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Old 06-14-2006, 01:29 PM
Elaine Santangelo Elaine Santangelo is offline
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 200

Not sure if this should be posted here or responding to Alan Bates but I admit that as a crew member, I could not figure out the fee structure at all. When everyone I know has asked me why I don't go back as a passenger now, I frequently reply that I could not afford it. When they would ask, how much is it? I would reply, "I am not really sure." They would look at me funny for a moment. Then I would explain that it is very similar to buying airline tickets today except that since one will be aboard the boat for approximately a week, one has to also factor in the tips and extra cash-type spending.

There is a very funny email that circulated a few years ago using the example of a person buying a can of paint to paint one room. The price kept changing depending on if he needed one coat or two coats, painted the hallway as well as the room, painted on the weekend or the weekday, had others helping with the painting, etc etc. In the end, the person decided NOT to paint the room.

Well, vacations can be like that too. Since the base price is so high, many quit before they start. If one vacations at a hotel, the rates also get quoted in a variable fashion so the boats are not that different. But I do agree- River Rats and those on a tight budget need not apply. But that has always been true whether it was Delaware North, Ambassador, or American Classic Voyages.

One of the things that always interests me is sales tax since I live in a state without it. It is great to buy something and the price is what it says on the tag. That was also true in Europe where the tax had already been added into the price. The area where that changes is meals and food. Food purchased at a grocery store is usually tax-free everywhere. But restaurants frequently have a meal tax. Now that most grocery stores are getting more and more restaurant style in the Deli and Bakery departments, they are sometimes subjected to meals taxes. That gets confusing again.

I still believe that if we could figure out the timeshare model in a practical way, that might be an affordable option. I hate time shares and time share salespeople. But, imagine of a cooperative purchased a stateroom and timeshared it. OK maybe it is too complicated and would turn out to be as costly.

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