How to plan a family cruise within the budget

Cruise season’s back again, and if planning a trip with family on the open seas isn't on your list already then it should be
Image courtesy: ©Excel Entertainment

Cruise season’s back again, and if planning a trip with family to the open seas isn’t on your list already then it should be. But before you roll your eyes and (like some of us) think it’s not for you, wait a minute. Going on a cruise doesn’t necessarily mean breaking in to your savings and living the rest of your days on air and water. It’s amazing what a little pre-planning can do.

Think of it as a well-tailored suit – a few, smart adjustments at just the right places and you get the perfect fit. Consider the following list when planning a cruise on the open seas with your family.

Research well

Research is key when you’ve just started planning your trip. For questions like where to go, when to go, and what it’ll cost, log on to the many available sites that’ll give you a good starting point. Any special and current offers are easy to spot, too. It’s also always a good idea to call up a travel agent or the cruise line itself in case you have more queries. Answers to questions relating to discounts, promotions, value added services or special packages will most likely find an answer when you pick up the phone.

Plan ahead

As with most things in life, it’s always best to plan ahead – perhaps even as much as much as six months in advance. Why pay more for tickets that’ll probably cost less around the six months before your actual date of departure? Value for money is always a good thing.


Planned a trip with your family recently?
Image courtesy: ©Excel Entertainment

Pick your season

After you’ve zeroed in on a destination, select the season when you’ll be travelling. It’s important since travelling during peak season that mean a slimmer wallet. A quick search on the web will tell you that the number of cruising seasons almost match the number of cruising destinations. So, choose well.

Get a travel agent if you have to

Too many options leaving you confused? Get a reliable travel agent who’ll help you pick and choose a package that suits yours and your family’s needs best.  It’s good to remember that some travel agents receive their commission directly from cruise lines. What it means for you is that you probably won’t have to spend extra.

It doesn’t have to be a long stay

One way of saving money (while spending it) is to keep the cruise short and sweet. Why stay a whole week when you can pack in the same experience in a four- or a five-day trip instead. Oh, the joys of coming home to a healthy savings account. Worth a second thought, isn’t it?

Bon Voyage!

AUTHOR'S BIO: Tanya is the digital and community editor at Lonely Planet India.