Please beware where you are getting info on the Internet about different subjects. Forums can be a decent place to get some information, but in most cases people post to forums anonymously. Here I give advice pertaining to Cruises and answer any questions without asking for much in return. I leave my email address and phone number in numerous places on this blog. I have a history of 100s of original blog posts and comment replies to give you a good idea of who I am. If I give you bad info, you are more then welcome to call me out on the blog…or call me on the phone. On a forum, ultimately you have to be extremely careful on who you trust. Therefore there is zero accountability for bad advice, or information. Cruise Critic is the most popular Cruise Forum on the Internet. For a long time, I just dealt with the fact that we had to re-educate consumers to the truths of cruising after they had visited Cruise Critic and had read in some cases were complete lies about cruising.
Cruise Critic counts on other members of the site to jump in and give the truthwhen there is a member not telling the complete truth…the problem is that people new to cruising do not know how to figure out who to believe on the forum…or they read the untrue post prior to anyonehashad a chance to dispute it. This causes unnecessary fear among semi experienced and first time cruisers.
Here is a great example of Fear Mongering a half truth on Cruise Critic:
Posted by Ravens Mom:
I read on this site earlier today that the Travel Agency I used to book my January cruise with Carnival went out of business and left customers in the lurch. Well I am one of those unlucky customers. When I called Carnival they confirmed that the Travel Agency never paid my final balance which I had paid them in back in September. Word to wise, even if the company has been in business for 14 years, it does not mean that they will be there for you. I have reported the company to the BBB in New Jersey and also called my credit card company to start the dispute process, but at this point my hopes and expectations are low.
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=874753 – you can read this post and all of the ones in disagreement…but there are people who read this when it first came out without any counter arguments…
Most agencies that you book a cruise through charge your Credit Card directly with the Cruise line…the cruise line is the company that shows up on your billing statement because they are the company that gets your money. The Agency I work for, CruiseDeals.com, is owned by the 8th largest seller of leisure travel so we are safe and we will be stronger at the end of this down turn. But if Cruisedeals.com or most other agencies were to go out of business, you would be fine. Just make sure the cruise line the agency is charging your credit card directly with the cruiseline. If this is the case, you will still have a booked cruise even if the agency you are working for goes out of business.
There are many other example of misinformation and lies on Cruise Critic….there is some good info on their site but it is mixed in with inaccurate info(so for the consumer how can you decipher the truth vs. lies)…if you are looking for cruise advice from someone who is not afraid to put their whole bio out there to the public, check out my cruise advice page and/or ask me questions in the comments.
If you choose to read CruiseCritic.com, good luck trying to decipher the truth…my recommendation is to find a cruise expert and ask them your questions…and if you are going to continue to use Cruise Critic, please do not trust everything you read… ~ Rich Tucker