Two of the major cruise travel related headlines this week related to couples being left by cruise ships in foreign countries. And though the circumstances surrounding the incidences could not have been more different, together they teach an important lesson about cruise travel.
Earlier this week we reported on the Palks, who were abandoned in Mexico by Royal Caribbean when Mrs. Palk was having a medical emergency. Unable to assist her aboard the ship, the company forced the couple to disembark in Mexico and find their own medical treatment, and their own way home.
The other story relates to a viral video in which a couple can be seen chasing a Royal Caribbean cruise ship as it pulls out of port, leaving them. It was later revealed that the couple were newlyweds celebrating their honeymoon. They reportedly showed up late to the dock.
Taken together, these stories illustrate the fact that cruise lines will leave you behind in a foreign land. Whether it be due to your showing up late, your suffering an illness that the cruise company does not want to deal with, or for any of a myriad of reasons, they will leave you.
We have reported on instances in which cruise captains have decided to set sail early, usually due to weather, and left hundreds of passengers behind. In other instances, similar to the Palk’s, passengers were forced from ships due to illness. One video online even seems to show a mother being left behind as the ship sails away with her children onboard.
Getting back home after being stranded by a cruise company can be expensive. In the Palk’s case, travel insurance helped cover some of the expense, but still left them responsible for thousands of dollars in travel fees.
Passengers should plan for what to do should some, or all, of the party be left behind. This could include ensuring that there is some sort of accountability check to make sure that everyone arrives to port on time, and that each person keeps tabs on someone else.