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Notice to Passengers: Voyages from the U.S. to Cuba

Posted

The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) is aware that passenger cruise lines that called Cuba have amended itineraries to comply with amendments made to the Cuban Assets Control Regulations announced in the Federal Register on June 5, 2019.

Passengers with questions related to a voyage they have booked should contact their travel agent and/or cruise line directly.

Cruise passengers should always carefully read their ticket contract, which states the cruise line’s obligations with respect to canceled voyages. If cruise passengers have purchased travel insurance, they should consult their policy to determine whether to file a claim.

The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) has limited authority over cruise lines and administers the legal requirements that cruise lines maintain financial responsibility for the protection of passengers for non-performance of a cruise or death or injury while on a cruise. (46 U.S.C. §§ 44102 and 44103; 46 CFR Part 540). The FMC issues certificates to Passenger Vessel Operators (PVO) with 50 or more berths and that embark passengers from U.S. ports. The Certificate (Performance) evidences that the PVO has on file with the Commission acceptable coverage to satisfy any liability incurred for nonperformance of transportation, such as when a PVO declares bankruptcy and fails to complete the cruises booked. The coverage is used to reimburse passengers when the PVO fails to perform cruises as contracted and has taken no further actions to refund passengers.

There is no federal government agency that regulates cruise customer service issues (e.g. itinerary changes, passenger cancellations, cabin concerns, etc.). The Commission’s Office of Consumer Affairs & Dispute Resolution Services (CADRS), however, assists consumers and cruise lines by offering free alternative dispute resolution services. Requests for CADRS assistance regarding a dispute with a cruise line can be made by calling 202-523-5807 or via e-mail at complaints@fmc.gov.