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Coronavirus: Which cruise lines are protecting travel agent commissions?

Nieuw Statendam, cruise, Holland America Line, solo cruising, cruising, cruise, solo, coronavirus commission
photo_camera Holland America's Nieuw Statendam.

In light of the coronavirus outbreak, many cruise lines have suspended sailings and altered cancellation policies affecting travel agents up and down the country.

Some cruise lines have announced protection for travel agent commissions in the event of cancellations and are listed below.

Crystal Cruises

Crystal Cruises is is protecting travel agent’s commission on fully paid cancelled bookings when 100 per cent future cruise credit is provided.

The line cancelled river cruises scheduled to depart from March 26 to April 11, along with a Crystal Esprit yacht cruise due to depart on April 10.

The line had earlier made the decision to cancel a series of Asia cruises for Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity including a cruise from Mumbai to Rome departing on April 3. Crystal Serenity is due back in service on April 21 and Crystal Symphony on May 8.

Affected guests will be offered a full refund or future cruise credit, details of which will be communicated by the line.

Holland America Line

Holland America Line has made the decision to voluntarily pause global cruise operations of its 14 ships for 30 days, impacting sailings scheduled to depart through 14 April  2020.

Three cruises that were scheduled to depart this weekend are now cancelled. Booked guests and their travel agents are in the process of being notified. Guests on these three cruises cancelled this weekend will receive a 100 per cent refund and 100 per cent Future Cruise Credit.

In a statement, it that Holland America Line will protect travel agent commissions on bookings for cancelled cruises that were paid in full and for the total amount of the Future Cruise Credits when guests rebook.

Norwegian Cruise Line

NCL joined Royal Caribbean as one of the latest US cruise lines to suspend sailings amid the outbreak.

Guests who are currently booked on voyages with embarkation dates from 13 March to 11 April 2020 on NCL, Oceania Cruises or Regent Seven Seas have been asked to contact their travel agent or cruise line.

All guests on impacted voyages will receive a 125 per cent refund of the fare paid in the form of a future cruise credit, which can be applied toward any future cruise through 31 December 2022.

Guests who do not wish to have the credit can instead choose to have a 100 per cent fare refund, which they will receive within 90 days of making the request.

Travel agent commissions on cancelled cruises will be protected, the line also confirmed.

Guests on voyages currently underway will conclude and passengers will be disembarked and assisted with travel arrangements.

AmaWaterways 

AmaWaterways has delayed the start of its European sailing season until 26 April 2020.

It has updated its cancellation policy applicable to the cancelled sailings so guests can cruise in the future. Passengers booked on a cruise that is being cancelled have the option of receiving a future cruise credit equal to 115 per cent of the value of all services purchased through AmaWaterways or receiving a full refund.

The future cruise credit is applicable on all European or Mekong river cruise sailings any time before  31 December 2022.

The company will fully protect the commission of travel agents whose clients opt for a future cruise credit, as well as pay an additional 10 per cent commission on the value of the future booking.

Plus the company will pay full commission on the fare difference, if applicable.

Windstar Cruises

Windstar Cruises announced the company will temporarily suspend operations worldwide for cruises embarking 14 March through 30 April 2020.

Travellers on cancelled cruises can choose a future cruise credit valued at 125 per cent of all monies paid to Windstar or a refund equal to the amount paid on the Windstar booking. They will have 24 months to book and embark on any available cruise using the credit.

Travel agent commissions are protected.

Avalon Waterways/Cosmos

Avalon Waterways is suspending travel through to April 30.

The line has introduced a new ‘Peace of Mind Plan’ for travelers whose trips are impacted. This allows them to move travel dates without incurring cancellation fees, land or airline penalties. It also gives a bonus credit of $200 per person for a new reservation, redeemable for any future 2020, 2021 or 2022 vacation.

Travellers who cancel will get a refund but must advise the company by 31 March.

Commissions will be protected on bookings during this travel window that are rescheduled.

The wider Globus family – including Cosmos Tours – has also announced that it is voluntarily suspending travel, across all destinations, through to 30 April 2020.

Silversea

Royal Caribbean has suspended all US sailings, as well as the voyages of its fleet globally, until 10 April. All current sailings will be concluded as planned and the line will be assisting passengers with their return home.

Due to the coronavirus outbreak, Silversea, part of Royal Caribbean,  is protecting travel agent commissions on all bookings cancelled under its ‘Cruise with Confidence’ programme.

It will allow travel partners to retain any commissions already paid, and pay commissions on bookings cancelled between 9 March and 31 July 2020 after they were paid in full, provided the cancellation occurs outside of the 48-hour cancellation window.

For the latest advice on coronavirus, visit gov.uk.

This article will be updated.

Our view

The cruise industry is facing an unprecedented and ever-changing situation, and we are committed to keeping you informed with the most up-to-date news. However, we firmly believe that the cruise industry will bounce back. When it does, we’ll be on hand to help you get back to selling the cruises that people love.   

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