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Cheap Cruise Tips: Repositioning Cruises

Aug 20, 2008
One of the best ways to enjoy a cheap cruise is on a repositioning route. A repositioning cruise takes place in either the spring or the fall, when the cruise lines need to move some of their ships from their winter routes in such areas as the Caribbean, Hawaii, and Europe to their summer routes, including those in Alaska.

Rather than sailing the cruise ships empty between destinations, the major cruise lines carry passengers on these repositioning voyages at what often amounts to a huge savings over regular in-season cruise pricing.

Yet though the prices are much lower, the ship facilities and activities are usually operating at full functionality. You'll have plenty to see and do on a repositioning cruise, from live shows and other entertainment to sports, arts, crafts, and tons of other activities, and you can do it all at a truly fantastic price.

Another advantage of repositioning cruises is that you can travel to places not frequently visited on the in-season cruise routes, most notably the Panama Canal. Other ships sail the Trans-Atlantic and Trans-Pacific routes, between ports in Europe and the Caribbean and between ports in Australia and New Zealand to Hawaii and Alaska.

Repositioning cruises can be both long and short, ranging from three and four cay cruises between Vancouver and California to several week Trans-Atlantic and Trans Pacific cruises.

On the longer cruises that include ocean crossings, there are few port stops, so passengers have plenty of time to take full advantage of the many activities, shows, and other forms of entertainment aboard the cruise ships.

Of course, it is easy to spend a lot of money in the ship's bars and casino during a long cruise, so you might want to keep track of your tab along the way to avoid any nasty surprises when you get your final bill.

One other factor to weigh when considering a repositioning cruise is the cost of the airfare. Since repositioning cruises by definition start and finish in different ports, you will most likely need to purchase a split fare ticket, which can often add a bit to the overall cost of your vacation.

But if the airfare is reasonably priced, a repositioning cruise can be a great way to cruise to new places while having the time to thoroughly enjoy the facilities and amenities of a modern cruise ship - all at a great bargain. It is hard to beat a deal like that.
About the Author
Scott Russell is a writer, consultant, frequent traveler, and editor of the Alaska Cruise Advisor, a guide to Glacier Bay National Park, Tracy Arm Fjord, and other Alaska cruise destinations.
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