There is no shortage of activities on a cruise ship that will cost you extra. Cruise lines are constantly trying to boost their bottom line with additional fees and expensive novelties.
But that doesn’t mean that there aren’t plenty of free activities to keep you entertained. Most ships even offer services and activities that are much cheaper than what you’d find on land.
Next time you’re on a cruise ship, save yourself some money by enjoying something that you’d normal have to pay for on land.
This one is a personal favorite. They may not be first run movies, but they are always recent. Depending on the ship, the presentation varies, but the bottom line is you can enjoy a night out at the movies for 100% less than what it would cost at the cinema.
Celebrity Century plays movies in an indoor theater. Princess and Disney offer outdoor movies, at night, on the pool deck. Norwegian shows new release films in the lounge on multiple screens. Check the features of your next ship to see what they offer for your free movie night.
Live productions are another great activity that will cost you far less than their dry land counterparts. While some ships offer in-house products (most of which are excellent) the larger ships offer Broadway caliber productions of popular shows.
“Rock of Ages” will debut on board Norwegian Breakaway when she launches next year. Oasis of the Seas and her sister ship, Allure of the Seas, offer “Hairspray” and “Chicago”, respectively, as their Broadway shows of choice.
Or “Mini-Golf”, if you prefer, is another popular on board activity that is 100% cheaper than putting on land. There’s also the added dynamic of having to deal with the movement of the ship affecting your putts. When was the last time you putted on a land course that actually moved?
Some courses are smaller than the 18-hole standard. Some Royal, Disney, Princess and Carnival ships offer mini-put on the top deck. For an added challenge, check if your ship offers a mini-put competition and see if your putting skills are up to par.
On a two-story screen!
Next time you’re on a Norwegian Cruise Lines ship, look for the giant screen in the main atrium. NCL is offering Nintendo Wii Sports on board its vessels. Passengers can challenge each other to Wii Sports matches and most ship will offer tournaments.
It can also make for an excellent spectator sport if you’re not a gamer. Grab a drink and a table and watch your fellow cruisers try to out-swing, out-box and out-bowl each other for a free t-shirt.
Many say that Carnival offers the best pizza afloat. I haven’t had the opportunity to test that theory, but from personal experience, the pies on NCL are nothing to turn your nose up at. The Norwegian Dawn served up some of the best made-to-order pizza we’ve ever had, and it’s delivered hot and fresh to you anywhere on the ship: your cabin, the poolside, the bar or anywhere else you might be hanging out!
The only catch is that there’s a $5 surcharge for the delivery, so it isn’t exactly free. But a large pepperoni and cheese pizza pie, delivered to me anywhere I want, any time of the day, for $5?
Don’t let the constant addition of for-fee activities on cruise ships deter your from enjoying a cruise vacation. Cruise lines have a responsibility to turn a profit, but they still offer a great vacation value and plenty of activities that keep you entertained, and well-fed.
If there are any cruise ship activities that you enjoy on board for less than on land, drop us a line in the comments and share them with us.
Check out Cruise Critic for their list of “The 20 Best ‘Free’ Things to Do” on a Cruise
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