Last month a very good friend of mine called me to ask me for my recommendation on a cruise. He wanted to sail away with his whole family within a week. My first choice was to send him on the Allure or Oasis of the Seas, which I’ve sailed a few times in the past. However, to our surprise everything was pretty much sold out.
He got 3 kids under 10, so a cruise was a fun vacation with his time constraints. I took this matter personal to make sure I can find some availability. The hardest part was that in most ships there was only 1 cabin left, and of course they couldn’t accommodate 5 persons in a single cabin, not at this point of time.
I wasn’t making any money out of his trip, just wanted to make sure he found a good value for the money on a nice ship. Even though he wasn’t paying me anything for arranging his trip, I found a very nice way to get something in return which wouldn’t cost him nothing.
With 78,000 miles you almost have enough to fly United Global First from US to Asia for 80,000.
United Cruises Miles Offers
In the past I found out that United Cruises gets you exactly the same fare you would pay directly with the company of choice, in my case always have been with Royal Caribbean.
You get the same fares, but they would throw in some freebies as an incentive to book with them. I’ve got in the past specialty dinners, drink packages, gratuities, massages; and of course miles, many miles. The only downside is the $24.95 service fee they charge per cabin, which I normally get waived.
In this case he decided that the Disney Dream would be their cruise. Honestly, I’ve always found Disney Cruises to be overpriced, probably because I don’t have kids yet, but still there are better values out there.
As you can see the Bonus Offers I would get for this booking:
- 2 miles per $1 for being a United cardholder
- 2 miles per $1 spent
- 2 miles per $1 if booked on a Balcony or Suite Stateroom
- 1 mile per $1 for being a United cardholder and traveling on Balcony or Suite
For a total of 7 miles per $1, that’s a pretty good deal.
With this booking not being an exception, I quoted in different websites, they all came to the same pricing. With this being a very nice booking for 2 cabins, went ahead and booked with United Cruises.
Was lucky to find 2 connected Balcony staterooms for 5 persons, which we booked right away. They came out to be:
We paid a total of $8,514.53 for both cabins. Which it’s way more than what I would pay, not my money though. The best part of the invoice was this:
How Soon did Miles from United Cruises post?
To my surprise the miles posted as soon as they came back home, though the posting date on my MileagePlus account reflects the sail date.
I ended up being the owner of a Total of 53,900 miles (all the bonus are based on pre-tax dollars). Deal or no deal?
I love the idea of World Travel Holding, the company behind United Cruises, which I believe they run the same thing for American Airlines. Most of the times you won’t get anything out of cruise reservations if done in any other website, so I’ll keep doing business with them as far as I can get good deals like this one.
Also, quick note, you don’t have to pay with your United Credit Card in order to get the cardmember bonus, you just have to be a cardholder. Which I found awesome because we paid with a Chase Sapphire Reserve and earned us an additional 3x miles per $1 on this booking. For a total of 53,000 United Miles and 25,542 Ultimate Rewards points.