Today we’re taking a closer look at all-inclusive cruises. There’s often some confusion about what’s included in the advertised price leading many people to be stung by extra charges and gratuities whilst on board. To help you navigate the murky waters of all-inclusive travel, we’ve created this short but in-depth guide.
What’s Included as Standard?
Not all cruises are created equal. That is to say, not every package will be all-inclusive. If you have booked an all-inclusive cruise, here’s what your money will have already paid for:
- Accommodation for the entire duration of your cruise.
- Breakfast, lunch and dinner in the main dining rooms and buffet restaurants.
- Entertainment – both daytime and evening shows.
- Some onboard attractions like the gym, swimming pools, book clubs and games.
So what’s not included in standard packages?
- Dining in speciality restaurants
- Alcohol and soft drinks
- Day trips/excursions
- Child care
- Some on-board activities
- Tips – although tipping is entirely at your discretion, it is common practice and some cruise lines will automatically add gratuities to your bill.
This list is by no means exhaustive and it may not apply to every cruise line – some include more than others. We advice checking with your provider before you travel.
Who Offers All-Inclusive Cruises?
There are currently seven cruise lines offering all-inclusive packages – Azamara Club Cruises, Crystal Cruises, Hebridean Island Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Seabourn, SeaDream Yacht Club and Silversea.
What Does All-Inclusive Really Mean?
As with all-inclusive resort packages what is and isn’t included varies between each line. However, as a general rule every line offers all-you-can-eat dining, including meals at speciality restaurants. This means breakfast, lunch, dinner and extras like afternoon tea, midnight snacks and poolside treats are included in the price of the cruise.
Some lines (Regent, Crystal, Seabourn, SeaDream and Silversea) include all drinks, alcoholic or otherwise and gratuities. Other providers only include drinks at meals or minibar beverages.
The most inclusive lines are Regent and Hebridean. Regent really does include everything in the cruise price – food, drink, gratuities, shore excursions, flights, transfers and all accommodation. Hebridean isn’t far behind.
The Cost Benefit of All-Inclusive Cruising
Although the initial cost is significantly more expensive than a standard package, you won’t have to touch your wallet whilst on board. Often, all-inclusive actually works out comparable to, if not a little cheaper than, standard cruises.
Find Out More
If you’d like to find out more information about all-inclusive cruise packages, take a moment to see Cruise 1st’s packages or call us today on 0800-230-0655.