Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
phire

NCL refuses me to board, question about refund in similar situation

Recommended Posts

Hello, 

I booked Norwegian Escape Caribbean cruise for Feb 15th, 2020. I am a permanent resident Canada holding a Chinese passport, and I have not been back to China for many years. Sadly, after counting down from 130 days to 8 days left, I received the message that anyone holding a Chinese, HK, or Macau passport cannot board the ship. I also called NCL, and they confirmed that in my situation I still will be denied. My husband who is going to celebrate his 30th birthday, and my 17months old son will not go without me, and they both hold Canadian passports.

 

We booked an 8 day vacation, 7 days supposed to be on the cruise. The customer service representatives are almost sure that I will get full refund on cruise fare for the family, but they are not positive about our flights from Hamilton, ON to FLL, and the one night hotel on the 14th....One of them told me he handled a previous case that customer travelling from China requesting refund, and this customer was given $300 in addition to the cruise fare. The airlines that travel to and from China all offer free cancellation and delay, but I fly from Canada!

 

They said I have to submit refund requests to the guest relations web form, and there is no phone number for that department. When I actually did that it told me I need to allow 4 to 6 weeks to hear back. 

I am in a stranded position, I purchased through line of credit, and now being denied solely by discrimination on my Chinese passport, and part of the trip might not get refunded =( 

Does anyone have similar experience??? I read the news that several ships are quarantined in Asia, is there anyone here not able to board the cruise because people on there cannot disembark? Are you guys offered refund on flights and hotel?

 

I feel so sorry for those stuck on board, and I definitely would choose losing money over being quarantined/contracting the virus....But 1700CAD worth of flight and hotel is not a small amount, I want to have it back.Screenshot_20200208-211312_Norwegian.thumb.jpg.58b2e02025b44a4eb3390d8a40839357.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So it only occurred to me twice that I eagered to become a Canadian. I immigrated with my parents, and when they became Canadian I was too old to change nationality with them as a family. Another time was 3 years ago, that I actually did the application to the last page, $900....I thought it was too expensive and I was unemployed that time... So I just kept my Chinese nationality. But it is irrelevant to this topic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do feel for the OP but I can't blame the cruise line for refusing to let the OP board.  It is happening with all cruise lines and airlines.  Hopefully they will get a refund for their airfare but maybe they should try going thru the airline?  The way things are going right now the OP could be denied boarding the flight?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We are sailing on 2/16 on Holland America. We received notification 3 days ago from HAL stating that passengers who have visited China, Macau or Hong Kong in the last 14 days will be denied boarding, but it didn't state that passengers holding a passport from these countries would be denied boarding as well. 

 

Have regulations for all cruise lines changed in the last 3 days, or is NCL specifically targeting passengers based on their nationality regardless of their residency? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You have a rather unique situation. I am sorry this is happening to you.  I agree with the others advising you to contact the airlines regarding cancelling the flights.  I would think you would get a full refund from ncl but it may be a long process. It is a unique situation and stressful time for  everyone involved. I haven't been in this particular situation but have been dealing with a situation where we have spent several months trying to resolve an issue involving fraudulent business practices with a different company. It is hard to be patient when it is your money on the line.  Hopefully you will get the answers you need soon!

 

take a deep breath ! Good luck!

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To the OP,  I’m sorry you are going through this. It must be very upsetting. The financial loss compounds the sense of disappointment at missing out on the cruise. Too bad some on here feel it’s appropriate to post comments that are unhelpful. 
 I hope there will be a resolution for you and your family. These certainly are tough times for people planning cruises! Let’s hope the virus is contained very soon, and that fear does not lead to panic and spur additional discrimination. None of that will help anyone!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OP: I am very sorry this has happened to you, and to others.  

 

I do believe that NCL should refund your cruise fare as well as other reasonable expenses that you have incurred.  I think you will do best in dealing with NCL if you don't use legally-charged words like "discrimination" but instead focus on the facts and issues of fairness and customer service.  This is not a situation of your own making. 

 

NCL is acting in the face of a public health threat that is still of unknown dimensions. It is unclear what resources companies like NCL have that would enable them to determine exactly where a Chinese-passport holder has traveled in recent months, or whether family in China have visited them.   (There was a recent thread here on CC about how people who hold dual citizenship use whichever passport works best for them to get around travel restrictions.  I am not putting you in such a category,  just noting that travel operators don't always have all the information they may need.)  

 

I would discuss the matter with your airline as well and see what they might do for you.

 

Again, I am very sorry for you.  I am sure I would be extremely angry if I were you, and feel targeted as you do.  I wish you good luck in this and future happy travels.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you booked your air travel thru NCL then you should be reimbursed by them since they are the ones who are cancelling your trip thru no real fault of your own.  If you booked the air directly yourself; I would try contacting the airline & explain the situation.  At the very worst you might end up with a flight credit for a future time.  If it was Air Canada or Westjet ....you've got a pretty good chance at getting a refund.  These are tough times for travellers & I sympathize with your plight.  Good luck...

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It seems to me they should be able to verify you have NOT been in China by the lack of current stamps on your passport.  I know that doesn't address the issue, but I would think there are many in your situation.  

Edited by FLConnie

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, phire said:

I am in a stranded position, I purchased through line of credit, and now being denied solely by discrimination on my Chinese passport, and part of the trip might not get refunded =( 

 

You have been discriminated against, absolutely no doubt despite the clear statement on Coronavirus Procedures from NCL. If it were me, I would find an Attorney offering a 'no win, no fee' service and take them all the way!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OP, sorry to hear about your situation.  NCL's policy is just wrong.  The country which issues passports does so for many of its citizen who do NOT reside there.  Plain and simple.  It's as wrong as assuming that holders of non-Chinese passports won't be capable of transmitting the virus.  Best of luck getting this resolved and, as little as it will help, my apologies for the abusive comments you're receiving.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, hamrag said:

 

You have been discriminated against, absolutely no doubt despite the clear statement on Coronavirus Procedures from NCL. If it were me, I would find an Attorney offering a 'no win, no fee' service and take them all the way!

 

Not all discrimination is illegal nor unwarranted. An example would be a refusal to issue drivers licenses in the US to people with certain disabilities (blindness, epilepsy, certain mental disabilities). Presumably there is a public health exemption either written into laws governing discrimination in the US or carved out by our court system. I'm actually researching this right now and will hopefully be back with a real answer.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is so sad.  There has to be something they can do to exempt you from this rule.  Common sense should say that if your husband and son have Canadian passports, and you can produce things such as a drivers license, pay stub, insurance papers, or anything else to show your current residence, that you live in Canada and not China

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, sparkmaster said:

 

Not all discrimination is illegal nor unwarranted. An example would be a refusal to issue drivers licenses in the US to people with certain disabilities (blindness, epilepsy, certain mental disabilities). Presumably there is a public health exemption either written into laws governing discrimination in the US or carved out by our court system. I'm actually researching this right now and will hopefully be back with a real answer.  

And....???

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is a ridiculous policy. I understand travel restrictions on people who have actually BEEN to mainland China in the past 15-30 days, but people who simply hold a Chinese passport? That is nonsense. I feel so sorry for you, OP, and I hope you receive refunds for all of your travel expenses.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

NCL has exempted Green Card holders with Chinese Passports from this new policy. Why not Canadians with permanent residency status? Why not from any other Coronavirus free country as well? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fly to FLL, stay on the beach, drive to the Keys, etc...in other words, adapt. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
24 minutes ago, JamieLogical said:

This is a ridiculous policy. I understand travel restrictions on people who have actually BEEN to mainland China in the past 15-30 days, but people who simply hold a Chinese passport? That is nonsense. I feel so sorry for you, OP, and I hope you receive refunds for all of your travel expenses.

 

Ridiculous beyond belief

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
44 minutes ago, hamrag said:

And....???

 

Still digging up stuff, but broadly there are exemptions to US nondiscrimination law for public health reasons. 

 

43 minutes ago, JamieLogical said:

This is a ridiculous policy. I understand travel restrictions on people who have actually BEEN to mainland China in the past 15-30 days, but people who simply hold a Chinese passport? That is nonsense. I feel so sorry for you, OP, and I hope you receive refunds for all of your travel expenses.

 

It's not ridiculous at all. Look at the pattern. Of 40,653 confirmed Coronavirus cases, 40,197 are in China. Of the rest, *all* of them are cases either of people who have been to China or those who have had close contact with those who have been to China. Of the 161 cases in Japan, the majority of them are because of the Diamond Princess petri dish anchored off their coast. Said Diamond Princess petri dish caused, unintentionally, by Chinese citizens carrying the Coronavirus onboard. NCL has a duty to its passengers to prevent a public health crisis, and I think the courts would agree with them. Passports can be modified, and many countries don't stamp on entry or exit (not sure if the PRC regularly stamps its own citizens' passports on entry and exit). As catastrophic and unfortunate as this is for people like OP, who have not visited China in ages, a ban on certain citizens from cruising is a reasonably way to prevent a Diamond Princess-esque public health disaster. 

 

Edit: For Japan, 135 out of 161 confirmed cases of Coronavirus originated on the Diamond Princess. 

 

Edited by sparkmaster

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My guess is that they are trying to limit people who may have been in recent contact with others who are from/have recently been to areas of concern. While it may not hold true 100% of the time, I would guess that a citizen of country x is more likely to come in contact with someone who has been to x in the past 14 days than someone who is a random Canadian citizen. But this is interesting. I wonder if there is research on this. That may be what they’re trying to prevent.
 

it sucks in this situation, and I hope they issue your family a full refund for all expenses incurred through their offerings. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Part of the reason that they are using the passport origin is that people lie and would deny being in China the last 30 days. Yes, you could look at they stamps but by that time you may have brought someone into the terminal that could be infected and do you really want the checkin agents trying to decipher the passport stamps?

If you start with waivers who decides it? It is simpler and safer in the long run to make it a blanket policy with no exceptions.

I feel for the OP but just because you say you haven't been in China doesn't make it true.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

NCL is dropping the ball big time!! They need to take a page from Princesses policy,

On FB latitudes page there is a gentleman who booked a cruise for his family for the grandfathers birthday. He was notified by NCL he would not be able to board as he had recently been to China in The Haven on The Jade.

He called to see about cancelling his kids and grandkids as he paid for all the cabins with his credit card, NO was NCL response, he then requested if they could switch to another sailing after the time frame NO was their response. I think that is pretty crummy, at least let the entire family switch to another cruise in the future.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for everyone who showed sympathy. Yes, I feel very discriminated, and I complain, but I wouldn't be that miserable if I could know I have everything related to the cruise refunded. 

Last week I had my HR (a big company in Canada) issued me a proof of employment and work history. I also printed all my online paystub to try to prove I haven't been to China. I do think the policy is wrong, but at the same time I do not want to go on the cruise anymore either. 

I hope to come across people who were affected by the new policies - if they happened to travel in China in the past 30 days, and been denied a cruise because of that, did they receive refund of their flight?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, njkate said:

NCL is dropping the ball big time!! They need to take a page from Princesses policy,

On FB latitudes page there is a gentleman who booked a cruise for his family for the grandfathers birthday. He was notified by NCL he would not be able to board as he had recently been to China in The Haven on The Jade.

He called to see about cancelling his kids and grandkids as he paid for all the cabins with his credit card, NO was NCL response, he then requested if they could switch to another sailing after the time frame NO was their response. I think that is pretty crummy, at least let the entire family switch to another cruise in the future.He also volunteered to be tested by his doctor and send results to NCL that he was negative, again NO was the response.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, njkate said:

NCL is dropping the ball big time!! They need to take a page from Princesses policy,

On FB latitudes page there is a gentleman who booked a cruise for his family for the grandfathers birthday. He was notified by NCL he would not be able to board as he had recently been to China in The Haven on The Jade.

He called to see about cancelling his kids and grandkids as he paid for all the cabins with his credit card, NO was NCL response, he then requested if they could switch to another sailing after the time frame NO was their response. I think that is pretty crummy, at least let the entire family switch to another cruise in the future.

that's horrible! If they think he might be carrying the virus, letting his close family to be on the cruise is not a win-win situation. They could have refunded everyone in the family and let other customers book the room.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...