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Published on : Thursday, November 3, 2016
Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the world’s largest cruise industry trade association, is celebrating the service of U.S. military men and women this Veterans Day by highlighting travel discounts and appreciation programs from the organization’s Global Cruise Line Members. Veterans and members of the armed forces can take advantage of a variety of deals, discounts and programs to see the world, spend time with loved ones, and enjoy much deserved downtime on a cruise vacation to a variety of destinations within a range of budgets.
“From the sunny beaches of the Caribbean to the storybook villages of France, cruise vacations offer a unique way for our country’s honored servicemen and women to see the beauty of the world solo or with family and friends,” said Cindy D’Aoust, president and CEO, CLIA. “The cruise industry is proud to offer programs to help make these one-of-a-kind travel experiences as attainable as ever.”
From discounted booking rates to onboard spending money, a host of different cruise lines offer robust military discounts and armed services benefit programs:
1.) Booking Deals and Discounts: There are plenty of great cruise travel deals and discounts available to troops and veterans year-round. Disney Cruise Line, for example, offers special military rates on a range of select sailings which changes weekly so there’s always a chance to get a great deal.
2.) Extra Cash: Many cruise lines offer service members extra spending money to further enhance cruise vacations. For example, as part of their military benefits program, Princess Cruise Lines offers up to $250 of free onboard spending money toward onboard amenities and shore excursions for veterans and active, retired, or disabled American and Canadian military personnel which is applicable to any cruise, any time of year. Veterans can also earn extra cash toward spa treatments, cocktails and more on a Cunard cruise when booked fourteen days in advance.
3.) Right to Reschedule: Since service terms aren’t always predictable, many cruise lines offer military members special refund and rescheduling policies. MSC Cruises offers a 100-percent full cruise credit for a future sail date if a member of the military can no longer travel due to redeployment or revocation of leave.
4.) Civilian Companion Discounts: Service members can enjoy benefits and discounts with family and friends. Many lines offer compliments to civilian travel companions as well. For example, Royal Caribbean International allows spouses of actively deployed military personnel to book one stateroom if the eligible spouse is occupying them, with discounted rates applying to all guests in the stateroom. Spouses of deceased military personnel are also eligible for the military rate.
5.) Special Deals & Service: Many cruise lines offer additional deals and discounts to service members in honor of special holidays, like Veterans Day. Carnival Cruise Line, for one, is celebrating this Veterans Day by offering a discounted Early Saver rate to service members with 50% reduced deposits, $50 on board credit and the opportunity to book two additional cabins at the same rate within the booking window of November 1-November 14, 2016.