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-   -   What is your Fav. discount cruise site (http://www.cruisemates.com/forum/all-things-cruising/357276-what-your-fav-discount-cruise-site.html)

singing mommy October 13th, 2008 03:29 PM

What is your Fav. discount cruise site
 
My husband and I are determined to cruise in 09 - money will be a factor. I have found some really good deals on discount cruise sites if you book 90 days out or so. Is there a downside to this??What is your favorite discount cruise site? Do some sites favor some cruise lines? We booked a Disney cruise with vacations to go and got a REALLY good deal!!! Any advice?? THANKS!

jackieb October 14th, 2008 03:56 PM

We booked ours through smart cruisers. There cheap but very unfriendly. And if the price drops or they offer onboard credits after you have booked you can't change.

mehawk October 14th, 2008 04:34 PM

I have used Nancy B and she has beaten the other discounters by $.

CruzNut October 15th, 2008 01:13 AM

I agree with Michael - Nancy B has saved me a bundle over a whole bunch of cruises. Check out Cruisemates special cruises for a better idea.

valtime October 15th, 2008 09:27 AM

We always use CruiseVacationOutlet (ext 170) and have never had a bad deal - cruise number 43 coming up.

beenie weenie October 15th, 2008 11:04 AM

I know I have booked at least 10 cruises with Nancy and Marietta, we've had no problems that she couldn't handle, she always returns my calls and trys hard to keep me happy. I just booked a cruise with her for the fall and she saved me a $1000 off the pricing the cruiseline gave me for four of us. I was pretty happy with the deal she offered us and we were able to get one of the nice aft mini suites I have been lusting after for a while.

If I just want to browse what's available and see if prices have dropped etc, I often pop over to vacationstogo.com and look at their 90 day ticker.

singing mommy October 15th, 2008 12:29 PM

Who is Nancy B? I'm sure I missed something!

mehawk October 15th, 2008 01:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by singing mommy
Who is Nancy B? I'm sure I missed something!

Sending you a private message...

SailorSquirrel October 16th, 2008 01:06 PM

I would like to know who Nancy B is also. Can someone send me that info? Thanks!

spacewoman October 17th, 2008 11:53 AM

me too who's nancy b?

twincruisermom October 18th, 2008 12:25 PM

I have been reading these boards for some time and I really wanted to respond on this topic as some other cruise sites will not let you recommend agents.

I was royally burned by a local travel agency for our first cruise with extra fees that were not disclosed and I was too naive to do anything about it.

For our last three cruises we have used Genxcruises.com. JD has given us terrific deals always lower than the posted Princess prices. He even got us a terrific upgrade on our next cruise in December.

He does not charge extra fees and all payments go through Princess. We found out about his agency by using cruise compete and we have stayed with him ever since because of his excellent service.
Of course, he does deal with all of the cruiselines and he is easy to contact via his email or toll free number.

seadog2 October 18th, 2008 12:48 PM

Me too!! I want to know who Nancy B is also.

mehawk October 19th, 2008 03:32 PM

I don't see any harm in mentioning her here since we have have her site posted here as contact for past cruises. Here goes...

Nancy Bogart

nancy @ planning cruises . com


Just mention Cruisemates! :D

Paul Motter October 19th, 2008 07:12 PM

No need not to disclose, Nanct Bogert happens to be the agent CruiseMates uses most often to organize our CruiseMates group cruises.

She truly earned it, we always tried to get bids and find the best provider for every group cruise we did, Nancy ended up winning year after year and that is the truth.

There are other really good discount cruise sites and we have worked with many of them...

bestpricecruises.com
cruises-n-more.com
AmericasVacationCenter.com
CruisesOnly.com
Cruise.com
CruiseVacationCenter.com
cruisedeals.com
cheapcruises.com
NationalDiscountCruises.com
cruisebargains.com

The ones mentioned in notes above as well.

All of these agencies are long-standing, cruise-focused agencies that sell cruises inbulk at the best prices. They have great relationships with the cruise lines and should be able to get things done.

There are more as well, I am not trying to give a complete list here.

The people we urge you to avoid are NON-cruise specialists like Travelocity, Expedia, etc.

Bentnail October 25th, 2008 06:55 PM

I have had good luck with Cruise Planners
and bad luck with Travelocity.
Will give Nancy a call next time.

DougR. November 20th, 2008 08:37 AM

I have booked two cruises with Cruise Brothers and have been impressed with their customer service and ressponsiveness to inquiries and problems.

susierphillips November 20th, 2008 10:07 AM

Personally, I like Hotwire. Great for hotels and good for cruising. They always have you assigned to one person so there's no waiting for 20 minutes to speak to a customer service rep at other sites. Just watch the pricing....make sure port charges are included in the price quoted.
We've had very good luck with cruise.com too.

Sobe420 November 20th, 2008 06:30 PM

Maybe I am asking a question that was already asked or that I should Know the answer.

But I am looking at June 09 and when I look at booking with the cruise company directly or through other sites the prices are the same. Nothing really extra. Am I doing something wrong? Do, you get extra perks booking with them instead of the cruise company directly? Also, with the economic times would it be safe to use a third party to book your cruise?

badbob39 November 20th, 2008 08:45 PM

Agent
 
If you can research and find what you want with no help, Smartcruiser.com I have found the best prices....especially of Princess cruises....Not freindly at all, but I generally do all of the work myself and just use an agent toi book. Your payments are made directly to the cruiseline, which makes me feel safer. There are lots of cruise agents online that you can use to research, I prefer cruise.com. Do your homework, and do what you are comfy with

Bob

jackieb November 21st, 2008 10:25 AM

Maybe there don't have discounts for the cruise your looking at.

Queenbgs January 2nd, 2009 11:03 PM

trying VTG
 
Am trying vacations to go for the first time. So far...so good. Very friendly and helpful, they matched the price I got from another agency and gave me OBC and a bottle of wine! My brother has used them and said they were good. Will let you know how it goes....

Gene C January 4th, 2009 06:01 PM

smartcruisers
 
I am using smartcruisers and I think it depends which agent you get.I have called a couple of times and talked to several ladies who were rud and unhelpful,then I ot Joe O. on phone and he has been very helpful and polite.Good luck.

Dannyboy January 6th, 2009 12:46 AM

Pricing vs service
 
I just reviewed the post, very interesting commets.

I found that most cruise lines standardize pricing to all agencies.
The actual pricing is with-in a nominal spread, the agencies will reduce there profit margin for your business and or consintrate on volumn sales to make up for reduced profit, you will find that agencies offer ship board credits or paid tips to make there pricing more appealing.

The exceptions to the rule is GROUP PRICING.
Group pricing is common among the more aggrasive agencies, some agencies will aquire blocks of rooms and resale or they may be working with a group, whom are among a orginization or special event.
These groups may be closed to public offerings or for specific events.

There are close outs on specific cruises offered by most cruise lines, usually 60 days out from cruise date, these are common on the lowest level inside cabins, this eleminates problems with earily bookings and prices paid by these guest.

Nancy Bogart does a very good job and her service is out standing.
Even when she is out of the office, she will take care of all reasonable request from her G-3 phone and the very least she will attend to your business the very next morning.
That woman does not take a break and is highly professional.

Most cruise agencies will only offer travel insurance at time of booking, you should check advance of booking, There are companies that offer insurance for cancelations for specific circumstances, read the fine print.
Remember Pre existing conditions will be forefitted on most policies if not purchased with-in 7-days of deposit of any cruise.

Please understand, many agencies will charge additional fee's, if you make any changes or cancel your cruise.
These charges are above and beyond the standard cancelation policy from the cruise lines.
Upgrades are always allowed with out any penalties.
Make sure you obtain details prior to booking.

All bookings through any agency will receive a confirmation number, you will be able to call the cruise line direct and or verify your booking online.
If you have made your deposit and no confirmation number is provided at the time the Agency obtains your credit card information, call the cruise line and speek to customer service ASAP.
Always use a credit card....................... NO EXCEPTIONS.

fireba11 January 6th, 2009 02:18 AM

For Carnival Cruises we have always used Janice, an agent with Carnival, She has always lowered the fares for us if the cruise we booked has a price drop and with being able to put a deposit down and make payments up to 45 days before the cruise it makes going on vacation more affordable for us.

RosieRoo January 17th, 2009 11:49 PM

I have gotten quotes from 3 different agencies for an NCL booking all much lower than NCL's price. CruiseVacationOutlet, BestPriceCruises and Bon Tour Travel. Has anyone had any good experiences with any of these agencies?

Mike M January 18th, 2009 10:06 AM

"The Moose" (Kuki) wrote a good article that explains what agents can charge and what they can discount. It also explains how you can take advantage and find these discounts.

Here is the link:

http://www.cruisemates.com/articles/...upthephone.cfm

Take care,
Mike

RosieRoo January 18th, 2009 02:06 PM

Thanks. I have read the article. I understand the pricing of cruises, I was just wondering if anyone had used these particular agencies and if they had good experiences or not.

mehawk January 18th, 2009 02:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RosieRoo
Thanks. I have read the article. I understand the pricing of cruises, I was just wondering if anyone had used these particular agencies and if they had good experiences or not.

I have used a Carnival agent a few times but Nancy has alway beaten them by a buck or two...

Kuki January 18th, 2009 05:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RosieRoo
I have gotten quotes from 3 different agencies for an NCL booking all much lower than NCL's price. CruiseVacationOutlet, BestPriceCruises and Bon Tour Travel. Has anyone had any good experiences with any of these agencies?

Best Price Cruises is very reputable. They have handled a couple of our CruiseMates group cruises and did a good job.

BetWes January 21st, 2009 06:47 AM

Has anyone used Direct Line Cruises? We're thinking of using them.


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