Anyone addicted to cruise travel knows that where there is a will, there is a way to make it happen, often. Somehow we overcome financial burdens, finding the money to fund cruise travel. Scheduling conflicts disappear as land events lose out to at-sea wonderment. Want to take someone along with us? There is usually no shortage of takers willing to come along for the ride. Experienced and addicted cruise travelers know this all too well. But what about those to whom the addiction has not yet taken hold of? What advice do we have for them to enable more cruise travel? We begin with a few tips, learned the hard way.
Skip Dining Out, Make Food
We all know that meals made at home almost always cost less than dining out. Still, we also think we don’t have time to cook and that may very well be the case. It’s all a matter of priorities and if cruise travel is yours, dining at home makes a lot of sense.
In addition to knowing what we are actually consuming, we really do know how much we’re saving based on our habits. Try this for a month: Instead of going out to lunch on Saturday, make your own and put what might have been spent at a restaurant away. A clear glass jar works really nicely for this. That way we can see what we are saving.
Take Another Look At Fixed Expenses, Pocketing The Difference
Remember, you’re an addict and you must have your cruise fix. Without it you will die, maybe not physically but the pleasure you get from sailing is so great that you will do anything to make it happen.
Simply switching credit cards to one that includes a cash back option can add $hundreds to your travel fund. We must have coffee, but do we really need it to be from Starbucks when we can make it for a fraction of the cost? Again, priorities are key and saying out loud “Do I want to go to Starbucks or on a cruise?” works wonders.
Hang Out With Others, Similarly Addicted
Cruise line websites that have a social element, the message boards of Cruise Addicts, Facebook cruise-oriented pages, Pinterest travel boards and more make talking with like-minded cruise addicts easy. Still, just watching won’t be nearly as effective as engaging others in a conversation about your addiction.
Much of the allure of cruise travel is the experience shared with others on the ships we sail. Beginning that shared experience before sailing and continuing it after focuses our mental efforts on what’s important: feeding our addiction.
Find A Good Travel Agent And Hang On Tight
Sure, we can book just about anything online these days. The big question is: Should we? One of the best parts of using a travel agent is having a professional, someone actually in the business to keep us in check. Scour the Internet for pricing and availability but don’t make a move until you talk to that travel professional in your back pocket. They might see something you don’t that can benefit you, saving $hundreds if not $thousands on just one sailing.
Actually, that’s probably one of the best reasons for cruise addicts to use a travel agent; so they get more for their money, more often.
All of the above has worked for my family of four over the years, resulting in more sailing and little disruption to normal life. But what about you? What have you done to enable more cruise travel? Share your secrets here and let us all sail more too.