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Posted (edited)

We had a cruise booked for  November 2020 ( which we booked while on board last November).  Given the current situation with Covid 19 we decided  to cancel and did so 2 weeks ago.  We were told we would receive a refund to our credit card within 2 weeks.  That time has come and gone.  I wrote to Seadream and they now say it will be 90 days to get a refund and blamed the fact they are now working at home. This is very concerning.  I had multiple trips booked and now cancelled over the next year- every other travel provider has refunded me promptly.  Not sure what is going on with Seadream but this does not inspire any Confidence. If every other travel company can refund me promptly why are they reneging on their promise to refund me in 2 weeks. Why 90 days ? ( I have my suspicions).  They have lost a customer permanently 

Edited by Christi209
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Thanks for posting - this is the first time I’ve heard the 90 day timeline.  When I last pinged them (end of last week) after the end of the 14 business days they said was the outer marker for processing our multiple refunds, I too was told it was because of the “work from home” order in Miami-Dade County (which is an hour south of us here in Florida).  Of course that doesn’t account for the Oslo office.  In any event, even if both offices are closed, working from home to process a refund doesn’t take any longer than doing so from the office, especially not 90 days.  

 

We can all read into the inordinate delay what we will ... and should, sad to say.  While we too are out a lot of money we may never see, as a general rule we are all far better off than the crew who were left in the lurch including dozens essentially stranded on SD1 and SD2 (at least for now) because they can’t disembark.  While SD2 is in Lisbon, they are being quarantined onboard.  While that is understandable, it still doesn’t make it any less painful especially when they have families also in worse shape hundreds if not thousands of miles away.

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We’re in the same situation with the same ‘BS’ response. 
Cash flow management situation (apparently). 
The red flags are blaring. 
 

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Ditto here. After many Seadream cruises, I am so disappointed by the poor communication and lack of customer focus.  I am out.  Out of our next cruise, and probably out of the franchise forever.

 

Also getting the 90 days to refund message.  Sounds like a pretty big liquidity problem.  Think carefully about accepting a future cruise credit. 

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Posted (edited)

It's pretty tough times all around out there for most all companies and for people in general right now.  Things are way different than we were used to just a short month ago.

 

Going through the cancellation process was not particularly easy, and not the "Sea Dream" I had in mind, but that's just the way things worked out, and certainly not even nearly all Sea Dream's fault.

 

So I am still looking forward to being a first time SeaDream customer when things calm back down.  I am happy with my 150 percent future cruise credits from my previously scheduled trip, and look forward to a few Painkillers at Jost Van Dyke in the future.

Edited by DWhit

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I find the same things disturbing as most of you.  We have had some wonderful times on SD but feel they are not really stepping up with either passengers or crew.  As a comparison, visit the Viking Oceans boards and read the threads about this, particularly one titled "FWIW".  I am not comparing the two products as they are different but there are similarities.  Both lines are founded and owned by Norwegian billionaires.  Both lines have excellent crew. But the handling of this disaster couldn't be more different .  

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This is all so sad and disturbing at the same time.  Not looking good for SD at all.

 

Earlier this morning I pinged SD on the status of our refund requests since it is now well beyond the original promise of 14 business days to process, not including last week’s “we are working from home” delay.  I, too, for the first time directly from SD was told the new policy is 90 days, for which a link was sent.  Of course it wasn’t 90 days when we booked these trips and it wasn’t 90 days only a week or so ago.  Thus they are applying the new policy retroactively.  I wouldn’t be holding my breath on this at all.  I tried to ping/copy shoreside executives on the sales/marketing team and the emails bounced back several times no matter how I tried to send them.

 

Unlike a public company with legal disclosure duties, privately owned companies especially those based outside the USA have no such duties.  The SeaDream web site continues to show voyages running per normal as of May 7.  Summer voyages show limited availability when at the same time they tell us the new 90 day refund policy is justified by the high volume of cancellations.  Which is it?  Unlike insurance companies and banks, I am not aware of any reserving requirements or industry-backed guarantee funds.  Thus any refunds, whether within 90 days or not, are contingent on cash flow from future bookings, which seems highly unlikely. If others here have different information or perspectives please advise the rest of us.  Be safe.

 

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Posted (edited)

I emailed on Friday asking them to honour the 14 day timeline that they quoted me in an email and  have received no response which is very poor customer service.  I also spoke with someone last week who continued to insist that everything was fine and the only reason for the delay was because they are working at home which makes no sense.  When I asked to speak with someone higher up I was out on hold and then told there was no possibility of speaking to anyone .  I also said my concern was the company’s viability and was told their ships are fully paid for and the company has no liquidity issues.  They are handling this all extremely poorly.  Other travel companies have been able to do the right thing and provide refunds ( and they too are working from home). I know which companies I will be booking with in the future - the ones that treat their customers( and their employees)  with some respect in hard times 

Edited by Christi209

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All of the above comments are very sad, but it seems that we have no choice other than to wait 90 days.  We also have deposits on several upcoming cruises with Sea Dream, the first one coming up in October of this year.  We haven't cancelled it yet, but will probably do so; and were planning on waiting until closer to the final payment date.  Given the above comments, perhaps we should do so soon. 

 

We have Travel Insurance booked on all of them, but it will be difficult to get a claim processed unless we have evidence that they refuse to reimburse the deposits.  Also, we have some coverage through our credit cards, but that may be our last resort.  Please keep us posted on how this develops.

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I took a stab at calculating timing of a refund:

Assumptions:

5 minutes per transaction (how complicated is it to refund since all the information is already in the system)

2 months of cancellations

Each segment is based on a 7-day itinerary

Full capacity of every segment

1 representative processing the refunds

Processing:

12 transactions per hour x 7 hour day = 84 refunds per day

84 x 4 weeks = 336 per month

336 x 2 months = 672 refunds for the 2 month period

Guests for the 2 month period:

4 (weeks) = 4 segments (7-day itinerary) x 2 yachts = 8 per month (or 16 for the 2 month period)

Average capacity = 50 cabins/transactions x 16 segments = 800 transactions or possible refunds

  • The above is based on every segment being full - which we know is rare
  • Crossing occurs in April during the canceled months is 12 days and capacity is half full, still, I'm basing the above on 7-day segments to show the comparison of a 'higher' amount of transactions SDYC has to process.

Summary:

SDYC with 1 representative can process 672 refunds in a 2 month period.

IF, SDYC sailed full in every segment they would have to process 800 refunds in a 2 month period.  We all know this number is inflated by xx% (you decide).

SDYC to put it nicely is 'full of it' that it takes 90 days to process from a stay at home requirement.

We have 4 segments on deposit (now canceled) and a credited future cruise due to a cancelation.  Fingers are crossed to receive the money, hoping our insurance and/or AMEX will come through if not.

**These are just my thoughts, feel free to comment on your assumptions**

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Actually - capacity is 84/day x 5 days per week x 4 weeks per mo, or 1680 per month. 
 

So, they could refund an entire 2 months of demand in 2 weeks. 
 

If they wanted to.
 

 

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Will Seadream roll over deposits for cancelled voyages to future voyages?  We sail in October but if that trip doesn’t happen, I would still like to do a Seadream cruise in 2021

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Good question on rolling over deposits.  Not sure, but in the past anyway, they seemed to want to treat each voyage separately given how their booking systems work.  Now that we are all in uncharted waters so to speak perhaps they will do so.  No doubt a lot depends on how soon they can resume operations.  The web site continues to say May 7 but that seems very optimistic in light of present conditions one month out.  Every week without two voyages going with paid passengers is that much less revenue for continuing operations and refunds.  How long can they last without incoming operating revenue?  How much is the owner willing to burn to keep it all afloat?  How quickly will people be willing to fly long distances and travel overseas?  How soon and how far in advance will others be willing to book future voyages?These are all pertinent questions for which we simply don’t yet have firm answers.  That said, thanks to all here for sharing their opinions, insights, etc.  Let’s all continue to be safe and keep the crew in our thoughts as dozens of them remain onboard SDI and SDII.

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They did offer to apply my deposit to any future cruise so if that is what you want to do it is definitely an option.  .  I was not interested in that 

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Why would you not take a future cruise credit? Or roll over your deposit? If everyone want a refunds all tourism companies will go out of business. 

 

And regarding 90 days, even big companies like NCL does 90 days or more for refunds. 

A hotel, cruiseline or airline does not just keep funds on file when people book. Funds in is a part of cash flow. 


I know SeaDream offered me to move my deposit and get a 20% saving on the new voyage when I asked to cancel, i felt that deal was to good to say no to. They even allow me to select a new sailing in 2022. 

 

If we all want to sail again, why not keep our funds?

 

 

89760526_10163243093780361_9065567722854678528_n.jpg

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Posted (edited)
On 4/8/2020 at 3:05 AM, Scspartan76 said:

Why would you not take a future cruise credit? Or roll over your deposit? If everyone want a refunds all tourism companies will go out of business. 

 

And regarding 90 days, even big companies like NCL does 90 days or more for refunds. 

A hotel, cruiseline or airline does not just keep funds on file when people book. Funds in is a part of cash flow. 


I know SeaDream offered me to move my deposit and get a 20% saving on the new voyage when I asked to cancel, i felt that deal was to good to say no to. They even allow me to select a new sailing in 2022. 

 

If we all want to sail again, why not keep our funds?

 

 

89760526_10163243093780361_9065567722854678528_n.jpg


I have been very unimpressed by how Seadream has acted during this pandemic and won’t sail with them again.  I also am concerned they won’t be around to honour a credit.  They were sending out tone deaf messages on Instagram about enjoying champagne in the surf even days after the pandemic was declared .  They are still booking passengers for May of this year even though it’s pretty clear that those sailings won’t happen.  They have not returned calls. Every other tour operator I have dealt with has behaved in a way that makes it clear they are thinking about the health and safety of their clients first .  And other companies have refunded me within days- I will rebook with them. Seadream seems to care more about their dollars than their passengers or staff. And I have a written email confirmation from them from mid March that they would refund my credit card within 14 days ( which IS their norm so clearly possible)- they did not issue the refund and did not follow up with me to offer any explanation. It was only when I sent an email asking about the credit that I received a form email back ( identical to one that our friends also received when they inquired) stating that it was suddenly 90 days.  None of that speaks to customer service or doing the right thing 

Edited by Christi209

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Posted (edited)

Well I guess I now have a clear picture of how Seadream treats it’s customers.  After reaching out 3 times over almost 3 weeks and being told each time that a manager would get back to me within a day I have not had any contact from Seadream. Nothing.   Meanwhile, other companies such as an airline and a large villa rental agency who are equally if not more busy, have been able to reach out to me on the same day and also issue refunds ( and the villa refund was a very large amount- much larger than my Seadream deposit ).  I think this speaks volumes about Seadream.  They might provide a nice product and their crew are wonderful but when a company seemingly could care less about its customers in challenging times I do not think they deserve my dollars in good times.  I hope they are at least treating their crew better than they are treating their passengers

Edited by Christi209

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