Reporting Rochelle Ritchie
BALTIMORE (WJZ) — More fallout from that fire on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship based out of Baltimore. The company has canceled several cruises, leaving hundreds of people upset and waiting on a refund.
Rochelle Ritchie has one couple’s disappointed story, and the impact on the economy in Baltimore.
Cruises bring in millions of dollars to Maryland every year, so when one breaks down, it certainly hurts the financial market.
Linda Daley and her husband, Ron, are just two of the hundreds of people upset at Royal Caribbean’s decision to cancel several cruises after Grandeur of the Seas caught fire earlier this week.
The couple was set to sail next Friday.
“I just want my refund, and I don’t really appreciate just 25 percent back. I think we should have a free cruise,” said Linda Daley.
But that’s not happening. Instead, Royal Caribbean has agreed to give ticket purchasers a full refund and a 25 percent discount towards another cruise with the company.
It took two years for the Daleys to save every dollar earned to afford a $2,000 cruise on the Grandeur of the Seas, which just underwent a $48 million renovation and returned to the Port of Baltimore earlier this month.
“I was very, very upset. I had planned all my vacation and got it straightened out with my manager at the grocery store,” Ron Daley said.
The boat traveled from Baltimore to Port Canaveral Coco Kay and is now docked in Nassau as officials and the U.S. Coast Guard try to figure out what went wrong.
When cancellations like this happen it not only affects the passenger’s pocket, but also the city of Baltimore, which brings in a substantial amount of money every time a ship docks at the port.
“The economic impact per cruise, I can say, is a little under $1 million per cruise,” said Richard Scher, spokesperson for the Maryland Port Administration.
“So obviously, when something like this happens with the Grandeur of the Seas it’s really regrettable,” he continued.
Total, the Port of Baltimore brings in $90 million to the state.
No word on how long the ship could be out of service. It could be at least three weeks before people receive their refund.
All of the passengers on board the ship are accounted for and most are now back in Baltimore.