Best card when booking cruises

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by Jsm1985, Feb 27, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. Jsm1985

    Jsm1985 Silver Member

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    I'll be booking a cruise soon and I wasn't sure if there are any cc's that give more than the standard 1x points. Thanks!
     
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  2. kyunbit
    Original Member

    kyunbit Silver Member

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    Chase Sapphire Preferred
     
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  3. Singapore Flyer

    Singapore Flyer Silver Member

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    2X on travel. Also, check if the casino on board lets you charge money to your room for playing. It gets charged as a regular item on the bill and not a cash advance. depends on the cruise ship though. Parents did it on a Princess line. I had a post about that last year.
     
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  4. Mapsmith
    Original Member

    Mapsmith Gold Member

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    Also, (at least in the US) most of the airlines have "vacation sites" which are associated with online travel agents. These sites (AACruises, Skymiles Cruises, Priority Club Cruises, Southwest Vacations, etc) will often have bonus miles available for booking with them (based on the length of the Cruise and the cabin category)

    I have booked through AA Cruises twice. Once I got a 12000 AA mile bonus on top of the miles for using the AA card. and once I actually got a 40000 mile bonus for a 10 day cruise!
    Also did Skymiles once and got a 6000 mile bonus (they were the only ones having a bonus when I booked)

    Check your favorite Affinity programs "vacation" link for these. There are some good bonuses out there sometimes.
     
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  5. boondr

    boondr Gold Member

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  6. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Works on Carnival as well... last July I did about 1.5k in the casino (500 a day)
     
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  7. Singapore Flyer

    Singapore Flyer Silver Member

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    nice. the only thing is to carry it around in your room on your person.
     
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  8. kyunbit
    Original Member

    kyunbit Silver Member

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    I am not an expert on cruises; but on a limited experience of shopping around, I found that some TAs give really good discounts on cruises, way more than the worth of the airline cruise bonuses.
     
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  9. Dangjr213

    Dangjr213 Gold Member

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    Like others have said Chase Sapphire Preferred. You get 2x, plus another 1x if you book with the 1 (800) on the UR Travel page.
     
  10. Jsm1985

    Jsm1985 Silver Member

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    Just in case anyone is interested, I ended up using this site: www.cruisecompete.com
    You set the cruise you're interested in and various TA's give you their offers. I ended up doing this instead of a points earning site because I got a good amount of on-board credit from the TA's. Also, I can get a lower price if my cruise price drops before my final deposit is due, whereas I don't think that's possible with the point-earning sites. I used my Sapphire Preferred. Thanks for all of the feedback here!
     
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  11. Mrlasssen

    Mrlasssen Silver Member

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    COSTCO Amex gives you 2% rebate, usually on board credit, and once got me additional ship credit when the price dropped. Also, their insurance is good and lower priced than most.
     
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  12. daninstl

    daninstl Gold Member

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    I've had really good luck with AA cruises and also cruise.com. For some odd reason cruise.com most of the time can beat the best prices around by $10 or more. Strange. I also use vacationstogo.com to search for cruises I want to take. They have good prices but I like their search engine the best.
     
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  13. daninstl

    daninstl Gold Member

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    Buy the insurance from a third party site like travelinsurance.com or whoever they will normally be cheaper than the agent or website with the booking. You can customize the coverage better also.
     
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  14. deant
    Original Member

    deant Milepoint Guide

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    For insurance, go to insuremytrip.com . They allow you to compare numerous insurance companies / policies.
     
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  15. mooeyjc

    mooeyjc Active Member

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    What about the Amex Platinum card? I read on FT that using the Amex Plat you get extra $300 on board credit and some other complimentary bonuses. Granted you are not earning the x2 from Sapphire. Has anyone done the comparison from Milepoint would like to share some info?
     
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  16. autolycus

    autolycus Gold Member

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    You have to use the Amex Platinum travel services for the onboard credits. You can often get similar credits through AAA. I've also found that the credits end up being a wash compared to a higher fare in the first place. But, it never hurts to get more than one quote for the same cruise, as different agencies and affiliations provide different deals, depending on the cruise line and sailing dates.
     
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  17. Miss Staunton

    Miss Staunton Silver Member

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    I too used the Sapphire for booking my cruise that I took last month. Luckily I booked it just as we were signing up for that card and used it to meet the minimum spend. May I also suggest putting your trip out to "bid" for OBC (on board credits). We just did that and there was a bog difference. We ended up going with CruCon and they gave us a $750 per cabin OBC. Be aware, if the price of your cabin goes down, you need to ask for that lower price and a portion will come off your OBC. Ours went down $150 pp and we lost a total of $50. Their base price was also a little higher (same price as the cruise ship's) but their OBC really made a difference.
     
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  18. daninstl

    daninstl Gold Member

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    Great point about the bidding and using the event to meet minimum spend. Might be a good time to churn a card with high required spend just before booking.
     
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  19. Mapsmith
    Original Member

    Mapsmith Gold Member

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    Costco also has a travel agency that you can use for cruises. (I think that most use a branch of Cruise.com) So with the Costco Amex, you can also sometimes get some decent pricing and On Board Credit.
     
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  20. norge
    Original Member

    norge Silver Member

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    Costco and the CSP. When buying things online you can also use MC & Visa.
     
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  21. deant
    Original Member

    deant Milepoint Guide

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    One thing about insurance is that you NEVER want to buy your insurance through the cruise company. If it goes under or has financial trouble you might not have any insurance.
     
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  22. Miss Staunton

    Miss Staunton Silver Member

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    I agree about never buying your insurance through the cruise company. On one of my cruises on HAL, we met a couple who were cruising despite the fact that her father died days before the cruise and the insurance would not cover it since they thought it was pre-existing (according to the passenger). She said that they never thought he was going to die - he was just sick.

    That one conversation made me rethink insurance. A number of people basically self-insure and then buy medical evacuation coverage. We found that through USAA they have a subsidiary that will help you with medical evacuation coverage and excursions. We also checked our T&C with our cc and found that on the AmEx Platinum that they offer medical evacuation. Getting evacuated off the ship through the Coast Guard or something similar is generally free; it is after that can be concerning for some. For those military or retired military, there is Tricare overseas that offer coverage. If you are concerned about coverage, go to www.insuremytrip.com and compare different policies and be sure to purchase within 21 days of making your down payment as that will generally cover pre-exisiting conditions. We just came back from Australia/New Zealand /Singapore and did not purchase any insurance. Since we were Tricare beneficiaries, we knew we would be covered on land and took a risk that we would not need medical evacuation.

    Medjet Express has received a lot of great reviews . They also provide a year long coverage if you have multiple trips. Here is their link: http://medjetassist.com/
     
  23. norge
    Original Member

    norge Silver Member

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    I don't think you'll have problems with the major companies. You'll get better service if you buy from your cruise co. through your travel agent.
     
  24. Miss Staunton

    Miss Staunton Silver Member

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    I totally disagree with you. Many TA know that they are just the middle man and can not speak to the particulars of policies and if they are smart, they will refer you to the insurance company for clarification or policy questions.

    Do your research, check google for help. Here are some sires to help you get started:
    travel insurance in general: http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/tips/travel-insurance.htm) http://www.travelinsurancereview.net/tips-and-advice/where-to-buy/direct-vs-travel-agent/,
    http://www.travelinsurancereview.net/cruise-travel-insurance/, and finally http://www.today.com/id/17519580/ns/today-travel/t/do-you-need-travel-insurance/#.UWQzy3AvL5w
     
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