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Sudden death cancels cruise and possible refund

7:25 PM, May 13, 2013   |    comments
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KEYSTONE HEIGHTS, Fla. -- Carnival Cruise Lines has seen its share of problems this year, but that did not stop Frances Prince and Mollie McCall from booking a seven day cruise.

"She wouldn't go without me and I wouldn't go without her," said Prince. 

But on May 9 Herb Green, McCall's fiance', was killed in an accident on State Road 16 near Starke. Prince is still trying to cope with the loss. 

Prince, McCall and Herb Green were good friends. 

"Tragedies happen," she said. "You can't schedule them."

On May 10, the day before they were to set sail, they contacted their travel agent with the bad news.

"Their big suggestion was see if you can find somebody else to take your place," Prince said.

Prince said she also called Carnival Cruise to try and reschedule the cruise.

"I did not ask for a refund," she said. "I wanted to see if they can reschedule us so we don't lose all of our money and they said there's nothing they can do."

Florida Costal Law School Professor Rod Sullivan specializes in maritime law.

"In spite of circumstances they do not have a legal obligation to do anything," said Sullivan. 

Sullivan said Carnival could always make an exception to its own rules.

"This is a situation where a cruise line or any company ought to be compassionate," said Sullivan. "This is not somebody who cancels their cruise because it was an inconvenience, this was because of a tragedy."

Prince said that is what she was looking for when she reported what happened to her travel agent and Carnival Cruise lines.

"Give us a chance to go later," said Prince," I'm not asking for our money back."

On Your Side Contacted Carnival Cruise Line. Spokesperson Ally Belo said by email:

"Our Guest Services department has been in contact with Ms. Prince's travel agent to explain what documentation is necessary to facilitate a future cruise credit for these guests so that they may re-schedule their voyage for a later point in time.

Carnival extends its heartfelt sympathies to all affected during this difficult time."

First for You:

Whenever booking a trip consider trip cancellation insurance. 

If you need to cancel a trip after you've paid, trip cancellation insurance can refund any deposits and prepayments you can't recover from your suppliers.

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