Here is the e-mail of the event that took place written to Costa by my cruise mate. I was the one injured on the moped. I will post their response also in another thread.
200 s. park rd., ste. 200
hollywood, fl 33021
to whom it may concern,
hello. i am writing about the cruise that a friend of mine just took on your ship. first i would like to say that the ship, it's equipment, food, and amenities were outstanding. i enjoyed the cruise very much overall. there was an incident, however, that makes me reluctant to utilize your services anymore. my friend, and suite mate had an accident in cozumel on the moped he rented. he rode it from the accident site back to the rental location near the dock of the ship. it had a few scratches but was obviously very driveable with little visible damage. we offered to call the police when the rental attendant expressed concern about the moped and the accident. he refused to call the police but insisted on a payment of $400. this demand was without a police report or a appraisal of the moped by an authorized repair center both of which we suggested at the time of return(a few hours before the ship's scheduled departure time). my friend and i were back on the ship trying to decide on how to proceed with the situation when presented with the idea of paying $400 in cash to the moped rental agent or have my friend(karl reinhold) disembarked immediately to allow the ship to depart on time from cozumel. the agent of the ship was very firm and unflexible in her demand for $400 to give the moped rental agent so that my friend could stay onboard the ship when departing cozumel. i think it was unfair of her to take the side of the moped rental agent without a police report nor an appraisal of the damage to the moped by an authorized repair moped center. the option presented to us was to pay or be disembarked immediately. i am very unhappy with this approach and process. it felt very unfair. i would like for karl reinhold to be reimbursed for his pain and suffering in the mishandling of this event.
From: firstname.lastname@example.org <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: Fw: cruise from 2/28/10 to 3/7/10
To: "karl reinhold" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tuesday, April 27, 2010, 4:09 PM
We apologies for the inconvenience and trouble you incurred during your cruise. We must however, decline your claim due to the terms and condition, we are not liable for situations with outside vendors.
All ships must follow the laws of the countries they are in, therefore what the ship agent was trying to explain to you is that if you do not pay the vendor, the Mexican police would have boarded the ship and arrested you. The ship would not have been able to stop this from happening. Had you not paid the vendor you would have been arrested by the Mexican police. If you have any further questions please feel free to contact us.
International Risk Services, Inc.
C/O Costa Cruise Lines N.V.
200 South Park Road, Suite 200
Hollywood, Florida 33021-8541
Even though my friend who wrote the post in regards to the accident was complimentary about the amenities ,there were staff issues. The room attendant sat her ice trolly in front of our cabin door and refilled all the rooms in the area. All you heard daily was clink, clink, clink. Everytime I returned to my room to rest, their was the housekeeping terrorist knocking on my door to see if I needed anything. She was very sweet, kind and caring however she never ever stopped disturbing me. I have been on a dozen other cruises and I thought the cabin staff was never to be seen or heard. It was almost as if other cruises the staff were ghosts. After being on Costa I think they have ghouls!
The dining staff outside and at the buffet allowed the dishes to sit on tables for hours. I usually picked up my plates and took them to the station.
As time goes on I will think of more issues.
I'm sorry to hear about your injury and the extortion with the motor scooter. Sadly you are not the first person this has happened to and it is the normal practice for these vendors to get money for any damage to their equipment. It doesn't matter to them if someone was hurt.
I hope that your experience helps others reconsider renting scooters in foreign ports.
I actually have to side with Costa on this. The best thing you could have done was paid and got the heck out of there. The contract you signed at the time of rental said you were responsible for all damages and that's all the local police require to arrest you.
I hope that you have recovered from your injuries and that you will have more fun on your next cruise.
__________________ Cruisemates Community Leader/Moderator
"There is a great difference between being well traveled and just having been to many places." ~Me
I have to agree with Mike on this issue and say that when you are in a foreign country you need to be aware of liability and legal exposure when renting vehicles. Anytime I rent a vehicle in Mexico, I know that should I be in an accident I am 100% responsible for paying any damages prior to leaving the country or I will be their guest in a local Mexican jail... not my idea of a great vacation. As a result, I always purchase a $0 deductible damage waiver insurance. That way if it gets totalled, I walk away (hopefully). Most of the cruise lines we've sailed to Mexico with have disclosures on their daily news bulletins warning of the hazards and dangers of renting mopeds and scooters and caution against it for safety reasons.
It is naive to think that one is going to receive the same due process and legal rights in Mexico as they do in their home country. Hopefully your post will save someone else some money and aggravation.
I am not a fan of Costa at all, but in this case, their hands were tied. With regard to the terrorist Housekeeping staff, did it ever occur to you to put out the "do not disturb sign" or to ask the room steward to move the ice trolley down the hallway a bit? Some folks are upset if they don't see their room stewards, others evidently don't want to see them at all, someone is bound to be disappointed.
Whether or not you think this is unfair, you really had no choice given the alternative...what was explained to you, was the law of the country you were in, and to be arrested in Mexico, would be no cakewalk.
Hopefully, your next cruise, will be better...
Trip, with her book & tea!
Chat Hostess & Board Moderator
Along the line of this thread, be careful if you cruise to Israel, or fly there and rent a car.
At time of rental, the agent goes over the car with a fine tooth comb and notes every little scratch and ding.
When you return the car, they use a much finer comb, and always find more scratches and dings.
I recommend that you use a digital camera and photograph every scratch and ding, to protect yourself when returning the vehicle.
After a couple of these episodes in Israel, I rented a car in San Jose, Costa Rica. within a mile of leaving the car agency, I hit a huge pothole. The car bottomed out with a thud. Then, for the 3 days, I must of hit another potholes!
I envisioned a tremendous charge for damages when I checked the car in. But the agent just laughed. Potholes are a way of life in Costa Rica.
Quite a number of years ago, my son and I went on a ski trip to Innsbruck, Austria.
We noticed that the two young men in the room across the corridor were collecting beer mugs and steins.
One evening, at dinner, the hotel owner made an announcement. The two guys were in the custody of policemen, and their stolen glassware was on a table in front. They were protesting. The owner told them to "shut up". "They were is a different country, and were going to jail for thief." They were then marched out by the police!
I know that scooter rentals are very common on these islands, but I also know that crewmembers are forbidden to rent them. I always thought it was merely a safety issue (which it is, these scooters are often responsible for far worse accidents than one would ever expect), but I never knew about this extortion scheme.
However, if crewmembers are prohibited, I suspect it is also because the cruise lines do not want a situation where their crewmembers are arrested. I also believe passengers are also warned away. I am pretty sure I have seen warnings in daily programs saying that the rental of scooters in islands is not recommended.
No doubt - you were extorted and I am sure the port agent got a piece of the money. But my gut feeling (if this is common) is that Costa has already done everything they can about this. I did a search on "warnings against renting scooters on islands" and they are all over the Internet. Costa already prohibits its crew and (I believe) warns passengers not to rent scooters. I don't see what else they can do.
One last question - were you offered "insurance" when you rented the scooter? Probably a good idea in a foreign country. Also - never pay cash! Use a credit card to rent any vehicle. Then you can protest the charges or sometimes you may get insurance from the credit card company.
I feel this qualifies for the "dangers of cruising" thread I started elsewhere.
I am the editor, but I also speculate, ask questions and play devil's advocate. I reserve the right to change my mind.
I am very sorry to hear about your accident and unfortunate incident.
Unfortunately, I think that this sort of thing is quite common with scooter, etc rentals. I have seen quite a few posts on other boards like this.
This is one reason why I think it might be better to stick with ship excursions rather than go out on your own. You might feel like you are saving a few bucks...then something like this happens.
Carnival Fantasy - Dec 2010 - Bahamas
Costa Atlantica - April 2010 - Western Caribbean
After reading this post, I will not be renting a moped in Mexico.
Carnival Liberty New Year's Eve 2007
Liberty of the Seas 5/2008+11/2009
Allure 1/16/ 2011