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Everything posted by bobroo

  1. I strongly disagree. You can't blame China if you also did not heed the advice from South Korea and the excellent job that was done there.
  2. I don't think many passengers realize who is going to pay the principal and interest for the $6.18 B in loans agreed to over the past 2 1/2 weeks. Surprise!
  3. Is it not baffling that Florida does not have a statewide stay-at-home order???
  4. Oops! You are absolutely correct it’s the Jones Act that prevents cruise ships from behavior they would very much like to do. I apologize.
  5. @JLMoran that’s great due diligence! Thanks for sharing. I agree, it’s all of Celebrity that is being pawned. “Wholly owned vessel-owning subsidiaries” ? I don’t think that’s Azamara, I think they mean Pullmantur. Example, Monarch of the Seas was retired and brought to Pullmantur. I’m guessing Royal still owns the boat but somehow leases it’s use. I don’t believe Royal has any say in the day to day Pullmantur management. Perhaps Royal expects to replace these recent loans with Federal money? Federal money that is cheaper and not a lot of strings attached? If so, I hope they get their brand-new best friends to repeal the Hatch Act because maybe a good way to get back online is to have short sailings that don’t go out of country.
  6. Completely correct and your beginning to touch on a potential big problem in the future.....RCL has had excellent financials for all these bankers and investors to sign up for future endeavors. In the future when the financials are less than stellar, at what price are they going to write the loans? Nobody in the history of the world has called a banker “compassionate”, “understanding of the circumstances”, or.....”forgiving.” What has occurred here over the past month and a half is going to have a big impact for rates of interest for years to come on many of the new ships or for what ever else they receive loans. Companies with no debt? There is only one that I know of; Berkshire Hathaway. I hope you have Class A shares!
  7. You and me JL are of the same thinking, limited in depth of knowledge as well. So I could be wrong but am I understanding the following correctly???: We are talking about Royal Caribbean and all it related brands (Azamara, TUI, Pulmanteur, Celebrity, etc.) Last year RCL made $5 B profit, After all expenses they were $5 B to the good. Two weeks ago, RCL agreed to a line of credit for $500M "for liquidity". Basically, the opportunity to take $500M if they need it. Today they take out a $2.2 B loan "for liquidity" to be repaid in a year, or extendable to be repaid over two years. This means they have received the funds and owe them back. Matt's article kind of says these funds are to keep the ball rolling on all the new ships and upgrades. (Incidentally, there are 17 new ships across all brands in the works). So......this $2.2B is a loan to make sure the already agreed to loans still work out??? Big business is different than personal finance but if this were a conversation between me and my father he would say the following: Dad: Last year you had $5 billion in the bank? Me: Yep Dad: Then the bad thing happens... Me: Really bad thing.... Dad: So I agree to make available to you $1/2B just to get you through. Me: Yes Dad: Then a week later you go take out a short term loan of $2.2B, so that your other future loans will still be available? Me: Yeppers Dad: So.....It's March 23rd; since January 1st you have taken in nearly $8B, of which you only have $3.6B today? In 82 days you have blown through $4.4B....AND......have no firm or reasonable expectations of when you will be making money again???? You have loans to cover other loans??? You are still hell bent on essentially buying things that you already own??? Is thrift a word in your vocabulary??? Me: Yeah but... I want, I want, I want..... Dad: Follow me to the woodshed <takes off belt>
  8. I'm glad that makes some sense, I've used that approach many times myself. I was really reacting to the common threads of many other posters here. Online trading today is super cheap if not free. There are a lot of similarities between a brokerage account and an account on Amazon or e-Bay. Many big banks offer trading and it's quite convenient to go online to see how much is left in your checking account and alongside that is the status of your brokerage account. Maybe that's the first place you look?
  9. A couple personal thoughts: RCL is in a tough spot. Share price is free falling and they have huge overhead costs with little income. I can not imagine a current shareholder that would not call it a distressed asset. If you want to pick up 100 shares in expectation to receive future OBC for "cruises I'd be do'in anyway" Ummmm..... distressed assets don't give away free things to customers. I would NOT buy RCL expecting that free $50/$100/$250 on my sea pass. Wrong answer. Dividends? Not anytime soon. Near term increase in stock price? I think the share price will go down further the next time they announce earnings. Like, Staples doesn't have enough red ink toner cartridges for me to print out the report. But....... If you are a Royal fan and have never opened a brokerage account and bought some stock. I think this is a great opportunity to do so. Look at it this way: If you feel "Yeah, the financial world is very confusing. So confusing, I want to avoid the whole thing. I have no idea what the mumbo jumbo means." But.... you do have a relationship with Royal. An intimate knowledge of their day to day. Whether it's reading this blog or being onboard and seeing with your own eyes how well their brand is doing. I would endorse someone in the above circumstance going to a Fidelity, Charles Schwab, TD Ameritrade, Chase Bank....whatever, there are a ton of brokerage outfits. Open and fund your account ( this takes a few days for your funds to become available for trading BTW) and buying some RLC. And then watch it. Learn from it. And perhaps most of all, become a better cruiser in the future because you have some skin in the game. You'll be prouder of whatever ship you are on. It won't be imposing to say "Hey kiddo, get off the railing!" RCL needs your support. You don't have to spend thousands of dollars. You can spend $100. Just know you are buying a very volatile asset and don't have expectations that this is going to pay off anytime soon. I think in years down the road, Royal will be back as strong as it was.
  10. A lot of people think this is a snow day, a temporary inconvenience and then it's back to life as we know it after the switch is flicked. They could not be more incorrect.
  11. Thanks so much for sharing SOnny! Your detailed review is what makes this blog a great place. I hope we are on the same dive boat sometime soon.
  12. Ummm.....I'm hoping it's real apparent that it's not the time to re-decorate something you already own. But rather, it is a golden opportunity to maintain those assets. It should be expected that every ship for the next 30 days is completely repainted, re-carpeted, and re-gasketed. New water slides and restaurants? Wrong answer.
  13. Without Question!!! I think we are all well aware of of Matt's enthusiasm but today more than ever Royal needs Matt and his Blog. Not just to spread truthful word but to be optimistic. Royal owes Matt a deep, deep debt of gratitude.
  14. I have been concerned for months about the continual RCL spending and bragging they use as advertisement: $250M for Coco Cay $300M for a new corporate headquarters $250M to make a new terminal in Miami and make the dock 100 feet longer $165M to revitalize Allure $116M to amplify Freedom $300M for an existing hotel and dock in Freeport and on and on and on........ I mentioned this today on the Insiders FB group and it's worth stating here; I think Royal is in serious trouble because this elephant does not dance to slow music. I think they will dock all the ships until at least September. It will be cheaper to cease operation than try to combat the hostile environment. I think this could very well happen in the next 30 days.
  15. This is absolutely true. I know the use of Google Maps is pretty much an unknown skill for Royal Caribbean passengers, but give it a Goog and find out for yourself. Also absolutely true is that you as a passenger are absolutely forbidden to leave the Labadee compound unless you are on a Royal excursion or going on the zip line. Which is also weird, because there are passengers who would like to visit family in the area who are declined leaving. There is also the occasional freak like myself who would like to venture outside the gate and they are quite serious about the “you can not leave” while hold a large semi automatic weapon.
  16. Ernestos Tortilla Factory (a restaurant just north of the cruise terminal) and it’s neighbor Gateway Car Rental both will rent you a Jeep for about $50 for the day. Probably manual transmissions only. Again, unfortunately renting a dune buggy is no where to be found.
  17. Good for you! I think you’ve had a good lesson in vacation planning. My last time in Coz I rented 5 vehicles from HTL for close to $300. We did essentially what I said above. <cue Banana Splits theme>
  18. Bobroo's Cozumel Private Destination Plan: (You'll need American dollars, bug spray, a wristwatch, and a bathing suit.) Rent 2 mopeds for about $50 for the day. Or a car or Jeep for about the same price (unfortunately you can not rent a dune buggy). If you arrange it ahead of time they will meet you just outside the port. Take the C-1 around the island. A good 1st stop is San Gervasio. Many will tell you the ruins are not that impressive; in fact they are not. They would be much better with hieroglyphs. Having your own wheels, you can bail at anytime. Give your left over bug spray to someone just walking in. Next stop Bee sanctuary. I have not gone but the apiarists I was with on my last visit called it a dud. Worth doing some research. Continue on the C-1. There are plenty of bars on the beach that serve food. Also along the route, just pull over someplace and get in the water! There is something very fun about spontaneously going to the beach to wave hop. No towels, no beach bags, no frisbees---and no cost.. Just do it. Punta Sur and the Lighthouse is kinda your halfway point. This area is where you need the wristwatch. This area has no cellular service and most of the bars don't have electricity. Relying on your phone for it's maps program or to use it as a watch might not work out. If you have to postpone a visit to this stop till the next visit to Coz, it's because of all the right reasons!!! There are bars along the final leg for "just one more margarita", but no where near the view as the east coast so you'll kinda be slum'in it. There is a gas station just before you get to the port to fill up and then finally return your vehicle(s). Save your manatee experience as part of a pre/post cruise fun thing to do when you are in Florida. Wildlife experiences are always better when the animals are not captive. You can easily do the above for $200 a person. I'm guessing a taxi will want $100 an hour but you might talk him down to $80 an hour (?). I'm guessing Royal's Private Destination will cost you $1,000- $1,200 a person.
  19. It's been subtly suggested I should "wash my hands like 50 times a day". It's a practice we should have all been doing long before we began worrying about a new strain of the flu. Sometimes change is good.
  20. I use Pelican cases. Although heavy, I’m good for life at the same cost as buying “luggage”.
  21. Might you allow Blog Insiders on your balcony so they can booze it up while watching an Aqua Theater show???
  22. bobroo

    Scuba gear

    This is one of the many reasons why it would be appropriate (if not important) to contact your dive provider(s) before you go on a cruise. Size? Brand? Additional cost? Hey, while I got you on the line; I know you can't make promises, but where typically might my dive trip go-- so I can make sure my skills are appropriate (and so I can research on YouTube)?
  23. It depends on the itinerary of the cruises and what there is to see. Hawaii? Balcony! Europe definite balcony! Alaska balcony mandatory! Caribbean? Definite insides!
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