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Cunard's Coronavirus Cancellations/Refunds (Merged threads)


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On 3/14/2020 at 3:21 PM, Clagmeister said:

Yes and thank you. That full stop at the end of 'Alternatively you are entitled to a full refund'. makes a big difference .

I know that I was promised a Full Refund when I phoned Cunard on the 16th and told to ignore the cancellation notice which arrived that showed a 75% cancellation penalty. We have to practice forbearance but has anyone actually seen any money returned yet?

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I am new to this forum and cruising, so please be gentle with my long missive, but i seem to share a number of issues that are being reflected, namely;

1. I have tried to engage with Cunard direct as has my travel agency - i have had no joy and she was( my TA) given the verbal response referred to yesterday by someone on this thread that there will be no changes to the British  90 day balance policy

2. I have to pay may balance by the end of this month or risk losing my deposit for a beginning July 2020 trip.

3. I cannot really 'afford' to lose the deposit so am encouraged to pay the full balance and hope the mechanisms in place- Insurance, Cancellation decision by Cunard and Celebrity solvency - all come on line/remain in place.

4. I cannot (definitely) afford to pay the balance and then not have the option of a cash return -rather than FCC- as my finances may change over the next few months.

Consequently i am left thinking that my options are to a). bite the bullet and cancel this week , b) sit tight and wait for the british cancellation policy to catch up with whats just been posted in america and c) pay the balance this week, hope that my point 3 above saves me and my 82 year old mum with a long list of medical issues - all cited on our early march insurance, will find a future voyage option that suits and there is not a long line of people vying to embark!!!!

Thoughts are welcomed?

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5 minutes ago, Proceed with Caution said:

I am new to this forum and cruising, so please be gentle with my long missive, but i seem to share a number of issues that are being reflected, namely;

1. I have tried to engage with Cunard direct as has my travel agency - i have had no joy and she was( my TA) given the verbal response referred to yesterday by someone on this thread that there will be no changes to the British  90 day balance policy

2. I have to pay may balance by the end of this month or risk losing my deposit for a beginning July 2020 trip.

3. I cannot really 'afford' to lose the deposit so am encouraged to pay the full balance and hope the mechanisms in place- Insurance, Cancellation decision by Cunard and Celebrity solvency - all come on line/remain in place.

4. I cannot (definitely) afford to pay the balance and then not have the option of a cash return -rather than FCC- as my finances may change over the next few months.

Consequently i am left thinking that my options are to a). bite the bullet and cancel this week , b) sit tight and wait for the british cancellation policy to catch up with whats just been posted in america and c) pay the balance this week, hope that my point 3 above saves me and my 82 year old mum with a long list of medical issues - all cited on our early march insurance, will find a future voyage option that suits and there is not a long line of people vying to embark!!!!

Thoughts are welcomed?

Yes, those are your options.

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1 hour ago, ThomasFR said:

KetoCruiser, is it possible Carnival / Cunard are driving people to FCC, which may or not be covered under any insurance or guarantee, so when / if a bankruptcy is declared, all FCC goes away? In this manner, upfront fees are never returnable? Is this possible, if you or anyone knows?


Thomas FR

i am not sure what they are thinking, I emailed my MP yesterday as the travel industry are petitioning Government here in U.K. to allow them to stop having to pay refunds and offer future credits instead. I pointed out that normal people are also hurting financially and may need the money to survive over next 3-4 months. No guarantee that we could consider spending money on holidays in the next year if there is a global recession following this crisis.

 

I also suggested that cruise industry is perhaps not dealing fairly with its customers as they are blatantly selling cruises operating in next few weeks that they know will be cancelled.  Demanding immediate payment then only offering credit when they then finally cancel the cruise.  I for one will be looking for refund as I don’t plan to travel with Cunard in the foreseeable future( unless it’s a deal to good to say no too)

 

Like you I have concerns that some of the smaller cruise lines will not survive this, I think Carnival are in better position than some, however there is nothing to say that they won’t drop some of there smaller brands and consolidate.  I would hope and expect that they would honour credits with those companies.

 

 

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45 minutes ago, exlondoner said:

 

Actually, I don't think I mentioned Carnival Corp. Such specific concern as I showed was for the owners of small businesses in the travel sector. As for appearing very charitable, I wasn't seeking to do that, just suggesting a wider perspective might be better for everybody in the long run. It often is.


Apologies, I thought you mentioned ‘measures to avert the destruction of an entire business sector would be prudent’ and I naturally assumed the business sector you were talking about was the cruise industry (Cunard/Carnival included) as we are in the Cunard/Carnival section discussing cruising on Cruise Critic.

 

i feel, sadly, that very soon it will be ‘every man for himself’ and wider perspectives will go out of the window. As someone has already said, when this is over they will still have huge fleets to help them get back on their feet, hopefully.  Those who have lost homes and livelihoods will not be so lucky.


Lets all hope that some miracle occurs which will end this terrible pandemic, but at the moment I’m sad to say I don’t feel as hopeful as President Trump! 
 

And let’s hope we can all “Carry on Cruising!” 👍🏻

 

 

Surely measures to avert the destruction of an entire business sector would be prudent?

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1 hour ago, Proceed with Caution said:

 

2. I have to pay may balance by the end of this month or risk losing my deposit for a beginning July 2020 trip.

3. I cannot really 'afford' to lose the deposit so am encouraged to pay the full balance and hope the mechanisms in place- Insurance, Cancellation decision by Cunard and Celebrity solvency - all come on line/remain in place.

4. I cannot (definitely) afford to pay the balance and then not have the option of a cash return -rather than FCC- as my finances may change over the next few months.

Consequently i am left thinking that my options are to a). bite the bullet and cancel this week , b) sit tight and wait for the british cancellation policy to catch up with whats just been posted in america and c) pay the balance this week, hope that my point 3 above saves me and my 82 year old mum with a long list of medical issues - all cited on our early march insurance, will find a future voyage option that suits and there is not a long line of people vying to embark!!!!

Thoughts are welcomed?

 If you are UK based and have paid the full Cunard Fare, you have the option of amending your voyage upto 90 days before sailing. This is still being quoted on their website. I am not sure if it will help you, but might avoid surrendering your deposit or paying final balance.

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9 hours ago, Canuker said:

I want to be sure I have this right.

The cancellation fees are still to be converted into FCCs?

Or is that idea out the window now?

And the 'cancel up to 48 hours before sailing'. Is that out too?
Lastly, what is this "90 day expiration on FCC's" that samiam1 is mentioning in post #1009?

Signed,

'Confused'

 

 

 

I cancelled a June Trans Atlantic so got a 75% refund and 25% FCC but supposedly they must be used within 90 days. This was fair enough but then have had no communication from Cunard except the booking disappeared. The Travel Agent says 30-90 days.

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45 minutes ago, ellie1145 said:


Apologies, I thought you mentioned ‘measures to avert the destruction of an entire business sector would be prudent’ and I naturally assumed the business sector you were talking about was the cruise industry (Cunard/Carnival included) as we are in the Cunard/Carnival section discussing cruising on Cruise Critic.

 

i feel, sadly, that very soon it will be ‘every man for himself’ and wider perspectives will go out of the window. As someone has already said, when this is over they will still have huge fleets to help them get back on their feet, hopefully.  Those who have lost homes and livelihoods will not be so lucky.


Lets all hope that some miracle occurs which will end this terrible pandemic, but at the moment I’m sad to say I don’t feel as hopeful as President Trump! 
 

And let’s hope we can all “Carry on Cruising!” 👍🏻

 

 

Surely measures to avert the destruction of an entire business sector would be prudent?

 

Well the request came from the ABTA which obviously covers the whole industry, including big people like Carnival and BA. But I was thinking of the smaller businesses which will go to,the wall if the big companies do: family owned travel agencies, airport car companies, the many smaller companies that service the cruise ships in Southampton, etc, etc. Their eimployees probably have mortgages too.

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1 hour ago, Clagmeister said:

I know that I was promised a Full Refund when I phoned Cunard on the 16th and told to ignore the cancellation notice which arrived that showed a 75% cancellation penalty. We have to practice forbearance but has anyone actually seen any money returned yet?

 

Not I and that is what is worrying me.  If they drag it out too long, your remedies get very limited if they do not pay.

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11 minutes ago, samiam1 said:

 

Not I and that is what is worrying me.  If they drag it out too long, your remedies get very limited if they do not pay.

Yes. If my refund (promised within 7 to 10 working days ) comes through then I will post on here. My port parking charges and pre cruise overnight stay with Premier Inn has been returned to my Credit Card.

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22 minutes ago, Proceed with Caution said:

posted 35 mins ago on Celebrity's twitter account- do we think Cunard will follow suit ?

https://www.celebritycruises.com/gb/travel-alert/voluntary-suspension-of-cruising

A small point.

The webpage at the above hotlink states (quote):

"We understand the Canadian government has banned cruise ship travel containing more than 500 passengers".

This not correct. This mistake has been made by others too.
To correct this, change "passengers" to "people". In other words, the 500 maximum includes both passengers and crew.

With a rule of thumb ratio of of about 2.5 passengers to 1 crew, this translates to a maximum number of passengers of around 350. Needless to say, the 3 vessels Cunard have carry way more than 350 passengers and are certainly affected by this ban.
(In practice the ban affects all mainstream cruise ships, regardless of brand).

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Slightly different question.  What happens if we have FCC and the new cruise is cheaper than the original?

Had just about decided that we would cancel our October cruise before we had to pay the balance, based partly on the fact that I thought they were not repeating the cruise, however they are.  I think I must have missed it because it sails in September and I'd been looking purely in October!!!

It's showing at the moment as quite substantially cheaper.  So this now leads to another conundrum.  Do we still wait until just before the balance is due, or should we think about transferring the booking now?  

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2 hours ago, Proceed with Caution said:

I am new to this forum and cruising, so please be gentle with my long missive, but i seem to share a number of issues that are being reflected, namely;

1. I have tried to engage with Cunard direct as has my travel agency - i have had no joy and she was( my TA) given the verbal response referred to yesterday by someone on this thread that there will be no changes to the British  90 day balance policy

2. I have to pay may balance by the end of this month or risk losing my deposit for a beginning July 2020 trip.

3. I cannot really 'afford' to lose the deposit so am encouraged to pay the full balance and hope the mechanisms in place- Insurance, Cancellation decision by Cunard and Celebrity solvency - all come on line/remain in place.

4. I cannot (definitely) afford to pay the balance and then not have the option of a cash return -rather than FCC- as my finances may change over the next few months.

Consequently i am left thinking that my options are to a). bite the bullet and cancel this week , b) sit tight and wait for the british cancellation policy to catch up with whats just been posted in america and c) pay the balance this week, hope that my point 3 above saves me and my 82 year old mum with a long list of medical issues - all cited on our early march insurance, will find a future voyage option that suits and there is not a long line of people vying to embark!!!!

Thoughts are welcomed?

 

My cruise with Cumard is on 31st May, so my balance was paid just before the corona thing was kicking off. 

 

Since then I have had nothing but uncertainly.  The terms for cancellation to start with were quite good 40% cash and 60% FCC. Cancel up to 48 hrs before and get 125% fcc.

 

So I didn't jump to do anything. Now the offer has been reduced to 110% fcc with no cash refund if I cancel.

 

The situation is regularly changing and after all this is over (?) I expect there will be more restrictions on what health conditions insurance will cover, making cruising much harder for the older or those with pre-existing health conditions.

 

If I was you... And you can afford it.. I would forgo the deposit, cancel and not pay the balance. Then you can see what shape the re-emerged cruise industry is in before rebooking.

 

I’m going to stick it out.. Expect canard to cancel at the last minute and by then I bet it will be a refund by way of a FCC, meaning I'm tired to Cunard and the itineraries they offer. 

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I  hope the law isn't changed and you are still entitled to a full refund if you pay the balance. 

But

This depends on the cruise line being still in business. 

 

If not you can claim from credit card company 

 

But this may involve a lot ot work.

 

If I had the choice of giving up 15%, which you would still get as FCC, then have a 100% certainty you wouldn't loose the 85% balance as you haven't paid it. I would cancel now and take the hit.

 

I've paid the balance for a spring med cruise,  I'm 100% certain it will be cancelled,  but it won't be cancelled  untill the last minute. As l don't want FCC,  I must wait till they  cancel and fingers crossed for a refund. 

 

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3 hours ago, exlondoner said:

 

Well the request came from the ABTA which obviously covers the whole industry, including big people like Carnival and BA. But I was thinking of the smaller businesses which will go to,the wall if the big companies do: family owned travel agencies, airport car companies, the many smaller companies that service the cruise ships in Southampton, etc, etc. Their eimployees probably have mortgages too.

Perhaps small companies will go to the wall but it is not my responsibility for them to use my money to save their jobs and pay their mortgages when the priority of many is to save their jobs and pay mortgages so any monies paid should be reurned in caash if cruises cancelled.

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1 hour ago, majortom10 said:

Perhaps small companies will go to the wall but it is not my responsibility for them to use my money to save their jobs and pay their mortgages when the priority of many is to save their jobs and pay mortgages so any monies paid should be reurned in caash if cruises cancelled.

No crystal ball, no moralizing but what I can say is that, from a legal standpoint, customers who prepay a contract are unsecured creditors. Which means, it terms of pecking order, they are bottom of the pile, along with suppliers and payroll employees with no termination agreement.

For what my own crystal ball is worth, I don't see Carnival folding, nor do I see insolvency resulting in the appointment of a receiver. Its balance sheet is healthy and well-ordered, in terms of quantity and repayment of debt. An important option open to them is to sell and lease back major asset(s), since they currently have relatively little in the way of lease commitments (i.e they own the ships). Such a strategy generates quick, potentially sizeable cash and has virtually no impact on operations, sales or customers' cruise experience. And with interest rates an rock-bottom levels, this is an attractive possibility for both lessor and lessee. It is a common practice in the transportation sector, where large amounts are tied up in large equipment. If I ran a leasing / finance company, I'd be sniffing around the cruise industry already, looking for a deal.

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9 minutes ago, Radar boomer said:

We got an email today at noon advising they are changing final payment due from 120 days to 60..changed for cruises sailing July 1 through sept 30th ..happy with that as was due next week 

I am not very happy as we sail on 2nd October and we will have to pay full balance at 90 days but those cruising before me can have an  extra 30 days to consider their position and cancel. Sorry but Cunard are acting like a cowboy company instead of a 5* company and risk losing a lot of custom in the future and have a great risk in tarnishing their reputation.

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Hopefully they will not wait that long or they could be the last Cruise line giving up on April.
 

Just out of curiosity, Why are deposits not refundable in the UK? Law? 
 

I think they will give you 60 days in a month

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7 hours ago, beaveh said:

 

My cruise with Cumard is on 31st May, so my balance was paid just before the corona thing was kicking off. 

 

Since then I have had nothing but uncertainly.  The terms for cancellation to start with were quite good 40% cash and 60% FCC. Cancel up to 48 hrs before and get 125% fcc.

 

So I didn't jump to do anything. Now the offer has been reduced to 110% fcc with no cash refund if I cancel.

 

The situation is regularly changing and after all this is over (?) I expect there will be more restrictions on what health conditions insurance will cover, making cruising much harder for the older or those with pre-existing health conditions.

 

If I was you... And you can afford it.. I would forgo the deposit, cancel and not pay the balance. Then you can see what shape the re-emerged cruise industry is in before rebooking.

 

I’m going to stick it out.. Expect canard to cancel at the last minute and by then I bet it will be a refund by way of a FCC, meaning I'm tired to Cunard and the itineraries they offer. 

Cunard has yet again revised the US cancellation schedule, which is the strictest yet:

 

Cancellation Fee schedule will be as follows

  • 31 to 59 Days to Sail: 50% of net fare
  • 15 to 30 Days to Sail: 75% of net fare 
  • 0 to 14 Days to Sail: 100% of net fare 

There is now no FCC offered when canceling less than 60 days. 

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1 hour ago, tilournextadventure said:

Cunard has yet again revised the US cancellation schedule, which is the strictest yet:

 

Cancellation Fee schedule will be as follows

  • 31 to 59 Days to Sail: 50% of net fare
  • 15 to 30 Days to Sail: 75% of net fare 
  • 0 to 14 Days to Sail: 100% of net fare 

There is now no FCC offered when canceling less than 60 days. 

 

I think you may be misinterpreting these terms. They represent a relaxation of the 120 day final payment date and the usual US cancellation fee schedule where penalties would normally start to apply at the 120 day mark, for sailings through September 30. Anyone on a US booking scheduled to sail by July 31 can still take advantage of the flexible cancellation terms offering FCC on sailings through July 31. That's how I interpret it anyway.

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In the UK it's fairly standard for deposits to be nonrefundable, for holidays, cars, furniture, building works etc. So cruises are no different.

 

I don't know if our deposits are slightly lower because of this? 

 

For my may cruise ( I suspect will be cancelled ) the deposit at the start ( 10 months before) was £100, as a special low price. Then 6 months before cruise date  an additional £300 deposit was paid. All of that was not refundable if I should cancel before I pay the balance ( as deposits aren't )

 

The added protection we have is insurance cover ( all uk cruisers must have cruise insurance and can't travel with out it) 

Also ABTA and ATOL protection which will repatriate and refund people if holiday companies go bust ( as happened last  year with Thomas Cook)

 

The problem is the world wide nature of the issue. So even these protections would be totally overwhelmed if every one wanted a cash refund for their canceled cruises, so legislation may well change to allow voucher refunds... This issue is wether such a system of vouchers would be government backed, so if the travel company subsequently goes bust a cash alternative will be offered.

 

 

 

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13 minutes ago, beaveh said:

In the UK it's fairly standard for deposits to be nonrefundable, for holidays, cars, furniture, building works etc. So cruises are no different.

 

I don't know if our deposits are slightly lower because of this? 

 

For my may cruise ( I suspect will be cancelled ) the deposit at the start ( 10 months before) was £100, as a special low price. Then 6 months before cruise date  an additional £300 deposit was paid. All of that was not refundable if I should cancel before I pay the balance ( as deposits aren't )

 

The added protection we have is insurance cover ( all uk cruisers must have cruise insurance and can't travel with out it) 

Also ABTA and ATOL protection which will repatriate and refund people if holiday companies go bust ( as happened last  year with Thomas Cook)

 

The problem is the world wide nature of the issue. So even these protections would be totally overwhelmed if every one wanted a cash refund for their canceled cruises, so legislation may well change to allow voucher refunds... This issue is wether such a system of vouchers would be government backed, so if the travel company subsequently goes bust a cash alternative will be offered.

 

 

 

The legislation that was being rumoured recently (but hasn't yet appeared) did include a government underpin, as well as an eventual right for a refund from the company, just not now.  So essentially punters could still rely on getting their money back, but just not in a hurry.

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Given the UK parliament is closed , the law on refunds can't be changed. 

 

Similarly the EU parliament is closed,  so they can't ratify any proposals from Brussels. 

 

For the moment you are still legally entitled to a full refund if Cunard cancel. 

 

Keep lobbying your MP and also Grant Shapps the transport Secretary 

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