Thumbs DownMy wife and I are looking forward to a cruise this spring with two other couples on Royal Caribbean. We made our reservations  last fall, including a relatively sizable deposit. The remainder of the cost is due this month.

When I went online to pay the remainder I found that Royal Caribbean had added a fuel surcharge to our bill (after I made the reservation and paid my deposit). So I called in to their call center and, after being transferred to a different department, I found out the surcharge was added to all passengers whose cruise departs after February 1, 2008 and have not been paid in full by November 16, 2007.

Now I understand that oil prices are going up and they squeeze companies like they squeeze normal people, but adding an additional charge after we’ve agreed on a price, and paid a deposit, is wrong. If you’d like to raise your prices for future reservations that’s fine, but don’t raise the price retroactively. I asked customer service to remove the charge and was told it was an executive decision that couldn’t be changed.

Richard D. Fain, as the CEO of Royal Caribbean, you should realize this is a bad business practice that will anger your customers.

Update: Royal Caribbean changed its mind and didn’t charge us the fuel supplement. Click here for my folllow up post.

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