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Re-positioning Cruises: A Great Way to Save Money

One way to get a great bargain is to sail on a re-positioning cruise. As the name implies, these are cruises primarily designed to move the ship from on embarkation port to another. For example, a ship that cruises Alaska in the summer might cruise the Caribbean in the winter. As the ship transitions from one location to the other the cruise line naturally does not want to sail an empty ship. As a result, re-positioning cruises often offer bargain prices to help fill up the ship.

Such cruises may not include as many ports of call and usually have far more days at sea, but otherwise offer all the attractions of regular cruises. They are ideal if you have the time and want to relax more than sight-see, and save money while you are at it.

Here are two examples of some recent re-positioning bargains:

Holland America's Nieu Statendam
Holland America’s Nieu Statendam

Holland America has a 14-night Transatlantic cruise in December 2018 on its brand new ship the Nieu Statendam, departing from Rome with stops in Funchal (Portugal), Cartagena and Malaga inSpain and then on to Fort Lauderdale. The price we found for an outside cabin was an incredible $1099 per person (excluding taxes). And, again, Holland America has a Catholic priest on every cruise, not just re-positioning cruises.

Royal Caribbean’s Vision of the Seas had a 14-night cruise leaving Bayonne, New Jersey on October 23, 2017, going to San Juan, Saint Thomas, Phillipsburg (St. Martin), Willemstad (Netherland Antilles) and Grand Cayman and then on to Galveston Texas. The price we found was only $1200.50 per person (tax included) in an ocean-view cabin! Out of those 12 days, 6 days are at sea. Lots of time to read, relax or whatever. Royal Caribbean promises to have a Catholic priest on board all Trans-Atlantic & Pacific re-positioning cruises.

Of course, when considering a re-positioning cruise you need to take into account the fact that you are flying in to one city and out of another.

This is called an “open jaw” ticket by the airlines and does not mean you need to buy two separate tickets.  Just factor in the airfare cost and it is still a great bargain.  In the case of the Holland America cruise we mentioned above, you could fly in to Rome, spend a few days in the “Eternal City” and then join the cruise.