If you're looking for a cruise deal, you should have no problem finding a cheap cruise for the holidays. Whether you want to give the gift of a cruise to a loved one or purchase it as a gift for yourself, there is no shortage of cheap cruise offerings right now. Considering that you get a room, great food and entertainment all in one low price, cruises can make a great gift.
Carnival is one of the most popular cheaper cruise lines out there and they certainly live up to their reputation this holiday season. If you want to get away at Christmas, they have a 4-night Western Caribbean cruise that starts at $389 per person.
If you prefer to save traveling until after the holidays are over, you can book a 3-night Bahamas cruise that leaves out of Port Canaveral starting at $159 per person. If you aren't into the shorter cruises and want something that will get you away for almost a week, there is a 6-night Western Caribbean cruise that starts at $309 per person. This cruise departs in the second half of January.
Carnival isn't the only cruise line with good cruise deals--Norwegian Cruise Lines offers some pretty good deals themselves. If you want to give the gift of a cruise, but don't want to break the bank, you can purchase a 3-night Bahamas cruise from Norwegian starting at $129 per person. For those who don't mind spending a little more money, a 7-night Eastern Caribbean cruise can be purchased starting at $399 per person. An added bonus, this cruise can be taken right after the New Year's festivities are over.
Royal Caribbean has the second best cruise deal on our list with a 3-night Bahamas cruise starting at $130. This is a nice extended weekend cruise that won't cost you much vacation time before the year gets started. Royal Caribbean offers a 5-night Western Caribbean cruise starting at $376. This is a little bit more than a similar cruise offered by Norwegian, but less than a similar one offered by Carnival, so this comes down to cruise line preference.
If you or the person you're gifting a cruise to are first-time cruisers, there are a few costs you should be aware of. You are expected to provide a tip for the dining staff, housekeepers, etc. This might be a no-brainer, but Carnival adds a daily tip to your final bill, which has taken some first-time cruisers by surprise. While cruise lines include food and some non-alcoholic drinks around the clock as part of your fare, alcohol isn't included in this unless you specifically add on the option.
Even though there is no shortage of activities to do on the cruise ship, if you want to participate in excursions, this will come at a cost. Since the cruise line's excursion costs can be a little inflated, it's always a good idea to do your research in advance and see if you can score a better deal by booking directly through the excursion site.[Image via Twitter]