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October 2016    Download the Entire Issue (PDF) Vol. 31, No. 10   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
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Bad Weather Can Happen

but should you pay for dives so canceled?

from the October, 2016 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

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Nobody can control the weather, and dives can get canceled. It's how the dive operator handles the business side of things that can make the difference between the client feeling merely disappointed or totally cheated.

Chip Wright (Hebron, KY) and his wife were at Brac Reef Resort on Cayman Brac for four days of diving with Reef Divers in early August when a tropical depression formed to the east of the island. On what was supposed to be the third day of their diving, the morning dives were canceled due to the weather. The decision didn't surprise them and was easy to agree with. That said, the shop told them that there were no refunds for dives canceled by the shop. Chip was told to claim the missed dives on their travel insurance. Chip thought it morally wrong to keep money for a service that was not provided, and contacted the resort's U.S. office a few days after he informed Undercurrent of his dismay.

This incident clearly identified the need to continue to focus on training our staff on circumstances like we experienced as a result.

"The fellow I spoke with, Jason Belport, apologized for the lack of a faster resolution while we were on the Brac. He reiterated that they normally do not offer refunds for weather-related cancelations. I didn't push for more information, but I still don't understand how this can be considered by anyone to be an acceptable practice: the money is collected, no expenses are incurred, no service is provided, yet the business keeps the cash."

For his trouble in contacting the U.S. office, Chip was offered a $273 refund for the lost dives (based on the discounted rate of the package), or credit to be used on a future stay on any of the islands of $1000 total, to be used within the next year."...

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