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Ship Shape on <i>Norwegian Bliss</i>
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Ship Shape on Norwegian Bliss

Porthole Cruise Magazine - December 14, 2018
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Use Your Pre-Cruise Stay to Stock Up on Savings

Smart cruisers know the benefits of heading to your South Florida cruise port a day or two early. Not only do you avoid travel delays and other unexpected surprises ruining your vacation, but you can also spend your time pre-cruise saving a ton of money on things you’d otherwise spend more on at sea. Everything from shopping to spa time can be enjoyed near Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale and PortMiami for savvy cruisers who love to save on their hard earned vacations!

Here are some of our favorite tips to stock up on the savings during your next pre-cruise stay.

Save On Your Shopping

Some people are good at packing. Some people are great at it. Others are downright terrible. If packing is something you tend to do last minute, it’s easy to forget essential items which can make or break your cruise vacation. Didn’t grab your sunglasses? What about a swimsuit or sandals? These are all things you can get on the ship, but usually the prices are higher than you’ll find at malls and shopping plazas near the port.

If you took a look in your closet after booking your cruise out of PortMiami and found a depressing lack of acceptable cruise-themed clothing, Miami is a great place to improve your wardrobe. Those staying at the Hilton Garden Inn Miami Dolphin Mall are in a great spot for some retail therapy. Two of Miami’s biggest shopping centers, Dolphin Mall and Miami International Mall, have everything you need and more to look great on your cruise for way less than you’ll spend on the ship. Guests have options for their accommodations as Homewood Suites by Hilton Miami Dolphin Mall is located in the same building as the Hilton Garden Inn. The hotels have an outdoor pool and sundeck for those interested in cultivating a bronze glow before even setting foot on the ship. Remember, a tan is always the best accessory! 

Hilton Garden Inn Miami Dolphin Mall

Hilton Garden Inn Miami Dolphin Mall

If Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale is your departure port, you’ll want to stay at a hotel near the Sawgrass Mills mall complex, which has a great assortment of luxury brands plus all your favorite stores where you can snag anything you may need for the cruise. The mall is just across the street from DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Sunrise Sawgrass Mills and only a 15 minute ride from the cruise port.

Save With Pre-Cruise Spa Time

Vacations are about getting away from the stresses and grind of daily life. Cruise vacations in particular place an emphasis on relaxation, luxury and pampering so it’s no surprise that the spas on board the ships are popular spots. However, we recommend getting your spa day in a day or two before your ship departs. Ship spas are luxurious, no doubt, but between the crowd and the high prices for services, the spa on board loses some of its luster. 

The spa at The Diplomat Beach Resort

The Diplomat Spa + Wellness

A day at the spa before you cruise is like taking a pre-vacation for your vacation! Those cruising from Fort Lauderdale should consider the spa at the The Diplomat Beach Resort hotel in Hollywood, a newly reinvented legend of South Florida comfort and relaxation. The spa offers all the usual amenities along with personal training sessions and holistic programming for a better you all the way around.

If PortMiami is your departure port, Spa 101 at Hilton Bentley Miami/South Beach Hotel offers professional spa services which go far beyond the basics. Hot stone massages, nail treatments and anti-aging facials can help you look and feel your best before the real vacation event starts. There’s no better way to really get into vacation mode than a day at the spa and you can’t beat the view, either! 

Hilton Bentley Miami/South Beach Hotel

Spa 101 at the Hilton Bentley Miami/South Beach Hotel

Save with Park, Stay & Go

Bundling always saves you money. It works with your cable, internet and phone bill. It works with your home and auto insurance, and it definitely works when you’re planning a cruise vacation out of PortMiami or Everglades. Some hotels in the area offer outstanding cruise and stay packages, which feature discounts on pre-or-post cruise hotel rooms, transportation to the cruise port or airport and even a place to park your car while on the ship. Those staying at the Hilton Miami Airport Blue Lagoon, for instance, can take advantage of cruise, stay and go options which offer 7 nights of parking and a ride to the port or airport in one convenient package.

Hilton Hotels

Hilton Miami Airport Blue Lagoon

 

Don’t spend top dollar on your next cruise vacation when there are so many ways to save by booking smarter. Bundling your services, picking up necessary items before you cruise and getting in a spa day can help make your vacation the best it can be without leaving you in the red. 

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