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When is a guarantee not a guarantee? When it's a Celebrity guarantee!


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We booked a suite on the Celebrity Silhouette in August for a 7 day UK cruise. The booking included a best offer "guarantee" . . . . . . or so we thought. 2 days after booking Celebrity announced a "double points" promotion that includes our sailing. When we enquired about applying the offer under the best offer guarantee, Celebrity said that as the offer is only available to Captain's Club members it is excluded from the best offer guarantee (even though non-members can join up to get it). I raised it to both Customer Services and Captain's Club directly but both agreed it could not be applied. How ironic that a promotion designed to boost loyalty has had the exact opposite effect . . . . . or am I being unreasonable? 

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If this is your first Celebrity cruise you come in as a Preview member with zero points. You would need to complete 1 cruise to be a Classic member with a point balance. It looks like this offer is specifically for Classic and above. This promotion doesn’t have any bearing on the Best Offer Guarantee program. 

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Posted (edited)

The fundamental question, at for me is, are you now a Captain's Club member to take advantage of the next promotion under which you might qualify?

 

Fair or not, it is part of the T&C's which I Am sure is disclosed on the website and quite possible to have pointed out to you.

 

bon voyage

Edited by Bo1953
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2 minutes ago, Bo1953 said:

The fundamental question, at for me is, are you a Captain's Club member now?

 

bon voyage

Yes I am a classic member and had previously completed a Celebrity cruise. 

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2 minutes ago, caleyjag said:

Yes I am a classic member and had previously completed a Celebrity cruise. 

Okay, now that I re-read your original post, here in the U.S. the 'Best Offer Guarantee' only applies to pricing and not non-pricing promotions.

 

As such I can only 'suggest', if possible and still available and possible, cancel and re-book your cabin to gain the points. There may be a policy in place which prevents your ability to do this.

 

Enjoy your sailing regardless and bon voyage

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2 minutes ago, Bo1953 said:

Okay, now that I re-read your original post, here in the U.S. the 'Best Offer Guarantee' only applies to pricing and not non-pricing promotions.

 

As such I can only 'suggest', if possible and still available and possible, cancel and re-book your cabin to gain the points. There may be a policy in place which prevents your ability to do this.

 

Enjoy your sailing regardless and bon voyage

 

Thanks Bo1953

 

You are correct we cannot cancel and re-book. We will enjoy the sailing regardless, the most likely impact will be when we choose our next cruise as we feel Celebrity may have been a bit mean.

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The best offer guarantee, afaik, refers to price - I'd be more interested in a price drop than double loyalty points but YMMV.

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Does your cruise meet the date parameters? 

https://www.celebritycruises.com/gb/uk-cruises-from-southampton-2021/exclusive-offers

 

 

Captain's Club Double Points Promotion

Captain's Club Member Offer ("Offer") applies to new individual bookings. Captain's Club Members ("CC Members")  are eligible to receive double Club Points when they book a Veranda stateroom or higher between March 25, 2021 – October 3, 2021. Offer applies to Celebrity Silhouette sailings between 23 July - 18 September 2021.

  The offer applies to each CC Member in a stateroom. All Captain’s Club members, Classic and above, are eligible to participate in this offer. Preview members are not eligible to participate in this offer. Club Points will be added to CC Member's account within 30 days after conclusion of sailing. Valid membership number must be provided at time of booking. One offer per CC Member. Any changes to cruise booking may result in removal of Offer. If you cancel your booking, Offer will not apply.  If you move your booking, Offer will apply if all criteria including sailing, booking window, stateroom category and tier are still met with the new sailing. If your sailing is cancelled by Celebrity Cruises, no Club Points will be awarded.

 

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Posted (edited)

Why does cancelling and rebooking not fix this?  European T&C's?

 

Oh, because you are inside the penalty phase if you cancel this close to sailing...

Edited by mahdnc
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1 hour ago, Bretty said:

The best offer guarantee, afaik, refers to price - I'd be more interested in a price drop than double loyalty points but YMMV.

 

1 hour ago, Bo1953 said:

Okay, now that I re-read your original post, here in the U.S. the 'Best Offer Guarantee' only applies to pricing and not non-pricing promotions.

 

I believe there was something previously called the Best Price Guarantee, which by its name

 referred only to the price.  But on the U.S. web site at least Celebrity shows a "Best Offer Guarantee," which specifically includes not only the best price but also promotions:

 

"If the fare on your sailing is reduced or the promotion gets better, give us a call and we’ll honor your choice right up to 48 hours before you sail."  (emphasis added)

 

https://www.celebritycruises.com/cruise-with-confidence

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2 hours ago, caleyjag said:

We booked a suite on the Celebrity Silhouette in August for a 7 day UK cruise. The booking included a best offer "guarantee" . . . . . . or so we thought. 2 days after booking Celebrity announced a "double points" promotion that includes our sailing. When we enquired about applying the offer under the best offer guarantee, Celebrity said that as the offer is only available to Captain's Club members it is excluded from the best offer guarantee

 

OP:  As I understand your various posts, (1) you are a Classic level Capt Club member and thus eligible for the double points promo, but (2) Celebrity is telling you that you can't apply it under the Best Offer Guarantee because the promo is not available to the general public, and (3) since you are past final payment, you can't cancel and rebook.   

 

I don't see where, in the Best Offer Guarantee T&Cs, it says anything about the general public.  (I hope someone will please correct me if I've missed it.)

 

https://www.celebritycruises.com/cruise-with-confidence

 

In any event,  there's another Captain's Club promo going on for 10% off the cruise fare for certain cruises.  Folks have reported on here that even though they are past final payment, they've been able to get the price reduction in the form of OBC (even though the promo is not available to the general public and they are past final payment so can't cancel and rebook).

 

Perhaps you might make one more call to Celebrity and raise those points.     

 

Whatever you choose to do, if you wind up not getting the double points, please don't let it spoil your cruise.  The Silhouette is a beautiful and wonderful ship, and I know that many Americans (including yours truly) are very envious of those of you getting to sail on her this summer.    Enjoy your cruise!

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Thanks everyone. I'd have thought applying the promotion would be in Celebrity's interest with a view of establishing loyalty and trust.

 

I will make one final call and then will forget about it and enjoy the cruise no matter the outcome. 

Edited by caleyjag
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39 minutes ago, caleyjag said:

Thanks everyone. I'd have thought applying the promotion would be in Celebrity's interest with a view of establishing loyalty and trust.

 

I will make one final call and then will forget about it and enjoy the cruise no matter the outcome. 

 

I'm still a little confused what the issue is. These cruises went on sale on April 6th. Did you book between March 25th and October 3rd? And are you sailing between July 23rd and Sept 18th? If so, you are getting double points.

 

 

 

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Hi Jeremiah1212

The issue is that we booked on May 23rd with a best offer guarantee. Two days later on May 25th Celebrity announced a new offer of double points for bookings made until June 30th. Everything else between a booking made on the 23rd and one made two days later on the 25th were identical, therefore we asked to have the best offer applied. Customer services then advised us the best offer guarantee did not apply to this offer but to email the Captain's Club directly and ask for an exception. They waited 3 weeks before responding, which was after the final payment date, to reiterate the offer did not apply and they would not make an exception.

 

 

 

 

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We booked 5 days before the promotion was announced.  We don't get the points and we didn't expect we would.  Had the price dropped or had they offered a free upgrade from the Classic to Premium beverage package then the Best Offer Guarantee should cover it.  Double CC points doesn't have a $ value so to me it is apples & oranges.  They can't give OBC or $ for CC points.

 

 If they give a exception for 2 days, then why not for those like us who booked 5 days earlier, or 7 or 10 or 2 weeks.   Double CC points is a offer and like most all offer has a start date and an end date.

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A couple of thoughts. 

 

The offer only applied to new bookings. This has to be applied at time of booking. 

 

You wanted to apply it to an existing booking, albeit you’d only booked 2 days prior. 

 

You recieved an email about the offer 2 days after you had booked but, as the start date of the offer was 25 March 2021, it has probably been on the website  in the members section under offers since then. (Or a date close to). 

Did you check for Captains Club special offers before booking? 

 

When you did your booking and entered your member number did you also click the check for offers button? 

The wording and the button change occasionally but if there is an offer available to members it is on that page in one form or another. 

 

I have been caught by this ‘applies to new bookings’ before, as I suspect many others have, and never had the offer applied. Now I do my due diligence and check the website before booking.

 

I also make sure I click that button for offers when I enter my member number (even if I haven’t seen any offers) just in case.

 

I don’t think Celebrity are being unfair as if an exception is made for 2 day it could be argued that it be made for 2 weeks or months. Maybe a little harsh, but not unfair. 

 

Cheers, h. 

 

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Thanks for the responses.

I get that offers are time bounded. The point I'm trying to make is that the best offer guarantee covers both the date of my booking AND the date of the new offer therefore I should be able to have the better offer applied. I'm not expecting an offer that was released outside of the best offer guarantee to be applied. 

I think what I'm trying to say badly is that it should not be an exception. It was Celebrity's Customer Service that proposed that approach. In my opinion it should be applied because it is the best offer in the period of the "best offer guarantee" that is applicable to my booking. Otherwise the terminology "best offer guarantee" is misleading.

 

 

 

 

 

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3 minutes ago, caleyjag said:

Thanks for the responses.

I get that offers are time bounded. The point I'm trying to make is that the best offer guarantee covers both the date of my booking AND the date of the new offer therefore I should be able to have the better offer applied. I'm not expecting an offer that was released outside of the best offer guarantee to be applied. 

I think what I'm trying to say badly is that it should not be an exception. It was Celebrity's Customer Service that proposed that approach. In my opinion it should be applied because it is the best offer in the period of the "best offer guarantee" that is applicable to my booking. Otherwise the terminology "best offer guarantee" is misleading.

 

 

 

 

 

Knowing how strangely the Celebrity accounts/ CC points system works I wouldn't be at all surprised if when you check your CC points the month after your cruise ends you will find you have the double points added. Frankly since the introduction of Always Included the Captains Club points are now pretty well useless. All the major benefits have gone and even getting from Elite to Elite+ gains you just 1 extra bag of laundry (it used to get you free lattes, teas, hot chocolate, juices, water, an extra 130 minutes Internet and the extra bag of laundry). Enjoy the ship we always do.

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I think you are missing it specifically says ‘new bookings’ that takes it outside the best offer for existing bookings. It has to be applied at time if booking.  

 

If it had been an open offer it could have.and would have, been applied. 

 

The wording specifically exempts previous bookings so can’t be applied to ‘best offer guarantee’.

 

Heck when we first started cruising with Celebrity we missed out on a classic bev pkg for 2 one cruise, $100 OBC each the next for exactly the same reasons. I soon learnt to check the Captains  Club, the members offer button and Cruise Critic to make sure I didn’t miss any of the ‘new bookings’ only offers. The more knowledgeable folk on this forum used to be really good at knowing what offers were coming out and when. Things may be different now and in the future, who knows. 

 

I will reiterate that, in my mind mind at least, the offer you want cannot be applied to your booking under the circumstances you wish because you didn’t apply it to a new booking which is within the parameters of that specific offer. 

 

Cheers, h. 

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57 minutes ago, middlehaitch said:

A couple of thoughts. 

 

The offer only applied to new bookings. This has to be applied at time of booking. 

 

You wanted to apply it to an existing booking, albeit you’d only booked 2 days prior. 

 

You recieved an email about the offer 2 days after you had booked but, as the start date of the offer was 25 March 2021, it has probably been on the website  in the members section under offers since then. (Or a date close to). 

Did you check for Captains Club special offers before booking? 

 

When you did your booking and entered your member number did you also click the check for offers button? 

The wording and the button change occasionally but if there is an offer available to members it is on that page in one form or another. 

 

I have been caught by this ‘applies to new bookings’ before, as I suspect many others have, and never had the offer applied. Now I do my due diligence and check the website before booking.

 

I also make sure I click that button for offers when I enter my member number (even if I haven’t seen any offers) just in case.

 

I don’t think Celebrity are being unfair as if an exception is made for 2 day it could be argued that it be made for 2 weeks or months. Maybe a little harsh, but not unfair. 

 

Cheers, h. 

 

Thanks middlehaitch

I very much take your point about applying due diligence before you book and will be more careful in the future. I was not expecting to have to do so when the guarantee declares "If the fare on your sailing is reduced or the promotion gets better, give us a call and we’ll honor your choice right up to 48 hours before you sail." This point was emphasised by the Celebrity booking agent as a reason to book on the call. It feels disingenuous to subsequently apply a caveat that was not made clear at the time of booking.

 

I'll put this down to experience. Clearly others are both wise to, and accepting of, these marketing ploys. I have learned not to treat things at face value with Celebrity and thank you and others for sharing. My reason for posting was not to debate, but to highlight to other less experienced cruisers like myself to be wary.

 

On a much more positive note the ship was docked in my home port today. We were able to get a look from a distance and it does look amazing.

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Maybe write a letter and send it to the corporate office to see if that gets you anything.  If nothing else, I would ask for them to explain why the offer doesn't apply.  Some promotions are excluded from the best offer guarantee, but they should be able to at least point you to something that shows you that this offer does not apply.  It seems to be pretty rare that they do not allow these things, so there must be something that is preventing this from being an automatic yes.

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No problems @caleyjag, I’m not a debater, I just knew what had happened from my own experience.

 

Next time check for offers in the Captains Club section before you book. (Checking Cruise Critic is good too- lots of canny cruises on here) 

 

It is wonderful seeing the ships docked if you live close to a port. 

I, originally from Manchester, live in Victoria BC where a lot of the Alaska ships visit and love going to see them. 

 

Enjoy your cruise. 

 

Cheers, h 🥂  

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