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Old 10-09-2013, 01:21 PM
Lexie Palmore Lexie Palmore is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,100
Default My $.02 worth

At least one DQ trip I took was a last minute booking for a few days on a longer trip. This used to be done a lot. People could do an overnighter even when there was no room and sleep on a sofa. Then the company was sold and the new suits didn't like that last minute stuff. Too bad. Back in the 1970's when I was a passenger on the DQ, I think I was paying about $50 to $75 a day from a $5000 a year salary. Today that would be about $300 to $400 a day on a $30,000 salary. That is a very average income, but affordable for only a few days. I was also single. (When a few days isn't enough, you get a job on the boat. At least that's what I did. See above about being single.)

Turnover days are hard on the staff, but they get paid the same, regardless. Technically, passengers are paying by the night, so what they don't want to do is have a non-paying night. That is why turnover day is so hectic - passengers going and passengers coming with only a couple of hours in between.

It is too bad, and will probably never change, that offshore cruises are a fraction of the price of US flag vessels. They herd 'em on like cattle, and even a major disaster is like a bump in the road. However, Viking River Cruises has apparently solved the cost problem by some very, very good advertising. They are not cheap. And they keep building new boats. I have a sister-in-law who has been on a few Viking cruises, and she would go again. So there is good service to back the lush ads. That is where the new DQ people are going to have to step up to the plate. Advertisng, service, and flexibility are all key. Also, a variety of fares.

I noticed when I worked on the DQ that the passenger list consisted to a large extent of ardent repeaters and people from California. I wonder if that still holds true today.
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