3 ON YOUR SIDE (3TV) - John Sherman and his family are supposed to be on a Mexican Riviera cruise. But his swimming pool is as close as he'll get to any water.

Instead, he and his family are stuck watching TV and basically doing anything they can to pass the time at their 北京福彩官网.

coronavirus cruise

Canceling a cruise can be tough to do.

“You're 北京福彩官网 and you're supposed to be on vacation right now,” 3 On Your Side’s Gary Harper said. “What is that like?"

“Well, it's pretty upsetting," Sherman responded.

This is what it looks like to be stuck on the Grand Princess cruise ship

Sherman and his family paid more than $2,500 to vacation on a Norwegian Cruise Line. But due to the coronavirus outbreak, they never took the trip and canceled.

So, exactly why cancel their cruise? Well, that's because his wife's employer just found out recently that they were taking a cruise and the employer was fine with that. However, the employer said once the family returned, Sherman’s wife was going to have to self-quarantine for 14 days unpaid. It’s something his wife didn't want to do.

coronavirus cruise

Sherman and his family are out $2,500 all because they didn't have the correct travel insurance.

As a result, Sherman and his family are out $2,500 all because they didn't have the correct travel insurance that could have reimbursed them for canceling. Instead, they had the lowest policy that didn't protect against a cruise cancellation.

US coronavirus cases top 1,000 as WHO declares it a pandemic

Dave Rodrigues is a Valley travel agent who advises the correct level of travel insurance is essential.

"Absolutely, it's important to get insurance whether there's an epidemic or not," he said.

But, Rodrigues says it's also important to get the right coverage. Remember, Sherman and his family didn't.

"You expect to be on a cruise that we've been planning for months. All of the sudden, I'm sitting here at 北京福彩官网 with nothing to do," a frustrated Sherman told us.

And then there's this. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention just issued a warning advising travelers to " ... defer all cruise ship travel worldwide."

So, what do you do if you already booked a cruise and you want out? Rodrigues recommends checking your travel insurance policy, if you bought one, to see if you can cancel and be reimbursed. If not, here's some comforting news. Many cruise lines just implemented a consumer-friendly cancellation policy that allows you to postpone your cruise until the coronavirus is hopefully under control.

Grand Princess cruise ship with at least 21 confirmed coronavirus cases will dock at California port

"The cruise lines are really trying to do right for the consumer now as they always have in the past because they really want to make sure that people feel confident and have the peace of mind when traveling," Rodrigues said.

Here's an example. Norwegian just launched its Peace of Mind cancellation policy. It's only temporary, but it allows consumers to cancel their cruise up to 48 hours prior to departure with no questions asked. Consumers are not reimbursed, but they're allowed to postpone their cruise for as long as three years.

coronavirus cruise

Norwegian's cancellation policy kicked in just two days after their cruise.

Unfortunately for Sherman and his family, Norwegian's cancellation policy kicked in just two days after their cruise.

“You just missed the deadline?” Harper asked.

“Yeah,” Sherman replied. “We just missed the deadline."

3 On Your Side has contacted Norwegian Cruise Line to see if it will reconsider Sherman’s cancellation denial. Again, Norwegian implemented their cancellation policy just two days following Sherman's sail date. If there’s an update, 3 On Your Side will let you know in a follow up report.

In the meantime, for more information on how COVID-19 is affecting the cruise industry or if you need more information regarding cruise cancellation policies, here’s a link to individual cruise lines.

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Gary Harper's 3 On Your Side reports air weeknights on 3TV News at 9.

 
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3 On Your Side' Investigative Reporter

Gary Harper is the senior consumer and investigative reporter for 3 On Your Side at 3TV. Read more about Gary.

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