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Magellan G903 Trans Panama Experience


Cruise Madam
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On 1/26/2019 at 10:42 PM, Cruise Madam said:

Mjk Sterling

OMG so sorry to hear your travel experiences too. I too plan to submit a report to my travel agent who will then investigate & contact CMV on our behalf. Thanks so much for taking the time to share your story the more passengers that do the better & stronger any action. We too are suffering badly from jet lag.....over the years we have been fortunate to go on many cruises & this is the worst one ever!

Practically zero customer care & 10/10 for trying to pull the wool, I believe there has been a coverup. Treated like animals with no RSPC inspector in attendance!

Let's keep in touch.

Good luck

 

Sorry to repeat not an apology to be had

 

You have used the word "coverup".  That is exactly what is happening here.

 

I am referring to the flight from San Jose.  Thousands of people knew what was happening. (They lined the fence outside the airport).  Hundreds of them were so interested that they stood on car roofs to get a better view.

 

The flight is then denied access to Colombian airspace. The Captain of the plane apparently lied when he stated that Colombia had closed it's airspace.  We have written proof from C&M that it was OUR flight that was denied permission, not that Colombian airspace had been closed.

 

I think that there are quite a few of us that intend to keep digging until the truth is revealed. 

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Well at least we have received a speedy reply from Virgin.

 

They are not going to refund us our £800 cost of the upgrade from Economy to Premium.  They are stating that the food and drink part of that upgrade is "complimentary" only.  The £800 that we paid was for the "cabin" that we occupied during the flight.

 

I could see how the "Upper Class" passengers had their own "cabin", but as far as I could see, we were sat in rows, on seats in a plane.  Although a curtain "screen" was pulled across to obstruct the view of "other" passengers on the plane, I am pretty sure that lack of "catering" did not extend to the front end of the plane.

 

Have we all noticed how this word "complimentary" is now sprinkled around like confetti when it comes to holidays and cruising.  Having paid for a holiday or cruise, we are constantly being "given" complimentary items.  They are not complimentary in any way, shape or form.  They have been very well paid for!

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Anyone reading this thread, that was actually on the flight, will certainly remember that woman that came over the tannoy on the plane.  After a very brief apology, she told us that there would be "complimentary" light refreshments provided at the baggage pick up.  She then went on, in a voice that suggested to me that she may have been sniffing too much of the white stuff,   "Have a great and fantastic day!"

 

The "complimentary" light refreshments turned out to be a very small (plastic) glass of some wine or other.  Yeah girl - just what we need after a disaster of a flight like the one that  we have just experienced!  Oh, I forgot to mention the very small bag of crisps.  I must admit that I tasted neither of these magnificent offerings - more important things needed to be attended too - like getting our bags, and arranging for other connections - we having missed our booked connections.

 

Very Well Done Virgin Atlantic!

 

 

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23 hours ago, Cruise Madam said:

Hello RobinDonkey

Sorry to hear your news about your return flight & an unsuccessful claim for compensation. Was your return flight the early one to Gatwick on the 21/1/19? We too have written to our travel agent with our complaints C&M have 28 days to reply. Fingers crossed we will get a positive reply. 

 

Hello again.

 

I have now learned that we were on the earlier flight - the one that was denied access to Colombian airspace.  Apparently the later flight flew on to Barbados with no problems at all.

 

I am just wondering if we might have had a passenger on our flight that the Colombians wanted.  Just a thought.

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On 2/24/2019 at 8:59 AM, Sailing Biggles said:

It reads to me that someone at Virgin did not get the correct flight clearances? 

 

You are exactly right.

 

So, Virgin being at fault, shouldn't really be clinging on to their customer's money.

 

£50 has been offered to every passenger (in full and final settlement).  A dismal offer in my opinion.  We would like to have seen some of our £800 upgrade money back.  After all none of us received anything like an acceptable service.

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Hello small comfort but £50 has been offered might suit some but not if you paid an extra £800 for an upgrade! 

Keep going it's an opening offer.

I have heard back from C&M regretting our dissatisfaction, many points unanswered. 

We will be emailing back elaborating further....ho hum onward & upward. I'm of the opinion the more a company drags it's heels sorting complaints it reflects badly.

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10 hours ago, Cruise Madam said:

Hello small comfort but £50 has been offered might suit some but not if you paid an extra £800 for an upgrade! 

Keep going it's an opening offer.

I have heard back from C&M regretting our dissatisfaction, many points unanswered. 

We will be emailing back elaborating further....ho hum onward & upward. I'm of the opinion the more a company drags it's heels sorting complaints it reflects badly.

It wouldn't surprise me at the moment if the £50  cheque doesn't start bouncing ....

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And Upper Class paid an extra £1,500 each way. Did they have food on the first flight? On the second flight, we had food in Upper Class but not until after Barbados. (uploaded in Barbados I assumed). We were told that as the runway was short in Costa Rica and they had to make a diversion to fly, which the first flight found out about,  they needed the fuel but at the same time restrict the take off weight, so no food apart from the crisps, health bar and a packet of nuts. Not good enough for a 3.5 hour flight! We did get good service from Barbados to Gatwick.

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On 2/27/2019 at 7:53 AM, Sailing Biggles said:

And Upper Class paid an extra £1,500 each way. Did they have food on the first flight? On the second flight, we had food in Upper Class but not until after Barbados. (uploaded in Barbados I assumed). We were told that as the runway was short in Costa Rica and they had to make a diversion to fly, which the first flight found out about,  they needed the fuel but at the same time restrict the take off weight, so no food apart from the crisps, health bar and a packet of nuts. Not good enough for a 3.5 hour flight! We did get good service from Barbados to Gatwick.

Well the crisps, health bar (no nuts) were all we had between Costa Rica and Gatwick.  15 Hours from entering the departure lounge in Costa Rica.

 

I think that it falls far short of good enough, but Virgin and C&M feel that it wasn't too bad and £50 each should settle the matter.

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So , in short, C&M have made a right pig's ear of this "Trans Panama Experience.

 

They could not use the planned airport as the runway was too short.  So passengers leaving and joining the cruise at Cozumel now have to endure an unacceptable journey to and from Cancun (?).  Also Belize now has to be dropped from the itinerary .

 

What do they do for the flight home at the end of the cruise? They choose San Jose airport.  Guess what?  The runway is too short, so "catering" is only available from Barbados - or not at all for the first flight!

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On 1/25/2019 at 8:16 PM, Cruise Madam said:

Hello Sailing Biggles

Thanks for your report sorry to hear you were poorly & to have missed meeting you.

 

That virus that went round the ship was powerful.

 

I had a cough and very sore throat for a few days.  When we went ashore at Cape Verde we found a Pharmacy and with a bit of sign language, managed to let the Pharmacist know the problem.  He sold us a bottle of something or other for three euros.  The cough and sore throat had gone within twenty fours hours - so whatever it was it worked.

 

So many people told us that they had had bills from the Medical Center ranging from £1,200 to £4,500.  My three euro bottle of jollop turned out to be great value.

 

Sitting in the lecture about the Panama Canal, was like sitting in a sanatorium, as was the flight home.  They called it "Cabin Cough".  I have heard of "Kennel Cough" before ......

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On 3/2/2019 at 10:08 AM, Sailing Biggles said:

I fully agree with you, it is just not good enough! Sounds as if your return flight was a nightmare. Ours was good in comparison. Time to make contact with a media travel programme? Rip Off Britain comes to mind?

 

 

Candid Camera would have had an absolute field day.

 

The only problem being that this was not a "set up".  All events were actually "real" - as hard as that must be to believe!

Edited by RompinDonkey
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I'm not sure how others are getting on with their "claims".  But they don't seem to be budging much, if at all.

 

C&M have made the £50 deal "in full and final settlement", and with such generosity and gratitude offered us a 20% discount on a future non UK Cruise.  Apparently the problems that we experienced are caused by Virgin.

 

Well what a surprise - Virgin are washing their hands of the whole matter, and passing it back to C&M.  They (Virgin)  have offered the cost of our transport from Gatwick to our destination (due to the late arrival of the flight), which was by National Express coach - £20 or so.  Now here, I suppose,  I should be getting excited!  We also have 8,000 airmiles to spend!

 

We are getting a little "old in the tooth" here.  In monetary value, what would 8,000 miles equate to?  Can we spend it in shops?

 

To be totally and completely "open" and "fair" - in our first letter of complaint we mentioned that we had seen someone pay a "Costa" bill by an airline voucher at Gatwick airport - it was around £20.  Low and behold,  they have given us around £20 for the cost of the sandwiches and coffee.  WHY WASN'T EVERY PASSENGER OFFERED THE VOUCHERS?

 

I know that it is procedure, when a flight cannot provide "catering", vouchers are given out to passengers, as they check in.  They are told how long the flight will be. They can then buy food accordingly.

 

We were handed a "Menu".  We could study it at our leisure.  That Menu did not say Crisps and Cereal Bar.

 

I am not an expert.  Who was to blame for choosing Cozumel as a destination, and connection for the cruise flights, I have no idea.  I find it very hard to believe that Virgin don't know the lengths of runways around the world - but nothing would surprise me these days.

 

So assuming that C&M made the initial mistakes - which affected the passengers arriving and departing from the Cruise at Cozumel,  it really is unforgivable for them to go and "do it again" for ALL of the passengers leaving at San Jose.

 

I don't know if this is merely a temporary aberration from the usual high standard of service that C&M provide,  but might indeed be "the service that they provide".

 

Whatever -  Caveat Emptor

 

Book with this company at your own peril.

 

 

 

 

 

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Well here I go again with yet another complaint about Megellan. 

 

Whilst most of us might be a bit hard of hearing - we are not totally deaf.  The "announcements" that occur every day at twelve noon, are delivered by the captain of the ship  at a volume level that distorts the speakers. Although it  is impossible to discern what the captain of the ship is actually saying, it occurs every day.  It has been doing that since last June.  Now trying to be as "nice" as possible - if you wish to deliver a "message" in English - maybe an English "speaker" mat help?

 

I have seen many senior officers on Deck 10.  They too can't hear the distorted messages.  They obviously assume that passengers do not need to hear this stuff.

 

I did actually sit with a very senior officer and tell him that the speakers on deck ten were as good as useless. 

 

Should an emergency ever occur, heaven forbid, the speaker system on that ship will be totally useless.  As it is at every lifeboat drill.

 

Just saying ......

Edited by RompinDonkey
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Hello 

We received a reply from C&MV but unfortunately not to our satisfaction. Many questions left unanswered & a gesture of goodwill that we have refused. So we have emailed back again hopeful that we will get a satisfactory reply. We are not holding our breath!

It appears that the flight difficulties were possible known to C&MV in advance of our cruise.  

We find it all so upsetting & unnecessary. If our complaint had been dealt with swiftly onboard rather than all this writing after getting back home could have been avoided.

 

What C&MV are not getting is that unhappy customers = no business. 

 

Anyway fingers crossed for a favourable outcome.

 

 

 

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12 hours ago, Cruise Madam said:

Hello 

We received a reply from C&MV but unfortunately not to our satisfaction. Many questions left unanswered & a gesture of goodwill that we have refused. So we have emailed back again hopeful that we will get a satisfactory reply. We are not holding our breath!

It appears that the flight difficulties were possible known to C&MV in advance of our cruise.  

We find it all so upsetting & unnecessary. If our complaint had been dealt with swiftly onboard rather than all this writing after getting back home could have been avoided.

 

What C&MV are not getting is that unhappy customers = no business. 

 

Anyway fingers crossed for a favourable outcome.

 

 

 

The bit that I am finding really hard to get my head round - is that when you upgrade your flight you have more choices.  You have a menu.  At a cost - in our case c£800.

 

But when the ***** hits the fan, and no food at all is provided - it turns out that our £800 was "paying" for something that  was "complimentary" anyway.  The food that we didn't get between San Jose and Gatwick was "complimentary".  I will repeat again that from stepping inside the Departure Lounge at San Jose, and arriving at Gatwick was 15 hours.  Just a bag of crisps, and a cereal bar.  Limited water.

 

When you book and pay for the flight, they do not say that the Menu and all food "is complimentary only" . If that is the case, why are they charging us for it?  It's free!!  Isn't it?  Or is it just free when the ***** hits the fan?

 

I am actually hoping that there are many people watching this thread.  This may be a bit of an "insight" into how C&MV operate.  Also showing you all how Virgin Atlantic don't operate.

 

It is very well known that you will tell the quality of a company, when you see how it reacts when things go wrong, or not quite go according to plan ....  Does anyone here really think that Cunard, P&O, or any of the other very reputable cruise companies would be wriggling and squirming their way out of refunding their customers for a total failure?

 

Well it is very apparent here that C&M, alongside their partner Virgin have no modesty at all.  They just stand there doing absolutely nothing about this .  They offer nothing at all, and I assume are just hoping that this major crisis for us (just a minor hiccup for them) - will soon go away.

 

 

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Oh dear. I’m not quite sure what I should say here.  I have never had the need to feel that I would like to complain, but after all of that money that I have spent, I will. 

 

My children have been encouraging me for years to take a cruise.  Why on earth would I like a cruise?  I am happy at home. Anyway for some reason the idea of getting away from England over Christmas and missing the supermarket hype, I thought “alright I will do it”.  Christmas Day at sea. That sounded so good.  It was good! CM actually gave us a present. A chocolate Santa, and some other sweets, and a pen set. Nice quality. 

 

New Year’s Eve at Bridgetown. Oh dear me. My husband would have loved that so much.

 

The cruise was lovely. Although there were many things that weren’t quite right. Cold plates will spoil any meal.  Over and undercooked food.  

 

The reason for me being here and complaining is the transport home - by airoplane. 

 

They didn’t have any food. I was offered a packet of crisps and a chewy thing. I asked for a small bottle of water.  I do have to take quite a lot of tablets these days. They couldn’t  give me a small bottle of water. One of those waitresses did give me a small plastic glass which did contain some warm water.  I did manage to swallow all of my pills. 

 

When my children convinced me to go on one of those Cruise things, they said that I would be treated like Royalty. 

 

I am sure now that I like being Elsie. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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On 3/9/2019 at 9:19 PM, ElsieJones said:

Oh dear. I’m not quite sure what I should say here.  I have never had the need to feel that I would like to complain, but after all of that money that I have spent, I will. 

 

My children have been encouraging me for years to take a cruise.  Why on earth would I like a cruise?  I am happy at home. Anyway for some reason the idea of getting away from England over Christmas and missing the supermarket hype, I thought “alright I will do it”.  Christmas Day at sea. That sounded so good.  It was good! CM actually gave us a present. A chocolate Santa, and some other sweets, and a pen set. Nice quality. 

 

New Year’s Eve at Bridgetown. Oh dear me. My husband would have loved that so much.

 

The cruise was lovely. Although there were many things that weren’t quite right. Cold plates will spoil any meal.  Over and undercooked food.  

 

The reason for me being here and complaining is the transport home - by airoplane. 

 

They didn’t have any food. I was offered a packet of crisps and a chewy thing. I asked for a small bottle of water.  I do have to take quite a lot of tablets these days. They couldn’t  give me a small bottle of water. One of those waitresses did give me a small plastic glass which did contain some warm water.  I did manage to swallow all of my pills. 

 

When my children convinced me to go on one of those Cruise things, they said that I would be treated like Royalty. 

 

I am sure now that I like being Elsie. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elsie, you have struck a few chords with us.

 

We are both essentially "outdoor" people.  We walk. We hike. We camp - even!  We have seen the world by foot alone.  I must say that if anyone is fit and able, by foot, is the best way to see any country, and the world at large.  I have had a problem with one of my legs, which brought us to this point of taking a cruise.

 

Like you, we have invested a lot of money on that trip.  There were many things that could be complained about - but also things that were excellent.

 

That trip home though was a total disgrace to Virgin airlines (or whatever it is that they call themselves these days).  That thirty seven day cruise cost us a lot of money.  I am a very "positive" person, but I must admit that I am struggling to remember the best bits of that "trip of a lifetime".  It was a fantastic trip. We will never be able to do anything like that again.  We have photographs to remember it by - but that flight home really has but a "dampner" on the whole experience!  All we seem to remember was that flight home and the BS that we were told.  Virgin really cut the weight of their fuel and "catering" to such a fine margin?  Really?

 

Is that safe?

 

For CM to just pass all of the blame onto Virgin - and then Virgin just pass the blame back to CM, is in my opinion disgraceful!

 

Any reputable business would simply admit that they have messed this one up.  They would reimburse their customers and hope to keep those customers for future cruises.

 

Have they done that?  Well they seem to think that £50 per passenger is full recompense.   What planet are they on?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by RompinDonkey
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Virgin Atlantic accepted a deal to fly home the passengers on our cruise.

 

It now appears that to do that, they had to use minimal amounts of fuel, and no "catering".  The reason being that the runway was too short.  The weight of the aircraft was critical.

 

When Colombia refused permission for our flight to enter their airspace, Virgin now have a problem.  A huge problem.  They have to fly to Montego Bay to "drop down", I am using the language of the captain of the plane - for fuel.  "Drop down" were the exact words that he used.

 

Why should the paying passengers be "paying" for this mistake?

 

An answer from the guilty parties would be absolutely wonderful thing here.  All we are getting is C&M passing the blame to Virgin, and Virgin passing the blame back to C&M.

 

I can understand the frustration of future "cruisers" with C&M getting a bit bored with all of this - but heck man - this is a fundamental error here.  It is an error that C&M managed to do twice on the same cruise!  The runway was too short at Cozumel also.

 

Stick with P&O guys - or whatever your previous companies were.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Morning All, Just sorting some papers out from this cruise company and our agents, which I have no intention of using again due to all the stress caused. We had huge issues with the medical department, and a bill of over £3,000 for a nasty bug which was going around the ship, but I will not go into that, as its private to us. 

Re the return flights. I have found a letter from CMV dated 11/09/18 about the flights and costs of upgrade etc. It clearly states Premium Economy Class upgrade costs £399 per person per flight. It gives the details off luggage allowed and also states Premium Upgraded Meals, Complimentary drinks and snacks throughout the flight. For Upper Class the costs is £1,499 per person per flight. Details of luggage etc and Superior Upgraded meals, Complimentary Drinks and snacks throughout the flight. (I took this option). However, we were all mis sold, they took our money and many travellers did not receive what was being sold to us? Does trade description still exist in the UK?

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2 hours ago, Sailing Biggles said:

Morning All, Just sorting some papers out from this cruise company and our agents, which I have no intention of using again due to all the stress caused. We had huge issues with the medical department, and a bill of over £3,000 for a nasty bug which was going around the ship, but I will not go into that, as its private to us. 

Re the return flights. I have found a letter from CMV dated 11/09/18 about the flights and costs of upgrade etc. It clearly states Premium Economy Class upgrade costs £399 per person per flight. It gives the details off luggage allowed and also states Premium Upgraded Meals, Complimentary drinks and snacks throughout the flight. For Upper Class the costs is £1,499 per person per flight. Details of luggage etc and Superior Upgraded meals, Complimentary Drinks and snacks throughout the flight. (I took this option). However, we were all mis sold, they took our money and many travellers did not receive what was being sold to us? Does trade description still exist in the UK?

Have been reading the terrible treatment you all received on your flights.

 

Just a thought but could you claim money back from your credit card company under section 75 f the consumer credit act? Also, if paid on debit card there is a charge back system. Lastly it may be possible to claim via the Small Claims Court - not expensive to raise and the other side have to attend your local court to defend. I know that some of this may not apply in your case if resident in Cyprus but may help others.

 

Good luck

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Thank you. Actually my husband & I were on the second flight departure from San Jose, via Barbados and then to London Gatwick. We had food after Barbados, but only crisps and a heathy bar on first flight. We were lucky, the first flight departure, had no food at all during either flight apart from what you can read on the board. For us, it finally spoilt what could have been a good 5 week trip, with the medical treatment issues and the return flights, but we are putting it all behind us. There are many there professional cruise lines out there, many of whom we have travelled on. For the folk who really suffered, I hope they follow their complaints through, it was extremely poor service, who ever was at fault, either CMV or Virgin, who I am particularly surprised at, we like Virgin. It looks as if someone did not file the correct flight plan! They should take it on the chin and pay up compensation!!!

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