New 2018 Guide

New 2018 Guide

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By Bernadette Chua and Brittany Lazarus

Consumer watchdog the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission is investigating travel providers over claims some are misleading consumers on cancellation fees.

In a statement to Cruise Passenger, the ACCC said it was probing “whether some travel providers are misleading consumers about the amount of cancellation fees they are entitled to charge, or whether they are entitled to charge cancellation fees at all.”

Cancellation and refund policies have been a hugely contentious issue ever since the COVID-19 pandemic hit the travel industry.

Government-enforced cruise suspensions meant tens of thousands of passengers were unable to holiday at sea in Australia and overseas, leaving the already financially distressed the industry and front-line travel agents with the unenviable task of gathering refunds from thousands of providers here and overseas.

It has been an enormous task – and one largely unpaid, as travel operators often rely on the commissions paid on holidays they sell.

Because of the length of time this huge process has taken, it has created tension between agents, cruise lines and their clients.

To add to the problem, some cruise lines have marketed itineraries linked to increasingly complex terms and conditions as they struggled to protect their businesses.

It meant many consumers were faced with the dilemma: should I cancel and lose some or all of my money; wait until the cruise line cancels so I can claim it all back; or take a future cruise credit?

Cruise Passenger readers told us in a recent survey that refund polices was their second most important concern after health in deciding which line to choose for their next cruise.

A spokesperson from the ACCC warned consumers need to understand that the rights and entitlements for cancelled travel bookings will usually be different, depending on whether the consumer cancels their booking, the travel provider stops the service or the service cannot go ahead due to government restrictions.

“Where travel bookings are cancelled by businesses due to government restrictions, this limits consumers’ rights under the consumer guarantees in the Australian Consumer Law.

“In general, whether consumers are entitled to a credit note or a refund for travel bookings cancelled in these circumstances will then depend on the terms and conditions of their booking.

“Terms and conditions will vary between different providers, and in some cases consumers might not be entitled to a full, or any refund of their booking.

“If a consumer cancels the cruise because they can’t travel to the port of embarkation because government health restrictions or quarantine restrictions make it unfeasible for them to travel, they might not be entitled to a full, or any, refund under the cruise providers’ terms and conditions.

“However they may have a claim under the law of contract where, for example, the contract is held to be frustrated.”

A Cruise Passenger team has examined each line’s terms and conditions – and found, in some cases, huge differences and complexities.

Most cruise lines still maintain cancellation policies where the consumer will have to forego full cash refunds. In some cases, there are cancellation fees of up to 100 per cent.

Many have sliding scales, depending on how far out the itinerary is cancelled.

So before you book, here are three questions you may need to ask yourself:

  1. I know I want to cruise with this line, and I don’t really mind when. Answer: Book your cruise and take a future cruise credit if it doesn’t eventuate
  2. I know I want to cruise with this line on this ship and route. I don’t really mind when. Answer: Book your cruise and take a future cruise credit if it doesn’t eventuate
  3.  I know I want to cruise on this ship and itinerary at this time only. Answer: Book with as low a deposit as possible, accepting you might lose it, or don’t book at all unless you are sure it is far enough out to go ahead.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic, lines have continuously updated their policies as the cruise pause continues around the world.

Brands like Carnival Cruise Line and Seabourn have had to cancel voyages around Australia and New Zealand in just the past few days.

The Seabourn Encore, which was slated to visit Australia and New Zealand for four voyages, has paused operations until May 28, 2021.

Seabourn, however, has an extremely generous policy in which you are entitled to a refund or, if you have paid in full, a 125% future cruise credit. And Seabourn’s FCC will be valid for 12 months from the date of issue and may then be used to book sailings through till 31 December 2022.

Where buyers need to exercise caution is when they are forced to cancel themselves on a journey that is still scheduled to sail.

Almost every cruise line has new rules around future cruise credit refunds. Some have separate policies for individual ships.

Most have generous future cruise credit allowances. For example, the boutique line Azamara will allow passengers to change a booking 48 hours before sailing and receive 100 per cent of the amount paid in a Future Cruise Credit if you book a cruise by 30 November 2020.

Viking has a Risk-Free Guarantee which allows guests to change cruise dates up until 24 hours before their planned departure, and the line waives any fees. This policy is currently under review.

Cruise Lines International Association Managing Director Australasia Joel Katz told Cruise Passenger: “Cruise lines are very conscious of the disruption the pandemic has caused and the impact this has had on people’s holiday plans. They’ve been working to provide alternative arrangements to guests with affected bookings, including refunds, credit options, and in many cases generous discounts on future cruises.

“Cruise lines are endeavouring to provide regular updates to customers and their travel agents on the status of voyage suspensions and any further potential cancellations. In many cases cruise lines have offered additional flexibility in cancellation or postponement provisions, in order to provide reassurance for customers.

“As we work towards a resumption of cruising and implement the extensive new health measures being developed globally, the additional flexibility many cruise lines are offering will give customers more confidence as they consider their future travel options.”

Cruise refund and cancellation policies line by line

Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises will allow passengers to cancel cruises up to 60 days before departure, without any charges. But, if you were seeking a refund, below is when you need to cancel your cruise.

If you do decide to cancel your Princess cruise after 60 days, these are the charges that will incur:

Sailings 5 nights or less

Final payment is due 60 days prior to departure

  • 45 to 59 days        Cruise fare     Deposit Amount
  • 29 to 44 days        All Items        50% of Total Charges
  • 15 to 28 days        All Items        75% of Total Charges
  • 14 days or less        All Items        100% of Total Charges

Sailings 6 to 29 nights (including World Cruise segments)

Final payment is due 75 days prior to departure

  • 181 days or more        None        None
  • 75 to 180 days        Cruise fare    Deposit Amount
  • 43 to 74 days        All Items          25% of Total Charges
  • 15 to 42 days        All Items           50% of Total Charges
  • 14 days or less        All Items        100% of Total Charges

Sailings 30 nights or more (including Full World Cruise and World Cruise Segments)

Final payment is due 90 days prior to departure

  • 181 days or more        None              None
  • 90 to 180 days           Cruise fare      Deposit Amount
  • 64 to 89 days             All Items          50% of Total Charges
  • 43 to 63 days             All Items          75% of Total Charges
Majestic Princess in Sydney

Majestic Princess in Sydney

Cunard

If you are booked on a Cunard voyage sailing on Queen Mary 2 after 18 April 2021, on Queen Victoria after 16 May 2021, or on Queen Elizabeth after 13 December 2021, and wish to cancel, our standard cancellation policy applies and Cunard can levy a cancellation charge as a percentage of the fare paid in accordance with the Terms and Conditions included in your booking confirmation.

Cunard has relaxed their cancellation policies due to COVID-19. These are some of the changes that they have made:

  • If you’re booked on a Cunard voyage sailing before 31 August 2020, you may now cancel up to 48 hours prior to departure.
  • Cancelled bookings will receive a Future Cruise Credit (FCC) equivalent to the cancellation fees and refunds will be given on any remaining monies paid – full details of how this will be applied are outlined in the table below
  • Your Future Cruise Credit can be used on bookings made up to the end of next year (31 December 2021) and can be redeemed against any Cunard voyage sailing until the end of March 2022

From the date of booking until 91 days before departure/100% of deposit/FCC given to value of deposit

  • 90 to 57 days       50% of fare or Refund 50% + FCC 50%
  • 56 to 42 days       60% of fare or Refund 40% + FCC 60%
  • 41 to 16 days        75% of fare or  Refund 25% +FCC 75%
  • 15 to 6 days          90% of fare or  Refund 10% + FCC 90%
  • 5 to 2 days           100% of fare or Refund 0% + FCC 100%
  • Less than 2 days 100% of fare or Refund 0% + FCC 0%

Cruising into the NSW coast

P&O Cruises Australia

P&O Cruises Australia has a new policy for cruises departing 18 December 2020 to 31 January 2021.

For any existing or new bookings made on cruises departing between 18 December 2020 to 31 January, 2021 guests can now cancel their booking for any reason up to 48 hours prior to the scheduled date of departure and receive a Future Cruise Credit to the value of the original cruise fare paid to us, valid for use until 31 December 2021. We have also relaxed our payments policy to defer the final payment date to 30 days prior to departure.

All guests affected by P&O Cruises Australia’s pause in operation may elect to receive a full refund of monies paid on their booking. Refund requests can be submitted via an online form.

Holland America Line

Holland America’s policy will only allow passengers to use FCC on sailings which depart before 31 December 2021.

Holland America has updated its cancellation policy in the light of COVID.

Grand World, Grand Voyages, any segment of a Grand World or Grand Voyage, 28+ day Hawaii, Tahiti & Marquesas, Amazon Explorer, Incan Empires, 30+ day transatlantic voyages and any segment of a 30+ day transatlantic

  • Cancellations through 121 days before your trip begins: 100% refund;
  • 120-91 days before your trip begins: 100% refund, less required deposit amount;
  • 90-76 days before your trip begins: 40% refund of full fare;
  • 75 days or less before commencing travel: No refund available.

All other voyages 7 nights or longer (through Northern Hemisphere Summer 2021)

  • Cancellations through 91 days before your trip begins: 100% refund;
  • 90-64 days before start : 100% refund, less required deposit amount;
  • 63-43 days before start : 50% refund of gross fare;
  • 42-22 days before start: 25% refund of gross fare;
  • 21 days or less before start: No refund available

All voyages 7 nights or longer (through Northern Hemisphere Autumn 2021)

  • Cancellations through 91 days before your trip begins: 100% refund;
  • 90-76 days before start: 100% refund, less required deposit amount;
  • 75-61 days before start: 50% refund of gross fare;
  • 60-31 days before start: 25% refund of gross fare;
  • 30 days or less before start: No refund available.

Voyages up to 6 nights

  • Cancellations through 76 days before your trip begins: 100% refund;
  • 75-57 days before start: 100% refund, less required deposit amount;
  • 56-29 days before start: 50% refund of gross fare;
  • 28-16 days before start: 25% refund of gross fare;
  • 15 days or less before start: No refund available.

* CANCELLATION POLICY EXCEPTION: If you have purchased a specially priced promotion that is 100% non-refundable from the point of payment, you are not entitled to any refund, payment, compensation or credit.

holland-america-line-in-alaska

Holland America Line in Alaska

Carnival Cruise Line

Family brand Carnival Cruise Line has had to cancel sailings for the Carnival Splendor through to and including 7 January 2021 and Carnival Spirit sailings through and including till 16 May 2021. They have not implemented a flexible booking option.

Carnival Cruise Line will apply an automatic FCC offer plus OBC. But if you decide to opt for a refund, contact Carnival. Refunds will take up to 90 days to be processed.

For cruises which have yet to sail, Carnival are offering a new plan called the Enhanced Value Option.

6 nights or more 100% Future Cruise Credit

PLUS AUD$900 onboard credit (OBC) per stateroom on your next cruise if booked by 31 May 2021 for sailing by 30 April 2023. 100% refund

5 nights or less 100% Future Cruise Credit

PLUS AUD$450 onboard credit per stateroom on your next cruise if booked by 31 May 2021 for sailing by 30 April 2023. 100% refund

Seabourn

Seabourn has enhanced and updated its new cancellation policy, ‘Book With Confidence’. For bookings made by November 20, 2020 on sailings departing by December 31, 2021, guests may cancel up to 30 days prior to departure and receive a 100% future cruise credit of any payment already made to Seabourn and currently within cancellation fees.

The future cruise credit granted using the Seabourn cancellation policy will be valid for 12 months only from the date of issue and may then be used to book sailings departing through December 31, 2022.

Additional packages and drinks packages will be refunded rather than moved into cruise credit and the future cruise credit is not transferable.

If a cancellation occurs within the 30 days and do not want a FCC, the following cancellation fees will apply:

Cruises 25 Days Or Less:

Days Prior to Departure Cancellation Fee:

  • 120-91 days 15% of full fare
  • 90-46 days 50% of full fare
  • 45-31 days 75% of full fare
  • 30 days or less, or non-appearance 100% of full fare

Cruises Of 26 Days Or More:

Days Prior to Departure Cancellation Fee

  • 150-121 days 15% of full fare
  • 120-91 days 50% of full fare
  • 90-76 days 75% of full fare
  • 75 days or less, or non-appearance 100% of full fare

Seabourn-Encore-aerial

Royal Caribbean

Guests with Royal Caribbean can cancel up to 48 hours before your sail date and get a future cruise credit good for 12 months or more. Applies to existing bookings and new ones made by November 30, 2020. But, if you are looking for a refunds, here are the cancellation charges below that apply.

The cruise and flights will only be deemed cancelled from the date we receive notice of cancellation from you or your travel advisor.

The following cancellation charges will then apply to your cruise:

Days prior to cruise departure/Cancellation charges

  • 151 or more days Deposit is refundable, except for non-refundable deposit promotions and airfares
  • 150 – 71 days Loss of deposit
  • 70 – 46 days  25% of fare*
  • 45 – 31 days 50% of fare*
  • 30 – 15 days 75% of fare*
  • 4 days or less 100% of fare

Holiday sailings – Christmas, New Year and Easter sailings. Applicable to Trans Pacific and Asia repositioning cruise departures from September 2018 (cruise portion only)

  • 151 or more days Deposit is refundable, except for non-refundable deposit promotions and airfares
  • 150 – 91 days Loss of deposit
  • 90 – 61 days 25% of fare*
  • 60 – 41 days 50% of fare*
  • 40 – 26 days 75% of fare*
  • 25 days or less 100% of fare *In instances where the deposit amount paid is higher than the 25/50/75% of cruise fare cancellation charge, then the highest of the two amounts is payable as the cancellation charge.

Azamara

Azamara will allow guests to change any sailing you book by 30 November 2020 up to 48 hours before you sail to cancel and receive 100% of the amount paid in a Future Cruise Credit.

Guests will have three compensation options to choose from:

  1. 125% Future Cruise Credit to book a new cruise by December 31, 2021 for sailings departing on or before April 30, 2023. This amount will be based on total cruise fare paid. Future Cruise Credit will automatically be issued by November 4th, 2020 via email. If you have purchased pre- or post-land packages through Azamara, you will also receive compensation in the same form as your cruise fare. If you opted into the Cruise with Confidence 100% Future Cruise Credit for this sailing, you do not qualify for this offer.
  2. Lift and Shift: Or, you can keep the cruise vacation plans to the same destination and move the existing booking to a 2021 or January to March 2022 sailing within four weeks of the originally scheduled sailing. If we don’t hear from you, we will automatically issue a Future Cruise Credit.
  3. 100% Refund: Or, you have until the end of this year – December 31, 2020 – to request a refund and deactivate the Future Cruise Credit certificate. You can expect to receive your refund 45 days after you submit your request.

Cancellation policies

The following cancellation charges will then apply to your cruise:

All Cruises & Cruise tours (Cruise Portion Only)/Days Prior to Cruise Departure Cancellation Charges

  • 121 or more days fee of AU$100pp, except in the case of non- refundable deposit promotions and airfare
  • 120-91 days 25% of fare*
  • 90-61 days 50% of fare*
  • 60-31 days 75% of fare*
  • 30 days or less 100% of fare*
Azamara Journey

Azamara Journey

Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises are offering a Cruise with Confidence program which allows guests to cancel 48 hours before the departure. If you do, you will be entitled to a Future Cruise Credit. The chart below outlines the last day to cancel a Celebrity cruise and still receive cruise credit.

Here are the cancellation charges if you are looking for a refund.

Days prior to cruise departure and cancellation charges:

151 or more days: deposit is refundable except in the case of non- refundable deposit promotions and airfares.

150-71 days:           loss of deposit

70-46 days:            25% of fare*

45-31 days:             50% of fare*

30-15 days:             75% of fare*

14 days or less:       100% of fare

Holiday Sailings – Christmas, New Year & Easter(Cruise Portion Only)

*In instances where the deposit amount paid is higher than the 25/50/75% of cruise fare cancellation charge, then the highest of the two amounts is payable as the cancellation charge i.e. the full deposit amount is retained.

Celebrity Solstice

Silversea

Silversea will allow you to cancel your cruise up to 30 days prior to departure for all voyages until 30 December, 2021, without penalties when selecting a Future Cruise Credit. Applicable for all bookings made prior to 30 November 2020.

Upon cancellation of the voyage, Silversea will email you the Future Cruise Credit, within 15 days, to the email address in the reservation. If you booked through a travel agency, your travel advisor will also receive a copy of the Future Cruise Credit. If you booked through a tour operator, please reach out to your tour operator agent.

But, if you are looking for a refund, here is what you will lose:

When guess cancel less than 48 hours in advance: Penalty will be 100% of the booking

Cruise cancellation requests received within 120 days of the initial sailing date will be subject to the following charges, regardless of suite resale:

  • 120 – 91 days prior to the initial sailing date: 15% of the total cruise fare per person;
  • 90 – 61 days prior to the initial sailing date: 50% of the total cruise fare per person;
  • 60 – 31 days prior to the initial sailing date: 75% of the total cruise fare per person;
  • 30 – 0 days prior to the initial sailing date or nonappearance at the time of sailing: 100% of the total cruise fare per person.
  • Guests who downgrade suite categories within 120 days of the initial sailing date will incur cancellation penalties on the difference in cruise fare between the two suites.

Cruise tickets must be returned to Silversea before refunds can be processed.

Silver Spirit - La Terrazza

Silver Spirit – La Terrazza

Norwegian Cruise Line

For cruises through December 31: cancel up to 48 hours prior to your holiday start date for a Future Cruise Credit; or a full refund when you cancel up to 60 days prior.

For cruises January 1 – March 31, 2021: cancel up to 15 days prior for a Future Cruise Credit, or a full refund when you cancel up to 60 days prior.

For cruises April 1 – October 31, 2021: cancel up to 15 days prior and receive a Future Cruise Credit, or a full refund when you cancel up to 120 days prior.

Cancellation schedule for cruises departing between 1 November 2020 – 31 March 2021

All Sail Dates / All Categories / Any Cruise Length

  • Up to 31 days* Nil Nil Nil fee
  • 30 days or less 100% 100% 100% of cruise fare

*Deposits refundable until 61 days prior sailing.

Cancellation schedule for cruises departing 1 April 2021 and beyond

Where cruise accommodation is for the Haven suites, garden villas or the cruise is a holiday sailing.

Cruise-tour cancellation fee / Land cancellation / Add-on cancellation fee

  • Up to 120 days prior to sailing Nil Nil Nil
  • 119-106 days 25%* Nil Nil
  • 105-91 days 50%* Nil 10%
  • 90 – 61 days 75%* Nil 50%
  • 60 days or less 100%* 100%* 100%*

Where cruise accommodation is other than as set out above and the cruise is between 1 – 6 days

  • Up to 90 days prior to sailing Nil Nil Nil
  • 89-76 days                                  25%* Nil Nil
  • 75-61 days                                  50%* 50% 50%
  • 60-31 days                                  75%* 75% 75%
  • 30 days or less                           100% 100% 100%

Where cruise accommodation is other than as set out above and the cruise is for 7 days or more including Hawaii

  • Up to 120 days prior to sailing       Nil Nil Nil
  • 119-91 days                                         25% Nil Nil
  • 90-61 days                                          50% 50% 50%
  • 60-31 days                                           75% 75% 75%
  • 30 days or less                                   100% 100% 100%
    * Or deposit, Whichever is higher
    ** Excluding Norwegian Sky

Cancellation Fee for 3-8 Guests

There is no cancellation fee for Guests 3-8 if cancelled outside of the cancellation schedule as set out in Chart B above. If such reservations are cancelled within the cancellation schedule, then the applicable cancellation fee will apply for Guests 3-8.

Oceania Cruises

Reservations made between 5th October and 31st October 2020, for scheduled voyages departing on or before 31st October 2021 that have been paid in full can cancel for any reason up to 15 days prior to departure and receive a Future Cruise Credit equal to 100% of the cruise fare paid. Situational decisions are also made.

Why Australians will love the new Oceania shipsRegent Seven Seas

For reservations made between May 18 and July 31 2020 on voyages embarking through December 2022, guests who have paid in full have the option to cancel up to 15 days prior to the departure date and receive a 100%  future cruise credit.

For reservations made between August 1 and October 31, 2020 on voyages embarking on or before  October 31, 2021, guests who have paid in full have the option to cancel up to 15 days prior to their departure date and receive a 100% future cruise credit.

For guests who wish to cancel and forgo the future cruise credit, the standard cancellation schedule will apply. Penalties will be calculated on total booking amount (inclusive of all Future Cruise Credit amounts).

Future cruise credits may be applied to a new reservation made within one year of the future cruise credits issue date. Future cruise credit may be used towards any voyage sailing before December 31, 2022, if booked prior to October 31, 2020.

Standard cancellation policy

For cruises onboard the Seven Seas Explorer, Seven Seas Voyager, Seven Seas Mariner and Seven Seas Navigator the policy is as follows:

The following cancellation penalties apply to all cruises of 1 to 14 days in length:
Suite Category:                                                       RS         MS-H
151 days prior to departure                            25%       100*

  • 150 – 121 days prior to departure          50%       15%
  • 120 – 91 days prior to departure            75%        50%
  • 90 – 76 days prior to departure             100%       75%
  • 75 – 0 days prior to departure                 100%      100%

For cruises onboard the Seven Seas Splendor the following cancellation penalties apply:

Category                                   RS-SS       A-H
Days Prior to Cancellation Amount Vacation Date Per person

  • Deposit Date – 151    25%         $100*
  • 150 – 121                     50%         15%
  • 120 – 91                       50%          50%
  • 90 – 76                        75%           75%
  • 75 – 0                          100%         100%

Voyages 100 Nights or Longer
Category  Suites                        RS-SS             A-H
Days Prior Cancellation Amount Vacation Date Per person

  • Deposit Date – 181        10%         $500
  • 180 – 151                          25%         25%
  • 150 – 121                           50%        50%
  • 120 – 91                             75%        75%
  • 90 – 0                                100%     100%
The Regent Seven Seas Splendor

The Regent Seven Seas Splendor

Dream Cruises

Operating under the automatically applied, ‘Cruise As You Wish’ policy, guests can cancel their cruise booking up to 48 hours prior to sailing and receive a 100% Future Cruise Credit. The credit is redeemable for sailing from Singapore on or before September 30, 2021.

All pre-purchased packages (drinks and shore) will be refunded to the original form of payment.

In order to receive a full refund, guests must cancel their cruise more than 100 days prior to departure.

The standard cancellation policy will apply to any guests who do not want a future cruise credit.

  • More than 100 days prior to departure Free refund, except non-refundable amounts
  • 100 – 46 days prior to departure 10% of Full Cabin Fare
  • 45 – 15 days prior to departure     30% of Full Cabin Fare
  • 14 – 08 days prior to departure     50% of Full Cabin Fare
  • 7 days or less prior to departure    100% of Full Cabin Fare
  • No Show / No Written Notice        100% of Full Cabin Fare
Global Dream exterior 3

Global Dream

Star Cruises

Operating under the same automatically applied, ‘Cruise As You Wish’ policy, as Dream Cruises, guests who choose to cruise with Star, can cancel their cruise booking up to 48 hours prior to sailing and receive a 100% Future Cruise Credit. The credit is redeemable for sailing from Singapore on or before September 30 2021.

All pre-purchased packages (drinks and shore) will be refunded to the original form of payment

In order to receive a full refund, guests must cancel their cruise more than 100 days prior to departure.

The standard cancellation policy will apply to any guests not interested in taking advantage of the Cruise As You Wish policy.

  • More than 100 days prior to departure Free refund, except non-refundable amounts
  • 100 – 46 days prior to departure 10% of Full Cabin Fare
  • 45 – 15 days prior to departure 30% of Full Cabin Fare
  • 14 – 08 days prior to departure 50% of Full Cabin Fare
  • 7 days or less prior to departure 100% of Full Cabin Fare
  • No Show / No Written Notice 100% of Full Cabin Fare

Dream Cruises in AustraliaCrystal Cruises

If passengers have paid their full fare more than 60 days prior to departure, and cancel their booking, a full 100% refund will be issued.

If a passenger needs to cancel with less than 60 days notice, the following cancellation schedule is then implemented:

  • Admin Fee – Waived
  • 60-31 days – 25% penalty
  • 30 – 8 days – 50% penalty
  • 7 days or less – 100% penalty.

Crystal SymphonyViking

The Viking Risk-Free Guarantee allows guests to change their cruise date up until 24 hours before their planned departure and still receive full cruise credit. Guests will then have 24 months to select their new date and use their Risk-Free Guarantee Future Cruise Voucher to make a new reservation on any river, ocean or expedition cruise.

Viking Risk-Free Guarantee Future Cruise Vouchers are transferable.

Requests for a refund rather than future credit will be processed as a regular cancellation and will follow the schedule below:

  • 121+ days or more is $500 per person for cruise/tour/land or $1,500 per person for air-inclusive.
  • 120-60 days is 50% of full fare.
  • 59-0 days is 100% of full fare.

For World Cruise voyages, the following schedule applies:

  • 181+ days or more is $1000 per person.
  • 180-151 days is 20% of full fare.
  • 150-121 days is 40% of full fare.
  • 120-91 days is 60% of full fare.
  • 90-61 is 80% of full fare.
  • 60 days or less is 100% of full fare.

viking Norwegian fjords

Ponant

Any new Ponant booking will be covered under their ‘Booking with Serenity’ policy. The cruise booking will be fully refundable up to 90 days after confirmation and guests can cancel up to 30 days prior to departure and receive a refund or transfer the full paid amount to a future booking.

If a cancellation is received with less than 30 days until departure, a full 100% fee will be charged in line with the regular cancellation schedule.

However, If the guest cancels within 30 days prior to departure due to being diagnosed with COVID, Ponant won’t charge any fees and will hold monies as a future cruise credit to use within 24 months from the cancellation date.

The line is also charging a 10% deposit rather than the usual 25% and final payments are not due until 30 days prior to the cruise, rather than 90.

The Ponant future cruise credit is transferable to family and can be changed once without being charged any fees.

ponants-fourth-explorer-class-ship

Ponant’s new ship

MSC Cruises

The MSC flexible booking program allows guests to “reschedule” free of charge up to 15 days before departure for cruise only and up to 21 days before departure for Fly & Cruise.

MSC cruises have taken a choose your own adventure approach, guest can decide what they would like refunded and what they would like to keep in cruise credit.

The cruise credit is inclusive of cruise fare as well as any onboard services such as shore excursions and drinks packages or guests can decide to have these items refunded.

If the guest has booked the flight with MSC they have the option for a refund or it can be added to the future cruise credit.

MSC cruise credit is transferable.

MSC Magnifica

MSC Magnifica

Coral Expeditions

As the only line currently cruising Australian waters, Coral Expeditions booking flexibility policy is centred around compensating guests if they are affected by a future COVID cancellation.

In the event of a forced cancellation, Coral will offer 100% cruise credit to be used within 24 months or beyond, if needed.

The credit can then be used on any available voyage and guests will not have any additional fees or price rises on a like for like cruise.

Coral will allow one complimentary name change if guests are unable to travel in future, they can transfer this to another guest if desired.

Standard cancellation rates apply to Coral Expeditions and are as follows:

  • Up to 90 days prior to departure – forfeit your deposit of 20% of the fare.
  • 60 to 89 days prior to departure – forfeit 50% of the fare.
  • No-show to 59 days prior to departure – forfeit 100% of the fare.

Transfer Fees Date change fee made more than 90 days before departure – $500pp fee.

Date change within 90 days of departure is considered a cancellation and standard Cancellation Policy applies.

A name change/transfer of the booking to another person is considered a cancellation and Cancellation Penalties (as above) will apply. A $200 per person fee is applicable for any amendments not requiring a date change after booking is confirmed.

Coral Adventurer

Hurtigurten

Refunds are offered to Hurtigruten passengers who cancel their cruise with more than 90 days until scheduled departure. However, cancellation fees of expedition cruises are $225 and for Norwegian coastal cruises a $150 fee will apply.

When booking flights, hotels, and transfers through Hurtigruten before October 31, the “Book with Confidence” policy applies.

If a guest has to cancel with less than 90 days until departure, the below cancellation fees will apply.

Norwegian Coastal Voyages

When the cancellation letter is received by us before departure Charges as a % of the total holiday cost (excl. insurance premiums)

  • 60 or more days Retention of deposit
  • 42-59 days 30%
  • 28-41 days 60%
  • 14-27 days 90%
  • Less than 14 days 100%

Expedition Cruises

When the cancellation letter is received by us before departure Charges as a % of the total holiday cost (excl. insurance premiums)

  • 90 or more days 20%
  • 60-89 days 40%
  • 28-59 days 70%
  • 15-27 days 90%
  • Less than 15 days 100%
Hurtigruten

Hurtigruten

APT

APT passengers can postpone their holiday and transfer their deposit for another date or trip up to 65 days prior to the original departure date for an international trip and 100 days prior to a domestic trip.

A future holiday credit equal to 100% of the amount paid on the booking, is being offered to all APT suspended tours and cruises, this includes APT absorbing any applicable third-party fees (although some airline fees may apply). This is valid for travel with any APT brands up until the end of 2022.

APT cruise credit is transferable and if other packages such as pre and post-tour accommodation are booked, this is then included in the amount that the guests credit.

The 2021 holiday package can be postponed up to 65 days prior to the departure date and must be booked onto a new date within 12 months of the original tour date.

Guests wishing to cancel a booking for departures not suspended, departing in 2020 onwards: Normal fees will apply as outlined below:

  • 100 days or more Loss of deposit
  • 99-61 days 50% of holiday package price
  • 60 days or less 100% of holiday package price

apt-luke-nguyenScenic

Scenic guests who have been affected by a booking that has been unable to operate or who have cancelled their booking voluntarily under our COVID policy can choose to defer travel plans by transferring to an alternate departure date or itinerary up to 60 days prior to the cruise commencing with no Scenic fees (third party fees may apply).

This policy is also available for new 2021 and 2022 bookings. (Excludes Russia cruises and tours, South America, Australia and New Zealand tours).

All components of the Scenic Group reservation will be moved to Future Travel Credit.

Cancellations outside of the flexible booking policy will be held to the standard cancellation policy as outlines below:

  • 65 days and over Loss of deposit
  • 64 to 14 days 50% of Tour Price
  • 13 to 8 days 75 % of Tour Price
  • 7 days and less 100% of Tour Price
The Scenic Eclipse inaugural voyage

The Scenic Eclipse inaugural voyage

READERS’ CHOICE AWARDS

Readers' Choice Awards

Vote in this year’s special Readers’ Choice Awards

No doubt 2020 will go down in cruise history as the year of the pandemic – a once in a generation event. And this year’s Cruise Passenger Readers’ Choice Awards will reflect it.

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