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Clay Clayton

When does RC lower prices to fill ship?

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Happy New Year all!

I’m a Royal Caribbean virgin and started looking at Allure’s March Transatlantic last Fall. At one point the price for a balcony was below $800 pp.   Based on my experience with Norwegian, Celebrity and Viking and since it was close to final payment, we elected to wait until then to see if the price dropped or if there were some perks thrown in. 

 

Alas, even though there are appear to be plenty of staterooms left, the price has gone up to almost $1000pp. 

 

Is this typical or might Royal do something closer to sail date to sell out the ship?

 

Thanks for any advice!

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25 minutes ago, Clay Clayton said:

Happy New Year all!

I’m a Royal Caribbean virgin and started looking at Allure’s March Transatlantic last Fall. At one point the price for a balcony was below $800 pp.   Based on my experience with Norwegian, Celebrity and Viking and since it was close to final payment, we elected to wait until then to see if the price dropped or if there were some perks thrown in. 

 

Alas, even though there are appear to be plenty of staterooms left, the price has gone up to almost $1000pp. 

 

Is this typical or might Royal do something closer to sail date to sell out the ship?

 

Thanks for any advice!

No such thing as typical with Royal. If they do lower prices for that TA I would guess the last month if is doesn't sell out.  We booked the Nov. Allure TA,  which is after the refurb in April,  about a year ago and prices steadily climbed. The cruise is still 10 months away and is totally sold out. If prices don't drop after the first month after final payment date they will probably keep going up.  Oasis class is awesome on a TA, the ship sails with all cabins sold but there will be 1200 fewer kids on board.  We did Oasis in the Caribbean with close to 1800 kids, on our Symphony TA last year there were 12 under the age of 16.. happy cruising

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When I checked availability on the Allure March 1st sailing a few days ago, all categories but a few suites were sold out.  $800 per person for a balcony was a good deal, and you may find only higher price rooms available if someone should cancel.  Unfortunately, you may have missed your opportunity for a good deal and now you may be faced with limited or no availability for this cruise.  I  think the moral of the story is when you see a fair price book the cabin.  In your effort to save a few more dollars it may have cost you the opportunity to get on this sailing.

Better luck next time.

 

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1 hour ago, Clay Clayton said:

Happy New Year all!

I’m a Royal Caribbean virgin and started looking at Allure’s March Transatlantic last Fall. At one point the price for a balcony was below $800 pp.   Based on my experience with Norwegian, Celebrity and Viking and since it was close to final payment, we elected to wait until then to see if the price dropped or if there were some perks thrown in. 

 

Alas, even though there are appear to be plenty of staterooms left, the price has gone up to almost $1000pp. 

 

Is this typical or might Royal do something closer to sail date to sell out the ship?

 

Thanks for any advice!

 

There's no typical, price changes are not predictable.

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RCCL CEO Richard Fain has famously said - more than once - that they will no longer do discounts to fill ships within 30 days of the cruise, "even if it doesn't sail full".  Of course he provided some wiggle room by exempting short cruises from, I think,  Florida.   However I've seen his edict violated more than once, but as others have said there is no logic to it.

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For Royal final payment due date is 90 days for most cruises. At the moment there might be reduced rates after final payment due date, maybe.  Royal leverages data analytics to make a lot of decisions.  Supply and demand plays a role but historically they have a wealth of data to draw from.  
 

Royal is all about maximizing revenue so they might offer casino comps or resident rates that the public never sees. 
 

Just when you think you have Royal figured out they do something unexpected.  If your crystal ball works better than mine please help me fix mine.  
 

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1 hour ago, Clay Clayton said:

Alas, even though there are appear to be plenty of staterooms left, the price has gone up to almost $1000pp. 

I've noticed this lately. Some good prices appear before final payment, there are plenty of cabins, but the price does not go down after final. The 3/1 Anthem sailing had Z GTY at $360 and X GTY at $420 a couple of weeks before final. Now, around 60 days out (when there used to be price drops) the price is up over $700 and $800 respectively, even though there are a lot of cabins left. There are some weird pricing trends afoot.

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It has been a long while since we have seen any price drops on any of the cruises we have purchased.  There are last minute deals out there for random cruises.  But you take a big chance on waiting for a specific cruise drop.

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1 hour ago, Clay Clayton said:

Happy New Year all!

I’m a Royal Caribbean virgin and started looking at Allure’s March Transatlantic last Fall. At one point the price for a balcony was below $800 pp.   Based on my experience with Norwegian, Celebrity and Viking and since it was close to final payment, we elected to wait until then to see if the price dropped or if there were some perks thrown in. 

 

Alas, even though there are appear to be plenty of staterooms left, the price has gone up to almost $1000pp. 

 

Is this typical or might Royal do something closer to sail date to sell out the ship?

 

Thanks for any advice!

Never early enough for us. 🙂

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55 minutes ago, twangster said:

 

Just when you think you have Royal figured out they do something unexpected.  If your crystal ball works better than mine please help me fix mine.  
 

Anyone who thinks they have RCI figured out must have a drink package and over indulged by far.

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We have NEVER seen lower prices closer to sail date...not ever.  I've heard some stories, but I've not experience that!

 

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You can count cabin inventory.  If the inventory is still high close to final payment date, most of the time...the cabin prices will  go down.  We (husband, and 16 yr old son then) had booked the Oasis many years ago in 2010 for mid December.  I was watching cabin inventory, and knew many were left. I cancelled our cabin.  I rebooked it about 68 days out. We ended up saving about $900.  I'm the type, I will take the gamble.  Three times this has worked for me.  Wishing you nothing but the best. 

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Alot of times they will put offers to casino royale members to help get casino players onboard too.  

We are both prime members with casino and get free cruise offers almost every month.  Just the other day we got a new list emailed to us and 3 of the cruises were almost sold out.  

Good marketing strategy to give free cabin to a casino player to fill up the ship.

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Thanks to all!

 

Currently there are a number of balconies left throughout the ship, I guess I can keep hoping. 

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Check out Quantum for 2/15/20 9 days Singapore to Hong Kong down to $751pp for a balcony.  The 9 day Hong Kong to Singapore on 2/24/20 is down to $834pp for a balcony, was $969 at final payment.  Guessing Hong Kong not a popular tourist spot these days.

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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, mugtech said:

Check out Quantum for 2/15/20 9 days Singapore to Hong Kong down to $751pp for a balcony.  The 9 day Hong Kong to Singapore on 2/24/20 is down to $834pp for a balcony, was $969 at final payment.  Guessing Hong Kong not a popular tourist spot these days.

 

They got me. I couldn't say not to that 9 night Singapore to Hong Kong! I'm eyeing the Hong Kong to Singapore!

Edited by Crism

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2 minutes ago, Crism said:

 

They got me. I couldn't say not to that 9 night Singapore to Hong Kong! I'm eyeing the Hong Kong to Singapore!

Many doing b2b, too much Vietnam for me.  2/24 Has 3 stops in Philippines, Ilocos may not be offered in the future.

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2 hours ago, mugtech said:

Check out Quantum for 2/15/20 9 days Singapore to Hong Kong down to $751pp for a balcony.  The 9 day Hong Kong to Singapore on 2/24/20 is down to $834pp for a balcony, was $969 at final payment.  Guessing Hong Kong not a popular tourist spot these days.

You called that one right.

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10 hours ago, Clay Clayton said:

 

 

Alas, even though there are appear to be plenty of staterooms left, the price has gone up to almost $1000pp. 

 

Is this typical or might Royal do something closer to sail date to sell out the ship?

 

What may seem like plenty of extra cabins may be that RC haven't allocated the guarentee cabins yet. I was waiting for prices to drop on a cruise from Southampton last September. 60 days before it showed hundreds of empty cabins but the price never shifted by more than a few pounds. Then almost overnight almost all of the inventory disappeared. I realised then that they must of had a lot of guarentee cabins to allocate.  It's very difficult to play the game when you don't have all the info!!! 

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Posted (edited)
1 minute ago, sgmn said:

Duplicate 

 

Edited by sgmn

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I price compare three different lines. Princess and Celebrity discount as it gets closer to final payment which is why I have sailed mostly with them over the years. It was 20 years between my two Royal Caribbean cruises basically due to the high prices. You have to book as soon as possible with Royal Caribbean the price goes up closer to sail date. I'm sure they have a few dud sailings that have to be filled but I have yet to find any of interest.

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I sail next month on a 5 day/ Brilliance and I noticed the best pricing about 1 month before final payment. Prices were roughly $2100 in july-oct then 1750-1900 in nov. Currently 2900. This is for spacious balcony. I repriced at 1750. Waiting until the end would have failed here and there are 10+ rooms available in my category.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Iamcruzin said:

I price compare three different lines. Princess and Celebrity discount as it gets closer to final payment which is why I have sailed mostly with them over the years. It was 20 years between my two Royal Caribbean cruises basically due to the high prices. You have to book as soon as possible with Royal Caribbean the price goes up closer to sail date. I'm sure they have a few dud sailings that have to be filled but I have yet to find any of interest.


Agreed.  RCI tends to follow the Disney model more closely in pricing.   Best pricing at the beginning slowly increasing with minor fluctuations as the date gets closer.  Occasional clunker cruise gets a deal on the going going gone,  but it’s definitely not a guarantee.   An occasional TA may get heavily discounted 1-2 months out,  but less than a month it seems to be more like airline pricing these days.
 

X gives great deals close to sailing date although you may lose any perks they offer (free bev pack, free grats, OBC) but their prices can get very low as it approaches sailing date.  RCI and Disney not so much unfortunately.  And if you are bookin  for a family of four (As we do) and need a cabin with a 3rd and 4th berth you absolutely must book early or the selection can be totally gone except some high end suites as the sailing date approaches.

Edited by rimmit

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Everyone's always looking for secrets to the cheapest cruise, but it's not that easy. The short answer is pricing is due to supply and demand. One of the big myths out there is after final payment, they are basically giving things away. Sometimes that may be the case, and that seems to reaffirm the myth. However, it is not as common as people make it sound. Often, especially in this strong economy, they are selling out. Sometimes the price was cheaper ahead of time. Sometimes it's not. The companies surely don't want to leave loopholes showing how to game their pricing.

 

The best advice I can give, is to be flexible with your timing. Go in off-peak. Be willing to go last minute. Deals will open up. However, if you are set on a specific itinerary, don't expect to wait out for a lower price.

 

Case in point, I was originally going to take a cruise either this month or next. I was even flexible on about 2 months of dates. I was SUPER excited for this one. I waited too long to book it. Not only did it go up in price about 30% from when I first looked at it, but in fact, it has been completely sold out for a little while now. I ended up booking it for this coming October, which is already up 15% since I booked, and rooms are getting limited.

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