Posted May 12th, 2012, 05:56 PM
Last edited by cruiseco; May 12th, 2012 at 05:57 PM
We did prepay a fee to the travel agency, it was charged when we booked our cruise along with the cruise deposit and that is what we didn't get back.
If the agency charged you some kind of booking fee, the fee may not fall under the definition of something the insurer will pay for:
"The Company will pay for the following:
a) unused, non-refundable land or sea expenses prepaid to the Participating Organization."
Unfortunately, when looking up the plan's definition of "Land or Sea Arrangements" you get only the following which does absolutely nothing to clear up what can or cannot be insured:
""Land/Sea Arrangements” means land and or sea arrangements made by the Participating Organization."
If they're denying the claim because a "booking fee" doesn't meet this definition of a "land or sea expense" then they might be making the proper claim decision. I'm not saying it's the decision I would have made but given the general vagueness of the definition it might be understandable. I just don't know -- some lawyer once told me that vagueness is generally decided in the favor of whomever didn't write the contract but I don't know how that would help you much.
You can of course get a better decision on this by appealing the matter to your state's department of insurance. But I think a good first course of action might be to contact the travel agency first and try to get them to refund the booking fee to you directly as a customer goodwill gesture. It just seems petty for them to keep the fee plus the commission they made on the sale of the insurance in light of the fact that the cancellation was for a legitimate medical reason.