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Any US agents can book it for you but you'd have to book in US$ which may or may not be good for you. I don't know of any Australia agents but maybe someone here can help.

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7 hours ago, Sharla said:

Any US agents can book it for you but you'd have to book in US$ which may or may not be good for you. I don't know of any Australia agents but maybe someone here can help.

Yeah I'd rather not use USD to book. The exchange rate from USD to AUD is INSANE.

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We look at pricing and compare, factoring in the exchange rate. If the pricing is better in the US, we book through MEI Travel as they are a select few who are allowed to make booking for customers like us from Australia. It will be in US dollars, but service is amazing and reading blogs, one of the few agents who constantly monitor pricing to see if it goes down and re-prices your cruise. I do not know of any agent in Australia who does this; one of my biggest frustrations. I have booked directly through Royal, both Australia and the US, but mainly when using my Casino Royale co p cruises. Always best through a travel agent. 

Honestly I am yet to find an agent in Australia who does not charge me CC fees, which MEI or Royal do not. I am big on supporting the TA industry, so I use a TA in NSW and suck up the CC fees to help her out. I currently have booking with MEI, Royal Casino and local TA. 

Do a comparison from the Aust and US Royal sites and there are times the US is so much cheaper, even after exchange rates. 

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The other thing to consider if comparing with US pricing is that gratuities are not included in the price as they are here in Australia/NZ so these will be on top of the quoted fare. Generally I found the Australian/NZ prices to be cheaper over all with the exchange rate factored in. I usually book with Royal directly on their website although there are other websites like www.thecruisecentre.com.au, they are a member of the helloworld.

 

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7 hours ago, F1guynz said:

The other thing to consider if comparing with US pricing is that gratuities are not included in the price as they are here in Australia/NZ

Important point I missed. With US you need to ask how much the gratuities are and we always pre pay them so we do not have a bill at the end of the cruise. Also they may go up in cost like other cruise lines recently. 

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1 hour ago, Jamesszy94 said:

I really want to support Danny and the guys/girls at Harr Travel, but the problem is, prices are all in USD... I might decide to just bite the bullet and book with them...

Booking with a US agency can also mean that Australia specific differences are lost.  Gratuity for example will be charged per US rules plus any Australian consumer protection laws won't be available.  That may be fine with you just calculate that into the pricing and overall comparison.  You will be booking as an American so American rules will apply.  

When I sailed from Sydney I had to pay the daily gratuity charges per US policy but I booked using a US travel agency so I knew that.   

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8 hours ago, twangster said:

Booking with a US agency can also mean that Australia specific differences are lost.  Gratuity for example will be charged per US rules plus any Australian consumer protection laws won't be available.  That may be fine with you just calculate that into the pricing and overall comparison.  You will be booking as an American so American rules will apply.  

When I sailed from Sydney I had to pay the daily gratuity charges per US policy but I booked using a US travel agency so I knew that.   

Yeah, I thought about this, this is also why I am hesitant to book with US TA's.

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I was watching Harr Travel cruise news yesterday and somebody asked if they could book for an Australian. Danny said they were working on some partnerships which they hope to have sorted in the next 12 months. He did say if you have a US address to use that they could book on your behalf. 

Unless it is significantly cheaper even including gratuities I would stick with booking through Australia. Remember all your cruise planner purchases and shore tours will also be in American dollars.

We booked through HK once and when they cancelled the cruise we ended up with a FCC in HK$ and and you don't have the option of changing currency.

 

 

 

 

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