion is valuable.

So, we affect the willingness or reluctance of others who are thinking of cruising in a post COVID world.

 

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1 hour ago, clo said:

I'm unsure how to describe what I'm really asking. It's not the number of participants but rather do they represent a broad spectrum of people who cruise?

 

I would say we are somewhat atypical, not necessarily representative of the cruise lines' target market -- first-time and less experienced cruisers tend to spend more $$ onboard, according to their marketing statistics. 

 

That said, I do agree with Donna and others that this group may have some insights that they at least keep tabs on, if not act on. Influencers is certainly a word that could apply in some cases.

 

Years ago there was a bit of a scandal on the boards. It wasn't long after I first joined so I don't know all the details. Something about one of the cruise lines rewarding certain frequent posters for posting positive things about their cruise line.

 

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32 minutes ago, Markanddonna said:

Two ways to look at the question of 'do CC contributors accurately represent a broad spectrum of cruisers: 

1. Many of those on CC represent MANY cumulative cruises. I've taken over 15 and many of you have taken many more. So, our opinion is quite valuable because we generally cruise frequently, regularly, and on different lines and ships within lines. Most everyone here doesn't give a rote answer that applies to every company or cruising experience. Our advice and thoughts on a Caribbean cruise is quite different than sailing in Europe. 

2. We are often influencers of others. I bet other people call you and ask your advice when they are booking their first or second cruise. So, our opinion is valuable.

So, we affect the willingness or reluctance of others who are thinking of cruising in a post COVID world.

 

Interesting thoughts...

 

Another way  to look at 

Do CC contributors accurately represent a broad spectrum of cruisers: 

 

I would say no

 

Is instead of number of posts...... maybe days at sea... would be interesting

 

It would sort of weight peoples answers.....

 

Example... on a travel forum.... a lot of excellent and terrible ratings are by people who have done little travel ...... one takes them with a grain of salt...

 

It is sometime difficult to get a level headed answer..... like Oh cruised once with with this line.. it was the best..... to I have cruised many time with this line it was very good to excellent.. and would recommend it..... 

 

So I have heard quite a few people going on about a line but have only been once,

There are a lot of flowers in field... but there id grass everywhere...

 

It is like a survey ... how do you rate the people in the middle ???

Don't Care.... Neutral....Happy.... Indifferent.... Don't want to rock the boat.   

Edited by getting older slowly
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5 minutes ago, getting older slowly said:

Example... on a travel forum.... a lot of excellent and terrible ratings are by people who have done little travel ...... one takes them with a grain of salt...

 

Kinda like yelp on restaurants. People who really know their way around generally don't like yelp at all for their reviews. Just use them to find their site, get directions, etc.

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14 hours ago, Markanddonna said:

Unless someone does a study on the topic, the cruise critic crowd is one of the few sources for opinions on cruising. So, to the original point, I believe that the cruise lines are watching the threads to see if the steadfast and dedicated cruisers insist upon a vaccine rule. Of course, parents of those under 16 may feel differently. I imagine that group is a small number of CCs.

I'm sure that such a study has been done. I do know that many officers at many meet and greets have mentioned Cruise Critic by name and asked that if anyone had an issue onboard that they be given a chance to fix it before it was posted on Cruise Critic. 

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11 hours ago, clo said:

I'm unsure how to describe what I'm really asking. It's not the number of participants but rather do they represent a broad spectrum of people who cruise?

Ah, yes, that is a different question entirely. Based on my own observations I think CC does represent a broad spectrum of people who cruise divided into just about any demographic you want to see represented, including many nationalities. The young, the old, the rich, the poor, frequent cruisers, nonfrequent cruisers, the married, the single. I doubt that much of this data is captured anywhere that is easily accessible and/or usable but we are a diverse group.

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44 minutes ago, sparks1093 said:

Ah, yes, that is a different question entirely. Based on my own observations I think CC does represent a broad spectrum of people who cruise divided into just about any demographic you want to see represented, including many nationalities. The young, the old, the rich, the poor, frequent cruisers, nonfrequent cruisers, the married, the single. I doubt that much of this data is captured anywhere that is easily accessible and/or usable but we are a diverse group.

 

Not sure I would agree that there are lots of nationalities. This forum is primarily English speakers so that would exclude a huge chunk of cruisers especially in Asia and Europe🤔.

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1 hour ago, ilikeanswers said:

 

Not sure I would agree that there are lots of nationalities. This forum is primarily English speakers so that would exclude a huge chunk of cruisers especially in Asia and Europe🤔.

I've seen posters from the UK, Barbados, Sweden, Norway, Canada, Germany, and Australia to name a few, not to mention those in the US who are lawful permanent residents but still citizens of other countries. While the vast majority of CC members may be from the US many of them do come from other nations and that makes CC multinational regardless of the primary (or secondary) language that they speak.

Edited by sparks1093
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2 minutes ago, sparks1093 said:

I've seen posters from the UK, Barbados, Sweden, Norway, Canada, Germany, and Australia to name a few, not to mention those in the US who are lawful permanent residents but still citizens of other countries. While the vast majority of CC members may be US citizens many of them do come from other nations and that makes CC multinational regardless of the primary (or secondary) language that they speak.

 

But I think they would make up a very tiny portion in terms of nationality demographics on CC so I don't think it would make for a very accurate reflection especially for the European or Asian cruise lines.

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24 minutes ago, ilikeanswers said:

 

But I think they would make up a very tiny portion in terms of nationality demographics on CC so I don't think it would make for a very accurate reflection especially for the European or Asian cruise lines.

And CC makes up a tiny portion of cruisers overall. Since the data is likely not captured it doesn't matter much, but my comment that CC includes many nationalities is still a valid observation.

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I used to wear a tee shirt that had "cruisecritic" on the front, and would often wear it on sea days.  I can't tell you how many times I was asked "What's that?" or if I was cruising for free, or if I was working for the cruise line.  Hardly anyone recognized it as the forum we're all posting on.

 

In addition, whenever we had an "informal" M&G on board, say at an aft pool bar, with maybe 20 CCers showing up, we usually got asked by other cruisers how they could join our club.

 

Just re-inforcing how small a % of the cruising public we really are.

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