My wife and I are scheduled on the Celebrity Millennium from Barcelona to Venice this summer. We are utterly feaked out right now with what is going on in Spain, and now the just announced threat that the US may back out of the Olympics. We have pretty much decided to cancel the trip. What are others thoughts? I have spoken to the airlines and they have said they have already had many cancellations to Europe, but I don ot know if the cruise lines will be as honest. We love cruising, but I think we may do Hawaaii instead.
I am going on the QM2 to the Mediterrenean this summer. I am freaking out a bit, but I think we will still move forward with our plans. We actually arrive in Athens for debarkation the day before the Olympics. I'm definitely taking a "life must go on" approach.
Just curious about your comment regarding airline cancellations. They must be making people fork over the penalty, correct?
I too, have a cruise scheduled for Italy, Spain, Ireland and France. I am hanging tight, and waiting to see, my final payment is due May 5. I have cancelled a cruise in the past due to security concerns........
I have a daughter that is scheduled to tour DC with her class in April, this has me a bit more concerned.
Not to be the optimist here, but I have NO qualms about cruising anywhere this summer. My wife and I capitalized on the unbelievably cheap fares/cruises last year during/after the war, and had an unbelieveable honeymoon doing Millenium's run from Barcelona to Venice (same one as you David).
As one who deals with terrorism issues on a near daily basis, I have to raise an eyebrow at the people who stop their lives simply because an attack happens....ANYWHERE. I'm sorry to be the ney-sayer, but think about it.....that's EXACTLY what the terrorists want. Live your life, and reap the benefits as the airlines and cruise companys drop their prices to lure people out again. I only wish I hadn't booked my fares yet (Constellation's Baltic itinerary), or else now is PRECISELY when I'd be buying. Paranoia only takes you so far in life, and you can just as easily get hit by a bus crossing the street. The name of the game is to know what is going on around you, plan for any eventuality, and not stand out as a tourist.
My appologies if this sounds like a soapbox, or comes across in a condescending manner, but I can't imagine how people are willing to bury their heads in the sand and give up on life.
Yes, I agree with the post above. As long as planes aren't falling from the sky every day and the attacks remain relatively isolated, I'm going to go about doing what I want to do. Count me among those that will not let the terrorists win by keeping me from doing what I want to do, when I want to do it. However, we try to stay abreast of the current situations and will reevaluate if needed. We are cruising Europe again this summer, and it will have to be really bad before we change our plans. I also do not mean any disrespect toward anyone that feels otherwise and think this is just an individual decision; I think it you are worried and go ahead with your plans, you might not enjoy your trip as much as you would enjoy another destination. With the dollar being so weak in addition to the terrorist concerns, this just may not be a good year for many to visit Europe. What a shame. We just take the normal precautions and try to keep our eyes open (need to do that anyway), but my husband is 6'1" and 195 pounds, and I look very American too, so there's just no way to disguise that. I do understand that even though the events are very isolated, if it happens to you, the statistics are 100%. My husband and I visited Italy and France two months after 9/11, and we've been back three times since then and always hear the Europeans talk about how they miss the Americans and welcome us back. I want to live with no regrets too, so I'm headed overseas this summer.
We are stationed in Europe (Netherlands). For everyone who is worried about coming to Europe this summer. I would say to them come and enjoy what Europe has to offer. There are many Americans stationed in Europe and we go about our business as usual. We are going on a cruise on April 5th to Greece. The rule all of us follow is to be on guard at all times and stay with the locals. Trying not to draw attention to ourselves. My husband's job for the government is Force Protection so we live and breath it at all times. Please continue on with your vacations and enjoy Europe. Just always know what is going on around you. If anyone needs any more information about what is really going on over here, just email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You're more likely to have a car crash on the way to the airport than be the unlucky one to be involved in a terrorist attack.
Every day THOUSANDS of people die in car crashes. Do we hear about what is being done on a daily basis to get rid of the scourge of dangerous driving etc? Sure, there are more drivers than flyers on a daily basis, but, it's THE most dangerous form of transportation. Fact.
Here's a true story that will hopefully allay your concerns somewhat, David.
We were booked on a Western Mediterranean cruise scheduled to sail from Barcelona on 9/16/2001. In the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, we were in a fog as to what we should do...go on with our plans, or scrap the whole trip? We decided quickly that, if the airports reopened on time, we were going to Barcelona.
Miami International reopened on the 15th, and at noon that day we (four of us) flew to JFK.
That evening, we boarded our charter DC-10 en route to Barcelona. There were 330 people scheduled to be on that flight...about 50 or so showed up. We figured that many of those
missing pax simply were unable to get to New York, but we also figured that many or most just decided not to chance it.
Bottom line: we flew safely to Spain; enjoyed a wonderful 10-day cruise on the Renaissance R1 (which was only about 3/4 filled); and never looked back. My advice to you, David, is to go for it and don't let the bad guys spoil your good times. Like others said, we can't give in to those who despise us for those very freedoms that allow us to pursue our lives the way we choose to.
I couldn't have said it ANY better! Thanks for echoing my thoughts PERFECTLY!
I, too, have spent much time dealing with Force Protection issues, and spent several years stationed in Europe. I have NEVER ONCE feared for my personal safety, and would EAGERLY agree to another duty assignment over that way. Common sense is the name of the game, with respect to force protection/safety, and if abide by it you have more chance getting hit by lightning than you do terrorists.....
David - My husband and I are cruising the Baltic this year. It is our first trip back to Europe in 3 years and we are really looking forward to it. We have taken several international trips since 9/11 and I have to admit it has changed the way I think about things - mostly, who knows what tomorrow will bring? I think people should do the things they want to do when they have the opportunity. Life is way too short to worry about what might happen. Please don't take this the wrong way, but what makes you think Hawaii is safe? It's as much of a potential target as any other major tourist area. About 8 years ago, my husband and I were in London and the IRA was acting up. All week long there were bomb threats. We were on a bus one evening and just getting off to go our hotel which was located on the Strand when one of the busses just ahead of us blew up. We could have easily been on that bus or near it and been badly injured or killed, but we wern't. I guess I believe when it's my time to go it will happen - until then, I intend to have fun!