The world’s largest cruise ship oversold for spring break

Royal Caribbean International has reached out to guests booked on the March 12, 2023 sailing of Wonder of the Seas with news about overbooking. The cruise line offers a number of rebooking options if guests’ travel plans are flexible, with generous compensation for the error.

Guests offered reorder options

In an email sent to booked guests, Royal Caribbean International has acknowledged a stock error that has caused oversold Wonder of the Seas. “We regret to inform you that due to an unexpected inventory error, your scheduled March 12, 2023 Wonder of the Seas sailing is currently oversold,” the email reads.

The affected cruise is a 7-night Eastern Caribbean sailing, visiting St. Kitts, St. Thomas and CocoCay, Royal Caribbean’s private island destination in the Bahamas.

This is not the first time Wonder of the Seas has been accidentally oversold. ONE a similar situation occurred for the sailing on 11 December 2022. Three different options are offered in an attempt to rectify this latest overbooking, but guests may not be happy with the proposed options.

Sail on another ship

The first option is to transfer Wonder of the Seas booking to Explorer of the sea instead sailing from PortMiami on March 12 for a 6-night cruise instead of a 7-night cruise. This option will also include a 100% refund of Wonder of the Seas price, as well as a $300 onboard credit Explorer of the sea.

If Explorer of the sea the price is lower than the price paid for Wonder of the Seas, guests will also receive a refund for the price difference, returned to their original payment method. Guests must still pay taxes, port fees and gratuities for the new cruise.

Royal Caribbean Explorer of the Seas
Photo credit: Merrillie Redden / Shutterstock

Explorer of the sea will sail a Western Caribbean itinerary for the March 12 cruise, visiting Jamaica, Grand Cayman and CocoCay.

Although the proposed option may be of great value to guests, the differences in cruise itineraries, departure ports and the ships themselves may make this option less attractive.

Wonder of the Seas is currently the newest and largest ship in the Royal Caribbean fleet, having debuted in 2022 and weighing in at 236,857 gross tons.

The Vision class Explorer of the sea is significantly smaller and older, having debuted in 2000. At just 138,194 gross tonnes, Explorer of the sea does not have the same functions and facilities as the larger, more advanced one Wonder of the Seas.

Sail on another date

The other option offered to guests on the oversold sailing is to transfer theirs Wonder of the Seas booking for another sailing date. Only two select dates are available for this offer – July 30 and August 13 this summer.

Both alternate sailing dates are 7-night Eastern Caribbean cruises, visiting St. Thomas, St. Maarten and CocoCay. While this is not exactly the same itinerary as the original March 12 departure date, it is a close comparison.

However, the dates themselves can be problematic for many travelers. The week of March 12 is the local Spring Break week, and it is likely that many families have been looking forward to the seaside vacation during that school vacation.

Wonder of the Seas
Wonder of the Seas (Photo credit: EWY Media / Shutterstock)

While the alternative sailing date of July 30 is before local schools begin the 2023-2024 school year, the first day of school is August 10, meaning the other alternative sailing date – August 13 – is not as attractive, because it would mean students would miss out of critical. first days of school.

Full cancellation and refund

The third option offered to guests is to cancel the sailing completely. Not only will guests receive a full 100% cruise fare refund, but they will also receive a 100% Future Cruise Fare Credit (FCC) that can be applied to any Royal Caribbean sailing departing through March 15, 2024.

This will refund the first cruise and give guests a good credit to use on any future cruise for the next year. This is a great option for guests who do not have immediately flexible travel plans, but are willing to rebook to a future date on the sailing of their choice.

More compensation is offered

Whichever option guests choose, Royal Caribbean will also refund or refund any pre-purchased non-refundable travel expenses, such as airfare and hotel rooms. Guests are also under no obligation to accept any of the alternatives and may instead remain on the original sailing.

“This special offer is limited time and subject to availability,” the email explains. “If you are happy to be excluded from the special offer, please disregard this email – no further action is required.”

However, it is possible that if not enough guests accept one of the options, oversold bookings may be canceled and refunded, but without the special offers.

Guests interested in taking advantage of the offer must contact the cruise line to make appropriate arrangements and select their option. The offer is likely to be made only to those guests in oversold cabin categories and may not be available to all passengers booked during Spring Break cruises.

Royal Caribbean's Wonder of the Seas cruise ship

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