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penaddict

Prices dropping on travel sites but agent looks at Holland’s site

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So the price of our cruise has dropped considerably compared to other cruise travel websites.  We booked the cruise through an online travel agent initially using the compete website. Our agent said that they only look at Holland website for price differences which they it also dropped a little bit there. But I was wondering how this comparison works if other travel websites like the one we booked through has it for a considerably less than what we paid for. How does the price difference work there if it’s just another type of travel website.m?

Of course Holland’s website was more expensive than through the travel website we booked with but other travel websites are considerably less for the same exact class a room we got which is the most basic balcony. 

Thanks for any help.

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Posted (edited)

Are you comparing the exact same cruise for the exact same week?  The only difference I have ever seen in price are perhaps some special perks the big cruise agencies may offer but the base price is always the same as the Holland website 

Edited by Mary229

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Posted (edited)

Yes everything is exactly the same. 

Balcony, category, etc. 

I sent my agent a screenshot of Holland’s website and a competing travel  website.

Edited by penaddict
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Your agent may not be able to compete with other third-party sites if they have purchased blocks of cabins. Additional incentives like ship board credit, prepaid gratuities, drink or food packages may be added making their offers much lower than HAL. Sounds like your agent will meet any HAL price drop (probably only before final payment), but not just any agent's offer. Don't think there is a way around it, if that is his agreement with you.

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True. Makes sense. Purchasing a cruise sometimes feels like buying a car. 🤣

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If you got the cabin you wanted at a price that seemed fair to you, sometimes it is less painful to never look again. If you've got a travel agent to keep tabs on price drops, that's good. Prices always change based on supply and demand. Keep in mind that lower prices might also mean less desirable cabin locations. This happens on every cruise and every cruiseline - probably most comparable to the way prices vary for airline tickets. 

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True but I’m the type of person that also likes to make sure that I get a good deal. This time we splurged and got a balcony. All of our past cruises were inside cabins.

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Try this theory. HAL has a price. Any agent (A) that sells that cruise, for that price gets a 15% commission.  Agent B, reduces the HAL price by 5% and is happy with a 10% commission. Agent C Sells for the HAL price but gives you OBC = to 5% . Agent D is going for volume so they sell for HAL - 10% and gets a 5% commission. 

 

Lots of different versions. My ex-agent accidently sent me a copy of his HAL statement. Every time I upgraded he made money. Every time there  was a reduction or sale or benefit added he lost money. If I made the change. He was right on top of it for upgrades.😁 I do my own now.

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1 hour ago, aa7yy said:

Try this theory. HAL has a price. Any agent (A) that sells that cruise, for that price gets aInteresting 15% commission.  Agent B, reduces the HAL price by 5% and is happy with a 10% commission. Agent C Sells for the HAL price but gives you OBC = to 5% . Agent D is going for volume so they sell for HAL - 10% and gets a 5% commission. 

 

Lots of different versions. My ex-agent accidently sent me a copy of his HAL statement. Every time I upgraded he made money. Every time there  was a reduction or sale or benefit added he lost money. If I made the change. He was right on top of it for upgrades.😁 I do my own now.

Interesting........  I often wondered if the TA got less money whenever I got a better deal and refared.  That might explain why some TAs are not in a big hurry to notify you of price reductions?  I wonder how  getting more perks on your reservation is handled?

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I get this could be true...but I feel my agent is never on top of this.  I'm always emailing the agent, with a rare response.  This is the second time I've used this agent, and maybe the last.  Though I know the agent probably is working with so many cruises, who would he/she keep up with them. But if I'm doing the research, it would be nice to get a response. 😉

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17 minutes ago, penaddict said:

I get this could be true...but I feel my agent is never on top of this.  I'm always emailing the agent, with a rare response.  This is the second time I've used this agent, and maybe the last.  Though I know the agent probably is working with so many cruises, who would he/she keep up with them. But if I'm doing the research, it would be nice to get a response. 😉

Regardless of the company behind him or her, I would not accept this (not returning my calls or email).  IMO, time to move on!

 

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I use a TA who works for a regular travel agency.  I have to keep track if I see a price drop and call her.  She is far too busy to keep track of everyone's cruise and land vacations.

 

And she still gets a nice commission even when we get a price drop.  And we still get perks.

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So my agent isn't in much (very limited hours) so I called and spoke to a different agent.  The price did indeed go down by almost $200.  The sales rep tried to explain to me that she would call the cruise line and that I would get half back in OBC.  I told her that wasn't supposed to be the case.  I haven't put down my final payment yet and am supposed to get the difference back.  Period.  Not half and as a credit.  Please can someone verify this???

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1 minute ago, penaddict said:

So my agent isn't in much (very limited hours) so I called and spoke to a different agent.  The price did indeed go down by almost $200.  The sales rep tried to explain to me that she would call the cruise line and that I would get half back in OBC.  I told her that wasn't supposed to be the case.  I haven't put down my final payment yet and am supposed to get the difference back.  Period.  Not half and as a credit.  Please can someone verify this???

Your agent can do to you what you let her do to you.

 

Tell her to release you and move on.

 

Of course she won't and "it" moves ,

 

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Yes I could do that, hope they wouldn't do it because I would lose my deposit but I already told her this is not what I was told.  I was told that I would get the difference back.  That was the point of "before the final deposit."  I hope when she calls back she has better news.

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17 minutes ago, penaddict said:

Yes I could do that, hope they wouldn't do it because I would lose my deposit but I already told her this is not what I was told.  I was told that I would get the difference back.  That was the point of "before the final deposit."  I hope when she calls back she has better news.

Did you book with a non-refundable deposit fare?  Are you after final payment date?

 

If you answered "yes" to either of these questions, you may be out of luck.  If "no", can you just cancel and rebook with somone else?

 

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2 hours ago, DaveOKC said:

Did you book with a non-refundable deposit fare?  Are you after final payment date?

 

If you answered "yes" to either of these questions, you may be out of luck.  If "no", can you just cancel and rebook with somone else?

 

 

This is exactly the reason I will only book refundable fares.  If I find the TA I am using at the time won't offer me the better deal that I have found, I just cancel and rebook elsewhere.  This may be easier said than done if after final payment or if travel insurance has already been purchased ... not sure how that would work, exactly. 

I am not married to any one TA ... I will drop them like a hot potato if I can get a much better deal elsewhere.  

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Posted (edited)

Well after all was said and done Holland was not able to give us the credit back (according to the agent) so they offered us an upgrade on our balcony mid ship. Originally they offered a bigger balcony on the fourth deck but we didn’t want that deck because the balconies are not see-through. We kept our original deck and moved to the center of the ship as we were originally at the very front at category VH and now we’re category VA. 

Edited by penaddict
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14 minutes ago, penaddict said:

Well after all was said and done Holland was not able to give us the credit back (according to the agent) so they offered us an upgrade on our balcony mid ship. Originally they offered a bigger balcony on the fourth deck but we didn’t want that deck because the balconies are not see-through. We kept our original deck and moved to the center of the ship as we were originally at the very front at category VH and now we’re category VA. 

 

If you booked a refundable fare and it is before final payment you are allowed to refare at the lower rate.  It sounds like you either booked with a non-refundable fare or your agency is playing games with you.

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Our deposit was nonrefundable. And the deposit was more than the credit we were asking for. So the upgrade actually I think technically is more than the credit.

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There are different rules for non-refundable deposits, so the answer you're getting from your TA sounds correct to me.  In exchange for the non-refundable fare, you already paid a lower price versus the refundable deposit option & agreed to honor it should there be other price changes.

 

The reason the cruise lines will make adjustments for refundable fares (before final payment) is because you always have the option to cancel. 

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