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Diamond plus out of concierge lounges


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Diamond plus passengers have been denied access to the concierge lounges across the fleet as of 1/10/20. Without explanation this benefit has been revoked. Only pinnacle members and suite guests are allowed there. People in this exiled status should contact rccl at1-800-256-6649 to voice your protest please respond with any thoughts of actions we can take to force rccl to reinstate this benefit

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Welcome to the message boards.

With growing numbers this really should come as no surprise as the current venues are simply not big enough to contain the numbers involved.  

On my current cruise I have been restricted from the Concierge Lounge.  I understand all too well what you mean however of 272 Emerald, 86 are moving to Diamond for their next cruise and of 598 Diamond, 35 are moving to Diamond Plus.  The CL only seats ~50 guests yet now there would be 35 new D+ competing for CL seats on their next cruise absent of any restrictions.  This is one ship graduating 35 people to D+.  Across the fleet there are hundreds that will be graduating to D+ this month and hundreds next month.  

They simply can't continue in this fashion without changing some rules which is well within their rights to do so.  It's printed in the CAS terms and conditions that they can make changes without notice any time they need to.  

I've been facing this since first earning D+ thirty two cruises ago.  What Royal has done on all of my cruises is expand or overflow the Diamond Lounge to include more room.  To be honest and fair this has worked quite well on all thirty two D+ cruises.    

On a recent cruise through the Panama Canal the CL was off limits to D+ but they used the entire Some Enchanted Evening Lounge on Vision for the nightly happy hour.  This worked out really well and even many of the 86 Pinnacles ended up coming to happy hour there instead of the CL.  

Pinnacle numbers are also growing, 5 guests on this sailing graduated to Pinnacle.

The simple truth is that the numbers have grown to the point they need to make changes. 

So while I have been impacted by this change many times I also understand it is a needed change given the numbers of guests ascending up the CAS top tier levels.

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On my recent cruise over the holidays on the B2B on the Vision of the Seas, I had access to the Diamond Lounge and the Concierge Lounge and honestly I see no difference between either. They both offer the same thing. I don't know why people prefer one over the other. They are both the same. You are not losing anything by going to either one except that of an ego trip.

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This is great news! When we book suites we like the benefit of the Concierge Lounge. There is nothing worse then having it over run by Diamond + members who go in early and save seats. We pay a lot of money for this perk!  
 
On cruises we book in a non suite cabin we are happy to huddle with the unwashed masses in the Diamond lounge! 

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1 hour ago, CoupleOfCruisers said:

This is great news! When we book suites we like the benefit of the Concierge Lounge. There is nothing worse then having it over run by Diamond + members who go in early and save seats. We pay a lot of money for this perk!  
 
On cruises we book in a non suite cabin we are happy to huddle with the unwashed masses in the Diamond lounge! 

If you pay for it, then, it's not a perk!  ?

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Welcome to the boards.

The way I see it, D+ still have access to Diamond lounge, which has same exact culinary and beverage offerings. Quite often the two lounges are pretty much in the same location.

And if you want to get technical about it, many ships have had their Concierge Lounge converted over to a Suite Lounge, and when that occurred over the last couple of years, D+ did not have access to it. So it's not that much of a new change.

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Although I do understand why RC did it I do not understand why they done it like that .

They already have a system to change the CL to suite lounge  which automatically (As Matt explain) denying access to the D+ .

Well lets just hope the next move will not be to convert the DL to DL+  and leave the D with the 3 drink voucher.  

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16 minutes ago, Traveler said:

Although I do understand why RC did it I do not understand why they done it like that .

They already have a system to change the CL to suite lounge  which automatically (As Matt explain) denying access to the D+ .

I suspect it may be a comment from a previous CEO/President who offered something that could be interpreted like D+ would always have access to the CL.  

Many years ago that seemed like a reasonable comment, the boom in cruising and expansion of ships came long after that comment so it's a lesson for executives in never saying anything absolute in public, always leave it open ended.

By converting CL into SL they somewhat skirt the issue.  

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5 minutes ago, twangster said:

I suspect it may be a comment from a previous CEO/President who offered something that could be interpreted like D+ would always have access to the CL.  

Many years ago that seemed like a reasonable comment, the boom in cruising and expansion of ships came long after that comment so it's a lesson for executives in never saying anything absolute in public, always leave it open ended.

By converting CL into SL they somewhat skirt the issue.  

 

Agree  , that is why I did not understood why instead of denying access to the CL they have not completed the change in all the fleet . 

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On 1/12/2020 at 10:54 PM, James trepanier said:

Diamond plus passengers have been denied access to the concierge lounges across the fleet as of 1/10/20. Without explanation this benefit has been revoked. Only pinnacle members and suite guests are allowed there. People in this exiled status should contact rccl at1-800-256-6649 to voice your protest please respond with any thoughts of actions we can take to force rccl to reinstate this benefit

Do you have any official proof of this.

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on lots of ships if they have to many Diamond plus for that particular sailing the have been restricting the concierge lounges to Suite s and Pinnacles.

I would save complaints like this if the just changed the name of all the concierge lounges to Suite Lounge fleet wide and save themselves this headache

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Twangster is correct, there is just too many people in the diamond and plus groups now. Celebrity has suite lounge and suite retreat areas. They make a lot of room for their lounge.  Last time on Grandeur the lounge was filled every night with pinnacle and diamond plus members taking over whole areas, leaving no room for suite guests. I understand loyalty, and expectations of that loyalty. But at the same time royal, if not making changes won’t sell those price hefty rooms. It is a perk of the class of room, it comes with the room at no additional expense. The same as coastal kitchens is a perk. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Yes, I think RCCL have created a monster that they cannot feed. The number Diamond and Diamond Plus members is increasing dramatically every year. I think RCCL should introduce a new Crown & Anchor loyalty level at, say, 350 points. Access to the Concierge lounge could be awarded from that level. By the way, I am Diamond Plus with 262 points so I am not suggesting this to benefit myself, but merely suggesting the change as way to address the problem of the overcrowded lounges. The Diamond lounge could then be restricted to Diamond Plus members with less than 350 points. Diamond members would receive the normal 3 free drinks on their sea pass each night.

Only my opinion. Hope I don’t upset anybody.

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To be fair, the expanded Diamond Lounge experience has been wonderful.  I just finished 11 nights with no CL access and the new DL experience is much improved over the 2017 experience on the same ship.

Oasis lost her CL in or around 2015.  For the last five years D+ members have been enjoying their cruises.  Liberty lost her CL 3 years ago.  There have been lots of D+ on her over the last 3 years enjoying great cruises.  Adventure lost her CL 2 years ago.   All ships in these classes have since lost their CLs.  This isn't a new thing.   

I choose Royal because I enjoy the product.  The CAS is icing on top of that.  For me CAS still has great benefits but it's not the reason I choose Royal.  CAS benefits make a great cruise even better.    

 

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7 hours ago, Jim S said:

Yes, I think RCI have created a monster that they cannot feed. The number Diamond and Diamond Plus members is increasing dramatically every year. I think RCI should introduce a new Crown & Anchor loyalty level at, say, 350 points. Access to the Concierge lounge could be awarded from that level. By the way, I am Diamond Plus with 262 points so I am not suggesting this to benefit myself, but merely suggesting the change as way to address the problem of the overcrowded lounges. The Diamond lounge could then be restricted to Diamond Plus members with less than 350 points. Diamond members would receive the normal 3 free drinks on their sea pass each night.

Only my opinion. Hope I don’t upset anybody.

I think RCL should grandfather in the folks who are already diamond or diamond+.....or it would be dirty pool for the folks who put the time, expense and loyalty to achieve their status before they raise the points status to 350 points.

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22 hours ago, Jim S said:

Yes, I think RCI have created a monster that they cannot feed. The number Diamond and Diamond Plus members is increasing dramatically every year. I think RCI should introduce a new Crown & Anchor loyalty level at, say, 350 points. Access to the Concierge lounge could be awarded from that level. By the way, I am Diamond Plus with 262 points so I am not suggesting this to benefit myself, but merely suggesting the change as way to address the problem of the overcrowded lounges. The Diamond lounge could then be restricted to Diamond Plus members with less than 350 points. Diamond members would receive the normal 3 free drinks on their sea pass each night.

Only my opinion. Hope I don’t upset anybody.

I suggest to open now  the DL to whoever have 115 points and above , well at least until end of April when I will get 11 more points so it can change to 126 points and above ?

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For a while Royal has been sending the quoted letter to D+ for cruises on ships with a CL that have a high concentration of D+.  I have not seen anything official that this is now policy fleetwide. Can someone point to something official that now makes this policy fleetwide? If so, why don't they just rename all the CL to Sute Lounge?  Maybe that is happening.

In any case I am B2B on Ovation in April.  They still have a CL.  I suspect the first cruise to the South Pacific islands will have a low concentration of D+ while the next one (Transpacific) will have a large concentration.  I will report here on any letters I see regarding these cruises.

 

 

 

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  • 1 month later...

Ive just found this article, having just returned home after a cruise on the Jewel of the Seas. There was this problem on that ship if you check the small print on what benefits you get it  states that access for D+ to concierge lounges which has not been changed for years basically it states that only certain ships do this but does not state which ones? Now as the above messages states it is likely that none of them allow this now. Now my beef about this is that on that ship a large amount of pinnacle and suite guests are allowed to use the diamond club lounge now over here in the UK we would call two faced especially as the concierge lounge was never more than half full but you were unable to get a seat in the diamond lounge because they preferred to see their friends in that lounge.now this is a double standard and smacks of do what I say not as I do.So simply they go to their lounge and the diamond users use theirs.This cruise was sailing out of Dubai seven nights and I was unable to find a seat on every night for us and that was using the large lounge next to it as well. Soon this April I am on the Symphony of the Seas and I will find out if this is now on all the ships.

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Yes Jeff M I agree with you. I think we can all understand the problem that RCCL has due to the ever increasing number of D and D+ CAS members and the limited space in the Diamond and Concierge lounges. However, what I am not at all happy about is the deceitful attitude of RCCL in not being open and honest with their loyal guests in advance and only advising D+ members a few days before the cruise that they will not be getting access to the CL.

I can now see that this perk is NEVER going to return to D+ CAS members. Watch out Pinnacles, it is coming to you next.
 

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4 minutes ago, Jim S said:

Watch out Pinnacles, it is coming to you next.
 

It's already happening to Pinnacles on the long itineraries like Trans Atlantics and popular itins such as the President's annual cruises.  Pinnacles are restricted in their access to the CK and SL.  Hopefully @twangster can provide some updates from his recent Allure TA.

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28 minutes ago, FManke said:

Not being anywhere close to either of those levels myself, I was just wondering if their wasn't any under utilized lounge areas that can be converted for use by those C&A members? 

They do open up other areas for happy hour overspill but this is only temporary for the particular cruise. Don’t know if they would consider converting an extra lounge area permanently on their ships for D, D+ and Pinnacle guests.

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53 minutes ago, WAAAYTOOO said:

It's already happening to Pinnacles on the long itineraries like Trans Atlantics and popular itins such as the President's annual cruises.  Pinnacles are restricted in their access to the CK and SL.  Hopefully @twangster can provide some updates from his recent Allure TA.

On Allure for the transatlantic Coastal Kitchen rules for Pinnacles has been changed.  Pinnacles are allowed 3 dinners for the cruise.  That's really the only change.  Pinnacles have breakfast in Chops and lunch in 150 Central Park using the Coastal Kitchen breakfast and lunch menus so it's really just CK dinner that has been restricted. 

Pinnacles can access the Suite Lounge normally.  Dazzles is available during the nightly happy hour for Pinnacles and other than the view is a better venue for happy hour.  Plus Dazzles has a blender while the Suite Lounge does not and many are taking advantage of frozen drinks you can't get in the Suite Lounge.

A free specialty coffee (sans alcohol) is loaded on Seapass cards. 

These changes 

3 minutes ago, Jim S said:

They do open up other areas for happy hour overspill but this is only temporary for the particular cruise. Don’t know if they would consider converting an extra lounge area permanently on their ships for D and D+ guests.

They only do so when the numbers of each level warrant it. Not all cruises need it.  

The CAS spaces are only busy during the nightly happy hour event.  It would be a waste of space to permanently allocate more space to CAS happy hour because most of the time the existing spaces are completely empty.  Visit one during the day and most of the time you will be alone.  

There are two use cases that drive CAS lounge overcrowding.  The primary factor is unlimited drinks from the happy hour drink menu.  The secondary factor is a social time to meet other frequent cruisers.  If they eliminated unlimited drinks the overcrowding would stop overnight.  Some would still go for the social aspect but the vast majority would simply meet in other places.  

Empress is a good example.  They don't offer a nightly happy hour event but encourage top elite to visit the Viking Crown Lounge as a place to use your 3 drink coupons.  No one goes.  It's literally empty.  Top elite find other places to use the coupons, some in the Schooner Bar, some at the pool bar, some in Boleros.  So while some cruisers say they enjoy the social aspect of happy hour in the CAS lounge, it's really about the booze.  This is about alcohol.  

Real estate is precious on a ship.  Allocating more permanent space to the CAS isn't going to happen.  

While some elite see this as a "problem" it really isn't a problem for the company.  If anything happy hour overcrowding encourages some to use their drink coupons elsewhere which is exactly why they came up with the coupons in the first place.  For the company this isn't a problem.

 

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33 minutes ago, FManke said:

Is this the thanks you get for being too loyal?

Once you see through the whining it actually works very well and I continually feel that the company does appreciate my loyalty.  It has gotten better at every level.  

I honestly feel that the CAS program works very well and does what a loyalty program should be doing - encouraging customers to come back.   

I greatly appreciate the CAS.

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For us, we enjoy the social aspect of the CL and the DL and have made several new friends in this way, many of whom we still communicate with. In fact we are (hopefully) going out to Dubai on Friday to join Jewel of the Seas for two B2B cruises and meet up our Canadian friends that we met on two previous transatlantic cruises. They are Pinnacles and we are D+ and we have only just been informed that we will not be able to join them socially in the CS. Not at all happy about this.

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1 hour ago, Jim S said:

For us, we enjoy the social aspect of the CL and the DL and have made several new friends in this way, many of whom we still communicate with. In fact we are (hopefully) going out to Dubai on Friday to join Jewel of the Seas for two B2B cruises and meet up our Canadian friends that we met on two previous transatlantic cruises. They are Pinnacles and we are D+ and we have only just been informed that we will not be able to join them socially in the CS. Not at all happy about this.

Can't you just get together with them some where else?

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3 hours ago, Jim S said:

Yes Jeff M I agree with you. I think we can all understand the problem that RCCL has due to the ever increasing number of D and D+ CAS members and the limited space in the Diamond and Concierge lounges. However, what I am not at all happy about is the deceitful attitude of RCCL in not being open and honest with their loyal guests in advance and only advising D+ members a few days before the cruise that they will not be getting access to the CL.

I can now see that this perk is NEVER going to return to D+ CAS members. Watch out Pinnacles, it is coming to you next.
 

So what is the point to have D+ when benefits are same like D. No difference .

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10 minutes ago, RWDW1204 said:

Can't you just get together with them some where else?

We can but that is not the point. We enjoy the surroundings of the CL and this is being taken away from us. We booked a JS and if we had known this when we booked we would have either upgraded to GS if the price was right or we would not have booked at all.

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11 minutes ago, Cile said:

I am D+ and what will be difference ? 

Two days internet instead of one, a bag of wash and fold laundry for 7+ nights cruises. This is for each member, that’s two if you and your wife/partner go together. One photo each but I think that is the same as D. There might be some other things as well, eg welcome gifts etc.

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