The worst blunder your cruise line ever made, and how it was fixed...if it was.

With us, as I mentioned elsewhere, somehow, some way, they switched ships on us!  and we didn't know!...don't ask, I cant explain that either.  But when we found out, completely by accident, it was the single worst weekend of phone calls I can remember, not counting the usual family drama.  I have to leave out all the gory details, but by the time we were done, we had the cabin we wanted, more or less, and...wait for it...a $500 OBC...not because of the ship being switched, but because of the hoops we had to go thru.  We kept track of EVERY name we spoke to...and wrote an epic (but nice) letter, certified to pooh-bah central...and that was what we got...amazing how $$ can soothe things...well, sometimes anyway....btw, it can be your favorite cruise line, or any cruise line you've experienced a foul-up of epic proportions with..

17 Answers

Sad to say we cannot really contribute to this discussion since we have not had any major gaffs by the cruise line. Up till now that has been exclusively NCL but our next is RCCL. Am hoping for continued luck in no major messes.

You probably jinxed yourself now...give it far there is no "discussion"...looks like everybody's cruise line is just...perfect.....heheheheh...and aren't sad at all...…….just lucky IMHO....listening to some "stories" on board, when the line screws up, it can be a doozy.....course, y'know how the fish gets bigger and bigger with each retelling....

I already mentioned mine in a different thread, but ....

The first was our 13th cruise (all with Carnival). This was before internet was the way to get and print your documents. We arrived in LA and had a Carnival transfer to the port where there was the expected long line. The ship was at the dock but the line wasn't moving and didn't move for over two hours (we started timing it after what seemed an extraordinary length of time) You could only enter the terminal building to use the rest rooms and then had to return to your spot in line. There was no water or anything offered to those waiting and no explanation given. By the time we were processed the passengers and Carnival staff were short tempered and things did not go smoothly. Everything during the cruise was only OK and it seemed all the small hings that could go wrong, did. We almost missed our flight home because one of our pieces of luggage was lost (we were #1 and there was no self assist). As far as making it right.... nothing was ever said or explained. I did call Carnival and send a letter (snail mail) so on our next cruise we received a bottle of sparkling wine for our problems.

Our last issue; again Carnival and my diamond level booking. Just for those unaware, when you reach the diamond level you get to book a cruise with an upgrade in cabin; inside to ocean view or ocean view to balcony (no balcony to suite). You also can call the "diamond desk" for any booking needs. I booked an OV and upgraded to a balcony. The OV went on sale after final payment, so I called the diamond desk to see if the sale applied. the answer was yes and we got a nice OBC. I looked at the bottom line when receiving the email and everything looked great. a week later, for no particular reason other than excitement, I was looking at "manage my cruise" and noticed we had a different cabin number. I looked up the cabin and it was an OV . I called the diamond desk ready to make a major scene. Our cabin was long gone and there was only one balcony left. We got it and as it turned out it was a good cabin. I asked why and there was no good answer because the paperwork stated full upgrade.... just a poor customer service rep. working the diamond desk. By the way no additional compensation.

And then there was the time..... yes there is another but not worth the space or aggravation to remember it. Just say out of 35 cruises only 3 times I wouldn't want a "do over" isn't bad.

"And then there was the time..." aw c'mon...…….

btw once upon a time there was a major fire/breakdown on Carnival TRIUMPH...some of you may remember it..I hope nobody here was on it...It was a VERY big deal...but in any event, for reasons I neednt go into because they still don't make any sense to wife decided she needed to cruise, picked it herself based on dates or Tarot cards or something......and she wound up with the TRIUMPH (after it was fixed o course...) and like most wise married men I went along with it...I told her the thing was the most "fixed" ship in their fleet, and even tho its not my line of choice, oh well what the h....midway thru the cruise, nappy time in the afternoon to recharge for the evening.pfffft!!!! power goes air...nada....she wasn't happy...I, on the other hand, mustve chuckled a bit too loud....and the rest, as they was only out a couple of hours, so somebody put a penny in the fusebox (remember them kids??)..not a major snafu in the scheme of things, but considering it was THAT ship, well I'm sure I wasn't the only one ordering extra refreshments that evening...

OK! It was our 25th cruise on Carnival. I was so excited to get the special milestone card, the 25% OBC and all the special perks associated with all this. We only got the card, no OBC, no recognition at the repeaters party, or any of the other promised perks and someone charge a drink on my card. I went to Customer service and they decided to leave the charges because "I signed" for it. We were at the Chef's table and I can't even imagine ordering a Miami Vice during that event. I went to the desk 6 times to get the situation resolved but even the supervisor was going to dismiss my claim; finally I said "please" compare my signature and ask the bartender if she/he severed someone with a milestone card. Oh no the bartender didn't have any milestone card during the entire cruise, so the signature comparison was not required. I know we could have absorbed the cost, but it was the principle of the thing. We were offered the 25% for our next cruise but .... then no other perks ever appeared. Was a bit bitter, yes! But it is really one of those things that I shouldn't be upset about because well we had been able to cruise 25 times and we could enjoy our life on a cruise ship and ...and... and...

The problem was the difference between my expectations and reality. I've lowered my expectations.

THAT really was eyeballs bulged while reading it..and the lesson to be learned amongst the "newbie uninitiated set", concerning ones ultimate value to the cruise line is one that, sadly, can only be learned thru experiences like that....for them, yes by all means continue cruising, yes its a luxury item, but that doesn't mean you can let the bean counters and bureaucrats win...they do it often enough anyway...thanks for sharing...I get the distinct impression it STILL p's you off...….

Interesting stories.

This isn't a tale we personally experienced, but darn close to it. In 2008 we spent almost three months on the current Prinsendam, built in 1988. On the aft deck they had a model of the first Prinsendam, built in 1973. I'm from Prince William Sound, Cordova; Valdez is on the Sound too and last week I spent a couple of days down there touring their fine museum. Out front is one of the first Prinsendam's life boats from October 1980. Just hope you never experience a cruise like this one, happy ending though.

"In 1980, the United States Coast Guard Cutter (USCGC) Mellon assisted in the rescue of 520 passengers and crewmembers from the burning luxury liner Prinsendam, operated by Holland America Line. The Prinsendam was a 427-foot-long cruise liner built in 1973 at Shipyard de Merwede in the Netherlands. The liner was transiting through Gulf of Alaska waters, approximately 120 miles south of Yakutat, Alaska, at midnight on October 4, 1980, when fire broke out in the engine room. The vessel’s master declared the fire out of control one hour later and the Prinsendam sent a distress call requesting immediate assistance. The Coast Guard’s rescue coordination center in Juneau received the message and began to organize a rescue effort. Aircraft were immediately sortied to the scene, including an HH-3 helicopter and a C-130 turbo prop maritime patrol aircraft. At the time, CGC Mellon was on patrol near Vancouver, BC, a distance of 550 nautical miles from Prinsendam. CGC Mellon and other cutters diverted to assist. The 1000-foot supertanker, Williamsburgh, also diverted to render assistance."

The ship was abandon after the fire spread to the MDR. After all were rescued the ship sank. This life boat max capacity was 60, they had 85 in it for a time. The passengers and crew were all transferred to the supertanker, Williamsburgh, which returned to Valdez, the port it had just left with a load of oil.

More----(1) Better days painting of Prinsendam when new in 1973 (State of the art back then)---(2) Shot of ill fated Prinsendam just before she sank, notice the big motor launch got hung up so wasn't able to take part in the rescue, instead passengers were placed in the open boat lifeboats which were powered by a hand crank system. The north Pacific(Gulf of Alaska) was calm that day, lucky for them.

There are appropriate words to go with those pics...but if I used em I'd be banned...


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