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Old August 30th, 2010, 04:31 PM
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Unhappy First time on RCI - not a good start to my experience!

Hi,
Earlier this year we made the decision to take my Father in Law (85) on a Med Cruise. Brilliance of the Seas (sailing from Barcelona 24 September) We have not had a good start - mix up over cabins, upgrades were offered then withdrawn. In fairness this was the agent that let us down but RCI would not have anything to do with the dispute. As a result we feel disappointed bfore we even board!
Can we do anything at this stage to help salvage our holiday? Can any experienced cruisers advise us please?
If not what can we expect from 'Brilliance', has anybody else sailed the med on her?
I believe the midnight buffets are a thing of the past.
Any comments from cruisers who have sailed on Brilliance this year much appreciated!!
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Old August 30th, 2010, 05:17 PM
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I've sailed on her twice. I like the Radiance class ships the best of all RCL ships. Sorry you've had such an issue. Was your problem with a outside TA or one of RCL's agents?

Yes, midnight buffets are a thing of the past, but you won't miss them. They were beautiful but a terrible waste of food. You will have lots of food and choices.

What happened that you were offered an upgrade and then then had it withdrawn?
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Old August 30th, 2010, 06:00 PM
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We booked through an agent (Viva Voyage) in the UK when we realised there was a problem (we wanted guaranteed minimum) the agent offered us an upgrade at 95 (total not PP)
I accepted immediately and rang to confirm availability - suddenly there was a 'mistake' and the cheapest upgrade was over 200 PP. I have emails from the company accepting they made a mistake but they wouldn't offer any upgrades. I did contact RCI but was told it was between us and the agents. The agents say they are not authorised to upgrade (no profit I presume)
I have been advised to take the paperwork with me - but don't want to risk ruining our trip by dragging it all up again!
What do you advise?
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Old August 30th, 2010, 06:13 PM
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I would let it go- the company have acknowledged that their staff made a mistake in offering you an upgrade in error. Not much you can do about it, but don't let it spoil your cruise, you are going on a fabulous ship on a great itinerary...
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Old August 30th, 2010, 06:18 PM
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From what little I know I suggest you forget about it & just take the cabin you were happy to book in the first place. I think it is all too confusing for a first timer. If you have registered for a free upgrade should one become available I think you are compelled to accept it, but others may disagree. Good luck I am sure you will enjoy yourselves.
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Old August 30th, 2010, 08:03 PM
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As others have said, at this point let it go. If you are offered an upgrade from RCI you are not forced to take it. There are different types of upgrades - if it is more of an upsell and your agent offers it to you there is a cost involved. If it comes straight from RCL there is usually no charge. I believe you said you are in a guarantee. That means that you could possibily be upgraded when your cabin is assigned - it does happen but the chances are rather remote.

The only other thing I would advise, next time go to another agency. I am a TA and I defend TA's but not when they blow it.
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Next up - Celebrity Reflection, Nov. 22 (learning to sail solo) followed by Independence of the Seas Nov. 30.


Celebrity Constellation - March 17 followed by Celebrity Reflection - March 22 (done)




44 cruises - too many to list however cruiselines are in no particular order:

Azamara
Uniworld
RCL
Princess
NCL
HAL
Cunard
Celebrity
and some unknown tub

Yes, I'm a Royal Chump and proud of it.
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Old August 30th, 2010, 09:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnthed0g View Post
From what little I know I suggest you forget about it & just take the cabin you were happy to book in the first place. I think it is all too confusing for a first timer. If you have registered for a free upgrade should one become available I think you are compelled to accept it, but others may disagree. Good luck I am sure you will enjoy yourselves.
Just go with the flow and enjoy. The crew do not know and will treat you well, Then find a new TA for next time , even interview them if they want your repeat business.

John, good advice, nice to hear you :-D

Rob
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Old August 30th, 2010, 11:45 PM
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Default Travel Agent made offer and withdrew

RCCI didn't make the offer and apparently the TA should never have made the offer either. When you originally booked, you were happy with your choice. It must be disappointing to think that you "almost" got upgraded. Find a more efficient, better TA next time, but know that you are going to have a fabulous time on a beautiful ship. Midnight buffets went away several years ago. The ships have so many choices for food at all hours of the day and night that you will truly never miss the midnight buffet. We would go to the buffet but we had eaten so much that we grabbed a few nibbles of food and took tons of photos of the food. There is food to be had 24 hours a day and tons of fun things to do. Just remember, you will spend very little time in your cabin. Best to try to put this behind you and move on with your cruise plans....and to remember that you will never, ever use this TA again.
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Old August 31st, 2010, 03:09 AM
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Thanks guys for all the advice. we will be definately be using another TA next time.
Only other comment we aren't in a guarantee (thats what started the problem!)
Anyway 'Brilliance' is apparently fully booked now (apart from a few junior suites) for our sailing, so we will make the most of it :-)
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Old August 31st, 2010, 08:29 AM
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...at first when I read the thread line I was like whoaaa what happened...

...as I read into it, your bad experience is with your agent and not with RCI. When you get onboard check in with the guest services (as opposed to calling in because the phone people are just that phone people) and bring the issue up (bring whatever paperwork you have from the agent's promise), depending on full they are RCI will do their very best to make your vacation better...

...on my first cruise on the Monarch, my travel agent guarantied 50.00onboard credit (per person), a free spa treatment, and a free dinner at a specialty restuarant. a week later after the purchase my agent said there was a change and ONLY mentioned that the trip cost was 100.00 cheaper (50.00 per person). when i checked in i didn't get any of the promised incentives. i was like wtf. i went to guest services and they said that was between me and the agent. however, RCI matched that deal and added it on my account because there was still space. thank goodness...

...to this day it's to my experience difficult to find a third party that can really give you a deal without adding the cost to the overall total. i looked at many offers then compared it to the online booking just to find the pricing is no different...
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