Newsletter - Jan/Feb. 2014
Vol. 3, Issue #1
Travel & Cruise News and Items of Interest
A Newsletter from Rosswin Travel, Courtenay, Vancouver Island, BC
Business Opportunity: http://rosswintravelthecomoxvalley.blogspot.ca
A Pictorial View of the Comox Valley Blog: http://bit.ly/XPqzmz
A new year has began and now is the time to think about your travel plans for 2014
Wave Season, What is it?
How to take advantage of the Wave Season.
Wave Season takes place between January and March each year. This is one of the times when the cruise lines offer deals that that include free upgrades, onboard credit and other great perks. Some offer great sales at this time. At this time of year a large number of travellers book their vacations. The cruise lines take advantage of this to offer the extra incentives.
The following are some tips from Cruise Critic on how to make the most of the Wave Season Deals.
How Do I Get the Best Deal?
Wave Season is not for everyone. If you want a dirt-cheap cruise fare -- perhaps one of those less-than-$75-per-night deals that you can brag about to your friends -- you might be better off waiting for a last-minute sale. Wave Season deals are for travelers who want value for money, such as an upgrade to a nicer cabin or free onboard credit for some guilt-free indulgence at the spa or onboard boutiques. Fares are generally discounted, but they don't hit rock-bottom at this time.
To get the biggest bang for your buck, follow these three steps:
1 - Figure out the ballpark cost of your cruise: To know if you're getting a deal, you have to know what the average price you'd normally pay is. Do some research on typical fares for the itinerary you have in mind. Remember that a 12-night Mediterranean cruise will have a much higher base price than a five-night Caribbean getaway -- you'll want to compare apples to apples. And don't just look at fares. If you're interested in free upgrades, you'll need to know the price differential between an outside and a balcony cabin; if it's onboard credit you're after, plan out how much you might typically spend on spa treatments, excursions, drinks and souvenirs (IndependentTraveler.com's Travel Budget Calculator is great for tallying extra costs). If you're hoping for free airfare, look up the cost of airfare between your hometown and your homeport.
2 - Evaluate the sales: As you look for sales through the cruise lines or your favorite travel agency, be an active -- rather than a passive -- deal-hunter. Read the fine print, because sometimes the discount or perk being advertised won't apply to the specific itinerary or cabin category you're interested in. Don't forget to check expiration dates, too; some lines give you only a few weeks to take advantage of their offers, while others give you a couple of months. These steps let you evaluate what this year's promotions are and how good they are.
Another helpful trick: Always compare cruise line promotions with the same sailings sold through an agent. Often, agencies will offer additional incentives above what the cruise lines are offering. For example, one cruise line might offer two-for-one cruise fares and free airfare on select Europe cruises. But another might throw in perks such as prepaid gratuities, onboard credit, spa credits, shore excursion credits and a welcome bottle of champagne. If you don't see any advertised discounts, call and ask. Sometimes agencies are able to offer better perks and prices than they list on their Web sites and in promotional materials.
3- Compare cost benefits: Now that you've got all the information, compare the offers. Is the free upgrade on one line still more expensive than a regular balcony cabin on another? Would you prefer one agent's onboard credit or another's extra cruise fare discount? Are the deals good enough to make you want to book now, or do you need prices to drop further before you plunk down a deposit? If the numbers work out, congratulations: You've made an informed decision. Now it's time to book that cruise and start dreaming of sightseeing in Europe, sunbathing in the Caribbean or even dog-sledding in Alaska.
And if the Wave Season sales aren't tempting enough, or if you're just not ready to book yet, don't fret. Cruise lines will hold plenty of last-minute, three-day or extra-value sales throughout the year for you to find great deals. But unlike Wave Season, you just won't know when those sales are coming.
--by Erica Silverstein, Features Editor
Some interesting Travel Terms
An airline euphemism for an airline seat that is essentially upright and impossible to recline.
A Vacation taken by a couple before their baby is born, Described by travel agents as "your last chance for some pre-baby R & R.
A La Minute
Fr. Cooked to order, as opposed to being prepared ahead of time for service later.
Slang. An all-female cabin crew
An outdoor or adventure travel experience that is not overly demanding physically.
A hotel rate that includes a room with full board plus a spa treatment.
American Plan -
A meal plan at a hotel or resort in which three meals a day are included in the price. Sometimes referred to as Full American Plan.
In the railway industry, the shaking of a passenger train caused by braking.
A male pilot, ofter used in a derogatory sense.
The quart-sized bags used for toiletries when going through airport security: name after former head Kip Hawley
At an airport, a vehicle that services the lavatories on the craft.
In the aviation industry, a mildly derogatory term for an aircraft mechanic.
In the airline industry,, lighter seats that allow airlines to save money on fuel and cram more seats into each aircraft while providing inferor (sic) service to their passengers.
A person involved in crew scheduling.
A spa treatment using mineral-rich mud and a hot, sometimes steam room. Increasingly popular in cruise line spas.
Ramp Rat, Slang
A derogatory term for a baggage handler at an airport.
Artist of the month
Gail Neuls Artist Biography
I was born and raised in Grenfell Saskatchewan. I moved to Courtenay, British Columbia in December 1969. It was in 1980 I attended my first oil painting class. It stirred up my passion for art making. After a lapse of time while my busy lifestyle took over I took drawing lessons from Tracey Kobus. Now I was really ready to enter the art world.
About the Artist
Contemporary fine artist Gail Neul has been recognized for her unique and diverse techniques as well as her incredible use of colour and composition. As a contemporary stylist painter Neuls' images create a story enriched with depth and vision. Her work is well crafted and compels the viewer to discover something new.
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With thanks to the Cruise Critic and Travel Industry Dictionary web pages
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