How Can I Maximize The Value Of My Cruise Vacation
There are plenty of ways to get more bang for your buck when you sail on a Royal Caribbean cruise. Every ship in the fleet offers a range of delicious complimentary dining options, but you can dig into even more crave-worthy flavor by purchasing a Specialty Dining Package for less ahead of your cruise. Add a Specialty Beverage Package which includes unlimited alcoholic beverages, soda, and more and your experience is as close to all-inclusive as it gets. And with so many complimentary shows and attractions onboard, you can easily fill every sea day without spending a single dollar extra.
Royal Caribbean also offers deals based on departure ports and destinations, so if youre a flexible traveler looking for great savings, you can plan your next vacation around which itineraries are on sale. Just check your email or visit RoyalCaribbean.com/cruise-deals to stay up to date on promotions, sales and special offers. You can even browse sailings and deals by homeport, destination and season, so you can rest assured youre getting the best possible deal no matter when or where in the world you choose to set sai.
Great Value Tailor Made Experience
With many cruise packages, all your meals and entertainment are included in the price! There are hundreds of options available to you – whether you love fine dining, you want options for all the family, you like a little luxury, or you’re a solo traveller, our experienced and extensively travelled staff can offer personal advice and recommendations on the right cruise for you!
What Are Tips To Find Cruise Deals To The Caribbean
Here are our best tips for finding a cheap cruise or cruise deal to the Caribbean. If you book a guaranteed cabin , a cabin on a lower deck or sail on an older ship from a brand you like, then you can get the best price for a specific cruise to the Caribbean. Last minute cruises deals to the Caribbean appear as you get closer to the sail date, usually 1-2 weeks in advance. Taking a cruise to the Caribbean in the shoulder season can also be a great way to find a cruise deal.
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Which Cruise Lines Offer The Best Caribbean Summer Vacation Deals
One important tip for saving money via deals is to understand that there are quite a number of cruise lines. These cruise lines target different market segments. There are at least five cruise line levels. At the base of the pyramid are contemporary cruise lines like Carnival Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International, Norwegian Cruise Lines, and MSC cruise lines. At the other end of the spectrum are Luxury, Ultra-luxury, and Specialty cruise lines. Of course, for budget travelers who are looking out for the best money-saving packages, the focus would be on contemporary cruise lines. And when we look at the price packages, Carnival Cruise Line, in our view, offers the best Caribbean summer vacation dealson the dollar. At Carnival Cruise Line, a ticket can go for as low as $100. And honestly, that sounds like a fine deal. Carnival Cruise Line even has a four-day deal at only $171.
Logistics Can Get Complicated
If you have pets, figuring out who can watch them while youre away on short notice is not always easy. If you have kids, it can be difficult to take them out of school at the last minute when homework, tests, and activities are happening throughout the week.
Planning a last-minute cruise can be more complicated for some passengers than others, so its important to consider logistics before booking.
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Cheap Cruise Fare Versus Cheap Cruising
An important distinction to make is are you looking for the lowest price overall, or do you want a cheap per-night cruise sailing?
When it comes to getting the lowest price on the final bill, short cruises will be where you want look. These sailings typically sail to Mexico or The Bahamas, and they almost always depart from a port in Florida.
Royal Caribbean offers three and four night sailings every week, and if you can manage to book one during the school year and/or during hurricane season, you can really find some super low prices.
On the other hand, if you want to get the lowest price per-night of the cruise, look towards longer sailings, such as repositioning cruises.
A transatlantic crossing or a ship moving to a new home port can be among the cheapest per-night sailings you can find. These cruises tend to be longer voyages and Royal Caribbean will heavily discount these sailings in order to fill rooms.
Book A Guarantee Room
One way to save more money on any sailing is to book a guarantee stateroom.
Guarantee staterooms offer a lower price, in exchange for allowing Royal Caribbean to pick the exact location. You will receive a room of at least that category , but it may be days or weeks before you learn of the room assignment.
These rooms help shave hundreds of dollars off the cost of your cruise, and may allow you to move up to a higher room category without paying more.
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When Is A Good Time To Cruise To The Caribbean
Winter and spring are great seasons to travel to the Caribbean due to a slight reduction in crowds and moderate temperatures, though the warm weather holds year-round here.
Atlantic hurricane season, from June through October, means a higher chance of rain and possible storms, though summer is still one of the most popular times to visit the Caribbean. If you book a summer sailing in a Caribbean region within the hurricane zone, there’s a chance nothing will happen — but buying insurance and keeping a flexible schedule helps manage expectations.
What Are Popular Activities In The Caribbean
The Caribbean offers as much — or as little as you want to do during your time ashore, making it an ideal cruise vacation for families or for couples.
Water sports are abundant in the Caribbean and anyone who likes spending time in the sea will enjoy snorkeling, diving, paddleboarding and swimming through clear, turquoise waters like the remote beaches of Bonaire. Or fly high through the sky on a number of active zipline courses, including the steepest zipline in the world in St. Maarten. Lazily lounging on the beach is almost always a fantastic option. Pair a beach day with a hike on a day trip from St. Thomas to Virgin Island National Park in St. John.
If you need a break from the sun, air-conditioned island tours, duty-free shopping trips and even scenic rail trips — such as the one around St. Kitts — provide wonderful ways to spend a day off the ship.
All-inclusive lovers will be able to pamper themselves with excursions to resorts, while those looking for a more local flavor will be able to learn from chefs, artisans and other experts for an authentic taste of each island’s culture
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Caribbean Cruise To Mexico
During your cruise to Caribbean, Cozumel in Mexico is a must-see paradise with its ivory beaches, swaying palms and coral reefs. For something a little different, and as a break from all that relaxation, take an educational trip to the incredible Tulum temples and discover the lost civilisation of the Maya, or go exploring on a thrilling All Terrain Vehicle, cooling off afterwards by the pool with a refreshing cocktail in hand!
Go Beyond The Ordinary
Let the world come to you with Royal Caribbean Cruises. While you relax in luxury, these stunning ships will take you to unforgettable destinations. Royal Caribbean sails to over 260 extraordinary places across the globe.
Book your Royal Caribbean cruise holidays with Cassidy Travel
Try a cruise holiday with that extra wow. Famed for onboard innovations like robotic waiters, sky diving at sea, world class dining and West End style shows not forgetting astonishingly spacious accommodation Royal Caribbean cruise holidays are something apart. So, whether youre a lounge lizard or an adrenalin junkie, Cassidy Travels Royal Caribbean cruise deals offer you holidays that can cater to everyones idea of extraordinary.
The world is your oyster with Royal Caribbean
Whether you’re looking for a couple, family or a last minute Royal Caribbean cruise deal, we have it! From the sunny Mediterranean all the way to majestic Alaska, theres a holiday to suit your taste.
Wake up to a new horizon every day, filled with the promise of adventure. No unpacking or case-lugging required. Plus, when youre all explored out, you can always take the adventure back to the ship. Whether you want to rest or play, our decks are packed with activities, just waiting to be discovered.
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Cancellation Policy For Last
Because last-minute cruises are booked so close to departure, there is not as much cancellation flexibility compared to booking a cruise months or years in advance. Depending on when you book a last-minute cruise, you may have to pay a cancellation charge if you decide to cancel the sailing.
Ranging from 25% to 100% of the total cost of your cruise, cancellation fees can easily reach thousands of dollars. Therefore, its important to be 100% certain you plan to cruise before you book a last-minute sailing.
Royal Caribbean has the following cancellation policy, with cruise cancellation charges varying depending on how far in advance you cancel a cruise:
Cancellation charges on 1-4 night cruises
- 75+ days prior to departure: no charge
- 74 to 61 days: 50% of total price
- 60 to 31 days: 75% of total price
- 30 days or less: 100% of total price
Cancellation charges on 5+ night sailings
- 90+ days prior to departure: no charge
- 89 to 75 days: 25% off total price
- 74 to 61 days: 50% off total price
- 60 to 31 days: 75% off total price
- 30 days or less: 100% of total price
Where Do Caribbean Cruises Depart From
Caribbean cruises depart from ports around the U.S., including San Juan, Puerto Rico. Many of the top Caribbean cruise departure ports are located in Florida: Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa and Orlando.
Elsewhere on the East Coast and Gulf Coast, Caribbean sailings depart from Baltimore, Manhattan, Galveston, New Orleans, Mobile and more. Caribbean islands and itinerary lengths will vary, depending on where you sail from and where you’re sailing to.
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Airfare And Hotel Prices
Booking a last-minute cruise may mean spending more on transportation to and from the cruise departure port. Airfare, rental cars, train tickets, and hotels tend to only increase in price over time.
Youll also have less choice when it comes to booking a flight schedule and hotel, which can lead to less than ideal scenarios.
Contact A Travel Agent
Travel agents can be a fantastic resource when trying to book a last-minute cruise.
Royal Caribbean regularly sends information to travel agents about deals on upcoming cruises. Therefore, travel agents may have a better understanding of what ships and sailings are offering last-minute deals.
Plus, if a travel agent knows you are looking for a last-minute cruise, theyll be able to contact you whenever a deal appears to see if you would like to book the cruise.
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Why Cruise To The Caribbean
Thousands of islands make up the Caribbean, a tropical region stretching across the Atlantic Ocean. Home to some of the most popular cruise ports in the world, the Caribbean offers variations on a theme: sun, white-sand beaches and fun with a local twist, depending on the port. From Dutch and French isles to U.S. territories, the destinations of the Caribbean have cultural experiences to spare that extend well beyond the tip of the umbrella in your fruity cocktail.
A cruise offers the chance to visit multiple islands within the span of a few days, providing visitors with a sampler of new places plus balmy sea breezes along the way. Caribbean cruises offer endless variety giving vacationers the chance to get away for a long weekend or two weeks. With so many departure ports, your ship to the Caribbean might be a short flight or even a drive away.
Three Things To Remember When Booking A Cheap Cruise
1. Smaller is cheaper Smaller boats tend to be less expensive since they offer fewer amenities and attractions.
2. Cruise in the off season Traveling off season will get you markedly cheaper fares.
3. Take a repositioning cruise Repositioning cruises are when cruise lines move ships from one part of the world to the next in anticipation of the upcoming season. These cruises are a great way to cross an ocean or sail down a continents coast on the cheap and can be found on any cruise booking website.
What about your flight? Dont book your flight with the cruise book it separately. Check out this guide to finding a cheap flight to lower that cost.
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Tips To Helps Enjoy A Cheap Cruise
Tip 1: Cruises are not often all-inclusive and become increasingly less so each year. Chris states, the gravy is what people spend on board. Cruise ships want you spending, since thats where they have the best margins. However, if you are smart and disciplined, cruises dont have to cost much more than the price of the cabin itself. Heres how to save money while on board:
Tip 2: Skip the soda A long time ago, soda was free. Now, you have to pay around $3 USD for a tiny glass, or you can pay $45-60 USD for a soda card that gives you unlimited soda for the duration of the cruise. Youd have to drink a lot of soda to make that worth it. Instead, stick to the free water, iced teas, and juices on the ship. Your wallet and insulin levels will thank you.
Tip 3: Say no to photos Do you really need some cheesy professional photos of your family? I didnt think so. Get them done back home for less or take a digital camera and have someone take them for you on the ship.
Tip 4: Avoid the restaurants On most cruise ships these days, there are specialty restaurants that you can book for an added cost. Some are à la carte, some charge a set fee. Avoid these specialty restaurants. The food in the dining areas, the buffets, and the other shops is just as good and less costly.
Tip 6: Bring your own supplies Cruise companies will let you bring one case of your own water, soda, and beer, as well as a bottle of wine onto the ship.
Tip 8: Avoid the casino This goes without saying.
What Is A Last
A last-minute cruise is considered any cruise you book past the final payment date for that sailing. Royal Caribbean requires final payment to be made for a cruise at least 75 prior to departure for 1-4 night sailings and 90 days prior to departure for sailings 5 nights or longer.
Royal Caribbean monitors the demand for a particular sailing date and may lower the cruise fare as the sailing date approaches. While last-minute deals do not happen on every cruise itinerary, they can make for some amazing savings on a cruise vacation.
If you’re wondering how to get a last minute cruise deal, there’s a few good considerations.
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Things To Do In The Caribbean
– Dunns River Falls in Jamaica – Hike the Waitukubuli National Trail in Dominica- Swim with pigs in the Bahamas- Swim with stingrays in the Cayman islands- Hike Gros Piton, St. Lucia- Go whale watching on the Samaná Peninsula- Land in St Barts- Drink coffee in the Blue Mountains- Visit The Baths in Virgin Gorda- Drink a Painkiller cocktail at the Soggy Dollar Bar
What Are Popular Regions Of The Caribbean
Choose from Eastern, Western or Southern Caribbean itineraries. Youll primarily find the U.S. Virgin Islands — St. Thomas, St. Croix and St. John — on Eastern Caribbean sailings, as well as St. Maarten/Martin and the Dominican Republic. The ABC Islands are featured on Southern Caribbean cruises. Western Caribbean cruises often include ports in Mexico and Jamaica, along with Belize and Grand Turk.
Lengths also vary — Western Caribbean itineraries can be limited to just a few days for those who want a quick getaway or don’t have time for longer sailings. Southern Caribbean sailings tend to last at least 10 nights, and these often depart from San Juan. Eastern Caribbean sailings are typically a week long.
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How To Get Last Minute Cheap Cruise Deals
Doug advises that you start with a travel agent, as they have relationships with the cruise companies and can often get better rates and last-minute deals. And my experience has me agreeing. While there are many do it yourself options, travel agents often can find much lower prices and can act as liaison to cruise companies when something goes wrong.
If you want to go with the do it yourself angle, you only need to go to these three best websites for finding a cheap cruise:
These websites do a detailed job of scouring the web for cheap cruise deals. Vacations to Go is more of a travel agent/operator and thus often has better deals since they can negotiate with the cruise lines directly, but keep in mind that they add a lot of fees. Cruise Sheet is simply a website aggregator that crawls the web and then displays cheap last-minute fares. This is my favorite cruise site, as it seems to find all the deals and makes finding a cheap cruise easy.
In terms of timing, dont book early. As Doug states, the only benefit to booking early is to secure the room you want. If you want a specific cabin, book early. Otherwise, wait until the last minute. As I said in the beginning, cruise companies dont want to sail empty ships and so do heavy last-minute discounting be sure to sign up for cruise company newsletters to stay informed!