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Traveller 11

Beware of using Quark Expeditions

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[COLOR=#424142][FONT="Arial"]Be cautious in your dealings with Quark Expeditions. Our cruise was cancelled 6months before departure, two weeks after we paid the final deposit of over$16,000 because the boat wasn't built in time. We ended up with many hundredsof dollars in unrecoverable expenses because of cancelled flights andaccommodation. One might assume it was safe to book flights and accommodationthat close to the departure date, but we weren't counting on what is, in thescheme of things, a last minute cancellation. Quark all very apologetic butrefused to reimburse our costs. I would have thought around $1,000 was a smallprice to pay considering the inconvenience, having planned this trip for twoyears. I suspect Quark are more interested in their bottom line which doesn'tbode well for the culture of the company. Although I'll never get to actuallyexperience the actual service of this company I would advise prospectivecustomers to consider other providers before going with Quark. [/FONT][/COLOR]

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[COLOR=#008000][B]I guess I'll be the one to ask the obvious, did you buy travel insurance? I'm guessing Quark has that nasty little disclaimer somewhere on their website about no refunds due to a long list of conditions. Sounds like a very expensive lesson.[/B][/COLOR]

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Quark are an expedition travel company who charter and now build their own ships? Not much different from Marella except in size and scope.

[url]https://www.quarkexpeditions.com/en?utm_source=adwords&utm_medium=ppc&utm_campaign=&ads_cmpid=1139144133&ads_adid=55752803209&ads_matchtype=b&ads_network=g&ads_creative=257135817060&utm_term=%2Bquark%20expeditions&ads_targetid=kwd-379205829484&ttv=2&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIrbH2zJaI3QIVxFmGCh1VwQRKEAAYASAAEgIB7PD_BwE[/url]

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[quote name='Essiesmom']Quark are an expedition travel company who charter and now build their own ships? Not much different from Marella except in size and scope.

[URL]https://www.quarkexpeditions.com/en?utm_source=adwords&utm_medium=ppc&utm_campaign=&ads_cmpid=1139144133&ads_adid=55752803209&ads_matchtype=b&ads_network=g&ads_creative=257135817060&utm_term=%2Bquark%20expeditions&ads_targetid=kwd-379205829484&ttv=2&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIrbH2zJaI3QIVxFmGCh1VwQRKEAAYASAAEgIB7PD_BwE[/URL][/quote]

Thanks for the clarification.

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Traveller,

I'm sure this is disappointing, having a trip you were looking forward to cancelled. Unfortunately, this situation can, and does, happen with nearly all cruise lines. As has already been pointed out, your only recourse is if you bought travel insurance for your flights and other expenses.

I'm sorry you had to learn a lesson the expensive way.

Roz

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Traveler, welcome to Cruise Critic. As a new poster I will assume you are a new reader as well. Thanks for posting this in the first time cruiser sub forum as it is very important information for all to learn. I regret that you learned the hard and expensive way. That said, ATTENTION NEW/ FIRST TIME CRUISERS! YOU SHOULD CONSIDER TRAVEL INSURANCE FOR A VARIETY OF REASONS ONLY ONE OF WHICH IS DETAILED HERE! Sadly there are lots more examples on this forum but it doesn’t have to happen to you. Read and learn.

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Welcome to CC.

Inaugural cruises on a new ship are highly sought after, but do carry some additional risk. I also note that Quark are fairly new at new buildings, so won't have the experience of other cruise lines.

While definitely disappointing, unfortunately this is one of the risks of booking an inaugural cruise and it is completely outwith the control of the cruise line. These delays are due to the shipyard missing the contracted delivery date.

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[quote name='Heidi13']Welcome to CC.

Inaugural cruises on a new ship are highly sought after, but do carry some additional risk. I also note that Quark are fairly new at new buildings, so won't have the experience of other cruise lines.

While definitely disappointing, unfortunately this is one of the risks of booking an inaugural cruise and it is completely outwith the control of the cruise line. These delays are due to the shipyard missing the contracted delivery date.[/quote]

This is one of the main reasons I'll never book an inaugural cruise, unless I'm given it for free. I've read too many accounts here at Cruise Critic of inaugurals being postponed and/or workmen being on the ship finishing the things that didn't get done before the first sailing. Not to mention the crew hasn't had a chance to gel and form a cohesive team. Kind of like going to a new restaurant the first week it's open - chaos.

Roz

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[quote name='Traveller 11'][COLOR=#424142][FONT=Arial]Be cautious in your dealings with Quark Expeditions. Our cruise was cancelled 6months before departure, two weeks after we paid the final deposit of over$16,000 because the boat wasn't built in time. We ended up with many hundredsof dollars in unrecoverable expenses because of cancelled flights andaccommodation. One might assume it was safe to book flights and accommodationthat close to the departure date, but we weren't counting on what is, in thescheme of things, a last minute cancellation. Quark all very apologetic butrefused to reimburse our costs. I would have thought around $1,000 was a smallprice to pay considering the inconvenience, having planned this trip for twoyears. I suspect Quark are more interested in their bottom line which doesn'tbode well for the culture of the company. Although I'll never get to actuallyexperience the actual service of this company I would advise prospectivecustomers to consider other providers before going with Quark. [/FONT][/COLOR][/quote]

Check to see if your credit card has travel benefits that might cover some of the ancillary costs.

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I guess I'm missing something here. I assume you got your 16k back that was the price of the cruise. Why do you think they should reimburse you for hotels or airfare? If they didn't give you back your cruise fare then you have a valid complaint, but they have no obligation to pay for your hotels or airfare. That is what insurance is for.

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The only time you would get reimbursed for flights and hotels is if you booked them thru the cruise line. Can you cancel the hotel or did you pay upfront?

Roz

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[quote name='Roz']This is one of the main reasons I'll never book an inaugural cruise, unless I'm given it for free. I've read too many accounts here at Cruise Critic of inaugurals being postponed and/or workmen being on the ship finishing the things that didn't get done before the first sailing. Not to mention the crew hasn't had a chance to gel and form a cohesive team. Kind of like going to a new restaurant the first week it's open - chaos.

Roz[/quote]

Very valid, but also not limited to new buildings. This situation may also be experienced immediately after or even before a major drydocking/reburbishment where the scope cannot or did not get completed within the schedule.

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[quote name='Heidi13']Very valid, but also not limited to new buildings. This situation may also be experienced immediately after or even before a major drydocking/reburbishment where the scope cannot or did not get completed within the schedule.[/quote]

Good point, Heidi. I avoid those too.

Roz

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[quote name='TruckerDave']I guess I'm missing something here. I assume you got your 16k back that was the price of the cruise. Why do you think they should reimburse you for hotels or airfare? If they didn't give you back your cruise fare then you have a valid complaint, but they have no obligation to pay for your hotels or airfare. That is what insurance is for.[/QUOTE]


Many cruise lines would have offered (in an attempt to keep the 16,000) to transfer the booking to a different date and reimburse the airline change fees. Would have been the best win win the cruiser could have hoped for. Agreed that they won’t outright refund non-refundable non-cruise expenses.


Sent from my iPhone using [url=http://r.tapatalk.com/byo?rid=76452]Forums[/url]

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Yes, the deductibles and exclusions on the travel insurance meant we got back very little of out losses. I sent an email to the Managing Director of Quark who had one of his customer relations people respond. They "can't" help apparently. Code for they don't want to and the MD is clearly too busy to reply himself. Bottom line - Quark don't keep promises and abandon customers.

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Simply for reference:

Scenic Eclipse also cancelled all cruises for the next 5 months because "problems in the shipyard" delayed her completion. Cancellation notice in early July; first cruise about mid/late August. They gave full refunds of the cruise fare, they paid the TAs their commission, they reimbursed the non-refundable portions of airfare/hotels, and they offered a 25% coupon on a future cruise. Still posters on the thread feel this is inadequate.

[URL]http://www.seatrade-cruise.com/news/news-headlines/scenic-eclipse-s-launch-delayed-until-late-january-2019.html[/URL]

[URL]https://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2404957[/URL]
- cancellation info starting at bottom of page 5

Did the Quark ship have a name yet? I would be interested to hear where the Quark ship was being built. The same shipyard, per chance?

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Traveller 11 - curious which ship you were planning on sailing on. I was just informed today my cruise on World Explorer was canceled because the ship will not be built in time. Unfortunately my travel insurance company is currently denying claims because this is not a "covered reason". We booked our airfare and hotels after 8/24/18 so I'll be quite angry if Quark new the ship would not be ready a month ago but failed to inform us until today. My cruise was set to depart 1/3/19.

 

 

Yes, the deductibles and exclusions on the travel insurance meant we got back very little of out losses. I sent an email to the Managing Director of Quark who had one of his customer relations people respond. They "can't" help apparently. Code for they don't want to and the MD is clearly too busy to reply himself. Bottom line - Quark don't keep promises and abandon customers.

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Someone is not being truthful here and my quest it is Quark and not the OP. Because the OP says they would not cover outside costs, the company said they are covering those costs. So someone is not truthful here, it I had to place a bet it would be the company is not telling the truth.

 

Below is a message from the Company addressing the situation. The message reply was to me so I can post here under the DMCA.

 

 

Once again, on behalf of Quark Expeditions, please accept our sincerest apologies for this disappointing news. As mentioned, there were unexpected complexities installing the World Explorer's sophisticated hybrid power management system.

 

In addition to a refund, all passengers affected by this cancellation have been provided re-booking options that include a flight credit and future booking credit for any expedition.

 

Please send us a direct message with more information regarding your reservation (i.e. reservation number & contact details). We'd like to directly reach out to you with more information and options on next steps.

 

—The Team at Quark

Tel: +1-802-***-****

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Quark's original offer to us (we were just informed on Monday that our January cruise was canceled - also about 2 weeks after we paid the final balance and booked all our flights and hotels) was $2,000 off the list price of another cruise and $350 in rebooking fees for flights. In our case, the list price to rebook next year was $6,000 more that what we paid so their offer would put us in a much worse position. Yesterday our travel agent was able to get them to match the price (which should be the bare minimum they would do) and give us an additional $1,600 credit to cover our sunk costs (change fees, nonrefundable deposits, etc). While I'm not thrilled to have to wait another year I was pleased with how they handled this in the end. Seems like it should be what they do for all passengers.

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