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Screams from our readers: Fuel surcharge stinks!

Posted by Anita Dunham-Potter On November - 13 - 2007

Scowling manThe e-mail bag is getting full of complaint letters from cruise passengers upset by the fuel surcharge. Here’s a sampling of the anger:

 “How can they raise a paid in full cruise? Don’t I have a Paid in full contract with Carnival. I just don’t understand. I have till Nov. 26th to cancel with full refund and I think the others in our group of 25 cabins fill the same. ”

Lew Adams

“While the cruise lines should adjust their pricing for the additional costs of fuel, doing it retroactively to people who have already paid in full is ridiculous.

Imagine getting your car fixed at the mechanic, he bills you and you promptly pay. Two weeks later he sends you another bill, telling you that he forgot some of his costs. Would you pay?

You can’t use the excuse that the ship hasn’t sailed yet. If the prices for my room go down after I pay due to “capacity adjustments” will I get a refund? Of course not.Adjust prices for future bookings, not retroactively. It’s just bad business. ”

John Ropac


“I understand the high price of fuel. I see it every day I fill up my gas tank and get my heating bill. What I don’t like is when I book a cruise for April (Princess Cruises) in advance, pay a $450 deposit for an agreed upon price, then 2 months later I’m told that I have to pay an extra $100 for my wife and myself.

This cruise is more money than I normally spend (35th anniversary) and I may have chosen a different cruise had I known of this extra charge when I booked it. I had just booked my airfare 2 days before (non refundable) I was informed of the extra fuel surcharge. I see other cruise line raised theirs for people who have not booked yet. I can understand that.

I have cruised many times before on royal Caribbean and this is my first and last cruise on any Carnival owned cruise line.”

Darrel Kozikowski


“My son and his fiancé booked a 7 day cruise for their Honeymoon in June. I’ve never heard of an increase in the cost of a vacation after a vacation has been booked and a deposit has been put down.

I really feel sorry for the position they are in since they are watching their pennies planning the wedding. They had budgeted a certain amount for the honeymoon and thought they had a good deal until they were informed by their travel agent that they were increasing their cost by $70 per person not the $5.00 per person surcharge per day as stated in your article.

I will be on the phone with them this morning to clear this up. Also, Carnival is paying the travel agent an additional $10.00 for the inconvenience this is costing them. Wouldn’t it make sense for the travel agent to hand over this $10 to it’s clients as a good will gesture. If the cruise line is really hurting they shouldn’t be paying the travel agents extra.”

Carlene Smith


Editors footnote:

It’s clear the fuel surcharge has a lot of people upset. One thing to keep in mind is don’t take this out on the travel agent; it’s not their fault. ~ Anita

Have something to say? Shoot me an e-mail or post a note on our forums.

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2 Responses to “Screams from our readers: Fuel surcharge stinks!”

  1. Roy Bossons says:

    Lets have a vote on this,If you dont like it then dont sail.
    I for one have done the math and see that as much as 60% of the total fuel
    costs to the cruise lines will now be met by these fuel surcharges.
    Hey Cruise lines,heres an idea,why not put a $10 per person a day penalty on your passengers,that way all your fuel costs will be covered.

    I predict that we will see a decrease in cruise reservations in 2008 due to this kind of practice,if you need more money for fuel then include it on the ticket price.

    My advice to cruise lines is to stop treating your passengers like fools ,be honest
    so that you might earn the loyalty that you profess to covet.


    Roy Bossons

  2. jerry says:

    I have TWO crises booked with Royal Caribbean, 2009 & 2010. Oil is NOW $54.00 a barrel, IF they DON’T drop the fuel charge, I WILL cancel BOTH cruises & do something else. I have taken 4 cruises in the past 16 months, never had to pay a fuel charge until now.. With all the add ons i.e., car parking, tipping on ship & all the over priced items ON the ship, cruising is NOT the deal cruise lines would have you believe!


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