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The reason you're seeing so many cruise ads even though some sailings are being canceled

Jan. 11, 2022
3 min read
The reason you're seeing so many cruise ads even though some sailings are being canceled
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If you feel like you're suddenly seeing lots of ads for cruises, you're not imagining it.

Cruise ads have always been prominent in Florida, the unofficial cruise capital of the world, but TPG staffers have reported seeing TV spots in several markets -- including Washington, D.C., Baltimore and Charlotte, North Carolina -- for Carnival, Celebrity, Royal Caribbean and Virgin.

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I even passed a billboard for Carnival last week in suburban Pennsylvania on a road that I wouldn't consider a major highway. (Carnival, in particular, has been touting its brand hard. The line was one of the sponsors of the ball drop in Times Square on New Year's Eve, promoting its new ad campaign, "Funderstruck.")

What might seem odd is that lines are touting their vacation experience and pushing bookings when sailings again are being canceled due to COVID-19.

So, why the big advertising play?

Cruise lines are forward looking, and want you to think ahead, as well. Despite what's happening right now, they want you to plan voyages for 2023 or even 2024 -- and many travelers are doing just that.

"Bookings continue to build for the remainder of 2022 and well into 2023," said Arnold Donald, Carnival Corp. president and CEO, during a December earnings call, when predicting bookings for this year. "We are achieving those early bookings with strong demand."

Cruise lines know that you're unlikely to book a last-minute cruise for next month. They're focused on the future, once the omicron surge is past and travelers are beyond ready to set sail.

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A deposit on a future cruise gives you something to look forward to when the current travel landscape is less than ideal. Unsurprisingly, your booking also helps cruise companies with revenue management and cash flow.

That's why you see cruise lines stepping up their marketing in places within driving distance of many ports on the East Coast. (If you're hesitant to fly, driving to your embarkation port could be an option, depending on where you're located.)

Plus, January to March is the period historically known as wave season, when cruise lines typically double down on deals and try to incentivize travelers to book. This time of year is often the best time to save on a cruise , and cruise lines want you to know about their exceptional, limited-time promotions.

Through the first quarter of 2022, you'll find wave season discounts on fares, as well as valuable add-ons like free Wi-Fi, drink packages, shore excursions, cabin upgrades, onboard credit and more.

Feel free to book those future cruises with confidence. Although some lines recently canceled sailings, we don't anticipate another industry-wide shutdown, which means cruises will still be sailing into the latter part of 2022 and beyond.

Plus, cruise lines have stringent health protocols -- which include mandatory vaccination, pre-cruise testing and contact tracing -- and flexible cancellation policies that can protect you should you change your mind later on.

The next time your TV screen is filled with flashy cruise ships, tropical islands and families having vacation fun, you won't need to stop and scratch your head. Instead, pay attention to see if the cruise line is offering you a deal on next year's getaway that might put a bright light at the end of a dark winter tunnel.

Featured image by CAM2
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards

2 - 10X points
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Intro offer

75,000 bonus miles
Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

Annual Fee

$395

Recommended Credit

740-850
Excellent
Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,400+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and our Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023
Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

    75,000 bonus miles
  • Annual Fee

    $395
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
    Excellent

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,400+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and our Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023