Last Minute Deals — Are They Worth It?
Last minute deals?! If you follow the gurus on the internet, you wait until the very last moment and hope that the cruise lines have the cabin that you want, on the ship you want, sailing on the date you want, at a bargain basement price. The same goes for land tours and resorts.
Contrary to this popular belief, many cruise ships, resorts and land tours are selling out far in advance of their sail and travel dates. And if you want a particular type of cabin, a special location on the ship, if you want the hot sailing, land tour or resort stay during a popular travel time (school vacations and holidays) you will most likely be out of luck.
I have been getting quite a few calls from clients asking for the “Last Minute Deals”. I spend a lot of time researching them only to come up empty handed and not fully satisfying my clients. It is far better to err on the other side — book early, get the “early savers” discounts, plus all of the other discounts I get my clients (ie., past cruiser, senior, military, state resident, etc), put down your deposit. Your deposit is fully refundable up until the time of final payment and you should always buy travel insurance to cover medical or work cancellations. You never think you will need it, but I did on last summer’s cruise in the Mediterranean.
I watch all of the pricing and if and when it goes down, my clients get the lowest price. On resorts and land tours my vendors price match as well to any published price so my clients get the lowest price, the most amenities, outstanding customer service from me and they DON’T HAVE TO SETTLE FOR WHAT MIGHT BE LEFT IN A LAST MINUTE DEAL. Remember, other than airfare that has to be paid in full when you make the reservation, all cruises, land tours and resorts just need a deposit, which is fully refundable up until the time of final payment (usually between 30-45 days before departure). I don’t know you but my vacation time and money is precious. I am still tied to my daughter’s vacation schedule in terms of when I can go away. My husband has 3 weeks vacation a year and that family vacation time is precious. I would absolutely not wait until the last minute to put together my vacation in the hopes of catching a last minute deal. It’s not a good value if it’s inexpensive but is not what you want. My best advice and the one that I follow is: Make my plans far enough in advance, get the early saver rate, buy travel insurance (recommended for all travelers) to cover me for medical emergencies, lost and delayed bags and flights and get me a full refund with a doctor’s or employer’s note. I pick the vacation trip that is the best value for the money and gives us the experience that we want. I recommend the same for all of you.
Please share with me how you have planned in advance to take the vacation trip of your dreams! Love to hear from you and create a dialogue.