Saturday, January 30, 2010

Starting to feel the money crunch

103 days till we cruise! Eek! It will be here before we know it. Before that, though, will be our final payment, due exactly 60 days from today: April 1. But there's a lot more that has to be budgeted. Keep all this in mind as you plan for the next few months.
  • Remaining balance: The total of your cabin less the $700 we've already paid ($300-1800)
  • Flights: Have you booked yet? (~$200-700 depending on where you're flying from)
  • Transportation to/from FL airport: $30-75
  • Transportation/parking at home airport: $0 if you're lucky, up to $200 if you're not
  • Hotel: One night, split with a roommate, probably $100
  • Passport (if you need it): $100
  • Clothes: Pre-cruise party, theme nights, swim suits, daywear, shoes. . . let's be serious. $200-700
  • Drinks, photos, shore trips, misc on board: ~$150
  • Other (door decor, travel toiletries, pre-cruise mani/pedi, etc): ~$150
Maybe some of my estimates are a bit high. I live in one of the most expensive areas of the country, so I'm rounding up. For example, I know parking at JFK costs a lot more than it does at the Pittsburgh airport. And you certainly don't HAVE to spend anything on clothes or get a pedi before the trip, but chances are you will.

Where does that put our totals?

At the low end: You're in a category 4 room, have a ride to the airport, don't need a passport, and are very good at keeping a budget. $1150

At the high end: You booked a suite, have an expensive flight, and will spend $300 on the perfect theme outfit if necessary. $4000

Did you read that and think, "Katie, you are crazy. NO way I will be spending $300 on a dress. Put me in the $1150 group." Well, I would have said the same thing to you last year. And how much did I spend on my white dress two weeks before we sailed because I was getting frantic to find something white and flattering? $300. (Note to TPTB: If we do white night again, I'm wearing that same dress.)

If only NKOTB-related expenses were tax deductible. . .


  1. As a first-time cruiser it's good to see some of these estimates! Will help me plan/save better over the next few months. Thanks! :)

  2. Count me in the catagory of people who will wear the same white dress!

  3. Thanx for the estimates.. gives me a good idea of what else shoul i consider.
    i already booked a 1000$ flight (From Israel to Miami) a 4 night hotel (320$). Thank god Israel is a very Summery country so i have clothes for the cruise but Im sure I will be spending a couple of hunderds of 4 buying some more stuff

  4. Thanks for the info, Katie! Now if only we could get the theme night info, so we can start our shopping! :)

  5. Heck I have a mid priced room, got a super cheap flight $136 from KC to Miami... Am staying with a friend that get a cheap hotel rate and I'm still expecting to spend at least $4000 between clothes, getting my hair highlighted,tanning because I diffentally don't want to burn and then be miserible on the cruise, and who knows what else. Drinks are also super expensive on the cruise! But I decided if I was doing it I was going all out...well except on te room b/c really you aren't in the room at all.

  6. When will we know themes and such?

  7. We booked our flight last week!! From Baltimore to Ft Lauderdale was about $200 round trip! Flying Southwest, so we each can take 2 bags for free! That was the cheapest I we went for it!! I'm currently shopping sales and have put my credit card on a haitus for last minute items!!! Getting VERY excited!!!

  8. NKOTB - saving the American economy one Blockhead at a time.

    Good job on estimates. Hubby and I spent about the low end EACH last year (the one downside to having a Donniegirl husband, everything is twice as expensive). And we even brought some of our own on board!

  9. Thanks so much for this! I'm slowly getting a better idea of how much I should save. Eek, May will be here before we know it!

  10. If you drink pop/soda it's alot of $ on the cruise per drink. You can bring your own on board. I didnt know this till I saw ppl bringing it on, so before I left the Bahamas to reboard I bought a case of Pepsi. (also the ships carries Coke products)

  11. I just booked my flights JFK-MIA return yesterday through & I got a very good deal! JFK-MIA on 12 May with American Airlines $94.70 & MIA-JFK on 17 May $114.70. I need to spare $25 each way for my luggage.

    As for the hotel, my cruise roomies & I booked a room at $157.07 nett/night. The room at Nassau is pretty big & it's a studio I guess...

  12. Additional comments...

    I booked Delta Airlines for MIA-JFK trip (the one with $114.70).

    Also FYI-for non US residents who want to book your US domestic flights, you can always book through coz they accept non-US CC to pay. I did it yesterday, I paid with my non-US CC for my flights & the bookings were ok & smooth!

    Good luck on the preparations! :)

  13. So how much is the estimate spending in the cruise? (Excluding hotel, plane ticket, & transportation) Is maybe $100 a day sound right? Its my 1st time cruising & im FREAKING OUT!! lol!

  14. One thing that got me that I wasn't quite expecting was how much it would cost to travel from place to place. You've got the shuttle/taxi to the airport (unless you have someone who can take you or want to pay a fortune to keep your car there) The shuttle/taxi to your hotel in Miami, shuttle/taxi to the port, and the same for the way back home. And if Danny has a party you also have the taxi/shuttle there and back.

    Oh, and if you take a shuttle while in Nassau.

    Each of these trips require a tip too! It adds up rather quickly!

    Don't forget that anyone handling your luggage is probably expecting a tip too. (and if you DO go to Danny's party if he has one, don't let anyone give you soap! lol they wanted a tip too!!)

  15. i am going this year 2011 and so excited. I love your blog K.T. Girl, i dont want to add it up. I am scared. hahah.
    I still have to get my hair braided ( i am not going to miss getting in the water and have to deal with styling my hair it would take ages. I want to wash n go. and still be cute.
    i have to get some outfits, you know, shorts cute shoes, some theme clothes to add to what i already have in my wardrobe.
    i am all paid off too.
    YES I wish NKOTB expenses were tax deductible.that would be great! :)
    i am going on the plane with my friend and she's getting tix so we'll see.