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Old May 12th, 2009, 03:58 PM
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Default Need advice re: cruise / airfare changes/cancellation

We're leaving on the Imagination on June 1st for a four day cruise. To make a long story short, we have six rooms book with a total guest count of 18.

Here's our problem. My step-son wanted to go on this trip with us, but his decision was made after we'd booked all six staterooms. We called our Carnival TA and had him put into a room with my brother (his uncle) and their two boys who are around same age (12).

Then I also purchased him airfare through Orbit on a Delta flying down with my brother and his family (the rest of our flights were booked months ago and are no longer available for purchase).

So I spoke with my step son, he was okay with the flight with his uncle and the kids, sharing their stateroom (next door to ours) and spending one night prior to the cruise in their hotel room in a different city.

So here's where it gets complicated. Last night my step son calls and tells us he doesn't want to go now. He doesn't like the idea of staying with his uncle and cousins (which he likes, by the way, they get along great). He's upset because he can't fly and room with us on this trip.

My husband and I booked our room for just the two of us because it's an anniversary present to each other. I explained to my step son that other than the first day in a differnt town/hotel he'd have lots of time to be around his family although because it's an anniversary trip we would want to do some 'couple' things together like dancing and spending some quality time alone.

I have three daughters that are going as well, and they had no problem with us (the parents) having our own room to celebrate the anniversary, but my step-son is very clingy to his father and resents that we won't allow him to stay in our room with us.

So now we're faced with a cruise and a airfare that we've paid in full with a sailing/flying date three weeks away. The airfare is non refundable so I guess that $300 is just lost. The cruise, I believe, I can get a 50% refund on it since it wasn't purchased using the early saver fare.

Do you if it's possible to allow another person to take his place on the cruise (and if so what costs are involved) and also the airline? Is a non refundable ticket transferable? I read somewhere that there is a loophole.. I read that we take his itinerary on the plane, find the cheapest flight to anywhere and change his reservations, then the airline will give us back the differnce in cost. Then wait a day or two and cancel the new reservation. Then they (Delta) will impose approx. $130 admin fees from the remaining balance and allow us to use any balance left in the next 12 months by issuing a voucher. I read that although a ticket is not transferable a voucher IS tranferable. So in that case, we can take a trip someplace within the year and use the remaining balance in any name that we want...

Do you know what's the best way to handle this situation or have we just lost our $600 and need to just kiss it goodbye?

Thanks for reading, I know it's long, I've very frustrated at the situation and to be honest a little frustrated at my step son also because he knew the travel plans in detail and wanted to , now he has changed his mind..... which puts us in a bad place.
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Old May 12th, 2009, 05:45 PM
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Check your documents but you should be in the window for a 50% refund on the cruise. I believe his reservation will be non-transferable. To put somebody else in the slot would require canceling his reservation and making a new one. Sorry to not bring better news.
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Old May 12th, 2009, 08:15 PM
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HI,

You know what, I think you really should let him just stay in your room on the ship.

He is what 12 years old, everyone is going...he is at that age that he really needs to be accepted and needs his dad.

I bet that once he gets on this great ship with the excursions, all of the different ship activities...they have clubs and fun for his age...I bet he will be off running around on his own in no time.

As far as Romance, You and your husband can be "together" in the room at different times during the day should the mood strike, at night, you will be up so late having a good time you will be exhausted and just want to sleep....

I think that if this young boy does not go, you both will feel guilty and he will be resentful later on and I think if you want a happy marriage, it should include your husbands son at all cost...a child is the most important thing in life, I think if you take him, you won't regret it and your husband will also appreciate you more.

Just my thoughts...take them for what they are worth
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Old May 12th, 2009, 08:33 PM
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Honsestly, I have to agree with the previous poster. I know that the anniversary is a special thing, and, the time alone, would be nice...But by him not going, and, the hard feelings, for years to come[probably], would do more damage than letting this boy come along...

Things could change as the cruise goes by, and he just may want the new roomies...best of luck...
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Old May 12th, 2009, 08:54 PM
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You can substitute someone else for the cruise, it's simply done as a name change. I believe Carnival charges $50. The airline ticket is another story. The airlines are paying very close attention to what's being done with the tickets as people try to circumvent the system. Good luck with that!

Why not allow your stepson to stay in your room one night? He may find that he's having so much fun hanging with his cousins that he'd rather stay with them. I know this is your anniversary cruise but this situation could lead to greater problems down the road. I'd just sit the boy down and explain the situation to him and see how he reacts. He may just be getting cold feet as the cruise approaches. Is this his first cruise?

I hope everything works out for you.
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Old May 13th, 2009, 09:36 AM
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Have to agree with the others. There are more important things than cruising.
A 12yr old who needs his Dad is a good example.
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Old May 13th, 2009, 04:39 PM
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I'm going to disagree here. Couple/alone time is very important. Her stepson knew what the arrangements were before the trip was booked. If he was uncomfortable with that arrangement and didn't want to stay in the same room with his uncle and cousins he should have said something then. He agreed to it and now he wants it changed to accomodate him. At 12 he's not a baby anymore and needs to be able to deal with the fact that his Dad and Stepmother are going to be in a different room than he is. There is no way I would let a 12 y.o. dictate the sleeping arrangments on a trip If he doesn't want to go, I wouldn't make him, but I also wouldn't be paying for another trip for him in the future if this is what he's going to pull at the last minute. We have a blended family and DH and I have dealt with similar situations. Some of it may be a power play to see if he can get his own way.

As long as you are flying domestically minor's don't have to produce photo ID. Technically another male minor could use your stepson's ticket. You can change the name with Carnival for a fee (I think its around $50).
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