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I have been on exactly two cruises in my life. The first one was so good I wanted to become a permanent resident on the boat. The next, on the same ship BTW, opened my eyes to what you can be in for on a cruise ship ( that trip I will tell you all about another day )!
Here are some fun facts to know about cruising:
1) They want deposits early so you can not challenge the charge on your credit card if things go wrong ( you only have a certain amount of time to do that after a charge )
2) They can switch your room or even the boat if they want
3) Once on board they can go anywhere they want and you have no right to complain
4) Most of the time if things go very wrong they will only pay a multiple of your purchase price or, then again, just a percentage of it.
5) You have no right to a class action lawsuit if anything goes wrong.
Do all of these points make your blood boil a bit and make you say: NO WAY! That is just not right!? Well here is the thing no one thinks about. When you check in at whatever cruise line you like, and they get all your info, take your photo for your ID room card, and you sign the little box onscreen as required to be allowed on the boat, you are agreeing to a scary amount of stuff. Don’t believe me? No one ever reads the T&C before they sail ( I know I did not, but will now):
Now each of these talked about the five points I have outlined above. Keep in mind these are not American flagged ships most of the time and your rights are pretty much whatever they say they are, and you did after all agree to the terms as that is your signature when you checked in, right?
I am not saying I will not cruise again. I plan to next year for my 25th wedding anniversary, spending over 200,000 Chase UR points on a Royal Caribbean ship and had some outstanding help from my friend Marshall Jackson who I think would live on a RC ship if they asked him says:
- “behave on a ship the same way [you would] behave in another country. Be aware…be smart… but still have fun!”
I have never been on RC, but I have yet to find anyone tell me of a bad trip with them. I am not the starry eyed child anymore after what happened to me and my wife on a BAD NCL trip (more coming soon on this), and I just want anyone new to cruise ships to know what can and does happen! – René