A cruise is one mode of travel that makes cancellations a little more complicated than others. For example, when a flight is canceled, it’s inconvenient, but it’s simple to book another one. But when a cruise gets canceled, it may be a long time before you can go on another. In the event your cruise vacation is derailed by a cancellation, here are a few tips to help soften the blow.
Common Cancellation Reasons
Keep in mind that when there is a forecast for extreme weather, there is a chance that your cruise will be canceled. Although cruise ships can re-route in an attempt to avoid inclement weather, it isn’t always possible.
Most major cruise line ships are large, and even though there are lots of measures taken to ensure the safety of the passengers, unexpected issues can arise, such as mechanical failures, and the cruise line may decide to postpone or cancel a cruise indefinitely. Cancellations are inconvenient, but it is better than being stuck in the middle of the ocean and being at risk of an accident.
Another common reason for cancellation is the risk of illness. Cruise ships carry hundreds of passengers at once, so there’s no way to completely avoid coming into contact with germs. If a passenger is found to have a contagious illness and too many people could become exposed, the cruise will most likely be canceled, even if the trip has already begun.
What to Expect if Your Cruise Is Canceled
The difference between a canceled flight and a canceled cruise is quite noticeable. When a flight gets canceled, between all of the airlines and times available, finding a replacement flight is a lot simpler. Unfortunately, cruises don’t come around as often as flights, so it’s understandable to get upset when your cruise is canceled. In the event of a cancellation, some options will help lessen the blow.
The first thing to do is remain calm, as getting upset will not change the circumstances. Most major cruise lines offer remedies for canceled trips. Luckily, when a cruise is cut short or axed altogether, most cruise lines offer refunds. Some may offer passengers an alternative cruise. In other cases, passengers can get other perks like extra vouchers or discounted future bookings.
These are all great options, but it is important to keep in mind that nothing is guaranteed and it all depends on the reason for cancellation, the terms and conditions of your trip, and other factors.
If you aren’t satisfied with the compensation being offered, it’s best to contact the cruise line directly and be specific about why you aren’t satisfied. Often, they are very understanding and can assist you in getting the compensation that you feel is deserved.
As a last resort, you can contact your lawyer or utilize arbitration services should you feel that the cruise line is simply not doing enough. There have been cases where passengers were promised one thing and received another, so it is best to pay close attention in case the situation has to be escalated.
Use Travel Insurance
When you book a cruise, no matter the cost, it’s smart to purchase travel insurance. Not only does it offer some protection if your cruise is canceled, but it also provides a security net in case you or a loved one has a medical injury while onboard. Once you have travel insurance, you are protected in a variety of scenarios, such as flying out of a different airport or paying for unplanned hotel stays.
Travel insurance is always optional, but if you are concerned about unexpected issues arising, it will come in handy. If you are skeptical about getting travelers’ insurance, you can also research the choices that your credit card offers as an alternative or consult with a travel agent to determine the best approach.
Prepare for the Worst but Hope for the Best
It’s unfortunate when a cruise has to be canceled. It’s a huge inconvenience when all of your time saving and planning goes down the drain. As long as you prepare properly for the worst, you can still have a smooth experience despite cancellation.
Resources like professional cruise planners, lawyers, and travel insurance can make dealing with a cancellation process much easier to bear. If the cruise was canceled at the fault of the company, you can expect some type of compensation, so not all will be lost. Utilize the tips here to plan your trip and remain worry free, even amid cancellations.