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7-Night Carnival from $379
Carnival Triumph, roundtrip Miami to San Juan, St Thomas, St Martin.
•  America's Vacation Center (866) 501-7271
CM Note: special sale - up to a 2-category upgrade included.
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Ruby Princess Christmas Cruise $899
NEW Ruby Princess: 7-night Christmas cruise to West Caribbean to Jamaica, Granbd Cayman, Cozumel, Princess Cays.
•  BUYCRUISES 1-800-510-1786
CruiseMates says: From: $1399 balcony - Great holiday prices!
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Trans-Atlantic Royal Caribbean - $399
Price drop! 12-Day cruise on Navigator of the Seas. Sails 11-10-08, Barcelona to Ft Laud.
•  CruiseMagic.com 800-474-5678
CM Note: Lowest Trans-Atlantic price ever! Cartegena Spain, Azores and Nassau.
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Royal Caribbean Mexico Bargains
7 Night Royal Caribbean sailings to Mexico from $449! Free insurance or prepaid gratuities! included!
•  CRUISEVALUE: 1-800-231-7447
CruiseMates says: amazing price on Mexico cruises on Vision of the Seas.
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Carnival Dream New Year's Eve
2009 New Years Eve on Carnival's newest & biggest ship ever! Balcony cabins from $1,125 pp. Christmas from $975
•  Cruise Planners 1-800-561-0802
CruiseMates says: 2009 Christmas cruise also available from $975!
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Holland America Mexico Cruises!
They're back - one of the nicest ships to the Mexican Riviera from just $449
•  America's Vacation Center (866) 501-7271
CM Note: Holland America is a premium cruise line at a budget price.
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Holland America Christmas Cruise
Holland America Noordam 10-nt Holiday South Caribbean leaving December 17 and returning December 27.
•  BUYCRUISES 1-800-510-1786
CM Note: $899 inside, $1399 balcony; Tortola, St Lucia, Barbados, Martinique, St Kitts, Half Moon Cay
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Australia Cruise on Celebrity
9 Night Celebrity Australia cruise from $589! Up to $100 onboard credit plus Free Insurance included! included!
•  CRUISEVALUE: 1-800-231-7447
CruiseMates says: amazing price on an Australian cruise!.
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Call for a Quote
CruisesRX - your prescription for fun. 2 for 1 cruise deals.
•  CRUISESRX 1-888-308-1218
CM Note: all major cruise lines, prices updated by the minute.
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Holland America Special Offer
Exclusive low fares, Free Pinnacle Grill Lunch for two, plus $25 - $50 ship credit per person.
•  CRUISE MARKETPLACE 1-800-826-4333
CruiseMates says: Dozens of HAL cruises on sale - ship credit is per person.
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You can access all of these specials above - or go to CruiseMates' Cruise Bargains for even more!
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"CruiseMates Best of the Web
Cruise Bargains Newsletter"
The ONLY travel newsletter containing cruise bargains we verify to be the Best Cruise Bargains on the Web. For each listing, you will not find a better price for that ship, sail date and cabin category on the Internet. If it isn't the best of the Web, we won't print it!

Buy Cruise Lines' Stock
Get Onboard Credit

There are not many companies that give this perk to shareholders, but both Carnival Corp and Royal Caribbean will give onboard credit of up to $250 per cabin to shareholders in the respective companies. And since stocks seem to be having a fire sale today, now is the time to buy these stocks near their five-year lows.

Shareholders in Carnival Corp. (NYSE: CCL), the parent company of Carnival Cruise lines, Seabourn, Holland America, Princess, Costa and several overseas companies, will give $50 shipboard credit for six days or less, $100 for a 7 to 13-day cruises and up to $250 per cabin for a 14-day cruise to shareholders who own at least 100 shares.

The compensation amounts are similar for shareholders in Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE: RCL). This offer applies to Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, Celebrity Cruises and Azamara Cruises.

As of today, Carnival Corp. is trading at $33.23 per share and Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd is selling for $19.54 per share. Each of these prices is very near to the lowest they have been in the last five years. For investing $1954 for 100 shares of RCL you get shipboard credit on your next Royal Caribbean cruise, and chances are the stock will soon even go higher, so you will make money as well; even though this is not a recommendation or solicitation to sell stock, as the brokers say. I only say the statistical chances of the price going lower is pretty small, assuming the solution to the bailout crisis is achieved pretty soon.

Okay, admittedly I bring this up because on a day when the stock market loses more points than any other day in history it is pretty hard to think about anything else. But I must point out that this "crash" feels different - there is a lot less panic and a lot more confidence that it is a temporary selloff. It is almost like "yeah, we have been here before, and it ain't no big thang."

If it helps to know this - cruise line stocks have statistically almost always faired better than other leisure and travel stocks in economic downturns. Why? Several reasons;

(1) Americans do not like to give up their vacations

(2) Ccruise ships are very easy to re-deploy to new locations, so in instances like New Orleans after Katrina, all they had to do was move the ships to Galveston (and vice versa)

(3) Cruising has the best pricing model in the vacation industry for enduring economic downturns; they can drop the cruise fare and still enhance the bottom line through onboard sales of extras.

Be sure to apply for your onboard credit before you sail, when you make the final deposit. And in order to receive the credit you must still be a shareholder at the time you cruise. You must show proof of stock ownership with a photocopy of the shareholder proxy card, shares certificates, or a brokerage or nominee statement.

Can you combine your onboard credits with other special offers? With Royal Caribbean, no, they can't be combined. For example, if you book a special deal on a 10-night cruise that includes $150 in credit you won't be able to tack on the $200 you're entitled to as a shareholder. Instead, the higher of the two will apply.

I am not a professional investment advisor and any stock investment carries risk. Any financial decisions should be discussed with a professional financial planner. But if stock ownership makes sense for you, and you are a full-time cruise enthusiast; Hey! maybe it isn't such a bad idea!

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We are an online, interactive CRUISE SHIP GUIDE with ship reviews, features articles, message boards and more. Recommended by: New York Times, Wall Street Journal, CNN Television, a Forbes Magazine "Best of the Web" site.

Prices listed are cruise only, per person, double occupancy and include port charges (also called non-commissionable cruise fare).

Fuel surcharges and government taxes & fees are additional unless otherwise noted. Prices are in US dollars, airfare is extra unless otherwise noted. Limited availability and restrictions may apply. Prices are subject to change without prior notice. Typographical errors may occur. Offers apply to new bookings only.

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