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Huffman, Thompson, Matsui, and Garamendi Introduce Bill Requiring Reimbursements for Canceled Cruises

Bill Would Help Address Cancellations Due to Coronavirus

March 12, 2020

Washington, D.C. – Today, Rep. Jared Huffman (CA-02), Rep. Mike Thompson (CA-05), Rep. Doris Matsui (CA-06), and Rep. John Garamendi (CA-03) announced they have introduced legislation to require cruise lines to reimburse passengers whose trips have been canceled due to the Coronavirus. This would apply for tickets purchased on or before February 1, 2020 and to cancellations both from the cruise line itself and by the passenger because of concerns over the ongoing public health emergency. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has advised that travelers defer all cruise ship travel at this time.

“Travelers must have the flexibility to forego travel if they feel unsafe, without the fear of losing their hard-earned money,” said Rep. Huffman. “Our bill ensures passengers can get reimbursed for travel due to concerns over the coronavirus outbreak – a practice that should have quite frankly already been in place.”

“We must do everything we can to ensure the ongoing spread of the Coronavirus does not endanger the health and financial security of people across our nation. That’s why I introduced this bill to ensure cruise ship passengers can get reimbursed if their trip is canceled due to concerns over the virus,” said Rep. Thompson. “I’ve heard from constituents worried that they won’t get money back from what are often expensive trips that may have been booked months ago, and we should get this bill passed to help make them financially whole again.”

“Amidst the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, people deserve peace of mind that they won’t be stripped of their hard-earned money due to this unforeseen crisis.  Not allowing these individuals to recoup their losses disincentivizes responsible public health decisions, such as deferring travel because of potential illness. Cruises have long been marketed as safe, family-friendly vacations, yet the unfortunate reality is that Americans have unknowingly been putting themselves at risk while at sea,” said Rep. Matsui. “It is our duty to make sure that we do everything in our power to relieve the financial burdens of the outbreak. This bill will give families the freedom to make the choice that is in the best interest of their health and their family, without fear of potentially losing thousands of dollars.”

“No American should have to face financial hardship due to the ongoing spread of the novel coronavirus. I’m proud to join Rep. Thompson to introduce legislation that will ensure our constituents are reimbursed if their cruises are canceled due to this virus, and I urge its swift adoption in Congress,” said Rep. Garamendi. 

You can click here to read the text of this legislation.

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