Customers are now entitled to a refund of all fees including charges
Have you seen a cruise itinerary get canceled recently? This has been a trend since the pandemic and many travelers have doubts and fears when it comes to planning a cruise vacation, But now they will be able to book with confidence.
US Federal Maritime Commission (FMC)- the agency regulating sea travel- has recently announced new rules and customers will now have the right to get a refund if a cruise operator cancels or delays an itinerary.
The Passenger Vessel Act has been updated to protect passengers regardless of cruise company. FMC Commissioner Louis Sola told NBC 5 that this new update to the Passenger Vessel Act represents a historic event: “This is the first time the law has been changed since 1881.since the California Gold Rush.” Sola also said: “People can be convinced to move on.”
According to information shared by the commissioner, the FMC received hundreds of complaints from passengers who did not receive refunds or revisions from cruise operations. One of the scandalous cases that activated a large number of complaints this year was the unexpected shutdown of Crystal Cruises.
Fortunately, travelers can start booking and planning future cruise trips because The new rules have started coming into force from April 18.From 2022 onwards all cruise lines will have to comply.
New Cruise Refund Rule
The new amendment in the regulation is a matter of pride for the officers. The FMC shares the words of Commissioner Sola on its official website:
“Thousands of Americans enjoy taking a pleasure cruise every year. For some, these are trips of a lifetime where people have worked hard to save on ticket costs. The commission’s efforts to provide passengers with more rights and choices Amending the Rules When a Cruise Line Hasn’t Performed Is Good for Consumers Am.”
To protect customers, these are the main considerations The new FMC rules include:
- Implementation of a procedure for obtaining a refund.
- Defining “non-performance” as a cruise that cancels or delays a voyage by three or more calendar days.
- From now on, cruise lines are required to publish clear instructions for obtaining refunds – shown on their websites.
- In a cruise operator’s “non-performing” status, Passengers are entitled to a refund of all money including fees.
Commissioner Sola also pointed out that these new rules will help streamline policies because each cruise line has a different approach and this makes it harder to process complaints: “As far as consumer protection is concerned We found that almost every single cruise line had a different refund policy.” Sola feels hopeful for passengers: “You’ll be treated equally across board, you’ll have rights to get a refund.”
Travelers wishing to know more about the new rules can visit the FMC website and read the documentation. In the updated Passenger Vessel Financial Responsibility, they will find more information about the process of obtaining a refund and the responsibility requirements.
New Cruise Travel Experience
The new rules will allow travelers to book with confidence and embrace new opportunities. The cruise industry is also offering transformation and customization services to provide travelers with unparalleled experiences in the seas, oceans and exotic destinations.
Now that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has changed the travel advisory for cruises and removed travel warnings, the more adventurous can take advantage of this travel experience. From onboard meals, like Royal Caribbean’s self-service buffet, to aboard the world’s largest cruise.
Cruise companies like Oceania Cruises continue to incorporate eco-friendly tours to their destinations and even solo-travel opportunities for those who want a different travel experience onboard.
Cruisers should make sure they have travel health insurance that covers not only medical care When boarding a cruise ship, But they also cover them before their travel if they become covid and can no longer travel.
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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions subject to change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality of entry and/or any changes to travel requirements prior to travel. Travel Off Path does not endorse travel against government advice