Cruise expert explains reason to ‘book travel separately’

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Yasmin Pekel, owner of Blue Cruise, shared her favourite tips to save money on a cruise holiday. She told that she would always book travel separately for a cruise.

Yasmin said: “You should always book your travel separately, as lines tend to inflate the prices or partner with expensive airlines which push the price for the same routes much, much higher.

“If your trip to your port is short-haul, you should go for the cheaper option, as this will give you a bonus amount of money to spend onboard.

“Just make sure to travel to your destination a day or two before you embark, you don’t want to let any delays or disruptions make you miss the cruise.”

Booking travel separately could be a cheaper option than booking a package with the cruise line.

Passengers will also have more choice when it comes to timings, dates and their departure airport.

However, as Yasmin suggests, it’s a good idea to book the flight a day before the cruise departs to ensure they don’t miss the ship.

A cruise line will usually take responsibility for passengers who are on a flight booked by the line but are unlikely to do this for guests who booked separately.

The expert also commented on booking excursions. She added: “Many ships will sell shore excursions. While convenient and appealing, it is often much cheaper to book your own tour, or visit attractions yourself.

“By Googling the local landmarks, sights to visit and any notable areas, you can often come up with a great route for no cost.

“Alternatively, you can reach out to local tour companies yourself, who will show you around for a much lower rate.”

Cruise line excursions are often much more expensive than third party company options or exploring solo.

If guests are visiting cities as part of their itinerary, it should be fairly simple to explore without the cruise company.

Guests will need to check how to reach the city from the port as in some cases the port can be quite far outside the centre.

If an excursion is far away from the port it may be easier to travel with the cruise line so passengers aren’t worried about getting back.

Yasmin added: “If you’re going on a boozy holiday, or need some serious soft drink rehydration, a drinks package is almost always worth it.

“Many cruise lines have the prices of their drinks available online, or you can find an average.

“By tallying up the number of drinks you’d usually purchase, such as five or more alcoholic drinks, a drinks package will seriously cut down on costs.

“You can also purchase bundles of bottled water on most lines, slashing the cost and effort of stocking up yourself.”

A drinks package could be a great deal if passengers are planning to drink most evenings on their cruise.

Guests should also check the complimentary drinks on offer as some lines will offer squash and iced tea for free.

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