Shopping for cruise deals when you've rather be packing and fantasizing about how great your cruise will be can be a tough sell. Still, it's a step that is essential in stretching every single dollar. Why not make your vacation even better than by saving as much as money as you can while planning your trip?
Here are five tips on securing some great cruise deals:
1. Check for Any Bundle Deals – Package deals can be fabulous for frugal travelers as the right deal can include (aside from your cruise fare) airfare, hotel accommodations, and destination tours. These bundles can mean great savings.
2. Let Technology Work for You – If you happen to be a major user of social media platforms and email communication, cruise lines and travel agencies can often send updates on new deals, pricing, and other sweet bargains right to your inbox and feeds. Times are changing, and as such, cruise lines have chosen to utilize this new technology. The nice thing is that with the parameters of these technological platforms, you can usually set guidelines for the way this information can be presented to you.
3. Research Price Points – Do some web work and check on general rates for the type of cruise you want, and make a daily check of fares to see if there have been candy changes. There are even ways you can be informed of these changes based on signing up for price-change alerts. Even if you do find the right price & book, you may find that the price can go lower. Do not be afraid to ask for cash back when fares change. The key is making sure to ask about this cash back option before you make your final payment. If you're flexible, this cash back option can be easier to acquire, especially if you ask to rebook at the lower price or even take the difference of the rate as a credit for your needs on the ship.
4. Last-Minute Booking – For those who can be spontaneous, booking at the last-minute can be a time for great savings. Just think in terms of ninety days as this is the usual point where final payments are due for bookings. This time period may show available departures at very low prices. You can also take advantage of hard-to-fill cruises because they can have deeply discounted fares that cruise lines want to fill. Just beware — booking last-minute can have pitfalls such as how much you need to pay to travel to the port.
5. Hire a Travel Agent – The heyday of the travel agent may seem long in the past if you listen to the do-it-yourself gurus, but nothing can be further from the truth. In fact, travel experts agree that if you're not the type of person to want to spend time searching for deals from either tweets, emails, or your own exhaustive web browsing, a good travel agent is the way to go because those are the things they do best. They also have access to deals others may not simply because they deal with cruise lines all the time. Sometimes the best way to get the best fare is actually dealing with a real person.
Cruise deals are out there; you just need to a certain level of resilience & cunning to make it work for you.