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So I've heard on these forums a bunch of times about the cruise planner sale on Black Friday but I am wondering if it's ever extended to actual cruise rates? Should I wait to book a spring and summer 2020 cruise until Black Friday? Or book now and re-book only if there is a sale?

And I assume with re-booking I'd forfeit my chosen cabin to opt for whatever would be left at that time? 

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22 minutes ago, DDaley said:

So I've heard on these forums a bunch of times about the cruise planner sale on Black Friday but I am wondering if it's ever extended to actual cruise rates? Should I wait to book a spring and summer 2020 cruise until Black Friday? Or book now and re-book only if there is a sale?

And I assume with re-booking I'd forfeit my chosen cabin to opt for whatever would be left at that time? 

My experience has been to book as early as you can. Usually, the longer you wait, the higher the price. We booked a May 2020 cruise last December and the price now, even with a "sale", is over $500 per person more. 

If you do see a price reduction after you book, the price can be adjusted without losing the cabin you originally chose. Obviously, the earlier you book, the better the cabin selection.

Black Friday pricing did provide a lot of savings on drinks, excursions, etc. For example, the refreshment package that was regularly $26pp/pd and $20 on sale, was $17 on Black Friday. The bungalow on Cococay was $214. Our cruise was on sale, but still wasn't lower than we paid originally.

Good luck and happy sailing!

 

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Concur with previous posts.  We try to book at least a year in advance, and when new schedules are released.  That said, there are sometimes good deals on the less popular cruises and ships just a few months out.  You need to consider refundable vs. non-refundable deposits.  We are  usually pretty sure we are going, so we select non-refundable.  But if you anticipate cancelling and rebooking, non-refundable would be better.  Travel insurance is also a factor - RCI doesn't have great medical coverage but provides an option to cancel for any reason.  Sometimes you are traveling with others, and they aren't sure when they are available, so you wait and hope for the best.

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16 minutes ago, ChessE4 said:

We are  usually pretty sure we are going, so we select non-refundable.  But if you anticipate cancelling and rebooking, non-refundable would be better.

That is certainly something to think about. I cannot swear to it, but I think I was once able to get a price adjustment even though it was a nonrefundable booking. I think it was just that....a reprice, not a cancel and rebook. @DDaley , you may want to call and check that if you are thinking of booking nonrefundable.

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1 hour ago, Skid said:

Black Friday pricing did provide a lot of savings on drinks, excursions, etc. For example, the refreshment package that was regularly $26pp/pd and $20 on sale, was $17 on Black Friday. The bungalow on Cococay was $214. Our cruise was on sale, but still wasn't lower than we paid originally.

This usually what is discounted the most on Black Friday, not cruises themselves.

11 minutes ago, Skid said:

That is certainly something to think about. I cannot swear to it, but I think I was once able to get a price adjustment even though it was a nonrefundable booking. I think it was just that....a reprice, not a cancel and rebook. @DDaley , you may want to call and check that if you are thinking of booking nonrefundable.

I re-price non-refundable multiple times a year, as long as you are not changing the ship or sale date there is never an issues, it's like @Skid says, it's just a reprice.

I buy up to 2 years in advance if I can, that way I get the best possible cabin selection, even then some of the higher categories are sold out already.

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20 hours ago, monctonguy said:

Book and re-book if the deal  is better is what most will say. No guarantee it will be cheaper then at all.

I totally agree. In my opinion, if you know you want to go on a certain sailing, never wait to book. Book now and then as long as Black Friday (or any other sale) is before final payment date for your cruise (90 days before embarkation day), you can re-price if price drops. 

This is assuming you're a resident of USA, Canada, Australia or most other countries not including the UK.

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I booked a Loft Suite about a month ago for a Jan 2020 cruise. I keep checking the prices to see if there is a better deal. The selection is already a lot more limited on the rooms.

 

Booking early and checking often for price adjustments is the way to go.

 

I'll be looking at Forth of July sales and Black Friday sales for Drink / Dinning packages.

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I have also found that black Friday isn't always the best sale either.  I always try to book planner purchases that day, but I keep rechecking.  Most of my excursions actually went down in price and I rebooked but had the security of St least having them.  Dining has been pretty good on black Friday but I've never tried to look at the cruise price itself.  Jane

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3 hours ago, Matt said:

Book now and then as long as Black Friday (or any other sale) is before final payment date for your cruise (90 days before embarkation day), you can re-price if price drops. 

Can you re-price without using a TA? I am assuming no. I have only ever paid in full, is that not an option if you're hoping to re-price later? It's an August Explorer sailing in 2020 to Greece so I've got some time! 

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16 minutes ago, DDaley said:

Can you re-price without using a TA? I am assuming no. I have only ever paid in full, is that not an option if you're hoping to re-price later? It's an August Explorer sailing in 2020 to Greece so I've got some time! 

YES.  We don't use a TA.  I just call RC if anything needs re-priced.

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15 minutes ago, DDaley said:

Can you re-price without using a TA? I am assuming no. I have only ever paid in full, is that not an option if you're hoping to re-price later? It's an August Explorer sailing in 2020 to Greece so I've got some time! 

Cruises booked through the North American process, either by phone or the website can be repriced regardless of booking direct or having booked through a travel agent.

I once had a travel agent warn me to hold back a small amount such as $100 until final payment is due to aid in repricing but I haven't tested that theory.

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