Take the family on a cruise and save enough money to buy a car

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While P&O’s sponsorship of Downton Abbey places the brand in front of a TV audience of millions each week, I fear the tactic will do little to change the widely-held – but totally inaccurate – perception of cruising as an expensive holiday.
In fact, cruise ship holidays provide some of the best value around, and it’s taken Thomson to prove it with a comparison of three different multi-centre breaks.
A family of four on a Mediterranean tour from Palma, Majorca to Corsica, Rome, Florence, Toulon and Barcelona would spend an estimated £11,269 on flights, hotels, meals, drinks and entertainment. The cost of the same itinerary by cruise ship would be £2,665 – saving enough money to buy a second-hand family car.
For a couple visiting the major sights around the Red Sea, the land option to fit in Sharm el Sheik, Luxor and Cairo in Egypt, plus Aqaba in Jordan would be about £2,750; by cruise, just about half that, £1,256.
Or how about a couple holidaying in the Caribbean? To visit Barbados, Tobago, Grenada, St Vincent, St Lucia and Venezuela’s Margarita Island by plane would cost £5,709 and would involve almost 34 hours flying (not including the flights to and from home). By ship, the cost comes down to £2,242.
In each case, the ship removes the stress and hassle of multiple flights – while you’re eating in the restaurant, dancing in the nightclub or sleeping in your cabin, the captain is conveniently moving your floating hotel to the next port of call.
The cruise fares used in the calculations were based on an outside cabin aboard Thomson Celebration or Thomson Dream. The prices for accommodation on land were based on 3 and 4-star hotels.
Fraser Ellacott, Thomson Cruises’ Managing Director, says: “Our customers have always told us that our cruises provide fantastic experiences and great value for money, but even we were surprised to see just how significant the monetary and time savings were compared to independently organised itineraries.
“With the cost of all tips included in the price of all of our cruises and Thomson Dream and Thomson Celebration launching our Platinum Cruise offering next year, there’s never been a better time to take a cruise with Thomson.”
 CRUISE VS MULTI-CENTRE HOLIDAY
Click image to full size (via Thomson Cruises).
PS: There ARE still some expensive cruising options. My floating home off the Italian and French Rivieras this week has been SeaDream II, which offers undreamed-of luxury at eye-watering prices. I have been sailing with about 100 fellow-passengers, and there’s one member of crew for each of us. The fare for two sharing a suite for a week is about £12,500.
Drinks and gratuities are included in the fare. But I don’t think caviar – at £85 an ounce – is one of the optional extras available on Thomson ships.

By | 2017-06-15T15:59:42+00:00 28 September 2012|Cruise deals, Cruise news|1 Comment

About the Author:

John Honeywell is a travel writer specialising in cruise ships and cruise travel. Winner of CLIA UK's Contribution to Cruise award 2017.

One Comment

  1. Bollinge 28 September 2012 at 12:25 pm - Reply

    Although I agree with the seniment, the Red Sea example is totally misleading.
    Cairo and Luxor are hundreds of miles inland from port, so Thomson should include the price of the ship’s excursions to those destinations.
    They are unlikely to be cheap!

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