Cruise 101: What Is Wave Season? The Best Time To Score Deals

Find out how to make the most of the perfect time to book a cruise.
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Catch major promotions on cruise vacations—like sailing to Alaska on Ovation of the Seas.

Credit: Royal Caribbean

The top travel destinations of 2020 have been named and resolutions have been made marking a new year of vacations—hopefully many! But how and when should you start planning your next getaway? The answer: Now.

“Wave Season” is here, offering the best cruise deals during the first three months of the year. There is absolutely no better time to book your next cruise vacation to nearly anywhere around the world, whether sailing among the glaciers of Alaska or the sandy shores of the Caribbean.

Here’s the 411 on Wave Season and what it means for your vacation planning:

Escape the winter a little early by booking a cruise to Perfect Day at CocoCay in The Bahamas this Wave Season.

Credit: Royal Caribbean

What is Wave Season?

Think of Wave Season as the Black Friday of cruising, but instead of a single day, you can maximize value and adventure from January through March. Many cruises are booked during this period, as travelers want to schedule their dream trips early in the year, so that they have an adventure to look forward to—whether that’s a warm weather escape or European vacation.

Do I really get more bang for my buck?

Yes! Wave Season deals vary, from buy-one-get-one half off offers a second ticket to added special amenities. For example, when booking the Mediterranean escape you’ve been eyeing, you could earn onboard credit (as good as spending money) and treat yourself to a tour of Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast, Sunday supper with the family at Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar, or a day relaxing with a massage at Vitality Spa. Whether saving on cruise fare, or maximizing perks, you can enjoy major value by booking this time of year.

New year, new adventures to dive into, including RipCord by iFly, the onboard skydiving simulator.

Credit: Royal Caribbean

Can new cruisers take advantage of it?

This is one of the ideal times for first-time cruisers. Deals can often be tailored to the length of the sailing, meaning you may have the option to take the perfect “trial” trip with three- to four-night short Caribbean itineraries. Cruising newbies can test their sea legs for the weekend and be home by Monday morning. Though we’re pretty sure you’ll be ready to book your next cruise by Tuesday.

So where can I go?

Anywhere Royal Caribbean cruises! There are countless options to take advantage of the added value from these deals. You can head to 2020 hotspots like Japan or Australia, many of the real-life filming locations for “Game of Thrones” in Croatia, or see the rugged coastlines and historical highlights of Canada and New England. Sailing to more than 270 destinations worldwide on 26 ships, Wave Season is your chance to book a trip almost anywhere you heart desires.

When and where can I find Wave Season deals?

Historically, a variety of offers can go live as early as January and throughout February and March. You can easily find them online (Royal Caribbean even has its own deals page), and if you sign up you’ll be the first to know about the next opportunities to save! If you have a travel agent, it’s also the perfect time to call; they can help you pick out the best offer for your desired vacation.

Check out this Wave Season’s top deals and don’t miss your chance to make the most of your next big adventure.