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View Full Version : HUGE Problems with Travel Agency!!!


meyerhaus
May 27th, 2004, 07:06 AM
DW and I booked out Classic Southern Caribbean Golden Cruise for this July 11th last year in October through a major travel agent which will remain unnamed. For purposed of this post, I will call them Arlsoncay Agonlitway.

Since then, we have made all of our monthly payments to them ontime and were paid up well in advance of 30 days. However, we have gotten nothing but trouble.

First, we were not getting any statements saying that we had made payments. After 2 weeks of asking, we started to get them. Next, when we called to get the final payment amount, we had to call repeatedly in order to get an amount. When we finally did get an amount, it was $640 too high because the TA did not subtract the amount of our downpayment or travel insurance. Had we not kept records, we would have been WAY overcharged.

Next, we started asking for a confirmation of final payment from Arlsoncay Agonlitway, which we STILL have not recieved. We also wanted a confirmation of payment in full from Princess, which we STILL have not received.

When we went online 2 weeks ago to check our cabin assugnment and book shore excurions through the personalizer (and, let's face it, we all like to just go online and look at all the info!), we got a message that read "CANCELLED BOOKINGS CANNOT BE VIEWED!" I FLIPPED!

We called Princess, and they said that Arlsoncay Agonlitway had not paid them anything since the deposit. I couldn't believe it. So, after straightening things out with Princess and having Arlsoncay Agonlitway OVERNIGHT our payment, we were told that everything was fine and that everything was the way it was before.

(GOTTA SWITCH COMPUTERS! WILL CONTINUE IN 5 MINUTES)

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Golden Princess 7/11/04
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Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

ginza17
May 27th, 2004, 07:15 AM
did you pay by check..if so those would be your reciept of payment. Maybe call a lawyer friend to contact the agency and princess just to let them know you are serious about this issue. The TA is to blame since Princess is not receiving the coreect $$$ and dollars from them. Also it seems you are to " hands-off " on your approach. KEEP RECORDS....

Pete...

PeabodyNVL
May 27th, 2004, 07:16 AM
I suspect you won't use that agency again.

We normally only make the initial deposit and final payment. If, God forbid, something happened inbetween the deposit and final payment and we had to cancel, it's just easier to have less money in the pot to worry about. Also, always pay by credit card...then you know whether the money got to the cruiseline or not, as the charge should be from the cruiseline, not the travel agency. And if something is disputed, you have some recourse. Make sure you get a receipt for everything you do with the travel agency and any changes that make occur. Any agency that doesn't supply these automatically isn't worth their salt.

Pea

5/9 Golden Princess  http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=191970&cdt=2004;5;9;23;0;00&timezone=GMT-0400
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roe2ship
May 27th, 2004, 07:17 AM
Why were you making monthly payments to them?

Caribbean Princess 7/03/04
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spongerob
May 27th, 2004, 07:19 AM
I've never heard of anyone making monthly payments towards a cruise. It sounds like they are taking your money and putting it in their own savings account. Very unusual...

Completed:
Sea Princess, Royal Princess, Grand Princess (3X), Caribbean Princess, Golden Princess

Toto2Kansas
May 27th, 2004, 07:23 AM
I know I have heard of this before, and it is difficult for many travel agents to take monthly payments and each time issue a receipt.
I might suggest that after you make your initial down payment on the cruise that you put away those monthly payments, either in a savings account or some other type of account so that you will not spend it, and then make ONE final payment to them, as this is the normal way to pay for a cruise. It makes it much easier on the travel agent and much less stress to yourselves wanting that receipt each time a payment is made.
This might work with a small mom and pop agency, but very hard on those big companies with thousands of clients. Cruises are not usually sold on the installment plan unless you decide to put the charge on your credit card and make payments on that.
The Travel Agency will not make payments to the cruise line, they will make inital payment, and then final payment when it is due, but not payments every month as you make them to them. Just way too much trouble for the cruise line and too much to keep track of.
Sorry you had a bad experience, but that seems like a lot for a travel agent to deal with. ONLY IMHO of coarse.

Tahitian Princess 10/14/04
RCI-Legend of the Seas 3/27/05 Panama Canal.
One Phantom Booking still open with Princess.

[This message was edited by Toto2Kansas on 05-27-04 at 09:40 AM.]

meyerhaus
May 27th, 2004, 07:41 AM
CONTINUED:

The payment is made and Princess did get it. The problem was not with the monthly payments and we did not have to pay all of the monthly payments. We did that so we would not spend it on something else! http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_cool.gif

ANYWAY

I was told that everything was the way it was before and we had the same cabin, etc. However, when I went to log on last night, all I had was a booking, no cabin. When I called Princess, they said that our cabion had been rebooked when we cancelled (it was the location that we wanted to a "T") and we were on a guarantee.

Normally that would not bother me, but there are only 5 cabins left on the whole ship, so if they were booked up, we would have been Sca-rewed.

So, we went ahead and grabbed up the last room in our category and are waiting and praying for an upgrade.

We contacted Arlsoncay Agonliway USA and have not heard back.

Oh, yeah! I also forgot to mention that we almost missed an upgrade a couple of months ago but I happened to call Princess to ask a question and they helped me upgrade us and save $200.

Shouldn't my TA have been looking out for me all the way? Shouldn't he have looked for price-drops, followed up on payments, etc.?

I am SO frustrated. I wish I would have known about CC before we booked.

JON

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Golden Princess 7/11/04
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Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

meyerhaus
May 27th, 2004, 07:46 AM
Ginza - We kept EXCELLENT records. THat is not the problem. The problem is that we have had a hard time getting our TA to get us reciepts and confirmations. The other problem is they didn't pay Princess!

Peabody - I will definately keep that in mind. We did pay by check, but will pay by CC in the future.

Toto - We did not by an installment plan; we just made monthly payments because we wanted to make sure we didn't get to the 90 day mark and be short. We are a younger professional couple and have really had to work to pay for this cruise.

If it was too much for the travel agent to do, they shouldn't be a travel agent. All of their recipets are computer generated: push print and we have our account summary. They just didn't do it.

JON

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Golden Princess 7/11/04
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Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

isujim
May 27th, 2004, 07:48 AM
It is not unusual for people to make monthly payments. Circumstances are different. My wife and I are retired and make monthly payments on our cruises.

However, the difference is I go in to my local travel agent each month and give her my Visa and she calls Princess, RC or whoever and while I am sitting there she puts $500 on my Visa........then I pay it off each month and we do it again.........better than having a $3,000 payment on the due date.....but that is what is better for us.

We obviously don't use an on line agency. We also normally book 9 months to a year in advance.

After she calls Princess, I get a printed receipt before leaving her office.

The headaches come when you want to pay your T/A with a check........then the T/A has to use their credit card to make a payment on your cruise. It can be done but it is a headache..

If you are using a local agency there should be no problem IF you use your own credit card.

Jim

Nordic Prince 8/88
Viking Serenade 3/93
Enchantment 3/01
Rhapsody 9/02
Splendour 4/03
Rhapsody, 9/03
Brilliance, 4/04

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sue d. miller
May 27th, 2004, 07:48 AM
One thing you might want to try, Jon. Email or call, and if you get an answering machine, tell them you lost your cabin and you are p*****. It was their fault, not yours!!You are a regular on cruise critic, and it has 100,000 members, and if they don't fix this to your satisfaction, the entire world will know what they did to you, and you have already talked to your lawyer!!! Worth a shot!!! http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif I would do that in a heartbeat!! And talk to the supervisor, not the TA!!!!!

Sue
7 days on Star Princess 10/24

GROWING OLD IS MANDATORY..... GROWING UP IS OPTIONAL

cleacat
May 27th, 2004, 07:55 AM
You should always use credit cards, that way incase the agency closes you can get it charged back, if you use check you're out of luck.
Sue

Mardi Gras '77 Horizon '91
Regent Sea '93 Sensation '94
Norway '95 Seaward '96
Granduer '97 Veendam '98
Nor. Sea '99 Imagination 2000 Century 2000 Veendam '01
Nor. Sea '02 Zuiderdam '03 Caribbean Princess '04

meyerhaus
May 27th, 2004, 07:58 AM
Credit Card or not, this agency was in the wrong. I will keep you updated.

JON

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Golden Princess 7/11/04
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Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

torpeedo
May 27th, 2004, 08:08 AM
I hope you can put this behind you and have a fantastic cruise anyway. It's coming soon! Get that precruise excitment going and pull out some suitcases. Might help! It is a real shame when a TA causes such anxiety for their customers. This agency may be in real finacial turmoil and you got the short end of it. Just an FYI, there are some online TA's where you can make period payments on your cruise. I know you can with icruise.

Carnival Legend 12/05/04
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Caribbean Princess 09/17/05
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cnmiranda
May 27th, 2004, 08:20 AM
As stated above, I suspect the travel agency is having financial problems. We had a problem similar to this in that we were billed twice for almost 3k and when I'd call the hotel direct they didn't have any record of our reservation. After a lot of hassle and trips to the agency as well as filing a complaint with the cc company the problem was worked out but it took several months to get our money back. I kinda had a heads up there was a problem eventually because the TA didn't sound too surprised we were double billed and then told us she was owed a prepaid vacation for being the highest sales rep and still hadn't received it 11 months later. It is up to you if you want to keep this booking but be aware they may be in trouble. In our case the agency closed a few months later. The deals were good, a little too good I guess or bad management.

Majesty of the Seas (2)
Norwegian Dawn
Monarch of the Seas
Diamond Princess Alaska
Grand Princess 9/04

kruisey
May 27th, 2004, 08:24 AM
Had problems also with the Canadian branch of that same TA
promising the moon and not coming through.....so I dismissed them and book direct with Princess now.
I also pay in installments to princess via credit card in CA dollars and never have a problem.Princess update my statement each time and e-mail also mail me a statement update.
Sorry you had an experience with this TA company ,you obviously are not alone.
I am with you- Kruisey.

Northender
May 27th, 2004, 08:44 AM
Wow, I wonder if the CW agency that you used is a franchise. We use them for all our corporate travel and have found them to be doing a great job for us. Perhaps you may have to find out if it is a franchise and then call the head people in charge that oversee them and tell them your story. I would be sooooo pi**ed, I would want something from them, like shipboard credits, etc. So far you have reached people in the following areas:

NY, VA, NJ, OK, FL, SC, MA and at least one Canadian. Let them know that also. http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_mad.gif



Grand Princess 4/4/04

sue d. miller
May 27th, 2004, 08:47 AM
We are 100,000 strong.!!! http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_eek.gif And for all the cruisers that don't post here, will get it by word of mouth!!!!!!

Sue
7 days on Star Princess 10/24

GROWING OLD IS MANDATORY..... GROWING UP IS OPTIONAL

meyerhaus
May 27th, 2004, 09:00 AM
Maybe the branch is a franchise. However, with the Arlsoncay Agonlitway name behind them, they should be backed strongly by them http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif!

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Golden Princess 7/11/04
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Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

cnmiranda
May 27th, 2004, 09:02 AM
I'm pretty sure each branch is run independantly http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif Agencies just pay to carry that name http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

Majesty of the Seas (2)
Norwegian Dawn
Monarch of the Seas
Diamond Princess Alaska
Grand Princess 9/04

Italy52
May 27th, 2004, 09:07 AM
Jon I'm glad your situation worked out. I know how scary it is to look up your booking and not find it. We had booked through a respectable travel agency and paid our deposit with a credit card. We even received a receipt from the TA with the credit card number showing that we had charged our deposit to our AMEX card. A few days later after we received our paperwork I went into the cruise personalizer and looked up our booking number. The statement said there was no such booking number. I couldn't get a hold of my TA so I immediately called Princess. Princess stated they had not received my payment. I was stunned since I had a receipt for my credit charge. I called AMEX and they stated nothing had been charged. Called TA and she got everything worked out. Fortunately, our cabin was still available. What scared me is had I not checked, our cruise would have been nothing but a pipe dream. Now, I am overly cautious and trust no one. Hate to be that way, but mistakes/oversights do happen.

jhannah
May 27th, 2004, 09:34 AM
What a regretable situation! It doesn't seem to matter that a big name is behind the agency. The service level will be only as good as the agent. Our first cruise was with a major agency, but I fired them after that. Very poor service, lack of response to calls or e-mail, etc. I've since found a good match who gives very good service and is available.

We pay by installments ... but to ourselves. We have a special account we regularly put funds into. Then, at final payment time, the money is there to pay off the credit card. (We use the CC because of the mileage perk.) But I agree with the above posters who noted that it shouldn't be any big deal for any agency to take your payment and give you a receipt. If it is, then I suggest that maybe they're too big.

'Vegas Jim

meyerhaus
May 27th, 2004, 10:02 AM
Thanks for the votes of confidance. I am not trying to milk freebies out of them http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif, but I am VERY dissapointed that we have not even recieved an apology or phone call from our agent himself. Had that happened, I would have chalked it up to a bad day. Now I consider it bad service, period.

JON

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Golden Princess 7/11/04
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Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

meyerhaus
May 27th, 2004, 10:05 AM
Hey, Jack! Love your show! http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

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Golden Princess 7/11/04
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Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

CruiseFever
May 27th, 2004, 10:24 AM
That's insane!

I don't have a lot to add to what the above have mentioned except my own view, as in what
I would do if I was you.

Your TA dropped the ball big time and they need to do something REALLY nice for you and or use their considerable clout to get you in a cabin that will exceed your original expectations if they ever hope to see a dime of your money again.

How you paid is a non-issue, you did nothing wrong. Your TA IS set up to take occasional payments and does it all the time. If they're telling you different they are liars.

One way is to make the initial deposit, with as little as possible, then pay the balance in full right before it's due date. I think a lot of people do that and as Spongerob noted, they keep their money in all its glory until the last minute.

Others prefer to budget periodic payments. Perhaps it coincides with payday, a quarterly bonus, income tax refund, etc.

Whatever works is game.

I've said it before and I'll say it again; one of the most overlooked qualities a good TA will have is efficiency. Your TA was sorely lacking in this area in this specific incident. So often cruisers concentrate on the price offered or the personality of the TA and overlook efficiency.

I would rather have an efficient TA any day of the week and not have things like this happen to me. I had a lousy one once and dropped him like a hot potato. It's their job to keep stuff like this from happening and it is NOT hard for them to do it.

I can call any good TA I have ever had and they can get a confirmation showing all the details of my cruise including payments faxed to them, then on to me, within minutes .

I am not trying to milk freebies out of them , but I am VERY dissapointed that we have not even recieved an apology or phone call from our agent himself.

I would be looking for all that gift wrappped with a big bow! How much damage have you already done to their name by simply telling us your story?

They need to take care of you

Happy Cruising

Chris

www.LifeIsCruising.com (http://www.LifeIsCruising.com)

Next up:
Caribbean Princess 06/26/04
Star Princess 10/24/04
Diamond Princess 12/22/04
Carnival Miracle 03/13/05
Carnival Valor 10/30/05

Northender
May 27th, 2004, 10:34 AM
Agree totally wiwth Chris' statement to have it wrapped up in a big RED bow. When we inconvenience one of our clients, and it happens, if we are lucky enough to keep the business, you bet they are going to have a nice dinner and see a Red Sox,Celtics or Bruins game in a nice suite.
I would start at the top and call the travel company and tell them how disappointed you are in one of their franchisee's service and expect some form of renumeration for your problems. They may be independant, but CW does not want their name raked over the coals. We have one near us and I will take a stand right now and not use them again. Too many good fish in the sea.



Grand Princess 4/4/04

meyerhaus
May 27th, 2004, 10:51 AM
Thanks, guys! For their sake, I hope they do do something. We are already in a minisuite, so I think the Grand Suite, which is still open on the 7/11 Golden, would be nice http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif!

Seriously though, I think that a room credit or an upgrade to a suite would not be out of the question.

JON

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Golden Princess 7/11/04
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Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

ginza17
May 27th, 2004, 11:46 AM
Jon,

Pete...

ginza17
May 27th, 2004, 11:50 AM
Jon,
Call the corporate HQ and speak to someone there in management
Princess Cruises (Corporate Headquarters)
24844 Avenue Rockefeller
Santa Clarita, CA 91355 .

Let them know that a TA whom they allow to book cruises for their line screwed you and want to know what is being done about it. The TA apparently cares less but I think the corporate office understands these issues better and maybe you'll see a significant shipboard credit..... Don't call the 1-800 # because those are reservation and general info people..

Pete...

spongerob
May 27th, 2004, 11:51 AM
I work in a service industry, and in spite of our efforts we occasionally slip up. Regardless of the reason, we make it up to our clients if it was something within our control. At the very least, a nice bottle of champers awaiting in your cabin would be a nice way to say, "Sorry." And not the cheap stuff.

Completed:
Sea Princess, Royal Princess, Grand Princess (3X), Caribbean Princess, Golden Princess

meyerhaus
May 27th, 2004, 11:55 AM
Normally, that would work. However, we don't drink http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

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Golden Princess 7/11/04
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Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

MaryPoppinz
May 27th, 2004, 12:22 PM
What am I missing here?? Our payments (initial, final) are *never* are made to the travel agent. The TA accepts the payment, but it's always charged to us by whoever the booking is with. I thought this was the way it was with all pre-paid bookings for travel, except for those TA's who are up to some shenanigans (ie: taking the money and running...) This doesn't sound like an error (after all, they didn't forward ANY of your payments to Princess, right??) It sounds more like an effort to play travel roulette with your trip by keeping your funds earning interest in their account and hoping for the best when it comes time to actually pay Princess for your trip. I think there is, at the very least, an ethical problem going on here.

"I'm gonna book myself on that Princess Cruise."
-- Fox Mulder, X-Files 'Three Words'

meyerhaus
May 27th, 2004, 12:31 PM
They made the booking down-payment. The problem is not that they didn't pay the final payment on time. It is that they didn't pay ANY payment after the initial paymant and they had the money. I don't care if they hold all of it until the final payment is made. I just care that they make the final payment and do so according to Princess's rules.

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Golden Princess 7/11/04
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Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

Hulagirl
May 27th, 2004, 12:51 PM
Jon:

Interesting story. I've heard some negative things about this agency and this just puts the nail in it. I have a great TA and an lucky.

The question I have is why did Princess say your booking was canceled? You said that the initial hold payment was made and that final payment wasn't due yet, so they didn't miss that. Don't understand why you were canceled at all since no payment is due again until final.

We have made payments along the way at times also and never had a problem either. I agree with Chris. You did nothing wrong. We had to make a couple of payments when we did our Med cruise and the cost of the cruise was still higher than our credit limit. That was an expensive cruise for 3 with a pre-cruise in Switzerland. Sometimes you just have to make a few payments.

Have a wonderful trip. You have been read across the country and glad you posted this.

Hulagirl

http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=006400&cdt=2004;7;8;19;00;00&timezone=GMT+0100
Grand Princess Baltic Cruise

http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=0000ff&cdt=2005;4;3;17;00;00&timezone=GMT-0500
Star Princess Eastern Caribbean

http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=dc143c&cdt=2004;9;18;17;00;00&timezone=GMT-0800
Diamond Princess Northwest Cruise

PeabodyNVL
May 27th, 2004, 02:01 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by meyerhaus:
They made the booking down-payment. The problem is not that they didn't pay the final payment on time. It is that they didn't pay ANY payment after the initial paymant and they had the money. I don't care if they hold all of it until the final payment is made. I just care that they make the final payment and do so according to Princess's rules.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Sorry, Jon, but it should matter to you what they are doing with your money. If they are not crediting it to the cruiseline immediately, then what are they doing with it? It is just not a good business practice. It is this bad business practice that messed up your booking.

If you pay by installments in the future, make sure each and every payment is credited by the cruiseline at the time you make the payment.

You've got to own some responsibility once you know how things are handled. To say you don't care as long as Princess gets the final payment is just reckless and can lead to more heartache. This time the resolution was to your satisfaction. The next time, it may not be so.

Pea

5/9 Golden Princess &nbsp;http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=191970&cdt=2004;5;9;23;0;00&timezone=GMT-0400
http://escati.linkopp.net/logos/time98.gif

CruiseFever
May 27th, 2004, 02:10 PM
Peabody- good point

I agree that no matter who the TA is we, as the passengers, need to be sure everything is in order. A simple confirmation from Princess to the agency from time to time would have been appropriate...forwarded on to the passenger. It would have reflected any payments made and confirmed all other elements of the booking.

Happy Cruising

Chris

www.LifeIsCruising.com (http://www.LifeIsCruising.com)

Next up:
Caribbean Princess 06/26/04
Star Princess 10/24/04
Diamond Princess 12/22/04
Carnival Miracle 03/13/05
Carnival Valor 10/30/05

Beryl
May 27th, 2004, 03:23 PM
Another good reason to pay by credit card! It is the cruiseline that makes the charge to your card. If you pay by check, you make the check payable to the agency who in turn writes a check payable to the cruiseline. If you pay with cash it is the agency that writes a check to the cruiseline. To avoid the step by the middle man use your card!!

I'm sorry meyerhaus for all the problems your agency put you through. I expect you will be searching for a new agent for your next trip. I hope you find a great one!!

Cruising! It's like being in the Garden of Eatin'!

karen2cruz
May 27th, 2004, 04:00 PM
My sympathies for the pain and trouble. Had a similar thing happen to me last year. But I was a little ahead of the gane and found out before final payment was due. (Had already sent them final payment 2 weeks earlier and was just checking up on things).They said we owed about $750 (deposit money, like you). I keep records of everything, so I just copied them all and sent them overnight to prove we had paid up. The local agent apologized profusely. Got two free dinners out of him. Should been more, but at least we had it all straightened out.

But we all make mistakes. I am learning to check up early on everything now. Just recently my daughter's tuition payment was applied to the wrong term! A phone call fixed that one. whew

I am so ready for the Golden in January!

Sea Princess 2/02
DisneyWonder 6/03
Mariner of the Seas 4/04
Golden Princess 1/23/05

http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=ff0000&cdt=2005;1;23;23;0;00&timezone=GMT-0500

cathi
May 27th, 2004, 04:28 PM
This all tells you what a good TA can do for you. I know - live in a small town with little choice but when you find the "right" TA everything works. A big name means little if the people working there are not up to par!

coiran
May 27th, 2004, 04:35 PM
meyerhaus

NCL PRIDE OF AMERICA Oct. 2004
SUN PRINCESS 2004 Caribbean
REGAL PRINCESS 2003 Europe
GOLDEN PRINCESS 2002 Canada New England
SUN PRINCESS 2002 Panama Canal
SUN PRINCESS 2002 Mexico
DAWN PRINCESS 2001 Caribbean
DAWN PRINCESS 2001 Caribbean
SEA PRINCESS 2001 Alaska
REGAL PRINCESS 2000 Mexico
REGAL PRINCESS 1999 Panama Canal
PACIFIC PRINCESS 1999 Europe
SUN PRINCESS 1998 Caribbean
ROYAL PRINCESS 1996 Panama Canal

coiran
May 27th, 2004, 04:36 PM
meyerhaus
It's time you get a new TA - try K---K-----s - she books a lot of Princess cruises and takes real good care of her customers!!!

NCL PRIDE OF AMERICA Oct. 2004
SUN PRINCESS 2004 Caribbean
REGAL PRINCESS 2003 Europe
GOLDEN PRINCESS 2002 Canada New England
SUN PRINCESS 2002 Panama Canal
SUN PRINCESS 2002 Mexico
DAWN PRINCESS 2001 Caribbean
DAWN PRINCESS 2001 Caribbean
SEA PRINCESS 2001 Alaska
REGAL PRINCESS 2000 Mexico
REGAL PRINCESS 1999 Panama Canal
PACIFIC PRINCESS 1999 Europe
SUN PRINCESS 1998 Caribbean
ROYAL PRINCESS 1996 Panama Canal

comettgirl
May 27th, 2004, 05:37 PM
For the life of me, I keep trying to figure out what this agency's real name is. Will someone e-mail me and tell me.

atlaskowsky@sbcglobal.net

Thanks.

Therese

surfnsun
May 27th, 2004, 06:44 PM
Whoah Meyerhaus, I'm sure this will work out and you'll enjoy your cruise...but...not excuses here...but...TA's got it really rough with drastic commission cuts and revised distribution practices that reduce costs to the actual provider by challenging/eliminating the "middle man", i.e. TA's. IMO, TA's are having trouble keeping qualified and attentive personnel who will follow-up constantly, an absolute necessity in the travel business. My best advice (for what it's worth having been in the business before but now in another career, although not directly with a TA) is to work with TA's recommended by others with a good track record, or at least specialize in cruises (perhaps exclusively), or direct with the cruiseline. IMO, the cruise business is one in the industry where the commissions are still decent for TA's, but still declining. IMO, the travel business is in a state of extreme and constant changes and it's sad when the customers feel the pain. I went out on a limb here and wish you Best of Luck.

JCH
May 27th, 2004, 08:27 PM
I have to add this to the topic. No matter what agency, a good TA is what everyone needs, just like a good and trusted car mechanic, doctor, dentist, etc. On my recent cruise deposit, when I checked Princess online, they had my name spelled incorrectly, even with the ID number. I called my TA the next day and checked back with Princess the day after. It was corrected with just my one call.

I'm very happy with my TA, can't say enough. In business it is a rule of thumb, it takes three new customers to make up for one customer that is lost.

Sky Princess - 1997 West Coastal
Sea Princess - 2001 Western Caribbean
Sea Princess - 2002 Alaska

Reposition Cruise - Transcanal
Coral Princess April 27, 2005
http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=ff0000&cdt=2005;4;27;17;00;00&timezone=GMT-0500

meyerhaus
May 27th, 2004, 08:45 PM
Thanks for all the help! Lessons learned and hopefully, people read this and see what NOT to do. We probably did put too much trust in Arlsoncay Agonlitway. Luckily, we did keep EXCELLENT records and all is well...financially.

HOWEVER, when we finally got a call from CWT's headquarters, they TOTALLY passed the buck to the agent.

Ginza, I think that I will call them. Hopefully, they can put the heavy on them.

JON

http://www.picgoo.com/uploads/960426124355.gif (http://www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus/)
www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus (http://www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus)

Golden Princess 7/11/04
http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=191970&cdt=2004;7;11;18;00;00&timezone=GMT-0500
Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

surfnsun
May 27th, 2004, 08:50 PM
Great that you've found a good TA, but I stand by my point reiterated below:

"TA's are having trouble keeping qualified and attentive personnel who will follow-up constantly, an absolute necessity in the travel business."

YOU followed up and THEY didn't - until YOU brought it to their attention...what did YOU get for THEIR additional service fee??? Sorry, I'll stop now.

sensasianl
May 28th, 2004, 01:13 AM
Another vote of NO confidence in this TA. Used an online office out of Michigan that promised "at least 5% off listed rates." Our fare went down once and we had to contact them to get the reduction. After they got our final payment they were not very helpful, to say the least, with any questions we had. Caveat emptor.

Jon, sorry about your problems. Hope all works out well in the end.

Celebrity Galaxy 3/04

http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=006400&cdt=2004;9;5;16;00;00&timezone=GMT-0800&nbsp; till Sapphire Princess

pg.
May 28th, 2004, 02:01 AM
Cometgirl, when I was younger we used to have this funny "code" language that us kids called "pig latin". You would take a word, put the first letter of that word at the end of the work and then add " ay".. so the word " pig" would be "igpay"
Did you not have a game like that when you were younger?

comettgirl
May 28th, 2004, 04:55 AM
pg, thanks, i've got it now!!! my problem was (among other things) we don't have THAT particular agency in the midwest, so I kept trying to think of a Major Nationwide Agency and was drawing a blank!!!

P.S. Google helped. It knows what you want even when you don't!!!

Therese

laginog
May 28th, 2004, 05:49 AM
WOW, Jon!!! That's scary!!! I'm glad everything has worked out...a little bit, anyway! If my booking disapeared, I'd probably have had a heart attack, or at least a really bad anxiety attack!!! But...I have the same TA as coiran! And I agree----she's the best!! I just feel so "safe" with her and she does seem to have some special "connection" with Princess.

Car Destiny-W Caribbean-6/1/00
Sovereign - Bahamas - 6/15/01
Star Princess-Alaska-7/16/02
Navigator-E Caribbean-8/02/03
Mariner-W Caribbean-01/25/04
Caribbean Princess - 9/25/04

http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=0000ff&cdt=2004;09;25;17;00;00&timezone=GMT-0500
UNTIL THE CARIBBEAN PRINCESS !!!!!!



Kathi



http://home.insightbb.com/~laginog/Kathi_Whale001.gif

LOVE THE VOYAGER AND GRAND CLASS!!! BUT ANY SHIP WILL DO!!!

meyerhaus
May 28th, 2004, 06:10 AM
Thanks, folks. Sorry to confuse you Ometgirlcay http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

http://www.picgoo.com/uploads/960426124355.gif (http://www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus/)
www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus (http://www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus)

Golden Princess 7/11/04
http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=191970&cdt=2004;7;11;18;00;00&timezone=GMT-0500
Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

CruiseFever
May 28th, 2004, 07:08 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> HOWEVER, when we finally got a call from CWT's headquarters, they TOTALLY passed the buck to the agent. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Well IF I ever had any thought of ever using these people I sure would NOT now. This was their opportunity to shine. It's easy to be in the customer service game when everything is running along all hunkey dorey. It's when there's a problem that you see whos got it and who does not.

They ain't got it

Happy Cruising

Chris

www.LifeIsCruising.com (http://www.LifeIsCruising.com)

Next up:
Caribbean Princess 06/26/04
Star Princess 10/24/04
Diamond Princess 12/22/04
Carnival Miracle 03/13/05
Carnival Valor 10/30/05

meyerhaus
May 28th, 2004, 08:00 AM
I agree, Chris. When you, a customer-oriented business, do not take care of your customers, you don't have a business. If, however, you make a mistake and correct it in a way that satisfies the customer, you get great word-of-mouth praise.

I still haven't heard from the agent. He said that he will "look into" a ship-board credit.

BTW, the only cabin left on the 7/11 Golden is a Premium suite. It's a good thing I reserved a cabin two nights ago. I would have been SOL!

JON

http://www.picgoo.com/uploads/960426124355.gif (http://www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus/)
www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus (http://www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus)

Golden Princess 7/11/04
http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=191970&cdt=2004;7;11;18;00;00&timezone=GMT-0500
Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

MaryPoppinz
May 28th, 2004, 09:30 AM
I'd like to hear from one of the TA's who posts here about whether there is some sort of ethical violation (or worse) in this TA's conduct. When you make your deposit/payment to Princess, I suspect there is an escrow account involved to protect your pre-paid investment. What protects your investment when it's the TA holding your funds rather than the actual vendor of the service?? My guess is "Nothing," unless there is, in fact, some sort of industry-wide guidance about either NOT engaging in this practice, or about doing it properly....which to me would be something more than a tickler file with a notation to take your money and transfer it to Princess on a given date. I could be wrong, but this seems like an area for a lot of potential consumer fraud, and I'd be surprised if it wasn't addressed by the industry or one of the government agencies that oversees the travel industry. Anyone know???

Anybody know?

"I'm gonna book myself on that Princess Cruise."
-- Fox Mulder, X-Files 'Three Words'

dorotha
May 28th, 2004, 09:36 AM
So, Have you printed out and FAXed this thread yet? http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

sue d. miller
May 28th, 2004, 09:43 AM
Great question, Mary. Yes, Jon is back on the ship, but the problem is he was cancelled, and the ship is about filled. He lost the cabin he wanted, and yes, he got another, but not the one originally booked!!!! I would be RIPPED!!!! I always book a specific cabin, and I trust my TA to keep it for me. If you take away the cabin that I wanted, you take away part of my cruise experience, I am looking forward too!!!!!!!! What If he found the error two days later, and couldn.t afford the premium suite, the only cabin left!! This could have been a total catastrophe, and his TA is responsible!! This company is big up north, and I just sent this info up. When trust is taken, what's left?? Next time Jon and his wife book, they are going to be nuts with worry, until they board. I hope he finds a TA he can build his trust with next time!!

Sue
7 days on Star Princess 10/24

GROWING OLD IS MANDATORY..... GROWING UP IS OPTIONAL

kruisey
May 28th, 2004, 09:43 AM
I will never deal with that TA again.Will give people a chance but when I am crossed thats it.
Life is not for hassles.
Let me say once more I am with you, have been there.
Wish I had only discovered Cruise Critics when it happened to me,for support http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_cool.gif

sue d. miller
May 28th, 2004, 09:45 AM
Jon, could you let me know which agency you booked with, and where?

Sue
7 days on Star Princess 10/24

GROWING OLD IS MANDATORY..... GROWING UP IS OPTIONAL

MaryPoppinz
May 28th, 2004, 10:09 AM
IIf our TA didn't fax me a credit card receipt from the vendor within 24 hours after I book a trip, I would be all over it. I don't have to ask for it, she provides it. But, I think this thread really does serve as an important reminder to those for whom following up on payment might not have ever occurred. Let's face it, you want to be able to trust these people. If you didn't, you wouldn't bother with an agent.

In my book, your payment should be going directly to the vendor, and the TA gets the commission from there, not from holding your funds.

My husband is on a $10 or $12,000 business trip right now, and his 4,000-employee company uses this TA exclusively. I was thinking about trying them as well, but if they don't have a policy against their franchisees doing this, there is NO WAY. Actually, after reading this thread, there is probably NO WAY, anyway. I also think I'll mention this to my husband, because, even though travel is not his area at all, he has some influence over how (and with whom) his company does business.

"I'm gonna book myself on that Princess Cruise."
-- Fox Mulder, X-Files 'Three Words'

pg.
May 28th, 2004, 11:20 AM
You know I 've reread this post a few times now and I have come to the conclusion that it was the travel agents mistake. All of it.They didn't have your reservation linked or marked no upgrade, I think your ta is lying like a rug!
I think that the reason Princess keeps passing the mistake off to the ta is because it was in fact all the ta's fault( and she won't admit it!)
As for your lousy ta " looking into a shipboard credit," excuse me , but after all this hassle the TA and CWL should give you a good credit from their own pocket!

Quite frankly CWL has just screwed themsleves out of a lot of business, because just posting on this baord is word of mouth times a thousand.!!
Print out all these posts and send to them, like to sse how they think rippping you off and treating you like this gained them anything!

Commodore Suzy
May 28th, 2004, 12:23 PM
marypoppinz... Each state has separate rules about escrow accounts. In CA, they are required is all I can say.

I agree with everyone that the agent needed to stay on top of it, and that you need a better agent next time. One of the questions you had WAY up there was something like "don't agents check prices for you as the cruise approaches". The answer to that is, some good ones do, and a majority don't. Its not standard practice for the industry overall, as most agents don't want to have their commissions lowered. You just need to find a good agent referred by others and stick with them.

Here is a twist I want to add. When a client gives me a check for a cruise, I have to take it to the agency and the agency has to write a check. (The cruiselines will only take 'official agency checks' unless you booked direct with the line.) Of course, I don't write and sign the checks for my agency, only the owner/manager can do that. It is TRUE your agent needed to be following up, however, be sure you rip the owner/manager of your agency too. Ask to speak with them. It could be that your agent turned in the required paperwork to the owner requesting and agency check, and the owner dropped the ball in sending it to the cruise line. Just a thought.

I personally turn in checks and expect the payments to be immediately forwarded to the cruise line. If they don't write it for me while I'm standing there, I make sure the receipt is back to me within a couple days. I've never once had a problem. I agree with what someone else said.. Its not good business practice for the agency to keep your funds until they are "due". If you pay, your payment should immediately be forwarded on.

Good luck and have a great cruise!

Suzy

NEXT --> Monarch family weekend 10/15/04 & Grand Galveston 12/11/04
Diamond Princess http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 5/1/04
Star Princess http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 10/18/03 -- Wind Star Honeymoon http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 11/14/03
Star Princess Wedding http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 9/24/03 -- Mercury http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 10/5/03
Vision of the Seas http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif 10/28/02 -- Amsterdam http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif 4/22/03
Sun Princess http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 5/10/02 -- Star Princess http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 6/15/02
Carnival Holiday http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif 9/8/00

sue d. miller
May 28th, 2004, 12:28 PM
Thanks, Suzy!! A tough question maybe you are unable to answer. If this happened in your agency, what would you expect to happen to make amends to the client, that almost lost a cruise because of incompetance?

Sue
7 days on Star Princess 10/24

GROWING OLD IS MANDATORY..... GROWING UP IS OPTIONAL

CruiseFever
May 28th, 2004, 12:33 PM
Indeed, assuming the worst, is Jon entitled to some compensation or are we just wineing?

Happy Cruising

Chris

www.LifeIsCruising.com (http://www.LifeIsCruising.com)

Next up:
Caribbean Princess 06/26/04
Star Princess 10/24/04
Diamond Princess 12/22/04
Sapphire Princess June '05
Carnival Valor 10/30/05

meyerhaus
May 28th, 2004, 12:57 PM
Chris, you crack me up! Here, can all split this to go with our "whine"!

http://www.cyberspacegrill.com/shop/thumbnails/cheese.jpg

http://www.picgoo.com/uploads/960426124355.gif (http://www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus/)
www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus (http://www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus)

Click the 7/11 to go to the ROLL CALL:
http://www.picgoo.com/uploads/seven_eleven_copy1.jpg (http://messages.cruisecritic.com/2/OpenTopic?a=tpc&s=927093444&f=4763056957&m=4253085267)
Golden Princess 7/11/04
http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=191970&cdt=2004;7;11;18;00;00&timezone=GMT-0500
Big Red Boat-1993 (Amy)
Celebrity Zenith-1993 (Jon)

meyerhaus
May 28th, 2004, 01:00 PM
Wow, my signature was obnoxious!

www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus (http://www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus)

Click the 7/11 to go to the ROLL CALL:
http://www.picgoo.com/uploads/seven_eleven_copy1.jpg (http://messages.cruisecritic.com/2/OpenTopic?a=tpc&s=927093444&f=4763056957&m=4253085267)
Golden Princess Southern Caribbean-7/11/04
Big Red Boat-1993
Celebrity Zenith-1993

CruiseFever
May 28th, 2004, 01:23 PM
Ok make that whining (DW set me str8)

Pete- Would you please pay for the board to upgrade and include a spell checker?

Happy Cruising

Chris

www.LifeIsCruising.com (http://www.LifeIsCruising.com)

Next up:
Caribbean Princess 06/26/04
Star Princess 10/24/04
Diamond Princess 12/22/04
Sapphire Princess June '05
Carnival Valor 10/30/05

ginza17
May 28th, 2004, 01:26 PM
chris..
maybe they'll give him some free Hagan Daaz........... http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Pete...

sue d. miller
May 28th, 2004, 01:29 PM
Chris, I am with you!! A spell checker would be the greatest gift ever!!! http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Sue
7 days on Star Princess 10/24

GROWING OLD IS MANDATORY..... GROWING UP IS OPTIONAL

meyerhaus
May 28th, 2004, 03:24 PM
Y dew we nead a spell cheker? Arnt we all smaurt enuff too get tat rite?

JOHN

I mean

JON

www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus (http://www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus)

Click the 7/11 to go to the ROLL CALL:
http://www.picgoo.com/uploads/seven_eleven_copy1.jpg (http://messages.cruisecritic.com/2/OpenTopic?a=tpc&s=927093444&f=4763056957&m=4253085267)
Golden Princess Southern Caribbean-7/11/04
Big Red Boat-1993
Celebrity Zenith-1993

sue d. miller
May 28th, 2004, 03:32 PM
http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Sue
7 days on Star Princess 10/24

GROWING OLD IS MANDATORY..... GROWING UP IS OPTIONAL

UK Cruiser
May 29th, 2004, 03:40 AM
I can spell, I just can't type!

sue d. miller
May 29th, 2004, 07:11 AM
http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Sue
7 days on Star Princess 10/24

GROWING OLD IS MANDATORY..... GROWING UP IS OPTIONAL

Commodore Suzy
May 29th, 2004, 09:43 AM
I agree we need a speal cheeker!

As for what I'd expect, I don't know. I just can't fathom it ever happening to one of my clients. I'd rip the agent owner a new one if he didn't send my client's money along right away so it wouldn't come to this. http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

From the cruiser's point of view, I'd definatley expect to get something. I'm cheap though.. all anyone needs to send me is chocolate covered strawberries and I'm in heaven. http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif No matter what they sent, I wouldn't use that agency again though.

Suzy

NEXT --> Pride of Aloha 6/11/04
Monarch family weekend 10/15/04 & Grand Galveston 12/11/04
Diamond Princess http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 5/1/04
Star Princess http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 10/18/03 -- Wind Star Honeymoon http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 11/14/03
Star Princess Wedding http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 9/24/03 -- Mercury http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 10/5/03
Vision of the Seas http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif 10/28/02 -- Amsterdam http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif 4/22/03
Sun Princess http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 5/10/02 -- Star Princess http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif 6/15/02
Carnival Holiday http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif 9/8/00

Princess Di
May 29th, 2004, 10:03 AM
Dear Jon,

All your wonderful CruiseCritic friends have given you great advice. Now, load your printer with paper and print out this Thread. Mail it to the T.A. and a copy to the Corporate office of the T.A. Let us all know what the marvelous compensation will be.

For the future, look for 2 qualities in a T.A. and the Agency:
1. Use a Cruise Only specialist who is a Preferred Provider with Princess.
2. Ask who, in that office, is a Destination Specialist for the Itinerary you are planning. These T.A.s take intensive courses for specific world areas; i.e., Pacific Islands, Australia-New Zealand, Europe, Caribbean, etc. By using a Destination Specialist, they have been to and studied that area and have relationships with tour providers, hoteliers, etc. to get you the best rates, as well as, the Best Experience.
After testing, a Certificate is awarded for each Destination. This T.A. can assure your having the optimal cruise.

Go to the Post Office and send your printout by: Return Receipt Requested. This type of mail is given priority handling in the company.
Good Luck. Have a great sailing in your new Suite.

A Smile is just a little curve that sets a lot of things Straight.
Fair Winds and Following Seas!

surfnsun
May 29th, 2004, 11:05 AM
A few more comments http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif and I'll try not to wine (I mean whine) and offer some (maybe) useful comments in more layman terms than my previous post. I said I've been in the travel business before where I actually worked in the industry...one of my many duties today in another field is related. I no longer provide the service, I evaluate and select providers for my rather large organization as well as monitor performance after the fact. I guess you can say I've experienced both sides of the fence, not to mention I also occasionally get time off to do some traveling. I've heard and experienced horror stories about those in the industry who are providing travel services. I'll just say it's been many more than one and should probably leave it at that.

To clarify my earlier comments on follow up - that is defined as following up across the spectrum, i.e. the customer, individuals internal to the TA, the actual provider/vendor, etc. I think some things that separate one AGENT from another is how much they know the intricacies (sp?) of the travel business that many times impact how well they can troubleshoot potential problems on behalf of the customer. Also, the time and attention they are willing to spend on behalf of the customer in terms of searching for best rates/fares, following up, etc. I think some things that separate one COMPANY from another is how much time they are willing to allow their agents to spend on a particular transaction without the agent having to worry about meeting quotas. Also, how the company responds to problems, their relationship with the actual vendor, and how well they can negotiate with the actual vendor for discounts they can extend to their customers. I think it's getting harder and harder to do the latter as the actual vendors make it easier for the customers to come to them direct. Perhaps one good thing about working with a large TA is the volume of their clientele sometimes means they can negotiate larger discounts. Perhaps one good thing about working with a smaller TA is they may be more personalized and you may receive FULL services. Many advantages and disadvantages to both, although I think the smaller one's are especially finding it difficult to survive in the business.

Sorry if this was long and boring, but just some things I've learned that may be useful to some.

zeroni
May 29th, 2004, 12:06 PM
quote: Use a Cruise Only specialist who is a Preferred Provider with Princess.

How does one find out about which agencies are Preferred Providers. I'm booked through an Online company that is also listed on the Travel Agent search on the Princess site, but I'm still really uneasy about the whole thing - especially after reading about CWT.

Princess Di
May 29th, 2004, 01:14 PM
Hi Zeroni,
Just call 800-Princes and give the Res. Agent your Zip code. She will tell you the Names, address, and phone numbers of the National Accounts that are in your area. Call these Agencies and quiz them as to their Destinations Specialists, as well as what kind of Group Pricing or special promotions they have.

A Smile is just a little curve that sets a lot of things Straight.
Fair Winds and Following Seas!

maxiesmom
May 29th, 2004, 05:33 PM
As a former travel agent with 25 yrs. experience, the problem you're having is with the individual travel agency, not WLT. Most WLT agencies are individually owned and operated. Obviously, the travel agent neglected to request a check for final payment. You should be dealing with the owner or manager of the individual agency. I believe they have a moral obligation to do something to help make it right for you. There is not an agent or agency that has never made a mistake at one time or another. I worked for a local WLT and we had wonderful, competent agents with great service for the most part.

And I'm sure you've learned NOT to pay by check or cash. The credit card is charged by the vendor (Princess in this case). Cash has to be deposited and a company check written and mailed to the vendor which leaves more of a chance of something going remiss. Also the credit card payment protects you much more in a vendor bankruptcy (such as Midway Airlines years ago).

By the way, now that I'm not in the travel industry, I book all my cruises through a large, on-line, cruise only agency. I've not found any local or other on-line agencies who can beat their prices. They are very no-frill with email communication only which is great to me..I hate the phone. And they answer email much quicker than any other agency I've ever worked for or with.

Hope this helps!

Judy

P.S. I want spell check too!

JohnL1935
May 29th, 2004, 06:16 PM
What has me concerned here are the dates. Your cruise is 7/ll. Your lst post was 5/27 and you said this problem was brought to your attention 2 weeks earlier which would be 5/13. The final payment was due to Princess on 5/ll. It seems that if Princess would cancel your cruise it would have been 5/12. I think I've been a few days late in calling my TA's in the past to make the final payment on a CC and I was never cancelled. Most TA's send notice that they will charge my card on the 60 day date. I generally will call the TA to confirm that they did make payment.

Seems Princess should not have cancelled before 5/ll since they had your deposit. I would want to know exactly when Princess cancelled your cabin. It doesn't make good sense to cancel a cruise without a phone call to the TA when they have a deposit for a specific cabin. I can understand their cancelling 30-40 days of the cruise, even with an open deposit, but not 1 or 2 days after the 60 day window. If a person is cancelling a cruise, seems there would be a request to Princess for a return of the deposit and they would know they had to sell that cabin. With no request it seems Princess should make an inquiry to the TA.

I read the posts pretty fast and maybe I missed something. I'm glad it is resolved but these dates bother me since I'm more prone to senior moments these days.

John L.

meyerhaus
May 29th, 2004, 07:31 PM
Good point! I will check and see. That does seem odd.

JON

P.S. He's a smart one. I want you for my T.A.

www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus (http://www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus)

Click the 7/11 to go to the ROLL CALL:
http://www.picgoo.com/uploads/seven_eleven_copy1.jpg (http://messages.cruisecritic.com/2/OpenTopic?a=tpc&s=927093444&f=4763056957&m=4253085267)
Golden Princess Southern Caribbean-7/11/04
Big Red Boat-1993
Celebrity Zenith-1993

DrGary
May 30th, 2004, 06:27 AM
Hi All,

Just wanted to add some more perspective to all the above. When things sometimes do go afowl with a long-standing booking, there are still good people and companies that stand behind their customers in ways that not only fix the problem, but further enhance the customer's loyalty. Our recent experience...

Here is a fine example of superior customer service and satisfaction, with an added touch of Tahitian hospitality:

We were scheduled to stay at the brand-new Radisson Plaza Resort Tahiti for pre-cruise from Jun 15-16, and then again post-cruise Jun 28-29.

Unfortunately, due to unforeseen construction delays in their anticipated June 1st opening date, we received a message that the hotel would not be opening until July 2nd...too late for our visit.

Karine Voguin, the Radisson Plaza Resort Tahiti's Reservations Manager was extremely gracious about accommodating us and overcoming the problem with the opening date.

She offered to arrange reservations for us at Le Meridien Tahiti for Jun 15-16, and then kindly offered the following:

"We would like to make up for it by inviting you to stay at the RADISSON PLAZA RESORT TAHITI as our guests for your second stay, from June 28th to 29th 2004. Our Restaurant Hiti Mahana will have the pleasure of inviting you to taste our chef’s exquisite cuisine, and we would be delighted to offer you a complimentary treatment in our Spa."

With personnel like Karine Voguin, looks like the Radisson is going to be a tremendous success as Tahiti's newest upscale resort!!

Wouldn't it have been nice for your TA to similarly arrange a complimentary accomodation for your trouble! http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_razz.gif

http://www.cruisecritic.com/images/reviews/ships/tahitianp.JPG
Tahitian Princess June 16, 2004
http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=0000ff&cdt=2004;6;16;12;00;00&timezone=GMT-1000

PeabodyNVL
May 30th, 2004, 07:29 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by JohnL1935:
What has me concerned here are the dates. Your cruise is 7/ll. Your lst post was 5/27 and you said this problem was brought to your attention 2 weeks earlier which would be 5/13. The final payment was due to Princess on 5/ll. It seems that if Princess would cancel your cruise it would have been 5/12. I think I've been a few days late in calling my TA's in the past to make the final payment on a CC and I was never cancelled. Most TA's send notice that they will charge my card on the 60 day date. I generally will call the TA to confirm that they did make payment.

Seems Princess should not have cancelled before 5/ll since they had your deposit. I would want to know exactly when Princess cancelled your cabin. It doesn't make good sense to cancel a cruise without a phone call to the TA when they have a deposit for a specific cabin. I can understand their cancelling 30-40 days of the cruise, even with an open deposit, but not 1 or 2 days after the 60 day window. If a person is cancelling a cruise, seems there would be a request to Princess for a return of the deposit and they would know they had to sell that cabin. With no request it seems Princess should make an inquiry to the TA.

I read the posts pretty fast and maybe I missed something. I'm glad it is resolved but these dates bother me since I'm more prone to senior moments these days.

John L.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>John - Princess generally has a 75 day window for final payment, not 60 day. With Princess, right after final payment, they will start upgrading passengers and then have more "lower" fare cabins available for special pricing. So really, the final payment was probably due in the last week of April, not the middle of May. They do not usually wait as the system is automated. If final payment is not made on time or within a certain time range, the cabin will automatically open up and the reservation be cancelled.

Pea

5/9 Golden Princess &nbsp;http://escati.linkopp.net/cgi-bin/countdown.cgi?trgb=000000&srgb=00ff00&prgb=191970&cdt=2004;5;9;23;0;00&timezone=GMT-0400
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meyerhaus
May 30th, 2004, 07:43 AM
THat is what they said when I called http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_mad.gif!

TA dropped the ball...period.

www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus (http://www.geocities.com/pattersandmenus)

Click the 7/11 to go to the ROLL CALL:
http://www.picgoo.com/uploads/seven_eleven_copy1.jpg (http://messages.cruisecritic.com/2/OpenTopic?a=tpc&s=927093444&f=4763056957&m=4253085267)
Golden Princess Southern Caribbean-7/11/04
Big Red Boat-1993
Celebrity Zenith-1993

Commodore Suzy
May 30th, 2004, 11:19 AM
And it could be worse... I'm so happy for you that you are actually cruising and your deposit was obviously credited to you. Let me tell you what happened to one of my friends:


A newer friend of mine booked thru his local agency he had been using for many years. He booked WAY in advance a QM2 inagural season Europe cruise.. a BIG, expensive one. His deposit was three THOUSAND dollars.

His agent failed to call him when his final was due 90 days before sailing. At 88 days from sailing, my friend called and said, "So, when is my final due? 60 days out? 70? what's the date?". The agent completely blew it. My friend missed his final payment, the computer immediately canceled his reservation, gave up his cabin, and his $3K is gone as non-refundable. He has written letters to Cunard, asking for only to be credited with the money to use on a future cruise, but hasn't heard anything back. This all happened in April.

Is that a sad story or what? Of COURSE, TAs are supposed to let you know when your final is, but it pays also to read the fine print in your brouchure so you are on top of when those non-refundable things start happening. What's that word? Buyer beware? Coincidentally, if you plan on going on the QM2, be forewarned that there is a $75 fee for canceling ANYTIME after you book, and there are some penalties at 120 days out. (Yes, non-refundable penalties before final is due!)

I'm not adding this because it really applies you anything you missed doing meyer.. just wanted to alert everyone since I was on the topic! Cheers! Keep us posted meyerhaus!

Suzy

NEXT --> Pride of Aloha 6/11/04
Monarch family weekend 10/15/04 & Grand Galveston 12/11/04
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JohnL1935
May 30th, 2004, 12:51 PM
Thanks for the info. I'm still in the 60 day time warp. It may not have effected my perspective because my TA's automatically charged my CC for final payment. I still think it is poor business practice for Princess not to make a phone call before cancelling. What if a check got "lost" in the mail? Or, in this instance, a TA without a computer system that tickles them when to do things. Maybe the agency had that and an individual fell asleep--but still the manager should have been overseeing the operation and on and on....

We often visit the casinos in A.C. We use a card in the machines for comps. My wife continues to lose them. Once, I went to the desk for a couple replacements and they refused to give them to me. We went to another casino. I wrote a letter to the pres and said I don't understand your practice--we get food comps, room comps,entertainment comps, free drinks but your employees refuse to give me a ten cent card for us to donate to your machines. I did receive an apology and I never had a problem after that. Reminds me of Jon's case. Princess has a paying customer and won't make a ten cent call to find out the problem...

John L.

crlieq
May 30th, 2004, 04:26 PM
I am so sorry to hear that you are having to go through so much trouble before your vacation. I complete understand. We had something very similar happen to us in November (different cruise line). We had booked our cruise almost a year out, (with a travel agency we had used several times) made our deposit and final payment on time, only to learn a week before we were suppose to leave that the travel agency had not sent in our final payment and our trip had been cancelled by the cruise line. The ship was full and we had to sail 2 weeks later. It was completely the travel agents fault. They rebooked us, upgraded our cabin (ocean view to balcony) and refunded us 2/3 the cost of our trip.

If I were you, I would demand some compensation from my travel agent. I would calmly go into the agency (not call) and ask them how they are going to make it right by you. A little something (flowers in your cabin, sweets, or maybe a onbord credit for you to use) would certainly take the sting out a little and help but some wind back in your sails.

Have a great time http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

cruisernurse
May 30th, 2004, 07:29 PM
a local TA here was just arrested and will be sending a good time behind bars for taking customers money and spending it on her bills, then charging that person's trips to a very wealthy retired man that she had kept his credit card information on. It finally caught up with but the sad part is that those people that had paid her cash or check was left without their money and their hard earned vacations!

meyerhaus
June 1st, 2004, 08:15 AM
UPDATE:

I finally called and coaxed the name and phone of the Regional Manager out of the secretary. http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

I called her and she said that she would look into it, but that this was the only day in the office for her this week and she might not get back to us until next Monday or Tuesday. HAH! Gotta love the runaround from this agency!

JON

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Golden Princess Southern Caribbean-7/11/04
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Big Red Boat-1993
Celebrity Zenith-1993