Cruise Connections Canada had chartered the Norwegian Star for two northbound/southbound Pacific Coastal sailings between Los Angeles and Vancouver on February 6th and March 2nd, 2010. The charter, from NewWest Special Projects, was also to act as a floating hotel during the Olympic Games. On February 2nd, 2010, NewWest abruptly cancelled the charter, only four days before the first sailing.
John Brand, sales manager at Cruise Connections, and staff members immediately began working on contacting the 300 plus clients who they had booked aboard.
“We are extremely disappointed in the turn of events. Our priority is to assist our distraught clients who were inconvenienced as a result of NewWest’s decision,” Brand stated last week.
Despite not receiving refunds for their bookings from a number of vendors, including airlines, Cruise Connections promptly offered their clients several options, including a full refund.
“We offered our clients a number of choices, including alternate vacations, credits towards future bookings and a full refund,” Cruise Connections’ president Sanjay Goel commented.
The March 2nd sailing was filled to capacity, leaving some 2,000 plus travellers without holiday plans due to the actions taken by NewWest that scuppered the charter.
“We’re disappointed that an agreement between Norwegian Cruise Line and NewWest could not be reached,” Goel added. “These cancellations look bad on the industry and, more importantly, negatively affected our customers. We felt morally and ethically obligated to make sure that they had viable options, even if it was at a loss to us.”