It is beneficial for travelers to review the cancellation policy for Holland America cruises prior to booking a voyage.
Canceling a Cruise
Booking a cruise is no small task. Passengers often save for years in order to take a dream cruise to an exotic locale. Then, there's the time factor involved in researching cruise lines, reviewing cabins, and finding an acceptable price. After all the time and energy put forth to secure a spot on a cruise, having to cancel the trip can be a heartbreaking task. Unfortunately, life is full of unexpected surprises. There are times when, for whatever reason, be it poor health, family emergencies or work obligations, you are forced to cancel your fantasy cruise.
Cancellation Policy for Holland America Cruise
Like all major cruise companies, Holland America has a strict cancellation policy, which requires written notification of a passenger's decision to cancel an existing reservation. The letter must be received by the company's main office prior to the applicable deadline, which is set upon when payment is made for the original cruise.
All written cancellation letters must be sent to the following address:
Reservations Control, Holland America Line Inc. 300 Elliott Ave. West Seattle, WA 98119
If you are concerned your cancellation letter will not get to Holland America's corporate office in time, you may fax it to: 1-800-628-4855.
If you choose to fax your cancellation letter, it is a good idea to retain your fax confirmation, so you have a receipt of your efforts should they be called in to question in the future.
Depending upon when you send in your written cancellation to Holland America you may be subject to a cancellation fee. As of July 2010, Holland America's per-person cancellation fees are as follows:
- Up to 80 days prior to departure: No penalty
- 60-79 days prior to departure: Amount of deposit
- 35-59 days prior to departure: 50 percent of total fare
- 20-34 days prior to departure: 75 percent of total fare
- Less than 19 days prior to departure: 100 percent of total fare or no refund
- No appearance: 100 percent of total fare or no refund
In the case of Holland America cruises, it's important to note cancellation fees cannot be applied to future bookings. All refunds made by Holland America are applied to the passenger's credit card or to the travel agent, if one was used. Holland America is only responsible for refunding amounts actually received by the company.
Holland America's Cancellation Protection Plan
Fortunately, there are ways to protect your pocketbook should you be forced to cancel your cruise reservations. One of the best ways is to purchase travel insurance. The policies are designed to protect you from steep penalties assessed when you cancel a sailing.
If you are cruising with Holland America, you will be offered a unique insurance plan of sorts. It's called the Cancellation Protection Plan, and it is quite popular among passengers. Interestingly, Holland America offers the only trip cancellation program in the industry, which offers cash back for canceling for any reason prior to 24 hours before departure.
Holland America's standard Cancellation Protection Plan allows cruisers to cancel for any reason up to 24 hours prior to departure and receive a refund of 80 percent of any applicable cancellation fees. Meanwhile, the company's Platinum Cancellation Protection Plan refunds 90 percent of all applicable cancellation fees. Be sure to review the cancellation policy for Holland America cruises, before you sign up for either of the aforementioned cancellation protection plans.
Prepare For the Unexpected
No one wants to consider what could go wrong to force the cancellation of a dream vacation. However, it's good to be prepared just in case. With cruises, since the resale of cancelled space will likely result in lost profits, cancellation fees are due regardless of resale of a passenger's cabin. This is one of the reasons most travel experts strongly urge cruisers to consider purchasing travel insurance, or if you are booking with Holland America Line, you may opt to invest in the company's Cancellation Protection Plan, in order to save money due to unforseen circumstances.