5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (2023)

There are cruise people, and there those who aren’t cruise people — yet. Gone are most of the old cliches about cruises being cheesy, stuffy, and only for seniors. Today’s ships can suit any style, any budget, and any age.

And the good news — especially if you want to cruise the high seas in high luxury — is that credit card rewards can help make cruises of any caliber much more affordable. But the best travel credit cards for cruises aren’t necessarily the ones you’d expect.

In this article

  • Cruise-line specific cards: Are they your best bet?
  • The 4 best credit cards for cruises
  • The more cards, the merrier?
  • How we chose these cards (methodology)
  • Bottom line on the best credit cards for cruises

Cruise-line specific cards: Are they your best bet?

There are many cruise line-specific credit cards out there, like the Carnival World Mastercard, the Royal Caribbean Visa Signature and the Norweigan Cruise Line World Mastercard, to name a few.

There’s also a Disney® Premier Visa® Card from Chase. Since Disney cruises are among the most popular (and on the pricier side), the Disney credit card may seem like a natural choice.

But the truth is, most of these cruise-specific credit cards are not your best option for cruises. There’s nothing wrong with the cards, but when compared to other “flexible currency” cards their value pales in comparison.

The Disney card, for example, carries a hefty 3% fee for foreign transactions. The Princess Cruises Rewards Visa Card earns only the equivalent of a $100 ship credit as a bonus to new cardholders. And any co-branded credit card will lock you into that cruise line.

That means if you think you want to take a Disney cruise, but end up finding a fantastic deal on a Carnival Dr. Seuss-themed cruise instead, you’d be out of luck if all you had were Disney Rewards.

The 4 best credit cards for cruises

If you’re looking for the best credit card for cruises, a flexible rewards credit card might be a better choice than a cruise-line specific card. Plain and simple, flexible rewards give you more options, rather than locking you into cruises with one specific cruise company. Our top choices for flexible cards offer heftier bonuses for new cardholders, which can go a lot further towards the cruise of your dreams.

Not only that, but in many categories, you’ll earn more points when you use the card. That means you’ll be able to rack up the points more quickly and get closer to that ‘bon voyage’.

For example, if you used your Disney card to pay for your flights and your cruise, you’d earn 1% back in the form of Disney Reward Dollars. But if you used your Chase Sapphire Reserve®, you’d earn 3X on those purchases, and the first $300 would be erased with your annual travel credit.

The Reserve card would also give you trip protection to help cover your costs if a hurricane blows through the day you were supposed to be cruising the Caribbean, or if your flight is delayed and you miss the ship.

Here’s our list of the best credit cards for cruises:

CardWelcome bonusRewards rateAnnual fee
Chase Sapphire Reserve® Earn 80,000 points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months10X points on Lyft rides, Chase Dining purchases, hotels and cars booked via Ultimate Rewards; 5X points on flights booked via Ultimate Rewards; 3X points on travel and dining; and 1X points on everything else$550
Citi Premier® CardEarn 80,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months3X points at restaurants, supermarkets, and gas stations, and on air travel and hotels; and 1X points on all other purchases$95
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit CardEarn a one-time bonus of 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening2X miles per dollar on every purchase, every day; 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles per dollar when you book on Turo through May 16, 2023$95
The Platinum Card® from American ExpressEarn 80,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $6,000 in the first 6 months5X points per dollar spent on eligible airfare (on up to $500,000 per calendar year, after that 1X) and eligible hotel purchases, and 1X points per dollar on all other eligible purchases$695 (terms apply)

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

It’s been more than three years since the Chase Sapphire Reserve burst onto the premium credit card scene. It made a huge splash at the time, but it still reigns supreme as being one of the top earning travel rewards credit cards.

Despite its high annual fee that can be intimidating at first blush, this card consistently ranks as a favorite year after year. For starters, it boasts a generous sign-up bonus. You can earn 80,000 points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months — that’s worth $1,200 of travel if you book through the Chase portal!

A annual fee of $550 can be hard to swallow. But when you realize that the Sapphire Reserve card includes a $300 annual credit, it lowers the impact of the fee quite a bit immediately. The $300 travel credit is incredibly easy to use — you don’t have to jump through any hoops or cut through any red tape. Just use your card for travel, including flights, hotels, rideshares, subway passes, or even cruises, and the charges will automatically be erased from your statement to the tune of $300 per year.

One of the reasons that the Chase Sapphire Reserve is such a crowd favorite is because Chase Ultimate Rewards points are straightforward and easy to redeem. Just use them to book your travel directly in the Chase portal for a solid value of 1.5 cents each for hotels, airfare, rental cars, cruises, and experiences. Or, you can choose to transfer directly to many large travel partners like Marriott, United, and Southwest.

Though it can’t be done online, you can use your Chase Ultimate Rewards points to book a cruise. Just search the Cruises tab when you’re logged into the Chase portal. A few cruise options will display for you there. But rather than clicking to book online, you’ll have to call their specialized cruises and tours department to book. Even if you don’t see an appealing cruise listed when you search, you should be able to book most any cruise you find on a cruise operator’s website by calling Chase.

Since you’ll be earning plenty of rewards when you use this card —10X points on Lyft rides, Chase Dining purchases, hotels and cars booked via Ultimate Rewards; 5X points on flights booked via Ultimate Rewards; 3X points on travel and dining; and 1X points on everything else — there’s a good chance you’ll be able to rack up points more quickly by using this card as compared to a Disney or Norwegian credit card. If you want a nice welcome bonus and flexible points that are easy to earn and redeem, the Chase Sapphire Reserve deserves a spot in your wallet.

#1 Premium Travel Credit Card

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (2) 5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (3) 5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (4) 5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (5) 5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (6)

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

(Video) Cruise On-Board Credit. 8 Ways To Get More, And What You Can Spend It On!

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Learn How to Apply

Current Offer

Earn 80,000 points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months

Annual Fee

$550

Rewards Rate

10X points on Lyft rides, Chase Dining purchases, hotels and cars booked via Ultimate Rewards; 5X points on flights booked via Ultimate Rewards; 3X points on travel and dining; and 1X points on everything else

Benefits and Drawbacks

Benefits

  • Earn 80,000 points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months
  • Earn 10X points on Lyft rides, Chase Dining purchases, hotels and cars booked through Ultimate Rewards
  • Priority Pass airport lounge access

Drawbacks

  • High annual fee
  • Excellent credit required

Card Details

  • Earn 80,000 points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months
  • 10X points on Lyft rides, Chase Dining purchases, hotels and cars booked via Ultimate Rewards; 5X points on flights booked via Ultimate Rewards; 3X points on travel and dining; and 1X points on everything else

Citi Premier® Card

Another rewarding flexible point “currency” program is Citi ThankYou Points. ThankYou Points earned from the mid-tier Citi Premier card can add up quickly, For starters, you can earn 80,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months — that’s equal to $800 in travel. This card also earns an impressive 3X on top categories like restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, air travel, hotels, and 1X on all other eligible purchases.

Over the past couple of years, the ThankYou Points program has become more valuable with the addition of many new transfer partners. Some of these transfer partners are a bit more obscure, like Turkish Airlines and Qantas, but frequent transfer bonuses can unlock superb value from ThankYou Points.

Similar to the Chase Ultimate Rewards Travel Portal, Citi’s ThankYou program has a designated website where you can shop for cruises. You can use your points to book, and you’ll get a value of 1 cent per ThankYou point from your Premier card. One important note: you’ll be able to search for cruises on the ThankYou portal, but you’ll need to call to book them.

(Video) 5 Tips To Finding The Best Deal For Cruises

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Another great flexible credit card rewards option with a hefty bonus for new cardholders. With the Capital One Venture card, you can earn a one-time bonus of 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening. Plus, you’ll earn 2X miles per dollar on every purchase, every day; 5X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles per dollar when you book on Turo through May 16, 2023.

It’s just as easy to redeem your Venture miles as it is to earn them. You can redeem miles for statement credits toward past travel purchases, book new travel directly through Capital One, or cash out miles for gift cards. All of these redemption options give you the ability to lock in a fixed value of one cent per mile.

Using your Venture Rewards for cruises is easy and straightforward. Once you’ve found the cruise that works best for you, you can book it on any website. Just pay with your Venture card, and use your miles to erase some or all of the charges. Or, you could opt to cash out your Capital One miles for gift cards for Carnival, Princess, Disney, Royal Caribbean cruises, to name a few. Alternatively, you could book your cruise directly through the Capital One travel portal using your miles.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

Even though it’s not a great option for redeeming points for cruises, the American Express Platinum Card is a great travel rewards card to look into when you’re thinking about a cruise.

That’s because as a Platinum cardholder, when you book a cruise of at least five nights you’re entitled to the benefits of American Express’ Cruise Privileges Program. This program gives you fantastic benefits like a stateroom credit between $100-$300 redeemable towards dining and spa services onboard, as well as unique amenities like canapés and premium wine.

The Cruise Privileges Program works with 14 major cruise lines, like Norweigan, Royal Caribbean, and Crystal. When you call this special department at American Express and book with cash, you’ll earn 2X points on the price of your cruise. (While you can use your American Express Membership Rewards to pay for your cruise, you won’t get great value for your points.)

The Platinum Card has an annual fee of $695, but comes loaded with benefits. New cardmembers are eligible for this welcome offer: Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $6,000 in the first 6 months. The card also comes with $200 in Uber credit and free airport lounge access. Plus, you can earn 5X points per dollar spent on eligible airfare (on up to $500,000 per calendar year, after that 1X) and eligible hotel purchases, and 1X points per dollar on all other eligible purchases. Enrollment is required for select benefits.

Best Luxury Travel Benefits

The Platinum Card® from American Express

Current Offer

Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $6,000 in the first 6 months

(Video) Best Cruise Credit Card?

Annual Fee

$695

Rewards Rate

5X points per dollar spent on eligible airfare (on up to $500,000 per calendar year, after that 1X) and eligible hotel purchases, and 1X points per dollar on all other eligible purchases

Benefits and Drawbacks

Benefits

  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $6,000 in the first 6 months
  • Select your metal card design: classic Platinum Card, Platinum x Kehinde Wiley, or Platinum x Julie Mehretu
  • 5X points on flights booked directly with airlines or on Amextravel.com (on up to $500,000 per calendar year, after that 1X) and prepaid hotels booked on Amextravel.com
  • $200 hotel credit (minimum two-night stay required), $240 digital entertainment credit, $200 in Uber Cash, up to $300 Equinox credit, $200 airline fee credit
  • Access to Centurion and Priority Pass airport lounges
  • Select benefits require enrollment.
  • $695 annual fee. Terms apply.

Drawbacks

  • High annual fee

Card Details

  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $6,000 in the first 6 months
  • 5X points per dollar spent on eligible airfare (on up to $500,000 per calendar year, after that 1X) and eligible hotel purchases, and 1X points per dollar on all other eligible purchases
  • Terms apply

The more cards, the merrier?

When it comes to credit card rewards, it can pay to consider a multiple card strategy to cover all your bases. Instead of putting all your proverbial eggs in one basket, you could enjoy the benefits of several programs and “stack” them to create the perfect cruise.

For example, say you’re certain you want to take a Disney cruise. And on that cruise, you plan on spending a lot of time in the spa. The kids will be entertained in the Kids Oceaneer Club, so why not!?

You could consider opening a Chase Sapphire Reserve card to earn the generous welcome bonus, use the $300 annual travel credit, and protect your trip. Use that card to earn 3X on travel (not booked through Ultimate Rewards and excluding the $300 travel credit) and dining purchases and rack up Ultimate Rewards points quickly. You could use your Ultimate Rewards points to pay for your family’s flights to the cruise port, and the cruise itself.

You could also open a Disney Premier Credit Card and earn a $300 statement credit after you spend $1000 in the first 3 months. You could use your Disney card to earn 5% in Disney Rewards Dollars on DisneyPlus.com, Hulu.com, and ESPNPlus.com; 2% at gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, and most Disney locations; and 1% on all other purchases.

As a Disney cardholder, you would be entitled to a 20% discount on all spa services on port days. You’d also get a 10% discount on various merchandise, photo packages, and Castaway Cay packages at Disney’s private island. And you could pay for these discounted services and merchandise with the Disney Dollars you racked up.

How we chose these cards (methodology)

We chose the flexible cards above as the best credit cards for cruises because of their stellar welcome bonuses, generous earning potential and a wide range of choices.

When you’re planning your perfect cruise, consider pairing one of these flexible travel cards with a co-branded card like Disney, or with a straight cash back credit card. This way you’re leaving your options wide open, and you’re maximizing your rewards.

Bottom line on the best credit cards for cruises

You should always consider your priorities when choosing the best credit card for you. Would you rather get 2X miles on every purchase and not have to think about categories? Do you highly value the perks from the American Express Cruise Privileges Program and the exceptional Platinum Concierge help? Would the 20% off of spa services on a Disney cruise equal huge savings for you?

No matter how you’re looking to cruise, there’s a perfect card — or cards! — for you to help subsidize much of the cost. Happy cruising!

Our #1 Travel Card

(Video) MY FRIEND WAS ROBBED ON HER CRUISE AND IT COULD HAVE BEEN MUCH WORSE

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (24) 5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (25) 5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (26) 5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (27) 5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (28)

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (29) 5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (30) 5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (31) 5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (32) 5 Best Credit Cards for Cruises (Hint: They’re Not What You Expect) (33)

Learn How to Apply

Current Offer

Earn 60,000 points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months

Annual Fee

$95

Rewards Rate

5X points on Lyft rides and travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards; 3X points on eligible dining, select streaming services, and online grocery purchases; 2X points on travel; and 1X points per $1 on all other eligible purchases

Benefits and Drawbacks

Benefits

  • Earn 60,000 points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months
  • 5X points on Lyft rides and travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • 25% more value when redeeming rewards for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • 10% anniversary point bonus each year
  • $50 annual credit on hotel stays booked through Ultimate Rewards
  • Premium travel protection benefits

Drawbacks

  • Has annual fee
  • Typically need to spend thousands to reap rewards
(Video) Major Money Savings Tips *NEW HACKS* 2022 | WATCH BEFORE CRUISING

Card Details

  • Earn 60,000 points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months
  • 5X points on Lyft rides and travel booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards; 3X points on eligible dining, select streaming services, and online grocery purchases; 2X points on travel; and 1X points per $1 on all other eligible purchases

FAQs

What is the best card to use on a cruise ship? ›

The best credit card for cruises is the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card because it gives 5 points / $1 points spent on travel booked through Chase, including cruises.

Does Chase Sapphire cover cruises? ›

50% more value in travel redemption

Your points are worth 50% more when you redeem them for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruise lines through Ultimate Rewards—our easy-to-use portal that helps you maximize your travel spending. For example, 50,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.

Is Carnival Mastercard hard to get? ›

The Carnival Credit Card credit score requirement is 700 or better. That means people with good credit or better have a shot at getting approved for the Carnival Credit Card.

How do I get a cheap cruise score? ›

13 Tips for Finding Cheap Cruise Deals
  1. Don't Wait for Last-Minute Cruise Deals on High-Season Sailings. ...
  2. Hunt Down Shoulder Season and Repositioning Cruise Deals. ...
  3. Use Cruise Critic's Deal Score to Know When a Deal is Really a Deal. ...
  4. Bundle Up for the Best Cruise Deals. ...
  5. Ask for a Price Drop Credit When Cruise Fares Change.

What is a good amount of money to take on a cruise? ›

What Is The Average Amount of Cash to Bring on a Cruise? On a cruise, most guests bring between $100-$120 in cash per day to be spent on transportation, tips, gifts, food, and shopping. In a survey of 850 cruisers, 71% stated that they took over $100 per person per day when cruising.

Is it better to take cash or card on a cruise? ›

We highly recommend paying for anything OFF of the ship in cash. Ports in tourist areas are typically safe from violent crime, but petty crime like theft — or credit card fraud — can happen. So if you plan to pay for meals and entertainment with a card, there is always the risk of being overcharged, charged twice, etc.

Is Sapphire Preferred worth it over Freedom Unlimited? ›

Although both cards offer excellent earning potential, the Chase Sapphire Preferred card has an edge over the Freedom Unlimited card thanks to its generous welcome bonus and the opportunity to receive better value for your points at redemption time. The card also offers better travel insurance benefits.

Is Chase Sapphire worth it if you don't travel? ›

The Chase Sapphire Preferred is a travel rewards card through and through. That means if you don't spend frequently on travel and dining, you might be hard-pressed to justify paying $95 every year for the card, though the $50 annual hotel credit can help lower your annual cost.

Does my health insurance cover me on a cruise? ›

Your regular health insurance likely won't cover you. Not even Medicare, which doesn't cover health care services when the ship is more than 6 hours away from a U.S. port. Serious medical emergencies may require a medical evacuation, which can mean being airlifted off the ship to the nearest hospital.

Do Carnival cruises get cheaper closer to sailing date? ›

The closer you get to the departure date, the cheaper the cruise becomes. Why? Because cruise ships don't want to depart with half-empty boats, so they drop prices steadily until that boat is leaving port, since for them empty cabins mean less money.

How hard is it to get approved by synchrony? ›

What's the Synchrony Bank credit card credit score requirement? It depends on the credit card you are interested in. Most credit cards offered by Synchrony Bank are designed for people with fair (640 – 699), good (700 – 749) or excellent (750 – 850) credit.

Which deck is best on Carnival? ›

Lower deck: The lower deck is the best deck on a cruise ship if you want to be one of the first off the ship, exploring all the fun at each port of call.

How do you get free stuff on a cruise? ›

How to Get Free Stuff on a Cruise: 8 Tips to Know
  1. Be Brave and Get Onstage for Free Prizes. ...
  2. A Spa Tour Just Might Come With Free Perks. ...
  3. Proving Your Cruise Line Loyalty for Free Stuff. ...
  4. Score Freebies Shopping on Your Cruise. ...
  5. Win Prizes at Onboard Trivia and Other Games. ...
  6. Attend an Art Auction for Free Bubbles.

What is the cheapest month to book a cruise? ›

The best time of year to book a cruise is often January through March. During this period — also known as wave season — industry-wide sales occur and the price of that cruise you've been dreaming of may drop significantly.

Do cruises get cheaper the longer you wait? ›

Cruise prices do not get cheaper closer to the sailing date in all cases. Cruise prices are usually the cheapest furthest from the sailing date when first launched or 60-90 days before the cruise sets sail. The prices of some cruises will decrease last minute but this doesn't always happen.

What is the best way to take money on a cruise? ›

Most cruise ships will have a cash machine on them, but it's worth checking your specific ship in advance to be sure. You'll find the majority of cruise lines operate in USD and there will be a service charge from the ATM to withdraw funds.

How much does the average person spend on drinks on a cruise? ›

Prices start at about $18, per person, per day, and go up from there, depending on the cruise line and which drinks are included. Standard alcohol packages average $55 to $65 per person, per day, and the price likewise varies both by cruise line and drink inclusions.

How much does the average person spend on a cruise? ›

From these public reports, we know that the average cost of cruise fare runs from about $130-$260 per person, per day (depending on cruise line).

How much money should you bring on a 7 day cruise? ›

So How Much Cash Should I Take on a Cruise? As a general rule, plan to have $50 to $100 each day in the local currency. Also, you may want to bring an extra $20 a day for tipping crew members. Make sure to include smaller bills for tips.

Do you tip cash on a cruise? ›

Many luxury cruise lines, higher-end river lines, and some British and Australian lines have a no-tipping policy, and gratuities are not required. You can always tip at your discretion, though some crewmembers are not allowed to accept monetary gifts.

Is it better to be at the top or bottom of a cruise ship? ›

The higher the deck, the better and, often, more panoramic the view. Cabins on top decks aren't always the best on the ship, but many suites and specialty cabin categories are typically located on upper decks.

What card is better than sapphire Reserve? ›

The Platinum Card® from American Express is a good alternative for those who don't mind a high-annual-fee card that's packed with premium benefits. However, the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card offers overall the best value as an alternative to the Chase Sapphire Reserve®.

What income do you need for Sapphire Preferred? ›

We recommend that your annual income be at least $30,000 or higher before applying for the Chase Sapphire Preferred card.

How do I get my Sapphire Preferred fee waived? ›

The only surefire way to get the Chase Sapphire Preferred $95 annual fee waived is if you're an active servicemember and you check that box on the application. As long as Chase can confirm your active duty status, they won't charge you any fees.

How many credit cards is too many credit cards? ›

It's generally recommended that you have two to three credit card accounts at a time, in addition to other types of credit. Remember that your total available credit and your debt to credit ratio can impact your credit scores. If you have more than three credit cards, it may be hard to keep track of monthly payments.

Is Chase Sapphire difficult to get? ›

Generally, you'll need to have a credit score of at least 700 in order to qualify for the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card. It is possible for you to qualify with a lower score — or even be rejected with a higher score — but to improve your odds of being approved, aim to have a score above 700.

Should I have 3 credit cards? ›

To prepare, you might want to have at least three cards: two that you carry with you and one that you store in a safe place at home. This way, you should always have at least one card that you can use. Because of possibilities like these, it's a good idea to have at least two or three credit cards.

What is the best room position on a cruise ship? ›

You want to be as close to the pivot point as possible to feel the least movement. Avoid cabins near the front (bow) or back (stern) and on decks higher than the middle deck of the ship. So, on a ship with fourteen passenger decks, your best options are below deck seven.

What is not covered on a cruise? ›

Taxes, gratuities or a service charge, plus other “extras” are just some of the things not included with your cruise fare. As cruise lines encourage cruisers to pre-book specialty restaurants, beverage packages, photo packages and more, many new cruisers are wondering…

What's typically not included on a cruise? ›

Cruises are all-inclusive. Meals, limited drinks and accommodation are all included in the base cruise fare. There are a number of exclusions, alcohol, gratuities, excursions, WiFi and speciality meals usually cost extra.

What day of the week do cruise prices drop? ›

You might want to consider what day of the week to search for cruises, says cruisewatch.com, a search engine for cruise price drop. According to an elaborate study that took into consideration more than 600,000 data points, cruise prices drop lowest in the middle of the week with Thursday seeing most discounts.

How can I save the most money on a Carnival cruise? ›

8 Tips, Hacks, and Ways to Save Money on a Carnival Cruise
  1. Sail Locally. ...
  2. Consider Stateroom Options. ...
  3. Use a Travel Agent. ...
  4. Be Flexible With Travel Dates. ...
  5. Consider Not Getting the Drink Package. ...
  6. Look for Specials. ...
  7. Skip the Specialty Restaurants. ...
  8. Avoid “Empty Wallet” Syndrome.
26 Nov 2021

What time do most cruises leave? ›

The majority of cruises leave port at 4 or 5:00 pm. If your cruise leaves at a different time than this, check with your cruise line to see what time embarkation begins. Most cruise ships will begin boarding 4-5 hours before sailaway.

What is the easiest card to get approved? ›

The Credit One Visa Card is the easiest unsecured credit card to get. It is available to people with bad credit or no credit. Cardholders also earn 1% cash back on eligible purchases.

What is the easiest Synchrony card to get? ›

Easy Credit Cards To Get (Low or No Credit)

We recommend the The OpenSky® Secured Visa® Credit Card which doesn't require a credit check and is a solid option for those looking to boost their credit score.

What FICO score does Synchrony Bank use? ›

In fact, Synchrony uses TransUnion nearly exclusively. Though all three credit bureaus use your financial activities as the basis for their reports about you, there is the possibility that each bureau will have slightly different details and scores.

What deck prevents seasickness? ›

What's the best stateroom location to avoid motion sickness on a cruise? To reduce motion sickness, choose a stateroom in the middle of the ship on a lower deck. You will feel any sway of the ship less in this section.

Where is the most stable room on a cruise ship? ›

Low and midship: Best cabin location to avoid seasickness

The best cabin location for those worried about seasickness is midship on a low deck. As a ship rocks and rolls in the waves, it is most stable at its lowest, most central point.

What drinks are free on cruises? ›

On most mainstream cruise lines, however, only certain beverages are included in the fares. Complimentary drinks typically include tap water, basic coffee, tea (iced or hot), hot chocolate (from a packet or machine), milk and a selection of juices with meals.

Do you get free food if you work on a cruise ship? ›

Do cruise ship employees get free food? Yes, crew members receive free food for working onboard a ship, along with a cabin to sleep in (more on that later). Similar to the guests, crew members have their own buffet style restaurant to get their meals from throughout the day.

Will cruise prices drop in 2022? ›

Cruise lines will have to lower prices in the second half of 2022 to fill ships because cumulative bookings are "in a deep hole" compared with 2019 levels, according to a report written by Truist Securities equity research analyst C. Patrick Scholes.

How get the cheapest rate on a cruise? ›

13 Tips for Finding Cheap Cruise Deals
  1. Don't Wait for Last-Minute Cruise Deals on High-Season Sailings. ...
  2. Hunt Down Shoulder Season and Repositioning Cruise Deals. ...
  3. Use Cruise Critic's Deal Score to Know When a Deal is Really a Deal. ...
  4. Bundle Up for the Best Cruise Deals. ...
  5. Ask for a Price Drop Credit When Cruise Fares Change.

How far in advance should I book a cruise to get the best price? ›

Experts say it's best to book a cruise six to 12 months ahead for the best price, but you might be able to snag a better deal if you have the flexibility to wait a bit longer.

How many days is enough for a cruise? ›

If you're bringing the whole family, a 5 or 7 day cruise might be the best way to make sure everyone has an awesome getaway. And for those lucky folks with even more time to spare, a cruise of 10 days or more will give you an incredible experience of all the best things a cruise has to offer.

How much time do you need to show up before a cruise? ›

In general, expect to spend about 15 minutes on the boarding process if lines are short (usually when boarding later), or at most about 45-60 minutes if lines are long (usually when boarding earlier). When you arrive to the cruise port can make a big difference in how long you'll wait to board.

Is it better to book your next cruise while on a cruise? ›

Many cruise lines offer exciting incentives to guests who book their next cruise while still onboard. The rewards vary by cruise line, number of nights, and cabin category, and can include: Reduced deposits. Bonus onboard credit.

Which deck is best on a ship? ›

The higher the deck, the better and, often, more panoramic the view. Cabins on top decks aren't always the best on the ship, but many suites and specialty cabin categories are typically located on upper decks.

How do I not spend money on a cruise? ›

By examining each one carefully for your vacation preferences, you can avoid wasting money and save your spending for only the very best options.
  1. Drink Packages. ...
  2. Specialty Dining. ...
  3. Fitness Classes. ...
  4. Connection Fees. ...
  5. Professional Photos. ...
  6. Souvenirs. ...
  7. Tours With Meals. ...
  8. Shopping Tours.

Is it better to prepay gratuity on a cruise? ›

If you want to make your life easier, and don't plan on removing or adjusting the gratuities on a cruise, it's better to prepay before you go. In our experience, prepaying gratuities does not negatively affect the service onboard. We have consistently been very pleased with the wonderful service on cruise ships.

Can I use my Social Security card for a cruise? ›

Proof of identity, such as a certified copy of a U.S. birth certificate, U.S. passport, employment authorization document, permanent resident card, or foreign passport with an approved form I-94. Proof of your Social Security Number, such as an SSN card, W-2, or paystub with full SSN.

What is the best floor to be on a cruise ship? ›

The lower and more central you are in a ship, the less roll and sway you will feel. Even if you choose a balcony room, choose a low level and a room closest to the ship's center. The higher decks and cabins at the front (forward) or back (aft) of the ship will rock and roll the most.

Where is the best place to sleep on a cruise ship? ›

You want to be as close to the pivot point as possible to feel the least movement. Avoid cabins near the front (bow) or back (stern) and on decks higher than the middle deck of the ship. So, on a ship with fourteen passenger decks, your best options are below deck seven.

Is it worth getting a balcony on a cruise ship? ›

Balcony cabins on cruise ships are more spacious due to the outside space. They have spectacular ocean views, fresh sea air, and a private seating area. Although these cabins are more expensive, the rewards of a private balcony sometimes outweigh the cost. If it fits within your budget, balcony cabins are worth it!

How much money should you take on a $5 day cruise? ›

As a general rule, plan to have $50 to $100 each day in the local currency. Also, you may want to bring an extra $20 a day for tipping crew members. Make sure to include smaller bills for tips. Fifty to a hundred dollars a day should be enough to cover small purchases, tips and snacks at each port.

What happens if you don't tip on a cruise? ›

When you forego tipping on your cruise, you aren't hurting the corporation. You're just lowering the pool of funds that hard-working service employees share at the end of the journey. Automatically added gratuities take the confusion out of tipping on your cruise.

What is a good tip for housekeeping on a cruise? ›

For bartenders and housekeepers, you may also want to offer a generous tip at the beginning of the cruise (again, $20 or more, depending on your needs) to ensure great service while on board. As for daily housekeeping gratuity, $2 to $5 per person per day is a good rule of thumb.

How much extra should I tip my cabin steward on a cruise? ›

There aren't any hard-and-fast guidelines for this type of tip since it's contingent on your experience, but $25 to $40 on behalf of a couple roughly works out to an extra $2 to $3 per person, per day, for a seven-night cruise.

How much do you tip for room service on a cruise ship? ›

Many lines now have fees for some room service deliveries, but unless the menu specifies that a gratuity is being added to the fee, it is customary to tip a dollar or two with each delivery unless you are in a suite or on a luxury line where the butler delivers your room service.

Can you live on a cruise ship when you retire? ›

Certain cruise lines have rooms designed for full-time living with six month and yearly lease options. Others simply allow you to book out a room for a specified period of time. Certain cruise lines have special programs for retirees.

Can you use a birth certificate instead of a passport for a cruise? ›

U.S. citizens on closed-loop cruises will be able to enter or depart the country with proof of citizenship, such as an Enhanced Driver's License (EDL), a government-issued birth certificate (issued by the Vital Records Department in the state where he or she was born) or passport, and if 16 or older, a government ...

Do you keep your passport on a cruise? ›

We always recommend carrying a passport book or a passport card while vacationing on a cruise. That being said, there are certain types of cruises where you'll be able to board with other types of documentation if you do not have either a passport book or passport card.

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