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Saturday, April 05, 2008

Cruise for Free as a Group Leader: The Best Kept Secret in Travel!

Cruise for Free as a Group leader: The Best Kept Secret in Travel!

2009 Alaska Group Cruises. Save and Sail.

Did you know that you can cruise for free and save as much as 70% off brochure rates. And earn extra cash when enough people cruise with you? Organizing an Alaska group cruise or cruisetour is easy, fun, and hassle free.

Cruise tours offer the best of both worlds, combining a seven-day cruise with a three- to eight-night stay on land. All you have to do is decide where you'd like to go. Here is information about Alaska's favorite places. From it's historical towns and cities to its National parks, Alaska has something to offer everyone.

Friends & Family Groups

Friends & Family Cruises are so much fun. Have a large extended family or just a small group of friends? Are you a member of a golf or tennis club, bridge club, dance club, a member of Rotary, Lions, Elks...Perhaps a member of a condominium or homeowner's association. No matter what, a cruise is a "time of your life" experience that is even more fun when you travel with a group of people you know.

There is such a variety of cruise ships, itineraries and theme cruises available there is a cruise to fit both your interests and your budget!. So, get together with people you know who would love to cruise, give us a call and we'll take care of the rest.

Your group will have a great cruise at great prices plus, added amenities will that make your cruise even more special.

Special Group Pricing
Group and Mini-Group Rates

Here's a neat way to earn a free Alaska cruise.

All you need is a few friends or family willing to travel together on the same sailing, and a reason to do it--say a family reunion, birthday, graduation celebration, club outing, or just for fun.

Sometimes a group starts as just two couples and before they know it, they've invited enough people to eliminate their own cost of cruising.

What's a cruise group? The magic is in the numbers!

Most major cruise lines that sail to and from Alaska, including Princess, Carnival, Holland America, Celebrity, Norwegian, and Royal Caribbean, generally define a "cruise group" as 16 people occupying eight cabins (third and fourth passengers in a cabin don't count toward the total). The sixteenth person, or the person who organizes the bookings (in "cruise-speak," the group leader or tour conductor), earns the free fare--although port charges, taxes, and airfare must be paid. For some off-peak sailings your group may earn a free fare for every eighth, tenth or twelfth person.

You could earn an exclusive " mini-group" rate for as low as 6 people occupying three cabins.

TIP: If you and your group want to sail during peak sailing seasons, you'll need to book your trip at least 12 to 8 months in advance. However, cruise lines need less notice (three to six months prior to embarkation) for off-season sailings.

Cruise lines are best able to accommodate groups in the beginning and end of the Alaska cruise season ( May and September ), when they are most flexible (and have the most cabins to fill)

Family Reunions

Choosing the perfect family reunion vacation means pleasing young, old and in between; creating memorable experiences for everyone; and still keeping within budget. A cruise offers the solution to this vacation dilemma for more families every year. With an extensive selection of programs for all ages, the all-inclusive nature of a cruise and the deals that are regularly available - including "children sail free" specials - families are realizing that cruising is an affordable way to get together and make everyone happy.

Cruises have long been known for catering to passengers, and that includes the younger set who has its own activities, parties and kid-friendly menus.Highly trained youth counselors supervise youngsters ages three months to 17 years (depending on the line and the itinerary) through age-appropriate activities. Fun is the operative word for all ages on a cruise. Activities include face painting, pizza parties, karaoke, talent shows, video games and computer fun, mini-Olympic-style events and sporting tournaments.

Other programs are designed to make education fun through hands-on activities and entertainment focusing on the destination's nature, heritage and the international experience.In addition, several lines provide babysitting services.

A cruise also is a great opportunity to share some "quality" family time. After spending the day doing what interests them individually, family members can reunite at dinner to share their experiences and enjoy a family show or film. Some lines feature programs that enable children and parents to play and learn together.Best of all, parents can enjoy their time knowing the children are enjoying themselves in a safe and secure environment.

Here are some examples of groups who have taken a cruise:

Friends & Family gatherings
Alumni Groups
Church Groups
Clubs & Organizations
School Groups
Weddings or Anniversary parties
Family Reunions
School Reunions
Family members
Social clubs
Health clubs
Volunteer Organizations
Alumni Organizations
Music clubs
Dance clubs
Aerobic clubs
Bingo players
Fund raising
Professional organizations
Country Clubs
Senior Citizens

What do I have to do to cruise for free?

Here's an example of the free cabins you can earn for a 7 night group cruise (based on double occupancy):

If you have 16 guests in your group, you earn one free guest
If you have 32 guests in your group, you earn two free guests
If you have 48 guests in your group, you earn three free guests
If you have 64 guests traveling in your group, you earn four free guests

There are virtually no limits to how many free guests you can earn!
(Two free guests = one free cabin)

What you do with the free cabins is entirely up to you. Here are some examples:

Cruise for Free and Earn Cash

You can keep the all of the benefits for yourself. This means when multiple cabins are earned, you can cruise for free and opt to take the extra credit in the form of cash.( cruise line regulations permitting )

Spread the Wealth Across the Group

Apply the cash value of the any credits to all of the cabins in your group to create an additional discount for everyone. The additional discounts are paid after your group returns from the cruise.

.....or apply the credit towards the purchase of shore excursions (city tours, snorkeling adventures or a helicopter rides) or spend it on gifts such as fruit baskets, or wine.

Important Notes:Port charges, taxes and government fees, fuel surcharges and other add-on costs such as airfare and air taxes are not included in the free cabins. Each cruise line has their own group policies and they vary from line to line

Alaska Group Q & A

How many guests are required to make a group?
As few as eight staterooms, or 16 guests, can qualify as a group. Mini-Groups as low as 3 couples. The larger your group is, the greater the savings.

What are the advantages of an Alaska group booking?
You can negotiate for extra value, complimentary staterooms or stateroom upgrades, and amenities like a complimentary bottles of wine or shipboard credits.

Is planning well in advance important?
Yes! The earlier you start planning for a group, the greater the opportunity to enjoy greater savings and more amenities. When it comes to planning your vacation, it is service that is our priority. Consult an experienced and knowledgeable Cruise Travel Advisor with the know how to help you get the most out of your vacation.

Cruise Travel Advisors make sure all the details of your cruisetour are taken care of and that your experience is a memorable one.

What's included in the price?
Your cruise fare will include stateroom accommodations, sea transportation, all your meals, entertainment and on-board activities.
What's not included?
Generally speaking, depending upon cruise line, air transportation, shore excursions, medical services, items of a personal nature such as bar beverages (except coffee, tea, or milk with meals or when expressly specified) gift shop purchases, photography, beauty salon/barber shop and spa services, gambling and service/porterage gratuities are not included in the cruise fare. Also not included are charges for passports, visas, inoculations, laundry, travel insurance, postage, telegrams, telephone calls and surcharges, any items of a personal nature, Guests are urged to read the cruise lines brochure and cruise line confirmation from the cruise line for complete details on what is or what is not included.

How does the cost compare to a resort?
The economies are evident. Not only because our prices are competitive, but because many of the services that resorts charge extra for are complimentary aboard our ships: meeting rooms, coffee breaks, meals, afternoon snacks, AV equipment, entertainment, theme parties, sporting events and many daytime activities, to name just a few.

How are private functions handled?
Your group's functions and cocktail receptions can be held either in public rooms or in private suites. Drinks and hors d'oeuvres can be provided at an affordable cost (gratuity included).

What about dining arrangements?
You may have , depending upon availability, all your group's members seated in one area of a dining room, with either assigned or open seating.

How are on-board purchases handled?
Drinks, spa services, shore excursions and shop purchases can all be charged to on-board accounts. You may either set up a master account for your group, or leave it up to individual participants to establish and settle their own accounts.

How can we handle tipping?
Gratuities for your group's dining room staff and room stewards are prepaid prior to sailing. A 15% gratuity is automatically added to all purchases in bars and lounges.

Are telephone and fax services available?
Yes, anyone from your group can telephone directly from their stateroom. In addition, worldwide telex, radiogram or fax services are available from most ships. The guest will be charged at applicable ship-to-shore rates. And aboard many ships, you will find internet access via the ship's satellite system.

Service At Sea
For Groups of 50 or more, Cruise Travel Advisors can provide professional escorts, who take care of all your group needs at sea. They make sure your staterooms are in order. They provide coordination with the ship's staff for all meeting facilities, making sure they are set-up and prepared for you. They can arrange special tour excursions and private visits to the Galley and Bridge.

Where can I get more information or a quote for an Alaska Group Cruise? Call Alaska Cruise Travel Advisors today: 800.365.1445 for more information and a detailed quote, or simply fill out our Group Request Form: Click Here

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