Booking Cruises

Discussion in 'All about Cruises' started by straitman, May 23, 2016.

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  1. straitman

    Moderator

    Apr 27, 2003
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    When we fly we all have our own methods of picking/finding the best fares but ultimately they are often quite similar.

    When booking cruises what do people do?


    1. Book direct,
    2. Use the same travel agent each time,
    3. Look for specials,
    4. Shop around everywhere every time,
    5. Something else?
     

  2. drron

    drron Enthusiast

    Jul 4, 2002
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    We usually book a new cruise while on board a current cruise. Silverseas have a cruise consultant on board, so you can book through them, you then qualify for a "booking onboard" discount and maybe an early booking discount if that applies to the cruise you want to book. You pay a deposit ( usually with a credit card ) They then send the booking details to your travel agent of choice. We tend to do this as we like certain suites and also on the smaller ships popular cruises sell quickly.

    This info only applies to Silverseas - as that is basically all we cruise now, although we have a Scenic cruise booked for 2019 !

    mrs.dr.ron - using drrons computer ;)
     
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  3. Buzzard

    Buzzard Senior Member

    Jan 22, 2013
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    Haven't booked many but use Best Cruises in WA and book fly/cruise.
     
  4. love_the_life

    love_the_life Established Member

    Dec 21, 2012
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    We nearly always book with the cruise line as that way you can deal with the line directly if needed. If you use a TA the cruise line will only deal with them for any changes etc. Sometimes a TA will have a great price and so we'll book that.
    Booked onboard once but it didn't pan out and we basically ended up losing the (minimal) deposit.
    When the exchange rate was better, we would look at US TAs and if there was a big difference would use them, although some cruise lines do not allow this.
     
  5. Pushka

    Pushka Enthusiast

    Jan 26, 2011
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    I like control - could you guess that? So like the Dame I book direct. Deposits are usually fully cancellable direct but not always. But there is an excellent consultant in the USA I found through someone on Cruise Critic - we share a DVT history :eek: and she can even book Aussies on Princess cruises with excellent OBC. Her specialty is Crystal Cruises.
     
  6. turtlemichael

    turtlemichael Established Member

    May 24, 2006
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    Apart from something quite specialised (our first trip to India comes to mind) cruises are the only travel for which I use travel agents. If you can pick the right travel agent the pluses can be specialised knowledge of the product and service, the availability of on-board credits, payment of gratuities where these are additional to the fare and significant discounts/rebates. You need to pick your agents carefully and there are people here who I am sure can help you when you choose your cruise or cruise line.
     
  7. pootle

    pootle Intern

    Mar 31, 2010
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    Completely agree, I am an accredited cruise member of clia and we have to work hard to keep our accreditation, I am in the top 50 agents of Aus with other members of staff nipping at my heels so choosing an agent that has the correct knowledge takes it from a good cruise to a great cruise, as with hotels not all cruise lines are created equal,
     
  8. bwhouse

    bwhouse Member

    Dec 6, 2015
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    The last couple I booked via CruisePilot simply because they were offering 20k and 10k velocity point bonus for each booking, that coupled with the 4.5 points per dollar from the portal and 2 points per dollar from the cc was too hard to say no too.

    But our first cruise we booked via a travel agent and I would probably do that again if we end up doing another one.
     
  9. straitman

    Moderator

    Apr 27, 2003
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    Just rereading this old thread and came across this post.
    I'll try and remember to chase you up when I next need to book a cruise.
     
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  10. Redrob123

    Redrob123 Junior Member

    Nov 7, 2014
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    Would you be willing to share the name of the TA in USA? I am going over there next year and it would be great to have a local agent particularly as I want to do a Princess cruise.
    TIA
     
  11. Pushka

    Pushka Enthusiast

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    Will do. It’s on my computer at home where I am not. First name was Isabel. I think. Just remember to calculate currency before booking.
     
  12. Wello

    Wello Junior Member

    Jun 7, 2014
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    I recently booked a Baltic Cruise for next year and compared prices directly with the cruise line, a major US based on-line cruise travel agent and a local shop front cruise travel agent. The actual price was similar to all three but it was the extras from the local travel agent that made me decide to book with them. They gave me nearly $700 land credit that I have now used for two nights accommodation in Copenhagen before the cruise.
     
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  13. Kolo

    Kolo Member

    Feb 14, 2012
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    I book through a TA to get FF points. Last cruise I booked through Virgin's Cruise Pilot and got 3pts per dollar plus the WP bonus of 3pts per dollar. On top of that were the CC points. Fantastic earn all up. We got all due benefits from the cruise line inc. our prepaid deposit from onboard the previous cruise.
     
  14. Pushka

    Pushka Enthusiast

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    Here is her email: Isabel@isabeltravel.com
    Her website isnt the best, but she is excellent and responsive. I referred her to someone in QLD who used her for a Princess Med Cruise and they saved megadollars. I know of another Aussie who uses her also.
     
  15. VPS

    VPS Established Member

    Apr 2, 2011
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    Good timing because I was about to ask if anyone in Adelaide had a good TA for cruises. I'm looking at doing some relocation cruises which I've heard you can get some good deals for. Do you know if she would handle things like that as well?
     
  16. Pushka

    Pushka Enthusiast

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    I think she has access to everything. But I’ve not specifically asked. For the record I know that repositioning from Japan to US and Europe to US and vice versa are very popular and book out quickly.
     
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  17. Redrob123

    Redrob123 Junior Member

    Nov 7, 2014
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    Thanks so much - will email her
     
  18. Redrob123

    Redrob123 Junior Member

    Nov 7, 2014
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    A big thank you for Isabel. I am now doing a Crystal cruise from San Francisco through Panama Canal to New York in August. This cruise was so popular it was booked out nearly before it was advertised but Isabel was able to get me on it at an awesome price as she had a group,booking. She told me yesterday that she is having a few cancellations and she is able to offer cabins if anyone is interested. If you need info please ask me. Not sure if you can PM me. I have also just booked next month Sydney to Phillipines with Crystal on a whim. Even though it is expensive Isabel has given me a great deal on an awesome itinerary that is not being repeated next year.
     
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  19. Pushka

    Pushka Enthusiast

    Jan 26, 2011
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    Well you certainly took that idea and ran with it! Well done. Now I’m very green.
     
  20. Redrob123

    Redrob123 Junior Member

    Nov 7, 2014
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    You too can do this if you are willing to live on bread and water for the next year. Though i like cruising in balcony if I want to do more lux I have to slum it in an oceanview It’s worth the sacrifice to get free alcohol and as a solo female they supply dance partners. How funny
     
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