MSC Cruises has instituted new rebating and cancellation policies that take effect May 1.
No travel agencies can advertise, market or sell a cruise or cruise package at a price below MSC’s published or contracted pricing.
Agencies may continue to offer value-adds such as onboard spending credits and prepaid gratuities. The value-add cannot be cash, a gift card or other items that reduce the base price of a cruise.
Agencies that violate MSC’s rebating policies will be “subject to written warning, a reduction in the co-op support provided by MSC Cruises and other actions such as, but not limited to, a reduction in the base commission paid on all future cruises booked by that agency,” MSC said.
For all new bookings made beginning May 1 for all sailings departing in April 2017 and forward, MSC has adjusted its cancellation policy.
For cruises less than 15 nights, guests lose their nonrefundable deposit if they cancel between 89 and 61 days before departure; lose half the fare if they cancel 60 to 46 days out; lose 75% of the fare if they cancel 45 to 16 days out; and lose 100% of the fare if they cancel with 15 days or fewer before departure.
For cruises more than 15 nights, they lose their nonrefundable deposit if they cancel between 109 and 61 days before departure, half the fare for 60 to 46 days, 75% of the fare from 45 to 31 days, and 100% if they cancel 30 days out or fewer.
Also, MSC Cruises said it will continue transfer a direct booking to a travel agent upon request of the customer when the appropriate forms are submitted by the customer to MSC Cruises. Bookings may only be transferred to an agent up until 60 days from creation if the request is made outside of final payment period and the booking is not paid in full.