SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 28, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Hotwire.com, a leading discount travel site, today released its Cruise Savings Indicator for the 2013 wave season. This guide aims to help cruisers who haven't booked yet score the best possible deals before wave season ends in March. During this time period, cruise lines aggressively compete to fill cabins for sailings throughout the rest of the year. However, while all lines are offering deals, finding the best bargains amongst the clutter can sometimes be tricky. The good news is that the cruise experts at Hotwire have done the work for you, awarding Norwegian Cruise Lines the "best value" line, and Transatlantic and European cruises the "best value" cruise types. Cruisers should look to Norwegian Cruise Line and Transatlantic and European cruises for a combination of the season's best prices and range of entertainment options.
"Every wave season, cruisers are inundated with offers and promotions, making it harder to decipher a fantastic deal from a small discount," said Clem Bason, president of the Hotwire Group. "With access to the ever-changing cruise pricing data across so many lines, ships and destinations, we at Hotwire have a keen sense of where the best values can be found. By sharing this information with travelers during wave season, we hope that prospective bookers will get the most out of their next cruise."
The best value cruise line for wave season 2013 is:
Norwegian Cruise Line – award-winning line with award-winning prices
Cruise is an incredibly competitive business and many ships compete for the same types of travelers. That being said, each year one line seems to step up its game and pull ahead of the pack when it comes to value and savings. This year, it's Norwegian Cruise Line. NCL is known for its variety of destinations and ports, which is ideal for folks who may not know where they want to cruise. On Norwegian, they can have their pick of eclectic offerings like island adventures, getaways to Europe and the Mediterranean or northern explorations in Alaska and Canada.
Beyond normal wave season deals, Norwegian continues to improve its value-adds, like onboard credits and gratuities. Throughout wave season, NCL has also been running flash or pulse sales where they either drop rates or tack-on freebies suddenly. In order to take advantage of these short-term promotions, folks should sign up for newsletter alerts, and continuously check sites to keep a pulse on any last-minute sales Norwegian offers.
The best value cruise type for wave season 2013 is a tie between two types of cruises, offering two very different cruise experiences:
Transatlantic Cruises – sail like royalty at a fraction of the cost
Travelers who want to really take advantage of onboard amenities and don't mind being at sea for most of their trip should consider a transatlantic cruise. There's something incredibly nostalgic about crossing the Atlantic by ship, and with modern day lines offering an array of top-notch food and entertainment options, there's no time like the present to try it out. The influx of deep discounts on transatlantic trips is due to the fact that many cruise lines are looking to reposition their fleets to different ports in 2013. As a result, some sailings are going for as low as $37 a night, but these one-way trips aren't ideal for novice cruisers or anyone looking for a lot of shore excursions. However, if you're looking to sit back, relax, and enjoy the ship at a nightly cost cheaper than a meal at a restaurant, a transatlantic cruise is the way to go.
European Cruises – experience multiple ports of call, even on a budget
The European cruise experience is an interesting counterpoint to the typical transatlantic sailing. While spending a vacation out on the open water is a dream for some travelers, others might want to explore various ports of call. And this season, the best value for getting on-land adventures can be found on European cruises. Many ships moved to Europe last year and kept them there this year in hopes that demand would return for the region. However, it hasn't just yet, and as a result there are plenty of cabins to fill. In order to attract travelers, especially those in the U.S., cruise lines are continuing to keep prices low for European itineraries, and are offering even more incentives, onboard credits, gratuities and – best of all – airfare credits to counter high airfare prices. Some are even offering as much as $1,000 in air savings. So, travelers looking for the ultimate European getaway should book now to experience a range of cultures, countries and stops throughout the Mediterranean and Western Europe, at a fraction of the price of a landlocked European trip.
*Above cruise rates are based on bookings made on Hotwire.com on 2/25/13 for specified travel dates.
Hotwire.com is a leading discount travel site with low rates on airline tickets, hotel rooms, rental cars, cruises and vacation packages. Launched in 2000, Hotwire, Inc. obtains deep discounts from its travel suppliers to help travelers book unsold airline seats, hotel rooms and rental cars. Hotwire.com is an award-winning website and Hotwire, Inc. is an operating company of Expedia, Inc. CST # 2029030-50. NST: 20003-0209. For more information, visit http://www.hotwire.com. Hotwire.com operates sites in 8 countries worldwide: www.hotwire.com, www.hotwire.com/uk, www.hotwire.com/ie, www.hotwire.com/au, www.hotwire.com/nz, www.hotwire.com/se, www.hotwire.com/no and www.hotwire.com/dk. In addition to Hotwire, The Hotwire Group of websites includes: www.hotwire.com and www.carrentals.com.
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