Some time ago, HAL announced (as posted elsewhere herewith) that they would refund fuel surcharges if the price of oil was below 70 for 25 consecutive trading days, ending five days before departure. Now, this week, they have announced that they will not be charging fuel charge for trips with departures after Dec. 17.
I will be sailing on the Veendam this Sunday, departing on Dec. 14. I called HAL to ask about the fuel surcharge refund, as per the previous press release, and was told that was no longer valid, and that there would be no refund in my case. When I questioned this practice and mentioned that they must have a lot of irritated passengers, I was told "we have the right to change the policy", to which I replied, "and I have the right not to cruise again on HAL".
The point here isn't whether they can do this, or not, rather, what a TERRIBLE business practice this is, especially in an economy where all lines are struggling and fighting for our business!
Alaska / RCL Vision of the Seas, May '98
Mediterranean / RCL Legend of the Seas, July '00
Caribbean / Celebrity Infinity, Nov. '00
Transatlantic / Pacific Princess Final Voyage, Oct. '01
Caribbean / RCL Adventure of the Seas, July '03
Caribbean / NCL Sky, June '04
Caribbean / Celebrity Horizon, Dec. '04
They needed to add the fuel surcharges to cover the increased costs of fuel, just like any other business. All the cruise lines did the same thing. Then when fuel prices began dropping the cruise lines started to phase it out. Then when it nose dived and was obviously going to be well below the 70 mark they decided to get rid of them all together and set a cutoff date.
Are you saying that they changed their mind on the phase out portion (which you were in) and that the December 17th cuttoff thing is it? This is the first I have heard of that. Seems like they would have given you some sort of onboard credit or something.
I see you are cruising today. Let us know if you were able to get any portion of the refund back.
I have this feeling that when you get back, and read this thread, you will tell us that were given a shipboard credit for your fuel supplement when youarrived on board... let us know... EVERY passenger I have sailing out this week had a shipboard credit applied to their accounts.
I hope you are right that they are already giving fuel sup. rebates.
However, the December 17th date was perfectly valid based upon what they announced the terms were for onboard credit refunds last summer. They specifically said 25 days of trading below $70, plus five days, before they would give the OBC.
December 17th is the exact date it was supposed to happen.