Do I deserve a refund for a closed pool?

The pool on the NCL Sky / Photo courtesy of Judith Pearlstein
As a silver-level Latitude program member, Judith Pearlstein counts herself among NCL’s top customers. So when her Presidents’s Day weekend cruise to the Bahamas didn’t go as planned, she expected the company to step up and make things right.

It hasn’t — at least not yet. She’s hoping I can nudge it into action.

I’m not sure what to do.

At the center of Pearlstein’s grievance is a pool; a closed pool, to be exact.

For two out of four days, the pool on the NCL Sky was closed. NCL tried to minimize the impact to passengers by waiting until the ship was in port in Nassau, but that didn’t make any difference to Pearlstein and her family of six, because they decided to stay on board.

She feels the work was unnecessary.

“It consisted of sanding a bench,” she recalls. “It was routine.”

The Sky has another pool, but it’s only for adults and doesn’t have any handicapped access — both of which Pearlstein and her family required.

She says the closure was arbitrary and unfair.

“It was unnecessary and mindless, with little thought given to the passengers,” she told me.

Pearlstein spoke with a manager about the closure, and received an apology and a total of $100 in room credits — $50 to each cabin. But she feels she deserves more.

“Passengers paid for the use of all facilities, including the pool,” she says. “It would seem that a full refund is in order or a replacement cruise in the future.”

NCL has refused to sweeten its compensation offer, despite letters and photos sent to its CEO threatening to take this case to the media. Now Pearlstein wants me to get her money back from NCL.

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I’m not sure if I can — or should.

A ship needs constant maintenance, as anyone who has ever owned a boat can attest to. Some of it can wait, but I don’t know when they might have done these repairs. Had they waited until after hours to sand the benches, even more customer might have complained.
How could NCL have known that the pool was the most important amenity to her and her family?

NCL might have let Pearlstein and her travel agent know about the pool closure before her departure, if possible. But a $100 credit should go a long way toward making up for a missing amenity.

At the same time, I’m sympathetic to these passengers. And I’m tired of the complaints about travel companies that don’t deliver the products they promise, but force their customers to agree to onerous, one-sided “adhesion” contracts that sometimes result in the loss of their entire cruise, flight or hotel stay.

Just for once, I’d like to see a company like NCL cough up a full refund because they failed to deliver a product they promised.

I’m not sure this is the time. In fact, I have a feeling it’s going to be a long wait.

Christopher Elliott

Christopher Elliott is an author, journalist and consumer advocate. You can read more about him on his personal website or check out his adventures on his family adventure travel site. Contact him at Read more of Christopher's articles here.

  • Chasmosaur

    Ah.  Another Monday, another “One aspect of my trip was horrible and now I want an entire refund or I’m tattling to the media” story.  Joy.

    Going to the website for the NCL Sky – – it appears there are three pools on board. Two large pools and a smaller “Splashes” children’s pool.  There are five hot tubs, including one that is for children only near the Splashes pool. There is also a “Kid’s Korner” for younger kids and a “Zone” for teenagers for non-swimming entertainment.

    Also, I’m thinking NCL wouldn’t have drained the pool during the middle of a holiday weekend cruise to sand a bench if it wasn’t problematic. If it wasn’t closed, perhaps Ms. Pearlstein would instead be e-mailing Chris because a jagged piece of surfacing had cut one of her children when they were sitting on the bench.

    Finally – it was for 2 days out of 4.  It was not for the whole trip.  Also, did they ask at all if the family could use the “Adults only” pool during the days the more accessible pool was closed.  Some of the family could have been accommodated, perhaps.  I’m on crutches and in hydrotherapy myself right now – a ladder is harder than stairs but I can still use one. If she’s throwing down the accessibility card, this accessibility consultant would like to see her full hand.

    (ETA – I’m not trying to sound heartless here. Because I’ve worked with people with disabilities, I just hate when someone makes a huge fuss about needing an accessibility feature when they don’t. It pisses me off on so many levels.)

    I would be more sympathetic if Ms. Pearlstein instead was advocating not for a free cruise, but that NCL have a flexible pool policy if something like this should happen, and to keep a set of extra accessible pool stairs on hand for the event.  Think of other families with special needs, and not just her own.

    ETA #2 – Okay, this is the “adult” pool – with kids in it. It just appears to be a deep pool, as opposed to a quiet adult-only pool. I can understand why there are no stairs then, and yes, this is inaccessible, I give Ms. Pearlstein that. It’s lack of accessibility is glaring as it is right next to the pool with stairs and a shallow end.

    “Adult” pool

    Dual pool layout

    Apparently the “Splashes” pool is very shallow, and intended for toddlers, so it is actually for splashing and not for swimming.

    Still – as others are noting, there are opportunities for shore-based swimming, so why stay on the ship for what look to be pretty small pools?

  • Stacie Abney

    Did you ask the company if all they were doing was sanding benches?  Maybe there was additional work being done out-of-sight so that appeared to be all they were doing?

    It’s possible that there was something else going on and they decided to do the sanding at the same time since the pool was closed anyways. 

  • backprop

    It is an inconvenience, but really only that.  A pool on a cruise ship is a relatively minor attraction given the whole package (ports of call, shows, activities, excursions), despite her claims that it was supposedly the most important thing on the cruise.  And it was closed only two days.  The credits were more than enough ‘compensation’ and I’d be embarrassed to write a mediator over something so trivial.

  • Couldn’t agree more! Well put and exactly what i was thinking!

  • markblei

    Modern cruise ships are in operation 24 hours a day, if the maintenance had been carried out at night, people would have made noise complaints.

    I’m usually with the consumers, but not swimming on a small cruise ship pool on a 3 or 4 day cruise doesn’t warrant a full refund.

  • patseacruiser

    The cruise contract CYA’s them to the hilt and it’s hard to say what maintenance will be done 3 months earlier when they booked and don’t believe there is even that level of communication from ship to booking agent.  If the seas were too rough to open the pool would she still have a complaint?  I don’t think so.  And if Norwegian refunds now how many times will they have to do it in the future since pools close regularly because of rough seas.  And it’s not just Norwegian – ALL of the cruise lines have regular maintenance and rough seas that close pools and hot tubs.

  • Jennifer Black

    There is so much more to pool maintenance that goes on behind the scenes.  I have a hard time believing that the entire pool was closed to “sand a bench”.  That’s probably the only part of the maintenance that she could see.

    And sometimes the “maintenance” has to happen now because something broke.

    For $50 credit per room, it should have been easy enough for her family of 6 to take taxis and pay for day use at one of the shore-side resorts each day if what they really wanted was a pool.  While I’ve never cruised to Nassau, this kind of arrangement was typical in Mexico and in the Caribbean when I cruised.

    Since they slept in the beds, ate the food and (supposedly) partook in the other activities on board, I do _not_ think a full refund or another free cruise is needed in compensation. 

    So you wanted to use the pool, and the pool was out of commission for a portion of your trip. Get over it.  It could be worse you know – you could be petitioning for recovery of medical costs for that nasty rash your whole family picked up when they should have closed the pool for maintenance but didn’t…..

  • Joe_D_Messina

    The fact the work was routine means nothing because routine stuff needs to get done, too.  The only part of their story that sways me is their need for handicapped access. If they had a child who couldn’t leave the ship because of a disability, I can see the pool being a huge deal for them. However, reading Chasmosaur’s earlier post, it sounds like there was a third pool they should have still had access to and they got some compensation for the inconvenience. There will be times when amenities are inaccessible. They come off sounding greedy.

    I’m a bit amazed that nobody in their party of six went ashore. Sort of takes a key component out of traveling, in my opinion.

  • LadySiren

    Good heavens, when did this culture of entitlement take over our country? While there are legitimate gripes out there, I swear it looks like Chris’ inbox has been overtaken by the me-me-me crowd.

    A full refund? Really? Is it any wonder that the travel industry thinks it’s okay to gouge consumers, especially when they know that they’re going to hear about it in spades if the smallest thing goes wrong?

    I can understand about being upset at the loss of a recreational facility, however, NCL didn’t just give the OP a cold shoulder. They offered an apology and $100 worth of credits. Could they have done more? Of course the could have, but at least they made an effort. Even a token effort is better than nothing at all, which is what the OP might’ve gotten from another cruise line.

    Ugh, unlike Gordon Gekko, I think most of us don’t believe that “Greed is good.” I wish the OP and some of the other gimme-gimme types that have been asking Chris to help them would get the memo, too.

  • Raven_Altosk

    She’s already received more than I would’ve given her. I was on a ship where some idiot let their diapered toddler in the pool. Baby had an accident and the pool was closed for four days.

    No one received any compensation.

    I think we have another contenter for our “most ridiculous letter.” A full refund because she couldn’t use a pool?! After she was onboard, ate, drank, and made merry for a week?

    The greed…it stinks with this one, Master Yoda.

  • Raven_Altosk

    Nicely stated. Like X100.

  • Raven_Altosk

    Five bucks says some idiot put a baby in the pool, the baby pooped, and they had to close it. Until cruise lines start debarking pax for bad behavior like this, it will constantly happen.

  • Shaking my head. I have no words. Okay. Check that. I have SOME words.

    Granny + family just went up to the top of the Hunger Games competitors’ list.

    1) I’m pretty sure the captain was fully aware of the inconvenience and still decided the maintenance was needed. To her, it was a sanded bench. But it very well might have been something more serious.

    2) She deserves major compensation if the pool was the main attraction of the cruise, but I don’t believe it is. Who goes on a huge ship to the BAHAMAS to swim in the tiny pool on the ship? She would’ve been better off angling for day passes at a Bahamas resort which would have been a more reasonable request. Can’t swim in the ship’s pool, then pay for me to swim in a resort pool.

    But she wants a free cruise because the pool was closed for part of the trip? Using that logic, NCL should refund ALL of the passengers, not just her.

    But then again, if that’s what she’s asking for, I don’t think logic is her strong point. I simply do not know how these people function in the real world.

  • mszabo

    I would say a $100 credit would go a long way, but are cruise credits any better than airline voucher credits?  If so then it seems like a meaningless offer.  Why not an actual $100 refund?  That is still only $25 per passenger isn’t it?  Even if it is a good compensation amount, a small credit has the taste of an extremely self serving coupon.  Looking at cruise prices this compensation seems like at best a 10% off coupon (smallest inside cabin room, booked for Presidents day of next year)  or at worst a 1.4% (Owner’s Suite).  Seems like this discount isn’t really any better than any sale price that may come up in the future.  

    To be clear,  I don’t think I would ever take a cruise with my kids, I’m not really sure I like the idea of a cruise with just my wife.  However from experience traveling with my two young children, this would have been a major issue.  Living in a colder part of the US my kids end up swimming 2-3 hours a day anyplace we vacation.  What else do small kids do on a cruise ship?

  • jkeahey

    Chris, where do you find these people? I guess it is they who find you.

  • IGoEverywhere

    Don’t even respond to a cry baby.

  • Chasmosaur

    Ms. Pearlstein’s family decided to stay on board – it is unclear whether or not this was because of an accessibility issue, or because they simply chose to not disembark.

    If the OP is a frequent traveler on the cruise line, I find it difficult to believe that the accessibility need is so severe that it limits the mobility of an entire family.  There are plenty of vacation destinations on land that would be logistically easier than regular cruising.  I could be mistaken, of course.

    As noted below, I’m not trying to sound heartless.  I work in the accessibility community.  I would be the first one to stand up and fight for this family if accessibility was the issue here. Not enough assistive hardware, software or accommodations, and I’d be down NCL’s throat.  (And I will say to not have accessibility access on an adult-only pool?  I do find that annoying – not unusual, but annoying.  Good design can incorporate accessibility pretty seamlessly.)

    But to me, this feels like the lack of accessibility access is being thrown up as a way to generate sympathy for the refund process.  It doesn’t appear to be the focus of the complaint.  I also find it hard to believe that if the all-ages pool was closed, NCL wouldn’t allow families access to the adult pool at a time when many people were off the ship (though as a non-cruiser, someone let me know if this would actually happen).

    I’m not unsympathetic.  I am, though, a little skeptical.

  • Yes, the cruise credits are MUCH better than airline vouchers.  The story indicates they are credits to the room, so they could be used to offset the cost of anything on THAT trip, including staff tips.  So, they were very close to real cash that could be used immediately for real costs on board the ship.

  • Lindabator

    Exactly!  Access to the beach was available, they just chose to whine about the pool instead.  Ships operate 24 hours per day – so when would she have LIKED them to make necessary repairs?

  • Lindabator

    Of course they are!  They are used onboard the cruise you are already on, so it gets you drinks, shore excurstions, money to offset your onboard shopping, pays for a specialty dining, etc.  And why on earth could you not just leave the ship to swim?  There are resorts which allow a pass, and there is always the beach.  Sounds like they just didn’t WANT to leave the ship.  Heck, they could have used the credit for a transfer over to Atlantis for the day, and enjoyed the pool there (always one of the most popular shore excursions, anyway!)

  • Lindabator


  • bc

    This, a million times this!

  • bc

    Actually, if you look at the photos, those benches stretch the entire length around the pool. If they’re being sanded they’re likely being finished some way as well. Water and finishing materials don’t mix. I can see why they would close a pool if their was maintenance going on that could be disrupted with water. It doesn’t even matter, the pool is literally one out of a hundred or so amenities on a boat. Not sure how she justifies her entire voyage being refunded because a pool was not available for two days out of her trip.

    Entitled consumer is entitled. 

  • severnwatcher

    No matter how vigilant the parent, you really can’t keep a baby from pooping, and because they are supposed to wear diapers, how would you know?

  • Raven_Altosk

    You don’t be an idiot and read the giant signs next to the pools/hot tubs that say “NO CHILDREN IN DIAPERS.” All cruise ships have them, as do many hotel pools. It’s a CDC thing as I understand it.

    That’s how you know.

  • I can hear it now —  “Hey, there were children in the Adult’s only pool….  I paid for peace and quiet ….  I deserve a FULL refund of my cruise!!!!”       -shrug-    ya can’t win.

  • Chasmosaur

    No, but you can get swim diapers and swim pants (even though they aren’t fool-proof).  And in this case, go to the infant/toddler pool.

  • severnwatcher

    Now, now, be nice!   Of course some pools don’t allow kids in diapers, but some (like the kiddie pools) do.  I wouldn’t actually think you would be enough of an idiot to be commenting about kids in diapers where  they are not supposd to be.

  • sirwired

    “One pool was closed for two days, so I want a complete refund.”?!?!?!!  Seriously?  Thousands of dollars in cash or cruise credit because of the pool?

    The ship is in use 7 days a week, 365 days a year, for years at a time between drydocks.

    Things need maintenance, and not everything will be operating every single day of every single cruise.  I suspect there was more than just some finish work going on.  There very well could have been maintenance work being done on the cleaning or pumping system, and those are out of sight.  (Or it could have been broken… things happen.)

    Chris, where do you FIND these people? On the other hand… they did keep their complaint concise and to the point; no laundry list for this writer. Too bad it was for something so stupidly trivial.

  • Raven_Altosk

    Yes, but on most cruise ships, swim diapers are not allowed because they leak. That’s why most pools have toddler splash areas.

    Still, entitled idiots put their kids in the pools/hot tubs anyway…

  • Raven_Altosk

    Only toddler splash areas on cruise ships do allow diapers. However, I have seen entitled morons put kids in pools and HOT TUBS on cruise ships.

    Emphasis on the hot tubs because while I’m a mpnth and a half away from being a parent, even I know that babies should never be put in a hot tub because they can overheat. :D

  • Raven_Altosk

    I would’ve complained. If I was promised an adults only area and it was invaded by the OP’s brood, oh heck yes I would complain.

    I also was on a cruise that had a special adults only spa pool. You paid extra for use of the spa pool and spa lounge areas. One day, this moron woman tries to sneak in her kids. I called an attendant and had them removed. The woman was livid, but I just said that I paid for the adults only spa area. I was getting the adults only spa area, no matter what her Special Snowflakes needed or wanted.

  • Chasmosaur

    Yes, but look at my second edit – I don’t think this is a quiet, “Adults-only pool”.  I don’t cruise but my father does – he discusses how he doesn’t mind kids, but sometimes he looks for the adult only pools since they’re quieter.  I would think that since these are right next to each other, it isn’t really an adult-only area.

    Also, nowhere on NCL’s page for this particular ship does it call the second pool an “Adult” pool.  I think it is merely a deep pool, which deters the “littles.”

    Yes, I can see complaining if you paid extra for an adult-only area, but that isn’t the case *here*.  I am not pro Special Snowflake, at all, and wonder when we became a society where kids had to be allowed to go everywhere adults did.

  • SooZeeQ

    If it was work on a bench and nothing else, it should have been done before the cruise set sail.

    If they got to use the credits while still on the cruise, I say that is enough, but if they are credits for a future cruise, not so much.

  • Kathleen Proud Keyte

    People have to think of thiese things with a little proportionality…..You don’t go on a cruise solely to use a pool. They haev pools at land based accommodation if that’s what you really want. Also not too sympathetic to these people who want full refunds for some small things that isn;t right

  • Raven_Altosk

    Agreed. I just looked at your link and this is definitely a different situation.

    The cruise I was on, it was $250 per couple to have rights to use the spa areas/pool which were adults only. (No one under 18 was allowed in the spa, period)

  • Kevin Mathews

    First I would like to say thank you for the good laugh on a Monday.  This story really made me laugh.
    First line of the story sets the tone for the entire article.  “silver-level Latitude program member”  That simply means that she has been on 5-8 Cruises since 1995.

    “She feels the work was unnecessary.”  Is she a Pool Expert?  Carpenter? Maintence Person?  “She says the closure was arbitrary and unfair.”  Most people on cruises disembark at Ports of call to go explore.  Scheduling the Pool to be down during this time period made perfect sense.  This would have the least impact on the majority of the customers. 
    ““It was unnecessary and mindless, with little thought given to the passengers,” she told me.”  Actually seems like just the oppisite.  The Cruiseline made a decision the do the maintence when it would affect the least number of their passengers.  Her comments and complaints seem “unnecessary and mindless, with little thought given to common sense” :-)

    The ONLY thing I can think that might be worth taking up with the cruise lines was instead of $50.00 per Cabin, MAYBE $50.00 per Person.  $50.00 per person should cover whatever other activities someone might reasonably expect to accomplish while off the boat.  That would’ve encouraged them to get off the boat while the issue with the pool was being resolved.

  • bc

    I’m with you on this one Raven. Adults only is adults only. I don’t care how well behaved your little brood is, if I don’t want to deal with kids I shouldn’t have to. 

  • emanon256

    I worked as a consultant once for a company that installed commercial pools, I cannot believe how many pipes and pumps and tanks and such go behind the scenes, and how much maintenance they need.  I designed a maintenance tracking system actually, it was very complex.  I have to wonder if a pump actually had to be replaced or a tank repaired etc., and they just decided while the pool was drained and people were working behind the scenes, that it was an opportune time to also sand the benches since the pool couldn’t be used. This would maximize their uptime.  Also, when the Cruise line said it was done when they were in port to continence their passengers, does that mean she still had use that night?  Still only being closed for two days, and having alternate pools,  and being closed when they are in port and there are other things to do should hardly count as a major inconvenience, I think the $100 on-ship credit is very generous.
    I was quite shocked when the OP said she should receive a full refund.  I find it hard to believe that anyone would go on a cruise just to use a pool, if she wanted to use a pool there are many she could get to without booking a cruise.
    Her statement “‘Passengers paid for the use of all facilities, including the pool,’ she says. ‘It would seem that a full refund is in order or a replacement cruise in the future.’” makes me think if perhaps she had a missing fork at dinner, or a comedian she was going to see got sick and canceled, or even if she heard a comedian canceled their show and wasn’t planning to go, she would still ask for a full refund.  Totally ridiculous!  A few of the 50 little nozzles on my hotel showerhead were not working today, perhaps I too should ask for a full refund as I paid for use of all of the nozzles?
    The fact that she threatened with letters to the CEO that she will take this to the media if she doesn’t get a full refund also makes me think she should go to the top of the hunger games road trip list. 

  • john4868

    Chris … Simple question based on your “Just for once …” statement. Maintenance needed to be done on the pool. Even resorts close pools periodically for maintenance. Would you advocate for complete refund if a single pool in a complex was closed for maintenance for two days out of a stay?

    Let’s be real here… Cruise ships only make money while there are passengers on board so periodic maintenance has to be done while there are passengers on board. Its why if you look when you are boarding you will almost always see someone hanging off the side of the ship in a bosun’s chair doing maintenance (painting, changing bulbs etc) and crew members taking the ship’s boats out to exercise them (including life boats).

    Sorry but she lost me when she threatened the CEO to take this to the media.

  • flutiefan

    wait…. so this whole family went on a cruise to the Bahamas, without having plans of actually getting off the ship and … visiting the Bahamas????

    get rid of this one, Chris…

  • Julie Northrop

    You’re a month and a half away from being a parent? My goodness do I feel sorry for your children. You HATE children from past posts I’ve seen from you. I guess you’ll now be one of those parents who have *entitlement* complexes.

  • Sadie_Cee

    This one was SO easy.  Sorry, no mediation!  Doesn’t deserve the time of day.

  • mszabo

    Perhaps I misread the original story but this seemed like the credits were offered after the fact.  So then they could really only be used on the next cruise.  Don’t get me wrong I don’t think the amount is completely unreasonable but I think any apology where they condition the compensation with buying another service makes it seem hollow unless they the offer is really high.   

  • MarkKelling

    The cruise ships have about 12 hours maximum of down time between when one cuise ends and the next cruise begins.  Since the pool was closed for 2 days, there is no way this could have been done and not impacted at least part of one cruise.  

  • MarkKelling


    Are you serious in your comment “Just for once, I’d like to see a company like NCL cough up a full refund because they failed to deliver a product they promised. ” ???

    There have ben article here of people complaining about sewage backing up in their showers where the hotel would not move them to a different room and your response was something to the effect of “oh, well, things happen.”

    This was a minor issue that did no impact the OPs comfort or safety and you are pushing for a FULL refund??? Where is the real Chris Elliott?

  • Lindabator

    She clearly stated she spoke with the manager and received the credits – while onboard.  So no, this was something she could immediatley use. 

  • Lindabator

    Thank you.  The fact that they did while in port meant they were attempting to make as little impact as possible, as most people are off the ship at that time. 

  • Lindabator

    I don’t think any amount would have made her happy – you know, she still didn’t get “her” pool!  HAHA

  • Lindabator

    And the cruise line DID attempt the repairs while they were in port, so it would impact the least amount of folks.  She just feels she’s far more important than anyone else!

  • CherylAE

    Going to the Bahamas and choosing not to get of the ship?  They should have stayed at a nice hotel with a pool!  Don’t even consider mediating. There are far more important issues to nail a cruise line on, routine maintenance is not one of them! Gee I was on a Greek cruise last April and they had to empty the pool because the seas were rough, can I get a full refund?

  • Raven_Altosk

    I don’t hate kids. I hate irresponsible parents.

  • LeeAnneClark

    I AM a parent, and I too hate irresponsible parents. 

    After reading months and months of Raven’s articulate and intelligent comments on this blog, I have no doubt he’s going to be an absolutely fabulous Dad…one who would never be so selfish and self-absorbed as to bring his kid into an adults-only area, or plop his diapered baby into a pool or hot tub.

  • LeeAnneClark

    Swim diapers do not keep poop out of the pool. Period.

  • Joe Farrell

    OMG the POOL was closed.  How horrible.   People get sick and puke their guts out for DAYS on cruises – getting sick from other passengers and the horrific sanitation from 1500 people all double dipping into the salsa and now we are worried about the pool being closed? 

    Imagine if you had been on the Concordia – 

  • Raven_Altosk

    Wow, this also reminds me of a story my GF tells. A few years back she worked as a cast member for Di$ney. (You want entitlement stories, wooo…she can tell some…)

    Anyway, a disgruntled guest came into guest services at the end of the day and demanded a refund for the following reasons:

    1. It rained.  (You’re in FL, durh)

    2. The attraction she wanted to see was closed for renovations. The “only reason” for going to the park, mind you! (Di$ney posts all closures on their website. Durh)

    3. She had to wait in line at numerous attractions and “someone with her kind of money doesn’t wait in line!” (It’s Di$ney. You wait in line)

    After refusing the refund, the woman told my GF to go fornicate with herself. GF replied in her super-happy-Di$ney voice, “Yes ma’am! I will do that, and you have a magical day!”

  • LadySiren

    Hahahaha, that’s awesome. I will admit to lurking on a forum where Di$ney cast members often post about their less-than-magical guests. I can’t believe some of the horror stories that get posted there.

    During our family reunion trip to Di$ney two years ago:
    1. There was a heatwave that was so intense even the locals were complaining. My MIL nearly fainted, as she’s from the Pacific Northwest and simply not used to temps that high (we did our best to keep her hydrated, I swear). It’s not Di$ney’s fault that the temperature was more akin to Hell than the Happiest Place on Earth. You just have to roll with it and figure out how to enjoy yourself without melting into a puddle on the blacktop.

    2. When it did rain, it was always one of those tropical monsoon rainstorms – I’m positive I saw small children floating away in the parking lot. It shut down Big Thunder Mountain and we ended up waiting inside (we were close to the front of the line) for the lightning to pass. I swear it was one of the best experiences we had – we ended up chatting with the cast members, one of whom turned out to be from not too far away from where we lived. We also hit up Blizzard Beach right after a massive rainstorm…and it was AWESOME. Everyone cleared out but we simply waited it out and voila – no lines!

    3. If you’re not smart enough to check the boards outside to see what’s closed, you’re woefully unprepared and should go buy a copy of Di$ney for Dummies. Seriously, how hard is it to find Disboards online?

    What it comes down to is, how much are you going to let the little things ruin your vacation? Yeah, I know – trip of a lifetime, etc, ad nauseum, but c’mon – if you can roll with the punches, you’ll have a far better time than if you freak out over the smallest details. Just sayin’,

  • DotWonder

    this woman is a scammer.  they hand out silver level latitudes memberships to anyone w/ a pulse who has been on a ship ONCE before. heck…i have one.  she’s just trolling to get a free cruise

  • mszabo

    The article clearly states she spoke to a manager.  However it does not say whether this occurred on board or after the fact.

  • Debbie Lott

    I was just in Nassau… and the cheapest I saw for a day pass was $25 pp.  Unless you wanted to use the public beaches which would have been no place for kids.

  • Julie Northrop

    Really Raven? I’ve seen you post some very disparaging posts about children on flights and how they don’t belong there. You accuse parents of having entitlement complexes if a child somehow bothers you.  Sounds like someone who dislikes kids to me.

  • Julie Northrop

    Oh I’ve read his posts as well LeeAnne, and as well articulated as you say he is, he still has shown on several occasions how he abhors children.  They don’t belong on flights, they don’t belong in hotels, they don’t belong on cruises. Yeah, this is someone who’s going to be a GREAT father. Give me a break.

  • NCL should have some kind of accommodation for wheelchair users and others with disabilities when the accessible pool isn’t available. They need to step up and do that immediately! 

  • Raven_Altosk

    Disqus keeps eating my reply..

  • Monica Lynn Kennedy

    This is totally unreasonable. I think the credits were sufficient. There are so many things to do on a cruise. I wouldn’t let a pool ruin the whole trip. I have been on several DCL and was never bothered with pool closures. We had one shut down when a baby left a little something extra in the water. My kid and cousins couldn’t use the pool for hours while it was drained, sanitized, and refilled. Did we demand a full refund? No. We found a different pool and other things to do. Life goes on.

    I’m willing to bet there was more than just sanding benches that caused the pool to close. Unless she was watching it 24/7 while it was closed, she couldn’t see or know everything that was going on. The cruise line has to perform maintenance at some point. It was unfortunate that it coincided with her cruise.

  • Drew_Thackery

    Come on, really?  On a ship that size the pool was closed and it ruined her vacation?  How pathetic is this woman?

  • TiaMa

    “It would seem that a full refund is in order or a replacement cruise in the future.”

    If this woman knows that Chris is a travel advocate and this is why she chose to write to him, then chances are she’s seen similar stories with similar quotes and possibly the comments that follow.  To a degree, I get the accessibility issue but come on – does she really think she’s going to get a full refund or replacement cruise for a pool that was closed two out of four days?

  • Cybrsk8r

    While I don’t think a full refund is due for this, I’m also puzzled why sanding a bench forces closure of the entire pool.  Assuming that the concern is an electrical hazard, there are several ways I can think of to mitigate that risk.  1) use cordless tools, 2) erect a solid, physical barrier to prevent even a dropped tool from getting in the water, or 3) simply remove the bench to a work shop for sanding. And since the ship is on a 24 hour schedule, seems to me the work could be done at 2am, when most pax are going to be sawing logs anyway.

  • Sorry, I dont think NCL will do anything more than they have.  I had a medical issue and was mis-diagnosed by the ship’s doctor and didnt even get an apology.  Im empathetic to her situation but she should be thankful that NCL awarded her on-board credits that she was able to use while still on her cruise.

  • streamerstoo

    What is this, give me my money back thing going on…
    So these folks did not get a cabin, eat, play or enjoy any of the other amenities of the cruise.  Oh, I suppose they slept in the hallway and drank water only…were’t allowed to do anything, sure..right…
    Get real people, I suppose if it had rained you would want your money back too. 

  • Lindabator

    The MANAGER is the hotel manager onboard – they were given CREDITS to the rooms, so this CANNOT be done after the fact.  IF it had been after the fact, they would have gotten future cruise credits.  You would have better understood this if you either cruised before or were an agent.

  • SallyLu

    I was also thinking of Disney.  We are annual passholders at Disneyland and I don’t recall any time we’ve been there when there wasn’t at least one ride closed, often one of the more popular ones.  Some people plan their vacation months in advance and won’t know what rides will be closed until a few days prior to their arrival, or even the day they get there.  Disney doesn’t give refunds or discounts to those people.  It’s just life.  You make the best of the other attractions and have fun!

  • MikeInCtown

    I just wanted to be last in line on this one. I can certainly understand adults only and I also understand the needs of a person with disabilities. I think for me to understand how much would be fair compensation, it may be good to know how much the cruise was, in dollars spent. if it was $300 each person, then that $900 a cabin, for a $50 credit for apparently a fairly important amenity to a disabled person. I would think $200 total between the two cabins would have been more adequate.

  • bc

    What does it matter if the person was disabled or not? This is nothing more than a emotional ploy by the OP to garner sympathy. There was other entertainment options available for the family besides the pool. It isn’t as if they were forced to sit in their cabin and sulk. This is the difference between being entitled and being an adult and dealing with things when they don’t go your way. 

    I do agree that the price of their fare might be important in how much of a credit to provide but when it comes right down to it sometimes maintenance needs to be done and when a vessel operates nearly 365 days a year if it wasn’t this cruise then it would be the next cruise affected. In this case the cruise line got unlucky and had the entitled customer on board.

  • pauletteb

    You’re the one with the problem, honey!  I’m a parent, and I’m disgusted by today’s “entitled” parents who think anything their brats do is “cute” and should be excused because “kids will be kids.” I refuse to accept behavior from someone else’s kids that I wouldn’t accept from my own!

  • pauletteb

    No worries, Raven, posters like Julie Northrop aren’t worth the response. I shudder to think of how her kids (or future kids) behave.

  • judyserienagy

    WHINERS!  Will they ever go away?  If you want guarantees, stay home and enjoy yourself.  Travel experiences are NOT guaranteed.  If you are truly wronged by a travel provider, get some evidence to support your claim.  Whiners do not deserve attention, much less refunds.

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