Cruise deals abound: why this could be the year to spend winter holidays on a ship

As cruise lines continue to run discounts to boost bookings, the holidays can be a great time to sail, with deals for upcoming 2022 voyages everywhere you look – some as little as $50 per person per night.

Demand for travel is increasing in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, meaning airfares have skyrocketed, as have prices for country-bound hotels, resorts and all-inclusives. What this means is that, with cruise prices remaining low, a vacation at sea might be the best value if you want to go on vacation.

Whether you plan on spending them with your significant other, a group of friends, or your entire extended family, you’d be remiss not to check out some of these great last-minute cruise deals we’ve seen for sailings over Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah and New Year.

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Example cruises

A Royal Caribbean ship docked at the line’s private island in the Bahamas, Perfect Day at CocoCay. ROYAL CARIBBEAN

Here are some examples of fares I see in three popular cruise destinations during the holiday season.

Bahamas

  • Thanksgiving: Five-night Carnival Sunrise sail, round-trip from Miami on November 23, from $479 per person ($96 per night).
  • Christmas/Hanukkah: Sail three nights with Norwegian Sky, round trip from Miami on Dec. 23, from $279 per person ($93 per night).
  • New Years: Eight-night Norwegian Getaway sailing, round trip from New York on December 31, from $629 per person ($79 per night).

Caribbean

  • Thanksgiving: Nine-night Celebrity Infinity sails, round trip from Fort Lauderdale on November 19, from $599 per person ($67 per night).
  • Christmas/Hanukkah: Sixteen nights sailing in Zaandam (Holland America), round trip from Fort Lauderdale on December 20, from $1,049 per person ($66 per night).
  • New Years: Seven-night sail with Radiance of the Seas (Royal Caribbean), round-trip from New Orleans on Dec. 31, from $571 per person ($82 per night).

Mediterranean

  • Thanksgiving: Fifteen-night Regal Princess sailing, from Rome (Civitavecchia) to Fort Lauderdale on November 17, from $857 per person ($57 per night).
  • Christmas/Hanukkah: Five-night MSC Magnifica sail, round-trip from Marseille, France, on Dec. 22, from $299 per person ($60 per night).
  • New Years: Sail MSC Poesia for four nights, from Genoa, Italy, to Rome (Civitavecchia) on Dec. 31, from $243 per person ($61 per night).

The fine print

Norwegian joy. NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE

However, there are some caveats. Prices listed are for the most basic windowless cabins as advertised on VacationsToGo.com. They are also double occupancies, meaning they are per person, not per sailing. Cruisers traveling alone must pay both rates when staying only in accommodations intended for two people. (Some cruise lines offer solo cabins.)

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In addition, port taxes and fees are generally not included in the rates you initially see. Airline tickets and pre-cruise hotels can also add to the overall cost of your trip. Look for sailings that depart from a port that you can drive to if you’re cruising on a budget.

It boils down

While cruise prices for holiday weeks aren’t quite as low as what we’ve seen this fall for non-holiday weeks — think Carnival fares of $26 a day and Royal Caribbean sailings for under $100 — they’re still affordable, given a much more affordable choice. than country holidays. (While the prices above are super low, just under $1,000 per person per trip is still a bargain for holiday cruises.) Plus, you can see multiple places in one trip.

Not quite ready to sail yet? There are other great bargains to be had for sailings in 2023 and beyond with this year’s Black Friday cruise deals. Check out early deals from major cruise lines with fare discounts and perks like free airline tickets, Wi-Fi, alcohol packages and more.

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