7 Smart Tips to Follow Before Booking Your Next Cruise

Going on a cruise can be a wonderful experience filled with life-long memories. In order to get the most out of your cruise, here are 6 great tips – these were originally posted on the Vacation Cruises Info website. Plus, we’ve added an extra tip for you.

Let’s start with that extra tip first.

You can get injured or become sick while on a cruise ship

It’s a simple fact and one that we see quite often. People do become sick or do suffer injuries while on a cruise. The reality is that it happens frequently, though serious accidents and death are relatively uncommon. What is more common are accidents including slips, trips, falls and other mishaps caused by the rocking of the boat, unsteady footing, wet flooring and slippery areas. These can lead to wrenched backs, bone breaks, bruising and concussions.

It’s best to take note of potential hazards prior to boarding the cruise ship as well as when you are onboard. Take a quick tour of the boat to identify potential problem areas – open decks, poolside areas and areas around the restaurants. The cruise lines will do their best to keep these areas clean, dry and free of obstacles but it’s a good idea to take caution into your own hands as well. Personal safety starts with you.

A travel agent can be a great ally

Although you can book a cruise direct with any cruise line, travel agents are paid a commission by cruise lines and have access to pretty much all the same deals that you do. In other words, if you have your heart set on a specific ship or itinerary, let a travel agent do the legwork to locate the best price. And when you don’t know the exact cruise you want, a good travel agent will work to match you with the right cruise line and vessel and source the best price. Read the rest of the article here…

Never pay full price and watch for onboard credits

With rare exception, virtually every cabin on every ship sells for less—often considerably less—than the “brochure” rate. The brochure price is the published fare for a cruise, a price that’s usually set more than a year in advance. But as soon as cruise fares are announced, the special offers start to materialize, starting with early booking discounts. Read the rest of the article here…

Know what’s included

This is where things get tricky. While cruises used to be a fairly inclusive product, in recent years cruise lines figured out that one way to increase overall revenue was to lower the upfront price of a cabin, but charge for many of the extras we used to take for granted. When comparing the major cruise lines, the list of inclusions varies. Read the rest of the article here…

Understand the cabin types

There are four basic types of cabins on almost every ship. Cheapest will be the interior or inside cabins—that is, a windowless room with no view. While we haven’t met anyone who actually prefers an interior cabin, the savings can be significant. Often identical in size and features to an interior, ocean view or outside cabins will be found along the exterior of the ship, most frequently on lower decks. The views can vary considerably—from round portholes barely one-foot-wide to floor-to-ceiling windows allowing ample natural light. Note also that ocean views can be obstructed by lifeboats or railings; these should always be identified as such on cruise booking websites. Read the rest of the article here…

Consider a guarantee

During the booking process you will choose your cabin from within the category you have booked. While there are reasons for choosing one room over another, there is often another option to consider, a guarantee—one of our favorite ways to save. In this instance, most commonly availed to those booking in the final months before sailing, by choosing a guarantee cabin, cruisers put the cabin choice in the hands of the cruise line. Read the rest of the article here…

Know Your Dining Options

In addition to table size, there are usually two basic dinner choices that you will be presented during the booking process on most of the mainstream lines. Read the rest of the article here…

Do you have other tips you’d like to share? Add them in the comment section below.

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