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Symphony Rerouted to CocoCay from Labadee


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We are sailing on Symphony of the Seas on October 19th, and we were supposed to visit Labadee as part of our itinerary.  I had booked a beach bungalow for our family and we made reservations for Amiga Island and the Dragon's Breath zip line. This morning, I randomly logged in to my account, and with no notice my Cruise Planner now shows that we are going to CocoCay instead.  The worst part is all the Cabanas are $900 each instead of the $250 we paid for the Beach Bungalow on Labadee.  I had a couple of questions about this change. 

1. How often does this happen pre-cruise? I understand if weather forces a change before or during the cruise , but why would they change 100 days out? We were hoping to see Labadee since we had never been there.

2. Is there any chance we get switched back to Labadee?  

3. Cabanas on CocoCay -- It was easy to justify getting a Beach Bungalow for our family at $250.  $900 for a Cabana at CocoCay seems excessive.  We have four adults and three children (16 month twins and a 3 year old).  Is a Cabana on CocoCay worth it at that price?  Which Cabana would you recommend - Thrill Island Cabana, Chill Island or Oasis Lagoon? Will the price for the Cabanas ever go down so I should wait to book, or will I need to grab a Cabana now?    

4. Refunds - The Cruise Planner still shows we are booked for all the activities in Labadee.  When should we expect a refund?  Should I cancel these myself or wait for Royal to cancel them?  

Any advice would definitely be appreciated. 

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In 14 cruises I have never experienced such a drastic re-routing before the cruise - only a couple of changes after we started the cruise due to weather.  Having said that, there have been several recent posts about major itinerary changes, so something seems to be a foot.  Whenever we had excursions for a "lost" port, Royal automatically cancelled them and refunded the money.  Others with more recent experience can offer you insight about the timing, etc.  Also, as noted in other posts you can cancel excursions before your cruise -- some folks do that to re-book at a lower price.  There are others who have used the Cabanas and can comment on your question about their value.

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1 hour ago, CypressCruiser said:

We are sailing on Symphony of the Seas on October 19th, and we were supposed to visit Labadee as part of our itinerary.  I had booked a beach bungalow for our family and we made reservations for Amiga Island and the Dragon's Breath zip line. This morning, I randomly logged in to my account, and with no notice my Cruise Planner now shows that we are going to CocoCay instead.  The worst part is all the Cabanas are $900 each instead of the $250 we paid for the Beach Bungalow on Labadee.  I had a couple of questions about this change. 

1. How often does this happen pre-cruise? I understand if weather forces a change before or during the cruise , but why would they change 100 days out? We were hoping to see Labadee since we had never been there.

2. Is there any chance we get switched back to Labadee?  

3. Cabanas on CocoCay -- It was easy to justify getting a Beach Bungalow for our family at $250.  $900 for a Cabana at CocoCay seems excessive.  We have four adults and three children (16 month twins and a 3 year old).  Is a Cabana on CocoCay worth it at that price?  Which Cabana would you recommend - Thrill Island Cabana, Chill Island or Oasis Lagoon? Will the price for the Cabanas ever go down so I should wait to book, or will I need to grab a Cabana now?    

4. Refunds - The Cruise Planner still shows we are booked for all the activities in Labadee.  When should we expect a refund?  Should I cancel these myself or wait for Royal to cancel them?  

Any advice would definitely be appreciated. 

Chill Island. We had 4 adults and 3 kids and there was plenty of room. 

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Do the 16 months old count as people for capacity purposes?  If not you could do the bungalow and not the cabana, if they are still available.  Bungalows hold 6 and cabanas hold 8.  The big difference I really see with the bungalow vs cabana, besides occupancy is that the cabana has wall on 3 of the 4 sides, whereas, the bungalow appears only on the back wall, with curtains on the sides.  Both come with attendants and food service.  The bungalows on my sailing are going for 399 right now, but I have seen them as low as 279.  The chill cabanas are at 799, but I got mine at 449.  

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  • 2 weeks later...

If you get the thrill park cabana it includes all day tickets to the water park.  For our sailing it is $599 now, I got it at $529 and saw it as low as $499.  If they haven't canceled your Labadee purchases I would do 2 things.  First do a fake booking on Royal's website and see if they show Labadee or Coco Cay.  Next call Royal and ask what is up and why your Labadee purchases are still showing. 

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We just returned from a cruise with a stop at CoCo Cay where we had an Oasis Lagoon cabana.  We absolutely loved it, and would do it again, however, it was $349 for 8 people.  The price of cabanas seem to be driven simply by supply and demand.  We were on Navigator, and although Majesty also ended up being there at the same time, that was a last-minute itinerary change because of the sudden Cuba restrictions.   The point being, our price was driven by the fact that there were only 3,200 passengers to vie for the purchase.   Since Symphony holds almost twice as many passengers, I’d expect the prices to be about twice as high.   All of that being said, if you get off the ship early, you will EASILY find plenty of open lounge chairs with umbrellas wherever you would choose to hang out.   It’s not necessary to book a cabana.

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2 hours ago, Bbjunkie said:

We just returned from a cruise with a stop at CoCo Cay where we had an Oasis Lagoon cabana.  We absolutely loved it, and would do it again, however, it was $349 for 8 people.  The price of cabanas seem to be driven simply by supply and demand.  We were on Navigator, and although Majesty also ended up being there at the same time, that was a last-minute itinerary change because of the sudden Cuba restrictions.   The point being, our price was driven by the fact that there were only 3,200 passengers to vie for the purchase.   Since Symphony holds almost twice as many passengers, I’d expect the prices to be about twice as high.   All of that being said, if you get off the ship early, you will EASILY find plenty of open lounge chairs with umbrellas wherever you would choose to hang out.   It’s not necessary to book a cabana.

We had a Thrill Island cabana on Navigator last week. I love the beach bungalows on Labadee but I don't know if I'd do it again.  The cabana manager said Symphony and Harmony prices are MUCH higher than other ships.  Our next cruise is on Harmony and the same cabana is $400 more so not worth it to me.  BTW, don't do Thrill Island with kids your ages.

IMO, a cabana on CocoCay is a luxury and one I wouldn't pay $900 for.  If you get off the ship early, there are plenty of chairs under shade to grab.  

RC seems to be rerouting several cruises to CocoCay.  Probably to get the maximum value out of their investment.  This typically doesn't happen except for weather or other real reasons, but IMO lately its for profits.  Our May cruise on Symphony was rerouted to Cococay too.  The prices were expensive so we just made it a free shore day and it was great.

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Intersting..no reason given for the change this far out?:33_unamused:

 

Great way for Royal to make ALOT more money...making ppl go to Coco cay instead of Labadee....they aren't stupid...;)

 

Wouldn't be surprised to see this happening more and more with Royal..better not happen on my cruise in Nov on Harmony.

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19 hours ago, melski94 said:

We had a Thrill Island cabana on Navigator last week. I love the beach bungalows on Labadee but I don't know if I'd do it again.  The cabana manager said Symphony and Harmony prices are MUCH higher than other ships.  Our next cruise is on Harmony and the same cabana is $400 more so not worth it to me.  BTW, don't do Thrill Island with kids your ages.

IMO, a cabana on CocoCay is a luxury and one I wouldn't pay $900 for.  If you get off the ship early, there are plenty of chairs under shade to grab.  

RC seems to be rerouting several cruises to CocoCay.  Probably to get the maximum value out of their investment.  This typically doesn't happen except for weather or other real reasons, but IMO lately its for profits.  Our May cruise on Symphony was rerouted to Cococay too.  The prices were expensive so we just made it a free shore day and it was great.

I would think Labadee is a big money maker as well since it’s all under RC umbrella as a private destination. 

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2 hours ago, tonyfsu21 said:

I would think Labadee is a big money maker as well since it’s all under RC umbrella as a private destination. 

But it doesn't have as many money makers as Coco Cay and everyone wants the new island so they are going to send them where they make more money.  I can see cruises going to just those two locations and don't forget they are supposed to put a hotel on Coco Cay for overnight stays.  I would stay on the ship in the room I already paid for.

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