Thursday, 26 January 2012

Costa clarifies compensation policy for Concordia passengers

By Donna Tunney
Costa Cruises clarified its compensation policy for passengers who were aboard the crippled Costa Concordia, which hit a rocky reef and capsized off the Italian coast Jan. 13.

The line said it would refund the full cost of the cruise, either directly or through the passengers’ travel agencies.

It also will reimburse all travel expenses incurred both reaching the port of embarkation and on the homeward journey, including any independent arrangements made for transfers.

Additionally, onboard expenses will be refunded, any credit card charges will be credited to the account and any cash deposits will be refunded, Costa said.

Costa also will reimburse any medical expenses incurred as a result of the accident.

It said that “every effort will be made to return the valuables left in the cabin safe,” and that information on the return of personal belongings and other forms of compensation will be communicated.

The embattled cruise line came under fire in recent days after a media outlet in the U.K. mistakenly reported that Concordia passengers, who evacuated the vessel in what’s been described as a chaotic and unorganized way, were being offered only a refund and 30% off a future Costa cruise. Other media have picked up the erroneous report.

“The 30% future cruise discount, in addition to a full refund, is intended for guests [who were] scheduled to sail on Costa Concordia from Jan. 14 onward,” the line stated.