Costly Cruise or Value Vacation?

Many vacationers struggle with the cruise versus single destination vacation issue.  With cruise companies constantly touting their low prices, it is easy to see why.  Let’s explore the true price of a cruise.  As I am based in Philadelphia, I will use the May prices out of this area for this comparison.

A Western Caribbean Cruise on a brand new 1,800 cabin ship sailing out of Miami sells for an advertised price of $849.00 for 7nts.  When you compare that to 7nts at the All-Inclusive Ocean Blue Resort & Spa Punta Cana for an advertised prices of $1,189.99, the cruise seems a better value.

Let’s look at some hidden costs.

First the cruise = $849.00
Airfare/transfers — most people in the U.S.A. will need to buy airfare to get to the ship, an average of $450, then transfers from the airport to the ship $50
A view of the ocean — outside window = $200; balcony = $190
Drinks — unlimited soft drinks for the week = $42; 1 bottle of water a day, 1 beer, 1 glass of wine and 1 cocktail each = $24 a day in drinks; totals $168 for 7 days
Surcharges/tips = $10 per day fuel surcharge; mandatory $10 a day tips; totals $140 for the week
Taxes = $64.46

You can see how quickly your $850 cruise will cost $2,253.46!

Now let’s take a Junior Suite with balcony at the Ocean Blue Resort & Spa Punta Cana. Including roundtrip airfare, all meals, all drinks, all tips, all fees, all taxes the trip will cost you $1,317.69. Although the advertised price of the cruise seems less expensive the better value is absolutely the all-inclusive vacation, in this case, you save $1,871. That’s enough money to take a 2nd vacation.

One thought on “Costly Cruise or Value Vacation?

  1. That makes so much sense. I read recent article about crusing and it said the cruise lines make more money from a passenger once they are on the ship than the price for the cruise. My wife and I were just considering a cruise with the family. She’s an expereinced cruiser. I’m not. The thought was the cruise would be more economical considering the times…….quite the contrary. Thanks for the ammo.

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