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About graphicguy

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About Me

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    Travel, Golf, being out and about
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    I like them all (but haven't sailed them all)
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  1. Agree on that point. At the very least ad revenues would explode allowing TAs to advertise on this site. Plus, there would be some real world input here about TAs we use. I've had more than one PCC (happened to be with Carnival) who dropped the ball on my booking by going direct. Try getting your booking issues resolved when a PCC gets into a "misunderstanding" about what you wanted, booked it incorrectly, and play "cover their a**" leaving you with little to no recourse as you have to take your issue up the ladder for resolution.
  2. Agree about that. Like anything else, there are good and bad TAs, just like there are good and bad NCL PCCs. But, my experience with NCL PCCs, good luck finding one who is there more than a year. My TA, on the other hand, has been booking for me for a decade or more.
  3. You make a good point. NCL will et you and your TA know when they received the cancellation/refund request. Mine came via email from both NCL and my TA. Like anything else, you'll have good and bad TAs as well as good and bad Personal Cruise Consultants direct with NCL. Aside from the "deals" OBC and discounts my TA gives me, she's been helping me for years. Plus, she helps me regardless of which cruise line I want to cruise. She has access to ALL of them. She also has sailed most mainstream lines. She knows what you should book (cabins, excursions, packages, etc). And will steer me away from what really isn't worth the money. When I worked with NCL directly, it was a crap shoot whether my PCC would be around long enough to help me 90 days down the line, or booking subsequent cruises. Again, some were pretty good. Some really didn't care to do any changes or follow-up once the cruise was booked. Regarding the OP, it's not clear whether she did or didn't get the cancellation/refund form in on time. And, if s/he did, where the hiccup was for the TA to tell her/him she didn't qualify for a refund.
  4. That's a different story. If OP didn't follow the procedure, and wants the TA to take the blame as a result, small claims court will not help. Only person to blame is yourself at that juncture.
  5. Only when necessary. Bill me incorrectly? Fix it. Can't accommodate your own T's and C's, tell me why. If it's something you can control but choose not to? We go to court. I'm not the sort of person to sit back and say "what can I do?". You can do something. But, don't complain if you're not willing to be fair or you're right but not willing to fight for it.
  6. Always prefer getting a positive result without going to court. That's a last resort. But, if a company becomes defensive with me over what it is clearly an error on the company's part, I won't argue with them. I just go to court. As an aside, after my free 90-days of cell phone service was finished, I moved to Verizon. What's not clear to me, was the OP's request in writing and sent by the correct date to the TA? Again, TA owns the reservation. It's up to them to manage it for the client. Most cruise lines push you back to the TA once the cruise representative finds out you didn't book directly. If, as the OP insinuates, s/he sent the written cancellation and refund request to the TA on time (NCL had some schedules the requests had to adhere to), then it's cut and dry. TA is culpable. It's up to the TA at that point to act as the OP's agent in dealing with NCL and getting the refund issued. If, on the other hand, there was no written request made (which was required by NCL) by the OP, or one that was not submitted according to the guidelines, then the only recourse is to accept the offer of FCC.
  7. Hmmmmm.....the Epic was our first cruise on a Norwegian Ship since sailing the (now defunct) SS Norway. So, having a cruise ship so modern, offering so much, and so far removed from the SS Norway was stunning. We had a Balcony and loved the sink, shower and toilet set up. I guess if you're sailing with someone who you is not your spouse or significant other, there might be some who didn't like the set up. But, when doing something like shaving while the other person was showering was quite convenient. Have sailed both the Getaway and Breakaway twice each. The WATERFRONT on those ships was such a delight, we ate meals and drinks out there every day. Loved that feature. Sailed the GEM....just a different and welcome experience after coming off of a bunch of mega ship cruises on MSC, RCCL, and NCL. Met some great people on that ship (who I still love chatting with in here). Also sailed Escape twice. Probably my favorite NCL ship. Was going to sail the Bliss to Alaska on October. Clearly, that's not happening. But, someday I'll take that cruise. Escape is my fave (so far) but have loved them all.
  8. They had small claims court at night....not during the work day. Plus, they gave plenty of notice as to the hearing date so plans could be made. If it's between me losing $2K, $3K, $4K or more, I'd make the time to go to small claims court. If you can work it out with the Travel Agent, all the better. But, it sounds like the OP's Travel Agent isn't willing to admit their error. That being the case, I'd file my suit.
  9. My TA offers a pretty hefty OBC and booking discounts that I can't get dealing direct. Plus, she always lets me know if particular bargains and sales on cabins I wouldn't have known without her looking at cruises all day, every day. She was the only one who kept me informed as to what was going on with Hurricane Dorian while I was in a Miami hotel waiting to board my cruise. She was calling me until 3:00 a.m. just to let me know what the port and cruise lines were doing. Cruise ended up cancelling and she took care of changing all of my flights to get home, and hotel reservations. I have never lost a small claims suit, either. I'm in Cincinnati. Cost me $35 to file. As you say, show up on time. Likely, the Travel Agent had to hire a local lawyer to represent them, if they choose to do so. If you have your paperwork in order showing the cancellation, the date you cancelled, who you sent it to, etc., disposition should be quick and in your favor. Any of these companies you deal with that are remote (as is the case with on-line Travel Agents), find it's more expensive to hire a lawyer and litigate in small claims court than to just admit their error. One such suit a year ago was against AT&T. Big company......they made a mistake on my cell phone bill. The mistake kept happening every month. Every month I would call their customer service and get it corrected, only to have them do the same thing the next month. Finally, I refused the extra charges (paying the legitimate charges), and they cut off my cell service. I filed in small claims court. They sent a lawyer who drove 5 hours, one way, for the hearing. He really had no explanation as to why my bill was incorrect. Magistrate asked us to see if we could privately come to an agreement. I was going to ask for a continuance (which meant the lawyer would have had to make another trip). He asked what I wanted. I got a new iPhone and 3 months of free mobile phone service for my trouble. My bill has never been wrong again. Point is, if you're right, don't be afraid to make your own case. If the TA screwed up and didn't submit your request for cancellation and refund, then hold them accountable. If you've got the evidence on your side, you should be good to go. Find the execs or owner of the travel agency. Show him/her your cancellation and refund request. If that doesn't do it, file in small claims court.
  10. Yes....the form to cancel the reservation and request a refund. Once you book through a TA, they own the reservation. You don't deal with NCL directly at that point. The TA services the reservation. My form asked for the RES #, the date of my sailing, all who were sailing under the reservation, etc. Then I signed it. Sent it to my TA and also kept a copy. I have emails with the cancellation/refund form attached. That shows dates and times and attachments associated with the request.
  11. If it's a form like my TA has (my TA calls it a LETTER OF CANCELLATION) it's essentially a sheet that's printed on the TA's letter head stating you want to cancel your cruise. It should have the Res# and the sailing date. It should also have a CYA statement which says although the TA will process the request, final disposition is done at the cruise lines' discretion. At least, that's what mine said. Pretty cut and dried, as I mentioned before. It would be helpful if the OP kept track of the dates and time of the phone calls, and what was discussed. Even better, have the names of the people s/he discussed cancellation with at the TA's office. If the OP has that sheet which was signed by them, and the date sent to the TA, it will be admissible in small claims court. If the TA did not submit it within the time frame NCL stipulated (if submitted, at all), then they are responsible if NCL declines the refund.
  12. OP...Every municipality is different. But, I've used small claims court to good effect in the past. Doesn't matter if it's a big company or not. Matter of fact, aside from playing the waiting game with you, and what would probably be a request for a continuance, big companies have to hire legal representation in the municipality you reside. I doubt very seriously they would send a corporate lawyer, especially now. This should be cut and dry. You have a record of when you called the TA and what was discussed. Don't count on the TA to provide the dates/times you called, or any sort of record of what you discussed. You have to do that. It's also reasonable for the TA to act on your behalf with NCL. The on line refund request had to have your signature on it. You had to print it out to sign it and email it back to the TA. So, you should take a copy of that with you to court. That will be key. Once the magistrate hears the case (which shouldn't take more than 10 minutes, particularly given how small claims works), it's either a yes or no decision (or a continuance). If the TA, or their representative don't show, you win. If they provide no credible information to disallow your claim, you win. It's not you suing NCL. It's you suing the TA. If the TA loses, they can take up their case with NCL. If you win, you also get court costs. I know in my cases, filing with the court costs $35, which I was reimbursed for, also. I've taken AT&T, a large home builder, GM and one of their Cadillac franchisees, and others to small claims court. I've never lost. GM didn't even bother to show up, so I won by default. Stay patient and persistent. You have a good case.
  13. I cruised with @GA Dave and his lovely wife in the Haven. As Dave mentioned, they were within a few steps of the Haven Restaurant and Haven Bar. I was in a Spa Suite, which was the next level down. For me, I didn't mind the walk up the Haven stairs (seperate entrance from the Spa). I spent a lot of time at the Haven Bar. I never felt like I was not getting the full benefit of the Haven experience. I was just in a different location. Instead of a 1 minute walk, mine was 2-3 minutes to get to the Haven Bar/Restaurant. And, I concur. The Haven on the Jewel class ships aren't nearly as nice as the Haven on the -Away and -Away Plus class ships. While I've never stayed in the Haven on the Epic, I hear that it is also a great Haven experience (and the one all other ships mimic to one degree or another).
  14. Julie Valeriote was the CD on a couple of my cruise (-Away ships). She was excellent both times. Very entertaining, very talented, untiring (she seemed to be everywhere all the time...even welcoming passengers back on board from excursions while walking on stilts).. I don't know where she is now, or if she's still with NCL. But, she was the BEST CD I've had on any ship, on any cruise line. Agree about Blue Man Group on the Epic. Also thoroughly enjoyed "MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET".
  15. I've always felt that RENO was the step child of Vegas. Unfortunate that they aren't taking the same steps that Vegas has implemented.
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