Anakarina Alvarez has a highly unusual story to tell — one that includes lots of confusing twists and turns. She says her family had been eagerly looking forward to a tropical vacation aboard Norwegian Cruise Lines’ Gem. Unfortunately, those plans ended abruptly at embarkation when the cruise line denied boarding to her 11-year-old child. To add insult to injury, NCL refused the family’s $4,000 refund request, too.
If a cruise line makes a huge pricing mistake, is it required to honor it?
Patrick Gendron thinks so. He recently found an incredible deal for a suite on a 10-night cruise through the Mediterranean on Azamara’s Pursuit. So he quickly booked and paid for not one, but two suites. But the cruise line soon slammed him back into reality — the deal was a $30,000 pricing mistake. And the erroneous rate would not be honored for this cruise.
Now Patrick wants to know if we can force Azamara to give him the two suites for what he paid. But is his request reasonable?
This case brings up the controversial topic of “fat-finger fares” or “gotcha rates.” Those are too-good-to-be-true offers erroneously displayed on companies’ websites. Some consumers believe they should be entitled to these bargains regardless of the value of the pricing mistake.
But no matter which side of this debate you support, you’ll likely have an opinion about Patrick’s experience.
If a cruise line goes bankrupt while holding a customer’s cash, does the money just go down with the ship? That’s what many customers of Crystal Cruises have been asking since the cruise line went belly up earlier this year.
But the fear of bankruptcy and sudden shutdowns is not limited to this particular cruise line. Throughout the pandemic, our team has received a steady stream of concerned messages from cruise ship passengers. These travelers all have large sums of money tied up in various cruise lines via deposits and future credits.
Nicole Walsh is one of those would-be passengers who has been in a battle to retrieve nearly $4,000 from Crystal Cruises since last winter. The cruise line made repeated promises that her refund was on the way – right up until it announced its bankruptcy.
Now that Crystal Cruises has ceased to operate and its parent company is bankrupt, her cash is in no-man’s land.
With her travel agent unable to extract the refund from the bankrupt cruise line, Nicole hopes Consumer Rescue can help.
Norwegian Cruise Line forced a triple-vaccinated husband and wife to stay inside their cabin without reprieve for four days. And when the ship finally returned to New York, two burly NCL crew members inexplicably continued to prevent the couple’s escape. How is this possible? That’s what the bewildered COVID-negative duo wants to know.
Kelly Cotto and her husband had never taken a cruise before their bizarre experience. But after what they endured aboard Norwegian Cruise Line’s Gem, they likely never will again.
Royal Caribbean offered Stan Fernald and his wife the opportunity to bid on an upgraded cabin for their upcoming cruise. So they did. Then just days before the Liberty of the Seas set sail, the cruise line accepted their $4,200 RoyalUp bid. But this wasn’t welcome news for the couple. Not at all. By that time, they had paid Royal Caribbean thousands of dollars to switch to one of the largest suites onboard the ship.
The cabin Royal Caribbean awarded the couple through RoyalUp was actually a RoyalDown.
If your luggage goes missing on the way to your cruise, should you get a full refund? Pamela Shane thinks so. She says her pre-cruise hotel failed to deliver her suitcase to the dock in time for the ship’s departure. Now she wants $7,000 in compensation for the mistake that left her without her own clothes for the entire cruise.
But wait! There’s a plot twist here. The hotel says it doesn’t even offer such a luggage delivery service.
Stephen Delisle is a seasoned traveler with a proven track record of successfully navigating the globe – even during the pandemic. But Carnival Cruise Line put an end to that success streak. His family planned to celebrate Thanksgiving aboard Carnival’s newest ship, the Mardi Gras. Unfortunately, they never made it past the pier on the day of embarkation. That’s where Delisle was summarily denied boarding the cruise by the boat’s medical personnel.
Delisle says the crew members made an awful mistake when they refused to let him board the Mardi Gras. That error caused his family to miss their much-anticipated Carnival cruise.
To add insult to injury, Carnival firmly rejected Delisle’s refund request for the missed cruise. Now he’s asking us for help. He wants our advocacy team to properly investigate and prove this was the cruise line’s mistake, not his.
Can we do it?
The massive lifting of travel restrictions in the past few months came a little too late for Ann Shepherd. In April, she and her husband missed their much-anticipated Royal Caribbean cruise when Barbados rejected them for entry. As their cabin aboard the Grandeur of the Seas sailed unoccupied, the cruise line quickly refused Ann’s refund request.
Ann says this isn’t fair since she believes the Barbados Ministry of Health refused them by mistake. Now she’s hoping Royal Caribbean will offer a replacement cruise for the one they missed.
Unfortunately, this cautionary tale highlights the confusing evolution of travel requirements and restrictions before, during, and after the pandemic.
Whose mistake really caused this missed cruise? That’s the question for today.
The pandemic hit the cruise industry hard — that’s for sure. But did that global event change the refund rules for the cruise lines? Can a cruise line really cancel your trip and also refuse your refund request?
Of course, the answer to that question is “no.” But Elizabeth Ramirez says that’s exactly what NCL did to her — canceled her cruise and kept all her money.
Now Ramirez is asking our advocacy team to investigate and retrieve $7,300 from Norwegian Cruise Line.
If you hate your next shore excursion and the cruise line refuses your refund request, don’t expect a credit card dispute to save the day. It won’t. Joseph Campo can tell you.
After a salmon-fishing excursion in Alaska went all wrong, Campo asked Princess Cruises for his money back. When that didn’t happen, he filed a chargeback with his credit card company — and won. So he assumed that settled the matter.
It didn’t. Not even close.