Sipping cocktails while lounging on a deck chair on a South Pacific cruise is a travel dream for many Australians.
In fact, Aussies love cruise ships so much that over one million of us took a cruise last year. And, the annual number is increasing!
What’s not to love about a cruise? It’s relaxing and your cruise fare includes:
- Meals and dining
- Most entertainment
- Most activities
Even if your trip includes these basics, don’t be stung by high currency exchange rates, overspending on your trip or hidden traps.
Find out the top tips for travel money for cruises.
How do I pay onboard a cruise ship?
Your cruise fare will include all of the above. For other expenses, you will use a cashless cruising system where you pay with a cruise card for onboard purchases. The cruise card is also your room key and security pass to leave and re-board the ship at ports of call.
Although there are many benefits of paying your bill by cashless cruising, it can be tempting to spend more money on your trip than you anticipated. A credit card service fee will apply to your transactions, and the bank may keep the ‘pre-authorisation’ on your credit or debit card for up to 30 days.
The benefit of this system is that you get Express Check Out and don’t need to visit reception to settle your account.
Tip: Be aware that EFTPOS facilities are not always available onboard cruise ships. If it is available, you may be charged additional fees and charges.
Prepaid Visa cards and Travelex Visa cash passports are also not accepted onboard.
How do I pay for purchases at ports of call?
You may be able to exchange your money onboard into local currency for ports of call. The fees for this service and denominations they carry will vary according to the cruise company. There will be some ports when the ship does not have the local currency you need.
You may also be able to book onshore trips with your cashless cruise card. There are good reasons to take local currency on your trip. You will need it for souvenirs, duty-free items, shopping, food and drinks.
Credit cards and charge cards may be accepted in the resorts and large shops, but local markets will only accept cash.
Tip: Take local currency for each of your ports of call. Budget enough money to cover extras. Buy your currency before you leave for your trip. This will ensure that you have the currency you need for each port and helps you budget for your destination. A set budget will keep your spending on track.
Can I use US dollars in port?
In some ports, you may be able to pay using US dollars. It is better to have local currency as the conversion rates will be more favourable. Also, if you use US dollars, you will get your change back in US dollars.
We recommend that you exchange currency before you depart on your trip. If you are unsure of the currencies you need, Crown Currency Exchange can advise you.
We buy and sell in 80 currencies, including exotic currencies. Whether you need South Pacific Francs, Samoan Tala, Fijian dollars, Vanuatu Vatu or Tongan Pa’anga, we have you covered.
Benefits of paying by local currency
The benefit of paying by local currency is that you won’t pay commissions or fees. By organising your currency before you leave for your trip, you can ensure that you get an unbeatable deal.
You save time from not having to find a local ATM, giving you more time to enjoy your destination. Whether it’s the crystal clear waters of Fiji or the glamour of Tahiti, enjoy every last moment at your destination instead of worrying about currency conversion.
Crown Currency Exchange offer you exceptional currency exchange rates. We charge no commission or fees and give you advice on the local currency you need. Let Crown Currency Exchange be your first port of call before your cruise! Request a quote today.