Looking Ahead: Your Update From Michael Wilson

Hello,

It’s remarkable that almost a month has been and gone since my last update; time really does seem to be passing rapidly during the Covid-19 crisis. I thought now would be a good time to let you know what’s been happening here at Bolsover Cruse Club over the past few weeks and to take a look at some of the recent changes within the cruise industry, including the positive steps that cruise operators are taking in readiness for when they begin sailing again.

Firstly, however, I would like to thank everyone for the amazing replies of support to my last email. My various teams have continued working hard on your behalf, processing cruise suspensions, rebooking and chasing refunds. This remains very testing and my staff really appreciate having their outstanding efforts recognised.

I am pleased to report that, after several difficult months, the majority of cruise operators finally have refunds under control. Our dedicated cancellations team has been working tirelessly with cruise lines to ensure our client’s refunds are processed and we have seen thousands successfully concluded in July. I appreciate there are groups of clients that still have refunds outstanding, but I can reassure you that we are pressing each affected operator hard to resolve the technical challenges behind these delays. Please be assured, however, that your monies remain safe, with all holidays sold by Bolsover Cruise Club covered financially by ABTA or ATOL.

A real example of how necessary this financial protection is was the very sad news that Cruise & Maritime had ceased trading in July. They were a favourite with our clients, operating smaller ships and representing great value, yet despite being largely booked for 2020 and almost sold out for next year, they could not secure the necessary funding and failed as a direct result of Covid-19. With hundreds of passengers affected, we assembled a small team to return to our call centre and began work to contact everyone involved. I am pleased to confirm that within five days ABTA claims had been lodged on behalf of the majority of our clients, with refunds to follow directly in due course.

The past few weeks have seen some promising information start to emerge on how cruise lines will look to sail more safely than ever once they return, with new details from Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Lines, Carnival Cruise Lines and MSC, plus river cruise line AmaWaterways, amongst others. From Carnival’s partnership with leading scientists and the World Tourism Organisation, to RCI and NCL’s collaboration in creating the Healthy Sail Panel of experts, it’s so reassuring to learn how much work is going on behind the scenes to make ships the safest way to holiday again.

So far we have seen plans for virtual muster drills from Royal Caribbean (something I’m sure you will share my excitement for!), enhanced screening at embarkation and throughout voyages, installation of medical-grade air purification systems, contactless dining – with an important promise that it won’t compromise on service or experience – plus assurances from shoreside partners that tours and the like will operate with the same care and attention as sea days.

Of course, I can’t gloss over the recent false starts and what setbacks these are, however I do think they will serve as an opportunity to reassess and refocus efforts on coming back

stronger than ever. With the whole industry working together in a way we’re seeing nowhere else in travel, I’m very confident for what the future holds.

Before I close, as such a major agent for P&O Cruises and with so many loyal followers, it would be remiss of me not to mention the long-awaited news that Iona will finally be delivered before the autumn. P&O Cruises also confirmed that, following discussions with the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg Germany, an as-yet-unnamed sister ship to Iona will be scheduled for delivery in December 2022, with itineraries set to go on sale in spring 2021. While details of Iona’s first sailing are still to be confirmed, you can rest assured that we’ll keep you up to date on news of her inaugural season as it develops.

For the time being, The Cruise Centre at Barlborough and our retail store at Meadowhall both remain closed, and we will continue to offer our award-winning service via telephone and online chat. You can call or chat with one of the team Monday to Friday from 09.00 until 17.30, Saturday 09.00 until 17.00, and Sunday 10.00 until 16.00. Whether you’re planning your next holiday or simply need a question answered, we’re here to help.

Your sincerely, 

Michael Wilson

Managing Director

Call our Cruise Experts 01246 819 819
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Rebecca

Author: Rebecca

Editor of Into The Blue, Bolsover Cruise Club’s specialist cruise magazine. Writer for almost ten years – the words have tended to be more specifically about travel and cruising for six of those. Big fan of beaches, even bigger fan of New York. Still can’t pack a case for toffee and once discovered a stranger in the shower of her Airbnb.

14 thoughts on “Looking Ahead: Your Update From Michael Wilson

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    August 5, 2020 at 8:59 pm
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    Thank you for your interesting email full of information. We look forward to booking with you again for next year. Good luck to you and all your wonderful staff. Stay safe, we need you all.

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    August 5, 2020 at 9:01 pm
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    Thank you for your update and well done to all your hard working dedicated staff. Cant wait to cruise again

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    August 5, 2020 at 9:30 pm
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    Thank you for your update! I would like to thank your staff for the speed with which we were contacted recently following the demise of Cruise and Maritime, we have had 8 cruises with them all booked through Bolsover Cruise Club. 2 days after the announcement I had taken 3 calls from agents, asking for bank statements and bank details, I know your staff can do no more and we are in the hands of ABTA. Thank you all once again, we probably now have a long wait! We do have 2 more cruises booked with you!!

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    August 5, 2020 at 9:34 pm
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    You are all working really hard and appreciate your updates. Stay safe and we look forward to sailing again in future ☺️.

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    August 5, 2020 at 9:35 pm
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    What a good and positive newsletter. I have been so very worried that the situation would effect your business detrimentally. There are only so many knocks and setbacks any company can endure and I have been concerned that you may find yourselves in an impossible situation.
    I have had to consult your operatives on a couple of occasions and have been so impressed by the continued upbeat, happy and positive responses. I do not need to tell you that your staff are marvellous but I am certain it must make a difference to be told so.
    The very best of luck over the next months. I have a booking for October 2021 I will keep my fingers crossed that perhaps I may be able to sneak another in between.
    Regards and thanks
    Hilary Walkley.

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      August 13, 2020 at 6:53 pm
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      Thanks again for your update. I would like to thank all of your staff, particularly those dealing with refunds etc. We had cruise booked with Cruise and Maritime and were devastated at the news, your team contacted me on the morning after the announcement, 2 days later they contacted me again for bank statements and bank details, so speedy, we are now awaiting the refund from ABTA which we are expecting to take quite a while, your staff are amazing and over the 5 years we have been booking with Bolsover we have never had any problems, prompt service and extremely professional team. Thankyou@

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    August 5, 2020 at 10:01 pm
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    I would like to thank your staff in what have been incredibly difficult times. Whenever I have requested a call back in relation to my outstanding FCC with P and O cruises, who ever I have spoken to has been professional, knowledgeable and outstanding in these strange times.

    We have only ever booked our 20+ cruises with yourselves and have never been disappointed or felt the need to book our cruises with any one but yourselves.

    Thank you for continuing your excellent service through out these challenging times we find ourselves in. We will continue to support and book our future cruises with your amazing company and more importantly the amazing staff at Bolsover Cruise Club.

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    August 5, 2020 at 10:15 pm
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    Can only imagine what a difficult time this has been for all staff.
    Sure we all hope to cruise again but more than that we want everyone safe & well.
    Thank you for your message.

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    August 5, 2020 at 11:55 pm
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    We would like to express our gratitude to all the staff at Bolsover Cruise Club during Covid 19 for their professional approach in dealing with all our enquiries. Our cruise was cancelled in May 2020 but our refund did not reach us until June after many attempts to contact P & O and filling in the appropriate forms. However we are still waiting for our refund of £111.00 for the trip we booked on 22nd November 2019 CRUISE CJ3C9C which now I have asked my bank to investigate. I was however was told from a staff member of P & O that they did not receive any confirmation from yourselves directing them to give me e refund which I can’t understand as you replied to my email requesting it. We are not blaming yourselves and are very pleased with the service we have received from everyone at Bolsover and will continue to contact you for future cruises as long as we physically can .

    Mr and |Mrs Read

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    August 6, 2020 at 10:13 am
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    Here’s hoping our postponed Rhone cruise will go ahead next May, thankyou to everyone at Bolsover for rearranging so smoothly.
    Also, we are getting excited thinking about a 2022 cruise hopefully to the Baltic, the same group of us that went with Princess to Norway, again arranged by yourselves.

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    August 6, 2020 at 11:26 am
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    Thank you for keeping us up to date I am just hoping that we will be back cruising next year I have one booked with you for April.

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    August 6, 2020 at 2:09 pm
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    Bolsover is an amazing and very reliable cruise centre for all us cruise addicts and would like to commend them on all they do for their customers, even at these hard times, due to the coronavirus. Its a cruise centre that’s second to none and I should know being a cruise traveller for 53 years!

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    August 7, 2020 at 4:31 pm
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    Many thanks for your update, my wife and I are grateful that we booked our cruises with you, we have done so for quite a while now and we hope that we will be able to do so again in the future for many years to come. You should be proud of your amazing professional team of staff, they are truly wonderful and are a credit to your company. Keep safe everyone and keep up the good work!

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    August 13, 2020 at 6:30 pm
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    Your entire staff have been, as always, absolutely marvellous. They cannot be bettered for service, friendliness and efficiency. We cancelled our cruise with P&O for this November and re-booked for the same time and ship in 2021, the whole process took about ten minutes and we now have something to look forward to when, hopefully, we all beat the virus. Wishing you all good health, stay safe.

    Reply

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