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Cruise tips to save money

After a year of watching booking windows shrink, cruise lines are
fighting back by offering incentives to travelers who buy early.
Oceania is giving its heftiest savings up front: travelers who book
winter 2010/2011 cruises before March 31 receive a $3,000 discount on
itineraries. Meanwhile, Silversea is slashing fares by 50 percent on
six of its ships for those who book a 2010 cruise at least six months
in advance. Cruise lines are also lowering the risk on early purchases.
Crystal Cruises has announced automatic price guarantees, promising a
cash refund of the difference if the cost of a cruise drops after a
customer purchases. And Holland America has incorporated a Cancellation
Protection Plan clause into its insurance policy that reimburses
passengers 80 to 90 percent of their fare even if they cancel 24 hours
before the trip.

T+L Tip: When it comes to cruising in 2010, the early bird definitely gets the worm (and a better stateroom, to boot).


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