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Star Princess going or not?


flyguy404

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If it were not so tragic for so many people this thing would really be a bad comedy. I called Princess again this morning to see if they had come to their senses and was repeatedly assured the 04/02 sailing was still a go and that the Star was enroute back to FLL. All this babble while I am watching live shots from the bridge cam with the ship still docked in Jamaica!!! FYI to Princess...if you insist on lying to us..at least make the lies plausaible.

 

You are so right Jayne. I would rather not sail on a ship in that condition right now. But all I really want is to be released from the 04/02 sailing. No discounts etc. just give me my money back and I will be happy.

 

Good Luck All!!;)

 

Princess often gives out false information. Just from what I have seen here over the years.

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.

 

I know I'm going to get flamed for this (especially based on the responses that other people have received here), and quite frankly I don't really care. Princess has the capability to make a difference here, and they are refusing to do it! I've had numerous, and calm discussions with them over the past two days and have gotten NOWHERE. This was to be our first experience with Princess, but based on how they have treated their potential customers, we will NEVER give them our business again.[/quote

 

 

 

Hi cruisingmen,

 

I'd be disappointed if you get flamed for your post. It is a nice post and you are entitled to your feelings, thoughts, and to express them.

 

I'll be anxiously waiting and watching to see what happens with the Star.

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Thanks for the kind words CamelliaCity!

 

Based on our latest conversation this morning with Princess Custom NO-Service, they still are not giving out any new information nor taking care of their customers. The rep stuck to her script saying Princess management would be making a statement on Monday. According to the rep, the management team is still assessing the damage (would someone please send them a picture so they can more quickly see what is obvious to the rest of the world?), and assessing the financial impact (is their ANY question they will be refunding everyone's money? Is it possible they don't have the money to make these refunds?). The rep refused to commit that customers would be taken care of on Monday, only that the company would make a statement. That's reassuring!

 

I hope anyone reading these posts who are considering crusing on any of the Carnival Corporation cruise lines will be reconsidering their choice. Based on our experience with the company's handling of this situation, we have no interest doing business with them in the future.

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While I am sorry for those whose upcoming sailings will be affected by this fire, you people are unbelievable! This happened two days ago! You all want your refunds (no other compensation, according to you all...just your original payment refunded) immediately. You all want answers yesterday. I can't believe how unrealistic you all are being. Princess Customer Service probably can't tell you what is going to happen because the upper management hasn't informed them yet, because THEY probably don't know. To those of you who just want your money refunded, won't you be having a hissy fit if that were to happen, only for you to find out 2 weeks from now that those who waited got additional compensation.

 

When I previously said Princess is probably trying to figure out how/who to compensate over and above their cruise fare, I wasn't making a judgement on who should get it and who should not. I really think Princess will make right by everyone, and personally I feel that those whose cruises are upcoming in the next few weeks should be given something additional to just a refund of their cruise fare. I was due to sail on NCL's Norway a few years back and it suffered a fire. We were kept in limbo for I can't tell you how long...it took forever for them to refund our money AFTER it was decided the ship would never sail again, and we got nothing back besides our cruise fare. I figured from initial reports that our sailing wasn't going to happen, so I took my credit card and booked something else. Most people have a credit card and a grace period for payment of one month. I'll bet dollars to donuts that Princess has your money refunded within that time period to pay off the new cruise that you may book. So to blame Princess for not being able to give you complete answers two days after this tragedy is ridiculous.

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I beg to differ with you jerseygirl3!

 

If this were an incident with an airplane, the airline company would in hours have the potentially 10s of thousands of customers indirectly affected rebooked, rerouted, and/or refunded. Similarily, if this were a large hotel, you could be certain the company would be on the phone and offering alternate accomodations to it's customers. Things like this happen all of the time and good companies respond appropriately and quickly.

 

I gather you have lots of flexibility with your travel arrangements. My group does not. Between our jobs, school and other commitments my family has 1 week each year where we can vacation together. This year that happens to be the week of April 2. I certainly understand things can happen outside of everyone's control, but there is a right way and a wrong way to handle problems such as this. Princess' management has chosen to handle it, in my opinion, the wrong way by not equiping it's front-line employees with the necessary information and authority so they can quickly resolve their customers' situations. Because Princess is choosing not to handle this situation in a quick fashion, it is likely my family will not be able to experience a nice vacation this year since as each hour goes by, there are less and less available alternative options.

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Princess SHOULD give you a full refund and let you book elsewhere. that is good PR. And PR is what brings in the new $$$. as the old saying goes, a dissatisfied customer will tell at least 10 people. this being a big ticket item and a vacation, I am sure that you and others will tell many more then 10 people the way you were left hanging. Princess should be ashamed. Bad business, bad PR

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Jerseygirl3) Unfortunately, not everyone is as rational and level headed as you are. I am incredulous with some of these posts. Princess has not had the ship examined by the authorities here in the US, and won't until the ship docks in either Ft. Lauderdale or Miami. That's when the assessment will be made as to when or if cruise dates will be canceled. This was an accident....I'm sure Princess did not have alternate plans ready in case of a fire on their ship!!! Be patient folks. You will be notified as soon as Princess knows what to do. I know how one plans for their vacations....Heaven knows I've been on enough trips and vacations to know that things happen and you have to go with the flow.

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I beg to differ with you jerseygirl3!

 

If this were an incident with an airplane, the airline company would in hours have the potentially 10s of thousands of customers indirectly affected rebooked, rerouted, and/or refunded. Similarily, if this were a large hotel, you could be certain the company would be on the phone and offering alternate accomodations to it's customers. Things like this happen all of the time and good companies respond appropriately and quickly.

 

I gather you have lots of flexibility with your travel arrangements. My group does not. Between our jobs, school and other commitments my family has 1 week each year where we can vacation together. This year that happens to be the week of April 2. I certainly understand things can happen outside of everyone's control, but there is a right way and a wrong way to handle problems such as this. Princess' management has chosen to handle it, in my opinion, the wrong way by not equiping it's front-line employees with the necessary information and authority so they can quickly resolve their customers' situations. Because Princess is choosing not to handle this situation in a quick fashion, it is likely my family will not be able to experience a nice vacation this year since as each hour goes by, there are less and less available alternative options.

 

Nice vacation ????? Thats what you are worried about? Just where are the extra ships hiding at? Where are all the extra cabins hiding. Those of us who want to reschedule want to know what you know. Please share your inside knowledge with PC, you may save them hours of time as well as the need to get the Star up and running. There is hardly a comparisson between a hotel, an airplane, and a cruise ship. It appears tha PC is working very hard to get 2600 pax taken care of followed by 1800 crew that are now homeless. Your vacation needs are pretty far down the list, but there is plenty to do in Florida if need be. There are thousands if not millions in this country that would love to have your dilema. I just wonder about what all the crew families are facing right now. I am sure they are wondering about a lot more than their vacation. I suspect they can hardly wait until Monday either. I' never flamed before but there is always a first......

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Princess SHOULD give you a full refund and let you book elsewhere. that is good PR. And PR is what brings in the new $$$. as the old saying goes, a dissatisfied customer will tell at least 10 people. this being a big ticket item and a vacation, I am sure that you and others will tell many more then 10 people the way you were left hanging. Princess should be ashamed. Bad business, bad PR

 

I'm sure there are more important things to worry about right at this minute, like perhaps taking care of the passengers and crew in Montego Bay who just want to get home. The people who are working on their flight plans are likely the same people who would process cancellations and refunds. I'm quite positive that if you were waiting to go home, you'd be annoyed to discover that resources were being spent taking care of the less immediate needs of those who are wondering about the future, than the immediate needs of those worrying about the present. To suggest otherwise is callously selfish.

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Jerseygirl,

 

I agree with you. I know this whole situation has inflamed many, and we are one on the 4/9 sailing. But this was not Princess' fault and they, too have a business to run. You cannot ask them to just let everyone out to rebook when they have not yet figured out what is going on and had a chance to fully assess the situation! People are expecting mroe of Princess than of themselves in a similar situation. Also, there is contract that you signed when you booked the cruise that provides reasons for refunds. This is an unforeseen situation for which they were not responsible--those clauses are in your booking contract. Read it--it's there! You would get no different treatment from the airlines. You can be sitting on the plane for hours and find out 7 hours later that the plane has mechanical difficulties or some other reason, and depending on the situation, may get no recourse (or for overnight stays due to delays, no hotel).

 

Frankly, I am upset if we don't go on the Star (even though initially I did not want to do the itinerary but we have a wedding the night before so this is what we got). After many sailings on Princess, I have been generally pleased--the rooms are great, service overall is great, and we have had some terrific cruises. We were even going to get free internet this time. But, this is an unforeseen tragedy, not anything that Princess did here. This was likely the fault of one self-centered lazy individual who was too lazy to put out his or her cigarette stub (if this is found to be the cause) in an ashtray but instead flicked it over a balcony! That person, if found, should be "neutralized," and I really question whether if they do know they could have been the cause (unless drunk and likely not) how much remorse they may have. If so--maybe they will think the next time they flick their cigarette butt. Princess is a top notch cruise line and they stepped up to the plate quickly. We all need patience here, myself included. I would much rather go on any Princess ship than the alternatives we have before us. In my view, we will be stepping down a notch (or two) to take RCCL but we have our airfare and my husband still wants to go.

 

Give Princess a break--this was not their choosing. Let's be patient and see what they do instead of attributing poor motives to them. They are running a business, too, and to just cancel all cruises so those individuals who want to rebook can, no matter how far out the cruise may be, is not the way things operate in any business environment. If anyone's business was destroyed, would you give refunds (plus more) without first assessing damage to your business and see whether and when you could reopen. We should expect no more of them than we do ourselves.

 

This whole situation is bad. Complaining will not change things and let's just look ahead. I, too, may well be disappointed if our cruise is cancelled (which may well be likely), and if we go on another cruise, it appears on one far less appealing to me. But this is the situation and we have to give them the chance to do their job and make the right decision at the right time (and not be rushed into something).

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Listen you people. Princess has a small staff and there is no way they can deal with tens of thousands of customers all at the same time. I'm sure Princess is talking to lawyers, shipyards and insurance companies at this very moment, trying to figure out what to do next.

 

Please go to your at-home muster stations, take a chill pill and just be patient. There will be official announcements from Princess about refunds very shortly. Meanwhile stop and think about all of the dedicated Char Princess passenger service crew that will likely be losing their hard working low paying jobs. Where are they going earn the money now to support their families.

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Actually, I think you are all somewhat correct. You're right jerserygirl3, SOME people would be mad, mad, mad if they cancelled their cruise and then found out they wouldn't be eligible for additional compensation. No matter what the outcome, some people won't be happy. But I think that Princess could give immediate options to those booked within the month of April. Some would gladly give up the possibility of additional compensation for release. And you are right KAJOKG, the ship won't be completely inspected until it gets to the US, and since that hasn't happened yet (the bridgecam still shows Montego Bay), and probably won't until sometime next week, it seems pretty unlikely that the April 2 trip will sail, don't you think? Could they really get it ready in just 3 - 5 days? So, shouldn't Princess at the very least be giving those April 2 passengers some choice?

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I am sure the US Coast Guard will be going over the ship with a fine tooth comb before it allows passengers to sail again from a US port. Turns out that the quarterly Coast Guard inspections don't always take place.

 

The following excerpt if from an article about Star's fire on today's edition of the Miami Herald:

 

"Coast Guard records show that the ship was inspected in October in San Juan, and O'Neil said its fire-suppression system, using carbon dioxide gas, passed.

 

The International Council of Cruise Lines, an Arlington, Va., trade group, boasts on its website that ships sailing in and out of U.S. ports are subject to quarterly Coast Guard inspections.

 

In reality, the Coast Guard often limits inspections to once or twice a year for new ships such as the Star Princess, which are believed to be in ''good shape,'' said Ted Thompson, an executive vice president with the group.

''The captain of the port, because of manpower issues, may have permitted it to go beyond the three-month inspection time frame,'' Thompson said. ``But at this point, I don't think we have any indication that not doing that quarterly inspection had any impact.''

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I'm sure there are more important things to worry about right at this minute, like perhaps taking care of the passengers and crew in Montego Bay who just want to get home. The people who are working on their flight plans are likely the same people who would process cancellations and refunds. I'm quite positive that if you were waiting to go home, you'd be annoyed to discover that resources were being spent taking care of the less immediate needs of those who are wondering about the future, than the immediate needs of those worrying about the present. To suggest otherwise is callously selfish.

 

So you are calling me selfish? Big of you!! You made some great points. Still, Princess should be able to handle the situation in regards to upcoming passengers. I am not talking about passengers booked a month or more out. Just the ones that are booked on 4/2. Not enough time to rebook a vacation. They are wasting valuable employer time by not dealing with the issue now..... read some of the threads. A lot of people have posted ho they have called over and over and asked to speak with hire ups. It would be quicker to say, We do not know if we will be sailing. If you would like a full refund we will give it to you now. If you would like to wait and see and we then cancel you, you will get a full refund + 25% off your next cruise. Quick and easy. But by not offering this, they are just adding to the phone load because human nature is gratify me now. And so these passengers left hanging will keep calling, having their TA's call and so forth. valuable time that could be used to get others home. This would also be good PR.

..

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Perhaps it is not what everyone wants to hear but PC has said they will make an announcement Monday. To speculate what it will be will only add stress to those people who are alrewady stressed about their upcoming cruise. Lets let our concern be for pax and crew who are still in Limbo and the Bay fot now.

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Well said boatlover!

 

One last point I want to make and then I'll be silent... for awhile anyway.

 

There is nothing keeping Princess from issuing refunds now and later offering additional compensation after they have finally sorted things out. This would be a win-win for everyone: Customers can go ahead and make alternative arrangements and Princess will have a good marketing gimick to woo us back.

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So you are calling me selfish?

 

It was the nicest thing I could say and stay within guidelines. Your comments are inflammatory and don't help anyone with real questions about their future cruises. The fact of the matter is that priority has to be given to the immediate needs of those in Montego Bay. Those who are wondering about next weekend's cruise will just have to be patient and wait until it is appropriate to address their issues. To say that such prioritizing is bad PR is irresponsible and suggests that such comments are being made only to throw fuel on the fire. That is shameful.

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It seems that we (the cruel and unreasonable people that want some sort of answer and not just made up stories from the reps we call, who btw. can't be that busy helping other passengers, since I have never been on hold for more than a minute (oh the ship is going back to FL as we speak - got that last night - just check the live bridge cam...)) are now suddenly becoming the bad guys.

 

I am sorry, but the $10,000 we already spent are a LOT of money for us and I do NOT want to go on a charred ship or a ship that had temporary repairs or a ship that is being repaired as we sail. This is NOT what I booked. And no, I don't want to go on a ship that was housing hurricane victims 2 weeks ago.....

 

At this point, this is all driven by minimizing the financial losses for Princess - its as simple as that. The longer they can stall us, the better they can figure out how to save money with the alternatives or whatever we might or might not be offered. The Monday date is simply to buy them another 3 days without making any commitments. You can't tell me that they have not assessed the damage by now, I mean, how blind can you be? Just look at the pictures on the web....They had 48 hours now.

 

But we loose our chances to find alternative arrangements.

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Well said boatlover!

 

One last point I want to make and then I'll be silent... for awhile anyway.

 

There is nothing keeping Princess from issuing refunds now and later offering additional compensation after they have finally sorted things out. This would be a win-win for everyone: Customers can go ahead and make alternative arrangements and Princess will have a good marketing gimick to woo us back.

 

 

The only thing we may know for sure is that princess didn't set their own ship on fire and future Pax think they are entitled to compensation because of PC's misfortune? Thats why you buytrip insurance folks - the unexpected.

 

By the waySpongerob, the most recent comments go waaaay beyond selfish.

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Precisely the kind of customer reaction I was hoping Princess would try to avoid. I am becoming more and more frustrated by the hour. The constant refusal to state the obvious and allow those affected to explore additional options is inexcusable. We understand this was an ACCIDENT....but the refusal to relay accurate information to those affected is purely calculated and quickly becoming unforgivable.

 

I agree.

 

It seems to me that Princess should post all available information concerning future cruises on the Star on the main page of their website. Even if they don't have information on future cruises on that ship they could post that and let everyone know that any new information will be updated daily and posted immediately.

 

http://www.princess.com/

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It was the nicest thing I could say and stay within guidelines. Your comments are inflammatory and don't help anyone with real questions about their future cruises. The fact of the matter is that priority has to be given to the immediate needs of those in Montego Bay. Those who are wondering about next weekend's cruise will just have to be patient and wait until it is appropriate to address their issues. To say that such prioritizing is bad PR is irresponsible and suggests that such comments are being made only to throw fuel on the fire. That is shameful.

This is a discussion board. We are discussing how we feel Princess should handle the situation. Read my post again......whether or not they offer refunds to passengers scheduled for 4/2 will not affect the call load. It would probably bring the call load down rather then letting people hang. We do not see eye to eye, but that does not mean you should flame me with labeling me as selfish, and then flaming me again by saying that was the nicest thing you could say about me. That behavior got you banned once before, had it not?

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I agree.

 

It seems to me that Princess should post all available information concerning future cruises on the Star on the main page of their website. Even if they don't have information on future cruises on that ship they could post that and let everyone know that any new information will be updated daily and posted immediately.

 

http://www.princess.com/

How about like, "We had an unexpected fire on the Star Princess and we don't quite have all future plans settled yet." Give me a break!

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I agree.

 

It seems to me that Princess should post all available information concerning future cruises on the Star on the main page of their website. Even if they don't have information on future cruises on that ship they could post that and let everyone know that any new information will be updated daily and posted immediately.

 

http://www.princess.com/

 

 

Try: http://www.princess.com/news/releases.jsp

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Actually, I think you are all somewhat correct. You're right jerserygirl3, SOME people would be mad, mad, mad if they cancelled their cruise and then found out they wouldn't be eligible for additional compensation. No matter what the outcome, some people won't be happy. But I think that Princess could give immediate options to those booked within the month of April. Some would gladly give up the possibility of additional compensation for release. And you are right KAJOKG, the ship won't be completely inspected until it gets to the US, and since that hasn't happened yet (the bridgecam still shows Montego Bay), and probably won't until sometime next week, it seems pretty unlikely that the April 2 trip will sail, don't you think? Could they really get it ready in just 3 - 5 days? So, shouldn't Princess at the very least be giving those April 2 passengers some choice?

 

A very sane post.

 

To me it makes sense to give a statement that anyone on the next two cruises wanting to book elsewhere to please do so.

It's only fair to give them that opportunity. At least you would have 'that choice' and not be in limbo.

 

A decision by Princess to make the statement would only take a few minutes of their time. They always have plenty of time when it comes to taking payments for a cruise. There always seems to be no time available when it comes to returning money. Princess can get the job done if they want to.

 

I'm not worried the least bit about my cruise. It's not until September 12 but I do feel bad for those booked for the next couple of weeks that could possibly miss out on theirs. Planning and waiting is a lot of fun and then to find out that you might not get to go would be sad.

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Jerseygirl3) I'm sure Princess did not have alternate plans ready in case of a fire on their ship!!!

 

If they didn't have contingency plans in place then shame on them! Any large corporation should have plans in place for dealing with the unexpected. Governments spend many $$$ to have such plans in place and Katrina is an example of what happens when those plans are faulty. The fire on the Star is minor compared to that and should not be as difficult to deal with, if contingency plans were in place. Part of the reason for Princess' unwillingness to make a decision may be that they have to wait to see what their insurance company is willing to do. Even though it appears that the ship is seriously damaged and needs extensive repairs, Princess might have to wait for the decision of the insurance company. Its sort of like when you are with an HMO, even if you know and your doctor knows that you need a particular procedure, you have to wait for approval from the HMO. It might not be right but that is the way it is.

 

That being said, if I were scehduled to be on the 4/2 cruise and could only travel that week, I would be frantic to find a suitable alternative before time ran out. I can't even imagine the frustration and disappointment that you are feeling. Princess could be a little more understanding and compassionate if for no other reason then to keep their client base happy and loyal.

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