Cruising on a budget

Posted December 6th, 2011

While cruising may offer more value for money than many other holiday options, any holiday can become too expensive if you don’t set yourself some sort of a budget. So, here are a few tips and things to look out for to go cruising on a budget and make your dollars stretch that little bit further.

  1. If your cruise line doesn’t offer all-inclusive drinks packages for soft drinks, then try to look out for promotions whilst on board. Some cruise lines also offer ice cream packages, and if you have kids, both of these can save you a bundle.
  2. If you are looking for gifts to take home, try not to dive into the first shop and blow your whole budget at once – a lot of onboard shops have a sale day during the cruise, where you could get up to 50% off – so stay on the lookout for sales!
  3. You’re on holiday, and it’s time to de-stress – what better way to do so than with a massage? And while the spa may be very tempting, it can also be pocket breaking. So again, try to find out about package deals – like a facial and a massage, combined at a cheaper rate.
  4. Planned shore excursions with the cruise line are very good, especially if you are a first time cruiser. But, they can add up – especially if you have a family. If you are confident enough, try venture out on your own to save some money – but make sure you leave enough time to get back to the ship or you risk being left behind!
  5. Always change your money at home into the currency of the ports you will be visiting. While you can do this onboard, you probably won’t get as good an exchange rate as you will at home.
  6. Enjoy reading? Don’t break the bank before your cruise on buying more books – if the cruise line has an onboard library, make use of their books!
  7. Internet access onboard can be very expensive, so look out for any package deals on offer, or maybe try go to an internet café while in port, as this may be cheaper.
  8. Speciality restaurants onboard normally come with an added charge per person, so while they may offer an enticing menu, ask if it will be worth the extra money when you already have food included in your cruise fare. The other thing to consider is that some of these restaurants have a lunch menu too, which many be cheaper than the dinner menu.

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