Just how much will you spend daily on a cruise?

Angus Kidman 27 June 2016

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Shore excursions will typically rack up $64 a day.

Part of the appeal of cruising is the notion that you'll pay for your accommodation and meals up front. In reality, you'll almost certainly end up spending more, whether that's on "beverage packages", room service, on-shore excursions or other extras.

Just how expensive can that get? We can get some idea from industry association Cruise Lines International Association Australia, which tracks the economic contributions of cruising to local tourism. While the CLIA data aims to promote cruising, it also gives a solid indication of what you'll spend. Here's the typical passenger spending per day in 2014, the most recent year for which CLIA has data:

CategoryDaily spend
Accommodation$79
Food and beverages$38
Shore excursions$64
Entertainment$5
Retail shopping$32
Transport$121
Other purposes$44
Total$384

Bear in mind that these figures include things you'll definitely pay for up front (such as accommodation), as well as options you might have included in your cruise package but which you can spend extra on (such as food). But if you're an average tourist and you take a seven-day cruise, you'll be up for $2,688.

That's still potentially a good deal, especially if you cover multiple cities. However, it provides a useful contrast to the up-front price, and gives you some idea of how much extra you might want to save to cover your holiday expenses.

Finally: don't forget that you'll need to take out travel insurance before you take a cruise. That's the case even if the cruise is solely in Australian waters; your regular health insurance won't cover you.

Angus Kidman's Findings column looks at new developments and research that help you save money, make wise decisions and enjoy your life more. It appears Monday through Friday on finder.com.au.

Picture: Shutterstock

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