MSC Cruises Allows Guests to Book Now, Choose Voyage Later

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MSC Cruises has a new incentive aimed at inspiring guests sailing aboard its ships to plop down a deposit on a future cruise.

What’s novel about the future cruise option, which is routine across the industry, is that, in this case, guests don’t have to immediately decide when or where their future cruise will be. At the same time, the cruise line gets a boost in its revenue coffers.

MSC Cruises Introduces ‘Open Booking’ Policy

MSC Cruises rolled out an Open Booking program across its fleet of 23 ships, offering current guests the chance to book a future vacation at sea without having to identify a ship, itinerary, or departure date.

Under the program, guests sailing aboard any MSC Cruises’ ship can pay a reduced deposit of $100 (or €100 or £100, for Eurozone and UK guests), and receive a document certifying they have up to 12 months to choose the particulars of the future cruise, including selection of ship, itinerary, and embarkation date.

The cruise line did, however, sweeten the deal for those who make their future cruise decision within 60 days of deposit. Those who do so will receive an onboard credit, per cabin, of up to $200 (or €200 or £200). 

There also is an incentive for selecting their specific ship and cruise within one year of making the open booking — an onboard credit of  up to $100. 

We want to offer our guests more flexibility in choosing their next ship and sailing date and the Open Booking programme gives guests onboard up to a year to make that decision while earning future credit for their next holiday at sea,an MSC Cruises’ statement explained.

MSC Cruise Ships
Photo Copyright: Obatala-photography / Shutterstock

The Open Booking incentive is meant to complement a program that MSC Cruises introduced in mid-2023, called the Future Cruise program. Under that policy, any travel agent who handled the original cruise booking will receive full commission when their client selects the ship and sail date of his Open Booking cruise.

Read Also: Why Are MSC Cruises So Cheap?

Other advantages of the Future Cruise program include the ability to alter a reservation before final payment is made. Besides the shipboard credit offerings, cruisers who book their future sailing while onboard a ship will receive double points for MSC Voyagers Club, the line’s loyalty program.

MSC Cruises Plans Homeport Expansion in US

The MSC Cruises’ fleet provides prospective cruisers with hundreds of itineraries to choose from across the globe, and in the US, the line homeports ships at PortMiami and Port Canaveral in Florida and at New York City’s Brooklyn Cruise Terminal. 

Starting in the fall of 2025, the cruise line will expand its homeports to Galveston, Texas, following an agreement with the port to build a fourth cruise terminal, where the line’s MSC Seascape will be based.

MSC Meraviglia Cruise Ship
MSC Meraviglia Cruise Ship (Photo Credit: Karolis Kavolelis / Shutterstock)

The port announced on February 6, 2024, that it reached a $142 million development deal to renovate an existing cargo warehouse into a new terminal for MSC Cruises. Under the plan, the 5,200-guest ship will begin sailing from Galveston in November 2025.

Thirteen of the line’s ships, including MSC Seascape, offer guests the MSC Yacht Club experience, and cruisers can select one of these ships when they make their final choice under the new Open Booking program.

The ship-within-a-ship luxury enclave offers guests a private restaurant, club members-only pool and sun deck, butler and concierge services, exclusive lounges, and many other perks and bonuses.

The MSC Yacht Club is offered onboard MSC Bellissima, MSC Divina, MSC Euribia, MSC Fantasia, MSC Grandiosa, MSC Meraviglia, MSC Preziosa, MSC Seascape, MSC Seashore, MSC Seaside, MSC Seaview, MSC Splendida, MSC Virtuosa, and MSC World Europa.

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