Upon hearing of a two-for-one cruise fare offer starting on April 1, some may wonder whether they’re hearing an April Fool’s Day joke, but the latest booking promotions from premium cruise brand Celebrity Cruises and deluxe sister brand Azamara Cruises are the real deal. Beginning today and running through April 30, 2009, cruisers can book a limited number of berths on select Alaska and Europe sailings at a two-for-the-price-of-one rate based on published brochure rates. Any of these cruises booked during April 2009 also feature a price-protection component and a travel agent booking incentive.

“With these unprecedented two-for-one promotions and their price protection component, when our guests book these sailings early, they can feel secure that they will get the best price, lock in an ideal stateroom assignment, and begin the countdown to their well-deserved vacation,” Dondra Ritzenthaler, Senior Vice President of Sales, Celebrity Cruises and Azamara Cruises, said. "With fantastic cruises available for prices as low as $75 per person per day, quite simply, there has never been a better time to book a cruise."

Azamara offering Europe for less

The Azamara Cruises offer, called “The Azamara Assurance,” offers savings of up to 50% off published brochure rates on 21 different cruises sailing between May and November 2009 through the Mediterranean, the Greek Isles, the Black Sea, Western Europe, Iceland and Scandinavia/Russia. Ranging in length from seven to 15 nights, the discounted cruises offer travelers the opportunity to experience the spectacular service, cuisine and amenities on the 694-guest Azamara Journey and Azamara Quest.

Sample discount fares being offered in “The Azamara Assurance,” based on double occupancy in a veranda stateroom, are a 14-night “Best of Italy” cruise sailing on August 9, 2009, that was $3,999 per person and is $1,999 per person; and a seven-night Mediterranean cruise sailing on May 2, 2009, that was $2,099 per person and is being offered at $1,049 per person.

Celebrity offering Alaska and Europe at a discount

Celebrity Cruises’ offer is called “The Celebrity Starring You Promise,” and offers savings of up to 51% off published brochure rates on 53 different cruises sailing in Alaska and Europe between May and September 2009.

Alaska sailings in “The Celebrity Starring You Promise” range from seven to 13 nights in length and are being offered on Celebrity Mercury, Celebrity Infinity and Celebrity Millennium. An example of the type of discount guests can receive by booking their Alaska cruise on one of the sailings featured in the offer is a seven-night

“Southbound Alaska” cruise between Vancouver and Seward on June 5, 2009, that was $999 per person based on double occupancy in an inside stateroom and is being offered at $499 per person.

Guests who book select Celebrity Europe cruises between today and April 30, 2009, are eligible for savings such as a 12-night Mediterranean cruise on July 21, 2009, that was being offered at $2,199 per person for an inside stateroom, based on double occupancy, and is being offered today at $1,149 per person. The Europe cruises in the promotion range from 10 to 14 nights in length.

Offer’s price protection component adds security

Price protection, a component of both the Azamara and Celebrity offers, gives guests who book during the promotion access to lower rates up to 48 hours before their sailing. If Azamara or Celebrity publish a lower price for the same stateroom category on the same sailing that the guest previously booked, the guest must call Azamara/Celebrity to verify eligibility for the lower price. A limited number of special rate programs are excluded. Guests or their travel agents must make their requests for a price adjustment no later than 48 hours prior to sailing by calling Azamara/Celebrity. Prices offered in “The Celebrity Starring You Promise” and “The Azamara Assurance” are per person, cruise only, based on double occupancy, in US dollars, subject to change without notice, and capacity controlled. The price protection component does not apply to price programs, such as resident and senior rates, that the guest does not qualify for at the time the request is made and cannot be used to obtain rates offered as part of other select pricing programs. Other terms and conditions apply.

Travel agent booking incentive

Travel agents can maximize this consumer offer through a special booking incentive. For each 2009 Azamara Cruises or Celebrity Cruises sailing that a travel agent books during a booking window of April 1-30, 2009, the agent will earn one entry into a giveaway. The following prizes are being offered:
Four grand prizes – Two Celebrity cruise giveaways (excluding any holiday sailings and Celebrity Xpedition voyages) with airfare valued at up to $1,000 per person and two Azamara Europe or Asia cruise giveaways (excluding holiday sailings) with airfare up to $1,000 per person)
50 iPod Shuffles
100 Celebrity logo computer speakers.
500 Corning Museum of Glass pieces of artwork