Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Cruise News: Costa Cruises Clarifies Reports Regarding Discounts & Promotional Offers

As if the situation surrounding the deadly grounding of Costa Concordia weren’t bad enough, the media isn’t making it any better. In a sensational bit of tabloid-ish reporting that has been published and republished over the past few days (sorry, I don’t know the original source or I’d link it), Costa Cruises was said to have offered survivors of the Concordia capsizing a 30 percent discount on their next cruise with the line. A shocking and callous claim attributed to a survivor, but untrue.

Apparently a notice to travel agents regarding future canceled Costa Concordia voyages is the source of the grossly misleading stories. In the notice sent to agents, Costa offered alternative sailings to guests booked on upcoming Costa Concordia cruises or the the opportunity to cancel for any reason and receive a complete refund plus a future cruise credit worth 30 percent of the fare they paid for their cancelled Costa Concordia cruise.

Costa Cruises North America Statement:

In reference to news reports on discounts and promotional offers, Costa Cruises asserts that the company has never offered any discount on future cruises to our guests who were on board Costa Concordia for the cruise of Jan. 13 and involved in the tragic accident. The information originally published by a newspaper and reported in various news outlets is unfounded, as confirmed by the English passenger who was quoted by the newspaper.

Costa Cruises reiterates that after the accident the company’s priority has always been to provide the maximum possible assistance and solace to the people involved. From the outset the company has been fully aware of and saddened by the suffering and hardship endured by guests and crewmembers, and has acted with this firmly in mind.

On a joint basis with rescue teams, the company worked to provide evacuated passengers and crewmembers with all the necessary assistance to ensure they were able to return home. Subsequently, Costa Cruises contacted guests by telephone after they had returned home to check on their physical and emotional wellbeing, and to confirm that they will receive a refund for the cruise and all material expenses related to it.

As previously announced, the company welcomes discussion with its guests and all consumer-protection associations to determine indemnity for the hardship endured, with the support of tourism-sector trade associations with which it has been in contact for days.

Driven by its sense of ethics and the values of fairness and responsibility which guide it, the company also has given all customers booked on future Costa cruises the opportunity, if they have hesitations about cruising, to cancel their cruise booking by Feb. 7, 2012. All travel agents who work with the company were informed of that days ago.

Costa Cruises would also like to clarify that starting on the day after the accident, all advertising initiatives planned were cancelled out of respect for those affected by this tragedy. The company was unable to stop only one postal promotion, which had already been sent to some customers at the end of December.
Photo: © CruiseDiva.com

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