yes, booked through RCI, everything. I will try not to rant and rave. Letters have been mailed off and phone calls have been made. It seems all that we get are; "im sorry, but you did not purchase travel insurance". That doesn't seem right to me? Why not a credit?
The sad truth of the air/sea package is that the cruise line really doesn't stand behind it that much - so it really isn't much different than doing your own air as far as liability. I can tell you right now that Delta won't do anything. They got you to MIA and that is the end of it as far as they are concerned.
Weather holds are a strange thing. One can affect you even though it has nothing to do with your flights or your departure and arrival airports. I also think your flight times were too tight to begin with. Did you book directly with RCI or did you use an agent?
Why not a credit? Because contractually they don't have to. I hate to be blunt, but that is the bottom line. I assume this was your first cruise with RCI, or with any cruise line?
Unfortunatley, travel insurance is about the only protection against all the disclaimers in the contracts. The cruiselines don't and can't take responsibility for air delays/cancellations. They don't run the airlines they have to use or own planes. The airline industry is notorious for delays and never guarantee arrival times for vacations, meetings or anything else. They also don't take responsibility for "Consequential damagers", like missing your cruise.
Lawyers run the world. They put in language to protect the companies that hire them, not the traveling public. Travel insurance can be just as riddled with exemptions and exclusions so you have to be very careful in selecting which coverage you purchase there as well. The cruiselines insurance would have provided you a future cruise credit for 80% of the cost of your cruise. Many outside providers offer 100% coverage and they do so in real $$$ back to your CC. You just have to shop carefully for the right policy with fewer exclusions and higher coverage.
You are not alone in believing when you book the cruise and the cruiseline's air you'd be protected. I hear it all the time. It's just not the case. Without insurance it doesn't matter who you bought your cruise or air from. There is no protection. I hope they will do something for you but don't expect they will. I'm an agent and your situation and other similar ones happen from time to time. It is very rare that I've seen a good outcome without the insurance.
I'm afraid, though, I can't be of much help. The itinerary RCI booked actually included a legal connection time. Personally, I wouldn't go with anything less than 2 hours in Atlanta, and sadly you found out why.
So, the problem does not lie with RCI.
Delta, however, is another story -- although I agree with Dave that they will not do anything. Their only responsibility is to get you to your final destination, which they did. I understand that getting there late was not an option, and I do feel badly about that. I have had flights held for me on several airlines. In fact, when I flew through O'Hare in April and ran between terminals to make what had originally been a 2-hour connection but was now a 15-minute connection, the gate agent said, as she pointed to a screen in front of her, "Hello, Ms. P, we've been expecting you," and I boarded the flight. So, that's why I originally thought you might have been on two airlines.
As for a credit -- that's what insurance would have provided. Sorry if I seem blunt on this one, but why should someone who did not purchase insurance get reimbursed just as someone who spent the $ for insurance?
Next time, please book your own air (or have your TA do it for you), make sure that any layovers are at least 2 hours, and go down a day before. Cruise lines do not book air transportation for the day before the cruise unless you specifically asked. Your TA should have told you this if you communicated this concern to him/her when you booked.
I am sorry that you missed your anniversary cruise, but I hope you were able to celebrate your anniversary somehow.
We flew Delta (which we always do) into Washington and then Alaska Air into Anchorage. It was a quick turn over to get on that second plane. When we landed in Anchorage our luggage had not made it. Luckily we were not on a time line and were told it would probably be on the next flight in, which it was. We were fortunate enough that Alaska Air had a flight incoming every hour. So quick plane changes mean your luggage may not be with you.
You have every right to be frustrated and disappointed. Pick yourself up by your bootstraps and try again. Life is that way, unfortunantly. Move forward and count your blessings to be married for a year to a wonderful person!
It is very common for all airlines to overbook busy routes. It is not limited to Delta. If you don't check in and get your boarding pass within 20 mins of your departure, you stand a good chance of being bumped. Last month, my wife and I were flying from Frankfurt, Germany to Venice, Italy to catch the Legend of the Seas. We left ourselves a large window of arrival time just incase. Two couples behind us were bumped. Lufthansa was offering 300 euros to anyone who would give up their seat and would stay and wait 4hrs. for the next flight. All this being said, trip insurance is a very wise move. I don't go anywhere domestic or international without complete documents and insurance.
Rwiebe13--I feel bad for the problems that you had with your flights. Isn't it a shame that all lessons are learned the hard way? Here are a few things that we have learned (as confirmed on this thread by other cruisers):
1. Buy insurance. I can't emphasize this enough. I don't know how it would work in your situation, but it paid off for me when we had to cancel an Alaskan cruise last month because I broke my wrist a week before sailing. We had booked the cruise and air through Princess and were totally reimbursed for both
2. Arrive the day before sailing. This allows for delayed flights; helps assure you get your lost luggage before sailing (also the voice of experience!); and gives you the opportunity to explore the port city.
3. Book your own flights. We have booked through RCCL on a couple cruises and booked our own flights on the others. Generally speaking, it is cheaper to book your own because you can fly on Air Tran or other independent carriers. The cruise lines will book you on major carriers, which are more expensive. Also, the seating assignments on cruise-line booked flights leave a lot to be desired. On the flight which we had to cancel in May, every flight to and from Alaska, we were seated over a wing or by the bathroom. On one flight, my husband and I were separated by two rows.
4. Carry all documentation and phone numbers with you.
5. Make sure your cell phone is charged before leaving home and before leaving the ship. You could be using it a lot if your flights get messed up!
6. Finally, do try cruising again! Once you get past the airport hassles, the cruise is the ultimate payoff. It's a perfect anniversary gift to each other. Start planning now for your second anniversary!
Me again. After I wrote my message, I was discussing this with my husband. He said that he thought if you bought your air tickets from the cruise line, regardless whether you had insurance or not, they would assure that you got on the cruise. Even if you had to meet the ship at the next port. That is what I thought, too.
I just read information regarding this in both the RCCL and Princess brochures. Both indicate they are not responsible if you arrive at the cruise port too late. With RCCL, it states that if you bought CruiseCare insurance, they will reimburse you up to $500 for catch-up transportation, as long as the airline delay was caused by covered reasons. I couldn't find a similar statement by Princess, but it's probably there somewhere.
At any rate, Rwiebe, I learned something today--unfortunately it was at your expense. I am glad you wrote about this. Good luck with your letters!