Royal Caribbean terrible experience

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Feb 16, 2016
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#1
Michael Bayley CEO Royal Caribbean

I would like to start off with introducing myself. My name is Joan Olivieri however, I go by the name J.R. I live in Boynton Beach, Florida. I am a 70 year old vibrant, happy and healthy lady. I am a wife, mother and grandmother. I was a professional model, dancer and make-up artist and I am presently working with a billion dollar company called Jeunesse Global. So you see I have led and still do lead a very active life.

On January 16-21st my husband and I cruised on the Independence of the Seas and had a horrific experience which I am about to explain. We arrived on the ship as scheduled and was able to enter our room to place our valuables in the safe and my medications in the medicine chest. We then proceeded to poolside where I danced (which you have on your videos) and waited for our luggage to arrive.

Returning to our room at 2:30 to see if our luggage had arrived, it had and was outside our door. We then tried to unlock our door and both our cards did not work. Our room attendant Jean who was simply lovely and wonderful told us she had also tried to get in to put our luggage away , and as well her card did not work. She had informed us that the lock was broken and she had called for someone to come and repair it almost an hour before we even got there. We waited over 3 hours and still no one came to help us. I was left sitting in a narrow hallway for that period of time and was extremely annoyed, frustrated, hungry and tired. Being so upset I decided personally to go to Guest Services to complain. At the Guest Services desk I spoke with Gemma McKever and I quote " This is totally unacceptable we have been waiting over 3 hours for someone to come and fix our broken lock. I am so upset I could just kill myself"

Upon returning to room after speaking with GS it was now 5:30 and they just arrived to fix the broken lock. We got our luggage into our room by 6pm and decided to go immediately to eat dinner. When we opened our door there were 5 security guards at our door, at which time they told me I was not allowed to leave my room . We were shocked and appalled and had no idea what was happening. A very nice deputy security officer Tej Cheena explained the situation and a very nasty GS supervisor Tyler Parker explained the same situation saying he could put me off the ship. Of course we were still in shock as never thinking this was really happening.

I was ordered to stay in the room till the ships doctor came to speak to me. Dr. Christintain Lintermans arrived a little later and proceeded to ask me many personal and heath questions which I had no problem answering. The doctor told me I must stay in the room till he can contact a physiatrist on shore for me to speak with. My husband who was allowed to leave the room went to GS to talk with a supervisor and again this Tyler Parker told him "I could have your wife put off this ship" At this point there was a female guard at our door keeping it unlocked and opening it every 1/2 hour which was extremely embarrassing for my husband to shower and dress. At 10pm the guard told us to follow her to the ships doctor, when we got there he had Dr. Manuel Melendez from Miami to speak with me. The first thing Dr. Melendez said to me and again I quote "I just received an e-mail saying that you wanted to JUMP OVERBOARD. I was totally shocked beyond belief. How could the only person I spoke with Gemma McKever falsified my original statement that I made? Those words are not even in my vocabulary to say. What I did say was from the frustration they created which was not even near what she stated.

Of course within 2 minutes the two doctors conversed and the both agreed I was fine. Now I ask you could anyone enjoy the rest of their vacation? With all the embarrassment and humiliation that I indued all I expected was an apology, which I never got. Needless to say I will never travel with RC, being in the people industry as I have for over 40 years I think you need some serious training for you GS. Our trip obviously was a total disaster thanks to your GS staff Gemma McKever and a very rude Tyler Parker.

I am home now but this ordeal is still haunting me. Please train your staff to use common sense and be more courteous and considerate to passengers.
Respectfully,
J.R. Olivieri
 

mmb

Verified Member
Jan 20, 2015
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#2
JR --- I realize how upset you were and are, but I personally think you need to take some responsibility for this situation.
I have been upset many times in my life and have never uttered anything to the effect of killing myself. That you may use this particular phrase from time to time is not something GS workers would know upon meeting you.
If you had taken your life, your husband would now being suing them for causing your death and/or not taking your statement seriously.
Just looks to me like a no-win situation for them.
 
Feb 16, 2016
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Boynton Beach, Fl
#3
First of all, I never made the statement the GS person said I did. She made up her own story. How many times does a person say oh I'm so upset i'm gonna kill my self or even sometimes when your mad at your kids you say oh i'm gonna kill you.None the less it could of been handled in a proper way not with 5 guards at my door keeping me in the room 8 hrs. It would of been a little nicer if maybe the one nice man came into our room and explained the situation as we truthfully had no clue what was going on. Remember it is not what you say it's how you say it and they could of been a lot nicer about it. Even if i was a a nut case or whatever that nasty man who kept saying I can have you put off the ship could make matters worse. You weren't there and it was a frightening experience!!!! Sorry you feel this way
 

johnbaker

Verified Member
Oct 2, 2014
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#4
@J.R. By stating "I could just kill myself" you met a classic suicidal symptom which set off the alarm bells that it should have.

Sorry, anyone that has been trained to spot the symptoms would have responded in a similar manner, while embarrassing to you, was for your own well being. You left them no choice but to respond in the manner in which they did until you were cleared by someone who was trained to do it.

I would advise you to find a new saying
 
Feb 16, 2016
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Boynton Beach, Fl
#5
But did you not read that they said I was going to jump overboard!!!! Again it was not necessary to of had 5 guards outside my door where was i going and one gentlemen would of been sufficient to explain to us the issue!!! There was pictures of me dancing on this ship which they video and having a great time and trust me they could tell what kind of a lady i was.
 

Carol Phillips

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 28, 2014
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Coastal South Carolina
#6
I'm sorry to hear of your experience with Royal Caribbean.

How may we assist you? I may have misread, but did not see a request for assistance/advice.

Since you've already written to Michael Bayley, the CEO, it's difficult for us to offer the suggestion to visit our Company Contacts at the top of this page and contact Guest Services .... but if you've not received a reply from Mr Bayley yet, you may wish to do so. Follow the ladder of contacts, starting with the first level, and allow one week in between each contact to permit time for the reply.

Your letter to them, though, should contain a request. Unless you wish to just inform them about your experience.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
12,734
12,713
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New York
www.promalvacations.com
#7
You admit you said you could just kill yourself and then get mad they thought you might? You must be kidding if you think a cruise line is not going to take you seriously!

They don't know you and honestly, that was a ridiculous remark, you didn't have to sit in the hallway, you could have been enjoying the ship during that time.

You are responsible for the debacle you set yourself up for and I applaud RCCL for taking action. People DO get on cruise ships to commit suicide. As someone said before, had you been serious and actually did something, your husband would have been suing them. They HAD to take action to prevent this.

If you feel you need to complain to Royal, we have a list of company contacts on top of our page you can write to but honestly, I think if you write to them they are absolutely going to stand by their actions.

If that is the worst thing that could happen to you on a cruise you are very lucky. Thank your lucky stars you weren't on the Anthem. And no, I have never been so dramatic to day so rad going to kill myself over anything, let alone a broken door lock.

BTW, Royal doesn't read these posts so you should send your complaint directly to them.
 
Aug 28, 2015
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#8
When unpacking a food delivery order I once exclaimed, "if they forget the ketchup again I'm going to kill myself!"


My partner wasn't concerned, obviously. Of course they forgot the ketchup. They brought it in an hour when the burger was cold. I think it is clear where I am going with this.... Some people are more prone to hyperbolic speech. Only a total moron could interpret @J.R. exclamation as anything other than frustration. I am with her. I think she deserves a refund on the cruise.
 
Likes: J.R.

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
12,734
12,713
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#9
When unpacking a food delivery order I once exclaimed, "if they forget the ketchup again I'm going to kill myself!"


My partner wasn't concerned, obviously. Of course they forgot the ketchup. They brought it in an hour when the burger was cold. I think it is clear where I am going with this.... Some people are more prone to hyperbolic speech. Only a total moron could interpret @J.R. exclamation as anything other than frustration. I am with her. I think she deserves a refund on the cruise.
The cruise line had no way to know if she was exaggerating or not. A cruise ship is a very easy place to commit suicide and people DO do it. They could not take a chance whether she was kidding or not. They did the right thing.
 
Aug 28, 2015
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New York
#10
@J.R. Let's rework your letter. I understand your intent is to establish your vibrancy to prove you aren't suicidal but don't come at it from that angle, it gives the impression of trying too hard. Let's start with the assumption that you are not and anyone who is normal would know that and focus on your detainment and humiliation, both valid causes of action if you were to sue for damages.
 

Grant Ritchie

Dependable adequacy :-)
Oct 1, 2014
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#12
Dear J.R.,

Have you shared your concerns with Royal Caribbean? Mr. Bayley may or may not see your letter here. To ensure he does see it, please follow the steps below:

First, complete and submit the Contact us" form you'll find here:
Give them a week to get back to you. If they don't or you don't like what they have to say, escalate your appeal to the executives you'll find listed here:


Send short, polite emails to, one at a time, with a week between each, the Primary Contact, Secondary Contact and Chief Executive.

Save all your correspondence and if you don't receive satisfaction, feel free to complete and submit the Elliott.org "Help" form you'll find here:


Good luck!

Grant Ritchie
Senior Lead Advocate
 
Likes: jsn55
Mar 17, 2015
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#13
JR, when you do re-write to RCCL, please shorten the letter. And please also take some responsibility for the comment. Whether the reaction was over the top or not, it may be how the employees are trained and/or life experiences. I don't think I have ever used the term, "I will kill myself" rather, I like, "I'll die, I'll just die." Same sentiment. That being said, I would probably watch who I said this around.

Be polite, be succinct, as in, I am sorry I made the hyperbolic statement but under the circumstances, I was frustrated with having to wait over 3 hours for someone to fix a lock. I also understand that while my friends and family are used to me using this phrase, it may have been jarring for a stranger to hear. But, a simple review of the situation and a quick chat with me should have cleared up any and all misconceptions. My comment did not arise to the level it was escalated to by your employee.

I think you are due some compensation, I am not sure you are due an entire refund, but you may certainly ask.
 

AMA

Verified Member
Dec 11, 2014
862
1,112
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#14
When you go through airport security, do you make jokes about wanting to blow things up? That will land you in jail so fast your head would spin. The cruise line did absolutely the right thing to protect a potentially suicidal passenger. In the future you might be a little more circumspect with your choice of words.
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
6,643
6,644
113
San Francisco
#15
Well, JR, I'm very sorry that this happened to you. My colleagues have laid out very good advice. Make a list of the facts, leave out all the extraneous information, apologize for saying such a silly thing and ask them for an apology because you were treated rudely at one point.

I realize that you upset yourself greatly with this incident, but the reality is that the cruise line followed protocol. You have obviously never been "in charge" of a group; when there is weird behaviour, the group leader must take action, s/he has no choice. No competent GS person would take the responsibility of evaluating your mental state, that needs to be done by a qualified physician. Five guards at your door seems a little excessive, but we don't know what RCCL's protocol calls for in this instance.

Your post appears, for some reason, under "Travel Tips". Please move it to "Cruises" where it may help others.
 
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Sep 19, 2015
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#16
JR while it was annoying inconvenience to be locked out of your room for 3 hours, most people do not resort to saying that they are so upset as to kill themselves. And asking the crew to review the tape to see you dancing is not realistic. Have you ever had a friend or loved one diagnosed with bipolar disease? One of close friends was able to be active and upbeat and working and in a few hours he would decline into a frightening despair. This friend did attempt suicide several times. And when there is a perceived risk of self harm (whether the risk is real or not) public carriers err on the side of extreme caution. One guard cannot often control a person who is intent on self harm and that is why there were several. I think you need to rethink your choice of words, such hyperbole does not serve any purpose. In the last year I have been in numerous frustrating travel situations with others, including a high speed train in Europe that broke down and arrived over 6 hours late (on a 2 1/2 hour trip), and there was no one threatening to kill themselves. The train ran out of bottled water and food and yet there was no hyperbole. I walked the length of the train several times and the passengers while annoyed and complaining, there were no outbursts. And as an aside, my bipolar friend is stable thanks the medication and therapy and is a functioning member of society with a job and advanced degrees. Please rethink your words. And considering there was a suspected suicide late last year on a Royal Caribbean cruise line one should not be surprised at their response,
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#17
When unpacking a food delivery order I once exclaimed, "if they forget the ketchup again I'm going to kill myself!"


My partner wasn't concerned, obviously. Of course they forgot the ketchup. They brought it in an hour when the burger was cold. I think it is clear where I am going with this.... Some people are more prone to hyperbolic speech. Only a total moron could interpret @J.R. exclamation as anything other than frustration. I am with her. I think she deserves a refund on the cruise.
Royal Caribbean does not know these people and how they respond to frustration. Someone jumped overboard recently (November 2015) on one of their cruise ships (Oasis of the Seas) and there is likely to be a lawsuit. So I am not sure that the staff were being "morons" as you so put it. RC is now erring on the side of extreme caution.
 
Aug 10, 2013
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Atlanta
#18
When unpacking a food delivery order I once exclaimed, "if they forget the ketchup again I'm going to kill myself!"


My partner wasn't concerned, obviously. Of course they forgot the ketchup. They brought it in an hour when the burger was cold. I think it is clear where I am going with this.... Some people are more prone to hyperbolic speech. Only a total moron could interpret @J.R. exclamation as anything other than frustration. I am with her. I think she deserves a refund on the cruise.
I'm going to go out on a limb here. It simply isn't true that only a moron would interpret a statement like that as literal. Certainly she could be "prone to hyperbolic speech". She could also be mentally unstable and crying out for attention. Someone who doesn't know her shouldn't have to figure out the difference. Not only is it a huge matter of liability to the cruise line, but think how guilty those that heard her threats would feel if she actually did kill herself?

My father committed suicide. I found out after he died that he had told several other people about it, although he had never said anything to me. They made an assumption, based on his personality, that he wasn't serious. Then he actually did it. And almost succeeded; he was recessitated by paramedics, declared to have no brain activity by a neurologist almost 2 days later, and being his next of kin I had to make the decision to remove him from life support. Two of those people, that I know of, still visit a therapist 10 years later. It took me about 7 years to even be able to admit it to anyone outside of my immediate family. I'm not embarassed anymore, and I just want others to understand how seriously people need to take threats of suicide by anyone.

To imply that suicide is a joke or that we should make assumptions about others mental state is dangerous. Frankly, I find it somewhat disturbing that anyone would entertain the thought that we shouldn't, as a society, react with extreme precaution. I'm glad to see the majority of posters see it this way.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#19
First of all, I never made the statement the GS person said I did. She made up her own story. How many times does a person say oh I'm so upset i'm gonna kill my self or even sometimes when your mad at your kids you say oh i'm gonna kill you.None the less it could of been handled in a proper way not with 5 guards at my door keeping me in the room 8 hrs. It would of been a little nicer if maybe the one nice man came into our room and explained the situation as we truthfully had no clue what was going on. Remember it is not what you say it's how you say it and they could of been a lot nicer about it. Even if i was a a nut case or whatever that nasty man who kept saying I can have you put off the ship could make matters worse. You weren't there and it was a frightening experience!!!! Sorry you feel this way
Most people manage to deal with frustrations of life without making public verbal statements that they are going to kill themselves or others. It is one thing to think something or say it in private to friends, another to make a public statement. Your lack of compassion for anyone that truly has a mental illness is evident when you refer to people as "nut case or whatever". Mental disease affects people from all backgrounds and has nothing to do with appearance, wealth or education. You state that "There was pictures of me dancing on this ship which they video and having a great time and trust me they could tell what kind of a lady i was". How is that? Is someone suffering from a mental disease incapable of dancing and smiling?
Someone did go overboard on a RC cruise late last year, and it was ruled a suicide although the lawyer for the family is disputing that and a lawsuit is likely. Although I think certain airports are badly designed and should be destroyed with a controlled explosion and rebuilt, I do not walk around the terminals expressing that thought.
 
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