Couple says company showed 'lack of compassion' after cruise cancellation

A Bloomington couple says they were disappointed by the lack of compassion they were shown after being forced to cancel a trip for medical reasons.

This past fall, Loretta Gosse and John Hendrickson booked an 18-day cruise from Bangkok to Mumbai. Including airfare and visas, the couple paid $12,000 for the luxury vacation.

A few months later, Gosse was diagnosed with lung cancer. Surgery and chemotherapy would follow.

“It was really difficult to breath that first month, there’s no way they would allow me to fly," she said. "They said that would be very dangerous."

Gosse called Oceania Cruises, expecting the company to offer a refund or credit but was instead directed to the company’s cancellation policy.

“We even said, ‘Can we give our tickets to somebody else? Can somebody else go in our place so we don’t lose the money?’" she said. "They said no.”

The couple would eventually receive a portion of what they paid for the trip, but according to company policy if they had called even a few days later they wouldn’t receive anything.

The customer service representative ultimately told Gosse he could not make any exceptions.

“This isn’t something that happens every single day," Gosse said. "They’re not losing money on this, they’re making money because they’re selling your suite."

Oceania Cruises declined to comment, instead directing the public to its cancellation policy. A spokesperson for the company also said this incident emphasizes the importance of purchasing trip insurance.