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Old May 16th, 2006, 03:12 PM
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Default How much available credit needed on card??

Hello. I am wondering how much available credit I have to have on my credit card for my upcoming cruise? I am planning to have about $700 on the card and take 300-400 onboard in cash and pay that towards my total bill the day before we leave. Will they let me do that or do they run your card before you board and it has to have like $1,000 or more available?? Please help!
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Old May 16th, 2006, 05:27 PM
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I don't think they actually charge your card until the end of the cruise. You can check your balances daily (which I recommend as you can tend to "forget" how much you spend).
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Old May 16th, 2006, 05:33 PM
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The line may not actually run the card until the last day of the cruise, but they can have the CC company put a block on your available credit line. That way they know that the CC is "good" for the charges.
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Old May 16th, 2006, 06:06 PM
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I know that if you're depositing Cash into your account to be used for onboard charges, the amount required is anywhere from $100-$350, depending upon the length of the cruise. If you present a credit card for purchases, they will place a hold on your account as a deposit for your onboard purchases and your credit card will reflect loss of that "open to buy" money. Therefore, if you only have $500 available on your credit card and the cruise line "holds" that amount, you will not be able to purchase anything with that credit card when you are off the ship or anywhere else. During the cruise, additional monies will be added from your credit card if your Sail & Sign account exceeds the amount of the original deposit (and, boy, is this easy to do). It's not a question of having cash to settle your account at the end of the cruise (lots of people blow that cash in a couple of days), it's having enough cash to satisfy their requirements as soon as you board for the duration of the cruise or enough available credit on your card.
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Old May 16th, 2006, 07:51 PM
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ok...so they are not going to run my card before we board the ship and say,"hum I see that you only have $500 available credit...this amount needs to be higher?" So if all you do is give them your credit card before boarding, how do they know if you have enough credit since you cannot predict exactly how much you might spend?
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Old May 17th, 2006, 12:26 PM
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It is like when you rent a car or check into a hotel. They know the minimum that is going on that card; so they add a certain % higher and tell the CC company to block that amount.

If your CC does not have enough credit limit left on it to handle the block, they will cut off certain additional charges. In a hotel, they will not allow telephone calls, pay TV, room service, etc ...

The cruise ship is like a hotel. The tips are put on your account, shore excursions, and anyother prepaid items. Now they ask that a block for that amount + $X be put on your card. If it is rejected, then the ship will cut back on what else you can charge.
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Old May 17th, 2006, 03:50 PM
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Your card is swiped upon check-in and they know how much credit is available on that card. If you have ever stayed at a Disney Resort, once they swipe your card, they will tell you how much available credit they are alloting to you for purchases at their resorts, theme parks, etc. As Irish Shark stated, the cruise lines figure you will spend XX amount of dollars per day per person, if there is not enough available credit on your card, they will probably ask you to guarantee the balance with cash. As soon as you board the ship, you will have to go to the Purser's desk and give them the balance in cash to be deposited in your account. They will not wait until the end of the cruise for you to settle your account. Only if you prepaid too much money will they cut you a check upon departure.
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Old May 17th, 2006, 04:39 PM
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ok, thanks to all...I just wanted to insure no embarrassment if we had under $1,000 available credit
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Old May 17th, 2006, 11:58 PM
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If you're a big drinker, check out all the posts for clever ways to save yourself some BIG money with alcohol by bringing it on board, i.e. mouthwash bottles, sprite bottles, etc. to put some liquor in. Dave the Wave has incredible ideas! Otherwise, if you're a big drinker and get your drinks on board, your sign and sail might be high. I budgeted $300 for my sign and sail and it came in just under mainly because of duty free alchohol purchases I made for the holidays. Otherwise, I'm not a big drinker so it was pretty reasonable. It was only a four night cruise so my budget for souvenirs, the pub crawl in Key West and the trip we took to a resort for the day outside of Playa Del Carmen and my art deco tour in Miami was just $200. I blew half my souvenir budget on tshirts at the Wharfside in Key West for my entire family because I want to go back to Key West asap!!
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Old May 18th, 2006, 09:32 AM
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Teri...I know exactly how you feel about Key West, you either love it or hate it....I LOVE IT and drive down as often as I can (I live in Florida). The drive to Key West has to be one of the most awesome, beautiful, rides in the U.S. Each island has it's own distinct character and it's lots of fun to explore every one of them. As soon as you arrive in Key West and immerse yourself in its rich history, laid back atmosphere, wonderful restaurants and bars, unique architecture and stunning sunsets, and friendly people, you'll want to return again and again.
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