We recently put down money on a cruise from Sydney to Los Angeles for my wife and myself. Air was included at $750 per which was reasonable. We thought we'd upgrade as we'd have to fly from LA to Sydney and the flight is almost 15 hours and being we are tall and having flown to New Zealand and Columbia we know it's not very comfortable in coach. We ended up canceling the cruise as the cheapest flight by business was $5500 per person one way. doing. Booking roundtrip and throwing the other half of the ticket away was no cheaper. First class was $20,000 plus. These prices are rediculous and in canceling our trip with Princess the agent said we weren't the first to cancel because of the cost of air which would exceed the cruise price. I'm just wondering why cruises can't get deals for cruisers who have these long flights to departing ports at a more realistic price as it certainly must hurt their business. Haven't seen anything addressing this and perhaps you could shed some light on it as we love to cruise, we're getting older, we're tall people and being on a long flight in coach isn't our cup of tee. Thanks
Did you look at airfare prices directly with the airlines? I usually always book directly on the airline's site as it usually is the best price. I never book with the cruiseline as they always seem to be higher.
As for the airline giving the cruise line a better price, I doubt that would ever happen as the airlines are really struggling now as it is and discounting tickets even more would really hurt the bottom line. Also most cruisers (except last minute bookers) probably book air a few months prior to the cruise and at that time the airline probably isn't too concerned about not selling all the seats as there is plenty of time for them to try and sell out the flight. Now maybe they could offer the cruise line a better price for the last minute cruiser, but then how many seats do they save that they could potentially sell on their own.
I know what you mean about the prices though, I struggled finding a decent price and was just checking daily. Amazing how the prices changed day to day.
Just for the heck of it, about a month ago, checked into airfare to Miami from Chicago and it was over $800, unbelieveable!! Then the other day, I get an e-mail, for flights at $69. one way, now how can that be?
Nomally we do t/a,but this time we are doing Rome to Rome in October and I'm shocked at the rates. Will keep looking and then Celebrity ha a new program that we mght check into, but we have had better luck and prices on our own..
Once upon a time cruise lines negotiated great deals on airfares but that was many, many years ago. Since deregulation and the airlines struggling to survive they no longer look at cruise lines as great customers. Cruise lines now buy airfare at "cost plus $".
Cruise lines will negotiate rates with the airlines but they usually aren't that good. The exception is "coach" airfare for International travel. There is often decent pricing if you are willing to fly coach.
The rule I go by is: Find out what the cruise air is then check on your own and find a price you are comfortable with. If the cruise line air is a reasonable price then buy it. Once you buy your air don't check prices again unless you have price protection. You will see it higher or lower and finding it lower does nothing more than aggravating you.
For us that are land locked the air can often be the deciding factor in booking a cruise.
If it was me I would take the fifteen hours of suffering in coach and do the cruise. I'm 6'2" and can handle coach.
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One thing to consider as well is, that sometimes, cruise air will book you through timbuktoo, to get you to your cruise port destination. On a precruise flight once, they booked me getting into town at 6:30 at night, losing the entire day..this was not acceptable to me..I fought and won...
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