Frugal Family Friday | Carnival’s Early Saver Rates

MS Carnival Triumph
photo credit: Aah-Yeah

Carnival Cruise Line offers some great rates if you book in advance with their Early Saver Rates.  Carnival states that you can save up to 20%.  To qualify for the special rates you must pay a non-transferable and non-refundable deposit. Bookings must be made 3 months in advance for 5 day or shorter cruises, and 5 months in advance for 6 day or longer cruises to get the special rates.

One bonus I have seen is that you get to pick your cabin instead of booking a guaranteed cabin, and the price is usually the lowest available. Price protection is also a feature of the Early Saver Rate.

Please visit their webpage for full details on the Early Saver Rate terms and conditions.

Frugal Family Friday | Charleston Cruise Deals

cruise ship

Carnival Fantasy in port in Charleston, SC
photo credit: Muffet

Even though I have featured Charleston, South Carolina cruise deals before, it has been a while and there are some great deals if you are willing to book well in advance.  The only ship out of Charleston is the Carnival Fantasy.  It does have cabins that hold up to 5 passengers so it is a great option for families with 1- 3 children especially if you live near the east coast and can drive to the port.

All prices are per person without taxes/fees and are the lowest priced cabin available in each category.

January 9, 2013 – Carnival Fantasy – 5 Day from Charleston to Nassau and Freeport

Inside:
Family of 3 or 4:  $269 1st/2nd passengers, $129 3rd/4th
Family of 5: $289 1st/2nd passengers, $129 3rd-5th

Oceanview:
Family of 3 or 4:  $299 1st/2nd passengers, $149 3rd/4th
Family of 5:  $299 1st/2nd passengers, $149 3rd-5th

January 4, 2013 OR January 14, 2013 – Carnival Fantasy – 5 Day from Charleston to Nassau and Freeport

Inside:
Family of 3 or 4:  $269 1st/2nd passengers, $129 3rd/4th
Family of 5: $289 1st/2nd passengers, $129 3rd-5th

Oceanview:
Family of 3 or 4:  $324 1st/2nd passengers, $149 3rd/4th
Family of 5:  $299 1st/2nd passengers, $149 3rd-5th

January 19, 2013  - Carnival Fantasy – 7 Day Eastern Caribbean from Charleston to Grand Turk, Half Moon Cay, and Nassau

Inside:
Family of 3 or 4: $419 1st/2nd passengers, $199 3rd/4th
Family of 5: $444 1st/2nd passengers, $199 3rd-5th

Oceanview:
Family of 3 or 4: $469 1st/2nd passengers, $219 3rd/4th
Family of 5:  $469 1st/2nd passengers, $219 3rd-5th

There are many other cruise dates available with slightly higher pricing if these dates do not work for you.  Simply search Carnival’s website or any of our affiliates to the right.

Frugal Family Friday | Holiday 2012 Cruises

Queen Victoria shops
photo credit: slideshow bob

Merry Christmas to my readers!  Obviously it is too late to book a holiday cruise for this year, but do consider booking one for next Christmas or New Years.  Booking early is usually better for the holidays if that is the only time you can go on a cruise, but it would be best to wait for some sort of cruise line sale such as reduced deposits or onboard credits.

Christmas is going to be a Tuesday in 2012 due to it being a Leap Year.  The weeks of Christmas and New Years are probably the most expensive of the year.  Third  and 4th passengers will typically cost close to full fare as well. If you can get away the week before Christmas or the week after New Years, you will pay significantly less.

I will not be posting any specific pricing this week.  One cruise line to consider for a holiday cruise is MSC Cruises.  They have offered some decent holiday pricing in the last few years, so do consider them especially if you only have 1 or 2 children as their cabins only hold up to 4 passengers and Kids under 12 Sail Free.  If you have 3 or 4 children, you might be able to travel with the grandparents like we did for Thanksgiving 2009 and have all of your children sail for free!

Frugal Family Friday | Winter Cruises From New Orleans

Mississippi River (2)

Mississippi River at New Orleans
photo credit: HeroicLife

Here are some cruise deals for winter (December 2011-March, 2012) out of New Orleans.  The best pricing will be in January and February due to the holidays in December and spring break in March.  The cruise lines that depart from New Orleans are Carnival, Norwegian, and Royal Caribbean.

*All prices are for the lowest priced cabin available which is an inside cabin.  Some are guarantee cabins where you are not assigned a cabin at booking and could get upgraded and some are assigned at booking. Taxes and port charges are additional.

January 8, 2012 or January 15, 2012 or January 22, 2012 – Norwegian Spirit – 7 Day Western Caribbean to Costa Maya, Belize City, Roatan, Cozumel

Family of 3: $429 1st and 2nd passengers, $199 3rd/4th, $160 children under 2

Family of 4:  $449 1st and 2nd passengers, $199 3rd/4th, $160 children under 2

January 9, 2012 – Carnival Elation – 5 Day Mexican Cruise to Progresso and Cozumel

Families of 3, 4, or 5:  $219 1st and 2nd passengers, $139 3rd-5th

January 28, 2012 or February 4, 2012 – Royal Caribbean Voyager of the Seas – 7 Day Western Caribbean to Falmouth, Grand Cayman, and Cozumel

Family of 3 or 4: $439 1st and 2nd passengers, $259 3rd/4th

February 26, 2012 – Carnival Conquest – 7 Day Western Caribbean to Montego Bay, Grand Cayman, and Cozumel

Family of 3 or 4: $459 1st and 2nd passengers, $179 3rd/4th

Book these cruises and more directly with each cruise line, with your favorite travel agent, or our affiliate:


Cruise Tip Tuesday | Post Cruise Excursions

05-21-07 Road Trip 042 French Quarter

French Quarter, New Orleans, LA
photo credit:
mnchilemom

I am back…for now!  I have no idea at this point as to how often I will post, but hopefully more than I have been.  I have gotten a lot more traffic to this blog lately without even posting.  So thank you to all the recent visitors!  I hope some of my tips have been helpful to you.

So here is a quick tip:  Book a post cruise excursion with the cruise line to ensure easy transportation back to the airport.

Our last cruise was out of New Orleans, and we booked Norwegian’s post cruise New Orleans excursion.  After meeting in the theatre at a specified time, we were basically led off the boat as a group and did not have to wait in any long lines to disembark.  We picked up our luggage, and it was placed under the bus.  We learned a little bit about the city and history and were then dropped off right at the airport.  Since we have young children, I always worry about taking taxis without car seats and actually fitting in a taxi.  With the excursions, you are usually taken via charter bus and there is no need or worry about car seats for children.  If you have any interest in the city of disembarkation, it might be worth the cost and ease of booking the post cruise excursion offered by your cruise line.

As a bonus, kids are usually charged a discounted rate, and oftentimes infants and toddlers are free.

One thing you must ensure is that your flight leaves the day the cruise ends AND that it is late enough in the day to actually have time for an excursion.  A return flight departure of 1pm or later is usually safe, but I would consider 2pm to be better.  It really depends on the length of the excursion and distance to the main airport.  For example, if you were to cruise out of Port Canaveral, FL, you might want to consider a later flight since you would probably be flying out of Orlando International Airport which is approximately an hour away.  You will usually see information in the description of the excursion that tells you how late your flight needs to be to go on the excursion.

As an alternative, you could contact the cruise line and buy just transfers from the port to the airport, but the price might not be much less than buying the excursion with the tour.

As a reference, the 2.5hr tour that Norwegian Cruise Line sells from New Orleans as a post cruise excursion is $49 for adults and $29 for children.  I am almost positive that children under 2 are free.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...