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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 04-16-2007, 03:16 PM
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Hi IBCruizin. I'm in the same situation. Our family is waiting on an $800 reimbursement check from Carnival.
We were on Pride on 2/5/07. We missed a day because Pride had an engine problem at sea. So, folks on board before us got an extra day and we lost a day. I e-mailed Carnival last week and asked if they had received all of our proper paperwork that I mailed them back in February. I made sure to make duplicate copies of everything before I sent it in, just in case. I don't possibly see how they can get out of paying 2,400 Pride passengers their $200 PP refund. If you were planning on cruising out on 2/10 on Fantasy, that's a whole other shipload of refunds they have to process.
So far, Carnival has been very good and fair to us. I wouldn't pass judgment just yet. I believe these reimbursements take a long time to sift through and their accounting office needs to analyze everyone's receipts and paperwork.
If I don't see a refund by summer, I'll worry. I'd say, hold tight and give them a little more time. A'ndrea
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Old 04-16-2007, 03:17 PM
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Quote:
However, concerning the circumstances of this reimbursement, Carnival should have seen that these passengers were reimbursed the travel expense money asap.
When you're talking about a huge corporation ASAP is relative. Nobody is sitting with a pen to just cut checks and stick them in an envelope. There is a process, corporation run like governments. How long did your last tax refund take? Don't take it out on the poor guy who has to answer the phone and field 10,000 calls a week all screaming at him about their last missing $25. onboard credit or used saop in the shower of my cabin. He didn't create the red tape and can't resolve it.

Cheers, Neil
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Old 04-16-2007, 03:20 PM
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Ironically, I received a refund to my credit card within a month after I sent Carnival a letter complaining about the internet being down for most of a Holiday cruise two years ago (I had bought a minutes package which couldn't be fully used).
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Old 04-16-2007, 03:26 PM
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Dave,

How long between your letter and getting the check? Do they take two years to reimburse customers or was your letter more recent?

Ken
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Old 04-16-2007, 03:38 PM
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No. I sent the letter a few days after we returned home. I was nice about it, but noted that I had many internet minutes that I couldn't use. Carnival wrote back about a month later saying they would credit the card I used for my shipboard charges, apologizing for it taking so long (a month!) but they needed to verify my complaint. The same day I received the letter I went on-line and saw that my credit card had been credited - for the whole amount I paid for internet which meant I got whatever I used for free.

This was in 2005.
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Old 04-16-2007, 03:49 PM
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I work for a company that does gross cruise sales just under $400M per year. I alone book approx 150 cruises per month. I have to deal with Guest Relations of 27 different cruise lines daily. There are none of the lines that handle individual clints issues well. Their focus is on the masses not on the individual.

You would be shocked at the comments I hear daily from the cruise lines toward their clients with issues, whether legitimate or the mooches that ARE out there. They treat them all with the same contempt. With the volume we produce for them you'd think we might be treated differently from the individual client. Not so, once you leave the ship you're no longer a client but a past client. Your furture bookings don't seem to matter. The amount of $$$ you've spent in the past doesn't seem to matter. Their attitude seems to be that if you never sail again with them someone else will.

They all do a remarkable job most of the time on the ship. Some better than others. None have outstanding reputations for handling well if you have an issue or concern. With the Carnival Group its especially true. You wouldn't believe the number of clients I have who have an issue with, say Princess and then in protest never sail PCL again. Who do they book with the next time? Holland!! or Carnival!! They don't seem to realize that their protest just put their hard earned dollars back in the same pockets.

The cruise industry know you and I are going to cruise. There are limited choices and we are creatures of habit. We like a particular line for a reason. We protest the treatment and change only to return again and again to the lines we liked for a reason. They know that and take full advantage of it. I could tell you horror stories of how a client was treated by a cruise line. Many of those clients are back sailing with that same line now. We have short memories for the bad experiences and very long memories or the good times. Just hope and pray you never have a really major issue with the cruise lines. They will treat you with contempt. If you change lines and have the same type of issue your treatment won't improve. There are very few exceptions. Occasionally there is someone at one of the lines with a heart who goes above and beyond to do the right thing. I keep their names and extensions. The problem is with the turnover in those positions, more often than not 6 months later that extensin is answered by someone new who follows the "Policy" and won't give a d@*n again. Sorry for venting. I love what I do except for dealing with cruise lines policies.

Cheers, Neil
  #17 (permalink)  
Old 04-16-2007, 04:00 PM
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Neil, I understand what you're saying. It's just like any other big... no humongous... corporation. Losing one cruiser doesn't mean anything to them. I'm sure losing a few thousand doesn't matter. Someone else will be picking up the phone soon enough and booking a cruise. Like I said, I'm not going to lose any sleep over my $800 refund. I know it will come eventually. If I call them, hound them, and threaten, it's only going to prolong my check's arrival. It's also okay to vent about your job Neil. It's understood. A'ndrea
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Old 04-16-2007, 05:43 PM
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I understand I may be jumping the gun. I think if the powers that be on the ships know that reimbursement is a 90 day out endeaver, they should have advised the passengers of this or at least allow the guest relations reps to advise of this and not leave the passengers in the black hole of waiting.

I have seen major corporations handle things in a much more efficient manner. Carnival is not the biggest company in the world to have to deal with customer appleasement. Carnival's "after cruise" customer service is just simply not up to par with their "during cruise" service. Their customer service reps are only able to answer the phone and are not allowed to give out information, make decisions, appplease cusotmers or even pass the call onto someone who can actual get anything done. That is inefficient and will turn customers away.

Now as far as not caring about any one particular customer, this may be true but corporate arrogance is a dangerous thing. The corporate graveyard is full of many, many, many megacompanies that forgot about individual service. (MCI/HP/AT&T/Chemical Bank/TWA to name just a few). Those that are not deceased have been merged away and/or are a mere shadow of their former glory. Also, if Chase Manhattan Bank didn't merger every 6 months, they would have been gone long ago. All of these company were notorious in their prime for horrible customer service. Oh yeah, how about the big 3 auto makers? They got arrogant in the 70's and let reliability slip. Along came Honda and Toyota who crept up and stole the industry from them. 35 years later, the big 3 are still trying to figure out what went wrong. Corporate arrogance is a dangerous thing.

True Carnival has 24 ships but they have to fill all 24 ships on every cruise in order to stay on top of what they expend. The cruise industry has just about tapped the American market dry of cruisers. It is not new anymore. Most people these days have either already cruised, have a cruise planned or will never cruise. Therefore, repeat business is the cruise industries bread and butter. Any company is dependent upon repeat business. No business can survive off of "one shot charlies".

My concern for Carnival stems from the fact that their prices have not risen much over the last few years while fuel and food has skyrocketed. Also, I read somewhere that bookings for the Caribbean itineraries are way down which is why Carnival, among others, are looking to the European market to replenish their stock of passengers with new blood. However, Europe is a different market with different styles and taste so that will take some tweaking.

Delta Airline was, at one time, at the top of their game and therefore, felt that customer service could take a back seat to "we are the big dogs, someone will purchase a ticket from us." A few storms came, airports got backed up and Delta flipped their customers the finger. Along came JetBlue, SouthWest and a few others and wham, Delta was in bankruptcy court fighting for survival and with their own employees over pension and salaries. Delta will never be what they once were because they dropped to ball publicly a number of times and now there is a good segment of the population who fly Delta when there is nothing else. Count me as one.

JetBlue is smarter than most, they had a meltdown a few months ago and have revamped their entire system to assure people that they won't fall through the cracks. A few of the great companies I have run into are Wachovia Bank/American Express/Verizon/Verizon Wireless/Honda. All of these companies empower their customer service reps to solve minor customer service issues (within a $ limit) so that at the end of the call, the customer is a happy camper, destined to come back often.

If Carnival has developed the attitude that "if not you, then someone else, . . ." well that usually is followed in a few years with some sort of press release about downsizing, resizing or court protection from creditor.

I hope not because I like Carnival and plan to cruise for the foreseeable future. However, their "guest relations" should reflect the same attitude that is shown when you book the cruise and when you are on the ship. Anything less is shameful.

Never believe any one company is too big to fold. It has happened time and time and time again. One day they are prosperous and the next, it is all gone. (Enron!!!)

Anyway, I am glad so many people have responded. I appreciate each and every response and it has made me feel a lot better and perhaps a little more patience is in order.
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Upcoming Cruzes
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Past Cruzes: RCCL Navigator, RCCL Majesty, CCL Destiny,
Glory (2007),Liberty (2007), Fantasy (2007), Destiny (2006), PofAm (2005), Inspiration (2005), Fascination (2004), Victory (2004), Fascination (2004), RCCL VOS(2003), Fantasy (1999)
  #19 (permalink)  
Old 04-17-2007, 08:13 PM
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[quote]posted by IBCRUZIN':
True Carnival has 24 ships but they have to fill all 24 ships on every cruise in order to stay on top of what they expend. The cruise industry has just about tapped the American market dry of cruisers. It is not new anymore. Most people these days have either already cruised, have a cruise planned or will never cruise. Therefore, repeat business is the cruise industries bread and butter. Any company is dependent upon repeat business. No business can survive off of "one shot charlies".

Delta Airline was, at one time, at the top of their game and therefore, felt that customer service could take a back seat to "we are the big dogs, someone will purchase a ticket from us." A few storms came, airports got backed up and Delta flipped their customers the finger. Along came JetBlue, SouthWest and a few others and wham, Delta was in bankruptcy court fighting for survival and with their own employees over pension and salaries. Delta will never be what they once were because they dropped to ball publicly a number of times and now there is a good segment of the population who fly Delta when there is nothing else. Count me as one.[Unquote].....

Only about 16% of Americans have cruised. That leaves a very wide market for the cruise lines to tap in to. Cruise lines continue to put orders in for new ships. Thirty-one ships are due for delivery between May 2007 and 2012.
Delta airlines is due to emerge from bankruptcy in the next couple weeks. I just flew them today. Everything was right on time. No problems.
  #20 (permalink)  
Old 04-17-2007, 08:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Cruise Fanatic:
Only about 16% of Americans have cruised. That leaves a very wide market for the cruise lines to tap in to. Cruise lines continue to put orders in for new ships. Thirty-one ships are due for delivery between May 2007 and 2012.
Delta airlines is due to emerge from bankruptcy in the next couple weeks. I just flew them today. Everything was right on time. No problems.
So, horrible customer does not have ramifications? Of course, it does. Just ask any of the Big 3 automakers.

Delta is but a shell of what they once were. It is not when things go perfect that determine customer service. It is when things go wrong and the company's response that determine customer service.

Carnival's guest relations should be empowered to solve problems (similar to JetBlue, Honda and Verizon) and not just answer the phone.

16% have already cruised. What percentage will never cruise? At least 50% will never set foot on a cruise ship. In fact, I would guess the numbers are much higher than 50%, probably closer to 75% will never cruise for any number of reasons. Of the 15 or so members of my immediately family, only 3 of us have ever been on a cruise ship and it is highly unlikely that the other 12 or so will ever get on a ship and we are all a pretty good cross-section of middle america -- the cruise industry's target market. When you think of all the reasons why a person will not cruise, the available market for cruising in a relatively small percentage of the American public.

Therefore, it is very important to keep the customers you have and not take them for granted. Foresaking the 16% that has cruised for the 84% that may or may not ever cruise is foolish and a bad business plan.

Do you remember The Big Red Boat(s)?
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Upcoming Cruzes
CCL Victory, CCL Imagination, CCL Victory

Past Cruzes: RCCL Navigator, RCCL Majesty, CCL Destiny,
Glory (2007),Liberty (2007), Fantasy (2007), Destiny (2006), PofAm (2005), Inspiration (2005), Fascination (2004), Victory (2004), Fascination (2004), RCCL VOS(2003), Fantasy (1999)
 
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