If you’re dreaming of taking a cruise but put off by the price tag there are ways to find affordable sailings. You’ll need to do a bit more homework but in the end it can net you huge savings.
Watch for Specials
Cruise lines are always offering special deals for their sailings. It could be free onboard credit or kids sail free packages – or a whole host of other offerings. Know what your needs and wants are and keep them in mind when you’re researching. Watch for these deals to keep your costs down.
Book an Inside Room
The most affordable room on a ship are the interior rooms. Sure you won’t have a view of the water but on most sailings it won’t make much difference. If you struggle sleeping an inside room can also mean better rest as they are completely dark. Inside rooms are almost always at least $100 less per person and can sometimes be several hundred dollars less.
Avoid Extra Charges
It can be very easy to rack up extra costs on-board. Whether it’s from drink packages, alcohol or the casino. The costs can rack up quickly if you don’t pay attention. If you know you’ll want to drink soda or alcohol plan to purchase the drink package or buy drinks when you’re off the ship to carry on.
Pre-pay As Much as Possible
There’s nothing worse than having to pay unexpected costs on vacation. Pre-paying as much as possible can cut down the stress of this feeling. Pay the gratuities ahead of time as well as any packages or shore excursions you opt for. When you walk off the ship on the last day you’ll have a much better feeling!
Track after Purchasing
Once you’ve bought your cruise don’t stop watching it – especially if you buy well in advance. Many times the price will change and you can cancel your booking and re-book at the lower price. You’ll want to double check the options with the specific cruise line but this can save you a huge amount of money. Prices tend to fluctuate closer to the sail date as they try to fill up empty rooms.
Buy/Book for a Low Season Cruise
The low season for a cruise is usually the first and last sailing on any route in a specific area. For example a cruise to the Norwegian fjords on the first sailing in an interior room was recently only $399 per person. In the peak of sail season? Over $999 per person. The weather might not be as perfect but you will find the ship isn’t packed and the price is worth it.
Compare Transportation and Hotel Prices
Depending on how you look at sailing it is a great idea to also consider what your costs would be should you not be on a cruise. What would it cost you to get to all the points the ship will be stopping and to book hotel rooms. Could you do it cheaper or would it cost more? If you can do it cheaper then perhaps a cruise isn’t the best idea but if you discover it’s much more expensive look at the cruise as your mode of transport, accommodation and dining. It can give you a more realistic idea of what things should cost and whether you’re getting a good deal.