USS GREGORY DD 802 SPRING 2019 REUNION
ROYAL CARIBBEAN CRUISE LINE VISION OF THE SEAS
APRIL 10-15, 2019
Ahoy shipmates! For our next reunion we will meet on the Blue Seas of the Caribbean. We will set sail from Galveston on RCCL's Vision of the Seas on April 10, 2019, for a 4-day, 5-night cruise. We will have a day at sea, followed by a day in port in Progreso (Yucatan), next day in Cozumel, another day at sea, and back to Galveston the morning of April 15. The Yucatan stop will be from 7:00 am until 4:00 pm, and Cozumel from 9:00 am until 6:00 pm. All passengers must be back on board no later than 30 minutes prior to departure from port.
Sixteen staterooms have been optioned for our sailing. Four are inside cabins (Category 2V), six are ocean view cabins (Category 2N), and six are balcony cabins (Category 4B). If there is more demand for any particular category than what we have in our allotment, we will do all possible to fulfill it. However, at present, the ship is quite full, so anything more will be subject to availability. Following are costs for each category.
Shipmates! Please Note:
To clarify one thing on the previous Gregory Reunion Cruise information. Please note that Kathy Buley will be handling all reservations for the cruise Reunion. You must contact her directly at (512) 258-7465 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are requesting a balcony stateroom you MUST contact Kathy before September 16, 2018, as balconies are limited. Payment by credit card is easiest and preferred but can also be done by check.
Information for making travel arrangements: the ship departs Galveston on April 10, 2019 at 4:00 p.m. and returns on April 15 at 7:00 a.m. The times could change a bit but they don't often as it creates havoc.
Inside, Category 2V:
*Single occupancy pays 200% of base cost.
**Gratuity guideline is $14.50 p/person p/day, which covers gratuities for cabin steward, dining room waiter, & busboy, but not for bar service. This can be prepaid prior to cruise, or added to your stateroom account at the end of the cruise.
***Travel Protection optional, but strongly recommended as cancellation penalties are severe. Can be added at time of deposit, or until final payment. Will cover preexisting conditions only when taken with initial deposit. Your credit card may provide coverage, but may not include medical protection.
Good news … the usual Reunion registration fee will not be collected for this cruise.
Balcony Staterooms are on hold only until September 16. If you wish to have a balcony stateroom, deposit of $200 per person and names, as listed on your passport or proof of citizenship, must be submitted by that date. Any staterooms not optioned will be withdrawn September 16. Final payment will be due January 10, 2019. Deposit is fully refundable until that date, but Travel Protection, once paid, is not refundable.
Ocean View and Interior Staterooms are on hold until January 10. However, it is in your best interest to book and pay your $200 per person deposit early, as cabin selection can be done only at this point. The deposit is fully refundable until final payment due date, January 10, 2019, but again, Travel Protection, once paid, is not refundable.
Following is the Cancellation Schedule of penalties for this cruise. Please be aware that the penalties for cancellation with 30 days of sailing date are extremely severe, and that the cruise line makes absolutely NO exceptions to their rules, for any reason whatsoever. 89 to 75 days prior 25% per guest As of 11 Jan 2019 74 to 61 days prior 50% per guest As of 26 Jan 2019 60 to 31 days prior 75% per guest As of 09 Feb 2019 30 to 0 days prior 100% per guest As of 11Mar 2019 If Royal Caribbean deems that the cabins we have on hold are not being adequately utilized, they reserve the right to withdraw any or all unassigned cabins, at their discretion. While I have never experienced this, it is in their contract, and within their rights.
Also, Royal Caribbean reserves the right to impose a fuel supplement on all guests if the price of West Texas crude exceeds $65.00 per barrel. This would apply to guests 1 and 2 in the stateroom, and would not exceed $10 per guest per day. Guests 3 and 4 would pay $5.00 per guest per day. This is a routine disclaimer, and in 30-plus years as a travel consultant, I (Kathy) have never seen it applied.
This space has been optioned at a Group rate, so if you plan to join us, Kathy Buley will be placing the bookings and processing payments on your behalf. If you have any questions about any facet of the cruise, please call (512) 258-7465, or email email@example.com and I will get back to you as soon as possible. As mentioned above, I have been in the travel industry since 1985, and in 1997 earned my C.T.C. (Certified Travel Counselor) designation, which at that time was the highest available.
A passport is not required for this particular cruise; you can sail with a government issued photo identification (i.e., driver's license) PLUS your original birth certificate, or an official government issued certified copy of the birth certificate with a raised seal. However, I strongly recommend you travel with a passport. In the unforeseen event of a family emergency at home, or an accident and injury while on the cruise, without a passport it is not possible to fly home from a port of call. You can leave the cruise only at the termination in Galveston.
We have confirmed early dining for our group, and will be seated at 5:30 pm for dinner. (Seating for late dining is 8:00 pm, which we thought a bit late for our senior group.) We will request we be seated at adjacent tables, as a group. We will not have our own banquet, per se, but we expect one “formal” night on the cruise. A suit or “Tux” is definitely not required; a jacket, slacks and necktie will do for the gents, and dressy slacks and top, or a dress, will work for the ladies. If you have formal wear that just hangs in the closet, and wish to wear it, that is fine too. Almost anything goes, except for shorts and t-shirts in the dining room for the evening meal.
We hope you will plan to join us on this cruise. We have compared the costs of the 5-night cruise on the Vision of the Seas with the cost of our usual land reunions, and when you consider all the extras included on the cruise (all meals, entertainment, lodging, etc) the cost is very comparable. The total for two sharing an inside stateroom is considerably less than the cost of a traditional reunion, while the ocean view sharing a double is about the same. The shore excursions when in port are additional (and optional; many passengers explore independently, or hire a taxi after disembarking), but those costs would be about equal to the costs of optional tours that are offered with other reunions. And, the cost of the banquet, which was always additional, is included in the cruise cost, with dinner in the dining room.
The port of Progreso is the gateway to visit Merida, a beautiful Colonial Mexican city. It is also near beaches, or you can visit nearby Mayan ruins. We believe the famous ruins of Chichen Itza are also within reach, as we are to be in port a little over 8 hours. Cozumel is well known for water and beach activities (especially some of the best snorkeling in the Caribbean), shopping, Mayan ruins, golf, or you can plan to visit/swim in a Cenote (Google it!).
The Port of Galveston is about 40 miles south of Houston. The closest airport is Hobby, if you are flying in and have a choice of airport; Intercontinental is about 15-20 miles further distant. RCCL offers transfers from both airports; Hobby is $63.90 p/person round trip, and Intercontinental is $79.90 p/person round trip, both of these ½ price for one-way only. There are numerous shuttle companies also offering transportation from Houston to Galveston, and their rates are generally lower than those offered by RCCL. If you opt to rent a car, parking at the Galveston cruise terminal is $10 and up per day (subject to change by next spring). Some are payable in cash only, some accept cards. Most require advance reservations, as parking becomes scarce when quite a few ships are using the port. If you book a hotel pre- or post-cruise in Galveston, many offer reduced rate or free parking while you are on the cruise.
Again, we hope you will join us on this cruise. We think it will be a great adventure, and a few days at sea with shipmates will feel like the old “Gregory” days......just in a lot more luxury!