FAQ Page

/FAQ Page
FAQ Page 2018-01-26T10:08:05+00:00
Can I expect good customer service from your company? 2018-01-26T10:08:08+00:00

Our company motto is: “The Best Price AND the Best Service”. While most people assume that you can only have one or the other, it is our goal to demonstrate that BOTH are possible. All of our agents and office personnel are knowledgeable, courteous and efficient. We are focused on CUSTOMER SATISFACTION, not quick sales. Profits are important for any business, but is our management’s belief that the best way to obtain profitability is to provide great products at great prices and maintain high customer satisfaction. It is our goal to view every client as a customer for life. A highly satisfied client will return to us for their future cruise vacations and recommend CruiseBrokers.Com to all of their friends and associates.

Don’t all travel agencies get the same prices from the cruise lines? 2018-01-26T10:08:08+00:00

No, and there are two parts to this answer. Our membership in the Vacation.com Consortium earns us “preferred” list prices from many of the cruise lines, also our Preferred Supplier relationships earn us high commissions. Unlike most full-service travel agencies, we are delighted to provide our clients with substantial discounts by cutting our portion of the commission and passing on the savings to the client.

How can your prices be so cheap? 2014-07-08T11:09:46+00:00

We are able to price our cruises so low for several reasons:

Our cruise sales volume has allowed us to obtain Preferred Supplier status with all of the major cruise lines in the US market.
Our Preferred Supplier relationships with the cruise lines allow us to obtain cruise cabin space at costs significantly below most other travel agencies.
Our company business processes were designed to minimize overhead, while still focusing on great customer satisfaction.
Our use of computer and telecommunications technology provides us a significant cost and time competitive advantage over most travel agencies.

It sounds too good to be true! Is It? 2014-07-08T11:09:14+00:00

The major complaint we hear over and over again is that cruises end far too soon! Beyond that, it’s hard to find any negatives. After all, you don’t have to run to make plane connections to get from one port to the next. You don’t have the hassles of making dinner or nightclub reservations. You don’t have the bother of packing or unpacking as you move from place to place. You don’t get unexpected, expensive surprises at restaurants or nightclubs. You have a wealth of options for shopping, adventure, sightseeing, exploring, entertaining and sports activities. All you have to worry about is relaxing and enjoying your vacation. Most importantly, every crew and staff member onboard is dedicated to making your cruise vacation the best vacation of your life!

Is motion-discomfort a problem? 2018-01-26T10:08:09+00:00

Not really. The most popular cruise areas boast some of the calmest waters in the world. In addition, stabilizers on modern ships, advance availability of accurate weather information, and development of effective preventative medications have, for the most part, eliminated the incidence of motion discomfort. If you should feel seasick while on board, the purser will probably provide you with over-the-counter medication. If you anticipate feeling sea sick while on your cruise, you may want to bring your own medication or look into using sea bands.

Are there laundry services aboard? 2014-07-08T11:07:45+00:00

Almost all cruise ships have laundry facilities and a great many provide dry-cleaning services. There is, however, an additional charge for professional laundry and dry-cleaning services. Many ships also have self-service launderettes.

Are there medical services onboard? 2014-07-08T11:07:13+00:00

Virtually every cruise ship (except for smaller vessels operating in coastal waters) has a fully equipped medical facility and staff to handle almost any emergency.

Can we stay in touch with the outside? 2016-08-15T17:40:51+00:00

Quite easily. Most ships now have internet and WiFi access.  Most ships also offer a wide variety of television and news available in cabin. All ships have telephones in passenger cabins and many places in port also offer WiFi access so you can feel connected at most times.

Is cruising a good choice for honeymooners? 2014-07-08T11:06:04+00:00

Without a doubt. Cruising offers an atmosphere that’s just right for romance…cozy dinners for two, strolling on deck at sunset, dancing the night away (even under the stars) and so much more to remember forever. Most lines provide special services from Sunday or Monday departures to welcome champagne and breakfast in bed. (And speaking of beds, most ships have them in double, queen or king sizes!) Most ships offer special programs for performing a marriage ceremony or renewing your marriage vows while on board.

Can we celebrate a special occasion? 2014-07-08T11:05:34+00:00

Absolutely! Most cruise lines will even treat you to a complimentary cake and chorus of Happy Whatever to honor the special day. Your birthday or anniversary can be more festive with champagne, flowers, canapés, wine or cheese. You can even arrange for a special private party. All you have to do is advise us when you book your cruise.

What if I don’t like my tablemates? 2018-01-26T10:08:09+00:00

With the new choices available in dining options this is rarely a problem. However, if you wish to move to another table, speak with the maitre d’. He will make every effort to seat you in an alternate table or location.

Can I get a special diet? 2014-07-08T11:04:17+00:00

Most ships accommodate salt-free, low-carbohydrate or other diet preferences. However, this request must be made in advance, so be sure to notify us of your requirement when you book your cruise with us.

Is cruise ship dining as good as I’ve been told? 2018-01-26T10:08:09+00:00

Everything you’ve heard about cruise ship dining is true. You’ll find a varied selection of entrées (appetizers, salads, soups, vegetables, and desserts, too) every time you sit down. And there’s virtually no limit on what or how much you can order. Just because your cruise ship offers plenty of delicious food doesn’t mean you’ll come home out of shape! You can choose low-cal, spa or fitness menu selections that are just a tempting as the regular menu. You can also jog, do aerobics, work out in the gym, swim, golf, play tennis, and much more. Burning calories was never so much fun! Best of all, the one thing you’ll never see on a cruise ship menu us price.

What are different meal sittings? 2018-01-26T10:08:09+00:00

Some ships’ dining rooms can accommodate all passengers in one seating, but most ships have two sittings, which differ only by time. To choose, just decide whether you prefer to dine early or late and then we can request your preference when you book your cruise. Whichever seating you choose, remember that one of the best ways to make new friends is to ask for a large table. In addition, some ships offer alternative dining options. For example, theme restaurants such as Italian, Chinese, Japanese, or Southwestern dining experiences separate from the main dining room may be available.

What type of clothes should I bring? 2014-07-08T11:02:06+00:00

Pack like you would for any resort. Cruise vacations are casual by day, whether you are on the ship or ashore. In the evening, ships vary as to dress. As on shore, attire is dictated by occasion. For the Captain’s Gala, for example, you’ll probably want to wear something more formal, such as a dark suit or cocktail dress; perhaps even a dinner jacket, tuxedo for the men or formal gown for the ladies.

Is there a charge for entertainment? 2014-07-08T11:01:30+00:00

Never. On a cruise vacation, the entertainment is “on the house.” There is no cover, no minimum, no charge for an admission ticket. The shows are live; the movies are first rate. The variety is limitless!

What’s there to do at night on board the ship? 2014-07-08T11:00:36+00:00

At night, life aboard a cruise ship really comes alive. There’s dancing; live entertainment in nightclubs, discos and lounges; feature films; and parties with all your newly made friends. Most ships have casinos. There are also many special events like the Captain’s Cocktail Party, Passenger Talent Night, the Masquerade Parade, and the Late Night Buffet. And the night can go on as long as you want. Even until the spectacle of sunrise at sea.

What is there to do in port? 2014-07-08T11:00:05+00:00

So much you may have a hard time choosing! You can go off on your own, or take a guided tour. You can search ancient ruins or go bargain shopping. Ride a raft over river rapids, a bicycle down the side of a 10,000-foot volcano, or ride a horse across miles of hills and beaches. Climb a waterfall or a pyramid. See the birthplace of civilization or listen to a steel drum band. Follow the footsteps of history or the wake of a water-skiing boat. If there’s still time, play golf or tennis. Eat native foods. Learn how to windsurf. Sun and swim at some of the world’s best beaches. Catch a record marlin. Sail, snorkel or go scuba diving. Go to a nightclub or glittering casino. Take cable car to the top of a mountain. Explore dark catacombs. In short, a cruise is the easiest way to see new places and do all the things you dream of. Cruising is the perfect way to sample a number of destinations that you may want to return for another vacation.

Will I get bored on board the ship or feel confined? 2014-07-08T10:59:33+00:00

Being at sea gives you a feeling of freedom few places can offer. There’s plenty of room and it may take you two or three days just to discover what is on board! You will also get the added adventure of exploring new and exciting ports of call. Cruise ships are like floating resorts with all the choices fine resorts have to offer. You can be by yourself and lie back in a lounge chair, breathe in the sea air, soak up the sun, read a good book, or watch the ever-changing view. Or perhaps you can join in exercise classes, dance classes, sports contests and other organized deck activities. You can go for a swim, practice your tennis stroke or golf swing, climb a rock-climbing wall, or shoot some baskets. Stretch out in the sauna, work out in the gym, have a massage. You can see a feature movie, attend lectures by renowned experts, play backgammon or bridge. And that’s just when you are onboard!

Will I need a passport for my cruise? 2014-07-08T10:59:03+00:00

This will depend on the type of cruise and your destination. You will need, at minimum, proof of citizenship, such as a government issued photo I.D. and a certified copy of your birth certificate. In some cases, you will need a valid passport. You will receive complete information on the required documents well in advance of your departure so you will have plenty of time to make arrangements.

What is cruise insurance and is it worth the cost? 2018-01-26T10:08:10+00:00

Cruise insurance is sometimes also called trip cancellation insurance or travel insurance. Cancellation insurance is not really a good name for it, since in addition to cancellation protection the insurance will usually cover emergency medical treatment, lost or delayed baggage or trip delay. When you cancel a cruise for a covered reason, the trip cancellation insurance coverage will reimburse you for the portion of your funds that the cruise line will not give back. If the cancellation occurs close to sailing, this is most likely the entire cost of your trip. Every policy is different, but valid covered reasons almost always must involve illness, injury, accident, or death. The person suffering the malady does not always have to be the traveler themselves, but could be a traveling companion or close family member as defined by the policy terms and conditions. It is important to understand that no insurance policy will cover cancellation expenses for business or personal reasons. Proof of covered cause usually requires producing either a doctor’s letter advising against travel or a death certificate.

Trip delay insurance most commonly comes into play when you miss the sailing of the ship due to airline flight delays or cancellations. Many clients believe (falsely) that if you booked your air through the cruise line you don’t have anything to worry about. This is not true. Read your cruise document fine print and will see in black and white that the cruise line has no legal responsibility for the performance or lack of performance of any airline. Although there are other good reasons to book your flight through the cruise line, missed sailing reimbursement is not one of them. Typically, the trip delay portion of a cruise insurance policy provides for a maximum amount of dollars to fly you to the next port where you may reasonably join the cruise. It is not unusual for this maximum amount to be $500 for the policy. This especially comes into play if you decide to purchase a family policy. For a single premium, this type of policy covers married couples and legal dependents traveling together. Although the premium may be lower than getting an individual policy for each passenger, you must weigh this against policy maximum coverage. For example, if a couple were taking an Eastern Caribbean cruise out of Miami and arrived so late that they missed their ship, they would likely have to fly to San Juan to join the cruise. With a family policy they would have a total of about $500 for the two airline tickets, but with individual policies they would usually have twice the maximum coverage of the family policy. Again, please be cautioned that all policies are different, and you must take the time to read and understand the coverage that you personally are signing up for.

Lastly, we occasionally meet clients that decline the cruise insurance based upon the fact that “we never get sick.” Unfortunately, even if this were true they fail to appreciate the possibility that they might be involved in something that is unavoidable. We know a client that “never got sick” but was involved in an unavoidable auto accident on the way to the port.

Premiums for cruise insurance are sometimes related to the total cost of the cruise, and sometimes not. A typical individual policy for a 7 day cruise has a premium of $89 to $150 depending on the cruise and coverage. For a specific example, see our information on Access America’s Travel With Ease Basic Policy.

What are the penalties if I have to cancel my cruise? 2014-07-08T10:48:38+00:00

Penalties are assessed by the cruise lines if your cruise is cancelled too close to sailing. The cancellation policy does vary by cruise line, so it is important that you understand exactly what this is. Like other Terms and Conditions related to your cruise, the cancellation policy is listed in the back of the cruise line brochure. Make sure you have a current version of the brochure, as the policy may change.

Should I go to the Western or Eastern Caribbean first? 2018-01-26T10:08:10+00:00

7 night Western Caribbean cruises almost always go to Cozumel and Grand Cayman. Most of these itineraries also include a third stop at Jamaica or Key West. Most Western Caribbean itineraries stopping in Jamaica will call on Ocho Rios, however some will port at Montego Bay instead. Western Caribbean cruises most frequently depart from Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, Tampa or New Orleans.

The Eastern Caribbean itineraries tend to leave from either Ft. Lauderdale or Miami. From there San Juan and St. Thomas are sure bets. Usually other nearby islands will be included, such as St. Maarten and St. Thomas.

Eastern Caribbean cruises are usually more port intensive (stops at more different ports) than Western ones. The Western Caribbean ports are all unique, where the Eastern ones share many similarities. The price of a Western versus Eastern Caribbean cruise can be the same, similar, or one higher than the other one. No general rules here, you will have to check prices for the particular week you will be sailing.

The first two 7 night cruises a client takes will almost always be a Western or Eastern Caribbean in either order. Since most people fall in love with cruising and will continue to do so, which to do FIRST is usually not that important.

When are cruise payments due? 2018-01-26T10:08:10+00:00

The deposit for your cruise is due at the time of booking. For a 3 or 4 day cruise the deposit required is usually around $100 per person. For a 7 day cruise, the deposit is usually around $250 per person. Cruises to Alaska, Panama Canal, and other parts of the world outside of the Caribbean may require higher deposits.

The balance due, or final payment is usually due 70 days before sailing for a 7 day or longer cruise. Some shorter cruises allow final payment to be delayed until 45 days prior to sailing. Since the due date is when the funds are due in the hands of the cruise line, expect your cruise specialist to request payment up to two weeks in advance of the official final payment date. This is especially true if paying by check.

How do I pay for my cruise? 2018-01-26T10:08:10+00:00

There are two basic ways to pay for your cruise; credit card or check. We find that most of our clients prefer paying for their cruise deposit and final payment with a credit card. CruiseBrokers.Com will ask for your signature authorizing the cruise line to charge your credit card and then we will call in the billing information directly to the cruise line. The cruise line charges your credit card, not CruiseBrokers.Com.

If you pay by check, CruiseBrokers.Com will accept a personal check for your deposit, however, all final payments must be made with a cashier’s check or money order. Your check must be made payable to CruiseBrokers.Com. We will then forward our agency check for payment to the cruise line.

What is an “Air/Sea” cruise? 2014-07-08T10:45:27+00:00

An air/sea cruise or a fly/cruise vacation package includes either free or much reduced airfare along with your cruise ticket. These money-saving options are available from most major North American cities and include transfers between the airport and the ship as well as baggage handling. If you prefer booking your air travel separately from the cruise line, our full-service travel agency reservations center can assist you with obtaining low air fare rates.

What is the difference between a “guaranteed” and an “assigned” booking? 2014-07-08T10:44:34+00:00

When you book a cabin assignment, you are choosing a specific cabin you will be occupying. You will be able to look in the cruise line brochure on the deck plan and see exactly where your cabin is located. If you book a cabin assignment, the odds of getting a free upgrade some time in the future are very slim.

One way you can get “more than you paid for” is to accept a guaranteed booking. Simply stated, you pay for one category of cabin and you could be assigned a more expensive category. The basic rules go like this: You are guaranteed a cabin on the ship in a specific category or better at the price specified at time of booking. If you book far enough in advance, it is likely that you will receive free upgrades to the tune of 1, 2, 3, maybe even more categories. If you book last minute, odds of being assigned a cabin in exactly the same category as the guarantee you paid for are high.

Is it worth the extra money for an OceanView cabin? 2014-07-08T10:43:28+00:00

What we often hear:

I’ve been told you don’t spend any time in your cabin anyway, why waste your money on an OceanView cabin?
I would never stay in an Inside cabin.
Once we got a cabin with a balcony and saw how great it was, we would never go back to a standard OceanView cabin!
Like any other topic, opinions abound. If you are on a budget, and the choice is either to go or not to go, or to only be able to afford to go in an Inside cabin, BY ALL MEANS take the Inside cabin! If you can afford the extra money to move up to an OceanView cabin (maybe $200 total on a 7 night cruise), you will probably feel you got your money’s worth.

What type of cabin should I choose? 2018-01-26T10:08:11+00:00

Where your cabin is located on board ship can be an important decision. Here are some guidelines you should consider.


  • Inside cabins are less expensive than OceanView cabins.
  • On newer ships Inside cabins are usually Identical to standard OceanView rooms.
  • Passengers in Inside Cabins are afforded all the same ship amenities as in OceanView cabins while taking advantage of price savings.
  • Without daylight, one can wake up not knowing if it’s morning or the middle of the night or what the weather is outside.

  • Having a view from your cabin of passing tropical isles or massive glaciers is a special treat.
  • There is a greater variety and selection among OceanView cabins ranging from standard cabins to Deluxe Suites.
  • There are categories of cabins on newer ships that include your own Veranda or Balcony affording privacy while passing spectacular scenery.
  • Would you like a Butler? Some Deluxe Suites include 24-hour Butler service.

What’s included in the cost of my cruise? 2018-01-26T10:08:11+00:00

When you get a cruise quote from CruiseBrokers.Com, you will receive a cost per person breakdown of the base cost of your cruise, applicable port charges and any air fare charges and taxes. Travel insurance is almost never included in your quote unless you ask for it as it is an additional item. In summary, your mandatory costs are probably:

Mandatory Costs = Cabin Cost + Port Charges, with air fare and transfers separately stated.

Included in these costs are all of your food, entertainment, use of facilities, etc. If you would like to partake of some alcoholic beverages (or even soft drinks on most ships) expect to pay extra for them. Juices, milk, coffee, and tea are available at no charge.

Although not “mandatory”, you should plan on tipping your waiter, bus boy and cabin steward. As a guideline, most cruise lines suggest the following:

Dining Room Server $3.50 per guest per day.
Dining Room Busboy $2.50 per guest per day.
Cabin Steward $3.50 per guest per day.
Generally, a 15% gratuity is automatically added to the bar, beverage, wine and deck service tabs.

Is cruising affordable and a good vacation value? 2018-01-26T10:08:11+00:00

Cruising can be considered one of the best vacation values. There are cruise vacations to suit every budget. A cruise also offers the best travel value for your money. Your fare includes all meals, your cabin accommodations, onboard daytime activities, nighttime parties, entertainment and more. You will know what your vacation will end up costing you before you go. Your only extra expenses will be drinks, optional shore excursions, personal services (such as massage or hairstyling) and gratuities. Compare the cost of a cruise vacation to land vacations and you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the value!

Can you help select a cruise, or do I need to know what I want? 2018-01-26T10:08:12+00:00

Choosing the right cruise for you and your traveling companions is the most important step in your cruise vacation. In fact, some people seem to enjoy researching all available information and opinions and doing the booking more than actually taking the cruise! Another large part of the population doesn’t have the time to invest in researching the hundreds of available cruises themselves so they choose to work with a travel agent or cruise specialist. Of course, everyone asks their friends and acquaintances about their personal cruise experiences or knowledge. But be careful, asking someone’s opinion about which is the best cruise line or which is the “best cruise” is a little like asking someone which is the best restaurant. They might love Italian food, but you might not. So, in doing your research, remember that any person’s particular cruise experience is measured against their particular values and ideals. By utilizing the services of CruiseBrokers.Com, our competent cruise specialists will only suggest a particular cruise to you only after obtaining important information about your desires and expectations. All of our Cruise Specialists have been on cruises, have sold many cruises, and are constantly obtaining additional education and training. We will use our knowledge and experience to help choose what is right for YOU! For assistance in choosing the right cruise for you, just call us at 800-409-1919 or complete our Free Discount Quote Form.

Who are the largest / most popular cruise lines? 2018-01-26T10:08:12+00:00

Before answering, we need to disclaim that although popularity can be a matter of popular opinion, our answer to this question is based on passenger counts and profitability. This is not as clinical as it seems, because in the U.S. democratic marketplace, customers vote with their dollars. Not every cruise line is for every type of client, but we are talking overall numbers here.

In North America, Carnival Cruise Lines is the clear popularity winner. The “Fun Ship” experience has been a resounding success with the public. Excellent value, children’s programs, gala shows, new ships, and terrific casinos are some of the attractions that give Carnival Cruise Lines boasting rights to having an occupancy rate of greater than 100% (maximum occupancy used in computations based on two passengers per cabin). In addition to Carnival Cruise Lines, the Carnival Corporation also owns Holland America Line, Windstar, Seabourn, Costa Cruises and Cunard Cruise Line.

Besides Carnival, the “Big Three” also includes Royal Caribbean International/Celebrity Cruises and Princess Cruises. Royal Caribbean International, used to be known as Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, or RCCL. Today, officially they are RCI. Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises have merged and operate separate fleets of ships. Princess Cruises is also a major player in the North American and European cruise market, but rates a solid third place in this playing field when measuring passenger counts and profitability.

Are all ships and cruises fairly similar? 2012-11-27T14:43:43+00:00

Far from it. Cruise ships can range from under 200 feet to over 1,000 feet in length. They can range from 13,000 tons to over 140,000 tons. You can sail with anywhere from fewer than 100 fellow passengers to over 3,000. Experience atmospheres ranging from casual to formal, classically simple to ultra-deluxe. You can even choose between traditional propeller-driven craft, sail-assisted cruise ships, or even a paddle-wheel riverboat.

When is the best time to book a cruise? 2018-01-26T10:08:12+00:00

This is a complex subject, but the answer boils down to “as early as possible”. It is not unusual for some cruises to sell out almost a year in advance. The cruise industry has changed dramatically over the last few years. Experienced cruisers knew that you could often wait until the last minute to get a good deal. It was only common sense that the cruise line would rather get “something” for that unfilled berth. Several years ago, the cruise lines changed to a system of “early booking discounts”. In general, the price of a cabin will go up the closer you get to the sailing date. This typically happens in $50 or $100 per person increments. Even if a last minute sale does come up for a cruise that you have already booked, it is almost always possible to have your cruise re-priced at the lower cost.

What is the best strategy to get the lowest price? 2012-11-27T14:42:55+00:00

Let CruiseBrokers.Com book your cruise as far in advance as possible. This will lock in what will most likely be the lowest price ever for the cabin you choose. With your reservation in our computer system, we will constantly be on the lookout for “fare sales.” In almost all cases, the cruise lines will allow a “retroactive fare decrease” when this occurs. That’s our job, to get you the lowest fare today, and make sure it ends up being the lowest fare you could ever have received!