Cruise Refunds And Cancellations
Any cruise lasting more than 24 hours is automatically considered a package holiday, regardless of whether or not your booking included a flight.
Package holidays are covered by the Package Travel Regulations, entitling you to a full cash refund within 14 days if your booking is cancelled by the cruise operator. If you booked your cruise through a travel agent, they will return your money once they’ve received it from the cruise line.
During the coronavirus pandemic, however, many cruise lines have been illegally ignoring the Package Travel Regulations, with some taking more than a month to issue refunds and others refusing refunds altogether and issuing vouchers, instead.
If you’re considering booking a cruise for later in 2021 or beyond, only do so with a cruise company that’s quickly and consistently refunding customers for cancelled bookings. All our WRP cruise lines can be trusted to do this and they also all organise excellent cruises.
What Is The Best Cruise Line For Your Money
Ocean cruises are one of the best ways to explore multiple Caribbean islands or the Pacific Northwest without the hassles of booking numerous flights, hotel rooms and rental cars. With so many cruise lines to choose from, finding the best cruise for your money can be challenging.
People stand in line as they prepare to board the Celebrity Edge cruise ship in Fort Lauderdale, … Florida, on June 26, 2021. – Celebrity Edge is the first major cruise ship to restart operations from a US port since the Covid-19 pandemic shutdown cruise travel.
Royal Caribbean is the best overall value for many itineraries. Their fares are competitively priced and are some of the cheapest fares starting as low as $225 per night.
Booking a cheap cruise doesnt mean youre automatically going to have a no-frills voyage or be on a party boat where the celebration never ends, even when youre trying to rest. This cruise line has a reputation for having a good mixture of solo travelers, families and retirees. There are also many on-ship amenities for entertainment, relaxation and dining.
Families are more likely to find childrens programs without the steep cost of a Disney cruise. While the experience isnt the same, children and parents will likely still have a great time. Booking a suite can also be a good option if you have a bigger travel budget but dont want to splurge for a luxury liner.
Norwegian Cruise Line
Do Your Own Laundry On A Cruise
Using the cruise ship laundry services can be quite pricey. Having a cabin that comes with some free laundry perks is amazing.
However, otherwise, youll probably want to avoid sending clothing to the laundry service. You can save some money, while still having your clothes stay wrinkle free, with these cruise tips.
Use the cruise ships self-serve launderettes if they have them . This is about the only place you might find an iron on a cruise ship.
Alternatively, bring some a small DIY laundry kit from home and wash a couple of items as need be in your cabin.
There are 3 products I like and recommend.
1. Travel size laundry soap packages. These are great for pre and post cruise stays in pre and post cruise destinations.
2. Tide-to-Go travel size stain remover sticks. I love these so much and almost always have one in my handbag.
3. Downy Wrinkle Release is amazing. You can bring along a small travel size bottle and it will really get the wrinkles out of your clothes on a cruise. Although it doesnt get the items crisp like with an iron, it still does a pretty good job, and were all in the same boat cruise pun intended
Finally, you can also wait for laundry bag specials that the cruise ship might have a few days into your cruise. As an example, it may be $25 for a bag of clothing, and this may be worth it for you.
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Mega Ship Line #: Royal Caribbean International
If you truly want to feel like youre living in a floating city, Royal Caribbean is the cruise line for you, given that it has the four largest cruise ships in the world. Symphony of the Seas, Harmony of the Seas, Allure of the Seas, and Oasis of the Seas top the lists in terms of passenger count , length , and gross tonnage . Given their size, these ships provide every amenity you can think ofand plenty you cant even imaginefrom waterparks to world-class musical productions to autonomous bars staffed by robots to double-decker suites with slides for the kids. Youll find these behemoths sailing the Caribbean and Mediterranean throughout the year, but with so many activities on board, you might not even want to leave the ship.
Best Budget: Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line
Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line
- Sails from: Port of Palm Beach
- Duration: 2 nights
- Ship Name: Grand Celebration
- Itinerary: Grand Bahama Island, Port of Palm Beach
If youre looking for a short getaway to blow off steam and let your hair down, then Grand Celebration might be for you. The cruise line operates a regular schedule of short overnight cruises to Grand Bahama Island , but with many attractions found on a cruise ship, including live nightly entertainment in the theater, sail away shows and parties, a steel-drum band, spa, and casino. Most cabins are standard interior or oceanview categories with a handful of suites, and pricing is very budget-minded. While these ships lack the bells and whistles of some of the other cruise ships, theres fun to be had onboard during quick getaways from the Port of Palm Beach.
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Shop Onboard And Wait For The Last Day Sales
If youre planning to bring souvenirs home, such as cruise line t-shirts, youll find a big huge sale on the last day of the cruise. One thing to keep in mind, is that most of the time, this isnt the same merchandise youll have see in the cruise ship stores.
However, if you love some of the stuff you find on board, not to worry. There are sales throughout the cruise and you can get some amazing deals. Remember that all jewelry and other high end items are duty free, and in some cases this makes it more affordable than at home.
If youd like to know more, I put together this post, all about: duty free shopping deals on cruises.
Regent Seven Seas Review Which Recommended Provider
For a luxurious, all-inclusive ocean cruising experience, it’s hard to beat Regent Seven Seas. Almost every cabin has a balcony, staff are friendly and helpful, and the port excursions are consistently enjoyably and well-organised. The only real downside is the cost.
, or read our full Regent Seven Seas review for more information.
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Cruise Lines That Offer The Best Value For Money
If you are new to the concept of cruise holidays, it can seem a little daunting, with so many cruise ships and cruise lines that offer cruises to every part of the world. For a newbie, knowing which cruise lines offer the best value can be a challenge, and in order to help you make the right choices, here are some of the better-known cruise lines that offer great value for money.
Best Extended Cruise: Royal Caribbean
Corey Seeman/ Flickr
- Ship Name: Grandeur of the Seas
- Itinerary: Port Canaveral, United States CocoCay, Bahamas Nassau, Bahamas Baltimore, Maryland
Combine the pink-sand beaches of Bermuda with a trip to the Bahamas onboard Royal Caribbeans Grandeur of the Seas for a longer, sun-soaked getaway. The cruise sails from Baltimore and overnights in Port Canaveral, for even more time exploring. Then, it continues to Royal Caribbeans private island in the Bahamas for private cabanas, gigantic water slides, and swim-up bars. Onboard Grandeur, passengers can watch movies under the stars, watch a tango show, take culinary or sushi classes, and even learn some new dance moves. Sample excellent cuisine at one of Royal Caribbeans signature restaurants like Chops Grille steakhouse or Giovannis Table as well as Italian eatery.
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What Makes A Which Recommended Provider Cruise Line
Which? Recommended Providers are the cream of the crop and, as a minimum, we only consider giving the accolade to cruise lines that achieve a customer score of 70% or above.
Thats not all. We know that pricing transparency is important, so we only give the award to the companies that provide clear information about gratuities, excursions and drinks at the booking stage. After all, it’s hard for customers to compare prices if they can’t find these details before parting with their cash. If the companies fall down in more than one area, theyre not eligible to be Which? Recommended Providers, whatever score they receive in the survey.
Similarly, a cruise company can only be a WRP if it is committed to refunding customers promptly for any cancelled cruises. Neither Azamara or Seabourn could make this commitment for bookings cancelled due to COVID-19, so both have had their WRP status removed for 2021.
Which? is independent, you can be sure that our recommendations are influenced only by our survey results. We’re not influenced by third parties and we don’t accept freebies from product manufacturers, retailers. or providers.
Large Ship #: Msc Cruises
Nearly half of MSCs fleetnamely those ships in the Musica and Fantasia classesfalls into the large cruise category, with its newer builds firmly taking a bigger is better stance. The eight large vessels primarily sail in the Mediterranean and the Caribbean, though they do offer itineraries in North and South America, Asia, and Northern Europe, too. The family-friendly ships skew on the upscale side, and theyre known for their incredibly international crowds.
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Best Modern Cruise: Celebrity
- Ship Name: Celebrity Solstice
- Itinerary: Seattle, Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Alaska Inside Passage, Victoria
For an upscale Alaska cruise without the luxury price tag, Celebrity is a fantastic option. The award-winning, Celebrity Solstice is a dignified ship that focuses on modern well-being. Activities include culinary classes, silent discos, and educational lectures. Theres also a half-acre of fresh grass with hot glass demonstrations, private cabanas, and outdoor movies. The ship also has a fabulous fitness center and programs, and the Canyon Ranch Spa situated right next to the Aqua Class cabins. These cabins include access to a health-conscious restaurant as well as the relaxation room and other spa perks. This voyage includes a full day cruising Endicott Arm for fabulous views before concluding in Victoria.
Ocean Cruise Lines Rated
In the table below, we show the latest results from our annual survey of Which? members. Viking takes the crown, with Hurtigruten, Noble Caledonia, Regent Seven Seas and Saga, also all receiving a Which? Recommended Provider rating.
|Using the table: *WRP stands for Which? Recommended Provider. Results based on a September 2019 survey of 2,254 Which? members and members of the public. The more stars the better. Passenger to space ratio Number of people on ship compared to its size. On-board facilities Quality of communal facilities, e.g. swimming pool, shops, cinema, gym, etc. Cabins Cleanliness, condition of furniture, comfort. Port excursions Quality of excursions, e.g. organisation, availability and price. Overall value for money Price in relation to experience. Customer score Combination of overall satisfaction and likelihood of recommending, if asked.|
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Princess Cruises Best Affordable Adult
Carnival is the parent company of Princess Cruises, so you can expect the same range of affordable prices here. Although the rates are similar, there is a significant difference between these two cruise lines, though.
While Carnival is a superb cruise line for families with kids, Princess focuses more on adult cruisers. Particularly on the longer voyages, youll find adult-focused dining options and activities such as history lectures and cooking classes. There are also fantastic spa treatments and romantic experiences to share with your loved one.
Here Is How To Get The Best Deal On A Cruise
You do not have to have a huge wallet to go on a cruise. Here are tips that can teach you how to get the best deal on a cruise vacation.
With gourmet restaurants, relaxing spas, stunning entertainment, glitzy décor, and exotic destinations, cruises can be the ultimate luxury vacations. You dont need a luxury budget to enjoy an amazing cruise, however. These easy tips can help you get the best deal on a cruise no matter what your vacation budget may be.
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How To Cruise For Less
If youve gone through all these tips, but still would like to know more about booking your cruise and cruising for less, I highly recommended checking out this course How to Cruise for Less
It is full of information that most people would actually have to take a travel agent course to know, and then some. Its by one of my friends and cruise bloggers, Emma from Emma Cruises, so you know its good!
Most importantly, youll make back the price of your course on the savings you get and the things you learn.
For more info on whats inside the course, click here.
Medium Ship Line #: Viking Ocean Cruises
Originally a river cruise line, Viking has launched six ocean-going vessels since 2015, the most recent being the brand-new Viking Jupiter, whose maiden voyage took place in February 2019. The ships are nearly identical, carrying 930 passengers each, housed in balcony staterooms. Though not all-inclusive, Viking Ocean guests do receive one free excursion in each port , beer and wine with lunch and dinner, and an unlimited Wi-Fi connection.
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Small Ship Line #: Australis
Some of the most dramatic landscapes in the world can be found in Patagonias Tierra del Fuego, and Australis takes its passengers right into the heart of them aboard the all-inclusive Ventus Australis or the Stella Australis. Each day, passengers disembark their ship and navigate the icy waters in zodiacs, getting up close and personal with glaciers and penguins along the way. It doesnt get more off-the-beaten-path than this.
Small Ship Line #: Paul Gauguin Cruises
The single ship Paul Gauguin focuses solely on the Pacific, treating its 332 guests to picture-perfect beaches and dramatic scenery in Tahiti, Bora Bora, and Fiji year-round. On Mota Mahana, the lines private island in French Polynesia, passengers sip cocktails from the floating bar, or paddle out over coral reefs on kayaks and paddleboardsstraight from the ships water sports marina. For those wanting to get under the waves, an onboard PADI scuba program certifies divers in some of the clearest waters on the planet. Best of all? The ships rates are all-inclusive. In 2019, Ponant acquired the cruise line.
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Best Overall: P& o Cruise
Courtesy of P& O Cruise
- Ship Name: Aurora
- Itinerary: Andalsnes, Norway Romsdalsfjord, Norway Tromso, Norway Alta, Norway Stavanger, Norway Southampton, UK
After undergoing a refurbishment in early 2019, the 1,874-passenger Aurora is now one of three adults-only vessels that sail under P& O cruises . Aurora is ideal for cruisers who enjoy ocean cruising on a mid-sized ship, with an array of dining options and several cabin choices ranging from interior to spacious suites. Dance classes, a full-service spa, a theater, movie cinema, casino, and a number of bars and lounges including the bustling, four-story central atrium are all available onboard the vessel. For a chance to see the northern lights, Aurora sails round-trip on a breathtaking voyage through Norwegian fjords and dramatic scenery.
River Ship Line #: Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours
Scenics 15 luxurious river ships sail waters across Europe and Asia, from the Danube in Germany to the Irrawaddy in Myanmar to the Volga in Russia. Each voyage is completely all-inclusivetransfers, excursions, all food and beverage , and gratuities are covered in the ratemaking for a truly relaxing and stress-free experience. And did we mention theres butler service for every cabin?
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Large Ship Line #: Princess Cruises
Part of the Carnival family, Princess Cruises has a fun claim to famethe TV show The Love Boat was set on its Pacific Princess ship. If youve never seen an episode, youre in luck, as one of the onboard TV channels airs reruns around the clock. But you wont want to stay cooped up in your stateroom when you discover all the activities on board its 17 ships, from its special Seawitch craft beer program that sees the cruise line partner with breweries around the world to Discovery at SEA, a series of programs based on TV shows from the Discovery, Inc. family of networks, including Animal Planet, the Discovery Channel, and the Science Channel. In October 2019, Princess Cruises newest ship, the Sky Princess, set sail, debuting a new class of stateroom called Sky Suites, which is the lines most luxurious offering. Its next two ships, Enchanted Princess and Discovery Princess, are scheduled to launch by the end of 2021.