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RCI Withholding entire deposit for cancelations


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Not sure if other cruise lines are doing or have been doing the same but since they have implemented this new rule I think their should be concessions for valid reasons for canceling such as death in family even if given as onboard credit.

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Do I like it? No, but, I've always known this when booking as it's been policy for a long time when choosing a non-refundable deposit (NRD) when booking.

As, @jticarruthers stated, this is one of the many reasons to look into trip insurance. I didn't used to buy trip insurance, but, with travel being such a gamble these days, I find it essential.

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My TA gave me the choice between a (larger) refundable deposit and a non-refundable deposit for one of my recent bookings and I selected the non-refundable to keep more cash in my pocket at the time. Unfortunately, I did have to change (not cancel) that booking, and although TA tried to get the non-refundable part waived, was not successful. My fault for choosing the non-refundable option and took it in stride/lesson learned for sure.

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I'm okay with it just like other non-refundable options in the travel industry. 

I can save money at a hotel by paying for the room upfront with no option to cancel or change the booking.  I often choose to pay a little more for the peace of mind to make changes to hotel bookings.

Airlines also have a big play with non-refundable tickets.  Some airlines have better terms for their non-refundable products like Southwest.  The legacy carriers tend to have the least favorable terms for their non-refundable products.  Caveat Emptor.  Know what you are agreeing to.

I often choose refundable fares for cruising even though it costs more money.  I accept that additional expense knowing it provides greater flexibility.  

When any travel related company offers non-refundable options I would not expect any flexibility for unforeseen challenges in a guest's life.  

It still boggles my mind when I see guests complaining that a non-refundable cruise booking is actually non-refundable.  Seriously?  

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Our first couple cruises we booked non-refundable deposits and crossed our fingers in hope that nothing would happen.

Once we realized the importance of travel insurance, we were delighted to learn that there were policies that included coverage for the non-refundable part of our costs. 
 

Getting our non-refundable deposit back if there is the death of a family member is one of the things the policy we have covers, along with a bunch of other things. 

It definitely sucks, but its  “lesson learned and do differently next time”

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If you choose to book a non-refundable cruise and don't buy any type of trip insurance than you are accepting the risk that comes along with that type of booking.

None of us knows what life will throw at us but when you book a non-refundable trip you are accepting a certain level of risk. 

 

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The fact that they use to give you anything in regard to NRD bookings was a boon. I sometimes book suites and sometimes I book NRD's on basic rooms, if I elect to do that, I made the choice. So, I will eat the cost, if I don't take precautionary measures. In Most cases I will just change the sailing. I have had really bad luck with a la carte trip insurance, so I now just use the services associated with my travel card, 

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I am also OK with the NRD and like most others, we always buy trip coverage in case worse comes to worse but the fee I'm not ok is the change fee. Especially if the change you make is an upgrade in their favor and made at over 300 days out. I just can't wrap my head around why they think its a good idea to penalize and as such deter customers for wanting to spend more money. 🤪

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1 hour ago, SemperMom said:

I am also OK with the NRD and like most others, we always buy trip coverage in case worse comes to worse but the fee I'm not ok is the change fee. Especially if the change you make is an upgrade in their favor and made at over 300 days out. I just can't wrap my head around why they think its a good idea to penalize and as such deter customers for wanting to spend more money. 🤪

From a business perspective, it doesn't matter if the guest may spend more money. What matters is that the guest was counted as part of this ship and now has to be removed and moved to another. There shouldn't be multiple sets of rules when it comes to changes as people might upgrade to a suite to avoid the change fee and downgrade after the fact. 

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10 hours ago, SemperMom said:

I am also OK with the NRD and like most others, we always buy trip coverage in case worse comes to worse but the fee I'm not ok is the change fee. Especially if the change you make is an upgrade in their favor and made at over 300 days out. I just can't wrap my head around why they think its a good idea to penalize and as such deter customers for wanting to spend more money. 🤪

I have NEVER lost my deposit on an upgrade on same ship same itinerary. 

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I'm an old school believer.  Once there is an agreement you adhere to it unless there was something outrageous.  I have tried to follow a philosophy of "say what you mean and mean what you say".  While not exactly the same it is still applicable to what others have indicated.  If I agreed then I should adhere to it.  It also applies to what Royal should practice (and sometimes struggles).  I'm hopeful that we start to see some of the values that the earlier generations held so highly.

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1 hour ago, Pooch said:

Sadly, manners seem to have gone the way of cursive, just too old fashioned.  And in our current political state, unlikely to change.  But we can all try!  A little kindness can do wonders.

It is very hard to be kind apparently and lots of people expect you to read their mind and infer. I would like to say it is the youths and children who lack manners but at this point it spans across all generations.

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On 8/4/2022 at 10:43 PM, Ampurp85 said:

From a business perspective, it doesn't matter if the guest may spend more money. What matters is that the guest was counted as part of this ship and now has to be removed and moved to another. There shouldn't be multiple sets of rules when it comes to changes as people might upgrade to a suite to avoid the change fee and downgrade after the fact. 

I see what you're saying but if they were to down grade after the upgrade, they would have to pay a change fee for that too, right? Or maybe I misunderstood, I am really easy to confuse. 😊 

I just don't think of things in the "how can I beat the system" sense so I vent, but in the back of my head figure there must be a reason for it somehow. We were on the Brilliance and we upgraded from balcony to JS and they charged us the fee. Then, just before they cancelled the Brilliance itinerary (like a week before) we switched to Odyssey and were charged another change fee. So, I get charging us for the ship hop, but I didn't think charging us for the Brilliance balcony to JS was very fair. Don't get me wrong, we knew the rules and we'll pay it, but it doesn't mean we have to like it or let it happen again. We have certainly learned our lesson. lol 

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It's part of the terms you agree to when booking. If it is a non-refundable deposit, that's on the customer and not the cruise line. They incur a cost to deal with you whether you go through with the cruise or not if you engage them. They should have a way to offset the labor and infrastructure to deal with the public who don't end up using them.

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1 hour ago, SemperMom said:

I see what you're saying but if they were to down grade after the upgrade, they would have to pay a change fee for that too, right? Or maybe I misunderstood, I am really easy to confuse. 😊 

I just don't think of things in the "how can I beat the system" sense so I vent, but in the back of my head figure there must be a reason for it somehow. We were on the Brilliance and we upgraded from balcony to JS and they charged us the fee. Then, just before they cancelled the Brilliance itinerary (like a week before) we switched to Odyssey and were charged another change fee. So, I get charging us for the ship hop, but I didn't think charging us for the Brilliance balcony to JS was very fair. Don't get me wrong, we knew the rules and we'll pay it, but it doesn't mean we have to like it or let it happen again. We have certainly learned our lesson. lol 

So, they should not have charged you a fee to upgrade from balcony to JS, just the upgrade cost. I have never heard of them charging a fee to change rooms unless you moved the dates, then you get charged a fee. 

I have gone up and down on a booking and never paid a fee. I moved from an interior to a virtual balcony on Navigator. I moved from a balcony to a JS on Grandeur and paid no fees. I have repriced several, if not all my cruises. 

What I meant was yes lots of people would try to scam. They would upgrade to a higher category to avoid the fees and call later and move to whatever cabin they originally wanted. Thats why Royal has a flat policy that if you change dates, itineraries or ships they charge a fee. It makes sense: since a person can book at a cheap rate, hold that room that could be sold at a higher revenue and try to cancel later. 

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30 minutes ago, Ampurp85 said:

So, they should not have charged you a fee to upgrade from balcony to JS, just the upgrade cost. I have never heard of them charging a fee to change rooms unless you moved the dates, then you get charged a fee. 

I have gone up and down on a booking and never paid a fee. I moved from an interior to a virtual balcony on Navigator. I moved from a balcony to a JS on Grandeur and paid no fees. I have repriced several, if not all my cruises. 

What I meant was yes lots of people would try to scam. They would upgrade to a higher category to avoid the fees and call later and move to whatever cabin they originally wanted. Thats why Royal has a flat policy that if you change dates, itineraries or ships they charge a fee. It makes sense: since a person can book at a cheap rate, hold that room that could be sold at a higher revenue and try to cancel later. 

Thanks for clarifying @Ampurp85 ! It all makes more sense now seeing as how your experience has been that you've never been charged the change fee to move up a cabin category. It didn't sound right to me that at over a year out that they would charge us an extra $200 to free up a balcony and pay more for a JS.

Like I said, I totally get the ship/dates/itinerary change charge, you make great points there. But, when we made the move to the new ship, that original 'cabin only' upgrade change fee moved to the new reservation so now I am paying $400 more for this cruise instead of just $200 and the original cruise has been cancelled. Had I waited a week, my cruise would be $400 less! 🤣

I wonder if others have been charged to upgrade their room on the same ship for the same dates/itinerary like I was. I'm gonna go dig around in the rules on the website and see what I can find, maybe something changed? I use a TA and he didn't question it but maybe his info was wrong? 

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On 8/5/2022 at 2:42 PM, Ampurp85 said:

It is very hard to be kind apparently and lots of people expect you to read their mind and infer. I would like to say it is the youths and children who lack manners but at this point it spans across all generations.

I would agree with the fact that it extends across most generations.  I do not see it from what is left of the great generation and the most of the one right after.  It appears to be getting progressively worse from there.  Not any one generation but clearly getting worse. 

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14 hours ago, SemperMom said:

I see what you're saying but if they were to down grade after the upgrade, they would have to pay a change fee for that too, right? Or maybe I misunderstood, I am really easy to confuse. 😊 

I just don't think of things in the "how can I beat the system" sense so I vent, but in the back of my head figure there must be a reason for it somehow. We were on the Brilliance and we upgraded from balcony to JS and they charged us the fee. Then, just before they cancelled the Brilliance itinerary (like a week before) we switched to Odyssey and were charged another change fee. So, I get charging us for the ship hop, but I didn't think charging us for the Brilliance balcony to JS was very fair. Don't get me wrong, we knew the rules and we'll pay it, but it doesn't mean we have to like it or let it happen again. We have certainly learned our lesson. lol 

I agree that there are way too many companies losing sight of true customer service as well.  Nickel and dime everywhere.  This has been eroding for years (like our social norms) and it is very sad.  What happened to the days when a company would charge a fair price and leave you very excited when they did something above and beyond for service?  That to me grew so much loyalty.  It has gotten to the point (at almost every company I can think of) that even when you need to call about an issue you can only call Customer Service that knows nothing about Customer Service.  

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48 minutes ago, DMLM said:

I agree that there are way too many companies losing sight of true customer service as well.  Nickel and dime everywhere.  This has been eroding for years (like our social norms) and it is very sad.  What happened to the days when a company would charge a fair price and leave you very excited when they did something above and beyond for service?  That to me grew so much loyalty.  It has gotten to the point (at almost every company I can think of) that even when you need to call about an issue you can only call Customer Service that knows nothing about Customer Service.  

What happened was these companies try to be nice and accommodate by going the extra mile but 1,000 influencers from social media posted about a hack to the game the system and gain a benefit by lying and 100,000 followers tried the hack so companies had to stop being nice to avoid the masses taking advantage of generosity.   Social media is the demise of our society.  

Some people get married several times a year to try to get a free cake.  Then they post about it.  Then the free cakes go away.  

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1 hour ago, twangster said:

What happened was these companies try to be nice and accommodate by going the extra mile but 1,000 influencers from social media posted about a hack to the game the system and gain a benefit by lying and 100,000 followers tried the hack so companies had to stop being nice to avoid the masses taking advantage of generosity.   Social media is the demise of our society.  

Some people get married several times a year to try to get a free cake.  Then they post about it.  Then the free cakes go away.  

This is everything true. 

I sometimes consult with several law firms in Chicago. I recently had a ......I'm going to call a spade a spade...... dummy try to tik tok a mediation. There was all sort of NDAs in place and when she wasn't allowed to film, she got all entitled and threaten to sue and get her followers to boycott. 

Customer service isn't what it used to be, and policies have to tempered and tampered because of social media. How often are people told on this site to escalate their problems on RCG social media? Any slight and it is going on social media. Then other's see it and try to game the system. 

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45 minutes ago, teddy said:

Over the past few years. people have taken “the customer is always right” to horrifying new levels. 
 

Spoiler:  Customers are not always right, and in fact, ruin it for other customers by their entitled behaviors. 

We reap what we sow. 

I am not pleased with this post! I need to speak to the manager! 😉

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3 hours ago, Ampurp85 said:

How often are people told on this site to escalate their problems on RCG social media? Any slight and it is going on social media. Then other's see it and try to game the system. 

I have often advised readers of this site to contact RCG through Twitter as a way of getting an answer to a question they have not gotten straight answers from Customer Service on. I have found the employees that handle their social media sites are much more knowledgeable and whatever they don't know, they often resopond with "Let me reach out to (whoever they need answer from) and get that answer for you". I use there Instant Messaging to do so. I love this site because we all try to help one another and because we have had wonderful experiences with RCG and believe them to be the best place for others to have that experience we want that for them.

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To be fair, when some of us suggest that people contact RC on social media, we mean message them from their social media platform.  The reason for this is that you can typically get a faster response without sitting on the phone.  We don't mean go onto their social media pages and bitch publicly.

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1 hour ago, SpeedNoodles said:

To be fair, when some of us suggest that people contact RC on social media, we mean message them from their social media platform.  The reason for this is that you can typically get a faster response without sitting on the phone.  We don't mean go onto their social media pages and bitch publicly.

Yes, that is the intention on this site........ I meant it to mean, when people go to the social media site and see all the rigmarole, they could get ideas.

Unfortunately, I have seen on other sites people suggest that option and then use it to bitch publicly. 

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