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Non Refundable Deposits Under The New Normal


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We currently have a non refundable deposit on a cruise in February 2021 that we booked this past January 2020.  When we booked, it was with the intention of cruising in the manner of all of our past cruises with the buffets, no social distancing or any of the other new normal cruise rules.  Since this is the case, shouldn't we have the option to cancel with a refund of our deposit?  We didn't signup for the new normal cruising.

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Read your contract.  They can change the product at any time.  They are currently being more lenient than they have to be.  You might could plead for an exception, especially if you have an underlying health condition.

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Have you considered requesting a lift and shift to February 2022? By then, cruising may well be closer in character to what you are used to.

 

As for having the option of a refund, when you booked you had the opportunity to acquire this option but turned it down in favour of a less expensive fare with the non-refundable deposit. Too late to change your mind.

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I think it is too early to know what the experience will be.  The buffet will no doubt be served by staff but that isn’t a bad thing, IMO.  
If ships sail at reduced capacity then social distancing will be much easier.  I think of the pool with loungers cramned in.  If the ship sails at 50-60% capacity and 50%  of the lounge chairs are removed it will be more comfortable for everyone and social distancing easy to accomplish.

As for a refund, Fouremco offers a good option with lift and shift.

 

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1 hour ago, sam849 said:

We currently have a non refundable deposit on a cruise in February 2021 that we booked this past January 2020.  When we booked, it was with the intention of cruising in the manner of all of our past cruises with the buffets, no social distancing or any of the other new normal cruise rules.  Since this is the case, shouldn't we have the option to cancel with a refund of our deposit?  We didn't signup for the new normal cruising.

Provide your source that shows Celebrity's "new normal" detailed guidelines for future cruises. 

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So you have three options:

 

1. Lift and Shift (as someone else mentioned)

    - 'shift' the cruise to similar ship/itinerary sailing the following year (within 4 week date difference)

    - retains current cost and perks

2. Move your cruise to a different date further out - different ship/itinerary etc

   - non-refundable move fee is waived

   - forfeit everything in current booking much like any cancellation

   - new booking made with whatever cost and perks apply

3. Cancel your booking entirely

   - non-refundable deposit will be returned as FCC that expires Dec 31, 2021 like others and usable on sailing up to May 2022
   *  I did this and told I will get FCC though no way to see it and I have no email but assume it is on my account.

 

You have options, may not be what you would like but something to ponder.  One has to expect that a sailing further out is less likely to have many of the change restrictions still in place that limit the day to day experience.

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Thanks for the responses.  Did not know of the lift and shift option.  Do not have a source for Celebrity's New Normal.  Just thoughts from what I have read and seen on the numerous YouTube videos posted

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25 minutes ago, sam849 said:

Thanks for the responses.  Did not know of the lift and shift option.  Do not have a source for Celebrity's New Normal.  Just thoughts from what I have read and seen on the numerous YouTube videos posted

 

I would not consider this a 'New Normal' as these options have time limits.  For example, the Lift and Shift (they also refer to as Same Cruise, Same Price) has to be done by August 1, 2020. 

 

Cruise With Confidence - Options

Cruise with Confidence - More Detail

 

Edited to add that even the measures they are implementing would adapt along the way so even this should not be considered new normal as things will evolve.

 

Edited by poffles
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I think there is still so much unknown about cruises early next year.  By then perhaps there will be a vaccine and perhaps everyone will be required to acquire it before boarding (there is a lot of discussion on other threads for people to debate this topic).  By then the virus could have run its course (not likely, but stranger things have happened).  By then there might be better treatments found which drastically reduce needs for hospitalization/ventilators (also not likely, but one can hope).  It is just too soon to tell.  Bottom line, you are stuck with one of the options noted above.  As has been said, Celebrity is actually already going way beyond what they need to provide in the way of options based on the cruise contract (which slants extremely heavily in favor of the cruise line versus the customer).

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2 minutes ago, poffles said:

 

I would not consider this a 'New Normal' as these options have time limits.  For example, the Lift and Shift (they also refer to as Same Cruise, Same Price) has to be done by August 1, 2020. 

 

Cruise With Confidence - Options

Cruise with Confidence - More Detail

 

You are correct.  It is very possible it will be extended if cruising start up is extended, but there is no way to know for sure if that will happen so it can't be counted on right now.

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Definitely look into the lift and shift.  We had a nonrefundable deposit and like you, I didn't want to move forward and lay down a lot of money for a changed cruise experience.  I believe pushing our cruise back to 2022 gives us a better shot at normal, normal.

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On Monday, we phoned to book a cruise, and we immediately started by saying that all our cruises for about ten years (2008 to 2018) automatically had refundable deposits -- and that is what we wanted now, even if it meant that the deposit would have to be twice as large.  The vacation planner said, "I'm happy to tell you that you didn't even have to ask for that, because ALL our deposits, for the foreseeable future, will be refundable."

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19 hours ago, davekathy said:

Provide your source that shows Celebrity's "new normal" detailed guidelines for future cruises. 

I too was wondering their source.  I have seen nothing published by Celebrity and am under the impression they are still at the drawing board on acceptable rules.  When Celebrity knows I am certain we will know.  I am willing to bet there are others like me who know what cruises they would like to book but are waiting for cruising to officially begin.  I can't imagine any rule they might impose that would not be in my best interest...health wise.  I will wait and see.  I did book The Connie for April 2021 and Reflection for May 2021.  I would book a Caribbean cruise for late 2020 if one was available.

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I stated in a previous reply that I did not have a source on the new normal but was speculation based on readings and videos in various internet and YouTube sites.  I am sorry for posting something that was not factual based and will stay on the sidelines of just being a reader of these forums.

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1 hour ago, sam849 said:

I stated in a previous reply that I did not have a source on the new normal but was speculation based on readings and videos in various internet and YouTube sites.  I am sorry for posting something that was not factual based and will stay on the sidelines of just being a reader of these forums.

 

Don't give up that easy.  Some people will challenge to challenge but many here really do want to know if there is something out there that they have missed, especially in these extremely volatile times.  People like to separate published 'fact's from those believed, perceived, assumed, interpreted ... you catch my drift.  Cruise Critic posts are not always a source of truth 🙂

 

Hopefully you got some helpful responses here.

 

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1 hour ago, Doctor G said:

My travel agent told me that all deposits right now are refundable.  I don't know if that will last, but it seems to be the policy of the moment.

 

Assume you (your agent) are referring to when booking a new cruises going forward ... until/if they change this again in the future?  Not to be confused with past non-refundable deposit bookings, which are currently being returned as FCC if someone cancels.

Edited by poffles
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58 minutes ago, poffles said:

 

Assume you (your agent) are referring to when booking a new cruises going forward ... until/if they change this again in the future?  Not to be confused with past non-refundable deposit bookings, which are currently being returned as FCC if someone cancels.

 

I thought she said all deposits were being treated as refundable, but I could be wrong.  On one of my cruises that was canceled by Celebrity I had a nonrefundable deposit, and the full deposit was refunded to me.  Perhaps this only applies to the cruises cancelled by Celebrity?  As usual, there are multiple answers to the same question.

 

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58 minutes ago, Doctor G said:

 

I thought she said all deposits were being treated as refundable, but I could be wrong.  On one of my cruises that was canceled by Celebrity I had a nonrefundable deposit, and the full deposit was refunded to me.  Perhaps this only applies to the cruises cancelled by Celebrity?  As usual, there are multiple answers to the same question.

 

 

I think it might be only for those cancelled by Celebrity, which makes sense since they are taking on the ownership of that decision even though it is just circumstances beyond anyone's control at this point.

 

Alternatively, one I just cancelled last week that was yet to sail next year, I was told my non-refundable would be FCC which I was fine with as I had resolved to just lose it ... I still may if I don't book anything else before it expires.

 

As you say, there are multiple answers to same questions and multiple meanings to same thing ... 'refund' being one of them and there is sense in the noise but it isn't always clear.

Edited by poffles
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