How long would it take for Disney to re-staff the ships (with training)?

TiggerBouncy

DIS Veteran
Joined
Mar 4, 2013
Currently (AFAIK) cruises are set to resume end of September / beginning of October. We know it took a while for the ships to sail around and drop everyone off (mainly because of port restrictions). We should get an early warning bell of some sort of Disney's intent to resume operations by positioning of the ships which will take time, recalling of the crew which will take time, training of the crew on new procedures - which will take time.

If you add all of the things together which have to happen, what is the MINIMAL lead time that DCL would likely need to resume operations? So we have some kind of idea whether non-cancelled cruises or possible, or even some gauge as to if Disney intends to meet a date.

Does anyone have actual empirical knowledge of this? Assuming that Disney does not go to extraordinary circumstances or secretive moves or anything of that sort.
 

randumb0

Party at Mickey's
Joined
Oct 25, 2011
They would have to hire new staff as I'm sure not everyone would be willing to return. If you factor in passports, visas, medical exams and training I don't see how it could take less than 6 - 8 weeks.
 

T & R

More cowbell !!!
Joined
May 8, 2017
It depends how many ships they want to fire up at first. If it's just one ship, then they could prolly cobble together enough American/Canadian crew pretty fast, especially if they limit capacity with half the number of guests. You wouldn't need as much crew if you have half the number of cruisers.
 

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  • BartmanLA

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Apr 26, 2013
    A big factor is getting the crew members BACK to FL to re-join the ships, with the international travel restrictions going on right now, flying in from most countries to the US is prohibited right now, I honestly can't see the ships sailing back around picking up crew members like it did in repatriating them as it would take a significant amount of time. Until international travel into the United States can resume fully most crew members that are from other countries will find it very difficult to return to work on board the ships. And there doesn't seem to be any specific date where travel bans will be lifted that I've seen. So that would have a major impact on "re-crewing" in order to resume sailing. Also a number of cruise lines, NCL, P&O, Princess and a few others have suspended cruise operations until the end of October or beyond. Banking on Disney resuming based on cruises still "posted" on their site can't really be relied on completely. Also besides crew members being able to fly in, resumption of cruises would have to rely on guests being able to arrive in the US to board ships as well, again prohibitions will keep that from happening as well.
     

    bavaria

    <font color=deeppink>Makes the best of both worlds
    Joined
    Jan 3, 2001
    While I do think that there will be a lot of crew who want to resume their jobs as soon as possible on cruise ships, in order to provide income to their families, I do think that the contracts for American companies, with mainly American passengers, will not be preferable in the near future. The reality is that there are cruise lines currently operating in Europe, and in Asia, with a low portion of Americans cruising in normal times. I suspect that those are the more desirable work locations at this point for people considering a cruise contract in the near future.

    It is just the unfortunate reality that a few countries will continue to have to deal with restrictions and bans for longer than others, and this is a consideration for people, passengers as well as crew.
     

    T & R

    More cowbell !!!
    Joined
    May 8, 2017
    I do think that the contracts for American companies, with mainly American passengers, will not be preferable in the near future.
    I do not know if this is true but I've been told by many people in the service industry that Europeans do not tip or barely tip (Transatlantic cruise). If I was a cruise employee in a tip heavy industry like cruising, my only reason to be on the ship would be to earn money. So wouldn't I want to work with American clients who come from a society where tipping is expected? Just saying.
     

    _auroraborealis_

    I like marshmallows. And adult beverages.
    Joined
    Oct 18, 2015
    45-60 days, plus being able to get them in country, which is a huge wild card.

    Canadians cannot cross the border right now. And you won't get Americans working cabin steward jobs at the rate of pay offered.

    So, assuming you can get people in country, for ships sailing from PC, you have the following basics:
    • Get people into country.
    • Embark them.
    • 14 day quarantine in individual cabins before they are allowed to share space or work.
    • A few hiccups as people in 14 day test positive.
    • two weeks? of training.
    Assuming roughly 3 cycles of quarantine based on hiccups and getting people in (3x14=42) plus additional prep and training for the final group, plus resupplying the ship, puts you at 60ish days.

    Based on the repatriation guidelines from the CDC, we absolutely have to assume that the 14-day quarantines will be required embarking new crew, because current tests just say you are negative right that moment, and having just traveled to get to the ship... well, you can see the complicating factor, certainly.
     

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  • bavaria

    <font color=deeppink>Makes the best of both worlds
    Joined
    Jan 3, 2001
    I do not know if this is true but I've been told by many people in the service industry that Europeans do not tip or barely tip (Transatlantic cruise). If I was a cruise employee in a tip heavy industry like cruising, my only reason to be on the ship would be to earn money. So wouldn't I want to work with American clients who come from a society where tipping is expected? Just saying.
    In order for that assumption to be true, it would mean that there would not be much interest in working for companies or sailings in Asia and Europe. That certainly isn't the case. There are mandatory gratuities on many lines/regions. And keep in mind that the pay structure most places is different than in America ie restaurant servers are paid a good hourly wage and do not need to rely on tips. This is a consideration in some areas.

    I know many people who made excellent money working on cruises not populated by Americans. And certainly as a server in Europe we didn't feel the need to have American customers to make a good wage. And try and tip in some countries and you will have an uncomfortable reaction. I tried many times in the past to decline tips from Americans, and see unpleasant interactions around the globe.
     

    bbel

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 23, 2014
    It depends how many ships they want to fire up at first. If it's just one ship, then they could prolly cobble together enough American/Canadian crew pretty fast, especially if they limit capacity with half the number of guests. You wouldn't need as much crew if you have half the number of cruisers.
    The only problem with this is very few, if any, American/Canadian crew do the jobs that you need for the ship to function.
    Entertainment would be fine, but I've never met an American/Canadian incinerator room guy, or pot wash or deck hand...

    **Edited to add, I've never met these people working onboard a cruise ship (I know they exist in other areas of life lol) which I thought might be obvious given the topic and board were on, but apparently not...**
     
    Last edited:

    bbel

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 23, 2014
    Technically, if all restrictions are lifted or there are exemptions made for crew, you can get everyone onbaord in a day or two and then however long they wanted training or any quarantine to take.

    I work for RC and in the last few weeks we've had the information/plan in place for going back (as crew are coming and going frequently to replace those who are needed who have to go on 'vacation')
    We have to quarantine at home for 2 weeks, have a test 72 hours before the flight. Then once onboard another 2 week quarantine in a solo cabin.
    I can only assume that DCL will follow a similar plan.
     

    T & R

    More cowbell !!!
    Joined
    May 8, 2017
    In order for that assumption to be true, it would mean that there would not be much interest in working for companies or sailings in Asia and Europe. That certainly isn't the case. There are mandatory gratuities on many lines/regions. And keep in mind that the pay structure most places is different than in America ie restaurant servers are paid a good hourly wage and do not need to rely on tips. This is a consideration in some areas.

    I know many people who made excellent money working on cruises not populated by Americans. And certainly as a server in Europe we didn't feel the need to have American customers to make a good wage. And try and tip in some countries and you will have an uncomfortable reaction. I tried many times in the past to decline tips from Americans, and see unpleasant interactions around the globe.
    Just going by what people have said on this board regarding the Transatlantic sailings. There were several saying that CM's didn't make as much because the Europeans would remove the auto-gratuity from their onboard charges. Could not be true but many of the comments were from seasoned DCL vets who have been on many cruises and on this board for some time and I have discovered to be credible.
     
  • T & R

    More cowbell !!!
    Joined
    May 8, 2017
    I've never met an American/Canadian incinerator room guy, or pot wash or deck hand...
    Next time you are out to eat, go back in the kitchen and you will meet an American dish/pot washer or go down to any dock and you will meet an American deck hand. They're not going to come to your table and introduce themselves to you. Just because you've never met one doesn't mean there are not millions of them servicing the ships and restaurants in our country. DCL could also use private security companies to take over for the Nepalese. We're just staffing half of one ship, wouldn't take much.
     

    bavaria

    <font color=deeppink>Makes the best of both worlds
    Joined
    Jan 3, 2001
    Next time you are out to eat, go back in the kitchen and you will meet an American dish/pot washer or go down to any dock and you will meet an American deck hand. They're not going to come to your table and introduce themselves to you. Just because you've never met one doesn't mean there are not millions of them servicing the ships and restaurants in our country. DCL could also use private security companies to take over for the Nepalese. We're just staffing half of one ship, wouldn't take much.
    I'm going to take the information from (non-American) cruise employees, who have worked for multiple lines in various areas of the globe, over the word of an American cruise ship passenger. That includes the poster here on this thread who has posted their experiences as a non-American, who has worked for various lines over the years. And that also includes the people in my private life who have had similar experiences.

    Again, the reality is that there are places considered safer to be right now, and a cruise ship is not considered one of the safest. Factor in mostly American passengers who came from American destinations, and the perceived safety is even lower. That makes other options more attractive for (non-American) passengers as well as crew right now.
     

    Jodi

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 14, 2005
    Technically, if all restrictions are lifted or there are exemptions made for crew, you can get everyone onbaord in a day or two and then however long they wanted training or any quarantine to take.

    I work for RC and in the last few weeks we've had the information/plan in place for going back (as crew are coming and going frequently to replace those who are needed who have to go on 'vacation')
    We have to quarantine at home for 2 weeks, have a test 72 hours before the flight. Then once onboard another 2 week quarantine in a solo cabin.
    I can only assume that DCL will follow a similar plan.
    So since you have a better gist of what's doin' in the industry, what chances do you think that our Feb 27 2021 cruise 1. actually happens 2. looks like a "normal" cruise Can/will DCL cruise at a reduced capacity so peeps don't have wear masks, etc?
     

    bavaria

    <font color=deeppink>Makes the best of both worlds
    Joined
    Jan 3, 2001
    So since you have a better gist of what's doin' in the industry, what chances do you think that our Feb 27 2021 cruise 1. actually happens 2. looks like a "normal" cruise Can/will DCL cruise at a reduced capacity so peeps don't have wear masks, etc?
    NCL has delayed until at least 1st November. There are cruises operating in other parts of the world, and have been for several weeks/months. However the reality is that cruising will not return to 'normal' or even resume in some parts of the world. Nor would most Americans be able to travel to locations where cruising has resumed right now.

    Forecasting Q1 2021 would be extremely difficult at this point.
     

    apathetic

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 16, 2013
    Whatever time it takes to get crew back (I'm assuming at least a month with travel restrictions), you have to factor at least 30 days of quarantine. And those 30 days will increase with every positive test. You could be talking months if people keep testing positive. Then you bring in passengers who the expose the crew again. This is why it's hard to imagine cruises before a proven, effective vaccine.
     

    T & R

    More cowbell !!!
    Joined
    May 8, 2017
    Assuming roughly 3 cycles of quarantine based on hiccups and getting people in (3x14=42) plus additional prep and training for the final group, plus resupplying the ship, puts you at 60ish days.
    So since Canadians can still fly into the U.S. and my Disney Dream cruise is in 63 days, it still has a chance? Just kidding, I know the answer.
     

    icc2515

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Sep 11, 2010
    So since you have a better gist of what's doin' in the industry, what chances do you think that our Feb 27 2021 cruise 1. actually happens 2. looks like a "normal" cruise Can/will DCL cruise at a reduced capacity so peeps don't have wear masks, etc?
    While I do not have a knowledge of the cruise industry, I do consider myself pretty well versed in the Walt Disney Company. I don't think that you will see any Disney cruises until there is a widely distributed vaccine. The very last thing that Disney wants is to see a headline of a corona virus riddled ship not being allowed to dock in America and that ship is a Disney ship. Nope, not gonna happen. They did not want to open the parks, but their hand was forced by Universal. Other cruise lines starting up will not force DCL hand, as DCL does not contribute enough to Disneys bottom line and definitely will not with a 50% or less capacity. When you think about Corona virus and ships most people immediately think of Princess. Disney does not want their name in the same sentence.

    The only exception to this is they might run 1 ship back and forth to Castaway on 3 day cruises with a day of deep cleaning in between. I for one think this would be a great time.
     

    OKW Lover

    Retired and living 2 miles from The Castle.
    DIS Lifetime Sponsor
    Joined
    Apr 29, 2004
    I think that there are a lot of crew members that are itching to get back. Most come from poorer nations and the ships provide them with a means to provide for their family. Disney (or any cruise line) wouldn't have to train somebody brand new. They can re-hire those that have worked for them before. Some remedial training in new health procedures could be done in a couple of weeks.
     

    bbel

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 23, 2014
    Next time you are out to eat, go back in the kitchen and you will meet an American dish/pot washer or go down to any dock and you will meet an American deck hand. They're not going to come to your table and introduce themselves to you. Just because you've never met one doesn't mean there are not millions of them servicing the ships and restaurants in our country. DCL could also use private security companies to take over for the Nepalese. We're just staffing half of one ship, wouldn't take much.
    I wont, because I'm not American and dont live in the US...
    And I'm not completely stupid I know they exist, duh! But as we're talking about cruise ships so saying you'll meet Americans in America is completely irrelevant. They dont exist in the cruise industry (I've worked multiple contracts, on many different classes of ship and two different companies).
    Americans and Canadians (Brits and Australians too) wont do that job onboard a cruise ship for the pay and living conditions they get in return. They fact you very very rarely meet American/Canadian servers (on board a cruise ship, I know they exist in other parts of life), kinda proves that you wont find them in a messier job working longer hours on less pay and with even less privileges (onboard a cruise ship).
    Now, if they raise the pay, put money into improving living conditions, let them work less hours and let them roam the ship in their free time, maybe they'll be interested....
     




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