How can you afford “The Vacation of Your Dreams”? Guess what? There are ways to travel to those Caribbean island beaches even with limited funds!
But first you have to board this surreal monster of a ship to get there! Scenes like this may bedazzle you because you really can’t imagine the size of these ships. When they’re tied up to the dock, they dwarf the small coastal towns like alien space ships against the landscape of normal blue and green.
But how can you afford this floating mansion, this kind of ultimate luxury transportation? Here’s a travel tip for all you who think a vacation cruise is just too expensive. When you’re flexible, last-minute cruise tickets can really pay off! Vacations to Go is one such internet site where prices keep getting slashed as the days on the calendar slip by. On this site can buy tickets for 10% – 80% off from some of the major cruise lines – for destinations all over the world.
Of course for the bigger savings, you practically have to have your suitcases packed! But if your departure date is only one or two weeks away you might also find like we did, last-minute airline tickets slashed for certain days. The world is waiting for you too!
On our last trip we were on a ship with three thousand Brits! Literally, out of over 3000 people only two Canadian couples were aboard. How the heck did this happen? Well, we booked last-minute cruise tickets to the Caribbean and saved 80% on the cost. So if we’re coming home with a little British accent, it’s not going to be so hard to take, is it? This crowd is exuberant at the “sail-away” party on the Azura owned by British P.&O Cruise Lines!
Our fourteen-day Caribbean cruise had a brochure price per person at $2650 US, and a last-minute price of only $530. That’s quite a savings and we’re still able to jump off the boat at every ten ports and end each day walking on the white sand beaches in the middle of winter. Yet, the cruise ship is just the transportation to the destination.
Of course our monster “home” looks formidable on the outside. But remember, it’s a four-star hotel, with meals included, and it transports you from port to port. This is all part of the sale price for your cruise.
Now if the cost of a vacation on a cruise ship is not holding you back, maybe something else is? You don’t know if being on a cruise ship would suit you? It’s not for everyone, that’s for sure. Obviously there are great positives: the fine dining, all-you-can-eat buffets, the professional and fantastic nightly entertainment, the casinos, numerous glamorous bars, three or four swimming pools, a full gym with an awesome view and exercise classes, the shops, the movies – you’re living in a deluxe humongous floating condo complex, a small community even. But if you get overwhelmed by noise and crowds then you have to customize your experience by exploring the ship to find quiet serene out-of-the-way little places. Here’s one of our favourite quiet reading retreats, a fancy nightclub in the off-morning hours.
Fourteen days is a long time to be onboard a ship even in the Caribbean, and especially for introverted people like me. I mean, if you like the bar scene and partying on into all hours of the nights, you’ll love cruising. But hey, we’re not twenty-four anymore. We had most of our breakfasts early on the stern of the ship in this beautiful warm setting.
Two of our favourite servers from the Philippians would come around with fresh pastry every morning and we’d enjoy talking to them with our coffee on the deck.
While we were in port on the Island of St. Lucia, the views were delightful! We leisurely watched the island rush hour on the harbour highway far below.
But keep in mind, your ship is not going to be the only one at the docks at Caribbean ports, however. From the deck on the 15th floor it’s exciting to watch another ship jockeying into position beside us at St. Lucia.
At Antiqua we’re one of four ships tied to the wharfs. Notice the pelican in the picture, below passively watching? The activity of these four or more floating islands of people come and go on a daily basis for him.
Think of the crowds of tourists milling around in the multitudes of gift shops in every port town. You’re not going to experience the natural culture of the island that way. The wealthy multi-time cruisers who have booked a balcony cabin on the 12th floor are not going to be so happy when they look across to the other ship’s cabins on the same level!
But we’re not on the ship during the day in port. We’re exploring! And don’t think you have to spend the big money on shore excursions. All towns have city and tourist bus lines. Some even have tramways or trains. When you depart in the morning, all kinds of private touring companies will approach you with their personalized tours for sight seeing, snorkelling, boating etc. You’ll have many choices for things to do. All in all however, after a day’s touring around the county side or walking along the quaint interesting streets, it’s wonderful to see your “home” all lit up in the harbour with luxury accommodations just waiting for you to get back on board.
If you have other vacation deals to share with us…write in the reply box PLEASE! Maybe we’ll see you around the world some where.
––––––––––––––––––––––––––– ♥ Heart Thought –––––––––––––––––––––––– Praise the Lord...who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. Psalms 103:1,4-5, NIV Bible In that day you will no longer ask me anything. Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete. John 16:23-24 NIV Bible
Thank you Jane for sharing – yes, it looks rather intimidating, but I’m sure once you two got to shore you did some “real” exploring……. Bonita
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Hi Bonita! We did indeed as you’ll see in our next blog!