Jump to content
  • Deals
  • Find a Cruise
  • Reviews
  • News
  • Cruise Tips

How do you pay for your cruise?

Recommended Posts

Credit card...

  • Living near one of the Cascadia ports. We have lots of choices cruise destinations.... Alaska? Washington? California? Hawaii? Asia? Australia? Where do I want to go?
  • I normally budget $100 a day for a road trip. With accommodations, transportation, and meals included. A cruise is cheaper than a road trip! I'm a huge convert.
  • By staying in Oceanview or inside cabins, I stick within my budget.
  • ship repositioning are a huge bargain

Link to comment
Share on other sites

we booked a year early, found a great deal, and saved during a kids sail free. By booking a year out we not only got a great deal but that gave us a year to put away money. It also broke up the deposit, payments and final payment. Now that we are paid in full we are saving for the DSC and whatever we plan to spend on board with three more months to go. By having 12 months we are able to put away a little each month. I also took on a few extra side jobs that were specifically for paying for the cruise. My husband also worked hard to earn a bonus at work that we applied for the vacation. We also made payments as the money came to us. We didnt just hold onto it and wait to pay at the end.


other cruises we have used our tax return. we always get the maximum taken out of our checks so we get a bigger return in spring. That allows up to usually have some extra money for a vacation.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well I use my cash back credit card (discover) for everything I can. I have about $2000 saved up now for my next cruise. Of course you have to pay it off in full every month.

Every month I have $500 taken out of my husbands account and put into a savings account. I call it my travel savings but in reality it goes for any bills that we may not have the money to pay. So if at vacation time there is any money in it I use it for the trip. Sadly there usually isn't much but every little bit helps.

This summer I may get a second job at the local quick shop.

Any refunds or "found money" gets put in the vacation fund.

I don't drink or smoke. So there is a bit of cash. we don't have television. We don't go out to eat. Drive our cars till they die. Basically we live fairly frugal. We are hardly deprived though. Just don't like to waste money.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for starting such a good discussion post!


I make use of my credit union at work and have a designated amount going into my vacation club account that is drafted each pay period (this is in addition to my IRA). Many years ago it was a small amount, but over time, I've managed to bump up the draft amount, and since it's "gone" before I have it in hand, DH and I have not really missed it. But if I had to physically make the effort to move the money myself after I was paid, not sure I would be as consistent, i.e., I could always have a good reason for skipping or reducing the amount.


I also have a part-time job and payment comes in the form of 2 checks: One for doing the job, and the other as travel expense, which is the one designated to be saved for travel.


With the cost of traveling to a port, we tend to make use of those cruise lines that are an easy drive, so I'm always watching for cruise sales from "our" ports: Charleston, Jacksonville, Port Canaveral.


On the other hand, I am signed up for emails for all the airlines, and when there is a sale for flights to port cities, I have been known to book a cruise based on the low cost of flying. We also have 1 major credit card we use to rack up fly miles. Getting to/from west coast can be as costly to us as the cruise. Our upcoming land cruise trip to Alaska is a good example. I had my TA holding the "buy 1 get half off" Hal cruise until I could verify the flight times and cost to get there. The planets were aligned for that one and I feel we got our very best deal for the cruise and the getting there.


Hope this helps.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...
By spending our DD's inheritance.


But since we take her, her DH , and their two sons, she doesn't mind -- much. ;)


Ha you sound like my parents. Except they go to the casino and don't take me. I say that all in good fun. They worked for it. They can spend it. And I hope they do. I just wish I could talk them into a cruise!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Inside cabin on a 7 day cruise ship within driving distance can be all-in for ~1500$ (tax, fees, and tips) for two people pretty easily. Flying and a balcony can be 5,000$ pretty easily. For me, I'd rather do more cheap cruising than less expensive trips. That being said, the little ones limit my travel to once a year and limit my funds to cheap cruising!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We book early then get up every morning and go to work.:eek:


That's pretty much it for us too. Any extra money that comes in throughout the year goes in the vacation fund as well as overtime and bonuses.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We also book early (16 months in advance). I've also created a vacation fund which is solely for vacation. Because a cruise is so pricey (cruise + flight), we can't take these kind of vacations too often so we save us in between. Makes for a long wait in-between but worth it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

By living (fairly) frugally and saving as much as possible.

By booking and paying for as much as possible over time. Deposit first, excursions over a period of months, prepay gratuities, etc.

Research, research, research to find the best bang for the buck.


AND because I have direct deposit for my paycheck that can be divided between multiple accounts, I have a set amount that goes into my checking account for expenses. Everything left over after that and the other deductions (401k, insurance, taxes) goes directly into my savings account. I haven't given my checking account a raise in years, so any actual raises I have gotten increase the amount going into savings. (Of course, increases in the cost of my health insurance decreases the amount going into savings, as well, but I don't really see it, so it doesn't bother me as long as something is going into the savings.

It also helps that the house is paid off, the kids are grown, and we have almost no debt. We always pay off our credit cards each month.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

DH has paintless dent repair as a 2nd job, during hail season he usually gets a few cars that are big jobs and can bring in around $1500 for a weekends worth of work.


I started a photo booth business as my side job a few years ago and it's starting to take off more, I'm always wanting to put a little more into it so it hasn't exactly helped me save a ton yet, but it's starting to take off.


I also sell crafts, I make wooden blocks, with scrapbook paper and letters mod podged to say whatever ya want. I make a lot of "family is everything" or other similar things and sell them at a couple craft fairs around Christmas time. Although since it's Christmas time a lot of that end up going towards gifts.


Our last cruise was paid for with a combination of tax return and selling a car that we did not need. We now only drive vehicles that we can pay in full at purchase time. Helps that we each live within a mile of work. I go in spurts of following Dave Ramsey too :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I look for value - Carnival seems to be less expensive and although I was leery at first, I enjoyed CCL. I would rather have more "cheap" cruises over fewer "luxury" cruises. Just as I would rather take the family to Outback Steakhouse 6 times a year vs once at Morton's (or equivalent).

Edited by RobinKY
Link to comment
Share on other sites

How I did it for our first few cruises was:


When I went to the grocery store no matter how poor I was that paycheck I took an extra $5 out. If I was feeling rich that week, I took an extra $20 out and it went into the savings account.


If I lent someone money, be it $1 or $10, when they repaid me that went into the savings account.


Any refunds went into the account. That includes if I bought something and returned it.


Any recyclable things that I got cash back for, that went into savings.


Any cash that was not part of our paycheck or a gift went into the savings account.


Any money that was "spent" and returned went in. It was a painless way to save money since none of my normal paycheck was used.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

DH just put me on a budget lol. We have a free trial of this software YNAB (you need a budget). What I like about it is we can put money in a cruise account without actually moving it. Then, instead of looking at my bank account and saying "I have money, I can buy another pair of shoes" I look at YNAB and see that I have $40 in my clothing budget for the week.


I don't mean to sound like a saleswoman but we just started using it this month and we've already put a lot of money aside without really feeling it. I can't recommend it enough.


This has already been said, but don't impulse buy. Keep your eyes on some itineraries you like and watch the price and wait for deals. We're sailing NCL and were able to get the UBP for free. We also got OBC and no deposit through Priceline.

Edited by bassclarinetgrl
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Welcome to Cruise Critic
      • ANNOUNCEMENT: Explore 5 Unique Destinations With All-inclusive Pricing
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Cruise Critic News & Features
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • Canadian Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
  • Create New...