Jump to content
  • Deals
  • Find a Cruise
  • Reviews
  • News
  • Cruise Tips
,

Early saver price reduction but tax/fee increase?


Mistyhon
 Share

Recommended Posts

I finally received a price drop for our sunshine cruise (balcony.) However, my taxes/port fees went up ( from approx $398 up to $437 ish.) Ummmm, ok?!?

 

 

 

When I called to question it the rep couldn't figure it out not could her supervisor so I was transferred. They eventually gave me the reason that the new price/promo had a different tax/fee rate and that they are subject to change.

 

In the grand scheme it's only a little $$ but I feel like, "really guys you can change my tax rate?" It's just a bit wacky to me.

 

Has this ever happened to you? (Maybe I just didn't notice it last cruise?)

 

Thanks and happy sailing to you all. ;)

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes this happened to me recently too. I was told if they go down you will get a refund in the form of OBC, but if they go up you won't be charged more unless you're changing something on your reservation.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The taxes/port fees are based on the number of people on the ship when it comes into port. They are estimates until the ship sails because they don't know how many passengers there will be until then.

 

They try to be as accurate as they can because they don't want to be left short when they sail. As a result, they use statistical models that base their estimate on how many passengers have already booked, how much time remains before sailing, and past history of the cruise, time of year, etc.

 

Any time you ask for a change in your booking, they recalculate your share of the taxes/fees based on the most current estimate of the number of passengers that they will have.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

basically you are doing a new booking when you are requesting a price drop. So, whatever the going cabin rate is, if there is an "upgrade cost" due to position in the ship, and taxes/fees all factor in. I have three active ES bookings and so far, only one rate drop when the fees/taxes changed. Saved me $31. But since then, the rates have gone up so my initial costs are still the best.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I finally received a price drop for our sunshine cruise (balcony.) However, my taxes/port fees went up ( from approx $398 up to $437 ish.) Ummmm, ok?!?

 

 

 

When I called to question it the rep couldn't figure it out not could her supervisor so I was transferred. They eventually gave me the reason that the new price/promo had a different tax/fee rate and that they are subject to change.

 

In the grand scheme it's only a little $$ but I feel like, "really guys you can change my tax rate?" It's just a bit wacky to me.

 

Has this ever happened to you? (Maybe I just didn't notice it last cruise?)

 

Thanks and happy sailing to you all. ;)

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

This just happened to us. We saw a $50 pp drop in price so I called Carnival for the rate reduction. The CSR gets done and says the $80 will be issued as an OBC. I told her the drop was $100 and she told me the price went down but the taxes went up. I told her bulls*%t, taxes are a percentage of the fare and if the fare goes down the taxes go down. She told me that's not the way it works so I asked for a supervisor. She got a supervisor that told me the same thing. I'm not buying it but hey, an $80 drop is better than nothing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I told her bulls*%t, taxes are a percentage of the fare and if the fare goes down the taxes go down.

 

You are totally wrong. First off, it is taxes AND port fees. It is not a percentage tax like a sales tax. Just because the cruise fare decreases does not mean port fees decrease. There are port fees for every port you travel to, and they can also change from time to time. Post 5 in this thread explains it perfectly.

Edited by RD3P0
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The taxes/port fees are based on the number of people on the ship when it comes into port. They are estimates until the ship sails because they don't know how many passengers there will be until then.

 

They try to be as accurate as they can because they don't want to be left short when they sail. As a result, they use statistical models that base their estimate on how many passengers have already booked, how much time remains before sailing, and past history of the cruise, time of year, etc.

 

Any time you ask for a change in your booking, they recalculate your share of the taxes/fees based on the most current estimate of the number of passengers that they will have.

 

^^^this^^^ Good explanation.

 

In all my cruises, about 25% of the time I have received OBC because the taxes and port fees have decreased. Nice surprise when I check my account after boarding. Seems to happen more when I have booked over a year in advance.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This just happened to us. We saw a $50 pp drop in price so I called Carnival for the rate reduction. The CSR gets done and says the $80 will be issued as an OBC. I told her the drop was $100 and she told me the price went down but the taxes went up. I told her bulls*%t, taxes are a percentage of the fare and if the fare goes down the taxes go down. She told me that's not the way it works so I asked for a supervisor. She got a supervisor that told me the same thing. I'm not buying it but hey, an $80 drop is better than nothing.

You are incorrect. If you look at your cruise, you will see that the cheapest inside cabin and the grand suite have the same taxes and fees. And they most certainly aren't the same price. So as you can see it per person not a % of the fare.

 

Sharon

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Port fees and taxes are constantly changing. Sometimes they go up. Sometimes they go down. I always have received $10-$20 per person OBC at embarkation due to decreases to those fees/taxes.

 

I don't buy that either. It doesn't make sense for the port fees to constantly fluctuate. The port fees are set and the cruise line divides that number by the number of passengers it expects to be sailing. How could a cruise line set prices if their costs didn't remain constant? For example fuel. They understand that fuel costs are unstable, therefore, the cruise lines have a clause in their contract for a fuel surcharge should the cost of fuel exceed $75 a barrel. Food costs fluctuate slightly, but are within the lines margin.

 

We have been on over 20 cruises and have only received an OBC when we missed a port.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You are totally wrong. First off, it is taxes AND port fees. It is not a percentage tax like a sales tax. Just because the cruise fare decreases does not mean port fees decrease. There are port fees for every port you travel to, and they can also change from time to time. Post 5 in this thread explains it perfectly.

 

The CSR didn't say port fees, she said taxes. The supervisor didn't say port fees, she said taxes.If they had said port fees I would have questioned this as well.

 

As for post #5, that assumption is close but not accurate, in my opinion. Most ships sail full these days, therefore, port fees should remain the same for everyone.

 

On the Triumph we did not port in Grand Cayman. The cruise director announced on the public address system that each guest would receive a $20 obc for port fees since we did not port. If the scenario in post #5 was accurate, every guest would receive a different amount of obc depending on when they purchased their ticket.

 

The cruise lines reduce their profit margin to lower prices when the ship is not at it's expected capacity at a certain point in time before sailing. Once the capacity gets back to what was projected they will raise the rate. If they are always meeting their projections the rate will not be reduced.

 

The "beards" know they make more money with a full ship rather than a half empty ship, therefore, they will reduce the fare to entice people. Port fees are not influenced in this decision.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You are incorrect. If you look at your cruise, you will see that the cheapest inside cabin and the grand suite have the same taxes and fees. And they most certainly aren't the same price. So as you can see it per person not a % of the fare.

 

Sharon

 

WOW, I stand corrected. That makes no sense at all.:confused::confused:

 

I guess all those business classes I took at school led me down the wrong path.

Edited by Socref124
Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have been on over 20 cruises and have only received an OBC when we missed a port.

 

Then I must be one lucky guy because I have been on two cruises and have had OBC twice due to decreased prices in port fees/taxes.

 

But my cruise fare did not change....so why did the port fees/taxes decrease from what I paid if those are "fixed costs".

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Then I must be one lucky guy because I have been on two cruises and have had OBC twice due to decreased prices in port fees/taxes.

 

But my cruise fare did not change....so why did the port fees/taxes decrease from what I paid if those are "fixed costs".

 

One explanation is that Port Charges, Government Fees and Government Taxes can be assessed either on a per passenger, per berth, per tonnage or per vessel basis. Assessments calculated on a per ton or per vessel basis are spread out over the numbers of passengers on the ship at the time of sailing.

 

So let's say that you are making a booking today for next Summer 2015. The cruise line will quote you a cruise fare and base the taxes/fees assuming and anticipating a 100% occupancy for your sailing. That means every room is occupied by at least 2 passengers. But with many cabins set up to accommodate 3rds 4ths and some 5ths the ship can ultimately sail at 101% - 105% capacity. Hence spreading the taxes/fees over a higher number of passengers and you end up with the OBC on your Sail and Sign account.

 

Conversely, if a ship is selling slowly and say at 120 to 90 days out "the powers that be" anticipate only a 90% full ship then the estimate of the taxes per person will rise. Anyone booking next spring will pay the current tax/fee rate. If you are already booked at the old estimate, you will not be charged this increase. The cruise line will eat the difference. Unless.... you call for any price adjustment... at which time the cruise line reserves the right to adjust your taxes to the prevailing anticipated taxes. Hence the Early Saver price adjustment / increased taxes scenario.

Edited by AdGuyMG
Link to comment
Share on other sites

One explanation is that Port Charges, Government Fees and Government Taxes can be assessed either on a per passenger, per berth, per tonnage or per vessel basis. Assessments calculated on a per ton or per vessel basis are spread out over the numbers of passengers on the ship at the time of sailing.

 

So let's say that you are making a booking today for next Summer 2015. The cruise line will quote you a cruise fare and base the taxes/fees assuming and anticipating a 100% occupancy for your sailing. That means every room is occupied by at least 2 passengers. But with many cabins set up to accommodate 3rds 4ths and some 5ths the ship can ultimately sail at 101% - 105% capacity. Hence spreading the taxes/fees over a higher number of passengers and you end up with the OBC on your Sail and Sign account.

 

Conversely, if a ship is selling slowly and say at 120 to 90 days out "the powers that be" anticipate only a 90% full ship then the estimate of the taxes per person will rise. Anyone booking next spring will pay the current tax/fee rate. If you are already booked at the old estimate, you will not be charged this increase. The cruise line will eat the difference. Unless.... you call for any price adjustment... at which time the cruise line reserves the right to adjust your taxes to the prevailing anticipated taxes. Hence the Early Saver price adjustment / increased taxes scenario.

 

I'm with you 100%. My "question" was meant more to prove a point to the poster that was quite adamant that claimed that those items should not change in price because they are fixed costs and that port fees and/or taxes should decrease if cruise fare decreases. That poster was seeing port fees and/or taxes as more of a "sales tax" of a certain percentage on the cruise fare rather that established fixed amount taxes/fees.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The CSR didn't say port fees, she said taxes. The supervisor didn't say port fees, she said taxes.If they had said port fees I would have questioned this as well.

 

Since they aren't separated even on the detailed bill, that's a meaningless distinction.

 

As for post #5, that assumption is close but not accurate, in my opinion. Most ships sail full these days, therefore, port fees should remain the same for everyone.

 

That's a polite fiction that the cruise lines get away with. I have moved cabins once and my wife has moved 2 times on cruises. Unless there was another passenger who had requested a cabin with a leak and wet carpet, and was waiting patiently for one to become available, I think it's likely that at least one of those cabins was vacant when we sailed.

 

As pointed out in post #15, even when full, there can be quite a difference in number of passengers.

 

On the Triumph we did not port in Grand Cayman. The cruise director announced on the public address system that each guest would receive a $20 obc for port fees since we did not port. If the scenario in post #5 was accurate, every guest would receive a different amount of obc depending on when they purchased their ticket.

 

Since the fees aren't separated by port either, they can refund whatever seems reasonable to them without recourse by the passenger. It's likely that it is fairly close to the average charged, but we really don't know.

 

I agree that the lines are not trying to make money on the fees. But they also are trying not to under-collect and cut into their profits either. Like another poster, I have twice received small OBCs to cover recalculated taxes & fees when I got on board. Since we usually book well in advance on early saver and those were both cruises that we didn't get late rate reductions on, we assumed that they were the result of the difference between full capacity (100%) & the "more than full" (100%+) capacity that actually sailed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One explanation is that Port Charges, Government Fees and Government Taxes can be assessed either on a per passenger, per berth, per tonnage or per vessel basis. Assessments calculated on a per ton or per vessel basis are spread out over the numbers of passengers on the ship at the time of sailing.

 

I have heard, but have never tried to verify, that the tonnage charges are mostly in old ports in Europe and Asia. My understanding was that most of the Caribbean/Central American ports use a flat fee for the ship plus a per passenger fee system. Again, just hearsay, never confirmed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

...That's a polite fiction that the cruise lines get away with. I have moved cabins once and my wife has moved 2 times on cruises. Unless there was another passenger who had requested a cabin with a leak and wet carpet, and was waiting patiently for one to become available, I think it's likely that at least one of those cabins was vacant when we sailed...

 

A bit OT: I used to believe the signs that said "the ship is full this sailing" that cruise lines have up when you board. Then I'd hear about pax who got moved after that. I think they have these signs just so they don't get barraged at the front desk by people wanting to be moved or upgraded from cabins they are unhappy with after the ship sails.

Edited by Ryndam2002
Link to comment
Share on other sites

A bit OT: I used to believe the signs that said "the ship is full this sailing" that cruise lines have up when you board. Then I'd hear about pax who got moved after that. I think they have these signs just so they don't get barraged at the front desk by people wanting to be moved or upgraded from cabins they are unhappy with after the ship sails.

 

I would think that "full" does not mean every single cabin occupied. It would make sense that they would have to leave open cabins to accommodate having to move passengers for whatever reason (toilet doesn't work, ceiling leaking from something overhead, etc.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

(RE: Taxes/Fees separate on invoices)

 

If you book via a travel agency they are always separated on the T/A invoice.

 

I admit that I overstated my case. They weren't split out on the one that I booked via T/A, but that isn't proof that no one does. My bad.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
 Share

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Forum Assistance
      • Q&A: Cruise Insurance with Steve Dasseos of the TripInsuranceStore.com - November 2022
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • Canadian Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...