If you want to go on a cruise, you cannot simply show up at the dock on departure day and expect to come aboard. You must first search for cruise deals and make reservations. While some of the last minute deals are possible, you still need to make your reservation as soon as possible before the ship is scheduled to take off.
There are many things to consider before you decide to cruise: itinerary, price, place of departure, port of call, excursions, number of nights, cruises, boat etc.
Keep these factors in mind when looking for bids and comparing itineraries.
Here are some tips for bargain cruises:
• Do not spend twice as much on airline tickets. In most cases, cruising is much cheaper when the city of departure and return are one and the same. This will save you on plane tickets and cruise on both. Or, if you are within a day's drive from the city of departure, it may be a lot cheaper to just drive to the port and pay to leave your vehicle parked or while cruising. Compare daily parking costs with airline tickets.
• If you are traveling with a family or group of friends, look for family or group discounts. There are numerous types of group discounts offered by cruises: wedding ceremonies, anniversaries, birthdays, reunions, retirements and so on. Leading cruise lines also offer a discount for children. Some even offer a free ticket for children under a certain age.
• Keep in mind that cruise fares – just like airfare – often vary. In fact, they can change on a daily basis. Generally, the lowest fares are the earliest (eight months or more before departure) or the latest (within two months before departure). However, if cruising is popular and cabins are selling out fast, you may not want to take the risk until the last minute. However, if you are not picky and do not have specific dates in mind, it might be helpful to wait and see what last minute deals will appear.
• Decide whether or not you just want the basic package. Do you need any of the "extras", such as dining and drinks packages, spa packages, trips, personal service receptions, private balcony, etc.? Or would it be cheaper to just pay for some of them because their needs also come up? It is almost always given that cruise trips planned by boat for a cruise are NOT the cheapest and you will save by going through a third party travel company or a trip on your own.
These are just a few ideas to give you an idea of the types of discounts and offers on cruises available.
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