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Carnival needs to think about how it come across to its customers ...

Cruizer

Well-Known Member
#1
I started cruising with Carnival in 2001. I'll be taking my tenth cruise with Carnival in September of this year. However, if Carnival continues to play games with its customers, especially customers who have returned to Carnival on multiple occasions, then all it is going to do is get its core customers upset. At a time when Carnival has been making the news for all the wrong reasons, at at a time when Carnival is still the punch line in many of Jay Leno's jokes, Carnival should be at least treating people with a little more respect.

I booked a cruise in September. It is a drive to port for me. Around the end of last year the ship was chartered and I was booted off. No problem, I just booked the same cruise, on the same ship, in the same cabin, two weeks earlier (it actually works out better for me - though I didn't know it at the time and certainly Carnival didn't know it).

At any rate, now the price is $40 more. I my TA asks Carnival to honor the original price, since it was Carnival's choice to force me to move - not mine. Carnival refused. My original rate was an ES rate as is my new booking.

After I rebooked the price went up another $20. So everyone else is posting about price drops and I can't take advantage.

Finally, last month the price drops enough that I can ask for the new lower price. It is only $20 but at least it is something. Note - final payment is not due yet.

So Carnival tells my TA that they will not honor the new lower price, but will give me a $25 OBC. I'm okay with that. So far so good - except I'm still $15 over what I originally booked for.

Then there is another price drop and now I'm down to what I originally booked - I thought. Carnival tells my agent that it will honor the price drop, but I'll lose my OBC. Okay, $15 is $15.

However, it turns out I have a higher level than the level being quoted, so I'm not eligible for the price drop. Unfortunately Carnival doesn't catch the error until after the change is made. So now I'm out $5. My agent asks then to reinstate me to the price and OBC I had before they tried to make the change, but reservations cannot do that. Someone else has to.

My agent informed me today that Carnival will not agree to put me back into the same position I was in prior to the change. My agent is going to attempt to reason with someone else at Carnival next week.

Now I may not be Carnival's best customer, but still, I am booked on my tenth cruise. Why the is Carnival treating me like some they wished would go somewhere else? Especially now, when they should be putting an emphasis on customer service.

This is not going to ruin my cruise, nor is it going to prevent me from booking with Carnival. However, it is leaving a bad taste in my mouth and I'll likely book less often with Carnival as a result.

Uncle Bob was in marketing. I believe the current CEO is from accounting. Perhaps their new consultant can explain the advantages of customer respect to the accountants.
 

Jamman

Carnival Specialist
Community Sponsor
#2
I understand that you are frustrated, and rightfully so. These days, the cruise boards are loaded with threads from people who are having problems with Carnival's so called customer service. I have been extremely lucky, knock on wood, that I have not run into any issues that you, and many others have run into. Following your situation closely from the beginning, things just didn't make sense to me. First, not price protecting you when they displaced you due to a charter, was just wrong. Secondly, how they handled that first price drop boggled my mind. Under the ES rules, if you qualify for a price drop, and it is before final payment, you are given a price reduction on your remaining balance, NOT OBC. OBC's or upgrades are only supposed to happen AFTER final payment. On top of that, refusing to give you the $20. dollar price reduction, but giving you a $25. OBC, made no sense at all. I believe the gist of the problem is, that after the Triumph issue, there have been so many different fares and "specials" ($50. OBC, Half Deposits, etc. etc.), that the waters have been so muddied, that Carnival's booking system, and the people that use it, are in a perpetual state of confusion. It's probably going to take some time before this situation resolves itself. In the meantime you, and many, many others will continue to be frustrated. Have your TA keep at it, and hopefully, eventually, you will get satisfaction.
 

Cruizer

Well-Known Member
#3
Here is the reply my TA received from Carnival ...

Hello (this was addressed to my TA),

Thank you for contacting us. We appreciate the opportunity to be of assistance. I have reviewed this booking and see that the onboard credit (me) had was part of the 4 day sale we were offering under the Early Saver Fall and Winter sale that had a bonus of onboard credit and as another price protection has been done, the promotion has changed and no longer qualifies for the onboard credit offered with the previous promotion. Thank you for choosing Carnival.
 

Jamman

Carnival Specialist
Community Sponsor
#4
Here is the reply my TA received from Carnival ...

Hello (this was addressed to my TA),

Thank you for contacting us. We appreciate the opportunity to be of assistance. I have reviewed this booking and see that the onboard credit (me) had was part of the 4 day sale we were offering under the Early Saver Fall and Winter sale that had a bonus of onboard credit and as another price protection has been done, the promotion has changed and no longer qualifies for the onboard credit offered with the previous promotion. Thank you for choosing Carnival.
Yep, that's what the rats nest of a gazillion fares will do to you. If you had a fare that included OBC (like you) or Half Deposit, and you price match to another fare that doesn't have those terms, you will lose them. So if you price match in the future, be sure that the fare you are matching to is LESS that your current fare PLUS any promotional OBC. If you have a fare rate with the promotional Half Deposit, and you price match to a lower fare that doesn't have the Half Deposit promotion, you will have to come up with the other half of your deposit immediately. Would not be a problem for me if the price drop was worth it, as you would be paying the second half of the deposit at final payment anyway. However, I have heard horror stories of people that did not know this,(for whatever reason), and had their cruises cancelled due to non payment of the full deposit!!! Bottom line is BE CAREFUL!!! It's a MINEFIELD out there!!! Sorry Zef, I have no solution for you. Still think that it STINKS that you weren't price protected when you were bumped!!

 

Cruizer

Well-Known Member
#5
The bottom line to all of this is, it is a small amount and I'm not going to lose any sleep over it. However, if Carnival is going to treat people like this, then I'll just book less often with Carnival. I'm not going to stop cruising with Carnival, but I am going to slow down. Also, no way would I now take a first time cruiser on a Carnival cruise. Something like this could turn them off of cruising before they ever had the chance to find out how fun it is.
 

John

I'm on Island Time
Staff member
#6
On a slightyly different note, I have found that booking early saves you a TON.. even over the best SALE prices. So when you find a ship book early. :)
 

Cruizer

Well-Known Member
#7
Had a long talk with my TA today. Seem she ask the Carnival rep to see which would be better and the rep changed it without my agent's authority. Then the rep couldn't change it back because the sale with the OBC was over.

Now I have every reason to believe my TA because she does the same thing to me. I could take advantage of two out of three discounts offered by Royal Caribbean. I told her which one was better. She told me she would verify that at the time of booking. So I have no doubt that she did the same with the Carnival rep who simply jumped the gun.

Meanwhile my TA spent around three hours so far trying to get this straightened out - for $5?!? :hammer: I told her enough was enough. Lets pay off the cruise and put this behind us. There are other cruise lines out there (even in California).
 

MisterD21

If you take me serious, it's your problem
#8
cruizer,

i think this is simply a case of carnival running too many promotions so close together in a short period of time. I think had they just run two or three promotions in that same short period of time there wouldn't have been nearly the confusion, or seemingly lack of service(but i believe carnival ran 5 separate promotions in the space of a month and a half). add to that fiasco, tens of thousands of guests trying to get the best rates, and OBC's for their monies worth and it must have been a nightmare for carnival's customer care center. bear in mind that that isn't even accounting for the calls they received from guests requesting other information such as special needs, cruise specific questions, and other general questions regarding their cruise and i think one can understand how something like this can happen. I am not saying carnival didn't drop the ball in regards to your situation(which they certainly did). I am certain you are not alone in receiving less than stellar customer service during this period. Which unfortunately, is simply carnival shooting themselves in the foot at a time when they could have risen to the top, and provided exemplary service which would have certainly guaranteed return customers. In my opinion, carnival would have benefited greatly by not only securing your price when they bumped you, but then by awarding you a price drop for having done so in the first place, as well as giving you the OBC when they screwed up... if for nothing else but say ooops we messed up, sorry about that. You would have been happy, came back here and posted a positive experience... probably would have been a little free-er with your wallet onboard(because we all know that when you recieve an OBC, you generally spend more than what you have in OBC)... but they didn't, and that is what is really dissapointing here. Not that you didn't get what you think you deserved... but that carnival didn't step up, and ensure their customer was happy.
 

Cruizer

Well-Known Member
#9
cruizer,

i think this is simply a case of carnival running too many promotions so close together in a short period of time. I think had they just run two or three promotions in that same short period of time there wouldn't have been nearly the confusion, or seemingly lack of service(but i believe carnival ran 5 separate promotions in the space of a month and a half). add to that fiasco, tens of thousands of guests trying to get the best rates, and OBC's for their monies worth and it must have been a nightmare for carnival's customer care center. bear in mind that that isn't even accounting for the calls they received from guests requesting other information such as special needs, cruise specific questions, and other general questions regarding their cruise and i think one can understand how something like this can happen. I am not saying carnival didn't drop the ball in regards to your situation(which they certainly did). I am certain you are not alone in receiving less than stellar customer service during this period. Which unfortunately, is simply carnival shooting themselves in the foot at a time when they could have risen to the top, and provided exemplary service which would have certainly guaranteed return customers. In my opinion, carnival would have benefited greatly by not only securing your price when they bumped you, but then by awarding you a price drop for having done so in the first place, as well as giving you the OBC when they screwed up... if for nothing else but say ooops we messed up, sorry about that. You would have been happy, came back here and posted a positive experience... probably would have been a little free-er with your wallet onboard(because we all know that when you recieve an OBC, you generally spend more than what you have in OBC)... but they didn't, and that is what is really dissapointing here. Not that you didn't get what you think you deserved... but that carnival didn't step up, and ensure their customer was happy.
Exactly! :doubleup:
 

Mbandy

Well-Known Member
#10
Welcome to MY world. I deal with it every day. It is enough to drive you to distraction sometimes.

Sounds like your T/A did a great job in trying to get it straight and a agree, over $5....REALLY? But rules are rules, after all
:smack:
Carnival has become more and more T/A unfriendly in recent years and especially months and they know it. They are starting a program called "Carnival Conversations" where T/A's will have a chance to sound off an let them know what we...and our clients are thinking about them these days. It won't be pretty.


There's a shake up in management at Carnival right now and with Bob Dickenson coming back on the scene I'll bet some positive changes are on the way!!