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Old August 12th, 2006, 07:57 PM
garden4cook garden4cook is offline
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Default Sales brochures misleading..."scenic cruising Inside Pa

I recently go back from a northbound cruise to Alaska on the Island Princess. My BF and i read the Princess brochure and brown brochure they send after we pay in full...and for day 2, they say that it is "scenic crusing of the Inside Passage". This is one of the things we most looked forward to. However, day 2 is really "At Sea". This is misleading. So, I did some research on all the cruise line Alaskan brochures. They all say for Day 2 of a northbound cruise it is "scenic cruising" - this is NOT true, not correct and is misleading. It is a day "at Sea"...

The Princess brochure called "Alaska cruisetour memories" features a northbound cruise and even writes in the book "The sights and sounds of the Inside Passage filled our day...cruised past islands, forests and soaring eagles..." This is not true and angers me! We saw islands way, way off in the distance, and the ship was cruising at full speed. There is no way the ship could have reached Ketchikan at 6am if we had "scenic cruising".

Ok, I am just venting. Both my BF and I were very very disappointed. We booked a balcony room just for the scenic cruising part - and were soarly disappointed.

I checked the web sites of the cruise ships - and they state that day 2 is "at Sea"...very inconsistent. I used to be in advertising and i can pick these things out - and i I had made that mistake when I owned my advertising firm , my head would have been on a platter!!!! Ouch#@!#

Anyone care to comment?
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Old August 14th, 2006, 01:16 PM
Karen16 Karen16 is offline
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Sorry, but this is now a given on Alaska northbound cruises. They all sail a significant amount of open ocean, compared to several years ago.

On a northbound sailing, your "scenic" sailing is from before dawn of Vancouver Island. I'll assume you got a late start?? I frequently am out by 4:30am, usually the only one too. Frequently you are "done" by 9am. Which most people do not realize. A significant reason I prefer southbound sailings is for the daytime Vancouver Island sailing. Consider another trip? Alaska is spectacular.
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Old August 14th, 2006, 10:25 PM
garden4cook garden4cook is offline
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To clarify - we left Vancouver on time at 4:30pm. Apparently, we cruised thru the Canadian Inside Passage at night...did a verrrrrrry small portion of land in the am, but then we went out to sea. the weather was perfect. then the next time i saw anything (land up close, islands, etc) was 4:30am on our way to and upon arriving Ketchikan at 6:30am. Very disappointing.
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Old August 15th, 2006, 06:51 PM
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garden4cook,

...and for day 2, they say that it is "scenic crusing of the Inside Passage". This is one of the things we most looked forward to. However, day 2 is really "At Sea". This is misleading.

The "Inside Passage is the waterways between the outer islands and the mainland, but there are some breaks in the island chain. The middle third of the transit along the "Inside Passage" from Vancouver to Ketchikan (or vice versa) via the "Inside Passage," which cruise ships transit in daylight, passes through Queen Charlotte Sound and the Hecate Strait. Queen Charlotte Sound, extending from Vancouver Island to Klinghit Island (the southernmost of the Queen Charlotte Islands), is one of the largest breaks in the outer islands. The Hecate Strait (between the Queen Charlotte Islands and the mainland of British Columbia) is quite wide (it appears to be over forty nautical miles on average). Thus, a cruise ship in these segments of the "Inside Passage" is likely to be ot of sight of land.

Factually, it appears that the brochure is correct in listing the ship's location as "Inside Passage" but that "Scenic Cruising" is not exactly guaranteed, though some of us think that open ocean is pretty scenic....

I checked the web sites of the cruise ships - and they state that day 2 is "at Sea"...very inconsistent.

Other cruise lines may well make this transit at sea, where less traffic and less restricted waters permit higher speeds and a lot less work for the crew.

I used to be in advertising and i can pick these things out - and i I had made that mistake when I owned my advertising firm , my head would have been on a platter!!!! Ouch#@!#

Did you ever have to prepare advertising materials for a product that you could not see, touch, taste, or whatever, personally? Whoever prepared the brochure probably has not had the opportunity to take a cruise to Alaska, and thus is not aware of the width of that segment of the "Inside Passage." Of course, a polite note to Princess Cruises might bring a correction in the next round of brochures and on the web site.

Norm.
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Old September 8th, 2006, 07:08 PM
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I just returned from a northbound Alaskan cruise. We sailed from Vancouver last Wednesday, spent Thursday at sea, and reached Ketchikan on Friday. During daylight hours on Thursday, we always had land on both sides. We sailed up Princess, Talmie, Greenville, and other channels. The only time we were in open waters was when we reached Dixon Entrance after dark on Thursday.

When I first read this thread, I thought you were being a little harsh on the cruise line. However, I had never sailed the route so I did not say anything. Now that I have had sailed that route, I would recommend you research routes of cruises instead of just going bycruiseline brochures. That day at sea was wonderful for us; especially as the lecturer kept updating us on the sights along the way.
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Old September 8th, 2006, 09:30 PM
garden4cook garden4cook is offline
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original poster here. I have read the last post, and sounds like we had 2 different cruises. Scenic Cruising means coasting/cruising slowly in order to see things. That is NOT what we did at all. We were at sea...left Vancouver 4:30pm Monday, and spent Tuesday far, far away from land. Yes, we could indeed see some land - farrrrrrrrrrrrrrr, farrrrrr, far off in the distance. That is NOT scenic cruising - no could we enjoy the "sights and sounds of the inside passage: like the brown brochure states. A brochure is advertising and needs to be correct. I am not being a harsh reviewer of my cruise, just stating that what the brochure says and what we saw are two different things.

Out of over 700 photos taken, there is NONE from that first day of "scenic cruising" if that tells you anything...we were really at "sea"

I think what my BF and I found out is that we are not big cruise ship people, we tend to be more "adventurers" and will look for another avenue next time. We will look into a place called "BackCountry Safaris"...

http://www.backcountrysafaris.com/index.php

as this sound more like what we would like best - up close and personal. It is not to take away from Princess...it was nearly a flawless cruise with excellent customer service. I am just saying that a day at sea is not like a day of scenic cruising. Thats all.
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Old September 9th, 2006, 07:43 AM
Karen16 Karen16 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marc
I just returned from a northbound Alaskan cruise. We sailed from Vancouver last Wednesday, spent Thursday at sea, and reached Ketchikan on Friday. During daylight hours on Thursday, we always had land on both sides. We sailed up Princess, Talmie, Greenville, and other channels. The only time we were in open waters was when we reached Dixon Entrance after dark on Thursday.

When I first read this thread, I thought you were being a little harsh on the cruise line. However, I had never sailed the route so I did not say anything. Now that I have had sailed that route, I would recommend you research routes of cruises instead of just going bycruiseline brochures. That day at sea was wonderful for us; especially as the lecturer kept updating us on the sights along the way.
Sorry, but this is not a given. It can vary week to week how much open ocean you sail. There is NO fixed routing for any Alaska cruise ship. I'll assume this is your only time sailing Alaska??? I will guarantee- you will have a different route next time, even on the same line.

You were on Carnival or HAL??? HAL is a consistant winner with dedicated cpts. who do have a priority for routes. Some line just do not.
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Old September 9th, 2006, 02:24 PM
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Karen, I asked the Captain if we just took this route due to bad weather. He replied that he preferred this route all the time as it is more scenic. We were on Regent Seven Seas Mariner.

My map is still packed so I cannot be exactly sure of the channel names. There are at least three main routes between Vancouver and Ketchikan (or any port in southeast Alaska). The route we took has some corners that are difficult for larger ships to maneuver around. There was another route which any ship could manage and would still be in inland waterways most of the route. Then, there is a route through open ocean once you pass northern tip of Vancouver Island. It sounds like OP went on this last route.
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Old September 9th, 2006, 06:55 PM
garden4cook garden4cook is offline
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Original poster here...

Marc, thanks so much for the details you just gave in the last post. I researched the Regent web site and found that the ship you were on carries only 700 people. The Island Princess ( the ship i was on) carries 1,970 passengers... a big difference. That makes it easier to manuver thru the chanels you did. The web site also does not show that exact route that you took, however it shows a more general route like the one Princess took. I just might call and ask for a brochure from Regent to get some more details to satisfy my curiosity for the future.

Details from the Princess Patter (newletter that comes each day) reads this for the first night/first day:

"After our departure from Vancouver yesturday afternoon (4:30ish), IP sailed north-west through the Strait of Georgia towards Discovery Passage. Early this morning we passed thru Seymore Narrows (m 205), the narrowest part of this passage...therefore the transit thru the narrows is only possible close to slack water. Once clear of Discovery Passage various courses were steered thru Johnstone Strait and Queen Charlotte Strait. Early this am, we will disembark our Canadian Pilots at Pine island (m319) and a set of north-westerly courses will be set thru Queen Charlotte Sound and Hectate Strait thowards Ketchikan."

By the way, the Princess Patter states at the top "At Sea , Tuesday June 27, 2006...) Again, this is inconsistent to that of the sales brochure. That is my beef.

I would love to see photos from your scenic cruising thru the Inside Passage...to see what I had hoped/thought i was gonna see.
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Old September 10th, 2006, 01:19 AM
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garden4cook,

I researched the Regent web site and found that the ship you were on carries only 700 people. The Island Princess ( the ship i was on) carries 1,970 passengers... a big difference. That makes it easier to manuver thru the chanels you did. The web site also does not show that exact route that you took, however it shows a more general route like the one Princess took. I just might call and ask for a brochure from Regent to get some more details to satisfy my curiosity for the future.

Most of the channels of the "inside passage" are plenty wide and plenty deep even for the biggest of cruise ships. Those mountains on both sides continue downward at the same slope below the waterline until they meet to form the bottom, which may be hundreds of feet below the surface in some areas.

That said, it's important to remember that all cruise lines' contracts of passage contain language that allows the line to modify its itinerary at any time for any reason, with no obligation to the passenger. When the lines change itineraries, theyt usually update their web sites but do not publish new brochures.

Norm..


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Old September 10th, 2006, 12:54 PM
Karen16 Karen16 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marc
Karen, I asked the Captain if we just took this route due to bad weather. He replied that he preferred this route all the time as it is more scenic. We were on Regent Seven Seas Mariner.

My map is still packed so I cannot be exactly sure of the channel names. There are at least three main routes between Vancouver and Ketchikan (or any port in southeast Alaska). The route we took has some corners that are difficult for larger ships to maneuver around. There was another route which any ship could manage and would still be in inland waterways most of the route. Then, there is a route through open ocean once you pass northern tip of Vancouver Island. It sounds like OP went on this last route.
Your cruiseline is what made all the difference. Your upscale line, which usually is more costly than the "majors" makes much more of an effort. For your information on the route- did you use a GPS, ship naturalist, or bridge???
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Old September 10th, 2006, 09:06 PM
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Combination of ship naturalist and bridge. We also were given a pretty good map to chart our progress on. I did get confused at one point thinking we were about 30 miles ahead of ourselves until the naturalist identified the light house we were passing.
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Old October 18th, 2006, 03:25 PM
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I've been Northbound, Southbound and round trip on Carnival Spirit and always had lovely Inside Passage viewing. Maybe it depends on the captain. I had the same captain all three times too.
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