If you want to take a vacation, but you're not sure if you can afford a trip, there are several ways to save money on a cruise. A cruise is an excellent way to see different countries and gain new experiences on the cheap. Cruise vacations are relatively cheap considering how the price covers accommodation, food and entertainment. Depending on how long or how far you travel, cruise vacations can get costly however, here are seven ways to save money on a cruise vacation.
1 Travel during September
If you want to save money on a cruise, travel during September. Because hurricane season is at its peak during this time, some cruise lines discount fares in order to keep cabins booked. There's always the chance that a storm will delay your trip. But if a storm doesn't occur, you can enjoy a fabulous vacation without breaking your budget – just make sure you purchase travel insurance.
2 Travel between Thanksgiving and Christmas
September isn't the only off-peak time to hit the open seas. Because tourism drops after Thanksgiving and before Christmas week, this is one of the best times to book a cruise vacation. Personally, this is my favorite time to cruise. We once sailed for eight days and only paid $500 a person, including port fees and taxes.
3 Last Minute Deals
If you’re within driving distance of a cruise port, you might be able to snag a last-minute travel deal. A travel agent might have information about these deals, or you can visit websites such as lastminutecruises.com. The savings are amazing and you can sail at discounts up to 50%. Basically, cruise ships would rather discount fares than sail half empty.
I use Groupon for everything nowadays, from buying electronic accessories to booking hotel rooms. And if you want to take a cruise, visit Groupon to check out the latest getaway deals. I've seen cruises sailing to different parts of the Caribbean at prices below retail. Unfortunately, you have to book during specific dates. But if you're flexible, this is an excellent way to save on a cruise.
5 Group Rate
Get with a few friends or relatives and plan a group cruise vacation. A travel agent can work directly with the cruise line to negotiate the best group rate for your circle. I’ve taken advantage of group rates at least three times; and each time, the group rate was about $150 less than retail. Not only did we enjoy a lower fare, we received extras like invitations to VIP events and onboard credit.
6 Shorten Your Cruise Dates
You may dream of going on a cruise vacation for eight days or longer, but there are ways to enjoy a nice vacation in two or three days. Here's the thing, time seems to stop when you're on the water. Therefore, even if you can only afford a Friday through Monday cruise, you’ll still have a blast and ample opportunity to unwind and relax.
7 Interior Cabins
I known people who refuse to stay in an interior cabin because they’re claustrophobic, yet I know others who love interior cabinets. To each his own. If you couldn’t care less about a window view, booking a cabin without an ocean view is cheaper and saves money.
Cruise vacations are a favorite among many travelers. You can travel to different countries, experiment with different cuisines and meet exciting people. But along with the desire for a cruise vacation, you need cash. What are other tips to save on a cruise vacation?