Two hours, 57 minutes.
Never in my life have I been in a telephone queue for so long, not to change the electricity tariff, and not even to make an appointment at the Berlin Citizens' Registration Office.
Now I've been listening to Disney songs in an endless loop for what feels like an eternity, because I really want to book this one special trip with a Disney cruise ship to Hawaii.
Obviously, I'm not the only one.
But then, six minutes later, I am suddenly thrown off the line.
Has the travel dream come to an end?
Book a cruise for 2022 - that shouldn't be an overly daring, reasonably feasible plan, even in the age of pandemics.
But the year 2020 has shown: Nothing can be taken for granted any more, and certainly not at all.
Actually, I wanted to take the Disney ship off Honolulu in April 2020 - a special route that Disney Cruise Line (DCL) only offers every five to ten years: From Vancouver it goes across the North Pacific to Hawaii.
I wanted to stay there and explore the islands.
Today it is hard to believe that the beginning of 2020 was still a realistic plan.
At the end of March, however, the shipping company canceled the trip, offering at least 125 percent of the travel price as credit.
Not a bad deal, but the question remained: will it be another five years before this trip can be booked?
And then do I even get a cabin?
As rarely as Hawaii is offered, it is in great demand.
DCL fans can earn privileges with their loyalty - for example, those who travel often can book earlier than others.
The Disney forums have been discussing eagerly since April: When are we going to cruise again?
When will Hawaii finally be headed for?
When can I book?
And do you have any advantages if you have reserved a place for 2020?
The Disney cruise to Hawaii is on offer again
In October it will be announced: Hawaii will be on offer again in 2022.
But everyone who got a cabin for 2020 has to try their luck again.
After all, there are regular customer benefits: I have silver status, so I can book earlier than customers without status, but platinum and gold members are ahead of me.
And: if you want to use the credit on a canceled cruise, you have to book by phone.
Two weeks later the time has come, booking day for gold and platinum.
I read in real time in forums and Facebook groups who had to wait for how long, which categories are immediately booked out, and calculate my chances with only around 800
And finally I can call the next day.
When I was thrown off the line so abruptly after three hours and three minutes, I was shocked, but immediately dialed again.
According to the Facebook group, there are still a few cabins in the lowest category left.
Anyway, I just want somewhere on this ship that offers the perfect mix of escapism, Disney perfection and magic for me.
It then sounds nicer than the most beautiful Disney song when, after an honest two hours and 35 minutes, I am finally greeted in a professional American manner by a telephone operator.
I was previously afraid that my landline phone battery would not take part in these marathon calls.
But it works, I get one of the last cabins - and even pay less than the previous time.
I'll keep the rest as on-board credit.
For many tropical cocktails that I have earned!
Holidays in corona times - you should pay attention to this
Despite Corona, many people want a vacation.
The good news: Traveling in times of pandemics is not entirely impossible, but there are a few things to keep in mind.
This text is from WELT AM SONNTAG. We will be happy to deliver them to your home on a regular basis.
This text is from WELT AM SONNTAG.
We will be happy to deliver them to your home on a regular basis.
Source: Welt am Sonntag