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jmcbride2019

Royal Caribbean's Heartless Refund Policy

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9 minutes ago, Judyrem said:

BTW, travel insurance is not always a sure thing when it comes to payout if needed.

We  were in France for two weeks and I received a call saying my sister was in ICU.  I traveled back the next day and the insurance company did not reimburse me one cent.

So TI is not always the magic bullet IMO.  TI companies have so much fine print that it boggles my mind!!!!!!!!😳

 

I have now been buying TI from my big box TA.  I have not needed it but still........we will see.

 

I would love to do a "cancel for any reason", but it is VERY expensive.

In your case, "Cancel for any reason" would not have applied as it is only good for a certain period before embarking the cruise ( in policies we have purchased, the cancel for any reason has ranged between for between 24-48 hours before embarkation).  After that, you need trip delayed or trip interrupted clauses and, of course, one needs to be aware of the fine print for that coverage.

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Isn't final payment date, full refund date,  90 days out?   April till September is 4 months out. Did you have a non-refundable deposit?  The timeline would point to the non-refundable deposit.  Pretty lucky they gave you what they did.

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My husband book a cruise in January for this Thanksgiving with NCL.  I was diagnosed with stage 3 rectal cancer in January.  He purchased insurance, but managed to get a large portion of it back through his credit card company.  The rest requires form to be filled out by my doctors and he should be reimbursed by the travel insurance company.  He booked another cruise with RC over Christmas.  Even though I will likely be able to travel then, in the next few days, I will be purchasing insurance.  I will need cancel for any reason insurance and if we cancel will likely only receive 75% because of my pre-existing condition.   Talk to the social worker at the cancer center where she receives chemo.  They know the resources where you can be helped financially.  I've received backpacks with school supplies for my kids, a grocery store gift card and a small grant for my kids sports fees.  Cancer is expensive and every little bit helps.  Chemo brain can make it hard to think and the social worker can help you find the help that's available for you.

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2 minutes ago, Homosassa said:

In your case, "Cancel for any reason" would not have applied as it is only good for a certain period before embarking the cruise ( in policies we have purchased, the cancel for any reason has ranged between for between 24-48 hours before embarkation).  After that, you need trip delayed or trip interrupted clauses and, of course, one needs to be aware of the fine print for that coverage.

This was not a cruise.  It was a very involved situation but nevertheless I still am wary of TI.

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2 hours ago, Another_Critic said:

In addition to travel insurance, many credit cards have trip cancellation coverage.

Our World MasterCard has this coverage and we received a refund from Carnival via the credit card after we had to  cancel our cruise. 
 

Backing up a bit, dh had earned a comped cruise at the casino in the summer of 2015. We were only going to pay taxes and port fees, but we also paid the fare for our son to go as well. 
We decided not to pay for travel insurance for the cruise, although we had done so for a few previous cruises. 
 

In early December of the same year, dh unexpectedly suffered a heart attack. Thank goodness,  he recovered, but due to the CPR, he had several very sore ribs and was in no shape to go on the cruise, which was scheduled for around Christmas. 
 

When I phoned Carnival to cancel the cruise,  of course I asked for a refund due to the circumstances. We were well past the final payment date, and had no insurance, so, nope, nothing. They were sorry, but we were denied. 
 

I then reread the fine print concerning our MasterCard, called them, did all the required documentation, and eventually received a credit for the cruise fare for our son ( don’t recall about recovery of the taxes and port charges.) 

 

After this happened, I did some research and I have been booking travel insurance from independent companies online for our cruises. The cost has been less, while the coverage is better, than either Carnival or Royal. While we thankfully haven’t needed  to file a claim yet, at least we have peace of mind while cruising. 
 

As a matter of fact, this message string reminded me to obtain travel insurance for upcoming cruise in November  ( which I just did.) 
 

So yes, we learned a hard lesson, and being denied the refund and going through the process with the credit card company only added to the enormous stress our family was dealing with because of the heart attack. 
 

As much as I grumble about paying for travel insurance, I now realize that my husband and I aren’t getting any younger, and we probably should pay for it. 

Edited by sushitex

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This could have all been adverted if the OP asked about the cancellation policy during the booking and then purchasing Travel Insurance with a Cancel For Any Reason policy with Trip Delay  and Medical Evacuation with Reparriation.

 

I'm sorry to learn about your situation and I hope it gets resolved soon 

Edited by travelplus

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10 minutes ago, sushitex said:

Our World MasterCard has this coverage and we received a refund from Carnival via the credit card after we had to  cancel our cruise. 
 

Backing up a bit, dh had earned a comped cruise at the casino in the summer of 2015. We were only going to pay taxes and port fees, but we also paid the fare for our son to go as well. 
We decided not to pay for travel insurance for the cruise, although we had done so for a few previous cruises. 
 

In early December of the same year, dh unexpectedly suffered a heart attack. Thank goodness,  he recovered, but due to the CPR, he had several very sore ribs and was in no shape to go on the cruise, which was scheduled for around Christmas. 
 

When I phoned Carnival to cancel the cruise,  of course I asked for a refund due to the circumstances. We were well past the final payment date, and had no insurance, so, nope, nothing. They were sorry, but we were denied. 
 

I then reread the fine print concerning our MasterCard, called them, did all the required documentation, and eventually received a credit for the cruise fare for our son ( don’t recall about recovery of the taxes and port charges.) 

 

After this happened, I did some research and I have been booking travel insurance from independent companies online for our cruises. The cost has been less, while the coverage is better, than either Carnival or Royal. While we thankfully haven’t needed  to file a claim yet, at least we have peace of mind while cruising. 
 

As a matter of fact, this message string reminded me to obtain travel insurance for upcoming cruise in November  ( which I just did.) 
 

So yes, we learned a hard lesson, and being denied the refund and going through the process with the credit card company only added to the enormous stress our family was dealing with because of the heart attack. 
 

As much as I grumble about paying for travel insurance, I now realize that my husband and I aren’t getting any younger, and we probably should pay for it. 

Yes this is so true.Age should not be the only deciding factor as there are cases of young people dying on a cruise or getting very ill that they neededical help pronto.

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Judging strictly from the OP's use of language and spelling, my best guess is that he's from the U.K. so none of the U.S. centric advice (no matter how well intentioned) may apply. AFAIK, The U.K. has completely different laws, rules, and policies regarding cancellations and credits so the OP may want to explore what remedies might be available under those policies.

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44 minutes ago, sushitex said:

I then reread the fine print concerning our MasterCard, called them, did all the required documentation, and eventually received a credit for the cruise fare for our son ( don’t recall about recovery of the taxes and port charges.) 

 

Carnival should have automatically refunded taxes and port charges; therefore, the CC company should not reimburse you for them.

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"Heartless"? 

 

No, heartless would have been to keep the entire fare when they had absolute legal rights to do so.

 

I am grateful to hear however that your wife appears to be on a good path, as a husband whose wife has endured both breast and cervical cancer I do understand the stress you have endured.

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Hopefully you do not run into the same problem as me. I am a cancer survivor and I cannot get Travel Insurance, as soon as they see the word cancer they want nothing to do with you. If you do find an insurer please I would love to know their name. We have a cruise coming up in Feb. PS I am so glad your wife is responding to treatment.

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13 minutes ago, charmy98 said:

Hopefully you do not run into the same problem as me. I am a cancer survivor and I cannot get Travel Insurance, as soon as they see the word cancer they want nothing to do with you. If you do find an insurer please I would love to know their name. We have a cruise coming up in Feb. PS I am so glad your wife is responding to treatment.

 

We have never been asked health questions.

 

Check out Insuremytrip and pay close attention to the pre-existing sections.

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1 hour ago, Another_Critic said:

 

Carnival should have automatically refunded taxes and port charges; therefore, the CC company should not reimburse you for them.

I just checked online using my app and the statements do not go back that far in the past, so I can’t verify about the refund details. I am fairly certain that Carnival gave us nothing back. The inherent irony is that the credit card that I used is a Carnival- branded World Master Card! 
 

Like the OP, at the time that this was happening, I was tending to my husband (who was in a great deal of pain because of his ribs) and may have been preoccupied with his care. As a bonus, our cat became very ill a few weeks later and we had to say goodbye to him. 😕

Edited by sushitex

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36 minutes ago, charmy98 said:

Hopefully you do not run into the same problem as me. I am a cancer survivor and I cannot get Travel Insurance, as soon as they see the word cancer they want nothing to do with you. If you do find an insurer please I would love to know their name. We have a cruise coming up in Feb. PS I am so glad your wife is responding to treatment.

I too am a cancer survivor with no current sign of disease.  I am able to purchase travel insurance, including coverage for pre-existing conditions, as long as I purchase the insurance within 14 days of booking the cruise.  This assumes that my condition has been stable for the at least the previous 3 months.  When I was diagnosed, I had to cancel 3 cruises, along with associated air travel, and the insurance covered everything.  What a relief that was at such a difficult time.  I would suggest that you check with other travel insurance carriers.  

Edited by nwcruiselover

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6 hours ago, jmcbride2019 said:

Thank you to everyone who's shared their positive thoughts and empathies. It's means a lot, really.

 

Also, appreciate the suggestions to purchase travel insurance for exactly these situations. It's never a bad idea, wish I'd done that obviously. Lesson learned.

 

Regarding RC's handling of this situation, though, I stand by my title. They explained that we could use our initial deposit towards a future booking. We tendered their offer to do just that. It was only then, when we tried to rebook, that they said it needed to be within a year of the original booking. I don't have a problem with that policy, per se...had it been originally communicated to us. Misleading expectations, travel insurance can't correct that.

 

I'm so sorry about your wife's diagnosis and glad she's on the road to recovery.  I wonder if you could escalate this issue to crown and anchor resolutions department.  These calls to agents are supposedly recorded, or at least some are dealing with $$.  You can try to explain you were NOT informed that there was a time limit to rebooking and ask they review the phone call.  Maybe that would clear it up and maybe you can then rebook with your deposit.  

Edited by torpeedo

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Sorry about your wife’s illness but if RCL would reimburse you then there’s no need to purchase insurance, everyone just can call & explain what happened, sickness, illness etc. & be reimbursed & save hundreds. Unfortunately you learned a lesson the hard way, always buy insurance otherwise don’t expect cruise lines to make exceptions just not fair to others who always purchase it & gratefully never had to use it. 

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8 hours ago, jmcbride2019 said:

Thanks for your comment, and you're right on both points. I edited the title and will certainly purchase travel insurance next time.

Does your credit card provide any cancellation/interruption insurance.

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We have bought travel insurance through the cruise lines for all 28 of our cruises.  We never used it until recently.  I broke my ankle (dislocated it and my knee) a week before Labor Day.  I needed surgery on my fibula (plate and screws) and am still recovering and going to PT. We were scheduled for a b2b on Harmony on 3 and 10 Nov and then 5 days at WDW.  Dr said I shouldn't go, that I wouldn't enjoy it and he was right.  We cancelled and got our partial refund from RCI and are now waiting on insurance to come through.  Insurance is available for a reason and we should get back a little more than we've paid in over the last 14 years.  You buy insurance for your home, car, family and pets so why not for vacations?  Us buying insurance means we've planned ahead.  Anyone who doesn't needs to deal with their personal decisions to not do so.  

Edited by BND

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I am very sorry to hear that. I hope all is well with that terrible process.

 

With that said, if every company allowed the rules to be bent for someone's personal circumstance, where do you draw the line? Then everyone has a great reason to cancel. Then it's those who follow the rules who end up getting hurt.

 

Instead of travel insurance, if you travel often, I recommend you get a good travel credit card with a high annual fee. The package of benefits I get, pays for itself many times over. Plus I get huge rewards. Plus I get travel insurance. The only times I recommend buying insurance is if your card won't cover you and/or you're going on some really expensive, high-risk vacation, or you're a risk for health. Paying $100-$150 a pop to get 75% back on your fare is a joke. Know your options. Know what works for you. In general, buying insurance for everything in life has been shown to be a colossal waste.

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First off glad to hear that your wife is doing better.  Second off, you have to remember that when you are dealing with "a multi-national, multi-billion dollar company" they have rules that they have to follow.  You would actually have a better shot with a small mom and pop type company IMO.  Finally I think your best bet here would be to look at the big picture since the price of a cruise is not that significant compared to everything else you have been through.

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On 10/10/2019 at 10:18 AM, Judyrem said:

BTW, travel insurance is not always a sure thing when it comes to payout if needed.

We  were in France for two weeks and I received a call saying my sister was in ICU.  I traveled back the next day and the insurance company did not reimburse me one cent.

So TI is not always the magic bullet IMO.  TI companies have so much fine print that it boggles my mind!!!!!!!!😳

 

I have now been buying TI from my big box TA.  I have not needed it but still........we will see.

 

I would love to do a "cancel for any reason", but it is VERY expensive.

 

My guess it has something to do with it being your sister and "just" the ICU. In other words you likely weren't her next of kin or guardian and therefore weren't needed to make decisions and therefore weren't required to return. I've seen some policies that list a broader term of family and are a bit more broad with what qualifies as enough of a reason to return (ie more than just death or severe illness of parent/child) so I think if you want that coverage you might be able to find it.

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Glad to hear your wife is doing well.  We had TI for a Transatlantic cruise last year that we had to cancel the day before we were flying to London, and 6 days before our cruise out of Southampton, due to an illness that came on that week.  We did have cancel for any reason, although I didn't realize that cancel for any reason only gives you 75% back.  Luckily, I had seen two doctors two days before we were to leave, and I knew (because of CC) that I would need documentation from the doctor.  Happily, we recouped our entire cruise fare, as well as various tours that we had booked.

 

I have since learned that our Chase card insures trip cancellation, et al, so I only bought Medical Insurance this time since we will be in Europe next year for a Transatlantic.

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On 10/10/2019 at 2:07 PM, charmy98 said:

Hopefully you do not run into the same problem as me. I am a cancer survivor and I cannot get Travel Insurance, as soon as they see the word cancer they want nothing to do with you. If you do find an insurer please I would love to know their name. We have a cruise coming up in Feb. PS I am so glad your wife is responding to treatment.

 

I was diagnosed in January.  My husband booked for Thanksgiving using Berkshire Hathaway.  We are still waiting for a refund from them, but he did get almost half back through his cc.  We booked another cruise for December.  I used the trip insurance store.com.  Travel insured Wordwide Trip Protector plus. They have a CFAR.  You will only get back 75%, but it's better then nothing.

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On 10/10/2019 at 2:07 PM, charmy98 said:

Hopefully you do not run into the same problem as me. I am a cancer survivor and I cannot get Travel Insurance, as soon as they see the word cancer they want nothing to do with you. If you do find an insurer please I would love to know their name. We have a cruise coming up in Feb. PS I am so glad your wife is responding to treatment.

 

There are some travel insurance policies on squaremouth  dot com that cover travel expenses and cover medical but just don't cover pre ex conditions so if you want travel insurance and your cancer is in remission or you don't think it will be a problem, you can get policies there that will cover you for accidents or other illness.

Edited by torpeedo

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Avoid an online travel agency based out of Long Island NY that offers free travel insurance. I paid to upgrade the plan and broke my foot on the ship. All I got from them was the runaround and lots of wasted faxes & postage because every time I would call to follow up...they couldn’t find my paperwork. I wasted a year on their BS.

 

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