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MSC - Explora Pricing


Stockjock
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As you may know, MSC has a new ultra-premium division called Explora, replete with ultra-premium pricing.  Do you think it will work?

Personally, I don't.  I base this upon their high prices, MSC's generally poor reputation for customer service, and the existing, far more experienced ultra-premium lines that offer more of a known quantity.

Your thoughts?

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Edited by Stockjock
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LOL, yeah...I agree 100% with you...but we will see. MSC is certainly more well known in Europe, but I'm pretty sure the customer service issues are still crap.

 

They will need a dedicated team for this.

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16 minutes ago, alyssamma said:

They will need a dedicated team for this.

 

I believe that is what they will have. 

 

"In March, the brand tapped several veterans of upscale cruise brands for its leadership team, including chief sales officer Chris Austin, who was most recently a sales executive with Seabourn; destination experience advisor John Stoll, who was vice president of land programs for 17 years at Crystal; and commercial and strategic advisor Thatcher Brown, most recently president of Dream Cruises and managing director of Crystal Cruises Asia."

 

So it seems like they are going to have people who should know what they are doing and understand the potential client. 

 

These look like "brochure" prices. Real world prices are almost always lower. 

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53 minutes ago, Two Wheels Only said:

 

I believe that is what they will have. 

 

"In March, the brand tapped several veterans of upscale cruise brands for its leadership team, including chief sales officer Chris Austin, who was most recently a sales executive with Seabourn; destination experience advisor John Stoll, who was vice president of land programs for 17 years at Crystal; and commercial and strategic advisor Thatcher Brown, most recently president of Dream Cruises and managing director of Crystal Cruises Asia."

 

So it seems like they are going to have people who should know what they are doing and understand the potential client. 

 

These look like "brochure" prices. Real world prices are almost always lower. 

Agree about the rack rates.

 

We will see about the customer service. I just don't believe they can pull it off...

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To MSC's credit, they did offer an exceptional product when entering the US market twelve years ago:  an outstanding shipboard experience at a remarkably low price.  Perhaps they will enter the upscale market with pricing that will attract even the most critical.  However, I totally agree they will have to improve their landside customer service.

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46 minutes ago, neptuno said:

To MSC's credit, they did offer an exceptional product when entering the US market twelve years ago:  an outstanding shipboard experience at a remarkably low price.  Perhaps they will enter the upscale market with pricing that will attract even the most critical.  However, I totally agree they will have to improve their landside customer service.

I think that is it. Most (all) of us agree that the *product* is great. I would even say for the price point it can't be beat.

 

But the aggravation of dealing the CS is just...ugh. Right now I compare MSC to RCCL, Carnival, etc. so when I am still waiting to get credit for a cruise I took 2 mo ago, fine. I don't like it, but fine. 

 

Now, if this was being compared to Oceania, Viking, Seabourne, etc...then forget it. Completely unacceptable.

 

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2 hours ago, alyssamma said:

I think that is it. Most (all) of us agree that the *product* is great. I would even say for the price point it can't be beat.

 

But the aggravation of dealing the CS is just...ugh. Right now I compare MSC to RCCL, Carnival, etc. so when I am still waiting to get credit for a cruise I took 2 mo ago, fine. I don't like it, but fine. 

 

Now, if this was being compared to Oceania, Viking, Seabourne, etc...then forget it. Completely unacceptable.

 

The funny thing is that it really wouldn't take too much to improve the situation dramatically.

After all, how hard is it to call, e-mail or send a letter to let a customer know that their short Barcelona cruise is now a 20-night cruise leaving out of Brazil on an entirely different date?  And yes, that did happen to me with no notification ever.  Just one of countless examples of poor customer service.

Edited by Stockjock
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5 hours ago, Stockjock said:

The funny thing is that it really wouldn't take too much to improve the situation dramatically.

After all, how hard is it to call, e-mail or send a letter to let a customer know that their short Barcelona cruise is now a 20-night cruise leaving out of Brazil on an entirely different date?  And yes, that did happen to me with no notification ever.  Just one of countless examples of poor customer service.

Yep, us regulars know your agenda by now...you really ought to stay off the vino!

Edited by hamrag
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3 hours ago, hamrag said:

Yep, us regulars know your agenda by now...you really ought to stay off the vino!

Graham

 

you ruined my evening.  I had blocked him, but you quoting him defeated that strategy.  😀😀😀😀😀

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1 hour ago, kelleherdl said:

Graham

 

you ruined my evening.  I had blocked him, but you quoting him defeated that strategy.  😀😀😀😀😀

Well, I suppose you are now blocked as well.

Sorry if the truth offends you..

Edited by Stockjock
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That will depends really on where they'll to sell their tickets.

 

So apparently MSC will to admit kids on Explora... That's pretty much a no go on other mid to full luxury cruise lines...

 

Viking sells only to the following markets: US, UK, Australia.

 

Happaq-Lloyd sells primarily to the German market.

 

The likes of Seaburn, Silversea, Oceania, Regent sell globally but seem to encourage the English speaking world.

 

Ponant is primarily a French product.

 

That said: Unless the continental European mid to full luxury is content enough with kids aboard, and lots of triplets/fourthlets aboard... OK.

 

Explora ships are built from the very same Viking's Finicantieri prototype. Viking is double occupancy only, no kids, 930 passengers per ship. Explora is mostly a 4 pax per stateroom, so in theory some 1500 pax per sailing... At more than Viking prices!... Good luck MSC. For now I'm out!... Who know that can be?... Again: Depends on where they sell the tickets. It might to work with the new affluent clientele on the Eastern European countries... Maybe!...

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