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Posted: 6:00 a.m. Monday, June 10, 2013

Cruises are best travel deal of the summer

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By Clark Howard

ClarkHoward.com


I am not ecstatic about going on cruises. I used to be in the travel business, and had a very profitable department that sent people on tons of them. Yet cruising is not my thing. Not that I hate it, it's just not my thing.

But, boy, is it cheap right now!

My 7 year old son became fascinated with cruises after the 100th anniversary of the Titanic sinking and the Costa Concordia tragedy more recently. He kept asking to go on a cruise and I kept blowing him off.

Finally my son wrote me a letter (and mailed it) for an exercise in his persuasive writing class at school. The letter he wrote explained why I should take him on a cruise. His main reason? To spend time with me.

What is any father supposed to say to that?

So I start looking around and cruises were so cheap because of the continuous Carnival mishaps. Carnival has since spent a third of $1 billion to put in new safety and reliability features, including full fire suppression systems.

In the end, we went on Royal Caribbean on their ship called the Enchantment of the Seas. I always bought into the idea that cruise employees are exploited with 7 month schedules and no time off. But the general morale of employees was better than I've seen just about anywhere.

If you are looking to stretch a buck, Carnival's reputation is so in tatters that they're selling some cruises for less than a Motel 6 stay. You can use these sites to score a deal on a cruise:


As for me, my son now wants to go on another cruise!

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