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An American Girl Chased Me To Europe

Written by: Kuki

Years ago, when I was in college, I got dumped by an American girl. Until recently that was my only reference to the term. Now, suddenly I find out it’s a brand name. A brand name that, sadly, has led us to cancel the CruiseMates Group Cruise  scheduled over Thanksgiving 2012 on the Celebrity Eclipse.
We learned that American Girl has a group of approximately 500 brand loyalists, compromised largely of young girls, aged 8+, on this sailing to celebrate it’s 25th anniversary.
There’s almost always a variety of affinity groups on most cruises, and under “normal circumstances” this isn’t an issue, as most co-exist quite easily. However, there are circumstances, such as this, which are unusual, and can cause problems for other groups.
In this case, I was surprised to hear a brand like American Girl had chosen the Celebrity Eclipse for their cruise, and particularly a Thanksgiving Cruise. I always enjoy Thanksgiving cruises, as they are often full of multi-generational families, however, with such a large group of young girls on the Eclipse, I predict a multitude of problems and complaints from those onboard, who are outside of the group. But, that’s only my opinion, I suppose.
The problem as we saw it, was when looking at their schedule of events onboard, which included “American Girl Dining”, A dedicated “American Girl Lounge with crafts and activities”, movie events, character events etc., made it clear to us that the presence of the American Girl group would have a fairly serious impact on our CruiseMates group; with public areas of the ship being dedicated to them, and limiting access to those in our group.
At any rate, after discussions with the travel agent handling our group, we made the decision to cancel our group, and she began the process of finding us a replacement cruise to offer the members of our community who enjoy our group cruises.
Boy has she come up with a DOOZY!!! And it was a Breeze!
Departing Barcelona, Spain June 27 ‘12, the Carnival Breeze is sailing an itinerary very unique to big ships. This eye popping itinerary includes an overnight stay in Rome AND an overnight stay in Venice, Italy.
In order to make this group cruise even more outstanding we’ll be including a FREE pre-cruise hotel room in Barcelona, so the CruiseMates group may enjoy the amazing port of embarkation. Once onboard members of the group will also enjoy a FREE dinner in the Steakhouse, as well as a complimentary group cocktail party.
Carnival Cruise Line (and most other cruise lines) do not allow travel agents to discount prices from Carnival’s own posted rates. As a result, we will be offering two alternates for you to choose from to book this group; you can choose to book the Group Rate, OR you can book the Early Saver rate. Booking either way will result in your inclusion in the group, and all it’s amenities.
Either method chosen for booking requires a $500 per person deposit. Each method has its own set of restrictions established by the cruise line.
Choosing to book at the “CruiseMates Group Rate” means you can cancel at any time prior to final payment due date and receive a full refund of your deposit if you do so. Up until full final payment is due, you will receive the benefit of any rate reductions that may occur.
The Early Saver Rate is slightly less expensive, but with that comes more restrictions. From the Carnival.com web site.
“Early Saver: Cruise rates are in US dollars, per person, based on double occupancy, capacity controlled and subject to change at any time without prior notice. Government taxes and fees are from $17.83 to $279.52 additional for each guest based on itinerary. A non-refundable and non-transferable deposit is required at the time of booking for all guests to secure confirmed accommodations. Fares are backed by a unique price protection policy. Full names are required for each guest. Offer is valid for new bookings only and is not combinable with any other discounted or promotional offer. Available on sailings 3 months prior to sail date for short cruises (5 days or less) and available on sailings 5 months prior to sail date for long cruises (6 days or longer). Savings are based on Fun Select rates and vary by sailings. Category restrictions and exclusions apply. No name changes are allowed. No downgrades are allowed. A $50 service fee will be assessed per person for ship and/or sail date changes made prior to the final payment due date. Cancellation penalties apply. Request Early Saver. Ships’ Registry: The Bahamas & Panama.
Price Protection: Price protection applies to new Early Saver bookings only and requires payment of a non-refundable and non-transferable deposit. Applies to cruise fare only. Applies only to a Carnival.com or Carnival advertised fare available to the general public and excludes group rates, membership programs, charters or other Travel Agent promotions not offered by Carnival to the general public, including but not limited to travel agent rebates. To submit a Price Protection claim, visit carnival.com/earlysaver. When submitting a rate lock request, you must provide the lower rate amount and where the rate can be found. Requests will be accepted up to two business days prior to sailing. Lower rate must be: (i) for the same ship, sail date, stateroom category and number of guests; (ii) a Carnival advertised rate (iii) available for booking at the time the request is reviewed by Carnival’s reservation agents. Verified rate difference is issued as an on-board credit. The on-board credit is non-refundable, non-transferable and has no cash value. Any unused portion of the onboard credit will be forfeited. Rate lock is not combinable with other promotions. Price protection will be subject to the prevailing fees and/or fuel supplement if applicable. Program subject to change at any time without prior notice.”
Those choosing to book with the Early Saver Rate can be the benefactor of price reductions right up to the day of sailing, as well as a reduced initial cost. However, as stated up, there are fees for any cancellations or changes.
For those who are certain they are going to go on the cruise, come heck or high water, the Early Saver Rate is an excellent choice. And, there are of course relatively inexpensive insurance policies available to cover unforeseen events that might force you to cancel.
Below you’ll find the rates for both manners of booking what’s sure to be an amazing CruiseMates European sojourn, and the full itinerary.
Group pricing includes port charges, taxes and fees are additional, $101.57
Category 4B Interior – $1499
Category 4D Interior – $1529
Category 8D Balcony – $2199
Category 8 C Balcony – $ 2229
EARLY SAVER RATES :
Early Saver Rates includes port charges, taxes and fees are additional, $101.57
Begin at $1339 Interior
Begin at $1929 Balcony
Wednesday, Jun 27 Barcelona, Spain 5:00pm
Thursday, Jun 28 Marseilles, France 7:00am 4:00pm
Friday, Jun 29 Livorno (Florence/Pisa), Italy 7:00am 7:00pm
Saturday, Jun 30 Rome (Civitavecchia), Italy 8:00am
Sunday, Jul 01 Rome (Civitavecchia), Italy 5:00pm
Monday, Jul 02 Fun Day at Sea
Tuesday, Jul 03 Dubrovnik, Croatia 7:00am 7:00pm
Wednesday, Jul 04 Venice, Italy 2:00pm
Thursday, Jul 05 Venice, Italy 7:00pm
Friday, Jul 06 Fun Day at Sea
Saturday, Jul 07 Messina (Sicily), Italy 7:00am 4:00pm
Sunday, Jul 08 Fun Day at Sea
Monday July 9 Depart in Barcelona, Spain.
Booking Information:

Nancy S. Bogert, MCC
900 Grampian Blvd
Williamsport, Pa 17701
Telephone: 570-323-0112
Toll-free: 1-800-561-0802
Fax: 570-323-0702
GET Booked NOW for this fabulous European itinerary, with overnights in Rome and Venice, with CruiseMates (and without American Girl) and enjoy the added amenities of a FREE Pre-cruise hotel stay in Barcelona, FREE dinner in the Steakhouse, and a FREE CruiseMates Cocktail Party.
- A View From The Kuki Side Of Cruising -

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Comments

Comment from Kenneth Eden
Time July 15, 2011 at 6:29 am

dear god, what a cruise to cancel – better off at home – what next, a Toddlers and Tiaras cruise? At least you found out about the VALLEY OF THE DOLLS cruise.

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