Last-minute cruises are of great interest to many people. The last-minute deals available are often impressive, allowing people to take a cruise who might not otherwise be able to afford one. But given that last-minute cruises are only offered at (naturally) the last minute, you might wonder how anyone is able to take one. Cruises are a fairly elaborate undertaking and in general require some advanced planning. Who, then, is able to take a last-minute cruise? Are last-minute cruises available to only a select few?
The most obvious characteristic in possession by those who can take advantage of last-minute cruises is flexibility. If you have a rigid work schedule or other obligations, this essentially disqualifies you from taking a last-minute cruise, and so you are one of the many who cannot take last-minute cruises. You can’t just hop on a ship if you need to let your boss know months in advance when you want to take your vacation time, nor can you spontaneously leave if you have young children to take care of, to cite a couple of common limitations.
Even if you are fairly flexible, however, this still doesn’t necessarily mean that you can take a last-minute cruise. This is so because a cruise involves more than just booking a cabin on a ship. Most obviously, you need to also find a way to travel to the port of departure, potentially arranging a place to stay for a night if you don’t arrive on the day your cruise sets sail. And depending on how last-minute your cruise is, it might be hard to manage these additional matters, or in any case it may not be cheap, and if it’s not cheap, the savings from the last-minute deal could easily be outweighed by an expensive flight or hotel booking. (This is, it should be noted, an important point about cruises in general; rarely is the cruise price the only relevant cost to consider.) Also, depending on your nationality and the country to which your cruise is sailing, you might need a visa, which is also the type of thing that can take time to arrange.
So, it is clearly not impossible to take a last-minute cruise, but you obviously have to be flexible. Moreover, several other factors most be considered when even a maximally flexible person takes a last-minute cruise; you still have to find a reasonably priced way to get to the port of departure (assuming you don’t live by one), and travel documents like visas might be necessary to procure. If you are able to take one, though, here is how to book a last-minute cruise.