Cruise Help!!

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Old 03-02-2013, 08:20 AM
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cruise help!!

Hi all my hubby and I are looking to book our first cruise in Dec any suggestions on how we can save money?
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Old 03-02-2013, 08:43 AM

RE: cruise help!!

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YAY!! I love, love, love cruising, and DH and I are getting ready to book another one soon for late summer!

A couple suggestions....

~ shop around! Do you know what cruise line you want to go with or what ports of call you definitely want to see? Carnival is about the most cost effective line out there. We've cruised on a couple of the others that were more expensive but always return to Carnival. Unless you're looking for a certain experience ~ like Disney, or going somewhere Carnival doesn't go, for me there is no reason to pay more with one of the other lines.

~ do your research when it comes to shore excursions. Know that if you try to do everything you'll just be exhausted! For excursions that are going to be pushing time limits, etc. of when you are in port, book through the cruiseline. They guarantee that if your excursion runs late or there's a problem, the ship will wait for you. For smaller excursions (say 3 hour excursions when you'll be in port 8-10 hours, look outside the cruiseline. They are definitely more cost effective.

~ soda. Do you drink soda? That is one of the beverages that is NOT included in your cruise fare. Some lines have a soda card (Carnival is about $50 for the card) but know that you would have to drink a LOT of soda to make it worth while. Most cruise lines, however, allow you to bring a certain amount of soda on board with you. If you don't mind lugging it with you, this is the best way to go. You can also purchase more soda in ports and bring it back abord with you.

~ Alcohol is probably one of the biggest expenses on board, if you are a drinker. I am a VERY LIGHT social drinker, DH likes his beer but not to excess. Our bar bill for the week on our last cruise was about $185, and neither of us did without. If you are a heavy drinker, some of the Carnival cruises offer a liquor card now, but I think it's about $350+ per person for the week, and ALL adults in the cabin are required to buy one (example, if DH got one, I would have to get one)

~ food in ports. Sometimes you want to eat on the island for that authentic Mexican cuisine or whatever. If so, ask locals where they go. It's usually the best food for the best price. If you are just going ashore to shop, explore, sunbathe, etc., know that you can ALWAYS reboard the ship to have lunch (free) then go back on the island.

~ there is a website, not sure if I'm allowed to list it here? that has excellent info. PM me if you're interested and I'll respond with the info!

I hope you have a wonderful time! Planning the cruise is half the fun!
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Old 03-02-2013, 07:53 PM

RE: cruise help!!

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All the above is great. We r going on Disney for the 2nd time this year. We are addicted. I actually buy stuff for the kids online before the cruise and leave it on the bed as a soveneir (sp) I don't do the spa treatments. The vacation is relaxing enough. I don't buy food in port(but I am from Texas so Mexican food is so common and cheep). I usually skip a port excursion and just go the beach or stay on the ship. It will be almost empty and that's when you can really enjoy it!! For Disney I bought Walmart pillow cases and had the characters sign it. I think there is no other like Disney. However the best food was Noreigan (sp). If we stay in a hotel before we do micro soups because heck we are about to eat out 24/7 for 7 days. I try not to have a hotel and fly in the morning of the cruise and fly out the day it returns. If you need passports space them out. We needed 5 so we did the kids first and then two months later another and then two months later mine. Plan at least a year out because its like a layaway plan. I have done the pic deal in the past and did not do it this last time and REGRET!! Skip family and holiday pics for the time up to the cruise and make those your family pics (your dressed up anyways) if your ship has a washing machine bring a tide pod or two even if you think you have enough clothes.
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