MSC Cruises Celebrates Black Friday and Cyber Monday with 50%+ Savings

 November 14, 2017.

MSC Cruises USA  is kicking off the holiday season’s most popular shopping extravaganza with free upgrades from ocean view to balcony staterooms, meaning 50 percent plus savings on select sailings. Beginning on Monday, November 20 and extended through Black Friday and Cyber Monday to Wednesday, November 29, cruisers can take advantage of these incredible reduced rates, especially for those looking to get away during the holidays or kick off the new year with a vacation.

MSC Seaside   is the company’s newest ship, featuring a revolutionary “beach condo” design, and will sail year round from  Miami to the Caribbean when she arrives in December.  Guests can be one of the first to experience the stunning, innovative cruise ship by booking one of the last few available staterooms on MSC Seaside’s first 7-night cruise from Miami. Departing December 23, MSC Seaside will be decked out for the holidays for this sailing, with special holiday décor, menus and activities.

The MSC Divina will also depart on a holiday sailing on December 23, with themed events, decorations and culinary celebrations. Additionally, guests can enjoy incredible lower rates and be the first to experience the ship’s new 10 and 11-night Caribbean itineraries, which kick off on December 23.

Black Friday & Cyber Monday Deal

From November 20-29, 2017, guests can book a balcony stateroom at an ocean view rate on both MSC Divina and MSC Seaside select sailings starting December 23, 2017 extending through May 12, 2018, offering the potential for 50%+ savings.

7-night cruises qualifying for the Black Friday/Cyber Monday promotion on MSC Seaside include, but are not limited to:

  • December 23, 2017: Guests booking on this sailing can be among the first to experience the innovative MSC Seaside as she embarks on her first 7-night voyage from Miami. Ports of call include St. John’s, Antigua and Barbuda; Charlotte Amalie, U.S. Virgin Islands; and Nassau Bahamas. Prices for balcony staterooms start at $929 per person.
  • December 30, 2017: Celebrate New Year’s on the brand new, revolutionary flagship with stops in Ocho Rios, Jamaica; George Town, Cayman Islands; Cozumel, Mexico; and Nassau Bahamas. Prices for balcony staterooms start at $1,199 per person.
  • January 6, 2018: 7-night sailing with stops in Nassau, Bahamas; Ocho Rios, Jamaica; George Town, Cayman Islands; and Costa Maya, Mexico. Prices for balcony staterooms start at $699 per person.

10 and 11-night cruises qualifying for the Black Friday/Cyber Monday Promotion on MSC Divina include, but are not limited to:

  • December 23, 2017: Guests can ring in the holidays onboard MSC Divina as she sails her first 11-night itinerary. The stunning ship will be adorned with holiday décor and feature special festivities throughout the week with stops in Nassau, Bahamas; Ocho Rios, Jamaica; Cartagena, Colombia; Cristobal, Panama; Puerto Limon, Costa Rica; and Belize City, Belize. Prices for balcony staterooms start at $1,609 per person.
  • January 3, 2018: 11-night sailing with stops in Charlotte Amalie, U.S. Virgin Islands; St. John’s, Antigua and Barbuda; Bridgetown, Barbados; Saint George, Grenada; Willemstad, Curaçao; Oranjestad, Aruba. Prices for balcony staterooms start at $599 per person.
  • January 25, 2018: 10-night sailing with stops in St. John’s, Antigua and Barbuda; Basseterre, St Kitts & Nevis; Fort de France, Martinique; Pointe-a-Pitre, Guadeloupe; Charlotte Amalie, U.S. Virgin Islands; and Nassau, Bahamas. Prices for balcony staterooms start at $649 per person.

Carnival Horizon Completes Final Sea Trials

November 7, 2017.

Photo by Filippo Vinardi

Carnival Cruise Line’s newest ship, the 133,500-ton Carnival Horizon, successfully completed its final sea trials in the Adriatic Sea earlier this week in anticipation of its inaugural cruise from Barcelona on April 2, 2018.

Currently in the final stages of construction at the Fincantieri shipyard in Marghera, Italy, the 3,974-passenger vessel had a full contingent of officers, technicians and engineers on board who thoroughly tested Carnival Horizon’s sophisticated technical, mechanical and navigation systems.

As the newest ship in the fleet, Carnival Horizon will offer a number of unique innovations, including the first-ever Dr. Seuss WaterWorks aqua park, a new teppanyaki dining venue, and Guy’s Pig & Anchor Bar-B-Que Smokehouse Brewhouse, a new BBQ restaurant offering mouth-watering favorites created by Food Network star Guy Fieri along with a four different kinds of craft beer brewed at a brewery on board.

Carnival Horizon will also offer such popular Vista-class features as an IMAX Theatre, a groundbreaking bike-ride-in-the-sky attraction called SkyRide, the tropics-inspired Havana section with colorful staterooms and its own Cuban-themed bar and pool, and Family Harbor with extra-roomy accommodations and the Family Harbor Lounge.

Carnival Horizon is set to debut April 2, 2018, with a 13-day Mediterranean cruise from Barcelona – the first of four round-trip departures from that port.  Carnival Horizon will reposition to the U.S. with a 14-day trans-Atlantic crossing from Barcelona to New York May 9-23, 2018.

Following its summer schedule of four-day Bermuda and eight-day Caribbean departures from the Big Apple, Carnival Horizon will shift to Miami and kick off a year-round schedule of six- and eight-day Caribbean cruises beginning Sept. 22, 2018. Carnival Horizon will also offer a special two-day cruise to Nassau from Miami Sept. 20-22, 2018.

Royal Caribbean Announces 2019-2020 Deployments

November 7, 2017.

Royal Caribbean International has revealed the 2019-2020 deployment plans, with new offerings in the Caribbean, four new ports of call in Europe, and the first-ever Quantum Class ship to visit  Alaska.

More Ways to See the Caribbean

Royal Caribbean is changing the game when it comes to short Caribbean cruise vacation offerings.  Newly modernized and purposefully redesigned with families in mind, two of the cruise line’s Voyager Class ships – Mariner of the Seas and Navigator of the Seas – will sail 3- and 4-night itineraries to The Bahamas.

Mariner will sail from Port Canaveral, Florida, while Navigator will be based in Miami where guests will be welcomed through Royal Caribbean’s new, state-of-the-art Terminal A in PortMiami.

Travelers from the Southwest also seeking short Caribbean getaways can take advantage of 4- and 5-night sailings on Enchantment of the Seas from Galveston, Texas to various destinations in Mexico, year-round.  Short Caribbean itineraries will be available to book the week of Nov. 20, 2017.  All itineraries will be available to book by Crown & Anchor Society loyalty members one day prior to the general opening date.

All four of the world’s largest cruise ships – Oasis of the SeasAllure of the SeasHarmony of the Seas and Symphony of the Seas – will set sail from Florida in 2019 through April 2020.  Oasis of the Seas, the first ship in its class, will undergo a bow-to-stern transformation before homeporting at Royal Caribbean’s custom-built Terminal A at PortMiami for the fall and winter seasons, alongside her newest record-setting sister ship, Symphony of the Seas, which will be a year-round Miami resident.
After spending the previous year in Miami, Allure of the Seas will return to Fort Lauderdale’s Port Everglades, while Harmony of the Seas will make Port Canaveral her new home.  This move to Central Florida brings first of its kind innovations like the Ultimate Abyss – the tallest slide at sea – within driving distance for markets throughout Florida, Georgia and the southeast region.
All four Oasis Class ships will sail 7-night Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries, Liberty of the Seas will sail 7-night Western Caribbean from Galveston, Texas and Freedom of the Seas will sail 7-night Southern Caribbean itineraries from San Juan, Puerto Rico.  The 7-night Caribbean itineraries are available to book the week of Nov. 13, 2017.

Royal Caribbean will continue to have a strong footprint in the Northeast with Anthem of the Seas, sailing from Cape Liberty Cruise Port in Bayonne, New Jersey.  The Anthem will sail 5- to 9-night summer itineraries to Bermuda, The Bahamas and the Caribbean. For the fall season, Anthem of the Seas will offer 9-night itineraries to Canada and New England. For the second consecutive year, Royal Caribbean is doubling up on fan favorites in the New York metro area.

Anthem will be joined by the recently upgraded Adventure of the Seas, offering 6- to 8-night itineraries to The Bahamas and Caribbean. Adventure also will offer select 6-night itineraries to Canada and New England during the summer, and longer 10- to 11-night fall foliage cruises beginning in September.  Northeast, Canada and Bermuda itineraries will be available to book the week of Dec. 4, 2017.

The Views of Alaska Just Got Wilder

Making her U.S. debut for the 2019 Alaska summer season, Ovation of the Seas will transition from Sydney, Australia to her new summer homeport in Seattle, Washington.  Only on Ovation will guests glimpse the Northern Lights and other Alaskan wonders from the North Star, the ship’s signature glass observation capsule with panoramic views from 300 feet above sea level – the best views possible without taking flight.  Ovation guests also will have the chance to skydive, surf and swim alongside glaciers from the comfort of the ship’s thrilling indoor SeaPlex sports complex, Solarium and indoor or outdoor pools.

Ovation will sail 7-night itineraries to destinations from Juneau to Victoria, British Columbia, showcasing Alaska’s natural treasures and luring adventure seekers with stately spruce forests, island-studded waters, native wildlife and awe-inspiring glaciers.  Ovation will join Radiance of the Seas in the Alaska market, which sails 7- night open-jaw itineraries between Seward, Alaska and Vancouver, British Columbia. Alaska itineraries will be available to book the week of Dec. 11, 2017.

New Northern Europe and Mediterranean Adventures

Royal Caribbean will discover the untold stories of four new European ports of call. Travelers can now visit the world’s best preserved medieval city and UNESCO World Heritage site, Visby, Sweden; Zadar, Croatia, offering national parks, waterfalls and Roman-era history; the glamorous, picture-perfect fishing village of Portofino on the Italian Rivera; and Porto, Portugal, the country’s second largest city, famed for its charming, breathtaking scenery steeped in history.

For the first time since 2014, Oasis of the Seas will spend the summer season in Europe, sailing from the iconic port city of Barcelona, Spain, known for its world-class art, architecture, design and culinary scene.  As the largest ship sailing in the Mediterranean, Oasis will bring together old world destinations and modern experiences only found on board Royal Caribbean’s Oasis Class ships – the distinct seven-neighborhood concept, imaginative and sophisticated dining, Broadway entertainment and the iconic waterfront AquaTheater.  Oasis will sail 7-night itineraries, visiting Palma de Mallorca, Spain; Marseille, France; and Florence, Rome and Naples, Italy.  Europe itineraries will be available to book the week of Dec. 11, 2017.

For additional information, itinerary details and a peek into the Royal Caribbean adventures coming in May 2019 through April 2020, visit royalcaribbean.com/cruise-itineraries-2019.

Carnival Garners 6 Readers Choice Awards From Porthole Cruise Magazine

November 6, 2017.

Carnival Cruise Line has earned six Porthole Cruise Magazine Readers’ Choice Awards, including Best Value for the Money Line for the 19th consecutive year.

Since the awards were established in 1999, Carnival Cruise Line has earned an unprecedented 152 individual honors – the most of any cruise operator.

Carnival’s six Porthole Cruise Magazine Readers’ Choice Awards include:

  • Best Value-For-The-Money Line
  • Best Cruise Line for Teens
  • Best Computer Facilities
  • Best Website
  • Best Nightlife
  • Best Mexican Riviera Itineraries

Carnival’s six Porthole Awards encompass a variety of categories, everything from providing a superior value with an array of free-of-charge dining and entertainment options to the line’s legendary nightlife, which includes fun-filled deck parties, sizzling dance clubs, high energy production shows and live music throughout the ship.

The line’s top-rated Club O2 teen program, which features designated facilities, enthusiastic counselors and activities aimed at 15-17 year olds, along with its immersive www.carnival.com web site that makes planning for a cruise vacation fun and easy, were also recognized as was the line’s fleetwide computer facilities with standalone workstations that provide convenient access for keeping in touch with friends and families back home.

Carnival is also the West Coast cruise leader, with three year-round ships operating 250 three- to 15-day cruises annually from Long Beach, Calif., visiting spectacular ports in Mexico and Hawaii. The line will increase capacity by more than 40 percent on its longer length cruises from Southern California when the 3,006-passenger Carnival Splendor repositions to Long Beach in January 2018.

“Considering our awards cover such a diverse array of areas – from our teen program and nightlife to onboard computer facilities and itineraries – it’s truly gratifying to be recognized for the efforts we put forth in providing fun and memorable cruises for our guests,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line.  “Plus, exceeding guests expectations is one of our brand pillars and earning Best Value honors for the 19th consecutive year is a testament to the value and affordability of the Carnival vacation experience.”

Royal Caribbean Sets Return To San Juan and St. Maarten

October 25, 2017.

Royal Caribbean International today announced the cruise line’s return to San Juan, Puerto Rico, and Philipsburg, St. Maarten, marking a major milestone towards the revival of these Caribbean islands which were impacted by the recent hurricanes. On Nov. 30, Freedom of the Seas will be the first ship in the fleet to call on San Juan, Puerto Rico, arriving with approximately 3,782 visitors to the island that is renowned for its passionate, welcoming spirit. Grandeur of the Seas will follow suit on Dec. 17 as the first cruise ship to sail into, St. Maarten since Royal Caribbean’s Majesty of the Seas arrived to provide humanitarian relief last month. This announcement comes on the heels of Royal Caribbean’s recent news that Adventure of the Seas will be the first ship to call on St. Thomas on Nov. 10.

“Royal Caribbean is encouraged by the commendable progress that has been made by the governments of Puerto Rico and St. Maarten towards the recovery of these destinations and it means a lot to us that we are heading back home. We have been part of the Caribbean community for almost 50 years, and for all of us it has been paramount that we focus on supporting our long-standing partners – who feel more like family after so many years,” said Michael Bayley, President and CEO, Royal Caribbean International. “Supporting these destinations that are so reliant on tourism is key to the future of the islands and the best thing we – as travelers and businesses – can do for the islands.”

With power and transportation on track to be readily available in San Juan by Nov. 30, guests can tour the city by foot, bike, Segway or bus; explore the fortresses of El Morro and San Cristobal in Old San Juan; spend the day on the beach at VIVO Beach Club; or admire the countryside through Cueva Ventana – the Window Cave – which sits atop an 800-foot limestone cliff.

Similarly, the return of power and water to most of St. Maarten means that a majority of the shops, restaurants and bars, and tour operators around Philipsburg will be fully operational for guests to experience a diverse and extensive array of dining, shopping and activities in the area. The sun and vistas of the region’s best beaches, Great Bay Beach and Kimshaw Beach, will be a beacon for guests wanting to dive into the turquoise blue waters and admire the sea life, whether by boat or catamaran, or from the relaxing comfort of a beach lounger.

As of Nov. 30, all scheduled calls to San Juan and St. Thomas across 10 ships in the Royal Caribbean fleet will operate as planned – including calls from the world’s largest cruise ships each sailing with nearly 6,000 new visitors each week – Oasis of the SeasAllure of the Seas and Harmony of the Seas. The scheduled visits to St. Maarten will operate as planned starting on Dec. 17 with the exception of Oasis of the Seas, which will make its first call to the island on January 1 during her New Year’s Eve cruise.

Additionally, the cruise line will return to St. Croix on January 8 with the arrival of Jewel of the Seas, which will sail from San Juan. All calls to Dominica are cancelled through June 2018 and the cruise line is working closely with the local government on a return date to the destination. For more information on Royal Caribbean’s newly updated Caribbean itineraries, visit RoyalCaribbean.com

Royal Caribbean Sets Return to St. Thomas 

October 16, 2017.

Cruise Line’s Ongoing Commitment to the Caribbean Starts With Visits to St. Thomas On November 10 and Spearheads Restoration of Famed Magens Bay

Royal Caribbean International has set the date for its much-awaited return to St. Thomas since the Caribbean destination was impacted by the hurricanes last month. On November 10, the cruise line will make its way to St. Thomas for the first time since early September with Adventure of the Seas.

In partnership with the government of the U.S. Virgin Islands, Royal Caribbean also has committed to undertaking the complete restoration of Magens Bay, one of St. Thomas’ most popular tourist attractions – with plans for a grand re-opening of the pristine destination during the November 10 visit by the Adventure.

“We are very excited to get back home to our friends in St. Thomas. The Caribbean is our family, having cruised there for nearly 50 years, and the long-standing relationships created in all this time are unwavering,” said Michael Bayley, President and CEO, Royal Caribbean International. “We are committed to doing everything we can to help and proud to support the restoration of the iconic Magens Bay.”

In addition to returning to St. Thomas, Royal Caribbean has committed to returning to San Juan, Puerto Rico and St. Maarten by the end of November and is working closely with local governments to announce the exact dates.

By December 1, all scheduled calls to the three islands will operate as planned – including calls from the world’s largest cruise ships each sailing with nearly 6,000 new visitors each week – Oasis of the Seas, Allure of the Seas and Harmony of the Seas.

Norwegian Breakaway Coming to New Orleans For 2018/19 Winter Season

October 3, 2017.

As the largest ship to sail from New Orleans, Norwegian Breakaway will offer seven, 10- and 11-day cruises to the Caribbean, all including a port of call at the Caribbean’s premier resort-style destination in Southern Belize, Harvest Caye

Norwegian Cruise Line today announced an update to the line’s 2018/2019 deployment, offering guests a new opportunity to set sail from the Port of New Orleans to their Caribbean destinations on one of the line’s newest and largest ships. After returning from her summer  2018 season in the Baltic, the 4,000 passenger Norwegian Breakaway will reposition from the Big Apple to the Big Easy for her winter 2018/19 season and cruise to the Caribbean, visiting  ports of call including Cozumel and Costa Maya, Mexico; Ocho Rios, Jamaica; George Town, Grand Cayman; Roatán, Bay Islands, Honduras; and the beautiful island destination of Harvest Caye, Belize. Harvest Caye offers a diverse, enriching experience highlighting the natural beauty and culture of Belize along with lush native landscaping, a swim up pool bar, luxury beach villas, private pool cabanas, thrilling aerial activities and water sports. The destination also features the first ever pier in Belize that allows guests to walk straight off the ship and into paradise.

By repositioning the Norwegian Breakaway to New Orleans, Norwegian is offering a more convenient departure port along with a newer and larger ship for cruisers sailing from the Crescent City to explore. Norwegian Breakaway features a wide variety of accommodations, from Studios for the solo cruiser to the exclusive, all-suite luxurious enclave, The Haven by Norwegian®; more than 25 different dining venues; an exhilarating aqua park with five slides and a thrilling ropes course with zip lines and The Plank; signature Broadway entertainment including Rock of Ages and so much more. Norwegian Breakaway, which debuted in 2013, was the first ship in the line’s signature Breakaway class, and features The Waterfront, a quarter-mile promenade deck with waterfront dining, shopping and entertainment, along with 678 Ocean Place, a three-story complex at the heart of the ship where guests can enjoy nightlife, gaming and more. The ship will undergo a two-week dry dock next spring, and will receive a full refresh in public spaces, including new flooring, updated furniture, new décor and new carpeting in staterooms. Norwegian Breakaway will arrive in her new homeport of New Orleans on November 11, 2018 and will sail a variety of cruises to the Caribbean through April 7, 2019.

The recently refurbished Norwegian Gem will remain in New York City and sail a series of cruises to the Caribbean, Canada & New England and the Bahamas & Florida.  She will share her Manhattan homeport with Norwegian Escape, which will reposition for summer 2018 for the first time since she was christened in 2015, sailing from New York City to Bermuda on seven-day cruises every Sunday beginning April 22, 2018. Norwegian Escape features entertainment from the Tony-award winning After Midnight and critically-acclaimed For the Record: The Brat Pack, along with a bevy of food and beverage concepts including the District Brewhouse featuring 25 beers on tap and including a selection of popular craft beers; the upscale food emporium, Food Republic; and The Cellars, a Michael Mondavi Family Wine bar.

Guests currently booked onboard Norwegian Gem from New Orleans will have their reservations protected and will be automatically moved to the new vessel and itinerary. Norwegian Breakaway’s new Caribbean itineraries from New Orleans will open for sale on October 24.

MSC Cruises Celebrates “Plan A Cruise Month”

September 28, 2017.

Plan a Cruise Month is a campaign by Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the voice and leading authority of the global cruise community and takes places every October.

MSC Cruises USA  is celebrating the month by offering travelers 50% savings until October 31 on brochure rates in the Caribbean, Mediterranean, Northern Europe and United Arab Emirates, plus bonus perks in the Caribbean like onboard credit, internet and drink packages. And a big bonus for many families – Kids 11 and under sail free on select sailings.

MSC Cruises Two for One Plus Deal For Caribbean

Guests have the chance to enjoy half off  7+ night sailings in the Caribbean between December 2017 and March 2019 on MSC Divina and the hottest new ship to sail the Caribbean, MSC Seaside, arriving to Miami in December 2017. Plus, cruisers can enjoy perks like $50-$150 onboard credit, free WiFi packages and drink packages, depending on category of stateroom booked.

Sample itineraries for sailings on MSC Seaside and MSC Divina include:

  • MSC Seaside: December 23, 2017 – Guests can experience the first 7-night Caribbean sailing of the revolutionary MSC Seaside as she departs for the first time from Miami, Fla with ports of call in St John’s, Antigua and Barbuda; San Juan, Puerto Rico; and Nassau, Bahamas. Prices start at $958 per person.
  • MSC Seaside: January 27, 2018 – 7-night cruise departing from Miami, Fla with ports of call in Ocho Rios, Jamaica; Georgetown, Cayman Islands; and Cozumel, Mexico. Prices start at $589 per person.
  • MSC Divina: February 15, 2018 – 11-night cruise departing from Miami, Fla with ports of call in Pointe-a-Pitre, Guadaloupe; Basseterre, St. Kitts & Nevis; Fort de France, Martinique; San Juan, Puerto Rico; Bridgetown, Barbados; and Freeport, Grand Bahama. Prices start at $829 per person.

MSC Cruises Two for One Mediterranean, Northern Europe and United Arab Emirates Cruise Deals

Cruisers can save 50% off brochure rates, and reduced deposits of $99 for all Mediterranean, Northern Europe and United Arab Emirates sailings.

Mediterranean:

For those looking to explore the Mediterranean, 50% savings apply to all sailings between November 2017 to November 2018, including MSC Cruises’ newest ships — the sparkling new MSC Meraviglia, which debuted in June 2017, and MSC Seaview, which will debut in June 2018 — as well as MSC Orchestra, MSC Divina, MSC Fantasia, MSC Musica, MSC Opera, MSC Poesia, and MSC Sinfonia.

Sample itineraries for sailings in the Mediterranean include:

  • MSC Meraviglia: January 19, 2018 – 7-night cruise departing from Barcelona, Spain with ports of call in Marseille, France; Genoa, Italy; Civitavecchia, Italy; Palermo, Italy; and Valleta, Malta. Prices start at $439 per person.
  • MSC Seaview: June 17, 2018 – 7-night cruise on MSC Cruises’ newest Seaside-class ship, arriving June 2018, departing from Genoa, Italy with ports of call in Naples, Italy; Messina, Italy; Valleta, Malta; Barcelona, Spain; and Marseille, France. Prices start at $908 per person.

Northern Europe:

Northern Europe sailings from March 2018 through October 2018 are eligible for half off, including MSC Meraviglia, which after sailing her inaugural season in the Mediterranean will be repositioned to Northern Europe for the summer 2018 season. Sailings are also available on board MSC Magnifica, MSC Orchestra and MSC Preziosa.

Sample itineraries for sailings in Northern Europe include:

  • MSC Meraviglia: May 20, 2018 – 11-night cruise departing from Hamburg, Germany with ports of call in Kirkwall, United Kingdom; Akureyri, Iceland; Isafjordur, Iceland; Reykjavik, Iceland; and Invergordon, United Kingdom. Prices start at $1,329 per person.
  • MSC Magnifica: April 23, 2018 – 7-night cruise departing from Southampton, United Kingdom with ports of call in Le Havre, France; Zeebrugge, Belgium; Amsterdam, Netherlands; and Hamburg, Germany. Prices start at $429 per person.

United Arab Emirates:

Cruises to Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and MSC Cruises’ newest private destination, Sir Bani Yas Island Beach Oasis, are also reduced by 50% between December 2017 and March 2019 on the magnificent MSC Splendida.

Sample itineraries for sailings in the United Arab Emirates include:

  • MSC Splendida: February 3, 2018 – 7-night cruise departing from Dubai with ports of call in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates; Sir Bani Yas Island, United Arab Emirates; Muscat, Oman; and Khor al Fakkan, United Arab Emirates. Prices start at $499 per person.
  • MSC Splendida: February 10, 2018 –   7-night cruise departing from Dubai with ports of call in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates; Sir Bani Yas Island, United Arab Emirates; Bahrain; and Doha, Qatar. Prices start at $499 per person.

For more information on all of MSC Cruises’ Plan a Cruise Month 2 for 1 deals, see here.

 

 

 

Holland America’s Popular ‘Explore4’ Promotion Is Back

August 7, 2017.

Holland America Line’s popular Explore4 promotion is back with four offers on more than six hundred cruises from March 2018 through April 2019. Travelers looking to book a cruise or Alaska Land+Sea Journey for next year or beyond can take advantage of all the benefits, which include complimentary beverages and specialty dining aboard ship as well as reduced deposits and free or reduced fares for friends and family. Suite bookings also receive onboard spending money.

The Explore4 promotion for guests booking any category stateroom includes a Signature Beverage Package valued at $1,400 per stateroom (based on a 14-day cruise), dinner at the Pinnacle Grill for two, free or reduced cruise fares for friends and kids in the same stateroom, and 50 percent reduced deposits. Guests receive all benefits, and bookings must be made by Nov. 17, 2017.

Suite Travelers Receive Added Perks
Guests who book a cruise in a suite category stateroom will receive the four offers plus an additional $200 onboard spending money per stateroom ($100 per person).

Beverage, Dining and Other Onboard Amenities Add to Cruise Value
The beverage package includes wine, beer, spirits, cocktails, sodas and coffee. The beverage offer is only applicable on the cruise portion of Alaska Land+Sea Journeys.

Explore4 offers also include a complimentary dinner at the Pinnacle Grill, featuring a menu highlighting steak and seafood dishes like filet mignon and broiled Alaska king salmon, Pinnacle Grill also includes favorites like roasted pumpkin risotto and double-cut Kurobata pork chops.

With reduced cruise fares on select sailings for friends and kids sharing a stateroom with two other guests, a group of four can take an affordable vacation to the Caribbean or a longer journey to an exotic destination. For example, in the Caribbean, fares for seven-day cruises start from US$799 for the first and second guests in an interior stateroom, and free or reduced fares apply for the third and fourth guests. A seven-day European cruise starts at US$1,199 for an interior stateroom for the first and second guests, with free or reduced fares for third and fourth guests. Taxes, fees and port expenses are additional.

By taking advantage of the 50 percent reduced deposit offer, guests will have more flexibility and time before paying the final deposit on their cruise.

Global Itineraries Available with Explore4
Guests looking to take advantage of the Explore4 program can choose select itineraries to nearly all of Holland America Line’s global destinations, including Alaska and Alaska and the Yukon Land+Sea Journeys, Asia, Australia/New Zealand, the Baltic, Bermuda, Canada and New England, the Caribbean, Europe, Hawaii, the Mediterranean, Mexico, the Panama Canal and South America. Grand Voyages and Grand Voyage segments are excluded.

Carnival Fantasy Hosts ‘Seuss-A-Palooza’ For YMCA Of South Alabama

 

July 24, 2017.

It’s always a delight to post news about Alabama’s favorite cruise ship, and “my” homeport of Mobile.

Carnival Cruise Line today celebrated its partnership with the Port of Mobile and greater Mobile community by hosting a Seuss-a-Palooza event for kids attending the YMCA of South Alabama Summer Camp program. The event aboard Carnival Fantasy, which is homeported year-round in Mobile, was highlighted by a Green Eggs and Ham brunch with The Cat in the Hat and Friends, a Seuss-a-Palooza Story Time and Parade and other Dr. Seuss–inspired activities that are featured on Carnival cruises.

During the event, Carnival made a $20,000 donation to the YMCA of South Alabama, reinforcing the cruise line’s commitment to supporting its homeport communities.

Carnival Fantasy sails from Mobile on four- to 10-day cruises to destinations across The Bahamas, eastern and western Caribbean, Mexico and Central America. The ship carries approximately 170,000 guests a year from Mobile.

“The event today was a terrific opportunity to celebrate our long-standing relationship with the Port of Mobile and demonstrate that we’re proud to be community partners,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “The partnership with Dr. Seuss Enterprises is unique to Carnival and we were happy to share this fun experience with such a great group of kids from the Mobile area.”

Today’s festivities are part of Seuss at Sea, Carnival’s exclusive partnership with Dr. Seuss Enterprises that features fleetwide activities like the Green Eggs and Ham Breakfast with The Cat in the Hat and Friends, the Seuss-a-Palooza Parade and Story Time, Dr. Seuss Bookville, a family reading venue on select ships, character interactions, Dr. Seuss toys and games, and popular movies shown on board.