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Cruise Pricing Gone Mad?

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On 11/22/2019 at 6:10 AM, ptrpanpens said:

When you can find better service, better itineraries, better food, much better small ship experience for a lower price on some Azamara cruises in the Med next April and May than comparable Celebrity itineraries, you know something is up.


Add to this non refundable deposits on Celebrity and the fact that drinks and gratuities are included on Azamara it’s a no brainer as to which line to pick. Even though they are both part of the same company. Le Club Voyage points earned on AZ are higher and automatically apply to Captains Club loyalty program, too.

 

Celebrity pricing is now comparable to some Seabourn and on some rare occasions Silversea cruise prices. These are true 6^ luxury lines. It's not common but I've seen the classic verandah suites (376 square feet with 64 square foot balcony) on Silversea with grats, internet all drinks and $1000 OBC go for the same price as some E class aquaclass rooms. 

I've also noticed that good last minute deals on AZ are slowly starting to increase in availability in recent months. 
 

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4 hours ago, Mynki said:

 

Some of the new 2021 itineraries had aqua class rooms priced at £120 pppn more than a regular verandah. For that you could buy all four perks, dine in a specialty restaurant nightly and still have money left over. How Celebrity can justify such a premium is beyond me. 


There are other amenities. Like access to the spa facilities. And while the other specialty restaurants are nice Blu is available breakfast as well. The shower in Aqua is good too. 

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4 minutes ago, Pushka said:


There are other amenities. Like access to the spa facilities. And while the other specialty restaurants are nice Blu is available breakfast as well. The shower in Aqua is good too. 

 

 

I know. I've sailed in aqua class six times over the last five years. But whilst Blu is very nice for breakfast and I do like the shower I personally don't believe it's worth £240 ($308) per cabin more per day. I mean, what value would you personally put on breakfast in Blu and a shower per day? 

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11 hours ago, Pushka said:

Well yes but you can’t compare land experiences with a cruise. Chalk and cheese. 

I think you are wrong.  Or course we can (and do) compare land trips with cruises and enjoy both.   But we can generally do a European driving (or train) trip for about $500 per day (per couple) which includes decent hotels or apartments, excellent restaurants (far better then cruise line cuisine), etc.   We recently spoke with Viking River cruises about a trip between Berlin and Prague and it would have cost us about $1000 per day (plus air) to do this with Viking.  I told their rep the pricing was absurd and that we could fly over (Business Class), stay in good hotels, etc. for far less.  And no, we did not book that cruise.  And it is the same with Celebrity.  This past summer we took a 14 day Seabourn Cruise in Alaska for far less money then it would have cost to do a similar itinerary on Celebrity in comparable accommodations.   Consider that Seabourn cost us about $400 per person/day for a suite and an all-inclusive line which includes things like unlimited caviar, French Champagne,  top shelf booze, etc.  

 

Celebrity has priced itself out of our market since we can cruise most other mass market lines for far less and even cruise on luxury lines for about the same or less than Celebrity which is simply another mass market line...whose quality has unfortunately been declining under current management.  When we find a decent Celebrity deal we still book it...but otherwise the grass is far greener elsewhere.

 

Hank

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2 hours ago, HFX said:

However I see you are also from Canada and our dollar has not been any help, but some other lines pricing are starting to look a little more appealing. 


I certainly feel for you, 33% more & on top of these prices.

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2 hours ago, Mynki said:

 

Celebrity pricing is now comparable to some Seabourn and on some rare occasions Silversea cruise prices. These are true 6^ luxury lines. It's not common but I've seen the classic verandah suites (376 square feet with 64 square foot balcony) on Silversea with grats, internet all drinks and $1000 OBC go for the same price as some E class aquaclass rooms. 

I've also noticed that good last minute deals on AZ are slowly starting to increase in availability in recent months. 
 


i just priced an 11 day itinerary for veranda single occupancy on Apex to Spain and Portugal for over $7,800. Obviously I am not taking that cruise. I am in Paris now at a wonderful 4 star hotel on Rue Jacob in St Germain for far less than that per day,, including business class air and delicious food from the restaurants around here, plenty of money left over for purchases from the expensive boutiques and the best pastries you could ever have.😁😁

 

Plus, you cant get better surroundings than Paris, even in the rain!

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50 minutes ago, Hlitner said:

I think you are wrong.  Or course we can (and do) compare land trips with cruises and enjoy both.   But we can generally do a European driving (or train) trip for about $500 per day (per couple) which includes decent hotels or apartments, excellent restaurants (far better then cruise line cuisine), etc.   We recently spoke with Viking River cruises about a trip between Berlin and Prague and it would have cost us about $1000 per day (plus air) to do this with Viking.  I told their rep the pricing was absurd and that we could fly over (Business Class), stay in good hotels, etc. for far less.  And no, we did not book that cruise.  And it is the same with Celebrity.  This past summer we took a 14 day Seabourn Cruise in Alaska for far less money then it would have cost to do a similar itinerary on Celebrity in comparable accommodations.   Consider that Seabourn cost us about $400 per person/day for a suite and an all-inclusive line which includes things like unlimited caviar, French Champagne,  top shelf booze, etc.  

 

Celebrity has priced itself out of our market since we can cruise most other mass market lines for far less and even cruise on luxury lines for about the same or less than Celebrity which is simply another mass market line...whose quality has unfortunately been declining under current management.  When we find a decent Celebrity deal we still book it...but otherwise the grass is far greener elsewhere.

 

Hank


Agree but the comment was comparing cruises with land based trips and not just celebrity. And I posted earlier that Celebrity  pricing was absurd for a couple of bookings I’d checked. Viking just is expensive - I know as our May Alaska cruise was with them. And we do not think we got great value at all, in fact I could have purchased Princess cruise and received much better service. We were down to Guest Services several times during that cruise. Will never do an ocean cruise with them again. And obviously you can’t do an Alaskan trip the same way if a land trip. 

Edited by Pushka

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1 hour ago, Mynki said:

 

 

I know. I've sailed in aqua class six times over the last five years. But whilst Blu is very nice for breakfast and I do like the shower I personally don't believe it's worth £240 ($308) per cabin more per day. I mean, what value would you personally put on breakfast in Blu and a shower per day? 


 

Yes, on that basis I totally agree. I think I missed the “per day” cost in the first post.  
 

As we have to travel from Australia we always combine a land trip with a cruise. And not just a cruise on its own. 

Edited by Pushka

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The new “ perks” pricing in the uk looks to have boosted prices yet again sadly. Same Caribbean cruise next September has gone from £2700 to £3600 with the only addition being high speed internet. There has to be a point that these increases hit Celebrity.

Edited by yorky

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I looked at a 12 day cruise in Oct 2021 Along the East Coast.   A SS is over $14, 000.   We could stay at the Wynn in Boston for about $400 to $600 a night and still have at least $700 to spend per day for Food, drinks and gambling.   We could drive along the East coast staying at nice places and have many choices of where to eat, drink and etc.  We would also have unlimited internet, more TV channels and all  the liquor or beer we wanted in our room for a lot less than $1100 per day.  
 

We also drove to Quebec last year  and had a very nice room in old Quebec for $200 per night.  They served a real nice breakfast  and had a 24 hour espresso machine.  Again It would be very hard to spend  the remaking $900 a day on Food  and drinks.  A few drinks and food at the Hotel Frontenac is expensive but it wouldn’t make a dent in the extra $900 plus the atmosphere is nice. 

 

Bar Harbor.  You can get a very nice room for $300 a night, and be there for a few nights.  

 

 I don’t mind driving as we can see the country side and make stops along the way.  

 

What are we missing by not taking that cruise?   Maybe some lame entertainment and possibly missing Bar Harbor because of the weather conditions along with all of the other hidden charges plus the aggravation or embarkation and disembarkation, but  I will really miss the Muster Drill 🙄

 

I know that it could be cheaper to sail in a lower class but to get a room about the same size as a regular hotel room you need a SS.  
 

Happy cruising 🌊🚢🇺🇸🌅

Edited by miched

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3 hours ago, Pushka said:


There are other amenities. Like access to the spa facilities. And while the other specialty restaurants are nice Blu is available breakfast as well. The shower in Aqua is good too. 

My original example included 4 Caribbean cruises all Aqua Class A2 cabins, all with the same inclusions and deposit type. None are after final payment. The Silhouette cruise was 1 or 2 nights longer than the  Reflection cruise and was 2-4 thousand dollars per person more. They all have the same showers, although they will have removed the wall jets on Silhouette after its revolution.  There is just NO logic at play. No way should 1 night more cost that much more.

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2 hours ago, Luvcrusn said:

My original example included 4 Caribbean cruises all Aqua Class A2 cabins, all with the same inclusions and deposit type. None are after final payment. The Silhouette cruise was 1 or 2 nights longer than the  Reflection cruise and was 2-4 thousand dollars per person more. They all have the same showers, although they will have removed the wall jets on Silhouette after its revolution.  There is just NO logic at play. No way should 1 night more cost that much more.


Agree. I didn’t understand the pppn for the post I was referencing. I must be a bit weird. I do both land holidays where I stay put and enjoy. I also love cruises for the different itineraries and the experience of a different port every day. Not having to unpack but still seeing different places each day. 
 

Genuine question - I can upgrade on Edge from a SV balcony to a Sky Suite 2 for $190 USD a night per cabin (2 people). Both bookings have the four perks offer, although the Suite has $400 more OBC. A port intensive cruise but we don’t plan on getting off at all ports one is a repeat. Worth it?

Edited by Pushka

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22 minutes ago, Pushka said:


Agree. I didn’t understand the pppn for the post I was referencing. I must be a bit weird. I do both land holidays where I stay put and enjoy. I also love cruises for the different itineraries and the experience of a different port every day. Not having to unpack but still seeing different places each day. 
 

Genuine question - I can upgrade on Edge from a SV balcony to a Sky Suite 2 for $190 USD a night per cabin (2 people). Both bookings have the four perks offer, although the Suite has $400 more OBC. A port intensive cruise but we don’t plan on getting off at all ports one is a repeat. Worth it?

Only you can answer that. We all have different priorities. I wouldn't do it. Luminae and the suite retreat aren't that important to me nor do I value a butler or the extra space. Since I'd have the 4 perks either way the drinks in the retreat are meaningless to me. You didn't mention the length of the cruise, but after 3 days you will have already paid more than the $400 extra OBC you'd receive. The earlier boarding for suites is nice, but not worth the extra dollars to me for an extra 15 -30 minutes on board.  Since I'll likely never make it to Zenith the extra Captains Club points per night hold little value.

Edited by Luvcrusn

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I frequently see pricing with Celebrity and think, who is dumb enough to pay that.  However, there are still many deals to be found as well, especially if you have the ability to be flexible with dates/itineraries.  Two weeks ago we booked a 4 -night cruise departing Memorial Day weekend 2020 on Equinox.  Inside cabin, $500.00 OBC, Premium Beverage Package, Prepaid Gratuities and free WiFi, $525.00 per person including all taxes and fees.  

 

Southern Caribbean on Summit leaving April 2020, Ocean view cabin with $425.00 OBC, Classic Drink Package, and WiFi, for $750.00 per person.


Even our 14 night Japan, South Korea, and China cruise on Millennium this past October could be had in the last 90 days for about $900.00 a person.

 

So yes, Celebrity pricing at times is ridiculously high, but there are still deals out there.  That's why I check pricing every couple of weeks just to see if there's anything that's too good of a deal to pass up.

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20 hours ago, phoenix_dream said:

I agree prices these days can be crazy.  We cruise a lot now that we are retired, much prefer Celebrity, and have to put a lot more effort into finding decent prices these days.  That said, there are deals here and there.  Just sailed in a Sky Suite on Equinox for what we normally pay for our Aqua Class cabins, when 4 added perks are considered (which we almost always purchase).  This is only our 3rd suite in more than 50 cruises as we usually cannot afford the insane suite prices.  Found the same deal on the Connie in 2021 when they first released the sailings out of Tampa - same price for SS as for AQ (that was then; won't find that same price now

 

 

And are all those cruises in the Caribbean?

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6 hours ago, ShawninFL said:

Even our 14 night Japan, South Korea, and China cruise on Millennium this past October could be had in the last 90 days for about $900.00 a person.

 

 

Most pax still working could not take over two weeks holiday with less than 90 days notice.

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13 hours ago, Hlitner said:

I think you are wrong.  Or course we can (and do) compare land trips with cruises and enjoy both.   But we can generally do a European driving (or train) trip for about $500 per day (per couple) which includes decent hotels or apartments, excellent restaurants (far better then cruise line cuisine), etc.   We recently spoke with Viking River cruises about a trip between Berlin and Prague and it would have cost us about $1000 per day (plus air) to do this with Viking.  I told their rep the pricing was absurd and that we could fly over (Business Class), stay in good hotels, etc. for far less.  And no, we did not book that cruise.  And it is the same with Celebrity.  This past summer we took a 14 day Seabourn Cruise in Alaska for far less money then it would have cost to do a similar itinerary on Celebrity in comparable accommodations.   Consider that Seabourn cost us about $400 per person/day for a suite and an all-inclusive line which includes things like unlimited caviar, French Champagne,  top shelf booze, etc.  

 

Celebrity has priced itself out of our market since we can cruise most other mass market lines for far less and even cruise on luxury lines for about the same or less than Celebrity which is simply another mass market line...whose quality has unfortunately been declining under current management.  When we find a decent Celebrity deal we still book it...but otherwise the grass is far greener elsewhere.

 

Hank

Hank,

We have a wonderful 28 day land trip, driving our rental car all over S. Wales and England in 2017.   We stayed in top B&Bs and small hotels near city centers.  Not counting airfare, our trip, including the rental car, fuel, dining, lodging, admissions (everything), we spent between 8-9,000 dollars.   We didn't visit London, which would have been more expensive.  That is a little over $300 per day.  We prefer a nice B&B to a five star hotel.  You get a wonderful breakfast, usually a spacious room and can walk to the sites you want to visit.  Also, since we usually have a free breakfast, we don't have much of a lunch, sometimes not, but have a great dinner.

Regarding cruises, we continue to compare our three favorites, Celebrity, Royal C. and NCL, as well as Princess and HAL.  When I look at Azamara, Crystal or Seabourn, the prices are always at least double the main line cruises, sometimes triple or more.

We started cruising in 2010 after I retired and have found that experience is not far off today what it was 9 years ago.  However, we miss the end of cruise brunch on Celebrity and dislike the price bundling with promos.  Service on Celebrity is still excellent.  Entertainment is great on Royal and NCL.  The one thing negative about the production shows on Celebrity is that they don't change frequently.  I have read they run for five years.   For example, after seeing the Burt Bacharach and Disco shows about four times, we declined to see them again.

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I have  gotten some excellent deals recently on Azamara. For instance their Anarctica cruise 16 nights last minute voyage was going for about $1,000 less than Celebrity. Also there are excellent deals right now in South America around Xmas into the beginning of 2020, and India too.

 

next April and May there are several AZ cruises in the med including the TA to Lisbon that are excellent deals, especially for single travelers with a reduced 50% supplement. I just booked a 10 day cruise on Pursuit May 14-24 from Lisbon to Southampton with three overnights in Bordeaux for $3,500 single occupancy Veranda on their double upgrade special. I think the pp rate for double occupancy is around $2,300 pp without any discounts (loyalty or TA). I think that is a great deal for the quality you get on AZ and the small ship experience. Also gratuities and drinks are included. Of course you have to want the itinerary they are offering but I would definitely not just assume AZ is higher than Celebrity. 

 

I am not interested in the shows generally or all that nonsense that sometimes goes on in the center of the larger Celebrity ships, the casino, etc.  so the ambiance and refinement of Azamara works perfectly for me. I am sure people would disagree if their priorities are drinking, dancing and shows, though. And BTW the food on AZ is much better as is the general atmosphere in the ship with extremely laid back and friendly passengers and crew. And the beds are 1,000 percent more comfortable too. 

 

Just my opinion of course and I continue to find some good itineraries at fair prices on Celebrity, especially the smaller ships, which work for me.

 

Anne

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An interesting observation, noted in this thread, the Celebrity board and other boards is -  the increasing frequency of formerly " cruising only" consumers, now adding other vacation arrangements into the mix. 

 

Including myself.

 

Each land vacation etc, takes $ away from the cruise industry. 

 

In June we took a 14 day Austria/Switzerland with a premium tour company, and a private tour after  - top hotels, food excellent and and regionally specific, all attractions including the Glacier Express. For 2, 5,000$. Added in one way air and the QM2 home from Hamburg. Under 10K$ for almost 4 weeks. Simply outstanding value, and what we saw and experienced, simply blows a cruise out of the water.

 

The cruise industry is exhibiting arrogance assuming we are all lemmings who will continuously book as they raise prices and reduce their product.

 

News to Celebrity and other cruise lines - not everyone.

 

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I’ve never done a cruise-only holiday and I’d say that’s the case with most Australian cruisers. 

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We are cruise only most of the time although always add a couple of days on either end.

 

It does really pay to price watch and compare.  I’ve also noticed some Celebrity prices to be almost as high as Viking and Viking includes excursions and has cheap drink packages.

 

I book early now for best pricing since we’re before retirement so we can’t do last minute trips. I do price watch and a lot of the time book refundable in case something better comes along.  More and more I’m also checking across all lines. 

 

 

 

 

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4 hours ago, cruiselvr04 said:

We are cruise only most of the time although always add a couple of days on either end.

 

It does really pay to price watch and compare.  I’ve also noticed some Celebrity prices to be almost as high as Viking and Viking includes excursions and has cheap drink packages.

 

I book early now for best pricing since we’re before retirement so we can’t do last minute trips. I do price watch and a lot of the time book refundable in case something better comes along.  More and more I’m also checking across all lines. 

 

 

 

 


On Ocean cruises the included excursions offered by Viking on the cruises we’ve been on really aren’t worth it as they are usually just intro walking tours that we’d prefer to miss. So far us they are an inclusion that we don’t want at all. 

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19 minutes ago, Pushka said:


On Ocean cruises the included excursions offered by Viking on the cruises we’ve been on really aren’t worth it as they are usually just intro walking tours that we’d prefer to miss. So far us they are an inclusion that we don’t want at all. 

 

Agreed - most are a 1/2 day highlights bus tour or walking tour w/ no inside visits.  None of the "included" ones on the Viking Ocean cruises I've looked at are worth anything to me as a consumer, so therefore have no benefit for the inflated prices they charge for their cruises.  While included wine/beer at meals as well as unlimited coffees/teas/softdrinks/water throughout the ship are nice I would find Oceania or Azamara  of better overall value in the "Premium Plus/Luxury Light" segment.

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On 11/24/2019 at 5:58 AM, ABoatNerd said:

An interesting observation, noted in this thread, the Celebrity board and other boards is -  the increasing frequency of formerly " cruising only" consumers, now adding other vacation arrangements into the mix. 

 

Including myself.

 

Each land vacation etc, takes $ away from the cruise industry. 

 

In June we took a 14 day Austria/Switzerland with a premium tour company, and a private tour after  - top hotels, food excellent and and regionally specific, all attractions including the Glacier Express. For 2, 5,000$. Added in one way air and the QM2 home from Hamburg. Under 10K$ for almost 4 weeks. Simply outstanding value, and what we saw and experienced, simply blows a cruise out of the water.

 

The cruise industry is exhibiting arrogance assuming we are all lemmings who will continuously book as they raise prices and reduce their product.

 

News to Celebrity and other cruise lines - not everyone.

 

 

the plural of anecdotes is not data.

https://cruising.org/-/media/research-updates/research/clia-global-passenger-report-2018.pdf

 

however many people are cruising less, the data suggests that even more are cruising more.  

 

It's supply and demand.  Digital booking and big data makes it possible for cruise companies to better adjust prices to squeeze the most money out of each sailing.

 

And economically it's a good thing.  If the value isn't good for you anymore, then it's not.  I don't understand why people complain.  Just chose from something else; there are a lot of choices.  If you have no control over the supply, why cry over it? just chose from the part you have control over.

 

Either that or become the CEO of celebrity. then you can do what you want... until the board kicks you out.

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Hi all... When we want to book a cruise -- we lurk in the shadows until the "price is right..." We also have our TA make changes to the reservation, as pricing changes (usually prior to final payment and we avoid losing perks).  We are going to Dublin/Iceland in July on Reflection.  We got a GREAT deal... We have a 1A Balcony (on the hump - big balcony), Air from Palm Beach, Transfers,  Drink Package, Gratuities, SBC, Internet (we get due to status) and it is running us $3,950 PP.  We are staying at the new Hyatt in Dublin $200 per night additional. You have to work those deals baby.... 😁😊

 

Happy Sailing!!!!

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