Cruising can be an expensive business, but there are ways of getting around the expense to make your cruise a lot more wallet friendly. Here are a few ways you can cut the costs.
Compare Pricing & Book Early
Shop around for the best cruise deals by identifying what you’ll get for your money. Identify your priorities for what you want on board. For example, do you need a crèche or a kids’ club, fancy a top notch spa or gourmet dining?
Booking early, more often than not, will get you better deals. If you’re a regular cruiser, booking your next cruise on board will save you a great deal on your next trip as fewer fees will apply.
Go On Your Own Onshore Adventures
It can be tempting to book on to shore excursions run by the cruise operator, especially if you’re not familiar with the port or the language. You do have the option to go on your own tours of the onshore areas though.
Before you go, do a little research about what awaits you in the port towns you’re due to visit on your trip. Read up about the best things to do and see while you’re there. Check out reviews online – especially within the cruising community. Forums are a good place to start for honest recommendations from other travellers.
Cut Your On-Board Spending
Follow these savvy on-board tips to save even more:
Pack enough clothes to save on laundry expenses
Book spa treatments on port or embarkation days
Choose fee-free activities on board
Find WIFI hotspots on port days
Try not to use roaming data on phones and tablets
Avoid the cruise ship photographers and take your own camera
Take extra tech supplies like batteries, camera memory cards etc.
Buy souvenirs in port rather than in on-board boutiques
Book Packages or Bring Your Own
Weigh up your options for food and drink costs; ask yourself if it would it be cheaper to go for a restaurant package, or bring your own food to tide you over in the days.
You will find that most cruise ships offer free dining on board, so if you can resist the gourmet and luxury dining options – often at around 100 USD per person for the height of luxury – you’ll save yourself a great deal of cash on board.
As you’ve read, it’s by no means beyond the realms of possibility to cruise on a budget if you’re smart in the planning stages and savvy with what you spend on-board