I have just been notified last night that I am being charged an additional $50 per person mandatory fuel surcharge by Princess for our cruise we will be taking in March.It has been paid for a year and my receipts say paid in full, only now to say I owe $800.00 more for a group of 16 people. Is this normal practice, and is there a chance they will add more before time to go? Are other cruise lines also charging this fee?
All cruise lines owned by Carnival (which includes Princess) are adding the surcharge for cruises staring after March 1, 2008. It is not a "normal" practice but it has happened before - back in 2001 I think. Blame the high oil prices. My understanding is that it is supposed to only be charged for the first two occupants of a cabin, and then it is supposed to be capped at $70. But that may be strictly for Carnival cruises.
And yes, it could increase again. Look for Royal Caribbean and the others not owned by Carnival to follow suit.
I sure wouldn't be surprised to see it rise again. It's still less than I have to pay to drive to and from work each day and I'd much rather be cruising. Groceries will be going up, air fare will be going up, medicine will be going up, everything but our paychecks will be going up. We need to come up with alternative fuels now, not years from now so we're not jerked around by the controlling factions of the mid-east. You can't blame the cruise lines for this, it takes fuel to run the ships. Maybe one day they'll be able to run on water, but not now.
I too just received notice of the fuel surcharge and while I can understand the need I don't think it should be applied to a cruise already booked. I am sure if the price had gone down we would not get a rebate. Another issue I have is that I can't find a email address for princess to relay may concerns and objects on adding the cost to a pre-book cruise. I am thinking of changing to another cruise line for Alaska in May. Any suggestions?
Just remember that the surcharge applies to all the cruise lines owned by Carnival, which includes Carnival Cruise Lines, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Seabourn Cruise Line, AIDA Cruises, Costa Cruises, Cunard
Line, Iberocruceros, Ocean Village, P&O Cruises and P&O Cruises Australia.
This leaves Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, and NCL as your realistic choices for Alaska, and I would not be surprised to see them add a surcharge too.
Thanks Dave. I just get a little frustrated when they add the fee to a trip already booked. Also, that I can't find and email address to let them know my feelings. In all likelyhood I'll stay with Princess I really like their product. Just needed to sound off.