Ok, here's the situation. My husband and I were booked on an Alaska cruise for June 10 of this year at a pretty good price on Princess roundtrip from Seattle. My husband got a new job and couldn't take the time off so we had to cancel (just two days before our final payment was to be in!!). We would like to rebook for next summer and start paying on the cruise but we don't know when to rebook to get the best rates. When I go to the Princess website and look at the May 25 sailing (which is the one we want) we can only save $1000 by booking this early. When is the best time to book and is it ok to go directly through the cruiseline since we know exactly what we want? Or is there a better way? Thanks for your help! Sarah & Clinton
Franky, for Alaska, I think it's best to book much closer to sailing dates.
It seems Alaska always starts out quite high, and as the sailing gets closer... within 60 days, the prices on available space drop pretty dramatically. At least that's my experience.
I wouldn't be paying any cruise off before final payment date is due. Instead put the money in an interest bearing separate account, and use it to pay of the cruise when it's time.
I would always shop with travel agents for pricing, rather than the cruise line direct. Not hard to find agents who will discount some from their commissions, or who may have group space.... so you'll buy the cruise for less than the cruise lines will charge you.