Royal Caribbean ‘working with’ agents over building work complaints

Royal Caribbean International admitted it is “working with” agents whose customers had complained about building work on new ship Harmony of the Seas.

But it insisted most of its retail partners had offered “very strong support and positive feedback”.

Negative press last week branded the ship ‘Calamity’ or ‘Disharmony’ of the Seas after guests reported several areas unfinished and claimed some parts were “unsafe”.

Royal declined to reveal how many complaints it had received, but said: “We are working closely with agents whose customers are dissatisfied and are dealing with these on a case-by-case basis to help resolve any queries.”

Agents gave a mixed response  on the Travel Gossip site, with some reporting disappointed customers.

Agent Emily Trumble described her four-night sailing as “awful”.

But agents who attended the previous ‘shakedown’ cruise defended Royal Caribbean.

Claire Brighton, senior commercial manager at Advantage Travel Partnership, said: “I didn’t witness signs of the extremes being reported in the national press. A few areas were not 100% complete but work seemed to be kept to a minimum and did not affect any passengers. The ship was fantastic.”

Si Prentice, group marketing director at The Travel Network Group, said the ship was in “excellent condition” and was disappointed by the negative coverage.

Sharron Gallagher, senior travel consultant at Regent Travel in Stone, Staffordshire, who paid to be on the second cruise on May 26, said: “It may have been hyped up a little. I have no complaints; the majority of things were open for use.”

Phil Nuttall, managing director of The Travel Village Group, said no customers had raised concerns. 

A Royal Caribbean spokeswoman said the line had had “some fantastic feedback from a huge number of guests” on pre-inaugural sailings.

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