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Surf & Turf

How to find the best cruise and stay deals – and what not to do

Cruise and stay deals are an excellent way to snap up bargain vacations of a lifetime – but what’s the best way to source them? We asked the experts.

The best cruise and stay deals are a brilliant find when you get your mitts on them but it can be tricky to know the best ways to unearth these bargains.

While any decent vacation requires careful planning and preparation, there are methods to making the whole process simpler and maybe even cheaper.

By using a travel agent not only do they do all the hard work for you in organising your vacation but they also source the very best cruise and stay deals.

We quizzed the experts at boutique travel agency Paramount Cruises to find out the top tips for finding cheap cruise and stay deals as well as mistakes to avoid.

How to find the best cruise and stay deals

When researching your cruise and stay vacation it’s important you make sure the experience will live up to your expectations. A great way of doing this is to read reviews for any brand you might be interested in booking with. “These are a great insight into the service and product quality you will receive,” pointed out Sam from Paramount.

You’ll also want to weigh up which packages will suit you best – there’s no point forking out for all-inclusive cruise and stay deals if you won’t really make the most of it.

“Everyone has a different view on their perfect vacation, an all-inclusive resort may be your ideal option, but equally a more authentic culturally immersive stay may work for you,” said Sam.

This is when travel agents come in really handy, for instance, the Paramount Cruises team have access to all types of hotels and all cruise lines to put together your perfect vacation.

This can also work out cheaper for you. As Sam explains: “Travel agents can often negotiate preferential rates with both cruise lines and hotels in order to offer a great value cruise and stay package. Building on long-standing relationships means you’ll often find an exclusive price or special offer.

To get the travel inspiration juices flowing, visit Paramount’s package deal page and filter by your preferred dates, destinations or cruise line.

What destinations are the best value?

It goes without saying that where in the world you travel will greatly change how much you pay for your vacation, but bagging great value vacations doesn’t have to mean sticking to the same-old nearby European destinations.

Sam recommends jetting off to the Far East: “Destinations in South East Asia such as Bangkok and Singapore offer great value for money whilst offering cruises to exotic destinations.”

It’s easy to mistakenly assume some places are pricier than they actually are, too. “Whilst Dubai may be known as an expensive city, the wide variety of hotels means there are luxury options to suit every budget,” said Sam.

Remember to factor in how much expensive flights might send the costs of your cruise and stay vacation soaring. “South American cities such as Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires also offer great value for money, however, airfares tend to be higher to reach these incredible destinations,” the Paramount expert warned.

What mistakes should you avoid when finding cruise and stay deals?

Never make the mistake of not looking closely at what’s included in the package. You don’t want to find you’ll end up paying for things you hadn’t anticipated.

Booking with a travel agent is a sure-fire way to ensure this doesn’t happen. “A good travel agent will give you a complete package without hidden extra costs,” advised Sam.

He also warned against getting sucked in by temptingly-low costs: “Beware of cheap packages, if it looks too good to be true it probably is.

“Do you really want to spend your pre-cruise stay in an airport hotel when you could be spending your first night indulging in local cuisine and properly getting into the vacation spirit?”

Travel agents can help prevent you from getting lured into seemingly cheap deals you wouldn’t be happy with at the end of the day.

“You might be prepared to compromise, but realise that a good agent often won’t,” said Sam.

“Just because you may be happy to stay in substandard quality of accommodation does not mean your agent will be willing to do the same, a good agent won’t send their guests to somewhere which is not adequate just to save a few bucks.

“What you might save by staying in a hotel further out of town you’ll often just spend on transport; plus, when you only have a short time in a city do you want to be wasting your time traveling to and from your hotel?”

Best cruise and stay deals 2022

Paramount Cruises have loads of fabulous packages to nab all year round.

These are some of the best value cruise and stay deals going right now:

Rio de Janeiro Stay & Grand Voyage to Barcelona

You’ll get five nights in Rio de Janeiro, just a few steps away from the legendary Copacabana beach.

Duration: 21 Nights
Ship: MSC Seaview
Where: Hotel stay: Rio de Janiero Cruise: Brazil | La Palma | Fuerteventura | Malaga | Barcelona

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Memphis, New Orleans & All-Inclusive Western Caribbea

If you’ve recently watched the Elvis movie you’ll love your time in Memphis, plus you get to experience sultry New Orleans too!

Duration: 14 nights
Where: Hotel stay: Memphis and New Orleans Cruise: Mexico | Belize | Honduras
Ship: Norwegian Breakaway


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Singapore, Thailand & Malaysia with Blissful Bali Stay

Spend New Year’s Eve in Bali during a five-night stay, explore South East Asia by cruise then spend two nights in Singapore, what’s not to like?!

Duration: 22 nights
Where: Hotel stays: Bali and Singapore Cruise: Indonesia | Malaysia | Thailand
Ship: Celebrity Millennium

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Southern Caribbean & Central America with New York & Austin Stays

Start off in the Big Apple, cruise the Southern Caribbean and then finish your vacation in Austin, the “Live Music Capital of the World.”

Duration: 20 nights
Where: Hotel stays: New York and Austin Cruise: New York | Haiti | Jamaica | Grand Cayman | Colombia |Panama | Costa rice | Honduras | Mexico | Texas
Ship: Royal Caribbean, Adventure of the Seas


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Luxury 2023 Carnival in Rio de Janeiro Voyage

Spend three nights in the Argentine capital Buenos Aires, before boarding a luxury all-inclusive small ship which docks in Rio de Janeiro for a double overnight onboard during the city’s electric Carnival.

Duration: 20 nights
Where: Hotel stay: Buenos Aires Cruise: Argentina | Uruguay | Brazil
Ship: Azamara Pursuit

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Athens stay and All-Inclusive Greek Isles Cruise

Scoff as many souvlakis as is humanly possible during your two-night Athens stay before embarking on Norwegian Jade and exploring the Greek Isles in style! You’ll visit a new port every single day!

Duration: 9 nights
Where: Hotel stay: Athens Cruise: Greece | Turkey | Greece
Ship: Norwegian Jade

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Published 07.21.22