Consumer reviews and reports on scam companies, bad products and services
My spouse purchased this vacation over the phone and then passed it off to me after it was a done de
26th of Nov, 2010 by User329964
My spouse purchased this vacation over the phone and then passed it off to me after it was a done deal to make the arrangements. We have not yet taken the vacation, but are due to leave in four days. So far, including airfare for three and the PRE-PAID fees for the cruise and accommodations, plus our airfare - which I PERSONALLY arranged - we have spent $2039 for three people - all of it now non-refundable. What this includes is our airfare, a rental car for 9 days, 2 nights in Florida, one night on the cruise ship, 2 nights in the Bahamas, one more night on the cruise ship, two more nights in Florida. Because of the difference in costs for airfare to stay an extra 2 nights, this SHOULD have saved us money. What I knew going into it from asking questions: $15 per night at the hotels for taxes - $60 $12 per day for gratuities on the ship - $24 Meals included for 2 ONLY in Florida for the first two days and on the ship...meals for my son would be extra...meals in the Bahamas would be extra...valet parking at Port Palm Beach is available for $15 per day, but was optional. Total anticipated extra costs WITHOUT OPTIONAL VALET PARKING and including extra for meals -$200 What I suspected: Small fee for taxes for rental car (estimated around $40 as it would be here) - expected $40 $9.00 per person per day fuel surcharge (oil hasn't been below $40 a barrel for years...just add it into the pre-charged costs already) - expected $54 Total Suspected Costs: $94 Total Cost of trip so far: $2333 What I found out when we received our itinerary ONLY 4 DAYS before we are getting to leave (too late to cancel and get ANY of our money back, by the way): $12 per day PER PERSON for gratuities...see additional $48 $75 in taxes and fees and surcharges for car rental...see additional $35 more than I expected They weren't aware of any free parking at the port, only of the valet for $15 per day...see additional $75 NO ARRANGEMENTS for transportation to the resort from the port in the Bahamas or back, but the resort has a shuttle for $17 round trip per adult, $12 for children 12 and under...see additional $46 $7.00 per room per day energy fee at the resort in the Bahamas...see additional $14 $15 resort fees (taxes) are charged by the DAY not by the NIGHTS that you spend there (double-dipping, as the next guest is paying for two days to stay one night, as well)...see additional $30 (above and beyond what I had expected) - This last item is what I understand it to be as I was informed today that gratuity fees are charged by nights and resort fees by days. This is an additional $248 dollars ABOVE AND BEYOND what we had previously been aware of. As well, we are told that we must SURRENDER our passports and birth certificates when we board the ship for security purposes, to be returned when we debark. Also, $100 per person will be placed on hold on our credit card as an assurety for what we order and the gratuity fees. Additional tips are still expected at 15% for service. (Rest assured, we not cannot afford any more than the free meals, so should not have more than a $12 charge per person on the card) Total cost of trip NOW: $2581 This is just to date...before we have arrived, boarded the plane or even packed our suitcases. These additional unexpected (to us) costs will mean NO excursions, NO sightseeing, NO amusement parks, NOTHING. We agreed to TWO timeshare presentations for the REDUCED costs. We look for REDUCED costs because we BUDGET for a YEAR prior to taking a vacation. I'm NOT going to say YET that this is a scam...what I AM going to say is there is a huge amount of non-disclosure and prevarication and the fact that you don't receive notification of all this information until it is TOO LATE to cancel and get any of your money back is misleading, manipulative and unethical. How many people have forfeited all of their money because their budgets wouldn't allow the room for all the additional costs? In addition, when I received the itinerary and called with my concerns, I was passed along TWICE. Finally, I ended up with the Confirmation department who said she was sorry that the sales department did not inform us of everything. I understand that it was not her fault and told her so, but told her, as well, that I would like it made note of that I was not happy, as I now need to come up with an extra couple of hundred dollars from SOMEWHERE to do this. I feel strongly enough about it to try and send a written complaint, but cannot find ANY contact information for Caribbean Cruise Lines on their website. This may end up being a nice vacation, but I have a feeling it may end up being sour grapes instead just because I know we are going into now with more than we can afford to spend. Last year we traveled to Mexico on a promotional package, found NO hidden costs, no additional fees and had a fabulous time so I know that not all promotional packages are scams...I just think that this one should have been the same.

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