Hello Shipmates, looking to purchase tickets on an Eastern Caribbean cruise 7 night in August where's the best place to buy tickets?
There are several options.
One is to visit the website of the lines you are interested in and comparing their cruises. The advantage here is that you will be dealing directly with the cruise line of choice with no middleman. This can require a lot of time and note-taking.
The second option is to find a good travel agent (not one of the mega-sites). The advantage is that they will do the research for you. Although you gain a middleman, you will still be dealing with a person. Since travel planning is the agents' livelihood, they will usually strive to ensure your satisfaction.
The third alternative is one of the mega-sites for travel. Although this option is probably the easiest, you will be leaving the fate of your vacation to a computer, with no one to communicate with. Although their prices may seem to be better, they often have add-on prices that end up costing about the same as the other two options. If something goes wrong, they will usually not stand behind you (or their product).
There are many cruise sites that offer packages as well as the cruise lines themselves and you will notice that they are all very very close in price. But usually one will offer better perks than the other. Or if you wait until last minute you may get a better price
I prefer booking directly with the website after researching the location and type of room we want. We have used a vacation planner with the Cruiseline and had good results, but I enjoy doing the work. The price we have received for doing the work ourselves and using a Cruiseline agent was the exact same.
I have found better prices with one of the Mega sites (they advertise as being the biggest cruise outlet) There I can look things up on line by destination and month. To finalize things I call my vacation planner there and we book the specific cabin I want. They also have good travel insurance that I can increase the Policy to also cover air and hotel. Travel insurance through the cruise line most often just cover the cruise.
I've book several different ways--with the cruise line directly, with a travel agent, and on-line. My two go-to websites for booking are Vacationstogo.com and AffordableTours.com Both are on-line and will honor any sales that the cruise line is offering. You get a personal agent with both groups--the agents are very helpful, responsive and you can contact them any time. This last cruise I took in December I used AffordableTours.com I got a great deal and with anything you book (tour, cruise, resort), they give you a 10% discount.