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Cruises-N-More / be aware of this company!

1 United States Review updated:

I went through CruiseCompete.com to get quotes on a cruise in May on the Star Princess for 5 cabins (ll family members). I received 8 quotes, the lowest being from Cruises-n-More.

This quote was based on "BB" category cabins. (I have this in writing). However, We have been put in BC and BD cat. cabins. We booked this cruise the lst of Oct. just a few days after receiving the quote. I have left emails and phone messages for the agent to please change the BD cabins (at least those 3) to BD cabins. She won't even do that.

Now, months later, the cabins are all booked. Esther, our agent, does not return phone calls or emails. Even her boss, Todd, the VP, emailed me that the BB cabins were not available when I booked and that I am stuck with what I have.

I think this is wrong. It's like ordering a Cadillac, but getting a Chevrolet instead. Consumers need to be aware of this sort of practice. P.S. This agency touts itself as the #1 agency for cruises of 2006.

Va
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Comments

  • La
      18th of Sep, 2007
    -1 Votes

    Cruises-n-More is unprofessional, rude and I will never deal with this company again! There were 4 of us that booked a cruise to Hawaii, and 1 of our friends called to cancel ONLY her reservation. The agent we were working with at the time said no problem and understood that it was just HER that was canceling only her reservation. All this was discussed and understood on the phone that only her reservation would be cancelled but the other 3 of us would still be going. She called the agent several times as well as sent e-mail stating that only she was the ONLY one who could not go. Well the agent left the company and another agent stepped in and canceled the ENTIRE reservation. Now they are saying there is nothing they can do. The only optionthe three of us have (so they say) is to upgrade to an oceanview because there are no more inside cabins and that we must payadditional for air because it is not included anymore. THIS IS INSANE!! Nobody called us before they canceled our reservation to verify if indeed it was only 1 that was canceling or the whole reservation. I'm furious becaue I keep getting the run around about speaking to a supervisor. The have the ability to make the situation RIGHT but they say unless we all pay $$$ we will not be going on the trip, which all of this is THEIR fault. I bet the agent quit because of their unfair business practices!! DO NOT BOOK WITH CRUISES-N-MORE!! They don't care about you, just your $$$.

  • Ch
      22nd of Sep, 2008
    -1 Votes

    Contact CruiseCompete--let them know you were not given what you were promised. CruiseCompete is a great company. I am an Elite Member and have many happy guests. I specialize in group travel. Feedback is very important for this type of business. Let them know when you are happy and when you are not satisfied.

  • Ly
      7th of Nov, 2008
    +1 Votes

    We used cruise compete many time but had a nightmare when we booked 8 cabins for a cruise a week ago. We booked through them using CRUISE VACATION OUTLET.
    My quote was from Mark but he quickly dumped us onto his wife Shannon who just seemed to mess everything up day after day and when you asked her more than one question at a time it seemed to be too much for her to comprehend.
    We all complained bitterly, complained to her company and cruise compete - all to no avail!
    Cruise Vacation Outlets President Todd assured me that if we had any further issues to contact him directly but contacting him was impossible. Emails were returned because his inbox was full. Same with voice mails.
    We take several trips/year and have been on many many cruises and this was the worst experience of ever!!! We all (16 of us) agreed.

  • Co
      19th of Dec, 2008
    -1 Votes

    I would caution anyone in using CruiseCompete. You have no idea what kind of travel agent they will connect you with. In my case, it was with My Cruise Value. They are now out of business and have left ripped off many people. I feel it is worth it to go through a reputable travel agency, or deal directly with the cruise lines. You may pay a few dollars more, but you will have peace of mind that you're not going to lose your money.

  • Wi
      28th of Dec, 2008
    -1 Votes

    Used this agency and Shannon on a Med cruise and a Mex cruise this year and found her to be excellent. She had all the answers, always answered the phone or returned my calls immediately. Too bad you had a poor experience with her, I will use her again. ecruise store is one that a friend had a terrible experience with.

  • Wi
      28th of Dec, 2008
    +1 Votes

    BTW-I've used CruiseCompete about 6 times and never had a single problem, I swear by them.

  • Cr
      10th of Mar, 2009
    +1 Votes

    Hi, Bob Levinstein CEO of CruiseCompete.com here.

    I was just made aware of this thread this morning, and wanted to respond and apologize for any frustrations our customers experience.

    1. As CEO I handle all service complaints personally. Though about 50, 000 people a year find cruises through our site, we only see a handful of problems each month or two. Even with these, I find that in almost every case getting the agency management involved clears up the issue very quickly.

    2. Cruises-n-More. CnM is a very high-volume agency booking thousands of passengers each month. Here are their ratings from consumers on our system:

    Positive: 99% 3, 763
    Negative: 1% 39

    I can't really comment on the scenario described above except to say I wish the user had contacted me immediately to help get it resolved. I have known CnM to be an agency that takes responsibility for their mistakes, so this seems out of character for them. That the agent who was so mishandled this customer left the agency in the middle of the transaction is no surprise, however.

    2. Cruise Vacation Outlet. This is another high-volume agency highly rated by our customers:

    Positive: 99% 1, 738
    Negative: 1% 9


    Though the user says she contacted us, I don't recall this particular issue. The first thing I would have done would have been to get Todd Elliot, the owner of CVO, involved, so that certainly tracks. I do know that I was not made aware that anyone was having trouble reaching Todd, as I would have been glad to follow up and make sure to put the customer in touch.

    3. Cruise Value Center. Yes, CVC went bankrupt. However, very few people lost any money at all. The worst thing that happened to anyone who paid with a credit card (as we advise every customer) is that they ended up having to pay the same price they would have if they booked directly with the cruise line in the first place. Not a great result, but not the tragedy described. Booking directly with the cruise line and paying the higher price in the first place to avoid the unlikely event of an agency going bankrupt between your booking and final payment so you have to transfer the booking back to the cruise line and pay the higher price doesn't strike me as the best advice.

    CVC was no fly-by-night operation: this was 15-year-old, $70 million travel agency. After 5 years of quoting and selling through CruiseCompete with glowing customer reviews and never missing a payment to us, they went out of business with no notice and no warning.

    This is probably because the agency itself was doing just fine. However, it had been sold to another company which (I've been told) was siphoning off revenues to support other, failing ventures and all of their enterprises went bankrupt. I'd like to tell you that we've taken steps to prevent similar problems in the future, but frankly there's absolutely nothing we could have done differently. We'd had no hint of any problems until the general manager e-mailed me to tell me they were closing their doors.


    Finally, here is a link to our "Contact Us" form for customers:

    http://www.cruisecompete.com/contactmail.php/?desc=cruisers


    E-mail sent via this form come directly to me. If you ever have an issue with any of our member-agencies, please do let me know right away. While CruiseCompete is technically a 3rd party to all transactions (we match customers with the agencies with the best offers who ultimately do business together), I can usually get the attention of the right people to get problems solved.

    We do our best to work with customers and agencies to help everyone both have the best experience in booking their cruise vacations and get the best deal. For those of you where we've fallen short of that goal, I do sincerely apologize.

    Sincerely,

    Bob Levinstein
    CEO
    CruiseCompete, LLC.

  • Kk
      6th of Apr, 2009
    +1 Votes

    We have used CruiseCompete many, many times. I must admit, not everything went smooth on every cruise, but on most it did. The cost benefit to me is substantially better than the risk factor involved. I always, always pay by credit card (Credit Card Company also guarantee my purchase). My credit card deposit and subsequent payments are always direct with the cruise line, so unless the cruise line goes out of business, there is very little risk. The satisfaction numbers quoted by Bob Livingston are astounding in any industry. I imagine if you compared the actual satisfaction rating of the cruise lines, you would be hard pressed to match these numbers. More industries could use sales tools similar to CruiseCompete. Can you imagine buying a car under this competitive system ... I would love it!
    KKPMI

  • Re
      11th of Apr, 2009
    0 Votes

    The old saying you get what you pay for! I have been selling cruises for 6 years now & it is said to see that people treat buying an expensive item like a cruise the same way they buy a toaster. Looking to save 10.00 may cost you a bundle! I may not always be the cheapest price on every cruise but I give personal attention & excellent customer service. I am the owner of my homebased agency so you deal with the decision maker from start to finish. These huge internet agencies that are being discussed cant service like a small company. Will you save a few dollars sometimes but not always. How do some of the large agencies have the lowest price, simple. They give back all or most of the commission they are getting from the cruiseline. Great for the consumer but anyone who owns a business knows if you dont make a profit guess what happens? Yes they go out of business like many travel agencies have! Another inside tip never purchase direct from a cruiseline. You will never save money & you will give up the perks a good agent will get you. The cruiselines dont give the commission they save on direct bookings to the consumer they just make a higher profit. Any questions on the cruise industry or other agencies please contact me to discuss
    Thanks
    Reece Oslinker
    Smooth Sailing Cruises

  • Kk
      11th of Apr, 2009
    -1 Votes

    I agree completely that you get what you pay for. There is another saying that also applies. Buyer Beware. The buyer also has a responsibility in any transaction. When dealing on line, you must read all of the details. I am sure that agents like Reece give the type of personal attention that most often avoids the situation that is being discussed in the above comments. All of the online agencies advise that until purchase has been made, the price is not guaranteed. This also affects folks like Reece, the difference being that at that moment the buyer is in actual contact with the seller and the seller can immediately explain that the lower priced cabins have been sold and these are now the current best price. There will always be customers that want that type of contact with the selling agent. I will admit, if as Reece says I was saving $10.00, I would deal with my local travel agent. I must point out that the saving amounts to hundreds of dollars per person. I travel with my wife and this now doubles my savings. That said, as I said the buyer is responsible to ensure that they know what they are buying. These large tour companies are here to stay, just like Costco, Walmart and Home Depot. That does not mean all of the small shops will go away. The inefficient and outdated ones will fall by the wayside, but the smart & aggressive ones will succeed, as they have over the years in every industry. Even Reece has made the adjustment ... he is not the typical storefront agent ... he states that he is the owner of his “homebased” agency ... low overhead, no employees, all profits are all based upon his own effort and initiative. I will continue to deal on line for all my travel needs; I have found that most "agents" do not source the best deals the way you can do it yourself and the savings are substantial if you are aware of what is required. So, like Reece. I also am rewarded for my effort and initiative. Thanks for your time, KKPMI

  • Lz
      25th of May, 2010
    -1 Votes

    I went with cruisecompete twice and never will use that site again, Cruises-n-more are a mortar and brick agency which means they need to sell lots of cabins to get a good price, heres the problem though if they dont sell the cabins they need to sell price that was offered will not be legit,

    I booked a Royal Caribbean cruise three weeks before my cruise I was told by a rep of royal that I owe $400.00 still on cruise and I said I paid in full and told them the price they told me that they discounted the cruise and it's against there policy, DONT book with cruises-n-more and I wont ever deal with cruisecompete again, I taled to Bob Levinstein and he told me there the top agency and probably was a mistake, I very much doubt that,

    I found a agency that I use and will always use there name is vacationsnbeyond.com, there site is under construction but I used them now 4 times and are truly the best.

  • Ta
      13th of Jul, 2013
    0 Votes

    You all should do yourselves a favor and find a local brick & mortar travel agency and create a relationship with an agent you can actually sit down face to face to discuss your plans. Be sure to pick an agency that has been in business for a long time and go in and "interview" the agent. Find an agent who has traveled extensively and you can benefit in more ways than just saving money. Remember, the cheapest price does not always provide the best cruise experience. Here are some good reasons to do this-
    1. You get to sit face to face with an agent. If not satisfied with the agent, you can go elsewhere. So it is important to find a good one - its not that hard to do.
    2. The agent can quote several cruises & categories at one time thus shortening the selection process.
    3. The agent can compare for you, again the cheapest price is not always the best value for your hard earned money and the agent can point this out to you.
    4. An experienced agent will spend time with you (at no cost to you) and will assist in planning your cruise including recommendations for shore excursions. Possibly offering shore excursions not offered by the cruise line and often for less money.
    5. After you have booked, a good agent will monitor your booking(s) for any price reductions, upgrades & amenities and will apply them to your booking according to the cruise line's rules & regulations..(I have known cases where the cruise rate has gone down and the agent will keep the difference and the client knows nothing about it.). Periodically check prices yourself after you have booked the cruise - just to keep your agent on their toes.
    6. Most importantly, if problems do arise, you can go and sit down face to face and discuss the situation. You won't be frustrated with your calls and emails not being answered
    7.You are spending a lot of money, it is wise to seek out a travel professional and not an on-line order taker.
    8. Many, not all, agencies that take online leads are desperate for sales and will kick back their commissions to offer you a competing price. Beware of this practice - the cruise lines do not condone it, and if detected, some cruise lines will not honor the booking or will seek to collect the difference. Cruise lines like Royal Caribbean, Celebrity and Norwegian, to name just a few have taken online discounters to task by not honoring bookings that show pricing other than the official cruise line rates. The cruise lines are monitoring most sites to detect aggressive price discounting.
    9. Remember there is value to an agent's experience, knowledge, service and follow-up that is afforded to you at no cost.
    10. There are many other things, but this gives you the general idea - stay away from booking through the internet - even the cruise lines suggest you use a good agent rather than book directly with the cruise line itself. Booking a cruise is a lot more complex than most people think, and it is best to have some knowledgeable help.
    11. If a problem occurs during your cruise a good agent is your best advocate. The agent will help you deal with the cruise line.
    By now you have probably figured out that I am a travel agent. Have been for over 28 years and a have a loyal clientele which continues to use my services, and refers others, because of the reasons stated above and more. Good Luck to you all in finding that "brick & mortar agent". We out here waiting for you!

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