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Refusal for a alternate cruise date

Discussion in 'Royal Caribbean' started by John Gregg, May 9, 2016.

  1. John Gregg

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    In Jan. I was scheduled to cruise with a small group on the Grandeur of the Seas from Balto. to the Caribbean. I was unexpectedly hospitalized for 6 days, & while recuperating from surgery & adapting to multiple new medications, my cardiologists forbid me to take our cruise as he said the medical risk was to great. Documentation of my medical situation was sent to the travel agency (Cru Con) & they requested a alternate cruise date on my behalf. RCCL refused the request without offering any option, such as a credit or voucher on a future cruise. RCCL's dismissive response makes me question their sense of corporate fairness in dealing with their customers.
    I'd like to appeal this situation to the management at RCCL hoping they may find a way to offer some solution to my grievance.
     
    #1
  2. Patina

    Patina Moderator
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    Did you sign up for a travel insurance policy for your cruise? Did you pay for the cruise with a credit card that offers travel insurance?
     
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  3. cp556

    cp556 Moderator
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    @John Gregg - First, I hope that you are feeling much better and are well on the road to recovery.

    As @Patina asked, did you purchase Royal Caribbean's insurance or a third-party travel insurance? Your situation is precisely what travel insurance helps cover.

    Depending on how close to sail date you cancelled, you may be due a partial refund. Penalties increase as you get closer to sailing date, and if you cancel within 14 days of sailing you are due only a refund of taxes and fees. If you cancelled outside 15 days there may be a higher refund due you. (I can only see the cancellation penalties that are in effect now ... not sure of the exact dates for older bookings such as yours. Info should be on your cruise confirmation from Royal Caribbean or the online agency.)

    You can appeal to Royal Caribbean by using our Company Contacts: http://elliott.org/company-contacts/royal-caribbean/

    Send a short, concise note to the Guest Relations email. Include pertinent details such as passenger name/ship/sail date/reservation # ... and a brief outline of the medical situation that necessitated your cancellation.

    If you've not heard from them in a week, escalate that email to the first executive contact, and proceed on up the line as/if needed.

    We've learned that short, polite messages seem to get the best response.

    Best of luck in your pursuit of this ....

     
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  4. johnbaker

    johnbaker Moderator
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    @John Gregg Here's the link to the RCCL contacts page http://elliott.org/company-contacts/royal-caribbean/

    Keep in mind that when you signed up for your cruise, you had to decline a product that would have covered you for this circumstance. The fairness is this case is not allowing you to receive the benefits from a product that you opted not to purchase.

    Your tone needs to reflect that you are asking them for a very large favor.
     
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  5. LaurieB

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    You will need to beg RCCL for any kind of adjustment.
    Just as an fyi - I picked this up off the Cru Con Travel Agency information on their website =

    What if I need to cancel?

    Why should I buy trip insurance?


    What if I need to cancel?
    All cancellation requests must be made in writing via fax or email to CruCon® Cruise Outlet. Guests are responsible for any/all cancellation fees that might be imposed by the cruise line in addition to an independent $100.00 per person cancellation fee from CruCon® Cruise Outlet. For details of your cruise line’s cancellation penalties, please see their website.

    Why should I buy trip insurance?
    CruCon® highly recommends that guests protect their cruise vacations and themselves by obtaining trip insurance. Guests can obtain coverage for trip cancellation, trip delay, missed connections, trip delay, medical coverage, accidental death/dismemberment, baggage loss and/or delay and many other incidents. In some cases if trip insurance is purchased through Travel Insured International, guests are even able to cover other trip components not booked through the cruise line or via CruCon® like airfare, hotel stays, and even car rentals so long as it is part of their overall cruise vacation.

    It is important to remember that insurance does not just protect the non-refundable portion(s) of your trip if you need to cancel but extends coverage for occurrences that your primary insurance, credit card company, or homeowner’s insurance might not cover at all or while you’re out of the country. No one intends to cancel their trip or become ill while they are away but it happens.

    In an age when the cruise lines are not providing credits or refunds for even the worst emergencies, trip insurance provides the sole opportunity to recoup monetary losses for covered reasons.

    Ask your CruCon® agent for details about the benefits of insurance prior to completing your reservation. If you, your traveling companion, or any family member might have a pre existing medical condition, let us know immediately. In such cases, insurance MUST be purchased at the time of initial trip deposit/payment to ensure full coverage.
     
    #5
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  6. jsn55

    Staff Member Advocate

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    So sorry, John, it must have been very disappointing not to be able to reschedule your cruise. When you contact RCCL as my colleagues have outlined, make your letter as concise as possible. You want someone to read it, understand it instantly, and route it on to the right department.

    We can't stress enough that you need to convey that you are very sorry that you didn't purchase the insurance and would they please do you this huge favor and let you take another cruise. We often call this "artful begging". Good luck, and please let us know the outcome.
     
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  7. Neil

    Neil Moderator
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    John, this is what they sell travel insurance for. Did you buy it?
     
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  8. John Gregg

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    No I didn't purchase travel insurance, in hindsight, that was a poor decision. I doubt I have any credit card protection either, but will investigate that further. I canceled the trip about 3-4 days before the sailing date, as that's when my doctors firmly insisted I not take the risk of being at sea & developing complications from my recent coronary hospitalization.
    Its very difficult to accept paying almost $3K up front & getting absolutely nothing in return. I appreciate the advice on contacting RCCL & moderating my tone, "artful begging" as you suggested. Any other tips you have would be helpful I'm sure. Will let you know how this situation develops.
     
    #8
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  9. John Gregg

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    One other piece of information I forgot to mention, CruCon, the travel agent, had the decency to waive their $100 cancelation fee after I provided a letter of documentation from my cardiologist. Hoping that RCCl might offer some gesture of goodwill as well.
     
    #9
    Last edited: May 12, 2016
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  10. Neil

    Neil Moderator
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    They probably won't as they rarely make exceptions but it is worth pursuing anyway. Sometimes you hit the right executive on a good day and they might allow you to rebook. The worst they can say is no and you never know- I have seen it happen many times here when I thought what would be slam dunk no turn into a yes with a well written letter.
     
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  11. SierraRose 49

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    LaurieB: Thank you for posting Cru-Con's detailed explanation about the need to purchase trip insurance. We have copied to pass along to friends/relatives who think there is NEVER a need to ever protect their trip.

    The most sound advice Cru-Con stated is: "No one intends to cancel their trip or become ill while they are away but it happens. In an age when the cruise lines are not providing credits or refunds for even the worst emergencies, trip insurance provides the sole opportunity to recoup monetary losses for covered reasons."

    Certainly hope Mr. Gregg is feeling much better and will be able to travel in the future. It will be interesting to see if RCCL gives him a future cruise credit (seriously doubt they will refund his $$$ or give a future cruise credit as he canceled 3-4 days before sailing and they may not have been able to re-sell his cabin). RCCL's cancellation policies detailed in their cruise docs are very clear about cancellation.

    The last few times we've booked trips/cruises, all the travel agents we use have been very emphatic about purchasing travel insurance. And they also read to us what we may forfeit if we don't.
     
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  12. Joe Farrell

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    How did you pay for the cruise?

    Check with your credit card company and see if they offer trip cancellation insurance . . . .

    Mine does - every single card I use does at some level - you just need to make sure you pay for the entire trip using the same card . . .
     
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  13. John Gregg

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    Did as many of you suggested & sent a Email appeal to RCCl Customer Service a week ago. Many of you also thought they might just ignore me, so far that's the case, but I'll wait another week before sending a second Email to RCCl management. Hoping they have the courtesy to at least respond.
    Lessons learned for me in this process are: travel insurance is advisable, & always charge to a credit card that offers some level of protection.
    I suppose the odds of getting any type concession aren't good, but will pursue it further.
     
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  14. cp556

    cp556 Moderator
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    I'm glad you're pursuing this, @John Gregg. I agree that next week is a good time to send the email to the first Royal Caribbean executive contact. Here's hoping it brings good resuls.
    Thanks for keeping us updated.
     
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  15. Neil

    Neil Moderator
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    As a travel agent, I don't see Royal giving you a credit. There are thousands of other people that have similar issues and if the cruise lines gave everyone who neglected to buy travel insurance credits or refunds they'd go broke.

    It's an expensive lesson about the importance of travel insurance.

    But still go through the process of writing and remember you are dealing with a holiday week so give your first letter a couple of more days. I never say it's impossible because you might hit an executive who makes an exception. I hope you will be successful.
     
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  16. AAGK

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    Could you share which credit card you used? As @Joe Farrell pointed out, many come with trip delay/cancellation these days. Since we don't necessarily look into those things until we need them, I wouldn't assume you don't have some form of something.
     
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  17. John Gregg

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    I used a AARP Visa card to charge the entire cruise cost. I looked over the brochure they sent me when I originally got the card & didn't see any provision for travel cancelation protection.
    Suppose I really should call them to make certain
     
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  18. cp556

    cp556 Moderator
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    I'd say it's definitely worth the time to either check online with the AARP Visa, or give them a call.
     
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  19. Neil

    Neil Moderator
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    CruCon never recommended purchasing travel insurance? If they didn't you can sue them in small claims court.
     
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  20. JVillegirl541

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    Hard to imagine they would not have offered as its a nice profite center and an easy sell. My TA sends a seperate statement saying the TI is important and make you acknowledge in writing that you are turning it down and you understand the risk you are taking.

    I just completed the purchase of TI with the Tripinsurancestore this morning for a cruise. I made my deposit 12 days ago.
     
    #20
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