Cruise Your Way to Vacation Bargains in 2014

An alternative way to avoid the hassles of air travel and hotels, yet still get away to virtually anywhere in the world, is to vacation via cruise ship. A cruise can be an economical way to go since most meals and entertainment, lodging and transportation, is included in the price.

The average cost of a Carnival cruise fell 15% in 2013. According to Barclays, prices are expected to be down 9% for voyages departing in the first quarter of 2014.

You’ll pay more to cruise on luxury liners, but you can still pay a lot less than most people do. There is one secret to consistently nabbing the best deals every time you cruise, and that is to be flexible. If you are open to a wide range of dates and destinations, you can simply ask your travel agent to find the lowest price-per-day fares – and in fact, an ocean-view cabin for two can regularly be had for less than $100 per person per day.

These are the types of fares that are so low that cruise liners lose money on them. They just want to fill cabins on particular, usually less popular, dates and itineraries. Of course, they hope to recoup their losses by inducing you to buy cocktails, gamble at the onboard casino, and sign up for onshore excursions and other extras. But if you avoid most of these temptations, you can cruise at below-cost rates every time.