Q – This is wonderfully helpful information – but it is incomplete. Not everyone is thinking about sailing Crystal and we are wondering which of the other lines in the Top Ten or Top Twenty, for that matter, are likely to cease operations while holding on to vast amounts of our deposit money. Please provide a list of those lines in likely trouble. I have been unable to find this information anywhere. Or, do you limit your concern to Crystal?
A – Sharing specific financial information about a specific product under consideration is only appropriate, in our view, in a client-Advisor relationship. We would not make a list of lines that we feel are currently on the financial ropes because such reporting could further slow their bookings and add to their financial distress – something we have no interest in doing.
Seabourn, Oceania, Azamara, Regent Seven Seas, and Silversea are each owned by one of the Big Three, US-based lines. There is ample financial reporting about these lines for those interested in specifics. They are publicly listed companies and their stocks and financials are available for public scrutiny. But the smaller, foreign-owned lines present some unique challenges. As we have indicated previously, the best way to sense the financial strength of any specific travel company is to see if the major insurance companies are still insuring them for Supplier Default protection.
Let’s see if we can answer your question this way: There are currently four cruise lines, of various sizes, that we are watching carefully. We share this information privately with our clients. We recommend that you take up the question with your personal travel consultant who will likely be more open to a private conversation that addresses the issues you have raised. The only reason that we have discussed Crystal’s recent challenges is that it has been widely reported by financial news outlets.
We actually have more confidence in Crystal than many in our field. The line has a new policy that allows bookings to be help for zero money down. Here are the details: