Who Is The Cruiseman, Anyway?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe Cruiseman is a national “cruise only” travel agency. We have been in business since 1994, beginning in North Carolina, and then moving to Missouri in 2005. Our function is to assist you in the planning of your next vacation and to make all the arrangements for you. We take pride in giving our clients personal and complete service. You will get the same person every time you call, and all calls are promptly answered! We represent all major cruise lines, as well as Sandals All-Inclusive Resorts.
And …. our professional services are free to you.

The Cruiseman Says:  “I fell in love with cruising on a “day trip” cruise to Bimini on an old ship that was built in the 50’s! A few years later I found myself in the Cruise business, starting from scratch with no customers and no experience. It’s been 23 years now, and I have thousands of customers from all across the USA. My passion for cruising has increased over the years, and I still look forward to each opportunity to go cruising, just like I did at the beginning.  I love my customers and try to treat them just like family, with honesty and integrity.”

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The Cruiseman has been quoted in:

  • Arthur Frommer’s Travel Website
  • Newsweek Magazine (April 14, 2003 & July 18th, 2005)
  • US News & World Reports, Feb. 9th, 2004
  • USA Today website
  • The Chicago Tribune, April 2nd, 2000
  • Cruising For Dummies
  • USA Today Weekend Magazine, Aug 24th, 2008
  • USA Today Cruise Log July 28th, 2009
  • Travelmarketreport.com

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What others are saying about The Cruiseman

I wouldn’t consider using anyone else. Your attention to detail, immediate attention to ANY questions and considerable knowledge and advice is beyond reproach — Martin Kennedy; Buffalo, NY

We’ve booked a HAL cruise from New York to Montreal for late May with the Cruiseman. I was so impressed when Jim, the president, answered the phone himself. He has already sold me with his quick responses to all of our questions and best possible price. Having become accustomed to the lack of personal attention most businesses give, I found working with the Cruiseman a pleasure.  — Jolene Schadler; Merced, CA

I would not hesitate to recommend his services to anyone, and his newsletter is one of the best on the web.  I am not sure how we happened to find him on the web, but we are certainly happy that we did. My husband and I are very happy to have the “Cruiseman” in our corner and helping us plan our next cruise.  — Jacqueline Ruse; Brecksville, OH

Having sailed on 17 cruises, I have done business with many Travel Agents. None can come close to the experience I had with The Cruiseman. Jim immediately answered every question I Emailed him and gave me First Class service. It seemed like I was his only client by the way he rendered to me his personal attention. A great guy and a great company. I Recommend him highly.  — Charles Glady; Richmond, VA

I wanted to say that we enjoyed our cruise on Legend of the Seas very much. I know that this sounds weird but we had confidence in you as our cruise consultant and that really helped. Our previous cruise was a complete disaster, made worse that our travel agent could have cared less. It is obvious that you have a passion for what you do and that, matched with expertise is a formula for success for both you and your customers.  Thanks, Jeff Taylor  — Glenwood, MD

The Cruiseman (Jim) is just wonderful to work with.  We have been doing business with him for many years and around 10 cruises…with the expectation of many more. He is very familiar with most all cruise lines and their itineraries, also is  extremely helpful and able to answer all questions.  Your Cruise travel arrangements and side trips couldn’t be easier!  Thanks Jim!!   Bruce Swenty — Springfield, MO

The beach was wonderful. Palancar Beach is a free beach in Cozumel.  The snorkeling was good not great. Royal Caribbean was better in most way to Carnival.  But Carnival has its moments. Roatan was a time of renewing old friendship for wife and making new ones for both of us.  We did a lot of talking and none of the usual site seeing.Belize we saw the city.  Others told us of better excursions.  But we were lazy.  We were satisfied with what we did.  You did a great job of negotiating my CC points.  I actually look forward to do it again. I will continue to use you for all my cruising. Bruce Baker — Houston, TX

Good cruise, just had some issues with a guest on the boat.  The Cruiseman did a great job, very easy to pick a cruise and get it booked. If there were questions or issues he took care of them instantly!  Todd Waterman — Lewisville, TX

One more fantastic cruise under our belts thanks to the Cruiseman!  We wouldn’t trust anyone else with our cruise details. The Cruiseman is top-notch at what he does. No problems, no hassles.  — Carol Mueller — Ormond Beach, FL

The ship was older and smaller, but it was only a four-day cruise.  Food and service were both excellent.  We had a very enjoyable time.  This is the fifth cruise we have taken and the fourth we have booked with The Cruiseman. Jim is both helpful and very knowledgeable.  Thank you.  —  Lisa Nix, Benton, LA

To Read More About The Cruiseman  CLICK HERE

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The Cruiseman

4728 S. Campbell Ave.  Suite 116
Springfield, MO 65810
417-881-2789  /  800-889-7683
www.cruiseman.com
www.facebook.com/TheCruiseman

How It Works

Booking a cruise vacation is not at all like booking a hotel room. Below I will reveal to you “How it Works” so you will understand the difference.

Hotel Bookings

With glowing sunset as backdrop, downtown Orlando, Florida is reflected in mirror smooth Lake Eola.

Hotels have a minimum or “net fare” that is made available to all those different web sites that you see on the internet. Each of those web sites then adds their own mark up (commission) to that net fare, resulting in the price that they are willing to sell the hotel room to you for.

For instance; The Red Star Hotel has a “net fare” of $100 per night.  Web Site A adds a $25 mark up, making their price $125 per night. Web Site B adds a $30 mark up, making their price $130 per night, while Web Site C decides to add a $35 mark up, making their price $135 per night.  That is the simple explanation of why you get all sorts of prices when searching Hotel prices.

Booking A Cruise

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Booking a cruise works completely different from a Hotel room.  The Cruise Lines publish “gross fares” meaning that the price they make public is the price the cruise cabin will be sold for, no matter which agency you work with.

To make things more complicated, however, most cruise lines have several various promotions going at the same time, meaning various prices are available.  These might include special rates for past passengers, Early Savers, “guarantee” rates where you get a discounted price but the cruise line gets to pick your cabin, military rates, senior citizens rates, and more.

The point is this; No matter what promotion price you qualify for that price is available to every travel agency in the country, and no agency is allowed to change the price. Cruise lines work from a “level playing field” so that every agency has the same prices. So, no matter what you may have read on the internet, the correct price will be the same no matter which agency you call. (We hope you call The Cruiseman, of course).  Look Out! Some online agencies add a “booking fee” or “service charge” to the booking, so you actually end up paying more than the published fare.  We’ll never do that to you.

WARNING:  Because of the “level playing field” policy of every major cruise line, many online agencies will try to fool you with deceptive advertising and come-on’s to make it appear that they have some kind of a special deal that other agencies do not have.  This is, of course, unethical & nonsense. Please don’t be fooled by the “70% off” ads, etc. And be aware of the word “from”, such as “7 night Caribbean Cruises from $399pp”.  That means that the $399 price is available at least once in the next two years, and most certainly not when you want to cruise.

The one exception to all of this is Group Rates. If you form a group, or join an already formed group you will received a discounted rate, or a special amenity, or both.

I hope this will clear up some of the confusion and help you understand “How it Works”. At The Cruiseman we never try to fool you, and we give you the honest facts with no tricks of any kind. That’s been our policy for 23 years …. And counting.

25 Free Things to Do in New Orleans

Thomas Jefferson paid $15 million for the entire Louisiana Territory, or about four cents an acre. That means New Orleans went for about seven bucks. More than 200 years later, New Orleans is still a great deal.

1. Get jazzed.
Stroll along Bourbon, Frenchmen and Fulton, where jazz pours out onto the street, or duck into a club for the full experience. Many clubs don’t even charge a cover.

2. Dive deeper into our musical heritage.
Explore New Orleans neighborhoods and their connection to jazz with six self-guided Jazz HistoryWalking Tours provided by the National Park Service.

3. Browse art throughout the city.
It seems like you can find art in every corner of New Orleans – and you can. Check out the galleries on Julia and Royal, Jackson Square vendors and the Mid-City and Bywater art markets.

4. Experience our parks.
Walk among the centuries-old oaks of City Park, picnic in picturesque Audubon Park or enjoy views of the Mississippi River at Woldenberg Park.

5. Attend a free festival.
There’s almost always a festival going on in New Orleans, and many of them are free – French Quarter Fest, Satchmo SummerFest, Po-Boy Preservation Festival, Wednesdays at the Square and, of course, Mardi Gras.

6. Immerse yourself in New Orleans history.
Stop by the Historic New Orleans Collection at 533 Royal Street for a crash course on the city’s history, which spans almost 300 years.

7. Spend a day at the track.
Experience the thrill of live thoroughbred racing at the New Orleans Fair Grounds from early November to late March. Grand stand admission is free.

8. Bike along the levee.
Bring your bike (or rent one) and go for a ride along the levee while taking in the sights and sounds of the mighty Mississippi River.

9. Eat for free.
Oysters, gumbo, crawfish boils – many of these feasts are free at local music clubs for those who are there buying a few drinks.

10. Shop for mansions on St. Charles Avenue.
Come on! You don’t have to be in the market to appreciate these jewels on the Avenue.

11. View the architecture of the French Quarter.
I spy wrought-iron balconies, a cornstalk fence, a hidden courtyard…

12. Tour the oldest restaurant in the French Quarter.
Ask for a tour of the historic Antoine’s that has hosted dignitaries, presidents and notable historic figures in its 160 years. Make sure to peek into the endless wine cellar.

13. Catch a free summer show at Tipitina’s.
This uptown venue pays homage to the jazz legend Professor Longhair with free shows on Fridays during the summer months.

14. Eat some pralines.
This gooey, nutty treat is a New Orleans snack staple. Candy shops throughout the city offer enough free samples to fill you up – and tempt you to bring some home.

15. See haute art.
The fashionable Warehouse District also doubles as the art district. The first Saturday of every month, walk down Julia Street and peruse local artwork in the diverse galleries.

16. Look for ghosts.
Experience paranormal activity and visit haunted sites such as the Bourbon Orleans, one of the most spirited locations in the French Quarter.

17. Spend Saturday morning at the farmers’ market.
Learn a bit about the famous New Orleans cuisine with free cooking demonstrations at the Crescent City Farmers Market.

18. Watch a Cigar Rolling Demonstration.
The New Orleans Cigar Factory is one of just a handful of U.S.-based cigar rolling outfits. Located right in the French Quarter, the store is a walk-in factory with a half-dozen experts rolling tobacco at any given time.

19. Haunt our “Cities of the Dead.”
Take a guided tour of our famous aboveground tombs at Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 in the Garden District or St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 on Basin Street, believed to be the final resting place of Voodoo Queen Marie Laveau. Knock three times on her crypt and make a wish. Please note that tours of St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 are only available with a guide.

20. Take a self-guided literary tour.
See where Tennessee Williams (722 Toulouse), William Faulkner (624 Pirate’s Alley), Truman Capote (711 Royal), Thornton Wilder (623 Bourbon), Walker Percy (1820 Milan) and Anne Rice (1239 First) lived.

21. Jam at the Square.
During the spring, the Young Leadership Council sponsors free concerts Wednesdays in Lafayette Square.

22. Stroll the French Market
Nearly three centuries of history and six blocks of uniquearts and crafts, souvenirs, and local food stalls to discover. Whatever it isyou’re looking for, you’ll find it at the French Market!www.frenchmarket.org

23. Be moved by our spectacular churches.
The large Catholic population of New Orleans gave rise to breathtaking churches such as St. Louis Cathedral, St. Augustine and Our Lady of Guadalupe.

24. Discover the Besthoff Sculpture Garden.
Located amid the beauty of City Park, the Besthoff Sculpture Garden features one of the most impressive collections of contemporary sculpture in America.

25. Go window shopping on Magazine Street.
While this might start out a free activity, you may find yourself with the uncontrollable urge to throw your money at any one of the unique shops that line Magazine Street so that you can bring a little bit of New Orleans home with you.

 

Source: New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau   http://www.neworleanscvb.com/