Cheap Summer Cruises to the Caribbean…Great Value or Great Risk?

When is the Best Time to Cruise in the Caribbean? 

Turks & Caicos

Ever wonder why there are such cheap cruises to the Caribbean during the summer?  The main reason is that it is Hurricane season in the Caribbean!  Years ago, all cruise ships left the Caribbean for more favorable summer destinations – like Alaska and Europe.  But with the huge growth in the cruise industry, several cruise lines stay in the Caribbean year-round.

Caribbean High Season:  The best time for a Caribbean cruise is January – April.  The seas are calm and the weather is beautiful, so therefore the fares are highest.  However, cruise deals can be found by your travel agent.  Good agents often reserve blocks of cabins on peak sailings, before they go on-sale to the public. (Agents often negotiation extra amenities on these sailings than you can get directly with Cruise Line or Expedia).

Caribbean “Shoulder Season”:  December and May are considered “Shoulder” months  or the next best time to cruise in the Caribbean.  So if you are looking for discounted cruise fares,  consider  December or May sailings for good value AND a better chance of good weather and calm seas.  Early December is one of my favorite times for a Caribbean cruise (see pics below from my last December cruise).  Not only can I find great fares, but it gives me a “serenity break” during the Holiday marathon from Thanksgiving to New Year’s.

Summer Season – Cruiser beware!  There is a down-side to those cheap summer fares. Hurricane season runs from June 1 – November 22 in Florida and the Caribbean, with September being a particularly active month in my experience.  You need to know your risks upfront and/or buy trip insurance that allows you to cancel anytime.

Summer Caribbean Cruises – Pros Summer Caribbean cruises – Cons
  • Cheaper rates & special offers
  • Today’s larger ships more stable in rough weather than smaller ships from the past
  • Better time for families with school age kids to travel
  • Carnival, Royal Caribbean & other well-know brands are available
  • Hurricanes & Tropical storms can result in missed ports, delays and cruise cancellations
  • Even without major storms, count on more rainy weather will impact your beach vacation
  • Rough weather can make cruise uncomfortable for passengers subject to motion sickness

Bottom Line:  If you really want to take the kids to the Caribbean for summer vacation and don’t mind the rain…you can get some great deals.  But if the possibility of a cancelled, delayed or re-routed cruise would ruin your family vacation – don’t risk it.

Royal Caribbean Monarch of the Seas Dec. 7-10, 2012.  If I tempted you with my pics of a December cruise, come join us for a cruise weekend this Dec. 7-10, 2012!  I’ll be cruising to the Bahamas for a quick getaway with Friends, family and staff on the Royal Caribbean Monarch of the Seas.  See our website for more information or to book on-line.

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About KMP Travel

Owner of a full service Cruise Planners- American Express travel franchise
This entry was posted in Caribbean Cruises, Cruise Deals, Cruises, family cruises, family vacations, Princess Cruises, Royal Caribbean, Travel, Uncategorized, Vacations and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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