Cruising through Hawaii’s islands was the best vacation experience we ever had! Hawaii seems to have everything! Mountains, Volcanoes, heavenly beaches, rainforests, amazing marine life and people who as lovely as the land they live in.
Just as airlines sell bulk air tickets to consolidators, there are several companies that earn commission from cruise lines by selling cruise tickets, insurance and shore excursions in bulk to individual customers.
When we think of cruises, the first site to surf around offer about 75% off the cruises and prices change daily, so it’s best to check their site often. As the cruise nears its date, the discounts get better and better. Anyone interested in cruises should go to their site and register for their Cruise newsletter.
This site has thought about it all! They have options for senior citizens (age 55 and over), military, past-guests, singles, police, special needs, teachers, and theme cruises. Search options on the site that allow us to specify any region or part of the world, any month, any cruise line (Norwegian, Princess, Carnival, etc) any Ship, any length of the cruise and from any port or destination.
There are tips for first-time cruisers, family cruises, honeymoon cruises, wedding cruises as well as suggestions on what to pack, dining plans, deck plans, dress codes, passport requirements, weather etc.
Click on the orange button marked “Find your bargain” and you will be ready to set sail on your heavenly cruise in a matter of minutes!
Bring it down
The deals on this site can be made even sweeter by using credit cards that offer frequent flyer miles, using AARP of AAA discounts to get further reduction in prices and also use group discounts to get even more amazing bargains!
Potential travelers can search for bargains using their automated search engine and get their cruises as perfect as they wish.
Another way to reduce the prices is to book through a travel agent. These agents do take a commission on the cruise prices as well as the airfare to get to the ports, but their skill and experience my help us first time cruisers to understand more about cruises in general. We may not know the difference between a stateroom with an ocean view and a stateroom with an obstructed ocean view. Or we may have some special requirements that we need to clarify before booking the cruise. If we run into problems in the airports or get delayed by a missed flight, we can call the travel agency to help us sort it out and continue on our way. Travel agents save us lots of money and headaches in the long run!
As a knowledgeable consumer, it is our responsibility to check out the individual cruise line prices as well as the prices offered at these consolidator sites. Also check out the discounts offered for senior citizens, member of the military of the police force, special occasion cruises, etc. A lot of money can be saved by checking out the reviews for each ship or cruise destination. If the food available is not of very good quality or taste, we will end up eating in specialty restaurants every day and spending a lot of money. So it’s worth asking people who have been on cruises about their experiences.
So how did it go?
Even if you book the cruise at a discount, once you embark you will find a lot of opportunity to spend money. The shore excursions are a big rip-off if you buy them from the ship. There are many sites where you can book these same excursions offered on the ship ahead of time to save dollars.
Consider Shore Trips where you can reserve excursions and shows such as luaus, bike trips, hummer tours, helicopter tours, lava hikes, learn to snorkel, swim and scuba dive with the dolphins etc.
Sometimes Cruise lines have to move the ships from one continent to another. Moving an empty ship is not a lucrative proposition and this type of “repo” cruises are now big bargains for those who would like to cruise almost free. Most of the passengers have standing reservations every season. So it’s not easy to get into this amazing opportunity.
These trips are not short, but usually last two to three weeks. You will be on sea longer and will be able to enjoy newer ports that are not traditionally visited by commercial cruise Lines.
The deal to beat them all
You can also book a trip on a Freighter! You may have to forego the entertainment and 24 hour cafeteria, but if you enjoy the sea and would love to visit some exotic cities, then traveling on freighters carrying cargo may be just the twist you need. The trips are longer than the usual cruises, the culinary offers may not be close to the ice sculptures or the mountains of grilled shrimp that you see on regular cruise ships, but the per-day costs will blow your mind!
As we can see, there are several ways to get on a mammoth ship that sets sail from exotic ports around the world. As our gigantic ship “The Pride of America” glided along on the Pacific Ocean in the darkness of the night, the best show on earth was provided by the 300,000 year old active Kilauea Volcano in Hawaii as it erupted at a distance in a shower of fireworks and lava.