Avoid the Cruise Money Pits

If it's one of the seven deadly sins—gluttony (booze), greed (gambling), sloth (spas), extravagance (shore excursions), etc.—it's how a cruise line makes all its profit

Cruising's dirty little secret: Cruise ships usually don't make a dime off the cabins. In fact, with the exception of upscale balcony suites and such, they often take a loss on the actual cost of carrying you around and feeding you endless buffets. They can do this because they soak you to make their money in other ways.

Once you know what those ways are, you can avoid over-spending and turning that great bargain price on the cruise into a pricey shipboard bill at the end. Here is a list of the major money-generators on board a cruise ship, and the best solutions for addressing each.

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This article was written by Reid Bramblett and was last updated in February 2011. All information was accurate at the time.

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