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Better Without My VIFP Number?


Woodfaerie
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I was researching cruises and just for the  heck of it, decided to see if there was actually a discount when I entered my VIFP number.  I had 2 window open, one I was logged in with my VIFP,  the other not logged in because I was researching as  Josephine Stealthmode.   The sailing with my VIFP number showed the Pack and Go (cheapest rate for that particular sailing)  as not available but the more expensive options were. Under  the Stealthmode / non VIFP, the Pack and go was available.

Now why on earth would booking under under a non VIFP offer me less expensive options  than using my VIFP number to book?  Inquiring minds want to know.

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I don't know, but I recently had an experience where a travel agent was able to find me a fare that was WAAAAY cheaper than what I could book on the Carnival site.  It was weird...usually they see the same rates and can maybe get you a little more OBC or something.  But this time, I was seeing $6k for 2 balcony rooms, and the agent got me $4500.  It was bizarre.  Still not sure how exactly how they got it to work?  They were able to use a casino rate that simply WAS NOT coming up when I tried to book for myself (not for that NYE sailing).  I probably could have used a PVP and gotten it as well, but since the agent found it, I gave them the business.

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I've seen the same lately. On top of it, I'm helping a large group book and they range from first time cruisers, to 1 time before cruisers, to "a few" time cruisers and every single one of them has better rates than me right now. Puts a bad taste in my mouth like "we know we got ya anyways" so I think I'll start shopping around. There are a few lines out there I've been wanting to try but Carnival has given me such good VIFP rates that it kept me here.

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I was searching for cruises recently and the results showed prices much lower than I had been seeing, which surprised me.  Then I noticed I had made a typo when entering my VIFP number, and was actually looking at offers someone else had.  They were as low as 50% of what I saw under my VIFP number.  Obviously there was no personal information on whoever had that VIFP number. Wish I could have booked those prices!

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Have you already booked a cruise using that promo code, or another one similar to it?  They wont show some offers if you have already used that offer.  I say "some" because I am not sure that is universal to all offer codes.

 

Completely unconfirmed, but I can see some offers being used also canceling out others as well.

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5 hours ago, heidiatmn1 said:

I've seen the same lately. On top of it, I'm helping a large group book and they range from first time cruisers, to 1 time before cruisers, to "a few" time cruisers and every single one of them has better rates than me right now. Puts a bad taste in my mouth like "we know we got ya anyways" so I think I'll start shopping around. There are a few lines out there I've been wanting to try but Carnival has given me such good VIFP rates that it kept me here.

It does seem as those of us with a fair amount of sailings under our belts don't get the better rates as "they" have determined we are hooked and will pay to feed our addictions.  There is some slight truth to that. I totally understand  why your less traveled cruisers are getting the better deals but holy cow, the additional costs of traveling (airfare, etc) really make me jones for some better deals.

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I just booked 4 cabins. Dh and my rate was the worst. We are platinum with the most trips on Carnival. Booked with my parents and got a better deal. My youngest brother is gold and got the same offer. My oldest brother is gold, but his wife has only cruised a couple times. She got an unbelievable rate of $35 for a 4 day cruise....come to find out she spent WAY TOO MUCH on the spa last time she cruised. They want her back!

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4 hours ago, cruisemom67 said:

I just booked 4 cabins. Dh and my rate was the worst. We are platinum with the most trips on Carnival. Booked with my parents and got a better deal. My youngest brother is gold and got the same offer. My oldest brother is gold, but his wife has only cruised a couple times. She got an unbelievable rate of $35 for a 4 day cruise....come to find out she spent WAY TOO MUCH on the spa last time she cruised. They want her back!

I just got a 5 day cruise for $25 and couldn't figure out why because I had only sailed Carnival one time before and don't gamble, now it makes sense since I did overindulge in the spa a bit.

 

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7 hours ago, cruisemom67 said:

I just booked 4 cabins. Dh and my rate was the worst. We are platinum with the most trips on Carnival. Booked with my parents and got a better deal. My youngest brother is gold and got the same offer. My oldest brother is gold, but his wife has only cruised a couple times. She got an unbelievable rate of $35 for a 4 day cruise....come to find out she spent WAY TOO MUCH on the spa last time she cruised. They want her back!

That is why I think I never get the good deals.  We are frugal cruisers. and basically don't need much more that what is included in the cruise fare. We don't drink, no photos, no spa, no specialty restaurants, a rare ship excursion, etc. Pre-paid bottomless bubbles, water for the cabin and gratuities and we are ready to cruise. We bring cash for extra tips, so even that does not show on our Sail and Sign card.

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There is no best way to book any type of vacation. Period. Same goes with my hotel rate. Sometimes it's cheaper to book it third party than with the "loyalty rate". Shop around and compare.

 

Also, don't always trust people's targeted offers. What they often don't tell you is how much they waste onboard with excursions, drinking, gambling, etc. 

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I also question my VIFP rates, they say I get the best rates, I call shenanigans with that. I recently was on a cruise that I paid quite a bit for, but I did have a casino rate so I got $500 OBC and got an aft balcony. We had some friends that were going w/us but decided to cancel about 2-3 months b4 sailing. They all ended up getting better deals offered to them, like $25 rooms, so they rebooked at that better rate, none of them are gamblers. 1 couple got a deal for about $400, our other friend got a solo rate for under $300. We all had a great time on the Sunrise. I have never gotten a $25 rate, if I did I would cruise even more. But, I also already have another cruise booked for Jan 2022. I think they know they have me hooked so they don't give me those great deals. Maybe I need to stop booking too far in advance, maybe I'll start getting some great last minute deals.

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