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MEI Travel

Holland America Line Cruise Cancellation Policy

Holland America Line Eurodam

Unfortunately, sometimes we need to change travel plans. Not ideal, but life is busy, and things pop up. Adding to travelers’ worries are the recent flight delays and cancellations, resulting in some guests missing their cruise.

Before booking a cruise, it is a good idea to understand cancellation policies, especially as it relates to any promotional pricing and packages. Details regarding how much money you will get back, timeframes and processes are all things to know ahead of time.

Holland America provides its customers with some options to get their money back, or credit when cancelling a cruise.  

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Here is an overview of their cancellation policy and what it means for cruisers.

Cancellation policy

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Holland America’s cancellation policy varies by length and type of cruise.

For cruises of 6 nights or less, guests start to incur cancellation penalties at 75 days prior to sailings. The following penalties apply:

  • 76 days before sailing: 100% refund
  • 75-57 days before sailing: 100% refund, less required deposit amount
  • 56-29 days before sailing: 50% refund of cruise fare
  • 28-16 days before sailing: 25% refund of cruise fare
  • 15 days or less before commencing travel: no refund available.

For cruises of 7 nights or more, guests start to incur penalties farther out from the cruise date. The following penalties apply:  

  • 91 days before sailing: 100% refund
  • 90-76 days before sailing: 100% refund, less required deposit amount
  • 75-61 days before sailing: 50% refund of cruise fare
  • 60-31 days before sailing: 25% refund of cruise fare
  • 30 days or less before sailing: no refund available

Holland America offers a number of longer voyages to numerous destinations worldwide. For Grand World Voyages, Grand Voyages, 28+day Hawaii, Tahiti and Marquesas, Tales of the South Pacific, Amazon Explorer, Incan Empires, and 30+ day Transatlantic sailings, there are the following cancellation penalties:

  • 121 days before sailing: 100% refund
  • 120-91 days before sailing: 100% refund, less required deposit amount
  • 90-76 days before sailing: 40% refund of cruise fare
  • 75 days or less before sailing: no refund available.

Additional Terms and Conditions:

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The cancellation policy noted above does not apply to any specially priced promotions that are 100% non-refundable after payment. In this case, guests will not be entitled to any refund, payment, compensation or credit for cancellation.

Important to note that name changes require prior approval and may not always be possible. Name changes and departure date changes are considered reservation cancellations and are subject to cancellation fees.

All cancellations must be done in writing, which can be done via mail or email. Country specific contacts are noted on the cruise line’s website.

Flexible Cancellation Program

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In the post-pandemic return to cruising, many cruise lines are offering flexible booking options. Holland America still offers flexible cancellation to its customers for those who book a cruise by September 30, 2022 and depart through December 31, 2022.

Guests have the option to cancel for any reason up to 30 days before departure and will automatically receive a Future Cruise Credit (FCC) in the amount of any non-refundable fees, with the remainder being refunded to the original form of payment.

This is a significant benefit in comparison to the company’s standard cancellation fees which can start as far as out 120 days for longer voyages.

Air Program

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Holland America offers its guests the option to purchase flights in addition to cruises so as to coordinate travel planning. Flight Ease provides travelers with a number of flight options at specially negotiated low prices. In addition, the program offers the freedom to change your flights with no change fees and late arrival protection with 24-hour assistance. In addition, travelers can earn frequent flier miles with participating airlines.

There are two types of fares to choose from, with differing cancellation policies:

  • Flexible Fares provide the greatest flexibility. Payment for flights is due at the same time as the final payment for the cruise. Flexible fares can be changed or cancelled without change fees at any time prior to the final payment due date. After the final payment due date, fees up to the full cost of the ticket may apply.
  • Restricted Fares are best suited to guests who are certain about their travel plans. It generally requires full payment at the time of the air reservation and are non-refundable. Any changes to reservations will result in cancellation of air booking and cancellation fees up to the full cost of the ticket. Air prices are non-refundable; that is no money back.

Holland America Insurance

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It is always a good idea to purchase insurance. Holland America emphasizes this with a strong recommendation that guests purchase insurance for unforeseen events such as trip cancellation, loss or damage to baggage and personal effects, illness, medical expenses, accidental injury or death, or emergency evacuation.

The cruise line offers its Cancellation Protection Plan options, which include a cancel for any reason and contain no exclusions for pre-existing conditions or age. This provides a lot of flexibility as guests can cancel their vacation plans for any reason and receive a money-back refund  The plan starts at $79 per person and can be purchased when booking a cruise. 

There are two options for Holland America insurance:

  • Standard Plan, which allows guests to cancel for any reason up to 24 hours prior to start of trip, including any sea, land and/or air arrangements made by Holland America Line. Guests will receive a refund equal to 80% of the cruise cost.
  • The Platinum Plan is much more robust. Guests can cancel anytime prior to departure, receiving 90% refund of cruise costs. In addition, the plan covers trip delays and interruptions, medical expenses and worldwide emergency assistance. This plan is not available to residents of New York State, Quebec, and Puerto Rico.

Covid-19 Related Cancellations

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Testing positive for Covid-19, just before a cruise can add an enormous amount of stress for travelers. Holland America hopes to alleviate this concern with its Worry-Free Promise, which is valid for those guests with bookings made by September 30, 2022 and sailing on or before December 31, 2022.

It is designed to assist guests who, as a result of being suspected of having Covid-19,  testing positive for Covid -19, or are quarantined on board or disembarked early. It also applies to passengers who, as a result of governmental travel restrictions put in place within 30 days of embarkation, cannot travel to the country of embarkation for their booked cruise.

In terms of refund, guests will automatically receive a Future Cruise Credit in the amount of any non-refundable cancellation fees, with the remainder of what you paid for the cruise being refunded to the original form of payment.

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