Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
ommboz

Crown & Anchor Program Revisions - join the merged discussions here

Recommended Posts

when did you recieve this?

RCI seems to stagger these emails alphabetically by last name. As you are T, you will get it later but mine will be even slower as I am a Z. My friend, whose last name begins with a C, already got hers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sure, right away bring out the negative. I guess some people are never happy.

 

This will be interesting if it is really true. Can't wait for the comments.

 

The price comments are true.

How is that negative?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, that makes ME happy, Diamond here on the Serenade in August, and was not happy to see the lounge taken away for our sailing.

 

I definitely know they read and listen here. I'm impressed with Adam's response and I think their changes to the previously-announced program are very positive.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It looks like they are reversing a little

 

From Adan Goldstein

April 13, 2009

 

Dear Crown & Anchor Diamond Plus, Diamond and Platinum Members,

I am writing to provide you with an update regarding the recent changes to our Crown & Anchor® Loyalty Program.

 

Let me begin by thanking you for being loyal customers of Royal Caribbean International®. These are remarkable times - economic challenges, new modes of communication, amazing new ships and so many other changes that impact our lives at every turn. Especially in these times, we appreciate your loyalty as Crown & Anchor Society members.

 

As you may know, we recently announced a number of changes to our Crown & Anchor Loyalty Program. Many of our Diamond Members have expressed considerable unhappiness about the change in eligibility for access to our Concierge Lounges. While we knew the reaction would be negative, it has been more negative than we anticipated. This underscores how phenomenally passionate our most loyal customers are about their Royal Caribbean experiences. We believe one of our strengths that inspires such loyalty is our ability to learn from others and especially from our Crown & Anchor customers. With this in mind, I will comment on the change in eligibility regarding our Concierge Lounges and also inform you of some new enhancements that will improve your experience onboard our ships.

 

Our decision to limit access to the Concierge Lounges was based on the unfortunate but inescapable fact that we cannot deliver an acceptable experience in lounges that were never designed to handle so many people. We regret that the crowding in our Concierge Lounges prevents us from delivering the experience we intended. It also prevents us from being able to grandfather in Concierge Lounge access for existing Diamond level members. We deeply regret having to restrict this access, but we are committed to delivering an exceptional Concierge Lounge experience. Having said that, we realize we should have provided more notice of our decision, which carries such consequences. To that end, we will delay the implementation date for the change in eligibility from July 1, 2009, to September 1, 2009.

 

Before I address the additional initiatives we will implement, I would like to summarize the physical or "hardware" status of our fleet as it relates to Concierge Lounges and Diamond Lounges, taking into account all 22 Royal Caribbean International ships that are now open for sale.

 

Five ships (our Freedom class and Oasis class) have both Concierge Lounges and Diamond Lounges. We are excited about the Concierge Lounge overlooking the Boardwalk and the Diamond Lounge overlooking the Royal Promenade on our forthcoming Oasis of the SeasSM and Allure of the SeasSM.

 

Five ships (Monarch of the Seas®, Majesty of the Seas®, Vision of the Seas®, Grandeur of the Seas® and Rhapsody of the Seas®) have no Concierge Lounges and two ships (Splendour of the Seas® and Legend of the Seas®) have limited Concierge Lounges.

 

Ten ships have Concierge Lounges but no Diamond Lounges (Enchantment of the Seas®, as well as the ships in our Voyager class and Radiance class). While we don't currently have plans to add Diamond Lounges to these ships, we will look for opportunities to invest in Diamond Lounges as we go forward.

 

The strong response from our Diamond members regarding our recent changes demonstrates how much the Concierge Lounges are valued and we clearly should honor that response. The feedback we have received from Diamond members falls primarily into one of the three following categories:



Preserving the social aspect - the ability to meet and mingle with other members



Maintaining free or reduced price drinks



And, access to concierge-type services for ice show tickets and other activities

In order to address the first two interests for Diamond members, outside the Concierge Lounge, effective September 1 we will offer them a dedicated VIP private party in one of our bars or lounges. This may be held in the Viking Crown Lounge, or any other bar or lounge designated by the ship. In this dedicated area, from approximately 5 to 8 p.m., we will offer complimentary wine and champagne and a happy hour discount of 25 percent off all other beverages. This will be offered every day of each sailing and will replace our recently announced one-time per-cruise special Diamond party.

 

Additionally, we will offer a new continental breakfast from approximately 8 to 10 a.m. in one of the rooms adjacent to the main dining room onboard. During these morning hours, a crew member will be present and will provide services such as obtaining ice show tickets, and other assistance. We believe these changes will address the primary desires our Diamond members have expressed. These enhancements will be instituted on all our ships that don't have a Diamond Lounge today.

 

A number of Crown & Anchor members have placed the Concierge Lounge issue in the context of a perceived sequence of "cutbacks" that taken together have reduced the quality of the product we offer. We take these comments seriously. I am pleased to inform you that in 2009 we are seeing one of the most meaningful year-over-year improvements in our guest satisfaction ratings in memory. Apart from the obvious - Independence of the Seas® entering the fleet, Empress of the Seas® and Sovereign of the Seas® leaving the fleet and Oasis of the Seas soon to join - systemic improvements such as My Time DiningSM, our suite enhancements, the new debarkation process, and numerous smaller initiatives are being very positively recognized by guests, travel agents and the media.

 

While we understand not everyone is happy about every change taking place in our fleet, we appreciate your loyalty to our company and we sincerely hope you will continue to choose Royal Caribbean International. It gives us no pleasure to hear from aggrieved Crown & Anchor loyalty customers. Our goal is to earn your advocacy and your return to our fleet by providing you with truly memorable vacations and by recognizing and rewarding your loyalty.

 

Our mantra at Royal Caribbean International, besides delivering the "Wow," is "continuous improvement." We constantly strive to find the right balance, so our product evolves in ways that our guests, especially our most loyal guests, are comfortable with. Our ratings and most communications we receive indicate that the balancing is working. However, occasionally we stumble and when we do we try to react quickly. This may be such an instance. We are committed to earning the faith you place in us. I hope the additional enhancements explained in this letter demonstrate our commitment.

 

These changes will be reflected on our website in the next 48 hours.

 

Thank you very much for being our customer and for your loyalty to Royal Caribbean International.

 

Sincerely,

signature.jpg

Adam M. Goldstein

President and Chief Executive Officer

Royal Caribbean International

 

 

 

*** What I just read was the President of RCCL still maintaining the position that Diamond member benefits will still change not in July but two months later. Also offer 25% off on watered down beverages ( as they say at a discount price...big deal), offer a continental breakfast from 8-10 with choice of apple or raspberry day old pastries, orange juice or coffee. Mr. Goldstein you still skirt the primary issues of the many loyal RCCL cruisers while making it look like you're doing us such a big favor. *** Thanks very much fellow cruiser for posting the letter I'm sure a lot of people will take note of it now or in 48 hours on the RCCL websight.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you very much for providing this information.It is certainly an improvement over what they originally announced and had they done this originally, they might have spared themselves considerable grief and aggravation. Clearly the criticism that they received was heard and to some degree, at least, is being dealt with. I guess it demonstrates that you can fight City Hall successfully. It will be interesting to see the response to this newest proposal. I hope that most will see that it is a fairly reasonable compromise given the situation regarding the exponential growth in diamond memberships. I also think that they will think hard and long before instituting any other significant changes in the Crown and Anchor system, including the manner in which cruise credits are earned.:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
RCI seems to stagger these emails alphabetically by last name. As you are T, you will get it later but mine will be even slower as I am a Z. My friend, whose last name begins with a C, already got hers.

mine is a S...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I do understand their position, but I really don't think thay have really contemplated what will happen as the diamonds become plusses....unless they anticipate being able to make changes over the next few years as hinted at in his email.

 

Based on some posters' promise to sail other lines because of the changes being made to the program, the Diamonds to Pluses may now be fewer.

 

Thanks for posting the email.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Where, exactly have you encountered the overcrowding? You keep bringing this up over and over. We were on the IOS in December and Brilliance in February, different class of ship, different itineraries. Both had overflow lounges. There were nights on Brilliance when there were less than a dozen people in the overflow lounge.

 

 

You are not the only one wondering about the overcrowding, we have sailed several times this year and failed to notice it. While the lounge has more people in it before 1st seating it empties out when they go to the

D.R. and there are plenty of seats available for the rest of the happy hour.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mine arrived about ten minutes ago. Seems that RCI did listen. Will be interesting to now read the comments from the posters on this board.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not to be a pain, but how is this different than having the overflow lounges? It sounds like it was about money vs. room.

 

I have no dog in this fight as I am not a diamond, just trying to figure out the logic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just received my e-mail too.

I am very HAPPY about this, and, even more so because,

R.C.C.L. is listening to us.

 

I intend to respond to this message too.

I don't want to give up the 17 credits we have

built up...and, I can not figure out WHY the suits with the MBA's

at R.C.C.L. can not figure out these benefits to the

Crown & Anchor Society was immensely popular and, DID bring

back alot of cruisers to this company. HOw can those guys (people)

in the Ivory Tower in Miami NOT recognize this.

 

I was looking at my mail for cruises from Holland-America today..

I guess I will put it away now... :D

It is our desire to make to to Diamond +.

It is very difficult how R.C.C.L. would not realize this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
RCI seems to stagger these emails alphabetically by last name. As you are T, you will get it later but mine will be even slower as I am a Z. My friend, whose last name begins with a C, already got hers.

 

Thanks Sherri but as i never got the first one so i will not hold my breath.

i may be thick but are they going to now reinstate a diamond bar nightly on the Radiance class?

As they already do on the Brilliance.

Edited by GEORGET

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
mine is a S...
And you got it already. Maybe it is an AOL block. I always get the emails but they are later than other Cruise Critic folks or my cruising buddies.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thank you very much for providing this information.It is certainly an improvement over what they originally announced and had they done this originally, they might have spared themselves considerable grief and aggravation. Clearly the criticism that they received was heard and to some degree, at least, is being dealt with. I guess it demonstrates that you can fight City Hall successfully. It will be interesting to see the response to this newest proposal. I hope that most will see that it is a fairly reasonable compromise given the situation regarding the exponential growth in diamond memberships. I also think that they will think hard and long before instituting any other significant changes in the Crown and Anchor system, including the manner in which cruise credits are earned.:)

 

Actually if something isn't changed soon then they will be visiting this entire issue a few years down the road. I don't see any changes at the moment due to this fiasco but I do see them making changes and rightfully so.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Based on some posters' promise to sail other lines because of the changes being made to the program, the Diamonds to Pluses may now be fewer.

 

Thanks for posting the email.

 

LOL, nah the free wine wins them over :cool:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. has the right to terminate the Crown & Anchor Society Program :p

 

Royal Caribbean also has the legal right to videotape you in your cabin, enhance the video to make it even more embarrassing, and publish on the Internet. Yes, they do. It's in the cruise contract.

 

Now, would we have a gripe with them if they availed themselves of their legal right to do so? Of course. It would be a very stupid business move on their part and would alienate their customers.

 

You people that get hung up on their legal right to make changes to C&A are completely missing the point. As a frequent customer and a stockholder (of quite a bit more than the 100 shares for the now pretty much non-existent benefit), I am concerned that RCL is changing their business model to attract never-ever cruisers and then deliver a so-so onboard experince. Some bean counter thinks this better than attracting and keeping loyal repeat customers. I think THAT is the problem, and not so much that I will lose a free drink or two.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I don't understand why you think RCCL should continue this as long as you continue to buy their cruises. It's like you want the perks to be continuous. They didn't "give their word" that you would get perks indefinitely, so there's no "broken word" involved.

 

I also missed the part where you said, "I choose to buy cruises, which is my decision, and what I got in return is very nice vacations, plus a few frequent cruiser perks". Isn't the main reason you spent the $50k is for the fun vacation that they did deliver??????

 

Also, it isn't just you alone that got the free drinks, it was the other THOUSANDS of people that received them, and that's what finally overwhelmed the perks "system". I think a bigger perspective on the picture is needed. It's not just your individual situation, but the combination of all of it that caused the change in the program, IMO.

 

Just curious Peggy,

Are you folks Diamond or Diamond Plus? And have you ever used the CL or overflow lounges or the use of any of the Concierge Services while not sailing in a GS or above on RCI? Thanks in advance for the reply.

 

Colleen

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
So, it DOES pay to be vocal about your dissatisfaction of things taken away, once promised, as opposed to being cheerleaders saying, "THAT's OK, may I have another."

 

Now waiting on posts to this new policy...it seems most everything was given back except fo the drinks.....lets see what the 575 posts here stating "it's not about the drinks" have to say! :p I personally think this is a good comprimize....

 

to those that asked what lounges I have seen full I will post again for the 4th time...I am only refering to what MANY others here as well as RCI has said...I have NEVER stepped foot on an RC ship though I am Platinum!:eek: :p

 

BUT............I am a happy camper my CL won't be crowded when I hang out there on the Mariner soon! Good thing its after 1 Sept!! :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
*** What I just read was the President of RCCL still maintaining the position that Diamond member benefits will still change not in July but two months later. Also offer 25% off on watered down beverages ( as they say at a discount price...big deal), offer a continental breakfast from 8-10 with choice of apple or raspberry day old pastries, orange juice or coffee. Mr. Goldstein you still skirt the primary issues of the many loyal RCCL cruisers while making it look like you're doing us such a big favor. *** Thanks very much fellow cruiser for posting the letter I'm sure a lot of people will take note of it now or in 48 hours on the RCCL websight.

Hey, at least they have taken note of the mood of the diamond members and they have responded with what some may think is a reasonable compromise. What primary issues are you concerned with that were not addressed? Perhaps if you detail those issues in a letter to RCI, they will respond as they have to the most common complaints that we have read since the original announcement was made (loss of free drinks in the evening and continental breakfast in the morning and access to the concierge and the concierge lounge). It can't hurt to write and voice your feelings. Those who have done so since the issue first arose had some success. You might also.:) I would suggest that your letter might be better received if you refrain from sarcastic comments about "watered down drinks" and "day old pastries". :rolleyes:

Edited by negc

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You are not the only one wondering about the overcrowding, we have sailed several times this year and failed to notice it. While the lounge has more people in it before 1st seating it empties out when they go to the

D.R. and there are plenty of seats available for the rest of the happy hour.

We had over 200 Diamonds on Independence in January and I read on CC that one IOS sailing had 400 D/D+s and another one had 700 D/D+. We had pre-dinner drinks and abundant Hors d’oeuvres in the disco but breakfast was up in the Diamond lounge with the Cappuccino maker, the nice continental breakfast and our Diamond Concierge who was there from 8 - 11 AM. The DL had many more folks in the morning that on previous cruises (but was not crowded) and our Concierge kept ordering refills of the fruit plate and other stuff.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Is he serious?

25% off drinks.... well they increased the price by over 25% this year, so that cancels that one out.

 

After all the hoopla about this not being all about free drinks, what are we to make of this comment?????

 

Sheesh, the man just tried to explain in detail what his company is trying to do with all that it is going through at this time. Making changes for any company is a hard venture because you won't be able to please all the people all of the time. Now after going back to make revisions that somewhat are a bit better than before, the only thing that matters (as you so posted) is the 25% discount you'll receive and yet you've got some inside info that they've raised their drink prices up 25%. You said nothing about being able to enjoy this event for each night of the week instead of the one time event previously offered. Some people will NEVER be satisfied with anything! It's just a "gimmie gimmie gimmie"!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
At the same time, I wonder if there are a lot of Diamond members who sail ONLY on RC ships that contain a CL? Not all RC ships have a CL, so do they not sail on those ships? In other words, there may be a whole group of Diamonds who sail ONLY on RC ships with a CL, in order to benefit from that one specific perk.

 

 

Take it a step or two further. I make it a 'practice' to only cruise on the RC ships with a CL (since I became Diamond and before), but I don't like the 'big' ships. I've cruised twice on Voyager, once on Navigator, so I gave it a fair test. So I cruise on Radiance class ships, and I would cruise on Vision (one cruise on Vision) class if they had the CL. Now ... I will cruise where I find the best itinerary, price, amenities, and convenience. If RCCL fits, great. But it will not be the same ... ever.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • 2019 Cruisers' Choice Awards
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...