Looking to save some money on your next cruise? Well Cruise Passenger has the top 10 tips on the best ways to save money when you plan you’re next cruise. From pre-planning meals to choosing a cheaper cruise, follow these handy tips to pinch a few pennies.
Purchase meals and spa treatments before you hop onboard
Lots of cruise lines are creating pre-purchased packages for meals and spa services before you depart. Last year, Royal Caribbean announced 25% savings on dinner packages aboard the Oasis and Allure of the Seas as well as Radiance and Splendour of the Seas. According to Cruises-N-More, guests can pre-reserve dining at three specialty restaurants at US$65 per person which saves them more than US$25 each.
Don’t immediately buy a beverage package
For alcoholic beverages, most people won’t keep up the drinking pace needed to break even on these packages. But families with children that drink lots of soft drinks, juices, and bottled water, there are savings to be made.
As cruise lines increase the cost of checking in bags, pack a bit lighter and then use the ship’s laundry services. A couple can easily save up to $100 on luggage fees alone and that would cover a fair bit of laundry you can pay for on the ship. Plus, freshly laundered clothes always look better. Or even handwash your clothes.
Consider going on a megaship
Why don’t you consider a megaship? There are lots of cabins to fill so there are often last minute deals to get guests into these rooms. Ships like Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas, Voyager and Allure of the Seas, Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 and many more.
Yes, many cruise ships have lots of enticing extras–onboard shopping, one-day-only jewellery sales, specialty restaurants or cupcake and ice cream shops. But the best way to save some money on cruise ships is to steer clear away from them.
Pick a shorter cruise
If you can’t afford a seven-night cruise, why not go for just three or four days. Cruise ships, these days, are catering to a growing market of short-stay holidaymakers. It’s also perfect for people who may not be able to take an extended holiday.
Try a repositioning cruise
Cruise ships need to get from one side of the world to another and these ships need to make ocean crossings on what is called a repositioning cruise. Though you may be at sea for days, there are some great deals. Transatlantic crossings are extremely well priced.
Explore ports on your own
Sometimes booking shore excursions through cruise lines are more expensive that booking your own, or even exploring the ports by yourself. One Cruise Passenger reader said she was slapped with an 18% booking fee on her last cruise. The only down side is guests who book tours with the lines are first off the ship – so if you do book yourself, you may be waiting a while to disembark.
Some cruise lines allow you to bring a bottle of wine on embarkation only. But otherwise, it’s not allowed or you’ll be paying big corkage fees. You can bring your own soft drinks – you can really save some dollars if you’ve got kids. Also, consider bringing your own water bottles to fill up.
Ditch the digital
Wi-Fi is expensive and slow at sea so it’s not worth paying the fees. And besides, you’re on a holiday! If you really must touch back to reality, buy an internet package or use free Wi-Fi areas on shore.