Cruise Fuel Surcharges Come Under Florida Scrutiny

Florida's attorney general's office may adjudicate in consumer complaints about fuel surcharges that have been implemented by many lines, including Carnival and Royal Caribbean, in response to skyrocketing fuel prices. Attorney General Bill McCollum has received 150 complaints from customers regarding the surcharges, according to a spokeswoman from his office, Sandi Copes. Many complaints stemmed from consumers not receiving adequate notification or disclosure of the fuel surcharges, which amount to $5 per day per person on Carnival brands and are higher on some other lines.

Customers also voiced concern over fuel surcharges on cruises that had already been paid for in full. "We are reviewing complaints about whether cruise lines can retroactively impose a fuel supplement/fuel surcharge to passengers," Copes told the Associated Press.

Tim Gallagher, a spokesperson for Carnival Corp., told the AP: "We believe that our fuel supplement complies with all applicable laws." In most cases, when cruise lines announced fuel surcharges, they established dates of booking or travel when they would become effective. (DE)

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