Would you like to cruise around Southeast Asia, in the Mekong River of Cambodia or roam Tanjung Priok of Jakarta, Indonesia, who doesn’t? But vacation cruise can be very expensive that you might get sea sick and throw up even before setting sail, and don’t forget the add-ons! Here are some tips brought to you by Westhill Consulting Travel and Tours, Singapore on how to save big before boarding.
Booking early would save you a lot of money, reserve six to 12 months before your cruise can lock you with an early-bird cruise rate that is 25 to 50 percent lower than the published “brochure” rate most lines advertise. Plus, you can have more choices of itineraries, dates, and cabins, and possibly get better deals on airfare and hotels. And the best part is when the prices go down after you book, its either travel agents or the cruise line itself would help you get the new lower rate
You can either book early or book late, it runs completely contradicting to the first tip of booking early, but waiting 60 to 90 days before you want to sail, cruise lines often lower their prices significantly to fill any remaining spaces on their ships. But the thing is, you cannot choose an itinerary cabin since it may be hard to find low airfare to your port, and last-minute fares are typically nonrefundable. And be careful with the scams, since this is mostly the time when fraudsters are everywhere.
Requesting a discount works and asking the right question can work magic! It will help that you mention that you are a returning customer, and then politely inquire whether you’re eligible for a discount. You can save up to 5-10 percent of your fare. The third or fourth person in your cabin should get a 30 to 60 percent discount since cruise prices are based on double occupancy. If you’re 55 or older, you are entitled for a 5 percent discount as well as for those active and retired servicemen and women should always ask if the line offers those savings.
Using a travel agent would help you save money; in contrast of the interpretation that it would cost you more. They can find you the right deal. Many have reserved spaces they can sell you at a discount, and they can explain whether an advertised “free” upgrade or all-inclusive package is for real or just a ploy. They can also advocate for you if rates drop after you’ve booked your cruise.
Travel in groups. Large groups—like family reunions at sea—can be complicated to pull together, but they can also knock big bucks off the price of the cabins. A group of 16 people in eight cabins, for instance, can sometimes get a steep discount on the 16th fare or in some cases a free berth. For large groups, booking a year in advance is advised to ensure you get the block of cabins you want.
Shoulder season is a good idea after all. You won’t save a ton, but sailing when most folks stay home can nab you a modest bargain—maybe 10 percent off typical high-season rates. Here are the best times to find deals in four highly popular cruise regions: