Exclusive: You could get a free voyage with this Windstar Cruises 'treasure hunt'
Windstar Cruises has cooked up something fun to celebrate the comeback of cruising -- a "treasure hunt" that has a free cruise as a prize.
The small-ship cruise specialist will launch the nearly-month-long event, which will start with an online puzzle, on Friday.
Would-be cruisers who solve the online puzzle, which will reveal the location of the as-yet-undisclosed "treasure," can earn up to $200 in onboard credits that can be used on a Windstar sailing and will be entered in a contest to win a Windstar cruise for two.
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The winner of the Windstar cruise then will search for the treasure while on the sailing.
Windstar is staying tight-lipped about what region of the world the treasure will be located and what it might be, but it says the free trip to find it will be "an exotic cruise to a fabled port-of-call" and the treasure will be "massive."
The contest comes as Windstar approaches having its entire fleet of six ships back in operation.
Related: Everything you need to know about Windstar's loyalty program
Windstar restarted sailings in June with two ships, the 148-passenger Wind Star and 312-passenger Star Breeze, operating in the Greek Islands and the Caribbean, respectively. It added a third vessel, Wind Spirit, to operations in Tahiti in July and a fourth vessel, the 312-passenger Wind Surf, to operations in the Mediterranean in August.
A fifth Windstar vessel, the 312-passenger Star Legend, will resume sailings on Sept. 27 in the Mediterranean. The line's final ship to restart operations, the 312-passenger Star Pride, is scheduled to resume trips on Nov. 20 in the Caribbean.
How the treasure hunt will work
To find the location of the hidden treasure, participants must go online and watch 11 short videos hosted on Windstar’s social channels and on the treasure hunt landing page, windstarcruises.com/treasurehunt (note that this page won't be active until Thursday).
Each video will contain a number, letter or symbol that, strung together, form a Google Plus code revealing the destination of the treasure.
Once players crack the code, they can earn up to $200 in onboard credits and are entered to win a Windstar cruise. The cruise winner and a partner will then search for the treasure while on the free sailing.
The initial part of the treasure hunt will continue through Oct. 1. No purchase is necessary to enter. For official rules and to get started, visit the treasure hunt landing page noted above starting Thursday.
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