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Where to find the best Wave Season cruise deals

SmarterTravel

When’s the best time to get cruise deals? Some people say it’s right now, between January and March, because the combination of winter’s chill and the start of a new vacation year spurs travelers to book cruises. This period of heavy cruise bookings has become known as Wave Season, and cruise lines and travel agents now offer extra incentives for bookings during this time.

This year, 35 percent of the Cruise Lines International Association’s (CLIA) member travel agents said they expect their highest bookings during Wave Season, while 32 percent claimed to have consistent bookings year round. Whether or not you believe most cruise sales take place during Wave Season, here’s how to maximize your chances of getting a great deal in early 2008.

Cruise line promotions

The cruise lines know you’re contemplating booking a cruise, so they try to seal the deal with extra discounts and perks during Wave Season. Look on your favorite cruise line’s website or contact a travel agent to ask about special promotions.

Several cruise lines have already advertised Wave Season specials. Here’s what I’ve found so far:

  • [% 10816 | | Costa %]: Costa’s [% 2493562 | | Diamond Jubilee %] promotion lets you save up to 60 percent on all cruises for 60 days.
  • Cruise West: This small-ship line is offering $100 to $550 in savings to guests who book Alaska Inside Passage itineraries by February 29.
  • [% 9823 | | Holland America %]: HAL’s [% 2493569 | | View and Verandah Sale %] offers discounts on most sailings, but especially on outside and balcony cabins, through February 29.
  • [% 12025 | | Norwegian %]: NCL’s Freestyle Revolution Sales Event features a different promotion each week through the end of February. Offers include discounts and ship credit.
  • [% 14460 | | Princess %]: Princess is handing out [% 2492532 | | savings and ship credit %] to guests who book Alaska cruise tours through February.
  • [% 9668 | | Regent Seven Seas %]: First-time Regent cruisers can receive $250 per person in ship credit if they book by February 29 and request promotion code C9SEA071P.

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