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alisonslp

timing for booking May/june cruises inexpensively with CN deposits?

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We lucked out on our first NCL cruise to Alaska (Bliss) earlier this month. Booked a gty balcony 50 days out for just under $2000 for 3 people, with free 3rd person and free dining. Totaled $4000 with excursions, flights, etc.  But I guess I had that 2k figure in my head because when offered the chance to buy the cruise next deposits, I jumped at it!  We didn't need much on-board credit so I opted to double my CN credit - getting four $250 deposits for $500. Great!Of course, I hadn't yet processed that I needed to use them on 6+ night cruises booked 6+months in advance. I got home, settled in after the cruise and am now looking for the next cruise - bam.... They are expensive!!!  I was looking to sail on POA around Hawaii with the whole family (5) but that will be $10k just for the cruise itself. Another $5+ for tours, flights, on-board stuff, etc. I looked at the Caribbean cruises, though we have done several of these on other lines. They are more affordable especially since we can drive to port, but the 7 day ones (needed for the CN deposits) are still going to be high. We have 3 in college courses so we are limited in time of the year - basically May/June works best.

 

I guess my questions are 

1. Did I just luck out with this year's Alaska cruise being the first of the season and so cheap, booked so close to sail?

 

2. What is my best timing for booking a May/June cruise to Caribbean and/or Hawaii?

 

3. Does NCL run these deals frequently where you can use the CN deposits on cruises less than 6 days and/or when booking less than 6 months in advance, like they recently did?

 

We tend not to plan way in advance. So our previous cruises (except Disney 10 yrs ago) have been planned within 3mths of sail. Maybe we have just always been lucky with pricing...

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NCL has been letting you use two deposits on balconies and above within 6 months since last July. It is still listed as a limited time promo, but it is going on a full year now. This is the first time I have seen the promo extended to all cabin types, but at long as you are doing balcony and above, you should be safe long term.

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I believe you can use one of the certificates even if you are less than 6 months out with your booking.  Using two is the "double up" feature, which we were told requires a 6 month lead.  

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And there is a promo now until 5/23 that you can use two on ANY cabin, insides included.

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3 hours ago, EllieinNJ said:

And there is a promo now until 5/23 that you can use two on ANY cabin, insides included.

 

Yes this is a great deal!  We just used two certificates on an inside cabin. 

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Can I add a second certificate to a cruise I've already booked? Or do I have to cancel and re-book to be able to use 2 certificates?

Thanks,

Tony

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What happens to the certificate if I use it for a future cruise in 2020 and then have to cancel it?   

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, disneykins said:

Can I add a second certificate to a cruise I've already booked? Or do I have to cancel and re-book to be able to use 2 certificates?

Thanks,

Tony

 

You should be able to use the second certificate toward your final payment if you make that through the My NCL site within the promotion window.

Edited by JamieLogical

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53 minutes ago, jemz1949 said:

What happens to the certificate if I use it for a future cruise in 2020 and then have to cancel it?   

 

It will be added back to your account within 72 hours of cancellation.

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I just booked a cruise for September and called to talk to an NCL rep and she said there was no time limit to use 2x CN deposits as long as it's a balcony +. I didn't believe her, but it's worth a call if you're curious once you book.

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1 minute ago, allyfrizzle said:

I just booked a cruise for September and called to talk to an NCL rep and she said there was no time limit to use 2x CN deposits as long as it's a balcony +. I didn't believe her, but it's worth a call if you're curious once you book.

 

For all intents and purposes, that is true now. Like I said in my earlier post, the "Double Up" promotion on balcony+ even within 6 months has been running for almost a full year now. It's basically like the Free at Sea promotion at this point. While it does have an expiration date, it gets extended in perpetuity. If, worst case, they do end it, you can ALWAYS use at least one CN deposit on any booking, even within 6 months of sailing.

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I always book late (Cruise or Land) and shudder at the cost some people pay but my work and my H's is flexible so we can book last minute. As a result we can usually have 3/4 vacations a year for what some pay for one :)

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i can confirm as i just added a room for my parents for June 2nd, 2019 cruise to Bermuda and used my extra 2 CN certificates. (2 weeks before cruise)

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I an relate, we purchased 4 on our last cruise and since then prices have gotten out of my budget!!!

 

I have used 2 on a 2021 cruise and hopefully I can go on that one, got a half decent deal on a mini-suite (not my usual suite or haven lol) but I didn't have to put additional deposit down so that worked

 

Now I have 2 left..... and have to book by October 2020.  So I am thinking the same as you, but maybe an Alaskan cruise as I could just drive to port.  I have never ever booked a last minute cruise, always at least book a year plus out and in the past it really made a huge difference.  But now...with prices what they are, I am thinking of booking a last minute Alaskan cruise this summer and put 2 my cruise next certs down on it if I can....they are worth almost $700 Canadian for the two of them so I might get a good deal!!!  Fingers crossed.... 

 

Question to all who have done this, do you wait until under the 4 week mark to look and book then? If I am looking at some time early August, start looking in July for last minute deals?

 

Leah

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25 minutes ago, browniegirl said:

I an relate, we purchased 4 on our last cruise and since then prices have gotten out of my budget!!!

 

I have used 2 on a 2021 cruise and hopefully I can go on that one, got a half decent deal on a mini-suite (not my usual suite or haven lol) but I didn't have to put additional deposit down so that worked

 

Now I have 2 left..... and have to book by October 2020.  So I am thinking the same as you, but maybe an Alaskan cruise as I could just drive to port.  I have never ever booked a last minute cruise, always at least book a year plus out and in the past it really made a huge difference.  But now...with prices what they are, I am thinking of booking a last minute Alaskan cruise this summer and put 2 my cruise next certs down on it if I can....they are worth almost $700 Canadian for the two of them so I might get a good deal!!!  Fingers crossed.... 

 

Question to all who have done this, do you wait until under the 4 week mark to look and book then? If I am looking at some time early August, start looking in July for last minute deals?

 

Leah

Not sure how school holidays work there but in the UK once the kids break up all (July/Aug) vacations almost double in price

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2 minutes ago, debgreg said:

Not sure how school holidays work there but in the UK once the kids break up all (July/Aug) vacations almost double in price

 

Yes, kids are out July and August here as well and it is very true, everything gets very pricey I the summer here!!!  I am looking at doing something solo while daughter is away with her Dad, so will keep an eye out on something!

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Thanks everyone. I will keep an eye out for deals. May/early june work best for our situation and thankfully that is usually two of the cheapest months to sail. I also just realized that I have it in my head that I have to pay for the whole cruise up front - this comes from booking our previous ones so late but in reality, I could book a year out and do payments, which I am not used to. Still, I think I will continue to look for last minute deals, especially on the extended weekend cruises in our area, which will cut the cost

 

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You can use your deposits to book a shorter Cuba cruise. NCL lifts the 6 days or longer rule for that destination. 

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20 hours ago, JamieLogical said:

NCL has been letting you use two deposits on balconies and above within 6 months since last July. It is still listed as a limited time promo, but it is going on a full year now. This is the first time I have seen the promo extended to all cabin types, but at long as you are doing balcony and above, you should be safe long term.

True.
I used two on an inside for 6/2.

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