Benefits of a Last Minute Cruise
If you ask anyone who has cruised before, one person will tell you that it is best to book early so you get the exact cabin that you want, and someone else will tell you that you should wait until the last minute to get the best deal. So, who is right? Well, both of them really! There is no right or wrong answer here, and there are benefits to both, so it really depends on what works best for you.
A last minute cruise is considered any cruise that could be departing in the next 60 days or so, as this is generally the last chance people have to cancel their cruise and the cruise lines then know how many cabins are full and how many are empty - and as a result, how many they have left to discount. There is some risk involved in waiting for a last minute cruise deal - the biggest of which is that your cruise could actually sell out and then you won't be able to get onboard at all! The other risk is that the cabins you want may sell out, so you may have to settle for something else - but this is only a big deal if you really want a specific cabin type.
So, what are the benefits of waiting?
If circumstances allow you to take off on holiday on short notice, there are number of benefits to booking your cruise holiday last minute:
- The big one - you can get an excellent deal. We have recently seen some amazing last minute cruise deals offered from some cruise lines, with prices starting from as low as $50 per person, per day. So if you are patient, and you can wait - you can often reap the rewards with a massive savings
- A last minute cruise can cater to any time frame - so if you suddenly find yourself with a few days or a week to spare, or (lucky you) maybe even a month - then a last minute cruise is a great way to spend this time, as you could get anything from a 3 night short getaway to a long two week voyage or even more!
- If you book a cruise that leaves from your home port, you won't need to worry about adding on airfares - which can sometimes be more expensive closer to the time
Clearly, waiting until the last minute has some big benefits, but you might want to take note of a few things to avoid any disappointment further down the track. We would only recommend booking a last minute cruise if you can take time off on short notice, if you don't need a long-haul airfare to meet your cruise, and if you are flexible about what cabin type and dining times you get. You will also be hard pressed to find a last minute deal in peak season, so if you have your heart set on a Christmas cruise, we would definitely recommend booking that one early as these tend to sell very quickly!
Your Cruiseabout consultant will be able to let you know about any deals on last minute sailings if you ask them to, or we have a Last Minute Cruises page on our website showing you cruises leaving in the next 60 days and in the next 60 to 120 days. So, bookmark that page or sign up to our enewsletter to get deals emailed to your inbox. However you choose to keep an eye on these deals, just make sure that when a great deal comes out that you act fast. With a great price comes lots of people wanting to book, and it can sell out very quickly!