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Gluten Free Cruise


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Poll: Gluten Free Poll (25 member(s) have cast votes)

Which Cruise Line would you Prefer? (prices on page 2)

  1. Celebrity (16 votes [64.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 64.00%

  2. Holland (9 votes [36.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 36.00%

Which Logo do you like best? (URL on page 2)

  1. Blue Lagoon (6 votes [24.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 24.00%

  2. Blue Yacht (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  3. Brighter Days (2 votes [8.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 8.00%

  4. Sea Decor (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  5. Wave Splash (4 votes [16.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 16.00%

  6. Celiac C's (8 votes [32.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 32.00%

  7. Airy Blue Splash (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  8. Two Celiac C's and sun or moon (3 votes [12.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 12.00%

  9. Natural in Green (1 votes [4.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 4.00%

  10. Arch and Star like a ships bridge (1 votes [4.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 4.00%

Vote Guests cannot vote

59 replies to this topic

#1 Timber4est

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 06:52 AM

As I sat down for the past five days or so, trying to plan a cruise for my husband and I, I realized that in the “special diet” section only two ships show Gluten Free in the needs. When I called the others on the phone, several more also provided Gluten Free menu items. However, the planning phases of a nice cruise for 2007 (in the cruise industry not to early). Most of the ships have some really good chefs on staff and offer cooking classes on-board as one of the daily activities. Then it dawned on me.

We hold in our hands a way to:

#1 Get to know one another in real life
#2 Have a whole series of lectures from experts in the field of Celiac from diet, cooking, fitness and so much more if we can find interested parties.
#3 Take command of a whole ship, forcing those chefs to learn how to make us our cakes so we can eat them too. And then teach us their gourmet ways.
#4 Take a whole vacation without worrying about “Where the next gluten-free meal is going to come from”.

In addition to all the onboard activities there are many excursions in the ports, most of which I doubt have ever been forced to figure any snacks outside of fresh fruit for the one or two passengers they get for the port day-trips. If all or most of their days customers were gluten-free, they too would have to take into consideration our special diet needs, thus spreading the word about Celiac Disease” a little more.

After brain storming a bit, I got back on the phone with several of the nicer cruise lines and found out they do have group discounts, conference rooms and would have no problem with focus groups and their organization. For the “lectures” or focus groups, I thought that splitting things out into topics such as:

#1 Help, I’m tired and can’t get up
#2 Athletes with Celiac and how to cope
#3 Cooking the Celiac way (A title I have been toying with for my new cookbook)
#4 Coping with Celiac (for those that support us through our strange diet)

The possibilities are endless here. I priced out a 7-day vacation in Hawaii at a reasonable hotel with air fare and rental car (mid sized) and realized that it would be more expensive and didn’t have any activities or meals for our family of three included in the price. The ship includes everything except some of the shore excursions.

Most of the cruise lines offer the children clubs, where they break them down into smaller age groups, some cruise lines do this better.

The two cruise lines that have the most extensive gluten-free menus in place already are Holland and Princess, but after calling Celebrity, they also have a good gluten-free menu. My bet is that with a whole gluten free group, this menu would expand and grow. Thus, making cruises easier in the future for whichever cruise line we opt to take a “group cruise” on.

What do you guys think? If we were able to put together a Celiac Cruise and found some people willing to do a daily workshop like they do occasionally, would you be interested in it? When I called the cruise lines, they need to know the approximate anticipated size of the group prior to quoting out prices. My sister-in-law is a travel agent and has put together several group cruise packages kind of like this one, she said she would help me out if there are enough people interested to make it viable.

It would have to be in 2007 or 2008 depending upon the size of the group. But if done in 2007, from the planning aspect, time is short in getting it done. 2008 would be easiest from a planning stand point!

Anyhow, what I would like to know is who would be interested if we had one, what type of people would you like to see there for lectures (dietician is a given), what kind of focus groups and where would you like to set sail?

Price wise, Princess is the most reasonable, Celebrity offers the most for your money and Holland will pamper you like crazy (for a higher fee). I have more details if anyone wants to know them, but don’t know how much work I should continue doing on this idea if there is no interest.

A cruise would be nice, as it would open up people from the entire world and bring us all together in a gluten-free melting pot.

Deborah
  • 0
Diagnosed January 2006 after a 35 year battle.

Interested in a Gluten-Free Cruise symposium style? Visit the following link to give your input:

Gluten Free Cruise vacation and lecture series idea

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#2 VydorScope

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 06:57 AM

I think its a great idea! But it be 2008 before I could consider it.
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#3 mouse

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 06:59 AM

I went on Celebrity twice many years ago and we were so happy with everything. Our room and bathroom were great. And the food was top notch. I have no idea if it is the same now. I would love to do this, but would hope for 2008 and then maybe I would have the energy to fly to the cruise and really enjoy it. My husband says no more cruises, but I think I could get him talked into another one. It will be interesting to see how many say yes and how many really end up going. Good Luck as it is a great idea.
  • 0
"Throw yourself a pity-party and you'll be the only guest." - Earlene Fowler

Diag. Celiac Disease by positive blood test 2/03/2004
Allergies - corn, soy, casein, egg whites and wheat
Morphia Scleroderma
Osteoarthritis
Hypothyroid and Hperthyroid
Essential Tremors
Asthma
Migraines
Fibromyalgia - diag. in 1978 when they called it Fibrositis
PAD Peripheral Artery Disease
Angina and Atrial Fibrillation
Gluten Ataxia
Vitiligo
Scoliosis of the spine (caused by malabsorption and it is horribly painful) This would be enough reason for someone to go gluten free.
Ocular Myastenia Gravis

#4 bklyn

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 07:33 AM

Timber4est -
I recently attended a workshop given by Bob & Ruth's Dining and Travel Club. This husband and wife team travel to amazing places (including cruises) and all the food is gluten free. Here is their website for more ino - www.bobandruths.com or call (410)486-0292.
  • 0
Kathy C.
Ft.Lauderdale, Fl.

#5 Timber4est

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 08:18 AM

Woot, I got an email from a company I contacted last week (it was lost in my spam folder) and they are willing to do a sponsor of a cruise of $10,000 towards our total price AND provide a special registered dietician from their company to give workshops on a cruise if we have one of at least 100 people. They also indicated that they would pay an additional $10,000 per every 100 people we are able to do confirm book on a cruise.

This is a company that provides special dietary needs for many types of patients and they look at is as an "advertising expense" which they can write off, that is good news, I wonder how many of the companies that provide services us Celiacs use that are willing to do this. It would certainly decrease the overall costs of the cruise for sure!

Deborah
  • 0
Diagnosed January 2006 after a 35 year battle.

Interested in a Gluten-Free Cruise symposium style? Visit the following link to give your input:

Gluten Free Cruise vacation and lecture series idea

#6 jams

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 09:04 AM

I'd be interested. 2008 would be better for me as well. I have never done a poll, but maybe you should do a poll on this site. How awesome that a company would sponser something like this!!?? If one would do it, I am sure more would too! Thanks for checking into it!!
  • 0
Angi
Milw/Madison, Wisconsin
Diagnosed 12-2003 positive biopsy confirmed w/bloodwork
gluten-free from 5-2004

#7 Judyin Philly

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 09:22 AM

Timber4est -
I recently attended a workshop given by Bob & Ruth's Dining and Travel Club. This husband and wife team travel to amazing places (including cruises) and all the food is gluten free. Here is their website for more ino - www.bobandruths.com or call (410)486-0292.


Hi
Glad you knew who these people were becasue i was going to mention to Deborah too.
She might have info on how to go about it. Deborah, your sister-in-law being a travel agent is a great help.
I'd sure been interested and 2008 is ok for me. have to save up the $$$
Judy
  • 0
Judy in Southern CA

#8 Timber4est

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 09:39 AM

A poll, I haven't done that on this site either, but I would need to know three very important things for polls.

1. What region? In other words, where the cruise goes. (My thinking is Eastern Caribbean and 7-11 nights in length)
2. Length of cruise (4 day, 7 day 10-11 day)
3. Time of year.

In examining the choices a late fall/winter cruise seems to be the most economical. Many may not want to do that as there are many holidays in November/December/January, yet these months offer the most bang for the buck (in other words a lower cost). Plus, would make a nice “gift” as the knowledge and understanding would give a new lease on life to some (like me who is kinda in the dumps with this disease). What an amazing gift, the gift of “new lease on life” for 2009!

My husband has done the packages for the last three winter Olympics so we have all the ins for some really nice kits for sponsors to put their logos/samples/literature into. Some of the kits we have done in the past-included things such as:

-Luggage bag/tote bag
-Embroidered shirts (polo/long sleeve/t-shirt)
-Hats
-Toiletries
-Pens
-Note pads with nice jackets (this might be good for some insurance companies if we could get them or financial planning companies).
-Water bottles or bottles of water from companies willing to donate the actual water bottles (Coca-cola bottles Dasani, that might be a way to get them into a sponsorship)
-Vitamin packs
-Photography vests
- logo’d socks

Prices for these kits would vary due to several things like the total number of people going on the cruise and how many sponsors donate 50/50 (meaning partial money and partial product).

I’m just brainstorming here and will speak in detail tomorrow with the guy over one of the cruise lines about what they would allow in the form of corporate advertising from sponsors, but some of the ideas I have thought about are:

- Banners displayed in conference room during lecture/seminars
- Sponsors name mentioned at least once during each lecture/seminar
- Dinner table sponsor (could include pens/trinkets/business cards/ literature
- Sponsor an after-hours party
- Podium banner at lecture/seminars
- Ad in cruise magazine (would require coordination and allowance from cruise line)
- Sponsor logo on website with a link to their website
- Sponsor logo on above mentioned kit/t-shirt
- Category exclusivity
- Allow them a table and representative at an event/lecture/seminar that has to do with their products/services
- Sponsor an activity in port. For example a snorkel/diving company to sponsor a like activity at one of the ports
- Logo on PowerPoint presentations during lecture/seminars (the conference rooms have the equipment to do this)

I have hundreds of ideas, but I guess I really need to wait to put together my ideas till after I have had the chance to speak with the cruise lines. Also from you guys. Would you be okay with a November/December/January sailing if it were not over Thanksgiving/Christmas or New Year holidays? Or would you be okay if we could get the cruise package discounted enough to take the whole family through the form of corporate sponsorships?

I know, my mind is teaming here with the endless possibilities, but really an event like this, even if in the end of 2008 will require much planning so this isn’t too early to ask the questions and brainstorm with you guys.

Deborah

Feel free to email me at Deborah@deborahharr.com with questions/suggestions/ideas because if we are going to do this, it can’t be a one-woman show and will require assistance.
  • 0
Diagnosed January 2006 after a 35 year battle.

Interested in a Gluten-Free Cruise symposium style? Visit the following link to give your input:

Gluten Free Cruise vacation and lecture series idea

#9 Rusla

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 10:06 AM

I think it is a great idea. It would of course be a different price for us Canadians. We don't want to be visiting the Caribbean after the end of April because it is hurricane season until the beginning of October. So, I think April is a fine time to go. I am up for 2008 I don't care if it is Eastern or Western Caribbean, I would love to go to the Galapagos Islands but that is South America and very pricey. 7 or 11 days, don't care which. Seven days is probably better for most.
  • 0
Rusla

Asthma-1969
wheat/ dairy allergies, lactose/casein intolerance-1980
Multiple food, environmental allergies
allergic to all antibiotics except sulpha
Rheumitoid arthritis,Migraine headaches,TMJ- 1975
fibromyalgia-1995
egg allergy-1997
msg allergy,gall bladder surgery-1972
Skin Biopsy positive DH-Dec.1 2005, confirmed celiac disease
gluten-free totally since Nov. 28, 2005
Hashimoto's Hypothyroidism- 2005
Pernicious Anemia 1999 (still anemic on and off.)
Osteoporosis Aug. 2006


Creative people need maids.

#10 VydorScope

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 10:21 AM

I think it is a great idea. It would of course be a different price for us Canadians. We don't want to be visiting the Caribbean after the end of April because it is hurricane season until the beginning of October. So, I think April is a fine time to go. I am up for 2008 I don't care if it is Eastern or Western Caribbean, I would love to go to the Galapagos Islands but that is South America and very pricey. 7 or 11 days, don't care which. Seven days is probably better for most.



My birthday is APril 10th, so thats the week I suggest! :D
  • 0

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#11 Judyin Philly

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 10:27 AM

I think it is a great idea. It would of course be a different price for us Canadians. We don't want to be visiting the Caribbean after the end of April because it is hurricane season until the beginning of October. So, I think April is a fine time to go. I am up for 2008 I don't care if it is Eastern or Western Caribbean, I would love to go to the Galapagos Islands but that is South America and very pricey. 7 or 11 days, don't care which. Seven days is probably better for most.


Galapagos Islands I've always wanted to go there but people who've been there tell me it's so hard to get around..for me anyway...
judy
  • 0
Judy in Southern CA

#12 Timber4est

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 10:30 AM

LOL on April, my husbands birthday is the 12th and mine the 25th --he said April as well. But April is more expensive (guess is this is the best for everyone --we would need more corporate sponsorship).

Hehehe

On that note, I contacted my sister-in-law, as a travel agent, she gets to go on so many cruises all the time. She stated that Celebrity is by far the most bang for your buck and the better way to go. Princess she said you would be able to do it for less, but you should also expect less than you would be afforded on Celebrity for not that much more money. Holland she said would be best suited for that romantic/total pampered get away and plan on paying a minimum of 25-45% more over the same cruise on Princess or Celebrity.

Thus, if any of you care to "dream" or see what is available on Celebrity (if no one minds that I concentrate and focus on getting as much information as possible from them). You may visit their website at:


http://www.celebrity.com

So please, dream away and give your input as to what you would like to do, I will be busy trying to work out some "logo" ideas, but what would you like as the "3 word theme"?

"The Freedom of Celiac?" (ho hum-just a sample) as this would be an instructional/pleasure cruise? What are your ideas?

For those of you having mentioned the Galapogas Islands, you need to understand the cruises around the Galapogas Islands are very, VERY, very expensive in comparison. First you have to fly to South America, and the ships that do these cruises are very small, most around 400 passengers due to environmental impacts. Keeping that in mind, it would be an idea for future reference. I did check and from my airport to the port of sail, I would be into the trip from my home an additional $2,300 per person, economy class for airfare alone.
  • 0
Diagnosed January 2006 after a 35 year battle.

Interested in a Gluten-Free Cruise symposium style? Visit the following link to give your input:

Gluten Free Cruise vacation and lecture series idea

#13 kevsmom

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 11:10 AM

I think it is a wonderful idea. :) I definitely would be interested. Right now I am so afraid to go anywhere, that this would be a great experience. I look forward to meeting the people who have helped get me through this. 2007 or 2008 would be o.k. It gives me something to look forward to. :P

My aunt just returned from a Princess cruise to Hawaii. She is a seasoned cruise taker, but she was very dissapointed with this one. :huh: She said that she wouldn't do Princess again.

A couple of suggestions for on-board ideas might be:
1.) Gluten Free vendor demonstrations
2.) How to survive not eating at home - How to explain your needs and effects of cross contamination

Questions to ask might be:
1.) Will provided toiletries be gluten free?
2.) Will towels and bedding be washed in gluten free detergent?

There sure is a lot to think about. I appreciate your looking into this. :) :) Maybe as things firm up, we can all pitch in and help with some of the work.

Cindy
  • 0
Diagnosed with Celiac Disease April 2005
Diabetic

#14 Kasey'sMom

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 11:21 AM

Wow, this sounds like so much fun!! I've taken several cruises in the past but haven't travled much since I was diagnosed. I really miss traveling....... :(

I would LOVE to go!!! :D
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#15 Rusla

 
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Posted 12 February 2006 - 11:46 AM

Actually in most cases April is cheaper. I am going to Jamaica the beginning of March. It would have been $500 cheaper to go in April but I am flying.

I checked on the Galapapgos last year and it is about $5000. from Canada. Which makes me sad but some day I will go.
  • 0
Rusla

Asthma-1969
wheat/ dairy allergies, lactose/casein intolerance-1980
Multiple food, environmental allergies
allergic to all antibiotics except sulpha
Rheumitoid arthritis,Migraine headaches,TMJ- 1975
fibromyalgia-1995
egg allergy-1997
msg allergy,gall bladder surgery-1972
Skin Biopsy positive DH-Dec.1 2005, confirmed celiac disease
gluten-free totally since Nov. 28, 2005
Hashimoto's Hypothyroidism- 2005
Pernicious Anemia 1999 (still anemic on and off.)
Osteoporosis Aug. 2006


Creative people need maids.




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