NCL Terminates Relations With YTB
Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) has terminated their business relationship with the online travel agency YTB (Your Travel Biz). The two companies have quit doing business together, as of January 20, 2009. It has been reported that Norwegian Cruise Line quit taking any more new bookings from this company full of controversy. Although, NCL will continue to service existing YTB reservations, and pay commissions due on bookings prior to the recent announcement.
Earlier this year Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) also stopped accepting reservations from independent agents affiliated with the travel company Joystar. You may have heard that Joystar is also considering filing Chapter 11. Travel agents, and others have filed a petition for involuntary bankruptcy against Joystar.
It is unclear how a travel company in the business of booking a variety of travel for a client can continue to function without the support of some of the major travel suppliers in the travel industry. Companies that have previously terminated their business with YTB are Royal Caribbean (another huge Cruise Line), Celebrity, Azamara, Perrillo, IATAN, (just to name a few). And now they have to add Norwegian Cruise Line to the list of suppliers refusing YTB service.
YTB is considered to be a “card mill” by many in the travel industry. YTB also faces a lawsuit later this year through the state of California, for accusations of an MLM performing as a pyramid scheme. The origional intent by Attorney General Edmund Brown Jr. was to shut down the company’s unlawful operation before more people were hurt by this scam.
Other aligations have also been made against YTB, and will all be addressed during this September trial. The state of California is seeking $10 million in restitution for the California residents who bought into the business, and another $15 million in cival penalties.Since the lawsuit was first presented, YTB has reported some changes in their business plan and stratagies. But will it be a case of “too little too late”? We will all be watching the outcome of this case. One has to wonder why it had to come to this in the first place?