Ten Reasons Cruises Are Not Created Equal

One of the biggest reasons to not just find a cruise itinerary and price that you like, then click and buy, is every cruise line is different.  The value of a travel agent is we are knowledgeable about all the different cruise lines, so we can help you find the cruise line that best matches your expectations.  Your vacation will then meet or exceed those expectations. 

  1. Prices aren’t always what they seem.  Are the taxes and port charges included?  Can you pick a specific room for this price, or will you have to accept whatever stateroom the cruise line assigns you?  One of my guests called with a great price she’d found online, and she was shocked to learn that this stateroom would have an upper and lower berth only. 
  2. Each cruise line has a specific target market.  Do you prefer a lively ship filled with activities day or night, or would you prefer a peaceful floating resort?  Are you bringing your kids along, requiring family activities, or would you prefer to sail mainly with adults?  Are you a smoker, or are you allergic to smoke?  Different ships for different folks. 
  3. Each cruise line has a different atmosphere aboard their ships.  Some ships have lively music playing on the deck on sea days, while others provide a more quiet ambience.  Some ships have formal nights, while others are more casual, even in luxury lines. 
  4. You also need to know what’s included in your cruise price.  Some of the premium and luxury lines may include all beverages, gratuities, excursions, and other such items that guests pay extra for aboard mass market cruise lines.  Once you calculate those expenses, you may find you can easily afford a nicer cruise line. 
  5. Different itineraries sail at different times of the year.  Do you want to sail when it costs the least, but the weather may be iffy, or do you want beautiful weather, at least as much as possible? 
  6. Travel agents are knowledgeable about all the ports of call.  We can warn you about any possible dangers or concerns anywhere you might travel, so you can plan a safe trip. 
  7. Service, service, service.  If the price of your booked trip drops, will you get that lower price?  That’s a question you should ask of anyone you book a trip with.  Your travel agent will do this, plus they’re the one on hold with the cruise line with all your requests, checking and double-checking your booking and documents, and reminding you what to take with you. 
  8. Are you getting everything due you?  If you’re booking several staterooms together, you may be due some additional discounts or gifts.  When you click and buy, you’re just booking staterooms, without even asking what else might be available. 
  9. Would you like to make payments toward your cruise?  The click and buy companies want your deposit and your final payment.  Most travel agents will accommodate any payments you want to make between your deposit and final payment dates, as long as the cruise is paid in full by the final payment date. 
  10. Who are you going to call when there’s a problem?  When you call my travel agency, you’ll always reach me, or I’ll call you right back.  I’m ready to help you with any problem.  In fact, most of my guests leave my number for their families to call in an emergency.  It’s nice to have someone to call when a problem comes up while you’re traveling. 

Buying through a travel agency, like ours, doesn’t cost you a dime more.  The cruise line pays us a commission out of the price they’re already charging you.  So, when you buy from the cruise line, they’re just keeping all your money.  And, they’re not going to watch the price for you or give you anything extra after you’ve already booked.  They’re already moving on to their next sale, while we travel agents are giving you advice, watching your price, and sending you small gifts. 

Buying through a nameless, faceless online agency is scary in these economic times, too.  One large online agency has already gone under, without paying for people’s vacations.  At Cruise Planners, we make all your payments directly with the cruise line.  We aren’t holding your money … your cruise is booked.  That’s the only safe way to book a vacation. 

Travel agents are fun people, and you’ll enjoy working with a professional travel agent … like me, when you plan your next vacation! 

Happy cruising,


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