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-   -   Best Way to Book with RCCL? (http://www.cruisemates.com/forum/royal-caribbean-international/373014-best-way-book-rccl.html)

johnsan April 4th, 2010 08:58 PM

Best Way to Book with RCCL?
 
I haven't been on an RCCL cruise for about five years now. We are planning to book Serenade for June 20, but when I went online, the price had gone up from a week ago. What is the best way to get a good deal with RCCL? book direct with them? or use a travel agent? With the economy the way it is, I think $929 for an inside cabin is too much.

Mike M April 4th, 2010 10:51 PM

Royal Caribbean will not allow any agent to sell a cruise for less than they are selling it. (There is an exception for group space)

I would recommend that you use a travel agent and not the cruise line. The agent may be able to give you added amenities, onboard credit or perhaps a bottle of wine.

The best part of booking with a good agent is that they are on YOUR side and not on the side of the cruise line.

Take care,
Mike

johnsan April 5th, 2010 12:07 AM

Thanks, Mike. I appreciate your help. It's hard to know when I don't cruise that often.

jdh April 5th, 2010 09:33 AM

I use CruiesCompete. You put in your desired cruise/travel info and within minutes various travel agents respond. I was leary at first but discovered one of the participating travel agents was local. I saved $200 on the cruise price AND received shipboard credits. As an example... a balcony cabin RCI advertised at $936, I am paying $736.

felix_the_cat April 5th, 2010 10:52 AM

It also depends on where you live. You don't have anything showing in your profile but if you live in Canada you are better with a Canadian Travel Agent not an American one. If you are in Ontario, Quebec or BC you have additional coverage should something happen to the cruiseline or travel agent you use.

The cruiseline (no matter which one you book with) is protecting itself. Their staff are not out to protect and do what's best for you.

(As per my usual qualifier when saying anything like this, I am a Travel Agent).

momofmeg April 5th, 2010 11:13 AM

As a ship sells out, the prices go up. Prices only go down if the ship is not selling well. So you either book early, or last minute, to get the best price.

Kuki April 5th, 2010 11:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jdh (Post 1284396)
I use CruiesCompete. You put in your desired cruise/travel info and within minutes various travel agents respond. I was leary at first but discovered one of the participating travel agents was local. I saved $200 on the cruise price AND received shipboard credits. As an example... a balcony cabin RCI advertised at $936, I am paying $736.

Unless the agent had actually bought those cabins at a lower price under a contract, there would be something fishy with that scenario, as RCI does NOT ALLOW agent to sell for less than they are selling cabins for.

In fact, if agents do so, and are caught RCI will no longer do business with that agency.

Kuki April 5th, 2010 11:30 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by felix_the_cat (Post 1284410)
It also depends on where you live. You don't have anything showing in your profile but if you live in Canada you are better with a Canadian Travel Agent not an American one..

Sorry Felix.. I don't think that's always the case. I'm Canadian, and only booked my very first cruise with a Canadian agency. After that, I've always found better pricing using agencies in the U.S.

Plus, when booking with a Canadian agency, you pay in Canadian dollars, and in most cases the exchange rates the cruise lines use in calculating their "Canadian prices" are disadvantageous to the purchaser.

felix_the_cat April 5th, 2010 02:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kuki (Post 1284420)
Sorry Felix.. I don't think that's always the case. I'm Canadian, and only booked my very first cruise with a Canadian agency. After that, I've always found better pricing using agencies in the U.S.

Plus, when booking with a Canadian agency, you pay in Canadian dollars, and in most cases the exchange rates the cruise lines use in calculating their "Canadian prices" are disadvantageous to the purchaser.

That must have been awhile ago Kuki. There is no problem booking in U.S. $$ - I always book my personal cruises in U.S. $$. If a Canadian agency won't book you in U.S. then, run - there is no reason not to. All the cruise companies accept U.S. when i tell them I want that pricing. I usually get both pricings although since we are .002 off par today I wouldn't consider booking in Canadian.

You are right - booking in Canadian is too expensive.

So, now prices are the same in U.S. whether you book with a Canadian agency or a U.S. agency. As I said before, the big difference is in the protection if any of the companies go under (but the must have an office here in Ontario to be coverd).

Skyservice went into bankruptcy last week but everyone booked to fly with them - that is booked in Ontario - will be protected one way or anther.

The other advantage Kuki, if an American or English or Australian or whoever books through an agent in Ontario they have the same additional coverage through TICO as does someone living in Ontario.


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