Monday, November 8, 2010

4 Secrets to Saving Big on Cruises

Cruises are becoming increasingly popular ways to holiday, but for many the price tag is just too high. We dug up our four favourite ways to save big on cruises:

Repositioning Cruises – Vacationers looking for a long trip on a small budget should try a repositioning cruise, which happens when a ship is moving from one route to another. These trips tend to be between 14 and 28 days long, and can start as low as $35 a day. Keep in mind though, that there will be fewer stops in ports, and flight costs for one-way trips can offset savings.

Book Your Next Cruise While on Holiday – Enjoying your cruise? Most cruise lines will have an on-board travel agent that will help you book your next cruise right on the ship. The lines have an incentive to keep you loyal, so these agents will offer discounts and stateroom credits to entice you back. You’re not locked in to a specific date, so when you get home speak to a travel agent to see if there are any further discounts available.

Keep Watching Prices – Cruises used to offer their best rates to those who booked far in advance, and this is sometimes still the case. However, keep an eye on prices even after you’ve booked. If it drops before the final payment date you can simply cancel and rebook through your travel agent.

Sign Up for Newsletters – Cruise lines sometimes offer extremely low rates to preferred booking partners, with the caveat that they aren’t allowed to advertise them to the general public. Sign up for email lists of these cruise-focused travel agencies and watch for notices to ‘call for low rates’. These rates are usually available for only a short time, so you’ll need to book quickly.

(photo by Kabacchi)

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