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Warning - Royal Changing Ships Without Notice


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44 minutes ago, CarlaB said:

This is what I did too. Royal told me they would issue my refund within 30-45 business days. That was well over two months ago and times up. This weekend I called Discover and a very nice rep was able to dispute the charge and hopefully I'll have the few thousand back that Royal has been so dearly hanging on to for months now. 

I have been following this blog for over a year now and really enjoyed the live blogs and info from the veteran cruisers. Sadly I never made it on a Royal ship as our Anthem got canceled last year and then Oasis canceled back in May. Not Royal's fault but the way they have handled customer service leaves so much to be desired. At this point I'll be happy to have my money back and not sure if I'll ever set foot on their ships even in the future. This latest fiasco with changing ships without notice just adds to my hesitance. 

I will say it's interesting (and a bit sad) to see the shift in attitudes here from the long time cruisers, from Royal enthusiasts to now disillusioned with the whole company. I've quietly lurked these boards and witnessed a lot of disputes between the Royal enthusiasts and anyone else who would speak something negative about Royal in the past. Some veteran cruisers here ardently stood up for Royal time and time again, even in instances where I didn't think it was justified. Now it looks like everyone is finally fed up with the company and have seen for themselves the kind of selfish tactics Royal uses. 

While I have been a dyed in the wool Royal fan for over 20 years, the handling of the refunds, and now the latest issue with unilaterally transferring reservations to the Liberty has definitely caused me to step back and look at the company in a different way.  I am still a fan and will continue to cruise them,  but the way in which I conduct my business transactions with them will most certainly be changing.

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I have called out Royal before when they make a mistake and that is what I've done here in the thread.  However don't confuse that an overall or new found disdain for the company.    

No company is perfect, not before the pandemic and not during the pandemic.  

I still have double digit cruises booked with Royal and I eagerly look forward to the day when we can cruise with some resemblance of normalcy.  

When I see someone wrongly claim something like bait and switch or when someone didn't understand established policy then tries to throw the company under the bus because they didn't understand or take the time to research I'll continue to challenge that. 

Royal has always done right for me in the end.  In this case I am whole in that I was fully refunded.  That's better than other companies that have been seriously impacted by the pandemic have done for me.  Even if it wasn't the ideal solution, at least I am whole.  

As this pandemic continues to impact this industry ships are way out of position for all the right reasons (getting crew home no matter what it takes) and that may lead to other ship swaps once things begin to recover.  For some that may be a good thing, for others not so much.  The warning remains, just keep an eye on your booked cruises and learn from this thread if it happens to you.

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I made the mistake of sending an email to Michael Bayley over this issue.   Today I received a response.  

I was booked in a two bedroom aqua theater suite on Allure before Royal moved me to Liberty without any communication. 

Here is the executive explanation why:

"Given the closure of shipyards along with the disruption to the supply chain caused by this pandemic, the amplification of Allure of the Seas and Explorer of the Seas has been placed on hold until further notice. This change does mean that the stateroom you were booked in – which we were planning on updating during this process – will no longer be renovated. As a result, your original stateroom’s capacity can no longer accommodate your party, and we’ll need to make a change to your stateroom. We’ve moved you to the best available stateroom, and your amenities will remain the same (as many as can be accommodated)."

Apparently the three of us on my Allure booking could never fit into the two bedroom aqua theatre suite on Allure.  Even had the terminal in Galveston completed on time, we apparently would have had to move because the two bedroom suites on Allure can't accommodate three guests.  

So you see it has nothing to do with construction delays in Galveston.  

The loss of Star Class by being forced onto Liberty in their eyes:  "your amenities will remain the same (as many as can be accommodated)."  This appears to confirm that Royal places no value in the Star Class program.  It's worthless.

It's a shame Michael Bayley knows so little about the ships in the Royal fleet.  

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That doesn't make sense at all...its all fluff and BS......from him?...It's got to be an intern punching out the responses. If not, it shows a total lack of care and empathy for Royal customers......terrible service.

 

Would have been better to NOT send a response then to send something that is so blatantly cavalier.

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2 minutes ago, monctonguy said:

That doesn't make sense at all...its all fluff and BS......from him?...It's got to be an intern punching out the responses. If not, it shows a total lack of care and empathy for Royal customers......terrible service.

 

Would have been better to NOT send a response then to send something that is so blatantly cavalier.

I give it a fraction of a percent chance that he A: reads his emails, or B: is the one answering them....people with money pay people to do these things. 

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1 minute ago, SteveinSC said:

I give it a fraction of a percent chance that he A: reads his emails, or B: is the one answering them....people with money pay people to do these things. 

No question in my mind he never saw it, but it's his office and it carries his name.  It does reflect on him.

I appreciate in the era of the current government it may seem acceptable to lie and make stuff up out of thin air but I had higher expectations for Royal Caribbean.    

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