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FunInTheSun9

Celebrity Cancelled our April cruise: Why would you not take the 125% FCC if it can be converted to a Refund later?

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If you are like us and have had your cruise cancelled recently by Celebrity, why would you not take the 125% FCC offer? Unless you either know that you will definitely not cruise in 2020 or 2021, or think that RCI/Celebrity is at risk of going bankrupt, it seems to make sense to take the FCC offer and then assess the current state of affairs over the coming months to determine when you wish to sail again. If you don't like how the recovery is playing out you can still take the 100% refund at anytime up until December 31, 2021. This seems to leave your options open.  

 

We had a group sailing together on our cancelled cruise and most are taking the FCC and looking to see how things go through this summer. If conditions are still frightful (government travel advisories, port closures, flights not running, etc.) then we are going to take our refund then. We can be patient for a few months. 

 

The 25% bump covers giving out an interest free loan (which isn't a big deal anyway considering the state of interest rates these days). Future cruise fares are already high, but we believe they may drop throughout the travel industry to get folks back into seats. If we are wrong: Then we can take the refund.

 

A couple of note worthy items:

1. Should we decide to cruise, we will be sure not to self-cancel the new cruise to avoid loosing the FCC (it is considered redeemed once applied); and it will only be restored if Celebrity cancels the sailing. But if things have settled enough to get us back into the traveling/sailing mood, we probably wouldn't self-cancel anyway. Our travel insurance will cover any normal reasons we may have to self-cancel (become ill, job loss, pregnancy, etc.).

2. Also, since we have no claims on our travel insurance policy, we can move our policy dates from the April cruise to the new cruise dates for travel insurance coverage without the need to open a new policy. If we later decide not to cruise and convert our FCC into a refund from Celebrity, our insurance carrier allows a refund of the policy premium (though we'd have to open a case for this with the insurance company, they usually give no-claim premium refunds only up until the original trip departure date).

 

Hopefully this may help some of our fellow cruisers who are still struggling with what to do after a cancelled sailing.

 

(Forum moderator: Feel free to move this post to another FCC-related thread if this does not warrant one of its own. I just thought it would get buried in there.)

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Why would you not take the 125% FCC offer? If you did not want to go on a Celebrity Cruise when they return to service, or if you were concerned whether RCCL will continue to trade. 

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I looked at the price of the cruise I had booked and that Celebrity cancelled, for   Nov., Dec., Jan., and the price for the room category I was in was way more than 125%.  Did I say WAY more?

 

:WHEN" I get my refund, I can look at all the other cruise lines.  Maybe I'll use that refund to book Celebrity, but maybe not.  I like having options.

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Some prefer cash in hand, some are concerned that health issues may preclude them from sailing in the future, some want to shop other vacation options or cruise lines, some may have just lost their jobs and need money now. 
 

Glad the 125%FCC works for you, but for others it may not meet their needs.

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There are a multitude of factors that are part of the decision in choosing which option is preferable; it is truly an iondividual choice.

 

We recently had our cruise cancelled and when through the decision making process, so I will share our thoughts.

 

First we did consider the value of the FCC, with respect to all the T&C's which are attached, and also the mention that they could change....that has been an issue with us all through this process, the terms, conditions and offers have changed. 

 

The ongoing solvency of the cruise lines is an issue....is bankruptcy an issue, certainly; is it likely...not so much, but it is a possibility.  How long is this likely to continue; China was impacted for about 10 weeks and they were able to close everything down very quickly in their efforts to contain the spread.  The past few weeks has shown that Europe and North America are not able to contain the spread as quickly, will this lengthen the time period we are affected....will it mean a significant reduction, or even a cancelling of the 2020 cruise season.

 

In looking at our future booked cruises, the price of our cruise for Feb 2021 has increased by 42%, part of that is due to currency fluctuation, but also a price increase due to demand.  Also, our Jan 2022 cruise has increased by 10%, again a currency fluctuation is impacting this cruise.  With the sudden increase in FCC which have to be used by end of 2021, demand will force the prices higher.

 

Finally, some of the behaviours coming out of the corporate offices, primarily the fence sitting as the situation continued to deteriorate, and what essentially looked like a what can we do to keep these people sailing with us, rather than a broader approach of what is the best course of action for everyone involved.

 

We took the cash refund to allow ourselves more flexibility in planning how we will spend our leisure time.

 

 

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1 hour ago, FunInTheSun9 said:

If you don't like how the recovery is playing out you can still take the 100% refund at anytime up until December 31, 2021. This seems to leave your options open.  

 

 

Does any know if this statement is true?

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Posted (edited)
33 minutes ago, Oville said:

Does any know if this statement is true?

Yes it is at this time (like all Celebrities T&C it could change at the drop of a hat). Check the FAQ on the web site. https://www.celebritycruises.com/travel-alert/voluntary-suspension-of-cruising

 

After I receive my 125% Future Cruise Credit (FCC), can I choose to change to the 100% refund?

Yes. All guests have until December 31, 2021, to decide to change their FCC to a refund.

 

 

 

I was due to sail on the same April cruise as Scubesdad, up thread.

We too took the full refund.

Reasons:

We have limited time to cruise because of work constraints, and the window for using a FCC (31/December/2021) is getting shorter as the virus spreads.

 

At this point in time, as far as I know from the info on Celebrity's web pages, it can't be used for a deposit, taxes, or port charges.

 

Celebrity reserve the right to limit its use on sailings and cabin choices.

 

Celebrity can change the T&C  of the FCC at any time. (this is why we didn't take the FCC with the option of converting it to a full refund up until December 31 2021. This may change in the future at Celebrity's discretion, not saying it will)

 

Therefore I am not comfortable leaving a few thousand dollars in an account (Celebrity FCC) where my spending of it has so many known and unknown limitations.

 

Cheers, heather 🥂 

 

Edited by middlehaitch

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Not knowing that Celebrity was soon after going to start cancelling cruises and offering 125% FCC or 100% refund, we cancelled when the CWC policy first came out. As a result, we received the +30 day 25% refund and the rest in FCC. Had we waited another three weeks, we too would have had the much better options when Celebrity finally cancelled the cruise. Our choice would definitely have been 100% refund.

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We were booked on a Royal cruise that was just cancelled. We chose 100% refund for a couple of reasons. First, we wanted the ability to choose to book a cruise on either Royal or Celebrity. Second, we are over 70 and while we think the note from the doctor requirement will stop once the pandemic is under control, there's nothing certain about much these days. I don't think you can go wrong with either choice. Whatever works for you.

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3 hours ago, middlehaitch said:

Yes it is at this time (like all Celebrities T&C it could change at the drop of a hat). Check the FAQ on the web site. https://www.celebritycruises.com/travel-alert/voluntary-suspension-of-cruising

 

After I receive my 125% Future Cruise Credit (FCC), can I choose to change to the 100% refund?

Yes. All guests have until December 31, 2021, to decide to change their FCC to a refund.

 

 

 

I was due to sail on the same April cruise as Scubesdad, up thread.

We too took the full refund.

Reasons:

We have limited time to cruise because of work constraints, and the window for using a FCC (31/December/2021) is getting shorter as the virus spreads.

 

At this point in time, as far as I know from the info on Celebrity's web pages, it can't be used for a deposit, taxes, or port charges.

 

Celebrity reserve the right to limit its use on sailings and cabin choices.

 

Celebrity can change the T&C  of the FCC at any time. (this is why we didn't take the FCC with the option of converting it to a full refund up until December 31 2021. This may change in the future at Celebrity's discretion, not saying it will)

 

Therefore I am not comfortable leaving a few thousand dollars in an account (Celebrity FCC) where my spending of it has so many known and unknown limitations.

 

Cheers, heather 🥂 

 

I agree!  A cash refund gives you much more flexibility and stability.  I know how much money I have in my hand today if I get a cash refund.  I don't know what will happen to the Royal Caribbean corporation in the future.  There are too many variables to even consider.  I don't want to bank that the fallout from this virus will be over quickly.  Things went sideways in a hurry with my vacation this year.  I'd rather wait this out on the sidelines with my cash in hand.  I can use my cash refund on toilet paper.

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We took the 100% refund as our next cruise booked with Celebrity for a TA next April has a balance owing that is less than what our FCC would be for.
Also currently our 2021 vacation days have already been allocated so having to cruise Celebrity by the end of 2021 because of an FCC is not possible.
We are also not loyal to one line as we sometimes cruise for price just to get away,
sometimes it Is for a destination.

 

 

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I chose the cash refund for my cancelled cruises because there is no guarantee that Celebrity will allow me to board their ships in the future, there is no guarantee that itineraries might be as advertised, and there is also no guarantee that Celebrity will be around in the future.  Not letting Celebrity keep $10,000 of my money for maybes.

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Took the CASH refund!  Being a stock holder, and avid Celebrity cruiser, the concern is what the viability of the cruise industry will be.  IF, and that's a BIG if, they don't survive and file for bankruptcy, all bets are off on the 125%, because you then become a creditor and the return could be 25 cents on the dollar.  Just my opinion  

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Good luck converting that FCC to a refund in the future 

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Why do you think you could turn the FCC into a refund? I understand it's a use it, by the end of 2021, or lose it.

I would gladly exchange my cruise for the same cruise next year with the same cabin category and perks. Initially, I thought I would take the 125% FCC, but then I checked prices for next year. The extra 25% does not get us what we have paid for. Celebrity is in complete charge of the prices and could raise them significantly and then we're stuck.

Other people may not be planning to cruise again due to age and health issues.

 

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23 hours ago, sr4mjc said:

Bird in the hand.  

Then buy more toilet papers. Win & win.

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I think the big question is if you think there’s the possibility of RCCL filing bankruptcy or not.  If there is a bankruptcy filing, a FCC puts you in a pool of unsecured creditors.  

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7 hours ago, CulverCityCruisers said:

Took the CASH refund!  Being a stock holder, and avid Celebrity cruiser, the concern is what the viability of the cruise industry will be.  IF, and that's a BIG if, they don't survive and file for bankruptcy, all bets are off on the 125%, because you then become a creditor and the return could be 25 cents on the dollar.  Just my opinion  

 

25 cents on the dollar is highly optimistic in case of bankruptcy. Probably more like 1-2 pennies on the dollar.

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I'm sticking with the FCC for now. My fare for the May 9th Summit sailing was $11.90 per night, per person for an oceanview (my first mistake fare booking ever) so my risk isn't very much. If I had over $10K invested, yes, I would pull it too. For 2, including taxes and fees, I paid $800 and some change.

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The amount I had laid out for our (now cancelled) April cruise is in my mind what economists call “sunk costs.” Maybe not a good metaphor in the cruising world, but the notion is that it is spent, gone, forgeddaboutit, move on. Of course it could be refunded now, but in my mind it is gone. So I will leave it, apply 125% to one or two of several cruises I have booked, and take my chances. If the industry and Celebrity go bankrupt, oh well. Because if I don’t have other cruises to spend on, then I don’t really need that money anyway... Sure, I could buy a new laptop or a few high end bottles of wine or some other luxury, but I will get by. And if the cruises do go on but I am denied boarding due to their age or other restrictions, then they owe me a refund and have promised as much.

For now, stay home, stay safe, and stop the spread.

Stan

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