COVID-19: Azamara Extends Global Suspension of Operations

Azamara Cruises has released an update to the travel trade announcing the decision to extend the suspension of its global operations

Azamara Cruises has released an update to the travel trade announcing the decision to extend the suspension of its global operations amid the global coronavirus crisis.

Azamara have contacted all affected clients directly about their upcoming cruise and encouraging them to discuss a series of options with their travel agent.

Update in full below:

Dear Travel Advisor,

We hope that amid this global pandemic, you have remained healthy and safe. We are facing truly unprecedented times as the coronavirus pandemic continues to have unexpected consequences on our communities and businesses. However, we remain optimistic that each day that passes, is another day closer to less uncertainty, more recoveries, and getting back to regular day-to-day.

After consulting with the CDC and our partners at Cruise Lines International Association, we will be extending the suspension of global operations for all sailings departing on-or-before July 31, 2020.

We are terribly sorry. This is disappointing for all of us. But know, your clients’ health, safety, and well-being are our top priorities. And while we wish we had different news to share, we have some compensation options for your consideration for sailings between June 11th, 2020 and July 31st, 2020, for guests who have not previously canceled under our ‘Cruise With Confidence’ policy.

We’ve emailed your clients directly about their upcoming cruise due to the urgency of this matter encouraging them to discuss the following options with you:

  • As a result of this change, we’re providing your clients with a 125% Future Cruise Credit to book a new cruise by December 31, 2021 for sailings departing on or before April 30th, 2022.
  • We are very pleased to give you full commission on cancelled reservations paid-in-full, as well as the future reservation where the correlating FCC is redeemed. Please note that FCC commission earnings are payable only on sailed reservations.
  • This amount will be based on their total cruise fare paid. And, we’re giving them a little extra, knowing that this is such a unique circumstance.
  • We will automatically issue their Future Cruise Credit by Tuesday, June 30th, 2020 via email. So, there’s nothing for you to do!
  • Guests who have purchased pre- or post- land packages through Azamara will also receive compensation in the same form as their cruise fare.
  • Please note, if your clients previously opted into the Cruise with Confidence 100% Future Cruise Credit, they do not qualify for this offer.

Alternatively, your clients also have the option to keep their cruise vacation plans to the same destination and move their existing booking to a 2021 sailing on a date within four weeks of their originally scheduled departure. The alternative sailing must be of the same stateroom category, on the same product (itinerary type) and cruise length (+/- one sail night), scheduled within four weeks before or four weeks after the date of the original sailing but in the subsequent year.

Just let us know by June 10th, 2020 and we’ll “lift and shift” their reservation at the same rate including any promotion they currently have on the booking. If we don’t hear from you, we will automatically issue their Future Cruise Credit.

Please note, if you have already cancelled their sailing by taking advantage of our Cruise with Confidence policy, they will not be eligible to receive the compensation noted above.

Or, if your clients prefer the lower value in a 100% full refund, we’re happy to process this. Given how fluid this situation is, and the opportunity to use the extra credit being offered, they have until the end of this year – December 31, 2020 – to request a refund and deactivate their certificate.

Please contact us to start the refund process, if your clients are willing to give up the higher value of their 125% Future Cruise Credit.

To avoid waiting on the phone to cancel, login to CruisingPower to use our self-service cancellation form and start the process.

We’ll then deactivate their Future Cruise Credit and process their refund to their original form(s) of payment.

Your clients can expect to receive their refund 45 days after submitting the request.

Please note: If you used a Cruise with Confidence certificate on this sailing, and you request a refund instead, we’ll refund any NEW funds paid above the certificate amount, and we’ll reinstate your original Cruise with Confidence certificate.

If you purchased Shore Excursions through Azamara for your clients:

  • Your clients can opt-in to receive an Onboard Credit in the value of 125% of the total Shore Excursion purchases on their reservation.
  • If we don’t hear from you on or before June 10th, 2020, your clients’ Shore Excursion purchases will be automatically refunded.
  • They’ll receive their refund within 45 days of June 10th, 2020. Please know, we are working as quickly as possible and we appreciate your patience during these unprecedented times.
  • Please note, this offer does not apply to other pre-purchased amenities and packages – like beverage, internet or specialty dining, or Azamara Upgrade, those will be automatically refunded.
  • If your clients have independent arrangements, we suggest you cancel them directly with the service provider who can give you additional guidance.

Guests with air travel and hotel booked through Azamara will be refunded automatically. Guests with independent air and hotel arrangements need to contact their air carriers or hotel provider directly to make all required cancellations. As a reminder, due to the current situation, airlines are being flexible with flight changes and the waiving of fees.

Thank you for your patience, understanding, and cooperation during this situation.

Please stay safe and healthy, and know, we really appreciate your continued support.

Carol Cabezas
Chief Operating Officer, AZAMARA