Received notice of complimentary cruise

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#1
South Jersey
1,554 Posts
Joined Jan 2001
Has anyone else gotten one of these? It's a postcard addressed to my husband, with no return address or indication of any company name. It says "Dear ___, In celebration of our Grand Opening in your area, you have been selected to received a complimentary 8 day/7 night cruise for 2 with an outside cabin, leaving from any major port in the US, including New York City." It has the Carnival logo in several places, although it's clearly not from Carnival. It also says "This is not a timeshare or land sale offer."

It tells us to call for more info, but I hesitate to respond without knowing anything more about it. I'm old enough to know that there's no such thing as a free lunch... but I do wonder about this.

Did anyone else get one and call the number? What did it turn out to be?
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#2
USA
6,739 Posts
Joined May 2007
Originally posted by Shelli
Has anyone else gotten one of these? It's a postcard addressed to my husband, with no return address or indication of any company name. It says "Dear ___, In celebration of our Grand Opening in your area, you have been selected to received a complimentary 8 day/7 night cruise for 2 with an outside cabin, leaving from any major port in the US, including New York City." It has the Carnival logo in several places, although it's clearly not from Carnival. It also says "This is not a timeshare or land sale offer."

It tells us to call for more info, but I hesitate to respond without knowing anything more about it. I'm old enough to know that there's no such thing as a free lunch... but I do wonder about this.

Did anyone else get one and call the number? What did it turn out to be?
this is going to cost you!! I wouldn't make the call and the postcard goes in the circular file for me!!
#3
Tallahassee , FL
14,591 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
Originally posted by Crusin6
this is going to cost you!! I wouldn't make the call and the postcard goes in the circular file for me!!
I agree. Toss it. It ain't a complimentary cruise from Carnival. And it'll cost you in taxes as it will be reported as income. Unless you specifically entered a contest and "won" this, it's a marketing ploy for someone.
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#5
Alabama
1,465 Posts
Joined Aug 2007
I got something very similar, it was for a free cruise, several free gift cards. It had logos from Carnival and Travelocity but no compay name just a phone number. Most of these free offers have the fine print that explains what the offer really is, like timeshare viewing, this one did not. I threw it away, thought it might be one of those scams that charge your phone when you call the number. I remember those from a few years ago, you call the number and then a charge appears on your phone bill.

We went to a timeshare once because they were offering a free cruise. When I called to book the cruise it was for a cabin with an upper and a lower bed, well my husband and I wouldn't want that, so I asked about upgrading and it was as much as the cruise would cost if I just booked it myself. Even if we had taken the original cabin there were fees we had to pay, so it really wasn't free.
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#6
Lynn Haven, Fl
2,736 Posts
Joined Mar 2007
To quote myself, "If it sounds too good to be true, it is too good to be true." In some way or form you will have to pay for this free deal.

I actually worked for a company years ago that gave away "free" vacations to Miami Beach or Las Vegas or a cruise (on Costas Franca C) as promotional gifts. The consolation prize of a set of steak knifes cost us more than the vacation certificates.

Doc
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#7
Sarasota Florida
1,157 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
These "offers" are a monthly occurrence at our house. They are not from Carnival, they are from a marketing company. They have a price tag....
and you are correct....no free lunch.
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#8
17,660 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Call

You have nothing to lose. just DO NOT get sucked into giving a credit card number or anything like that, AND before you do verify that the area code in in the US, and not a weird one.
#9
29,344 Posts
Joined Dec 2007
Life is to short to fall for such ploys and try to actually get the award.

However i interested I have a bridge for sale.
#10
Castle Rock CO
5,091 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Originally posted by zqvol
Call

You have nothing to lose. just DO NOT get sucked into giving a credit card number or anything like that, AND before you do verify that the area code in in the US, and not a weird one.
Why would one waste time if you know better? It will end up being a overpriced "cruise" not a mainline cruise line or a timeshare hustle.

Punt.
#11
Algiers, on the WEST BANK
746 Posts
Joined Dec 2005
Originally posted by zqvol
Call

You have nothing to lose. just DO NOT get sucked into giving a credit card number or anything like that, AND before you do verify that the area code in in the US, and not a weird one.

DON'T CALL -- some area codes and number CHARGE your phone bill per/min. When you call you get a recording that lasts forever and you are charged for each minute.
#12
Richardson, TX
71,126 Posts
Joined Dec 2006
I did one of those ... but I knew someone else who got their cruise. They gave me a card for $179 pp for a 4 day in a 1A, or a 7 day for $299 pp, total. sounds good so far right. My card said I was promised a cruise out of Galveston, so the prices were fine.

OK, so now its a year later, I can only pick off season, ok, Ill do cartwheels, that can only be from Sept to mid Dec, ok fine ..give me my cruise. Well Galveston is considered premium, they are quoting me full price, not even a discount. .. but we can give you a cruise out of Miami. Im not flying to Miami for a 4 day Carnival cruise.

I finally opened a dispute with BBB and got a 4 day out of Triumph ..out of New Orleans. So that adds money as its much cheaper out of Galveston.

The company who books the cruises also told me, they are not the same company who sent the postcard. By sending in the money and signing my name I agree that I released them from any previous promise, (such as the cruise going out of Galveston which was originally promised). .. oh we are not that company, thats a different company.
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#13
Winnfield, LA
776 Posts
Joined Apr 2008
Don't just toss it!......Be ecologically responsible and recycle it.

Seriously, no way would I call for all the reasons stated by the above posters.
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#14
DFW
703 Posts
Joined Jul 2007
I agree to toss it. But if you're curious, you could always Google the number first?
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#15
Charlotte, NC
10,143 Posts
Joined Nov 2004
Originally posted by firefly333
I finally opened a dispute with BBB and got a 4 day out of Triumph ..out of New Orleans. So that adds money as its much cheaper out of Galveston.
Whatever you got out of it in the end, was it worth it? Compared to the best "legit" rate you could get from a reputable company?

Seems to me this sort if thing is to be avoided always.
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#16
Richardson, TX
71,126 Posts
Joined Dec 2006
Originally posted by salty dingo
Whatever you got out of it in the end, was it worth it? Compared to the best "legit" rate you could get from a reputable company?

Seems to me this sort if thing is to be avoided always.
If I had gotten a cruise out of Galveston, would have been way worth it .. but out of New Orleans, 4 day cruise, I paid $179 pp, X 2, and then invited a friend who is flying in, so I paid $358 for Dec 16th. The current price is $329 plus taxes ...for one person.
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#19
South Jersey
1,554 Posts
Joined Jan 2001
Thank you all for your replies. It's an 877 number, and I was unsuccessful in linking it with a company name... but I found a couple of posts elsewhere about others getting the same postcard (nobody posted their results, though).

I don't wish to call them and give them any indication that their direct mail marketing was working!

I've decided to rely on the old adage about it seeming too good to be true and just recycle the silly postcard.
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#20
California
51 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
A postcard just came in the mail today with Carnival name and logo and then in the tiniest print possible, says it is not affiliated with Carnival. Wonder why Carnival tolerates this? I tried the reverse phone number but couldn't find anything "free". But it is going in the trash.