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megsie

HA@CIBT email re Princess cruise.

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Has anyone else received an email.from HA@CIBT re visa requirements for a cruise. Never had one before. Seems very dodgy with the usual click here icon and a suspicious looking, poor quality cut and paste photo (not the ship on which we will be cruising). It bothers me because our booking number and children passenger names were mentioned and it was stated that Princess cruises had authorised this data.

We do not require any visas and I know that CIBT is a real business. Just wondering and if it is a scam, maybe a warning for others.

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If it smells fishy it usually is fishy, it reads that way to me from what you've said.

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We both received a similar email this morning. I don't know if it is a scam or whether Princess authorises this company to assist people to get visas where required.

 

We know we don't need visas for our next two Princess cruises, so we just deleted the email.

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likewise. I would be wary anyway. Play it safe and do it yourself through the official channels.

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I got one this morning. The communication would imply that Princess have forwarded my details to CIBT. They know my email address, my name, my sail date and itinerary. I'm surprised that Princess would be allowed to forward this info on - I will contact Princess in due course and would suggest others do the same. Seems like a privacy issue to me......

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Two weeks we received a similar message regarding our upcoming Holland America Line Maasdam cruise, thought it was a scam, our Travel Agent contacted the HAL NZ agent, who had received many similar messages.

We do not require visas for our cruise which calls at Norfolk Island (Australian and NZ passport holders do not need visas for NI)

Today another e-mail requesting we click on the link to provide further information.

Not happy with our full names, booking number etc being given to a third party.

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CIBT is a legitimate company. Price point for commercial customers ($60+ For tourist ESTA)

 

I would be contacting the cruise line and asking what the .. is going on.

 

I would also be contacting the privacy commissioner and reporting this.

 

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yep - totally agree erewhon - I have just emailed privacy@princess.com.au

I found another identical email in my trash folder too. Whilst I believe CIBT are a legitimate company, this seems like a very underhand way of selling visas, in my humble opinion!

Edited by UKCruiser2
spelt email incorrectly

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28 minutes ago, UKCruiser2 said:

yep - totally agree erewhon - I have just emailed privacy@princess.com.au

I found another identical email in my trash folder too. Whilst I believe CIBT are a legitimate company, this seems like a very underhand way of selling visas, in my humble opinion!

I have just done the same thing, not impressed.
Cheers Carole

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I also sent an email to Princess.

I thought it may have been a scam using both Princess and CIBT as fronts requesting travel information. By using the click here button who would know which site it takes you to and what further personal or credit  information would be requested illegitimately. 

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I got one today re our Majestic Princess cruise on Feb 12, Sydney-Singapore, for which we require no visas.

 

I am of the opinion Princess has passed on customer details, I mean how did they know of our cruise?  A Princess visa service for sure and Princess gets a commission.

Edited by NSWP

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I agree, I also think it is very shoddy work to be passing on information to 3rd parties without permission (although it is likely in their terms and conditions buried on page 153 below the clause about taking ownership of your estate in case of death on their ship. 

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We've also received the email and have sent off a message to Princess with our concerns about a privacy breach.    A one-liner with a link to the visa company in our cruise doco would be suffice without alarming everyone with a suspicious email.

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I've also sent off a complaint to Princess about this. It's not only a breach of their privacy policy, it's also a breach of Australian privacy law I think.

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Depends whether they disclose in their booking terms that your details may be shared with partners for the purpose of booking and/or visa services. If it's adequately described there, it's not a breach.

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8 minutes ago, The_Big_M said:

Depends whether they disclose in their booking terms that your details may be shared with partners for the purpose of booking and/or visa services. If it's adequately described there, it's not a breach.

I checked their privacy policy and it said nothing about sharing details with third parties. 

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I received an email this morning from Carnival stating that it is not a scam but a service offered to passengers. An expensive service from what I’ve read.

But they are reviewing the way it was offered in Australia and NZ. It has also stopped offering  the service in Australia and NZ.

I’m thinking it was wrong morally, if not perhaps illegally as in our case, to email such services for 2 minors only, as was in our case.  Because no adults were addressed in the original email, only the 2 children, I did think it was a scam. 

Guessing there were a few complaints.

 

Edited by megsie

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I've just had a very quick response from Princess regarding this issue. I suspect someone in the US didn't check the Australian privacy laws before they passed on the info to CIBT. Anyway here's what it said:

 

"Thank you for your email and the concerns you have raised with us.

 

We confirm that the email sent by CIBT was not a scam, our American headquarters (Princess Cruises, Holland America Lines and Seabourn) have an existing relationship with this company.

 

The email was sent to assist customers to obtain their visas as this is a convenient service offered by CIBT.

 

We are now undertaking an internal review of the program and how it is offered to our Australian and New Zealand guests.

 

Rest assured that CIBT has no authority to use your information for any purpose other than to offer you its visa services.

 

For now we have stopped offering the program in Australia and New Zealand. You will not receive any further emails nor calls from this company.

 

We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience caused."

 

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Just now, megsie said:

I received an email this morning from Carnival stating it is not a scam but a service offered to passengers. An expensive service from what I’ve read.

But they are reviewing the way it was offered in Australia and NZ. It has also stopped offering  the service in Australia and NZ.

I’m thinking it was wrong morally, if not perhaps illegal as in our case, to email such services for 2 minors only, as was in our case. Thinking because no one else was addressed only the 2 children, I did think it was a scam. 

Guessing there were a few complaints.

 

Snap!

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Although DH has used this company, in it's alter ego of VisaLink,  in the past for business travel visas that he knew he had to have, I'm not sure I trust their advice for cruise passengers as I saw some posts elsewhere stating they were offering to supply visas for countries where no visa is required for Australians.

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I read the CIBT were also sending out emails re passports as well. But sent to some people who had years still to go on current passport. Had a bit of a read on the HAL forum.

Edited by megsie

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25 minutes ago, megsie said:

I read the CIBT were also sending out emails re passports as well. But sent to some people who had years still to go on current passport. Had a bit of a read on the HAL forum.

I wonder if people may have misread that part. Did anyone say if CIBT had been given people's passport numbers? I think CIBT just made a general offer re passports and visas. I don't know what was offered if the link was clicked, I didn't go that far.

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44 minutes ago, OzKiwiJJ said:

I've just had a very quick response from Princess regarding this issue. I suspect someone in the US didn't check the Australian privacy laws before they passed on the info to CIBT. Anyway here's what it said:

 

"Thank you for your email and the concerns you have raised with us.

 

We confirm that the email sent by CIBT was not a scam, our American headquarters (Princess Cruises, Holland America Lines and Seabourn) have an existing relationship with this company.

 

The email was sent to assist customers to obtain their visas as this is a convenient service offered by CIBT.

 

We are now undertaking an internal review of the program and how it is offered to our Australian and New Zealand guests.

 

Rest assured that CIBT has no authority to use your information for any purpose other than to offer you its visa services.

 

For now we have stopped offering the program in Australia and New Zealand. You will not receive any further emails nor calls from this company.

 

We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience caused."

 

''Existing Relationship' = Commission.'

Edited by NSWP

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21 minutes ago, NSWP said:

''Existing Relationship' = Commission.'

Agree

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2 hours ago, OzKiwiJJ said:

Although DH has used this company, in it's alter ego of VisaLink,  in the past for business travel visas that he knew he had to have, I'm not sure I trust their advice for cruise passengers as I saw some posts elsewhere stating they were offering to supply visas for countries where no visa is required for Australians.

 

If you're paying, they're happy to offer.

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