Seven Lucky Ways To Cruise More, No Gambling Experience Required

So you have become addicted to cruising.  Good. We’re glad you’re here. Unlike other addictions, cruise travel is one to be encouraged. Reasons to continue your cruise addiction are plentiful these days. Better food and entertainment are on the list as is a more relaxed dress code, a focus on destinations and more.  But being sold on feeding your cruise addiction and having the tools to do so are two entirely different animals.  Rather finding an additional job, getting a loan or stealing, here are a variety of ways to cruise more.

Ways To Cruise More
Photo- Chris Owen

Your Smartphone

Cruise CompeteI was a really good customer of one cell phone service provider for decades.  I believed that sticking with one service provider was smart and that I would get the best pricing and perhaps some bonus consideration.  When I began traveling internationally, I tried a variety of that provider’s plans but none really allowed me to use my smartphone abroad as I did at home.  That got me to looking around, running across T-Mobile.  I wanted to move to take advantage of their plan which provides unlimited data and no overage charges anywhere in the world.  One problem: I was locked into my previous carrier and did not really own my phone.  All of the sudden the “free phone” plan I had embraced for decades was a problem and a bitter pill I had to swallow in order to change providers.  Oh am I glad I did.  As a result, our monthly cellphone bill has been cut to a third of what it once was.  Those saved dollars go a long way toward feeding my cruise addiction.

Your Home Telephone

I grew up with a hard wired home telephone, just like everyone else.  There was really no thought of any other way to communicate by phone because there really was no other source to turn to. Now there is.  Very soon, more people use cellular phones as their “home phone” than not.  When we switched to T-Mobile, the deal included four phone lines.  We only needed three so the fourth went for my home office line, using the same number that was formerly hard-wired.  Better yet, I can take that smartphone line with me when I am ‘out of the office’ and it is as though I am always ‘in’. More funds available to cruise more.

Reconsider Loyalty Elsewhere As Well

A sign of the times perhaps, I have come to the realization that the best place for consumers to be, in many respects, is “thinking about being loyal to you”. Increasingly, we are seeing loyalty pay off less and introductory offers bringing more in the way of value.  If the ‘for new customers only’ deal is really attractive and does not lock you into a long term commitment, take it.  When the introductory term runs out, switch to some other company.  There will always be another ‘deal’ around the corner or one to get you back.

Cut The Cable

My best (so far) example of reconsidering loyalty comes from cable television. More accurately, cutting the cable television out and going to streaming internet sources for entertainment at home. Since July of this year, nearly one million people have done just that, finding life without cable entirely possible.  Streaming services replacing cable as the go-to destination for hot shows. Still, broadcast TV still has one major advantage over the online alternative: live television. If watching live news, sports or the latest shows as soon as they’re broadcast is a priority, that can be difficult but not impossible without a paid TV subscription.   I really like live news so Sling TV is a good choice for about $20 per month.  On the other hand, via AppleTV I get CBSNow included at no charge which is nearly live news.  SkyNews brings international news from the UK and is indeed live.  It’s all a matter of priorities.  If the priority is feeding your cruise addiction, the choice is rather easy.

Amazon Prime

Saving money on things we buy anyway is always a good idea.  A subscription to Amazon Prime brings competitive pricing and free 2-day delivery.  A bonus is included entertainment.  Amazon-exclusive television series are really as are their included movies and streaming music.  Better yet, all of those can be downloaded and watched later, maybe onboard your cruise ship instead of buying a movie. To get in the mood for a cruise: Titanic or Poseidon Adventure work and will probably not be offered on your cruise ship. Better yet: learn something new along the way or get all that nomadish flavor without the backpack via a variety of travel-related video of equal value to actually doing these tedious things yourself. Going to Germany or Japan? Check the Amazon Original Series The Man in the High Castle which explores what it would be like if the Allied Powers had lost WWII, and Japan and Germany ruled the United States.

Keep Looking

Carrying all of the above thoughts forward, take a look at other ways of buying everyday items, relationships/loyalty you have with brands ranging from insurance to automotive needs, shoes and groceries.  You may find the provider being used does indeed offer the best value, but they might not.  At the end of the process you’ll have a decision to make: continue this relationship or look for a better source.

Track Pricing And Buy Right

A final thought that might help direct your actions or non-actions: track pricing.  We started doing this not long ago, scanning purchase receipts into our smartphones.  Out shopping, it is now easy to recall what we last paid for a commonly purchased product.  That beats the feeling that “it seems less expensive” with actual facts that enable informed decisions.

Flickr photo – Ryan Milani

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Chris Owen
Chris Owen
Chris Owen is a travel writer from Orlando Florida who shares frank, inside information about cruise vacations with fellow Cruise Addicts.

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