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Royal Caribbean Cruise Deals Guide

When it comes to planning the ultimate getaway, there are so many reasons why cruise vacations rank among the most popular travel options. First of all, they’re completely stress-free. On a cruise vacation, all the planning is taken care of by the cruise line — from the destinations you sail to and the shore excursions available at each port, to a full range of entertainment and activities happening onboard every day. If you’re not a planner, or if the only things you’re looking to focus on during your getaway is savoring great food, relaxing, and soaking up the sights, cruise vacations are the way to go. A cruise vacation is also a great option if you’re traveling with the whole family, especially when you opt for a Royal Caribbean cruise. All of the ships in this cruise line’s fleet offer family-friendly experiences for guests of all ages. Even little ones will find plenty of ways to play with spaces and activities designed for tots to tweens. One of the top reasons savvy travelers love cruising, though, is because of the incredible value it offers. With Royal Caribbean, your cruise fare includes access to most of the ship’s attractions, select dining venues and all of the entertainment onboard. If you want to make your experience even more all-inclusive, you can opt for beverage and specialty dining packages that cover drinks and dinner at some of the most exclusive restaurants in the fleet. On top of all that, the cruise line presents frequent limited-time offers and seasonal sales, making it easy to score big savings when booking your vacation.

I’m ready to start planning my cruise — how can I score the best deals?

Whether you’re looking to book a short getaway or a longer adventure to far-flung destinations, Royal Caribbean makes it easy to save big on everything from your cruise fare to special experiences onboard and onshore. The first step to making sure you get the best deals is to join the cruise line’s email list. Once you’ve signed up, you’ll receive regular updates on all the latest offers, like deals by destination , kids sail free promotions and flash sales. The savings don’t end when you book your cruise, though. Once you’ve made a reservation, you’ll also receive notifications about special offers for onboard experiences — like discounts on beverage and specialty dining packages, shore excursions, spa services, and more via My Royal Cruise .

Does it pay to plan ahead, or should I wait until the last minute?  

It’s an age-old question — does the early bird really get the worm, or are there perks to taking a “wait-and-see” approach? If you’re booking a cruise vacation, you’ll find there are benefits to both strategies. Planning ahead is a great way to score big savings , as Royal Caribbean often runs early saver deals to guests booking well in advance. It’s also pretty safe to assume prices usually go up as availability goes down the closer you get to your sail date, so booking ahead is a surefire way to lock in a great rate. That said, booking a cruise at the last minute can also yield some unexpected savings — but only if the itinerary you’re interested in hasn’t sold out yet.

If you can be flexible when it comes to your travel dates, you’ll have your pick of unbeatable savings. Popular vacation dates — like the holidays , spring break , summer vacation and week long cruises — sometimes see the highest prices (though you might get lucky with a seasonal sale). If you have the flexibility to travel during the shoulder season or off season, you’ll likely enjoy big savings on popular stateroom categories , like Balconies and even Suites. The deals don’t only apply to your cruise fare, though. Once you’ve booked your vacation, you could easily unlock discounts and specials on add-ons, including beverage and dining packages , Voom® high speed internet, shore excursions, and amazing experiences not included in your cruise fare — like a day of pampering at Vitality SM Spa, a behind-the-scenes tour of the ship’s galley followed by brunch, VIP seating at shows, and much more.

How can I maximize the value of my cruise vacation?

There are plenty of ways to get more bang for your buck when you sail on a Royal Caribbean cruise. Every ship in the fleet offers a range of delicious complimentary dining options , but you can dig into even more crave-worthy flavor by purchasing a Specialty Dining Package for less ahead of your cruise. Add a Specialty Beverage Package — which includes unlimited alcoholic beverages, soda, and more — and your experience is as close to all-inclusive as it gets. And with so many complimentary shows and attractions onboard, you can easily fill every sea day without spending a single dollar extra.

Royal Caribbean also offers deals based on departure ports  and destinations, so if you’re a flexible traveler looking for great savings, you can plan your next vacation around which itineraries are on sale. Just check your email or visit RoyalCaribbean.com/cruise-deals to stay up to date on promotions, sales and special offers. You can even browse sailings and deals by homeport, destination and season, so you can rest assured you’re getting the best possible deal no matter when or where in the world you choose to set sai.

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Find the best cruise vacation for you

How can i find a cheap cruise.

Cheap cruise deals are fairly easy to find in most cases, and you can begin by considering what kind of features and itinerary you want. The more simplistic the experience is, the cheaper it is in general. On Expedia.com, you can filter for specific features and sort your results by price. By mixing and matching certain features, unforgettable experiences may be available with discount cruises. For example, booking a cruise with stunning restaurants and live performances while opting for an inside cabin without an ocean view window or balcony could be ideal for a traveler who doesn't plan on spending much time in their cabin anyways

What is the cheapest month to take a cruise?

The cheapest month to take a cruise varies based on your destination and the cruise line company that runs the ship. A Caribbean cruise , for example, is generally cheapest in the late summer and early fall since it's the local hurricane season.

Can I cancel my cruise booking?

Yes, you can cancel, but there may be fees for canceling depending on how far in advance you cancel and what kind of booking you have. You can check the specific cruise lines’ cancellation policies in your itinerary on Expedia.com.

Are river cruises worth the money?

River cruises are quite relaxing, with much more varied scenery than you'd experience on an ocean cruise. These ships often also feature several stops along the river, so passengers can enjoy a greater variety of destinations to explore. Viking river cruises are especially adept at providing this unforgettable experience.

What cruises are best for families?

The best family cruises in 2024 / 2025 tend to be Disney cruises with plenty of offerings for kids and adults alike, though MSC cruises are known for their iconic Children Cruise Free promotion. Disney cruises, specifically, are essentially a Disney theme park on a boat with live shows, rides, and attractions with your kids' favorite characters.

How much does a cruise ship cost?

Cruise prices can vary quite a bit, with cheap cruises and especially luxurious all-inclusive cruises available. Budget lines can offer cruise tickets as low as $50 per night in some cases, while the more high-end experiences can reach up to $1,000 per night and more.

What are some of the best cruise lines?

Several different cruise lines have a lot to offer, such as Viking cruises , which are known for traversing oceans and rivers with a style that blends outdoor and indoor splendor. Celebrity cruise line is more upscale with luxurious features like WiFi, included beverages, champagne, and suites with panoramic views. Other top cruise lines include Royal Caribbean International , Carnival Cruise , Disney Cruise , and Norwegian Cruise .

How far in advance do you need to book a cruise?

It's generally best to book a cruise about 6 to 12 months before your cruise departure. That's the safest way to balance availability and affordability. Technically, you can book earlier or later than that, with some last-minute cruise deals occasionally available up to a weekbefore cruise departure.

Are cruise trips affordable?

They can be, and it's especially simple to search for more affordable cruises with Expedia.com. Not only can you filter by cruise length, cruise line, and cabin experience, but you may also sort your results by price to put the more affordable options first on your search results page.

What is it like to go on a cruise?

A cruise is generally designed to offer the most relaxing experience possible. Despite the size of the ship, it's possible to feel the wave. Many passengers report that the movements help them sleep. Additionally, many fun cruises offer live stage performances, several restaurants, and shopping opportunities. When the ship is in international waters, you may even be able to enjoy a bit of tax-free shopping.

Are cruises a good way to travel?

Cruise travel is great if you're looking for some varied fun. Compared to a plane or a train, cruises have their own attractions and can be considered an integral part of cruise vacations. Plus, a cruise can hit several different destinations as well, with plenty of time to enjoy the cruise and scenic locales. It's certainly worth it for a unique experience no other method of travel can match.

Which cruise line is the cheapest?

The actual cheapest cruise available depends on a variety of different factors. Still, Carnival Cruise tends to be very affordable overall, most of the time with great options like the Carnival Sunrise and Carnival Horizon . Royal Caribbean is also another fantastic cruise line offering great deals if you are watching your budget.

How can I get the best cruise deals in 2024 / 2025?

If you're looking for some of the best cruise deals, booking through Expedia.com makes it easy since you can sort your cruise search results by price and have access to special deals. One Key members can earn  OneKeyCash  on all eligible bookings and get instant discounts with Member Prices. Sign up today!

What do I need to know when I book a cruise?

To book a cruise, you'll need to know where you'll be setting off from and where you'll be going, in addition to how many people will be with you and the features of the specific cruise you book. Keep in mind that you'll want to factor in spending money in your budget for the cruise's restaurants and shops in most cases.

Where should I go on a cruise in 2024 / 2025?

Plenty of incredible cruise destinations are accessible such as cruises to the Bahamas and cruises to Mexico . You may also be interested in cruises to Alaska or cruises to Europe for something outside of the Caribbean.

What countries are best to visit by cruise ship?

A lot of countries are accessible via a cruise, but the best include a cruise to Australia . However, a cruise to Australia is quite a long trip at sea and really allows you to take in everything the cruise ship has to offer.

Can I get last-minute cruise deals?

Yes, last-minute cruise deals are often available, and you can find them on Expedia.com by inputting your travel dates in your search and sorting your results by price. The deals will automatically be applied to the price estimates so that the cheapest estimates will show up first on your search results page.

Are cruises all-inclusive?

Cruises aren't always all-inclusive, but they can be. If you're interested in all-inclusive cruises, you can activate a search filter for it to ensure your search results only show cruises that meet your all-inclusive standard.

Is food free on a cruise?

Food is sometimes free on a cruise, but there are often specialty restaurants that aren't included with the general booking that you'll have to pay for separately. Check the details of each cruise before you book in the "What's included" section after clicking the cruise on your search results page.

What cruise lines are adults only?

Several lines offer adults-only cruise experiences, including Viking cruises , Carnival cruises , and Princess cruises . With an adults-only cruise, you can relax in a tranquil and laid-back setting without kids running around and enjoy all the cocktails you want.

What cruise lines are considered to be the most luxurious?

Viking cruises are considered exceptionally luxurious, with smaller ships and larger cabins that make them feel more exclusive, but Celebrity cruises offer luxury cruise lines too. Booking a luxury cruise means you can expect high-end amenities including gourmet restaurants, sizable suites, top-tier performances, massive pools, and much more.

What are the best cruises for couples?

Viking Cruises have much to offer for a more romantic experience. Holland America Line cruises can be quite refined and romantic as well, with an adult-oriented experience that's sophisticated rather than rowdy. Romantic cruises offer exceptional service as well as cozy suites for you and your partner to enjoy that's complemented by delicious food often themed around the cruise destination.

Why should I go on a cruise for my honeymoon?

Going on a cruise is a great way for you and your new spouse to be pampered with luxury while also being able to explore a new destination. Whether you're taking a cruise to Hawaii or a cruise to Bermuda , a particularly romantic experience is almost guaranteed thanks to the sheer number of things to do.

Are there any Christmas cruises?

Yes, quite a few cruise lines operate around Christmas, and you can find them easily by entering travel dates around Christmas into your 2024 cruise search. Some of the most popular Christmas cruises are available with Carnival and Disney.

Do I need a passport to go on a cruise?

Whether or not you need a passport depends on where you're going and the kind of cruise it is. Any US territory like Bermuda and Puerto Rico won't require a passport, of course, but you also don't need one if you're on a closed-loop cruise. This is a cruise that begins and ends at a US cruise terminal, even if there are stops in other countries on the way.

Why should I book a cruise with Expedia.com?

Booking a cruise with Expedia.com makes it easy to find a cruise type that works best for you. You can use the cruise finder and sort by cruise line, type, destination, length, and itinerary. One Key members also earn OneKeyCash on all eligible bookings that can be used to save on future eligible trips.

What happens if a cruise is canceled?

Every cruise has a different cancellation policy, but generally, passengers are entitled to either a full refund or a credit for a future cruise at a later date. Remember that they may automatically change your booking to their rescheduled date, so you may have to contact them if that date doesn't work for your schedule.

*OneKeyCash is not redeemable for cash and can only be used on Expedia,  Hotels.com  and Vrbo.

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Celebrity Edge

Debuted in December 2018, the 2,918-passenger Celebrity Edge stands out for its modernity. The Edge is dressed to the nines in contemporary designs and features a diverse array of technologies, amenities, activities and dining venues on board. Passengers can delight in the ship's rooftop garden, take a dip in one of many ocean-facing pools, work up a sweat on the jogging track or relax at the on-site spa.

You'll find plenty of evening entertainment options, too, including themed bars and lounges, a club and a theater showcasing a variety of productions. The Edge was the first Celebrity ship fitted with the Magic Carpet – the line's cantilevered venue at sea that travels 13 stories. The open-air venue can be repositioned alongside several decks, allowing it to transform from a live music venue to a bar to an exclusive specialty restaurant, depending on its location.

For dining, passengers have 29 options to choose from. These include four main restaurants and specialty options serving a range of cuisines, from sashimi to French bistro classics. After a bite to eat, take a break and relax in your modern stateroom or suite. Every room offers technology that allows guests to control temperature, service and lighting with a touch screen. What's more, with a roughly 2-to-1 passenger-to-crew ratio, service across the ship will be spot on.

Celebrity Edge makes sailings across Europe, Asia, Australia and more. 

U.S. News Insider Tip: On Edge Series ships, park yourself at the Sunset Bar with a spicy margarita every evening – it’s the best spot on the ship to watch for the fabled green flash. – Skye Sherman, Contributor

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Celebrity Beyond

Launched in April 2022, Celebrity Beyond is the third ship in the cruise line's Edge Series, capable of holding up to 3,260 passengers and 1,400 crew members. On board, guests have their pick of 32 food and beverage venues serving everything from Greek to French to Italian cuisine; there are also several cocktail bars and lounges where guests can grab a drink.

One of the highlights of Celebrity Beyond is its 4,500-piece art collection, which includes works by travel photographers and international artists. There is also no shortage of unique entertainment options; these range from acrobatic shows to juggling mixologist performances. To enjoy stunning water views, enjoy Celebrity's "Magic Carpet," a large platform that hangs off the edge of the ship and moves from deck to deck.

Staterooms offer amenities like plush bathrobes, comfortable Cashmere mattresses and flat-screen TVs; many also come with private verandas. For a one-of-a-kind experience, splurge on a room in The Retreat. This resort-within-a-resort features villas and suites with added luxuries like plunge pools, hot tubs and butlers. Plus, guests of The Retreat have exclusive access to a private sundeck, restaurant and lounge, along with an onboard credit that can be used however you see fit.

Celebrity Beyond sails to a variety of popular Mediterranean and Caribbean destinations, including the French Riviera, Italy, Mexico and more. 

U.S. News Insider Tip: On Celebrity Beyond, if you're lucky, your drink might be poured by Captain Kate McCue herself during the nightly flair bartender show at the Grand Plaza Martini Bar. Make sure to follow her behind-the-scenes adventures on Instagram. – Skye Sherman, Contributor

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Debuted in October 2021, Rotterdam welcomes up to 2,668 guests. The name hearkens back to the line's founding in the late 19th century, when its first ship, Rotterdam, sailed from the Netherlands to New York. Though the ship's name is rooted in the cruise line's past, its amenities are anything but antiquated. 

Among Rotterdam's standout facilities is World Stage, a performance venue that features a two-story, 270-degree wraparound LED screen that creates a panorama of light and sound for audience members. For more entertainment, passengers can catch a performance at any of the ship's numerous music venues, including the Rolling Stone Rock Room and B.B. King's Blues Club.

When travelers aren't grooving to live tunes, they can test their luck at the onboard casino or relax at the spa. Meanwhile, kids can play the day away at the Kids Club. Foodies will be pleased to hear the ship offers eight dining options, including Rudi's Sel de Mer, a French brasserie, and Tamarind, which highlights the culinary traditions of Southeast Asia, China and Japan.

Cabins range in size from 143 square feet to 1,290 square feet, with some of the luxury suites boasting floor-to-ceiling windows, whirlpool baths and verandas with hot tubs.

Sailings aboard Rotterdam depart from ports like Fort Lauderdale, Florida , and Amsterdam to destinations in the Caribbean, Europe and the Panama Canal.

U.S. News Insider Tip: The art collection aboard Rotterdam is valued at more than $4.1 million and has 2,645 pieces of diverse works ranging in value from $500 to $620,000. Take some time to walk around the ship to explore the collections. Each of the three stairwells has a theme that reaches from top to bottom: architecture, music or zoology. – Jill Schildhouse, Contributor

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Celebrity Apex

The Celebrity Apex – which made its inaugural sailing in June 2021 – can hold up to 2,910 passengers and 1,320 crew members. Guests can wine and dine at 29 restaurants, bars and lounges, then spend the night testing their luck at the casino or enjoying live music at the Magic Carpet (which offers great ocean views). Specialty restaurants include a steakhouse and a raw bar, while main dining options feature Mediterranean, Italian and French cuisines. There are also meeting spaces and multipurpose areas on board, as well as upscale shops. 

Visit the spa or adults-only Solarium pool to stay relaxed throughout your stay at sea. For younger travelers, there are some kid-friendly areas of the ship – such as a Camp at Sea. However, the ship is geared more toward adult clientele (or families with older children) looking for a relaxing escape.

The ship's staterooms, which start at 181 square feet, offer smart TVs, customizable air conditioning and plenty of storage space. Many rooms also offer private verandas. If you're willing to splurge, consider booking a room in The Retreat. This exclusive section of the ship features luxury accommodations as well as access to a private restaurant, sun deck and lounge. Plus, rooms in The Retreat offer more space, measuring up to 1,892 square feet.

The Celebrity Apex sails to European destinations like Greece, Italy, Croatia and Portugal, as well as to Caribbean hot spots like St. Thomas , Puerto Rico , Belize and Grand Cayman . 

low price cruises

Resilient Lady

An adults-only, LGBTQ-friendly cruise ship, Resilient Lady has a capacity of 2,770 passengers and 1,150 crew members. Since setting sail in May 2023, Virgin Voyages' third ship has received praise among travelers for its exceptional dining scene and exciting entertainment options. With onboard experiences ranging from acrobatic performances to comedy shows to themed parties, Resilient Lady is best for travelers who are seeking an upbeat and social atmosphere.  

When you've worked up an appetite from your activity-filled day, grab a bite at one of the ship's 20-plus eateries, which serve everything from Mexican to Asian to Italian fare. Although all food is included, reservations are still required at many restaurants. There is also no shortage of bars to choose from, whether you want to sample The Loose Cannon's signature cocktails or sip some bubbly in the Champagne lounge.

Standard Insider rooms range from 105 to 177 square feet. All accommodations come equipped with comforts like flat-screen TVs, rain showers, mood lighting and convertible Seabeds. For more room, opt for one of the ship's RockStar Quarters. These upgraded suites feature extras like a terrace with a hammock, European king-size mattresses and spacious marble bathrooms.

Resilient Lady sails to a variety of destinations in Europe and the South Pacific, including top destinations such as Athens, Greece ; Sydney ; and Dubrovnik, Croatia .

U.S. News Insider Tip:  The Wake boasts the most ambiance of all eateries on Virgin Voyages vessels by far, so make sure to lock in reservations when you can. This upscale restaurant offers prime entrees with plenty of upgrade options for those who want to splurge. This establishment also features huge windows that provide incredible views of the ocean from the back of the ship. –  Holly Johnson, Contributor

low price cruises

Symphony of the Seas

The 6,680-passenger, 2,200-crew-member Symphony of the Seas set sail in 2018 and features 18 decks packed with activities.

For heart-pounding fun, travelers will find a surf simulator, an indoor ice skating rink, two 40-foot rock walls, a zip line and a 10-story slide. Meanwhile, relaxation seekers can unwind in the spa, sip cocktails made by robotic bartenders or stroll through the Central Park -inspired neighborhood.

Onboard snacks and meals are served at 20 quick-service and sit-down eateries. The Main Dining Room is where the ship's traditional, complimentary dinners are provided nightly, but specialty options like a steakhouse, a bistro and a Johnny Rockets outpost are also available. What's more, cruisers can dine at Jamie's Italian, a restaurant helmed by celebrity chef Jamie Oliver.

After filling up on gourmet fare, passengers can retreat to their cabins, all of which include work desks, flat-screen TVs and minibars. Guests can choose from 149-square-foot Interior Staterooms, some of which have virtual balconies with real-time views of the ocean, or opt for upgraded cabins with furnished balconies and up to 1,524 square feet of space. Select suites also feature two bedrooms, whirlpool tubs and dining rooms.

Symphony of the Seas departs from Cape Liberty, New Jersey, Miami , Fort Lauderdale, Rome and Barcelona for sailings throughout the Caribbean and Europe.

U.S. News Insider Tip: If you’re on one of the 19 Royal Caribbean ships that have a FlowRider, like Symphony of the Seas (which has two!), reserve a private lesson with a pro. For a small fee, you'll save yourself some embarrassment and get more ride time. – Skye Sherman, Contributor

low price cruises

Odyssey of the Seas

Launched in July 2021, the Odyssey of the Seas holds 5,498 passengers and 1,550 crew members. Royal Caribbean's latest ship is the first Quantum Ultra Class vessel to sail in the United States. As a member of this class, Odyssey of the Seas offers standout amenities like RipCord by iFLY, billed as the only skydiving simulator available at sea, and the FlowRider, a 40-foot-long surf simulator. There is also the North Star observation capsule, which hoists guests 300 feet above sea level over the cruise ship to enjoy unparalleled views below. 

In addition to these thrilling activities, the ship comes equipped with standard facilities like pools, an arcade, a spa, a fitness center with classes, kids clubs and shopping venues. There are also 15 dining options, ranging from Japanese fare to all-you-can-eat buffets to Starbucks. For drinks, the ship offers nine bars and lounges, giving passengers plenty of places to enjoy libations. Entertainment options include theatrical performances, live music, a casino, outdoor movie nights and more. 

As far as cabins go, cruisers can choose between Interior, Ocean View, and Balcony staterooms, as well as suite accommodations and new Virtual Balcony rooms. These technologically advanced cabins feature floor-to-ceiling displays that project real-time views of the sights and sounds from the outside of the ship. 

Odyssey of the Seas sails to ports in Europe, as well as to various destinations in the Caribbean from Fort Lauderdale, Florida and Cape Liberty, New Jersey.

low price cruises

Scarlet Lady

The first ship within the Virgin Voyages fleet, the adults-only Scarlet Lady welcomes more than 2,770 passengers and 1,160 crew members. Debuted in October 2021, the Scarlet Lady boasts a collection of unique amenities not often found on cruise ships, including a tattoo studio, a record shop and a blow-dry bar. And instead of a buffet or a dining hall, the Scarlet Lady offers a collection of more than 20 specialty restaurants, all covered by the cruise fare. Standouts include Extra Virgin, a traditional Italian restaurant serving handmade pasta, and Gunbae, a Korean barbecue eatery.

The Scarlet Lady also deviates from cruise industry tradition when it comes to onboard entertainment. Instead of Broadway classics, cruisers will be treated to six original shows, along with "micro plays" that are performed throughout the ship.

Cabin sizes range from 105 to 177 square feet for the Insider rooms to nearly 2,150 square feet for the RockStar Quarters suites. The latter are outfitted with marble bathrooms and serviced by RockStar Agents who are available to assist guests 24/7. All accommodations feature mood lighting, minibars, free Wi-Fi and adjustable Seabeds, which allow travelers to transform their beds into couches when they want to entertain.

The Scarlet Lady sails to destinations in the Caribbean, like the Bahamas , from Miami .

U.S. News Insider Tip:  Use the app to book dinner reservations as far out from your sailing as you can, or 45 days out for most sailors. If you wait until closer to time or until you're on board, you will likely find that the most popular restaurants and dining times are all booked up. –  Holly Johnson, Contributor

low price cruises

MSC Euribia

MSC Euribia, named after the Greek goddess of mastery of the sea, launched in June 2023. MSC Euribia stands out with its commitment to sustainability (the ship runs on liquid natural gas, or LNG) and art-filled aesthetic (with original works of art throughout the ship and a "Save the Sea" motif on the hull).

Entertainment options abound, with an immersive gallery, a sports center, a theater, a casino and seven rooms dedicated to kids and teenagers. Five pools and a water park are also available. The Galleria, the main promenade featuring a dazzling LED sky dome, is a hub for shopping and dining.

With MSC Euribia's 10 dining venues, passengers can choose from formal Italian, fast-casual tacos, a sushi bar, a buffet, a crepe shop and more. What's more, the ship offers 21 bars, including a British pub, a wine bar and upscale cocktail lounges, as well as the Carousel Lounge, where passengers can dance to music of varying genres.

MSC Euribia holds up to 6,327 guests and 1,711 crew members. Staterooms range from the 129-square-foot Interior Studio to the 420-square-foot Grand Suite with a whirlpool and terrace. MSC Yacht Club Suites, which offer access to exclusive perks like butler service and a dedicated sun deck, are also available.

Most MSC Euribia itineraries sail through northern Europe, particularly the Norwegian fjords and destinations including Amsterdam ; Paris ; Hamburg, Germany ; Copenhagen, Denmark ; and Bruges, Belgium . Cruises to the Middle East, including ports like Doha, Qatar, and Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, will also be offered. 

U.S. News Insider Tip: If you’re dead set on cruising in the MSC Yacht Club, you’ll want to be selective with the vessel and itinerary you choose. Many older MSC ships do not offer a Yacht Club section, including the Poesia, Armonia, Lirica, Musica and Opera. – Holly Johnson, Contributor

low price cruises

Carnival Panorama

A member of Carnival Cruise Line's Vista class, the Carnival Panorama debuted in December 2019 as the first new Carnival ship homeported on the West Coast in 20 years. With a capacity of 4,008 guests and 1,450 crew, Panorama is one of Carnival's largest ships.

Among the ship's standout amenities is the Sky Zone – a trampoline park that offers dodgeball and basketball games, toddler bounce sessions and more. Other unique Carnival amenities found on the ship include a suspended bicycle in the air called SkyRide, a sprawling water park, the Cloud 9 Spa and an open-air recreation area and ropes course.

Dining options on board are just as diverse. In fact, there are more than a dozen dining venues aboard Carnival Panorama, including multiple Guy Fieri eateries, a sushi restaurant, a steakhouse, a seafood eatery and more.

Carnival Panorama offers the line's typical range of accommodation classes (Interior, Ocean View, Balcony and Suite) along with Family Harbor and Havana staterooms and suites. Havana Cabana Suites feature rain showers and patios equipped with hammock chairs, along with exclusive access to the Havana Bar & Pool. Meanwhile, Family Harbor accommodations are located next to the ship's Family Harbor Lounge and afford guests special perks, such as a free evening of babysitting and complimentary kids meals in the onboard specialty restaurants.

Sailing from Los Angeles , the ship cruises to destinations in Mexico, including Puerto Vallarta and Cabo San Lucas . It also departs from Singapore for transpacific voyages. 

Disclaimers about ship ratings: A ship’s Health Rating is based on vessel inspection scores published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). If a ship did not receive a CDC score within 22 months prior to the calculation of its Overall Rating, its Health Rating appears as N/A; in such a case, the ship’s Overall Rating is calculated using the average Health Rating of all CDC-rated ships within the cruise line. All ship Traveler Ratings are based on ratings provided under license by Cruiseline.com.

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The 17 Best Websites To Book Cruises at the Cheapest Prices [2023]

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Katie Seemann

Senior Content Contributor and News Editor

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Compliance Editor & Content Contributor

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Keri Stooksbury

Editor-in-Chief

Countries Visited: 44 U.S. States Visited: 28

The 17 Best Websites To Book Cruises at the Cheapest Prices [2023]

1. Cruise Line’s Website

2. cheapcaribbean.com, 3. cruise critic, 4. cruisedirect, 5. priceline, 6. tripadvisor, 7. cruisesonly, 10. cruises.com, 11. american airlines cruises, 12. delta skymiles cruises, bonuses for united premier members, use united mileageplus miles to pay for your cruise, use marriott bonvoy points to pay for your cruise, 15. costco travel, 16. cruise.com, 17. travelocity, price comparisons, final thoughts.

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So, you’ve decided you want to go on a cruise. Great news! But, do you know where to book it to get the best price?

There’s no shortage of websites out there that can help you book a cruise. There may even be more options to book cruises than hotels or flights. In addition to the traditional online travel agencies, there are a bunch of cruise-only sites that you can choose from, too.

So how do you know which site offers the best price? That’s where we come in. We combed through the most popular websites used to book cruises to look at their pros and cons and to do some head-to-head price comparisons.

If you’re only concerned about finding the cheapest price, scroll down to the price comparison section at the bottom of this post to see how all of these sites stack up against each other.

Your first instinct when booking a cruise may be to go directly to the cruise line’s website, especially if you have elite status with a specific cruise line. There are definitely some benefits to this — it’s simple and there are fewer hassles if you have to make any changes .

If you’re sure of the cruise line you want to take, it makes your search a little easier because you’re just looking at one specific line.

The big drawback when booking directly on a cruise line’s website is that you can miss out on extra deals that online travel agencies (OTAs) may offer.

Pros and Cons of Booking Directly with the Cruise Line

  • Simpler search functions make it easier to locate specific cruises.
  • There’s no middleman (another website) to deal with if there is a problem.
  • You might miss out on extra deals offered by other sites.

Bottom Line: No matter where you choose to book your cruise, be sure to use the right credit card — refer to our list of best credit cards for cruises to get you started.

CheapCaribbean.com is an OTA that specializes in travel to the Caribbean, Mexico, and Central America. It was founded in 2000 and prides itself on offering the best prices and great U.S.-based customer service . The site’s sales agents are available 7 days a week to help you plan your ultimate Caribbean vacation.

Despite the name, you can book cruises to destinations other than the Caribbean through CheapCaribbean.com, including Europe, Canada, Hawaii, and Alaska.

Cheap Caribbean cruise booking

CheapCaribbean.com sometimes offers extra bonuses, like extra onboard spending credit. Plus it offers a 110% best price guarantee — if you find the exact same cruise for a cheaper price (available to the general public) on another website, CheapCaribbean.com will refund 110% of the price difference.

The not-so-great thing about CheapCaribbean.com is that it charges a $24.99 processing fee on each booking. It’s lumped into the taxes and fees, so you may not realize it unless you read the fine print.

CheapCaribbean.com processing fee

Pros and Cons of CheapCaribbean.com

  • Occasional special deals like extra onboard credit may be offered.
  • 110% best price guarantee.
  • There’s a $24.99 processing fee on each booking.
  • You need to sign up for emails or call in to book a cruise if you want to access exclusive deals.

Hot Tip: Want to save more? CheapCaribbean.com offers exclusive deals to email subscribers and offers unpublished fares and exclusive offers if you call in to book your cruise. 

Cruise Critic is a cruise-focused website that features reviews, tips, and advice for a huge community of cruisers. The Cruise Critic forums provide a place to ask questions, give advice, and get help booking your next cruise.

The site also acts as a metasearch engine for cruises, allowing you to compare prices from lots of other websites . You can search for your perfect cruise and when it’s time to book, Cruise Critic will transfer you to another site to complete your booking.

Cruise Critic

Pros and Cons of Cruise Critic

  • The site offers lots of cruise reviews, plus cruise tips and a travel forum to help you plan your trip.
  • You can sign up for email alerts so you’re notified when the price of a cruise drops.
  • The prices you see are not guaranteed and may be subject to other fees or restrictions depending on what website they are from.

CruiseDirect is a website that specializes only in cruises. The site allows you to quickly search cruises by destination, cruise line, departure port, or last-minute deals . You’ll find lots of different types of cruises, from budget to luxury and from mega-ships to riverboats.

With each cruise listing, you’ll see bonus details next to each sailing date — just click on each icon for details. Some of these are already reflected in the price and some are extras like onboard ship credit or discounts on shore excursions.

CruiseDirect.com perks

Pros and Cons of CruiseDirect

  • Bonuses are offered with each cruise ranging from discounts, shipboard credit, or discounts on shore excursions.
  • The bonuses offered are often from the cruise line and not exclusive to CruiseDirect, so you can get them regardless of where you book.
  • The site is a bit cluttered and can be hard to navigate.

Kayak is a popular online travel agency but the site doesn’t support cruise searches anymore.

Priceline gained fame from its “Name Your Own Price” feature but has since transformed into a more traditional OTA. In addition to hotels, flights, and rental cars, you can use this site to book cruises, too.

Priceline often offers deals above and beyond what’s being offered through the cruise line. At the time of writing, a few different deals offered perks like $1,000 in onboard credit or 30% off every guest .

Priceline Cruise Deals

Plus, Priceline offers a 110% best price guarantee — if you find a lower, publicly available price for the exact same cruise within 48 hours of booking, you’ll be refunded 110% of the price difference.

Pros and Cons of Priceline

  • Extra deals like onboard credit or room upgrades are sometimes offered.
  • The site offers a 110% best-price guarantee.
  • Some offers, including the one for up to $1,000 in shipboard credit can be confusing. Once you read the fine print, you’ll realize you need to spend $20,000 to get the full $1,000 credit.

Hot Tip: For more information, check out our detailed guide on booking travel with Priceline .

While you might think of Tripadvisor as just a place to get reviews and photos of hotels, restaurants, and activities, it’s actually much more than that. In addition to reviews and traveler forums, Tripadvisor acts as a metasearch engine , comparing prices on lots of other websites.

When you’re searching for a cruise, just click on the drop-down arrow that tells you how many deals there are — then you’ll be able to see that cruise’s price on many sites.

Tripadvisor Cruises

Pros and Cons of Tripadvisor

  • It offers lots of great ship reviews and travel forums.
  • It’s a great site to quickly compare prices on many sites at once.
  • You may not be able to see all the deals being offered on each site.

Hot Tip: For more information, check out our detailed guide to booking travel on Tripadvisor .

CruisesOnly claims to be “the best” because each of its call center agents has an average of 5+ years of experience plus professional training.

While that might be helpful if you’re new to cruising or need some advice about which cruise line, ship, or destination you should choose, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’re getting the best price (scroll down to the Price Comparison section to see how CruisesOnly stacks up against other websites).

CruisesOnly also has its own loyalty program. The V.I.P. Customer Loyalty Club is free, and you’re signed up automatically if you have booked with CruisesOnly at least once before. Benefits include things like shore excursion credits and onboard spending credits.

CruisesOnly loyalty program

The V.I.P. Customer Loyalty Club only applies to cruises on these cruise lines:

  • Holland America
  • Royal Caribbean

CruisesOnly’s best price guarantee is similar to other sites — a refund of 110% of the price difference if you find a lower price on an identical cruise within 48 hours of booking.

Pros and Cons of CruisesOnly

  • The V.I.P. Customer Loyalty Club is free and offers plenty of benefits.
  • The site offers a 110% best price guarantee.
  • The site, like many other OTAs, can be very busy, making it hard to narrow down the cruise you really want to take.
  • The loyalty program only applies to 6 cruise lines.

When booking a cruise through an OTA, be sure to use a card that earns bonus points on travel purchases, such as the  Chase Sapphire Reserve ®  which earns 3x Ultimate Rewards points on cruises purchased from any website or travel agency.

Expedia might be one of the first websites you visit to search for flights or hotels (and it’s probably a site you have used for a long time), but did you know that you can book a cruise through Expedia as well?

The site is straightforward, easy to use, and offers cruises from all the major cruise lines . While Expedia doesn’t charge any booking fees, it also doesn’t offer any price guarantees. However, you can sometimes find additional bonuses for booking your cruise through Expedia.

It also does a nice job of showing exactly what’s included and what might cost extra.

Expedia Cruises

Pros and Cons of Expedia

  • The site sometimes offers extra bonuses like onboard credit.
  • It’s easy to use and is very clear about what’s included in the price.
  • No price guarantee is offered

Hot Tip: For more information check out our complete guide to using Expedia .

Orbitz is a typical OTA that offers flights, hotels, car rentals, vacation packages, and cruises. There are no booking fees on cruises and a price guarantee is offered . However, the price guarantee isn’t as strong as some of the other sites — you’ll need to find a lower price within 24 hours to receive the difference in price as a refund.

Like Expedia, Orbitz does a good job at displaying prices clearly so there’s no confusion.

Orbitz cruises breakdown

One of the nice things about Orbitz is that it offers a rewards program, but, unfortunately, cruises are not eligible for Orbitz Rewards.

Pros and Cons of Orbitz

  • It offers a best price guarantee.
  • There are no booking, change, or cancellation fees.
  • Cruises aren’t eligible for Orbitz Rewards

Hot Tip: For more information, check out our complete guide to using Orbitz to book travel .

Cruises.com is another site that claims to be the best place to book your cruise. It can offer some impressive deals, but once you read the fine print, well, you realize there’s a lot of fine print.

For example, a deal was offered for up to $2,000 cashback, $1,500 to spend onboard, or a Visa gift card. However, after reading the fine print you’ll notice that in order to get the full bonus you’d have to spend $20,000+ on a cruise. To top it off, the bonus is only available for select cruise lines.

Cruises.com 2000 offer

So while the deals offered could be lucrative, they aren’t necessarily a slam dunk.

Cruises.com also has its own loyalty program. It’s free and you’re signed up automatically if you have booked with Cruises.com at least once before. Benefits include things like shore excursion credits, onboard spending credits, or deposit waivers. Benefits are identical to those offered through the CruisesOnly loyalty program.

Pros and Cons of Cruises.com

  • A loyalty program is offered for past guests.
  • There are sometimes extra bonuses beyond what’s offered by the cruise line.
  • There is a lot of fine print with its offers.

Hot Tip: Cruises.com and CruisesOnly are both owned by World Travel Holdings, along with other websites, including Cruise411.com. These sites offer the same loyalty program and similar perks, however, their prices can be different.

Did you know that you can book a cruise through American Airlines ? The best part is that when you do, you’ll earn American Airlines AAdvantage miles for your purchase (in addition to any points or miles you will earn from your credit card).

  • Earn 1 AAdvantage mile per $1 spent on cruises booked through American Airlines (up to 10,000 miles)
  • American Airlines credit cardholders will earn 2 AAdvantage miles per $1 spent on cruises booked through American Airlines (up to 20,000 miles)
  • Occasionally, additional bonus points will be offered for select cruises

Hot Tip: Base miles earned by booking a cruise through American Airlines will also count as Loyalty Points that help you earn American Airlines elite status .

American Airlines Cruises also offers a 110% best price guarantee — if you find the exact same cruise priced lower within 48 hours of booking, you’ll be refunded 110% of the price difference.

The bad news is that you’re charged a $24.99 processing fee on every booking.

Pros and Cons of American Airlines Cruises

  • AAdvantage members have the ability to earn lots of American Airlines miles and Loyalty Points.
  • There is a $24.99 processing fee on every booking.

Bottom Line: While you can book a cruise through American Airlines, you can’t use AAdvantage miles to pay for it.

In addition to flights, you can book cruises through Delta Air Lines’ SkyMiles Cruises and earn Delta SkyMiles at the same time.

Currently, you’ll earn 2 SkyMiles per $1 spent on a cruise , excluding the taxes, fees, and port charges.

SkyMiles Cruises also offers a 110% best price guarantee — if you find the exact same cruise priced lower within 48 hours of booking, you’ll be refunded 110% of the price difference.

Pros and Cons of Delta SkyMiles Cruises

  • Earn extra Delta SkyMiles.

Bottom Line: While you can book a cruise through SkyMiles Cruises, you can’t pay for your cruise with Delta SkyMiles.

13. United Cruises

When you book a cruise with United Cruises you can choose to either earn United MileagePlus miles for your purchase or you can use MileagePlus miles to pay for your cruise !

United Cruises offers different ways to earn miles on your next cruise:

  • Earn 2 MileagePlus miles per $1 spent on an interior or oceanview stateroom
  • Earn 4 MileagePlus miles per $1 spent on a balcony stateroom or suite
  • Any United MileagePlus credit cardholder will earn 4 MileagePlus miles per $1 spent on an interior or oceanview stateroom
  • Any United MileagePlus credit cardholder will earn 7 MileagePlus miles per $1 spent on a balcony or suite stateroom

Additionally, there are sometimes opportunities to earn even more miles.

United Cruises offers a 110% best price guarantee — if you find the exact same cruise priced lower within 48 hours of booking, you’ll be refunded 110% of the price difference.

Unfortunately, United Cruises charges a $24.99 processing fee on every booking.

If you have any Premier status with United Airlines you’ll also receive onboard extras with select cruise lines:

  • A bottle of wine and chocolate-covered strawberries in your stateroom
  • $100 spa credit
  • $200 onboard credit
  • $250 onboard credit

Paying for your cruise with miles is a great option to have. Unfortunately, you’ll lose out on some value if you do so .

When you book a cruise using United Miles, you’ll get about 0.7 to 0.8 cents per mile in value. United miles are generally worth around 1.3 cents per mile (or more if you’re booking business or first class flights), so you’re getting less value than you could get if you used your miles for a flight.

However, if you have a bundle of United miles and prefer cruising to flying, it might be a good redemption for you.

Pros and Cons of United Cruises

  • MileagePlus members have the ability to earn lots of extra miles.
  • United Premier members receive extra perks with Norwegian, Oceania, and Regent Seven Seas Cruise Lines.

Bottom Line: When you choose to book your cruise through United Cruises, you can either earn United MileagePlus miles on your purchase, or you can pay for your cruise using your United MileagePlus miles.

14. Marriott Bonvoy Cruises

Marriott Bonvoy Cruises allows you to earn Marriott Bonvoy points on your cruise or you can choose to pay for your cruise with Marriott Bonvoy points !

When you book a cruise through Marriott , you’ll earn up to 3 points per $1 spent . Chase Marriott Bonvoy credit cardholders will earn an extra 2 Marriott Bonvoy points per $1 spent on a cruise booked through Marriott Bonvoy Cruises.

Marriott Bonvoy also offers a 110% best price guarantee — if you find the exact same cruise priced lower within 48 hours of booking, you’ll be refunded 110% of the price difference.

Hot Tip: If you book a cruise through Marriott Bonvoy, know that you’ll be charged a non-refundable processing fee of $24.99. That’s a pretty hefty fee considering many other sites don’t charge any fees.

It’s a great option to be able to pay for your cruise with points , and Marriott Bonvoy makes that possible. However, it’s not the best way to use your Marriott Bonvoy points.

When booking a cruise with Marriott Bonvoy points, you’ll only get 0.4 cents per point in value. Since Marriott Bonvoy points are generally worth about 0.7 cents each, you’ll be missing out on some value, so you might want to look into other ways to redeem your Marriott Bonvoy for hotels or flights .

Pros and Cons of Marriott Bonvoy Cruises

  • Members can earn extra Marriott Bonvoy points.
  • You can pay for your cruise with Marriott Bonvoy points.
  • The site offers a 110% best price guarantee
  • You’ll be charged a non-refundable processing fee of $24.99 per reservation.
  • Marriott cruises can only be booked with Marriott Bonvoy points over the phone.

Bottom Line: When you book a cruise through Marriott Bonvoy, you can pay for your cruise with points or you can choose to pay cash (I mean, credit card!) and earn Marriott Bonvoy points on your purchase.

Costco Travel is an in-house travel agency that’s only available to Costco members . Costco offers 2 levels of membership: Gold Star for $60 per year and Executive for $120 per year. Executive membership comes with a valuable extra perk for travelers — 2% back on your purchases through Costco Travel (up to $1,000)!

Another great thing about Costco Travel is that you’ll sometimes find deals that offer extra shipboard credit or a Costco shop card as a bonus.

Costco Travel is easy to use and offers all of the search and filter functions found on any other website.

Pros and Cons of Costco Travel

  • Executive members receive 2% back on purchases through Costco Travel.
  • Costco shop cards or onboard credit are sometimes offered as a bonus.
  • Costco Travel is for members only.

Hot Tip: For more information, check out our detailed post on using Costco Travel .

Cruise.com  is a cluttered website and can be overwhelming when you’re searching for a cruise (especially if you’re a first-time cruiser and not quite sure how everything works). It offers lots of deals and discounts, but many of those are actually offered through the cruise line, so it can be hard to tell which bonuses are actually coming from Cruise.com.

Cruise.com offers

Pros and Cons of Cruise.com

  • Lots of deals for a variety of cruise lines are offered.
  • The website is very busy and cluttered.
  • No price guarantee is offered.
  • You may be contacted by cruise.com after searching for a cruise on the site.

Hot Tip: Don’t be confused — Cruise.com and Cruises.com are 2 separate websites!

Travelocity is a website that many travelers use to book flights, hotels, rental cars, and cruises. The simple interface and the fact that there are no booking fees will make this a good choice for many travelers.

While Travelocity doesn’t advertise as many deals and savings as other sites, the price still manages to come out about the same as other websites.

Pros and Cons of Travelocity

  • There are no booking fees.
  • It’s simple to use.
  • No rewards program or extra bonus points.

Hot Tip: For more information, check out our complete guide to booking travel with Travelocity .

Let’s get to the important part — price comparisons! We priced out a 7-night Eastern Caribbean cruise from Miami on Royal Caribbean’s Icon of the Seas. Prices are for 2 adults in an Infinite Central Park View Balcony room.

As you can see, most websites offer the same price . The difference comes in the extras like onboard credit, free specialty dinners, free gratuities, or bonus miles.

The exception in this example was Cruise.com, which offered a savings of $50 on the price of the cruise. However, some of the extras offered by other sites could be worth more than that, so it’s always a good idea to price your cruise on multiple websites before booking.

Bottom Line: The base cost of a cruise is generally the same across most websites. The big difference comes in the extras — onboard credit, specialty dinners, cash-back, or bonus miles. 

No matter where you book your cruise, you’ll be paying the same base price 9 times out of 10. Even though a website might be offering “the best prices” or a “50% discount,” when you actually look at the numbers they’ll usually be the same as every other website.

To get a great deal, you’ll need to look for bonuses that a particular website is offering, such as onboard credit, free specialty dinners, cash-back, or bonus airline miles.

The higher the room category you’re booking, the more bonuses you’ll be able to get. Keep in mind that lots of the bonuses you may see advertised won’t kick in unless you book a balcony stateroom or a suite. Cashback and onboard spending bonuses are generally tied to your stateroom level as well which means you’re not going to get anywhere near the amount advertised if you’re booking an interior or ocean-view cabin.

No matter where you book your cruise, be sure to check out our post with cruise tips and a downloadable packing guide !

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you get the best deals on cruises.

To get the best deals on a cruise, it’s important to know which website is offering the most bonuses. The base price of your cruise will be the same from website to website 9 times out of 10, so you’ll need to find the website that’s offering the best bonuses like onboard credit or free specialty dinners.

Is it better to book directly with the cruise line?

Surprisingly, you’ll usually get a better deal when you book your cruise through an OTA (think Cruise.com, Expedia, or United Cruises). When you book through these types of sites you’ll get any deals that are being offered directly by the cruise line plus any extras offered by the OTA.

Is it better to book cruises last minute?

While you can find some great deals on last-minute cruises, it’s not a guarantee. If you have any preference about your cabin type or location, you’ll want to book as early as possible to make sure you get exactly what you want. If you’re traveling with a group and want to book cabins that are next door to each other, you’ll also want to book ahead of time. However, if you’re super flexible and don’t care what type of cabin you’re in, where it’s located, or even what cruise you’re on, you can often find some good deals at the last minute.

What is the best website for booking cruises?

Unfortunately, there’s no one site that always offers the best cruise deals. Most of the OTAs like CheapCaribbean.com, Cruises.com, or Priceline offer the same prices. The difference usually comes when you factor in extras like onboard credit or free gratuities.

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About Katie Seemann

Katie has been in the points and miles game since 2015 and started her own blog in 2016. She’s been freelance writing since then and her work has been featured in publications like Travel + Leisure and Forbes Advisor.

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Plan the ultimate cruise vacation, how can i book a cheap cruise.

If you're looking for cheap cruise deals, booking with Expedia.ca allows you to customize your search with filters that will put the best value at the top of your search results. Filters are available for various factors, including cabin experience, cruise line, destination and more. In most cases, the simpler your cruise is, the cheaper it will be. Even so, you may still find discounts on luxury cruise experiences, so don't hesitate to filter for some more high-end amenities and sort by price to see the cheapest cruises available.

Which month is the cheapest for cruises?

There is no consistent answer for the cheapest month for cruises unless you specify a destination first. With a cruise to the Caribbean , for example, the cheapest month will be around August since that's when the region undergoes hurricane season.

What happens if a cruise gets cancelled?

Every cruise operates differently, but you'll generally get a choice between a rescheduled date, a refund or cruise credits. Check the policy on your cruise before booking to learn more.

How affordable are cruise trips?

Cruise trips can be surprisingly affordable given all the features you can enjoy on them. Booking with Expedia.ca lets you filter for features like cabin experience, cruise length, cruise line and cruise ship while also sorting the results by price to ensure that you're getting the cheapest options at the top of your search results page while still meeting your search filter specifications.

What are some of the top cruise lines?

Top cruise lines include Viking cruises and Disney cruise lines. While Viking excels at luxury, Disney is among the best when it comes to family-friendly experiences. Some of the other best cruise lines include Royal Caribbean International cruises , Carnival cruises , Princess cruises and Celebrity cruises . What really qualifies as the best is more up to what you're looking to get out of your experience. For example, travelling with kids typically means a Disney cruise or something similar is the best, while budget travellers may prefer Carnival.

How much are cruise ship tickets?

Cruise prices largely depend on the kind of cruise you opt for. Cruise ship costs can be fairly affordable, with cheap cruises only charging $50 a night per person or so for some of their trips, while luxury cruises can run you upwards of $1,000 per night per person or more.

How far ahead should I book a cruise?

Cruise tickets should be bought 6 to 12 months before your cruise departure in most cases. Tickets are technically available further in advance and closer to your cruise departure date. Still, the 6- to 12-month range is generally the best way to get the best deals without missing any opportunities.

What are cruises like?

The cruise you book will have plenty to see and do before you even reach the first destination stop. The ship can be just as exciting as the destinations on your route. Cruise vacations offer food and drinks along with pools, shops and live performances in some circumstances. You may even find a cruise with a water park and a cruise with a roller coaster among particularly luxurious options.

Are cruises a useful way to travel?

Cruise travel ensures that every step of the journey is fun, with activities available between destinations, starting from your cruise terminal. While cruises may only have a single destination, some will travel to multiple spots throughout their entire duration, allowing you to enjoy locales that are just as varied as the attractions on the ship.

Which cruise line is the most affordable in 2024 / 2025?

Deals are often available for just about every cruise line, but Carnival cruises tend to be the most affordable with their Mardi Gras ship . You can also usually find cheap cruises with Royal Caribbean . When searching for a cruise, remember to sort by price to put the most affordable options at the top of your search results page.

How do I get the top cruise deals?

Start your cruise search with Expedia.ca to get the best cruise deals by using our comprehensive filters to sort through our vast collection of offerings. Expedia.ca Rewards members may even find discount cruises through their membership perks, so don't hesitate to take advantage of the free membership.

What cruise would work best for me?

If you're looking for the absolute best cruise in the world, the answer depends on what you're personally interested in experiencing. A laid-back cruise is notably different from a family-friendly cruise with its own amusement park. Take advantage of search filters to narrow down your results to cruises that work for you.

What should I keep in mind when booking a cruise?

Finding a cruise you'll be satisfied with means considering the type of cruise you want and the budget you have to work with. See what's included in the price of a ticket and what you'll have to pay extra for. If aspects like food aren't included, for example, you'll need additional funds in your budget to cover that cost.

What are some of the best cruise destinations in 2024 / 2025?

Cruises can take travellers all over the world, whether you're looking for a cruise to Alaska , a cruise to Mexico or even Antarctic cruises . Cruises to the Middle East and cruises to Australia are popular as well. Think about the kind of cruise experience you want to determine which is the best destination. If you want plenty of time on the cruise, picking a faraway destination can be useful. You also need to consider the attractions available in the destination itself.

What countries should I visit on a cruise?

The Bahamas cruises are among the most iconic cruise destinations, but the cruises to Cuba can also be lovely. Of course, countries all over the world are available. Remember that cruises may not necessarily stop in a country for all that long, so keep in mind how long your visit will actually be when considering what you want to do during your stop.

Are last-minute cruise deals available?

Last-minute cruise deals are often available, and you can check what's available by inputting your travel dates into the cruise finder on Expedia.ca. If you sort by price, the cheapest options will be listed first, including opportunities with special deals applied.

Are there all-inclusive cruises?

Yes, all-inclusive cruises are available and quite popular, and you can find them by using the search filter for all-inclusive. Celebrity cruises and Royal Caribbean cruises , for example, both offer all-inclusive packages.

Is food included with a cruise ticket?

Whether or not food is included in your cruise depends on your booking details. You can check to see what exactly is included with the ticket by checking the ‘What's included’ section of the cruise summary page after clicking it from your search results.

Are there adults-only cruise lines?

Some lines are adults only, including Viking cruises , though Carnival cruises and Princess cruises have options for adults-only cruises as well. With an adults-only cruise, you can immerse yourself in a peaceful and tranquil environment designed to make it easy to sit back and relax.

What kind of luxury cruise lines are there?

Luxury cruise lines include ships like the Caribbean Princess from Princess cruises , along with pretty much anything that Viking cruises have available. With luxury cruises, you can expect high-end amenities and a variety of things to see and do on the ship, such as shopping, dining, live performances, pools and even theme parks.

What family cruises are best suited for kids?

Disney cruises go above and beyond to offer fun cruises for kids and adults alike, but some cruises, like MSC cruises , have special promotions that allow children to get booked for free. Think of Disney cruises as having a Disney theme park on a ship with rides, shows and attractions for the whole family to enjoy.

Which lines offer the best cruises for couples?

Romantic experiences are easy to enjoy with Viking Cruises and Holland America Line cruises . The latter's Koningsdam Cruise is complemented by truly stunning views among breathtaking natural features. River cruises tend to be some of the most romantic, with more stops in historic romantic cities for you and your partner to enjoy.

Why should I go on a cruise for my honeymoon?

A cruise is one of the best ways to spend your honeymoon, as you and your partner can enjoy pampering at spa facilities with fine dining too. You can check what special features are available on every cruise on Expedia.ca in the ‘What's included’ section of their summary page.

Do cruises run around Christmas?

Yes, several cruises operate during Christmas, and you can find them by entering travel dates around Christmas to see what's available for a 2024 cruise to finish out the year. Carnival and Disney both offer special Christmas cruises with special activities and features centred around the holiday theme.

Is it worth going on a river cruise?

River cruises offer a bit of a different experience from ocean cruises, as they tend to have more stops and more varied sights to see. Viking river cruises are among the best available, as they got their start doing river cruises, making them have extensive experience with river journeys.

Are passports required for cruises?

You will need a passport if the cruise travels outside of Canada, even if you're leaving from a Canadian port like cruises from Vancouver . Cruises to the US require a passport valid for at least 6 months after your return. Cruises to other international locations require the same in addition to any potential necessary visas.

What are the benefits of booking a cruise with Expedia.ca?

When you book with Expedia.ca, you'll have access to an expansive catalogue of cruise options and search filters that allow you to narrow down those results as you see fit based on the destination, length, itinerary, cruise line and more. Additionally, Expedia.ca Rewards members accrue points on eligible purchases and other perks that can be put towards subsequent trips. Membership is free, so feel free to join and reap the benefits.

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Cruises have long since ceased to be reserved for the better-off: even the smaller budget allows you to enjoy the benefits of a cruise. Experience this very special kind of holiday and visit several countries without having to leave your hotel room or even pack your bags. Our cruise offers are perfect for families who require a range of cabin options to cater for their needs. Even if cruises are a completely new terrain for you, you've come to the right place: Our bargains are also ideal as a taster cruise due to their low price, to see if the sea air is for you.

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10 Cheap 2024 Alaskan Cruises (Starting at Just $249)

During the past few years, interest in sailing to Alaska has soared. It’s not hard to see why.

Alaska is known at the “Last Frontier,” and like any frontier, it can be difficult to traverse. With a limited amount of roads and other transportation, the easiest way to get around the picturesque coastline is via boat or plane. Luckily, that’s also the best way to view the natural scenery.

Mountain view from cruise ship in Alaska

And as word spreads about the beauty of taking an Alaskan cruise, more and more people are considering taking a trip.

The good news is that with increased interest in cruises to the region, cruise lines are sailing more ships. Today, there is a staggering amount of Alaskan cruises to choose from across every budget, cruise line, and itinerary.

If you’re looking for cheap Alaskan cruises, however, then you need to be prepared to shop around. Trips to this area are seasonal — sailing from April through October. Since there is only a limited window of time to cruise, prices are considerably higher than similar Caribbean cruises you might be familiar with. As well, prices change frequently.

Below, we highlight some of the cheapest 2024 Alaskan cruises. The prices for these trips start at just $249 per person. But before we get too far, here are some tips on how to find the most affordable trips to this region…

How to Find the Cheapest Alaskan Cruise Deals (Best Deals Below)

Sail Early in the Season The Alaskan cruising season is short — usually only five months long, although some lines are extending that season. Running from April through October, your opportunities to sail are limited, although there are a number of ships sailing at any given time.

If you want to save the most, look for cruises that sail April/May. These trips early in the season are before the busier summer travel season. That means the pool of available passengers is smaller. In order to fill the ships, cruise lines slash prices. A cruise departing in May can be hundreds of dollars less than the same trip leaving in July.

Sail Late in the Season Didn’t we just say to sail early in the season to save? Well, the same logic applies to sailing late. If you can wait until September/October, cruise fares to Alaska are much cheaper. With school back in session, the summer season largely over, and the bulk of the sailing season already past, you can find deals that are hundreds of dollars less than sailing just a few weeks earlier.

Sail One-Way or from Different Ports Most cruises sail round-trip, departing ports like Vancouver or Seattle . But if you look around, you can find one-way trips or that that depart from one port and let passengers off in another (such as departing Vancouver and returning to Seattle or sailing from Seattle for seven days and ending in Alaska before another seven-day cruise home). Since these cruises are less convenient for most passengers, they tend to be cheaper.

Search an Aggregator Website It only makes sense that if you go to a specific cruise line’s website to search for cruises, they will only show you their sailings. But every major cruise line sails Alaska. That’s why we suggest going to a site that searches across all cruise lines to search for deals.

Sites like AvoyaTravel.com or Orbitz allow you to search by cruise lines, destination, dates, and more to find the trip that matches your schedule and budget. Since the sites are the same, it’s not a huge difference which line you sail.

With all of these tips in mind, here are some of the cheapest Alaskan cruises for 2024. Note that prices may change depending on when you book.

Cheap 2024 Alaskan Cruises (One-Way/Alternate Ports)

Endicott Arm in Alaska

As we mentioned above, cruises that are one-way journeys mean you will need to find transportation back from the endpoint of the cruise (usually with a return cruise). Still, you can save a ton. Below, we’ve listed some of the cheapest one-way Alaskan cruises we’ve found. Prices are based on the per-person cruise fare for an interior cabin.

7-Night Alaskan Cruise from Vancouver aboard Celebrity Summit (One-Way) Date: May 10, 2024 Price: $349 per person

A one-way trip from Vancouver to Seward, Alaska , this trip starts at just $349 per person and leaves in early May. The cruise is aboard Celebrity Summit, making it ideal for those wanting a more luxurious experience than what you normally find on mass-market lines. It’s among the cheapest trips to Alaska you’ll find, and stops in Ketchikan, Sitka, Juneau, and more. The return trip starts at $377 per person . Combined, that’s about $750 in cruise fare for a two-week Alaskan trip. That’s not bad at all.

7-Night Alaskan Cruise from Vancouver aboard Norwegian Jewel (One-Way) Date: April 29, 2024 Price: $399 per person

For 2024, we’re finding lots of low prices sailing from Vancouver — especially if you sail one-way (often the return voyage is also fairly inexpensive). In this case, Norwegian Jewel is heading from Vancouver to Seward on a week long trip. On the way there, it will visit Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Hubbard Glacier and Seward. So you get an entire tour of Alaska starting at just $399 per person . The return trip costs around the same amount. 

7-Night Alaskan Cruise from Vancouver aboard Radiance of the Seas (One-Way) Date: August 23, 2024 Price: $416 per person

Royal Caribbean is known for its large ships with lots to do. While Radiance of the Seas is a little older than others in the fleet, it still has a lot to offer for those days at sea. 

On this cruise you’ll depart Vancouver on a 7-night trip to Seward. Along the way you’ll sail the Inside Passage, visit Juneau, Icy Strait Point, Sitka, Skagway, see Hubbard Glacier and end the cruise in Seward, Alaska. That’s essentially seeing all the major cruise ports starting at $416 per person . 

From there you will need to book a southbound trip back to Vancouver (or fly home). That southbound let currently runs $368 and features stops in the same ports giving you more time to explore. 

Cheap 2024 Alaskan Cruises (Round Trip)

Discovery Princess cruise ship docked in Skagway, Alaska

While one-way cruises often offer the cheaper fares, for 2024 we’re finding more deals in round trip cruises, which are much more convenient for travelers. The following cruises are all round trip from a single port.

5-Night Alaskan Cruise from Vancouver aboard Noordam Date: April 30, 2024 Price: $249 per person

Technically, Holland America calls this a “Pacific Northwest” cruise. But it leaves Vancouver, sails through the Inside Passage to Ketchikan, Alaska, and then stops in Prince Rupert before making its way back to Vancouver. So you can get to say that you visited Alaska, but also do it on a low budget and for a trip that’s shorter than the traditional week-long itinerary. Consider that this price is cheaper than many budget trips to the Caribbean for just three days!

The trip departs early in the season as well , giving another reason why it’s among the cheapest deals your find to sail to the region.

9-Night Alaskan Cruise from Seattle aboard Norwegian Jewel Date: October 10, 2024 Price: $499 per person

Sailing late (or early) in the season is a great way to find cheap Alaska deals. So is sailing an older ship. In this case, the two come together for a nine-night cruise to the state that starts at less than $500 per person .

This trip aboard Norwegian Jewel takes you from Seattle to Sitka, Icy Strait Point, Skagway, Juneau, Ketchikan, and Victoria before returning home. That also gives you two extra days to explore Alaska compared to a typical cruise, yet the price is something that won’t break the bank. Cruising Alaska for just $55 per day is nearly unheard of.

6-Night Alaskan Cruise from Vancouver aboard Brilliance of the Seas Date: May 6, 2024 Price: $458 per person

Royal Caribbean fans have plenty of options for the season with four different ships sailing to Alaska. However, prices can soar, with some trips on the newest ships and at peak season starting around $900 per person. This cruise, however, is much less expensive.

On the six-night cruise you’ll sail from Vancouver and sail up the Inside Passage. From there, it’s the capital city (Juneau), Skagway, and the Tracy Arm Fjord before returning back to Vancouver. It’s not that many days in port but if you’re wanting to see some dramatic landscapes and are a Royal Caribbean fan, this might be the trip for you. 

7-Night Alaskan Cruise from Vancouver aboard Nieuw Amsterdam Date: April 28, 2024 Price: $429 per person

Holland America offers a number of deals, especially if sailing from Vancouver. This particular sailing departs British Columbia and sails up to Juneau where you can explore the Mendenhall Glacier. From there, it’s Skagway and the Endicott Arm, followed Ketchikan and then sailing back down the Inside Package to return to Canada. 

This type of cruise is normally hundreds more during the peak of the season. Sail early, however, and you can go starting at $429 per person . One thing to note is that balcony cabins on this particular trip are considerably more expensive, starting at $929 per person.

7-Night Alaskan Cruise from Vancouver aboard Ruby Princess Date: May 7, 2024 Price: $398 per person

When it comes to the least expensive week-long round trip cruise to Alaska, this is the cheapest we found. Set sail in May (before the more expensive summer peak) and you can visit the “Last Frontier” for under $400 per person before taxes and fees .

Just because this cruise is a deal doesn’t mean you’ll miss anything. It will visit Juneau and Skagway, followed by scenic cruising in Glacier Bay National Park. The trip wraps up with a stop in Ketchikan, Alaska prior to returning to Vancouver.

Consider that at the peak of the season, this same cruise is $648 and you can see the deal you’re getting. 

7-Night Alaskan Cruise from Seattle aboard Majestic Princess Date: May 19, 2024 Price: $598 per person

If you notice, many of the cruises featured depart from Vancouver. But for many travelers, flying or driving into Seattle is much cheaper and convenient. So even if you pay a little more for the cruise, you’ll still come out ahead overall.

This trip is among the least expensive we could find for a round trip sailing from Seattle. Starting at about $600 , it hits the highlights of Alaska cruises. This includes Ketchikan, Dawes Glacier, Juneau, and Skagway, along with a stop in Victoria, British Columbia before returning to Washington.

The same cruise runs nearly $800 during the peak of summer.

7-Night Alaskan Cruise from Seattle aboard Norwegian Bliss Date: September 28, 2024 Price: $599 per person

One nice thing about sailing a large ship is that it offers a lot to see and do both inside and out. That can be great if your trip is to Alaska where days at sea can be breezy and cold. In this case, this trip sails on Norwegian Bliss, a ship in NCL’s Breakaway-Pluss class and built just a few years ago. That means you’ll get to sail a big ship with all the latest amenities as you hit all the highlights.  

Ports of call on this trip include Alaska’s capital city Juneau, former gold mining town Skagway, and Ketchikan. It also visits Victoria, BC, which we think is one of the most underrated ports in the area. Prices for the cruise start at roughly $600 per person , but keep in mind that taxes and fees will increase the price significantly. 

More on Sailing Alaska:

  • The Best Cruise Lines for Sailing Alaska (2024)
  • 44 Must-Have Alaskan Cruise Tips, Tricks, and Secrets
  • 29 Must-Have Things to Pack for an Alaskan Cruise (11 You’d Never Think Of)

Popular: 39 Useful Things to Pack (17 You Wouldn't Think Of)

Read next: park & cruise hotels for every port in america, popular: 107 best cruise tips, secrets, tricks, and freebies, related articles more from author, complete guide to taking an alaskan cruise (what it’s like), answered: what’s the cheapest time to take a cruise, are alaskan cruises worth it absolutely, and here’s why…, answered: do you need a passport for an alaskan cruise, alaskan cruise packing checklist: 80+ things to bring (printable), which cruise line should i sail the definitive guide for 2024.

Been on 6 Cruises on board the USS Nimitz and almost a Dozen Cruises with the Family. Good Info in this Article about Alaskan Cruises.

Are there any repositional ships from Alaska to Miami?

We’re not sure of every ship, but if you search you will find some. For example, Norwegian Joy sails from Seattle on October 6, debarks in Los Angeles on October 11, and then sails on a 16-day trip from LA to Miami. For more, look at the ships sailing from Alaska and see what their schedules are in September and October (when the Alaskan season ends and the ships move on).

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Can i bring my pet on a cruise, icon of the seas (world’s biggest cruise ship) makes inaugural cruise this weekend, hotels with cruise shuttles for every major port in america, 107 best cruise tips, tricks, secrets, and freebies, 39 useful things to pack for your cruise (including 17 you’d never think of).

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Where You Can Find Cruises on the Cheap

Picking an older, smaller ship might make for less fancy travel, but it comes with advantages

Royal Caribbean’s Icon of the Seas , a cruise ship over five times as large as the Titanic, is preparing for its inaugural voyage in late January. A subset of die-hard passengers are saying they would much prefer the opposite of that mammoth boat and book older ships . Here's why :

Royal Caribbean

1. Fewer People

Passengers have said that they enjoy greater attention from crew members on smaller and older ships without feeling so crowded.

Royal Caribbean's Rhapsody of the Seas originally entered service in 1997. Photo: Royal Caribbean

Icon of the Seas

The amount of passengers Icon of the Seas can hold . It is the largest cruise ship in the world and comes with everything from an ice-skating arena to six waterslides.

Vision of the Seas

The amount of passengers the less-heralded Vision of the Seas , which has been in service since 1998, can hold . Guests described that they were less overwhelmed by crowds and could do the activities that they wanted.

2. Big-Deal Savings

A cruise’s cost generally depends on factors including the length of the trip and demand for the itinerary, travel advisers say. But the ship’s age can also factor in.

Grandeur of the Seas is Royal Caribbean’s oldest ship. Its maiden voyage was in December 1996. Photo: Royal Caribbean

The starting price per person , before applying discounts, for a seven - night sailing on the Icon of the Seas , according to a recent search for an interior stateroom.

Utopia of the Seas

The starting price per person , before applying discounts, for a three - night cruise on Royal Caribbean ’ s Utopia of the Seas . Its maiden voyage is in July.

Grandeur of the Seas

The starting price , per person, before applying discounts, of a four-night cruise on Royal Caribbean ’ s Grandeur of the Seas , the cruise line’s oldest ship.

3. More Exotic Itineraries

Keeping older ships in a fleet enables cruise lines to serve a wider array of destinations. Newer megaships can be too big to dock in certain harbors, including Tahiti.

Suliane Favennec/AFP/Getty

4. Updates on Dry Land

When booking cruises, instead of looking at when a ship first sailed, check when it was last refurbished during what is known as a dry dock . A cruise ship can start to show its age at around 15 years.

Phil Perrey

Carnival uses the dry-dock process to install features on its more-mature ships , such as the adult-only Serenity section. The Carnival Sunshine originally entered service in 1996 as the Carnival Destiny and was renamed following an extensive renovation in 2013.

Older ships can come with drawbacks, even if they are recently renovated. They tend to have smaller rooms and fewer cabins with balconies, says Rob Clabbers, president of Q Cruise and Travel in Chicago.

An ocean-view balcony room aboard Rhapsody of the Seas. Photo: Royal Caribbean

Produced by Leah Latella Photo Editor: Daisy Korpics Cover Image: Adam Carnevale

READ MORE: Billionaires Love This Tiny Bahamas Island. A Travel Guide for the Rest of Us.

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Yikes, does Royal Caribbean's new Icon of the Seas really cost that much?

Gene Sloan

Egad, does it really cost that much?

Cruise fans looking to book the hottest new ship of the year, Royal Caribbean 's giant Icon of the Seas, experienced sticker shock when it first went on sale in 2022. But in hindsight, the pricing then wasn't bad at all — at least compared to what it is now.

Pricing for 2024 and 2025 sailings of the much-awaited vessel, which debuts this week in Miami, have only gone up — and by a lot.

For more cruise news, guides and tips, sign up for TPG's cruise newsletter .

In a research report out this week, Wall Street analyst Brandt Montour of Barclays said ticket prices for the new world's largest cruise ship are running nearly twice the level of ticket prices for the rest of the Royal Caribbean fleet, according to the firm's proprietary analysis of online fares — 95% higher, to be exact.

That's up from an initial premium of 40% to 60% after the ship first opened for bookings in October 2022, Montour noted.

The increase, in part, is due to the enormous amount of press the first-of-its-kind ship has been getting of late, which is contributing to an imbalance between supply and demand that is allowing Royal Caribbean to raise prices.

"Icon has received much greater organic attention from the mainstream media than the company has ever seen for a new cruise ship, which appears to be driving outsized demand," Montour said.

Alas, don't expect fares for the ship to come down anytime soon.

Related: TPG is on board Icon of the Seas this week: Our first impressions

"While this strong pricing would seemingly set Icon up for tough ship-specific comps to lap in 2024, management expressed confidence it can grow yields in year two," Montour said, citing conversations between top Royal Caribbean executives and Wall Street analysts during preview events on board the vessel.

Montour did note that pricing for Icon of the Seas was even higher on a relative basis, when compared to other Royal Caribbean ships, during the fall of 2023. For a time, pricing for the ship was running about 150% higher than the average Royal Caribbean ship, he said.

How much does Icon of the Seas cost?

Just how high have Icon of the Seas fares soared? As of this week, the least expensive sailing on the vessel available to book was a seven-night Caribbean voyage departing from Miami on Jan. 10, 2026. It started at $1,775 per person, not including taxes, fees and port charges.

Compare that to starting prices of $1,259 per person , not including taxes, fees and port charges, that were available for sailings on the ship shortly after it opened for bookings in 2022.

That's a 41% increase in the starting price for the vessel in just over a year.

With the increase, the starting price to sail on Icon of the Seas is now three or four times the starting price of some other Royal Caribbean ships operating similar routes.

low price cruises

Similar seven-night Caribbean cruises on Royal Caribbean's oldest ship, Grandeur of the Seas, for instance, start at just $469 per person, not including taxes, fees and port charges, for sailings in January 2026. That's just 26% of the cost of a sailing on Icon of the Seas during the same month.

Like Icon of the Seas, Grandeur of the Seas sails seven-night Caribbean voyages out of Florida, albeit from Tampa instead of Miami.

You can even book much newer, more amenity-filled Royal Caribbean ships, such as the 8-year-old Harmony of the Seas, for less than half the cost of Icon of the Seas.

Related: The ultimate guide to Royal Caribbean

Seven-night Caribbean cruises scheduled for January 2026 on Harmony of the Seas — one of Royal Caribbean's giant Oasis Class ships — start at just $699 per person, not including taxes, fees and port charges. That's just 40% of the cost of a sailing on Icon of the Seas.

Harmony of the Seas is based in Galveston, Texas.

The starting fares listed above are for the least-expensive, windowless interior cabins on the ships. But it's not just entry-level cabins that cost significantly more on Icon of the Seas. There's a sharp differential in pricing for higher-level cabins on Icon of the Seas, too.

As of this week, balcony cabins on Icon of the Seas sailings to the Caribbean in January 2026 started at $2,426 per person, compared with $949 for similar cabins on similar Harmony of the Seas sailings for the same month.

That works out to a 155% premium for a balcony cabin on Icon of the Seas.

Why does Icon of the Seas cost so much?

The sky-high pricing for Icon of the Seas is a sign of just how much excitement among cruising fans there is for the ship — the first in a new series of vessels at Royal Caribbean that is bigger than anything seen before. Due to its giant size, it has more amenities than any other cruise ship.

Related: TPG's ultimate guide to what you'll find on Icon of the Seas

Cruise executives at Royal Caribbean and other major lines have long said many cruising fans are most drawn to the biggest cruise vessels that have the most restaurants, bars, showrooms and decktop attractions.

The pricing differential between Icon of the Seas and other ships, notably, is even bigger when the vessel is compared to the ships of Royal Caribbean rivals. Seven-night Caribbean sailings in January 2026 on MSC Cruises , Carnival Cruise Line and Norwegian Cruise Line ships start at $459, $509 and $649, respectively.

That means that you'll pay about 386%, 347% and 291% more, respectively, to sail on a seven-night voyage on Icon of the Seas in January 2026 than you would on ships operated by those three lines.

A new icon of cruising

Cruising fans are particularly excited about Royal Caribbean's unveiling of Icon of the Seas as it marks the first time in 15 years a cruise line has launched a new class of ships that eclipse all others in size and amenities. The last time that happened was in 2009 when Royal Caribbean unveiled its much-ballyhooed Oasis Class of vessels.

Ranging from 226,838 to 235,600 tons, the five ships of the Oasis Class were long the size leaders in the cruise world, with even the smallest among them being nearly 10% bigger and more amenity-packed than any other cruise vessel afloat. When the first Oasis Class vessel was unveiled, it was around 40% bigger than the next-biggest ship.

Related: The 7 classes of Royal Caribbean ships, explained

Like Icon of the Seas, each of the Oasis Class ships offers dozens of restaurants, bars, lounges and decktop attractions, making them among the biggest resorts in the world that float.

Still, at 250,800 tons, Icon of the Seas is more than 6% bigger than the biggest of the Oasis Class ships, the 22-month-old Wonder of the Seas . It can hold up to 7,600 passengers — a new record for a passenger ship. That's about 7% higher than Wonder of the Seas' maximum capacity of 7,084 passengers.

The bigger passenger capacity is in part due to the ship's greater focus on family travelers. Icon of the Seas was built with a lot more cabins that have extra bunks to accommodate families with children. It also has more amenities geared to families, including a new-for-the-line outdoor "neighborhood" called Surfside, dedicated to families with young children.

Related: Royal Caribbean's new cruise ship aims to be the ideal vacation for young families

Icon of the Seas also features the largest water park ever built on a cruise ship, with a record six decktop waterslides. It also has seven pools.

Icon of the Seas is just the first of three sister ships Royal Caribbean has ordered for delivery by 2026 that will make up its new Icon Class. The line also has one more Oasis Class ship, Utopia of the Seas , on order for delivery later this year.

Icon of the Seas' first sailing with paying passengers will take place Saturday.

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