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Old 10-07-2012, 07:57 PM   #1
nancy drew
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Hidden costs when booking a cruise? Also, what about getting to the cruise terminal?

I have priced out our cruise, and I'm getting a few different totals on different sites (same room category, same date). Some quotes specifically say all taxes, fees, port charges, etc. are included, some do not. So I'm trying to make the best choice, but I'm confused. Are we going to get hidden fees or charges?

Also, I can't decide whether we should fly in the night before and stay at a hotel or fly in the morning of the cruise. We would have a direct flight either way. If we arrive the night before, how do we get to the cruise terminal?
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:03 PM   #2
sissy_ib
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nancy drew View Post
I have priced out our cruise, and I'm getting a few different totals on different sites (same room category, same date). Some quotes specifically say all taxes, fees, port charges, etc. are included, some do not. So I'm trying to make the best choice, but I'm confused. Are we going to get hidden fees or charges?

Also, I can't decide whether we should fly in the night before and stay at a hotel or fly in the morning of the cruise. We would have a direct flight either way. If we arrive the night before, how do we get to the cruise terminal?
Not really any hidden fees. The total price will be the same anywhere you book it. As you said, some sites may not show the taxes and fees. But anywhere will be the same total as direct with DCL.

Don't forget about the gratuities. $12 a person, per day. This is added to your on-board account. You can change this if you feel it necessary.

As for your flight, I and others will strongly advise you to come in at least the night before. Get a hotel either near the port or at the airport. You can take DCL transfers from the airport or a WDW resort. (DCL transfers are $35 a person each way), rent a car or get a hired town car/limo to the port area. If you head to the port area the night before most hotels will have a free shuttle to the port.
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:05 PM   #3
NancyIL
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Whatever the price is on DCL's web site - other travel sites will have the same final price. You might get onboard credit if you book with some travel agencies.

I would definitely arrive at least one day before you sail. I usually rent a car (at the airport or near WDW) for drop-off in Cape Canaveral the day of the cruise. Stay at an airport hotel or one near the port. If you stay overnight at an airport hotel, another option is to take the DCL bus to the port at $35 pp each way.
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:14 PM   #4
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I would recommend looking at Costco's travel site if you are a CC member. CC charges the same price as Disney, but will give you a Costco gift card for at least a hundred bucks.
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Old 10-07-2012, 09:11 PM   #5
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I would recommend looking at Costco's travel site if you are a CC member. CC charges the same price as Disney, but will give you a Costco gift card for at least a hundred bucks.
Wow, didn't think about that option. So I now have the choice between $200 shipboard credit, $380 in Costco credit, or an unknown amount reimbursed to me for shipboard purchases. We don't shop at Costco often, but that would definitely go a long way toward a new TV or something....
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Old 10-07-2012, 09:41 PM   #6
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DCL doesn't allow TAs to vary the price at all, so the price is the price. What you will see is some sites will include all taxes and fees while others make their costs look lower by not listing these till you actually try to book.

Beyond that, make sure you are comparing "apples to apples." Do the quoted include transfers, insurance, etc. or just the cruise costs?

Where TAs CAN differ is in the service they provide as well as any "thanks for booking with us" gift. As noted, this can be an onboard credit, a shopping card. a gift in stateroom, a coupon book, etc. Honestly, after excellent service, I'd prefer either a shopping card to a store that I already use regularly OR an onboard credit. The other stuff is just fluff--a coupon book is not much good if I don't use the stuff the coupons are for."

The only "hidden cost" would be your tips, which are $12 per guest per night of cruise. SO, if you did a 4 night cruise, the standard tips would be $48 per person in your cabin. The rest is obvious, but needs to be considered. You have to get to the ship--that's likely to be a flight with transportation from the airport to the ship, but could involve driving and parking your vehicle....a flight could involve a cost in getting to your home airport and possibly parking there.

If you arrive the night before, decide first where you want to stay. There are hotels in the airport area that offer a stay, breakfast, and transportation to and from the cruise terminal. You can stay at a hotel IN the airport and ride the DCL bus in the morning--this option is very convenient but also costly. You can also choose to stay at a hotel near the port in which case you need to rent a car or arrange a towncar/limo/shuttle service to get there.

Last edited by kcashner; 10-07-2012 at 09:47 PM.
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Old 10-07-2012, 09:48 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NancyIL View Post
I would definitely arrive at least one day before you sail. .
Funny, when DW and I first started cruising in the 1980's, the cruise lines required you to fly in the night before if you were flying, and included the hotel room in the price of the cruise.
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