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Non-refundable deposits


Jaybardin
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It caught me by surprise also

I booked a Panama Canal cruise on Princess Web site and didn't see any of the usual warnings about deposit being nonrefundable for a sale price

When I checked later, It was listed as nonrefundable deposit on the booking confirmation in small print.

 

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3 minutes ago, jsquared said:

 

You are certainly entitled to your opinion and I am not trying to beat you up. And I agree having to deal with non-refundable deposits will definitely have to be taken into consideration when I plan future travel. However, I also try to see it from the other side. I imagine that there are many people that book multiple cruises knowing full well that they are going to cancel some of them (I've seen posts of people talking about doing just this). The cruise line can't sell these cabins to a new customer while they are being held by another customer. If held until the last minute the cruise line might have to sell these cabins for less than the original reservation. And of course they're all about the money - this is a business after all 🙂.

 

There are a lot of land based businesses (specifically thinking about those that provide services for weddings) that have non-refundable deposits too. Ultimately it's all about their bottom line. 

 

We, as consumers, have the choice on where to spend our disposable income and should let that speak for us. Eventually someone will have to listen.

 

BINGO, totally agree on both sides...

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5 minutes ago, Kiran said:

It caught me by surprise also

I booked a Panama Canal cruise on Princess Web site and didn't see any of the usual warnings about deposit being nonrefundable for a sale price

When I checked later, It was listed as nonrefundable deposit on the booking confirmation in small print.

 

Sad but Buyer Beware...

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On 8/19/2018 at 8:52 AM, voljeep said:

is that in the basic policy, or do you need to upgrade to the Premium/Platinum coverage?...which we ( and prolly a whole lot others ) get for platinum/elite status , but only pay the basic coverage price...

Voljeep, The cancel for any reason for a future cruise credit in the amount of the cancellation fees is the platinum princess vacation protection plan. Ruby, platinum and elite captian circle members receive the upgrade to platinum protection from standard for free. I just used it and received 100% of my cancelation fees which included the EZ air cancellation fees. I now have this credit on my account. My TA can apply that credit for a future cruise. I have to use it for a sailing through next year. 

 

Edited by tioalmsp
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Hey folks, too many posts of similar info to quote in here.  I realize the issue with NRD's and Princess website only shows one pricing scheme by default.  However, it was well-publicized and discussed on this board in other threads during the previous Landmark Sale that Princess had FOUR pricing plans out there related to Landmark.  There are still RD pricing schemes to book under.  However, you have to either call Princess if booking with them and request this price plan, or work with your TA to book it.

 

Similarly, the new 3FF sale still has the RD options.  Princess has chosen this year to post up only NRD promotions on the website booking engine.  In many cases, the NRD fares (code K9-) are lower and no doubt the marketing types want to post up the lowest fare possible and still provide promotions.  The savvy shopper who might want a RD, can request it (code N9-) and perhaps pay just a little more.

 

As one example, I was looking at a couple of cruises on SKY for Winter 2021.  On the two 10-night cruises, the NRD fare and RD fare were identical.  If booking the 20-night combined cruise as a single booking, the RD fare was $30/pp higher - not a huge difference if it gives you peace of mind.

 

It may be a bit frustrating, but as several have pointed out, other cruise lines and many other businesses do have NRD policies.  Whether Princess eventually attempts to eliminate RD's altogether is obviously something they might know, but we customers don't.  All we can do is indicate our preference and let them know we would like to continue to have RD's available. 

 

While it is necessary to call in to Princess in order to find out this info, their website just isn't built to support multiple pricing schemes.  That said, they might have put in the sales promotion info that other pricing plans are available on request.  Perhaps they want more people calling in in the hopes they will book with Princess directly.

 

Cannot speak for all TA's but my agency has all possible pricing plans available on their booking engine and certainly the TA's have access to book under different pricing plans that Princess offers.

 

 

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3 hours ago, jsquared said:

 

You are certainly entitled to your opinion and I am not trying to beat you up. And I agree having to deal with non-refundable deposits will definitely have to be taken into consideration when I plan future travel. However, I also try to see it from the other side. I imagine that there are many people that book multiple cruises knowing full well that they are going to cancel some of them (I've seen posts of people talking about doing just this). The cruise line can't sell these cabins to a new customer while they are being held by another customer. If held until the last minute the cruise line might have to sell these cabins for less than the original reservation. And of course they're all about the money - this is a business after all 🙂.

 

There are a lot of land based businesses (specifically thinking about those that provide services for weddings) that have non-refundable deposits too. Ultimately it's all about their bottom line. 

 

We, as consumers, have the choice on where to spend our disposable income and should let that speak for us. Eventually someone will have to listen.

 

Bingo!   😉

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All of the cruise lines are going after NRD either buy offering a lower price or adding it to promotional offers. Royal Caribbean will not let you book a suite with a refundable deposit. What I don't like and shouldn't have to deal with is the deception when booking through a TA or directly with the cruise line. If I'm booking online and have no interaction with a person then it's on me to be sure of the type of deposit that I book. If it's through an agency or directly with the cruise line they should be disclosing the deposit information during the booking process. They should also inform you if there is a refundable deposit  price available.  Those of us who follow this site are seasoned cruisers who know what to look for and what questions to ask. Someone new to cruising shouldn't have to do extensive research to find out if a deposit is refundable or not if they are booking through an agent.  As for myself NRD don't work for me if booking more than 6 months out. I will wait closer to sail date to be sure that vacation time or family obligations aren't an issue.  The prices on Princess and Celebrity seem to drop significantly after final payment anyway. I haven't had that success with Royal Caribbean but I won't book a NRD with them if I have to book a year out in order to get a good price.

Edited by Iamcruzin
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1 hour ago, Iamcruzin said:

for myself NRD don't work for me if booking more than 6 months out. I will wait closer to sail date to be sure that vacation time or family obligations aren't an issue.  The prices on Princess and Celebrity seem to drop significantly after final payment anyway. I haven't had that success with Royal Caribbean but I won't book a NRD with them if I have to book a year out in order to get a good price.

Once again, we're in agreement.

Only wish we had that option for booking 3, 6 months or even a year out but we don't. Maybe I wouldn't have such issue with this NRD issue if we could.

Wife is a paraplegic, very active but confined to a wheelchair, cannot walk or stand so accessible cabin is only option. To get that we have to book a minimum 15 to 18 months out or it doesn't happen. Hard for many to go that far out with certainty but our cancel rate is almost nill. We'd give anything to take a standard cabin and book within a 3 to 6 month before sailing.

NRD isn't going to happen for us and last 2 booking attempts with Princess there was no mention of any other options so good bye. They lost two 20+ day bookings as that's almost all we do anymore, 60 to 90 days a year on the water.

Guess being loyal with Princess for 25+ years doesn't help get anymore info during booking directly with them....

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48 minutes ago, finucane said:

Once again, we're in agreement.

Only wish we had that option for booking 3, 6 months or even a year out but we don't. Maybe I wouldn't have such issue with this NRD issue if we could.

Wife is a paraplegic, very active but confined to a wheelchair, cannot walk or stand so accessible cabin is only option. To get that we have to book a minimum 15 to 18 months out or it doesn't happen. Hard for many to go that far out with certainty but our cancel rate is almost nill. We'd give anything to take a standard cabin and book within a 3 to 6 month before sailing.

NRD isn't going to happen for us and last 2 booking attempts with Princess there was no mention of any other options so good bye. They lost two 20+ day bookings as that's almost all we do anymore, 60 to 90 days a year on the water.

Guess being loyal with Princess for 25+ years doesn't help get anymore info during booking directly with them....

This is sad because I can only think you got a poor rep.  Or you had to specifically ask.  Jeez, are they that secretive about alternate booking options?

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9 hours ago, steelers36 said:

This is sad because I can only think you got a poor rep.  Or you had to specifically ask.  Jeez, are they that secretive about alternate booking options?

Yes it is sad.

Used to be you might remember a rep from past bookings or vica-versa, rare now.

And I think their not as regimented now that most are working out of their homes, higher turnovers...

Sing of the times I guess...

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With non-refundable deposits , Princess takes advantage of those first timers , non shoppers, and those that believe booking a Sale @ Princess.com is the one and only deal.

Many of these frequent Princess Sales do have a Refundable Rate code that only a TA sees or you must call Princess to book it.

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7 hours ago, MCC retired said:

With non-refundable deposits , Princess takes advantage of those first timers , non shoppers, and those that believe booking a Sale @ Princess.com is the one and only deal.

Many of these frequent Princess Sales do have a Refundable Rate code that only a TA sees or you must call Princess to book it.

I think it is very disturbing that Princess would try to scam cruisers with non-refundable deposits when the cruise market is becoming more and more competitive.  Princess offers Future Cruise Deposits (FCD's) that you can purchase while on board a cruise for $100. per person.  This was supposed to make it easier for you to book cruises in advance and now they have come up with the non-refundable deposit to complicate booking in advance.  The FCD's are supposed to be refundable but if you use an FCD to book a cruise with a non-refundable deposit, you will lose your FCD.  I have talked with Princess several times about the non-refundable deposits and using an FCD and I get a different answer every time I talk with them.  I have also emailed Princess about the non-refundable deposits and they have not answered the  emails.  I think Princess is doing to great disservice to their clients and frequent cruisers by not being completely upfront and open about whether FCD's are refundable if they are used as a deposit for a non-refundable fare.  Princess refuses to give a straight forward answer and their employees who interface with us cruisers don't know the correct answers.  When booking a cruise now I make sure it has a refundable deposit or I will not book the cruise.

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1 hour ago, Capt Krunch said:

I think it is very disturbing that Princess would try to scam cruisers with non-refundable deposits when the cruise market is becoming more and more competitive.  Princess offers Future Cruise Deposits (FCD's) that you can purchase while on board a cruise for $100. per person.  This was supposed to make it easier for you to book cruises in advance and now they have come up with the non-refundable deposit to complicate booking in advance.  The FCD's are supposed to be refundable but if you use an FCD to book a cruise with a non-refundable deposit, you will lose your FCD.  I have talked with Princess several times about the non-refundable deposits and using an FCD and I get a different answer every time I talk with them.  I have also emailed Princess about the non-refundable deposits and they have not answered the  emails.  I think Princess is doing to great disservice to their clients and frequent cruisers by not being completely upfront and open about whether FCD's are refundable if they are used as a deposit for a non-refundable fare.  Princess refuses to give a straight forward answer and their employees who interface with us cruisers don't know the correct answers.  When booking a cruise now I make sure it has a refundable deposit or I will not book the cruise.

 

I don't know if you've read my posts on these 3 for free sale & non refundable deposit threads, but my experience talking to 2 Princess agents and 1 supervisor got me the same answer:" If you book a non refundable deposit cruise using your FCD and cancel before final payment, it is Princess policy to refund it back to your account; and if it expires you will receive a refund to the credit card you bought it with. It is not in writing, but we do this as a good will gesture."

 

Well, I am quite aware that Princess reps give different answers. My solution is only book cruises with refundable deposits, book after final payment, call and speak with a Princess Supervisor to get a refundable deposit or book with another cruiseline.

I urge others who feel this way to call Princess and discuss your issues about non refundable deposits.

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On 9/4/2019 at 6:10 PM, finucane said:

BINGO, totally agree on both sides...

I can understand why Princess and other lines are going to non refundable deposits.

 I have meant a number of people who already are holding 12-15 cruises for 2020.

They select which cruises they are actually going to take...perhaps 3 or 4 and want a complete refund for all others some “held” for more than a year and thus “off the market” and can’t be sold to serious buyers.    I can see why a cruise line only wants those to reserve “for a price.”    I have a feeling this is the wave of the future for all cruise lines....you take off the market for a price....and not for free.   Easily understandable.   I always wondered why they let them hold for free until 90 days before a cruise.  Just business!    Mike

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30 minutes ago, bobby3334 said:

I can understand why Princess and other lines are going to non refundable deposits.

 I have meant a number of people who already are holding 12-15 cruises for 2020.

They select which cruises they are actually going to take...perhaps 3 or 4 and want a complete refund for all others some “held” for more than a year and thus “off the market” and can’t be sold to serious buyers.    I can see why a cruise line only wants those to reserve “for a price.”    I have a feeling this is the wave of the future for all cruise lines....you take off the market for a price....and not for free.   Easily understandable.   I always wondered why they let them hold for free until 90 days before a cruise.  Just business!    Mike

I get it!

Why punish the bulk of your customers for the sake of those over booking, most of which I'd be willing to bet are fairly new customers and are working the system. 

 

Solution would be, limit the amount of bookings one can make by your past history. 

Example, we have 5 or 6 15 to 20 day voyages booked through 2021, I'm sure Princess feels fairly safe with us as we next to never have cancelled with them over the past 25 years.

I think they know who's scamming the system and those who are legit...

 

It's a big gamble for the cruise lines to piss off its loyalty base, which is huge. There will be a time that money won't be as free flowing as it is right now and the market will be saturated with all these mega ships.

Me pappy taught me a very long time ago, you might burn me once but never twice...

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2 hours ago, Capt Krunch said:

I think it is very disturbing that Princess would try to scam cruisers with non-refundable deposits when the cruise market is becoming more and more competitive.  

This topic is a frequent topic on both the Celebrity and Royal Caribbean boards with the same complaints about the NRD default so this seems to be an issue across the board.  On Royal Caribbean you have to actually create a mock booking and enter all or your information  before you can see the refundable deposit price. I have learned to enter bogus information like John and Jane Doe with a fictitious address and phone number and any other information they need just to compare prices. On Celebrity they offer a lower NRD price and if you choose the 2 perks you can book a refundable deposit. On the Celebrity site people have called to get a refundable deposit price without the added perks they force you to pick. Like I said earlier I don't mind the NRD but I hate having to jump through hoops to obtain a refundable deposit booking.

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4 minutes ago, finucane said:

I get it!

Why punish the bulk of your customers for the sake of those over booking, most of which I'd be willing to bet are fairly new customers and are working the system. 

 

Solution would be, limit the amount of bookings one can make by your past history. 

Example, we have 5 or 6 15 to 20 day voyages booked through 2021, I'm sure Princess feels fairly safe with us as we next to never have cancelled with them over the past 25 years.

I think they know who's scamming the system and those who are legit...

 

It's a big gamble for the cruise lines to piss off its loyalty base, which is huge. There will be a time that money won't be as free flowing as it is right now and the market will be saturated with all these mega ships.

Me pappy taught me a very long time ago, you might burn me once but never twice...

And why does the system allow  double bookings for two itineraries that are for the same date or overlapping dates?  Last I checked you can't be in two places at once.

Edited by Iamcruzin
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50 minutes ago, Iamcruzin said:

And why does the system allow  double bookings for two itineraries that are for the same date or overlapping dates?  Last I checked you can't be in two places at once.

The way I look at it that becomes the cruise lines problem when they allow that...

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8 hours ago, Ombud said:

I have a question for those who buy 'Cancel For Any Reason' insurance with a 3rd party instead of Princess and NRDs. Could that insure that you'd get the deposit back? A viable work-around? 

If you cancel for a covered reason. Family occasion such as a wedding isn't covered. Some policies don't cover work related issues.  If you don't purchase it with in 14 days of booking the cruise then pre existing medical conditions aren't covered. Cancel for any reason is very expensive as well as if you are up in years. It may be less expensive to lose the deposit.

Edited by Iamcruzin
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10 hours ago, Iamcruzin said:

And why does the system allow  double bookings for two itineraries that are for the same date or overlapping dates?  Last I checked you can't be in two places at once.

Right, and they won't allow you to book multiple excursions at the same time. Yet, they allow you to book multiple cruises at the same time. It does not make sense.

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I just did a mock booking for a 7 day Caribbean on Sky. The deposit was only $190 for 2. I haven't booked Princess in a while so I didn't remember what the deposit would be. On the other lines I've been on more recently the deposits have been between $500 to $900 depending on price or room category. This was before NRD so I didn't think twice about leaving that much money up front. Now on those other lines they charge you $100pp change fee and apply the rest to a future cruise. I know someone will say that the airlines have been doing this all along but that's not a fair comparison. If I book a flight to Florida or San Juan for a cruise and it turns out that I can't go I can always book a land vacation to either of those places or to another destination at a different time. I may have to wait over a year to book the a cruise with the same itinerary, possibly pay more or have to settle for something I don't want like Class of ship or destination.  I would be willing to risk $190 if I booked over a year out for something that I knew was a popular itinerary that sells out fast. On the other lines you have a year from cancelation to book another cruise so it pays to wait until just before final payment to cancel even if you know before that time. I would be losing less money on Princess and have no commitment to book in the future so for me that's a better risk.

Edited by Iamcruzin
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3 hours ago, Iamcruzin said:

If you cancel for a covered reason. Family occasion such as a wedding isn't covered. Some policies don't cover work related issues.  If you don't purchase it with in 14 days of booking the cruise then pre existing medical conditions aren't covered. Cancel for any reason is very expensive as well as if you are up in years. It may be less expensive to lose the deposit.

Yeah ..... I just did a mock purchase of USAA's CANCEL FOR ANY REASON TRAVEL INSURANCE  (cancel but don't say why) and it'll only reimburse 75% of the nonrefunded amt. 

 

This is not an ad for USAA but I did have to use it once when I decided I wasn't flying WOW and wanted same trip on UA. They knew I was switching airlines & paid. 

 

I'm leery of buying a cruise 2 yrs out and not being able to change dates. 

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