I’m not sure if you have noticed in the last few years how all the major cruise lines have seem to be battling it out to have the newest, biggest and boldest ships. While I usually roll my eyes at this sort of thing, I have to admit I’m one of the bystanders that oohs and awes at all the new amenities. It really is fascinating. Disney just launched their new ship this month the Disney Fantasy that follows the Disney Dream last year. These ships are 50% bigger than any of their other ships.
I often get asked when is the best time to book a cruise by readers for cheap cruises. The answer varies by the person and their needs but unless you are traveling with a group or have a specific itinerary or date, I always suggest waiting for wave season or booking right when they release an itinerary. Wave Season is a magical time between January and March (hmmm usually when people are receiving tax returns) where cruise lines and travel agents can offer the very best in promotions and prices. Seriously, it’s the time when you can get the best deals particulary on sailings in the next year. We are talking free perks such as onboard credit and upgrades! It’s unlikely you will find a better deal on price any other time of year.
It’s also a time where many people are looking to buy cruises because of the dreary winter weather and the need to get some sun! It’s the most popular time of year to purchase a cruise vacation. I can’t think of a more fabulous way to spend my tax return. The best way to get a good deal is talk to a travel agent specialiizing in cruises or sign up for your favorite cruiseline’s email alerts. Have a cruise coming up? Tell us about it! We are going on a mediterannean cruise in October!
A couple of year’s ago I wrote an article about travel agents and what they do. Many people, including myself have the misconception that a travel agent is an out of date profession since we can all book travel easily and freely through a plethora of different options available to us via the Internet.
However, as I was just in the process of booking a cruise that is set to sail more than a year away, I was determined to get the best price and decided to do my research. I looked on many different cruise boards on where and when to book to get the best deal and many of them were saying contact your local travel agent. What?!? I thought for sure it was a desperate ploy from disguised agents trying to get business but as I looked into it more I realized it’s true! Travel agents really can offer you the best deals on cruises.
At first it is tempting to book directly through the cruise line’s website as they often have flashy deals such as cabin upgrades and on-board credit. But this would be like paying sticker price for a car! You need the middleman in this situation to bargain for you and get the best deals possible. Travel agents can get you all those flashy extras and more times than not a better rate on top of it. Sometimes they can throw in free travel insurance and can make sure you get a decent cabin. A lot of time’s a balcony can come with an obstructed view, something you may not know of and blindly book on the cruise line’s website only to be disappointed at departure.
Well stocked buffets, spotless state rooms, flawless dinner service- these are all the things you see and expirience while aboard a cruise ship on vacation. But unbeknownst to most behind those service doors is a well oiled machine of crew members and maintanence organizing everything from laundry and room service, to keeping the ship running smoothly and of course steering it in the right direction. Celebrity Cruises was kind enough to let us take a peek behind the scenes of what most cruisers don’t get to see and share with you some things you may not know about your floating vacation.
This is the Bridge where the Captain spends most of his time. The bridge serves as the navigational, command and control center of the ship.
Only by a close second does the scenery on our cruise beat the cuisine. And really that’s because it’s Alaska and that’s just no competition. Had we been anywhere else and the food would have been King Supreme. I mean, it even had Reid begging for mercy at one point. He was eating his roasted lamb and he just started nodding his head and saying this is amazing. It takes a lot to get that kind of reaction out of him.
I on the other hand couldn’t stop raving. Most people know I am a foodie at heart, but they also know I do not discriminate. There really isn’t anything I don’t like. I also love gourmet, but I can eat ribs and hamburgers with the best of them. I just appreciate food in all of it’s glory. A cruise is definitly the best of both worlds. You get your fine dining in the main dining room and specialty restaurants but also if you are looking for a good quality face stuffing the buffet is where it’s at. Here are some of the highlights of our favorite food moments from our Celebrity Cruise in pictures, that is if we could bring ourselves to snap a shot before we gobbled it down.