8 Easy Ways to Avoid Overspending on Cruises

Favorites May 24, 2012 No Comments

You’ve booked and paid for the cruise. Whether low or high-end, you’ve predetermined your vacation budget. Problem is, many novice cruisers neglect to factor in unexpected and less than obvious costs. Cruise lines are in business to not only encourage loyalty from their guests with their stellar offerings, but also to profit from ancillary services that just sort of well, add up. The good news is that it’s possible to contain some of those costs.


Take your own. Bring a camera and small tripod for self-timed photos; ask shipmates to photograph you and your family. If you do find a selection of professional photos that you simply can’t live without, choose one or two rather than opting for the entire collection.


Be aware of those that charge extra beyond the cost of the cruise. Most restaurants included in the cost offer an abundance of every type of cuisine you hunger for. Expect quality and quantity, without the extra price tag.

Shore Excursions

Attend the lectures aboard ship to become informed about the activities and attractions available at your ports of call. Many cruise lines offer libraries containing guide books and pertinent information for each port of call. Study them and design your own itinerary.


A tricky matter. Some cruise lines allow you to purchase and bring aboard wine and champagne from their ports of call, but not liquor. If you prefer the hard stuff, pack the spirits of your choice in your suitcase before you board—if your particular cruise line allows. Be aware that some cruise lines will collect alcohol purchased during shore excursions, returning it upon final disembarkation. Check individual cruise line policies prior to your trip.


Take advantage of complimentary seminars and workshops, from computer classes to culinary schools.


Resist the temptation to have your hair or nails done aboard ship. While the ship’s services may be exemplary, if you are on a budget, save those services for your favorite salon at home before or after the cruise. Skip the spa. Instead, enjoy the natural healing powers of the sun, sea, stars and moon, all complimentary.


Forget about buying trinkets for every friend, relative and coworker; share your photos with them instead. Select, on ship or on shore, the one household or personal item that will bring back your treasured memories for years to come.


Some cruise lines will charge a daily percentage of services rendered. You may adjust these charges upward or downward. Keep in mind that your room stewards, restaurant servers, bartenders and other staff members work diligently to satisfy your every need.

To learn more about using cruise incentives to improve acquisition, activation, retention and renewal, explore our sea certificates.

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