Are Luxury Cruises Worth the Extra Cost?
Photo courtesy of Silversea Cruises
Luxury cruises can total as much as what some would easily consider a fortune. After all, it’s not uncommon for the price of a singular sailing to match or exceed the cost of a car or much more.
But is such a cruise experience worth it?
Clearly, the answer is yes to many because the luxury cruise segment is booming with every line in the category growing to some degree, some at record speed, read Crystal Cruises.
I myself have had the great pleasure of enjoying luxury cruises as well as the entire gamut of ships leading up to them, everything from Carnival Cruise Line to Silversea Cruises, and honestly I like them all for different reasons. There truly is a cruise line, and perhaps more importantly, a price point for everyone.
READ MORE: A Luxury Cruise Renaissance Begins
It all just comes down to what you most value in a vacation, whether it is priced at $499 for a week or upwards of say $34,999. That’s what the best Regent Suite is going for (on special mind you) aboard a 7-day Baltic cruise on Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ new Seven Seas Explorer, for example. What is included in those costs is what must be considered though. A $499 fare is absolute bare bones, usually in a smaller inside stateroom, but main dining meals and entertainment are also bundled in.
Comparatively, Regent is the most inclusive cruise line overall. In such a suite, which happens to already be booked as far out as the June 26, 2017 sailing, guests get a whopping 3,875 square feet of space wrapping around the entire forward section of the ship like a private observation lounge. That encompasses two bedrooms, a living room, vista garden, in-suite spa, two-and-a-half bathrooms and two balconies, and amenities extend to unlimited complimentary spa services, laundry and pressing, Wi-Fi and telephone connections, butler service and guaranteed specialty restaurant reservations. Plus, a one-night, pre-cruise luxury hotel stay, ground transfers, business class intercontinental flights, shore excursions, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages and pre-paid gratuities are included.
It’s true. That is a whole lot of dough, but that is also a whole lot of inclusions, which could make for a cruise of a lifetime.
For those who cannot swallow the cost, there are alternatives. Upscale cruise lines like Azamara Club Cruises, Oceania Cruises and, to an even closer degree, Viking Ocean Cruises approach luxury quality for a reduced price. They may not have every last bell and whistle, but they satisfy many cruisers with their value propositions.
Like with all things, you get what you pay for, but luxury brands, like Louis Vuitton at least, are also known for charging premiums for the sake of the label, on top of the plush product itself, of course. And for those who value it and can afford it, onboard or ashore, good for you.
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