How to get a big discount on your cruise

Cut Rate Cruises

by Debra Karplus

How to Conquer Debt eBook

You've never gone on a cruise, and your friends insist you would love a cruise. On, you discover that you can sail from Tampa to the West Caribbean for four days for rates starting at $534 per person on a Carnival ship. But then, you have a chance encounter with a young man who has travelled the world by ship on a college student budget. He claims to have travelled around the world for about $100 a day. How did he do this? The man is glowing as he brags about his exciting adventures seeing the world via a freighter ship.

Travelling by freighter ship could be more fun than a cruise ship and is guaranteed to be much cheaper.

If you don't need 24/7 scheduled activities, lounge acts, a "theme vacation" like a single's cruise and you prefer not to have a huge number of other passengers around, then give serious thought to freighter travel. Expect to travel no-frills in a large boat filled with cargo, about a dozen or so co-passengers, and the crew that will be very excited to share the high seas with you and will be extremely welcoming, accommodating, and more than happy to have you onboard.

Search online and book this exciting trip by sea.

To get started in your search for the freighter trip that matches your travel goals, start by looking online long in advance of when you hope to travel, using keywords "travel by freighter." You will be amazed to discover several reputable companies that can make your dream trip become a reality while not putting you in the poor house. On, you can find cruises for $90 to $180 per person per day for sea-loving people under 80 years old.

Pick your destination, and you will find numerous trips as short as about a week and some as long as 100 days. You'll enjoy comfortable sleeping quarters and three generous meals daily that include your beverage of choice. You will be amazed at all the exciting destinations, such as North America, South America, the Caribbean, the Mediterranean area, The Far East, Europe, South Africa, the South Pacific, or around the world. Additionally, you'll l discover that there are several options for types of ships, such as cargo, mail, or special purpose.

Look at each website to know what you can expect from each specific itinerary as they are all very different from each other.

The frequently asked questions (FAQ) of each of the freighter travel websites will be very helpful to you. Each emphasizes the necessity to book the trip long in advance, sometimes even six months ahead of departure date. Though your sense of adventure is a real plus to freighter travel, spontaneity is not an option. You must an able to plan your travel well ahead of departure date.

Plan to bring a few books to read, a large sweater to knit, or a book of crossword puzzles because nobody will be on the ship to entertain you. For things to do while onboard, you are truly on your own. However, you should also be ready for the opportunity to get off the ship and explore new destinations as it stops in various interesting ports.

Once you have found the freighter cruise that fits, call the phone number on their website and book your trip. You are likely to be sharing wonderful memories of your trip for many years ahead.

Reviewed January 2018

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Debra is an occupational therapist, accountant, teacher and freelance writer. She is a writer for Advance for Occupational Therapy Practitioners. She also writes for Grand Magazine, has some items (fiction and non fiction) selling on (kindle), has written several travel articles for the Champaign-Urbana News-Gazette and several articles for and volunteers as a money mentor for the University of Illinois Cooperative Extension money mentoring program. Learn more about her at

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