How much does a 7 day cruise cost?
You’re ready to take a cruise vacation, but you have no idea how much it will cost and what to factor into your budget.
This is a fairly common concern among first-time cruisers who may be hesitant to try cruising, but struggle with the price. Just like cars, televisions, restaurants, and watches, average price can be a big factor in your decision to pursue that purchase.
Even if we limit ourselves to a 7 night cruise, the cost can be as cheap as a few hundred dollars, or over $10,000. Not to mention costs outside of the cruise fare, such as airfare and visits to port calls.
In order to give you an idea of the cost of a cruise, here is a breakdown of what to consider.
The cruise line affects the price
Similar to car brands, the cruise line you choose can have a significant impact on the cruise fare you’ll pay for a 7-night cruise.
Traditional cruise lines, such as Carnival Cruise Line, Norwegian Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean International, will offer an average price that should suit most budgets.
These major lines include budget cruise lines and generally have very affordable fares, but can also see prices increase if you choose to sail in a more expensive cabin.
Of course, traditional lines don’t include that much in their cruise fare. They prefer to let the passenger decide what extras they want to purchase on top of the cruise fare, such as liquor, wifi, shore excursions, etc.
High-end and luxury cruise lines, such as Princess Cruises, Crystal Cruises, and Holland America Line, will likely see a higher price, but more is included in your cruise fare. Additionally, you can find more lavish staterooms to choose from.
It is important to note that cruise lines almost always charge a cruise cabin based on double occupancy. There are studios on some ships, but if you’re sailing alone, expect to pay for a second person whether you have one or not.
The price range for a 7-night Caribbean cruise will be between $400 and $4,000 on most lines in a balcony stateroom. Keep in mind that these cruise fares are only an estimate and prices can vary wildly depending on cabin type, time of year, number of people in the room and location. of the cabin.
If you’re not sure where to start when choosing a cruise line, a good travel agent is a great asset to work with in the cruise planning process.
Not only can a travel agent help you choose the right cruise line, they can also save you money and even earn you extra onboard credit.
Whether you choose an inside cabin, a balcony or a suite will be a major factor in the cost of your cruise.
In the same way that a compact car will likely cost less than a full-size sedan, interior rooms will likely cost less than a room with a balcony. Suites will drive the price even higher.
There are four types of cabins on most ships:
- inner chamber
- Sea view room
- Balcony room
The best value is often a balcony cabin because it offers extra living space and a private lanai without blowing most people’s budgets.
Think of suites like first-class airfare: nice to have, if you can afford it. Certainly not absolutely necessary.
A good choice for a family cruise may be to book two adjoining rooms, rather than one large cabin.
Generally, people who travel a lot swear by the mantra of booking as early as possible.
The best prices can often be had when booking a cruise several months in advance.
Cruise ticket prices tend to rise over time as inventory dwindles as more people make reservations.
Be careful not to wait too long to deposit a deposit. It is common for there to be price increases even a day or two later after you first set the price.
Period of the year
When you choose to browse can also have an impact on getting the best deals.
Lower prices are usually found during hurricane season, when there is less demand for a cruise.
Also, the shoulder season is a good time to get a lower price. Shoulder season is at the very beginning or end of a cruise season when there is less demand, usually due to less than perfect weather.
Higher prices generally follow popular times for taking vacations, such as summer or Christmas.
Typical peak season cruise costs will be higher than if you can get away during off-peak hours.
When choosing your departure date, take into account the demand for this time of year and look at prices earlier and later in the season to see if you can save a lot of money.
Not only do you need to consider the price of a cabin, there are other additional fees and costs you will need to pay before setting sail.
Port charges and government taxes are levied by your ship’s ports of call, and the exact amount will depend on the country. Expect shipping costs to average between $100 and $200 per person. Be sure to read the fine print to determine which costs are part of the cruise fare.
Gratuities from cruise ships usually cost between 14 and 19 USD per person per day.
The total cost of a cruise can also include popular add-ons such as:
- Alcoholic beverages or drink packages
- Thermal treatments
- Specialty restaurants
- Shore Excursions
- Plane ticket
- Hotels before or after your cruise
- Onboard gift shops
Tips for saving on a cruise
My best advice is to work with a good travel agent to guide you through all the options available. There are so many factors to consider that a good travel agent can help simplify it all, while avoiding pitfalls along the way.
Cruises that depart from less popular homeports, such as Puerto Rico instead of Port Canaveral, can save money.
If the minimum price you can afford for a 7-day cruise just isn’t practical, you can always opt for a shorter cruise to help reduce the total vacation price.