You have read our story on repositioning cruises before. It's in our November 2015 archive or here: http://freetirement.weebly.com/blog/repositioning-cruises
We had so much fun in Europe last fall that we were itching to get back, but we couldn't justify a valid reason due to the expense of both getting there and staying long term.
Well, that abruptly changed a week ago. I am always looking at transportation deals to different places and when we saw the repositioning cruise prices dropping rapidly it intrigued us. We began to think that if we could get a great deal on one, a trip back to Europe just might work very well within our budget.
We found a cruise on Royal Caribbean priced at $850 (before taxes, tips, insurance, etc.) per person for an inside cabin. This is not quite the deal we were looking for so we put it on the back burner for the time being.
I next signed us up for Cruise Compete to let brokers send us deals via email. During one insomnia-laden night, I woke up to see an email notification that fares had dropped considerably. A discount of $300 per person got us excited about possibly jumping on this one day only deal because only a few cabins were left.
In addition, at almost the same time as our "cruise or not to cruise" dilemma, our inquires into staying with friends in Europe materialized. At that point it was as if the stars were aligning for us. We then immediately booked the cruise and confirmed staying with friends for the summer.
So let's do a quick comparison on that. We will depart on the cruise in Fort Lauderdale for Southampton, England. The total price of this 13 day cruise per person is $875. This includes taxes, trip insurance and gratuities. That breaks down to approximately $67 a day per person.
At the time of this writing, we priced airfare from Fort Lauderdale to London on Kayak for $490 per person. We also included leaving from Orlando which dropped the price to just over $400. This is a one way ticket, just like our cruise. The price of the airfare basically doubles if you want a round trip ticket.
The biggest obstacle for people who need to get back to the states is that the cruise is only one way and they would have to pay for a return plane ticket once they arrived in Europe. Some people might not be able to take two weeks off to just cruise and then have another two weeks of vacation time to tour Europe. These are all factors you have to weigh when you decide if a repositioning cruise is right for you. Since we plan on living for awhile in Europe, it's an ideal plan for us.
Repositioning cruises are not ideal for everyone but we wanted to share our thought process for choosing this mode of transportation over flying. If you have the time, repositioning cruises could be a perfect option for you. Besides, on a flight, can you linger over the sunset with a drink in your hand?