Whether you’re a cruising veteran or a newbie without sea legs, you want to get the biggest bang for your cruising buck. The best tip is to be aware of all the extras charged to your room and don’t go over budget. Many people do not realize that all-inclusive does not usually include alcoholic beverages, which can be pricey. Many internet forums discuss ways to smuggle a bottle of their favorite in their luggage but there are much easier ways to stretch a dollar.
Here are some tips on how to save money while on a cruise.
1. Book Your Cruise for the Off-Season – You can’t really write about saving money without mentioning that booking during the off-season or shoulder period can save you and your family a bundle. Do your research and choose your dates wisely.
2. Avoid Using Your Cell Phone Internationally – Bring your cell phone; you may need it at the airport, but don’t use it on the ship. International rates for calls, texting and data usage can be ridiculously expensive. Call your provider for details before you leave dry land.
3. Do Your Own Laundry – Generally, your ship has a full-service laundry and dry cleaning service to take care of all their passengers’ needs. Convenient, but with a price tag attached. You can avoid this expense buy bringing your favorite detergent, encased in a ziplock bag, as well as a dryer sheet or two. Find the coin laundry on board and get out of the sun for an hour or two.
4. Book Your Excursions Directly – Do your research. You can save a ton of money on many cruise-sponsored shore excursions by booking them yourself. If you’re booking your cruise through eGO Vacations, we can suggest things to do at each of your ports of call.
5. Avoid Specialty Coffee – Just like on land, specialty coffee drinks can be an expensive habit. If you still want to treat yourself while on vacation, some cruises offer a “coffee card” for a reduced, set price that can bring the cost of your caffeine fix down considerably. A similar product is also available for soda on many ships.
6. Ask for a Free Upgrade – When you check in and get your room keycard, ask to be upgraded. If there are available rooms (and if you smile nicely), the staff is usually happy to move you to a bigger and better room at no additional charge.
7. Use a Travel Agent – A good travel agent can save you time and money when booking your cruise, help you avoid mistakes that can ruin your vacation and help you resolve any issues that arise before, during or after your cruise.
Remember, every dollar you save on this cruise puts you one dollar closer to the next one.