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del82

what makes you book ?

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there are so many different offers available with different cruise companys, but what offer makes you book, free travel , on board credit, complimentary drinks packages or is it just the best price ?

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None of the above del82. 

When I book a cruise holiday the cruise line and destinations are paramount as nothing is free in this world.  In many cases all that has happened is the cost has risen and  the 'freebees' have been included. It is my belief  for instance adding a free 'Drinks package'  means the cruise company are getting money from people who may not in normal circumstances spend money on drink whilst on board. Cynical, certainly am. 

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Hi del82,

I'm pretty much with OWT on this.  Our cruises are selected based on itinerary and whether or not we like the cruise line.  They also have to represent what we believe to be value for money, taking the whole package into account.

DavidH

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i always look for the best price but take into account the on boarding spending money and other offers however it has to be with the right cruise line getting the  ship right is more important to me.

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No flying  to get to ship possibly heads our list.

Ship then ports of call and as others have said if you get OBC ,drink package or coach to Southampton may persuade us to book a particular cruise line...Davybe 

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Since I'm semi-retired and have to semi-work we choose cruises that fit our schedule. We would rather drive than fly so the distance to the embarkation port is also important. We've tried most of the cruise lines and have never had a bad cruise only good and better. Our first choices would be a 'dam' ship or Celebrity, however recently it's been Carnival, RCI and NCL.

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An interesting itinerary is the prime reason for me to book a cruise.  Drink packages and OBC are not important because I know how much we typically spend while on a cruise, so the bottom line cost is what counts.  As others have said, nothing is free, so I do not want to pay an inflated price if the 'perks' do not have real value for me.  As long as we are fit enough for long haul flights we will visit distant parts of the world to experience different cultures.

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2 hours ago, Tally said:

It's the itinerary for me too. Unfortunately, the fact that I won't fly means I only do roundtrips, which limits the cruise companies I can use.:(

Have you ever thought about taking the high speed train to Amsterdam or Barcelona to pick up the ship. It would enlarge your choice enormously.

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12 hours ago, Oldworldtraveller said:

Have you ever thought about taking the high speed train to Amsterdam or Barcelona to pick up the ship. It would enlarge your choice enormously.

Great Idea may have a look at that,One Agent did do a coach cruise ?...Davybe

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19 hours ago, del82 said:

there are so many different offers available with different cruise companys, but what offer makes you book, free travel , on board credit, complimentary drinks packages or is it just the best price ?

We pretty much book what suits us, normally itinerary is the deciding factor, we certainly don't book based on alleged 'freebies' as most of us know you rarely get "something for nothing".

We have no preferred line, we will sail on any ship with any line as long as the itinerary meets our needs.

HLM.

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Hi   As I am a solo passenger I only consider a cruise which carries a small or no single supplement.  I am willing to undertake either fly or UK departures but I do prefer smaller ships but I don't eliminate larger vessels from my decision.   I  don't mind whether it is an ocean or river cruise.  If two or more cruises are available I will usually select a cruise line I have not tried after having decided whether I wish to have a warm holiday (Med or Caribbean) or visit more scenic northern regions.

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For me personally, the ship is as important as the itinerary. In some cases more.


For example I have booked the Independence Of The Seas next October, just a 5 night cruise and the itinerary really doesn't inspire, BUT I have always wanted to go on Indy and the price was fantastic!

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It's a tough one as most cruise lines have different promotions throughout the year. The one that can save a lot of spending money is the all inclusive drinks packages. I'm not an alcoholic (he says) but especially when you're on holiday you want a few don't you! Then you've got the soft drinks/juices/teas etc.

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We need an accessible cabin, good wheelchair and modern accessible facilities, and round trip cruises from Southampton, and to secure a good cabin we almost always book on new brochure launch, which can be up to 24 months in advance.  We prefer warm weather cruises, so Northern Europe needs to be in high summer, or Mediterranean, Canaries or round trip Caribbean in cooler times.

So after finding cruises which fit those requirements, it's generally price rather than itinerary that determine the ones we book, although we do try to avoid tender ports where possible.  Strangely enough despite booking so early, or maybe because we receive launch incentives, we now rarely see any late availability offers which are significantly less than we have paid.

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We always booked with P & O, with the odd exception, and mostly Oriana, did'nt always like the destinations, as been there many times before, but we went because we liked the ship, I personally liked being at sea, and of course the price.

We have only done one cruise in last four years because of issues with P & O, and are doing one next year only because it was a gift to us, but i feel that after that we will be finished cruising.

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Itinerary first and foremost, then whats included. Always look for all inclusive as that takes the pressure of paying the high price of drinks on board. Yes I know you still pay for it in the long run but if its paid up front I will not winge about the prices when on board. Gratuities is another sore subject as in my opinion they should always be at ones discretion not compulsory as on drinks. Any cruise company stating exactly that have my vote as they will be giving staff a proper wage in the first place.

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The itinerary is important to me, as is the cruise line.

I try to avoid having to fly to the USA as I find their customs and immigration very off putting they seem to be paranoid.

I do like drinks packages as they make the cruise somewhat all inclusive. It's good to know what the bottom line is going to be.

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This usually varies. Firstly I now need to sail or fly from Scotland and after well over 60 odd cruises since 1984 I have come to hate the big cruise ships. I did three cruises this year (one was free) Book three for the price of two, one had £100 OBS, One had included gratuities, One had free drinks package.Plus 5% loyalty discount and 10% booking on board discount on all three. Then of course the incentive on travel that Bolsover give me.t. A perfect bargain and sailing from Scotland.

I have four booked for 2017 and 1 for 2018. 3 booked on board sailing from Scotland with all sorts of incentives and the other 2 were special offers sent to me by the cruise company to special places. with convenient flights and my extra incentives from Bolsover.  I have been faithful to Bolsover since the beginning of the company (just 4 family members) and 27 cruises with one cruise company

 

Edited by MB alone

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Itinerary and Cruise line first, then if possible, a ship I haven't been on before, as a real bonus on top. Only 'doubled up' on 4 ships thus far: QE2; Arcadia; Aurora & Volendam. I don't have a favourite ship, as such, as they are far too many lovely vessels still out there, to try out and enjoy!

We are happy with an Outside or Balcony cabin, would only consider an inside cabin, as a very last resort if on a smaller 'classic' ship.

We often still do a wine package for the evening meal, but not the full 'drinks' package any longer, as we both felt on a Celebrity Solstice cruise a while back that we were drinking more than we really needed, just to get the full value out of the package, which is a bit silly really speaking!

On HAL, we purchase one of their drinks cards, and use that as an easy way of keeping track of what we are spending in the bars or out on deck, and reduces the need to collect and keep together all those so easily signed away drink receipts. The card comes back with a receipt, which also lets us know the amount of credit still left on the card.  

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