Costa policies are not customer friendly!
Our critique of Costa Cruise Lines, (the Costa Luminosa), is not of the ship, nor the cruise, but the “gotcha” attitude of the Costa Offices. On a recent Baltic cruise, my daughter, three weeks before sailing, had a change of her work schedule and told Costa that she would have to disembark on day 6 of an 11 day cruise. We did not expect a refund, but we did assume that our extended family would be able to continue to use the cabin being vacated by my daughter. On the day prior to her early departure, however, my daughter was notified she had to leave the ship the next morning by 7:30 AM!! It seems that Costa had re-booked her cabin, already prepaid by us, for the 6 nights my daughter was off ship. Therefore, Costa “double-booked” and we were locked out of the room. We got no explanation other than a curt policy letter saying they were allowed to do this. We got no offer of any recompense, even in the form of future ship credits. From my experience, Costa is difficult to reach directly and they insulate themselves through travel agents. NOTE: We had a similar situation arise on a Royal Caribbean cruise with a last minute medical cancellation, and Royal Caribbean refunded the prepayment with on-board credits and (later) a check refund for the remainder, even though we had no cancellation insurance. That is a major difference in the policy approach that should be considered.
It does seem unfair - but I think it is common to all travel and has to do with laws around home security, etc.
I had a flight once where myu wife had prepaid but could not go. She had the seat next to me.
So I said, "because my I paid for that seat I assume you will leave it open for me, so at least I can stretch out?"
Wrong - they said she had to be onboard the plane to claim that seat. They sold to someone again even though I had already paid for it.
For those booking Costa in the future perhaps this would be a good thing to get....
Carefree Travel Protection
The last thing you want to worry about is a problem on your trip. But because the unexpected does sometimes occur, Costa offers Carefree Travel Protection, a custom- tailored package of benefits to ensure peace of mind while you cruise. Carefree Travel Protection is a comprehensive package of benefits, comprised of the following: the Carefree Cancellation Fee Waiver, the Carefree Travel Insurance and the 24/7 Worldwide Emergency Assistance Programs, designed exclusively for our guests.
Carefree Travel Protection protects your cruise vacation investment should you have to cancel or interrupt your cruise for unexpected, specified reasons. Carefree Travel Protection provides reimbursement in the event of trip and baggage delays and provides medical expense reimbursement if you should fall ill or have an accident during your trip. This is especially important when you travel overseas, because Medicare and many private insurance policies do not provide coverage when traveling outside North America.
While we certainly hope your cruise vacation is nothing but pleasurable, we highly recommend the purchase of Carefree Travel Protection.
Costa’s Cancellation Fee Waiver:
Enables you (as a modification to your Passage Contract) to cancel or interrupt your cruise vacation for specified reasons such as illness, injury or death to you, an immediate family member or a traveling companion, as well as certain other non-medical reasons affecting you or your traveling companion, and receive CASH back for the otherwise non-refundable, unused portion of your prepaid cruise vacation. Should you need to cancel your cruise for a "pre-existing condition", you will receive a Cruise Credit equal to the cancellation fees which can be applied toward future travel. This feature is provided by Costa Cruise Lines Inc.*.
I always get trip insurance, but not through a cruiseline. Insurance from a company not associated with Costa or any other cruiseline would be a better bet.
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