A file of the Event Notices to Participants is available here Event Notices including Event Plan March 2020
Mallorca Cruise Cancelled
We had a conference call yesterday including members of the cruise committee – Jock Macrae, Fred Deichmann, Mark Ellis , and the Commodore, Vice-Commodore, and Fleet Surgeon to discuss where we were headed on the Mallorca Cruise. I had had a long chat with Fleet Surgeon Jeff Wisch earlier in the afternoon and it was his view that we are not going to want to take our troops to Spain in September. Even if travel restrictions are lifted, the likelihood of an effective therapy or vaccine being available by then is low and as such the risk of contracting the virus will remain as an ongoing threat. The idea of being at the mercy of the Spanish health care system would not be attractive. We are a vulnerable population and should not be exposing ourselves to risk.
Question 2 was where do we go from there – Cancel or Postpone?
The loss on the event fees is trivial – approximately $50 per person has been spent.
The financial loss on the bareboat charters to most of us amounts to 25 % of the total anticipated charter fee. The typical contract had a 25% non-refundable deposit that was paid on signing. The second 25% was generally due in March but the operators agreed to delay collection until May. In light of the circumstances, the operators will likely be prepared to give credit toward future use but not refund cash.
The loss to those booking on the mothership Rhea may be a function of whether the vendor will be able to deliver as contracted or whether it is a Force Majeure event. We have been in discussions with them for several weeks now.
Your airfares should be refundable by law. We understand from the press that the airlines have been trying to offer future credits rather than refunds. If you accept the credit, you will likely be stuck with it. Probably not a problem if a domestic carrier but of less value if coming from a foreign carrier. If you are prepared to wait until notice of the flight being cancelled, it is my understanding that they are obliged to give you a cash refund.
We discussed the idea of postponing for a year. While it could allow some value to be achieved on the charter deposits, it was felt that the demand for a foreign adventure in 2021 would be weak vs participating in the Apostle Islands or Newfoundland Cruises. Vice-Commodore Otorowski suggested we might think of Mallorca again in 2023.
So, the consensus was we cancel the event. These are certainly unusual times. We hope you will agree that our losses are modest in comparison to those of the vendors we have been working with and others out there much less fortunate than ourselves. By making this decision now, we reduce the anxiety around us.
I have discussed our decision with Sublime Charters. They will contact each of you regarding your boat booking options. Fred Deichmann and I are working with Sublime on unwinding the Rhea Charter and we will keep those of you involved up to date on our progress. Peter Chandler is standing by to issue refund cheques for $100 of the $150 per person event fee you have paid to date. (I am sure the Bonnell Cove Foundation would welcome a donation). Let me know as I will draw up a list of who to pay.
Les Crane Chair Jock Macrae Co-chair
April 15, 2020