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friedaliene

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About friedaliene

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Kitchener, Ontaro
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Princess

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  1. It's very true the time lag for processing seems outrageous. I will cut HAL some slack - I wouldn't want to calculate how many cruises were cancelled between beginning of March 2020 to this very day. They have dealt with thousands of refunds - air travel, excursions, specialty dining, cruise WIFI. I give kudos to all HAL staff I have talked with over the last 5 months - always polite, courteous. If it had been me on the receiving end of all the calls they have taken - I may very well have blown a gasket. They heard the same account from unhappy cruisers every day and remained upbeat. I contacted my credit card provider and the travel insurer attached to the credit card. I was at the discretion of HAL to resolve to issue me a refund credit instead of the FCC. Because, I cancelled the first issue of COVID cancel policy - I was tied to this policy. According to credit card policy I had accepted policy "A" - because HAL revised and altered the policy, I was tied to the policy "A" and could not dispute even though HAL was continuously revising. There may have been at least 4 revisions starting mid-Feb. I was at the behest of HAL if they converted my FCC to a credit refund. The credit refund hit my credit card July 27/20, I terminated my Apr 20/20 cruise Mar 6/20. It may have taken 5 months for the FCC to be converted to refund credit - so I will be grateful for my refund.
  2. I'm sorry to say but nothing seems logical or sensible when it comes to cruise pricing, special promotions, OBC's. The port taxes & fees seem to be consist with other search engines or with the cruise line. Some internet companies charge a processing fee for booking and cancelling. We had booked with 3rd party internet and I had $25 fee when booking. Then when I terminated they charged $100 US. Holland advised early on that the "travel agents" would have their commission paid even for COVID related cancellations. The 3rd party service refunded me my $100 US but I chased that forever as well. If they document the figures things may not add up. After all was said and done I might have been out $25 - $35 US. Of course the final refund I just received when transferred to my Canadian credit card I lost out on the exchange rate. When we purchased the exchange rate for buying was 1.34 US and of course with credit cards fees. The refund used an exchange rate of 1.3038. With Canadian dollar in the toilet everything in US dollars hurts. I hope that you get a balance sheet that details their calculations. Of course there could be mumble jumble "VOO DOO" who knows.
  3. Holland America Accounting - Direct Phone number: 1 - 888 - 663 - 5984 - option # 3 If you call early Seattle time you have quicker response. I have phoned later in the day and had wait times as long as 1 hr 15 minutes. Use some of their lingo on them - we at Holland are being "FLUID" at this critical time. Push them for someone to expedite your processing - this isn't always effective. I have been phoning Holland twice weekly since May 7/20. Was advised June 21/20 that my request for credit refund had been approved by Credit Approval team. Also, on my last call on July 21/20 advised that my refund was locked in a credit processing loop ?? Again, was this "CORPORATE" double speak? Who knows?? What ever the last Holland associate did on July 21, moved my credit from lying in unprocessed "LIMBO" into actual being processed. Twice I was declined to receive the FCC as an actual "REFUND" credit, this was mid - March and early April. I think "luck" was on my side the end of April when I got connected to a "Resolution Manager" - Thyme. He moved my request from declined to "Consideration" for refund approval. By no means has this process been simple. I can be a persistent pest and perhaps I finally wore them down. All calls are documented on your Cruise account file as well as being recorded. I kept track of all dates I called and insisted on getting the associates name at the time. I was advised consistently that my refund was in the "Process Queue", but no one was able to definitively tell me how the request moved up the "Process Queue". The last Holland credit associate on July 21/20 did something and low and behold my refund was sitting applied to my credit card this morning July 28/20. I don't know if you can request a specific Holland associate - the final person who got my refund out of the sludge and got me action was - JULIE. I hope your successful in getting your money back in your control. We didn't want to be locked into a FCC that was time sensitive, meaning you would have to just book something to insure our money was lost to Holland's coffers.
  4. I'm doing HAPPY HAPPY Dance - cancelled Eastern TA with Holland. Cruise cancelled Mar 14 - portion of credit was applied as FCC and received portion as a credit. The cruise would have ended May 9/20. Holland initially advised that I would be unable to receive actual credit for FCC. It took twice weekly calls and endless e-mails but today the FCC was converted to actual refund credit to my credit card. I can finally put to bed all my follow-ups for refunds of cancellations due to COVID19.
  5. This has been a long and horrendous process to have a credit applied to my credit card. It's not there yet!! But, a Holland - Accounting associate has advised that the credit was transacted on July 23/20. WOOO HOOO !!!! The credit card company has advised that currently transactions take between 10 - 15 business days. I have called twice weekly since May to inquire about my funds. Supposedly my credit refund was caught in an accounting loop and was sitting in "LIMBO". I have every possible body part crossed waiting in anticipation for the credit to hit my credit card. When the funds hit my credit card I will do a "HAPPY DANCE" !! I don't know where the cruise industry is going to be the near future but I didn't want my funds locked into an "FCC". Holland has sold 4 ships since this COVID19 began. Do I want to risk cruising before there's a vaccine. Take care all - stay safe.
  6. We cancelled on Mar 6/20 our Apr 22/20 departure - at this time HAL was offering FCC on the amount that was really no longer eligible for refund but they were allowing FCC for this portion. I have attached PDF of HAL Press Release Mar 6/20 & Mar 13/20 for your reference. I am disputing the FCC credit and have requested a refund to my credit card - this is based on how policy changed almost daily early in COVID. HAL cancelled our cruise Mar 30/20, but even by Mar 16/20 we would no longer have been able to fly to the US as border was closed for only essential travel. On Apr. 7/20, they sweetened the pot and would give me 125% FCC plus $250 OBC, if I settled the dispute. I call weekly to inquire about the refund and advised that it's in "Special Circumstances" queue ?? The dispute does not fall under my Credit Card disputed charges as I got what was being offered at the time. I will wait for hopefully a decision in my favour. The FCC is still mine if cruising becomes viable ?? I wish you luck getting the FCC which certainly should be allocated to based on the policy. Mar 13-20 Press Release Pause of Global Ship Operations.pdf Mar 6-20 Press Release New Book With Confidence Program.pdf
  7. The FCC are not visible on your personal profile page. Supposedly it is registered under the original booking number of the cancelled cruise. This credit is linked to your Mariner number we just can't see it. I did receive an e-mail notification directly from HAL advising us of our individual FCC. Copy - FCC notification received March 18, 2020 Dear Travel Partner, In light of the uncertainty regarding travel due to concerns about Covid-19, Holland America Line recently introduced a new Short Term Cancellation Policy on all departures between now and July 31, 2020. We are allowing guests the option of cancelling their booking no later than July 29, 2020, with a minimum of 48 hours in advance of their departure date, and receive a Future Cruise Credit (FCC) for the amount of their cancellation fee that can be used for another cruise in 2020 or 2021. We note that (passengers names) recently cancelled their cruise booking (XXXXXX) and we are happy to inform you that we are retroactively applying this policy to qualified bookings cancelled after January 20, 2020. Consequently, you now have FCCs attached to Mariner IDs (xxxxxxxx & xxxxxxxxx) in the amount of $XXXX,00 per person. The FCC must be booked by December 31, 2020. This applies to bookings on spring 2020 Land+Sea Journeys and cruises for all destinations. FCCs are nonrefundable, non-transferrable and do not have to be used on the same destination that was cancelled. Kind regards, Holland America Line This is an automated email, please do not reply as responses to this address are not monitored.
  8. A competitor cruise-line has posted a chart of exact dates that claims will be processed. Holland can't be that scattered brained that they don't have a chart for processing claims by cruise departure date. Maybe they would have fewer calls if they kept us apprised of their time-line for processing and thereby avoid an influx of calls. Just a thought Holland.
  9. I don't know the finesse of cruise lines accounting but it appears that extras such as drink packages, excursions or WIFI are credited back much at quicker pace than the actual cruise fare. It seems all the PLUS items are under another dept. control whereas cruise fares fall under the reservations department. Reservations dept. reviews then passes the approved credit to accounting for processing. I could be out to lunch but "Reservations" & "Accounting" are both on cruise credit processing overload. In "Normal" business practice the volume of cancellations being processed is probably small. Supposedly, staff from other areas have been moved to assist with the volume. From past experience if I book an add on and then cancel the credit shows up approx 3 working days later. I filed on Mar 26/20 a claim with Allianz the insurer linked to my Visa / Travel card (Canada) for recovery of certain expenses, yesterday via snail mail dated May 6/20 they are requesting additional documentation. I had called their claims "Hot Line" (that is joke - every one is working from home (WFH) 45 minutes on hold to be advised that it will probably be another 6 weeks before I hear anything. I'm now going to be derogatory the speed that these companies are working is like dealing governmental bureaucracy and yes lots of time government employees.
  10. Well, I was in contact with Visa / Canada dispute this a.m. I'm waiting for FCC to be returned as full refund credit. According to associate I don't have a dispute to receive cash refund. The dispute reverts back to "Cancellation Policy" as was established at point of purchase. That the refund policy doesn't mitigate based on the "NEW" "Revised" options that have changed 3 perhaps 4 times since early March 2020. I have escalated in Disputes to a higher power. Will have to wait and see what out come will be.
  11. I don't have answer for you. The wait times just keep growing. Yesterday on another Roll Call, someone advised that NCL - is headed for bankruptcy. NCL - is seeking to split shares and seeking outrageous loans to cover them. They have 3 new ships - somewhere in the new build stages. I haven't looked at Carnival Corp. which falls under corporately but their shares have plummeted as well. Carnival has new ship Mardi Gras currently under construction (big bucks commitment). Even RCL - UK president advises that destinations will be coming back over extended period. Consider, all the support workers that have been furloughed over this pandemic and getting them to the various ships ports. RCL - is picking up cruise staff at various ports, taking them all to England and I think they have chartered a flight for these folks to their country of origin they will then get what ever transportation to their home destinations. RCL advises that to adjust the Medical Infirmaries needs to be addressed as well. Personally, I have filed dispute with Allainz - VISA travel coverage, as well waiting on HAL, I'm trying to have all my options covered.
  12. I spoke to HAL - reservations associate this morning. As Atexsix indicated, I suggested that HAL could post all the ships / cruise that have had the refunds issued. Keeping us uninformed is only adding to every ones frustration. In fairness I think they are all flying by the seats of their pants. We consumers are fickle purchasers. HAL's biggest problem is "LACK" of public communication, use the web-site to update us. Maybe, we need to take this to HAL face book site. We have more power as a collective. They view Cruise Critic, but it's not out there for public viewing.
  13. Hello ON cruiser - in Tdot, Too often, I speak without considering the audience. I should have refrained from putting all our American neighbours in one big "Bin". I also sat on a "VISA - hold" to talk with a Dispute Associate only to have my call dropped - annoying but this is life these days. I am frustrated and want instant gratification of them saying "YES" we will expedite for you. I have to have the patience of respecting the queue - as our cousins across the pond are most respectful of the queue. We lived in the UK - ions ago, I was young and naive, I had a verbal take down for jumping the queue. It's a lesson, I was only required to experience once. Oh, I do miss having a lovely Greek dinner on the Danforth, having a lazy spring day on Toronto Island, a stroll along the Beachs, or wondering aimlessly thru Ikea without a care in the COVID19 butt. Oh to return to the simple, uncomplicated life. This too will Pass. Let me introduce you all to Pluto Living - there is collection of Pluto's take on how we get thru COVID19. I hope you enjoy https://www.youtube.com/redirect?q=https%3A%2F%2Fzazzle.ca%2Fstore%2Fpluto_living&redir_token=JUbSPg3sls4r1_JMqSfjiLrskQd8MTU4ODIyMTM1NUAxNTg4MTM0OTU1&v=yoAa_3r5qTI&event=video_description
  14. Sorry, but you Americans are way to litigious. So you see a lawyer for consultation at $225 - $300 US an hour. How many lawyers you think HAL has. So potentially you could exhaust whatever refund your eligible for in legal fees. Some one here keeps mentioning BBB - they too are an organization with no clout or muscle. The BBB is just a joke. They aren't going to fight HAL again they are independent city/town organization trying to help the small business owner in the community. Have some patience is stressing over this going to get you your money any sooner. friedaliene Holland America - 15 ships 15 ships = 25,000 passengers 10 day cruises = 4.5 weeks (Mar 14 - Apr 25) HAL has cancelled global operations until June 30/20 another 9 weeks of 7 days cruises cancelled for another 25,000 deposited / paid passengers doesn't include WIFI, pre-booked excursions, Flight Ease arrangements, speciality dining, pre/post hotels thru Holland, beverage packages, pre-paid gratuities. Is your stressing over this gonna get you your refund any sooner? Any HAL associate I've spoken to has been cordial and pleasant. At least HAL answers their phones, some of the Internet Travel - hotels, flights, cruises don't even pick up their phones. The world has gone to Hell in a hand basket. Resolve to be nice to these poor folks, they are just trying to pay their rent, feed their families and get thru this COVID19 - HELL.
  15. Disputed charges under the "old normal" fell under the 60 day's. In the "COVID19 oxymoron Normal" I'm left with impression this is a movable target. I spoke to a resolution specialist today, Holland has shifted staff from "Excursions / Speciality dining" over to processing either FCC or direct refund credit. The Holland associate did ask if I was experiencing financial hardship, employment termination or family member death, I guess they might expedite the refund, I have no explicate reason for pushing this other than I want my money. As the HAL associate was explaining this pandemic started in Dec/19 with all the ships in Asian ports. Having to re-schedule or refund any passengers booked in Asia. I know they had a World Tour that was due to disembark in Fort Lauderdale but passengers had to be re-routed from Australia. We tend to forget how many thousands of passengers were booked on a fleet of 15 ships over this extended period. I think we need to remember that these poor HAL staffers are hearing the same story over and over by the thousands. We think our problem or situation is unique and we get caught up in the "big royal "I", I think of it like a two year old the world as they know it is what revolves around them. Everyone's world has been taken out of a normal orbit. Does berating a HAL staffer change the backlog they must be experiencing. I'm trying to be a softer, kinder, more understanding person during this, stressing and going ape poop isn't gonna make it happen any faster. friedaliene
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