Celebrity Cruises: 6 things you need to know before you book

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Celebrity Cruises: 6 things you need to know before you book
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If you want to splurge on your next voyage at sea, Celebrity Cruises may be just the thing for you. Billed as the upscale option for sea travelers, Celebrity specializes in luxury cruise experiences. If you’ve never traveled on Celebrity Cruises or are planning on doing so again soon, here are some things to know before you go.

Celebrity Cruises: What to know before you go

Celebrity Cruises is buzzing with excitement these days as it gets ready to launch its newest cruise ship, the Edge, which the company is hoping sets a new standard for modern luxury cruising. While Celebrity’s iconic X brand is considered its premiere luxury ship series, the cruise liner is confident that after Edge’s November 2018 maiden voyage, it will quickly become the most popular ship in its fleet.

Celebrity Cruises began sailing in 1989 with a select number of ships catering to big-spending vacationers who wanted the finer things at sea. Today, a traveler can sleep on cashmere mattresses and venture on the deck to take in the sun on a quarter-acre of real grass amid tropical rain showers.
Other amenities include resort-style sundecks for suite passengers, complete with cabanas, a pool and complimentary drinks.

1. What U.S. ports does Celebrity sail out of?

Today Celebrity’s fleet travels to more than 300 destinations on seven continents, including many vacation cruises in places like the Pacific and Asia.

Celebrity Cruises ports from several cities within the contiguous United States, including the following:

  • Bar Harbor, Maine
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Cape Liberty, New Jersey
  • Fort Lauderdale, Florida
  • Key West, Florida
  • Miami, Florida
  • Newport, Rhode Island
  • New York, New York
  • Newport, Rhode Island
  • Portland, Maine

See Celebrity’s multitude of international ports of call from the Caribbean to Alaska to Asia.

2. Who is Celebrity Cruises owned by?

Celebrity Cruises is one of three global brands owned by Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. The other two are Azamara Club Cruises and Royal Caribbean International.

As part of its Royal Amplified program, parent company Royal Caribbean is pumping billions of dollars into Celebrity Cruises as it aims to raise the bar when it comes to luxury cruises. “We have designed this program to wow our loyal guests while also attracting the next generation of adventurers,” Michael Bayley, president and CEO of Royal Caribbean International, said in a news release.

3. How many ships does Celebrity Cruises have?

Celebrity’s 2018 fleet is 14-strong and includes several signature voyages. Here are the ships, as well as where they travel:

  • Edge: The Caribbean, Europe, Transatlantic. (Maiden voyage coming soon)
  • Eclipse: Hawaii, Alaska, Pacific Coast, the Caribbean, South America, Transatlantic.
  • Equinox: The Caribbean all year long.
  • Flora: The Galapagos Islands
  • Reflection: The Caribbean, Europe, Transatlantic.
  • Silhouette: The Caribbean, Europe, Transatlantic.
  • Solstice: Alaska, Australia/New Zealand, South Pacific, Hawaii, Pacific Coast.
  • Constellation: Europe, Asia, Dubai, Arabian Sea
  • Infinity: Alaska, Panama Canal, Europe, Transatlantic, South America, the Caribbean, Pacific Coast.
  • Millennium: Alaska, Asia.
  • Summit: the Caribbean, Bermuda, Canada/New England.
  • Xpedition: The Galapagos Islands
  • Xperience: The Galapagos Islands
  • Xploration: The Galapagos Islands

4. Which is the best Celebrity cruise ship?

Fans rate Celebrity’s best ships the Millennium, Solstice and Xpedition classes. U.S. News & World Report ranked Celebrity’s Reflection (Solstice class) as the best based on amenities like its top-deck Lawn Club and the Game On interactive activity center.
The Reflection’s “décor is pure modern luxury, and the entertainment ranges from classic piano lounge to full production shows,” says a review on CruiseFever.net.

5. How does Celebrity Cruises rank among cruise lines?

According to ConsumersAdvocate.org, an editorial site that specializes in product reviews, Celebrity came in sixth among thier top cruise lines for 2018. The full list is as follows:
Ranking 2018 Cruise Line
1 Carnival
2 Princess Cruises
3 Holland America Line
4 Royal Caribbean
5 Disney Cruise Line
6 Celebrity Cruises
7 Regent Seven Seas Cruises
8 Cunard

6. How to save money on Celebrity Cruises

Because cruises can get expensive, here are some ways to sail for less on a Celebrity cruise.

  • Check out Celebrity’s Deals page online: Celebrity Cruises has a Deals Page that features all the current specials. Come back early and often to find affordable fares.
  • Book early: As with most forms of travel, booking as early as you can will save you money because cruise line will raise prices as cabins fill up, so check those travel sites.  Booking in the less busy months — generally late summer and fall — will also save you some coin.
  • Cruise at the right time of year: Money expert Clark Howard says, “There are certain cycles through the year when cruise lines have trouble filling all their cabins, and that’s when you steal the great deals.” So where are the bargains located on the calendar? Clark says it’s usually before or after well-known travel times.
  • Get a cabin inside: It’s tempting to spend top dollar on a stateroom, where you can take in the natural scenery of each destination, but you can save money if you book an inside cabin. Want to check out what’s going on outside? Spend time on the deck.
  • Take your own photos: Big-name cruises often have official photographers that will gladly snap you and your family frolicking about the ship, but those photos aren’t free. Document your vacation for less by taking your own pictures.
  • Buy a beverage package for the whole trip: Passengers are typically charged for a beverage package commensurate to the number of days they’re on the ship, but you can buy a beverage package anytime. This tip is from DontWasteTheCrumbs.com.

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Craig Johnson is a conscious money-saver who still reads paperback books and listens to vinyl. He likes to write about how technology is making things easier and more affordable — but also sometimes more dangerous — for the modern consumer. You can reach Craig at [email protected]
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