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NR 02-03 - Commission Issues Cruise Advisory

February 14, 2002

Federal Maritime Commission

FEDERAL MARITIME COMMISSION ISSUES

CRUISE ADVISORY

Washington, D.C. 20573

NR 02-03



CONTACT: Joseph T. Farrell, Director, Office of Consumer Complaints, at (202) 523-5807

FOR RELEASE: February 14, 2002

As reflected in Press Release No. 02-01, the Commission recently was briefed by its staff on various issues involving the cruising industry. A particular focus of this briefing was the bankruptcies experienced by passenger vessel operators in the recent past, and the resulting impacts of these bankruptcies on involved passengers. The Commission also was advised of the type of complaints and inquiries the staff routinely receives from the cruising public. To address this specific matter, the Commission directed the staff to prepare a consumer advisory to provide prospective passengers with information that can be useful to them before and after taking a cruise.

That advisory has been prepared and has been posted on the Commission's Internet website. The advisory discusses the assistance the Commission and other Federal agencies may provide, and highlights some typical clauses in a cruise operator's passenger ticket contract which account for many of the complaints and inquiries received by the FMC. In addition, this notice contains some helpful advice regarding travel insurance, cruise cancellation waivers, and method of purchasing cruises.

The advisory can be viewed by visiting the Commission's Internet website at www.fmc.gov, and then clicking on Notice to Cruise Passengers. Anyone seeking additional information also is encouraged to contact the Commission's Office of Consumer Complaints at (202) 523-5807, or at complaints@fmc.gov.