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"extra" charges that add up

Discussion in 'Royal Caribbean International' started by njcruiser, Mar 11, 2004.

  1. njcruiser

    njcruiser Guest

    Royal Caribbean is getting a little carried away with the additional charges. I just returned from the Mariner and found it a nice ship but I feel like I'm being used as a cash cow. The Chops restuarant is nice but filet mignon and prime rib are available in the dining room. Granted they don't serve it everyday but $20 a head is a bit steep since you have paid for the meals already. The Ben and Jerry's ice cream is sold on the ship. I believe a cone is $4.50. Just imagine if you had a few children on the cruise. A 1 or 2 dollar charge would be a little more in line. Now they want to start charging for Johnny Rockets also? When I signed up for my next cruise it was free now they have changed the rules? What's next menu prices in the dining room? How about a dollar for coffee,that would generate some additional revenue.
    While on my most recent cruise a small group of us were discussing the fact that some of the photos are $19.95 each. If they only took photos of the people that wanted to be photographed they wouldn't have to waste thousands of pictures. I would gladly pay $5 each for a photo. The pictures don't come out that terrific but they are a reminder of the trip.
    I'm seriously considering canceling my next cruise in August with them and switching to a different line. I have sailed in categories B,C, D and atrium rooms and have found the experience nice. Now I feel that I am being taken advantage of. I'm sure there will be a lot of defenders of their new pricing and policies but it's my opinion that they need to have a lesson in economics. There are plenty of cruise lines out there and I don't use the rock climbing wall and won't miss it. In addition I'm not the least bit satisfied with the customer service in the Miami office
     
  2. sexilexi

    sexilexi Guest

    I'm not going to defend them for charging extra for things cause it is pretty lame. On my last cruise it was obvious that they don't make their money off of what I payed for the actual cruise...Cause i got that for a steal and i don't see how they could be profiting just from that. since it would cost me more to go on another vacation taking into account the food, travel, room and board and entertainment...Its pretty obvious that they make their money off the extras like the alcohol, cruise video's and pictures. In any case, I love Royal Caribbean. They are my favorite and wouldn't switch cruise lines.
     
  3. sailingrose

    sailingrose Guest

    You'll find a lot of fees with all the other cruise lines too. If it's not broke don't fix it!
     
  4. Cruzman

    Cruzman Guest

    When I book a cruise, I consider the overall value of what I am buying. I would never blindly book a particular cruiseline simply because they have been satisfactory in the past. When any cruiseline changes the rules, I tend to change mine and look strongly at others.
     
  5. Ali

    Ali Guest

    The "charge" to eat in Portofino's and Chops is the tip for the personnel that waited on you, not another charge for the food. I've sailed on the Voyager Class ships many times in the last 2 years and I've eaten in Portofino's once, just to try it out. The food is wonderful but to me the dining room food is good so why pay another charge. The frozen yogurt in the soft serve machines is just fine for my daughter and myself without having to purchase Ben & Jerry's. Pictures? I haven't purchased one of those in years. It's all options. If you don't want to pay for it, you don't use it. I'll still sail with RCI and if they institute the charge for Johnny Rockets on all the ships, oh well! If I choose to eat there, I'll pay the fee.

    Cruising is still cheaper than if you had to fly to 3 different islands, stay in a hotel, food for the week and entertainment.
     
  6. BP

    BP Guest

    I am amazed what people will settle for.
     
  7. njcruiser

    njcruiser Guest

    apparently the point is being missed. Almost like sheep being led to slaughter. I am perfectly aware of the option of not eating there or paying for something not wanted. To suggest that a $20 per person tip is acceptable is mind boggling. We had 4 people at the table for 1.5 hours,talk about great pay. That's utterly ridiculous and the frozen yogurt is terrible that's why it's free.
     
  8. sexilexi

    sexilexi Guest

    I happen to like the frozen yogurt!!
     
  9. Ali

    Ali Guest

    njcruiser I haven't missed your point. I paid for all those things when I first sailed on the Voyager. The fee for Johnny Rockets, the fee to ice skate, the fee to climb the rock wall. When the ship first came out, you had to pay to use all those things if you wanted to use them. It was known up front, before you booked and that ship wasn't sailing empty nor were those activities but when enough passengers started to complain they did away with the surcharge.

    As far as the "tip" amount in Portofino's that's their salary. They make less than a $100 a month from the cruise line, the rest of their income comes from their tips. It's split between all the servers, not just the one that waited on you. They don't benefit off the gratutites that you pay the dining room staff.

    We aren't all going to agree on what they are doing as we each have our own opinions on the subject. We all have the choice to cruise a particular line or not. If we don't like what one line is doing, you just try another.
     
  10. The $19.95 fee for pictures is what DCL charges for 8x10 family portraits. The 5x7 is $9.95. We always go to every picture opportuntiy and then at the end of the cruise- choose the very best. We have purchased at least 1 family portrait and numerous small photos of my daughter every cruise. This is my very favorite thing that I have purchased on a vacation. Such memories and my daughter looks so different in each and every picture. She was 6 when we first cruised and will be 13 this year.
    As for the frozen yogart, I haven't tasted it yet but the first cruise we ever took (DCL was 2 months old!) they had hand dipped ice cream for free- the next year we took another DCL cruise- it was Mcdonald's ice cream- out of the machine!! My daughter still loves it due to all the toppings she dumps on it! It is next to the pool so I am sure a ton of it was wasted so I understand- but I still missed the hand dipped even though it doesn't miss me!
     
  11. frito

    frito Guest

    Lets see if I can understand some peoples mindset:
    ( a) some want to book the most inexpensive inside cabin available and expect to get upgraded to an outside near the top of the ship. If an upgrade does happen and they don't like the particular cabin, then they complain. If they book the most inexpensive outside cabin, then they expect to get upgraded to a balcony cabin and it has to be midship.
    ( b) They don't want to pay for alcohol on the ship and expect to smuggle wheelbarrows of beer, wine, whatever aboard to avoid paying for same on the ship, thereby saving a few bucks.
    ( c ) Once they have the alcohol safely aboard and in their upgraded-from inside to outside cabin, they want the cabin steward to empty the mini-fridge of the cruise lines booze and cokes so they can use free of charge the cruise lines fridge to keep their smuggled booze cold.
    ( d ) some want to take the ships towels ashore, leave them in bars, on beaches, cabs
    and various other places and not have to be responsible for them.
    ( e ) some won't take a ships tour, as it seems too high and prefer to try to save a buck by going on their own, then complain that abc island isn't worth getting off the ship to see and should be removed from the itinerary.
    I could go on and on--- the point is that it seems that a lot of folks want to cruise but they want the best for a next to nothing price.
    The cruise lines have to make a profit somewhere in order to stay " afloat ". Drinks, spas, photos, gambling and yes, speciality dining areas are profitable to them. But--these are all areas that one can avoid if they don't wish to spend money. I ate in Johnny Rockets one time on the Mariner on our Jan 25 cruise and for the life of me I can't understand the fascination of it. It isn't like its gourmet food. I wouldn't pay for a hamburger there but neither would I get all upset because RCCL has started to charge for a burger. I will just stay away, as it really isn't anything to be upset over, free or not.
    Just be thankful to be able to go on a cruise and don't let the hamburger worry you.
    .
     
  12. I have no probelm paying for the room I want BUT I wouldn't turn down a free upgrade! I do have to say though- if the upgrade wasn't in an area I would not be as happy in as the orginial room I booked- I wouldn't accept it. I do bring my own cokes and yes, booze as well. I don't feel bad about this at all but I also order a drink for me and hubby at dinner or at an after dinner show.
    As for the Johnny Rockets surcharge- it is my daughter that would love to hang out and eat there. I am paying DOUBLE for her on the Mariner to what I have always paid on another cruiseline for her. I don't mind letting her buy X amount of shakes or pay to get her an arcade card. I have to draw the line somewhere.
    A cruise is supposed to be an all-inclusive vacation- I feel that I pay for this. I am paying more for this than I do for a week at WDW or pretty much anywhere else I wanted to go. We are traveling during hurricane season and still paying $3000 just for the cruise. Add the tips (suggested amount + always put back a little extra for special bartenders, counselors, room service, etc). I always purchase pictures, do a spa treatment or two, hubby will do casino, souvies, excursions- you get the idea. We went to London and Paris last March/April and spent about the same amount we are spending of this cruise. That included airfare for 3, room, food, souvies, and passes for transportation, museums, castles, etc. We let our daughter do horseback riding on Rotten Row, went to Windsor, the Louve, Notre Dame catherdal, Buckingham Palace, Varsailles, etc. I am not sure that when you put it in perspective that a cruise worth all the extra little surcharges.
     
  13. Cornhogio

    Cornhogio Guest

    I'm sure your post describes the mindset of some. For the most part, I figure that people who can afford a cruise have enough business sense to understand that the cruise lines need to make a profit. That said, I think it's ridiculous for them to charge to eat in a hamburger joint, especially if when you booked, it was considered to be included (as opposed to free; ain't none of it free!). I think most of us that are annoyed about it are worried about the old slippery slope. Gotta draw that line in the sand!
     
  14. I actually agree with you completely!!!!!
     
  15. mlzangel78

    mlzangel78 Guest

    To be honest with you I find that cruising tends to be much cheaper than an all inclusive resort vacation, since, you only sit at one spot all week long, instead of seeing 3 or 4 different ports. My dh and I spent 1300.00 for a bb on grand princess balcony stateroom, and about 800.00 in excursions tips drinks and photos, and all the rest, we had a blast, we paid less than a 7 day vacation to cozumel, and got to see 4 different ports, your on vacation, thats what vacation is for splurging , to say that it is more exspensive than to go to disney for 7 days is rediculous considering that to do it right, stay on disney property and pay 300 some odd dollars p/p for park tickets, not to mention the meal plan, comes close to 4000.00 for florida !!!??? i think ill stick with cruising and pay half that to see exotic locations
     
  16. JeffC

    JeffC Guest

    Is this extra charge truly only a cover to get in the door? Do you still have to pay extra for shakes, malts and deserts over and above the cover? Where else can I read about this?
     
  17. paulfredo

    paulfredo Guest

    When we spoke to ship officers about the cover charge in the specialty restaurants, we were informed that they aren't profit centers, and actually loose money. They provide it as a service, and the surcharge helps manage demand, off-set some of the extra costs of the cook to order kitchen, and tips for the service staff.

    I've never understood the facintation of Johnny Rockets, but I understand that some people do. If they want to use it, "go for it" I say. But it has become very popular, and they are now going to "manage" the demand with a surcharge.

    I don't agree with the surcharge, so I won't use it, and I'll let those with the unexplainable facination subsidise it... why should I? I won't use it anyway.

    I may someday quit cruising when they make the pay as you go so inconvenient that it not worth the trouble. Until then, I'll vote for their "tests" by not attending those venues, and not paying the surcharge. That's been easy enough so far, so I'm not dumping them yet.

    paul
     
  18. frito

    frito Guest

    You know another way they could go is to simply raise the base price of everyones cruise by $ 15-20 per person, thereby eliminating the need to charge for a hamburger.
    However by doing that, the hundreds who don't stand in line to get a burger and go merrily to the buffet to feast on dozens of different types of food would be helping to pay for those who are willing to stand patiently in line to get that hamburger.
    I don't necessarily agree with the charge for J. Rockets but I just don't think its worth thinking about canceling a cruise over nor changing cruise lines, etc. If people simply boycott the place they would have to take away any charge or maybe even close the joint period, which to me would be no big loss. I can eat a hamburger any day of the week at home and I'm sure not going to let a hamburger get me upset when it comes to a cruise.

    Happy burgering to all.
     
  19. Cornhogio

    Cornhogio Guest

    I'm not going to boycott or cancel either frito, but I don't see why you keep minimizing this. It's terrible business practice to start charging for something that was included when most people booked. It's like a contractor charging extra for the fourth bedroom when the contract initially said it was part of the deal. If you're willing to settle for a lack of integrity on the part of the cruiseline for this, then what exactly will it take before you get your back up as well?
     
  20. frito

    frito Guest

    Re:

    I'm not trying to minimize the charge -- I said I don't agree with it. But to me its very simple. A hamburger of all things is not something for people to get all riled up about. If a hamburger is something that is going to be an issue on a cruise, god help the waiter or steward who accidently screws something up.
    Don't get mad---get even---stay away from J. Rockets, thereby depriving RCCL from making any money there and eat twice as much in the buffet and dining room, thereby costing them more dollars in those areas.

    As far as getting my back up, its not hard to do if the cause is right but a hamburger isn't the right cause for me. As a matter of fact, I'll be grilling burgers for supper this evening and will no doubt think about how mine are much better than J.R.'s

    I don't believe comparing a charge for a hamburger is similar to a contractor who adds on thousands for a bedroom.

    I think that when and if you do eat there you too will probably wonder what the big deal ever was to start with, especially if you had to stand in line for 30 min. to get one.

    At any rate, may all your burgers be cooked to your taste and I do wish you and all the burger lovers luck in your quest to get the charge taken away.



    Post Edited (03-13-04 15:01)
     

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