Money Hacks That Will Save You Tons On Your Next Winter Cruise

In this Monday, May 3, 2010 photo, Cruise Liner Majesty of the Seas heads out to sea in Miami Beach, Fla. Saving money on a cruise vacation requires timing and knowledge. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)

The time has come to migrate for the winter. Because the winter is fast approaching and it is bringing the cold with it, there is not a better time to chase the sun. Before you know it, your home will feel like an igloo and your fingers will start to drop off. No one wants to experience that every time November rolls around, so they dream of setting sail on the high seas.

 

The problem most people have is money. They cannot afford a winter cruise because money is tight. After all, Christmas is on the way, and December to January is the most expensive time of the year. However, there are a couple of money hacks that can dramatically cut the cost of a winter cruise and make it much more affordable. Here are a few money saving tips that could make your winter dream a reality.

 

Haggle

 

The first trick is never to pay the retail price for a cruise. Cruise liners are massive, and filling one takes a lot of effort. Yes, the demand might be high, but the operators won’t be willing to take that chance. When they see an opportunity, they tend to grab it with both hands. At first, they will play the waiting game because they want you to pay as much as possible. But, in the end, they will start to buckle and enter into negotiations. When that happens, haggle for your life! The better you are at haggling, the less you have to pay.

 

Book Early

 

Cruises are like any form of holiday or transport – when you book them early, you get a discount. Demand for cruises tends to rise the closer it gets to departure time, so you want to book a couple of months beforehand. Booking this early may seem like you are too organized, but the reality is that you are only a few days away from paying an extortionate fee.

 

And Look For The Sales

 

Cruise operators are always offering a discount on their services because they don’t want any empty spaces on board the ship. When there are empty spaces, they are losing a lot of money. Make sure you look around for a better price before you book. It may be that you are only a couple of clicks away from finding a great sale that could knock-off half of the price. You never know what you will find when you search for bargains in the sales.

 

Use The Internet

 

In the past, most cruise goers would head down to their local holiday store or to the tour operator to book a deal. Nowadays, those methods are on the decline thanks to the Internet. Booking directly with the store is the most expensive method because there is a lack of competition. On the Internet, however, there is competition everywhere you look. That is what makes the web the best place to find a bargain because there is a host of operators competing for your custom. They will have great deals that you can exploit as they need to beat the competition’s’ price to make a sale. All it takes is a quick Google search, and you will have a ton of results at your fingertips. And, most of them will be dirt cheap!

 

Be Flexible

 

The time and the date that you book will make a difference to the price. Just like when you book a train or flight, there are peak times and off-peak times. When you book the peak times, the price is higher because the demand is higher. So, the off-peak times are the best option. The good news is that a winter cruise this close to Christmas is not as popular as one in the middle of summer, so the price will be lower. Check the dates and see which ones are the least expensive and make a concerted effort to go on those times and dates.

 

Book A Used Boat

 

Used cruisers are not bad. In fact, they are perfectly fine, but they are just not as shiny as newer cruise liners. Once you realize that fact, you can start to take advantage. Take a river cruise as an example. If you book used river cruise vessels over new cruise vessels, the price is considerably lower. In fact, the same goes for any cruise because the majority of people want to spend their time on a fancy new boat. Well, the fancy new boats are not much different to the old ones except, of course, for the price.

 

Travel Close To Home

 

Don’t jet off to luxurious destinations to sail from their ports because it will only add to your travel expenses. The port may be hundreds of miles away and you will need to fly, and flights don’t come cheap. Most cruise liners will sale from all around the country, so pick the one that is closest to your home. That way, you can take the train or drive and save a fortune in the process.

 

 

Travel Heavy

 

The more people you take, the better. A lot of operators offer a discount for groups of 16 or more, and some even give you a free cabin. It makes a lot of sense for both parties if you think about it logically. You get a reward for the size of your group, and they still make a lot of money without charging for the cabins. After all, most sailors spend the majority of their budget onboard the ship.

 

Buy Insurance

 

On the face of it, purchasing insurance seems like an extra expenditure. But, when the worst happens, it can save you a lot of money. Cruise liners have been known to cancel the trip before they set sail. You would think that they would have to pay you back, but they don’t if it is down to ‘an act of God’. If you don’t have insurance, they don’t have to pay you a penny. Insurance is a great backup in case anything goes wrong before, during or after the trip.

 

Now you can enjoy a winter in the sun instead of freezing to death at home!

 

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