CruiseFish Forum

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    Naples, FL, United States
    joined Apr 2012
    post 1/2
    cruiser #8734
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    As frequent cruisers we are aware that cruises during high demand periods ( ie: spring break/Easter/Christmass/New Years) ships are heavily booked and thus price drops are few. However, cruises booked during low demand periods ( ie: mid Sept thru mid November) are lightly booked and price drops especially after final payment are very common.

    joined Jun 2014
    post 1/3
    cruiser #23712
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    Well, I'm a bit sore.  I booked a cruise with a TA, at the last minute, within a week of sailing, my mom decided to join us.  They were offering 3rd and 4th person free, in a handicap accessible room, and my TA told me RCI wouldn't let us rebook into the other room and add my mother.  We could only add my mother to our room.

     

    It would have meant a slight price drop to add the 4th person compared to what I paid with the 3rd person.  I got on board and asked the RCI agent on board, he said it wasn't true.  When I called RCI directly, they said they couldn't do anything because the TA held the reservation.

     

    So basically, screwed over by the TA.  Leaves a sour taste in my mouth.  TA, never again.  First and last time.

    Heidelberg, Germany
    joined Aug 2012
    post 4/12
    cruiser #10843
    Lifetime Member
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    I use a travel agent all the time. Your just didn't have a good one. Several things are true - if a travel agent holds the booking, RCI can't mess with it. This is protection for both you and the agent. Any price drops are going to cost your agent commission. Many of us have great agents who do their absolute best for us. What they might lose on one cruse, they are going to get back in loyalty (more bookings) and referrals (again, more customers and more bookings). 

    I travel a lot for both professional and personal reasons. Talking on the phone to Royal (or any other cruise line)is a pain and it is costly and difficult when on the road. Having an agent who responds politely and promptly to emails is my way of handling it.

    And, the guest services staff does have the ability to make cabin changes. Just saying. But many times those last minute deals are just one cabin or two. My hunch is that your agent either didn't make the call or was too late..

    -Holly

    joined Jun 2014
    post 2/3
    cruiser #23712
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    She claimed to have made the call, and told me Royal wouldn't allow it.

     

    But before that she said, it must have been:

    1) A fare only published in Europe (I was on the RCI US site, in the U.S.)

    2) I was probably looking at a different sail date for the same boat, or the same sail date on a different boat

    3) She just didn't see the fare

     

    Sent her a screen shot via e-mail, said she couldn't see the screen shot in her e-mail.

     

    When on board, I check with Royal Reps there, and first they told me there were no such published fares, but I had taken a screen print, and he asked to see it.  It was then he told me, Royal couldn't touch the reservation anyway.

     

    It all adds up to a bunch of bullocks, and it cost me $450!  And now I realize I was being lied to.  I still have the screen shots, but I doubt RCI would do anything for me, as it wasn't their reservation...but boy, it rubbed me the wrong way.  Don't know how long it takes you to save $450, but that isn't so easily done...

    Heidelberg, Germany
    joined Aug 2012
    post 5/12
    cruiser #10843
    Lifetime Member
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    I don't blame you for being upset. 450$ to me is a significant amount of money. My least concern when booking is OBC; more importantly to me is cabin. price. ship. Of note - the RCI C&A crew can only see current prices - they can not see price history n any cabin. I have been known, when booking on ship to take screen shots and show them. OTOH, I have also had them get back point snafu's fixed and upgrades when there was a short window and I couldn't email my agent. 

    But then - because of my schedule I book up to 2 years out and then watch for price changes. I haven't even had the chance to book in the last couple of weeks. Usually the second best prices are the opening bids on the cruise.

    All the best

    Holly

    AB, Canada
    joined Feb 2014
    post 1/1
    cruiser #20931
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    Not all TA's are as bad as this one... most are more concerned with making sure that they have happy clients and will jump through hoops to ensure that happens.

    My TA checks for price drops every day, using a number of methods and never once has she not managed to get me the best possible prices when they are available. I would not give up completely on TA's just find a better one. They do have their uses and  will save you a ton of time and energy.

     

     

    joined Jun 2014
    post 3/3
    cruiser #23712
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    Well, if anyone would like to forward me the name of good TA, I'm open to suggestions.

    Minus recommened information, I guess I'm better off to just book on my own via the RCI website.

    Fort Lauderdale, FL, United States
    joined Jun 2014
    post 2/6
    cruiser #23891
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    I would love to offer that to my clients. I always have my clients use Yapta for air. There really isn't any tool or mechanism for this but for Cruise Fish. It's really setup like Airlines... Book in advance and get a decent rate, or gamble on a last minute one or two day sale. Most Airlines sans Southwest and JetBlue don't give you credit if it's less than cancellation fee. I love being with my big host agency because we can open up if planned outside a few months before sailing groups at group rates and OBC even if you don't have 8 cabins as a customer. We open up the group to all other agents, and your guaranteed whether the group fills up or not. So I do strongly recommend any agency for future planned cruises over direct booking. You also have someone to go to bat for you. I've gotten cabins you can't see online as well. Definitely get a good personal relationships with someone you like is worth it. But don't expect price Alerts from agents imho. Hope for a long and successful Cruise Fish!

    TravelWithPoints.com Jason@travelwithpoints.com
    joined Oct 2014
    post 1/1
    cruiser #26946
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    Hello, I noticed your response on this forum and want to ask the name of your travel agent.

    Fort Lauderdale, FL, United States
    joined Jun 2014
    post 4/6
    cruiser #23891
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    I am one and you can just go to my website. I don't want to post it or my email address as I only participate in these forums to offer free advice, don't want to violate any anti-advertising rules of this board but you can search it using my username.


    TravelWithPoints.com Jason@travelwithpoints.com
    Wyoming, ON, Canada
    joined Jun 2013
    post 2/3
    cruiser #16310
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    Hi, that has been my experience with the 2 TA's I used here in Canada, and with our regs our TA's cannot offer all these free gratuities and extra onboard credits anyway.  So I book direct, also I am sailing in 8 days and last week which was after the final payment date they not only honored the price change but gave me the wow sale OBC of $100 :)  that made me happy.  Love RCCL!

    Fort Lauderdale, FL, United States
    joined Jun 2014
    post 5/6
    cruiser #23891
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    Why not just use a USA travel agent? (Excuse me if there is a reason I am ignorant of) If allowed, seems like an easy solution!

     


    TravelWithPoints.com Jason@travelwithpoints.com
    Wyoming, ON, Canada
    joined Jun 2013
    post 3/3
    cruiser #16310
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    No worries, I am not taking that question the wrong way lol.  I have also called TA's in the USA but when I take the USA price then calculate the rate of exchange as I will be charged in US funds, our Canadian Credit Cards also charge an additional 2.5% FX fee on top of that I end paying for all the freebies so they are no longer free :)  Now some Canadians hold US dollar accounts here in Canada and have US fund credit card to go with from their Canadian Financial institutions but if we do not travel enough to have all that it is still not worth it for everyone.  I have friends here in Canada and her TA is in Arkansas but she also cruises alot lol she has 7 booked from now till end of 2015 :)  The CAD price RCCL charges us for the cruise is not far off the US$ price so it is the more economical way for us personally to do it.  Hope I made this clear lol sometimes it sounds ok to me but to others it might not be.

    Houston, United States
    joined Nov 2014
    post 1/2
    cruiser #27504
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    I wondered the same thing because when i saw a price drop and told my TA she did evertything and told me everything in her power not to get that price drop ,  I was booked on a group cruise and didnt get any obc.  All im getting is crappy ass service from my TA . I will never use a TA again. I will do my own booking from now on. Im new to cruising , and is going on my first in June.


    :grin:New Houston

    Fort Lauderdale, FL, United States
    joined Jun 2014
    post 6/6
    cruiser #23891
    Re: Commissions and price drops

    Can you be more specific, was this before or after final payment?


    TravelWithPoints.com Jason@travelwithpoints.com
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