Cruise Lines Refuse to Offer Full Refunds in Hurricane Affected Trips

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New York and New Jersey may have been the hardest hit in last week’s Hurricane Sandy, but the storm was felt much farther away than the Jersey Shore, and in many different ways. Several cruise lines are facing harsh criticism over how they handled the megastorm, and some passengers feel their needs were ignored during this stressful time.

The Norgwegian Gem, a cruise ship scheduled to leave out of New York Harbor on October 28, was pushed back four days because of the storm. However, instead of completing the ship’s planned itinerary, a nine-day tour of Puerto Rico, St. Thomas, St. Maarten and the Dominican Republic, the trip was shortened to a five-day trip to Bermuda.

In response to backlash, Norweigian Cruise Lines told the 2,394 passengers that they would be given a pro-rated refund for the four days that were cut from the trip. Norwegian did not, however, offer a full refund to passengers. Norwegian is not the only cruise line doing this; Princess Cruises is shortening a 10 day trip to eight days when it leaves New York and is offering partial refunds but not allowing any of the over 3,000 passengers to cancel and receive a full refund.

Once again, the cruise lines cite the fine print on ticket contracts to back up their refusal. Also found here are the stipulations cruise lines make to prevent passengers from collecting damages after a cruise ship accident or injury. Hurricane Sandy altered everyone’s plans, but cruise lines should understand that people may not want to take an eight day trip to a different location several days after a massive natural disaster. Carnival Cruise Lines, however, cancelled their scheduled trips out of east coast ports this week and offered passengers full refunds.

If you have suffered physically, emotionally or financially due cruise line negligence, contact a Miami cruise ship attorneys today for a free consultation. Speak up for your rights and contact us online or at (800) 215-7117.