Expedition Cruising Air Reservations
If you must fly to the city where your expedition cruise begins, you must decide whether to arrange airline tickets on your own or purchase air through the cruise operator. Here are the main considerations to help you with your decision.
Advantages of Arranging Your Own Airline Tickets
The main advantages of securing your own airline tickets are that you will be able to select the airline you fly and you will have some control over the timing and routing of your flights. You may wish to fly a particular airline to use frequent flier rewards, or to earn frequent flier miles, or because that carrier has nonstop service to your port city. If you arrange your own airline tickets you will have more control over these variables than if you purchase air through the cruise operator.
Benefits of Purchasing Air Through the Operator:
Convenience: One-stop-shopping for the cruise and flights saves time and avoids the headaches of dealing with multiple companies.
Worry-free: Companies will make every effort to get guests to the trip's starting point on-time.
- Delayed flights: If you book flights through the cruise operator and your flight is delayed, the company will help make arrangements for you to re-join the trip in progress. If you purchase your own flights, you will be responsible for connecting with the trip in progress.
- Cancelled cruises: If you book flights through the cruise operator and the trip is cancelled, the operator will refund the cost of airfare. If you purchase your own flights, the operator will not be responsible for any air refunds, and you could find the flights are nonrefundable.
- Changed itineraries or departure / arrival times: If you book flights through the cruise operator and they change the itinerary or departure or arrival time, the operator will rearrange your flights at no cost. If you purchase your own air, the operator will not be responsible for any air refunds.
Domestic, Intra-Tour Flights
Intra-tour flights refer to air transportation during the trip and are normally arranged for by the operator. The cost of these flights may or may not be included in the trip package price. For example, most Galapagos cruise packages include intra-tour flights from Quito or Guayaquil to the starting point of your Galapagos cruise. Your Vacations To Go travel counselor can help you determine if you will be required to purchase intra-tour flights or if they are included in the package price.