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DaCruiseBug

Questionable NCL business practices

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Before I get into it, I mean NCL the business model of taking advantage of customers sucks. Not the actual NCL product or all the hard working people on the ship.

 

So we have the Getaway booked for December 8th. Have a balcony cabin with the free airfare promo. We already received all the flight info from NCL etc.

 

Today we noticed that to upgrade to a Spa Balcony is only about $100 more total. So we call NCL to just pay the difference in cabin fares and they say that the free airfare no longer applies. On the website it still saying "free or reduced airfare" and it applies to this specific cabin category. So now they want over $1,000 to upgrade to the Spa Balcony because they want to charge $499 per person for the airfare. Seriously? That's their "reduced" airfare promo. The problem is that the flights we are booked on price out to $300 per ticket if bought on our own directly with the airline. So how is that free or reduced? They're charging a 60% premium to what the actual tickets cost...AND...we are already booked on those flights for FREE. When we booked the cruise 2 months ago it was completely free to fly from our city to New Orleans. But today under the same exact promo they want $499 per person for the airfare? 

When people complain about NCL this is what they mostly complain about. Sneaky business practices designed to just bend you over and take you for a ride. It's the same exact promo. Same exact wording. Same everything! Except the price. For the price they want for airfare I can buy a first class ticket.

 

The more I deal with NCL the more it makes me want to run away from them. My girlfriend is a Platinum but we're going to be looking elsewhere for cruising from here on out.

Edited by DaCruiseBug
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Keep what you have and buy Spa passes.

 

If you had originally booked a Spa balcony, what would the price difference have been? If the difference was more than $300, you're getting a better deal by adding Spa access now. If the difference was less than $300, you should have booked it then.

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4 minutes ago, Two Wheels Only said:

Keep what you have and buy Spa passes.

 

If you had originally booked a Spa balcony, what would the price difference have been? If the difference was more than $300, you're getting a better deal by adding Spa access now. If the difference was less than $300, you should have booked it then.

Your post is completely irrelevant to what I just said.

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1 minute ago, DaCruiseBug said:

Your post is completely irrelevant to what I just said.

Makes perfect sense.  If you want to upgrade, it's a cancel and rebook type situation, you LOSE the perks you had previously and get what is going on now.  

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2 minutes ago, Sauer-kraut said:

Makes perfect sense.  If you want to upgrade, it's a cancel and rebook type situation, you LOSE the perks you had previously and get what is going on now.  

 

The perks are the exact same now as they were then.

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6 minutes ago, Sauer-kraut said:

Makes perfect sense.  If you want to upgrade, it's a cancel and rebook type situation, you LOSE the perks you had previously and get what is going on now.  

December 8th cruise has been paid off for some time now. I had a balcony and when the rates dropped i contacted them and went to a mini suite and lost nothing.

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3 minutes ago, cruisinmeme said:

December 8th cruise has been paid off for some time now. I had a balcony and when the rates dropped i contacted them and went to a mini suite and lost nothing.


Do you have the free airfare? When did you upgrade to the minisuite?

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I never like to package air with hotel, cruise, resort, etc. for this very reason. It adds a whole new level of complication. 

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36 minutes ago, DaCruiseBug said:

The more I deal with NCL the more it makes me want to run away from them. My girlfriend is a Platinum but we're going to be looking elsewhere for cruising from here on out.

I’m sorry that you feel slighted, but unfortunately this is common practice among most if not all cruise lines. In your mind it should all be the same, and it should be an easy fare adjustment, but the reality can be quite different once the fine print is applied. The new fare may be for new bookings only, or as someone mentioned before, the cruise line may treat it as a cancel and rebook, or a myriad of other rules. Without looking at your original fare rules and the current fare rules, it’s hard to tell.

 

You may run away from NCL and look somewhere else, but you will most likely find similar practices on other cruise lines when trying to reprice your booking, specially when special promotions are involved. I’ve encountered the same with Royal Caribbean, Princess, Carnival, and Holland America. Very similar narrative as yours. 

 

Don’t allow this to sour the excitement of your upcoming cruise. Have a great time!

Edited by Tapi

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Try again.  The rules can sometimes vary from rep to rep.

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45 minutes ago, DaCruiseBug said:

Before I get into it, I mean NCL the business model of taking advantage of customers sucks. Not the actual NCL product or all the hard working people on the ship.

 

So we have the Getaway booked for December 8th. Have a balcony cabin with the free airfare promo. We already received all the flight info from NCL etc.

 

Today we noticed that to upgrade to a Spa Balcony is only about $100 more total. So we call NCL to just pay the difference in cabin fares and they say that the free airfare no longer applies. On the website it still saying "free or reduced airfare" and it applies to this specific cabin category. So now they want over $1,000 to upgrade to the Spa Balcony because they want to charge $499 per person for the airfare. Seriously? That's their "reduced" airfare promo. The problem is that the flights we are booked on price out to $300 per ticket if bought on our own directly with the airline. So how is that free or reduced? They're charging a 60% premium to what the actual tickets cost...AND...we are already booked on those flights for FREE. When we booked the cruise 2 months ago it was completely free to fly from our city to New Orleans. But today under the same exact promo they want $499 per person for the airfare? 

When people complain about NCL this is what they mostly complain about. Sneaky business practices designed to just bend you over and take you for a ride. It's the same exact promo. Same exact wording. Same everything! Except the price. For the price they want for airfare I can buy a first class ticket.

 

The more I deal with NCL the more it makes me want to run away from them. My girlfriend is a Platinum but we're going to be looking elsewhere for cruising from here on out.

No different on any other cruise lines. And the cruise line does not owe you anything. There is nothing sneaky about it. 
 

If you buy a new car, then see that they drop the price during the end of model year sale to sell off all inventory, do you expect the car dealer to give you back money?  
 

Once you are past final payment, you are contractually locked into the purchase. The seller has full rights to decide what they could allow, but they are not obligated to do anything other than to allow you to cancel and pay the cancellation penalty. 

Edited by BirdTravels

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7 minutes ago, BirdTravels said:

No different on any other cruise lines. And the cruise line does not owe you anything. There is nothing sneaky about it. 
 

If you buy a new car, then see that they drop the price during the end of model year sale to sell off all inventory, do you expect the car dealer to give you back money?  
 

Once you are past final payment, you are contractually locked into the purchase. The seller has full rights to decide what they could allow, but they are not obligated to do anything other than to allow you to cancel and pay the cancellation penalty. 

 

Yes I do actually. If I pay for a car and order it from the factory then before it comes the price drops...yes...absolutely they will give me the better incentives.

 

 

But...that's not what we're asking here at all. We want to upgrade our cabin and the fare difference is a little over $100...so we want to pay that to upgrade our cabin. Instead they want to take on $499 per person for the airfare...but the free airfare was included when we booked the cruise and it's still included today. We already have our flights and actually...the price for those same exact flights is $300...yet somehow they want to charge us $499 per person. How is that free or reduced? Leave the flights alone...just change the cabin and charge us the additional $$$ in fare difference.

Edited by DaCruiseBug

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2 minutes ago, DaCruiseBug said:

 

Yes I do actually. If I pay for a car and order it from the factory then before it comes the price drops...yes...absolutely they will give me the better incentives.

Funny. You know that isn’t the point. But in any case, you purchased the cruise at final payment,,, like buying a car. Bought. Done.
 

And you are bound by the contract you agreed to. The cruise line owes you nothing, unless you cancel. If they offer some credit or discount for a change, they are being nice. Works the same on any cruise line. 

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Just now, BirdTravels said:

Funny. You know that isn’t the point. But in any case, you purchased the cruise at final payment,,, like buying a car. Bought. Done.
 

And you are bound by the contract you agreed to. The cruise line owes you nothing, unless you cancel. If they offer some credit or discount for a change, they are being nice. Works the same on any cruise line. 

 

Agan, for all the cheerleaders...not asking for a discount or refund. We want to pay the cabin fare difference to get a different cabin. 

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20 minutes ago, DaCruiseBug said:

 

Agan, for all the cheerleaders...not asking for a discount or refund. We want to pay the cabin fare difference to get a different cabin. 

Keep on calling them every hour until you get what you want.

 

Don't let us down.

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Just now, billslowsky said:

Keep on calling them every hour until you get what you want.

 

Don't let us down.

 

I just spoke to 2 other people on the cruise that did this and they found someone that did it. I guess that's what's even more frustrating. Everyone gives you different answers.

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Does the phone rep want $499 for the airfare promo or is that what the website says when you do a mock booking under the air promo today.? 

 

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1 minute ago, DaCruiseBug said:

 

I just spoke to 2 other people on the cruise that did this and they found someone that did it. I guess that's what's even more frustrating. Everyone gives you different answers.

That is absolutely true.  I did an upgrade from inside to OV and paid for the upgrade.  Prices went down again and I asked to pay for the upgrade to balcony and was told no - but I argued (I was new to cruising and thought since I'd done it once, I could do it again...) and they went to their supervisor, who approved the upgrade.  But everything was sailaway, so no perks.  Have a cruise in December and the prices are changing daily - sometimes the airfare is $999, other times it is $1599, so very difficult to compare.

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5 minutes ago, tallnthensome said:

Does the phone rep want $499 for the airfare promo or is that what the website says when you do a mock booking under the air promo today.? 

 

 

It's what it says for this specific sailing. We already have the airfare and already have our reservations. They don't have to touch it at all. The "free or reduced" airfare promo inside of 2 months is usually messed up pricing. They ask $499 for airfare but the same exact flights if purchased directly from the airline are 60% cheaper. Isn't this technically false advertisement? There's nothing free or reduced about it.

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1 minute ago, salty dingo said:

Did you go through a TA for your booking? If so, this would not be an issue.

 

We booked directly thru NCL for this one. We usually use a TA but we also never use the air promo...I guess for this exact reason. This time it was free so we figured what the heck...

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2 minutes ago, DaCruiseBug said:

 

It's what it says for this specific sailing. We already have the airfare and already have our reservations. They don't have to touch it at all. The "free or reduced" airfare promo inside of 2 months is usually messed up pricing. They ask $499 for airfare but the same exact flights if purchased directly from the airline are 60% cheaper. Isn't this technically false advertisement? There's nothing free or reduced about it.

Yea, that’s a bit goofy but they definitely must be doing yours as a rebook. Your inside 60 days. Their current pricing strategy shows lower cabin fares but they want to sneak in a backdoor profit deal on the flip by over charging for the airfare for unsuspecting shmucks that might never even bother to look on their own. They lower one thing and raise another. 

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1 minute ago, DaCruiseBug said:

 

We booked directly thru NCL for this one. We usually use a TA but we also never use the air promo...I guess for this exact reason. This time it was free so we figured what the heck...

We have booked direct with the cruise line before but we always seem to come out better with a TA. That seems to be built into the business model so why not?

 

Never done a free airfare promo but I don't see how the cruise line can secure a better airfare than someone booking on their own. Until the cruise lines start buying airplanes (one of them actually did!) they have to get the airline tickets from the same places the rest of us do. Plus if you buy your own ticket the cruise line can't take it away from you if you upgrade!😉

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