This is the time of year that planning often begins for big-ticket vacations. If you’re contemplating a cruise, you’ve come to the right place! While cruises can be expensive, there are some ways to save money.
Here are five easy ways to save on your next cruise:
1) HOLD OFF ON PURCHASING A BEVERAGE PLAN
Tap water, coffee, tea, and juices are basics included on your cruise. If you prefer bottled water, soda, or anything outside of the basic items, it’s an additional cost.
There is a myriad of beverage plans available for purchase onboard. Anytime you buy one, no matter the particular package, it’s for the remaining days on your cruise; i.e., if you purchase a plan on day 1, you’re paying for the package for the length of your trip.
Consider buying drinks ala carte for a day or two to get an idea of how many you actually consume daily how much drinks cost, and what it would cost you for the remainder of the trip.
If you drink like a fish, purchasing a plan may be the route to go. Otherwise, it’s not worth it.
2) BUY DRINKS AT THE PORTS
On the days that you’re in port, skip buying drinks onboard. It’s significantly less expensive to buy drinks at the ports than it is on the boat. In fact, the further from the boat you get, the cheaper the drinks are.
On the other hand…
3) WHILE AT PORT, EAT ON THE BOAT
Cruise ships are famous for incredible food, and since meals are inclusive, it’s silly to eat on land. Dig in and enjoy!
Otherwise, restaurants within walking distance of the cruise ship are expensive. These establishments rely on tourism for their local economy, and, thus, the cost of dining there is high.
Of course, should you travel away from the cruise port and find a spot with cuisine authentic to that location, it would be a shame to miss out. If that’s the case, share a dish with your companion to keep costs down.
4) PACK 2 BOTTLES OF WINE (AND AN OPENER)
Most cruise lines allow 2 bottles of wine (or champagne) per stateroom. The cheapest bottle on board is around $25, which is a significant markup considering the equivalent is likely $8-$10 at your local store.
Don’t forget to pack a bottle opener because there is a corkage fee that generally costs $15-$25 to have the dining room open it for you. If you don’t bring an opener, your stateroom attendant can likely find one for you. Alternatively, ask a bartender, and they’ll open it for you.
5) SKIP THE INTERNET PACKAGE
Vacations are meant to unplug. But if you can’t, use WiFi while you’re in port because internet packages onboard often start at $25 per hour. Many establishments on land will give WiFi passwords to paying customers, and some will sell the password itself, which can be cheaper than buying something to eat or drink.
DON’T PARK AT THE CRUISE PORT
Another great way to save money on your next cruise is by finding long-term parking away from the cruise port. Daily parking is cheaper at offsite facilities, and there are complimentary shuttles to the cruise port. Call (888)399-9267 to reach a friendly Parkway Parking associate who will reserve your spot or visit their website to book online.
Parkway Parking has safe and secure facilities near Florida’s five major seaports:
Parkway Parking has the best prices for parking when you’re traveling to the airport, seaport or a local event.