Postponing your cruise holiday because of the expense? Most people think that cruise holidays are the ultimate luxury holidays. While this is not untrue, it does not need to be a holiday that empties your bank account. It is possible to go cruising on a budget. All it takes is a lot of research and meticulous planning to ensure that you enjoy an amazing cruise holiday without compromising on the budget. Here are

some tips that will help you to save money while enjoying a memorable cruising experience


Book Early

cruise booking

It is best to book your cruise at least four months before the holiday. Most cruises offer great deals and discounts (early savings promotion) for the early birds. Moreover, booking early also means you get the accommodation, amenities, itinerary, etc., of your choice. It is also a good idea to book your cruise during the “wave season”, i.e., between January and March. Many cruise liners offer cool discounts, amazing deals, and onboard credits for the entire year, right at the beginning of the year. So, even if you are planning to go on a cruise in December, booking it in January may help you in saving money.

Book at the Last Minute

This may seem untrue as it is the opposite of the above point. But this is true. No cruise liner wants to begin the cruise without full occupancy. To prevent this and entice new customers, cruise liners are likely to provide discounts and deals at the last minute. This will work only if you are flexible with your dates and can pack up and go on a cruise holiday at the drop of a hat. Another downside of booking at the last minute is that it is a risk, especially if you are looking forward to going on a particular cruise. There are chances that the cruise gets filled early on, and there are no spare cabins for last-minute bookings.

Go with a Travel Agent

You may think that booking a cruise through a travel or tour agent will add to your expenses. But the opposite is true in this case. A tour or travel agent has access to discounts, deals, and promotional offers that may not be available to an individual. Plus, the travel agent has more knowledge about different types of cruises and will help you choose one as per your interests and requirements. He/she may also help you get upgrades and better amenities at lesser prices. In short, a travel agent can help you save both money and time.

Book an Interior Stateroom


The cost of your cruise holiday is the cost of the stateroom you choose. The best way to cut down on the expenses is to go for an interior stateroom. This room does not have a balcony and not even an ocean view window. But most reputed cruises offer comfortable interior staterooms with twin beds, ensuite washroom, wardrobe, television, and such other amenities. If you are someone who plans to spend most of the time exploring the cruise, retiring to your room only for sleep and changing, choosing an interior stateroom is the best way of cutting down your costs.

Opt for a Shorter Cruise

Shorter Cruise

Another way of saving money on cruises is going for a shorter cruise. A cruise that lasts for a week or more will be more expensive than the one that runs for lesser days. Instead of opting for a week-long cruise, go for one that lasts for 3-4 days. You will also find short cruises that run during the weekend. The shore excursions are also less on these cruises, another way of saving your money. This way you can have a good time exploring and enjoying the different offerings of the cruise

Pack Smartly: Take All the Essentials

Pack essentials

Everyone knows that the cruise is like a resort on wheels, and you will find everything you need here. But the markup for almost all products is quite high, and even the basic things can be expensive onboard. Hence, it is important to pack smartly. Carry all the essentials like toothbrush, toothpaste, shaving cream, moisturizers, shampoos, conditioners, etc., with you. Similarly, you must pack a first aid kit with the necessary over-the-counter medications for fever, upset stomach, vomiting, nausea, headache, etc. If you have these essential items with you, you wouldn’t need to spend extra money to buy these on board.

Don’t Choose Excursion Packages

Most cruises offer excursion packages for their guests. But they can be costly. Do your research and find out what local third parties are offering. In most cases, these would be cheaper than what the cruise offers. Alternatively, you can choose to explore the port on your own. Calculate what the travelling expenses would be before you reach the place. Also, make sure you reach back on time before the cruise leaves from the port for the next destination, because missing the cruise can be expensive for you.

Let Go of Extra Expenses

Cruise packages include accommodation, all meals, and several amenities. But there are some things that require you to pay additional costs. Here are some things that you can let go off:

1. Alcoholic drinks are very expensive on cruises. Even if you buy a drinks package, it will cost you a lot unless you are planning to drink excessively during your holiday. Some cruises also allow you to bring your own alcohol. Check with your cruise line about this.

2. Laundry services are available onboard but at an extra cost. You should pack some additional clothes so that you do not have to pay extra for the same. You can also choose to wash your clothes yourself and reuse them during your cruise holiday.

3. All three meals are included in your cruise package. But if you want to dine at a specialty restaurant, you will have to pay extra. But it is an avoidable cost. Most restaurants where you can eat for free include special dishes in their menu. Still, if you want to eat at a specialty restaurant, book in advance (before you board). You are likely to get a discount in this case.

4. Wi-Fi is also extremely expensive on cruises. As you are on holiday, it would be best to take a break from the virtual world. This way you can save money too. You can connect online at any of the ports you visit.

Book the Next Cruise while Onboard

Book Cruise

If you love cruising, you can join cruise loyalty programs to save money. Cruise lines offer discounts and deals to their loyal customers. One of the best ways to save money is to book your next cruise right when you are onboard. You are likely to get some massive discounts in this case. Cruise lines also announce deals, discounts, and offers to their loyal customer sometimes. You can take advantage of the same.

Cruising on a budget is not impossible if you make the right choices. The best part is that you do not have to sacrifice your cruise experiences if you plan well.

A content writer by profession, Deepa has been writing for the travel nice for more than a decade. While she has a bucket list for the places she wants to visit, she also loves the idea of curling up on the couch with a good book. She believes that nothing can lift up your mood better than a good holiday, a great book, and your favorite dish.

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