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Haven Booking - I am the only idiot?

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I pay whatever the Haven/Suite price is and that’s fine.  I get the cruise I want, in the room I want for the level of service I want.  Life’s too short.

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I pay for the Haven outright as well when it is important for us to go Haven.  If I travel solo, I’m fine in an aft balcony.  Next cruise, Escape in August, we booked the Haven again, in a spa Haven suite. Might try to bid on a H4, or might pay for the upgrade outright in advance, haven’t decided yet.  I agree with all who say if the Haven is important to you, always book it outright.

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We book outright. I don't like having someone else decides for me where I'm staying.

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While there are benefits to knowing exactly where you are going to end up from the get go,  now that we are going to be Platinum we likely will be pulling back to the mini-suite level or at worst (in price) lower level Haven and hope for the bidding process.   Between the partial embarkation/disembarkation priority, free specialty meals, NCL's typical other Free at Sea promotions and Latitude benefits we do not think we are going to be missing much beyond the Butler and free newly released movies should our bid into Haven or an Haven upgrade fail.    I do omit it perturbs us that we are going to have free loading bidder next door to our OS next month since we are within the bidding 45 day interval with no reservations on it yet, but there is not much we can so.   We shopping around ships and weeks and believe we go a hummer of deal with what we got, just strange that other's did not spot what we found.

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If Haven is important to you and you're sailing on a popular (new) ship during a busy week then I would absolutely do the same thing and book it outright at the "rack rate" (maybe trying to get some obc from my credit card company or a TA to take a little of the sting out).

 

We have yet to sail on a ship with the Haven concept, but have sailed in every other suite level (always during Easter week when my daughter is off school) and always book the exact room we want, outright.  Once my daughter is off to college, I am looking forward to trying Haven during a non-busy, low-kid week 🙂

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19 hours ago, KeithJenner said:

I don't think that the Haven prices are worth it for us, even at upgrade bidding prices, but I agree with the view that if I want a particular room or category it is best to just buy it rather than hope for an upgrade.

 

I have status with a hotel chain that means I am very likely to get upgraded, but often pay for a better room if I really want it, rather than rely on getting an upgrade which may not happen.

Totally agree. If this is something you want and you can pay for why not assure you will have it? 

for us havens are out of our price range comfort zone, but we do love our balconies. We always book and pay for what we want when it comes to that. We could wait and try to play the bidding game but it is a gamble that we are not wanting to take. 

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We get extra OBC from our TA as well and always book the Haven.  We seem to book in April and November which are usually longer and in Europe or Asia, so we want the cabin we want and pay for it.    

 

On a side note, we are booked for two 2020 cruises and I saw the 20% off promo yesterday so I called my TA.  On one of the trips we got a $4000 per cabin savings and on the other almost $3000.   It's worth continuing to check the prices when you book this far out, so that taught me a lesson to do that from now on.  Makes the Haven not quite so pricey for the 16 and 21 day trips we have planned.

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5 hours ago, Hotspring said:

I do omit it perturbs us that we are going to have free loading bidder next door to our OS next month since we are within the bidding 45 day interval with no reservations on it yet, but there is not much we can so.  

Free-loading bidder?  Wow...so someone will correct me if I'm wrong but I thought that you could only bid up a few categories higher than one's original booking.  So for example, if I book an ocean view category then I may be able to bid on a balcony, spa balcony....maybe a mini-suite but I won't be able to bid on a Haven suite because it's too many categories removed from my original booking.  However, if I purchase say a mini-suite then I may have to option of bidding on a spa mini or a Haven spa suite because my original booking is closer to that higher level category.  I don't think a "free-loading" lowly ocean view booking would be eligible for bidding on a Haven Owner's Suite.  When we booked a Haven Spa Suite on Breakaway I submitted a bid for an OS and DOS just for the heck of it.  My bid was quite high on top of what I had already paid for my original booking.  Now, I knew my bid wouldn't be accepted because those 2 categories were sold out.  I bid in the event that someone cancelled at the last minute.  So let me be clear...IF my bid had been accepted, my all in, out of pocket cost would hardly qualify me (nor anyone else) as a "free-loading bidder".  That was quite harsh IMO.  I applaud anyone who gets what they want through the bidding process!!  

A side note, we will be on the Sun in an ocean view cabin at the end of the month.  The only bidding options given to me were balcony and mini-suite.  I placed a bid on both but will remain happy with an ocean view.

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FYI:  I just saved almost $3000 on our next Haven cruise by calling and asking for the current "20% off for Latitudes previous cruisers" discount.  The only thing I lost was a $300 OBC, which was way offset by the huge reduction in the PP rate.

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2 hours ago, GA Dave said:

FYI:  I just saved almost $3000 on our next Haven cruise by calling and asking for the current "20% off for Latitudes previous cruisers" discount.  The only thing I lost was a $300 OBC, which was way offset by the huge reduction in the PP rate.

Yup, I've saved about $3000 on a Haven OS Alaska cruise just by booking (the cabin I want) early and then grabbing price reductions as they appeared online, which was 3-4 times. 

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2 hours ago, GA Dave said:

FYI:  I just saved almost $3000 on our next Haven cruise by calling and asking for the current "20% off for Latitudes previous cruisers" discount.  The only thing I lost was a $300 OBC, which was way offset by the huge reduction in the PP rate.

That's fabulous! Although Platinum, my August 2020 Caribbean cruise does not qualify, which is so sad since I have two cabins booked in Haven so would have certainly saved a good chunk of change.

 

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We have booked an H4 and H6 for an epic family trip during an upcoming sabbaticle - we wanted a specific experience and it was worth it to us to book the exact categories.  

 

If it was just the DH and myself then we might risk the upgrade process, but with the kid, and the in-laws it is worth the expense to be where we want to be.  

 

 

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Thank you all very much! Your responses have actually surprised me since reading these forums it looks like so many just wait to bid for Haven.


We are like you, we want a specific category and cabin so we just end up booking.  We have an H4 and and H5 booked and even when it was my dh and me on the Escape a few years ago for our 25th wedding anniversary, I didn't want to chance it and booked an H5 (Escape Haven area is beautiful).

 

Thanks so much for your responses and taking the time to explain why you book.  We are in the same "boat" LOL

 

 

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3 minutes ago, Cruzn Bills Fan said:

We only cruise in Suites or The Haven but only when its around $6K for the two of us.

 

That is a great price.  My dh can only cruise in the summer or holidays for a few more years so we are stuck with paying high prices.

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We tried Haven for the first time this past February and booked the DOS outright. The price was dirt cheap at the time (to us for Haven) so we used that as justification for trying it out. 

 

Seems like we had a less than typical experience, so I'm glad we felt we got it at a discount. For the right price we would try it again, but it's hard to justify double/triple the cost of a balcony when I haven't had that special "Haven experience" to justify the normally steep price.

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I try to sail in the Haven if I can get a decent price and it's not a ridiculous amount more than a good balcony/mini-suite. For example, for 4 of us we paid 4k for a 4 day to Bermuda (mini-suite was 2700) and a little under 6k for an upcoming 7 day on the Bliss (mini-suite was 4k). Basically a 50% premium on the mini-suite price in each case. We just started sailing with NCL so I don't expect every cruise to be in the Haven, but it does make things easier with young kids. We may be less tempted though once we hit Platinum, since we would then get priority embark/disembark, extra SD dinner, Concierge?, etc

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I should also point out that on the same cruise a week later, an M6 for 4 with all the perks is 5300 (which is higher than normal), and about 600 less than my H8 a week prior. There are a lot of factors with cruise pricing. I always try to book the cheapest Haven room I can find since I have few restrictions on when I can take time off of work. 

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15 hours ago, FLConnie said:

We get extra OBC from our TA as well and always book the Haven.  We seem to book in April and November which are usually longer and in Europe or Asia, so we want the cabin we want and pay for it.    

 

On a side note, we are booked for two 2020 cruises and I saw the 20% off promo yesterday so I called my TA.  On one of the trips we got a $4000 per cabin savings and on the other almost $3000.   It's worth continuing to check the prices when you book this far out, so that taught me a lesson to do that from now on.  Makes the Haven not quite so pricey for the 16 and 21 day trips we have planned.

Hello, We are looking at a Europe cruise for next fall & would like a Haven. I'm wondering where you saw the 20% off promo. ??

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15 minutes ago, krisdamom said:

Hello, We are looking at a Europe cruise for next fall & would like a Haven. I'm wondering where you saw the 20% off promo. ??

Sign into your NCL.Com account, click into your Past Guest link for perks they are offering, inclusive of a list of cruises that are eligible.   Some call it the Latitude link, it may have been that once, but they currently call it Past Guest

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10 hours ago, Notnewtoit said:

Yup, I've saved about $3000 on a Haven OS Alaska cruise just by booking (the cabin I want) early and then grabbing price reductions as they appeared online, which was 3-4 times. 

That's amazing - what a fantastic way to say money AND get a wonderful Haven vacation. 

Amy

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Or sign into your account, then filter for special offers/past guest specials.  You should see 175 cruises at this point.  You MUST be logged into your acct though.

 

We have two booked that we wouldn't have booked otherwise and I"m thinking of more...

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Although we don't book the Haven, I am a firm believer in booking the cabin you want. We always book an aft balcony and I have never bid on an upgrade since I already have the cabin I want.

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Also Guilty of paying full price!  However, DH is most relaxed in Haven, so if I have to sail fewer times, so be it.  What good to go on vacation and not be in a place you will be happy and/or comfortable?  Besides, I can get together with my girl friends if I want to sail in a lower graded cabin for the in-between times!  (I DO keep an eye out for prices changes, however.  On my upcoming Mexican Riviera cruise, the price dropped almost $3,500!)

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