Welcome to Princess Cruises Superstore's Frequently-Asked Questions (FAQ in Internet-speak) list. We hope this answers any questions you may have about us. If not, please contact us and we'll be happy to help.
We're people who love to cruise at great prices. We've traveled throughout the world by cruise ship, and we're happy to help make it more affordable for you to do so as well. Our goal is to reliably and efficiently serve people who know exactly what they're looking for in a cruise, and who are comfortable purchasing their cruise on the Internet.
To read the FAQ, either scroll down, or click on one of the questions in this list to skip directly to its answer:
|Can you help me feel comfortable booking my cruise online with you?|
|Yes! All of us here have
dedicated ourselves to earning the trust of every one of our customers
since we booked our first cruise in 1999. We are cruise specialists
dedicated to advocating your needs with the cruise lines. We realize that
a cruise vacation is a large expenditure and we take our responsibilities
We have an unblemished record with our local Better Business Bureau. Plus, we are one of a handful of online cruise-only agencies accepted for membership in the Better Business Bureau's national Online Reliability Program. Visit our home page and click on the BBB logo for more information.
|I've never cruised! Can you explain cruising to me?|
|Absolutely! Start by reading our FAQ just for first-time cruisers. Then feel free to contact one of our cruise specialists who will be delighted to answer more detailed questions for you.|
|Which cruises can you sell me at great prices?|
|Princess Cruises Superstore offers terrific
pricing on almost all major cruise lines.
Celebrity Cruises, Costa, Crystal Cruises,
Cunard, Disney Cruise Line, Holland America Line, Norwegian Cruise Line,
Orient Lines, Princess Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Royal
Caribbean International, Seabourn Cruise Line, Seadream Yacht Club, Silversea, and Windstar Cruises.
For 7+ night cruises we are almost always able to offer you promotional and other special rates, whereas for shorter, less-expensive cruises this may not be possible.
Interested in booking a cruise on a line you don't see here? Email us and we'll let you know whether we can help you out; we probably can.
|Can you guarantee me the best pricing available?|
|No! There is absolutely no
travel agency that can guarantee the lowest price on every single cruise,
on every single cruise line. Whereas most agencies will hide this fact
from you (and some even make misleading price "guarantees"), we want you to be well-informed!
Why? Many reasons, but among there are a couple of more-common ones. Cruise lines practice extremely complex pricing policies, and from time to time will offer special pricing to one agency or another that are not generally available. Sometimes an agency will book a group onto a particular sailing well in advance, which locks in early-booking rates, and they may be able to offer extra group space and rates to additional customers--after the generally available pricing for that cruise has risen.
For more information on how cruises are priced, read the additional FAQ information below.
|What forms of payment do you accept?|
|We can only accept credit cards
as payment for your cruise (not personal checks). For your protection,
except in a very unusual situation, your cruise payment will be posted to
your credit card directly by the cruise line itself, as you will see on
Debit cards (bank ATM cards that also function as a Visa or MasterCard but draw from your checking account) frequently cannot be used to purchase a cruise because most banks strictly limit the amount of funds that can be drawn to $200-$300 per day, causing the cruise line to believe your card has been declined and placing your reservation at risk of cancellation and/or penalty for non-payment.
|What if a lower price becomes available on my cruise after I book it?|
|Usually cruise pricing goes up
while availability goes down as the sailing date draws nearer, so booking early
normally is the best move to ensure you get the accommodations you want.
Sometimes, though, you'll find a new promotion that comes along after you book your cruise. Just let us know. We will work with the cruise line to apply the new promotion to your existing booking. So long as the cruise line agrees that your booking qualifies based on the promotion's "fine print" (the cruise line has the final word) then they will adjust their rate to us, and we will be happy to adjust our rate to you. It is more likely that a new rate will be honored if you are still outside the final payment period, but in all cases, the final word will be the cruise line's.
Dollars-off coupons or credit certificates, however, sometimes cannot be applied after you make your booking (or at least not at face value).
|How does buying a cruise from Princess Cruises Superstore work?|
Here's how easy it is to book a cruise with Princess Cruises Superstore:
|How does cruise pricing work? Why do travel agents give me different prices for the same cruise?|
|We're glad you asked! You might
want a cup of coffee at hand before venturing into this labyrinth.
First of all, cruise lines print prices in their brochures. This is cleverly called the "brochure price." Next to nobody pays it.
However, cruise lines constantly practice yield management (adjusting prices constantly based on supply and demand) just like the airlines do, so on any given day as a travel agent if you call and ask the price on a given cabin, you may well get a different answer. This answer is almost always lower than the brochure price (the only exceptions are when a ship is nearly booked, or around a holiday). We'll call this the "standard cruise line quoted price."
But this is just the start of the fun. The cruise line will always be running special promotions (like category upgrade offers), a lot of which are only available to large consortiums, or perhaps if you book your cruise using a certain credit card. So now the cruise line is quoting different prices to different travel agents. Let's call this the "special cruise line quoted price."
But wait, there's more. Now that we have a quote from the cruise line, we have to calculate the agent's commission. An agent that does a lot of volume with the line or belongs to certain consortiums will get a higher commission rate than the usual 10% (these bonuses, sometimes called "overrides" within the industry, can sometimes boost the commission rate another 6%). Be aware you can not simply take your total cruise price and multiply by the commission rate to arrive at the agent's commission, since that commission rate either doesn't apply, or applies at lower rates, to things like taxes, port charges, airfare, tours, transfers, etc.
This is where pricing can go all over the map. Agent A may or may not discount from his cruise line price by sharing his commission with you. And then, after you mention to Agent B that you already got a price from Agent A, Agent B's price may suddenly drop because he's chosen to give back a little more commission in order to barely undercut Agent A's price. We consider Agent B's action in this case unethical: why wouldn't he give you his "best price" in the first place? And is his "best price" really the best he can do?
In summary, the final rate you are quoted depends on:
Here at Princess Cruises Superstore, our price quote to you will be low because we are eligible for outstanding special cruise line quoted prices and the top-tier commissions.
We also want to point out that just because an agent doesn't give you the lowest price probably does not mean that they're unethical or are trying to cheat you. It may be that they don't do enough cruise volume to have access to special cruise line prices, or to high commission rates.
|How does Princess Cruises Superstore deliver such great cruise prices?|
|We can give you phenomenal
cruise prices for two primary reasons.
First, we keep our costs low:
Second, we are eligible for extremely low, high-volume pricing from cruise lines. For much more detail on this subject, please refer to the FAQ about how cruise pricing works.
|Is Princess Cruises Superstore a California registered seller of travel?|
|No. We used to be, but gave it up. Regrettably, the State of California has saddled travel agencies (even relatively small, family-owned businsses such as ours) with an unnecessary, unproductive, bureaucractic paperwork burden and annual expense that are both excessive. Therefore we are unable to serve residents of the State of California. We take practical measures to avoid soliciting business from, or knowingly accepting travel bookings from, residents of the State of California.|
|Is Princess Cruises Superstore perfect?|
|Heck no. We pride ourselves on our professionalism and accuracy. But, we're human, so sometimes we make mistakes. Although we can't promise to be perfect, we can and do promise to make reasonable efforts to promptly correct any error on our part.|
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