Fans ‘Devastated’ Over Hallmark Cruise News

Hallmark cruise sold out

Heavy/Getty Hallmark's first-ever cruise sold out within hours of pre-sale launch

Days after Hallmark fans celebrated news of the network’s first-ever Hallmark Channel Christmas Cruise, many are expressing shock and frustration upon learning that the five-day cruise, with prices ranging from $800 to $8,000, sold out within hours of its pre-sale kickoff on July 18, 2023.

When the November 2024 cruise was first announced on July 11, fans who registered for the pre-sale were then emailed a specific “early booking time” — a window sometime between July 18 at 10 a.m. Eastern time and July 21 at 2 p.m. Eastern time — when it would be their turn to choose and book a stateroom.

Though the site did say Hallmark could not guarantee room availability for all, most pre-registered fans expected to have at least some rooms to choose from when their turn came up.

Instead, hours after the first pre-registered fans got to book their rooms, Hallmark announced that the entire ship had already sold out. The company handling booking for what’s been billed as a star-studded cruise, Sixthman, is now allowing pre-registered fans to sign up for a waiting list in case of cancellations, but with a deposit of $199.

Here’s what you need to know:

Hallmark Issues Statement Addressing ‘Record-Breaking’ Response

Hallmark alerted pre-registered fans about the cruise’s sold-out status via email on July 18 and then announced the news on Instagram and Facebook, encouraging people to sign up for its waitlist, in case of cancellations. Those who pre-registered and received an early booking time were given first dibs, allowed to join the waitlist with a $199 deposit at or after the early booking time they were given. Those who didn’t pre-register, the site explains, can join the waitlist when it “opens to the public” on July 21 at 2 p.m. Eastern time.

While many who managed to book a room expressed their excitement in the comment sections of Hallmark’s social media posts, others who were shut out responded on social media with a mix of confusion, sadness and anger.

On Facebook, one woman wrote, “Super sad never been on a cruise was making it a girls weekend and my booking date is tomorrow and it’s already sold out 😞.” 

Another wrote, “They should not have offered more presale spots than cabins on the ship. Our time spot is Thursday. I get not maybe getting the cabin you want but should at least have been able to get on the ship.”

On Instagram someone commented, “Devastated is an understatement 😭😭💔my booking time slot isn’t until tomorrow😿 waitlist it is with my fingers crossed!”

Someone else wrote, “How can this be sold out already??? My booking date was July 20th and I didn’t even get a chance! 😡”

Another upset fan commented, “Totally rigged it wouldn’t let me log in multiple times, said my username was invalid even changed my password using the username they emailed me😡 not impressed”

On Facebook, Hallmark issued a statement in the comment section to address the confusion, writing, “There is overwhelming excitement and enthusiasm for the Hallmark Channel Christmas Cruise. Thank you! Signing up for the presale reserved your place in line to book on a first come, first served basis. Due to the record-breaking amount of people who signed up for pre-sale booking, all staterooms are currently sold out!”

The statement continued, “Booking times were assigned in the order that you joined the pre-sale and you can join the Waiting List once your booking time is active for the best chance at coming along on the cruise! When we have cancellations, we will make those staterooms available in the order of the waitlist.”

Hallmark Hasn’t Announced Which Stars Will Be Onboard Christmas Cruise

Hallmark’s first-ever cruise, scheduled to travel from Miami to the Bahamas in November 2024, promises to have lots of Christmas activities, from a tree lighting ceremony to the world premiere of one of Hallmark’s “Countdown to Christmas” movies, plus a bevy of stars on board, though no names have been announced yet.

In fact, it’s possible that talent hasn’t even been approached yet to attend the cruise. When a fan tweeted actor Ryan Paevey on July 18 that she hoped he was considering going on the cruise, he responded, “They’d have to invite me…”

Despite not knowing which stars will be in attendance, fans rushed to book their rooms as soon as they received their “early booking” access links. Held on the Norwegian Gem, per People, the ship is one of the smallest in Norwegian’s fleet, according to U.S. News and World Report, which says it can carry 2,394 passengers and 1,070 crew members.

On Facebook, one fan wrote, “We need a bigger boat!!!!!!!” and others questioned why Hallmark hadn’t reserved a larger cruise ship. With the cruise over a year away, one fan suggested they may be able to switch boats to allow more people in.

“They sold out in one day, with over a year away they could try to get a bigger ship,” she suggested.

Some fans were complimentary of the Hallmark cruise’s surprise sell-out, including one who didn’t get to book but wrote on Instagram, “Congratulations on a record fast 1 day sellout – shows the Hallmark fan universe is loyal and vast.”

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