Your perfect cruise holiday can ultimately see you dishing out a lot of money for the pleasure. The most desirable destinations and attractive cruise liners can often lead to an expensive outlay, something which can put off potential customers.
However, if you prepare properly beforehand and take steps to reduce your outgoings whilst aboard the ship itself, a cruise holiday can be more attainable for regular customers. Here are 5 ways to best go about saving money for your cruise:
1. Know When to Book
Most holidaymakers will have a pre-determined time of when they can go away, during the school holidays for example. If this is the case, it is best to scour all the deals online as soon as possible for your preferred dates, keeping an eye out for potential deals. By booking early, you will also be able to guarantee your preferred room choice and place on any excursions taking place.
The end of summer usually causes the following summer’s deals to open up and even though you’ve just returned from on holiday, you may be looking at something a little different for the following year!
Alternatively, you can also try booking as late as possible as a way to save money. If this is a realistic option for you, finding a spot at the last minute will often be much cheaper than usual. Cruise companies will look to recoup as much money they can or fill up places left by cancellations.
2. Consider Off-Peak Seasons
Cruises during off-peak periods are generally less expensive than in the high season. Booking within these times, i.e. at some point in the school year, will save you money and also provide more freedom on a less crowded ship.
Christmas and New Year are also hugely popular, due to special performances by big celebrities and parties on the Disney cruise liners have been known to be incredibly popular as people look for an alternative festive season.
If looking for an off-peak cruise, knowing when to book for depends on many variables such as the location and weather conditions. Do research beforehand on your preferred destination and which season is the most feasible option.
3. Book Online
Although some people still prefer using the travel agent as a way to book their cruise holidays, completing the process online can often unearth some great deals. Going alone will require more preparation on your part however, especially with your travel arrangements to and from the cruise liner. Keep an eye out for sales, last month was National Cruise Week and Cruise1st were offering deals as a part of this here.
You can use comparison websites to reveal the cheapest options for your favoured location and time. Emailing different cruise companies enquiring of any deals or possible reductions is also something worth checking out.
4. Stay Efficient Onboard
Experienced cruisers will tell you that onboard living isn’t necessarily cheap, no matter how much you have saved during the booking process. Pack carefully; take all the important items you need to prevent spending money needlessly on overpriced goods. Don’t be drawn into some of the extras offered from certain sections of the boat.
Also, be prepared for some unexpected additional charges. Cruises are rarely all-inclusive and some of the more exciting activities, such as visiting the casino or spa, are only available at extra cost.
5. Cheaper Excursions
Cruising to the Mediterranean or Arctic won’t be much of an experience if you don’t leave the ship and take in the amazing sights. The cruise liner will most likely offer their own excursions tours at a cost, although it is possible to vacate the ship at your own free will.
Research all the local tourist hotspots and the most efficient way to see them all because your time off the boat is limited. In addition, you should also stock up on food, drinks and personal items whilst on land in order to save excess spending onboard.
Although the most desired cruise holidays on the most prominent ships are generally quite expensive to take, there are many ways to save money both at the booking stage and whilst at sea. Scout around for the best deals online, not forgetting the most efficient way to reach your embarkation point, and also pack resourcefully to save money whilst on the ship.