I've done anywhere from 2 to 4 months in advance. Have never done the last minute thing. Too much stress!
I prefer 5 to 6 months in advance. You're able to take advantage of reserving excursions and the cabin you desire.
I need an accessible cabin so I always book at least 14 months out.
There are two times fares are lowest, first at posting usually 14 or 15 months ahead. The second is three weeks before, this is usually when travel agents release their remaining cabins they had blocked off.
My first one I booked 7 months out. I just booked my next one for March 2014 - 10 months out. Going to try to book my 2015 cruise later this year as well.
....... As an agent I will say this, you can't beat pricing, at least 1 year a head of time. You might be hesitant about booking so far in advance, but just opt for the insurance if anything happens.
Wow, over a year!? I don't think I could wait that long... I usually do around 3-5 months.
I do a year up to 6 months...bc of the insurance and besides I have a large family...our next cruises are July, September, and December of this year...Now in about 3 months I will be booking for Feb and then April of 2014.
we try to do at least a year in advance so that it gives everyone a chance to jump on with us if they want to. We call our planner on a regular basis to see if the fare has dropped which gets us onboard credit. This also gives up the opportunity to pay as we go and have it paid off at least within 45 days of sailing.
I have booked 6 months before and sometimes 3 weeks before, trying to get the best deal