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Priceline Cruises: What You Need to Know

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Cruise topics covered –

Skim through these for what you need to know about Priceline cruises. Tips, savings, cautions, etc.

  1. Lowest price guarantee?
  2. Most discounted Priceline cruise bargains?
  3. Repositioning cruises—best bargains of all?
  4. Senior rates?
  5. Single rates?
  6. How are cruises good values?
  7. Departure ports?
  8. What's not included?
  9. What departures have lots of young singles?
  10. Airfares to port?
  11. Need a passport?
  12. Formal wear?
  13. Refundable?
  14. Trip insurance?

1. Has Priceline Cruises a lowest price guarantee?

Priceline guarantees you lowest price offered to the general public. Of course, everything must be the same—ship, date, type of stateroom, etc. You must apply within time limit.

2. Best Priceline cruise bargains?

3. Repositioning cruises—best bargains of all?

Priceline cruises what you need to know: BidOnTravel’s best tip: Positioning cruises are best values

Seriously consider repositioning cruises. These happen when ships make seasonal moves from one region to another.

4. Senior rates?

Senior rates typically start at age 55, and as long as one person in the stateroom is 55, everyone usually gets that rate.

5. Single occupancy rates?

Single rates vary wildly from departure to departure depending on how anxious a cruise line is to fill a ship. Comparing different companies and dates can save you serious money.

Although few cruise ships offer single staterooms (Norwegian does), most put singles in cabins designed to occupy two or more people and of course they prefer the extra income.

For these, you typically pay 125% to 200% of the per person double rate.

You are doing well if you pay 150% or less of the per person double rate. You are doing fantastically if you pay 125% or less.

In my experience the best single discounts usually do not come from deluxe (expensive) cruise lines.

6. How are cruises good values?

A discounted Priceline cruise vacation can offer tremendous value—especially if you are flexible enough not to focus on just one date or itinerary.

One reason? Because you’ll know the cost of nearly everything in advance—transportation, stateroom, all-you-care-to-eat meals, a wide selection of entertainment, taxes, etc.—you will face few surprises compared to a land-based vacation.

Easily compare this cost to what you would pay for booking a regular trip--all parts separately.

However, keep in mind that cruise companies work hard to entice you to spend more while on their ships by offering

Other than perhaps liquor, these temptations are typically easy to avoid

Value also comes from your safety. Although there have been incidents, cruises isolate you from most crime especially if you participate in group activities while in port.

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7. Departure ports?

Some 25 U.S. ports, as well as harbors in Europe, Latin America. South America, Australia, and elsewhere.

Most ships sail from Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, Los Angeles, Seattle, Vancouver, San Juan, and the New York City area, although more ships now leave from “non-traditional” ports.

USA ones include Galveston (Houston), Philadelphia, Baltimore, Norfolk, Port Canaveral (near Orlando), Charleston, Boston, San Diego, and others.

These may save you travel time and money getting to port.

Keep in mind though that if your Priceline Caribbean cruise in January leaves from New York City, you will likely not be able to relax by the outdoor pool during your first and last several days of your trip.

8. What’s not included?

You will find this list less frightening than its length may suggest. :) I want you to face no surprises.

9. I am 20 years old and want to be with young singles. What cruises are for me?

Generally, for Caribbean and Mexico cruises, the shorter the cruise the more youthful the passengers. During the spring break season—mid-February through Easter and Passover—expect exceptionally young crowds on 10-days or so or less cruises.

The cost of a cruise also plays a part. The more expensive cruises tend to attract significantly older passengers.

10. What about airfare?

Priceline Cruises usually shows you the cost both with and without airfare.

Some cruise lines like Royal Caribbean offer negotiated discounted cruise fares. These can be real bargains.

IMPORTANT: If book your own airfare, I urge you to arrive at the port at least one day before. Call your relaxing by the hotel's swimming pool a cheap insurance policy.

If your ship leaves without you, you are faced with buying an often very expensive last-minute one-way ticket to the first port of call. Moreover, not every cruise itinerary stops at a port the next day.

11. Will I need a passport?

Absolutely, if your cruise docks outside of the U.S. Or outside of Canada if you carry a Canadian passport.

12. Do I need formal clothing?

There's a trend toward no formal dining. Norwegian Cruise Line got this ball rolling.

Most though still encourage you to wear at least a jacket and tie in the main dining room on formal nights.

You can avoid this by dining in the buffet or another informal dining option. On the other hand, except for the very shortest and least expensive warm weather departures out of U.S. ports, men may feel somewhat out of place if they do not wear at least a jacket and tie in all indoor public areas on formal nights (one or two nights a week).

Even on the most expensive cruises, men can easily get by with a conservative suit in the dining room and public areas on formal nights, not a tuxedo.

Nevertheless, if you plan a long cruise or a cruise of any length on a very expensive luxury ship, especially one that attracts an international crowd—such as the Queen Mary across the Atlantic—you will probably want to take a formal evening gown or tux to get more fully into the spirit of things. At the minimum, men should pack a very dark suit.

13. Are Priceline cruises refundable?

Cancellation fees vary by cruise line and by how close to departure you cancel.

14. Trip cancellation insurance?

I urge you to buy trip cancellation insurance + out of country medical insurance that includes medical evacuation.

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May you enjoy huge discounts on your Priceline cruises!