I think everyone is getting off the point of the original posting..Discounts are given to targeted groups that the marketing cruise folks think will fill up a ship or to attract new people to cruising..thus prior to the implementation of inventory control systems, cruise lines use to fill up cabins by offering travel industry discounts (travel agents, airline employees etc) with less then 30 days before sailing. Due to sophisticated inventory management systems the cruise lines can do a much better job of not diluting their profit margin and also score marketing points..thus the military discounts and at any given time they can target any group they want (nurses as an example), if they think that group can fill up otherwise empty cabins..for a brief period after Katrina, Carnival was offering a special rate out of New Orleans for first responders..outstanding public relations move, smart move to fill up a lot of empty cabins.
If there is such a thing as a national organization for RN's, I bet they could approach any cruiseline and negotiate a volume deal to fill up empty cabins if it works for the cruise line. The good news is as the cruiselines keep building bigger and bigger ships, with more cabins to fill, the better the opportunity to see more "occupation type" discounts. The day a cruise ship sails with empty cabins that could have been sold I think is a thing of the past..
FYI, following my back operations, my favorite people on earth are emergency room nurses and intensive care nurses who deserve a cruise for taking care of me