Cruise holidays are great value for money, with all your transportation, accommodation, meals, and activities rolled into one price, but everyone is looking to reduce their costs these days, so how can you save money when choosing? One thing you can do is book early; cruise lines usually offer early bird rates when you book in advance, guaranteeing you’ll get yourself a bargain. Not only will you able to secure an amazing cruise fare, but you will also have the flexibility to choose your favourite stateroom. And there’s another bonus; you’ll have plenty of time to pay off the balance, which means you can put money aside each month, and avoid the stress of owing a large sum of money at short notice. Conversely, if you can be flexible, booking a cruise last minute can also work in your favour – but only if a ship isn’t full. Great deals can be yours if you’re not fussy about your stateroom type, and when you cruise. If you go on a cruise booking your next cruise while you’re already on the high seas can work in your favour. Talk to the ship’s Cruise Consultant, as they will be able to tell you about any current special offers available, and take your booking for your next cruise adventure. And depending on the operator, you may even get an additional on-the-spot discount, or an upgrade.
If you can cruise early or late in a particular season, or if you’re happy to take a cabin on a lower deck and forgo a balcony, being flexible will can also result in bagging a bargain. Other tips for being flexible with your booking include cruising during the shoulder season on a high seas cruise, and off-season on a river cruise, with the bonus of incentives which may be on offer such as onboard spending money. Also consider taking a one-way or repositioning cruise, as they are often less expensive than roundtrip voyages. If you have cash on hand, you may also be eligible for an early payment discount if you can pay for your cruise in full ten months or more before departure. If you’re thinking of booking, ask about these additional savings. And finally, solo cruisers can pay a supplement of 25 to 100 per cent on top of the fare to occupy a stateroom by themselves, but some operators charge less than others, and occasionally these supplementary charges are reduced, or even waived. All operators have solo offers from time to time, and deals for early bookings, and if you’re flexible with your travel dates you’ll have the pick of the best offers.