Single Savings to Beat the Band
Crystal Cruises (tel. 888/799-4625; www.crystalcruises.com) is offering single guests a break on the 940-passenger Crystal Symphony's Big Band cruise on April 29. The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra will be featured on the nine-night transatlantic crossing from Miami to Lisbon, with evening shows and lots of dancing in the line up. On board will be guest lecturer Loren Schoenberg, a conductor, saxophonist and current executive director of The Jazz Museum in Harlem. Extra Ambassador Hosts will also sail on this trip to serve as dancing and dining partners for single ladies.
Crystal has waived the usual 25% single supplement for its category E outside staterooms and travelers can save an extra 15% off all stateroom and suite categories for bookings made by February 15. Cruise fares start $1,929 for single occupancy cabins.
If you combine the transatlantic crossing with the following 10-night cruise departing May 8 from Lisbon to Athens, save an additional 10% on the cruise fare (though, the single supplement reverts to 25% for most categories of this cruise).
Save on Group Travel with Windjammer
And they say you don't get anything for free. When five people book passage on any Windjammer Barefoot (tel. 800/327-8601; www.windjammer.com) tall ship, the sixth person sails free. The deal applies to any and all sailings throughout the year, though the free cabin will be a standard stateroom. You can all split the savings and spend it on Red Stripes aboard the ship! The entire Windjammer fleet of quirky, ultra-casual tall ships sails the Caribbean year round, and fares include complimentary Bloody Marys at breakfast, rum swizzles at happy hour and wine at dinner.
Big Deals on Small Ships
Discovery World Cruises (tel. 866/623-2689; www.discoveryworldcruises.com) is offering a pair of cruise-tour packages to Ecuador's Galapagos Islands aboard the MV Discovery, one of few cruise ships permitted to visit the archipelago (each sailing is limited to 500 passengers)
- "Polynesia, Peru & Galapagos" is a 26-night voyage from the South Pacific to the islands that provided Charles Darwin with the inspiration for his scientific theories. Cruise departs April 7 and fare begins at $5,650 per person, double occupancy.
- The "Galapagos & Panama Canal" cruise departs April 27, and combines the Galapagos with the Panama Canal on a 16-night itinerary that concludes in the Bahamas. Early booking discounted fares begin at $3,795 per person, double occupancy, if booked by January 30, 2006.
American Cruise Lines (tel. 800/814-6880;www.americancruiselines.com) is offering deals on its Lobsterfest (New England) and Crabfest (Chesapeake Bay) cruises this summer. The trips will include, of course, delicious lobster and crab in each day's menu. Book six months in advance and reap $400 per stateroom savings with the Early Bird Discount on all departures and itineraries.
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines (tel. + 01473 746175; www.fredolsencruises.com), a UK-based company operating mid-sized ships, is offering discounts on a series of cruises from Britain. The savings are available to residents of North America and are valid for bookings made through March 31, 2006.
- All seven- and eight-night cruises to the Norwegian fjords are discounted by 40% between May 20 and September 3, 2006.
- A 24-night cruise departs Dover on May 24 aboard the new Boudicca is discounted by 45%. Ports include Spain, Malta, Greece, Turkey, Cyprus, Egypt, and Libya.
- Save 50% on any cabin category on a 17-night cruise departing Dover June 24, with ports including Copenhagen, Visby, Tallin, St. Petersburg, Turku, Vaasa, Kemi, Stockholm, Ronne, Travemunde and Amsterdam.
Norwegian Coastal Voyage (tel. 800/323-7436; www.norwegiancoastalvoyage.us) is offering deals on several northbound Coastal Odyssey departures in April, May, August and September.Â¿Rates for these 7- to 9-night sailings range from $1,303 to $2,393; suites are $1,904 to $4,576.
- The "Norwegian Life and Heritage" itinerary introduces passengers to the history and tradition of the Norwegian people. Lectures by Dr. Fenella Bazin, retired director of post-graduate studies at the Centre for Manx Studies, address the geography, wildlife and history of Norway's dramatic coastline.
- The "Norwegian Maritime Traditions" sailing focuses on the crucial impact of the maritime industry on Norway and the region since man first took to these seas. Professor Bard Kolltveit, director of research at the Norwegian Maritime Museum in Oslo, happily passes on his knowledge and enthusiasm to the passengers.
- "The Life, Work and Music of Edvard Grieg," a name synonymous with Norway, is a cruise program celebrating the life of the 19th-century composer with daily recitals.Â¿Rune Alver is an accomplished pianist, giving concerts throughout Europe; lecturer Eilif Lotveit has been connected with the Grieg estate for 35 years and has a background in languages, history and the arts.
Peter Deilmann Cruises (tel. 800/348-8287; www.deilmann-cruises.com) is offering 10% savings and free airfare from 16 U.S. gateways on three different cruises aboard the Deutschland in the Mediterranean and western Europe this spring. The 12-night cruises call at ports in Italy, Monaco, Spain, Morocco, Portugal and France sail from Venice on April 12; Civitavecchia (Rome) on April 24; and Malaga on May 6. Passengers can also save 50% off the price of pre-arranged English-language shore excursion packages and reap free airport/ship transfers.Â¿Cruise fares begin at $3,647 per person while single staterooms start at $4,030.
Star Clippers (tel. 800/442-0551; www.starclippers.com) is offering some appealing deals on its three tall ships.
- The 227-passenger Royal Clipper is sailing new 10- and 11-night journeys between Civitavecchia/Rome and Venice, Italy from June through September 2006. The voyages call at Ponza and Capri, Italy; Taormina, Sicily; Corfu, Greece; Kotor, Montenegro (the newest addition to the itinerary); and Dubrovnik, Kurcola, Hvar and Lusinj in Croatia. Savings include $400 per person off the cruise fare and $300 off airfare from major gateways.
- From May through October, Star Flyer is offering seven-night sailings throughout the Greek Isles and Turkey, round-trip from Athens or between Athens and Istanbul. The ports include Rhodes, Patmos, Delos, Mykonos, Sifnos, Santorini, Samos and Hydra, Greece; or Bodrum, Dikili, Kusadasi and Dalyan River in Turkey. Savings include $400 per person off the cruise fare and $300 off air fare from major gateways.
- Star Clipper sails two different seven-night round-trip Cannes voyages from May through October. Calls include Calvi, Ile Rousse, Bastia and Bonifacio, Corsica; Costa Smeralda, Sardinia; Portovenere, Elba and Portofino, Italy; Monte Carlo, Monaco; Porquerolles, Hyeres Island; and St. Tropez, France. Savings include $400 per person off the cruise fare and $600 off of airfare from major gateways.
All of these cruise lines are members of the Niche Cruise Marketing Alliance (NCMA), an association of 12 cruise lines. For more information about them, contact 425/867-0399 or www.nichecruise.com.
What Travel Agencies Are Offering
Here are some of the best deals a handful of major travel agencies are advertising this week. Cruises are capacity-controlled and offers may be withdrawn at any time. Similar deals may be available from competing online and brick-and-mortar agencies. All rates are per person and include port charges. Rates for the ultra-luxe lines may also include gratuities and some or all beverages.
Cruise Brothers (tel. 800/827/7779; www.cruisebrothers.com)
- Celebrity Millennium: Seven-night southern Caribbean, round-trip from Fort Lauderdale. From $800, April 2 sailing.
- Princess Star Princess: Seven-night western Caribbean, round-trip from Fort Lauderdale. From $849, April 16 sailing.
- Royal Caribbean Mariner of the Seas: Seven-night eastern Caribbean, round-trip from Port Canaveral. From $899, March 19 & May 7 sailings.
- NCL Norwegian Dawn: 10-night Caribbean, round-trip from New York City. From $979, April 16 sailing.
- Celebrity Zenith: Five-night western Caribbean, round-trip from Miami. From $600, Feb 11 sailing.
- Oceania Cruises Insignia: 12-night Europe, Lisbon to Dover. From $2899, June 2 sailing.
- Oceania Cruises Regatta: 12-night Caribbean, round-trip from Miami. From $1,549 Feb 13 and March 11 sailings.
- Oceania Cruises Regatta: 26-night South America, round-trip from Miami. From $3,499 Nov 25 sailing.
- Oceania Cruises Nautica: 15-night Asia, Hong Kong to Singapore. From $3,499, Jan 6, 2007 sailing.
- Oceania Cruises Regatta: 10-night southern Caribbean, round-trip from Miami. From $1,049, Jan 2, 2007 sailing.
CruisesOnly (tel. 800/278-4737; www.cruisesonly.com)
- Carnival Fascination: Four-night western Caribbean, roundtrip from Miami. From $319, April 24 sailing.
- Royal Caribbean Radiance of the Seas: Seven-night western Caribbean, roundtrip from Miami. From $699, April 2 sailing.
- Holland America Oosterdam: Seven-night Mexican Riviera, roundtrip from San Diego. From $699, April 8 sailing.
- NCL Norwegian Dawn: 10-night eastern Caribbean, roundtrip from New York. From $929, April 26 sailing.
- Celebrity Galaxy: 10-night Mediterranean, roundtrip from Rome. From $1,330, Aug 25 sailing.
Just Cruisin' Plus (tel. 800/888-0922; www.justcruisinplus.com)
- Costa Fortuna: 11-night Egypt and Greece, roundtrip from Genoa. From $999, Feb. 9, Feb. 20 and Mar 3 sailings.
- Costa Mediterranea: Seven-night eastern Caribbean, roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale.Â¿From $449, April 2 sailing.
- Costa Magica: Seven-night Bermuda, roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale.Â¿From $699, April 21 and 28 sailings.
- Costa Mediterranea: Seven-night western Caribbean, roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale.Â¿From $649, April 2 sailing.
- Carnival Sensation: Four-night Bahamas, roundtrip from Port Canaveral.Â¿From $449, June 1 sailing.
- NCL Pride of Aloha: Seven-night Hawaii, roundtrip from Honolulu.Â¿From $1049, June 10 sailing.
- NCL Norwegian Sun: Seven-night Alaska, roundtrip from Seattle. From $859, June 10 sailing.
- Carnival Sensation: Five-night Bahamas, roundtrip from Port Canaveral.Â¿From $359, Sep. 2 sailing.
- Carnival Glory: Seven-night eastern Caribbean, roundtrip from Port Canaveral.Â¿From $499, Sep. 2 sailing.
- Carnival Elation: Seven-night eastern Caribbean, roundtrip from Miami.Â¿From $459, Sep. 3 sailing.
- Costa Magica: Seven-night western Caribbean, roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale.Â¿From $649, Nov. 19 sailing.
Vacation Outlet (tel. 800/690-2210; www.vacationoutlet.com)
- NCL Norwegian Majesty: Seven-night Bermuda, roundtrip from Boston. From $749, May 7 sailing.
- Holland America Zaandam: Seven-night Alaska, roundtrip from Seattle. From $749, May 26 sailing.
- Carnival Triumph: Seven-night western Caribbean, roundtrip from Miami. From $549, April 29 sailing.
- Royal Caribbean Sovereign of the Seas: Four-night Bahamas, roundtrip from Miami. From $339, May 1 sailing.
- Celebrity Century: Seven-night western Caribbean, roundtrip from Ft. Lauderdale. From $650, April 9 sailing.
Vacation Shoppe (tel. 866/727-8473; www.vacationshoppe.com)
- Carnival Fascination: Three-night Bahamas, roundtrip from Miami. From $329, March 3 sailing.
- Carnival Fantasy: Three-night Bahamas, roundtrip from Pt. Canaveral. From $339, March 2 sailing.
- Carnival Legend: Eight-night western Caribbean, roundtrip from Ft. Lauderdale. From $849, March 9 sailing.
- Carnival Victory: Five-night Bahamas, roundtrip from Charleston. From $549, Oct 15 sailing.
- Carnival Liberty: 14-night transatlantic, Miami to Genoa. From $749, Apr 23 sailing.
- Carnival Liberty: Nine-night Mediterranean, roundtrip from Rome/Civitavecchia. From $1,449, Oct 10 sailing
- Holland America Amsterdam: 10-night Canada and New England, New York to Montreal. From $1,599, Sep 7 sailing.
- Holland America Maasdam: 15-night Canada and New England, Ft. Lauderdale to Montreal. From $1,799, Apr 28 sailing.
- Holland America Oosterdam: Three-night Pacific coast, Vancouver to Seattle. From $349, May 3 sailing.
- Holland America Veendam: Five-night Pacific coast, San Diego to Vancouver. From $499, May 9 sailing.
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