Budget Cruising: Ultimate Guide to Sailing Through Europe on a Budget

By Sarah Williams

Posted 4 years agoOTHER

Summer’s fast approaching, and it’s time to take advantage of some budget cruising. Read this ultimate guide to sailing through Europe on a budget.

Cruising the Mediterranean sea is an experience like no other, and luckily, it’s no longer reserved only for the wealthy. Budget travellers can plan cheap Mediterranean cruises as a couple or as a family for a fraction of the price and still have a great at-sea experience.

You’ll get excellent food and drinks, excursions, and tons of free activities included in the price. If you spend wisely, you’ll have extra money to explore the port towns and do some shopping.

Check out these tips for budget cruising and learn how to save money and still experience the magic of cruise ships.

Research Cruise Lines

The very first step you should take before you book a cruise is to research different cruise lines. There are several to choose from and each has different prices, perks, packages, and offerings. 

For example, Celebrity Cruises offers the best European cruises of a lifetime, covering the Mediterranean and the countries of Northern Europe. MSC Cruises is a well-known budget-friendly line, and Royal Carribean is the most famous, but they can be pricier than others.

Book Early

One of the best ways to cut costs even before you cruise the Mediterranean is to book the trip early. Several months in advance is optimal to allow you to plan your budget, buy plane tickets (if you’re overseas), and research the excursions.

Also, research the ports you’ll be visiting to see how you can use the resources around you to save money.

Be Selective With Shore Excursions

Shore excursions not included in the price can be the biggest expense on your trip. If you’re not careful or well-informed, you’ll end up buying expensive packages from the ship that you can get for cheaper otherwise.

For example, book directly with the companies that offer these excursions or find deals through travel agents. If you’re not into group excursions, you can always explore the place on your own.

Take Advantage of Freebies

Most Mediterranean cruises have free events all the time so you can still have fun on a budget. If you prefer to read a book by the pool or in your cabin, borrow one from the ship library instead of buying it.

The ships offer free game nights, art classes, or live music almost every day, so you don’t have to spend extra on entertainment.

Skip The Extras

Cruising is a form of vacation, so you shouldn’t worry about money too much. But indulging in extra services such as spa treatments, on-ship wi-fi, taking photos at a booth, or alcohol can take a toll on your budget.

If you need to use the Internet, wait until you’re on shore and find a local cafe. Spa treatments are much cheaper on port days, and if you planned to go shopping, do it in port instead of on the ship.

Buy Drinks On Shore

Drinks on the ship can be expensive, especially those not included in the price. Alcohol and specialty beverages will cost you extra than if you bought them on land.

On port days, you can buy drinks in local bars and cafes for a fraction of the price. Also, some cruise lines allow you to bring limited amounts of booze on the boat, so check their policy first.

Whether it’s your first on-board travel experience or you’ve taken a few cruise trips already, these budget cruising tips will help you save money and enjoy like royalty!

Curious to discover the Eastern part of Europe? Read this guide to see how to plan your trip and what to expect.

About the author Sarah Williams

Sarah Williams is an avid blogger who specializes in dating advice. Her interests include gender relations and the underlying mechanisms that drive human interactions. You can check out her thoughts on men, sex, dating and love at Wingman Magazine .

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