FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Renaissance Cruises continued its series
of initiatives intended to win the allegiance of cruise-selling
travel agents, with new policies covering cruise cancellations,
client deposits, booking options and an travel insurance agreement
with BerkleyCare Ltd.
The new policies go into effect Aug. 15 and include an
earlier-announced cruise-cancellation policy that Renaissance
reached with New York attorney general Eliot Spitzer. (To read that
story, click here.)
Renaissance's new cancellation policy is comparable to those of
most major cruise operators, and it replaces a policy viewed by
agents, insurance providers and even Spitzer as particularly
The previous system also led several travel insurance providers
to decline to write policies on Renaissance cruise packages.
Under the previous policy, Renaissance charged a $1,500 fee for
cancellations made 120 days or more before sailing and a penalty of
100% of the cruise fare if the client canceled less than 120 days
Spitzer had charged that this policy possibly violated New
York's consumer protection laws.
A spokeswoman at Spitzer's office said the agreement with
Renaissance only covers the line's cancellation policies.
As for the policy covering deposits, full payments for cruise
fares are due 90 days before sailing.
Under the old system, final payments were due 120 days before
The line also adopted a guaranteed, seven-day "option" period
for all agent bookings.
Renaissance's agreement with BerkleyCare Ltd. enables clients to
purchase travel insurance on which agents can earn "competitive
compensation," according to Renaissance.
The changes are expected to enable the repentant operator to
"facilitate normal relations and coverage with additional major
travel insurance providers," said a company statement.
"Our new payment and [cancellation] policies are as good as or
superior to policies established by other world class cruise
lines," said Frank Del Rio, Renaissance's co-chief executive
Renaissance also reintroduced its early payment policy, under
which passengers who book and make full payment at least 90 days
prior to departure earn a $1,000 per cabin discount.