Why are there so many cruise deals? In a word…competition. As a result of new cruise ships coming on line, supply now exceeds demand for passenger accommodations. Not only are there more new ships, in the past few years, most have a significantly larger passenger capacity. When more new cruise ships launch, over the next few years, passenger competition will be fierce.
While competition over passengers is the primary reason for so many cruise deals, some ships will have the advantage over others in a competition. Newer ships are resorts at sea. They offer impeccable service and pampering usually found in a 5 star hotel. Other new ships are amusement parks appealing, not only to families with children, but to the child in all of us. They offer race tracks for “go carts”, water slides, zip lines, Laser tag areas, and rope lines to name a few.
Cruise deals give would be cruisers the opportunity to enjoy a cruise for significantly less than the usual prices. Yet, cruisers can still expect and receive the same quality services, excellent food, entertainment and excursions. What follows is a sample ad for a 7 day cruise on the MSC Armonia out of Miami, Florida. It is just one of many offers at this time.
The MSC seven-day cruise to the Western Caribbean is less than the cost of a 3-4 day cruise leaving Florida ports throughout the year. Inside cabins and ocean views start at $ 199 pp. Balconies start at $399.
This cruise is just one of many cruise deals offers through the end of 2019, and those available in 2020. Several of the ocean going cruise ships are offering reduced fares and additional amenities at this time. If you want to know what deals are available, on which ships, I can help you with that. Please call me at 800-388-8781.
The question, “Why are there so many cruise deals, is not what you should be asking, But rather, “What are the cruise deals, and can I take advantage of them?”
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Cruise promotions and on-board credit, are incentives that make one cruise, to a specific location, more attractive than another. They are what adds value to a cruise package. In some cases, they make a value packed cruise more cost effective than buying a bare bones cruise selling at a lesser price.
The Norwegian advertisement featured above is all about NCL promotions for the new year. It offers six free incentives that will enhance enjoyment and savings when choosing an NCL cruise. These promotions apply only to first and second passengers in a stateroom. This promotion, like all promotions on most cruise lines, can be seasonal or have certain limitations. Promotions do not apply to X cabins as they are no frills cabins.
Unlimited Open Bar
Enjoying drinks over a several day cruise can add quite a bit to the final bill for your cruise. Having wine with dinner, enjoying umbrella drinks poolside, and evening cocktails adds up. Guests 1 and 2 in a stateroom can enjoy spirits and cocktails, wines, draft beer, juice and soda at no cost when they have an open bar promotion. However, there is a gratuity charge for an open bar, which is charged to your account in advance of the cruise, usually at booking.
All cruise ships have complimentary dining for passengers. The also have specialty restaurants that charge a modest supplement. Being able to enjoy a steakhouse, a seafood restaurant, Asian cuisine, a French Bistro and other specialty venues, at no extra cost, adds to the enjoyment of the cruise.
Shore Excursions are expensive. As such, many cruisers opt not to take an excursion in every port they visit. Free shore excursions for 2 people can be a savings of several hundred dollars or more on a seven day cruise.
Keeping in touch with family back home, or keeping up with your business isn’t cheap while you are at sea. Many of the ships bill Internet use in minutes. Given the frequent slowness of Internet access at sea, passengers find they are using minutes far faster than they anticipated. WiFi use can add substantially to your final cruise bill. Free WIFI is a significant money saver for those who need or want to be connected via the Internet.
Friends and Family Sail Free
On selected cruises. passengers 3 and 4 sail free when sharing a stateroom with passengers 1 and 2. This is an excellent savings for parents with small children. It is also a cost effective way for 4 family members or a group of friends to travel together. However, adults need to consider that they will be sharing a stateroom designed for 2 adults and having one bathroom, and limited closet space. Additional sleep areas will be either sofa beds or bunk bed accommodations. However, tight quarters maybe a small price to pay for this significant savings.
Free Air Fare
NCL Cruisers 1 and 2 get free air fare or reduced round trip airfare on some cruises with Free Air Available.
On-board credit can also be part of a cruise promotion. It is the gift of free cash that is added to your on-board account, which you can use to purchase goods and services during your cruise. It can be used for:
Shopping in Ship Boutiques
Cruise Promotions and On-board Credit
Sometimes, cruise lines will offer a value package that includes free services as well as on-board credit. Credits can and do come from the cruise line, as well as your travel agent. If you book a cruise in advance, while on a cruise, the cruise company will often include a generous on-board credit for that next cruise. Cruise lines value returning passengers. Most recognize and reward passenger loyalty by giving on-board credit to those who continue to sail on their ships.
If you are planning a cruise promotions, including on-board credit, will increase your enjoyment while cruising and give you a significant savings. If I can be of help in planning and booking your next cruise, please call me at 800-388-8781.
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