Can someone explain the Resident Rate Discount. I am always asked what state I live in when booking a cruise and the agent looks to see if our state is offered a discount. So far good ole Indiana has never been one of them. Are these for people who live in the states that have ports and the cruiseline thinks they can get them to fill up a ship on short notice? Why don't they give those of us in the midwest a break, afterall we are the ones who have to spend sometimes another grand on plane tickets. On our cruise last winter, we dined with two other couples and they were both from FL and said they booked their cruise two weeks before the sail date and got great deals. It also seems like when they ask the crowd how many are from FL over half the room raises their hand. Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against Floridians (other than the fact that I'm jealous of their beautiful weather, the sandy beaches and warm water). By the way you can keep your hurricanes. I was just wondering if this is just another way to make people in the "resident" states feel that they are getting a discount, and I am being offered a discount in another way, such as past guest, "special promo" etc. Thanks
Special 'residents rates' are often offered by the cruiseline as a promotion gig to increase sales. I have seen them ofered for many of the larger states from time to time as well as Puerto Rico. It is a gimmick but it can certainly save you money if they happen to be offering it for the state you happen to hail from. Word of warning here, make darn sure your state is the one being offered the promo and that your TA doesn't just try and slip you in saying I'll tell them your from there. That no longer works and they will stop you at the embarkation gate and require you to pay the additional fare at a completely undiscounted rate before you are allowed to board.
This happened to us and a number of other couples that were booked in a group and the TA placed us all in a state discount as he was from that state. They pulled all of us and demanded an additional $400pp or we would not be allowed onboard! We ended up having to pay it but with plenty of screaming, yelling and demanding and threatening the TA they wired the money to the Cruiseline and it was removed from our credit cards for all. Still, had we not had it available right there, we would have missed the ship.
Thanks Jim, I figured it was just another way to make some people feel like they were being treated "special". It truly is Buyer Beware these days. I just booked out family on the Triumph for May 7th (through one of the agencies who advertise on this board) and I keep finding little mistakes in the invoices they are sending me, little things like having my son down as Mrs. and wrong birthdates etc. but I am e-mailing them the corrections as soon as I open my e-mail, figure it is better to get this stuff straightened out now rather than haggle with them at the embarkation gate and have an unpleasant surprise there. I remember one time they left the a off of my daughters name (Melissa) and I didn't catch it until the docs came (two hours before we pulled out of the driveway) I worried the whole flight down there and then felt almost like a criminal because I was hoping they wouldn't notice it and I felt like I was trying to pull one over on them. As it turned out, it was never questioned and I was the only one who thought there was a big red flag beside her name. I guess I'm what they call a WORRIER. I'm glad you got it straightened out for you and your group, what a way to start your cruise. I love this board because you learn about things you never would imagine could, should or will happen. Thanks Again
Mistakes are why I never use a TA that I can't look in the eye. My agent is local and has all my information on file.
I still get the same price others get on the internet because I find the cruise I want and the best price on the internet then call my TA tell her where I want to go and what I am going to paying. She has yet to not be able to meet or beat the online price.
When I first started doing business with her about 7 years ago she said she couldn't get my price once. I told her OK I would book someplace else. She told me she would call back and she if she could get a better price from the cruiseline. Guess what she came back $10.00 per person under the internet price.
You see I do some work but I am assured of two things. 1. The actual best price available, (not a lose leader price) and 2. A real live person I can look in the eye if i have any problems.
When the cruiselines were going bankrupt, left and right, I was booked on Preimer to sail just before they went under. 1 day before Preimer actually declared bankrupcy my agent called and told us to book another ship. She got us on RCL for less than Preimer and told us how to get our money back from Preimer.
I can honsetly say she has been a benefit to me and my docs have always been correct.
In short I am saying you can get the same deals at home as you can in cyberspace with less worry.
Glad you have a great agent Don and hang on to her! That said, shopping around can often save you some good moeny and with some very good agents. Those that are allowed to advertise here are in the reputable classification and yes mistakes can be made by anyone, but the fact that they are prompt in fixing them is a good sign. Relax and don't worry too much or you will need another cruise. Hummm...not a bad idea!
I wasn't really complaining about the mistakes (I'm human too). They have been very prompt and friendly in correcting them and following up with me. As for an eye to eye TA, we live in a very rural part of IN and the nearest TA is over an hour away, so I would probably being doing my business with them over the phone or through e-mail just as I am with this agency. We had a travel agency in town and that is how we booked our first cruise 8 years ago, but they are out of business now. I guess I was just saying that I am trying to cross all the t's and dot all the i's before we go so I can find something else to worry about<G>