April 19, 2024

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I'm a travel expert — here's what to do if you're stranded like a Norwegian cruise passenger

I'm a travel expert — here's what to do if you're stranded like a Norwegian cruise passenger

Travel

You will sail if you follow these tips.

A travel agent shares the basic steps passengers should take if they fail to reboard their cruise ship before the scheduled departure time.

Late last week, eight Norwegian passengers, including six Americans, were stranded in Africa after their ship left port without them because their private land tour took extra time.

It is common for cruise ships to dock for several days or hours at different ports, giving those on board the opportunity to disembark and explore the local areas.

Although it's rare for a ship to set sail again without everyone back on board, Big Apple travel agent Joanna Kawthar He says it can be a bureaucratic nightmare if left behind.

“It's one of those things, it's not a problem until it's a problem,” she said. USA Today Tuesday.

Late last week, eight Norwegian passengers, including six Americans, were stranded in Africa after their ship left port without them because their private land tour took extra time. Boston Globe via Getty Images

If you return to port to find your ship sailing away, the expert advises immediately contacting the cruise line to let them know.

Kawsar added that a stranded passenger should contact his or her travel agent to help handle logistics, such as booking emergency accommodation or connecting flights.

The nearest US embassy may also be able to provide assistance, but you are unlikely to be able to claim insurance expenses, especially if land activities are not organized by the cruise company itself.

Smart travelers should choose shore excursions organized by the cruise or a vendor they have partnered with who ensures passengers are returned before re-boarding time, says Kawsar.

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Several passengers were filmed stranded after they failed to return to their Norwegian boat before departure. Jill and Jay Campbell

In order to avoid missing your departure time, Kawsar also gave some practical advice.

She urged passengers to make sure their watch is set to shipping time rather than local time, which may be different

“A lot of people get confused by that,” she announced, adding that travelers should aim to get to the boat at least one hour early.

And if you're getting off the ship, Kawsar claims there are essentials you need to take in case anything happens.

“You should probably have your passport with you because you will need it to board a flight to get to the next port, especially if it is in a different country,” Kawsar advised.

She added that travelers should obtain a credit card in case they have to incur any unexpected expenses, including emergency accommodation.

Travelers should aim to return to the boat at least one hour early. VW Pics/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

While the eight passengers stranded by Norwegian tore into the cruise line, accusing them of neglecting a “basic duty of care,” Corther says the ships operate to tight schedules while in port.

“If they have to leave at a certain time, they have to leave at that time,” she added.

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