Regent Seven Seas, owner of ‘the most luxurious ship ever built’ and arguably the most ultra-luxe line, says its cruises can be less expensive than some premium lines.
In a surprising series of claims which are bound to create a debate among other lines, comparison tables on Regent’s US website compare the prices of their 2019 Mediterranean, Alaska and Asia itineraries with other luxury and premium lines.
Regent claims to consistently offer the best value for a luxury cruise holiday and maybe even outdoing premium cruise lines.
How is this done? Regent Seven Seas made the comparison by estimating the cost of sailing on other lines with all the inclusions you’d enjoy on Regent and added it to the base fares on other lines.
This includes things like business class air fares, a three-night pre or post-cruise land program, unlimited shore excursions, speciality restaurants, ground transport, Wi-Fi and port taxes and fees.
But keep in mind many of these inclusions like business class air fares and pre or post cruise land programs are exclusive to the US market and do not apply for Australian guests.
On a seven-day Mediterranean cruise, against a premium line Regent Seven Seas claims to be almost US$1,000 less.
For a seven-night itinerary in the Mediterranean, Regent cites that they are $1241 (US$856) less than average prices of premium cruise lines like Princess Cruises, Holland America Line and Celebrity Cruises. That is a saving of $177 per night.
They also did a direct comparison with Viking Ocean Cruises and claimed that they worked out to be $2090 (US$1,442) less. This means that guests can sail the Mediterranean in luxury and save $300 a day while doing it.
When comparing with their luxury rivals, an Asian cruise is cited as $580 (US$400) less a night on Regent than other luxury lines on average – saving a total of $3,586 (US$5,200) on a 13-night cruise.
And in Alaska, Regent says that their seven-night itineraries are $2,315 (US$1,597) less than their luxury rivals like Silversea and Crystal Cruises. Offering savings of $330 per day.
“That said, the point that is being made is the value of the inclusions – no hidden extras…and to drill down and look at content. One good example: Silversea and Seabourn don’t include free unlimited excursions,” says Steve Odell, Regent Seven Seas Senior Vice President and Managing Director Asia Pacific.
Price is usually a no-go area for luxury lines, who battle it out with butlers, celebrity chefs and exclusive experiences. The Regent Seven Seas comparisons are unusual – and take the fight to overall value.
Premium lines, for instance, often claim the high ground on price…only to sometimes lose it against an all-inclusive comparison, where drinks, shore excursions, taxes and basics like wi-fi are taken into account.
“On premium, the message is a clear one to travel agents on where to look for new Regent guests – the top end of premium (with added cost of on board items) means there isn’t too much of gap between that category the luxury price point,” says Steve Odell, Regent Seven Seas Senior Vice President and Managing Director Asia Pacific.
The comparison was carried out on 2019 itineraries that have already sailed. But we found that on currently available sailings, the Regent Seven Seas claims are still attractive. Even without limited time promotions like free flight offers.
We compared 7-night Venice to Rome 2020 itineraries, and found Regent Seven Seas has fares that are up to $1,040 cheaper than deluxe line Viking Ocean Cruises.
Viking Ocean Cruises 8-day ‘Italian Sojourn’ 2020 itineraries are almost all sold out. Sailings on the Viking Sea departing August 26 starts at $5,795 while the May 13 sailing starts at $5,295.
Regent Seven Seas 7-nights ‘Mediterranean Medley’ Venice to Rome itinerary departing July 28, 2020 on the Seven Seas Voyager has fares from only $4,755. In late September, the fares for this sailing reached as low as $3,375.
Celebrity Cruises 8-night ‘Adriatic, Greece & Italy’ Venice to Rome cruise departing on Celebrity Infinity on June 3, 2020 has fares starting from $3,887.
There may be an $868 difference between Regent’s and Celebrity’s fares, but as Mr Odell points out, it is all in the inclusions. We’re talking unlimited shore excursions, beverages, Wi-Fi, gratuities and more.
And on Silversea Cruises, they are offering a 12-day Venice to Rome cruise departing May 5, 2020 on the Silver Spirit at $12,330.
So which is your pick?