Has anyone had this happen to them? It is in regards to gift cards and how Royal Caribben extorts money from seniors.
We have been on 5 cruises in the last 8 years. Most of which have been with RC. I would have never guessed that it would have come to this. We purchased gift cards for our mothers to take them on a European Cruise as a thank you for all they do. We also brought others with us in order to share the experience. As a part of this, we purchased Royal Caribbean gift cards for our mothers to use towards excursions,etc. Long and short of it. There were system issues. We spent a total of about 3 hours on the ship of our cruise time trying to get it resolved, Royal Caribbean WILL NOT refund us the money for the gift cards that they would not let our mothers use, which in essence, charged them twice for the same thing. Their solution was for us to use it as a credit. NOT acceptable. This pretty much is a shell game which amounts to THEFT. It is $600! This may not be a lot of money to them, but to seniors on fixed incomes, it's a ton. And as gift givers, it is offensive to my wife and I. This whole situation is unfortunate considering this last trip, we brought 13 people with us, and advocated for RC and the experience. This is embarrassing and disappointing. Not only because it shows that they are greedy, but it also displays a severe lack of respect for the choice that we made as consumers to choose them, although other carriers offer similar itineraries. This is what happens when companies get so big that they forget how they got to be that big...through service and relationship building. Unfortunately for RC, the same energy I put into promoting them, I will double in letting people know how they resolve issues. Offering me a voucher for a future cruise is fruitless because there will be no more with them. Not only is what they are doing unethical, it is basically illegal. In addition to the blogging I do, as well as using companies as examples of what to do and not to do through my consulting firm (I assist companies in improving their customer service), I will be asking the AG to investigate them to see how many other people they have done this too. This is a black and white, cut and dry situation, that should have easily been resolved. Making people pay twice for the same service is criminal, and would not be tolerated in any other industry. I don't want a credit. I want my mother and MIL to get their hard earned money back. The fact that RC thinks they can TAKE $600 from seniors is not only bad business practice, but it alientates a significant portion of their customer base. What's worse is they have alienated 40 somethings like my wife and myself that have disposable income and have many more years of cruising to do. I find this line of thinking obtuse, short-sighted, and frankly, disrespectful. But, if waging an all out assault on this process is what RC thinks is beneficial for what amounts to is $600, so be it. I am young enough and have enough time to walk with them step for step, and find other people they have done this to along the way. This is not my first clash with a company, and it won't be the last. Most people do not like being lied to, or taken advantage of, and I happen to be one of those people. Thank you, RC , for waking me up, and for helping my business grow. Your poor example of how to engage customers and resolve disputes is exactly why I do what I do.