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Heavy_d78

Is anyone else a little dissapointed by Royal Caribbean's False Advertising

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So I have booked a cruise with RC and have been watching their prices closely on excursions and drink packages. Even though they keep promoting "sales" the prices are always the same. 

 

For example, on Black Friday and Cyber Monday,  the deluxe drink package was being promoted as buy one, get one 50% off. However, the price was exactly the same as it was the week before and every day since ($68.12/day CAD). A few days ago I was on the phone with them and the guy told me that I should buy the drink package because it was the last day at that price, but surprise surprise four days later it is still $68.12.

 

I know people are going to reply that as a consumer I have the choice to shop there or not, but don't you feel a little cheated and upset by this blatant false advertising? They attempt to pressure you into a purchase by saying there is a limited time at that price, but it the same price it always is and always will be. I realize that many companies and stores have inflated prices to then offer something as a sale, but when the price never moves a cent how can you say you are giving a BOGO 50% or tell someone this is the last day and it will be more expensive tomorrow?

 

I wish someone would call them on this BS.

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They all do it, even the so called luxury lines. Similar ploys are used just about everywhere.   As long as it generates sales it will continue.   Doesn't mean I support the schemes, just not going to hold my breath that they will change.   

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I had a few pairs of pants in my kohl’s online shopping cart for weeks. The sales kept changing, the prices did not. I buy my kids ice cream every week, one major brand is usually on sale for $2.50, claiming the regular price is $4.49. In the past 10 years or so since I’ve bern grocery shopping online, none of the major 3 brands have ever been priced at $4.49. It’s everywhere.

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Hi

 

Welcome to cruise critic.

 

Yes. You are correct. They (all cruise lines) do not have "sales" as would be recognized in other retail businesses. 

 

The prices of cabins do go up and down more as a reflection of supply and demand. This is specific to the particular ship and sailing date you are looking at. It even goes to the particular cabin category, so if you see the price of a particular cabin class go up or down, it doesn't mean the price of other cabin classes on that sailing will move in the same direction.

 

Following the movement of cabin prices (as you are), you are best to book as soon as you are confident that you will make a given sailing, and if you book with a booking "rate" that allows you to take advantage of any price drops you can feel as certain as possible that you have found the best price. As you have seen, you can only know if the price today is a good price if you know what the price was yesterday.

 

Before you book, if you have any questions, ask before you commit. There are threads on this site for each cruise company. Ask your questions on the relevant thread

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52 minutes ago, Heavy_d78 said:

I know people are going to reply that as a consumer I have the choice to shop there or not, but don't you feel a little cheated and upset by this blatant false advertising? 

 

I wish someone would call them on this BS.

 

It's not blatant false advertising - it's sales and marketing. And these campaigns go on in one variety or another every week, and have for years.  It's just the way these things are marketed by the cruise lines.

 

But if you feel so strongly about it, why don't you call them on it?

Edited by leaveitallbehind

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I actually think it is "false".  I mean it is certainly not the truth.  But it is so prevalent that we learn to accept it as a standard business practice.  

 

 

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1 hour ago, Heavy_d78 said:

For example, on Black Friday and Cyber Monday,  the deluxe drink package was being promoted as buy one, get one 50% off. However, the price was exactly the same as it was the week before and every day since ($68.12/day CAD). A few days ago I was on the phone with them and the guy told me that I should buy the drink package because it was the last day at that price, but surprise surprise four days later it is still $68.12.

 

I'm a bit confused. Is the price of $68.12/day CAD only for one person or was it the total for two with the 2nd at 50% off? Based on the exchange rate today, $68.12 equates to $51.32/day US, which seems about right for one person. If this is for only one person, then the total would be $102.18 CAD for two people with the 50% sale, correct? Without the sale, it would be $136.24 CAD, right? 

 

What was the total for two people during and after the sale?

Edited by SantaFeFan

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48 minutes ago, SantaFeFan said:

 

I'm a bit confused. Is the price of $68.12/day CAD only for one person or was it the total for two with the 2nd at 50% off? Based on the exchange rate today, $68.12 equates to $51.32/day US, which seems about right for one person. If this is for only one person, then the total would be $102.18 CAD for two people with the 50% sale, correct? Without the sale, it would be $136.24 CAD, right? 

 

What was the total for two people during and after the sale?

 

Come on now, don't be confusing the situation with facts!  :classic_biggrin::classic_biggrin:

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4 hours ago, SantaFeFan said:

 

I'm a bit confused. Is the price of $68.12/day CAD only for one person or was it the total for two with the 2nd at 50% off? Based on the exchange rate today, $68.12 equates to $51.32/day US, which seems about right for one person. If this is for only one person, then the total would be $102.18 CAD for two people with the 50% sale, correct? Without the sale, it would be $136.24 CAD, right? 

 

What was the total for two people during and after the sale?

That's just it, the price was $68.12 before and after the BOGO sale. When the sale was on the price was still $68.12 for each person and it said the discount had already been applied to the single person price. Essentially there was no sale, and there never is. The price is always $136.24 for two guests.

Edited by Heavy_d78

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But the price ON BOARD is something like $69 USD....so the price in your cruise planner right now *is* a sale price compared to on-board prices, just like they are claiming.  See the big pink/purple banner across the upper left corner of the ad? (this is from my Cruise Planner for my upcoming Symphony cruise)

335501264_CruisePlanner.png.762f78785c361e97d5d9b3ab379272d3.png

It's only False Advertising if they say it will cost you $100 and they charge you $150 instead.  Or if they say they're giving you the Deluxe (alcohol) package but they only give you the Refreshment (mocktail) package instead.

Hotels charge different amounts on different days.  Rental car companies charge different amounts on different days.  Car dealers ALWAYS have a "sale of the century" every single month.  You can TRY to call them all cheaters and fakes, but it won't get you the satisfaction you're obviously looking for.
 

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2 hours ago, Heavy_d78 said:

That's just it, the price was $68.12 before and after the BOGO sale. When the sale was on the price was still $68.12 for each person and it said the discount had already been applied to the single person price. Essentially there was no sale, and there never is. The price is always $136.24 for two guests.

 

How do you know the discount had not been applied? Did you book a cruise during that sale and didn't get the discount? Or are you just assuming that the price would be double the $68.12? Many discounts on products don't take affect until the purchase is being processed. If you only looked at the price on the website without starting a booking, perhaps the discount may not have yet been applied. 

 

Not trying to be confrontational, just trying to fully understand the situation you brought up. 

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Interesting conversation guys.  I was a bit perturbed recently when we ordered online before our cruise a coffee card to use on Radiance.  The price of each card was good for 15 specialty coffees.  However, I discovered that when checking out there was a 15% service charge applied to the initially advertised price which bumped up the deal.  The reason why I felt this is disturbing because of all the things we have ever ordered pre-cruise online we have never encountered a "service charge".  C'mon RCI, you are better off just incorporating the fee and be done with it. So yeah, it might not have necessarily been deceptive, but totally unnecessary in my view. Not impressed with it and hope this (trend?) doesn't continue.

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If, as you say, a constant "sale", you have never seen what the "regular" price is. Cruise prices are no different than any item, be it a car or a fresh turkey. As a new model is coming out or the sell by date approaches, the price drops on in store stock. 

Because of the need of a specific type of cabin, I booked over 18 months in advance. That far out price is MSRP and not effected by supply and demand. I kept an eye on the prices which climbed and fell, under $100, over the next year. About 8 months out, small price drop AND $2000 OBC. Called and was re=booked at lower price. Couple of months later, another price drop but no OBC offer. So evidently the cruise is nor selling, last month another price drop and another re-booking. This one saved us $1400 and we have another two weeks before final payment. In 13 days another call in the oft chance of another drop. 

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no, I do not feel cheated.   one, I don't pay attention to advertising.  I look at the bottom line price, and if I feel it is a good value, I pay it.  if not, I don't.  

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8 hours ago, IslandHopperPro said:

Interesting conversation guys.  I was a bit perturbed recently when we ordered online before our cruise a coffee card to use on Radiance.  The price of each card was good for 15 specialty coffees.  However, I discovered that when checking out there was a 15% service charge applied to the initially advertised price which bumped up the deal.  The reason why I felt this is disturbing because of all the things we have ever ordered pre-cruise online we have never encountered a "service charge".  C'mon RCI, you are better off just incorporating the fee and be done with it. So yeah, it might not have necessarily been deceptive, but totally unnecessary in my view. Not impressed with it and hope this (trend?) doesn't continue.


Everything always has an 18% gratuity added on.  Always has.  This should not have been surprising.

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8 hours ago, IslandHopperPro said:

Interesting conversation guys.  I was a bit perturbed recently when we ordered online before our cruise a coffee card to use on Radiance.  The price of each card was good for 15 specialty coffees.  However, I discovered that when checking out there was a 15% service charge applied to the initially advertised price which bumped up the deal.  The reason why I felt this is disturbing because of all the things we have ever ordered pre-cruise online we have never encountered a "service charge".  C'mon RCI, you are better off just incorporating the fee and be done with it. So yeah, it might not have necessarily been deceptive, but totally unnecessary in my view. Not impressed with it and hope this (trend?) doesn't continue.

 

As brillohead indicates, this is the beverage gratuity.  Since you reference RCI, if you have cruised with them (or any other line for that matter) before you have always paid a gratuity in addition to the base beverage price on every beverage you have ever purchased.  Perhaps the fact that it was not included on the card (as it is on the packages) may have caught your attention in that it was then added separately, but the fact that it is there is exactly as it always has been. I. too, am surprised you are surprised by that.

Edited by leaveitallbehind

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17 hours ago, IslandHopperPro said:

Interesting conversation guys.  I was a bit perturbed recently when we ordered online before our cruise a coffee card to use on Radiance.  The price of each card was good for 15 specialty coffees.  However, I discovered that when checking out there was a 15% service charge applied to the initially advertised price which bumped up the deal.  The reason why I felt this is disturbing because of all the things we have ever ordered pre-cruise online we have never encountered a "service charge".  C'mon RCI, you are better off just incorporating the fee and be done with it. So yeah, it might not have necessarily been deceptive, but totally unnecessary in my view. Not impressed with it and hope this (trend?) doesn't continue.

 

Are you sure it was not 18%?

 

That is the standard gratuity for drinks, drink packages and such.  Those fees are paid to the people serving you.   

 

 

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It's interesting to read this thread from a European perspective.

Totally illegal in the U.K. and the EU. To offer a "sale" or discount, the seller must demonstrate that they have offered the product at a higher price for x months immediately prior to the offer. No ifs, no buts - it's the law.

 

There are ways around it.

One kitchen retailer has a permanent 50% discount. They offer two broadly similar ranges, set the price ridiculously high and put one range on a 50% discount. Six months later they switch the discount to the other range. 

 

As I say to sellers, I'm not interested in how much I save, only in how much I spend. I can save a great deal more than their discount by simply not buying.

 

JB :classic_smile:

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Marketing sucks.  NCL tries to get you to book future cruises while on board by saying, "Book now for the lowest cost".  They forgot to add, "At this time".  They would not answer questions about future sales or other price reductions.

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1 hour ago, Bankshot said:

Marketing sucks.  NCL tries to get you to book future cruises while on board by saying, "Book now for the lowest cost".  They forgot to add, "At this time".  They would not answer questions about future sales or other price reductions.

 

 

Well that would be true for any "lowest cost" booking - it would be that price at the time.  What else could it be?   Not sure how they would know about future sales or other price reductions that have not yet been announced. 

 

And like any other purchase of anything else, you can choose to buy it then or not.

Edited by leaveitallbehind

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They are implying this IS the lowest cost ever that will be offered and we all know the price can be reduced many times before sailing.  Some newbees may think they are getting the best deal and are being misled down this dead end street.  They avoided answering my question many times.

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3 minutes ago, Bankshot said:

They are implying this IS the lowest cost ever that will be offered and we all know the price can be reduced many times before sailing.  Some newbees may think they are getting the best deal and are being misled down this dead end street.  They avoided answering my question many times.

You already know the answer. Why did you need to ask?

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I asked repeatedly because I wanted them to admit this was not the "Lowest Price".  Just trying to put a little truth in advertising so people would understand this was a blatant misrepresentation.  I hope you don't agree with their dishonest methods.

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26 minutes ago, Bankshot said:

I asked repeatedly because I wanted them to admit this was not the "Lowest Price".  Just trying to put a little truth in advertising so people would understand this was a blatant misrepresentation.  I hope you don't agree with their dishonest methods.

 

Oh, boy.  It is not a "blatant misrepresentation" or a "dishonest method". They have no way of knowing what a future price may be.  The implication that it is the lowest price it would ever be is likely your interpretation.  But it doesn't matter, because just as cruise prices can go down, they can go up - and very frequently do.  And by the way, if a booked price - regardless of whether it was booked on board or otherwise - goes down after you book it and it is before final payment, you can get that lower price.  Happens all the time. 

Edited by leaveitallbehind

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Because most consumers are stupid, and every marketing department knows this. Many consumers recognize a deal by how they "feel," not actually saving money. 

 

It's all quite easy to ignore and overcome. See what is included, see what the price is. Fancy marketing "discounts" and "free offers" are usually little to no difference.

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