3 On Your Side

Disappointed cruise passenger wants full refund

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(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

Candia Franklin is a nurse and works a lot. So, she was pretty excited when planned out and paid for a cruise.

“I've actually never gone on a cruise. This was the first cruise we've ever booked,” Franklin told 3 On Your Side.

She and a friend booked an 11-day Caribbean trip on Viking Cruises and paid $7,000 in cash. For that price tag, the journey included stops at nine different islands.

“Puerto Rico, The Virgin Islands, Barbados, St. Lucia, St. Kits,” she said were just some of the islands they would be docking. “Because I've never been to the Caribbean, I thought why don't we take a cruise and I can get a feel for each of the islands.”

But, before the big cruise date arrived, Mother Nature struck. Hurricane Irma ripped through the Caribbean causing historic destruction and devastation. That was followed by Hurricane Maria, which basically wiped out Puerto Rico and damaged more of the Caribbean. 

Remember, these are the islands and area that Candia and her friend paid $7,000 to visit.

“We were supposed to go to nine countries, nine ports and six of those stops are in ruins, devastated. It's not possible anymore,” a disappointed Franklin said.

With much of the islands decimated, she thought Viking Cruises would have canceled the cruise. Besides, with so much destruction, it wasn't really a trip she wanted to take anymore.

So, she contacted Viking, which told her the cruise was still on.

“When I've talked with them and asked them about offering refunds, they said, there is no refund. There is no voucher, there is no credit, they are making a decision of where we'll go.”

But Franklin says visiting islands pulverized by hurricanes is not what she had in mind when she paid Viking Cruises $7,000.

So, 3 On Your Side got involved and we got a hold of Viking Cruises to see if they would consider returning Franklin’s $7,000.

As of now, they're looking into the issue for us. But, Franklin says she won't be happy unless she gets every dollar back. “It's not what I paid for and it's not what I agreed to. It's not what I signed the contract for.

As of now, 3 On Your Side is waiting for Viking Cruises to reach a decision when it comes to refunding Franklin’s money. When there’s a conclusion, 3 On Your Side will air an update.

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Gary HarperGary Harper is the senior consumer and investigative reporter for 3 On Your Side at KTVK-TV.

Click to learn more about Gary.

Gary Harper
3 On Your Side

With more than 20 years of television experience, Gary has established himself as a leader in the industry when it comes to assisting viewers and resolving their consumer-related issues. His passion and enthusiasm have helped him earn an Emmy for Best Consumer Reporter from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He’s also garnered several Emmy nominations

He has negotiated resolutions with companies of all sizes, including some of the biggest corporations in the nation.

Gary has successfully recouped more than $1 million for viewers around the state, making 3 On Your Side one of the most popular segments on KTVK and the station's Web site.

He's best known for investigating and confronting unscrupulous contractors. In fact, many of his news reports have led to police investigations and jail time for those who were caught. Viewers, as well as the companies and people he investigates, regard him as consistently being thorough and fair.

Gary has been with KTVK-TV since 1997. Prior to his arrival in Phoenix, he worked for WZZM-TV in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he was as an anchor and reporter.

Gary is from Chicago, but launched his television career in Lubbock, Texas, after earning a broadcast journalism degree from Texas Tech University. Following his graduation, he was quickly hired by KLBK-TV in Lubbock, where he enterprised and broke numerous exclusive reports. His aggressive reporting in Texas helped garner him Best Reporter by the Associated Press.

Gary has been married since 1994 and is the proud father of two sons. When he's not helping viewers, Gary is busy catching up on his favorite college and professional football teams as well as cheering on his beloved Texas Tech Red Raiders.

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