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Explorer collection- cruises

potchak

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Does anyone know if you can upgrade your cabin for cash with the cruises? Most of them only include an Oceanview, but if we utilize the Explorer program for this, we like at least balconies. Also, what kind of fees are on top of the cruises? I just used the Explorer Collection for the African Safari, and there were no additional fees associated. Appreciate the help.

PS- Before every attacks me for potentially using our DC points for cruises, please keep in mind with the amount we pay in MF's, we usually do not have the extra cash or vacation time to pay for it out of pocket. So if we use our DC pts to get it, it works out better for us since the costs are already expended.
 

Art

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First, I'll comment on your PS. Given that one can estimate the value of a point, I've done a full trial runs on using DC points for a cruise, and they are not all bad deals. In particular, I have seen some favorable offerings on Celebrity. Certainly part of this is that Celebrity, as part of the RCL family, is fairly active in controlling discounting.

In fact, I've looked at several cruises where the DC points seemed to be valued at least $0.50 each. To head off any comments about me not considering all the costs and availability of discounts, OBC, etc., we have cruised enough to have an excellent feel for what is a good or a bad deal.

Cruises as advertised, and this appears to hold for the DC points, do not include taxes and port fees. To get a feel for what they would be on a DC cruise one is considering, go to any of the on-line agencies and do a dummy booking. Any stateroom category will work, the add-on fees are a function of the itinerary only. (Actually, if there were no add-on fees, booking cruises via DC point would be a fabulous deal in many cases.)

I have no feel for paying for up-grades to a Veranda. I have played with the different point levels and I have seen that as one goes up in point levels, verandas do become available.

Art
 
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wvacations

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Yes you can add cash to upgrade the cabin. Also there are taxes besides the port charges that are shown on the online sites. These taxes (not port charges) are usually included in the fare. I was surprised to find out, from DC agent, that I add to add the taxes along with the port charges. I was very close as I could have traded my Shadow Ridge 2 BR for points and paid about $2300 for upgrade to aft balcony, port charges, taxes, and add my son. I thought it was a good deal and was about to book. Just before calling to book, I checked interval for exact same Alaska cruise in exact same dates and I only gave them the 1 BR portion and $2500. So I decided my lock off was worth $200 and booked with interval. I had checked a week earlier and Interval was much higher, so it's good to check regularly.

By the way, I traded the studio portion for a 2 BR in Ko Olina in October, so it turned out to be a great move.

Also remrber to check some of the higher point cruise catagories on DC and compare. I think there are good deals at both II and Dc.
 
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exotherm

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We have been looking into a cruise to Norway and generally found you don't get much value using DC's. For example, a 12 day cruise on RCL using 7500 points still costs $4904 o-o-p for a balcony for 2. Going directly to the cuise line and paying cash costs $5894. If we could sell our 7500 points at an average rate of $0.50, or $3750, the total o-o-p going directly to the cruise line would only be $2144, not the $4904 using DC's.
 

McFail

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I've no intention to hijack this thread but where can you find out how you can use your points for cruises and other offerings? My retired parents added their weeks into the legacy program. They will mostly use them like normal weeks anyway but I help them manage things and dates. I could not find a link on MVCI to find the other ways to trade the points for these collections that are mentioned.

Can you point me in the right direction?
 

potchak

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Use my-vacationclub.com's website, then once signed in, go to the tab Plan and book my Vacation, then under that is Explorer collection. From there click on Ocean Explorer. There are many options to choose from and many pt levels. Good Luck!

I am starting to think I would be better off renting out the points than booking the cruise through them, but that can be a PITA. I have done that with my Disney points and it can be a hassle.
 
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