Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
silkburke12

Unfair business practices

Recommended Posts

Hi,

I was always wondering about this tax and fees on top of the base fare of the cruise. On the German cruise market the base fare of the cruise always include tax and port fees and usually any change of cost for fuel. I‘m not sure if this is something specific for the German cruise market or because of German law.

 

Thus I never had to pay something extra I booked a cruise, and I never git a refund because of tax and fee has changed.

 

There is already a big debate in Germany about gratuities. Currently some cruiselines have them fully included in the base fare, i.e. you are unable to reduce them if you are unhappy with the service. Some cruiselines still charge them extra and allow you to change it.

 

So is it true in other cruise markets (US, Canada, Australia etc.) that you always have to figure out what the tax and fees are and to add this to the advertised cruise fare?

Or does the TA this and present the, well I would never call it he final price as there is always something on top, lets call it the final base fare?

 

Seems cruisers need good eyes to read the fine print and need some math capabilities to calculate the total cost.

 

It seems the whole tax fee thing is not only specific for each cruiseline, but specific for the markets they sell on ad well.

 

regards

MBerry

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, MouseBerry said:

Hi,

I was always wondering about this tax and fees on top of the base fare of the cruise. On the German cruise market the base fare of the cruise always include tax and port fees and usually any change of cost for fuel. I‘m not sure if this is something specific for the German cruise market or because of German law.

 

Thus I never had to pay something extra I booked a cruise, and I never git a refund because of tax and fee has changed.

 

There is already a big debate in Germany about gratuities. Currently some cruiselines have them fully included in the base fare, i.e. you are unable to reduce them if you are unhappy with the service. Some cruiselines still charge them extra and allow you to change it.

 

So is it true in other cruise markets (US, Canada, Australia etc.) that you always have to figure out what the tax and fees are and to add this to the advertised cruise fare?

Or does the TA this and present the, well I would never call it he final price as there is always something on top, lets call it the final base fare?

 

Seems cruisers need good eyes to read the fine print and need some math capabilities to calculate the total cost.

 

It seems the whole tax fee thing is not only specific for each cruiseline, but specific for the markets they sell on ad well.

 

regards

MBerry

 

 

When you look at pricing, the fare is quoted for cruise and the port charges/taxes are shown  (ie. base fare +  ).  If you book, the total price is shown (cruise fare + port charges/taxes) whether you book directly with HAL or a TA.  No need to read the fine print 😉 

 

The HSC (gratuities) are not shown but they are disclosed in the ‘know before you go’ and on the cruise contract.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, MouseBerry said:

I was always wondering about this tax and fees on top of the base fare of the cruise. On the German cruise market the base fare of the cruise always include tax and port fees and usually any change of cost for fuel. I‘m not sure if this is something specific for the German cruise market or because of German law.

 

European Law!  Prices must include taxes.  That's why we are always a bit shocked when we purchase a 20 dollar item in Miami and it costs us $21.40.  In Europe that €20 item will cost €20.

We have received refunds for port charges on a couple of cruises 😁, but do realise that we could be charged extra if the port charges increase.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I hope all the responses have extinguished the flames from the SilkBurke. Geez, HAL isn't trying to pull a fast one. Read the fine print & you won't be surprised!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
21 hours ago, silkburke12 said:

Holland

Never mind....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, VMax1700 said:

 

European Law!  Prices must include taxes.  That's why we are always a bit shocked when we purchase a 20 dollar item in Miami and it costs us $21.40.  In Europe that €20 item will cost €20.

 

 

This is why I love shopping in Europe!  Great idea.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have only had small amounts of OBC added for reduced port charges, never anything added. As I said, small amounts. I can't imagine the extra charge for the OP was anything not very small.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OP never said the $ amount for the extra tax.  My son and I recently booked the Christmas/New Year's 2021 half-transit Panama Canal with taxes in the amount of $525, mainly due to taxes in the Canal.  We were told that the taxes could go up or down depending on the Canal.  We understand that taxes and fees are a part of cruising and figure it into our fare.  We had one occasion where the taxes did rise $7 per person, and several cruises where we received a refund due to either not entering a port or reduced port fees/taxes.

 

Yes, paying extra is never pleasant, but how much extra did you have to pay?  Knowing that would help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 hours ago, kazu said:

 

Yes I was quoting HawaiiDan who likes to praise other cruise lines and “all included” (which isn’t) and the port fees included.

 

As I said on HAL, I’ve had higher and been reimbursed if they drop.  I works both ways 😉 

 

My  only objection is having a cruise price advertised, by any line, and then  not showing what the complete total  or real price is...  Port, Taxes and fees.  extra.   Why can they not  just print the complete price ... Heck why can they not also add the service charges they  will  bill you too?        I like  to buy things I know the price of.. the full price   not just Cruises.        It just seems  slippery....   Why Can they not do that

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Hawaiidan said:

 

My  only objection is having a cruise price advertised, by any line, and then  not showing what the complete total  or real price is...  Port, Taxes and fees.  extra.   Why can they not  just print the complete price ... Heck why can they not also add the service charges they  will  bill you too?        I like  to buy things I know the price of.. the full price   not just Cruises.        It just seems  slippery....   Why Can they not do that

 

HAL is in competition with other lines and comparison needs to be apple to apples. With tips added into the final payment it would be hard for HAL to compete with the lines that do not add them in.

 

If all lines were required to do this, it would work for all, but as it stands, no.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, WFBgal said:

I hope all the responses have extinguished the flames from the SilkBurke. Geez, HAL isn't trying to pull a fast one. Read the fine print & you won't be surprised!

If they were not trying to seduce you with a flashy price... why do they have the fine print and details NOT included.... ???? ... Its to suck you in...with a " false  list price.   

Its like buying a car and  being told...Oh + dealer prep+ oh you want tires, oh you mean you wanted seats...    just chicken nickel dime games.

  I love the German law...     

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, SilvertoGold said:

 

HAL is in competition with other lines and comparison needs to be apple to apples. With tips added into the final payment it would be hard for HAL to compete with the lines that do not add them in.

 

If all lines were required to do this, it would work for all, but as it stands, no.

Ok with the tips...but why not taxes  fees and Port charges...... everybody pays the same for the same ports  taxes  etc ???   Why not that.     

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Hawaiidan said:

Ok with the tips...but why not taxes  fees and Port charges...... everybody pays the same for the same ports  taxes  etc ???   Why not that.     

 

Absolutely, I agree.  I suppose much the same thing: HAL wants to compete on the level playing field of pure cruise fare without the taxes added in.  Looks cheaper and that might fool some pax.

 

If I were a TA and got calls from pax who saw the "1500 pp" fare turn into "2200 pp" because of the added tax, I guess I wouldn't be any happier than the pax.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
22 hours ago, TAD2005 said:

On most of the "premium" cruise lines, their per-day rate is considerably higher than HAL.   Yes, they do include some extras that HAL charges for, but they charge enough that if they get a port charge increase from a particular port, they usually eat it instead of hitting the passengers.   But in the reverse situation, where a port charge is reduced or eliminated, there is no credit given to the passengers.   I guess they figure it all washes out in the end.

The advantage  to the passenger is that  you select a cruise that is priced fairly in your judgment,  and pay the bill.   End of story..  no hidden extras .  One price up front. you can count on.    I also appreciate  when the line holds the price and dos not play games to fill last min cabins...  one price 300 days out or 10 days out.    Seeing fares jumping up and down as the inventory  is an insult to  those who booked and paid a fair price. With some  lines it is like the stock market  up down sideways every day

Edited by Hawaiidan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's the same marketing tactic the airlines and hotels use.   A bare-bones price, then all the "surprises".   Airlines nick you for bags, occasionally carry-on bags, pets in the cabin (not service animals), seat selections, advance boarding, etc.   Hotels do the same by nailing you for "hotel service charges" for many items that you may never use, and hidden taxes charged by the city.   Cruise lines started this to be able to show the lowest price.  

But if you can afford to pay for Business class or first class, then everything is included, bags, carry-ons, drinks, food, seat selections.   Cruise lines are the same.  If you can afford to pay for lines like Oceana, Crystal, Regent, etc, then all is included.   In today's cut-throat marketing environment, buyers must be very aware of extra charges.   Read the details, ask questions, and always ask for the "out the door price".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, TAD2005 said:

It's the same marketing tactic the airlines and hotels use.   A bare-bones price, then all the "surprises".   Airlines nick you for bags, occasionally carry-on bags, pets in the cabin (not service animals), seat selections, advance boarding, etc.   Hotels do the same by nailing you for "hotel service charges" for many items that you may never use, and hidden taxes charged by the city.   Cruise lines started this to be able to show the lowest price.  

But if you can afford to pay for Business class or first class, then everything is included, bags, carry-ons, drinks, food, seat selections.   Cruise lines are the same.  If you can afford to pay for lines like Oceana, Crystal, Regent, etc, then all is included.   In today's cut-throat marketing environment, buyers must be very aware of extra charges.   Read the details, ask questions, and always ask for the "out the door price".

Very Very well said....  I agree       I will be happy to pay more when I know that is the firm and complete guarantee price that I feel is to me within my budget. and  I feel a good deal for me.   

 When I dine at many top restaurants... in Europe and many in the US   they have 1 price, the meal, the service tip, the wine, the tax, all in  1 complete price....   No surprises, No extras, no exception

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 minutes ago, Hawaiidan said:

The advantage  to the passenger is that  you select a cruise that is priced fairly in your judgment,  and pay the bill.   End of story..  no hidden extras .  One price up front. you can count on.    I also appreciate  when the line holds the price and dos not play games to fill last min cabins...  one price 300 days out or 10 days out.    Seeing fares jumping up and down as the inventory  is an insult to  those who booked and paid a fair price. With some  lines it is like the stock market  up down sideways every day

As we all know, about 50% of the actual revenue from a passenger's booking is generated by on-board purchases.   That's why cruise lines will fire-sale empty cabins close to the sailing date.   They want a full ship, or "heads in beds".   That's why 3rd and 4th passengers in a cabin get such great rates.   They will spend just as much onboard as the 1st and 2nd pax in the cabin.   So, even the premium lines will offer some very attractive rates for unfilled cabins.  It may be a lower fare, or a credit for air fare, or a free shore excursion.   The bean counter's ultimate goal is a full ship every time, and they will do whatever they can do make that happen.   So yes, even the "premium lines" will discount fares or offer other incentives to fill those last cabins.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • SAIL-AWAY GIVEAWAY - Enter for a chance to win a $3,000 Norwegian Cruise Line Gift Card
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...