10 Wave Season Deals for Big Cruise Savings in 2020

by  Lauren Dana Ellman | Jan 21, 2020
Cruise in Alaska
Cruise in Alaska / virsuziglis/iStock

It's that time of year again. Wave Season happens during the first three months of the year, when cruise lines spur sales by handing out onboard credits, fare reductions, and other perks. If you love to cruise, it can be the perfect time to book. 

But with hundreds of itineraries and ships on sale, it can be overwhelming to find the cruise that’s best for you. In an effort to make your vacation planning easier, we’ve rounded up some of the best, most value-packed deals across 10 different cruise lines — both ocean and river. 

Ocean Cruise Wave Season Deals

Azamara Club Cruises (a high-end cruise line known for its immersive itineraries, and inclusive pricing) is offering up to 40% off of more than 100 sailings departing between April 14, 2020 and November 21, 2021. In addition to the discount mentioned above, Azamara also offers unlimited beverages and free gratuities. This offer is available across the cruise line’s fleet. The lowest-priced itinerary offered is a three-night weekend Channel Islands sailing (from $580 per person), while the highest is the 20-night Western Africa Journey, which sails from Cape Town to Lisbon ($6,719 per person). To learn more about Azamara Club Cruises, read our review. For a list of eligible itineraries (and to book), click here; note that this deal expires on February 29. 

Azamara Pursuit / Courtesy of Azamara Club Cruises

Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line (which operates two-night Bahamas sailings from Palm Beach, Florida) recently launched their “Get Nauti” flash sale. Starting at just $99 per person, passengers cruising to Nassau or Grand Bahama Island will receive 50 percent off the second guest. Plus, kids under 12 sail free. Added perks include 10 complimentary drinks, and 15% discounts on spa treatments. Note that this offer is only available on sailings departing through May 31, 2020. Some additional restrictions may apply. To learn more and to book, click here or call 888-530-2775. 

Cunard’s “Upgrade On Us” promotion is available on a majority of sailings from June, 2020 through January, 2022 onboard the line’s iconic fleet of ships — Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth, and Queen Victoria. Perks include a free cabin upgrade, half-off deposits, and free gratuities. Those who book a Grill Suite will receive a free beverage package. Not sure where to go? Consider a Canada and New England sailing, or, for a classic Cunard experience, book a Transatlantic crossing. Other destinations included in the sale include Alaska, Europe, South America, Australia, and Asia. This offer is valid through February 27; book here (no promo code needed). 

Queen Mary 2 / Courtesy of Cunard Line

Holland America’s annual “View and Verandah” sale (available through February 28) is back with more value-packed perks, amenities, and offers. Guests who book select 2020 and 2021 cruises will receive a a complimentary stateroom upgrade, up to $500 in onboard credit, free or reduced rates for kids, half-off deposits, and 10% off select shore excursions. Book a suite category stateroom and you’ll also receive prepaid gratuities. Bucket-list-worthy destinations included in this offer include Alaska, Tahiti, the South Pacific, Hawaii, and the Panama Canal, among many others. Plus, holiday sailings, which take place over Christmas and the New Year, are also included in this offer. To book, click here (no promo code needed). 

MSC Cruises is offering up to $700 in added value per stateroom (based on a 7-night cruise). Passengers who book an inside, ocean view, or balcony stateroom on select sailings will receive a selection of unlimited drinks with an Easy Drink Package (includes select beer, house wines by the glass, spirits, mocktails, soft drinks, juices, bottled water, coffee, and tea), free wifi (up to 3.5 GB across two devices), and up to $100 in onboard credit. This promotion is available fleetwide through March 31. The cruise line offers itineraries to almost anywhere in the world, including the Caribbean, Europe, the United Arab Emirates, and more. Click here to book (no promo code needed). 

This wave season, score major savings with Oceania CruisesOLife Choice promotion, which includes roundtrip airfare, free wifi and your choice of: up to $800 in onboard credit, free shore excursions (up to eight), or a free beverage package. This offer is currently eligible on more than 400 itineraries. Featured destinations include the Baltics, Bermuda, Japan, and Ireland, to name a few. Fares start at $1,099 per person, depending on the itinerary, time of year, and length of sailing. This offer is valid through March 31. To book and to learn more, click here; no promo code needed. 

Princess Cruises Caribbean Sailing / Courtesy of Princess Cruises

From the complimentary drink packages to the free gratuities, there’s lots to love about Princess Cruises’ “The Best. Sale. Ever.” promotion, which runs through February 29. This special offer is available on sailings that depart in or after April, 2020; itineraries must be two nights or longer in order to be eligible for the savings. The sale includes a complimentary premier beverage package per guest (includes cocktails, wine beer, soft drinks, smoothies, and bottled water), as well as unlimited wifi and free gratuities — all of which could easily add up to hundreds of extra dollars per person. Some fares are under $500 per person; some highlights: a two-night Taipei-to-Tokyo sailing (from $479 per person), a four-night cruise to Cabo San Lucas (from $449 per person), and a three-night Australia and New Zealand itinerary (from $479 per person). To book, click here; no promo code needed.

Star Clippers, best known for its fleet of three beautiful, 19th-century-inspired vessels, is currently offering its own “Choose Your Wave” special. Book your next sailing by February 29 and choose from $200 onboard credit per person, one cabin category upgrade, or one complimentary massage plus a bottle of champagne (includes prepaid gratuities). This promotion is valid on all Caribbean (from $1,475 per person for a 7-night itinerary) and Mediterranean sailings (from about $800 per person for a three-night cruise) throughout 2020 and 2021. If you book a Southeast Asia itinerary (starting at $1,365 per person for a 7-night sailing), you’ll get to choose two of the above wave season offers. To book, call 800-442-0551 or visit the line's web site (no promo code needed). Learn more about the cruise line by reading our review.

UnCruise Adventures is offering savings of up to $1,000 per couple in honor of Wave Season. Each UnCruise ship carries no more than 86 passengers, allowing for an intimate cruising experience. Itineraries focus on nature and wildlife, and activities are included in every sailing (think kayaking, hiking, snorkeling, and more). You can save up to $1,000 per couple on weeklong Alaska sailings; up to $750 per couple on weeklong Hawaii cruises between March 7, 2020 and September 5, 2020; and up to $800 per couple on Latin America itineraries between April 20, 2020 and December 5, 2020. Families and large groups booking multiple staterooms can save with this sale as well. Food and drink (including alcohol), are included in the cruise fare. This promotion is available on reservations for select 2020 departures booked through February 28. To book, call 888-862-8881 or email sales@uncruise.com. Read our review of the cruise line here.

Windstar Cruises in Tahiti / Courtesy of Windstar Cruises

Windstar Cruises, which features iconic sails on several of its ships, is running their “Small Ship, Big World Savings” sale through February 28. The offer is eligible on over 190 itineraries from Tahiti to Alaska, to anywhere in between. The special is also valid on select Star Collector Cruise Voyages sailings, which offer a deeper exploration of destinations. Passengers can choose from up to $1,000 ($500 per person) in onboard credit; up to $300 in airfare credit ($150 per person); unlimited wifi (up to $70 per stateroom, per day); or complimentary cocktails and laundry service. Added perks include complimentary wine (up to two bottles per cabin), discounted deposits (from $50 per person), and reduced single supplements. Note that this package and the above offers are only available to guests who book qualifying staterooms, suites, and Premium suites. For more information and to book, click here.

River Cruise Wave Season Deals

Family-owned AmaWaterways is making waves once again this wave season (pun intended). Passengers who book select Europe and Mekong sailings by March 31 have the chance to save up to $2,000 per stateroom. Additional perks include a complimentary stateroom upgrade and $100 in onboard credit. Bonus: Mekong sailings (which start at $1,399 per person) also come with prepaid gratuities. Traveling solo? No problem. As an alternative to the above offer, solo travelers can save 25% on single supplements on all balcony staterooms and select suites. Blackout dates and restrictions apply. To learn more, call 800-510-4002 or visit the AmaWaterways website.

Danube River / Sergey_Fedoskin/iStock

From Amsterdam’s winding canals to the majestic, castle-lined Rhine River, there are so many reasons to love river cruising. Plus, there’s no better time than now to book your next sailing. In honor of its 100th anniversary, Uniworld River Cruises and its sister line, the recently launched U River Cruises, are both offering savings of up to 30% on a majority of 2020 voyages (including new itineraries and the ever-popular Christmas market cruises). We found fares as low as $2,099 per person for a seven-night Paris cruise on Uniworld, and Danube river cruises on U from $1,959 per person. To book a Uniworld cruise, click here; to book a U cruise, click here. For a list of eligible sailings and itineraries, click here. Note that the offer expires on February 29, so act fast to score. 

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