Cruises are generally associated only with the super wealthy or old folks. Additionally some people who like to travel would avoid cruises because they fear they will spend more than intended. This is a brief guide on how to avoid overspending on a cruise to help you get started and be better prepared.
Be aware of what your fare includes
You will automatically pay more if you don't know the basic features your cruise fare covers. You already paid for your accommodation, bathroom, TV, housekeeping, and other several amenities. Even if housekeeping is included, you should leave them a tip especially if you're a messier person, but it shouldn't exceed 5 dollars.
Various cruise lines offer various types of entertainment to the guests of the ship. No matter the type of entertainment, you should be aware of it being covered by what you already paid. All fun activities are also included in the fare. This can go as far as playing games by the pool side with other guests, playing table tennis, karaoke or jogging.
Using the pools shouldn't come at an extra cost. This aspect covers the water slides and the hot tubs. If you want to participate in fitness classes you should know that some are available at no extra cost. You clearly have to pay for others, so don't be scared to ask which classes are free to take.
If you're a person that drinks more liquids than others, take advantage of the various beverages available for free daily, at the self service buffet. It is also safe to assume that drinking the tap water running in your private bath is just as cheap.
You should know where you will be spending more
Generally, any activity that happens off the boat will be paid for. If you want to buy some memento don't do so on the ship, but in the ports as you'll help local economy. If you saw something on board that you simply must have, wait till the end of the cruise, as it might be cheaper then. You're better off eating on board as those meals are included.
Gambling is a form of entertainment where losing money is guaranteed. Just like gambling, the mini-bar in the cabin will literally kill your wallet. Additionally many of the things you order, especially alcoholic drinks, will cost you quite a lot, especially on board.
You need to pay attention to stuff
All ships give you a shipboard account represented by a card that allows access off and on the board while allowing you to perform many of the activities mentioned above. You need to keep an eye on it, preferably daily, as not to be charged something you didn't use or took part in. Be aware that the amount of money you pay for gratuities is charged daily, however you can set it higher or lower than the default value.
Various events such as auctions, captain's parties, and parties thrown for past passengers are key moments to get drinks on the house.